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batavia city school district

December 20, 2019 - 12:20pm

Press release:

Many of the Batavia City School District’s current prekindergarten students will have the option to switch to a full-day program beginning this January. The tentative starting date for the full-day option is Jan. 28. Like the current half-day program, there is no cost to families. 

The Batavia school district, along with only 25 others in New York State, was awarded State funding to expand the prekindergarten program. Prior to applying to be considered for the funding, Molly Corey, Ed.D., the District’s executive director of curriculum and instruction, surveyed parents of the current 112 prekindergarten students and found that interest in a full-day option was very high, but not unanimous.

With that parental directive in mind, she applied for the grant and secured funding for 72 full-time slots, or four full-time classes, while still allowing for the half-day option for remaining students.

Three of the full-day classes will be housed at Jackson Primary School, and one will be provided by a community-based organization that is yet to be determined. If more than 72 of the current preschool students apply for full time, a lottery system will be used to place them. No new prekindergarten students will be registered at this time.

An important meeting for parents of current students will be held at Jackson Primary right after the schools’ winter break, on Tuesday, Jan. 7, to provide more details about the expanding program and the changes that it will entail. Two meeting times have been set in an effort to reach all parents: 12 p.m. or 5:30 p.m. If a parent cannot make either meeting, they are encouraged to call Corey’s office for an alternate meeting time (343-2480, ext. 1003).

The meeting will include more information about locations and teachers; information about the overall transition, as well as accommodating new aspects of the school day such as lunch time, rest time, and play time; a sample schedule for the school day; and time for responding to parents’ questions.

December 19, 2019 - 12:20pm

Submitted photos and press release:

 Le Roy Central School has won the 2019 Play to Get Fit Challenge hosted by the Health and Physical Education department at Genesee Community College!

The Get Fit Challenge effort began in 2011 to motivate third-, fourth- and fifth-graders in Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming counties to get more active. The Challenge is designed to draw students' attention to just how many minutes they spend engaged in physical activity outside of school.

Throughout the five-week program, participating students record their active minutes -- time spent walking, biking, running, skating, swimming, playing a sport, playing tag, playing on a swing set and other active, creative games. (Video games designed for fitness utilizing Wii, Xbox Kinect or other similar gaming systems are not active minutes eligible.)

Recorded minutes are then totaled and an average active minute count is calculated based on the number of students enrolled in third, fourth and fifth grades in each school.

This year, Le Roy Central School generated an impressive 2,831 average active minutes -- beating even their winning count from 2018. The school was awarded the 2019 winning plaque and each student received a certificate recognizing their participation and effort.

In each participating school district the program also recognizes the three most active students:

  • Le Roy -- 1st Lyla Jones; 2nd Jacob Kochmanski; 3rd Abigail Valdes
  • Batavia -- 1st Ryan Bigsby, 2nd Jonah Arroyo; 3rd Dominic Darch
  • Warsaw -- 1st Delaney Baker; 2nd Kinsley Baker; 3rd Jaiden Fries
  • York -- 1st Briana Parsons; 2nd Brody Pangrazio; 3rd Charlie Cuozzo
  • Pavilion -- 1st Ella Brian; 2nd Peyton Gay and Colton Brian; 3rd Jessie Brian
  • Perry -- 1st Reagan Moroz; 2nd Aubrey McCowen; 3rd Tysen Deaton

The three most active participants (based on total minutes recorded) in the region this year were:

  • Ryan Bigsby, of Batavia, with 11,122 minutes
  • Reagan Moroz, of Perry, with 8,620 minutes
  • Aubrey McCowen, of Perry, with 5,540 minutes

"The Play to Get Fit Challenge encourages kids to lead an active lifestyle in a way they can see and understand," said Becky Dziekan, GCC's director of Health and Physical Education. "Each year, the participating school districts see proof that the program works! Congratulations to LeRoy and all of the students who worked hard to be active and enjoy the program."

The Health and Physical Education program at Genesee Community College offers several areas of study related to health, fitness and coaching. The Sports Management Studies transfer degree programs or Associate of Science (A.S.) includes foundations in sports facility management, accounting, marketing and more. The Fitness and Recreation Management Applied Associate of Science degree (A.A.S.) offers a Personal Trainer concentration and the opportunity to earn the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) credential through the American Council on Exercise (ACE) as a certified personal trainer. In addition, GCC offers an A.A.S in Physical Education Studies in which students have the opportunity to earn a coaching certificate for NYS non-Certified Physical Education Teachers.

The spring semester starts Jan. 13, so there is still time to register! GCC has more than 80 introductory courses available, including Beginning Personal Fitness (PED259), which teaches basic fitness training and conditioning techniques to help anyone make active choices. The full spring semester course schedule is available here.

Top photo: Le Roy Central School Physical Education (PE) teacher Michelle Sherman; GCC Director of Health and PE Rebecca Dziekan; Le Roy Central School Physical Education (PE) teachers Brian Herdlein and Mike Humphrey; (in front) 1st Place -- Lyla Jones; 2nd Place Jacob Kochmanski (missing from the photo --  3rd Place -- Abigail Valdes).

From Batavia City School District, from left: Amanda Cook, 2nd Place -- Jonah Arroyo; 1st Place -- Ryan Bigsby*, 3rd Place -- Dominic Darch; (back row) PE teacher James Patric, GCC director of Health and PE Rebecca Dziekan.

*Ryan was the most active participant in the region this year with 11,122 active minutes.

December 4, 2019 - 1:38pm

Photo of Batavia City Police Officer Jason Davis, the city school district's new school resource officer.

Submitted photos and information from the Batavia City School District:

At the Batavia City School District Board of Education meeting on Tuesday evening, trustees welcomed Batavia Police Officer Jason Davis as the District’s new school resource officer (SRO).

Officer Davis assumed his new duties on Nov. 28. He will continue the SRO work in all city schools to ensure student and staff safety as well as in building strong positive relationships between the BPD and students.

With 23 years of police experience, 20 of which have been in Batavia, Officer Davis will be a valuable resource for the District.

Board President Patrick Burk also presented four Certificates of Appreciation at the meeting.

Lisa Whitehead -- Certificate of Appreciation

Nominated by Lynn Dobbertin:

"Lisa goes above and beyond her duties every day and makes herself useful in every situation. In addition to being a classroom aide, she rides the bus home with students each day, she runs the John Kennedy School Post Office and the John Kennedy TVFCU Bank. Both before school programs allow students to participate in real life jobs and the students love being part of the clubs.

"Lisa buys snacks for the students in the classrooms that she works in so that kids are not without a snack at snack time. She is very thorough when working with students. Her expectations for student work and behavior are high. She is highly respected by both students and staff as a result."

