Community Gives Input on Superintendent Search
During the Board of Education's fourth Town Hall meeting of the school year, the community met the education expert who is heading the search for a permanent superintendent.
Dr. Harold A. Coles, the District Superintendent of Southern Westchester Board of Cooperative Educational Services, who has been commissioned to conduct the search, asked questions of the audience to help gather information needed to find the best superintendent for New Rochelle. Among the questions, he asked community members to tell him the District's greatest strengths, the District's challenges and the qualities and characteristics a successful leader of a school system.
"It's important to have this forum," Dr. Coles said in the session at Isaac E. Young Middle School. "Ultimately the board will make the determination of who the candidate is going to be who will sit as superintendent, but we want to make sure that the community has the opportunity to share its thoughts of what the board should think about as it goes through this process."
Dr. Coles shared the stage with Board President Jeffrey Hastie at the meeting. The Board will also receive input by meeting with District employees on Monday. The Board anticipates the superintendent to be in place by August 1, 2019, after collecting applications in February and conducting interviews in February and March.
Dr. Magda Parvey, the District's Chief Academic Officer, has served as interim superintendent since Dr. Brian Osborne left in early October.
Tell us your thoughts
Community members also have the opportunity to provide their input by completing an online survey, which is available until Dec. 20.
Board of Education Meeting Notes
The New Rochelle High School graduation rate for the 2017-2018 school year was 80.8 percent, almost a 1 percentage point decrease from 81.7 percent last year. In a
presentation on the statistics
, Interim Principal Joseph Starvaggi discussed a list of measures put in place to raise graduation rates, including more intensive monitoring of students who require it, weekly assessments of ninth-graders' progress and stricter attendance policies.
The Board of Education on Tuesday accepted the final report from T&M Protection Resources LLC regarding its independent investigation into New Rochelle High School's Credit Recovery Program and the school's utilization of Apex Learning online courses. The report was released unredacted to the public and comments from the board president and interim superintendent can be found on the District
along with the report.
The Board of Education and Interim Superintendent Dr. Magda Parvey congratulated the New Rochelle High School football Huguenots for their performance in the season that just ended. The team finished with 11 wins and 2 losses, making it to the state championships at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse on Nov. 24. While they did not win the final game, against Aquinas Institute, the 21-14 loss did not detract "from the outstanding achievements of these student-athletes and their coaches," the proclamation reads.
The Board of Education accepted draft policies in several areas, including a mission statement, core beliefs and vision. They are available on the Board of Education
page on the District website, under the "Dec 4, 2018 (Tue)" entry in the "Discussion Items" section.
Re-Harmonizes the Holidays
Devory Pugh, a Special Education Aide at Henry Barnard Early Childhood Development Center, has released an EP of Christmas music titled Christmas with Dev, just in time to be the soundtrack to your holiday season.
Pugh, a keyboard player and singer, is the principal arranger and performer on the collection, which includes his reimagined versions of five classic Christmas carols: We Three Kings; O Come O Come Emanuel; Away in a Manger; Silent Night; and Little Drummer Boy.
"The project started in my living room, with me sitting at my piano," said Pugh. "I was playing Silent Night and began to look for new ways to approach a holiday staple. I began to re-harmonize the chords and a world of musical colors opened up to me."
The melodies and lyrics remain familiar enough to take you on a nostalgic trip, but Pugh's sonically layered grooves are delivered with a modern, gospel chops-style energy that puts his contribution to the oeuvre squarely in line with the holiday traditions of contemporary jazz pioneers Fourplay, or the current sounds of trendsetters like Cory Henry & the Funk Apostles.
Pugh also engineered and produced the EP, while playing all piano, synthesizer and Fender Rhodes parts. It's also Pugh that you hear through the talk box, turning the traditional vocals into something appropriately otherworldly for Christmas in the 21st Century. Other musicians contributing to the EP include Patrick Andy, John Beaty, Pei-Chin Faison, Joy Farmer, Chris Morgan, Greg Norwood, Marion Ross III, Marquis Sayles and Erick Walls.
"I am extremely fortunate and blessed to have such wonderful friends who saw my vision and lent their talents to make this project a reality," said Pugh.
Get into the holiday groove with an EP that is definitely on the "nice list." Listen to Devory L. Pugh's Christmas with Dev on
, add it to your
library, or check it out on
* This link connects to an outside website
Saturday, December 8:
ACT, NRHS, 8 a.m.
