January Narragansett School System Newsletter
January 2019
Narragansett Makes Honor Roll

We are pleased to share that the Narragansett School System has earned a spot on the 9th Annual AP District Honor Roll.

This is a national recognition for a district's work in expanding AP access for students while maintaining high scores and standards.

We are so grateful for our staff, our hard working students, and the community that make accolades like this possible! Read more about this recognition below.
Important Budget Dates

For your reference, below are important dates pertaining to budget meetings and hearings:

Budget Presented at School Committee Meeting: 2/20/19 | 7:00pm
1st Budget Workshop for School Committee:  
2/27/19 | 5:30 pm
2nd Budget Workshop for School Committee:  
3/6/19 | 5:30 pm
School Committee Budget Vote at Regular School Committee Meeting:  
3/20/19 | 7:00pm
Town Council Meeting- Public Hearing on Budget: 
TBD in April 2019

For any questions or concerns, please contact Superintendent Dr. Peter Cummings by email.
SurveyWorks Taking Place Soon

SurveyWorks will once again be administered this year to students, families, support staff, teachers and building administrators across Rhode Island.

For the third year, RIDE is collaborating with Panorama Education to plan, administer, and collect feedback data. The survey dates are as follows:

Family Survey- January 14-March 29
Student and Staff- March 4-March 15

Work is already underway to help our school communities prepare. Be on the lookout for more information from your respective school on how to complete. Thank you in advance.
NSS School Achieves 5 Stars

On December 20th, the Rhode Island Department of Education released their list of award-winning schools, and we made the list!

As part of RIDE's new statewide accountability system, every public school is assigned a Star Rating. Schools that perform well across all measures are able to earn a 5 Star Rating, the highest designation. Congratulations to NES who received 5 stars! NHS and NPS weren't far behind as they performed above average.

Check out the link below for full list of school and information on this new way of performance rating.
Use our App on Your Phone!

Don't forget to download our Narragansett School System mobile app to stay even more up to date.

Find it in the Google Play Store or Apple iTunes Store by searching "Narragansett School."

We look forward to keeping you updated and connected to all of our schools in an even easier way.
School Committee Summary

Each month, our School Committee gathers at Town Hall to discuss the current year, future goals, and initiatives taking place in our school system.

We are pleased to share this great information through a  School Committee Summary . To view our most recent summary, please click below.
Bus Drivers and Monitors Needed!

The Narragansett School System is currently looking for School Bus Drivers and Monitors to join the team. This position offers:

  • Paid Holidays, Personal Days and sick time
  • Town Pension
  • Save on Childcare (Bring 1+ Yr Old With You)

To be considered you must:
  • Pass Background Check
  • Drivers must have a CDL and White Card

Monitors must be able to:
  • Get on and off bus at each stop
  • Assist Driver in maintaining order & safety
  • Assist students in crossing and boarding
Attendance Works Information

Attendance Works is Rhode Island’s efforts to track chronic absence to help reveal the tremendous importance of advancing student success and reduce equity gaps by reducing absence. 

Our teachers and administration are making it a priority to help parents and guardians keep attendance rates high by sharing resources to bridge the connection between chronic absence and a student’s academic achievement.

View the below links that contain flyers for your grade level to help build the habit of attendance.
Holiday Giveback 2018
As a close knit district, we are fortunate to have a school community that comes together to help positively change the lives of others around them. We had many gift giving and collection initiatives that took place this holiday season and are beyond grateful for the impact we have been able to make in our coastal community.
Jonnycake Center of Peacedale

NSS raised more than $1500 in gift cards and a car full of gifts! This season, the district also partnered with St. Mary's Star of the Sea, donating 8 big bags full of gifts and 2 bikes.
Support to Principal Warner
The Narragansett community came together for Principal Warner's recovery from his life-saving kidney transplant. During an Holiday Sweater contest for staff, more than $200 was raised to add to the $13,000+ in donations raised by his family, friends, and staff in Narragansett!
Project Undercover

NPS donated nearly 100 items during their collection drive of new underwear, socks, and diapers to donate to local children in need at the Narragansett Housing Authority, Jonnycake Center, Thundermist Health, Domestic Violence Resource Center and Welcome House. 
NES Collections and Initiatives
Gr. 4 developed and participated in G enius Hour , which helped local and national organizations through student-created projects.

