BES News Team: (l-r) Ms. Hunt, Ms. Ronety, sportscaster Matthew Schaaphok, weatherman Chance Burdick, news anchor Levi Sroka, news segment producer Jacob Bonesteel, Mrs. Baker and news segment producer Kaileigh Volks.


Each month BES Principal Tracy Kent and the school’s Character Education Committee choose a mindset theme for the students and staff. February’s mindset at BES was, I am humble.

This year’s monthly assemblies are hosted by Principal Tracy Kent over Zoom, a platform that allows students to gather virtually from home if they are remote or while in their classrooms at BES. Principal Kent uses this time to build a community within the school and unite all students both in person and remote.

After Principal Kent welcomed the 77 participants –18 of which were full classrooms– to the virtual assembly, the BES students chorally recited the “Mountaineer Mantra.” The assembly was then turned over to Ms. Rontey and Mrs. Baker who had a special presentation for the BES Mountaineers.

Mrs. Baker talked about what being humble means and the different ways students can engage in the character trait.

“Being humble is, being respectful, polite, showing gratitude, being a good sport and putting others before yourself.”

Ms. Rontey and Mrs. Baker asked BES students to think about how they can show their peers that they are humble.

The presentation was then passed to the BES News Team: news anchor Levi Sroka, sportscaster Matthew Schaaphok, weatherman Chance Burdick and news segment producers Jacob Bonesteel and Kaileigh Volks.

The third grader’s newscast was a first for BES and focused on being humble. Anchor Levi Sorka covered the successful BES humane society drive, and sportscaster Matthew Schaaphok shared a story about a humble display of sportsmanship during a Taconic Valley Youth basketball game.

With an assist from segment producers Jacob Bonesteel and Kaileigh Volks, weatherman Chance Burdick talked about how all the snow that has been falling lately led to a humble act on the playground. To see the full newscast please go to this BCSD YouTube page link

BES News’ first episode was a hit, and the elementary students look forward to future newscasts, so stay tuned.

As the assembly concluded, Principal Kent announced February’s Mountain Climbers, Mountain Guides and Mountaineer Merit recipients. Being a Mountaineer means being responsible, safe and respectful.

Mountaineer Merits are given out throughout the month by BES staff and bus drivers to celebrate students who are demonstrating these traits. The students are given merits, which are deposited in the Mountaineer Merit container found in the Elementary School’s main hallway. At the assembly each month Principal Kent draws 10 merit recipients, which includes both in-person and remote students (5 from kindergarten to second grade and 5 from third to fifth grades) who then receive a prize.

Mountain Guides and Mountain Climbers are chosen by the teachers each month. Mountain Guide awards go to students who consistently follow the expectations at school and serve as role models for others. A Mountain Climber award goes to students who are working really hard and showing improvement to meet the behavior expectations.

Congratulations to these award recipients for February:


Mountaineer Merit: Theodore Reed, Kaydin MacRoberts, Riley Blakely, Stanton Murray, Erin Stott, Aryn Hunt, Tabitha Hurd, Ryland Crowley, Mason Homiak and Benjamin Maxon

Mountain Climbers: Savannah Schrump, Kameryn Hathaway, Jameson Murphy, Henry Perkins, Alyssa Jagrosse, Ethan Stata and Kody Quick


Mountain Guides: Ryan Sausville, Henley Sorbello, Lilliana Killeen, Chase King, Dawson Taylor, Nevaeh Dudley, Nicholas Meyers, Kiley Quetti, Savannah Hammon, Alyah Varela and Rylee Colantonio