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Bronxville Students Earn Top Honors at Regional History Competition PDF Print Email


By Michael Ganci, Syntax for The Bronxville School

May 6, 2020: A group of Bronxville High School freshmen and sophomores earned top honors at the prestigious 2020 Lower Hudson Valley Regional National History Day Competition.

The students – who had been conducting extensive historical research on a topic of their choice over the last several months – electronically submitted their work to be judged by professors and scholars. Focused on this year’s National History Day theme of “Breaking Barriers in History,” their work was displayed in one of five ways – paper, website, documentary, performance, or exhibit. 

“All students who competed at the regional level this year had to embody the theme of ‘breaking barriers,’ as they needed to shift how their projects were judged and foresee the types of questions that would have been asked in their interviews when they submitted their images, transcript of projects and reflection,” said teacher Dana Landesman, who oversees the program with Kris Hart, Bill Meyer, and Christina Reidel. “We are so proud of all of their hard work and effort.” 

Similar to the regional competition, the New York State National History Day competition will be held virtually. 

Congratulations to the following students who earned awards in these categories: 

Research Paper: 

-Isaiah Weir – First place 

-Aarna Pal-Yadav – Second place 

Documentary (Individual): 

-Amelia Grullon – Second place 

Documentary (Group): 

-Olivia Cevasco and Rowan Baror – first place 

Exhibit (Individual): 

-Jack Evans – First place  

-Thomas Garofalo – Third place  

Exhibit (Group): 

-Eliza Brennan, Elizabeth Burnell, Maya Madhavan, Bethany Lee, and Sydney Tuck – First place 

-Joseph Cutaia and Jeremy Freeman – Second place 

Website (Individual): 

-Conner Huang – Second place 

-Teresa Markola – Third place 

Website (Group): 

-Erin Foley, Caroline Ircha, Carmen Phillips, Molly Stoltz, and Alice Vranka – First place 

-Edmond Hannigan, Alexander Kupersmith, and Theodore Veru – Third place  

Performance (Individual): 

-Alex Rice – First place 

Performance (Group): 

-Jake Berman and Hudson Zivic – First place 

Photo courtesy of the Bronxville Union Free School District

Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.

Bronxville School Virtual Learning, Tenure Appointments & Financial Report PDF Print Email


By Staff

Apr. 22, 2020: The Bronxville School Board of Education held its April 21, 2020 meeting over Zoom last night.

Bronxville School Board President, Jonathan Atkeson, opened the meeting by thanking the teachers and administration for the fantastic job they are doing in these unusual times.

Bronxville School Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Roy Montesano, thanked retiring Bronxville School Foundation Executive Director, Peggy Williams, for the great job she has done for many years.

Dr. Montesano confirmed that the School building is closed through May 15 and that virtual learning is ongoing. He said that he does not know when the School building will reopen. As a result, the School is planning for two scenarios (reopening and virtual learning) for academics, clubs, and end of year activities such as baccalaureate, graduation, and senior week.

Dr. Mara Koetke, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, described the virtual learning that is taking place in all three schools. The teachers are using a wide variety of technology in their classes, including Zoom, Google Slides, Kahn Academy, IXL, Big Ideas Math, Google Forms, Kahoot!, and Quizlet, among others. Extracurricular activities such as clubs are continuing over Zoom as well. Grading for Middle and High School for the 4th Quarter will be pass-fail, which is what many public and private schools are doing at this time.

The Board approved the following six tenure candidates: In the Elementary School, Anthony Vaflica (Physical Education), Jeannine Scaramuzzino (Special Education), Jessica Clark (Special Education), and Alexa Vafeades (Special Education); In Middle School, Alyssa Dioguardi (English); and in High School, Rob Cross (English).

Assistant Superintendent for Business, Dan Carlin, said that the School budget is currently tracking with a $900,000 surplus due to significant savings from the shutdown. He anticipates that the School will be in a strong financial position going into next year, which is good news because there is uncertainty about the amount of State Aid that the School will receive.

Carlin also reported that the School's construction projects are proceeding ahead of schedule.

Photo by N. Bower

Bronxville School Board Meets Virtually In Wake of the COVID-19 Emergency: Distance Learning is Focus of Meeting PDF Print Email


By Katharine Outcalt

Mar. 25, 2020: The Bronxville’s School Board of Education met via video conference on Thursday, March 19, 2020, in accordance with Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order 202, which prohibits the gathering of large groups during the COVID-19 emergency.

Jon Atkeson, Bronxville’s School Board President, conducted the meeting via Zoom conferencing with all board trustees and presiding administration present. The meeting centered around the current state of the Bronxville School on day 4 of the school’s transition to remote learning.