Monday, December 10: SEPTA General Meeting, New Rochelle Public Library, 6 p.m.
Monday-Tuesday, December 10-11: Holiday Boutique, Ward
Tuesday, December 11: Winter Concert, Columbus, 9:15 and 10:30 a.m.
Tuesday, December 11: PTSA Fundraiser, NRHS, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, December 11: PTA Meeting, Davis
Tuesday, December 11: PTA Meeting, Ward
Tuesday-Friday, December 11-14: PTA Book Fair, Barnard
Wednesday, December 12: Half Day Elementary Schools, Parent-Teacher Conferences
Wednesday-Thursday, December 12-13: Holiday Boutique, IEYMS
Thursday, December 13: Winter Concert, Trinity, 7 p.m.
Friday, December 14: PTSA Staff Appreciation Luncheon, NRHS, 11 a.m.
Friday, December 14: Book Fair Family Night, Barnard, 6:30 p.m.
Friday, December 14: Movie Night, Columbus, 6-8 p.m.
Saturday, December 15: NR Fund Practice SAT, NRHS, 9 a.m.
Saturday, December 15: Planetarium Show, NRHS, 5 p.m.
Four Inducted into
NRHS Wall of Fame
|New Wall of Famer inductees Madeline de Vries Hooper and Rasaun N. Young with photos of themselves and the other two four inductees, who could not attend.
New Rochelle High School welcomed four more distinguished alumni onto its Wall of Fame at a ceremony Thursday evening. The honorees include two research professors, a founder of a leading public relations firm and the head coach of the NRHS boys varsity basketball team.
They were chosen based on their outstanding professional achievements and notable contributions to their respective communities.
It's really great to hear these stories because they're so inspiring
," Interim Principal Joseph Starvaggi told the gathered families and friends, including members of the basketball team. "I hope you guys are inspired as well."
Dr. Michael N. Oxman, Class of 1954
Dr. Oxman has been a p
rofessor of medicine and pathology at the University of California, San Diego, since 1976; and, chief of the Infectious Diseases Section at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) San Diego Healthcare System.
He graduated from Harvard College in 1958 and Harvard Medical School in 1963. He then served as an intern and resident on the Harvard Medical Service at the Boston City Hospital, as a Staff Associate at the NIH, and as a Research Fellow at Harvard Medical School with Dr. John F. Enders. He was a faculty member of the Childrens Hospital-Beth Israel Hospital Infectious Diseases Research Training Program, an Associate Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at Harvard Medical School, and Director of the Clinical Virology Laboratory at Boston Children's Hospital.
His research over the past 50 years has involved the pathogenesis, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of viral diseases, especially ailments caused by herpes simplex virus (HSV) and varicella-zoster virus (VZV). He has trained numerous physician-scientists at Harvard and the University of California, and has authored more than 170 peer-reviewed scientific publications, books and book chapters.
He is National Chairman of the landmark Shingles Prevention Study, which demonstrated the safety and efficacy of live attenuated Oka VZV shingles vaccine, leading to its FDA licensure in 2005 and its use in the United States and many other countries.
Dr. Oxman could not attend the ceremony because he is in Japan to deliver a lecture at Osaka University, Starvaggi said.
Madeline de Vries Hooper, Class of 1963
Hooper's career was in public relations, initially at Bergdorf Goodman and later as the founder of her own agency, DeVries Public Relations, which grew to be a leading firm in the country specializing in marketing public relations.
Her experience includes work in fashion, beauty, retail, luxury products, wines, household goods and pharmaceuticals. She sold her agency to the Interpublic Group in 2001 and retired from the firm in 2005.
Hooper has served on several industry and charity boards including Cosmetic Executive Women, The Fashion Group and Berkshire Botanical Garden, where she is currently vice chair. In 2002, she received the Matrix Award, bestowed upon outstanding women in communications.
"It means the world to me to be on that wall," said Hooper, who was accompanied by her husband and son. "I really am just full of pride."
Dr. Chanel T. Tyler, Class of 1992
Dr. Tyler earned her medical degree from MCP Hahnemann School of Medicine and completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and is board certified. She completed her fellowship in maternal and fetal medicine at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics and is board eligible.
An assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin, School of Medicine and Public Health, Dr. Tyler has also co-authored published articles on preeclampsia, participated on several panels at summits and conferences on maternal fetal medicine, and conducted research on risk factors during pregnancy that resulted in various grants for the university. She is also the recipient of several honors and awards in the field.
