March 18, 2022
Hello North Rockland Families,
Just like the daylight savings time change earlier this week, the North Rockland Central School District will move into spring 2022 with a series of positive changes. In the coming weeks, NRCSD will unveil a wide range of new programs, services and supports for students, staff and families.
I can confirm many (if not all) year-end celebrations and activities will be “in-person” events unless current health conditions worsen. Commencement is a defining moment in a young person’s life- a time of change, growth and maturity. We want to make certain that our 2022 NRHS commencement, along with other moving-up ceremonies and graduations, are shared live and in-person with family and friends.
Professional learning throughout an educator’s career is essential to achieving great public schools. Our staff members have begun attending focused workshops around literacy, math and other captivating sessions delving into student engagement, helpful tech tools, social-emotional learning (SEL) and brain science. Additional SEL supports have been developed by our staff to help students cope with stress and anxiety. The next NRCSD PD Day will be held Friday, April 8th.
Our region continues to see an alarming trend involving student use of illicit substances including marijuana and alcohol. NRCSD continues to partner with parents, lawmakers, mental health experts, law enforcement and most importantly, students, to address the rising popularity of vaping, drug use and drinking and the need for targeted prevention programs, policies and strategies.
Through a comprehensive, multi-pronged approach, NRCSD, in partnership with the North Rockland Coalition for Drug Awareness and Prevention (NRC DAP), is developing new programs to support and foster good decision-making and healthy lifestyles. Efforts will include a variety of public speakers, guests and new resources for students and families, including advocate Timothy Shoemaker, whose information you can find below under Community Information. The safety and well-being of our students is always our top priority and we appreciate everyone’s help in ensuring this continues.
Finally, the District is making an effort to be green, conscious of our environment, and teach empathy through community service. This spring there will be additional Community Clean Up opportunities provided through our school buildings coming soon, so please be on the lookout for those.
We are looking forward to growing together as a community this spring!
New York State 3-8 Testing
The New York State Grades 3-8 English Language Arts (ELA), Mathematics and Science Tests will be administered to students over the next several months. Statewide testing is important because it helps ensure all public school students receive a quality education, no matter where they go to school, because they are measured to equal standards.
In North Rockland, we have had many families opt out of testing for their children and while we completely respect that decision, we do encourage students to take the exams. Their participation in the testing helps ensure our District shows we are on track with the state required curriculum and aids us in our efforts for program funding. Districts including North Rockland are adversely affected by New York State when participation rates do not meet their predetermined threshold.
Linked here you will find a letter that provides more detailed information about the NYS 3-8 testing program.
NRCSD Budget Information
The Board of Education and Administration, District and Superintendent have a shared goal to provide our students with an exemplary educational experience, while controlling taxes for our community. We understand the fiscal challenges that living in Rockland County pose which is why they are collaboratively working to ensure the amount of money we ask from our tax payers does not increase for the third consecutive year. The latest 2022-23 school budget presentation can be found linked here.
1. The BOE of Education has indicated the 2022-23 budget will not include an increase in our tax levy for the 3rd consecutive year.
2. Proposal 2 is on the ballot this year and if passed it will allow the district to utilize 14.6 million dollars established in the capital reserve fund for facilities improvements. With the access to the above capital reserve and money built into this year's budget the district plans to begin work on the following: Phase one of a plan that will eventually provide air conditioned classrooms in each of our schools, roof and window replacements, athletic facilities and fields upgrades, outdoor learning spaces and more.
3. Upgrades will be accomplished without asking the taxpayers for any additional funds. The District will utilize money already saved through the Capitol Reserve Fund which was approved by voters May of 2021.
***The district receives 80% reimbursement of the cost of capital improvement projects.
Specifics on the projects will be forthcoming stay tuned!
Board of Education Spotlight - Ida Mannine
We sat down for a Q & A with North Rockland Board of Education Trustee Ida Mannine to talk about her passion for education and her community!
Q: What do you admire most about the North Rockland Central School District?
“When I think about the North Rockland Central School District, I couldn’t be more proud to be a member of this community." Ida beamed. "One thing that makes our District stand out is our outstanding staff and administrators. They dedicate many hours back to the community and students beyond just their workday. Everything they do is to help better the schools and leave the kids with an amazing experience; let alone an amazing education to take with them while they go on to college and or trade school. Another thing I love about this community is everyone comes out to support one another. There has never been a time I attended a sporting event and didn’t see alumni and old staff back to see the games. We are NR Strong and we make it happen!”
Q: What inspired you most about the community before and during the pandemic?
