Tiger Tracks mUfsd's monthly e-news

September, 2019

District Highlights:

  • 2019-2020 School Year Launches Strong
  • Honey to Make the Year Sweet: Our Bees Produce 100 Lbs. of It!
  • District Welcomes 44 New Faculty Members
  • Productive Summer of Professional Development
  • Superintendent Dr. Shaps Updates Board on Enrollment, Class Sizes
  • Exciting Year of PACE Performances Ahead
  • Fall Sports Underway: Come Out to Cheer Your Tigers On
  • NY State Baseball Hall of Fame to Induct Coach Mike Chiapparelli
  • MHS Student Wins Acorda Science Award for Cancer Research
  • Recent Alum in the News for Exoplanet Discovery
  • Mamaroneck has Eight MHS National Merit Semifinalists
  • Superintendent's Inbox Continues This Year on District Website
  • Opt-In for Text Messages
  • Follow MUFSD on Social Media/Tell Neighbors & Friends to Sign Up for Emails; Stay Tuned for our New District App Announcement
  • Special Shoutout to Our Custodial Staff

And We're Off! 2019-2020 School Year Launches Strong

Nothing like the first day of school!

Honey to Sweeten Our Year: Bees Produce 100 Lbs of It!

The MHS Bee Team has generated quite a buzz! See more photos here.

District Welcomes 44 New Faculty Members to the Mamaroneck School District Community

Above: our newest faculty members (first-year teachers) at New Teacher Orientation. Each of them has been warmly welcomed to the Mamaroneck Schools community! In addition to first-year teachers, workshops were held with second and third-year teachers just prior to the start of school.

Summer Professional Development Highlights

It was a busy and productive summer for District staff members and administrators, who participated in a range of professional development initiatives, including workshops on Sustainability/"Love Your Food" grant with the Town of Mamaroneck (which you will hear more about over the course of the year), Technology, Social-Emotional Learning & Mindfulness, and more. In addition to District-sponsored workshops, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Instruction Annie Ward noted the tremendous amount of self-selected study - professional reading, networking -- that teachers across the District initiate.

Leading into summer, the District hosted a two-day Beyond Diversity workshop using the Courageous Conversation protocol. Focusing on racial literacy, more than 80+ staff members including Administrators, Department Chairs, Guidance Counselors, and psychologists, along with BOE and PT Council members, engaged in interracial dialogue that Superintendent Dr. Shaps called 'moving and important'.

This school year, the District will continue to partner with Sheldrake Environmental Center and explore other local field expeditions such as the Science Barge in Yonkers. Work was done over the summer on the Integration of our vibrant school gardens across the schools, tied to curriculum.

Elementary Instructional Technology Coach Jesse Dancy led a workshop for 5th grade teachers on integrating the computer science program with the literacy curriculum. Skills, including blogging and media literacy skills such as maintaining an appropriate online persona, will be integrated more authentically right in the classroom and then supported by the computer TAs.

Secondary Technology Coach Mike Sammartano worked with teachers on new tools for creating and consuming content. Highlights included augmented and virtual reality and helping teachers learn how to communicate effectively with the app known as flipgrid. He also led a popular podcasting workshop that educated teachers on the recording process, storytelling, scripting, and interviewing.

The Physical Education department worked on preparing for new technology that will enable students to maintain a fitness portfolio as part of the senior year PE model launched last year. And, the Dual Language Program teachers prepared to welcome the first cohort of Dos Caminos/Dual Language students to the middle school.

It is remarkable to note the groundswell of interest teachers show each summer in continually improving their practices and recharging for the year ahead.

Dr. Shaps Provides Update on Enrollment, Class Sizes

In providing an update to the Board on enrollment and class sizes, Superintendent Dr. Robert Shaps noted a 14.3% (68 additional students) increase in K-12 enrollment over last year, with incoming Kindergarten numbers aligned with Feb., 2019 predictions. “We have had a trend over the past 10 years, where we have seen an increase, followed by a decrease, followed by an increase, followed by decrease,” Dr. Shaps said. “The only difference is that cohort size was 380-410; now it is 450+” According to Dr. Shaps, we have 669 (or 13%) more students today in our schools than we did in 2010.

Dr. Shaps said K-5 enrollment this school year remains flat, with both Hommocks and Mamaroneck High School enrollment numbers up slightly. Space is currently being fully utilized at Murray and at Mamaroneck Ave. School with no more classrooms available in those two buildings. Three classrooms are available at Chatsworth Ave. School, and nine are available at Central (which includes five classes currently assigned to Pre-K program).

Class sizes fall under the Board of Education guidelines, with Kindergarten and 1st grade averaging at 20 across the District. A total of 77 of 109 elementary sections have 22 students per class or less. “We have favorable class sizes across the system and are continuing to commit to that,” Dr. Shaps said.

