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Batavia Middle School

Pavilion Fire receives donation from staff of Batavia Middle School

By Staff Writer
pavilion fire department

The Pavilion Fire Department accepted a donation on Friday made possible through the generosity of the Batavia Middle School’s dress-down days. 

Rebecca Matteson, the mother of a patient treated by the department in May 2021, made the donation to the department. 

Jeffrey DeMare was involved in an automobile accident involving one box truck and two semis at the curve on Route 63 and Peoria Road. Thanks to quick actions taken by a good Samaritan and a State trooper from Wyoming County, who both applied a tourniquet and with the Pavilion Fire Department providing Basic Life Support, Jeffrey was able to make a full recovery after multiple surgeries. 

Ken Weaver, president of the Pavilion Fire Department, accepted the check. Jeffrey is standing to the right of Rebecca. Also in the photo are firefighters who responded to the call.

Submitted photos and information.

pavilion fire department

BMS students deliver thank-you goodies during holiday give-back to community

By Joanne Beck
Students from Batavia Middle School give back to services in Batavia.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
Students from Batavia Middle School stop to visit the City of Batavia Fire Department on Thursday.
Photo by Steve Ognibene
Each year at Batavia Middle School, staff and administrators coordinate a Give-Back Day for students, and this year's event took them to several local places to spread a little seasonal cheer.
"Every student in our building creates gifts for community agencies and businesses that support our school, and then we personally deliver them the next week to show thanks and appreciation," Middle School Principal Nate Korzelius said. "It is a wonderful experience for our students and they enjoy this opportunity to give back."
They had a full itinerary on Thursday, dropping off thank-you treats, visiting and caroling at The Manor House, Richmond Memorial Library, the Department of Social Services, Tim Horton's, WBTA, the city fire and police departments, Probation and Child Protective Services, Family Court, STEP, Genesee County Sheriff's Office, Pizza 151, YMCA, Mancuso Bowling Center, Genesee County Animal Shelter, Cinquino's Pizza, the city school's administration office, and Miss Batavia, which also included lunch. 
Batavia Fire Department staff receiving gifts.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
Batavia Middle School students deliver some thank-you goodies to City of Batavia Fire Department staff.
Photo by Steve Ognibene
Batavia Fire Department staff receiving hot drinks.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
City of Batavia Fire Department staff receive hot drinks from BMS students during the give-back day.
Photo by Steve Ognibene
Caroling at Tim Hortons.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
Students from Batavia Middle School break out their best vocals for seasonal caroling Thursday at Tim Hortons in Batavia.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
WBTA 1490 staff excited that students stopped by to give back to community.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
Staff members from WBTA in downtown Batavia, including new company owner Jim Ernst, center on right, share in the excitement of a visit from BMS students during their give-back tour throughout the community on Thursday.
Photo by Steve Ognibene
Batavia Police department welcomed students who brought gifts.  Photo by Steve Ognibene
Batavia City Police officers welcome BMS students Thursday as they deliver thank-you gifts to the police station.
Photo by Steve Ognibene

Be forewarned: No parking restrictions on Washington Avenue

By Joanne Beck
No parking restrictions on Washington Ave., Batavia
Photo by Joanne Beck

There's been a change in restrictions to a section of Washington Avenue near Ross Street, that parents and guardians will want to take note of. That area has gone from no stopping to a more specific no parking zone for two different time periods on week days.

Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch made explained the change to City Council this week based on issues of lingering vehicles on the roadside.

"Before there was a no standing sign there, as well as on Ross Street right across from the middle school. We found that to be problematic from an enforcement perspective, because when people are dropping their kids off or picking their kids up from school, that's what happened, people stopped," Heubusch said during council's meeting Monday evening. "So it has been changed to a no parking rule from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on school days."

The zone is on the southeast side of Washington Avenue near Batavia Middle School, and is marked with no parking signs.

No parking restrictions sign on Washington Ave.
Photo by Joanne Beck

Restored bells toll for history and celebration of BMS centennial

By Joanne Beck


Lucas Hoisington was happy to be playing his cello during a concert Thursday at Batavia Middle School.

Unlike other concerts, though, this one was to commemorate the Ross Street school’s centennial birthday. That made the occasion even more special, the 13-year-old musician said.

“It’s pretty cool,” he said after the celebratory event.

Lucas, who is in seventh grade, was with his family, including his mom Meghan, who had also attended the city school district. A BHS graduate of 1998, with brothers Ethan and Jonathan, each who graduated in 1996 and 1991, respectively, the siblings would often reminisce their school days.

