Rye City School District ▪ 411 Theodore Fremd Ave Suite 100S, Rye, NY 10580 ▪ (914) 967-6100 

 Board Notes  


2013-2014 Board of Edu
Laura Slack, President ▪ Katy Keohane Glassberg, VP  
Karen Belanger ▪ Edward M. Fox ▪ Nancy Pasquale ▪ Chris Repetto ▪ Nicole Weber

A Summary of the 6/24/14 Rye City School District Board of Education Meeting


Special Recognitions  
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Frank Alvarez presented Rye Recognition of Excellence Awards to a number of athletes who have earned recent achievements at the State and National levels. In addition to the District recognition, certificates of acknowledgement were provided by Senator George Latimer and Assemblyman Steve Otis. 


Rye Crew members Ryan Costa, Grant Janart, Kiefer Mueller, Jim Palmer, and Allison Sullivan competed in the USRowing Youth National Championships in Lake Natoma, California, from June 12-15. Grant and Jim placed 2nd in the Nation out of 21 qualifying crews from their district championship races. All five team members came in 16th place in another race. Dr. Alvarez congratulated these students as well as coaches Stan Nelson and Jennifer Palermo.


Golfers Frida Henningsson and Alexis Hios competed in the New York State Championship at SUNY Delhi on June 14. They did extremely well and were part of the Section 1 Team that finished 3rd overall. These students were congratulated along with their coach, Rich Savage. 


The Baseball Team members are now New York State Finalists after making it to the final game in the State Championship competition, and are the first Regional Champions in Rye High School history! The Baseball Team won the semi-final game over Averill Park on June 14, when they played in Endicott. Dr. Alvarez congratulated Ryan Anderson, Mat Bruno, Brendan Cassano, Ryan Ciardiello, Trevor Crawford, Tim DeGraw, Brian Gardner, Tim Hale, George Kirby, Jay Little, Sam Lubeck, Connor McGovern, Luke Meyerson, Chase Pratt, Keith Secon, Brendan Tripodi, Shota Tsuda, Griffin Tutun, and Joe Zulli, as well as Coaches Michael Bruno and Chad Charney. Coach Bruno was selected as the League Coach of the Year and the Conference 3/4 Coach of the Year. 

Superintendent's Report  

Dr. Alvarez shared curriculum highlights from the 2013-14 school year, including the implementation of Science 21, literacy initiatives in the primary grades, and the expansion of Mandarin. Mandarin V, the next level of the program, was approved at this meeting. Dr. Alvarez also discussed the graduations and moving up ceremonies and acknowledged all the students and staff members who were celebrated during these events. He announced that a recent inter-generational concert held at the Osborn Retirement Community, featuring fifth grade chorus students from each of the elementary schools, was a great success and meaningful tribute to Flag Day. 


Dr. Alvarez also noted that several food allergy concerns raised by parents are being addressed and administrators are currently re-evaluating the policy regarding this, with the hopes of providing a recommendation to the Board in the fall. 

Memorandum of Agreement
The Board approved a memorandum of agreement with the Rye Administrators Association. Board of Education President Laura Slack thanked the District's administrators for their collaboration in negotiations and for acknowledging the challenging fiscal environment in which the District finds itself. Through the partnership between both parties, the process of reaching this agreement occurred smoothly and in a timely manner.
With sadness and well-wishes, the Board of Education approved the retirements of Tagrid Hermes, Gloria Maier, and Valerie Salwen. 
Tagrid Hermes has been part of the Midland staff since 2006, when she began as a substitute teacher aide. She was appointed as a permanent Teacher Aide in 2007. Ms. Hermes has worked with all grade levels and also provided assistance at the front desk and supervised lunch and recess periods. She has had a great rapport with children and the teachers with whom she was assigned. 

Gloria Maier has served as a Spanish Teacher in both RMS and RHS since 1984. She has held many professional leadership positions, participated on committees, and was twice elected as President of the Rye Teachers Association. Over the past 30 years Ms. Maier has taught various levels of Spanish classes, including the AP course, for which she was involved in writing the curriculum. Ms. Maier has also incorporated technology into her lessons to enhance student learning. 


