City School District of New Rochelle

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Wall of Fame to Add 3: Chemist, Pilot, Educator
A groundbreaking chemist, a pioneering female airline pilot and the recently retired director of New Rochelle's Alternative Campus High School will soon join the other illustrious New Rochelle High School alumni on the Wall of Fame.
The 2019 inductees, announced this week, are:


Dr. William Klemperer (Class of 1944), a physical chemist, a world leader in the field of molecular spectroscopy (the study of light absorption by molecules) and a former NASA adviser. (Dr. Klemperer died in 2017.)


Stephanie Wallach (Class of 1964), who was among the first female commercial airline pilots. She is also a co-founder of the International Society of Women Airline Pilots.


Joel Fridovich (Class of 1970), who

dedicated his professional career to helping others and helped start the Alternative Campus High School. He served as its director from its start 27 years ago until his retirement in June.

"These alumni represent the best of the heritage of New Rochelle," said NRHS Interim Principal Joseph Starvaggi. "We've turned out some exceptional people, and I think that's inspirational, not just to the students, but also to the families who move here and the teachers who work here."

The induction ceremony will be held in the House II stack area of the high school, 265 Clove Road. Keep an eye out for the date, which will be publicized and posted on the school and District websites when it is set.
Coach DiRienzo
To Join Westchester
Hall of Fame
New Rochelle High School head varsity football coach Louis DiRienzo will be inducted into the Westchester County Sports Hall of Fame on Thursday, October 17at 5:30 p.m.
The event takes place at the Westchester County Center, 198 Central Ave., White Plains.
DiRienzo and four others were chosen for the Hall of Fame in June. His fellow inductees are sportswriter Ernie Palladino, Olympic athlete and track champion Ronald O. Laird, Holy Child basketball coach Cathi Wasilik and basketball coach Beth Wooters of The Ursuline School in New Rochelle.
"It's a tremendous honor; it's incredibly humbling," DiRienzo said. He credited many with supporting him in his career -his family while growing up, his wife and children (his two sons played football at NRHS), and the "many, many coaches and many, many players" who have helped get him where he is.
"I didn't climb this mountain on my own," he said.
Last year, when DiRienzo coached the Huguenots to the Class AA state championship in the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, that was only the latest of his accomplishments.
"Lou's gridiron record speaks for itself; his 27-year record at NRHS is 224 wins and 60 losses," the program for the Hall of Fame ceremony reads. "His teams have won 13 Section One AA Titles, twice been NY State AA Champions and four times NY State AA Finalists."
Most importantly, the program says, "Lou wants his players to be men of good character."
That's the mission that drives him.
"In the game of football, there are so many life lessons to teach," DiRienzo said. "You're teaching a work ethic. You're teaching responsibility and accountability."
Sports Schedule
For upcoming New Rochelle athletic competitions, check out*

* This link connects to an outside website

Dates to Remember
Saturday, September 21: Trinity Car Wash and Flea Market, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Monday, September 23: "Start With Hello" Week Begins, ALMS/IEYMS

Monday, September 23: "Jefferson Cares" Week Begins

Monday, September 23: Trinity PTA Meeting, 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday, September 24: Jefferson PTA Fall Book Fair Begins
Tuesday, September 24: Board of Education Special Meeting, District Offices, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, September 25: ALMS Book Fair/Co-Curricular Extravaganza
Wednesday, September 25: Ward Picture Day
Wednesday, September 25: Barnard Meet the Teacher Night, Pre-K, 6 p.m.
Wednesday, September 25: IEYMS Meet the Teacher Night, Grades 7-8, 6 p.m.
Thursday, September 26: Columbus Picture Day

Thursday, September 26: Jefferson Meet the Teacher Night, Grades K-2, 6 p.m.; Grades 3-5, 7 p.m.

Thursday, September 26: Ward Picture Day

Thursday, September 26: IEYMS Meet the Teacher Night, Grade 6, 6 p.m.

Thursday, September 26: Barnard PTA Meeting, 7 p.m.

Thursday, September 26: IEYMS PTA General Meeting, 7 p.m.

Thursday, September 26: Ward Class Parent Meeting, 7 p.m.

Friday, September 27: Barnard School Spirit Day
Friday, September 27: Ward Picture Day
Friday, September 27: Trinity ENL Parent Orientation Breakfast, 9 a.m.

1999 Cheerleaders Revisit
'Good Morning America'
Decked in purple jackets and shaking purple, white and black pom poms, 13 former New Rochelle High School cheerleaders made an encore performance yesterday on Good Morning America - 20 years after their first time on the show.

Back in 1999, the New Rochelle varsity and junior varsity teams appeared on the famed morning program, helping the show debut its Times Square studio. Yesterday, the show was celebrating 20 years of broadcasting from the Crossroads of the World with a look back, and with visits from some of their first guests in the space - including those New Rochelle cheerleaders.

When they prepped to cheer before the studio audience yesterday morning, they found that getting back into the spirit came naturally.

