District News and Announcements

  • Campus School Hosts Power of Peace Event

    Campus Alternative High School hosted its first Power of Peace event for the school year in early October, offering a succession of experiential workshops designed to help students develop skills in conflict management, and feel empowered and connected to their community.

    Mike Arteberry, executive director and founder of Youth Voices Center in New Rochelle, led the two-day program. Twenty juniors and seniors participated, talking about personal issues such as family life, drug use, friendships, what they wanted to do after high school, and where they saw themselves in 10 years. Arteberry also discussed situations that adolescents often face and spoke about his personal experience growing up in New Rochelle.
     
    Dr. Sandra Zupicich, the school psychologist, and Gabrielle DiSapia, a permanent substitute teacher at Campus school, also participated in the program.
     
    Campus school has hosted Power of Peace for several years. A dropout prevention strategy that focuses on developing leadership, teamwork and decision-making, the program works with at-risk teens to keep them enrolled during the middle and high school years, and on track toward college and a career.
     
    "During Power of Peace, we get to listen to different types of scenarios and experiences that we all face. It allows us to look deeper into ourselves and relate to each other," said Guadalupe Morales, a junior. "Power of Peace helps students recognize that we all go through similar emotions and experiences, and can help each other in different ways." 
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  • Davis Students Find Readathon 'Is Encouraging Us to Read'

    Davis Elementary School held its Readathon Opening Ceremony last week, launching students on a month-long journey of reading as many minutes as they can.

    The event is also a fundraising event for the school's PTA, which supports enrichment programs for the students. 

    Principal Anthony Bambrola said students are enthusiastically reading, logging their minutes and enjoying the events planned by the PTA. It is one of three schools holding readathons this month; Jefferson and William B. Ward are the others.

    "It's encouraging us to read," said third-grader Jack Twardy. An avid reader even when he's not part of a readathon, he has been logging 30 minutes a night this month, favoring Captain Underpants, Diary of a Wimpy Kid and others. When he learned that by keeping up that pace he could top 900 minutes, he was very impressed.

    "That's more than the time I play video games!" he said.

    Olivia O'Briskie, another third-grader, is also reading 30 minutes a night. She reads Cam Jansen mysteries and Rainbow Magic books.

    "I like the way the characters are acting, and I like the pictures," she said.

    Today, students met author Gigi Priebe, author of The Adventures of Henry Whiskers. She is the mother of three and the founder of Stepping Stones, an award-winning children's museum in Norwalk, Connecticut. Bambrola said students enjoyed her presentation and learning about what he called "the writerly life."

    To tie into the month-long event, this week, students also submitted over 100 posters focusing on the importance of reading.

    "As we work to nurture confident and independent lifelong readers, the Readathon helps reaffirm the importance of volume and stamina in growing readers, as well as fostering a love for different types of books," Bambrola said.

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  • New Playground at Trinity a Hit

    When the students at Trinity Elementary School returned from summer recess, they couldn't wait to put their school's brand new playground to the recess test. 

    The impressively upgraded activity area is situated in Trinity's back courtyard and includes four slides, an array of horizontal and angled monkey bars and rope- and wall-climbing stations, all erected over a rubberized safety surface. Needless to say, the new playground has sparked the imaginations and enthusiasm of Trinity's students.

    "It's a multifaceted, 21st century playground and the kids are absolutely loving it," said Trinity principal Anthony DiCarlo. "It's utilized non-stop from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m., every day and by every grade in our school, K-5."

    The new, modern playground offers students a multisensory experience that goes beyond promoting physical activity. Amongst the slides and climbing apparatus are stationary bongo drums and an oversized xylophone for students to explore rhythm and melody. Altogether, the new facility effectively supports the concept of "learning through play," which is proven to assist young people in developing their social and cognitive skills and increase self-confidence when engaging with new activities and environments. 

    "The new playground has also become a focal point of the community," explained principal DiCarlo. "Every day when parents come to the courtyard for pick-up after school, they are staying an extra half hour, talking with one another and letting their students play together." 

