Our Mission is to be an exemplary 21st–century
learning community whose graduates are well prepared to excel in a complex,
interconnected and changing world.
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Swimming pool to be closed July 20-24 for repairs
The high school simming pool will be closed for repairs from July
signs three-year contract with Robert K. Libby as superintendent
The Board of Education will sign a three-year contract with Robert K. Libby
as RCS superintendent, a month after naming him as interim superintendent.
His contract was unanimously approved by the Board of Education
tonight during the board's re-organizational meeting. Member William
McFerran was absent.
Before retiring in April, he served as superintendent of the Cohoes
School District for seven years. Before that, he was the Cohoes
assistant superintendent for business and operations for 15 years.[READ MORE]
James Latter and Teddy Reville re-elected as BOE president,
James Latter, first elected as president of the Board of Education in
July 2013, was re-elected to a third term as board president on Tuesday,
July 1, during the annual reorganizational meeting.
Edward "Teddy" Reville was elected to a second term as vice
Class of 2015 Commencement
The morning of June 27, in bittersweet fashion, we said goodbye to another senior class. Please join us in wishing the Class of 2015 our most heartfelt congratulations and best wishes as they venture into the beginning of their bright futures. We are so proud and we'll miss seeing you in our halls!
Board of Education approves two-year teachers' contract
The Board of Education has approved a two-year contract extension with
the RCS Teachers Association that includes a 2.5 percent salary increase
for most employees, establishes a health insurance buyback program and
makes several other changes to the agreement.
The Board of Education unanimously approved the contract extension
on Saturday, June 27, before the RCS graduation at the Empire State
Plaza in Albany. Members Teddy Reville and William McFerran were
Under the contract extension, teachers will receive the
state-mandated "step increase" on July 1, 2015 and July 1, 2016.
Every public school teacher in New York state receives a "step"
increase when they have earned another year of seniority. The step
increases in the contract average a 2.5 percent increase from step
RCS Middle School students recognized for achievements in 2014-15
Our congratulations to all students who were recently recognized for
their many amazing achievements at RCS Middle School. [READ MORE]
students receive nearly $73,000 in scholarships and awards at annual
Nearly $73,000 in scholarships and awards were disbursed during the
annual Senior Awards Night this year - with most of the 47 students and
their families in attendance for the recognition on June 4.
Seniors were recognized, some receiving Hall of Fame honors,
certificates of achievement, medal and a total of more than $72,850
in scholarships and awards. Presenters including teachers,
representatives from the military, local business representatives
and individual donors made the night a huge success.
High School parent Jeanette Wayand-Reif made the delicious desserts
for the evening. [READ MORE]
annual Recyclable Regatta takes off on Lawson Lake
A fleet of specially-designed contraptions - 18 in
all this year - made their way across Lawson Lake in Coeymans during the
fourth annual Recycleable Boat Regatta. All of the floating wonders were
created by students in the RCS high school and middle school Design and
Drawing for Production (DDP) classes. Scott Peck and Shelly Bevan are the student's
The day started off with volunteers (i.e.,
parents and family members) transporting the boats, designed and
constructed mostly of recyclable materials, from the high school
campus on Route 9W to Lawson Lake.
There was a field of 18 boats “powered” by
student muscle. The boats were designed and created by the students
out of recyclable materials. Students used oars and/or swam behind
the boats pushing them along. [READ MORE]
5 students at AW Becker enjoy seaport and aquarium in Mystic, Conn.
The 70 grade 5 students at AW Becker, along with
65 of their parents, enjoyed their annual end-of-year trip to
Mystic, Connecticut as they checked out the renowned seaport, a
commercial whaling vessel and aquarium.
At the Mystic Seaport, students were transported back to the 19th
century to see what life was like in a coastal village. They
strolled down the streets to visit places like a cooperage, printing
press, and shipsmith shop, just to name a few. One of the major
highlights was the Charles W. Morgan, a whaling vessel the oldest
commercial ship in the United States that is still afloat.
Students finished their day at the Mystic Aquarium. They were
delighted with the sights and sounds of beluga whales, sting rays,
sharks and penguins. There was also a sea lion show to round out the
Scotia-Glenville Museum brings the magic of honeybees to PBC
Scotia Glenville Traveling Museum came to the grade 2 classroom of Glenn
Koblenzer at Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary to talk honeybees - including
honeybee dances by the students.
Koblenzer said the visit paired nicely with the class's study of
Students participated in two fun honeybee dances
to show them how honeybees communicate.Justin Castillo was also lucky enough to wear a beekeeper's
uniform and demonstrate how to use a smoker to get the bees out of
Interim Superintendent Robert K. Libby has announced
that the end-of-year calendar will change slightly with the last day of
school being a half day on Wednesday, June 24 instead of June 25 as had
"By analyzing the school calendar, we have
determined that our mandatory 180 student attendance days will
conclude on Wednesday, June 24th," he wrote to staff. "If all things
remain equal, and no additional emergency days are taken, the last
day of student attendance for all district buildings will be
Wednesday, June 24th.
The Pieter B. Coeymans Moving Up Day ceremony will
moved from Thursday, June 25th to Tuesday, June 23rd at 10 a.m.
AW Becker Wackadoodles train for 1 mile Freihofer Kids Run and cheer on
runner Melody Fairchild at Freihofer Run
the past seven weeks, 17 grades 4 and 5 students at A.W. Becker have been
training to run the 28th Annual Freihofer’s 1 Mile Kids Run, which occurred
last Saturday, May 30.
