Ritchie: $18,500 to Enhance Music and Extra-Curricular Programs in Schools

Support Will Benefit Students throughout Jefferson, St. Lawrence and Oswego Counties

State Senator Patty Ritchie is announcing she has secured $18,500 in special funding to support both music and extra-curricular programs in school districts throughout Central and Northern New York.

“The knowledge students need to become successful goes beyond traditional subjects studied in the classroom,” said Senator Ritchie.

“By connecting children with more opportunities to develop important skills through, music, sports and other programs, we are providing them with the well-rounded education they need to achieve their goals in the future. I am pleased to provide this funding, and am hopeful it will help enrich the lives of students across our region.”

The South Jefferson Central School District will use $5,000 in funding to offer intramural sports such as skiing, bowling and weight training, as well as clubs geared towards horticulture, woodworking, STEM, and other areas of interest.

“We are extremely grateful for the funding Senator Ritchie was able to secure for our district to support extra-curricular activities at our middle school. We firmly believe that when students participate in school-based intramural and extra-curricular activities, they feel more positive about school, are more engaged and reap both academic and social benefits as well,” South Jefferson Central School District Superintendent Mary Beth Denny said.

In addition, the Carthage Central School District, the Mexico Academy and Central School District and the Pulaski Central School District will each use their share of the funding to enhance music programs. Specifically, Pulaski Central will use $5,000 to enhance the school’s piano lab.

“The piano lab has enabled the district to further develop programming that enables our students to fully prepare for post-secondary programs in music. The opportunities available to our students in the arts are something we are very proud of. Thank you Senator Ritchie for your advocacy and support,” Pulaski Central School District Superintendent Thomas Jennings said.

In St. Lawrence County, the Morristown Central School District will utilize funding to support the Black Lake Fish and Game Program, which includes the school’s trap team.

“While it hasn’t been around for a long time, our trap team has become extremely popular at our school. We have found it not only provides our students with an activity they love, but it teaches them about concentration, discipline and safety. It also gives them a place to allow their social skills to expand and to reach a goal. We cannot thank Senator Ritchie enough for helping out students understand the value of an overall education,” Morristown Central School District Superintendent Douglas McQueer said.

The funding also includes $500 for the Ogdensburg City School District’s John F. Kennedy Elementary School K-Kids Club. The club meets monthly to perform a community service that helps students learn the importance of helping others, while at the same time, helps them build character and leaderships skills. Last year, Senator Ritchie recognized the group for its efforts to raise nearly $2,400—in just five days—to help combat childhood cancer.

Senator Ritchie’s announcement of funding to support music and extra-curricular activities in local schools continues her work to expand learning opportunities for children and others throughout the region she represents. She recently announced nearly $150,000 in funding to help local libraries expand and enhance services for patrons and $20,000 to support elementary-level reading programs.