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Superintendent Dr. Thomas Douglas 

Superintendent's Notes Archive


2012-13 School Year

Coping with tragedy: A letter regarding the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut

Dr. Thomas Douglas offers the district's sympathies to those affected by the  shooting in connecticut and provides tips on helping your student cope with this tragic event. READ MORE

A Thanksgiving message from the superintendent

Dr. Thomas Douglas reflects on thankfulness and expresses his gratitude for the Bethlehem Central School District and it's community. READ MORE

A message from Superintendent Dr. Thomas J. Douglas about transportation

Superintendent Douglas talks about the upcoming start of school and the changes to student transportation taking place this year. READ MORE

We need everyone involved in our budget process

Superintendent Thomas Douglas talks about the difficult budget process ahead for BCSD and your involvement in it. READ MORE

Superintendent embarks on ‘Listening Tour’
as part of entry plan

Dr. Thomas Douglas, who took over as Superintendent of Schools at Bethlehem Central School District on January 1, has commenced a Listening Tour of the district as part of his entry plan, a copy of which can be found here [PDF]. READ MORE

A message from Superintendent Dr. Thomas J. Douglas

Superintendent Douglas talks about the upcoming start of school and the changes to student transportation taking place this year. READ MORE


2011-12 School Year

The Great Rollercoaster Ride

I hate rollercoasters! They scare me. But, I love to ride them. Quite the paradox, isn’t it? They frighten the “begeebies” out of me, as they wind and wend their way overhead, and people are screaming, crying, yelling fears, epithets and laughter. READ MORE


It's not just 'kids being kids'

What is a school district to do when children are allowed to use drugs and alcohol throughout the community? How do we manage to teach and re-teach the ideas that drugs and alcohol are dangerous, inhibitive, and harmful to their health, welfare and safety? READ MORE


Steve jobs' legacy and education

Steve Jobs was an amazing individual.

His innovative and creative spirit spawned the Apple Corporation and he blazed a trail into all the areas of personal computing and technology that we use in our everyday lives. READ MORE


saying the pledge

Bethlehem Central has had many students serve their country in the military, and in recent years, three alumni gave their lives for this country in places such as Iraq and Afghanistan. READ MORE


Opening day speech: Lessons from an unusual source

On Tuesday, Sept. 6, Dr. Mike Tebbano welcomed the BC staff to school for the 2011-12 school year. READ DR. TEBBANO'S


welcome back from an eventful summer

The days are fast approaching the start of the new school year. It is hard to believe, but true, especially after an eventful few weeks of activities at the national and state level. Let's see if we can list the things that have happened, and decide if there will be an impact on our student's education this year. READ MORE


2010-11 School Year

Digital Darwinism

I have a wonderful mother. She is 85 years young and she has been a widow for over twenty years. Recently, I had the opportunity to spend an afternoon with her talking about things, and she surprised me with two startling questions. READ MORE


Budget vote — and other notes

While budget planning and fiscal responsibility are year-round activities, the vote next week is an important annual checkpoint in the process. I hope everyone plans to vote. READ MORE  


March madness - budget edition

Welcome to March Madness, and I don't mean basketball (even though I hope your bracket is faring well.) With all of the school budget talk in the news and at our own meetings lately, it's important to give a quick rundown of some of the factors at play. READ MORE  


Why do we need administrators?

March 9, 2011

Whenever I meet up with old high school friends the first thing they remind me of is that I ended up as a school administrator. They seem to conclude from my regular visits to the principal’s office in those years, that I was not the ideal student nor the best behaved — despite what people may think. And still, I ended up becoming a principal and now a superintendent.  READ MORE  


Some good news for a change

March 4, 2011

As the season of tightening budgets and painful decisions (March Madness?) descends upon us, it’s past time that I take stock of some things we can all celebrate about our students and the district. It's important to remember that, regardless of our challenges, much of our time is spent working hand-in-hand to do what's right for kids and our community. We have a lot to be proud of. READ MORE

The reality of the Budget picture

February 8, 2011

Educators, support staff, students, parents and taxpayers could be forgiven for being skeptical about warnings of massive school budget cuts. I know, it's all been predicted before. It feels pretty real to me right now. READ MORE


A warm night — at least inside the BCMS Library and your homes!

January 27, 2011

It turns out we picked the right night to offer a community budget forum through an interactive webcast. With the mercury hovering around zero — an improvement from the night before! — we had a peak of 135 people join us for the discussion online in addition to the 80 or so people in the BCMS Library. I wish the news that I had was as good as the community participation. READ MORE


New Year's Resolutions...