“Many people have noticed significant differences in their community after the pandemic. One thing I can say and love about North Rockland is that it has only built us closer and stronger." explained Mannine, a Thiells resident whose children are both NR graduates."Throughout all the tough times everyone cooperated with what was being told and tried to do anything that they could do to help. When it came down to hard times people made sure to help out the small businesses so they could keep their doors open. The amount of time and dedication there was to get the correct materials and food to the kids in need was amazing. As a community, we rallied behind one another to fight through this pandemic one step at a time. I truly feel that we all were able to gain valuable lessons from this pandemic and it taught me specifically to live in the present and not to stress about the past or the future."
Ida was first elected to the North Rockland Board in 2018 and currently serves as a Trustee. She is a former NRCSD PTA President and board member and has played important roles in the NR Mirant Debt Committee, Central Hudson Region PTA, as well as being honored in 2018 by the Mid-Hudson School Study Council Community Service Award. Thank you for your dedication!
Wizard of Oz Opens!
There’s no place like home!
Returning to North Rockland High School for the first time since 2008, the Drama Society’s production of “The Wizard of OZ!” opens tonight! You won't want to miss the chance to experience the enchanting original by Herbert Stothart and the great songs by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg, proudly put on by our high schoolers across a custom stage. Join us for the exciting journey down the yellow brick road live, alongside lovable character favorites including Dorothy and her ruby slippers, The Scarecrow, Tin Man, Cowardly Lion, Toto and even the Wicked Witch!
Take a tornado ride on the wild trip from Kansas to The Emerald City during five nights of shows presented by our incredible performers!
Performances: March 18, 19, 24, 25, 26 at 7PM
Ticket prices: $15 -$12 for students & seniors
nrhsdrama.booktix.com or at the door.
**March 24 is a two-for-one student night.
***Runtime approx. 120 minutes with ten-minute intermission.
NR Professional Development Workshop
Professional learning throughout an educator’s career is essential to achieving great public schools. In NR, we're committed to professional learning for all. Our March 8th Staff Development day was filled with great presenters, both in-district and from across the country. Teachers and faculty members attended workshops around literacy, math and had an opportunity to participate in other captivating sessions focused on student engagement, helpful tech tools, social-emotional learning and brain science. The District will be providing more development days and sessions to promote and nurture an organizational culture of continuous learning and collaborative practice. Dedicated educators are lifelong learners!
Sessions overview linked here.
Both the Boys and Girls Bowling squads for North Rockland High School captured NYSPHSAA Championships on Sunday March 13 at the AMF Strike-N-Spare Lanes in Syracuse.
Vanderbilt University bound Victoria Varano totaled 1371 pins for a six game average of 228.50, and took the top spot in the final Girls overall individual standings. Teammate Ashley Puleo finished fourth with a 202.83 average. North Rockland scored 5874 pins, enough to edge Longwood and Orchard Park. It was the second team title in the Girls' program history.
Meanwhile, the Boy's team rallied to knock down 1075 pins in the final few games, and scored a total pinfall of 6225. The Red Raiders bested Smithtown (6133) and Corning (6094) to win the program's fourth state title. Dylan Bullsan tallied 1339 total pins in six games, and finished fourth in the final individual standings. Kyle Murray rolled 1319 pins and averaged a 219. He finished fifth in the final standings.
Congratulate the teams through the link here.
Read the full lohud article with a play by play of the victories linked here.
North Rockland Parade of the State Champions!
This year North Rockland brought home three state championships! The NRHS Varsity Cheerleading Team, Boys Bowling Team and Girls Bowling Team will be celebrated by the community in the coming weeks with a special victory parade coordinated by the NR Athletics Department. The date and time is still TBD, but we will be sharing soon.
Boys Wrestling All-Section Athletes
Red Raiders threw it down NR Strong!
Congratulations are in order for our NRCSD Varsity Wrestling student-athletes on their Section 1 accolades: Robert DePolito (Wrestler of the Year League 1-C), Amari Payton (All-Section 110) and Robert DePolito (All-Section 138). NR Proud of your accomplishments this season gentlemen
Girls Basketball All-Section Athletes
Red Raiders proved when they step on the court, others can only try to keep up!
Congratulations are in order for our NRCSD Varsity Girls Basketball student-athletes on their Section 1 accolades: Grace Mallozzi (All-Section), Nieve Fausel (All-Conference 1) and Sarai Gurley (All-Conference 1) NR Proud of your accomplishments this season ladies!
NEW! NR Field Hockey 2 Day FREE Clinic and Camp!
Let's work, grow, and shine together! The North Rockland Field Hockey Program is so excited to host our first ever Clinic and Camp this June for new and returning athletes of ALL LEVELS. We will also be at Sports Day April 30th! We look forward to meeting and working with your athlete!
