News Releases - 2015



Monday, December 14, 2015

ITHACA CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT ACHIEVES AP DISTRICT HONOR ROLL

The Ithaca City School District is on the College Board’s sixth annual Advanced Placement District Honor Roll. The school district achieved this honor by increasing access to AP coursework for a broader number of students while maintaining or increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher on AP exams since 2013.
 
“Our school district has committed to increasing access to high-level course offerings for all students,” said Superintendent Luvelle Brown. “The recent accolade from the College Board recognizes our success with not only increasing access, but increasing achievement at the same time.  I am very proud of our students, teachers, and community.”
 
Twenty-five school districts in New York State are among more than 400 in the U.S. and Canada to earn this distinction.
 
Inclusion on the honor roll is based on the examination of three years of AP data, from 2013 to 2015, looking across 34 AP exams.
 

Thursday, December 10, 2015
ICSD HOSTS PUBLIC VIEWING OF FILM ‘MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED’

Ithaca City School District will host a free community screening of Most Likely To Succeed December 15, 2015 at 6pm in Kulp Auditorium.
 
An edu-documentary, Most Likely To Succeed is a smart and engaging examination of the history of the American education system and future possibilities. Most Likely To Succeed is a movement to get thinkers, thought leaders, and vested partners to collaborate and commit to continuously improving schools in creative and progressive ways.
 
“After viewing this thought-provoking film, our community will have a wonderful opportunity to hear from and engage with an amazing panel of students, educators, and leaders,” said Superintendent Luvelle Brown.
 
There will be a panel discussion and talk-back session with the audience after the screening.  Superintendent Luvelle Brown will moderate the panel:
  • Bart Auble, Special Education Teacher at Lehman Alternative Community School
  • Sean Eversley Bradwell, Professor at Ithaca College & BOE member
  • Khiry Brown, Student at Ithaca High School
  • Ryan Lombardi, VP for Student & Campus Life at Cornell University
  • Francesca Merrick, Student at Lehman Alternative Community School
  • Helen Perl, Math Teacher at Ithaca High School
  • Jennifer Wilkie, Teacher on Special Assignment – Science & Transdisciplinary Curriculum
 
This event is free to the public. Childcare will be provided by the Greater Ithaca Activities Center (GIAC).
 
This event is possible through collaboration of the Ithaca City School District, the Greater Ithaca Activities Center, the Ithaca Public Education Initiative, the PTA Council, and the Village at Ithaca.

Monday, November 16, 2015
ICSD HOSTS FREE VIEWING OF MOVIE ‘MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED’

Ithaca City School District will host a free community screening of Most Likely To Succeed December 15, 2015 at 6pm in Kulp Auditorium. An edu-documentary, Most Likely To Succeed is a smart and engaging examination of the history of the American education system and future possibilities.
 
“I was excited to learn that our school district and community had been chosen as one of the few in the nation to host this special screening,” said Superintendent Luvelle Brown.  “I look forward to an informative and inspiring experience.”
 
There will be a panel discussion and talk-back session with the audience after the screening. This event is free to the public. Childcare will be provided.
 
This event is possible through collaboration of the Ithaca City School District, the Greater Ithaca Activities Center, the Ithaca Public Education Initiative, the PTA Council, and the Village at Ithaca.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015
IHS SCHOLAR ATHLETE SIGNS NATIONAL LETTER OF INTENT ON THURSDAY

This Thursday, November 12, 2015, Ithaca High School scholar athlete Ayla Bonniwell will sign a national letter of intent to attend Florida State University next year. She is a diver.

“This is an exciting time for athletes, and their families, as they go on to pursue an education and athletics at college,” said Athletics Director Jeffrey Manwaring.

The event starts at 4pm in the Kulp Auditorium reception area.

Ithaca, N.Y., October 28, 2015
ICSD Enhances Website
The Ithaca City School District will launch a new website on November 2, 2015. The website’s design reflects the school district’s focus on keeping students, caregivers, the community, and district staff informed and engaged in two-way dialogue.
 
“Our web presence continues to evolve to meet the needs of our community.  I am confident that stakeholders will find our new site easy to navigate, visually pleasing, and rich with valuable information.  It is also important for our website to be a place that facilitates conversations as well,” said Superintendent Dr. Luvelle Brown.
 
While the website celebrates the best of what the previous website offered, it will feature:
  • Enhanced presentation of content making it more user friendly
 
  • Individualized teacher home pages with heightened content capability
 
  • A mobile version connecting ICSD to an ever-growing population
 
  • Let’s Talk!, a communication solution that let’s you ask questions, submit feedback or share your opinions 24 hours a day, seven days a week
 
www.IthacaCitySchools.org, the previous web address, will re-route to the new website.
 
About Ithaca City School District
The Ithaca City School District mission is to engage, educate, and empower. We will strive to engage all students in the importance and relevance of thinking; to educate every learner to communicate, comprehend, and collaborate for understanding; and to empower all in the ICSD to achieve academic excellence. We envision a bold community of 6,000+ Thinkers. Thinking is foundational to the development of self, society, and democracy. It is the cornerstone of all creative ideas; problem solving; scientific discoveries, innovations and social good.
 
Visit our website at www.ithacacityschools.org
 
Monday, October 19, 2015
NYSED COMMISSIONER TOURS NORTHEAST ELEMENTARY OCTOBER 23

Ithaca, N.Y., October 19, 2015New York State Education Department Commissioner MaryEllen Elia will visit the Ithaca City School District (ICSD) on Friday, Oct. 23, as part of her visit to the region to meet with various education stakeholders.  While in the ICSD, Dr. Elia will tour Northeast Elementary School. The school was recognized as a New York State Reward School in August for its consistent excellence in student achievement.

