TRCS Monthly Newsletter
November 2013      
What R U Up 2?
Rensizzle Week
Renaissance Recieves 2 Grants
Spirit Week
Halloween Howls
8th Grade Kente Cloth Project
What's On Your Mind?
Renaissance Rocks!
Spotlight On....Renaissance
TRCS Sports Desk
PTA News
Alumni Corner
Helpful Hints and Cool LInks

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Soon we will all take a much need break to enjoy time with family and friends.   We have already accomplished so much at Renaissance ~ another Rensizzle Week full of trips offered students experiential learning in the field of their choice;  Halloween Carnival and Pasta Night gave our students and families a chance to spend time together and the Scholastic Book Fair was a big hit, as always.  There was also a lot of exciting news, with Renaissance becoming the recipient of two laruge grants, as well as several mentions of our school in the media.  We hope you will enjoy reading about everything Renaissance!
What R U Up 2?
          6th Grader Asa Spellman's mom Tracie shares a great story with us this month: " Last spring I received an email from TRCS about an audition for the 92nd Street Y School of the Arts. (Much thanks to whoever sent the email).  It brought about an amazing opportunity for my son Asa (pitured above in blue shirt). He auditioned for a dance scholarship and got a callback (invitation for a second audition).  When he told his 5th grade TRCS teacher Emily Joffe about the callback, he found out she was a former student and repertory dancer at Harkness! She encouraged him to do well and took the time to speak with me about the school. Asa is now a Recanati-Kaplan Scholarship Awardee at the 92Y Harkness Dance Center, and  a scholarship student at the Ailey School in Manhattan and the Roberta Wells Conservatory in Corona".

        3rd grader Liam Collins wrote to us about his passion: baseball! 
"I love baseball.  I'm  on a team called the C.P. Stars. The C.P. stand for College Point. Our field is in College Point, but we travel all over the place.  We have been to Maryland, Delaware, the Jersey Shore and even Puerto RIco. We were playing games all summer long.  I play 2nd base.  It is a very busy schedule, but we are a very good team and we win lots of games and championships.  I have way too many medals and trophies, but it is a beautiful thing!  Here is an average week for me during baseball season:


1- Thursday - GAME 8/15 Glen Cove - 8:30 Field # 5

2- Saturday - DOUBLE HEADER 8/17- Glen Cove  

    Game #1 - 11:30 Field # 1 - vs. OH Wolfpack

     Game #2 - 2:00 Field # 8 - vs. Blue Collar Bulldogs

3- Sunday - DOUBLE HEADER - 8/18 - Brooklyn - 8:45 & 11:00 - Grace Field  - 100 Gravesend Neck Road 


 As you can see it keeps me busy - see you on the baseball field ~ Liam"
Rensizzle Week!
       This year's Rensizzle Week was probably one of our most ambitious!  There were trips upstate to Howe's Caverns, tours of the New York Institute of Culinary Education (I.C.E.) and survival hikes through New York parks.  There were twenty different groups, ranging from photography to music studio to New York City landmarks.  You can visit the Renaissance Rensizzle Wiki below to check out more photos and read about the students experiences.  If you are in the school, be sure to check out the great exhibition in the lobby showcase and the "street art" painting in the main hallway.
  A special shout out goes to Rebekah Oakes for somehow managing to organize hundreds of students into all the groups and for finding great resources so everyone has the best experience they can!    

 Here is just a sampling of some great Rensizzle events:

Survival Skills.  Students worked with a world class tracker to learn how to survive out in nature.

Street Art: Students visited 5Pointz in LIC, an outdoor art exhibit space.  They then tried their hand at creating art for the walls of Renaissance.

Students visited geological sites upstate and did their own digs.

Students in the Parks & Recreation group met with our Councilman Danny Dromm to discuss the need for more green space.

For more photos visit:

If you have not used this site before, you may have to join.  Just follow the link on the top left above the search box.
Featured Article....Renaissance Chosen as Lead School in Two Grant Awards
        Renaissance has been chosen as one of seven schools that have each been awarded $500,000 to share effective instructional practices with district-based public schools. Renaissance will partner with Truman High School in the Bronx to implement a Global Humanities Initiative in 9th and 10th grades.  Hellenic Classical Charter School, located in Brooklyn, will partner with PS 305 to implement Reading Rescue to improve reading among early grade students. The goal of the projects is to demonstrate how charter and district schools can work together to share resources and best practices to help improve public education for all students.

