RCS District Office
P.O. Box 100
15 Mountain Road
Ravena, NY 12143
(518) 756-5200
Robert K. Libby,
Superintendent

orange bar bullet RCS News

2013-14 School Year

JUNE 2014

  • June 26, 2014: Claudia Verga retiring as A.W. Becker principal after 40 years in education [Read More]

  • June 24, 2014: Thanks You for your service! 17 retirees recognized by the Board of Education [Read More]

  • June 20, 2014: Hundreds have fun outside in the fresh air during AW Becker Field Day [Read More]

  • June 12, 2014: Third Annual RCS Recycled Boat Regatta [Read More]

  • June 10, 2014: PBIS recognizes 480 students - 81% of the school - for positive behavior [Read More]

  • June 10, 2014: 33 students inducted into the National Honor Society [Read More]

  • June 6, 2014: Girls spearhead fundraiser for Coxsackie student fighting cancer [Read More]

  • June 4, 2014: Matthew Meacham inducted into National Technical Honor Society [Read More]

  • June 2, 2014: Thousands of dollars given out during High School Senior Awards Night [Read More]

MAY 2014

  • May 29, 2014: 41 Middle School students inducted into National Junior Honor Society [Read More]

  • May 27, 2014: Times Union recognizes RCS Valedictorian and high school music teacher [Read More]

  • May 22, 2014: PBC students focus on the habitats around us during Habitat Day [Read More]

  • May 21, 2014: SABIC volunteers build arbor and beautify front garden at A.W. Becker [Read More]

  • May 7, 2014: AWB students 'move their bodies' during Project ACES [Read More]

  • May 5, 2014: 12 RCS students receive Physical Education Student Leadership Awards [Read More]

APRIL 2014

  • April 29, 2014: Tricia Carlton named as new A.W. Becker principal [Read More]

  • April 29, 2014: RCS music students grab the gold at NYSSMA majors; music program continues to shine [Read More]

  • April 25, 2014: Class of 2014 valedictorian, salutatorian named [Read More]

  • April 21, 2014: Four candidates seeking election to three seats on the Board of Education [Read More]

  • April 17, 2014: RCS juniors Collin Adams and Katie Houghtaling have been named National Merit Scholarship semi-finalists

  • April 10, 2014: Learning Fair, Family Math Night and Art Show draws hundreds of families [Read More]

  • April 10, 2014: RCS flips the switch on solar power [Read More]

  • April 8, 2014: BOE adopts $42.345 million budget for 2014-15; taxes up by 1.88 percent [Read More]

  • April 7, 2014: MS FACS students become "blanketeers" and make a fleece quilt for The Linus Project [Read More]

  • April 7, 2014: Freshman Emma Hughes elected as a NYS FCCLA officer; heading to national conference in July [Read More]

MARCH 2014

  • March 28, 2014: The Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk Central School District will host the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Zone 7 Solo and Ensemble Festival at RCS High School on Friday and Saturday, April 4th and 5th. Music students from 31 Capital Region area schools will perform solos and small ensembles for certified NYSSMA adjudicators. The 23 adjudicators, coming to RCS from all across New York State, will evaluate student performances in areas such as tone, intonation, style, rhythm and several musical aspects. [read more]

  • March 26, 2014: As state leaders begin to wrap up their discussions on the state budget, the New York State Council of School Superintendents has put forth an easy and quick way to send your representatives a message about the budget. Here is the Education Speaks link to NYSCOSS - http://educationspeaks.org/2014/03/action-alert-tell-your-legislators-that-youve-had-enough/

  • March 25, 2014: Interim Business Administrator Stephen Meier continued his review of the 2014-15 budget proposal tonight but said some things are still in flux but a planned presentation on Tuesday, April 1 at 6:30 p.m. at the high school library should be clearer.
    "We are really trying to keep our expenses flat from the 2013-14 school year into the 2014-15 school year," Meier told the Board of Education. "This is still a work in progress." [read more]

  • March 21, 2014: As the state budget process draws to a close (the state budget is due to be adopted by April 1, according to the state constitution) in Albany, RCS Interim Superintendent Alan McCartney is urging parents, community members and staff to reach out to their representatives to prevent a huge shift in state resources to New York City and elsewhere. [read more]

