City School District of New Rochelle

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District Seeks Public Relations Consultant
The City School District of New Rochelle is seeking a public relations professional or firm to partner with its public information officer in maintaining a high profile for the District and the high-quality education it provides to nearly 11,000 students.

The public relations team will disseminate important information to the community; spread the word about innovative educational activities and student and teacher achievements; and promote school events such as performances, exhibitions and dedications.

The District is committed to finding a highly experienced public relations expert or firm with the skill and dedication suited to a diverse city school system that enjoys a strong bond with its community and features myriad exceptional programs, teachers and students.

A Request for Proposals issued by the District is available at

Proposals are due 3 p.m. August 9.
Superintendent to Meet with Administrators, Staff to Prepare for New Post
When classes are back in session, incoming Superintendent Dr. Laura Feijóo will become a familiar face at schools throughout the City School District of New Rochelle, meeting with principals and building relationships with the administrators and school staff she will lead beginning November 1.

Dr. Laura Feijóo
Once she takes her new position, she plans to continue spending much of her time in the schools.

"That's where the work happens, that's where the learning and engaging activities take place," she said. "That's how you gain context and perspective and it's where you get to know the students, who can be your greatest resource in figuring out what comes next."

She will come to the District with 30 years of experience, rising from teacher to senior supervising superintendent - a top post in the New York City Department of Education. In New Rochelle, as she has elsewhere, she will listen to residents' hopes and dreams for the school system. "My experience across very diverse districts in New York City has brought people together," she said. "I look forward to bringing that experience here."

"The New Rochelle Board of Education is pleased with Dr. Feijóo's vision and strategies to move our District forward," Board President Amy Moselhi said. "We are excited that she has begun to move quickly on her work for the District and look forward to what she will bring when she officially starts in November."

Dr. Feijóo has been spending the summer getting to know many aspects of the District. Her input helped guide the District in hiring educational administrators to fill several positions for the start of the new school year. She plans to work with Altaris Consulting Group and Director of Security Bruce Daniele on safety and security in the District, which she considers the top priority.

She is eager to continue the District's commitment to specialized programs including Performing and Visual Arts Education (PAVE), the Science Research Program, the magnet programs, the Kaleidoscope enrichment program and more, while always striving to improve.

"I am looking forward to continuing to build upon the richness in programming that the City School District of New Rochelle brings to all students," she said.

Her priorities and beliefs align with those in the District's Strategic Roadmap - excellence, equity, access and diversity. Among measures seeking to narrow the opportunity gap, she plans to review access to Advanced Placement high school courses for all students by offering supports beginning in middle school. She plans to explore ways to increase the graduation rate, and to analyze data on student suspensions to address issues of disproportion-ality.

Dr. Feijóo also plans to hire a Diversity and Equity Officer, who will work with the departments of human resources and curriculum and instruction.

This approach will inform hiring practices and policies, professional development and support systems for District personnel while also informing the review of curriculum and classroom materials to ensure that students are exposed to rigorous and culturally rich materials.

Dr. Feijóo is committed to supporting the implementation of the District's Code of Conduct by increasing the buildings' capacity to focus on promoting social behaviors and preventing discipline issues and on the use of restorative practices to support students in understanding the impacts of their actions.

She will oversee continued capital improvements, including those covered by the ongoing $106.5 million in bond construction work. During the budget season, she will partner with building administrators to build a robust, transparent spending plan.

In taking the helm of the District, Dr. Feijóo will apply the skills and experience that have gained her praise from former colleagues and supervisors.

"She has been a fierce advocate for the education of children of all families in all communities," Dr. Dorita P. Gibson, a retired Senior Deputy Chancellor in the New York City schools, wrote in a letter to President Moselhi. "She knows firsthand how to support teachers and improve their skills, how to help principals be better leaders, and how to be inclusive of parents in the educational process of all children."
Prepare Medical Information for New School Year
Prepare for the new school year by taking care of your student's medical information.

Physical Exam:  All new students and children entering Pre-K, Kindergarten and Grades 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 and 11 in September will be required to submit a copy of their current physical exam to the school nurse within 30 days of starting school.

