City School District of New Rochelle

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Exhibit Features Student Art at
Public Library
Stop by New Rochelle Public Library to view artwork from elementary school students across the district.

Paintings, sculptures, collages and drawings from all seven elementary schools are currently on display in the library's lobby for the 38th annual Our Children, Our Artists exhibition.

"This is our very favorite exhibit," Barbara Davis, the library's communications coordinator, told an audience of young artists and their families at a reception in the Ossie Davis Theater on Wednesday. "People come into this library, walk through the lobby and get these big smiles on their faces. You bring such joy with your artwork. And I have to say, this year, this exhibit is phenomenal! It's filled with happiness, filled with joy, filled with promise."

Marc Schneider, the District Director of Art and Music told parents about the benefits their children receive from art education.

"Your child engages and persists, envision s, observes, reflects, stretches and explores," he said.

The works will be on display through Wednesday, May 8. A week later, on May 15, the exhibition will resume with works from New Rochelle High School and both District middle schools.

Sofia Escoffery, a fifth-grader at George M. Davis Jr. Elementary School, created a beach scene using pastels to depict a vibrant sunset blending red, pink, yellow and orange.

"You can make anything you want," she said. "You can blend them to make any color. There's no limit."

Jefferson Elementary School fifth-grader Sierra Daly's drawing, in contrast, was a still life study in black, white and shades of gray.

"I like the way we learned to shade things in to make it look more realistic," she said.

Mia Mendoza, a Jefferson fourth-grader, said seeing the artwork from around the city can inspire other people to try their hand at creativity.

"It will help them see that if we can do it, and if they start it, they can do it, too," she said.

The library staff also presented a reception for the children in honor of their work and National Children's Book week. It featured foods from favorite books such as Sun Bread and If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.
NRHS Students Spend 2 Weeks in Germany
A group of 10 juniors and seniors from New Rochelle High School traveled to Germany recently to enjoy a 2-week experience studying abroad through a partnership with the German American Partnership Program (GAPP) of the Goethe-Institut New York and Gymnasium HAMM in Hamburg, Germany. From April 6 through April 20, the students were part of an immersive experience that had them living with German host families and going to school paired up with an overseas counterpart.
During their visit, the New Rochelle students were invited to attend family gatherings and community activities with their host families, which gave them a uniquely firsthand look at German culture. They also had time to learn about and reflect on a focused and very timely topic: examining how Hamburg and New Rochelle are immigrant cities.

"We explored the experience of immigration and assimilation in Germany and how it was similar or dissimilar from the immigrant experience in America," said New Rochelle teacher, program organizer and chaperone Lisbeth Lynn.

The group examined how the two cities are similar in their diversity, by their wealth of varied ethnicities and socioeconomic make-up. 

"The students got the chance to see that Germany and its cities are just as diverse as New York City and New Rochelle," said Eric Hedman, NRHS English teacher who also helped with the trip.

Besides assimilating into German households, the students also took excursions to a handful of German towns and cities, including Berlin. During the trips, they learned about the country's history, and present-day culture and norms. The Berlin outing took them to Holocaust memorials, including work camps liberated during World War II. Although the GAPP program does not align with a specific class at the high school, the trip abroad included many points of interest that the students have studied in their Global and American History classes.

"Our students attended classes just like any regular student in the German school would," said Lynn. 

"This was an amazing experience for the students," said Lynn, who said the same for herself, the host families and Mr. Hedman. 

This is the fifth year that New Rochelle and Gymnasium HAMM have partnered to offer the GAPP program.
Workshop on Hate Speech Set for May 15
Leaders of the Holocaust and Human Rights Education Center (HHREC) will offer a workshop for parents and guardians on May 15 entitled Free Speech vs. Hate Speech: When Does it Become Hate Speech?
The session will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in Room 207 of New Rochelle High School, 265 Clove Road. It will be led by Steve Goldberg and Julie Scallero, co-directors of education for the HHREC.
The City School District of New Rochelle has partnered with the HHREC to teach students about hate speech and symbols of intolerance. With this workshop, the District invites parents and guardians to learn more about this important topic in order to help foster a welcoming atmosphere for all in the New Rochelle schools and community.
Sports Schedule
For upcoming New Rochelle athletic competitions, check out*

* This link connects to an outside website
Dates to Remember
Monday, May 6: PTAC Meeting, NRHS Room 222, 7 p.m.