  • March 19, 2014: The AWB Literacy Night tonight focused on Human Rights, a module that focuses on the Common Core standards and that has been taught during the past 10 weeks in grade 5 classrooms. The evening also highlighted how aspects of the same theme permeated other  grade 5 subjects, including art and physical education. [read more]

  • March 15, 2014: During the winter season, two varsity RCS teams earned New York State Scholar Team Awards: The Boys Indoor Track team needed at least 11 students to have a class average of at least 90%. The team's team's top achievers were seniors Craig Brozowski, 96% and Jacob Coluse; 95%; juniors Collin Adams, 96% and Andrew McHugh, 89%; and sophomores Matt Carter, 92%, Ken Mueller, 94%; and Okoyeo Davis, 93%. The Girls Varsity Basketball team needed at least seven girls to have a class average of at least 90%. The team’s top achievers were sophomores Makayla Shear, 93%; Bailey Kross, 92%; and Kim Hughes, 91%.

  • March 11, 2014: This year’s recent A.W. Becker Science and Wellness Celebration featured displays, a book fair, budding scientists and food, but most importantly, it taught everybody important life lessons. [read more]

  • March 11, 2014: The Board of Education continued its review of the 2014-15 budget by examining these areas of the budget: General Support, Employee Benefits and Debt Service/Interfund Transfers. The board also said that the state's Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA), a one-year program begun in 2010 to help the state fill it's budget hole - has strangled RCS efforts to continue providing adequate funding for necessary programs. [read more]

  • March 11, 2014: The RCS Music Department is proud to host this year’s Greene County Music Educators Association Spring All-County Music Festival on Wednesday, March 19th and Friday, March 21st. [read more]

FEBRUARY 2014

  • Feb. 28, 2014: The RCS Middle School FACS (Family and Consumer Sciences) Club traveled to the Regional Food Bank in Latham to sort food and prepare it to be distributed to the needy in our neighborhoods. Sixteen students made the trip and helped out the Food Bank, which is located in Latham. [read more]

  • Feb. 26, 2014: While reminding the community that students are safe, interim superintendent Alan McCartney says the district is working on a long-term resolution with village and Lafarge Ravena plant officials to the dry hydrants issue at the high school/middle school campus on Route 9W. [read more]

  • Feb. 25, 2014: The Board of Education began its overview of the 2014-15 school budget, a plan that not surprisingly shows large increases in instructional costs and employee benefits. Interim School Business Administrator Stephen Meier presented the first overview of the developing 2014-15 school budget. At first glance, tax rates would climb by about 2 percent if everything in the current budget were continued into the 2014-15 school year. [read more]

  • Feb. 25, 2014: About 83 percent of the high school's student body - 495 students - chowed down on bagels and juice today during the PBIS Recognition Breakfast in the cafeteria. Assistant Principal Tom DiAcetis said the event fosters good will and is a true recognition. "We are recognizing that our students are doing the right thing every day and that we appreciate that," he said, adding that students attending did not have a single referral during the second quarter of this year. [read more]

  • Feb. 10, 2014: When fifth-grade students came to physical education class, they probably didn't image they'd be strolling through the outdoors in snowshoes and see deer beds, animal tracks or a trapped rabbit. But that's exactly what happened when the students explored the outdoors in class with teacher Diane Conover. [read more]

  • Feb. 10, 2014: Middle School students fought off tough competition to earn second place at the regional Science Olympiad competition on Saturday, propelling them to the state competition at Greece Arcadia High School April 4 and 5. They competed in science events and categories and performed tasks and solved problems about entomology, heredity, the solar system, water quality and invasive species with students from other school districts in the Capital Region. [read more]

January 2014

  • Jan. 31, 2014: More than 1,000 students, parents, teachers, administrators and community members flocked to Colonie Central High School Thursday night (1/30/14) for the "New York schools STILL in fiscal peril" advocacy forum. Interim Superintendent Alan McCartney led a contingent of 12 RCS parents, staff and community members at the event. [read more]