        These collaborative projects launch in the midst of public discourse about a divide between charter and district-based public schools in New York City. Sometimes referred to as the "tale of two school systems," this discourse was a major point in the recent mayoral race.  The projects demonstrate the opposite: charter and district-based public schools can and do work together for the common purpose of educating public school students.


       The two-year grants, from the NY State Department of Education, will allow school leaders and teachers among the partner schools to work directly together to implement the successful programs. In total, 40 teachers from the schools-Hellenic, Renaissance, PS 305 and Truman High School-will participate in joint training programs, work in one another's classrooms, and document their collaborative experiences. The ultimate goal is to raise student performance at PS 305 and Truman High School, both of which are designated as "Focus Schools" by NYS. Focus Schools are Title I schools with the lowest levels of achievement among subgroups of students on statewide assessments and/or graduation rates. Hellenic and Renaissance are both in strong positions to support efforts to accelerate learning at their partner schools as they are designated as schools that have achieved "Substantial Progress" by NYS for their ability to achieve and maintain high levels of student performance.



       The second grant was awarded to the NYC Charter School Consortium for Fitness & Health.  Renaissance is again the lead school in a group which also includes The Renaissance High School for Innovation, John V. Lindsay Wildcat Academies in Manhattan and the Bronx and Our World Neighborhood.  The Carol M White Physical Education Program award will allow Renaissance to create a more robust physical and health education curriculum by introducing new fitness modules and  increasing students knowledge of nutrition and healthy living through classroom and cooking segments.  We are also committed to helping our parents continue this healthy lifestyle at home and will be offering a parent "Nutrition & Healthy Cooking Workshop" on November 16th, so please join us.  

Spirit Week
       October 28th - November 1st, Renaissance celebrated Spirit Week, when every day has a different theme that students  can dress up to express.  Here are some pictures with kids in everything from their pajamas to  Mad Hatter costumes.

Monday - Twin Day  Students dressed as doubles or triples!

Tuesday - Sports Day
Students Dressed in the favorite teams colors
Wednesday - Heritage Day  Many were dressed in the national costumes of their family's homeland

Thursday - Halloween 

 K-5th graders marched through the main office to show-off their costumes and pick-up candy.

Even the staff likes to dress up ~
                                                        Rebekah Oakes was the candy fairy!
All of the kids were so cute....well, some were more scary than cute :0


                      We even had some scary doors! 
 Friday - Pajama Day Besides Halloween, this is probably the favorite day of Spirit Week, when everyone can roll out of bed and they're ready for school!

Halloween Howls with "Sleepy Hallow"!
     Our elementary and Middle School students had a special trick or treat on Halloween when storyteller extraordinaire Jonathan Kruk visited Renaissance to tell the tale of "Sleepy Hallow". 

With a musical accompanist to add some "spirit", Jonathan had the children (an
d adults who were there as well!) fully engaged in this great story.  This was a great addition to the children's trick or treat parade through the main office to show off costumes and pick up a treat.  The day was topped off by a middle school dance and that's how we celebrate Halloween, Renaissance style!
8th Grade Kente Cloth Project
      Continuing their explorations inspired by Sharon Draper's novel "Cooper Sun", the 8th graders spent the last 5 weeks working very hard on their Kente Cloth project.  Students created a Kente Cloth inspired by their own family mantra.  Mantras included things like "Respect Your Elders" and "Music Moves Me".  They studied several Ghanaian artists, researched symbols, and learned the art of dye making.  To present their work, students wrote short summaries of their cloth and participated in a gallery walk, filling out post-its to offer positive feedback to their peers.  We hope you enjoy these pictures of their final project!

What's On Your Mind? TUTOR.COM     

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     Attention Parents: Your child has FREE access to this year for help with his or her homework, studying, writing assignments and more. Tutors are available to help in 16+ subjects in math, science, social studies and English. Available from home, school or mobile devices, students can get a boost with their classes at


      Important note: student logins to have changed from last year. Students must now sign in with a personalized username which has been structured like: firstname.lastnameYEAR. YEAR means the 4-digit year your child will graduate from high school (for example: john.doe2021). The universal password is "tutorme".


