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RCSD Community Update: 3/10/23

Dear RCSD Community

We are continuing to create videos to illustrate the inner workings of the school district. With the spring sports season beginning at the high school on Monday (we have over 400 students cleared on FamilyID!) and at RMS beginning on March 27, I thought I would share with you our latest video on the subject of athletics. It has all kinds of great information, including, but not limited to, what Modified Athletics is (often a mystery to incoming middle school parents). Watch it here.

Communications Issues

The District uses Blackboard to communicate with parents/guardians. Blackboard has been purchased by another company. During the transition, we have noticed a number of problems with messages (particularly phone calls) not being sent in a timely manner or not being received. We are working closely with Blackboard to address these issues.

New AED Devices

You may have seen some alarming news stories about young athletes suffering cardiac arrests during sports practices and contests. I am happy to report the RCSD has just received a shipment of 33 new AED devices. We currently have 20 AEDs strategically located throughout the District and these additional units will help us ensure the safety and well-being of our students. An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a medical device designed to analyze the heart rhythm and deliver an electric shock to victims of ventricular fibrillation to restore the heart rhythm to normal. From this point on, all RCSD varsity, JV, and modified coaches will be bringing AED devices with them to every practice and game. All our coaches are AED-, CPR- and First Aid-certified.

Budget Presentation

At Tuesday night’s Board of Education meeting, the Board heard presentations on the 2023-24 school year budgets for Technology (start watching at 4:15), Athletics, (Start watching at 37:27), and Facilities (start watching at 58:25).  This concludes our Board presentations; the next stop for the budget express is the Community Budget Cafe…

Community Budget Cafe

Next Saturday, March 18, we will host a Community Budget Cafe from 9:30-11:00  a.m. in the RMS Multipurpose Room. We will have administrators present and tables with information set out for:

  • Technology
  • Athletics
  • Operations & Maintenance
  • Special Education and Pupil Personnel Services
  • Staffing & Professional Learning
  • High School/Middle School
  • Elementary Schools

The event is open-house style: visitors should feel free to wander from table to table as their time permits, visiting all or just those of particular interest. Children are welcome - refreshments will be provided. We hope to see you then!

Regents Graduation Measures

You may have read in the paper or heard on TV that the New York State Board of Regents is looking at graduation requirements with an eye to making some changes. I am currently sitting on the Blue Ribbon Commission on Graduation Measures for the State Education Department. The Commission is asking New York State residents to weigh in on what should be required for High School graduation in New York State. Specifically, they are looking to explore:

Foundational skills, like initiative, time management, and collaboration, are shown to prepare students for school, college, career, civic engagement, and life, and are priorities of the business world. How can these skills be fostered and encouraged in K-12 education?

I feel like our parents might have some thoughts to share with State Ed! The link to comment is here: Participate in the discussion via ThoughtExchange. The deadline to respond is March 17. Thank you in advance for making your voices heard -- especially those of you who have had children graduate from RHS in the past.

National School Social Worker Week (March 5-11)

This week marks National School Social Worker Week. I want to thank Sandy Degenhardt at the High School and Kristin Quintano at the Middle School for all they do every day to support our students! I’d also like to recognize our ESS partners Andrea Diaz at RHS and Corina Manders at RMS for all of their support of the students, families, faculty, and staff. 

Eric Byrne, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools