Welcome to Chestnutwold Elementary School!

Dear Chestnutwold Families,

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to you.  My name is Joseph Denelsbeck and I am the new principal of Chestnutwold Elementary. It is an honor and a privilege to have been given the opportunity to lead a great school with an awesome staff and community supporting it.

I started my educational journey many years ago at Bloomsburg University where I earned a BS Degree in secondary education with a concentration in Biology.  I later attended Saint Joseph’s University where I earned a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership.  I believe in continual learning and I continue to take courses and attend conferences and workshops to improve my leadership skills.

After 24 years of working in parochial education I moved to public school education.  I spent three years at Ardmore Avenue Elementary School in the William Penn School District.  Ardmore Avenue has the most active parent community of all of the schools and it was a community school much like Chestnutwold.  During my time at Ardmore we built the only makerspace lab in the district and introduced coding to grade school students.  After my successes I was asked to take the helm of Penn Wood Middle School.  During my time there I worked very hard to create a sense of school community within the student body and stakeholders in general.

A little about me personally.  I am married and the father of two young men.  My wife Amy is a kindergarten teacher in the School District of Philadelphia.  My oldest son Phillip is a graduate of Bloomsburg University and lives and works in Charlotte, North Carolina.  My youngest son Matthew is a junior Engineering student at Penn State University.  Amy and I are avid Phillies fans.  We stick with our team through good times and bad times!  I am a gardener.  I have a vegetable garden each year and enjoy flowers in my yard and home.  We are also birders.  We are blessed to live near Lorimer Park where we get an opportunity to do some birding and when down the shore we spend some of our time in the marshes and bird sanctuaries. We also have an array of feeders in our yard which give us time to sit and enjoy a piece of peaceful nature.

When meeting staff and some parents I have asked three questions; What is great about Chestnutwold? If you could change one thing, what would it be? What do you expect from me as the Principal?  I will share with you that the answer to question number one is “The Chestnutwold Family.”  “We, the parents, students and staff are a community that works together and rallies around each other when someone needs us.”  This has been consistent in every person I have spoken with.  It is my plan to continue to support and grow this sense of community.  The answer to question three has been consistent as well: “Communication”. In the coming days you will begin receiving information on the opening of schools.  These communications will include:  Class assignments, Opening Day procedures, Health and Safety information, and other information you will need as we begin our school year. Please closely monitor your email. Also know that a weekly newsletter link will be emailed to you every Friday with information for the upcoming week or weeks ahead.  This newsletter will start on Labor Day Friday, and it will be a Smore newsletter.

I thank you for the warm welcome I have received from the community and it is my goal to continue with the great things done here at Chestnutwold Elementary School.