Seana Murphy -- Certificate of Appreciation

Nominated by Dr. Cook and Mrs. Krumpek

"Seana is an important and valuable part of our support team at John Kennedy. She is always going above and beyond to support our students, families, and staff. She can often be found throughout the day with students, faculty, and parents working through questions or planning for student success.

"Her 'out of the box' thinking enables us to come up with creative interventions for students leading to increased achievement and success in the classroom. Mrs. Murphy also coordinates our Check-in, Check-out program for many of our at-risk students.

"Her students love her and value the time she spends with them. She is extremely organized, phenomenal at collaborating and communicating her ideas and extremely dedicated to our students. We are blessed to have her as part of our John Kennedy family."

Barb Roba -- Certificate of Appreciation

Nominated by Dr. Cook and Mrs. Krumpek

"Barb is an important and valuable part of our support team at John Kennedy. She helps with building-wide initiatives and sits on several committees where she advocates for the needs of our students and families. Mrs. Roba goes above and beyond to support our students and help them integrate skills for coping, emotional regulation, and problem solving.

"She seeks ways to improve the services we offer to students to better meet their needs. This year she is piloting a Social Emotional Learning Curriculum with some of our fourth-grade classes and is the counselor for our new Primary Project program for our second-graders.

"She is dedicated to the school and more often than not gives up her lunch, plan and after school time to help faculty or students with any concerns they have. The relationships she builds with students, staff and families are priceless. She is truly loved and respected at JK and we are honored to have her as part of our John Kennedy family."

John Dehm -- Certificate of Appreciation

Nominated by Dr. Cook and Mrs. Krumpek

"John Dehm is an outstanding faculty member. John is an important and valuable part of our support team at John Kennedy. He goes above and beyond to build relationships with our students and families.

"He has taught many of our kids valuable social skills like making eye contact and giving strong, firm handshakes. He is a patient and kind person who never says no to the many things that are asked of him each day. He is truly loved and respected by all and has become a staple in our building.

"John does an amazing job making sure our building, students, and staff are safe and feel safe. He is truly dedicated to our JK family and we are excited and honored to have him on our JK team."

November 13, 2019 - 11:12am

Press release:

The Batavia City School District’s Board of Education (BOE) has named three finalists for the district’s next superintendent. 

Patrick Burk, Batavia City School District’s Board president, said he is pleased with the high-quality candidate pool and enthused about the potential the three finalists have to offer. 

“Selecting the best superintendent for Batavia City Schools is the Board’s top priority,” Burk said. “The BOE has narrowed the search to three finalists. We look forward to the next round of interviews where the finalists meet with our stakeholder groups.”

The three finalists are Jason Smith, Joleen Dimitroff, and Anibal Soler Jr.

Jason Smith

Smith is the superintendent of Lyndonville Central Schools, located in Lyndonville. As superintendent, Smith supervises more than 100 staff and faculty members, and a student body of more than 648.

He’s led extensive curriculum work in math and English Language Arts with full alignment to the Common Core which resulted in a near 100-percent increase in math scores from 2013 to 2014. Smith implemented APPR requirements with alignment to the Framework for Teaching and Leadership standards and provided on-going administrator professional development to ensure consistency and calibration of teacher observations.

Smith has 18 years of educational leadership experience including serving as the assistant principal of the Albion Middle School in Albion, and elementary and high school principal at the Elba Central School District. Smith began his career in education in 1994 as a Social Studies teacher at Albion Central Schools.

He holds a Bachelor of Arts from SUNY Geneseo, a master’s degree and a Certificate of Advance Study in Educational Administration from The College at Brockport. He holds a certification as a New York State School Administrator.

Joleen Dimitroff

Dimitroff is the principal of Glendale Elementary School in the Sweet Home Central School District, which is located in Tonawanda. Dimitroff has served the Sweet Home Central School District since 2006 where she’s also served as principal of Sweet Home High School. She also served as primary school principal/Special Education director for the Akron Central School District in Akron.

As principal, her leadership and professional experiences includes the adoption of 12 new Niagara University Accredited Course as well as establishing an International Honors Academy for grades 9 and 10. She also designed a building-wide Professional Learning Community Framework. During her tenure as director of Special Education at Akron Central Schools, she supervised the Committee on Preschool Special Education protocols and procedures. 

Dimitroff began her career in education in 1989 as a special education teacher for the Binghamton City School District. She holds a Bachelor of Science from SUNY Fredonia, a master’s degree from SUNY Binghamton and a School District Administrator Certificate in Educational Administration from Canisius College. She also holds a New York School District Administrator Certificate.

Anibal Soler Jr.

Soler Jr. is the associate superintendent of Strategic Alignment and Innovation for the Buffalo Public Schools, New York State’s second-largest school district, a position he has held since 2018. In this role, he oversees four areas: Adult Education; district Athletics; the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative; and district school improvement strategy known as Strong Community Schools, which encompasses 11,000 students and 21 schools across the City of Buffalo.

This Strong Community Schools effort has moved persistently struggling or failing schools to good-standing rating by the New York State Education Department. From 2016 until 2018, Soler Jr., was the principal of North Park Academy, an elementary school in the Buffalo Public School District. In this role, he led a staff of more than 50 and 250 students and supervised all instructional and operational aspects of this Pre-K through 8 community school.

From 2009-2016, Soler Jr. was the principal of East High School, the largest comprehensive high school in the Rochester City School District with between 1,500 to 2,000 students and a staff of almost 250. Through his leadership, the school was removed from New York State Education Department’s Persistently Dangerous list in 2011.

Soler Jr. serves as an adjunct professor at Canisius College in Buffalo, New York. He began teaching in 2000 as an Art teacher at Thomas Middle School in the Rochester City School District. 

Soler Jr. holds a Bachelor of Science from Daemen College, a master’s degree from Nazareth College and Certification in School Administrator  and School District Administration from St. John Fisher College. He holds a certification as a New York State School Administrator and New York State School Administration Supervisor. He is currently enrolled in the doctorate program in Educational Leadership at the University of Rochester.

The BOE will conduct the final round of interviews with the three candidates on Nov. 18, 19 and 20 at the Batavia City School District.

Smith is set to visit on Nov. 18; Dimitroff on Nov. 19; and Soler Jr. on Nov. 20. During each candidate’s district visit, a community meet-and-greet will be held from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m. in the library at Batavia High School.

The anticipated start date for the new Superintendent is no later than Feb. 3.

Kevin MacDonald, district superintendent of the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership, who is acting as search consultant, said the Board has developed and implemented a process that will help determine the best candidate.

“This is a thorough process that the board and stakeholders undertake,” MacDonald said. “Finalists will visit at the district, and go through another round of interviews. The process concludes with the Board meeting to make a final decision.”


