Bird's Eye View
Superintendent: Mr. Rose
Hello Larrie Community,
We are in the “home stretch” of what has been an unprecedented school year. Thank you again for reading our 3rd edition of the Bird’s Eye View, which contains some of our previous months’ activities and news.
The results from our mid-April survey on the question...“If we moved from 6 feet to 3 feet distance per person, would you support the necessary changes that would need to be made to follow the new guidance?” were: 303 Yes and 22 No. We appreciate those who responded and although there has not been much movement on the topic, we have taken your many suggestions and are using them to guide us as we finish this school year, and also as important, on how to approach our opening next year.
Many of you will begin to see the turf field lights on and hear the sounds of aluminum bats on balls, as our first spring sports games begin this week. Since these are all outdoor events, two spectators per player will be allowed at each contest. All players will be required to provide their coaches with the names of their two guests 24 hours before each game. Please make sure your player adds you to the spectator sign-in sheet, if you plan on attending a home or away game. Masks and social distancing will be required prior, during, and while exiting the games.
“You cannot push anyone up a ladder unless they are willing to climb a little themselves.”
Throughout the process of bringing more students back to in person learning, we have found just how much easier it is to give that “push” when our students are here, in person, with us. To be sure we give our students every opportunity to see us in person and to make up for lost days last spring, our district has adopted an end of the year schedule that will look different than a typical year.
- With the number of regents exams being given this year limited to one per day, we are going to have all of the Elementary, Middle School, and High School students report to school either in person or remotely, until June 24th.
- The additional giveback snow/emergency days will be given on May 28, June 9, June 16, and June 25. June 9 and 16 are Wednesdays when students would already be at home on a typical schedule for this year. This will allow parents to continue with any daycare schedules you may already have and will give our staff two extra days to have your children for in person classes.
- June 22 and June 24 will be half days (as in most years) to allow staff to complete their “end of the year” checklist.
Plans for a little different style prom, senior trip, and graduation are all currently in the works. More details on these events will be shared in a future newsletter. Please also be on the lookout for the budget newsletter that will be coming out shortly.
High School Principal: Mrs. Zender
We as a North Country Community have joined with our friends at Potsdam and Heuvelton Central School district in mourning the loss of two students recently. Due to the circumstances surrounding their deaths, we have responded and are taking several steps to support our students at St. Lawrence Central High School.
We are working with the New York State Police and local area school districts to provide an educational event, so students and parents can learn more about the pitfalls of social media and what you can do to help keep your children safe online. The date for this event will be publicized in the coming weeks. Due to the demand recently from surrounding schools, this event will be for several local school districts with additional in-person follow up the first week of school at SLC HS.
Though we have many suicide prevention strategies in place, our counseling department will continue to reach out to students that we know are struggling to provide them with the resources that they need. Additionally, we will consistently take time to re-examine our protocols and support to provide additional ways for our students to get help.
We have recently partnered with Akwesasne Holistic Life Foundation in financial support from Massena Memorial Hospital Foundation to fund a mindfulness curriculum to all students across the district. These efforts and the grant were written by our counseling department as a way to support students with centering and calming techniques throughout this time.
This year we developed a Student Support Team in December who meet monthly to address the attendance, academic, and social-emotional needs of all students. In addition, we have grade level team meetings to try to provide immediate support and assistance for students who are struggling. Our goal is to additionally form a Family Support Team as a way to help parents navigate difficult times with their children and to have support from peers. Please be on the lookout for additional information!
New York State Regents Exams and Course Credit:
The Board of Regents acted in March on a series of emergency regulations to allow for exemptions to diploma requirements associated with the June 2021 and August 2021 Regents Examination administrations. With the COVID-19 crisis still affecting the State of New York and students having varied levels of in-person instruction, the Board and the Department are taking necessary steps to provide essential flexibility for the State’s students, families and educators. Recently, the United States Department of Education has denied NYSED’s request for a waiver for testing mandate relief. Regents Exams will be given in June 2021 for Living Environment, Earth Science, ELA, and Algebra I.
What does this mean for our SLC HS students this year? A general outline is below and is from the following link and excerpts have been provided below. As always, if you have specific questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to our HS Office and Guidance Office for clarification on what this means for your child.
Regents Exam Exemption Eligibility Requirements: Regulations are amended to allow students who have met the standards for the course of study, as locally determined, to be eligible for an exemption to the examination requirements. To qualify for such an exemption to the diploma requirements, students must meet one of the following criteria:
The student is currently enrolled in a course of study culminating in a Regents Examination and by the end of the 2021 school year, or the 2021 summer session, will have earned credit in such course of study;
The student was previously enrolled in the course culminating in the applicable Regents Examination, has achieved course credit, and has not yet passed the associated required Regents Examination, but was intending to take the test in June 2021 or August 2021 to achieve a passing score.
Mastery and Honors Flexibility: Regulatory amendments will allow for flexibility in the calculations for the mastery and honors endorsement wherein student course grades may be substituted for exam scores in cases where Regents Examination exemptions would preclude a student from qualifying for an endorsement to their diploma.
