City School District of New Rochelle

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State of the District Address Scheduled for Tuesday
Board of Education President Jeffrey Hastie and Interim Superintendent Dr. Magda Parvey will deliver a State of the District address at the Board's Special Meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Trinity Elementary School, 180 Pelham Road.

President Hastie and Dr. Parvey will reflect on the District's strengths and achievements and how it is meeting its challenges to provide a high-quality education for its almost 11,000 students.
High School
Orientation Planned Feb. 6
Parents and guardians of next year's New Rochelle High School ninth-graders are invited to an orientation on Feb. 6 at the high school. Tours of the school, for those who are interested, begin promptly at 6:30 p.m. in the "embassy" area at the school's entrance, 265 Clove Road. The orientation begins at 7 p.m. in the Whitney M. Young Jr. Auditorium.
Students Honor MLK Sharing Personal Hopes and Dreams
More than 20 students attended the first New Ro Connects Student Summit at New Rochelle High School on January 14. The evening event, which honored the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was organized by Student Assistance Counselor Pina Palmisano, with Stephanie Marquesano, the founder and president of local awareness and advocacy organization the harris project. 

Students gathered to discuss Dr. King's "Six Principles of Nonviolence," and gave personal oral presentations addressing violence in the District through the lens of Dr. King's ideal of the "Beloved Community" - a society based on justice, equal opportunity and love of one's fellow human beings.

While reflecting on the events of the last school year, 18 students shared their personal experiences and offered hopes and dreams for the New Rochelle community, which were also colorfully displayed on a hope poster. 

"(Dr. King) once said, 'Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter,'" said student Grace Myron during her speech. "We are here today to end that silence; to voice that we care and we have something to say." 

New Ro Connects is led by the District's Interim Assistant Superintendent of Student Services Amy Goodman and District Medical Director Dr. Brooke Balchan, in partnership with Tamaris Princi and Lisa Burton, co-founders of the New Rochelle Coalition Against Violence. Its mission: To harness the resources of the community and the School District to connect all students and their families to evidence-based programs that promote health, healing, resilience, and academic achievement. 

"The evening was an important part of our coming together as a school community to move forward in positivity from the unfortunate incidents that impacted all our lives last year," said Goodman. "Those events have not been ignored or forgotten. Rather, while terribly sad, they have empowered our students and staff to find ways we can all be the light that drives out darkness, as Dr. King so expressively instructed."

New Ro Connects meets the last Friday of each month and plans to sponsor future Student Summits to reach and inspire the broader student community. Give them a like and follow them on Facebook.
NRHS Taking Wall of Fame
Who will be next among New Rochelle High School's many illustrious graduates to join the growing Wall of Fame? In part, that's up to you.

The school is accepting nominations for alumni to be celebrated. Anyone can nominate graduates who have made a mark in their field - academia, business, the military, entertainment, sports, etc. - or who have made an outstanding contribution in volunteer service.

Before naming a candidate, however, carefully check the criteria. Nominees must have graduated from NRHS at least 10 years before their nomination. Find the full list of criteria and how to nominate a candidate here

Nominations must be received by June 1. -The Wall of Fame ceremony is held each December.
For more information, email Sue Riordan,
Sports Schedule
For upcoming New Rochelle athletic competitions, check out*

* This link connects to an outside website
Dates to Remember
Tuesday, January 29: Board of Education Special Meeting, Trinity, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, January 30: Planetarium Show, NRHS, 7 p.m.

Thursday, January 31: Winter Concert, ALMS, 7 p.m.

Friday, February 1: School Spirit Day, Davis

Friday, February 1: Barnard Magnet Lottery, City Hall, 9 a.m.

Saturday, February 2: PTA Breakfast with Dads/Guardians, 9 a.m., Barnard
Carnegie Hall Trip Planning Starts Next Week
We think we know how to get to Carnegie Hall (practice, practice, practice...) but in truth, it takes much more.

Every few years, several hundred New Rochelle High School music students travel to Manhattan to perform on a world-famous stage - either in Carnegie Hall or at Lincoln Center. That's a massive undertaking. Volunteers are needed for fundraising, organizing, producing a program and more.

Indeed, the next trip is expected to be in spring 2020, but the planning starts next week. Parents and guardians who want to help out are invited to a meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30 in the House IV cafeteria of New Rochelle High School, near the Braemar Avenue entrance off North Avenue.

They will discuss plans to either return to Carnegie Hall, David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center or another prestigious venue. In all, some 350 NRHS students would perform in the concert, symphonic and jazz bands, the Huguenot and string orchestras, the Choraleers and the Chorale.

Organizers are looking for volunteer help from parents of both NRHS music students and current eighth-grade band and orchestra students.
The last time New Rochelle High School's students performed at Carnegie Hall was in June 2015.

