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Phoenix, NY 13135
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News and Articles for Phoenix Central School District.

Phoenix students display musical talents at NYSSMA Solo Festival

Phoenix music students displayed their musical expertise in this year’s NYSSMA Solo Festival held at the Mexico middle school.

The NYSSMA Solo Festival is a state festival where students perform in front of certified music adjudicators. A written evaluation and score are given to each student that participates. Levels are given to solos based on their difficulty, ranging from one to six.

At this festival, students were also required to play a short sight reading passage as well as perform scales/rudiments. Advanced students may qualify for honor ensembles next year based on this year’s scores.

A few John C Birdlebough student highlights were: 10th grade Brian Breen who received a 100 on the marimba and a 98 on the flute, 10th grade Zachary Thompson who received a 99 on the tenor saxophone, 11th grade Mattingly Gleason who received a 99 on the oboe, 10th grade Daniel Knowlton who received a 96 on the trumpet, 12th grade Rachel Isbell who received a 96 on the clarinet, 11th grade Jacob Nicolini who received a 94 on the trumpet and ninth grade Dixon Ameele who received a 95 on the alto saxophone.

“Josh Margrey, Wyatt Parker and Ryan Luke performed marimba trio ‘Chasing the Caribou’ for comments only,” said music teacher David Frateschi. “The judge was wowed by their performance and said they had a very mature performance that was ‘amazing, brilliant, meticulously prepared and marvelous.’”



Phoenix students participate in NYSSMA Solo Festival. Front row from left to right: Wyatt Parker, Derick White, Kristen Clapp, Kaitlyn Greer, Rachel Isbell and Mattingly Gleason. Back row from left to right: Zachary Thompson, Daniel Knowlton, Dixon Ameele, Jacob Nicolini, Sean Sievers, Brian Breen, Ryan Luke and Joshua Margrey.


2015-2016 Budget Passes

 Click here to read our budget newsletter!

 Voting Outcomes:

#1  Budget Proposition:  456 Yes  to 127 No

#2  Purchase of Buses:  423 Yes to 142 No

#3  Capital Reserve for Building Improvements:   426  Yes  137 No

#4  Capital Bus Reserve   408 Yes  150 No


Board Members who won seats:

Kevin Dix  3 Year Term  -  382 votes

Daniel Dunn 3 - Year Term  - 341 votes

Debra Green  3- Year Term  -  356 votes

Earl Rudy - 2 Year Term  -   322 votes

Wayne Halstead - 2 Year Term  -  288 votes

Board Members who did not win:

Denise Wolniak-Bernard -  280 votes

Dr. David J. Isabella – 253 votes

Jim Graham  - 265 votes

Brad Tangora  - 177 votes

Phoenix students recognized for qualities of citizenship

Emerson J. Dillon students were recognized by Principal Sue Anderson for being good citizens and demonstrating the qualities of being dependable, responsible, courteous, thoughtful of others, congenial, friendly and showing school pride through the “Dillon Way.”

The “Dillon Way” motto at EJD Middle School is: Respect + Responsibility=Success. Students were congratulated during morning announcements and received a certificate for serving as excellent role models for their peers.

Students recognized were Gabriella Allen, Isabella Allen, Gracie Altman, Sarah Ashby, Amaya Baker, Virginia Bednarski, Adrianna Breckheimer, Lana Brown, Sara Brunell, Chloe Calkins, Danielle Case, Chloe Coughlin, Mary Crandall, Hailie Dailey, Mackenzie Davis, Gianna DeRoberts, Mariah Gilligan, Jayde Jacobson, Karson Kimball, Alivia Lamphere, Maggie LaPine, Danielle Lefebvre, Ross McFarland, Christian McKay, Caitlyn Mitchell, Alex Olschewski, Carter Pinkley, Kaitlyn Pyzdrowski, Andrew Quinn, Gabriel Rebensky, Keaton Renfrew , Olivia Ripley, Lily Roberts, Hannah Sallis, Olivia Snyder, Olivia Thrall, Josh Van Gorder, Grace Vestigo, Mason Watkins and Molly Werth.


Phoenix students receive citizenship awards.


Driver’s Education at Phoenix / JCB

There are still some openings for Summer’s Driver Education –The program runs from July 1, 2015 through August 14, 2015.  The program cost is $95 and you need to be 16 years old to be eligible and have your permit. Students can contact the guidance office if they would like an application and/or more details. Thank you!

JCB Music Department Visits Chicago

 66 students from the John C Birdlebough music department recently visited Chicago, Illinois and got a first-hand look at the culture of one of America’s major cities!

Phoenix kindergartners practice kindness

In Lucille Mercer’s kindergarten class at Michael A. Maroun Elementary School, students are developing academic skills and learning life lessons as well.

