School Board Town Meetings

School Board Update E-mail to Parents


January 2017

Welcome to your January 2017 monthly Rye school board update. It is our goal that this be your “one source” for School Board information. Each update will publish upcoming meetings dates, minutes from our last meeting along with key news items, and a “Did You Know?” section about our schools and/or school district.

Upcoming Meeting Dates:

  • Our next Board meeting is Wednesday January 18th in the RJH Cafeteria. This month’s meeting will begin at 6:00pm. Unless otherwise noted, School Board meetings are scheduled for the third Wednesday of each month.
  • The School Board deliberative session will take place on Wednesday, February 8th at 6:30pm in the RJH Cafeteria, with a snow date of February 9th. See below for a full description of the purpose of the deliberative session.*
  • The March School Board meeting has been moved to Wednesday, March 8th in anticipation of the upcoming elections.

Draft Minutes and Key Topics:

  • Please visit the “About Us” section of either school’s Web site to access all School Board related information. Here you will find the next Board meeting agenda and the previous Board meeting minutes.
  • Don’t forget, we have two seats up for re-election in March. One seat will be vacant and another member will be running for re-election. If you are interested in joining us in our efforts, the filing dates to run for School Board are January 25 – February 3 at Town Hall. Remember, you must be a registered voter in Rye!

Did You Know?:

  • Did you know that one of the Rye School District’s goals for this school year is to “To improve the capacity of educators to personalize learning and challenge all students.”? Here are examples of how each school is actively working on this goal:


Staff Professional Development: This past month we began work on defining the H.O.W.L.S. (Habits of Work and Learning). Our school HOWLS are Respect, Responsibility, and Resourcefulness. Each grade level team identified what those HOWLS look like for their grade. For example, responsibility looks different at the kindergarten level when compared to the fifth grade level. Our next work is to look at these vertically and then begin designing rubrics for each. Another example is how the second grade teachers took another step in their curriculum development (as a reminder, the second grade is teaching as a team this year). They broke out the year’s curriculum into themes and identified standards in each content area that matched, in order to integrate the standards across the curriculum. They continued to work on this over the winter break.

The RJH staff has also been working on further developing their three H.O.W.L.s which are Respect, Responsibility, and Perseverance. They recently broke out the H.O.W.L.s into attributes that can be assessed in the classroom. These attributes were then put into rubrics. The staff is continuing to work on refining the rubrics and will have teachers begin teaching to and actively assessing them throughout the year.

We hope you find these monthly updates informative. Please direct any feedback or input regarding these emails to Margaret Honda at [email protected].


Best regards,

Your School Board members:

Kevin Brandon
Kate Hillman
Margaret Honda
Jeanne Moynahan
Scott Marion

*The School Deliberative Session provides an opportunity for Rye citizens to review warrant articles to appear on the March ballot. The school operating budget is always the first warrant article. Citizens have the opportunity, should they receive enough support, to amend the warrant articles within specific constraints (e.g. the intent of the warrant articles cannot be changed and changes in funding of no more than +/-10% of the original article can be proposed). Should an amendment receive enough support at the deliberative session, the amended warrant article will appear on the March ballot. In addition to the operational budget warrant article for approximately $14 million, the School Board is also putting forth a warrant article for $75,000 to address buildings and grounds maintenance issues. Finally, citizens, should they gain enough signatures, may propose a warrant article at the deliberative session. Should the citizen garner enough support at the deliberative session, the warrant article will appear on the March ballot. Come participate in democracy in action on February 8th!