The Genesee Valley Educational Partnership operates as a Board of Cooperative Educational Services offering shared programs and services to 22 component school districts located in Genesee, Wyoming, Livingston and Steuben counties in New York State.

August 24, 2019 - 10:58am

Press release:

The Batavia City School District Foundation Inc. is reminding the local community about their Engraved Brick Campaign at VanDetta Stadium at Woodward FieldOrders need to be received by Saturday, Sept. 1 in order to be installed this Fall. All others will be installed the following years.

The bricks will be located in front of the weight room and will be a “River Red” color. Each brick is $100 (including engraving). All engravings will be approved by the BCSD Foundation Inc.

Each brick will be 7¾ x 4 x 1¾ inch and on each brick there will be a maximum of 14 characters per line with a maximum of three lines. A character is any letter, space or punctuation mark.

Order forms are available on the BCSD Foundation Inc. website here or at the Batavia City School District’s Instructional Services’ office at 260 State St., Batavia.  

If you have any questions, please contact the BCSD Foundation Inc. at [email protected] bataviacsd.org or Julia Rogers at 343-2480, ext. 1010.

July 2, 2019 - 1:09pm
posted by Lauren Leone in batavia, batavia city school district, education, news.

Scott Bischoping, interim superintendent of Batavia City School District, was welcomed by trustees at the Board of Education Reorganizational Meeting this morning.

Bischoping previously served as deputy superintendent at Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES. Bischoping will step into the interim role as former Superintendent of Schools Christopher Dailey becomes the superintendent of Gates Chili Central School District.

In the interim, consultants and Board of Education members will conduct a six-month search for the best candidate for the permanent superintendent appointment.

In other action, the board:

  • Reappointed Pat Burk as board president for the 2019-20 academic year;
  • Swore in Pete Cecere for his three-year board term and reappointed Cecere as vice president;
  • Received their board committee and building assignments for the 2019-20 school year.

The next BCSD Board of Education meeting is at 6:30 p.m. July 16 in the BOE Conference Room.

June 24, 2019 - 10:21pm

The Batavia City Council tonight agreed to consider a proposed five-year agreement to provide School Resource Officer services to the Batavia City School District -- something Police Chief Shawn Heubusch believes is long overdue.

Heubusch elaborated on a recent memo he sent to Council about the Memorandum of Understanding that he and City School District Superintendent Christopher Dailey developed, with the hope of the board’s approval at its next Business meeting on July 8.

Tonight’s meeting was a combination Conference and Business meeting at City Hall Council Chambers and set the stage for a pair of public hearings for the July 8 meeting – one to support a NYS Office of Community Renewal Community Development Block Grant requested by Genesee Dental and the other to advance $25,000 in funds earmarked for Dwyer Stadium repairs a year earlier than originally appropriated.

On the subject of an SRO for Batavia, Heubusch said he was a bit puzzled as to why the largest district in Genesee County was the only one not to have a designated officer.

“Yes, it does surprise me a little bit. In speaking with Sheriff (William) Sheron over at the county, our actual agreement kind of mirrors what they’re doing with their different school districts so it only makes sense,” he said.

“We’ve had a lot of calls for service at the school, just because there’s a large population in the City when school is in session. It is a little surprising that we haven’t had an SRO until this time, but it is much needed.”

In his memo, Heubusch outlined numerous benefits to having an SRO for Batavia schools, including: student/faculty safety, of course; along with enforcement; relationship building and communication with law enforcement; counseling services; tackling issues involving substance abuse and peer pressure; conflict resolution; and crisis training and response.

The chief said he has applied for grants and tried to fund the position through the budget process, but has been unsuccessful.

“So this year, the superintendent and I sat down and put our heads together and came up with a pretty good Memorandum of Agreement/Understanding, I believe, where the school district and the City share the cost of the school resource officer proportionately,” he said.

Heubusch said the MOU calls for the school district to pay 83 percent of the cost of an entry-level police officer and the City to pay 17 percent. That 83/17 split would remain the same for the life of the contract.

“It stays with that percentage throughout the life of the agreement (five years), so it kind of guarantees some longevity to the program,” he said. “The hopes would be that in five years or four years we renegotiate that contract, come up with another contract that will take us out another five years.”

The agreement starts with one SRO in year one, but increases to two in year two, and three in year three, Heubusch said.

“The idea is to get the three school resource officers for the district – one being assigned to the high school, one being assigned to the middle school and the third one floating between the elementary and parochial school,” he said.

Since the SRO would be a City Police Department officer, he or she could be recalled by the Chief if needed.

“As the agreement calls for, if there is an emergency situation and we need to recall that officer for whatever it may be – our staffing is short or we have a major incident – there is some notification that takes place with the school district, but we’d be able to recall that officer in an emergency situation,” Heubusch said.

“The intent is to make sure that officer is present (in the school) as much as possible – 100 percent of the time, quite honestly, (from September through June) in the school district to do the job that they’re there to do. I don’t foresee us having to recall that officer on a regular occasion.”

City Manager Martin Moore reported to Council that the SRO would have a vehicle, adding to the department’s inventory.

Council unanimously moved the proposal to the July 8th Business meeting.

In other action, Council approved a National Night Out event for 6-8 p.m. Aug. 8 at City Church at St. Anthony’s on Liberty Street. Part of a community-building campaign that promotes police/community partnerships and neighborhood relationships, it is free to the public. Food and refreshments will be provided.

Watch for more coverage of tonight's City Council meeting on Tuesday.

June 19, 2019 - 12:49pm
posted by Lauren Leone in batavia, batavia city school district, news, education.

As the school year comes to a close for Batavia students, administrators await new beginnings. Batavia City School District named Scott Bischoping its interim superintendent as Superintendent Christopher Dailey transitions to Greece Chili next month.

Dailey was appointed as the superintendent of Gates Chili Central School District in April. BSCD announced that from July 1, 2019, to Jan. 1, 2020, Bischoping, the deputy superintendent of Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES, will step into Dailey’s role.

Bischoping began his career in education more than three decades ago as a teacher at Livonia Central School District. He most recently served in an advisory role to the superintendent of BOCES in Newark. The Board of Education expressed its confidence in the leadership and experience Bischoping will bring to this position.

In the interim, Board of Education members and consultants will conduct a six-month search to determine the best candidate for the permanent appointment.

Dailey was awarded the BCSD Foundation Apple Award at the board meeting Tuesday in recognition of his support for students and families since he began as superintendent in 2013. Parents thanked Dailey for his involvement in the lives of their students and wished him luck at his new school district.

During his last board meeting at Batavia, Dailey spoke about his gratitude to the Board of Education, the community and faculty and staff for the opportunity to make BCSD a top place to work.

