June 2018 Commendation Ceremony
Students and staff were recognized on June 12 for extraordinary achievements during the Ithaca City School District Board of Education Commendations Ceremony. The quarterly event celebrates the achievements of Team ICSD members who go above and beyond in academics, the arts, sports, or the community.
Those recognized at the ceremony include:
Miryam Ginsparg, Michael Guan, Shuah Jang, David Sheng, Leo Song, Arjun Sweet, and Jenny Yoon : Recipients of the New York State Academic Excellence Scholarship
Kim Snow : Distinguished Member of Greek Peak Ski Patrol
Vivek Myers : Recipient of the National Merit Scholarship
Danielle Hemly : Recipient of the NYS Correctional Officers & Police Benevolent Association Scholarship
Hannah Barden : Recipient ...
Kids Discover the Trail!
Kids Discover the Trail! (KDT!) provides elementary students in Tompkins County with curriculum-based field trips to the Discovery Trail.
KDT! was formed in 2004 through a collaboration between the Ithaca Public Education Initiative (IPEI), the Discovery Trail, and the Ithaca City School District. The idea was to enhance students’ learning through experience-based programs and help students find connections between art, history, literature, science, and the natural world.
Through Kids Discover the Trail!, each elementary grade is linked with one of the eight Discovery Trail organizations: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell, Tompkins County Public Library, Museum of the Earth at PRI, Sciencenter, Cornell Botanic Gardens, The History Center in Tompkins County, ...
Computer Science for All
Kindergarten students learning on iPads.
In the future, every ICSD student will use computer science principles to become users and creators of knowledge.
That’s the aim of a team of teachers and administrators looking to integrate computer science into the district’s curriculum over the next several years, empowering all students to be fluent in its applications from an early age.
Teachers from Ithaca High School, Lehman Alternative Community School and Boynton Middle School, the district’s technology integration team, and building- and district-level administrators are working with the CSforAll Consortium to bring computer science education to all K-12 students. Through a Computer Science Education Visions Research-Practice Partnership grant, ...
Department Highlight: Child Nutrition
Beth Krause, Director of Child Nutrition
Each day, Ithaca City School District students receive nutritious, tasty meals in an enjoyable atmosphere, thanks to the Department of Child Nutrition.
The department’s 40 employees are focused on providing as many homemade and fresh foods as possible while meeting federal nutrition guidelines for school meals, ensuring children are able to learn on a full stomach.
“We understand that a hungry child cannot learn,” said Child Nutrition Director Beth Krause, who began working for ICSD in February after the retirement of longtime director Denise Agati. “School meals serve as a building block to promote the growth and development of our students.”
The department participates in the ...
Celebrating BJM's Cultural Diversity
On May 3rd, Beverly J. Martin hosted The Millicent Clarke-Maynard Multicultural Dinner & Annual Fundraiser, which approximately 225 people attended.
This event has occurred every May for the past several years and is an opportunity to cast a spotlight on the richness of BJM’s wonderfully diverse community. It is also an important fundraising event for the BJM PTA. Even though most BJM families live nearby, they don't always have enough opportunities to come together as a whole school community. This dinner affords the opportunity for everyone to be unified by school pride, their children and to celebrate the richness and benefits of being a diverse community. The students, along with their families, teachers and long-standing BJM supporters come ...
Dr. Brown elected to IC Board of Trustees
Ithaca City School District Superintendent Dr. Luvelle Brown was recently elected to a term as a member of Ithaca College’s Board of Trustees.
Dr. Brown was one of three new members voted in during the board’s May 17-19 meeting. He will serve a four-year term on the Board of Trustees, the college’s governing body.
In addition to serving as ICSD Superintendent, Dr. Brown serves on the board of directors for the United Way of Tompkins County and Tompkins County Area Development. His previous engagement with IC includes participating in an on-campus event with Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick in September 2017, during which the two reflected on the tragic 2017 events in Charlottesville, Virginia, and engaged in a dialogue about how the Ithaca community can move forward. ...
ICSD Annual Budget Vote and Election Results
The results of the 2018 budget vote and school board election listed below have been adopted by the Board of Education.