Johnny Cake Center - Students collected personal items to support families through a Socks of Love project .

South Kingstown Animal Shelter - School store supplies and student-created 'positive pens' were sold during Gr. 3/4 lunch & recess to benefit the animal organization.

Alzheimer's Association - Gr. 4 families donated baked goods for a staff bake sale to benefit organization.

Save the Elephants - Handcrafted stress balls were sold during Gr. 3/4 lunch & recess to benefit organization .
RICAS Test Scores Distribution

During the first week of January, you should have received your child’s results of the (RICAS) Rhode Island Comprehensive Assessment System in the mail. This online comprehensive assessment system for English Language Arts and Mathematics was administered last spring in grades 3-8.

The report informs you of how your child performed as well as how to interpret the scores. At the school level, we have been sharing assessment data with staff in an effort to determine where our strengths and weaknesses are as a school and district. In those areas we determine we can grow, we are putting systems in place to ensure all standards are being closely aligned K-12 which includes alignment of instructional materials and professional development.

Please call the front office if you did not receive your child's results so we can send you another one via backpack mail. For further information on the student reports, please refer to the link below from the Rhode Island Department of Education. Thank you in advance!
Narragansett Educator Highlight
Each month, we are happy to share a little more about one of our educators here at our schools. We hope this will help better connect you with the wonderful individuals who work hard to give our students the best experience each year, while learning fun facts about them.
Julie Camara, NPS Special Education, Grade 7

How long have you been working within the Narragansett School System and what do you do? I have been lucky enough to work at the Pier School for the past 26 years. I was originally hired as a 6th grade Resource teacher right out of college and worked at that level for 12 years. I transitioned to a self-contained placement where I was very fortunate to work closely with students from grades 5-8 for a few years. I am currently working at the grade 7 level and absolutely love the humor I can bring to this age level. A special thank you goes out to all the dedicated professionals and countless students I have worked with for helping me learn and grow over these past 26 years!

Where are you originally from? I grew up in the town of West Warwick in a tight-knit neighborhood. My friends and I were outside from early morning until the streetlights went on. We played kickball, swam in each other’s pools and rode our bikes. What I would do to go back to those carefree days! In junior high school, I was the ultimate Wizard. Although I was a cheerleader and a basketball player for the town, church, and school, softball was my passion. I ate, slept and drank softball! My parents were my biggest cheerleaders. My dad practiced with me almost daily, honing my catching, throwing and batting skills. It was a sad day when I realized it was time to hang up my cleats, but my love for sports and competition carry on!

What is your favorite part about working at your school? My favorite part of working at the Pier School has always been the camaraderie. In a way, we are like a family. Families do not always get along or agree with one another and we get that. In the end, we always do what is in the best interest of the students. The mutual respect and admiration we have for one another is visible throughout the school. The students are also what get me up in the morning. Being a special education teacher, you don’t always see immediate growth, but when it does happen it not only feels amazing for me, but also for the students. I love to see that sparkle in their eyes! Over the years, these students have taught me about perseverance and determination. I LOVE witnessing their growth when they come back to the Pier School for a visit.

Do you have any talents/hobbies outside of the school day or during the summer that you like to enjoy?
Unfortunately, I do not get to read for pleasure during the school year, but I most definitely get to it during the summer. My favorite authors are Jodi Picoult and Lisa Scottoline. I really get into the courtroom drama scenes! I love playing and cuddling with my four-legged son, Bandit! He has such personality and brings me so much joy. His love is always unconditional. Who doesn’t love a few kisses, especially after a difficult day at work?

What is one thing that your students and staff may not know about you! Back in the day, I spent my weekends singing karaoke. My best friend, Dawn, hosted at various places around our old stomping ground. I would belt out tunes by Blondie, Pat Benatar and Pink, just to name a few. Dawn was also the lead singer in a local band and I was her #1 groupie. She would call me up on stage to sing a song or two. What a great feeling being on stage with the spotlight on you! That is one thing I certainly miss about my younger years. Now, I just sing while I’m cleaning and cooking.
Narragansett Elementary School
Important January NES Dates!

11: NES Family Bingo Night (5:50-6:30pm or 7-8pm)
15: Bank Day (12-2pm) NES Cafeteria
15: NES PTO Meeting (7-8pm) NES Library
21: MLK Jr. Day- NO SCHOOL
24: NES Winter Concert (6-7pm Strings | 7-9pm Full Concert)
29: Bank Day (12-2pm) NES Cafeteria
Handwashing Video by NES!

