Colonial School District officials were notified yesterday that Nikki Saunders, a fourth-grade teacher at New Castle Elementary School  (NCE), passed away at home.  The cause of death is unknown at this time; she would have celebrated her 48th birthday at the end of this month. Ms. Saunders has been a dedicated Colonial employee for 27 years and was dearly loved by students and staff at NCE.  Ms. Saunders also taught at the former Colwyck and Martin Luther King Elementary Schools. She touched the lives of hundreds of students and their families for nearly three decades.

“We are deeply saddened by the news of Ms. Saunders’ death. She was a pillar at NCE and will always be remembered for her beautiful smile, her deep devotion to students, and her willingness to do whatever it took to help others,” said NCE Principal TeRay Ross.

Families whose children knew Ms. Saunders are encouraged to speak with their children about this loss.  Counselors will be available to help any children over the phone or via video chat. We ask families to make certain students who are having difficulty with this sad news to reach out to the NCE staff by calling the school at (302) 323-2880.  Families can also reach out to Principal Ross directly at

“We want to do everything we can to support our staff, students, and families during this difficult time. Please join us in keeping the friends and family of Ms. Saunders in your thoughts at this time,” said Colonial Superintendent Dr. Jeffrey Menzer.