SKHS Principal's Newsletter

November 2018

From the desk of Mr. Mezzanotte...

The 2018-2019 school year has gotten off to a very busy start! The high school has been buzzing with activity to start the year, as our students and staff have been working hard each day to meet their goals. This year has been an adjustment, with the implementation of our new block schedule, but thus far the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Students report having more time and flexibility within their schedule to manage their time, while teachers indicate that the longer blocks provide them more time to explore topics in depth, creating more opportunities for hands-on learning. We have also seen the successful implementation of our new CTE Pathways this year. For the first time in our school's history, we have received 5-year approval from the Rhode Island Department of Education to offer four Pathways, in the areas of:

1) Carpentry

2) Computer Science

3) Allied Health Careers, and

4) Studio Art

We have received a lot of interest in these programs, and those who have been accepted have indicated great pride in their choices! We have also seen terrific progress on our new social-emotional learning initiative this year, as we have established several new student-led groups dedicated to the goal of helping students manage stress and anxiety, and promoting a positive learning culture at SKHS. From the Choose Love group, to the Peer to Peer mentoring initiative, to the Rebels Inspiring Positive Lifestyles (RIPL), our students have demonstrated exemplary compassion and empathy for others. We are all very proud of their work!

This purpose of this newsletter is to keep families and the community updated on our work at the high school. Our improvement efforts are directly tied to the four goals of our school vision, which are:

1) implementing student-centered learning strategies every day in every class,

2) designing systems that are flexible, equitable, and support the individual learning goals of each student,

3) establishing essential partnerships with families and the community, and

4) promoting a learning culture that is supportive of all students- academically, personally and socially.

Please be sure stay informed by visiting our school website, following me on twitter (@rmezzanotte) and our district hashtag #umatteratsk and also our district Facebook page and our Parent Teacher Group page. Thank you for your continued support of our schools!

Rebel Music

  • SKHS Music is on three social media platforms! Check us out on Instagram at SKHSMusic, Twitter @MusicSKHS and our Facebook Page-South Kingstown High School Music
  • Our SKHS Band helped SK honor the town's veterans by performing at the Veterans Day parade and ceremony on Sunday November 11th! Congrats to our band for their hard work all fall season!

  • Our High School Music Department presented its annual Fall Concert on Thursday, November 8th at 7pm in the HS Auditorium. Featured on the performance were the Jazz Band, Chorus, eSKape, Concert Band and Symphony Orchestra. An exciting and inspiring night of music... Congrats to all of our students!
  • SKHS student musicians will audition for All-State music ensembles on Saturday, November 17th at Moses Brown School in Providence. These students represent every performing area including choral, jazz, concert band and orchestra. Best of luck to them as they prepare for auditions this fall!
  • Mr. Benz recently joined the Executive Board of the Rhode Island Music Educators Association where also serves as an Associate Editor of the RI Music Educators Journal. He recently wrote an article on "Building a Culture of Listening" which was published in the Fall '19 edition.
  • Mr. Muir has taken over as Theater Director at SKHS and has overseen "Testing, Testing, 1,2,3" at the CTC and is already hard at work with the Theater Club developing "The Addams Family" Musical to be performed February 7-10, 2019. Mark calendars and don't miss it!
  • Our High School Guitar class is learning to play bass and "Lead Guitar" where they will learn to read and play melodies, eventually forming an ensemble to play melody, harmony, chords and bass! Recent tunes performed by the class include "Come and Get Your Love" from Guardians of the Galaxy, "every Breath You Take" by The Police, "Free Fallin' by Tom Petty and the classic "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" by The Beatles!
  • Music Technology has been hard at work learning the fundamentals of recording using the program Mixcraft. In the coming weeks they will start their first major project, composing and recording an original song.

Rebel Athletics

Our fall season has recently concluded and our Rebel teams did a great job in Rhode Island Interscholastic League Division 1 competition. The Girls Cross Country team was the highlight of the season, capturing the Southern Division championship with a perfect 10-0 record, finishing third in Rhode Island and placing fourth in all of New England! The team was led by Kali Vanderlaan (2nd Team All State), as well as Kyle Fish and Isabelle McDonald (both 3rd Team All State). It was a total team effort! Congratulations to the ladies and their coach, Sherry Hathaway.

Girls Soccer finished in second place with an impressive 10-1-4 record and made it to the state semi-finals. Boys Soccer finished in fifth place with a record of 8-4-3 and also made the state semi-finals. Boys Cross Country finished with a record of 6-3, while the football, girls volleyball and field hockey teams all qualified for the playoffs in their respective divisions.

Below are some pictures of our student-athletes, courtesy of Daniel Gagnon.