This is a wonderful tool you should be urging your child to use on a regular basis. 

Renaissance Rocks!
A special shout-out to TRCS parent Kathy Corona for helping to get 200 pumpkins donated for our K-5th graders to decorate for the holidays. We thank Mr. Alex Rodriguez, Manager of NSA Supermarkets in Corona for their generosity.  The children had a great time and were very creative!

Shout Outs for helping Marlen with attendance: Yega Tharchin, Ethan Jerez, Amy Lliguicota, Kalliopi Spanos, Tseyang Sherpa, Nila Daniels, Himika Hamada, Regina Chen, Melany Morales, Rayana Govantes, Gillian Mendoza, Max Scott, Felix Salas, Ruth Uriarte and Daniela Malagon.  A Special Shout Out to Renay Moran for Attendance, too!


For door holder responsibilities: Barbara Krate, Destiny Solis, Joseph Vittoria.

Spotlight On...  Renaissance in the News!
       In the months preceding the mayoral election, and since the election of Bill DeBlasio as the new mayor, there has been much in the news recently about education in New York City, specifically the public school system and how charter schools fit into the picture. 

       Renaissance was contacted numerous times by reporters.  Some were interested in finding out more about charter schools in general,and others wished to find out more about specific issues facing New York City as the largest public school system in the country, with over 1.1 million students in over 1,700 schools. 

        With a change in administration, we can look to possible changes in the NYC Department of Education.  One major item that received a lot of coverage in the press before the election was whether or not charter schools, which are public schools, should pay rent for their spaces, when traditional public schools do not.  Obviously, some of these issues can have a big impact on charters, including Renaissance, so we will continue to keep you updated as information becomes available.

        In the meantime, you can read about Renaissance in the Daily News' coverage of the top NYC High Schools (we were ranked top Charter!), Stacey's interviews with the NY Times and the NY Post, as well as an open letter in Gotham Schools signed by our principal regarding last month's march to protest charters paying rent, as proposed by DiBlasio. Access the links below for all the information:

 Daily News
TRCS Sports Desk


      High School Girls Soccer finished the season 1-5-1,  tied for 5th place.    High School Boys Soccer finished  the Season 6-3  and started playoffs on Tuesday, November 12th  vs. Hyde Leadership at St. Mikes.  


      HS Girls Volleyball finished 6 out of 8 teams in their division. Recently they beat Roads 1 Academy  in two straight sets.  




Upcoming Sports 


Middle School Boys Basketball 

Middle School Girls  Basketball- on Monday, November 11th they

     played a Pre-Season Tournament  

High School Girls  Basketball

High School Boys  Basketball


PTA News

Thank you from your PTA Co-Presidents!


      We are two months into the school year and a lot has happened.  Kelly and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the TRCS community (families, students, teachers and staff) for your support.  The PTA Executive Board has organized several fundraisers and we wanted to acknowledge everyone for volunteering their time and donating money to help with our fundraising efforts:

  • Miss Chocolate:  Congratulations to our new Kindergarten class on winning the pizza party for having the highest sales.  Kudos to the 7th grade for coming in second.  Thank you to all the families who sold Miss Chocolate.
  • Scholastic Book Fair:  Thank you to all of our volunteers:  Evelyn Arias, Alex Auvers, Liz Del Pozo, Mariana Diaz-Wionczek, Patricia Goodwin, Chester Hicks, Mahmuda Hoq, Marta Kowalska (Co-Chair) Maarika Kuusisto, Lisa Liropoulos, Patricia Oscategui, Gardenia Orlando, Carina Salvi, and Suman Sharma.  For the first time, we had the assistance of junior volunteers and we want to send an extra special SHOUT OUT to them:  Andres Aguirre (8th grade), Nicholas La Bella (7th grade) and Ana Llorens (8th grade).  For those who don't know, these young people came in early (even though they didn't have to) during Rensizzle week to help setup in the morning.  Although we fell short of our fundraising goal, the book fair afforded teachers and students the opportunity to purchase books to build up their libraries.
  • Pasta Night: Thank you to all the families who came out to support this annual fundraiser and for the incredible desserts.  Special thanks to the following:
    • Family of Matthew Torres and Genesis Castro for the fabulous linguine with broccoli and helping to serve the food
    • Family of Joeshin Septh for helping to serve and for greeting our families
    • Family of Glenn Wagner for, once again, donating gift baskets for the raffle
    • Junior Helpers: 7th grade -Camilla Cheng, Nija Daniels, Helena Koffigoh, Jailynn Martin  and Nila Daniels (3rd Grade)
    • The night would not have happened without Jim Stonebraker (posters and fliers), Lisa Liropoulos (leading on the event), Hilary Rogan (making all the sauces), Marta Kowalska (making the salad), Kathy Corona (beverages).
  • Picture Day: We introduced Great Neck Photographers as our picture day vendor this year.  Thank you to our volunteers:  Liz Del Pozo, Mahmuda Hoq, Lisa Liropoulos.  Picture packages will be distributed before the winter holiday break.
  • Thank you to the teachers and staff for their support of our fundraising efforts.  Special thank you to Fran, Kallie, Mary, Marlene and Pierina for all of their help.