Monday, May 6: PTA Meeting, IEYMS, 7 p.m.

Monday-Wednesday, May 6-8: Mother's Day Plant Sale, Davis

Tuesday, May 7: Board of Education Regular Meeting and Public Hearing on 2019-2020 Proposed School Budget, NRHS Library, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, May 8: Grade 7 & 8 Spring Concert, IEYMS, 6 p.m.

Wednesday, May 8: Ward PTA Budget Presentation, Ward, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, May 8: Rising Sixth-grader Family Orientation, ALMS, 7 p.m.

Wednesday-Thursday, May 8-9: Mother's Day Plant Sale, Webster

Wednesday-Friday, May 8-10: Plant Sale, Trinity

Wednesday-Friday, May 8-10: Mother's Day Plant Sale, IEYMS

Thursday, May 9: Grade 6 Spring Concert, IEYMS, 6 p.m.

Thursday, May 9: Spring Concert I, ALMS, 7 p.m.

Thursday, May 9: PTA Meeting, Barnard, 7 p.m.

Thursday-Friday, May 9-10: PTA Mother's Day Plant Sale, Jefferson

Thursday-Friday, May 9-10: Mother's Day Boutique, Columbus

Friday, May 10: PTA Teacher Appreciation Luncheon, Columbus

Saturday, May 11: PTA Car Wash, Trinity

Saturday, May 11: Mother's Day Plant Sale, Barnard, 10 a.m.
Hearing on Adopted Budget Scheduled for Tuesday
The Board of Education will host a hearing on the adopted $281,067,000 budget for the next school year on Tuesday, May 7 during the Board's regular meeting at 7 p.m. in the library of New Rochelle High School, 265 Clove Road.

The 2019-20 spending plan, which the Board adopted unanimously April 23, adds more than 20 positions, improves resources in areas such as special education and building maintenance, addresses priorities expressed by administrators and the community, such as supports in social-emotional health, and stays within the state-mandated property tax cap.
The budget saves money by reducing contractual expenses and eliminating two central office positions, among other measures, and includes funds for replacing the press box and renovating the concession stand at New Rochelle High School's McKenna Field.
Information on the budget, including the adopted spending plan, is available on the District's website, . The public will vote on the plan on May 21.
Prestige Step Team
Advances to National Finals 
The New Rochelle step team Prestige has already won a place in one national competition and hopes to find more success tomorrow.

The team of students from New Rochelle High School and Albert Leonard Middle School finished first in the National Steppers League's New York State qualifying competition in the Bronx on March 30. The victory sends them to the national competition on June 22 at Morehouse University in Atlanta.

Tomorrow, the team will be busy, performing their percussive dances of rhythmic stepping and clapping in two events. First, the members will compete in another league's contest, Youth Step USA's New York City Regional High School Stepping Championship in Brooklyn. Then they will head up to White Plains for an event called "Performing Families II: The Art of Runway and Step," hosted by ArtsWestchester, 31 Mamaroneck Ave., at 7:30 p.m.

The victory in March left them soaring.

"It's like we're on top of the world," said freshman Mica Lorse.

It's quite an achievement for a team that is just three years old. It grew out of a team coach Karen Johnson began at ALMS years earlier. Prestige proved to be a strong team from the start. Their first year, they came in third in the National Stepping Association's National Championship. The following year, they came in first place in the Lion's Den competition in Chicago, Johnson said.

"They like being creative and they like being together," she said. "Their closeness helps them get through the tough competitions."

"Some get nervous," said senior Elijah Hunter. "But because we have such a connection, we help each other out."
Assemblywoman Speaks
at Latinx Conference
New York State Assemblywoman Catalina Cruz was 9 years old and living in Colombia when her mother gave up a career in nursing to take her away from dangerous times and bring her to the United States.

Cruz recounted her mother's sacrifice at the seventh annual Latinx Youth Leadership Conference in New Rochelle High School as she urged the several hundred students to never forget all that parents give up to bring their children to this country.