Top of the Arts
Stop Motion Animation in art class with third graders at TES
Jaime Refino, Art Teacher at TES
"The first thing I do is introduce the concept of Stop Motion as an animation technique. I show them clips of examples of movies that they may know that were made this way. ( Coraline, Nightmare before Christmas, Box Trolls, ParaNorman, etc...) This gets them excited. I then have them open the program on their chromebooks and show them how to use it. (it's pretty simple) Then I will explain 12 frames or photos will get them a 1 second animation. They should move their hands out of frame every time they take a photo. The smaller the movement of the object between each frame the smoother it will look. I also allow them to use any materials on the table to test their animation skills. (eg. having the crayons dance around the table) Then..... We talk about Setting, Main Character, and Plot for their movies and I give them a planning sheet. (they work collaboratively with whoever sits at their table) After I show them a clip about stop motion puppets and students make their main character out of air dry clay. They also draw their background on paper to act as their backdrop. Finally, they will create their stop motion movies. “
Advocate Timothy Shoemaker is returning to North Rockland this month for two in depth sessions for parents. Both interactive education sessions will be streamed virtually and are completely free for families to sign up.
- Monday 3/28: Vaping 7PM
- Wednesday 3/30: Digital Dilemma 7PM
Click on the flyer above to access the registration links.
Watch a trailer on the Digital Dilemma Session linked here.
Resources for Combating Substance Abuse
Following the nationwide and unfortunately countywide upwards trend in youth substance abuse, recently, there has been an increase in the number of instances involving student use of substances forbidden by the North Rockland Central School District’s Code of Conduct. The District is taking this very seriously as the safety and well-being of our students and staff is always our top priority. Subsequently, the District has set forth measures to help inform students and parents of the inherent dangers of these substances, while also deploying measures to promote a healthy school environment.
Measures being implemented include:
A search of North Rockland High School was conducted in late February by the K-9 units from Rockland and Orange County. 15 officers and their K-9 service dogs swept the facility. Future sweeps are planned in conjunction with the Haverstraw Police Department.
Training for faculty and staff members is being scheduled to help detect the signs of student substance use and the recognition of various forms of paraphernalia.
Increased security in areas of schools where student misbehavior is more likely to occur.
Educational presentations on the dangers of controlled substances are being held for students. A parent information night will be scheduled for later this month.
Adjustment of bathroom supervision protocols
The District will continue our partnership with the North Rockland Coalition for Drug and Awareness Prevention to support our students and families in need of assistance.
The District will add staff to provide substance abuse counseling.
The District is working closely with the town of Haverstraw to bring two School Resource Officer Positions (SRO) to the District.
We recognize the potential dangers associated with the use of substances by our student body and remain committed to the safety and well-being of our students.
Substance abuse for families
Strategies parents can use to help their children:
Look for signs
Talk to your child and explain your concerns in detail.
Seek help/resources from your family physician, school counselor or school social worker
- Behavioral Health Response Team
- Haverstraw Reach Out Center: 845-429-5731
- High Focus Center: 1-800-877-3628
- Volunteer Counseling (VCS): 845-634-5729
- Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration Hotline: 1-800-622-HELP(4357)
- Samaritan Daytop Village: 845-353-2730
- Arms Acres: 845-208-0632
- Adolescent Outpatient Substance Abuse Program (Nyack Hosp): 845-348-2075
Signs parents could look for that determine if their child may be using:
Poor performance in school
Emotional and behavioral problems
Losing interest in activities they once enjoyed
Dropping old friends for a new group
Acting despondent, aggressive or angry
Sleeping more than usual
Exhibiting physical changes like sudden weight loss, frequent nosebleeds, bloody or watery eyes, or shakes and tremors
More detailed signs: Linked here
HKD Library App
With Sora, local students and families can check out free ebooks, audiobooks and magazines from your NRCSD school AND the Haverstraw King's Daughters Public Library.
Sora can help students of all ages:
· Enrich vocabulary and improve comprehension and pronunciation
· Introduce students to books above their reading level
· Teach critical listening
· Help busy kids find time to read
· Incentivize reading with fun avatars and achievements
Start here: https://help.soraapp.com/en-us/5033.htm
Internet Safety Materials
At North Rockland Central School District we take internet safety very seriously. It is important that we all have access to information on how to keep our students safe. Here are a few web resources:
NRCSD Universal Pre-Kindergarten & Full-Day Pre-K Program Application Notice
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School Meal Information
School Meal Sign up!
Red Raider Reminder
NR students who enroll in the free/reduced breakfast & lunch program qualify for college application fee waivers, free ACT and SAT exams and reduced AP exam registration fees! To qualify please complete the Free or Reduced Price Meal Application Form linked here as soon as possible.
Join the NRCSD Family!
Food Service Helpers
The North Rockland (Haverstraw-Stony Point) Central School District is seeking candidates for Food Service Helper positions at various school buildings for the 2021-2022 school year. The starting rate of pay is $14.00/hour. Apply here