From the Principal's Desk



From the Principal's Desk  


It is amazing how quickly the pace has accelerated since those lazy summer days. Teachers have focused on familiarizing students with the structures and rules that help classrooms function efficiently and provide a safe and nurturing environment as they introduce students to the new curriculum. You can feel the excitement in the air that comes with the new year.


I regret that I was not able to join you for curriculum night. I have been struggling with some hip pain and needed to limit my evening work hours. I am hoping that with some treatment I will be back to my usual pace soon.


We are fortunate to have additional staff working with your children during this school year. Our staff includes numerous part and full time assistants, interns, and other support personnel that assist with instruction.


We welcome six student teachers this fall:

Melissa Leonard Kindergarten with Ms. Corbo-Hudak

Katie Wan           Grade 1 with Ms. McGrath

Brittany MacInnis Grade 2 with Ms. Hingston (Hunter)

Mike DeCoste      Grade 4 with Ms. Ludman

Mark Myers        Grade 5 with Ms. Costello

Rachel Griggs      Grade 5 with Ms. Addleman


Assistants have also been assigned in several classrooms to support students in our special education program:

Andrea Baras    Ms. Corbo-Hudak

Taryn Goldman    Ms. MacKenzie

Thuy Truong      Ms. Fabrizio

Abbey Patteson   Ms. Hingston

Ann Siegel          Mr. Hammer

Katie Haylon         Ms. Goldman/Ms. Beaulieu-Jones

Meagan Golden    Ms. Ludman

David Benson     Ms. Addleman


As part of our Response to Intervention (RTI) program, we have two literacy aides, Laurie Filreis and Jason Rago, working with Ms. Franklin to provide additional instruction to identified students in Kindergarten through Grade 3. In addition, Shirley Perez is joining us to provide math intervention in Grades 1 and 2.


Additional support is provided by our Northeastern University Intern, Hannah Kilfoye; our Building Aide, Kelsey Shine; and our Building Based Substitutes, Laurel Kaplan and Tom Doering when they are not covering classes. Since both fourth grade classes increased to 26 students, we were granted additional part-time aides. Cassandra Spittel is working with Ms. Kaplan and Luke Sheppard is working with Ms. Ludman.


Thank you for your generous support of our PTO fundraising efforts that allowed us to purchase 4 iPads for each class in grades K-2 and 4 laptops for each Grade 3-5 classroom. This will supplement our mobile labs that are always in high demand. The district also provided 4 iPads, 4 laptops, and 2 desktop computers for our library.


Parents of students in Grades 4 and 5 should be receiving MCAS results next week. Individual student reports will be mailed home from central office.


A reminder about security...

The doors will not be unlocked until 8:20 AM. Please time your arrival accordingly and dress your children for the weather. If you need child care early in the morning, you may enroll your child in the before school program. More information is available on the NPS website. Please wait outdoors for dismissal unless you have a meeting with a teacher. We are working to comply with district regulations to increase our security.

Thank you.


I hope you can join me for a Principal's Coffee on Thursday, October 3 at 8:30 AM in the Dolphin Café to review our goals for the upcoming year.


Warmest wishes,



REGISTRATION OPEN for Fourth Grade Instrumental Music Lessons and Band & Orchestra Ensembles

  • FOURTH GRADE PROGRAM: Students entering the fourth grade who would like to learn how to play a band or string instrument should register for the program prior to September 20th. Early registration is appreciated. Students enrolled in this program will receive one weekly 30-minute lesson during the school day. Schedules will be created in early September based on enrollments. Lessons are scheduled to begin the week of September 23rd. The website link below will lead you to information about acquiring a musical instrument. The fee to participate in this program is $150 ($75 per semester) and Financial Assistance is available by application which can also be found on the Music Program web page. Students who qualify for financial assistance also qualify for a scholarship instrument. Lessons are not provided for piano or guitar.
  • ELEMENTARY BAND AND ORCHESTRA ENSEMBLES: These ensembles are primarily offered to students who participated in the Forth Grade Lesson Program and would like to continue with their musical endeavors in Fifth Grade. Students will participate in one rehearsal per week held during the school day and will perform a minimum of two concerts (winter concert/end of year concert). The fee to participate in this program is $150 and Financial Assistance is available by application which can also be found on the Music Program web page. Students are expected to participate for the full school year unless unique circumstances prevent this. Students who have learned to play a musical instrument before fourth grade and students who already play the piano or guitar through private lessons are eligible to participate in the Band/Orchestra Ensemble at their school. Please contact the instrumental music teacher at your school to learn more.

PROGRAM INFORMATION & REGISTRATION: Registration information and program details can be found on the Newton Public Schools website under Music Programs - Online Registration and Fee Payments are available or you can download a registration form and mail it with your fee payment to: Fine Arts Office, Newton Public Schools, 100 Walnut Street, Newton, MA 02460. If you have questions about these programs, please contact Richard King, Fine Arts Coordinator at 617-559-6149 or by




Audrey Parad Peller
John Ward Elementary School
10 Dolphin Road
Newton Centre, MA 02459