  • Jan. 29, 2014: Interim Superintendent Alan McCartney didn't mince many words in his plea to state legislators as they begin planning the upcoming 2014-15 state budget: new initiatives with big price tags from the governor are nice but RCS may not be able to maintain the program it currently has in place for its 2,100 students.
    "Gains that might come from funding new initiatives for prekindergarten, after-school programs, and technology upgrades will most likely not materialize for us due to the fact that our district may not be able to maintain our current program next year," he wrote in a letter to Assemblyman Peter Lopez, who spoke at the RCS Board of Education last night. [read more]

  • Jan. 25, 2014: Just days before the regional advocacy forum at Colonie Central High School on Thursday, Jan. 30, two versions of the popular "What is the the GEA" video have been updated to reflect another year of lost funding through the GEA.Here is a video about the GEA developed by the Superintendent's Joint Legislative Committee from the Capital Region BOCES and QUESTAR III BOCES that is specific to the 47 school districts in the Capital Region (posted on YouTube). Here is a similar version of the video that details statewide losses under the GEA (posted on YouTube).

  • Jan. 23, 2014: Your voices will be heard at the Jan. 30 regional advocacy forum, “New York schools STILL in fiscal peril: Our kids can’t wait another year,” as RCS joins 47 other school districts and hundreds of educators, parents and others to demand that state officials properly fund schools and let them get back to educating students to be career and college ready when they graduate. [read more]
  • Jan. 17, 2014: The staff and students of Pieter B. celebrated the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and shared their service experiences with each other at two assemblies today. The theme of the assemblies was “See What Our Hands Can Do!” [read more]

  • Jan. 14, 2014: Five RCS High School juniors - all girls - won medals during the Science Olympiad Invitational competition on Jan. 11 at the high school. Thirteen RCS students competed in 20 events during the event, which featured students on 25 teams from across the state and Pennsylvania. [read more]

  • Jan. 6, 2014:RCS students are winning a strong reputation for their vocal talents with regional audiences! Harmonics, the select vocal ensemble from the high school, has achieved three noteworthy distinctions in just the past month. [read more] 

December 2013

  • Dec. 21, 2013: The RCS High School Band, under the direction of Scott Andrews, and the High School Chorus, under the direction of Michelle McLoughlin, performed at the South Concourse of the Empire State Plaza in Albany on Friday, Dec. 20. [read more]

  • Dec. 18, 2013: The Pieter B. Fifth Grade Chorus braved frigid temperatures in the teens to deliver some holiday smiles during their annual community caroling trip today throughout the village and town. [Read more]

  • Dec. 18, 2013: The Board of Education has extended the contract for Interim Superintendent Alan McCartney at its meeting last night. His new contract expires on June 30, 2015. [read more]

  • Dec. 13, 2013: The Board of Education has unanimously gone on record as opposing the rising number of standardized tests that are being given to RCS students and to all students across New York. Board members are asking state and federal officials to reconsider their emphasis on testing as a means of improving education in the schools. [read more]

  • Dec. 12, 2013: Thirty nine Middle School students showed that they can ace difficult state tests - achieving a Level 4 (the highest possible score) on the tests given last spring in English Language Art (ELA) and/or mathematics. [read more]

  • Dec. 11, 2013: More than 200 students came out to visit with Santa and get their pictures taken, play games, decorate plates and eat cookies during the annual PTA Cookies with Santa program at AWB last Friday, Dec. 6. [read more]

  • Dec. 5, 2013: New legislation requires all homeowners receiving a Basic STAR school tax exemption to register with the New York State Tax Department in order to receive the exemption in 2014 and subsequent years. [Read More]

  • Dec. 4, 2013: Eleven students from the Natural Helpers Club at the high school helped slice and dice carrots - thousands of them - as their part in creating meals to serve the needy during the Equinox Thanksgiving Day Community Dinner at the First Presbyterian Church in Albany. [read more]

November 2013

  • Nov. 29, 2013: RCS seniors Elizabeth Wickham, Emily Buckley-Crist, Audrey Davison, Craig Brozowski, Daniel Pennock and David Austin have been awarded New York State Scholarships for Academic Excellence based on their performance on state Regents examinations. Winners of the scholarships must attend a college or university in New York State and the awards are renewable for four years of undergraduate study (or five for approved five-year programs of study) if recipients meet annual criteria.

