Award Year: 2013

Cherry Lane Elementary School

1 Heather Drive
Suffern, NY, 10901-6613

(845) 357-3988

David Leach Ed.D., Principal at time of Nomination

Ramapo CSD

School Website


Educating for Personal Excellence

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 6%
  • White: 73%
  • Hispanic: 10%
  • Asian: 8%
  • Native American: 1%
  • Two or more races: 2%
  • ELL: 3%
  • Economically Disadvantaged: %

Cherry Lane Elementary School is located in Suffern, New York, approximately 30 miles northwest of New York City. Students in grades kindergarten through fifth attend one of the five neighborhood elementary schools in the Ramapo Central School District.

A school-wide ethos of high expectations exists for all students. Beginning in kindergarten, students are referred to as “scholars” and are taught to practice the qualities that uphold this standard. While the school community recognizes and celebrates the unique style that each teacher possesses, a laser-like focus on student achievement is non-negotiable.

The school is committed to developing the capacity of its human capital and sets high professional standards for its faculty and staff. Teacher teams regularly meet to plan lessons and collaboratively score student work. Several types of instructional coaching—literacy, mathematics, technology—are provided by teacher leaders to ensure ongoing and job-embedded professional development that is closely linked to the classroom. Faculty members regularly share best practices with one another.

Cherry Lane’s school-family connection focuses on family and community engagement in the educational program. Parent volunteers serve in roles such as guest readers and after-school program facilitators. Professionals from Sony Education, UPS, Apple, and SHARP—including many current or former Cherry Lane parents—run hands-on workshops with second-, third-, fourth- and fifth-grade students that feature cutting-edge industry technologies.

Visitors to Cherry Lane often praise the children’s good behavior. Students display a strong sense of school pride and demonstrate an ethic of care for younger peers. Cherry Lane scholars are often “caught being good” and honored for their good deeds.