In addition to touring Northeast Elementary School on Oct. 23, the Commissioner will meet with district superintendents and Board of Education members on the evening of Oct. 22.  While in the area, Dr. Elia will also meet with designated administrators, teachers and parents to discuss different topics related to education.  
 
Recently, the ICSD has received state and national attention for high-levels of student achievement - such as increased graduation rates, increased attendance, increased co-curricular enrollment, more students reading at or above grade level, and decreased discipline. More recognition on the state and national levels include:
 
  • Northeast Elementary School named a National Blue Ribbon School
  • Northeast Elementary School recognized for two consecutive years as a New York State Rewards School
  • ICSD named one of the Nation’s Best Communities for Music Education two years in a row
  • Multiple students in the district named as National Merit Scholarship Award finalists
  • Multiple teachers in the district named as New York State Master Teachers
  • Superintendent Luvelle Brown named by the National School Boards Association as a 20-to-Watch.
 
More About Ithaca City School District
The Ithaca City School District mission is to engage, educate, and empower. We will strive to engage all students in the importance and relevance of thinking; to educate every learner to communicate, comprehend, and collaborate for understanding; and to empower all in the ICSD to achieve academic excellence.  
 
We envision a bold community of 6,000+ Thinkers. Thinking is foundational to the development of self, society, and democracy. It is the cornerstone of all creative ideas; problem solving; scientific discoveries, innovations and social good.
Visit our website at www.ithacacityschools.org

Thursday, April 16, 2015
In an effort to engage the Ithaca community in the 2015-2016 Ithaca City School District budget process, Superintendent Luvelle Brown will host a tele-town hall on Wednesday, April 22, 2015, at 6:00 p.m.
Every ICSD student household will receive a phone call invitation to participate in a live conference call. Members of the ICSD staff and community are also invited to join the tele-town hall by dialing: (855)-756-7520 extension 28298#.
Participants may simply listen to the discussion or be put into a queue to have their questions about the budget answered by Dr. Brown, district leadership and members of the Board of Education. Comments, questions, concerns, and suggestions about the budget may be submitted ahead of time to the Listening Forum on the YourVoice portal on the district website at www.ithacacityschools.org/yourvoice.
Information about the 2015-2016 budget development is available on the Budget page of the district’s website at www.ithacacityschools.org/budget.
 
Thursday, April 16, 2015
The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation has recognized Ithaca City Schools for its outstanding commitment to music education with a Best Communities for Music Education (BCME) designation. ICSD joins 380 districts across the country in receiving the prestigious distinction in 2015.
Now in its 16th year, Best Communities for Music Education affirms school districts that have demonstrated exceptional efforts toward maintaining music education as part of schools’ core curriculum.
The BCME survey requires districts to answer detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program and community music-making programs. Responses were verified with school officials and reviewed by The Center for Public Partnerships and Research, an affiliate of the University of Kansas.
“Together we have strived for excellence in Music Education in the Ithaca City Schools.  In the last three years we have increased our participation in our elementary schools more than 150%.  Music has moved the dial in regards to students performing at higher levels in all curricular areas.  We truly believe an Arts Education is necessary for a child’s success.  On behalf of all music educators we want to thank Superintendent Luvelle Brown and the Board of Education for supporting such initiatives,” said, David Brown, Director of Fine and Performing Arts.
Community music programs have been drawing increased attention this school year because of a landmark study by Northwestern University. These researchers found new links between students in community music programs and academic success in subjects such as reading and math.  “The Ithaca City Schools has seen an extraordinary increase to our students’ success on ELA, reading and math assessments and while we embrace these findings we continue to teach music education for the sake of music education” said Brown.
 
Friday, March 27, 2015
There will be four vacancies on the Ithaca City School District Board of Education for the 2015 Annual Budget Vote and School Board Election.  The three Board candidates receiving the highest number of votes will be elected to three-year terms. The fourth highest vote getter will win election to the balance of the unexpired term of office of Seth Peacock, ending June 30, 2017, which became vacant due to his resignation from the Board.
The 2015 Annual Budget Vote and School Board Election will be held on May 19, 2015. In order to run for one of the upcoming Board vacancies nominating petitions must be filed in the Office of the District Clerk by 5:00 p.m. on April 29, 2015.

Nominating petitions, along with other forms and information for candidates are available on the ICSD website or in the Office of the District Clerk at 400 Lake Street in Ithaca. For more information please contact the District Clerk at danielle.desilva@icsd.k12.ny.us or (607) 274-2102.


Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Ithaca City School District’s recent Goals & Priorities Survey received 1,849 individual responses — a 163% increase from 2013 — giving district leaders strong data on which to base their future education decisions.

“It is important for us to engage and empower each member of our learning community, “ Superintendent Luvelle Brown said. “Gathering constructive feedback from our community is needed as we seek to achieve our vision.”

The 2014 Goals & Priorities Survey asked for feedback about the district’s mission, school and community relationships, curriculum, events and communication, among other topics.

Some of the survey results:
·      75% of participating community members said information received from the district is timely and 77% said the information is clear — an 8% and 7% gain, respectively.
·      A large majority of student respondents (86%) indicated they had a very positive relationship with at least one teacher.
·      Students agreed their teachers encourage them to do well in school (87%) and encourage them to ask questions when they don’t understand (84%).
·      The improvements made to the school district website have been beneficial as 71% of respondents said the website is how they receive district information.
·      66% of respondents said they are informed about the school issues and decisions that affect them.
·      71% of respondents said they would recommend their school to a friend.
Some respondents said the district should do more to involve the community in important school decisions. District leaders agree and are already implementing strategies to further increase community engagement, enhancing the communication platform that will allow every community member to reach the district at any time about anything.
The presentation to the Ithaca City School District Board of Education can be found here.