Bronxville School Superintendent, Dr. Roy Montesano, painted a picture of moderate success given the circumstances that all students and administrative staff members have suddenly found themselves at home attempting to instruct and learn virtually from programs that are new to the majority.

Montesano commented that the school is “so fortunate that we have a great administrative team and professional staff that have really stepped up big time and have done a lot of work in a short period of time.”

Describing the efforts of the administration, Montesano further commented, “We’ve all focused on one thing, and that is to try to continue the education as best we can given the circumstances that we have for our kids.”

Bronxville’s three principals offered reports on the distance learning experience in their respective schools.

Elementary School Principal, Tricia Murray, described a “really successful first week.” Middle School Principal, Dr. Tom Wilson commented, “The faculty has been outstanding. We hope that as we add value and move toward video conferencing, it will be improved even more.” Both the elementary and middle schools are using Google Classroom as their instruction platform.

High School Principal Ann Meyer is working to keep students engaged and connected while they struggle with a sense of uncertainty as events they have been looking forward to get postponed or canceled.

She is encouraging all clubs to meet virtually and has announced that all regularly scheduled meetings are continuing. “We are really shifting as much as we can to these digital platforms so that our regularly scheduled activities, maybe in a slightly different format, are able to continue.”

Assistant Superintendent Dan Carlin finished the meeting with a silver lining. In his facilities report, he noted that with the absence of students, the construction workers have the run of the building. Construction is moving ahead swiftly.

The School Board’s next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, April 21, unless the COVID-19 emergency gives them a reason to meet earlier.

Bronxville Non-Partisan Committee Invites Community To Submit Insights on School Board Candidates PDF Print Email


By Susan Meaney, Member, Bronxville Non-Partisan Committee

Mar. 11, 2020: The Bronxville Non-Partisan Committee ("NPC") has received two applications from individuals who seek to be nominated by the NPC as candidates for School Board Trustee of The Bronxville School.

Both of the candidates are current School Board Trustees seeking a second term:

Michael Finley

Jennifer Russo 

The NPC invites members of the community to submit insights regarding the candidates to  CLOAKING  or to contact your NPC district representative listed on

These insights will be confidential and shared only within the NPC to help with our deliberations.

Please submit your insights by 5 p.m., Saturday, Mar. 21.


The NPC was formed in 1936 to foster the election of Trustees of the Bronxville School on a non-partisan basis and consists of three elected representatives from each of Bronxville's seven election districts.  

Nomination by the NPC is not a requirement to run for the school board. The NPC seeks qualified Bronxville residents who are interested in serving on the school board. The NPC actively seeks community input about all applicants, then nominates a candidate for each open school board position to run in the school district election each May, while making every effort to be as transparent as possible to the Bronxville community in its process. You can learn more about the NPC at

Photo courtesy Bronxville Non-Partisan Committee

Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.


Grant From Bronxville School Foundation Funding "The Diversity Book Club" in the Elementary School PDF Print Email

By Joseph Hutchins, member, Bronxville School Foundation Board

Mar. 4, 2020: A grant from the Bronxville School Foundation is funding a new elementary school curriculum focused on diversity.

"The Diversity Book Club" provides K-5th grade students the opportunity to learn about the ways in which religion, race, gender, and physical abilities affect their lives and the lives of others.

The teaching is done through the context of children's' picture books. The books are read and discussed in the classroom, then sent home with a guide that includes questions for parents to use as prompts for family discussions.

This curriculum is the result of work done by the Elementary School Diversity Think Tank. The Think Tank began in 2017 and is comprised of 28 teachers with an interest in exploring issues of empathy, equity, and culturally responsive teaching.

The impetus for starting the Think Tank stemmed, in part, from students who expressed a feeling of exclusion.

In the summer of 2018, fifteen teachers attended an on-site training session entitled "Talking About Race" in the classroom. In the summer of 2019, the Foundation funded a grant that sent educators to study at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC.

The Foundation is funding work with Paul Gorski, of EdChange, a leader in scholarship in the field of equity literacy and culturally responsive teaching and learning. Gorski is a world-renowned expert on racial, poverty, and class equality.

Fifth grade teacher Claire Hollocou says, "We have made great strides in this work! Because of the Diversity Book Club, we provide space and time for conversations in which every student feels safe and has a voice in the classroom. This promotes multicultural competence, which is a top skill for college and work environments.

Teachers feel empowered when they see the beauty it brings to the students' experience.

Hollocou further says, "I feel it when I walk into my classroom. We have the ground rules set in place to have the conversations that, in the past, would have been uncomfortable. The impact that this is having is huge."

Pictured: Bronxville Elementary School teacher Claire Hollocou, The Diversity Book Club

Photo courtesy Bronxville School Foundation


Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.


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