Immunizations:  Current students promoted to the following grades will also be required to submit updated immunization records in order to attend school:

Grade 6 - Tdap booster
Grade 7 - One dose of meningococcal vaccine
Grade 12 - Second dose of meningococcal vaccine, given on or after age 16.

Parents should check with their child's health care provider as soon as possible to make sure that they are up to date and ready to start school in the fall. 

In-school Medication: All students with required daily, emergency, or as-needed medications must provide updated orders and supplies to the school nurse on the first day of school. 

For More Info:  For contact information and health forms, visit the Health Services website.

Athletics Forms and Info:  Health information required for athletics participation may be submitted through Family ID located on the Athletics website.
Home Access Center Will Reopen in Early September
The online Home Access Center (HAC) is temporarily closed to families to give schools an opportunity to update information for the coming year. It is expected to re-open in early September.
However, parents and guardians can register for the service even when the system is closed.
HAC offers parents and guardians online access to their students' report cards, attendance reports and other information.
Summer STEAM Students Enjoy Projects, Learning
At first, the hot air balloons lifted just a few feet off the propane furnace in the far corner of the Trinity Elementary School grounds. But with a couple of tweaks, the students in the Summer STEAM Academy improved their design; and soon, and the colorful tissue-paper spheres lifted to the tree tops.

"When something happens that you don't expect, try and do it a different way," said student Rejan Paracha, who finished fifth grade at Columbus Elementary School in June.

There could hardly have been a better engineering lesson for the students who chose to be in the summer program honing their skills in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics. If things don't go as planned, that doesn't mean you failed.

"You just found a way that didn't work on your way to finding out what does work," said Diane Delgado, who coordinates the five-week academy with fellow teacher Ann Marie Manganiello.

The balloon lift Monday was a project of the two upper classes, with students who will enter fifth or sixth grade in September. In all, the program is teaching about 150 students from the Trinity, Columbus and Jefferson elementary schools and the Henry Barnard Early Childhood Center. The youngest are about to enter first grade.

Their projects included solar-powered cars, rockets propelled by jolts of air and more. On a visit to the New Rochelle High School planetarium, they named constellations in the night sky. They took a nature walk and gathered treasures from the ground - chunks of wood, rocks, a sprig of leaves - that they built into habitat dioramas in cardboard boxes.

They made friends with a mini-menagerie brought by a naturalist from The Nature of Things, an educational center in North Salem. The creatures included a red-tail boa, a bearded dragon and an Arizona blond tarantula.

"My favorite was the chinchilla," said Nya Mejia, who is about to enter first grade at Trinity. "It's so cute!"

The program is supported by Title I ESSA funds, a federal program that promotes literacy.

"The STEAM Academy is an effective springboard for enriching students' literary skills by connecting written materials with real, hands-on science and engineering and enhancing their critical thinking skills," said Tiara Reyes-Vega, Director of Instructional Support.

The balloon lift was led by teachers Scott Misner and Ron Schoenherr, who operated the small furnace. Trinity students Elisse Tomlinson, Sameen Choundhary and Ricardo Mendoza created one of the balloons that didn't lift very high on the first shot. When they widened the opening so that it could lift more easily off the furnace's frame, it became airborne.

"It just took off and it went super high," said Choundhary, who will enter sixth grade in September.
Francesca de Giovanni dips a daisy into liquid nitrogen.
IEYMS Students Experience Science with IBM Experts
When they assemble robot cars to beep at the bump of a wall, and when they sample cookies-and-cream ice cream chilled with liquid nitrogen, Isaac E. Young Middle School students are learning science from experts at the top of the field.

The students are attending summer programs at IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, where the iconic tech giant's next groundbreaking developments are being pieced together.

In one class, students built, programmed and operated small LEGO robot vehicles on the floor and tables. One of their robotics teachers, James Wynne, an IBM physicist and a pioneer in the development of laser eye surgery, marveled at their enthusiasm.

"The minute they get to the part where they build things, you can see the energy," he said.