“I had a super positive experience growing up here and going to school here,” Meghan said. "We often compare our experiences, and my brothers are often sharing stories.”

They also contrast the differences between two dozen years ago and today, in the world that Lucas lives in.

“A lot has changed, in just being a young person today,” his mom said. “There was the pandemic … and just so many pressures they have that we didn’t. It was a cool experience to see Mr. Jakubowski again; he was a kind man.”

The event included introductions of current and former people of note, including former administrator John Jakubowski, BOCES Director of Instruction Jon Sanfrantello and Executive Principal Rachel Slobert, and school board members, including President John Marucci.

Members of the school’s orchestra, band and chorus performed seasonal favorites, with many students dressed in combinations of red, green, elf and Santa attire.


Middle school principals Nathan Korzelius and John-Martin Cannon had the distinct honor of rapping the bells — one on each side of the stage — at the end of a combined performance of “Carol of the Bells.”

“To celebrate this, we have worked collaboratively with the community to bring back to you our school bells that were originally used to call students to the school 150 years ago,” Korzelius said.

A large black bell had been located at a former “East” elementary school on East Main Street at the current location of Salvation Army, and the silver bell had been on Ross Street inside a section of the “old-old” high school, and is now the middle school gym and new addition, according to history buff and native Batavian Jim Owen.

It was Owen and a school custodian that apparently got the ball rolling to restore the bells. Put away in storage, those bells had gotten dusty and out of condition. And then a conversation between the custodian and Owen struck an idea to pull them out of storage and see them go back to good use.

“I couldn’t imagine it would be that dirty,” Owen said of the silver bell. “I was really surprised when I saw it.”

Owen, in turn, credits Superintendent Jason Smith for working to “get the job done,” however, it also took other administrators and members of Genesee Valley BOCES Auto Body classes — instructors and students — to restore the bells to a glimmering finish.

Owen had wanted to be at the celebratory bell-ringing but was unable to make it. He shared pieces of research that he discovered during the project, including how many smaller schools there were throughout various neighborhoods — from the East school to a West school on West Main Street, to Pringle and Lincoln schools, and the Washington school that now houses Reed Eye Associates.

In 1922 the construction of Batavia Middle School began, and it was used as a Junior and High School until the construction of the current high school on State Street was completed in 1961.


“Bringing these bells back to life was a collaborative effort. When I started here at Batavia Middle School a year and a half ago Jim Owen made me aware of their existence in our basement. He educated me on the significant history they represented to our Batavia community,” Korzelius said. “With the help and support of Mr. Smith, our Batavia Maintenance Department, and the BOCES Auto Body classes the process of restoring these historical bells became a reality. We couldn’t be happier with the way our Batavia Community rallied around the restoration.”

During Thursday’s celebration, Superintendent Jason Smith recognized the school for having such “a proud and rich history.”

“We’re proud to be celebrating the 100th anniversary of Batavia Middle School. The history of 96 Ross Street is the foundation of the Batavia City School District. Whether through the old Batavia High School building or the Middle School building we enjoy today, generations of Batavians, including myself, have passed through these halls,” Smith said. “Batavia Middle School is a jewel in our District, and we can’t wait to see what the next 100 years will bring.” 

He gave a nod to Kerry Boyle, a middle school maintenance worker, and to Owen, for their idea to resurrect the huge artifacts.

“As a fellow BHS alumni, Kerry was as equally as excited as I was. Coupled with some previous prodding by our good friend Mr. Owen, we undertook this project with our friends at BOCES to refurbish and display these wonderful bells,” Smith said.



Top Photo: BMS students Aubrey Sputore, Meg Gahagan, Jenna Higgins, Ryan Bigsby and Ty Gioia unveil one of the two restored bells to be placed in the school's auditorium; School Principal John-Martin Cannon does his part by striking the bell at the end of a musical performance for the centennial celebration; members of the school's band, strings and choral groups, led each by directors Sean Williams, Gwenaelle Chevillard and Melzie Case, entertain an audience of family members, friends and alumni. Photos by Joanne Beck.

Batavia Middle School to celebrate centennial this week

By Press Release

Press Release

In celebration of Batavia Middle School’s 100th anniversary, the Batavia City School District is hosting a celebration on Thursday, December 8, at 7:00 PM with a special concert by the Batavia Middle School Band, Orchestra, and Chorus, as well as a presentation of the recently restored historic bells that called students to school more than 150 years ago. 

Construction of the current Batavia Middle School building began in 1922. The building originally housed both junior and senior high school students. The existing Batavia High School building was built in 1961, and 96 Ross Street was officially redesignated Batavia Middle School. 

