BY JOE KUHN
Just in time for the new school year, the Ramapo Central School District on Wednesday officially changed its name to the Suffern Central School District. Superintendent Dr. Douglas Adams, Deputy Superintendent Stephen Walker, and New York State Assembly Member Ellen Jaffee were on hand at the newly minted Suffern Central School District Administrative Offices.
The change comes after two years of strategic planning efforts conducted by a committee consisting of the employees, students and parents of the Suffern School District. According to Deputy Superintendent Walker, the main goal of the rebranding is “to establish [their] identity as a premiere school district” and to “ensure that people inside and outside the area see the district as the best place to receive an education.” The renaming was also an effort to end the long-standing confusion between the former Ramapo Central School District and the East Ramapo Central School District.
Deputy Superintendent Walker’s evident pride in his district no doubt stems partly from the multitude of awards and honors the Suffern schools have received in the past few years. Cherry Lane Elementary, Montebello Elementary, Sloatsburg Elementary and Suffern High School have all been designated “High Performing Reward Schools” by the New York Department of Education. Cherry Lane Elementary has even been recognized by the US Department of Education as a Blue Ribbon School in 2013, an award “reserved for schools that boast students who meet and maintain high educational goals,” according to the department’s official website.
The rebranding process itself went smoothly, both Deputy Superintendent Walker and State Assembly Member Jaffe were “thrilled with the sponsorship” for the legislation and equally pleased with Governor Cuomo’s prompt approval of their proposal to rename the district. Assembly Member Jaffee was also happy to report that the community has “responded positively” to the rebranding.
It is the hope of all involved that the new name of the Suffern Central School District will raise awareness of the district’s achievements and help them to be better recognized by the community.