December 2022

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Dear Rochester City School District Families,

As we head into the December holiday season, I want to remind everyone that the winter recess is three short weeks away. While the days leading up to vacation may seem endless for students, I know that for me, the time flies! Please review the section in this newsletter that details days off for students.

One of my priorities is to improve family connections, and I am pleased to share with you the launch of the Family Services page on our website. While most problems can be resolved at the classroom level, here you will find a series of steps that families can take when dealing with school-related issues. I hope that this information is helpful when you need to contact the District.

In December, I ask that you take a moment to complete the School Climate Survey, which runs from December 5 - 23, 2022. This is important because it helps inform us as we make decisions about improving the educational climate for students in our schools. A positive school climate can help improve student attendance, achievement, and graduation. The survey is completely anonymous and can be accessed from anywhere.


Dr. Carmine Peluso

Interim Superintendent of Schools

RCSD Family Services

There are times when a parent or guardian has a school-related issue or concern. When that happens, we want to give families a clear method for communicating those concerns. Please follow the process outlined on this webpage, which provides the appropriate steps to take for most school-related issues.

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The RCSD now uses text messaging to communicate with families. Custodial caregivers of students who have a mobile number on file with us are asked to opt in to this feature. If you do not have a mobile number on file, please contact your child’s school to update your contact information. For more information about SMS texting or how to opt in or out of receiving messages, please visit www.rcsdk12.org/text.

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We are seeking your input! Please take a moment to complete a survey about school climate that is running from Monday, December 5 through Friday, December 23, 2022. Results from this survey will help provide the District with a basis for understanding and improving the educational climate for students in our schools. This survey is completely anonymous and can be accessed after December 5 at www.rcsdk12.org/climatesurvey. Students in grades 5 through 12 will be taking a similar survey in school. Thank you!

Entering K, 7th, or 9th Grade?

RCSD’s School of Choice process begins on Monday, December 5, 2022. Students who need to choose a new school for 7th and 9th grades, and students entering Kindergarten should visit www.rcsdk12.org/schoolchoice to explore school options and learn more about the lottery. This year, the process can be done completely online. The deadline to participate in the School of Choice lottery is Friday, February 17, 2023.

Days Off

  • Half-day for Students: Friday, December 9 (check dismissal times here)
  • Holiday/All Facilities Closed: Monday and Tuesday, December 26 – 27
  • Winter Recess/No School for Students: Wednesday, December 28, 2022 – Monday, January 2, 2023

Last Chances to Get Free Financial Aid Help

Students who plan to attend college are invited to join us at an upcoming FAFSA Fest event, where you will get free help from experts to fill out your financial aid forms. We will help you apply to college, figure out how to pay for it, and make the best choice.

Saturday, December 10, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Trent and Pamela Jackson R-Center
485 North Clinton Avenue, 14605

Tuesday and Wednesday, February 21 - 22, 2023, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Central Library (in the Teen Space)
115 South Avenue, 14604

RCSD Parent Group Meetings

Parent Leadership Advisory Council

If you are the parent or caregiver of an RCSD student, then the Parent Leadership Advisory Council (PLAC) is for you! Please see this link to join PLAC or send an email to plac@rcsdk12.org.

Click here to register for the next general membership meeting on Wednesday, February 15, at 6:00 pm. The full schedule is listed here. Be sure to follow us on Facebook too!

Special Education Parent Advisory Council

The Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC) is a group of parents with special needs students in the RCSD. Together, this group works to provide a supportive environment for students, families, and educators who help each student achieve their potential. SEPAC's monthly meetings provide an opportunity for parents to meet other parents, RCSD staff, and community partners. Monthly meetings typically include a short workshop on the Special Education process. All parents or caregivers of students with an IEP or 504 plan are welcome! Additionally, if you would like to be more involved, you can apply to be a SEPAC Parent Representative. For additional information or to be added to their monthly meetings, please email RCSDsepac@gmail.com.

The next general membership meeting is Monday, December 12, at 6:00 pm. Email rcsdsepac@gmail.com for the Zoom link and meeting information.

Bilingual Education Council

The Bilingual Education Council (BEC) advises the Superintendent on matters related to bilingual education, including curriculum, instructional materials, and cultural issues. BEC is made up of parents, community organizations, students, teachers, and administrators of the RCSD, who have demonstrated their concern for the development of bilingual education. For more information on joining BEC, please email bec@rcsdk12.org.

The next meeting is Tuesday, December 13 at 5:00 pm, at the Trenton and Pamela Jackson R-Center, 485 North Clinton Avenue, 14605.

Multilingual Parent Advisory Council

The Multilingual Parent Advisory Council (MPAC) is a vehicle for parents of scholars who are learning English as a new language. The purpose is to collaborate in the areas of problem-solving, program enhancement, communicating with parents, and recognition of student achievement. The purpose of MPAC is to encourage and support parental involvement and participation in English Language Learners’ programming and academic achievement.

The next meeting is Monday, December 19, at 3:30 pm, at the Office of Adult and Career Education Services (OACES), 30 Hart Street, 14605.

School Closings for Inclement Weather or Other Emergency

In the event of a school closure or delayed opening due to inclement weather or other emergency condition, the District notifies all families via robocall and email. Announcements are also shared with local television and radio stations and posted on the District’s website and social media pages.

What's on the Menu?

Check out the December breakfast and lunch menus for elementary, middle, and high school students here.

Winter Athletics

Athletic event schedules for RCSD high schools can be found on the Rochester City Athletic Conference webpage.

Student spectators from the home and away teams must show a valid school ID to attend RCSD-hosted games. Students from any other school must be accompanied by an adult who is at least 25 years old with a valid ID.

Feeling Sick? Stay Home!

Staying home when sick helps to lower the risk of spreading infectious diseases, including COVID-19. Students who have symptoms of respiratory or gastrointestinal infections, such as cough, fever, sore throat, vomiting, or diarrhea, should stay home.

Miss a Newsletter?

All of our 2022-23 family newsletters are posted on the District's website here.