As part of a community service initiative, Mercer’s students recently donated a shopping cart full of canned goods to the Phoenix food pantry. The students were eager to help those in need, their teacher noted, and the donations poured in.

“This is something that is important to me and to the students too,” Mercer said. “It’s an easy way for them to get involved and help their community.”

While browsing the shelves at the food pantry and adding their items to the inventory, students talked with volunteers about the importance of helping others. “There are people out there who don’t have money and need some help getting food,” said kindergartner Jacob Schroeder. “We’re helping them!”

Kindergarten students in Lucille Mercer’s class donate nonperishable goods to the Phoenix food pantry. 

Artist, storyteller captivates Phoenix middle school students

A performance weaving together folktales, music and art captivated students at Emerson J. Dillon Middle School in early May.

The program, “StoryFaces,” featured sixth and eighth-grade students as they were transformed into characters and scenes from different folktales. Artist and storyteller Christopher Agostino shared tales that were inspired by different cultures in different time periods. With the help of student volunteers, Agostino made the stories come to life through art.

“All cultures use masks and makeup,” Agostino said. “Masks and makeup are used for theatrical purposes, for celebrations and festivals, and for individual self-expression.”

To illustrate these three forms of masks, Agostino took his paint brush and used students’ faces as canvases.  He transformed one student into a Samurai warrior while discussing the Japanese culture behind the artwork.

According to EJD art teacher Beth Pritchard, Agostino’s visit was a true cultural experience for the students. “The storytelling, connecting literacy with the arts, talking about world cultures … everything in his performance has a strong tie to the curriculum,” she said.

The performance was made possible through the Arts-in-Education service at the Center for Instruction, Technology & Innovation.

  1. Artist and storyteller Christopher Agostino transforms Emerson J. Dillon eighth-graders into characters and scenes from different folktales.

EJD, JCB student leaders attend conference

Student leaders are emerging in the Phoenix Central School District and they recently had a chance to collaborate with their peers during a conference.

Held in Central Square, the 15th annual Student Leadership Conference provided an opportunity for student leaders from across Oswego County to unite and share ideas. Seven student representatives from the PCSD attended workshops and roundtable presentations, met with local dignitaries, and listened as keynote speaker, Ian Tyson, presented his “Comedy with a Message” approach.

The PCSD student leaders who attended the presentation were John C. Birdlebough High School Student Council officers McKinzi Hess and Conrad Karl, and Emerson J. Dillon Middle School Student Council officers Caitlin George, Hannah Gilbert, Tina Li, Wendy Li and Garrett Watkins.

Phoenix high school students earn awards for service to community

Volunteerism and community spirit resonated throughout the Phoenix Veterans of Foreign Wars hall Thursday, as 18 John C. Birdlebough High School students earned President’s Youth Service Awards.

The annual awards ceremony recognized Phoenix students who have gone above and beyond to serve their community. Service projects include volunteering at the food pantry, ringing the bell for the Salvation Army, assisting with Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, helping with church functions, volunteering with the Bridge House Brats, and assisting a variety of other organizations.

“You have all demonstrated a commitment to leadership, service and volunteerism,” said Phoenix Central School District Superintendent Judy Belfield. “Your actions are leaving a lasting positive impact on the community, and I challenge you to continue your service to the community. I’m very proud of you.”

In addition to receiving praise and encouragement from the superintendent, several local dignitaries, community representatives and school officials were also on hand to congratulate the students on their accomplishments. School board President Earl Rudy noted that he was honored to represent a school district whose students set the bar so high.

“Continue to be involved and continue to inspire others,” Rudy said.

Youth of the Year Award recipients Benjamin Bulgrien, Finella Campanino and Maria Musumeci were among the students who Rudy alluded to in his speech.  These students were described with adjective such as dedicated, compassionate, loyal, hardworking, motivated, courageous, intelligent and outgoing.

According to JCB Principal Greg Molloy, the academic and civic accomplishments of the Youth of the Year Award winners are qualities that should be emulated by others. These individuals, he said, are “examples of all that is right in this world.”

In addition to the youths of the year, awards were also presented to students who logged hundreds of volunteer hours to benefit the Phoenix community. Silver Awards (300 or more hours of service) were given to Kellen Arnold, Megan Brown, Brooke Dolbear, Kyle LaPine, Katelyn McDonald, Patrick Murphy, Hunter Nerber, Adam Pinzer, Jason Thoryk and Jolene Zaia. Gold Awards (more than 500 hours of community service) were presented to Ryley Doupe and Sarah Hoag, while the Golden Medallion Awards -- for 1,000-plus hours of community service – went to Bradley Dietz, Daniel Frawley and Tyler Gabrielle.

Pictured are the recipients of the President’s Youth Service awards and the Youth of the Year awards.

Sophomore Career Exploration

Rather than hosting a traditional career day at the high school, JCB sends their students out to various job sites of their interests. Check out this career exploration video!