The students' training, through the AW Becker
Running Club called the Wackadoodles, included coming to school
early three days a week and preparing their bodies to run the race
by learning how to stretch, how to pace themselves and how to
mentally prepare and endure distance running.
As part of the Wackadoodle program, A.W. Becker
hosted elite athlete Melody Fairchild, who would be running the
Freihofer 5K (3.1 mile) race, to come visit the school, run with the
Wackadoodle members, and present at a very special assembly for
grades 3, 4 and 5.
musicians give it their all during the Grade 5 Jazz Band and Chorus
Before a packed audience, grade 5 students showed off their musical
abilities during the Jazz Band and Chorus concert on Tuesday night,
June 2, at PBC.
The chorus was led by Deborah McAllister and the band director was
High School students share the joy of reading with students at AW
A.W. Becker students of all ages laughed, giggled and, most
importantly, paid attention as high school students in Dee Hushmendy's
Creative Writing class read some of their original books to them on
Monday, June 1.
These students participated in the program: Madeline Civill, Cameryn Cross, Laura Farrant, Mickey Fryer,
Lauren Hazelton, Vivienne Horne, Michael Jimenex, Lauren LeClaire,
Bianca Marinex Franco, Seamus Mooney, Anthony Notaro, Hayley Novak,
Sierra Staats, Zachary Therrien and
29 students inducted into the High School National Honor Society
Twenty-nine students from Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk
High School were inducted into membership to the National Honor Society
in a ceremony held at the High School on Wednesday night, May 27.
Candidates must first have a cumulative grade
point average of at least 90.0% and are then selected by a Faculty
Council for meeting high standards of scholarship, service,
leadership, and character.
Among the RCS inductees, there was one senior,
five juniors and 23 sophomores.
Robert K. Libby named as interim superintendent
Robert K. Libby, who served as superintendent of the Cohoes
School District for seven years and the Cohoes business administrator
for 15 years, was unanimously appointed by the Board of Education on
Tuesday night, May 26, as
the RCS interim superintendent.
His appointment is effective until August 31. It is expected
that the Board of Education will begin a search for a permanent
superintendent in the coming weeks. Libby will be paid $600 for each day
worked and he is not eligible to receive benefits.
He succeeds Dr. Alan McCartney, who died on May 8.
20 Middle School students inducted into National Junior Honor Society
National Honor Students from the high school
tapped 20 middle school students - 19 in grade 7 and one in grade 8 -
who were inducted into the National Junior Honor Society on Thursday
night, May 28.
Every chapter has different qualifications for membership
based on the five pillars of National Junior Honor Society: character,
scholarship, leadership, service, and citizenship.
Students find air gun accidently brought to RCS High School
Two high school students found a backpack during breakfast on a
cafeteria table this morning, Thursday, May 28, that contained an air
gun accidently brought to school by a third student.
The two students who saw the bag on the table opened it and saw what
looked like a gun in the bag. They brought the bag to their friend,
the owner of the bag, and confronted him.
The student who owned the bag explained that he had used the bag and
air “BB” gun over the weekend and never took it out before coming to
school. The student brought his air gun immediately to a staff
member and surrendered it before classes began.
Day a hit at PB Coeymans
Whether they were studying owl pellets, observing exotic animals or
going on a scavenger photo hunt, the students at PB Coeymans enjoyed
Habitat Day - an annual day-long celebration in honor of the
accomplishments of the PBC community who helped create the schoolyard
habitat and received certification from the National Wildlife Federation
for those efforts.
Students visited four to five of 18 potential habitat stations
including: Owl Pellets, Nature Art, Food Hunt, Predators and Prey,
Sounds of Nature, Plant identifiers, Bird Activity, Ladybugs,
Scavenger Photo Hunt, Energy, Sharing Legends, Animal Habitats, Bird
Beaks, Bees Are Our Friends and Oceans.
two and a half years, Superintendent Alan McCartney became known for his
attention to detail and a 'Kids First' mentality
He transformed RCS in many ways and will be sadly missed by many in the
Whether he was combing through pages of the
annual budget, climbing atop a school to study solar panels or walking
along the fence of the high school track to inspect the lawn
maintenance, Alan R. McCartney was a man who paid attention to detail.
After a short illness, Dr. McCartney, 67, died of a heart attack
on Friday night, May 8, at
his home in Voorheesville.
Officials from the Capital Region BOCES will be working with RCS to ensure continuity and oversee operations of the school district in
the short term.
RCS high school students talk bullying and diversity with PBC students
Monday, May 18, PBC fifth graders were visited by a group of RCS high
school students who came to talk to the elementary students about an
important topic — bullying.
The high school group hailed from the school's Diversity Club, presented
to the elementary students and stayed for lunch and recess!
Students honored with educational leadership awards
On Monday, May 4, the Sandra G. Morley Physical Education Leadership Award Program continued its tradition of honoring elementary and middle school students for their leadership abilities and positive influence on their peers.
The award ceremony was held in the McDonough Sports Complex at Hudson Valley Community College, and recognized a number of students from
AWB, PBC and the middle school. [READ MORE]
Students district-wide get moving with Project ACES
On Wednesday, May 6, all students at RCS participated in Project ACES (All Children Exercise Simultaneously,) which is a signature program of the Youth Fitness Coalition, Inc. and designed to unite children around the world in simultaneous movement in order to get them interested in exercise.
Students at PBC held a conga line in the hallways with DJ Shear playing music. Students at AWB had a dance party in their classrooms while Beyoncé's "Move Your Body" played over the PA system. Middle school students did a fun walk/run around the loop between the middle and high schools. The high school students had a dance party between periods eight and nine to the song "Happy" which was played over the PA system. We hope to make this an annual event in all RCS schools!