    Funded through the district's operating budget and by monies allotted from the capital bond approved in May 2016, the new playground at Trinity is one of five being installed at elementary schools. The others are Columbus, Jefferson, Henry Barnard Early Childhood Center and Daniel Webster Magnet School. Additional upgrades to the exterior of Trinity Elementary School, also part of the 2016 capital bond project, are scheduled for summer 2018.

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  • Columbus Teacher Honored by Chess Foundation

    Columbus Elementary School ESL teacher Mark Hegenauer has been teaching his students chess for 20 years. His ability to help children grow cognitively and emotionally through play was recognized by the National Scholastic Chess Foundation Monday at its Chess in the Park event inside the New Rochelle Public Library. 

    Hegenauer has seen students of every ability level benefit from learning this game of strategic thinking and problem solving. And he sees the social aspects of the game as just as beneficial for his students who are learning to be better communicators. 

    "I know it's just a board game, but the kids are socializing and interacting with one another, and that is so needed today," said Hegenauer. "Many of these children who don't do well in other subjects can perform on the chess board. It really helps with self-esteem and with self-control."

    In 2001, Columbus students began competing on the national stage.  The team has been to SuperNationals 16 times and has almost always placed among the top 20 teams. Twice, Columbus had two teams place among the top ten in the nation. And one year, it had two teams place in the top five. Most impressively, Hegenauer led one of his teams to win the New York State Championship.

    "The awards are great," said Hegenauer. "But the program is really about how chess helps students make better decisions as well as build confidence and relationships across grade levels."

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  • Columbus Teacher Honored by Chess Foundation

    Columbus Elementary School ESL teacher Mark Hegenauer has been teaching his students chess for 20 years. His ability to help children grow cognitively and emotionally through play was recognized by the National Scholastic Chess Foundation Monday at its Chess in the Park event inside the New Rochelle Public Library. 

    Hegenauer has seen students of every ability level benefit from learning this game of strategic thinking and problem solving. And he sees the social aspects of the game as just as beneficial for his students who are learning to be better communicators. 

    "I know it's just a board game, but the kids are socializing and interacting with one another, and that is so needed today," said Hegenauer. "Many of these children who don't do well in other subjects can perform on the chess board. It really helps with self-esteem and with self-control."

    In 2001, Columbus students began competing on the national stage.  The team has been to SuperNationals 16 times and has almost always placed among the top 20 teams. Twice, Columbus had two teams place among the top ten in the nation. And one year, it had two teams place in the top five. Most impressively, Hegenauer led one of his teams to win the New York State Championship.

    "The awards are great," said Hegenauer. "But the program is really about how chess helps students make better decisions as well as build confidence and relationships across grade levels."

    City School District of New Rochelle
  • IEYMS 6th Graders Take Pledge Against Bullying

    The sixth graders at Isaac E. Young Middle School are learning how to recognize, prevent and take action against bullying – lessons were summed up succinctly by an observation from student Adrian Mendoza:

    “Bullying is the wrong thing to do,” the sixth-grader in Barbara Sullivan’s class said this week.

    “It can cause a lot of problems,” added his classmate, Cristian Rodriguez.

    The members of the youngest class at IEYMS have taken a pledge to combat bullying for National Bullying Prevention Month. A board in the hallway near the main office shows anti-bullying slogans, and the students have signed cards that read, “I promise to take a stand against bullies.” A gold seal on the card reads, “BAN BULLIES NOW.”

    Principal Anthony Bongo and Assistant Principal Tawanda Robinson began the program last Friday with an assembly. The program, from “STOMP Out Bullying,” included tips such as, when you see it happening, “Don’t encourage the bully in any way,” and “If you notice someone being isolated from others, invite them to join you.”

    Bongo also met with 30 parents in the school library to talk with them about what the school was doing to ensure students feel safe, comfortable and ready to learn.

    The students agreed that school is a better place without bullying.

