Our school’s theme is “Possibilities not Problems.” We firmly adhere to the belief that only when working together do we truly form the most powerful educational unit. We are proud to be a member of the East Orange School District and we embrace the District’s Motto: “Rising to a Standard of Excellence.” It is our unyielding goal and expectation that we will continue to explore and implement the most beneficial avenues toward successfully educating our students to thrive both academically and socially.
Along with our strong focus on academics, Performing Arts is a central theme within the context of our school’s curricular priorities. Beginning in the primary grades, students have the opportunity to explore art forms from a selected group of offerings, including vocal music, dance, theater, and instrumental music. In grades four and five, students specialize in a particular area of the previously mentioned art forms as teachers strive to shape and mold quality artists. Students in grades 4 & 5 attend ensemble classes after school for four days a week to receive additional assistance in their performing arts specialty area. We host two Performing Arts weeks and multiple performances during the course of the school year, showcasing our students’ immense talent and progress.
Visual Arts and Technology are also taught at Cicely L. Tyson Elementary across grade levels. Students often combine their interests and abilities in visual and performing arts to create exciting culminating class projects, stage productions, and quality technology presentations. We believe that immersion in the arts is an integral part of the school’s basic curriculum and children’s development, and greatly contributes to our students’ mastery of the core curriculum content, knowledge, skills, and standards.
We have developed a unique co-teaching model in grades 1-5, whereby all students have multiple teachers assigned to their classrooms during designated instructional periods throughout the academic day. The goal of this instructional implementation is to provide our students with the additional, personalized assistance necessary to assist students in remaining consistently on task and successfully progressing in their mastery of curricular objectives via enhanced individualized support and academic coaching.
This educational institution is recognized as having a very successful and comprehensive early childhood program for students in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten, resulting in an expansion of our program in order to serve more students. Children between the ages of three and four are introduced to the Curiosity Corner curriculum, which includes weekly themed activities that will ensure that students’ academic, social, and emotional needs are being met in preparation for kindergarten. Such activities can be taught at a variety of levels and promote exploration. Students then transition into the Kinder Corner Program, where they are exposed to learning labs, physical education classes, and performing and visual arts.
Intrinsic student motivation is strongly encouraged via multiple school-wide behavior incentive programs predicated upon recognizing and celebrating students and classes that demonstrate leadership, hard work, and positive behavior.
Cicely L. Tyson Elementary School was awarded a grant for the (2018-2019) school years to incorporate fresh fruits and vegetables into the school day in an effort to reinforce/emphasize healthy eating habits within the school community. Additionally, we are involved in multiple programs centering on environmental consciousness, such as the school-wide recycling program, Golden Broom Clean Sweep, The Student Environmental Ambassadors, involvement in the Council for Clean Communities, and multiple environmentally-focused assemblies.