Our NES media students recently worked with Library Media Specialist, Brien Jennings, to produce a video on Handwashing. This was made in collaboration with the NES school nurse and her RN student teacher to promote healthy practices and hopefully reduce illness. 

They have been working on this piece since Global Handwashing Day on October 15th and hope to use it all year round!
Save the Bay Visit

In early December, Save the Bay paid another visit to Grade 4. This was made possible thanks to last year's Carter Spark Grant through the Rhode Island Foundation received by NES Special Education Teacher, Karen Festa.

During the event, Save the Bay taught students about "Life in our Watershed, " where they learned about our local watershed and ways to protect it. 

Last year, as part of the same grant, students also had the opportunity to meet representatives from Save the Bay, who came in and did a hands-on exploration with live animals from our local waters. The class also walked to Narragansett Town Beach and did an amazing beach clean-up event. Thank you Karen Festa and Save the Bay for this educational and fun experience!
Narragansett Pier Middle School
Important January Pier School Dates!

21: MLK Jr. Day- NO SCHOOL
29: NPS Spelling Bee (6:30pm)
Congrats to NPS Robotics!

On Saturday, December 8th, two NPS teams competed at the Gordon School's state qualifier. The youngest team, "PB&J" did a great job, but did not qualify for states. The oldest team, "Houston We Have An Identity Crisis," consisting of 7th graders Seamus Baxter, Michael Zelenak, John Deremer and 8th graders Lily-Weisz Nesshoever, Jacob Cox, Alex Goldstein, Pieter Mushen, Parker Harrison, Tomas Catanzaro, Harrison Quilliam came in 2nd place overall, therefore qualifying for the state championship at Roger Williams University on Saturday, January 12th!

Also, Team "Milky Way," which consists of 6th graders Zaharra Anderson, Roxy Sweetman and 7th graders Braden Ansaldi, Aiden Durkin, Sal Annino, Zachary Previte and Ryan Moricas, came in 2nd place overall at the Rocky Hill School State Qualifier. They will be competing at the state championship as well.
Congrats to all our competitors and thank you for representing our school so wonderfully!
Job Shadow Day

We are excited to bring the opportunity to your 8th grader to participate in the National Groundhog Job Shadow Day founded by Junior Achievement on Friday, February 1st.

This is a great opportunity for them to experience the world of work and to be exposed to a particular career which may hold some interest for them in the future. With your help, we are asking students to arrange a shadow day at a job location that they may be interested in. Local business communities have supported this program for years and are quite receptive to welcoming a student for the day. Many of you may also have a family member, friend, or acquaintance willing and able to provide a job shadowing experience for your child.

The Job Shadow Permission Slip Form is due by January 14.

For any questions please email kprovost@nssk12.org or lsilvestri@nssk12.org
Coding for Social Good Event

Calling all 4th-8th Graders interested in computer technology: Join your friends to design and create apps for a better world at an event in New Milford CT!

When : Saturday, February 9th
Time : 8:30-3:30pm
Where : Sarah Noble Intermediate School, 25 Sunny Valley Road, New Milford, CT
Registration Fee: $15.00

This event is a fun way to do social good while learning the basics of coding and teamwork. Click the link below to register or the button to view the full flyer.
NPS Winter Sports Update

All four teams are in action during the chilly month of January!

The Boys and Girls Basketball teams are battling for a playoff spot every Tuesday and Thursday for the next 2 weeks. 

Cheerleading is supporting the Basketball teams as they warm up for competition in March. 

The Wrestling team is competing in 9 matches and 2 tournaments this month. 

Come check out the RI Middle wrestling future as Narragansett hosts 12 teams and nearly 200 matches at NHS this Saturday, January 12! Good Luck to all the Student Athletes.
Triumph and Tragedy in History- National History Day 2019

The Pier School is hosting its Annual School-Level National History Day Contest next month on Wednesday, February 20th 2019.

Community members from the South County Museum, Newport Historical Society, Tomaquaq Museum as well as members of the school committee, staff and administration from all three schools in Narragansett, and several NHS students will be serving as judges for the contest. The top two projects in each category will be invited to represent The Pier School at the Rhode Island State National History Day Contest in March. 