“We’re proud to be celebrating the 100th anniversary of Batavia Middle School. The history of 96 Ross Street is the foundation of the Batavia City School District. Whether through the old Batavia High School building or the Middle School building we enjoy today, generations of Batavians have passed through these halls,” said Superintendent Jason Smtih. “Batavia Middle School is a jewel in our District, and we can’t wait to see what the next 100 years will bring.” 

Over the last year, Batavia Middle School staff members, in collaboration with Genesee Valley BOCES, worked to restore a pair of historic bells that were once used at 96 Ross Street, then Batavia High School, through 1924.

With support from the Batavia City School District leadership team and in collaboration with our BCSD Maintenence Department and the Genesee Valley BOCES Auto Body Department, the bells have been restored to working condition and will be placed inside the Batavia Middle School auditorium on both sides of the stage. 

“It’s been so rewarding to restore these historic bells to their original beauty and purpose,” said Batavia Middle School Principal Nathan Korzelius. “It truly was a collaborative effort between our BMS team and the wonderful crew of teachers and students at Genesee Valley BOCES. These bells will be displayed proudly and will remind every student who passes through these halls of the history of this wonderful building.” 

The 100-year celebration and presentation of the restored bells will take place in the Batavia Middle School Auditorium (96 Ross Street) on Thursday, December 8, at 7:00 PM. The school’s band, orchestra, and chorus will perform a special arrangement designed especially for this event. The celebration is free and open to the public.

Bells that once hung at Batavia Middle School restored by BOCES students

By Press Release

Press release:

The Batavia Career and Technical Education (CTE) Center Auto Body program, for the last three months, has been restoring two Bells that used to hang at the  Batavia Middle School.    The bells will be presented at the Centennial Ceremony at Batavia Middle School.  The Auto Body students, with help from Conservation Students, made platforms for the newly renovated bells to sit on.  Going forward, the bells will be mobile and will be around for a long time.  

One of the bells is made of cast iron, and one is made of brass bronze. The brass bronze bell was made at the McNeeley Foundry in Troy, NY.  The bell arrived in Batavia back in 1873, likely by horse and buggy. The bell will be 150 years old next year. The other bell was made in the early 1900s in West Seneca, NY.  

Auto Body Teacher Jeffrey Fronk received an email  From Rachel Slobert about the bells, and immediately knew this would be the perfect project for his students.  Fronk said he knew how valuable these bells were and didn’t want them falling into the wrong hands.  He knew how important it was to restore them and learned the rich history behind them.  He wanted the students to get a chance to restore something different, especially with this much history in the community.  The last time the bells rang was Likely in the 1930s.  

To restore the bells they had to go through two different processes since one is cast iron and one is brass bronze.  The project was completed by 15 students who tore them apart, disassembled, sanded, primed, painted, and hand-polished them.  During the bell restoration, students argued over who went to work on it because they all wanted to be able to help.  

On an average year, the students fully restore 15 cars and 25 smaller jobs.  By restoring something other than a car, the students are getting other hands-on experience in restorations.  This shows students that they have other avenues to learn and make money.   You will never hear an Auto Body student say they don’t have anything to do.  They continue to learn and work on several projects throughout the year.  

“I had a mentor when I was young, Rick Hoffman, who in my opinion, was the best of the best, and I only wish I could be as good as he was and pay what he taught me forward.  I absolutely love watching these kids grow to not knowing what they're doing to dive into this bell and wanting to be a part of something so cool,” stated Fronk.   Fronk is looking forward to hearing the bells ring on stage at the Centennial Ceremony.  All of the students and teachers have been invited to this ceremony. 

Special thanks to Ryan Ditacchio, Bernie Harwood and Ed Swain for the guidance and instruction of these great students.

Academic, leadership and community service excellence celebrated at BMS

By Joanne Beck


More than 40 seventh- and eighth-grade students and family members not only celebrated the end of another school year recently but also their induction into the National Junior Honor Society. 

A prestigious club at Batavia Middle School, this honor society strives for "academic excellence and prioritizes leadership and community service," Honor Society Adviser Meaghan Tederous said.

This year the group's community service endeavors included volunteering at Family Nights, Warm the Night, and the Polar Plunge at John Kennedy Intermediate School. Members organized -- and two members even plunged themselves, for -- the Polar Plunge fundraiser. They collected more than $1,500 for the Special Olympics of New York, Tederous said. 

To be eligible for NJHS, a student must have a certain GPA, and the criteria differ depending on each grade. A student must also possess qualities of community, character and leadership, and obtain a teacher recommendation, she said.

