Academics

The Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk Central School District is dedicated to preparing students to meet the demands of New York State exams and Regents diplomas, but more importantly, the district is dedicated to educating the “whole child” and preparing students for successful careers and rewarding lives.

RCS offers a pre-K-12 program designed to promote the academic and personal development of all students. View our academic departments below.

Art | Business | English Language Arts | English as a Second LanguageFamily and Consumer Science | Languages Other Than English | Mathematics | Music | Health & Physical Education | Science | Social Studies | Special EducationUniversal Pre-Kindergarten 

Art

The Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk Central School District offers a comprehensive art program for students K-12. Instructional activities include two- and three-dimensional projects in a wide variety of media such as clay, paint, textiles, charcoal, pastels, ink, basic stained glass, wood and found objects. Using an interdisciplinary approach, art projects also explore history and cultural mores. Students’ art work is regularly displayed at the school and in numerous public exhibitions.

Business

The Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk Business Education Department provides students with instruction to increase their knowledge and appreciation of the constantly changing business world. Students will develop the 21st-century skills needed to succeed in college and the working environment. The Business Education Department continues to develop and offer exciting courses which will broaden the education of all students as well as develop life skills.

Students may use a business sequence to earn their Regents Diploma without taking a foreign language or their Advanced Regents Diploma with a foreign language.

English Language Arts

At the secondary level

At RCS Middle and High Schools, students are instructed with a variety of learning strategies to assist them in becoming lifelong readers, writers and communicators. Through these learning strategies and opportunities, students are prepared to excel in their post-secondary experiences, whether it be higher education, the workplace, the trades or the military. English Department educators follow New York State Learning Standards guidelines as well as the Common Core. Students are also prepared for standardized testing experiences such as the New York State English Regents and the verbal components of the SAT and ACT. A variety of reading choices, both fiction and nonfiction, are incorporated at the various grade levels, as well as comprehensive instruction in various writing styles.

At the elementary schools

At the RCS Elementary Schools, students are taught the skills needed to read, write, listen and speak. Our curriculum is aligned with the NYS Common Core Standards. Our program is based on a balanced literacy model including whole group lessons, small group lessons and individualized instruction as needed. Students are taught the five components of reading: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension using authentic literature to motivate students to become lifelong readers. It is during these elementary school years that students make the leap from “learning to read” to “reading to learn.”

English as a Second Language

RCS offers English language learners appropriate programming in English as Second Language (ESL) classes, at all grade levels K-12.

Family and Consumer Science

Family and Consumer Science education empowers individuals and families to manage the challenges of living and working in a diverse global society. The unique focus is on families, work and their interrelationships. FACS has roots in both academic and career and technical education and reaches beyond the educational system into the community as it focuses on the needs of individuals and families.

Students in the middle school delve into the FACS curriculum with subject areas such as food and nutrition, sewing and project construction, career and education research and child and family studies. In the high school, they have the opportunity to further their knowledge in these areas with semester-long courses in fashion and interior design, culinary arts and child development. Using an interdisciplinary approach, the Family and Consumer Sciences courses offered at RCS help prepare students for all elements of the 21st century.

Languages Other Than English (LOTE)

The RCS LOTE Department provides students with instruction to increase their knowledge and appreciation of the diverse cultures of countries whose languages they are learning. They will develop a greater proficiency in listening, speaking, reading and writing at each level of the language.

Countries in the world have become more and more interdependent, and new technologies have erased many existing borders. Foreign Language instruction is more important than ever for our students and for linking them with the rest of the world in order to be able to function in today’s continually shrinking world. With continued advancement in technology, international travel, telecommunications and trade, it is essential for our students to be culturally educated and capable of participating in a global society.

New York State mandates that all students earn at least one unit of credit in a Language Other Than English (Foreign Language). Passing the LOTE course and the New York State Proficiency exam or an approved school final exam at the end of eighth grade awards the mandatory unit of credit toward a high school diploma. Those students who do not pass the New York State Proficiency exam at the end of 8th grade must pass a high school course in order to earn the mandatory one unit of credit. Receiving a Regents Diploma with Advanced Distinction with the Foreign Language component requires the successful completion of the LOTE sequence (Spanish/French 3) and passing the New York State Regents exam or an approved school final exam at the end of tenth grade.