  • Nov. 22, 2013: On Thursday, November 21, Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary School hosted a Hands-On Science night at the school. The event was designed to introduce the Scientific Method to parents and to demonstrate how the new Common Core standards are being integrated into core subjects and how they touch all aspects of learning, even science experiments. [Read more]

  • Nov. 16, 2013: Football wasn't the only sport in which RCS athletes excelled during the fall sports season. Take a look at the complete list of students who made all-star teams in the Colonial Council. [read more]

  • Nov. 15, 2013: Twelve RCS High School varsity football players have been named Section 2 Class B Reinfurt Division All-Stars following an exciting 2013 season. Five of the 12 are also members of the National Honor Society. [read more]

  • Nov. 15, 2013: For every bad story you read in the newspapers or hear on television about teenagers, there are a thousand good ones. This is one them. It is a story about one RCS High School student anonymously helping another student in need. [read more]

  • Nov. 8, 2013: The RCS music department will be well represented at this year’s New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Zone 7 Area All-State music festival. RCS has had students selected to Area All-State many times in the past, but this is the first time students from RCS will be represented in all four performing groups at the festival. [read more]

  • Nov. 6, 2013: Eight RCS High School students have been chosen to participate in this year’s Empire State Youth Orchestra Melodies of Christmas Chorale. They will perform along with the Empire State Youth Orchestra at Proctors Theatre on December 12th – 15th in support of the Albany Medical Center’s childhood cancer center. [read more] 

October 2013

  • Oct. 27, 2013: The Coeymans Police Department has filed charges against three RCS Middle School students who tried to rob a fourth student in school on Tuesday, Oct. 29. Read the police department's press release about the incident. [Read more - PDF]

  • Oct. 29, 2013: RCS teacher's lesson of tolerance featured on local news. [Read more and watch News Channel 13 profile story]

  • Oct. 25, 2013: Get to know a little bit about one of RCS's newest administrators - Director of Special Education Ann Jackson. Ms. Jackson has brought with her to the district many years of experience and a goal of making communications a top priority for her department. Oh, and she has a passion for books.

    [Read more]
  • Oct. 23, 2013: Pieter B. Coeymans Elementary kicked off the season with their recent Halloween Themed Literacy Night, which was attended by about 40 PBC families. [read more]

  • Oct. 22, 2013: The RCS Board of Education, Superintendent Dr. Alan McCartney and Principal Claudia Verga last week recognized 65 students from A.W. Becker Elementary who achieved a level 4 on one or more of the New York State exams taken last spring [Read more]

  • Oct. 22, 2013: The RCS Junior Varsity football team clinched their first place spot in the Reinfurt Division with a league record of 6-0 after defeating Green Tech with a score of 38 to 20 Monday night, Oct. 21.

  • Oct. 21, 2013: Dozens of RCS staff and students took to the pavement at Washington Park on Sunday, October 20, to raise money to help in the fight against breast cancer. The RCS team included 21 teachers/staff members and 10 students from the Natural Helpers/School Volunteers. [Read more]

  • Oct. 18, 2013: Mother Nature cooperated yet again with a picture perfect October day for the annual Apple Run held at both Pieter B. Coeymans and A.W. Becker elementary schools. [View photos from Pieter B. Coeymans] [View photos from A.W. Becker]
  • Oct. 11, 2013: Just as the RCS community was promised during the two safety meetings held last winter, the buildings are becoming more secure - literally from the front door and beyond. The new equipment will allow school offices to more closely monitor people coming into the school. Controlled entry is one way the district will ensure safety on each campus this year. [read more]

  • Oct. 6, 2013: Pink is the new black, some say. At RCS this week, pink is the new brunette, strawberry blonde, and in some cases, the new gray. That's because pink hair extensions are everywhere in Ravena this week thanks to the coordinated efforts of teachers, administrators and staff who are giving back to their community in October as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. [read more]