“We’ve accomplished so much together,” Dailey said. “When our 2020 Vision Capital project is finished in the fall, we’ll have state-of-the-art facilities that our community can be proud of. We’ll carry on our vision of continuing to lead, not follow, in our region.

“On a personal note, I have thoroughly enjoyed my 11 years at Batavia, starting as a high school principal, then deputy superintendent and eventually superintendent for the last six and a half years. I’d like to think that I have exemplified our ideal of ‘Take Care of BCSD.’ ”

Dailey congratulates Bischoping and trusts that the search committee will find a new superintendent who will continue the work being done in the district.

Board President Patrick Burke, who described Dailey as a “cheerleader” for staff, responded, “You have never, ever disappointed me in any way, shape or form … You’ve done an exemplary job for our students, all students, no matter what.

“You’ll be going to a bigger school district with other challenges and other students … You’ll have to make sure [staff members] take care of Gates Chili Central School District as well as you’ve taken care of the Batavia City School District. You’ll be really missed here.”

June 5, 2019 - 4:58pm
posted by Lauren Leone in batavia city school district, education, news.

The Batavia City School District Board of Education addressed concerns about the new Latin graduation system and provided more information about how students can qualify for laude designations at its Tuesday meeting.

High School Principal Paul Kesler and Counselor Kelly Garner presented information on class ranking.

They recently received input from families about the district’s implementation of a Latin graduation system. Based on the responses, there is overwhelming support among parents for this college-style honor system.

The Latin system will begin with the Class of 2023. Instead of announcing a valedictorian or salutatorian, the top students in the graduating class will earn designations of: cum laude -- "with distinction"; magna cum laude -- "with great distinction"; and summa cum laude -- "with highest distinction."

These are determined by students’ cumulative grade-point averages and the number of Advanced Placement and dual-enrollment college classes students take.

On Tuesday, Garner answered families’ questions about whether students in Genesee Valley Educational Partnership programs were eligible for the higher-level designations.

She said although GVEP students spend a portion of their school days at alternate locations, their schedules also allow them to enroll in AP and college classes at the high school campus.

In addition, Garner said that since those students already receive college credits through their technical education studies, they can easily apply those credits toward the Latin-style honors.

Therefore, students with nontraditional schedules can enjoy the benefits of their hard work and dedication to academics.

Kesler said, “I know that our staff is really looking forward to possibly going with this so we can honor more students moving forward.”

Board members praised the new class ranking system because more students will gain recognition for their achievements without an overly competitive learning environment.

Later in the meeting, Marco Morascio provided updates on the 2020 Vision Capital Project, which is 47-percent complete with 40 issues recorded.

Change orders total $345,000, and more than $1 million remains in the contingency budget.

The presentation included progress reports for VanDetta Stadium, Robert Morris and Richmond Memorial Library. Renovations are occurring district-wide in classrooms, restrooms, lockers, auditoriums, storage areas and more.

Afterward, Business Administrator Scott Rozanski spoke about the district’s financial summary reports.

In comparison to April 2018, revenue has decreased by $805,000 due to a drop in state and federal aid and the property tax levy, as well as debt service and miscellaneous spending. Rozanski said expenditures are down $672,000 from last year due to savings on employee benefits and bond interest payments.

In his nutritional services update, Rozanski said the district is exceeding 15-percent growth from lunch sales and has profited $11,000 overall. Meals per labor hour are lower than anticipated at the high school and John Kennedy Elementary School, and a la carte sales are down $23,000. In order to offset those costs, the Administration Office is working to adjust food inventory.

“It’s a good thing because our students aren’t buying all of the a la carte items,” Rozanski said. “However, it is negatively affecting the financial operations by that amount. But, our students are getting a full meal and not needing to buy that extra food.”

The board’s agenda also highlighted a contract between the City of Batavia Youth Bureau and the school district.

According to an inter-municipal agreement, the district will occupy the youth bureau’s former location at 12 MacArthur Drive in Batavia starting Sept. 1 of this year until Aug. 31, 2024. The district intends to use the 2,000-square-foot facility as an office or storage space.

The document also provided more details about the district’s transportation service to Teen City at St. Anthony’s A City Church. During the 2019–20 academic year, the district will cover costs associated with busing students ages 9–16 from John Kennedy and the middle and high schools to Teen City. The district will offer one late bus to Teen City that runs daily from 3:15 to 3:30 p.m.

A goal of the new Teen City location is to prepare students to excel in their academics at the high school level. In the agreement, the youth bureau said the transportation provided by the district is “a great collaboration with the school district and demonstrates their investment to the success of Teen City.”

The next BCSD Board of Education meeting will occur at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 18 in the District Administration Conference Room.

April 5, 2019 - 3:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, batavia, notify, batavia city school district.

Batavia City School District Superintendent Chris Dailey is moving up the career ladder to a larger school district. He will be formally appointed as the new superintendent of the Gates Chili Central School District on Tuesday, it was announced today.

Gates Chili Board of Education President Jeff Pettenski praised Dailey's leadership skills in an announcement by that district.

Dailey will be officially appointed at the Gates Chili Board of Education meeting April 9.

“We are impressed with his record of accomplishment and commitment to the community he serves," Pettenski said in an announcement. "We are confident he is committed to teaching and inspiring excellence for all learners.”

Dailey's administrative career started with the completion of an internship and being department chairperson at Twelve Corners Middle School in Brighton. He next served as an assistant principal at Churchville-Chili Senior High School before becoming Batavia High School principal. He was quickly promoted by the Batavia Board of Education to deputy superintendent before taking over as superintendent in January 2013.

“I am excited and honored to have been chosen as the next superintendent," Dailey told Gates Chili school officials. "I look forward to working collaboratively with the Board of Education, staff, parents and community to provide a phenomenal education to our students.

"My mission is to celebrate the excellent programs, activities and services that contribute to the student success and outstanding pride that sets Gates Chili schools apart. I commit to modeling the character, integrity and fairness expected of the leader as we write the next great chapter in the tremendous story of the Gates Chili Central School District together.”

Dailey will begin in Gates Chili on July 1, pending contract negotiations.

The Gates Chili Central School District in Monroe County has about 4,000 students, more than 850 employees, and an operating budget of approximately $100 million annually ($24,503 per student).

March 13, 2019 - 6:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia city school district, batavia, news, schools, education.


Dr. Joseph Zambon and Mrs. Paula Fischer are Outstanding Community Members
In recognition of their work to include our students’ families in the Give Kids a Smile Day, Dr. Joseph Zambon and Mrs. Paula Fischer were nominated to receive Outstanding Community Member Awards.