New school signs have been put in their place; electricity on the way
within two weeks
months of planning, and weather delays over the winter, the three new
school signs at each campus - in front of PB Coeymans, AW Becker and the
Middle School/High School - have been put in place.
The signs were put in place over the past two
weeks by Ray Sign. Electricity should be flipped on either just
before or after the Memorial Day weekend, said Brian Bailey,
assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction. "We
anxiously look forward to seeing RCS up in lights!," he said.
Dozens attend AW Becker Science Fair; study student research and
it was showing off homemade solar panels, imploding aluminum cans or
exploding volcanoes, the 2015 AW Becker Science Fair on May 7 was a
success on several levels.
Students in pre-K through grade 5 exhibited top-notch scientific
displays. This year marked a first with classroom viewings during
the school day. Students enjoyed the opportunity of walking through
the fair, observing projects such as homemade solar panels,
exploring varieties of nail polish, investigations into our everyday
food, imploding aluminum cans and exploding volcanoes and many more! [READ MORE]
RCS Music groups earns awards at NYSSMA festivals
The RCS High School and Middle School bands and
choruses had a very successful week at the NYSSMA Major Organization
Evaluation Festivals which were held at Shaker High School and
Bethlehem High School from April 27 through 30. [READ MORE]
students, families make Learning Fair and Math Fun Night a success
Dozens of students displayed their research and
participate in math games during the third annual Learning Fair and Math
Fun Night on April 30 at Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary School.
"The Learning Fair was by far the best that I
have had in the last three years (some of which included hands on
experiments: catapults and working volcanoes, wrestling, natural
disasters, Paris, and even Mickey Mouse)," said teacher Anthony
Lintner, who is the school's math and science coordinator.
"Math Night seemed to have the gym full of
learning and fun. Students were finding percentages from foul shots,
bowling and keeping score, and participating in the math Olympics
where they were estimating and getting actual scores using both the
metric and customary systems by doing shot put (cotton balls),
javelin (straws), discus (paper plates), high jump, and long jump." [READ MORE]
student recognized for collecting school supplies for needy RCS families
Sophomore Zachary Clouse was recognized on Tuesday,
April 28, at the Capital District YMCA's Student and Education Award
Recognition breakfast held at the Appel Inn in Altamont.
Zachary, an honor student, was nominated by the
high school staff because of his work with the Ravena Troop 1067 Boy
Scouts for more than 10 years. At the age of 15, he earned the
highest rank of Eagle Scout. For his service project, he raised more
than $2,000 in donations from the community and local businesses to
distribute 113 backpacks filled with school supplies to families in
need in the RCS district. The collaboration was with the St.
Patrick's Food Pantry in Ravena in the summer of 2014.
"You have demonstrated a remarkable commitment to the
community and are more than deserving of this award," said Peter Lauricella,
chair of the Bethlehem YMCA Board of Advisors. [READ MORE]
Three RCS students compete in state Skills USA competition in
Congratulations to Brian Netkin, Karra
Douglas and John Greene for demonstrating
superior career skills by placing third statewide during the Skills USA
Career and Technical Education (CTE) competition in Syracuse on April 23
"It was a very successful competition for our
students. They all performed well and represented BOCES and their
home school districts very well," said Denise Capece, principal of
the Albany CTE campus.
third for crime scene investigation (CSI).
Johnplaced third for auto service technology. [READ MORE]
RCS MS student raises over $1,100 for Best Buddies
On Sunday, April 19, RCS MS seventh grade student Gillian Bartlett and her "Dream Team" spent the day at Crossgates Mall, but instead of shopping, walked to raise money for a good cause.
Bartlett raised an astounding amount, over $1,100, during this year's Best Buddies Walk, an event the district participates in each year.. [READ MORE]
to Kate Houghtaling and Michael Jones - RCS Class of 2015
valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively!
Kate Houghtaling is Valedictorian of the RCS class
of 2015 with an average of 98.78 and Michael Jones is the
Salutatorian of the RCS Class of 2015 with an average of 98.36. [READ MORE]
Three incumbents are unopposed for re-election
The three incumbents seeking re-election - Bray Engel, Kristin
Hill-Burns and Teddy Reville - will be unopposed for re-election
during the May 19 community vote.
Each gathered the necessary signatures to secure a spot on the
ballot by today's 5 p.m. deadline.
Their new three-year terms begin on July 1. Board members are
Participants will walk or run for 26.2 miles during the Wellness
Now that the snow and cold weather is pretty much
gone, it is
almost time for the RCS Wellness Marathon - which runs from March 20
until April 24.
The is the second annual marathon.
All RCS students, faculty, families and friends are invited to run
or walk at least 21 miles between March 20th and April 24th. The
final 5.2 miles will be completed during the Wellness Walk at
Joralemon Park on April 24.
Board of Education adopts 2015-16 school budget; community vote set
for May 19
Spending plan calls for a 1.65 percent tax levy increase
The Board of Education approved a 2015-16 budget on
Tuesday, April 14, that would eliminate four positions, increase
spending by $890,872 and keep the tax levy increase to 1.65 percent.
The $43,236,730 budget proposal was adopted
unanimously with little discussion after the administration said it
had sharpened its pencils and found savings in various areas. Board
members scoured for hours over the budget materials at their March
31 meeting. Member Jason Hyslop was absent from the meeting.