Science Laboratory Experience: Commissioner’s regulations relating to science laboratory experience are amended to:
Clarify that a student may still be eligible to take a science Regents examination, and therefore be eligible for an exemption if applicable, even if they are unable to meet the 1,200-minute science laboratory experience requirement due to the COVID-19 crisis; and
Expand the amendment allowing students to continue to meet the laboratory requirements through a combination of hands on and virtual experiences due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Graduation Assessment Exemption Declination: With the cancellation of the January 2021 Regents Examinations, the Department amended regulations to provide parents and persons in parental relation of students scheduled to graduate in January, June, or August of 2021 who have been exempted from a graduation assessment requirement, the opportunity to decline such exemption.
Additionally, the amendment extended the time period required by schools to give parents or persons in parental relation notification of the option to decline such exemption from 10 calendar days to 30 calendar days.
As always, please let me know if I can assist your child in any way!
High School Principal
Golden Apple Award
The "Golden Apple" Award is a special recognition of a High School staff member who goes above and beyond the call of duty.
Mrs. Denise Arquiett was the "Golden Apple" Award Winner for the Month of April. She was nominated by one of her colleagues.
"Consider what it would have been like to be a teacher 25 years ago. Many of us know this feeling. Back then, we didn’t have computers in all of our classrooms. There were not even real phones in all of the rooms. Students used textbooks and teachers used chalk.
In the last 25 years, SLC has seen multiple changes in administration, faculty, curriculum and societal rules. Anyone who “grew” through all of the changes should be applauded!
Then came COVID.
In addition to learning new avenues because we wanted to, or because we could, it seemed we now had to learn everything all at once.
So, I guess I would first like to applaud all employees who have had to experiment by trial and error with any and all possible ways to reach our students and communicate with each other.
I would next like to applaud those who have lived through 20 plus years and stayed true to St. Lawrence Central. A lot of employees have come and gone through the years and some have been here for the long haul because they love this school and the students in it!
This brings me to my nomination. For me, this person has been a role model in all of my years here. She is a true professional with a kind heart and ears that will always listen when another person needs to talk. She has risen to the technology challenge and puts in many hours outside of school to be ready for each week and each day that we are living the COVID dream. There is so much I could say about her and how she remains positive and strong no matter what the world hands to her. She is one of those people who makes other people feel important when they speak to her. She is a teacher in every sense of the word!"
Congratulations, Mrs. Arquiett!
Would you like to recognize an SLC High School staff member? Stop in and see Mrs. Zender or email her at email@example.com.
High School Shout-Outs
The following high school students were nominated by their peers for a Shout-Out last month:
Congratulations to each of you!
Students please nominate your peers for their good deeds by dropping off a nomination form to Mrs. Andrews in room 105, or by completing the form in your Advisory Google Classroom.
Winter Scholar-Athlete Awards
Broadway Bootcamp News
Our middle school Broadway Bootcamp is underway until May 17. During our first meeting, the students were able to get to know one another with games, take a tour of our theater space, and play various acting games. The students also enjoyed an afternoon snack on stage together. Thank you to the Extended Day program for sponsoring the program!
The high school Broadway Bootcamp has continued throughout April. We have recently done activities to work on staying in character, learned about theater lighting, worked on accents, read scripts together, and more.
Tri-M Music Honor Society
High School Robotics
Lately, the SLC Robotics Team has been hard at work finalizing our robot for competition. We've run into a few things that needed work, like our intake and shooter systems. However, we have also made many breakthroughs! We finally got most of the parts on the robot to start working together and working properly. We also have programmed an autonomous program, which means the robot runs and moves only on pre-programmed instructions. This means that our robot can get more points in competitions. We are working on programming that will make the robot read the number of rings on the field and then tell the robot where to go.
Our shooter aim is getting better, we’ve been hitting almost all of our shots and most of them are in the high goal, which gives us the most points. Below is a snapshot of us shooting.
Article written by: Cole Zenger
Liberty Partnership Program
Sophomore Class T-Shirt Contest
Door Decorating Contest
Spring Time Fun with the Sophomore Class
As part of the spring pep rally, the sophomore class held a door decorating contest. The winners received a pizza party, donuts, or a goody bag of candy.
Terra Northeast Regional Science and Engineering Fair
In March, four of our seniors participated in the 2021 Terra Northeast Regional Science and Engineering Fair. At the award ceremony on April 10th, they received the following awards:
- Mackenzie Moreau was awarded Honors and the Topic Presentation Award for Curiosity on her topic presentation on the differences in damage and recovery in different people with ACL injuries.
- Bailey Brothers was awarded High Honors and the Yale Science and Engineering Award on her topic presentation on Edible Vaccines.
- Chantel McCarthy was awarded High Honors and the Topic Presentation Award for Curiosity on her topic presentation on Tooth Brushing.
- Jeneka McIntosh was awarded High Honors and the Ernstons Make a Difference Award for her topic presentation on Cancer.
