The DFSF works closely with the district to help fund large initiatives that require resources beyond those of the district. The FLES (Foreign Language in Elementary School) Program and the International Baccalaureate Program, both the Diploma Program (grades 11 &12) and the Middle Years Program (grades 6-10) were examples of this. The DFSF also raises monies specifically to help fund ongoing improvements for the Auditorium and to provide scholarships that recognize personal achievement.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Program
The DFSF provided the funding that enabled the establishment of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (IB Program) for the 11th and 12th grade back in 1997. The IB Diploma Program is a rigorous pre-college academic program open to all high school students. In 2014, the DFSF pledged $75,000 to fund professional development to support the Middle Years IB Program (MYP) rollout over the next two years. The MYP covers the 6th through 10th grades, and provides interdisciplinary connections across subject areas, IB preparation and continuity between the MS and HS. The Dobbs Ferry Schools were granted the designation of IB World School in the 2016-2017 school year.
"In 8th grade, we read Romeo and Juliet. It was like reading a really difficult book with a pretty thin plot. But in Digital Photography, we made stop-action movies of scenes from the play, which made me think much more about the drama and helped me get more into the characters and the story than if we'd only done it in English." - 9th Grade Student
For more information on the IB Program in the Middle and High School please visit the Dobbs Ferry Schools website at www.dfsd.org.
The DFSF has sold over 100 plaques to raise money for the ongoing renovation of the auditorium at the Dobbs Ferry High School.
Honor a graduate with a plaque in the Dobbs Ferry High School Auditorium.
More information available here.
Foreign Language in Elementary School (FLES)
In 2009, the Dobbs Ferry School District implemented a FLES (Foreign Language in Elementary School) program, bringing 75 minutes of foreign language instruction to 2nd graders every week. Over the course of the next four years, the program was expanded to encompass 2nd through 5th grade.
The Dobbs Ferry Schools Foundation granted $200,000 over four years to the District for a four year trial of a foreign language program in Springhurst.
Our support for this program is in keeping with the strategic goals defined by the administration and our desire to work in concert with the District to continuously enhance the opportunities given to Dobbs Ferry students.
"Sixth grade language class was just like every other subject for me - another step forward with a subject I already had gotten to know. I already had a basic sense that grammar was different from one language to another. I can't imaging dropping into a language with no prep. We didn't do that with math!" - 9th Grade student
We believe that FLES is critical to every student’s formative years insofar as it has been proven to provide the following benefits:
Enhance brain development
Increase creativity and problem solving skills
Increase awareness and appreciation of other cultures
Initiate a lifelong ability to communicate in a global society
Cultivate a desire to continue the study of a second language, and possibly other languages
Enhance development of reading, writing, listening and speaking skills in both English and Spanish
Support other academic content areas
Build language proficiency with each new year of study
Further achievement toward state and national language standards
JBK Scholarship Fund
Judy believed passionately in the power of determination, and she created the Personal Achievement Award that is now named in her honor. The Judy Blackwell Konowitch Personal Achievement Award is awarded each year to a High School Senior or Seniors who have demonstrated unusual courage, tenacity and resilience in the face of challenging circumstances. The award is not contingent upon academic performance nor the students’ plans for continuing education, which is just how Judy wanted it.
Judy Blackwell Konowitch, one of the founders of the Dobbs Ferry Schools Foundation, sadly passed away on January 29th, 2016.
Support the Judy Blackwell-Konowitch Scholarship Fund by donating via this website or by mailing a check to:
Dobbs Ferry Schools Foundation
505 Broadway, Dobbs Ferry, New York 10522