You're invited for a viewing of the student websites, documentaries, historical papers, exhibits and performances before the official unveiling.

When : Tuesday, February 19th | 4:00 - 7:00 PM
Where : Narragansett Pier School.

We hope to see you there to support our talented students!
Narragansett High School 
Important December High School Dates!

15: Jr. Parent College Night - Media Center (7pm)
21: MLK Jr. Day- NO SCHOOL
22: 8th Grade Parent Night- Auditorium (7pm)
24: PTO Meeting- Media Center (7pm)
Seal of Biliteracy Approval

We are excited to announce that the State Board of Education, in conjunction with the state legislature, has approved Rhode Island’s Seal of Biliteracy . This newly established seal is in line with nearly 30 other states across the country. The designation associated with the seal attest to a student’s language ability in both English and a second language. The Seal of Biliteracy will be affixed to a student’s diploma and will also be noted on his/her final transcript, which will be sent to colleges/universities.

The Seal of Biliteracy is a testament to a student’s dedication to building literacy skills in both English and a second language and how it relates to post-secondary education and the workforce.

To read the full letter on this approval and student eligibility and requirements, please click below.
A reminder that the NHS Lost and Found bin is overflowing! If your child is missing something or you're a student and have lost something, please come to the office to check if we have it.

If items are still unclaimed by January 31st , we will be donating the remaining items to charity to help the less fortunate. Thank you.
NHS Students Travel to D.C.

Narragansett High School Science Teacher, Kathy Couchon and Social Studies Department Chairperson, Kristin Hayes-Leite traveled to Washington, D.C. with nine NHS Sophomores who had the opportunity to present their climate change research at the American Geophysical Union's Fall Meeting on December 13 th , 2018. 

After much preparation, the students were excited to share their findings at the conference’s special k-12 poster session, Bright STaRS (Bright Students Training as Research Scientists.) They were among 105 young scientists presenting at the session. They explained their research on global climate change to scientists and graduate students and answered questions on their research rationale.

After the presentations were complete, the students were able to attend a special after-hours event the Air & Space Museum as part of the AGU’s Night at the Museums .

During their stay, students also took a tour of the Capitol, where Shawn Brown, a Legislative Liaison at the Pentagon, and also the nephew of teacher, Kathy Couchon, gave the group a personal tour of the building and grounds. Students shared that an especially poignant moment of the tour was walking through the renovated Pentagon Chapel, which was destroyed in the 9/11 attacks. In addition, they visited the National Archives and the Newseum, an interactive museum of news. We thank our teachers and students for representing our district in D.C.! 
NHS Awarded Grant for URI Bound Students

NHS students who graduate and will be attending URI to study Agriculture, Horticulture, or Nursing, now have a new scholarship opportunity thanks to the Point Judith Country Club.

This year, the high school was the recipient of a generous grant called the Royal Little Trust Scholarship in the amount of $15,500. These funds can be divided, carried over to school years, and will be directly used to provide scholarship(s) to a graduating student(s) attending the University of Rhode Island with a major in agriculture, horticulture, or nursing.

The scholarship was made possible by the Point Judith Country Club in Narragansett. Since 1994, members have participated in a Charity Golf Tournament that honors the memory of their longtime friend and Club member, philanthropist Royal Little. Proceeds directly support the Royal Little Memorial Trust Fund at the Rhode Island Foundation and each year, tournament winners select a South County- based charity to receive a grant from the Fund.

The 2018 Charities Tournament was won by the foursome of Michael & Mary Sullivan and David & Victoria Wallace. At their recommendation, and with the Tournament Committee’s approval, The Rhode Island Foundation chose Narragansett High School as the recipient. The Royal Little Trust Scholarships will be awarded to students by Narragansett High School with exact amounts and timing of each scholarship to be determined.

Thank you to the Point Judith Country Club for enabling us to offer even more support to our talented students who have found their craft and passions through our tailored programs.
PTO Meetings

This is a brief reminder that we have NHS PTO meetings scheduled for the remainder of the 2019 school year. The dates are as follows:

Jan 24th, Mar 7th, and May 9th

Meetings are held at 7PM in the NHS Media Center, unless otherwise announced on the NHS PTO Facebook page or in the monthly NHS Newsletter. 

