TRCS Monthly Newsletter
MARCH 2011 
Albany Lobby Day
Environmental Fair
Special Happenings
Cluster Updates
Japan Earthquake Relief
TRCS Sports Desk
Featured Article "Internships"
Rensizzle Week!
Art Auction

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Dear Friends and Families,


2011 has kept us busier than ever, from traveling to Albany to celebrating Mardi Gras, and there's a lot more planned.   

Read On!  

Albany Lobby Day & Student Trip

Renaissance parents and students and staff participated in the annual Albany Advocacy Day for Charter Schools on February 7.  The intrepid crew got up very early to catch a bus provided by the New York City Center for Charter Schools, and spent the day in Albany competing with Mayor Bloomberg for the ears of our legislators.  Mr. Bloomberg was testifying at a budget hearing to advocate for New York City's fair share of public spending, and our parents and students were reminding our lawmakers that charter schools need to be treated fairly as well-with equal funding on a par with the district schools.  This year we sent our newly revitalized Student Government, with advisor Janna Ostroff and representatives from 9, 10, 11and 12 grades.  Students stayed an extra day in the capital, ice-skating at a local rink, receiving a private tour of the capital sponsored by Jackson Heights assemblyman Francisco Moya, and grilling lobbyists about their role in governance.  Thank you to all who participated and made this day possible.   

Green Initiative & Environmental Fair
green initiative

Thank you to all staff, parents and friends for your generous donations and commitment to a sustainable future! The Green Initiative asked parents and staff to sponsor efforts to purchase recycle bins in classrooms to effectively teach students how to reuse materials and limit waste. The committee members, Girelle Guzman, Mary Sugrue, Janna Ostroff, Jose Morales, Kalli Radman and HS students launched our recycling initiative with after school student performances, informational booths, and the installation of the bins, in addition to school-wide recycling workshops on February 4th.    

Special Happenings
Our 2nd Annual "Evening Out" was held on Thursday, March 24th  at the newly renovated  party room above Natives Restaurant in Jackson Heights.  Over 100 family, friends and supporters were on hand to enjoy good music, food and more. We had a visit from Nick Tishuk, who spoke about the upcoming trip some of our students will be taking to Mississippi in honor of the Freedom Riders' 50th anniversary.  Look for more info in our next newsletter!

 The PTA sponsored a fantastic Mardi Gras to benefit Nature's Classroom and the middle school end-of-year trip.  The celebration included wonderful food, beads, masks, great music and dancing.  The PTA wishes to thank Janet Jefferson, Mike and Christine Francione, the PTA and all who brought food and their dancing shoes.

Martha Bolivar and the Spanish department brought a Latin Carnivale to Renaissance that featured spectacular student dancers, games and food.  
Cluster Updates
    K-4 will be welcoming a new architect to classrooms during the week of March 28-April 1 for a wonderful built-environment project.  As the 7-12 graders engage in Rensizzle Week [link text to the Rensizzle article here], K-4 students and teachers will be working with Howard Stern from the Center for Architecture.  The cluster will also be enjoying a new Spirit Week; notices will be coming home so your child can dress for their future profession, and other fun days!
    5th and 6th grades have been working with two wonderful partners this year, the Metropolitan Opera Guild and Carnegie Hall's American Roots program.  American Roots explores the uniquely American Gospel music, and how the songs reflect the American experience.  The "MOG Squad"
teachers, Michael, Allison and Cristine, have been working with Opera Guild teaching artists to bring Opera to life in their classrooms.  Students will be writing their own plays with music based on myths, literature and social-studies themes from their classes. 
    7th and 8th grades recently worked with poet Kahlil Mustafa during their ELA classes.  Kahlil and Miyo guided students through a personal exploration of poetry that resulted in an exciting middle school poetry slam on February 17.  In addition, th
e 8th grade poets were invited to perform their poems at the TREA open mic on March 10.
    High School humanities has a new partner for the arts integration component of the class.  The Children's Museum of the Arts is sending artist Jamie Kelty every week to work with our 9 graders as they rotate between 3 artistic disciplines: fine arts, theater arts with Curtis Anderson and literature with Jose Mane.  Each artistic discipline focuses on an aspect of history that connects directly to the Global History and Geography course.  In 10 grade, the second year of the Global course, students cycle through several Global Labs, with topics such as Greek Philosophy, Current Events, Human Trafficing, and Population & Poverty.
Japan Earthquake Relief Fund


According to Japanese legend, anyone who folds 1,000 origami cranes will be granted a wish. Share your love and support for the victims of Japan's devastating earthquake and tsunami by making a donation.


The Renaissance Charter School has begun cutting 6" squares of paper from recycled materials and folding these squares into origami cranes. We need you and everyone you know to help a wish-bearing crane to fly.