"We are not cutting any programs," said Interim
Business Administrator Stephen Meier. He said that programs added
last year - such as funding for library media staff and resources,
music offerings, freshman basketball program, after school and
summer reading programs, field trips, the pre-kindergarten mid-day
bus run, 5 p.m. bus run and technology upgrades - are still in the
More than 100 RCS student musicians perform at NYSSMA Solo Festival
More than 100 RCS elementary and secondary students performed
instrumental and vocal solos during the New York State School Music
Association (NYSSMA) Evaluation Festival at Voorheesville High School on
March 27 and 28
“Students are not required to participate in NYSSMA solo festivals
and do so on their own. It is quite impressive to see the
overwhelming response from our students throughout the district”,
said RCS K-12 Music Coordinator Scott Andrews.
With the help of their music teachers, students choose and prepare
solo literature which is from the NYSSMA manual of approved
literature. The level of difficulty ranges from level one (easiest)
to level 6 (difficult). Students perform in separate audition rooms
in front of an approved NYSSMA adjudicator.
History comes to life at RCS HS in celebration of the Civil War Sesquicentennial
On March 26, RCS High School, in cooperation with STARS Intergen and the Ravena-Coeymans and Greene County Historical Societies, brought elements of the end of the Civil War to life for the juniors, who are now studying this period in time – just in time for the war’s sesquicentennial (150th) commemoration.
Thanks to re-enactors, the students got to experience a taste of President Lincoln’s famous Gettysburg Address, got to hear about what war was like from the soldiers, and even heard stories about a New Baltimore resident who viewed Lincoln’s body as the President’s death train stopped in Albany. [READ MORE]
RCS HS hosts anti-drug bus to educate students
On Wednesday, March 25, students in Mr. Henry’s and Miss McClave’s health classes boarded Albany County’s “heroin bus” where they listened to the stories of two recovering addicts. This program brings to light some of the decision-making skills students are learning as part of New York State’s health standards.
The anti-heroin "mobile education center," created by Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple, travels among schools and uses educational literature and stories from those affected by the drug to help combat the upward trend of heroin and prescription drug use among young people. [READ MORE]
2 students at PBC learning
Read, Cover, Remember,
Retellstrategy for reading nonfiction
Reading nonfiction is not
easy for most young readers. Grade 2 students are doing more than
just picking up a book and plowing through the words on the page.
In Glenn Koblenzer's
classroom, they are using a strategy for reading nonfiction called "Read,
Cover, Rememeber, Retell."
UPDATED WITH STATE SCIENCE OLYMPIAD RESULTS - April 18, 2015
Middle School Science Olympiad places third during regional competion;
headed to state competition April 17-18 in Syracuse
they were testing a mystery powder, identifying insects, building a
robot to pick up objects or studying potential water on other plants,
these Middle School students were among the best during during a
competition on March 21 at the Monroe-Woodbury Middle School in Central
The RCS Middle School Science Olympiad team
placed third out of 16 teams from the Capital District and
The team's showing earned them a trip to Syracuse
for the statewide competition April 17-18.
41 RCS Music Students Selected For GCMEA Spring All-County Music
Forty-one music students from the High School and
Middle School have been selected to participate in the Greene County
Music Educators Association Spring All-County Festival.
The festival, which is being held at Cairo-Durham High School with
after-school rehearsals on Wednesday, March 25, and Friday, March
27, will conclude with a concert on Friday evening beginning at 7:30
in the high school auditorium.
All-County performing groups will include the Elementary Band,
Junior Chorus and Senior Band.
Want to give back to your RCS community? Consider a seat on the BOE
It takes a lot of hard work, focus and dedication,
but being a member of the RCS Board of Education has the reward of
helping to educate more than 2,100 students through your policies and
There are three seats up for election on the RCS
Board of Education on the statewide budget voting day on
Tuesday, May 19. Voting will be held from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
in the high school gymnasium.
The current three-year seats are held by Kristin
A. Hill-Burns (who was appointed and is completing the term of Alice
Whalen who resigned in January); Howard Engel and Edward Reville.
RCS HS to host Civil War Sesquicentennial Celebration on March 26
The community is invited to join us at RCSHS from 3-5 p.m. on
Thursday, March 26, as the district, in partnership with with
STARS Intergen and the Ravena-Coeymans and Green County Historical
Societies, brings a commemorative event that will showcase Union and
Confederate, President Lincoln and Mrs. Lincoln re-enactments and
highlight local connections to the Civil War and President Lincoln’s
death. [READ MORE]
RCS students perform with Capital Region Wind Ensemble at SCCC
Three RCS band students were selected to participate in rehearsals and
perform with the Capital Region Wind Ensembe on Sunday.
The three students, all juniors, were among the
24 area students selected to participate this year were members of
the RCS High School Band.
Selected on French Horn
and selected on Baritone Saxophone was Benjamin Andrews.
Students participated in rehearsals at
Schenectady County Community College on March 1, 8, 21 and concluded
with a concert on Sunday, March 22 in the Carl B. Taylor Auditorium
at the SCCC School of Music.
Superintendent Alan McCartney sends letter to area legislators urging
boost in state aid
(3/23/15) As state leaders enter final negotiations for the 2015-16
state budget, Superintendent Alan McCartney penned this letter to state
Assemblymen Patricia Fahy and Peter Lopez and Senators George Amedore
and Neil Breslin urging them to continue advocating for public schools:
"Through the media and other sources I have been led to believe
that the Legislature and the Governor are nearing agreement on
“increasing” aid to education in the state budget by $1.3 billion
and not fully ending the GEA this year.
It has been less than two weeks after both Houses passed plans
to increase state aid from between $1.8 billion and $1.9 billion; I
find this recent news exasperating and totally unacceptable."
students recognized for graduating early at
Board of Education meeting
The Board of Education on Tuesday, March 10,
recognized seven students who were able to graduate early by meeting their
requirements for graduation.