The award ceremony can be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38QXLZ-RyQk
Middle School Principal: Mrs.LaBarge
Although April has been a short month, it has also been a busy month for the middle school. We just completed our first round of state testing with ELA. Our students worked hard, and our first experience with Computer Based Testing was positive. We have math in May, and then 8th grade science coming up in June.
Although our end of the year calendar is not as full as it typically is, we are looking forward to celebrating our successes in June with our virtual awards ceremony. We will share more information soon! Summer school will also be occurring in person, and invitations will be sent in June for those students.
Congratulations to our final group of CORE students for Marking Period 3!
Middle School Art with Mrs.Warner
“More than a half-million pounds of crayons are discarded annually throughout the U.S., that equates to roughly 60 million crayons! The Crayon Initiative collects used and unwanted crayons donated from restaurants, schools, and homes across the country, then melts them down and remanufactures them, reducing environmental waste. Better yet, the recycled crayons are distributed to art programs at children’s hospitals across the U.S., brightening the lives of young patients during their stay. These programs provide young patients with a creative outlet to express themselves, while at the same time helping alleviate anxiety. They also enhance problem-solving and critical thinking skills, while promoting creativity and imagination. When the patients at our partner hospitals finally get to go home, they often take our crayons with them because they represent a happy memory during an otherwise uncertain time.”
-The Crayon Initiative
Our very own SLC school district and community collected/donated 70 pounds worth of crayons over the last two years! In honor of Earth Day, those crayons were mailed out mid-April and will be melted down to make almost 9,000 new crayons that will be donated to children’s hospitals!
Mrs. Warner, in the Middle School Art Room, would like to thank our teachers, students, families, and community members that helped contribute to this fund!! She will continue to collect crayons, and when we have another box worth, she will ship them out!
Mrs. Warner also collects markers (all kinds) because ‘Crayola offers an innovative program called ColorCycle that converts old markers into energy as well as wax compounds for asphalt and roofing shingles. The process repurposes the entire marker, regardless of the different kinds of plastics or how they are assembled.’- Crayola ColorCycle. Currently this program is on hold due to COVID, but Mrs. Warner will continue to collect!
Artwork Displayed at Local Post Offices
Please visit our local Post Offices (Brasher, Helena, North Lawrence, and/or Winthrop) in the month of May (starting on the 6th), they have kindly welcomed our student artwork again this year. The fifth graders worked hard to create a piece of artwork that they are proud of and that will be on display at a Post Office of their choosing.
If you get the chance, please stop in to see the talented artwork and thank our Post Offices for this opportunity.
SLC Middle School Art Teacher
Rocket Day Returns to the 6th Grade!
What is Modi-Fri?
Modi-Fri is a video-guided STEM experience that uses self-assembled projects to teach students how to think critically, ask creative questions, observe the world, create answers and above all, know their value as people.
Extended Day Program
Elementary School Principal: Mrs.Colterman
We would like to congratulate our third quarter Character Ed Award winners! Parents should refer to the Class Dojo School Story to view our video of these awards. A big thanks goes out to Mrs. Brouillette for preparing this video.
The NYS Assessment season has begun and our third and fourth graders now have their first experience with NYS (ELA) Assessments under their belts. Math testing will take place the week of May 3rd. Thank you to the SLC PTO for donating snacks for our students during NYS Assessment days.
I encourage parents to become involved in our PTO. We are very lucky to have the support of this organization. They do so much for our students. A big project we are currently working on is collaborating with the PTO as they lead in the installation of our new playground equipment. This is very exciting, as our current playground will soon be expanding! For more information on PTO activity, join their Facebook group, SLC PTO.
On Tuesday, May 11, from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., we will host a virtual Magic Show. Please be on the lookout for information on joining this virtual event. We look forward to a magical evening with our SLC families!
Lastly, we ask for your help in ensuring student safety during parent drop off in the morning. Please be patient and wait for the line of cars to move through the parking lot, rather than driving around them. Thanks for your cooperation in this matter.
Month of the Military Child
Earth Day with Mrs. Masuk & Mrs. Davis
Elementary Art with Ms. Medley
Mrs. LaFave's Class Easter Egg Hunt
Technology Tidbits: Mr. Welsh
Did you know that on April 16th, 2021, Governor Cuomo signed into law the first-in-the-nation legislation that requires internet providers to offer affordable internet services for qualifying low-income families? This legislation requires internet companies that do business in New York State to offer internet to families at as low as $15 a month, if you qualify.
New Yorkers qualifying for this affordable internet program include households who are eligible or receiving free or reduced-price lunch, supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits, Medicaid benefits, the senior citizen or disability rent increase exemptions, or an affordability benefit from a utility.
To see if you qualify for this program, you can visit the New York State's Affordable Broadband Portal for more information.
Residents may also be eligible up to $50 off your monthly broadband bill through the Federal Communication Commission’s Emergency Broadband Benefit Program. Please visit the Emergency Broadband Benefit website for more information, criteria to qualify, and updates.
A full list of New York internet service providers currently offering discounted service is available here.