    “You feel safer,” said sixth-grader Janelle Rodriguez.

    “You don’t have to worry about making a mistake and people laughing at you,” added classmate Roberto Gonzalez.

    “It’s bad behavior,” said student Christopher Jean-Baptiste. “Because you wouldn’t like it if they did it to you.”

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  • Columbus teacher returns to classroom after teaching STEM in Vietnam

    Elizabeth Barrett-Zahn, the science coordinator for Columbus Elementary, is back in the classroom in New Rochelle after a summer in Vietnam where she ran a STEM academy for elementary school students.

    Barrett-Zahn traveled to Hai Phong City after she was honored by the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Short-Term Program with a grant to travel and teach in Vietnam for the summer. She was one of nine U.S. citizens granted the award by the U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.

    For three-and-a-half weeks, Barrett-Zahn engaged with Huu Nghi School students in grades 1 to 6, their teachers and their parents, giving them powerful demonstrations of how hands-on science teaching works and why it is important. 

    Teachers, who use the traditional classroom lecture method of teaching, got an opportunity to observe Barrett-Zahn's planning and implementation of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) lessons. Barrett-Zahn then watched as the teachers taught their students, offering feedback. The collaboration helped clarify the importance of teaching students in a hands-on, minds-on, inclusive, scientifically challenging manner.

    "Teaching children to think critically and creatively is at the heart of all learning," said Barrett-Zahn. "To do this, we must be willing to take risks and extend our own learning beyond the classroom walls. My Fulbright Vietnam experience certainly filled that bill as it provided the opportunity to solidify and distill long-held beliefs and approaches to teaching and learning."

    Barrett-Zahn also held a workshop for more than 100 educators, parents and community members at Hai Phong University that focused on understanding learning differences and student motivation in this technological era.  

    Barrett-Zahn has taught in the New Rochelle school district for 24 years. She has worked summers in science labs in Columbia University, and participated in programs that took her to classrooms in Malaysia, Singapore and Japan. 

    Last year, Barrett-Zahn received the 2016 Anton Banko Award for excellence in elementary school science teaching, given by the Science Teacher's Association of New York. She is also the featured teacher in October for the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

    Barrett-Zahn will be presenting at the National Science Teacher Association's convention in Baltimore and at the Science Teachers Association of New York State Conference about her travels and experience in Vietnam.

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  • Board of Education urges continuation of DACA

    The New Rochelle Board of Education made its voice clear this week about the need to protect immigrants from deportation if they have lived in the United States since childhood. On Tuesday, the board voted unanimously to urge the U.S. Congress to work with President Trump in reinstating the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which is set to expire.

    "DACA has allowed hundreds of thousands of young people to live, study, and work in the United States, and to become stable and even more productive members of their communities, without fear that they could be arrested and placed in deportation proceedings at any moment," the resolution reads.

    It calls on Congress to work with Trump to enact legislation before March that would "at a minimum, continue the existing DACA program and provide DACA recipients with a pathway to permanent residence and eventually to U.S. citizenship."

    Copies of the resolution will be sent to Trump, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and key members of Congress.

    The Board also voted to affirm its commitment to offer education to all school-age children in the District, regardless of the immigration status of the students or their parents.

    "Tonight, we voted to reaffirm our commitment to ensuring that all of our students can feel safe and welcome in our schools regardless of their immigration status," Board of Education President Rachel Relkin said after the vote in the William B. Ward Elementary School. "We also called upon our lawmakers in Washington to support Dreamers by providing a pathway for them to permanently reside in the United States."

    In 2012, President Barack Obama signed the DACA program to shield from deportation immigrants who came to the United States as children. On Sept. 5, President Trump cancelled the program, but with a six-month delay.

    Those who are in the United States under DACA protection that ends on or before March 5 had until yesterday, Oct. 5, to file for a two-year extension. The City School District of New Rochelle, and the City of New Rochelle teamed up to create and distribute fliers to inform as many people as possible of the opportunity.