While Dr. Zambon was unable to be present, Mrs. Fischer was presented with the award by Board of Education president Patrick Burk at the BCSD Board meeting on March 12.

They were nominated by Julia Rogers, district coordinator of Assessment and Instructional Services, who wrote:

"Dr. Zambon, dean of the UB School of Dental Medicine, and Notre Dame alumnus, and Mrs. Fischer, director of School-Based Programs at the UB Dental School, and BHS alumna, coordinated the partnership between the Batavia City School District and the University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine for their annual Give Kids A Smile Day.

"The event, for children 1-18 years of age, took place on Feb. 9. They coordinated with Fidelis Care to offer free transportation to UB for families to attend if they needed it. The UB Dental’s Give Kids a Smile event offered free dental care -- including exams, cleanings, fillings, extractions, orthodontic consultations (braces), hearing and vision screenings, and healthy eating demonstrations.

"Every child and parent received oral health supplies and lunch bag. We are so grateful to UB Dental for their inclusion of BCSD families in this event.”

October 12, 2018 - 4:01pm

The Batavia City School District Board of Education and administration invite you to serve as a Budget Ambassador to assist with the 2019-20 Budget process.

Residents of the District are invited to become Budget Ambassadors and make recommendations regarding the school budget. No experience necessary.

If interested in serving, please notify the District in writing by Thursday, Jan 10.

Send written letter interest to:

Christopher J. Dailey


260 State St., Batavia, NY 14020

Or email letter to:   [email protected]

Ambassadors will be expected to attend three budget Monday sessions from 6:30 to p.m. on Feb. 4, Feb. 11, Feb. 25 in District Administration Conference Room #49.  

For questions or additional information, please contact the District Office at 343-2480, ext. 1000, or e-mail Superintendent Dailey at [email protected]

October 12, 2018 - 2:44pm
Press release:

With Batavia City School District’s yearlong reconstruction project at the Daniel A. Van Detta Stadium at Woodward Field set to begin next week, the last day the track will be open to the public is Sunday, Oct. 14.

Likewise, the current playground across the street from the stadium (adjacent to the Robert Morris Building) also will be closed after Oct. 14. The playground will be relocated to a different area of the Robert Morris grounds and reopen in the spring.

Another part of the 2020 Vision Capital Project that will begin this month is the addition of four classrooms and interior renovations at John Kennedy School.

The exterior and interior renovations at Richmond Library will begin in December. Improvements to Jackson are slated to begin in February the High School projects are scheduled to start in May.

July 15, 2018 - 12:50pm

Press release:

The Batavia City School District (BCSD) applied for and was granted federal funding that will allow all students attending a District school to receive one nutritious breakfast and one nutritious lunch each day that school is in session.

This four-year funding will begin in 2018-2019, with the District being eligible to reapply for additional four-year terms as long as the federal program is funded.

Batavia qualifies for this Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) funding – a provision of The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act – because of its classification as an economically disadvantaged community due to a significant number of students already qualifying for free or reduced meals.

“This is an outstanding opportunity for the District, and we are very excited to be able to take advantage of a federal program that allows us to offer every student one healthy breakfast and lunch every school day at no cost to our families,” says Superintendent of Schools Christopher J. Dailey.

“Research is conclusive that good nutrition is a critical factor in learning. This is a program that allows us to bring some of our federal tax dollars back to our community to provide nutritious meals for all of our students.” 

The CEP funding is for the first full breakfast and first full lunch. If a student would like a second breakfast or second lunch, or would like one or more particular separate items (“a la carte” items), then those will need to be purchased. Purchases can be made with cash or through My School Bucks – the Nutrikids computerized payment system which has been used by families in the District for several years.

Because all children will receive one breakfast and one lunch at no cost, the option of charging items to a tab to be paid at a later time will no longer be available.

To qualify for other income-based funding and grants – a process which was formerly measured by information recorded on the Free and Reduced Meal Applications -- all students’ families will be asked to submit a short household form to establish the level of community need.

The District currently receives a significant amount of money in grants and other funding based on economic need. Collecting data from all households will permit us to continue to apply for and receive funding for which we are eligible.

The new form is currently being developed to ensure that the information required for applications to grant-funding agencies is gathered while not being unnecessarily burdensome or invasive to families.

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) for Batavia City School District

Question:  Who receives free meals?

Every student enrolled in the Batavia City School District will receive the first breakfast and the first lunch at no cost each school day regardless of the family’s household income.  Students are not required to participate; students may still bring their lunch if that is their preference.

Question:  Is my child able to make purchases, such as for milk (if bringing lunch from home), for other a la carte items, or for a second school meal? 

Yes, students may make purchases instead of or in addition to the first free breakfast or first free lunch. The purchase of all a la carte items will remain the same, in that families are responsible for payment. Additional meals are not covered under the program and it is each family’s responsibility to pay for those meals. Payment is due at the time of purchase. Purchases may be made with cash or through My School Bucks, the Nutrikids computerized payment system which has been used by families in the District for several years.

***Please note: there is NO charging allowed for additional meals or a la carte items. 

Prices for second meals and additional milk (or milk purchased a la carte) for 2018-2019 are:

Jackson and John Kennedy                     Middle School and High School

Second Breakfast                      $1.35                                              $1.45

Second Lunch                            $2.10                                              $2.30

A la carte Milk*                           $0.60                                              $0.60

Milk is included with the first breakfast and the first lunch or any additional paid meals. However, milk purchased separately (for students who bring their lunch) will be charged at a la carte prices, which is $0.60.  

Question:  How does the program work?

The New York State Child Nutrition (CN) Department began this program several years ago with federal funding backing the program.  School Districts must be eligible based on their specific poverty rates and have to apply to CN for approval.  Batavia City School District is eligible because it has an Identified Student Percentage of 40 percent or higher according to building level data. An Identified Student refers to any student certified to receive free meals by any means other than the submission of individual paper applications, such as SNAP and Medicaid.

Question: What impact does this program have on school taxes?

There is no impact on school taxes.  The General Fund budget (which the taxpayers vote on each year) is completely separate from the self-sustaining School Lunch Fund.    

Question: Who needs to fill out the CEP Household Income Eligibility Form?

All District families are asked to fill out the CEP Household Income Eligibility Form. The completion of this form is essential for the District. Many state and federal programs use socioeconomic data (that is, household and income information) to determine eligibility for their programs. In addition primary state funding calculations use socioeconomic data.

In order to continue to receive such funding and grants, the income information still needs to be gathered from our student population. The form is available in the school calendar, online at the Batavia City School District Nutritional Service Web page at:  https://www.bataviacsd.org/Page/5872  and will also be available at all school open house events. 

Question: If I have questions about the Household Income Form or if I received a letter this school year indicating that my children are approved for free meals, who can I contact?