Rebel Cheer

Abigail Dech, Sarah LaPorte, Reilly Hodge, Elizabeth Arnold, Melissa Gallagher and Khadaja White (not pictured) tried out and made the UCA All Star Cheerleading Squad. They have the opportunity to cheer in the New Years Day Parade in London. Congratulations!
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Rebel Spirit

This past October, SKHS celebrated its annual Spirit Week, culminating in the Sadie's pep rally, football game and dance. SKHS students kept up the tradition of showing great pride in their school. Enjoy the photos!

Rebels of the Month

The SKHS Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports committee (PBIS) has introduced a new initiative this year, aimed at identifying students each month who represent the values and attitudes that we expect of our students. Each month, the teachers and staff at SKHS may nominate worthy recipients for the Rebel of the Month award. Our first winners were announced this October, and they are:

Juliet Lenzo (grade 12)

Maggie Montle (grade 11)

James Reid (grade 10)

Esmeralda Bacilio (grade 9)

Pictured below are our winners with Mr. Mezzanotte. Click HERE for more information. Congratulations to all winners!

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SKHS- First Place at the Engineering Olympics

On November 8, 2018 a five member team from SKHS participated in the Engineering Olympics sponsored by Toray Plastics as part of the" WE Make RI" initiative. I am pleased to report that team members George Cairns, Jaclyn Christina, Aidan Moriarty, Calvin Spector, and Benjamin Tibbits walked away with first place!

The team completed four challenges, the Propeller Car, the Archimedes' Screw, an Arm Cast Cover, and finally defend thier design in a Shark Tank. They took first place in three of the challenges and second in the last. Congratulations to all the participants and their teacher, Mr. Carey!

Click HERE for more information about the event.

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SKHS Happenings

  • In conjunction with a unit on fables, myths, and fairy tales, students in Mrs. Josephson’s Creative Writing course wrote personalized children's books for Mrs. Dolan’s first grade class at Peace Dale Elementary school. Digital book copies were sent home for the children to enjoy. A special thank you to Michaela Pantaleo for her help with this project. Click here to read the books. (Special recognition goes to seniors Ryan Benvenuti and Amber Hunley, who added their own original artwork!).
  • Click HERE to read about an awesome field trip taken by our French students, under the leadership of their teacher Ms. Crescenzo.
  • During the last week of October, RIPL students organized a campaign during Red Ribbon Week to raise awareness about substance use and show the different ways their peers avoid vaping and drinking. Also, members of the Varsity Athletes Against Substance Abuse (VAASA) talked to grade 9 students about peer pressure and the dangers of vaping.
  • On Nov 1 the Italian Club had a very successful first meeting and look forward to many exciting events ahead including Italian film and Celebrations throughout the year.
  • Anime club is up and running. This club meets Tuesdays after school from 2-3 in the library. The group shares their interest in the genre by showing their own artwork, watching anime clips, and discussing everything Anime!
  • Buddies club is also up and running meeting Mondays and Tuesdays during advisory. This club aims to make social connections for a wide variety students in a supportive environment. This club is largely student led with activities including board games, arts and crafts, and implementing school wide events (food/clothing drives, Angel tree,...)
  • Dungeons and Dragons Club has taken on some new members! We have 2 campaigns going with dedicated D&D players in each group. Student run, this club meets after school on Tuesdays 2-3 in the library. New members always welcome. Bring your dice! Monster manuals welcome...

School Counseling Corner

  • Freshmen met one on one with school counselors during quarter 1. The freshmen and counselors talked about the transition to SKHS, academics and extracurricular activities the students are interested.
  • CTE presentations were delivered to sophomores in Advisory, to discuss the various CTE programs and remind students of the October 1 application deadline. We now have over 35 sophomores enrolled in the SKHS CTE programs - congratulations to all these students!
  • Many junior and senior families attended the annual Financial Aid Night in October. Seniors have also been meeting with counselors to discuss post-secondary plans and we encourage all seniors to discuss their plans with the school counselors as soon as possible. For the fall semester, there are thirteen seniors enrolled in Internship, learning about careers at the hospital, local construction companies and the legal system.

Thank You to our SKHS Community Partners

A special thanks to our tremendous community partners who have accepted SKHS student interns. We are so grateful to work with these terrific groups, who help us advance our goal of bringing students more opportunities for dynamic, work-based learning opportunities. We hope you will consider supporting these great businesses, who are committed to supporting education in South Kingstown.

  • Julie Westcott, CPA

A Message from the School Nurse

All 12th grade Students need:

1.) Physical needed on file after the age of 16 years old, Per the Rules and Regulations for School Health Programs.


Meningococcal Vaccine after the age of 16 years old, Per the Rules and Regulations for School Health Programs.

All 9th grade Students need:

1.) Need to have completed 3 doses of HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine

*Note: Per current ACIP recommendations, 2 doses of HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine (if series is started at age 14 or younger)

If documentation has not already been handed in to the health office, please do as soon as possible. Documentation can be emailed to, faxed to 401-360-1465, or dropped off in the nurse’s office.

Please contact me with any questions or concerns at 401-360-1021.

Thank you,

Cindy Notarianni RN, CSNT