Dr. Valerie Salwen has served the District as a Rye Middle School Psychologist for 18 years, beginning her career at the Middle School in 1995. She has touched the lives of many students and parents and has worked closely with staff at all of the school buildings. Dr. Salwen started the Volunteer Action League (the VAL), which recognizes and reinforces children for their community service efforts in Middle School. She also served as an advisor for the Middle School advisory program for many years and was a member of the Excellence Team, the Child Study Team and many committees. 


On behalf of the Board, Mrs. Slack wished all of the retirees well in their future endeavors and thanked them for their service to the District. Mrs. Slack additionally thanked retiring Board of Education member Edward Fox for providing nine years of service to the District.

Gifts to the District    
The Board of Education approved several gifts: A $22,038.45 gift was provided by the High School PO for an i-Pad cart, a $4,000 gift was provided by the Niehaus Family for the Niehaus Scholarship, and a $3,364 gift was provided by the Milton School PTO for the purchase of a MacBook computer. Mrs. Slack expressed gratitude to all of the individuals and organizations who continue to support the schools and students of Rye through these generous contributions.  
Risk Assessment Update and Management Response    
The Board approved the acceptance of the 2013-14 Internal Audit Risk Assessment Update and Management Response. Board of Education Member and Audit Committee Chair Karen Belanger explained that the internal audit provides the District with recommendations for improving policies and procedures. After reviewing the risk assessment, the Audit Committee has recommended an in-depth look at grants, facilities, and capital projects, due largely to the Middle School/High School addition that will be completed by September. Mrs. Belanger thanked auditing firm Cullen & Danowski as well as members of the District's Audit Committee and Business Office, specifically acknowledging Assistant Superintendent for Business Gabriella O'Connor for her work with the external and internal auditors this year and in undertaking all aspects of the management response to the internal audit. 
District-Wide Safety Plan     

The Board adopted revisions to the District-Wide Safety Plan. Ms. O'Connor, along with Board of Education Member and Health and Safety Committee Chair Nancy Pasquale, provided a Health & Safety committee update as well as background information about the plan and its development. Mrs. Pasquale explained that construction monitoring was one area of focus for Health & safety this year, and monthly Construction Safety Committee meetings have been held since September in order to ensure safe and smooth operations throughout the duration of the construction work. She thanked all members who participated in those meetings, as well as members of the parent organizations who helped spread messages regarding safety protocols during construction. 


Ms. O'Connor discussed security, noting that the District underwent a review from StoneGate Associates, its security consulting firm. As an outcome of this collaboration, an updated Emergency Management Plan was created with regulations for each school building. Additionally, a corresponding Quick Reference Guide was developed and is posted in each classroom. Training and drills were also conducted with Rye City first responders. Security was also reviewed from a facilities standpoint as well with input and guidance from Facilities Director, Sam Carder, and certain upgrades will be made over the summer. An all-doors-locked policy was implemented as well.


The District-Wide Safety Plan was revised to incorporate the recommendations from StoneGate Associates and District Counsel. It also incorporates input provided by the Health & Safety Committee, which includes representation from each unit within the District; administrators, teachers, aides, custodians, and clerical staff, along with Security personnel, and parents, and members of the community. Mrs. Pasquale and Ms. O'Connor thanked all who participated in this process. 

College Placements     
Rye High School Principal Patricia Taylor and Guidance Counselor James O'Hara provided a presentation regarding college placements for the Class of 2014. Mrs. Taylor discussed the 202 seniors who graduated on June 21, noting that 98% of the class will be attending 101 different colleges in 28 different states and 6 different countries. She reviewed general trends and changes in selectivity among colleges. Mr. O'Hara provided specific information about the college placements earned by the Class of 2014. Students were admitted into specialized programs for art, design, music, and other areas at several schools. A number of athletes were recruited and have committed to participate on college teams. Rye High School students continue to achieve acceptances from top Ivy League schools such as Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Yale University, as well as many other competitive colleges. 

Visit our District website for complete information on Board of Education meetings, minutes, policies and actions.


can be accessed on the District website.  Videos should be available 2-3 days after each Board meeting.  Past meeting videos are also accessible.

Watch the video of Board of Education meetings on Cablevision channel 77 and
Verizon Fios channel 40.
The RCTV programming schedule can be found on the District website.