Please contact the Food Service Department at 585-343-2480, ext. 1007. The office will be able to assist you with any questions or paperwork.

Question: Who do I include as members of my household and what if my monthly income is not always the same?

You must include all people living in your household, related or not (such as grandparents, other relatives or friends) who share your income and expenses. You must include yourself and all children living with you. If you live with other people who are economically independent (people that you do not support, who do not share income with you and your children and who pay a pro-rated share of expenses), do NOT include them.

List the income that you normally receive if your monthly income varies. If you have lost your job or had your hours or wages reduced, use your current income.

Question: Does this program change the quality of food that can be served?

There is no impact to the quality of food that is served.  The District must still continue to follow all food and dietary guidelines that are set by New York State Child Nutrition Program.

Question:  What constitutes a complete meal for breakfast and lunch?

The District complies with the Federal Program: Choosemyplate.gov.

For breakfast, the District offers two grains, a fruit, and a milk. Students must choose at least three of the four offered items, and one of those chosen must be the fruit. For lunch, the District offers a protein, a grain, a fruit, a vegetable and a milk.

Students must choose three of the five offered items, and one of those chosen must be the fruit or vegetable.

Question:  May a student be charged for an incomplete meal if the student refuses to select the required components for a complete meal?

The District will offer a complete meal to each student in order to qualify for the CEP fully funded reimbursable meal. However, if a student refuses to take the complete meal then the student will be charged a la carte prices for the foods selected on their tray.  

Question:  My child has a positive balance on his/her “MySchoolBucks” account. What happens to the current balance?

The balance on the My School Bucks account can be used for a la carte purchases or for any additional/second meals.

If you would like a refund of your account balance please send an email to: Susan Presher at [email protected] or a written letter to Susan Presher, Nutritionals Services Director, 260 State St., Batavia, NY 14020.

March 30, 2018 - 2:39pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia city school district, business, news, batavia.

Batavia City School District Superintendent Christopher J. Dailey.

Submitted photo and press release:

The Batavia City School District has been awarded a 2018 Top Workplaces honor by the Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester.

The award is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by research partner Energage LLC (formerly WorkplaceDynamics), a leading provider of technology-based employee engagement tools.

The anonymous survey measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, execution, and connection, just to name a few.

“Top Workplaces is more than just recognition,” said Doug Claffey, CEO of Energage. “Our research shows organizations that earn the award attract better talent, experience lower turnover, and are better equipped to deliver bottom-line results. Their leaders prioritize and carefully craft a healthy workplace culture that supports employee engagement.” 

For Superintendent of Schools Christopher J. Dailey, the anonymous survey confirmed what he already believed to be true: “Our administration, faculty, and staff are second to none," he said.

“They are dedicated to improving all students in every aspect of their growth while enrolled at BCSD. In addition, our Board of Education, backed by our community, supports the administration in creating a positive environment for our students and staff to work, learn, and grow.”

The future, he noted, will hold more of the same. 

“This independent survey of all of our employees is an excellent recognition that defines our district as a great place to have a career that makes a difference in our world,” Dailey said. “We offer outstanding benefits to our employees and excellent professional development opportunities for continued improvement in all aspects of our district.

"BCSD also has tremendous facilities for our employees to impact the lives of our students. Our 2020 Vision Capital Project will enhance all aspects of our employee and student lives.” 

Claffey said, “Becoming a Top Workplace isn’t something organizations can buy. It’s an achievement organizations have worked for and a distinction that gives them a competitive advantage. It’s a big deal.”


The Batavia City School District is committed to empowering students to achieve their maximum potential, while becoming socially responsible citizens.

The Batavia City School District, in partnership with the Batavia community, will provide a safe and nurturing environment to develop students with high moral character who are able to successfully meet life's challenges.

February 7, 2018 - 4:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, batavia city school district, news, Milestones.

Submitted photos and press release:

At the Batavia City School District Board of Education meeting on Feb. 6, several students and staff members were presented with achievement awards for their exemplary work and contributions.

Nathaniel Barber is an Outstanding Student!

In recognition of his demonstrated kindness, compassion, and respectfulness to all staff and fellow students, kindergartener Nathaniel Barber was presented with an Outstanding Student Award by Board of Education president Patrick Burk.

He was nominated by Kelly Heizmann, Lucille DiSanto, and Shannon Reiss who wrote, “At six years old, Nathaniel is a model of the core beliefs we hope to instill in our students at Batavia City Schools. Nathaniel comes to school every day with a smile on his face and ready to learn. No matter how challenging the task, Nathaniel approaches everything with a positive attitude and puts forth his best effort.

"During his busy days, there are times Nathaniel has to leave a task incomplete to attend one of his therapy sessions; when he returns to class, he is not only ready but wants to finish the work he left behind. This is just one example of his strong work ethic. Nathaniel takes newly learned skills from a therapy session and independently applies them to all areas of his school day.

"For example, it is not uncommon for him to independently use or correct his pencil grip in speech therapy to the correct way that he was shown in occupational therapy. Anyone who knows Nathaniel would tell you that he is respectful, compassionate, and kind to all. This is shown in his respect to our school and others by following directions and classroom rules.

"Often times Nathaniel will rub the shoulder or put his arm around a peer who may be struggling or having a difficult day. You can count on him to try to encourage or cheer up others. His kindness is seen by all who know him. His positive attitude, eagerness to learn, and happy state of mind are infectious to all of us who are lucky enough to know and work with him.”

Savahanna Vanderveer is an Outstanding Student!

In recognition of her kindness, compassion, and respectfulness to all staff and fellow students of the Batavia City School District, Savahanna Vanderveer was presented with an Outstanding Student Award by Board of Education president Patrick. She was nominated by Mary Kanaley and Eileen Peterson, who wrote, “Kindness and perseverance are just two character traits that come to mind when thinking about Savahanna. She brings a smile to everyone's face and a positive attitude to the class with her friendly, bubbly personality. She is always looking for more ways to help friends and teachers. Savahanna works hard in all areas and tries her best in everything she does. Mrs. Kanaley and Mrs. Peterson are so proud to nominate Savahanna for this award for all she has done to be a wonderful friend and student this year!”

Jeremy Mettler is an Outstanding Staff Member!

In recognition of his valuable contribution to the staff and students of the Batavia City School District, BHS Social Studies teacher Jeremy Mettler was presented with an Outstanding Staff Award by Board of Education president Patrick Burk.

He was nominated by Dr. Corey, who wrote, “Mr. Mettler is very passionate about at-risk students. He organized a poverty simulator exercise for Middle School and High School teachers so that they would learn more about how it feels to live life in poverty.

"The event was well-received by all and brings a new level of awareness about the needs of many of our students. He will help facilitate future events for teacher aides and all teachers.”