  • Oct. 4, 2013 : Stephen Meier takes over as the RCS interim business administrator, a position he expects to hold until at least June 30. He replaces Diane Malecki, who retired to accept a position as the chief fiscal officer at the St. Anne Institute in Albany. [Read More]

  • Oct. 1, 2013: APPR stands for Annual Professional Performance Review. It is the process by which teachers and principals are now evaluated in New York State. APPR plans must meet strict state guidelines and are negotiated with local employee labor unions. [Read More]

September 2013

  • Sept. 30, 2013: RCS High School seniors Savannah Hotaling and Victoria Smith have been selected to participate with the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) All-State Women’s Chorus at the annual NYSSMA All-State Winter Conference. [Read More]

  • Sept. 30, 2013: RCS senior Philip McNaughton has been selected to perform on bassoon with the National Association for Music Education’s All-National Honor Orchestra in Nashville, Tennessee from October 27-30. He will be with approximately 670 other high school musicians from across the United States for the four-day festival that concludes with a concert on Oct. 30. [Read More]

  • Sept. 27, 2013: Seventeen high school students have already earned credit toward their college degrees. The students were honored by the Board of Education on Tuesday, Sept. 24, for their high achievement on the AP exams they took in June.  [Read More]

  • Sept. 26, 2013: For about an hour and a half after school today, there was absolute silence in the RCS Middle School library even though 55 students moved from table to table. They were silent. They were just trying to be understood - without speaking a word. [Read More]

  • Sept. 25, 2013: New Facilities Director Timothy Van Vorst knows the importance of his department, which is in charge of keeping the buildings humming, the roadways clear and the schools safe and healthy all year long. [Read More]

  • Sept 13, 2013: RCS sophomore Regina McGuire was interviewed for an upcoming health segment on NewsChannel 13 with Benita Zahn. [Learn more about it here]
  • Sept. 6, 2013: RCS teachers and staff welcomed students back to school on Friday, September 6 for the start of the 2013-14 school year. All students, teachers and staff shared the excitement the new year brings. [view opening day photos]

  • Sept. 4, 2013: Brian Bishop and Tom DiAcetis share common philosophies about how best to deal with the 600+ students at the high school. Both advocate consistency and fairness when dealing with students and their families. [Read More]

August 2013

  • Aug. 28, 2013: There was a time not too long ago when education was provided in one-room schoolhouses scattered throughout the area. Students were taught by a single main teacher - who taught several grades at once and several subjects during the day. [Read More]

  • Aug. 20, 2013: Parent Today is a free e-mail newsletter and companion website designed to help build a stronger bridge between families and the classroom. Parent Today is packed with research-based information that empowers parents and supports teachers. [Read More]

  • Aug. 7, 2013: A majority of Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk students in grades 3-8 - as well as as those at school districts across the state - fell into Levels 1 and 2 on the new standardized Common Core test results in English Language Arts and mathematics that the state Education Department released today. [Read More]

  • Aug. 6, 2013: The four-week Adventures in Reading program has brought campfire stories, crafts and computers to about 100 A.W. Becker and Pieter B. Coeymans students in grades 1 to 5 this summer. The class met four days each week in the mornings beginning on July 15; it concludes on Thursday.[Read More]

  • Aug. 1, 2013: The grades 4 and 5 students at A.W. Becker who participate in the Dance Crazy program have been spending their Tuesday evenings performing at the Sunny Hill Resort in Greenville, teaching guests a thing or two about ballroom dancing. [Read More]

July 2013

  • July 10, 2013: High School Principal Brian Bailey is used to getting everybody’s attention. Thousands of people heard him every day for 10 years when he was the official bugler at the Saratoga Race Course. Nothing would move – no horses stepped onto the race course – until he did his job. [Read More]

  • July 3, 2013: James Latter, a 2000 RCS graduate who was re-elected to a second full term on the Board of Education in May, was selected to lead the Board of Education as president during the coming 2013-14 school year. Alice Whalen, who was re-elected to a second BOE term in May 2012, will serve as vice president. [Read More]