January 6, 2011

New Year's resolutions are a waste of time. Or are they? Each year we put together mental and physical lists detailing our top sins and plans to overcome them in 12 short months. But by April or March, the battle is lost. This year will be different, at least for me. No more broken promises to myself, today I resolve to do the following: eat healthy, exercise more, and be kinder and more collaborative with people each day. It feels right as we begin the new calendar year. READ MORE

the future is not far away

December 16, 2010

Welcome to the third issue of BC eNews. I hope you find this issue compelling and thought-provoking as we feature an interesting exchange from two of our high school juniors, Raina Puels and Connor Rohan. They are part of BC's 21st Century Committee, which is made up of teachers, administrators, a Board of Education member and students, and is exploring ways to expand our programs and position our students for success in a global age. The students' responses are alive and fresh, illustrating the concern that many educators have with preparing students for a changing world. READ MORE »


anticipating change

December 2, 2010

Change is a phenomena that all people experience in their lives. Currently, we are in the midst of change as we welcome a new Governor in New York. Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo is a particular friend of Bethlehem Central, in that he has visited our district in the past as Attorney General. In the fall of 2009, he met with students and faculty at the high school to talk about some of his work with regard to the student loan industry. We wish him well on his new post, and we are eager to hear of the "changes" he proposes in order to bring stability to our state's financial situation. READ MORE » 



welcome to the first edition of the enewsletter - and some notes about bullying

Nov. 18, 2010

Welcome to the first edition of our BC eNews newsletter. With this inaugural issue we hope you will stay connected with our school-community and share with us your thoughts and ideas for future topics. Feel free to contact us with ideas you would like to know more about. READ MORE » 


Greetings and welcome to the end of the summer, 2010.

August 17, 2010

What a great summer it has been. The weather has been very warm and conducive for those trips to the beach or spending time outdoors and enjoying all the northeast has to offer. I hope this message finds you and your family enjoying the end of summer and the beginning of a new school year.



2009-10 School year


Welcome to summer - a great time to hit the books

June 30, 2010 

Welcome to Summer 2010, and the beginning of a new school year about to begin in short order.



announcements and other important notes

April 26, 2010

Important updates on testing, online safety, bullying, and some of the wonderful things happening throughout the district.



Difficult decisions: proposed 2010-11 budget adopted

April 9, 2010

After an involved and open process, the Board of Education has finalized a 2010-11 spending plan. The adopted budget totals $88.3 million, an increase of 0.84 percent from the current year's budget. As a percentage, this is the lowest in the Bethlehem Central School District for 34 years.



bringing the budget into focus — and balance

March 5, 2010

This past Wednesday, March 3, 2010, the Board of Education began its budget work sessions, and it's safe to say that we are at the beginning of a long month of scrutiny, review and difficult decisions. As many of you have heard from my previous updates, we will face a significant gap next year between projected revenues and anticipated expenses. READ MORE »


The Budget Process is underway

January 28, 2010

Last week the Governor presented the 2010-11 Executive Budget State Aid Proposal. As expected, the reduction to educational aid statewide was significant, and BC is no exception. READ MORE »


how state budget delays are impacting bcsd

December 21, 2009

As we prepare for the holiday season in front of us, the looming budget crisis of the State of New York echoes resiliently in our planning, thinking, and budgeting.. Even as I write this update to you, the wheels of state budget aid have decreased their momentum, slowing down the cash flow of promised aid to our school district by 20%. READ MORE »


looking for your input on the budget

December 10, 2009

We are beginning to put together the budget planning for the 2010-11 school year. This process begins officially at the District Community Budget Forums occurring on 1/12, 1/26 and 2/9. All of these meetings begin at 7:00 p.m. at the MS Library on Kenwood Ave. Once again, we confront the prospect that the State Legislature will be enacting a serious deficit reduction in our state aid for 2010-11. Please consider participating in our community forums to assist the Board of Education in setting priorities for our budget. READ MORE » 


out and about

October 2, 2009

Greetings and welcome to the second month of the school year. By now I am sure your children are settled into their routines of going to school, participating in activities, and enjoying the fall weather. In the school district things are moving forward in a positive and constructive manner, with all our students and faculty busy working together. READ MORE » 


Where the rubber meets the road...

September 17, 2009 

The lesson of the budget planning we did last year is that when we can no longer afford everything we want, we must establish spending priorities that ensure we meet our core mission - a quality educational program for all students. It is time to see the budget plan through. READ MORE » 


opening day speech: a time of unprecedented change & opportunity

September 11, 2009

This past Tuesday, I had the honor of welcoming our faculty and staff back for the 2009-10 school year. The theme I chose to speak about was about the district taking advantage of the opportunities presented by the rapidly changing, ever-digital world. I hope you take the opportunity to read the speech and I hope the 2009-10 school year is off to a wonderful start for all in our community. READ DR. TEBBANO'S SPEECH »