Last week, nine IEYMS students attended the program, known as Girls Go Tech Know. This week, seven IEYMS students are attending the counterpart program, Boys Go Tech Know.

"These are wonderful programs," said IEYMS counselor Martha Rodriguez, who has brought students to the summer classes for nine years. "It's inspiring for these young women and men to learn and be encouraged by role models. We are grateful to the IBM leadership for making this program happen year after year."

IEYMS student Francesca de Giovanni, who will enter seventh grade in September, said she had wanted to be a doctor before entering the program, but she is now considering research science.

"Now I see a whole new level of science," she said.

Participants froze balloons and yellow daisies in liquid nitrogen (the same substance that made the ice cream) and took note of how the normally soft objects crunched.

"It's like Cheerios!" de Giovanni said of the daisies she crushed in a gloved hand.

Students also coded computers to synchronize music and lights using an Arduino Gemma, which is a wearable micro controller board connected to a computer. Student Valerie Schellenbach painstakingly entered "You Are My Sunshine."

"I know the words by heart," she said. "So I'm just trying to make the computer play the notes I want it to play."

She was enjoying the four days focused on scientific exploration.

"I just thought it would be fun to have a little taste of it and see if I would be interested in it in the future," she said.
New Administrators Appointed in District
The City School District of New Rochelle has appointed Gregory W. Kern as the new Assistant Superintendent for Business, effective on or before October 1.

Gregory W. Kern
Kern currently serves as the Assistant Superintendent for Finance at the Newburgh Enlarged City School District, a position he has held since 2016. He directs and supervises the financial and support systems of the district, including budgeting, accounting, payroll, reporting, maintenance, legal services, transportation, security, capital construction, property management, safety, security and food services. A member of the Newburgh superintendent's cabinet, he oversees a general fund budget of nearly $282 million in a school district with a student population of 11,500.

Kern brings an extensive administrative background, leading business offices within school districts for the past 16 years. In addition to his work in Newburgh, he also has served as Assistant Superintendent for Administration at the Enlarged City School District of Middletown and as the Assistant Superintendent for Business at the Washingtonville Central School District. While in Washingtonville, Kern implemented a three-year budget planning and capital replacement program. He also served in administrative positions with the Greater Southern Tier BOCES, Amherst (NY) Central School District, Newark (NY) Central School District and Medina (NY) Central School District.

He has overseen several major bond construction programs including one for $100 million for the Elmira City School District while he was at BOCES and a recently passed $257 million bond project in Newburgh.

Kern will help continue the District's efforts to maximize value for our taxpayers while also prioritizing education for our students.

Also, several other new administrators have joined the City School District of New Rochelle, filling key positions districtwide and in individual schools:

Plinio Trujillo has been named assistant principal at Isaac E. Young Middle School. Trujillo has 16 years of experience as a science teacher and administrator, most recently as supervisor of science and instructional technology at the Rockland Board of Cooperative Educational Services.

Camille Edwards-Thomas , a former New Rochelle High School house principal who served the past year as interim assistant principal of that school, has been named assistant principal at Albert Leonard Middle School.

Rachel Cornelius , who had been leading NRHS House III, has been named Interim Assistant Principal at the high school. She joined the District recently, bringing more than 20 years of experience as a math teacher and administrator, including more than 10 years as assistant principal in the High School for Environmental Studies in New York City.

Rana Hafiz has been named mathematics chairperson for Albert Leonard and Isaac E. Young middle schools, effective September 1 . She is a graduate of the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has served as the director of math and science and STEM integration at a school district in Connecticut.
Candice Lee  has been named assistant principal at Barnard Early Childhood Center, effective September 1 . For the past 15 years, Lee has been working in the Somers Central School District as an English as a New Language teacher.
Paul Roncagliolo has been named assistant principal at Jefferson Elementary School effective September 1. Roncagliolo comes to us from the Poughkeepsie City Public School District where he served as an elementary assistant principal.
Francis Curley has been named the districtwide director of guidance. He has 14 years of school counseling experience in New Rochelle. This past year, he has served as interim director of guidance.