"New Rochelle High School was the foundation that jumpstarted Chanel on a path that proved to be of great success," said the honoree's mother, Donna Tyler. Dr. Tyler was unable to attend.
Rasaun N. Young, Class of 1993
Young was named the head coach for the high school's Boys Varsity Basketball team in 2012, leading the team to the New York State Class AA championship game in his first year.
His coaching career began at Mount Vernon High School in 2004. From 2005 to 2009, Young was the trainer for The Westchester Hawks Select AAU Team. He is the co-founder and president of Team Young World, Inc., a basketball camp designed to train young athletes to reach their full potential both on and off the basketball court. Young is also the co-founder and a board member of the New Rochelle Basketball Association, which was established in 2011 to provide opportunities for New Rochelle boys and girls to learn and play basketball on a competitive level as well as assisting them with their academic responsibilities.
When he graduated in 1998 from the University at Buffalo, he was the school's all-time leading scorer, three-time first-team All-Mid-Continent Conference selection, a member of the Mid- Continent Conference All-Academic Team. The university will retire his number (No. 11) in a ceremony on March 8. He was also inducted into the Remington Boys and Girls Club of New Rochelle's Hall of Fame in 2000; the University at Buffalo's Hall of Fame in 2004 and the New Rochelle Sports Hall of Fame in 2006.
He played professional basketball in Europe from 1999 to 2000. In 2005, he joined the New Rochelle Fire Department.
"It's really an honor to be put on that wall with so many great people
," he said at the ceremony.
Webster Students Create Recycling Facility in Class
Before they toured the Yonkers Material Recovery Facility (MRF), third-graders in Daniel Webster Magnet School operated their own mini-version of the refuse sorting plant in class.
By pulling a wide and verrry long strip of sturdy brown paper along three tables placed end to end, they created a conveyor belt onto which STEAM teacher Sandra Galano heaped cans, boxes, bags and more. As the pile moved down the line, several students each had one job. The student with a magnet pulled out cans and other ferrous metals. Others, wearing plastic gloves, picked out the items they were assigned to find. They worked until all the items were sorted into separate baskets.
"We learned about things that are attracted to magnets, which are iron, steel, nickel and cobalt," said student Indiana Twist. "And we learned how to use magnets."
The visit to the Westchester County plant in Yonkers last Friday capped the eight-week unit. During the studies, the students experimented to test the s
trength of magnets of different sizes, and the force they conduct through water and other materials, Galano said.
The lessons were in line with Next Generation Science Standards, which include learning about magnets and their real-world applications.
Students expanded their vocabulary by learning terms related to magnets and recycling. They honed math skills by weighing lunch waste and recyclables and graphing the results. T
hey also learned about the importance of recycling and being kind to the environment.
"It's important for Earth because if you litter too much, the Earth could get sick," said student Kevin Sotelo.
Simply burning trash is no solution either, said student Emma Salierno.
"If we burn it into the air, it's going to be bad for us," she said. "So we need to recycle as much as possible."
JV Cheerleaders Advance
to National Championship
New Rochelle High School's junior varsity cheerleading squad is going back to the UCA National High School Cheerleading Championship in February.
The team won a bid to compete in both Traditional Cheer and Game Day portions and achieved first place and fifth place finishes, respectively, in the Empire Regional Competition at Nassau Community College on Sunday. The teams were scored based on their overall performance, motions, impression, difficulty of stunts, execution, dance and cheer. New Rochelle competes in the Large Junior Varsity Division.
The team now advances to compete Feb. 8-10 in Orlando, Florida. The competition is the most prestigious cheerleading championship in the country. It is held at the Walt Disney World Resort and is nationally televised on ESPN and ESPN2. The competition hosts more than 800 teams and 15,000 athletes.
The program has participated in the competition since 1998. The JV team is coached by Melissa Begendorf and Laura Clement.
The varsity team is competing Sunday at the UCA Pocono Regional at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania, eyeing a bid for the championship competition as well. The team is coached by Angela Trozzi and Ashley Brennan.
The coaching staff at New Rochelle High School currently consists of all former New Rochelle Varsity cheerleaders.
In addition to the National Championship, the JV team will also compete in The World School Cheerleading Championship, based on its top 10 finish in the national competition last year. This means New Rochelle's JV team will go up against qualifying international teams as well as teams in the U.S.