"It didn't take much for us to all remember," said Danielle Powers, one of the 1999 cheerleaders and now a special education teacher at Trinity Elementary School. "We very quickly went back to our roots. Once you're out there, you go right back to doing what you do best."

They cheered as they held up signs that said "Good Morning America." In the closing shot of the segment, they stood near the center, on either side of hosts Michael Strahan, Robin Roberts, George Stephanopoulos and Lara Spencer.

The segment included video from their 1999 performance.

"The program was really strong then, and it continues to be," said Kristine Ferreira, a physical education and PAVE dance teacher at NRHS. She remembers appearing on the show as a freshman cheerleader, then returning to school to finish classes for the day. In the studio back then they met Cindy Crawford, who was also a guest, she recalled.

In the years since their performance on the show, several of the squad members have returned to the City School District of New Rochelle as educators. In addition to Powers and Ferreira, Victoria Domenici is now a teaching assistant at Albert Leonard Middle School.

For Domenici, the reason people have remained in New Rochelle was simple.

"It's hard to leave a place that's just so beautiful and friendly," she said. "It's hard to leave home."

Watch video of their appearance here, courtesy of Good Morning America. (The New Rochelle portion begins at 1:15.)
Columbus Elementary School students with water and lettuce for their new pet iguana (in background.)
Columbus Students Welcome Newest Friend:
A Pet Iguana
The students at Columbus Elementary School have been warming up to their newest friend - a green iguana.

Their new reptile occupies a tank in the school lobby, warmed by a heat lamp, in a space frequently spritzed with water to keep up the humidity. Students and Principal Michael Galland have been feeding their pet butterhead lettuce and crickets.

"He's very cute," observed first-grader Isabella Aridio.
The iguana, who has not yet been named, was a gift from New Rochelle Board of Education member Chris Daniello, who noticed that the tank was empty when he visited Columbus as a "School Buddy", the program in which school board members take turns connecting with a different school each quarter to deepen their relationships with each building.
He decided that the empty tank in the lobby was a missed opportunity.

"We're grateful to Mr. Daniello for his thoughtfulness," Galland said. "The iguana is bringing joy to the students, and I believe joy is a critical element to learning."

The reptile mascot is there for teachers to use as a jumping off point for lessons about biology, for instance. Galland is also using the gift to teach a civics lesson. When choosing a name, the school will hold an election, and Galland said he will request that each grade certify the results by double-checking the vote.

Students, meanwhile, have been surrounding the tank with posted notes suggesting names such as Alejandro and Billy Bob, or asking questions, such as whether iguanas change colors. (First-grader Madison Santiago correctly informed a classmate that iguanas don't generally change hues; "That's a chameleon.") Some of the notes say simply, "I love it," "Very cool" and "It's so cute."
New Furnishings
Transform Space
In  NRHS Library
The New Rochelle High School library has a vibrant new look, with updated technology and modern furniture that students can configure for studying in groups or individually. The space will soon add an active learning space and a center for academic support.
"Our library has become a learning hub," Interim Principal Joseph Starvaggi said. "I'm very excited to watch it grow to become a place where students go to expand their learning experience. I want it to be defined as a place of exploration, intervention and study."

Gone are the decades-old, heavy wooden tables and chairs. The space is now filled with comfy furniture sporting a white, purple and gray color scheme. Comfortable chairs surround lightweight, easy-to-move tables in various sizes and heights. Upholstered chairs and couches offer welcoming spaces. Fresh carpeting and flooring complete the bright new look.
Inspired by college campuses, the design offers flexible seating to give students more choice in where to sit and how to work, encouraging collaboration and allowing students to relax a bit.
"We want them to see themselves as college students," Starvaggi said. "When you treat them with respect and kindness, and show them you believe they're capable of anything, they will believe that too."
Coming to the library in October will be the Huguenot Center, an academic intervention center staffed by a math and an English teacher. Students may be referred to the cente rby a teacher for individual support, or can drop in on their own. Also coming soon is the Active Learning Center, a dynamic, student-centered classroom with flexible furniture, a large projection board, 30 Chromebooks and a 3D printer. Teachers will be able to reserve the room for facilitated instruction. 
Free 'Books and Basketball' Clinic for Grades 3-8
To be Held Tomorrow
New Rochelle boys and girls in grades 3 through 8 are invited to a free educational "Books and Basketball Clinic" from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. tomorrow, Sept. 21, at Lincoln Park on Lincoln Avenue and Prince Street.

The clinic is presented by My Brother's Keeper New Rochelle and New Rochelle Parks and Recreation. It is s ponsored by Lincoln Towers HDFC.

"Since the beginning of MBKNewRo, we have always placed a premium on making our literacy efforts cool and fun," said New Rochelle City Councilman Jared Rice, who is the Chairman of MBKNewRo. "This Books and Basketball event does just that - it incorporates the love of sports with a focus on reading." 

Local high school and college coaches will offer instruction, coaching and lessons.  No registration is required; walk-ins are welcome. Participation is on a first-come, first-served basis. Each participant will receive a free book. Free snacks will be served.