Jessica Levins is an Outstanding Staff Member!

In recognition of her valuable contribution to the community, staff, and students, Jessica Levins was presented with an Outstanding Staff Award by Board of Education president Patrick Burk.

She was nominated by Kelly Garner, who wrote, “Miss Levins works in the Counseling Center as a counseling assistant and also spends one day a week interning as she works toward her bachelor's in social work and eventually a master's in school counseling.

"In November, she was asked to help with the annual holiday donations at the High School. In addition to calling every family to procure wish lists, Miss Levins created all of the stars for our BHS Giving Tree, organized every donation that came in, and kept in constant communication with the families we helped this holiday season.

"She spent much of her own personal time to accomplish these tasks, made her own generous gift donations to the cause, and also helped deliver the gifts to families.
Miss Levins truly went above and beyond to make a difference for our families who were most in-need this holiday season.

"Because of her outstanding and selfless work, we were able to provide clothing, shoes, toys, and wrapping paper for 37 students from 13 different families this holiday season. From her outstanding connections with our students, to her work as a freshman class advisor, and now this incredible gift to our community -- Jess genuinely takes care of BCSD each and every day.

Jessica Levins and Kelly Garner are Outstanding Staff Members!

For going above and beyond to provide support to those in need, and for their compassion and leadership while serving others, Counseling Center assistant and intern Jessica Levins and BHS counselor Kelly Garner were presented with Outstanding Staff Awards by Board of Education president Patrick Burk.

They were nominated by Mark Warren, who wrote, “Kelly Garner and Jessica Levins stepped up to organize a Giving Tree for the High School staff to purchase gifts for District students in need. Their efforts allowed families in the District to help provide clothes and "wish" items to their children during the holiday season. The faculty and staff did an excellent job supporting the program, but without Mrs. Garner and Miss Levin’s compassion and leadership, it would not have been as successful.”

Ann Marie Wood is an Outstanding Staff Member!

In recognition of her valuable contribution to the staff, students, and community, Ann Marie Wood was presented with an Outstanding Staff Award by Board of Education president Patrick Burk.

She was nominated by Andrea Smith, who wrote, “Mrs. Wood serves as a substitute in many positions throughout the District. She willingly takes on the job with a smile and handles any position with dedication and enthusiasm, regardless of the challenges she may face.

"She comes to the Middle School to sub in the offices, as an aide, and even as a teacher. Mrs Wood recently served as a substitute for my Spanish classes at BMS and I could not have asked for a better person.

"Ann Marie is dedicated to the students and staff of BCSD and to the Batavia community. We are blessed to have her as part of our staff!”

June 13, 2017 - 8:35pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, batavia city school district.

John Kennedy Intermediate School is beating the odds when it comes to educating "economically disadvantaged" students.

That was the word from Molly Corey, executive director of curriculum and instruction for the Batavia City School District at the district's board of education meeting Tuesday night at Batavia High School.

Corey reported on a "Beating the Odds" conference last Thursday at SUNY New Paltz that she and JK Principal Paul Kesler attended.

Moreover, Kesler was the speaker in one of the breakout sessions at the conference, which was coordinated by researcher Manya C. Bouteneff, Ed.D..

Bouteneff is the director of Better Outcomes LLC, an organization devoted to creating high-performing environments so that students in traditionally underperforming demographic groups can succeed.

"John Kennedy (School) was selected as a result of (Bouteneff's) research, and placing in the top 10 of her findings," Corey said.

Criteria used by Bouteneff to identify high-achieving schools outside of New York City and not charter schools include the following:

-- 40 percent or more poverty;
-- 25 percent or more of ED students scoring 3 or 4 on the 2016 NYS ELA;
-- 65 percent or more of ED students scoring 2, 3, or 4 on the 2016 NYS ELA;
-- 30 or more ED test-takers;
-- no admissions criteria other than residency;
-- no in-district school choice.

Of 177 schools, just 16 percent of those eligible met these criteria.

Kesler's presentation -- Clear and Loving Structures: How Our “What I Need” (WIN) System Builds School Culture and Ensures Every Student’s Needs Are Met -- focused on how John Kennedy utilized its PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports) team to help build its school culture and how JK students (grades 2-4) have benefited from having clear and loving structures. 

He also shared the processes for training JK teachers to become leaders within the school.

In other developments, the board:

-- Approved the cross-country team's trip to the Manhattan Invitational in New York City from Oct. 13-15. Coaches Bill McMullen and Rich Boyce reported that fundraising will take place in anticipation of keeping the per student cost to around $200 for a three-day weekend.

-- Established the Batavia City School District Foundation scholarship, a $250 gift to a graduating senior, commencing with the 2018 graduation ceremony. The foundation accepts tax-deductible donations throughout the year. For more information, send an email to [email protected].

-- Presented Andy Pedro with a "golden ticket" -- free lifetime admission to any Batavia High School home sporting event -- for his nine years of service as a board member.  Tuesday's meeting was the last one for Pedro, who served six years, took a year off, and returned for three more years.

Superintendent Christopher Dailey praised Pedro for his work on the Building & Grounds Committee, pointing out Pedro's "guidance, calm demeanor, common sense, and sense of humor."

-- Thanked Madison Moore, student ex-officio on the board for 2016-17, for going above and beyond expectations. Dailey said her "professionalism and knowledge" contributed greatly to the board's success.





Community, Teacher Award Recipients: The Batavia City School District presented Certificates of Appreciation to several community members and teachers at Tuesday night's Board of Education meeting. Starting with photo at top, Board President Patrick Burk recognizes Julie Tryon and Korinne Anderson as outstanding community members for their volunteer service, and the Batavia Middle School Parent-Teacher Group -- from left, Michelle Dillon, Lisa Shell, Jennifer Burke, Michelle Bromsted and Kathy Fulton. In bottom photo are Jackson Primary School teachers Elizabeth Mundell and Anne Marie Koukides.

Photos by Mike Pettinella.

October 8, 2016 - 12:56pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, batavia city school district, education, batavia.

Pictured from left: BHS Principal Scott Wilson, Business Administrator Scott Rozanski, Board of Education (BOE) Student Ex-Officio Member Madison Moore, Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction Molly Corey, Citizen Action Member Eddie Jones, BHS teacher and Batavia Teachers Association President Mark Warren, Citizen Action Member David Cates, and Board of Education President Patrick Burk. (Superintendent of Schools Christopher Dailey was in Albany on school business so was unavailable.)

Submitted photos and press release.

The Batavia City School District welcomed Citizen Action of Western New York activists David Cates, Eddie Jones, and Samantha Nephew as they made a stop at Batavia High School this week on their way to Albany with an important message about education.