The Queens-based legislator also recalled worrying every day that her mother would be deported, and of facing prejudice while attending law school.

"I got told 'Go back to your country to learn the law,'" she said. "I told them, 'This is my country.'"

The theme of this year's conference was "Breaking Walls, Breaking Stereotypes." After the opening talks, students went to various workshops including "Women at Work: Latinas on the Rise," and "Poesía Con Beats: Presenting New Narratives of Latinx Identity Through Hip Hop."

"We cannot discover ourselves until we know what we are truly capable of," said Veronica Hernandez, a student organizer of the event, during the opening. "This discovery is only possible when we push ourselves to the fullest and open ourselves to the people and the experiences we once protected ourselves against."

"We all have a moral responsibility to improve our country," said Sebastian Palencia, another student organizer. "The limelight is shining bright at us and the time to put our best foot forward is now."
Fashion Show Features Wardrobes from Recyclables
The middle aisle of Trinity Elementary School's auditorium doubled as a fashion runway on Tuesday, when fourth-graders strutted past schoolmates, parents and teachers to show off wardrobes that made a statement about more than just style.

The clothing and accessories, from stylish to glitzy to quirky, were made from recycled or reused materials in a project that blended students' creativity and concern for the planet.

Its name: The Trashion Fashion show.

"This show will help by showing people that you can re-use things and not just litter or throw it away," said Adriana Valencia, who wore a gown made from meticulously pleated pages of coupons.

Paper and plastic bags, newspaper comic sections and Capri Sun juice pouches were just some of the materials stitched, taped and glued together to create the clothing. Many bottle caps were adhered to shirts and hats or hung as charms on necklaces. Some articles of clothing incorporated construction paper from decorations removed following the recent Enchanted Forest book fair.

The students walked the aisle as pop music set an upbeat tone with songs such as "Can't Stop the Feeling" by Justin Timberlake and "High Hopes" by Panic! At the Disco.

"This was a true celebration for Trinity Elementary School," Principal Michael Hilderbrand said. "The idea of 'reduce, reuse, recycle' came to life as a result of the hard work and dedication of our fourth-grade teachers and the creativity of our students."

The volunteer project that students completed at home helped them explore the impact humans have on their environment.

The skills students have been developing through STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) classes helped them pull off their designs with flair, said teacher Johanna Vasquez, who came up with the idea for the show. "It has made them confident enough to work on their own and create these amazing dresses and outfits." 

Student Yanea Rivera said the show was fun, and also helped show people "that you can make a piece of nothing into a very intelligent, nice piece of clothing."
Ward Waxes Historical
with Unique Exhibit
The auditorium at Ward Elementary became a time machine back to Colonial and Revolutionary-era America, as Ms. Erin Kaplan's fourth-grade class presented a fun and educational "living" wax museum. The project took a creative, role playing approach to subject matter that the students have been engaged with during their Social Studies activities, including the important accomplishments of individuals and groups who were living at the time, including some in New York.
For the hour-long presentation - Colonial & Revolutionary Life Wax Museum Exhibit - each student chose a historical figure from the time period and created a costume to dress up as their subject. The students, standing like wax statues, gave attendees a visual representation of each historical figure. The students also thoroughly researched their subjects and made speeches and presentations, in character, about the lives they led and the contributions and impacts each had made on America during such a formative time in United States history. 
Peers from another Ward fourth-grade class, along with many parents and family members of the students, attended to be educated and delighted by the wardrobe and oratory.
Skills the fourth-graders have picked up in their writing units were also put to use. Those include how to clearly introduce a topic and organize information by paragraphs and sections, and how to present that information using illustrations, and in multimedia formats, when it will help others comprehend the topic.
"In our reading units, students learn how to research, take notes and synthesize information from multiple sources," said Kaplan. "The kids did an amazing job! I'm so proud of them."
Through the mists of time, historical figures were brought to life, including: John Adams - our second president - and his wife and advisor Abigail Adams; Thomas Gates and Pocahontas whose stories are part of the history of colonial Jamestown; Betsy Ross; and founding father Benjamin Franklin.