    The Board's votes on Tuesday took the issue a step further in a call to action.

    "I want to congratulate the Board of Education, which had set a goal for itself to be advocates on behalf of the children and school community in New Rochelle," Superintendent Dr. Brian Osborne said after the Board voted. "This is a really fine example of something that has very practical impact, is pertinent to our school community and is timely."

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  • Elementary schools Stop, Drop and Read

    For 10 minutes on an otherwise ordinary school day, the elementary schools across the City School District of New Rochelle became so hushed you could hear a page turn.

    Indeed, many pages.

    The schools, plus Isaac E. Young Middle School, started off the week with a Stop, Drop and Read activity. At 10 a.m., everyone - students, teachers, principals and custodians - stopped what they were doing to spend 10 minutes reading purely for enjoyment.

    The activity kicked off a reading project designed to inspire students' love of the written word. In three elementary schools - George M. Davis Jr., Jefferson and William B. Ward - students began a readathon to see how much time they could spend reading this month. Daniel Webster Magnet School and Columbus Elementary School will follow with readathons in November, and Trinity Elementary School and the Henry Barnard Early Childhood Center will hold other reading events this month.

    "To see all the elementary schools, and Isaac Young, do something together as a community was so exciting," Kristine Sharp, the Davis PTA president who is leading the districtwide reading effort, said of the Stop, Drop and Read activity. "I'm proud of the way New Rochelle came together as a community, through the hard work of the PTA volunteers, administration, teachers and students, to foster the excitement of reading in our kids."

    In a readathon, which is a fundraiser for the PTAs and the enrichment programs they provide, students ask people to sponsor them based on the number of minutes they spend reading. As a school, they often log more than a million minutes (or almost two years) over the course of a month. At Jefferson, in midweek, the students were cheering in a pep rally to build up excitement for the readathon.

    The Book Fairy (third-grade teacher Vicky Vessecchia) and the school's tiger mascot brought them to wild cheers. Fourth-grade math and science teacher Krista D'Alessandro led the rally.

    "Our goal as a school is to read 1 million minutes!" she exclaimed. "Are you ready?"

    "Yes!" the students shouted.

    Jefferson fourth-grader John Guerrero was planning on reading 50 minutes a day for the readathon. He enjoys chapter books such as the Horrible Harry series and Wonder.

    "They're kind of funny and you might learn something for real life," he said.

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  • Energize may help with home energy bills

    The City of New Rochelle is sponsoring Energize New Rochelle, a program for the city's homeowners looking to lower their energy bills and increase the comfort and value of their homes.

    Residents can sign up for a free or low-cost home energy assessment with a certified contractor and learn how to improve energy efficiency. Typical improvements include added insulation, air-sealing and upgraded heating and cooling mechanicals. Additional benefits include easy financing and an independent energy coach to advise you. Most improvements take less than a week but provide years of benefits.

    Energize New Rochelle is partnering with the school district to share energy savings tips. For more information about the program, contact Lauren at 914-302-7300 ext. 8102 or visit EnergizeNY.org

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Adult Education

The New Rochelle Board of Education maintains an extensive Adult Education program for residents and non residents of New Rochelle. Questions concerning the program can be answered by calling: (914) 576-4547 after 5:00 pm Monday through Thursday evenings only, e-mail: mmaire@nredlearn.org, or in person. The Continuing Education office is located in room 145 at New Rochelle High School. 

Announcements

  • Continuing Education Registration

    In an effort to be environmentally sound, we have combined our Fall and Spring Catalog. Save your catalog or this page as a reminder to visit our website in February for our Spring registration .

    Fall Mail-in Registration begins September 12, 2016

    In-person Registration begins September 19, 2016

    We often run Intersession classes starting in December & April.

    Call us at 576-4547 to inquire.

    Spring Mail-in Registration begins January 9, 2017

    In-person Registration begins February 6, 2017

    Please visit our website at www.nrhs.nred.org

     

    Adult Education

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