The students are: Morgan
Albright, Samantha Foulger, Zoe Heald, Sarah Krein, Michael Lembo, Joe Martone
and Christina Palmer. [READ MORE]
Old prom dress hanging in the closet? Donate it to RCS and give it new life!
The Fairy Godmother’s Closet is collecting gently
used prom gowns that are no more than 10 years old. This program offers
RCS girls in need clean and fashionable gowns for free. We are in
desperate need of sizes 12/13 and larger.
All donations can be dropped
off at the high school’s main office. For more information please
contact Mrs. Jennes at email@example.com.
PBC students explore winter sports and snowshoe outdoors
Teachers John Conte and Diane Conover from the PBC
Physical Education department took the school's fourth and fifth grade
students snowshoeing as part of our winter physical education curriculum.
Being a long cold winter, getting outside and exercising can often be difficult,
but students learned that exercising can be fun! They saw how snow
shoeing can be a lifetime activity that can be done at almost any age.
In conjunction with the Presidents’ Day holiday
and Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, A.W. Becker’s Lincoln’s Literary
Lollapalooza for 3rd to 5th grade students and their families was held
on February 12, 2015. Forty students and their families attended.
Volunteers from the high school’s Natural Helpers and A.W. Becker
staff worked together to provide a fun night of literacy based
activities for all who attended.
of Education extends Dr. McCartney's contract by three years
The Board of Education has extended by three years
the contract with Superintendent Alan R. McCartney, a man board members
say has brought stability and experience to a very important position.
The board unanimously extended McCartney's contract at
its Tuesday, Feb. 24 meeting. He will continue to be paid $600 per day for
each day worked with no health insurance or other benefits. His new contract
expires on June 30, 2018.
"We love the direction the school is going in," Latter
said about McCartney's contract extension. "We have a huge bond project
coming over the next few years and Dr. McCartney's experience and passion
for projects will be invaluable."
Kristin Hill-Burns joins RCS Board of Education, replacing Alice
The Board of Education has appointed
Kristin A. Hill-Burns, a 1997 RCS graduate and parent of a grade 1 student at
AW Becker, to fill the seat vacated by Alice Whalen's resignation.
Board members made the unanimous appointment after
conducting public interviews with two potential candidates before their
meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 24.
90% of high school students participate in PBIS Bagel Breakfast
total of 515 high school students, representing 90 percent of the
school's entire population, earned the right to participate in the
second quarter PBIS Recognition Bagel Breakfast on Friday, Feb. 13.
Last year, during the same quarter, 84 percent of
students enjoyed free bagels during the PBIS recognition ceremony.
Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS) is in
its third year at RCS. PBIS is a team-based systematic approach in teaching
behavioral expectations throughout the school. It is based on a pro-active
model which teaches the behaviors, reinforces and recognizes students who
are able to model these behaviors. The program also requires schools to have
systems in place to support students who have a difficult time or may
present with more challenging behaviors. [READ MORE]
Chocolate Literacy Night combines chocolate treats and literacy at Pieter B. Coeymans
Chocolate Literacy Night combined something special for
grades 4 and 5 families at Pieter B. Coeymans tonight - chocolate and
Children and parents worked side by side to conquer a chocolate
webquest and to find out just how many milliliters of candy they eat
when eating 50 or 100 M&Ms. They completed an Ooey Gooey Chocolatey
Adjective activity and searched through the clues on a Scavenger
Hunt to gather the chocolate facts and attempt to win one of 5
Golden Tickets to a pizza party! [READ MORE]
RCS Health & PE staff get a crash course in adventure
The RCS Health and PE staff participated in an adventure training session with Liz Moore from High 5 on Thursday, Feb. 5, 2015. High 5 Adventure Learning Center is a non-profit educational organization that helps schools use adventure education as an effective tool for achieving goals and building a team.
Moore worked with the RCS staff (Elyse Loughlin, Brandon Herwick, John Conte, Diane Conover, Majiel Baker, Kevin Reinisch, Patty Stockman, James Henry, Megan McClave, Justin Schipano and Kiley Sherman) by challenging them to work together to achieve a goal, but did not tell them how to successfully complete the challenge given. [READ MORE]
AWB & PBC staff become certified in CPR
The registered nurses at RCS, Patti LeFevre, Karen Randio and Kathi Rice,
continuously share the knowledge they have as certified American Heart
Association Basic Life Support instructors, and this year is no
different. They take to training other members of the district so our
faculty and staff can learn this very valuable life-long skill and be
prepared to help any student or fellow staff member in need. [READ MORE]
RCSHS student art helps local charity drive
Each year, the Hunger Action Network of New York State and FOCUS
Churches of Albany team up to host Empty Bowls, an event to raise
awareness on the issue of hunger in our communities. This year, the
event took place on Jan. 25, and included some art work created by our
RCS art students have donated bowls they've created
to this event in the past, and were able to do so again this year. Below are the bowls created by RCS high school art students with the
help of art teacher Karen Teale.[READ MORE]
RCS students recognized by NYS AHPERD for commitment to health and
Kimberly Bianchi and
Andrew McHugh were honored on Feb. 8 with Physical Education Secondary
Leadership Awards at the Century House in Latham along with 53 students
from 26 other area school districts.
This honor was offered by the Capital Zone of the New
York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance.
One female and one male student from each high school in the zone were
recognized for their commitment to their education and health.
Transportation requests due by April 1, 2015
The deadline for requests for bus service to non-public
schools and other special requests is April 1 of each school year, or within
30 days of moving into the district.