"We are so proud of our inductees and look forward to another year of celebrating academic achievements and giving back to the community," Tederous said.

Members of the National Junior Honor Society in seventh  grade are: 

  • Phoebe Beal
  • Brock Bigsby
  • Ryan Bigsby
  • Mallory Boyce
  • Genevieve Clark-Scott
  • Parker Cohen
  • Augustin Crawford
  • Andrew Davis
  • Teegan Frens
  • Thomas Gaylord
  • Ty Gioia
  • Lillian Gray
  • Jenna Higgins
  • Nathaniel Kinsey
  • Casey Mazur
  • Emma McJury
  • Emma Moore
  • Brielle Ricks
  • Aubrey Sputore
  • Trey Tryon
  • Gretchen Weicher
  • Landyn Wood
  • Kate Woodward

And in eighth grade are:

  • Aaden Caletto
  • Alora Becker
  • Ava Darling
  • Andrew Hunt
  • Bella Moore
  • Elaina Stringham
  • Elizabeth Grazioplene
  • Ella Smith
  • Julia Plath
  • Kiana Beaty
  • Lakoda Mruczek
  • Lila Fortes
  • Madeline Smith
  • Marley Santos
  • Miah Jones
  • Misael Flores
  • Noah Richmond
  • Tabitha Jett
  • Nora Wood




Students at Batavia Middle School participate in the annual National Junior Honor Society ceremony as inductees of the club, which emphasizes academic performance, leadership skills and community service. Photos submitted by Batavia City Schools. 

New Batavia Middle School principal ready to build

By Press Release

Press Release


On Thursday, April 21, 2022, upon recommendation from Superintendent Jason Smith, the Batavia City School District Board of Education approved the appointment of Nathan Korzelius as principal of Batavia Middle School, effective immediately. 

“I’m proud that Nate Korzelius is my first administrative appointment during my tenure as superintendent,” said Superintendent Jason Smith. “His dedication to the students and staff at BMS is unparalleled. He has big plans for the Middle School, and I look forward to working alongside him in achieving them.” 

Mr. Korzelius has served as interim principal of Batavia Middle School since July 1, 2021. He began his career in the Batavia City School District 23 years ago as a high school science teacher. After 14 years in the classroom, he joined the administration and served as assistant principal of Batavia High School for five years.

“I would like to thank Mr. Smith and our Board of Education for the opportunity to continue my work at Batavia Middle School. I’ve spent my entire educational career here at Batavia, and it’s been an honor to lead a fantastic staff and amazing group of students at BMS. I look forward to building upon our ongoing goals of making BMS a safe, supportive, and engaging educational environment for our community,” said Nathan Korzelius.   

“Mr. Korzelius’ commitment to the Batavia City School District is commendable,” said Board of Education President Alice Ann Benedict. “We love to see administrators who come from our classrooms—they have a unique understanding of our students, families, and community. We look forward to seeing Mr. Korzelius achieve great things at Batavia Middle School.” 

Photos: Christmas Sweater Day at Batavia Middle School

By Howard B. Owens


It is Christmas Sweater Day at Batavia Middle School.

Top photo: Evan Patrick, 5th grade, models his sweater.


Demarius Johnson, 5th grade


Reid Presley, 5th, and Robert Thurston, 5th.


EIghth-graders Kritina Buchanan, Alora Becket, Mimi Weicher, and Paige Harmon.


Vice-principal John-Martin Cannon and Principal Nate Korzelius.

Photos: BMS choir sings Christmas carols at Pub Coffee Hub

By Howard B. Owens


The Batavia Middle School Choir performed Christmas carols on Friday evening at the Pub Coffee Hub on Harvester Avenue, Batavia.

The high school choir will be at the coffee shop this coming Saturday at 4 p.m.



Make repairs or no school: Batavia City Schools board approves spending

By Joanne Beck


At 57 years old, it’s time to pay attention to some equipment at Batavia Middle School or risk the site’s future closure, Business Administrator Scott Rozanski says.

He presented the issue Thursday along with a recommendation to spend more than $57,500 for the repair of three pumps for the boiler at the Ross Street school. 

“When the boiler is working, condensation is working, and it captures that and reuses it throughout the system. It was installed in 1964 and started to show its age. The tank itself is leaking, along with return pumps,” Rozanski said during the board’s public hearing at the Batavia High School library. “If the tank and pumps were to fail, we wouldn’t be able to have school, and would have to shut down.”