Mark Your Calendar! Exciting Year of PACE Shows Ahead

PACE performances at Mamaroneck High School are not just for MHS families. If you are a parent of a younger student, you will want to see what is ahead for your children at the high school. Attending a PACE performance is one way to do that. Come get a feel for the performing arts curriculum experience -- encompassing dance, music and theatre -- that thousands of Mamaroneck students have enjoyed for so many years.




Catch Fall Sporting Events! Show Your Tiger Spirit

Don't let the fall sports season slip away. Come out to support your Mamaroneck Tigers and show your Tiger Spirit.

Coach Chap to be Inducted into NY Baseball Hall of Fame

The NY State Baseball Hall of Fame will induct Michael Chiapparelli of Mamaroneck High School on November 3rd, 2019 in Troy, NY. Joining Coach Chap in this year’s Hall of Fame class are Thurman Munson, Bobby Murcer, Ron Guidry, Ron Darling, Art Shamsky, Gene Monahan, Ray Nacron and Matt Senk (Stony Brook University's baseball coach). Additionally, on a separate note, our own Inmar Medina was named NHSBCA Regional Groundsman of the Year. He will attend the national convention in December in Columbus, Ohio, where he will compete with other regional winners for Field of the Year.

Coach Chap, a 1974 Mamaroneck High School graduate, is in his 41st year with the District. He has served as a physical education teacher for 18 years at the elementary level and 18 years at the high school. He has coached numerous sports, including football, ice hockey and baseball (varsity head baseball coach for 35 years). During his time in Mamaroneck, Coach Chap has had 31 Con Ed Award winners; three New York state class AA state baseball championships; four class AA baseball section championships, and eight ice hockey section championships. A total of 89 of his players have gone on to play at the D1 college level, and five have played professionally.

Coach Chap will be inducted into the NY Baseball Hall of Fame on Nov. 3, 2019.

MHS Student Wins Award for Cancer Research

Mamaroneck High School senior Liana Haigis, who participates in the Original Science Research program, is the winner of the Acorda Scientific Excellence Award. The purpose of Liana's research was to find a better way to know if cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy treatment are susceptible to cardiac disease due to their cancer treatments.Listen here to her radio interview on The Lisa Wexler show: https://tinyurl.com/y4vof48f

Mamaroneck Alum In the News for Exoplanet Discovery

Our Mamaroneck HighSchool Class of 2012 Valedictorian and astrophysicist Sarah Blunt was recently featured on CNN regarding her exciting new exoplanet discovery, HR 5183 b.

"This planet is unlike the planets in our solar system, but more than that, it is unlike any other exoplanets we have discovered so far," - MHS Alum Sarah Blunt, study author and California Institute of Technology graduate student .
"Other planets detected far away from their stars tend to have very low eccentricities, meaning that their orbits are more circular. The fact that this planet has such a high eccentricity speaks to some difference in the way that it either formed or evolved relative to the other planets." - Sarah Blunt

Congratulations to Our 8 National Merit Semifinalists

Eight MHS students have been named Semifinalists in the 65th Annual National Merit Scholarship Program: Ian McLaren, Alex Astorina, Liana Haigis, Gabrielle Dobkin, Lily Kalish, Kaitlin Spiridellis, Jesse Ward and Nico Santamaria. They were called down to the principal's office last week to receive the surprise news of their accomplishments. As Principal Clain points out, even more importantly than the numbers (scoring in the top 2% nationwide on PSATs), we value these students’ overall contributions to our high school.

Above: Our Mamaroneck High School National Merit Semifinalists -- Ian McLaren, Alex Astorina, Liana Haigis, Gabrielle Dobkin, Lily Kalish, Kaitlin Spiridellis, Jesse Ward and Nico Santamaria -- were surprised with the news of their accomplishments. Selected from a pool of 1.6 million from around the country, these students represent fewer than one percent of U.S. high school seniors.

Board/Superintendent's Inbox Continues This Year

On this page, we will provide answers to reoccurring questions, concerns or issues received by email from community members throughout the school year. Superintendent of Schools Dr. Robert Shaps, will use the Board of Education's regular meetings as an opportunity to provide these questions and answers -- with the idea that when multiple people write in to board@mamkschools.org asking the same question, the answer is most likely relevant to the broader community. As always, we appreciate our community's involvement and interest in our schools.

Opt-In for Text Messages

Text the word ALERT to 22300 to begin receiving text messages from the District in the event of an emergency or unanticipated school closure/early dismissal.

Tell Neighbors & Friends to Sign Up for District Emails and Follow MUFSD on Social Media

Did you know that about 70% of residents in Larchmont and Mamaroneck do not have children in our District's schools? Help us spread the word that community members can sign up to receive District news by visiting www.mamkschools.org and selecting "District" at the top and then "News" to access a very short online form that can be submitted electronically. Additionally, all community members can learn about what is going on in the schools by following MUFSD on social media:

Special Shoutout to Our Custodians

A special thank you to our custodians and maintenance staff for their hard work over the summer and commitment to making sure classrooms were ready for the start of school. Our custodians -- just a few of them featured above -- keep our hallways and classrooms sparkling all year long!