RCS sophomore Zachary Clouse recognized for Eagle Scout project
A lot of students started school last fall on the
right foot thanks to a backpack full of supplies distributed by RCS
student Zachary Clouse.
In fact, at least 100 students got school
supplies thanks to Zachary.
The Board of Education recognized Zachary for his
good work Feb. 3 and attainment of Eagle Scout for the project. [READ MORE]
Swim team finishes record breaking season
January 23, 2015 marked a special night at the R-C-S Aquatics
Center, as it was the last home meet of the season, and because
history was made.
The team closed out the 2014-15 seasons with not one, or even two
records broken, but three: the 200 Freestyle Relay, the 6 Dive and
the 200 Medley Relay.
Read more to learn about the students who broke these records.[READ MORE]
RCSHS' Harmonics perform in regional Carmina Burana production
Sunday, Jan. 25, RCS High School’s select vocal ensemble,
Harmonics, performed Carl Orff’s famous
Carmina Burana as part of a chorus made up of select singers from
Albany High School, Guilderland High School and Shaker High School, and
accompanied by the Empire State Youth Orchestra under the direction of
RCS music teacher to conduct at festivals in Columbia and Sullivan counties
RCS music teacher Scott Andrews has been invited
as a guest conductor for two All-County music festivals. On Feb. 4
and Feb. 6, Mr. Andrews will travel to New Lebanon High School in
Columbia County to conduct the All-County High School Jazz Ensemble.
On March 6 and 7, he will be traveling to Monticello High School in
Sullivan County where he will be conducting the grade 8 and 9
All-County Jr. High Band. [READ MORE]
Congratulations to Jolene Hopkins, selected as a NYS Master Teacher
Congratulations to Jolene Hopkins, who teaches
science in the MS/HS, for her selection to the New York State Master
Governor Cuomo launched the New York State Master Teacher
Program (NYSMTP) in partnership with The State University of New York and
Math for America. The program creates a state-wide network of the
highest-performing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) teachers
that are dedicated to sharing expertise with peers and attracting the
brightest minds to a career in STEM. [READ MORE]
AW Becker holds Family Math Night
On Weds., Jan. 21, 2015, over 100 families gathered at A.W. Becker Elementary for Family Math Night. The school had about 40 math stations for all levels (Pre-K to Grade 5) that consisted of math games, problem solving, computer activities, estimation stations and more! Parents and students alike were actively engaged in the activities.
Green and gold drive-in sign removed from HS/MS entrance; new
digital sign expected to be in place in the spring
iconic drive-in sign with the huge arrow atop it that guided drivers
into the RCS High School and Middle School campus for two generations
has come down.
The sign greeted Route 9W motorists for the past 60
Ray Sign of Schenectady removed the green and gold metal
structure on Monday, Jan. 19.
The school district plans to accept sealed bids from any
area business or resident interested in buying the structure. The legal
advertisement for sealed bids will be placed in the Thursday, Jan. 29
edition of The Ravena News-Herald.
In the meantime, the sign is being stored behind the
High School health classes practice CPR on mannequins with guidance from
Marvin Powell of the Ravena Rescue Squad
Health education students in Megan McClave's and Jay
Henry's classes recently practiced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
on mannequins under the direction of Marvin Powell, chief of operations
for the Ravena Rescue Squad.
He discussed first aid and CPR with the students in
grades 10, 11 and 12.
Creative Writing students from the high school bring their original
stories to young PBC readers
students in the high school's Creative Writing class, taught by Dee
Hushmendy, knew they were missing one very important thing when they
wrote and illustrated original children's books as part of their
They got that when they visited Pieter B. Coeymans
classrooms - kindergarten, grade 1 and grade 2 - to read their stories to
Thank you RCS - Community approves both Help RCS Plan for Tomorrow capital
The community narrowly approved both school
construction proposals on the ballot today in a light voter turnout.
Three RCS students chosen for elite Albany choral apprenticeship
RCS students Samuel Datri, Emmalyn Knapp, and James Wamsley have been selected to participate in the Artist Apprenticeship Program, sponsored by Albany Pro Musica.
They are three of only eleven area vocal students chosen for this honor based on the results of their most recent NYSSMA (New York State School Music Association) ratings, extracurricular vocal endeavors and teacher recommendation.
On Wednesday, Dec.
23, the HS Band, under the direction of Scott Andrews and HS Chorus,
under the direction of Michelle McLoughlin, performed to a standing room only
crowd at the South Concourse of the Empire State
students brighten the holidays with cards and letters for a
93-year-old World War II nurse in Albany
Inter-generational activities enrich the soul but
also expand awareness, elevate the metacognitive quality of empathy,
and provide learning experiences back and forth across generations.
Elders share important lessons and events from
the past, while youth receive exciting new discoveries reminding us
all of the simpler joys and excitement during life’s early years.
Ella Wetterhahn, also known at Stella, lives in
Albany and is a 93-year-old veteran who served as an Army Nurse in
the European Theater during WWII. She has been the subject of two
Albany Times Union articles over the years, one in which
she was interviewed with former RCS teacher, the late Harold Becker
(High School Business Teacher), about her experiences in
World War II in which she served her country with conviction and
Students' cards and letters were recently
presented to Miss Wetterhahn at Crisan’s Romanian Bakery, an Albany
café in Stella’s Center Square neighborhood in Albany.
AW Becker students volunteer at local food bank
On Wednesday, Dec. 17, the 4th and 5th grade Student Government officers and representatives of AW Becker had the pleasure of volunteering at the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York.
