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Administrative Team

Danielle Bennett
Lauren Napolitano
Assistant Principals
Drita Koci
Kelly Mazzariello
Mary Opperman
Jennifer Paradise
Victoria Arcaro, Secretary
Dawn Hansen, Secretary
Camille Loccisano, Parent Coordinator

A past message from our founding principal, Mrs. Gounardes:

Welcome to our District 20 Pre K Center website. Through this website, we will try to provide a taste of all the wonderful experiences our 4 year olds have each and every day. Our goal is to prepare our young learners for success in kindergarten and beyond. We are committed to work with all our families to support the social, emotional and academic growth of our children. We are held to rigorous quality standards and policies of the New York City Department of Education.

Each of our District 20 Pre K Centers offers an outstanding program. Our program provides an engaging curriculum that integrates instruction through developmental domains and early learning disciplines following the guidelines of the New York State Pre K Foundation for the Common Core. This supports meaningful social-emotional development in our young children. It also supports literacy, math, science, social studies, the arts and technology development and it is all done through purposeful play and exploration.


The New York State Prekindergarten Foundation for the Common Core has organized five broad developmental and interrelated domains.

· Approaches to Learning – How children become involved in learning and acquiring knowledge.

· Physical Development and Health – Children’s physical health and ability to engage in daily activities.

· Social and Emotional Development – The emotional competence and ability to form positive relationships that give meaning to children’s experiences in the home, school, and larger community.

· Communication, Language, and Literacy – How children understand, create, and communicate meaning. Cognition and Knowledge of the World – What children need to know and understand about their world and how they apply what they know. This domain is a direct reflection of the content competencies and knowledge of the Common Core Learning Standards.


District 20 Pre K Centers are a diverse community which benefit from the rich cultural heritage of our families. The children are taught the value of respecting peoples’ differences and the importance of embracing many cultures and ethnicities. The idea is to build a foundation of kindness, tolerance and caring at this early level which will ultimately yield a strong community where people from all backgrounds can coexist in harmony.

We believe strongly in the Department of Education’s Framework for Great Schools –

· Trust

· Rigorous Instruction

· Supportive Environment

· Collaborative Teachers

· Effective School Leadership

· Strong Family – Community Ties

The Pre K For All Quality Standards which we follow are grounded in the Framework for Great School philosophy. We acknowledge the importance of understanding the whole child and use the Reggio Emilia approach to achieve this goal.


District 20 currently has 11 Pre K Center sites operating in free standing locations across the district. We provide new dual language classes in Spanish/English and Mandarin/English at 4 of our centers. In addition, we now offer  self-contained special classes servicing children in need of alternate settings.


We invite you to scroll through our website or to call and request a tour of any of our centers. I am confident you will find them to be a wonderful place to teach and to learn


Best wishes

Dianne Gounardes


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