"My hope is that the entire community will come out and support our children in this," said Marc Schneider, the district Supervisor of Music and Art. "To perform in such an iconic venue is an experience they will never forget."

For information, contact
Food Ed Students Serve Schoolmates 'Mindful' Lunch
Forty New Rochelle High School students were treated to healthy dishes including beet bruschetta with hummus and sweet potato and parsnip soup served by their schoolmates recently.

The student cooks in the Science of Food class whipped up dishes from their own recipes with farm-to-table, sustainable ingredients as the culmination of a semester-long "Food Ed" program with the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture.

They studied personal and cultural connections to food as well as topics of sustainability. The lessons focused on many facets of agriculture, even caring for the soil itself.

"They studied how to maintain healthy soil, how to restore depleted soil and how the foods that you choose to grow have an impact on that living skin of the earth," teacher Julia Chillemi Kouyoumdjian said.

For the lunch event, Chillemi  Kouyoumdjian's 30 students prepared, cooked and served the meal to two other classes in Room 207. The focus was "mindful eating," which "increases your awareness of the positive and nurturing opportunities that are available through food selection and preparation," their menu explains. It continues, "Eating mindfully is a practice that uses all your senses in choosing to eat food that is both satisfying to you and nourishing to your body."

They chose ingredients from the Stone Barns farm; others were sustainably sourced. In addition to the bruschetta and the sweet potato soup, there was kale risotto, "classic farm soup" and a seasonal salad. With each course came a story about how people can share their cultures by sharing foods, how food can be a form of medicine and how healthy soil leads to more nutritious ingredients.

Students who took the class said they planned to eat healthier and to spread the word about the connection between how we grow food and the world around us.

"I commit to eating healthy foods and staying away from bad foods that may be detrimental to my health," Gillian Okaiteye wrote in an action plan questionnaire.

Several said they would start their own gardens or join a community garden. Nick Calderone said he would like to help his mother cook and perhaps even make the family dinner on his own. Colin Logan, like many others, said he would let others know what he had learned.

"I will spread awareness about issues with the food system, such as unfair distribution and non-ethical production practices," Logan said.
Principals Outline Funding
Requests at Town Hall Meeting
Elementary and middle school principals talked about the long-term needs for their grades at the latest Board of Education Town Hall meeting, "Prioritizing Resources for Quality Programming," held Tuesday in the Linda E. Kelly Theater of New Rochelle High School.

Representatives of New York State Senator Shelly Mayer and Westchester County Legislator Terry Clements were among the attendees at the session, which included more than 70 administrators, teachers and residents.

Among the requests for the elementary levels, made by Columbus Elementary School Principal Michael Galland and Daniel Webster Magnet School Principal Melissa Passarelli, was the staffing to provide a math and literacy coach for teachers in each elementary school. Among the requests from principals of Albert Leonard and Isaac E. Young middle schools were staffing to start health education in sixth grade rather than eighth and a counselor for each school.

Board President Jeffrey Hastie and Vice President Amy Moselhi, who served as moderators, said hearing the principals list their specific needs would help greatly in the coming 2019-2020 budget season and on longer-range planning.

"An experience like this enriches the District," Moselhi said. "It certainly enriches the Board's perspective on how principals think and what they want. It will help Board members understand the Superintendent's final budget and it will help inform us all. We can start to think in a healthy, holistic way, so that people can understand where we're going."

View the Town Hall meeting here.
Photo courtesy of Jillian McAlley
Davis Staff, Parents Face Wizards for Fun, Fundraising
It was all in good fun when the teachers and parents of the George M. Davis Jr. Elementary School took on the Harlem Wizards basketball team in a fundraising showdown recently.

The world famous basketball team came to the District for a benefit show to the delight of the students, the staff and the entire school community on Jan. 13 in the Albert Leonard Middle School gymnasium. In all, 600 people came out for the event. It was coordinated by the Davis PTA, with co-presidents Daniela Rizzetta and Kathryn Goldstein taking the lead, along with Lathell Smith, the Davis PTA's Board of Education representative.

When it was over, the Davis team members had held their own against the pro team, with a score of 90 to 66 in the Wizards' favor. More importantly, the event raised $5,000 in donated admissions to fund field trips for all grades.

The Davis team was comprised of Principal Anthony Bambrola; staffers Nicole Strome, Joseph Triolo, ToniAnn Zuzulo, Deirdre Ferrara, Joseph Viggiani, Gianmattia Catanzaro, Kris Clark, Krista Gedney, Paul Williams, Lauren Endres, Zachary Seiden, Miko McCutcheon and Crystal Teixeira; and parents Brian Rubin, Rafael Katz, Jason Sealove, Michael Mendes, Ben Chen, Kyle Mc Evily, Marc Cohen and Mark Desimini.