The students diligently worked to make boxes, sort through supplies, and
package them to be sent to families in need around the Capital Region.
The experience was both fun and fulfilling. Students leaving the Food
Bank felt a sense of pride in their work and were eager to return to
RCS Middle School students recognized by the Board of Education
These 52 students were recognized by the Board of
Education on Dec. 18 for achieving a Level 4 - exceeds expectations - on the
New York state ELA and math exams they took in the spring.
Of those, 14 achieved a Level 4 on BOTH the ELA
and mathematics state exams. [read more]
PhRMA Grant to support STEM Education at RCS
School administrators, local elected officials, and representatives of Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers
of America (PhRMA) announced new support for Science,
Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education in the RavenaCoeymans-Selkirk
Central School District on Friday, Dec. 12, 2014.
The school district's
"Project Lead the Way" program
will be supplemented
by a $9,000 grant from PhRMA. This funding will be used to purchase
additional equipment and materials that will further the progress of RCS
students in their pursuit of 21st century skills.
grade students learn and present about history in Native American life
Throughout the month of November, students in Mrs. Baumgras’s and
Mrs. Campbell’s fourth grade classes at A.W. Becker Elementary chose
an aspect of Native American life to research and study. Students
then wrote reports and assembled projects at home that would
highlight what they had learned about the Algonquian, Iroquois or
grade students share their own mystery stories during writer's workshop
Fifth grade students at A.W. Becker proudly read their own mystery stories during a writer's celebration on Friday, Dec. 5. Students wrote stories inspired by
The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, a picture book by Chris Van Allsburg that consists of a series of unrelated and detailed images accompanied by a title and single line of text, which compel readers to create their own stories.
RCS files Local Assistant Plans to boost student test scores at Pieter
B. Coeymans and the Middle School
Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk has filed Local
Assistance Plans (LAP) with the state Education Department to show how it
plans to boost standardized test scores for a "subgroup" of students at
Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary and the Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk Middle School.
At Pieter B., the New York State Education
Department identified "Economically Disadvantaged" (ED) students as having
standardized test scores that were lower than a state-established
Performance Index (PI) for both English Language Arts (ELA) and math during
the 2012-13 school year. Although the PI score was very close to the
benchmark, it was still below the New York State cut point for ED students.
Similarly, the New York State Education Department
identified that RCS "Students With Disabilities” (SWD) at the middle school
did not meet a benchmark for Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). [read more]
AW Becker's Science Experiment of the Month keep students in awe
at A.W. Becker are getting a daily dose of the scientific method thanks
to a new make-shift scientific lab station set-up outside of the
elementary school’s library.
Each month, there will be a new theme explored taking the
students through the scientific method process (such as hypothesis,
observation, analysis of data, etc.).
The first month’s theme is “Growing Gummy Bears!”
On Science Night at Pieter B. lets students and parents test the Scientific
More than 80 PBC families and students worked
together to create flotation devices that could hold weight during the
second annual Hands On Science Night tonight.
"The designs were awesome with some more cosmetic than
functional features and others built for success," said math and science
coordinator Tony Lintner.
"Either way, they were able to choose their own
materials, build their own designs, and most importantly…work with their
family members while discovering the processes of scientific discovery and
engineering." [read more]
and Rims a huge success for Best Buddies program at the Middle School
More than 200 students and parents
attended the fourth annual Pins and Rims fund-raiser to support the Best
Buddies program at the Middle School.
Carusone, Pam Ginder, Patricia StockmanandMaria
Semenick coordinated the
"I had the pleasure of
attending the event which included a dodge ball tournament among
students and teachers, a raffle of some amazing donated item, food
and more!," said Semenick. "I was so impressed at this creative way
to spread our mission of inclusion and friendship."
PBC students recognized for excellence on state Science, ELA and
Mathematics tests in the spring
P.B. Coeymans Principal Hakim
Jones and Interim Superintendent Alan McCartney presented 33 students
with certificates noting their success on scoring Level 4 - the highest
achievement possible - on state science, English Language Arts and math
tests in the spring.
Jones noted that teachers
work very hard with students every year "to prepare our students and
see how much they have grown during the year" in their studies.
June recognized for Eagle Scout project benefitting Ronald McDonald
RCS sophomore Aaron June was recognized by the Board
of Education on Tuesday, Nov. 18, for achieving the Eagle Scout status.
Interim Superintendent Alan McCartney said Aaron had
achieved 21 merit badges during his scouting career. “I was a boy scout, a
life scout,”McCartney said at the Nov. 18 Board of Education meeting.. “I
didn’t have what it took to become an Eagle Scout. Aaron does.”
GI Go Fund Jeans for Troops fundraiser nets $375 from RCS staff
Employees at Pieter B. Coeymans and AW Becker
Elementary Schools, along with RCS District Office employees, honored
Veterans Day and the men and women who have died defending our country
by raising funds for military veterans and their families.
On November 12, staff took part in the 2014 “Jeans For
Troops” fundraising drive benefiting the
GI Go Fund, an nonprofit organization that helps veterans returning home
find employment, go to college, access their health care and financial
benefits, and link to housing.
During the drive, which involves schools and companies
from across the country, employees were given the opportunity to wear jeans
to work in exchange for a $5 donation to the GI Go Fund. RCS raised $375 for
this worthy cause.
56 RCS Middle and High School Musicians participate in All-County
Music Festival Nov. 5-7
Fifty-six student musicians from RCS middle and high
schools will participate in this year’s Greene County Music Educators
Association Fall All-County Music Festival.
The festival is being held at Greenville High
School on Wednesday, November 5th and Friday, November 7th.