Rozanski was asking for authorization to make the necessary repairs at a total cost of $57,583.52.

No one from the public showed up to the hearing. Rozanski explained that the price tag is part of a “piggyback bid” with the town of Greece. The pump problems were identified in a 2020 building conditions survey that’s to be performed every five years to assess facility needs and status. 

If the repairs are not made now, the issue could be a recurring expense, he said. A total of nearly $200,000 is currently in the Repair Reserve Fund, and this transfer of funds would leave $141,619.51, he said. 

“If there are funds at the end of the year, we will replenish the Repair Reserve for funds used,” he said. 

There was no discussion before a unanimous vote by Board President Alice Benedict and members Barbara Bowman, John Marucci, Jennifer Lendvay, and Chezeray Rolle to approve the use of funds. 

The board also voted to approve contracts or memorandums of agreement with:

— Firland Management/Batavia Ice Arena for use by Batavia Notre Dame United Hockey Team for practices and games.
— Notre Dame Board of Directors for interscholastic boys and girls swimming.
— Shared resources with the school districts of Pembroke and Byron-Bergen for Winterguard. 
— Attica Central School District for interscholastic wrestling. 
— Kimberly Gingrich for bilingual psycho-educational evaluations.

Updated 11/19/21: The Batavian reached out to Business Administrator Scott Rozanski for further clarification of the "piggyback bid" with Greece. The town of Greece had conducted a statewide bid for various New York State municipalities and schools. Bids were awarded by region to prime contractors for heating/ventilation/air conditioning, general contractor, electrical and plumbing work, Rozanski said.

“We were able to use this bid to secure a contractor instead of processing our own bid,” he said. “We did receive a quote initially to help assist with the initial planning of this project, which was approximately $18,000 higher.”

Photo above: Newly hired Superintendent Jason Smith reviews a board packet with District Clerk Brittany Witkop Thursday before the Batavia City Schools board meeting. Photo by Howard Owens.

Batavia’s Board of Education approves increased elevator repair costs during this week’s meeting

By Joanne Beck

Costs are going up with unexpected elevator repairs at Batavia Middle School, as city Board of Education members voted Thursday to approve a transfer of $212,000 from the repair reserve fund. 

Business Administrator Scott Rozanski had reviewed the issues and scope of work at the Sept. 19 board meeting, with the vote to occur this month. Members unanimously and without discussion agreed to the transfer for what Rozanski deemed “the worst-case scenario.” 

The elevator stopped working in March. Board members had approved an initial transfer of $65,000 for anticipated repairs by Otis Elevator Company in May, Rozanski said. A hydraulic cylinder had ceased to operate and work was to begin then, he said, but supply chain issues delayed it for a while. Work eventually began to repair the cylinder, however, there was an obstruction that prevented anything to continue. 

Otis Elevator proposed three phases to be used as needed: Phase I would involve cleaning out the hole, removing the pipe, and continuing the necessary work. If the cylinder casing is good, the issue should be resolved, Rozanski said, and the repair could be completed. The price tag for this first phase would be $35,000.

If it is determined that the casing is bad, then they will move on to Phase II for a new casing and another $26,000. Phase III is the “worst-case scenario” of the first two solutions failing, he said. Work will expand to include redrilling the hole, removing all of the debris, and putting in a hoisting beam, all for an extra $86,000 on top of the other two-phase costs. All totaled, it would be an additional $147,495.

The board’s vote on Thursday changed the original transfer from $65,000 to $212,000 to cover all three options if necessary, Rozanski said. That would leave an available balance of $86,703 in the repair reserve, he said. 

At that September meeting, Interim Superintendent Scott Bischoping added that the district’s construction manager obtained second opinions on the recommended work and didn’t just go with Otis Elevator’s proposal.

“This isn’t just a one-company idea,” he said.

The board also approved Campus Construction Management’s proposed cost of $3,875 to conduct a feasibility study on the potential renovation expenses of Batavia Middle School. 

In other matters, School board members received some good news during the district’s annual audit Thursday. Christian Townes of Freed Maxick CPAs said the firm issued an “unmodified opinion” for the school district. 

 “Which is the highest level of assurance that we can provide,” she said.

The overall rating, having no significant deficiencies and having no material misstatements is “a testament” to the hard work the district invests into its financial-related statements, she said. 

“Financially, the district is in good shape,” she said. “Overall, you had a really great audit this year. It went smoothly and there are no negative matters to report to you.”

The board voted to accept and approve the final audited report, basic financial statements, and audited extra classroom activity financial statements ending June 30, 2021. 