For a suggested donation of $5 (we will accept a donation of any amount) we will write your name on the wing of an origami crane.  We are threading the sponsored cranes from the ceiling of the school's entrance lobby. Please help us fill the sky of the ceiling with soaring cranes in flight


All donations will go to New York City's Japan Society's Earthquake Relief Fund. http://www.japansociety.org/earthquake 

They guarantee that 100% of your generous tax-deductible contributions will go to organizations that directly help victims recover from the devastating effects of the earthquake and tsunamis that struck Japan on March 11, 2011.


Send money to school with your child in an envelope labeled:


or mail a check payable to Japan Society to

The Renaissance Charter School

35-59 81st Street

Jackson Heights, NY 11372

Attn: Paper Cranes for Japan


TRCS Sports Desk


  • The HS Boys Basketball Finish 6th Out of Nine teams in very competitive PSAL Queens B East Division.
  • The HS Girls Team finished the season in 5th place out of thirteen teams with 8-5 record in CSAA  Girls Varsity Division
  • The MS Girls finished the Charter School Athletic Association (CSAA) the season  in second place in their division with 8-1 record . Also they are currently 3- 0 in the middle school basketball league.
  • The MS Boys finished the CSAA season in second place in their division with a record of 8- 3 record.
  • HS Boys  baseball team has be promoted from the developmental league to PSAL B Division
  • 7&8th grade C0- Ed  Finish the season with playoff loss to PS 127  30-26
  • HS Girls Soccer Team finishes the Season 6-1.
  • HS Boys Soccer team  finish the season with victory in Holiday Tournament

 Upcoming Spring Sports:


MSB Baseball Team

HSG Softball Team

4-6th Basketball Team / Club

HSB Baseball Team

Volleyball Club


Also there are several students who are interning in the sports department, where they're learning how to be team managers , assitant coaches and sports writers. 


Featured Article - TRCS Internship Program

  by Girelle Guzman 

Through the TRCS Internship program, our students continue to acquire knowledge and skills to become leaders for the Renaissance of New York. We are working with long-standing partners like Sadie Nash , The Noguchi Museum, and the Possibility Project while growing our portfolio of new organizations. These are some of this year's highlights: Fourteen TRCS students and local Senior Citizens developed community service projects through Bridging the Gap Program of the Aging in New York Fund. At the Ghetto Film School, sophomore Josue Loayza is learning the ins and outs of filmmaking---he's appeared in Rolling Stone Magazines and exhibited work at the Sundance Film Festival. Juniors Stephen Ruck and Samuel Benitez are exploring their interest in Criminal Justice through the Queens District Attorney Council, while Dylan Neary, also a junior, completed an animation program at Sony Wonder Technology Lab. Thanks to the support of The Green Agenda for Jackson Heights, CJ Joseph and Sabrina Yap have helped implement and run our first outdoor compost bin. Our program is also encouraging students to take leadership abroad. This summer, Vilma Gamarra will travel to South Africa with the YMCA Global Teens program for cultural exchange and community service.


There are many exciting opportunities available to TRCS students during the year and summer.  Your student can show you our wiki page to see more!


Upcoming Events:
Rensizzle Week!
The week of March 28 through April 1 is our famous "Rensizzle Week", a chance for our 7- 12 grade students and staff to pursue an educational experience for over a full school week.  It is based in the theories of experiential education: many students learn best by doing things, not just studying them.  This year we have 20 clusters ranging from studying the "Legacy of Colonialism in Latin America", to figuring out what "Happiness" means, to immersion in such sports as Soccer, Rugby and Cycling.  We will have the Spring Drama Production rehearsing and building scenery, poets creating "Hip Hop with the Live Band", musicians creating collaborations, students learning digital animation and photography.  The week is important to who we are as a school, and we applaud our students and adults for coming up with some great ideas, and group leaders for taking on the challenge.  Watch for our "Rensizzle Week Wiki" coming in April!   
 Art Auction

TRCS will be holding an auction of artwork created by our students, staff and  other professional artists to benefit the art programs at Renaissance.  Join us at the Jewish Center of Jackson Heights at 37-06 77th Street on Thursday, April 14th from 6:30-8:30.  Tickets are just $5.00 and include a wine & cheese reception, admission to art viewing and a ticket to our door prize.  Please join us to support the arts and the generosity of our local artists.  For more info, please contact Peggy Heeney at peggyheeney08@gmail.com  


Make an investment in children, education and the future of our world.  Safer, better-educated communities are great for business; they improve the quality of life for everyone. Renaissance's hard-working, high-achieving students strive to make that happen and with your help that goal is closer to being a reality:  Please visit our website for more information, and lick on the red DONATE button on the bottom of each page: http://www.renaissancecharter.org/.  Thank you!


The Renaissance Charter School