Students from RCS, Cairo-Durham, Catskill,
Coxsackie-Athens, Greenville, Hunter-Tannersville and
Windham-Ashland-Jewett will participate in rehearsals on Wednesday
from 3 – 8 p.m. They will return on Friday to begin rehearsal at 3
p.m. and the festival will conclude with an evening concert in the
Greenville High School auditorium at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, November
RCS students selected to all-state music conference
The RCS High School Music Department is pleased
to announce that junior James “Jake” Wamsley has been selected to
participate in this year’s New York State School Music Association
(NYSSMA) All-State Conference, which is being held from December 4-7
in Rochester, NY.Also
selected as an alternate was junior Emmalyn Knapp.
RCS high school students set to participate in state-wide music
The RCS music department will be well represented
at this year’s New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Zone
7 Area All-State music festival.
year’s festival will once again be held at Saratoga Springs High
Students will rehearse on Friday, Nov. 21 and
will return again on Saturday morning for rehearsals.
The festival will conclude with a concert
featuring the Area All-State Jazz Ensemble, Mixed Chorus, Band and
Symphonic Orchestra at 2 p.m.
Pictured in the photo are left to right:
Emmalyn Knapp (Soprano 1), Kathryn Rowzee (Band, French horn), Victoria Margiasso
(Soprano 1), Samuel Datri (Bass 2),
Michael Fryer (Tenor 2), Brennan Flory (Bass 2), Diana Bechdol
oprano 2), Diana Voronko (Alto 1) and
Madison Brown (Alto 2). Absent from photo were: Nicole Miller
(Alto 2) and
Jake Wamsley (Bass 2).
kindergarten students have fun at Stanton's Feura Farm
AW Becker kindergarten classes had fun on a hay ride,
a straw slide, maneuvering their ways through a maze and picking
pumpkins during a visit today to
Stanton’s Feura Farm in Feura Bush.
The students had the
opportunity to experience many fun-filled and educational
Students promote safe teen driving
Grade 10-12 students, who are getting ready to take permit and driving tests, last week participated in National Teen
Driver Safety Week and several activities designed to make driving safer
The students, in Megan McClave's period 7 health
class, participated in the activities as part of their advocacy project.
"Advocacy is one of the health skills included in the
NYS health curriculum," said McClave.
PBC grade 5 students attend ESYO performance at Proctor's Theater
5 students at Pieter B. Coeymans were part of a wonderful musical
experience that took place at Proctors Theatre in Schenectady on Oct.
Students took in the sights and sounds of the
Empire State Youth Orchestra (ESYO) as they performed musical
selections of American composers including Charles Ives and Aaron
Copland. The program was tailored for students and was very
interactive through the use of actors, artwork and of course,
survivor Marion Blumenthal Lazan discusses her life in Holland under
Nazi Germany and the positive thoughts that helped her survive
Next month, Holocaust survivor Marion Blumenthal
Lazan and her husband, Nathanial, will travel to Germany for a
reunion of sorts.
She will carry a sample of soil from the grave of
her mother, who died two years ago at age 104, to place on the grave
of her father, who died 69 years ago shortly after being liberated
from years of torture at the hands of the German Nazis during World
While symbolic, the author of Four Perfect
Pebbles, a reference to the four members of her family trapped
under Nazi control in Holland during World War II, will be reuniting
the two people who helped her to survive during the unimaginable
years of her childhood.
Ravena Mayor William Misuraca meets with students in grade 2
Ravena Mayor William Misuraca visited PBC on Friday, Oct. 17, to
teach Jessica Emerick's, Glenn Koblenzer's, Kim Kratochwill's and
Nicole Stott's second graders about the importance of leadership in
a community. Many thanks to Mayor Misuraca for taking the time to
answer many of the students' questions. Click on the image
to enlarge it.
A.W. Becker students recognized by the Board of Education
Nearly 50 students were recognized by the Board of
Education tonight for achieving a score of 4 - the highest possible
score - on the New York State exams in English Language Arts and
AWB students explore the world around them on Habitat Day
it was hiking on a nature trail, researching bird habitats,
exploring owl pellets or making Dragonfly Clothespins, students at
A.W. Becker explore the world around them during Habitat Day.
Students explored the Barbara Austin Nature Trail, looking and
listening for, and identifying animal signs and habitats. Various
grade levels were involved in researching bird habitats in the
School students honored by Board of Education
Fifteen high school students were recognized by the Board of
Education tonight for achieving a 3, 4 or 5 on the college-level
Advanced Placement (AP) exams last year.
In addition, two students - Alana Columbus and
Ariel Hunlock - were honored for having met
their graduation requirements after taking the August Regents exams.
Principal Tom DiAcetis said the AP honorees "have
shown that they can successfully complete college-level material," a
trait he said that will serve these students very well in the future. [read more]
swim team off to a strong start; swimmers break records in first meet
The RCS-CA Girls Varsity Swimming and Diving Team had
its first meet on Friday night, Sept. 5, against Johnstown.
For many of the girls it was their varsity debut, said
CoachElyse Loughlin. "The
young team swam their hearts out to beat many personal records," she said.
RCS grade 8 student Gillian
Burch was able to beat a six-year-old team record with a
time of 1:11.43 in the 100-yard breast stroke.
Senior Collin Adams named as a National Merit Scholarship
Senior Collin Adams has been named as a semifinalist
in the National Merit Scholarship program, the first step in a journey
that could provide funding for college next year.
Collin was among 16,000 semifinalists announced
today by the National Merit Scholarship Corp. These academically
talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the
competition for some 8,000 National Merit Scholarships worth about
$35 million that will be offered next spring.