City school officials consider bringing Robert Morris back to school

By Joanne Beck

Nine years after closing Robert Morris Elementary, city school officials are mulling the idea of resuming it as a school once again.

The idea is in tandem with recommending Request for Proposals of completely renovating the well-used Batavia Middle School. The Board of Education unanimously agreed to move forward with the school’s construction assessment and a cost estimate during Thursday’s board meeting.  

Board member John Reigle spoke on behalf of the Buildings and Grounds Committee, which has been conducting a district facilities review. 

His mission was to ask the board “to direct our contractors” to conduct a complete review of the middle school to find out how much work and money it would take to renovate and abate the site, he said, and the cost to “bring Robert Morris up to date to facilitate student use.”

Interim Superintendent Scott Bischoping added that it would be ideal to do this site study before any discussions about the next capital project take place. 

“Just to get an idea of the cost and what the community would like to do,” Bischoping said. “Eventually you’re not going to be able to put Band-Aids on that building. Many districts have totally gutted and rehabbed their buildings, but there’s a price tag to that.”

The middle school building has been around for quite a while, tucked into the residential neighborhood along Ross Street. It was initially built in 1926 to be used as a high school until Batavia High School was built in 1961 on State Street. Wear and tear and an estimated “significant amount of abatement” would be part of the renovation, which has become clear to the board, Benedict said.

“There’s a lot of dealing with abatement, and it puts a lot of expense on the project,” she said. “Probably in the future, we’re going to have to get some kids back to Robert Morris.”

Abatement, a word commonly used for cleaning up toxic materials such as asbestos, has been identified for the middle school. Bischoping said that it has been very difficult to do any work in the building without disturbing those materials. After the scope and costs have been determined for construction and abatement of the middle school, and any work necessary to get Robert Morris up to speed for full use, the Buildings and Grounds Committee will put forward a recommendation for board vote, Benedict said. 

In 2012, city school district officials closed Robert Morris Elementary in an effort to consolidate students and merge the west side school’s population into Jackson Primary and John Kennedy Intermediate. The defunct building at Richmond Avenue and Union Street then became host of a childcare facility and Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (BOCES) classes. The childcare facility has since moved out to another location and Covid ceased the other activities, Benedict said, rendering the site “an empty building.”


Batavia Middle School celebrates its Honor Society members at Van Detta Stadium

By Howard B. Owens


Students at Batavia Middle School who have been accepted in to the Honor Society were celebrated in a ceremony at Van Detta Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

From Ashley John Grillo, principal, Batavia Middle School:

Seventh grade 2021 Batavia Middle School Honor Society inductees

Brandon Currier, Cole Davis, Payton Dickinson, Elijah Fancher, Emma Godfrey, Gianna Grillo, Landon Hamilton, Kyleigh Kabel, Kailyn Lee, Harold Mellander, Sydney Parker, Gretchen Redder, Ella Shamp, Helaina Staley, Drew Stevens, Gianna Strollo, Isaac Varland

Seventh grade students who were inducted virtually last year as seventh graders

Ava Anderson, Cameron Baiocco, Kylee Brennan, Brooke Callahan, Lila Callan, Jeremiah Childs, Allison Debo, Maddison Dennis, Kahler Evans, Roan Finn, Will Fulton, Grant Gahagan, Samuel Grillo, Faith Guiste, Ava Higgins, Jakob Hutchins, Jameson Motyka, Mia Pellegrino, Jake Phillips, Kayla Richenburg, Campbell Riley, Bridget Taggert, Trevor Tryon, Alyssa Turner, Madilyn Underhill, Ava Wierda, Allyson Wormley, Kelsey Kirkwood

Eighth grade 2021 Batavia Middle School Honor Society inductees  

Madeline Bellamy, Aubrey Bisher, Bronx Buccholz, Yannis Ciornei, Isabella DeVay, Nicole Doeringer, Lillian Emerson, Emerson Fitch, Brady Mazur, Alexandra Morrill, Jayla Odom, Samuel Pies, Lylianalynn Santos-Baez, Andrew Smith, Gavynn Trippany, Payton Vickery





BMS staff member named state's Counselor of the Year

By Howard B. Owens

Nicole Mayers, a Batavia Middle School counselor, has been selected by the NYS School Counselor Association as the state's Counselor of the Year.

Mayers has been a school counselor for 16 years and worked at BMS for eight years.  

Currently, her focus is on school attendance, academic achievement, and providing social-emotional skills to students.

She was instrumental, according to information released by the school district, in implementing a daily social-emotional learning program for middle school students. Students are given daily SEL prompts that officials say have been beneficial during the coronavirus pandemic.