You can always explore the NHS PTO web page for more information on events, fundraisers, and updates. Click below to be directed there.
Holiday Sleigh and Oxen Pull

On Wednesday, December 12th, FFA Agriculture Mechanics Teacher, Aaron Gathen and his students rang in the holiday in a very festive way.

Narragansett FFA students constructed a complete and beautiful sleigh as a holiday project in their Agriscience classes. When the sleigh was completed, Mr. Gathen brought in two of his oxen, Smokey and Whitey, to help pull the sleigh to show it in actual use.

They then traveled to Chariho High School for the annual holiday design contest with fellow Rhode Island chapters. Members also made centerpieces that were donated to local nursing homes as well as played games like musical chairs, unwrapping gifts with oven mitts, and guessing what's in the bag. It was a great team effort and a true example of the talent and passion we have here at NHS!
Students Impress at 2018 CS4RI

On December 13th, CS4RI took place for the second year at URI's Ryan Center. At this year's summit, Narragansett High School had 8 students from the Information and Computer Technology Pathway that worked the NHS booth and an additional 25 from the program that enjoyed the event.

Governor Gina Raimondo created this initiative, which aims to inspire the next generation of computer scientists, entrepreneurs, engaged tech sector employees and anyone who wants to build the skills of the future. This summit also allows students to become familiar with the many educational and career opportunities that result from studying Computer Science.

Our students were very excited about showing off their Oculus projects. NHS also ran into 3 former students who are well on their way to successful careers in Computer Science! NHS grads Christopher Owens, a Freshman at URI who was manning a booth displaying his computer programming skills, Dan Gauthier who went through Cisco at NHS and is now a senior at URI continuing on to his Masters and who was directly involved with putting on the event, and Andrew Calore, who also took Cisco at NHS, was there to promote his newly developed firewall product.

NHS student Conner Marley also received a thank you letter from Governor Raimondo for his contributions to R.I Computer Science.  Thanks to Chris Herz and the students for representing our district and our computer science programs.
NHS Guidance Corner
Course Selections for 2019/2020 School Year

On Monday, January 7th, students received course recommendation sheets that were disseminated in advisory. 

Students will have each of their teachers from Monday (A Day) and Tuesday (B Day) sign their recommendations and finish off on Wednesday with their period 1A teachers who will sign and then collect the sheets from their students.

When recommending students for next year’s courses, teachers will meet with each student to inform them of their placement for next year before signing the course sheet. Students will also be selecting the electives they are interested in taking next year on Friday, January 11th during advisory . They will enter their requests on PowerSchool and every effort will be made to try to accommodate their choices as the Master Schedule is constructed.

The Program of Studies can be found through this link: Program of Studies. Please call guidance with any questions. 401-792-9406
Standardized Test Questions Coffee Hour

The Narragansett High School Guidance Department will hold an open coffee hour for parents and guardians who wish to drop in and discuss their child’s standardized test scores while enjoying a morning coffee. We invite you to stop by with any questions!

When : Thursday, January 24th 2019 | 8:30-9:30am
Where : NHS Media Center

Students were given their test scores during the week of December 10th and linked to Khan Academy. They should be utilizing this free PSAT/SAT Practice at www.khanacademy.org.

For questions, please click below to email Guidance Counselor, Elizabeth Afonso.
Presidential Award Nomination

NHS Math teacher Donna McCadden, has been nominated and is currently an applicant for the 2018 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) Program in Mathematics!

To be named a nominee and through completing an application for the PAEMST program identifies an educator as a truly exemplary teacher of mathematics or science.

We're excited for her nomination and will update the community on any new information on this award.
NHS Music News!

The Music Dept. is excited to announce that 19 NHS students have been accepted into RI All-State Music Ensembles. This is a record number of All-State students for NHS! 

Additionally, NHS has had one student selected for the National Association for Music Education's All-Eastern Chorus. This is an ensemble of 300 students chosen from Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Washington DC, and Maryland. Selection is highly competitive.

Congratulations to all!
 Narragansett Elementary School
55 Mumford Rd, Narragansett, RI 02882
(401) 792-9420

Narragansett Pier Middle School
235 S Pier Rd, Narragansett, RI 02882
(401) 792-9430
Narragansett High School
245 S Pier Rd, Narragansett, RI 02882
(401) 792-9400
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