South Orangetown Central School District

Starting Monday, South Orangetown schools will partner with hundreds of other schools and youth organizations nationwide for “Start With Hello Week.” A Sandy Hook Promise initiative, “Start With Hello Week” promotes an inclusive school culture and aligns with the district’s comprehensive K-12 character education programming.

South Orangetown Middle School first participated in “Start With Hello Week” in 2016. SOCES PTA reached out to CLE Principal Karen Ramirez this summer about “Start With Hello Week.” She shared event information with other principals, who decided to join in, too.

“SOMS is excited to again partner with schools across the United States, as well as William O. Schaefer Elementary School, Cottage Lane Elementary School and Tappan Zee High School,” said SOMS Interim Principal Dr. Chad Corey. “As a school, we strive to create a culture of inclusion and connectedness. Participating in ‘Start with Hello Week’ is another way to continue developing needed skills.”

“We are doing this work all the time,” explained Ms. Ramirez. “‘Courage’ is our September Word of the Month. Since the first week of school, we’ve been talking with students about how it takes courage to reach out to someone you may not know and to build new friendships. ‘Start With Hello Week’ is one more opportunity to reinforce our character education lessons.”

¨At William O. Schaefer Elementary School, we strive to develop empowered, caring, flexible and resilient children who are self aware and able to adjust behaviors and actions to improve their situation and the situations of others,” said WOS Principal Sheila Beglin. “This month, we are focusing on the importance of being respectful, kind and caring. Our students have been learning ways to be good to one another and to take care of each other at WOS. Participating in ‘Start with Hello Week’ allows us to continue this work while partnering with other SOCSD schools.”

“Students at Tappan Zee High School continue to strive toward the four core values that we as a school identified several years ago and included in our ‘TZ Zone’: respect, responsibility, empathy, and kindness,” TZHS Principal Dr. Jennifer Amos commented. “‘Start with Hello’ is one way that we seek to extend opportunities to practice these character values, as we continue to be intentional in our work to take care of one another.”

Stay tuned to our district and school social media feeds September 24-28 to see how our students “Start With Hello”!

Start With Hello event logo