Skip To Main Content

Principal's Newsletter-November 2023

Dear Parents and Students,

November is upon us and as always there are plenty of events planned in the coming weeks.  We will continue our work on building safety and security, practicing several types of evacuation drills.  This month we will run a full-scale lockdown drill involving the Mt. Pleasant Police Department.  Like all of our drills, this drill will be unannounced as well.  This is intentional so that we can assess how our staff and students perform without advance notice.   Our internal systems have been updated with an automated lockdown system that, once activated, will now have a recorded audible alarm broadcasting over the PA system.  This will sound different to students as they are used to my voice over the PA system when lockdown drills have been held in the past.  Please take a moment to share this with your child and I will have teachers do the same in their classes.

Our instructional highlight this month is focused on two areas.  First, our seniors in their Government & Economic Theory class have been introduced to the world of stock investing and will be engaged in the Stock Market Game over the next few months.  Mr. Marinaccio and Ms. DeNoia, our 12th-grade Gov/Econ teachers have already introduced the application to students.  Through this simulation, students will be trading stocks in real-time with $100,000 for companies listed on the NYSE and NASDAQ. Students started by researching companies that they believed would see growth, deciding the number of stocks they would like to purchase, trading the stocks on the platform, and finally tracking their trades on their investment trackers in class. This is a great time for students to talk to parents and family members about the stock market and the economy. Students can gain knowledge from family and friends about different industries and ways to make informed financial decisions.  This is one of the steps we take to introduce concepts connected to Financial Literacy and will be followed by a more intricate application called “The Budget Challenge” in the second semester.

Additionally, 9th and 10th grade Math and ELA classes administered the STAR assessment over the past two weeks.  This assessment is yet another piece of data to help teachers understand how our students are performing in regard to fundamental skills in Math and Reading.  These assessments are aligned to grade-level standards and can help teachers design instruction that can target areas in need of intervention.  This is the first of what will be a fall, winter, and spring assessment and will serve as important feedback in designing coursework moving forward.

The Winter Athletic Season is right around the corner, but I wanted to take a moment to congratulate our fall athletes on a spirited and well-played season.  Congratulations to our Varsity Cheer Team on being named Class C Game Day Champions at the recent WPDRCCA Competition!  This is an incredible win and we are looking forward to their winter season competitions.  Additionally, we still have sectional competitions for some of our teams as they head into post-season play. Please come out and support:

  • Varsity Football Section 1 Class C Semi-Final on Friday, November 3, at 6:00 pm versus Valhalla at WHS.
  • Varsity Swimmers, Kiera Naughton, Melania Petriccione, and Sophia Stemkowski, as they all head to Felix Festa Middle School in West Nyack, NY on Wednesday, November 1, and Thursday, November 2.

WHS Fall Drama Production:

November is an exciting month for our theater program.  Our Westlake Players have been hard at work preparing for this year’s fall drama, 12 Angry Jurors.  This is a classic and incredible drama and will be brought to life on the Westlake Stage on November 17, 18, and 19.  I hope everyone will come out and support our student actors during one of their performances.  Thank you to our Drama Directors, Mrs. Toni Williams and Mr. Mike Williams, and to the entire cast and crew for their hard work in preparing for the show.

Remember the First Quarter ends on November 9th.

Friday, November 3:             Underclassmen Photo Makeup Day

Tuesday, November 7:         Fall Institute -- Half Day for Students

Thursday, November 9:       End of Quarter 1 Report Card/Marking Period

Thursday, November 9:       Varsity Cheerleaders host the Harlem Wizards 7:00-9:00 pm WHS Gymnasium

Friday, November 10:           Veteran’s Day -- School Closed

Friday & Saturday, November 17-18:     WHS Drama - 8:00 pm WHS Auditorium

Sunday, November 19:         WHS Drama -- 1:00 pm (Senior Citizen Luncheon at 12:00 pm)

Sunday, November 19:         Mt. Pleasant Education Foundation Turkey Trot -- 8:30-11:00 am WHS        

Wednesday, November 22:   Half Day (Thanksgiving Recess)

Thursday & Friday, November 23-24:  Thanksgiving Recess -- School closed

Wednesday, November 29:  Financial Aid Night 7:00 pm WHS Auditorium

Please see the attached fundraiser information from:

The Mount Pleasant Education Foundation – Turkey Trot:

The WHS PTA – Thanksgiving Pies:

Westlake Football Booster Club -- Designer Bag Bingo: Designer Bag Bingo Flyer.pdf 

Hope to see you on campus at one of our events!


Keith Schenker