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Side by Side is a regional public charter school located in the heart of downtown South Norwalk. As specified in our charter, our integrated student population reflects the diversity of our surrounding community. The 235 students of Side by Side, grades Pre-K through 8th, represent several surrounding Connecticut towns and cities.

Like all charter schools, Side by Side functions independently from any local or traditional public school system. At Side by Side, our innovative approaches toward education allow us to actively and equally involve parents, teachers, and students in our day-to-day operations.

Dear Side by Side Families:

We are looking forward to seeing you on our first day of school, Wednesday, August 28, 2019.   I would like to take this opportunity to bring you up to date with some of the latest information regarding the upcoming school year.

SBS Faculty and Staff:
We are excited to introduce several new members of the teaching faculty at Side by Side.  In addition, we will again be welcoming a cohort of Quinnipiac University Resident Interns who will be working and student-teaching in our classrooms.

New teachers at Side by Side:

•    Pre-School: Please welcome Ms. Jessica DeCrescenzo who will be teaching PreK at Side by Side along with Judie Goldstein.  Jessica is a graduate of Salve Regina University where she majored in Early Childhood Education with a minor in Special Education.  Jessica holds teaching licenses in both CT and Rhode Island for Integrated Early Childhood/Special Ed.  Jessica has spent the past couple of years working as a Head Start teacher in both RI and in Westport, CT.  

Grade 3: Ms. Jane Skalkos-Baldyga will be the new Grade 3 teacher at Side by Side.  Jane is a CT (and Mississippi) certified elementary teacher.  Jane is a graduate of the University of Mississippi (BA in Education) and Sacred Heart University (MAT).  For the past couple of years Jane has been teaching 2nd grade in Bridgeport.  A highlight of Jane’s educational experiences includes being 1 of 36 nationally selected teacher representatives at the renowned Yellowstone STEAM conference.

Upper School (Middle School ELA/Humanities:  Ms. Theresa (Tess) Murphy will be teaching Humanities (Language Arts/Social Studies) to our Upper School students.  Tess is a recent graduate of Quinnipiac University (undergrad BA in English and graduate MAT in secondary education) and a newly certified CT teacher endorsed to teacher English to middle and/or high school students.  Through a residency/internship experience, Tess has spent the last school year at John F. Kennedy Middle School in Southington.  Tess looks forward to integrating important social justice topics and world issues into her ELA/Humanities instruction at Side by Side.

Below is the complete list of 2019-20 teacher assignments at Side by Side:

Executive Director: Matthew Nittoly
Assistant Director: Mary Newbery

Pre-K (A): Jessica DeCrescenzo           Special Education:  Alexandra Amarillo                       
Pre-K (B): Judie Goldstein                    US Mathematics (Gr. 6-8): Nicole Shagoury
Kindergarten: Esther Shatavsky         US Humanities (Gr. 6-8): Tess Murphy
Grade 1: Nell Conroy                            US Science (Gr. 6-8): Sally Davids
Grade 2: Stephanie Palmer                 Art: Cassie Bourgeois
Grade 3: Jane Skalkos-Baldyga           Music: Ivy McFadden
Grade 4: Melanie McGowan               Phys. Ed.: John Seferian
Grade 5: Christopher Berich                Research & portfolio (US): Sean Whalen

Drop-Off and Pick-Up:
Morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up procedures will remain the same.  During all morning and afternoon arrival/dismissal times, Chestnut St. converts to a temporary ONE WAY street (in a South moving direction -- from MONROE ST. towards HENRY ST.)  All student drop-offs and pick-ups will continue at the Chestnut Street entrance of the school (back entrance to the gymnasium in the Pre-K playground area). All vehicles dropping-off/picking up should take MONROE ST. and turn onto CHESTNUT ST. Parents should wait in a car queue lined-up along Chestnut Street leading to the school entrance.  Beginning at *8:50am, students can exit their cars to enter the gymnasium at the playground area entrance.  SBS staff will be assigned to this area to assist.  At dismissal time, parents are to wait in a similar queue of cars no earlier than 3:15pm.  Pick-up students will be dismissed in the same area at 3:30pm.  School staff will be using a student/car tag identification system to escort students to their cars.  Please make note that Chestnut Street will remain a police-monitored, NO PARKING zone.  Parents will not be allowed to park or leave their vehicles unattended. Violators will be ticketed.   To ensure the safety of our students, drop-off and pick-up will not be allowed at any area other than this designated route on Chestnut St. during these times. 

Parents please make note- the Norwalk PD has notified the school that tickets will be issued for any vehicles not following the required laws for child restraint seats

Please be advised that parking at the school is for school-related visitations only.  Parents should NOT be parking and escorting children into school as part of their daily routine.  All students being driven to school should be following the “drop-off and pick-up” procedures noted above. Parents will not be allowed to escort their children to the classrooms during morning drop-off.  

As we have provided in the past, there are two parking areas that are accessible for visitors.   Please understand that both visitor lots are shared with St. Joseph’s Church.  Lot #1 is adjacent to St. Joseph’s Church and has an entrance on S. Main Street.  If you are standing on S. Main St. facing St. J’s, this lot is on the immediate left of the church.  Lot #2 is directly across Henry St. from Lot #1. Lot #2 has an entrance on Henry Street.  Both of these lots have been in use for SBS visitors in the past.  Under no circumstances should any visitors be parking in the SBS staff parking lot.

General Information:
The new school year begins on August 28, 2019.  School hours are 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM.  Please look for the bus schedule in either the Stamford Advocate or The Hour approximately a week before school starts.  

If your child is newly enrolled at Side by Side, please make sure all your paperwork is completed and returned before the first day of school.  No child will be allowed to start school without up to date medical forms (completed by your child’s physician) and any other student related information forms.  Also, it is very important that you inform the school of any changes in your address, phone number or contact information.  We need to be able to contact you at all times.  

We are looking forward to a wonderful year with you and your children.  Enjoy the remainder of your summer. If we can be of any further assistance before returning in August, please don’t hesitate to call me at extension 133.  You can also reach my assistant, Lilly Rodriguez, at extension 132.

Very Truly Yours,

Matthew Nittoly                    
Executive Director