New York State has reneged on its constitutional and court ordered obligation to students, particularly students in high needs* districts such as Batavia, and it is payback time.

Board of Education President Patrick Burk presented Cates and Jones a “Past Due” invoice for $3.5 million to be delivered to the Governor’s Office on behalf of the Batavia City School District.

The trio is collecting other such invoices and statements from school districts as they travel to the state capital where they will meet up on Tuesday with like-minded activists and, they hope, lawmakers. Cates and Jones -- who both work in the educational field and whose inspiration for the trip comes from their own children as well as from working with other young people in their community -- are biking the Buffalo to Albany route with Nephew following by car.

Other affiliates of Citizen Action of New York from various parts of the state are walking to Albany.

The group’s intention is to spur lawmakers to pay the money owed to school districts in New York, as dictated by a 2006 court ruling which then was translated into the Education Budget and Reform Act of 2007. The court ruling affirmed the State’s constitutional obligation to provide essential resources for a quality education to all public school children in the state in order to graduate college-ready or career-ready citizens, regardless of their zip code. Subsequently, the legislation established a formula, to be phased in over a four-year period, designed to ensure adequate and equitable funding for all schools by calculating state aid based on students' needs and a district’s ability to raise revenue.

Legislators obeyed the law for two years, but when the economy took a downturn, they stopped obeying it and have not looked back. According to the Education Law Center, first, aid was frozen in 2009 at 37.5 percent of the four-year target. Then for the next two years, aid was cut by $2.7 billion in the name of Gap Elimination Adjustment that used school aid to balance the state’s overall budget. The GEA money has recently been restored, but the Reform Act has yet to be rekindled.

Thus, the bill for $3.5 million.

Batavia administrators, teachers, and Board of Education trustees agree that $3.5 million could provide a lot of “more and better” for our students, and ideas of how to spend it abound: reinstate courses; reduce class sizes; provide a greater variety of courses; offer multiple sections of selected courses so more students could take advantage of opportunities; hire more aides for classrooms; increase individualized instruction; increase professional development opportunities; and/or lower taxes.

“It’s important to make sure all of our students have their needs met,” said Burk as he thanked Cates and Jones for highlighting the issue. “This could do a lot.”

*“High needs” is typically defined as having a high percentage of students who qualify for free or reduced-priced meals.

June 16, 2016 - 3:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia city school district, batavia, education, news.

Information provided by the NYS Education Department.

Batavia City School District was awarded a grant totaling $212,748 from the state Education Department for extended school day and school violence prevention programs.

A total of 83 school districts and nonprofit organizations statewide, out of 450 applicants, received $24 million in grants for these programs, Commissioner MaryEllen Elia announced Wednesday.

Batavia City School District was the only school district or nonprofit in Genesee County to receive grant money for this purpose.

“It’s a simple proposition – when students are safe and engaged in productive afterschool activities, they’re going to enjoy school more and do better,” Elia said in a press release. “The grants we’re awarding today will go a long way toward protecting and enriching our children.”

Eligible programs provide support to students through extended school day activities and/or school safety programs which promote violence prevention. Extended school day programs will increase student achievement, provide extracurricular enrichment activities, and contribute to school violence prevention. School violence prevention activities include comprehensive school-based intervention models that reduce violence and improve school safety as well as provide funding for safe corridors, diversity programs, collaboration with law enforcement agencies or community-based organizations.

Each application was evaluated and scored by peer reviewers, including experts in expanded learning opportunities; college and university faculty and administrators; professional program evaluators; community educators; community service providers; staff from foundations and charitable organizations, as well as SED staff.

Lucy N. Friedman, president of ExpandED Schools, said, “We believe in the power of an extended day to engage kids in ways that are not always possible in a traditional classroom setting. Without the fear of a grade, students are more open to explore new challenges, like robotics or debate.

"Extended day programming provides kids with more time for enriched learning and social-emotional development. These extra hours also support the working parents because they know their children are in a safe, engaging place and this strengthens communities.”

A full list of grant awards is available at: http://www.p12.nysed.gov/sss/documents/ESDSVPR3Awardees.pdf

February 27, 2016 - 11:16am

Press release:

It’s been a long time coming, but Superintendent of Schools Christopher Dailey received a letter from the New York State Education Department (NYSED) stating that, once the State makes its official review visit in the early part of March, the District and Batavia Middle School will be off of the NYSED District/Focus School list in 2016-2017. Middle School staff were invited to a brief meeting Friday morning for the announcement.

“We wanted you to be the first to know,” Dailey said. “Even though this was always viewed as a district-wide process, most of the efforts were concentrated here, and we appreciate all your hard work. So, thank you, and congratulations.”

The process began several years ago, going into the 2012-2013 school year, when the District was notified that it had not met New York State’s proficiency benchmarks for one subgroup of students and, as a result, had been identified as a Focus District that was required to choose at least one school on which to focus efforts toward improvement for this subgroup. Because the Middle School had the greatest number of students in the specified subgroup, it was named as the Focus School.

The District then assembled a school improvement committee which, from that point forward, reviewed data, recommendations, and survey input to develop annual school improvement plans built around six tenets identified by NYSED’s Diagnostic Tool for School and District Effectiveness as aligning with research-based proven practices of effective schools: 1) District Leadership and Capacity, 2) School Leader Practices and Decisions, 3) Curriculum Development and Support, 4) Teacher Practices and Decisions, 5) Student Social and Emotional Developmental Health, and 6) Family and Community Engagement.

The criteria for being removed from the list included (1) meeting State participation requirements for all accountability groups for ELA and math; (2) meeting State achievement goals for the specified subgroup for two consecutive years; (3) meeting State achievement goals for averaged scores of all students in grades 3-12 for two consecutive years; and (4) having no subgroup fall below the minimum State achievement benchmarks during that time period.

Batavia Middle School Principal Sandy Griffin, noting several positive outcomes not numerically measurable, said “Our faculty has increased collaboration and the use of data to inform decision making. They have a deeper understanding of the Common Core Learning Standards and have been more actively involved in writing curriculum.

"Throughout the building – faculty, students, and staff – have a renewed commitment to and enthusiasm for the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS) initiatives and to working as a team to create the best environment for learning and growing.”

Says Dailey, “This is a tremendous accomplishment by the administrators and staff of the Middle School and District. Together we have created a community of learners that pushes themselves to improve each day. We have taken a very positive approach to improvement that has paid off by our change in status with NYSED.”

UPDATE Feb. 29: Following a reader's inquiry about which subgroup triggered the inclusion on the focus list, we contacted the school district. We were told that:

"In the 2010-2011 school year, the Middle School missed the State Performance Index (PI) by 4 points with the African-American subgroup."

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