She is a certified trauma illness and grief responder.

Video: Freezing for a reason at Batavia Middle School

By Howard B. Owens
Video Sponsor
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The annual Polar Plunge at Lake Ontario was canceled this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, but staff at Batavia Middle School didn't want to see Special Olympics lose out on such a vital part of their annual fundraising campaign.

So they came together today, at the prompting of Eric and Krista Knapp, who organized everything, for their own polar plunge with the help of City fire and Batavia PD.

BMS High Honor Roll, Honor Roll & Merit Roll for first marking period of 2020-21 academic year

By Press Release

Batavia Middle School -- Grades 6-8 -- Celebrating Academic Success

First Marking Period -- 2020-21 Academic Year

High Honor Roll

Grade 6: Phoebe Beal, Brock Bigsby, Ryan Bigsby, Mallory Boyce, Jeffrey Burton, Genevieve Clark-Scott, Parker Cohen, Eliana Cossitt, Augustin Crawford, Andrew Davis, Anna DiRisio, Luciana DiRisio, Teegan Frens, Thomas Gaylord, Ty Gioia, Lillian Gray, Troy Hawley, Grady Hemer, Jenna Higgins, Nathaniel Kinsey, Connor Krumpek, Gavin LaCarte, Connor Malone, London Martin, Tallulah Mattison, Casey Mazur, Emma McJury, Ayden Midkiff, Emma Moore, Jonah Motyka, Vy Nguyen, Aiden Reimer, Brielle Ricks, Aubrey Sputore, Trey Tyron, Gretchen Weicher, Landyn Wood.

Grade 7: Alexander Allen, Dakota Cook, Brandon Currier, Ava Darling, Cole Davis, Elijah Fancher, Lila Fortes, Emma Godfrey, Elizabeth Grazioplene, Gianna Grillo, Landon Hamilton, Andrew Hunt, Tabitha Jett, Miah Jones, Kyleigh Kabel, Anthony Lecointe- Naegely, Kailyn Lee, Parris Martin, Adrian Martinez, Nathan Mayeu, Harold Mellander, Sydney Parker, Julia Plath, Gretchen Redder, Marley Santos, Ella Shamp, Drew Stevens, Gianna Strollo, Isaac Varland, Gavin White, Nora Wood.

Grade 8: Ava Anderson, Cameron Baiocco, Waquez Bazile, Madeline Bellamy, Aubrey Bisher, Kylee Brennan, Brooke Callahan, Lila Callan, Jeremiah Childs, Allison Debo, Maddison Dennis, Ariana DiSalvo, Nicole Doeringer, Lillian Emerson, Kahler Evans, William Fulton, Cameron Garofalo, Samuel Grillo, Faith Guiste, Ava Higgins, Kelsey Kirkwood, Mia Pellegrino, Jake Phillips, Jesus Reyes, Kayla Richenberg, Campbell Riley, Lylianalynn Santos-Baez, Andrew Smith, Bridget Taggart, Trevor Tryon, Alyssa Turner, Allyson Wormley.

Honor Roll

Grade 6: Arianna Almekinder, Elana Andrews, Chase Antinore, Addison Arroyo, Maddison Bartz, Vivienne Bellavia, Travis Bisher, Carly Brokaw, Alyssa Burgess, Keaton Corcoran, Logan Desautels, Trevor Felker, Nathaniel Gibbs, Aliyah Green, Kylie Heath, Gillian Hildebrant, Donavan Hill, Kaden Jackson, Ryan Kendall, Chase Knapkewicz, Leilah Manuel, Makayla Marr, Adyson O’Donnell, Mya Odom, Madelyne Rapone, Lilyana Rodriguez, Savannah Sanders, Zackery Sumeriski, Autumn Umlauf, Kate Woodward.

Grade 7: Yaomy Acevedo, Mazey Arroyo, Emmeline Bateman, Alora Becker, Maggio Buchholz, Matthew Burns, Aaden Calleto, Keegan Delcamp, Payton Dickinson, Gage Draper, Darleigh Driffill, Branden Flanagan, Miseal Flores, Anri Helsdon, Emma Kilby, Emma Martino, Bella Moore, Lakoda Mruczek, Bryce Nicometo, Serenity Olavarria, Jose Osorio Rodriguez, Cecelia Paliani, Bob Parkhurst Jr, Kaylynn Peyman, Jadyn Radam, Ethan Rambach, Noah Richmond, Xavier Schramm-Sample, Ella Smith, Helaina Staley, William Stevens, Chastin Styer, Mikaylah Sweet, Adriana Volpe, Annabel Wasiulewski.

