The Smoke Signal

District to present reopening plan to the state

Assistant District Superintendent Barry Bachenheimer presented three plans for school reopening at Thursday’s virtual Board of Education meeting held through Zoom. It consisted of all on-site classes, 100% remote learning, and a hybrid schedule.

Ilmie Xhaferi, Izzy Zuluaga, and Abby Shapiro

July 23, 2020

Assistant District Superintendent Barry Bachenheimer presented three plans for the reopening of school at Thursday morning’s virtual Board of Education meeting held through Zoom.  The three plans consist of schedules for all on-site classes, 100% remote learning, and a hybrid schedule in which ...

Community holds Racial Equity Rally

Community members rally at the Woodcliff Lake train station in favor of the Black Lives Matter Movement. The protest began at 10 a.m.

Abby Shapiro, Sarah Shapiro, and Emily Moy

June 27, 2020

Members of the Pascack Hills and Pascack Valley community gathered in Woodcliff Lake to peacefully march in support of racial equality this morning. The rally was organized by the District Equity Team and PH alumni. Protesters began at the Woodcliff Lake Town Hall and walked across the Centennial Causeway to the Woodcliff Lake train station, where speakers discussed social...

Remembering Michelle Boccellari

<span class=Contributed by Jessica Doyle
Michelle Boccellari, shown in the middle, was a 2002 PV graduate. She was found stabbed to death in her apartment in Dumont on June 16." />

Sarah Buttikofer, Staff Writer

June 26, 2020

Jessica Doyle, a 2002 Pascack Valley graduate, was a close friend of Michelle Boccellari since they had met in the sixth grade at George White Middle School in Hillsdale.  “She was funny, very outgoing, and had a big personality,” Doyle said. “She was always very kind and giving.” Tragically, ...

Community comments on mascot removal

Community comments on mascot removal

Abby Shapiro and Izzy Zuluaga

June 25, 2020

Community members had two opportunities in which they could call in or "raise their hand" to voice their opinions in a 5-minute time slot per person at today’s virtual Board of Education meeting held on Zoom.  The main subject of discussion pertained to the BOE’s removal of the Pascack Valley and Pasca...

Smoke Signal disables Instagram comment section

The Smoke Signal Instagram has limited comments on its recent posts following requests from the district. A post announcing the Board of Education's decision to remove the Pascack Valley and Pascack Hills mascots received over 1,800 comments.

Ellie Kim and Spencer Goldstein

June 25, 2020

At the request of district administration, Smoke Signal editors opted to disable the comment section on Monday night’s Instagram post in which it announced the district’s decision to remove the Indians and Cowboys as the mascots of Pascack Valley and Pascack Hills, respectively. The post had reached 1,855 comments in under 24 hours and while many consisted of debate, t...

District faces backlash, support regarding mascot removal

During its virtual meeting held on Zoom this morning, the Board of Education faced many comments and questions from community members regarding its decision to remove the mascots. District Superintendent Erik Gundersen said that the decision to remove the mascots will not be changed.

Ellie Kim and Spencer Goldstein

June 25, 2020

(Editor's note: This article will be updated at a later date as the situation continues to develop. The Smoke Signal will continue to follow new developments and provide updates once more information is made available.) Updated at 1:16 p.m. to include the number of speakers in favor of and against ...

District Equity Team and PH alumni to hold peaceful protest

A peaceful rally and march will be held in Woodcliff Lake this Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The event was organized by the District Equity Team with the help of a group of alumni.

Ellie Kim, Managing Editor

June 24, 2020

A peaceful protest march to support the Black Lives Matter movement will be held in Woodcliff Lake by the District Equity Team and Pascack Hills alumni Saturday, June 27 at 10 a.m to 12:30 p.m. The march will begin at the Woodcliff Lake Town Hall and end at the Woodcliff Lake train station, where vario...

Pascack Hills community holds protest against removal of mascots

Pascack Hills students, teachers, and parents gather in the PH parking lot. Students protested against the removal of the

Abby Shapiro and Izzy Zuluaga

June 23, 2020

Members of the Pascack Hills and Pascack Valley community gathered in the PH parking lot to protest in favor of the return of the schools' former mascots – the Cowboys and the Indians, respectively – following the removal of them in a virtual Board of Education meeting held through Zoom on June 22...

Community expresses opinions on mascot removal

Community expresses opinions on mascot removal

Abby Shapiro, Sarah Buttikofer, and Izzy Zuluaga

June 23, 2020

During the Board of Education's meeting Monday night held on Zoom, over 50 community members voiced their opinions regarding the Pascack Valley and Pascack Hills Mascot and nickname. Community members were able to call-in to the meeting during comments from the public.  Alumni, current students, p...

District approves removal of PV and PH mascots

The removal of the PV and PH mascots was voted on and approved by the Board of Education at its virtual meeting tonight held on Zoom. The decision to establish new mascots and what those mascots would be will be made by the Board following its retreat Thursday.

Ellie Kim, Managing Editor

June 22, 2020

(Editor’s Note: This is a developing story and The Smoke Signal will provide updates once more information is made available.) The removal of the Pascack Valley mascot as the Indians and the Pascack Hills mascot as the Cowboys was voted on and unanimously approved by the Board of Education at it...

District to keep selected in-person graduation date July 8

Graduates celebrate the culmination of their high school careers by attending a car parade held on held on Tuesday, June 16. District Superintendent Erik Gundersen said that the in-person graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020 will still be held on July 8 despite concerns from seniors and parents who argue that the date interferes with “Beach Week,” a student-organized event in which graduates spend the week at the beach.

Ilmie Xhaferi, Staff Editor

June 22, 2020

District Superintendent Erik Gundersen said that the in-person graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020 will still be held on July 8 despite concerns from seniors and parents who argue that the date interferes with “Beach Week,” a student-organized event in which graduates spend the week at the...

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