Proposition #1 , the proposed school budget of $128,466,376 for 2018-2019
1,820 yes votes and 414 no votes
Passed with 81.47%
Proposition #2 , the appropriation and expenditure of funds from the School District's 2018 Capital Reserve Fund
1,968 yes votes and 284 no votes
Passed with 87.39%
Proposition #3 , to eliminate registration by the Board of Registration and replace it with continuous registration in the office of the district clerk
1,811 yes votes and 342 no votes
Passed with 84.12%
Further, the results of the election to the Board of Education are:
Two ICSD Educators Receive Governor’s Excellence in Teaching Award
Commissioner Samuel D. Roberts visited the Ithaca City School District on May 10, 2018 to award two teachers with Governor Cuomo’s Empire State Excellence in Teaching Award .
The honorees, DeWitt Middle School technology teacher David Buchner and Ithaca High School math teacher Steve Weissburg, were recognized as teachers who:
Exemplify the dedication, mission, skill, expertise, and talent of outstanding teachers;
Inspire and motivate all children and make learning exciting;
Make a difference in children’s lives;
Level the playing field and create a climate for learning where every child can succeed;
Hold high expectations for every student and provide access to higher levels of learning for all learners; and
Ithaca Technology Student Association Wins Big at Regional Conference
(click on photo to enlarge)
Ithaca teams from DeWitt Middle School and Ithaca High School earned a combined 23 first-place finishes and 4 podium sweeps at the 40th annual Connecticut Technology Student Association (TSA) Conference in West Hartford. Hundreds of participants and 22 schools represented Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island at the conference.
The conference offered 22 high school competitive events and 21 middle school events ranging from robotics to extemporaneous speech to CO 2 -propelled dragster design.
Eli Zhang of Ithaca High School (IHS) brought home five first-place trophies, taking first place with a small group in the team events: On-Demand Video, Biotechnology Design, Children’s Stories, and Music Production, ...
Unified Sports Basketball Team
This year, ICSD Athletics, along with 15 other districts, is partnering with the Special Olympics, the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHAA), and the Southern Tier Athletic Conference (STAC) to bring Unified Sports to our region.
Unified Sports is an exciting new athletic opportunity for student-athletes with and without intellectual disabilities to compete together in various sports. The goal of the program is to increase inclusion, build understanding, and create a greater sense of community within schools.
Last month, Ithaca formed its first Unified Sports basketball team. The roster includes both male and female students, as well as students with and without intellectual ...
Best Communities for Music Education 2018
The Ithaca City School District (ICSD) has been honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from the NAMM Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education. This is the sixth consecutive year that the ICSD has received this designation.
The Best Communities for Music Education designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement efforts to provide music access and education to all students. To qualify for the Best Communities for Music Education designation, the ICSD answered detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program, and community music-making programs.
This award recognizes that the ICSD is leading the way ...
Lacrosse for Literacy
This year, the varsity girls’ lacrosse team has started a new program called Lacrosse for Literacy, a community service project that helps provide reading materials for our elementary students.
At a recent fundraiser, the team collected commitments for over 150 gift cards that will be delivered to all eight ICSD elementary schools. The gift cards will provide a one-year subscription for magazines and other reading materials that will be chosen by each school’s librarian and teachers.
Lacrosse for Literacy will be an ongoing community service project each season as coaches, parents, and players look for additional ways to provide literacy support for Ithaca’s youth through partnerships with Cornell University, Ithaca College, and other community members. ...
Goals and Priorities Survey 2018
The voices of our community matter in the Ithaca City School District. That’s why we’re asking parents, guardians, and community members to participate in our annual Goals and Priorities Survey , which is open now through April 26. Students in grades 5-12 are also invited to take our Student Survey .
The survey asks for feedback on the ICSD, including district operations, services and functions, facilities, communications, and more. It also asks students to share their thoughts about their interest in classes, relationships with teachers, and their perceptions of their schools, as well as their feedback on curriculum, information sharing, and our climate of high expectations and “learning for all.”
The survey results will give us a better ...
Department Highlight: English as a New Language (ENL)
The Ithaca City School District’s English as a New Language (ENL) program touches every facet of the educational process through its work with the district’s English language learners.
