Morgan Frisch/Recorder staff
Fonda-Fultonville District Superintendent Thomas Ciaccio speaks to the board of education about late buses Tuesday while Board President Matt Sullivan listens.


Recorder News Staff

FONDA — Officials at the Fonda-Fultonville Central School District are making strides to ensure students can join clubs and get the necessary extra help they need after school.

At Tuesday’s F-FCS Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Thomas Ciaccio spoke to the board about adding two more late bus runs per month.

“As you know, we have expanded our clubs in the high school and middle school, and we have a lot of students involved in many activities,” Ciaccio told the board. “Many students stay after school for extra help and support.”

Ciaccio said he received an email from a student and has also talked with Laura Sullivan, vice president of the  Fonda-Fultonville Teacher’s Association (FFTA).

“She came to me asking is it possible to look at a couple more days that we could bring the late bus here at Fonda-Fultonville for our middle school and high school students,” Ciaccio said.

The late bus currently runs every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Ciaccio said on trial basis they will begin having the late bus on the second and fourth Wednesday of the month as well. The district’s 10th period currently runs from approximately 2:30 p.m. until 3:15 p.m.

“It’s a win-win for us. We just want to evaluate it in January and if we think it’s going well, and all we need is those two days, we will keep it at that,” Ciaccio said. “If we think we need to add another day then we will discuss how we can do that.”

Ciaccio said they picked those specific days because staff and departments are unavailable to meet with students on other days.

He said they are also going to be adjusting some of the times when clubs meet so students don’t have to choose which ones to join. Ciaccio said club advisers have heard students say they don’t want to have to pick one club over another.

“As you stated, it’s not just for clubs,  it’s also if someone wants to stay after for extra help,” Board member Dennis Egelston said.

Ciaccio agreed, also mentioning that having broadband at home is an issue for some of the outreaching areas of the district. He said last year, district technology specialist Danielle Knabe opened up a computer lab for students after school.

“We are going to be opening up that lab again. We will have it on these two days as well,” Ciaccio said. “So again, it’s not just for clubs, it’s for students to get help and use some of the computer technology that they might not have available at home.”

High school Principal Aaron Grady said adding these bus runs is going to increase opportunity.

“In a district like ours, that is so heavily dependent on transportation for our students to take part in the full educational experience, I think anytime you can add an opportunity throughout the course of the week that will assist them in getting home, adding that extra Wednesday, even though it only starts with just two days additional a month, it’s going to provide our students the opportunity to join more clubs, to not have to pick and choose between which club to attend,” Grady said.

He said the academic piece, “speaks for itself” noting that it will increase individual time students will have after school getting help from the teachers.

“It’s about increasing opportunities and involvement in their school community,” Grady said.