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State Board of Regents approves new graduation options

In the hopes of both improving graduation rates, the New York State Board of Regents last week approved a plan to add flexibility to its graduation requirements. On Monday, Oct. 20, the Board of Regents agreed to create a 4+1 pathway option, which would allow students to opt out of one of the social studies exams currently required for graduation. Instead, they could take a "comparatively rigorous" assessment in career/technical education (CTE), science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), the humanities, foreign languages or the arts.

BCSD tops in county in administrative efficiency

The Baldwinsville Central School District has been named one of the most efficient in the state for administrative efficiency, according to a Western New York publication. Business First, a Buffalo-based magazine, annually examines data from the New York State Department of Education for 432 Upstate school districts, looking at district spending, staffing levels and debt service to rank districts according to administrative efficiency. Baldwinsville ranked No. 11 statewide, making it the top school in Onondaga County. It beat out 97.7 percent of schools in the state, earning a five-star rating for being in the top 10 percent. Liverpool (No. 25) and North Syracuse (No. 22) also ranked in the top 44 districts statewide, earning five-star ratings, as well.

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C-NS girls break bread with local entrepreneur

When Linda Dwyer looked at her business classes at Cicero-North Syracuse High School, she thought something was off-kilter. “I noticed that most of my classes were male-dominated,” Dwyer said. In fact, one of her class sections doesn’t have a single female student. In an effort to jumpstart C-NS girls’ interest in business, Dwyer applied for and won the “E-Girls: Empowering Girls through Entrepreneurship” grant from the North Syracuse Education Foundation. She received about $1,400 to give 40 girls a taste of entrepreneurship.

State ed commissioner visits Lakeshore

New York State Department of Education Commissioner John B. King Jr. and Regents Vice Chancellor Anthony Bottar visited Lakeshore Road Elementary School in Cicero the afternoon of Sept. 24.

LBE celebrates annual Pinwheels for Peace event

Long Branch Elementary celebrated the International Day of Peace on Tuesday, Sept. 23 (the actual date was Sunday, Sept. 21) by participating in Pinwheels for Peace, a program developed by two art teachers in Florida. Students designed their own pinwheels using a premade template, then planted them in the school’s front yard in the shape of a peace sign.

Yale professor hosts ‘emotional intelligence’ workshop for parents

Marc Brackett is “trying to build an emotionally intelligent New York.” Brackett, director of the Yale Center of Emotional Intelligence, is teaming up with OCM BOCES to host interactive workshops for parents and teachers to learn how to raise emotionally intelligent children — that is, children who can manage their emotions effectively throughout life’s ups and downs. Brackett will be holding three “Emotional Intelligence: Why It Matters” workshops next week: one for parents Sept. 30 at Fayetteville-Manlius High School, and two for educators Oct. 1 on the OCM BOCES campus in Liverpool.

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OCM BOCES opens new Innovation Tech high school in Liverpool

For too long, we’ve been doing education the same way — and it’s doing our students a disservice. At least, that’s what the administrators at Onondaga-Cortland-Madison BOCES believe. And they’re trying to address the problem by introducing a new kind of instruction in Central New York. OCM BOCES held an official grand opening for its new Innovation Tech high school Wednesday, Sept. 17, at the facility at the Lee G. Peters Career Training Center in Liverpool. Classes began Sept. 3.

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NPE principal, superintendent take the ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’

Two Liverpool school administrators braved the chilly weather for a good cause at Nate Perry Elementary School’s annual back-to-school picnic Sept. 11. NPE Principal Dana Ziegler and Liverpool Superintendent Mark Potter accepted the “Ice Bucket Challenge” to support the ALS Association and the NPE food pantry.

Now that school’s in session, L’pool police chief urges motorists to be aware

While Liverpool’s elementary and middle school students learn reading, writing and ’rithmetic, village Police Chief Don Morris urges local motorists to bone up on safe driving. Liverpool Central School District began its 2014-15 school year on Sept. 4, and the village has a school speed zone on Second Street at the Liverpool Elementary School entrance.  The speed limit in the school zone is 20 MPH on school days from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

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Heading back to school: What’s new in your district this year?

It’s once again time for kids across Central New York to start getting ready to head back to school. Both Liverpool and North Syracuse students head back Thursday, Sept. 4. Both districts had some changes in store for students and staff; read on to find out what’s new.

LCSD issues ‘Parents Bill of Rights’

One of the major concerns expressed by parents with respect to the Common Core learning curriculum is the safety of student data. In order to address that concern, the Liverpool Central School District, along with districts statewide, has implemented a Parents Bill of Rights for Data Privacy and Security.

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North Area YMCA day camp encourages daily reading

The North Area Family YMCA on Wetzel Road is offering kids the full camp experience: swimming, arts and crafts, field trips… and reading? This year, the Y’s Camp Y-Noah, which serves kids who have completed kindergarten through sixth grade, has launched a new program to encourage literacy. In addition to traditional camp activities, the roughly 150 campers stop what they’re doing twice a day to read for 15 minutes.

Tips to help make college more affordable

For many, higher education is the key to a bright, successful future. The college experience can open doors and create better opportunities for our kids. While preparing for college can be daunting for parents and students, New York State has many great programs to help make the process easier.

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North Syracuse launches community summer reading program

For many students, school-assigned summer reading is a thing to dread, something boring and time-consuming that interrupts the carefree fun of summer. But the North Syracuse Central School District is trying to change that.

Carnival to benefit C-NS JV tennis team

The girls’ junior varsity tennis team was cut from the North Syracuse Central School District’s 2013-14 budget, but that wasn’t the end of the team. With the help of the North Syracuse Education Foundation (NSEF), the team was able to raise enough money on their own to be reinstated last season. They’re looking to do the same for the 2014-15 school year.

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