The department helps English language learners (ELLs) at all levels of English proficiency to access the same opportunities as their English-speaking peers. ENL teachers work together with classroom and content area content teachers to ensure access to the curriculum through scaffolds, language objectives and tapping into students' prior knowledge.
About 930 ICSD students – 18 percent – come from homes where another language is spoken, although not all receive ENL services. In all, ICSD families speak 66 different languages.
Students are determined ...
ICSD Security Upgrades
The Ithaca City School District is continually working to increase the safety of our students, staff, and families. We are currently engaged in several initiatives that will help ensure the security of our district’s community and facilities.
Smart Schools Bond Allocation
Several years ago, New York State voters approved the Smart Schools Bond Act of 2014, which authorized the creation of state debt and the sale of state bonds to finance improved educational technology and infrastructure. The ICSD was allocated $2.5 million from the Smart Schools Bond for the installation of high-tech security features in our school buildings, including access control systems and video security systems.
Access control systems will be installed in all school buildings throughout ...
Students and staff were recognized March 13 for extraordinary achievements during the Ithaca City School District Board of Education’s March Commendations Ceremony.
The quarterly event celebrates the achievements of Team ICSD members who go above and beyond in academics, the arts, sports or the community. Honorees are nominated by their peers.
Those recognized at the ceremony in Ithaca High School’s Kulp Auditorium include:
Alisandra Torres for receiving an Air Force ROTC Scholarship.
Sonja Schreiber , a teacher aide at Enfield Elementary, for inspiring and supporting the school’s students and staff. Sonja is always giving of her time and resources and organizes the Enfield holiday program, making sure all students have wrapped presents during the holiday ...
Dr. Brown and IPD Chief Tyler Talk School Safety
The Ithaca City School District is committed to collaborating with the Ithaca Police Department (IPD) and other local law enforcement agencies on issues regarding school safety.
This week, ICSD Superintendent Dr. Luvelle Brown and Ithaca Police Chief Pete Tyler met to discuss current and future safety precautions in the wake of recent acts of violence in schools.
“The largest factor of the whole thing is the buy-in, from top to bottom,” Tyler said. “The Superintendent is committed to not only keeping everybody safe, but looking at new ways to creatively address evolving problems as it relates to school violence. We at the Ithaca Police Department are committed to working with the school system to ensure protection and safety.”
As a precaution, ...
Message from Superintendent Brown Regarding District Safety Plans
February 15, 2018
Dear Families, Students, and Staff,
In light of the terrible incident yesterday in Florida, I wish to update you on the Ithaca City School District’s continuous efforts to provide a safe learning environment for our students and staff. The ICSD has a Code of Conduct and a District Safety Plan , which also contains specific Building Safety Plans. Per NYS regulations, each school is required to conduct eight evacuation drills and four lockdown (intruder/shooter, etc.) drills per year. We are in the process of researching and implementing additional scenario-based drills in collaboration with the Ithaca Police Department and other law enforcement partners.
In addition to the ICSD web page , information may be found on the New York ...
Mentoring Program Starts at South Hill Elementary
A new program will pair a group of South Hill Elementary fourth graders with college student mentors to encourage success.
South Hill has joined the New York State Mentoring Program, a school-based initiative that matches students with adult volunteers who serve as role models. The Ithaca College students will meet with 11 fourth-graders every Tuesday after school in the library.
For the first couple of weeks, the group will meet all together and get to know one another. During the first session on February 13, mentors and mentees learned each other’s names and played games to learn more about each other and find similarities.
Soon, each fourth-grader will be paired with a mentor who will meet with them one-on-one, participating in a variety of activities that align with ...
Board of Education Statement on Spring Musical
The Board of Education of the Ithaca City School District remains firmly committed to the education, health and, well-being of ALL of our students. It is in this light that our administration made the difficult decision to cancel the scheduled spring musical, the Hunchback of Notre Dame. While much has been said about the casting of the musical, this was not the reason for cancellation. Our administration’s decision was based solely upon the significant stress and divisiveness developing in our school community.
Unfortunately, the divisiveness has increased as this story has gained national media attention. More distressingly, members of our community, including our students, have been the recipients of hate-filled attacks and vitriolic threats. These attacks, an unintended ...