Principal's Message

Dear Godwin Families,                                                                                                  August 2017

It is with great excitement that I welcome you back to Godwin School for the 2017-2018 school year. The staff and I are eager to meet your children for a year full of learning, growth and maturity. 

The Midland Park School District continues to make significant facility upgrades during the summer months.  At Godwin School, the All-Purpose Room walls were outfitted with mats and a new floor was laid.  Next on the agenda are stage curtains and drapes for the windows.  Our sound system was upgraded a few years ago and will work beautifully with the automated projection screen and rear mounted projector.   They were set up at the end of last year, due in part to the generosity of the MPPEF.  The hallways on the first and second floors have been retiled to match the classrooms.  Steady progress continues to be made every summer to ensure a comfortable learning environment for your child(ren). 

The Writers Workshop curriculum in grades K-2 has been revised with the assistance of Gravity Goldberg and teacher volunteers.  This year, teachers will receive professional development in Readers Workshop and the Balanced Literacy Approach.  We are in year two of our partnership with our math consultant, Mary Oates.  This years focus will be to revise the math assessments and align them further with PARCC.  Students in grades K-2 will embark on the Next Generation Science Standards in conjunction with Enrichment.  Along with educating our students in the fundamentals of Reading, Writing and Arithmetic, we try to instill manners and respect for the world around them.  We encourage our students to say please and thank you; follow directions from the teachers, instructional aides, and lunch aides; be on time for school and not play on the front lawn or hill near the driveway.  We find value in all of these life lessons and ask for your help by reinforcing them at home.

Please join me in welcoming several new staff members: 

  • Erin Gonzalez joins our first grade team
  • Cassandra Clapsaddle joins the kindergarten team as the general education collaborative teacher
  • Laurie Barragan is the new full day preschool teacher
  • Betty Sanchez is the new Spanish and ESL teacher

Kindness and Respect are my two favorite words and I have shared this with the students since I started working in Midland Park.  I use those words with the children on a daily basis and remind them how simple it is to be kind and respectful to everyone.  Assembly programs and classroom lessons focus on character education traits and Kelly Scala, the guidance counselor, teaches weekly lessons to 1st/2nd graders from the Second Step Program to promote social and life skills.  Every adult in our building serves as role models and uses positive reinforcement to encourage appropriate behaviors.   

Some general information to get you started this year:

Entrance Time: K-2nd grade students will be permitted to enter the building at 8:00am and report to the All-Purpose Room.   Good behavior is expected in the All-Purpose Room during line-up.

Highland Specials: The students will walk across the street for several specials throughout the week, therefore, we remind parents to watch the weather and send students with umbrellas and/or raincoats when necessary.  (The MPPEF generously donated umbrellas to Godwin School in case your child forgets one.)

Up-to-Date Information:  Please utilize the district website and Godwin School webpage for more information:  You may also register for district e-blasts and receive timely updates and information.

If your child will be absent:  The responsible adult must call the school before 8am at 201-445-5350 option 1. Please leave the date, caller’s name, student name, the child’s teacher’s name, and reason for absence on the answering machine.  PLEASE SPEAK SLOWLY AND CLEARLY.

Student Lunch:  The Pomptonian Food Service provides lunch for the Godwin students.  The standard lunch price is $2.75, milk is $0.65 and fruit juice is $0.70.  All parents are encouraged to sign up their child for the Pay For It Program, which is a credit-based system that makes buying lunch easier.  No need to find cash in the morning, no more lost lunch money and no wondering where did your change go.  Go to the Godwin School’s Webpage and then to Lunch Program and click Pay For It on the left side.  The student menu is also located there.

First Day lunch will be Hot Dogs with Sweet Potato Fries; deli sandwich choice of Turkey & Cheese on a Wrap with lettuce and tomato; and of course always available, Bagel Meal and Yogurt lunch.   (The menu will be given out on the first day of school.)

Kindergarten Lunch: I highly discourage kindergarteners from buying lunch for the first three months of school.  It is very difficult for the children to purchase their lunch and consume it in the allotted time frame.  Their ability to balance their lunch tray, pay the cashier, get a fork and make it to their seat is a bit of a struggle at the start of the year.  Give your child a little time to acclimate to school and the time frame for lunch before allowing them to purchase.  At home, have your child practice opening their food containers and eating everything in 25 minutes.  

Visiting the School:  Parents wishing to speak to a teacher are asked to make an appointment through the main office.  In the interest of school security, parents may not go directly to a teacher’s classroom.  Teachers have been instructed not to hold conferences when supervising students, especially during dismissal.

GREEN FOLDER Mandatory paperwork: On the first day of school, your child will receive a green folder containing many documents that must be signed.  Please review and return the necessary documents ASAP to the homeroom teacher. 

Lunch and Recess Procedures: To ensure a safe school environment, our staff makes every effort to guide our students to make responsible and respectful decisions.  Lunch and recess provide opportunities for the children to socialize and play with one another. While this time each day is more unstructured than instructional time, good behavior is always expected and appreciated.  Please note: students are not permitted to bring electronic games, trading cards, silly bands, balls and other toys to school (unless permitted by administration).

Thank you for your anticipated cooperation.  Lastly, please contact the Godwin Office at any time with questions or concerns.  Mrs. Carol Berninger, our Godwin School secretary, and I are more than happy to speak with you.  We will see you on September 6, 2017.  


Ms. Danielle Bache, Principal


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