Mathematics

The RCS School District follows the New York state Curriculum for grades K-12. It is our goal to teach your child the beauty of mathematics in order to help them become problem solvers who communicate and reason mathematically. In order to do this, we have integrated the recently updated New York State Curriculum with our local curriculum to meet your child’s needs. Please visit the NYS website for curriculum information at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/ciai/mst/math/home.html

Elementary/Middle Level

In May, your child (grades 3-8) will take the New York State Assessment in Mathematics. Students enrolled in the Accelerated Math 8 Program will also take the New York State Integrated Algebra Regents in June. The curriculum integrates the five content strands with the five process strands. The five content strands are number sense and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement and probability and statistics. The five process strands are problem solving, reasoning and proof, communications, connections and representation.

High School Level

The primary goal of the mathematics department at the high school is to promote an increased participation and success in the study of mathematics. The Mathematics Department offers many courses including University in the High School, Pre-Calculus and AP Calculus. All students must complete at least three years of mathematics and pass one Regents examination to achieve a Regents diploma. The high school follows the New York State mathematics curriculum. For more information, go to http://www.p12.nysed.gov/ciai/mst/math/standards/core.html

The RCS Mathematics Department will be evaluating curriculum to meet the needs of their students and the common core standards each year.

Music

RCS offers opportunities for music instruction for all ability levels. From our classroom music curriculum to active participation in Band and Chorus beginning in the fifth grade and continuing all the way through our award-winning Band and Chorus ensembles in the middle and high schools, the RCS music program is very active both in and out of the community. Students participate in numerous concerts, All-County Festivals, NYSSMA Solo and Ensemble Festivals. They also have the opportunity to participate in our extra-curricular ensembles including Jazz Ensemble and Select Chorus. Many of our students perform with the Melodies of Christmas, Empire State Youth Orchestra, Albany Pro Musica, as well as many other community performances throughout the year.

Health and Physical Education

The mission of the RCS Physical Education department is to create an environment in which students will begin to acquire the knowledge to establish personal physical fitness and the skills to participate in physical activity safely and competitively. Students will realize that physical activity can be an opportunity for enjoyment, challenge, self-expression and communication. Through the curriculum students will have the opportunity to develop skills that involve tolerance, sportsmanship, cooperation, and leadership.

Science

As we dive deeper into the 21st century, science and technology are evolving at a near breakneck pace, both domestically and globally. To keep up with these trends, RCS is striving to transition out of the textbook and into a more high-paced, hands-on learning environment. Having students work to discuss current scientific issues, diagnose and problem solve, and creatively troubleshoot are all goals the Science Department will emphasize over the next decade. Along with specific academic goals, the department has identified the need for students to be able to work in teams as one cohesive unit. The science and technology industry demands that their future employees be interconnected and organized. We intend to instill the skills our students will need to be successful from a young age.

Social Studies

Social Studies educators teach students the content knowledge, intellectual skills, and civic values necessary for fulfilling the duties of citizenship in a participatory democracy. The interconnected nature and fragility of the world make in-depth, relevant social studies instruction essential. Therefore, the mission of the Social Studies Department at RCS is to provide all students with academic and authentic learning opportunities that both ignite their passions for learning and also enhance their abilities and motivations to contribute as citizens in their communities—from the school community to the neighborhood, city, state, national, and global communities. Students will learn to value the political, economic, geographic and social implications of the past and will be able to analyze those influences on the present and future.

Special Education Programs and Services: Assisting all children

The Ravena-Coeymans-Selkirk School District provides individualized instruction, accommodation of alternative learning styles, appreciation for diversity and promotion of healthy lifestyles. The district has specialized programs to assist and support all children in meeting their highest potential.

For information regarding special education, visit the Special Education page.

Universal Pre-Kindergarten

The New York State Universal Pre-Kindergarten Program (UPK) is a state- and district-funded program that provides educationally based, high-quality pre-kindergarten to four-year-old children. The program is free to all eligible accepted children. UPK provides developmentally appropriate activities to help four-year-olds prepare for Kindergarten. As our state’s school standards and expectations become more rigorous, making sure young children enter school with basic skills in place is critical for success. All UPK classes are taught by New York State certified teachers.

UPK registration and transportation information.