       Finally, there is one person that we would like to thank for her partnership, support and extraordinary efforts on behalf of the PTA.  Peggy Heeney has assisted us with sending out emails, distributing fliers, single handedly running the Miss Chocolate Fundraiser and doing anything and everything that we asked of her on top of doing her regular job.  We truly appreciate all that she has done.  THANK YOU.


      Our PTA membership dues drive continues.  We want to thank all the families that have sent in their dues and ask that those families who have not yet sent in their dues to please do so.  We have received requests to help fund 3 year-end trips (over $6,000) and we cannot grant these requests without your help.  Please do your share for ALL our children!


Upcoming eVENTS:

November 20, 2013 - PTA Meeting 6:30PM  

December 13, 2013 - International Potluck Holiday Shoppe Party



Lillian Chen, PTA Co-President 7-12

Kelly Goodwin, PTA Co-President K-6

Alumni Corner
        Alumni LaDorian Morris recently updated us on a trip she made to  India with the Women's Empowerment Project.  Here is an update of her very exciting and worthwhile trip:

"I volunteered through an Organization called The Art of Living, an organization that offers courses on meditation, yoga, and breathing techniques to relieve stress. They have a number of centers and outreach projects all over the globe.

In India I worked with a group called "Volunteer For a Better India". Due to the water shortage all throughout India, their main mission is to Rejuvenate the Kumudavathi River. This river contributes to the main water supply in Bangalore's Rural districts. This project started in February and will be implemented for the next 3 years.  


I also worked with the Rural Development team that generates jobs for rural women and Sri Visalakshi's Women's Empowerment Project, which focuses on inner-city, low income women. Due to my experience in the graphic design industry, I helped with creating packaging and marketing to promote the products made by these women, such as incense, jute bags, clothing, candy and much more." 


     At Renaissance, we are always so happy to hear from our alumni and are very excited when they have an opportunity to do such great work as LaDorian is.  They are truly having a global impact and helping to spread the Renaissance! 

Upcoming Events:

Saturday, 11/16 - Cooking Workshop

Wednesday, 11/20 - PTA Meeting, 6:30-8:00PM

Thursday, 11/21 - Parent Teacher Conferences  6-8:00PM (K-12) 

Friday, 11/22 - Parent Teacher Conferences 1-3:00 PM (K-12)

       Early dismissal for all students 11;40am

Thursday-Friday. 11/28-29 - Thanksgiving, No School

Wednesday, 12/4 - Senior Picture Day

Wednesday, 12/4 - Board of Trustees Meeting   

Friday, 12/15 - International Potluck Dinner & Holiday
Helpful Hints and Cool Links

Check out the new link on the Parents page of our website called "Supporting Your Child."



This page includes many helpful documents and resources to support your child both academically and emotionally, from experts in the field and our own staff. Currently, there are several documents that will help you help your child, by understanding our discipline code, our commitment to an anti-bullying culture, and by understanding what our communication protocols and our philosophy of student counseling. Here are some additional resources: 



Read the following document for tips on internet safety:

Internet Safety  



Elementary Math: 

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:  Thank you!


The Renaissance Charter School