Grade 8: Abigail Bestine, Allison Bisnett, Matthew Boyce, Bronx Buchholz, Yannis Ciornei, Isabella DeVay, Hanna Dun, Emerson Fitch, Dwaine Graham, Dillon Hale, Thomas Haworth, Jakob Hutchins, Talyn Kennedy, Kassandra Kesler, Anthony Kopper, Javion Krupinski, Abbigayle Leone, Damien Marucci, Brady Mazur, Jaiden Michael, Alexandra Morrill, Jameson Motyka, Bridgette Nordee, Jayla Odom, Madeline Ohlson, Samuel Pies, Tristen Post, Makenzie Rich, Isabelle Scott, Madilyn Underhill, Payton Vickery, Myles Wahr, Jay’Dah Williams, Zebadiah Williams.

Merit Roll

Grade 6: Enrique Bazan, Jay’lee Blackmon, Haiden Brooks, Keagan Calmes, Maxamillyn Chase, Isabella Cheruiyot, Jericho Childs, Jeremy Cooper Jr., Camden Demena, Adeline DeWitt, Brooke Diehl, Brody Ditzel, Kaylub Dunn, Meg Gahagan, Corbin Hanney, Madilyn Jones, Alexander Jursted, Gabrielle Lawlis, Parker Lazarony, Paisley Loranty, Luis Ortiz Carbajal Jr, Carmelina Pellegrino-Scott, Gunnar Pietrzykowski, Nina Pontillo, Aubrey Reinhardt, Trey Rodriguez, Khloe Rozell, Langdon Sage, Kenedi Smith, Frankie Tomei, Karizma Wescott.

Grade 7: Rylan Bohn, Leland Duval, Luke Gutman, Louis Heglund, Aaron Hosek, Nodia Jackson, Sophie Koladzinski, Gracie Lathan, McKenna Mazur, Caydence McQueen, Jessica Morrill, Andrew Perl, Esayas Reinhardt, Jorge Reyes Barranco, Roy Ricks, Kendra Sanders, Amiiya Santiago, Madeline Smith, Dominic Southall, Jacob Stabler, Elaina Stringham, Mimi Weicher, Ariel Whelan, Blake Wimett.

Grade 8: Nolan Barnes, Joshua Barone, Aiden Bellavia, Zoe Bradley, Sofia Branche, Brecken Capone, Brady Carney, Hannah Carney, Carson Crane, Roan Finn, Greyson Fix, Grant Gahagan, Trishelle Gibson, Leo Gray, Kate Hernandez Rivas, Sonny Kasmarek, Karissa Kendall, Owen Kilby, Cooper Konieczny, Madden Legler, Judith Newton, Yadiel Rosario, Riley Stephenson, Gavynn Trippany.

Families invited to annual Warm the Night event at Batavia Middle School

By Press Release

Press release:

This Thursday, Nov. 19, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., Batavia Middle School and John Kennedy Intermediate are hosting a COVID-19 friendly event for all Batavia City School District families.

The annual Warm the Night will be held at Batavia Middle School at 96 Ross St.

Families are invited to come and pick out gently used and new winter clothing (including coats, hats, gloves, scarves and boots) for members of their family.

In addition, representatives from many community agencies will be available with information about their programs and services. The growing list of agencies includes:

  • Community Action of Genesee and Orleans
  • Catholic Charities
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • AmeriCorps
  • Liberty Center
  • Neighborhood Legal Services
  • Connect 2-1-1
  • Batavia City Fire Department  

Also, Christina Kulesz, DC, a Batavia chiropractor, will be there for free chair massages. There will be other free giveaways as well, including free Timbits and hot chocolate.

Students, staff at BMS adopting well to stressful circumstances, principal tells school board

By Howard B. Owens

Students and staff have adjusted well to very stressful circumstances, Batavia Middle School Principal Ashley John Grillo told trustees Monday night at the Batavia City Schools board meeting.

Grillo provided the board with a regularly scheduled report about the status of his school concentrating on adjustments caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Students are wearing masks, not complaining about guidelines," Grillo said. "They've really done an outstanding job of adapting to the new guidelines for this year. I'm really proud of that. They deserve the biggest round of applause because they're really the ones most affected the most by the whole thing."

Grillo gave his report before two staff members tested positive for COVID-19 requiring 50 students who had close contact into mandatory quarantine for two weeks.

There are 127 students whose parents chose 100-percent virtual learning for this school year, Grillo said. 

In the cohorts that are splitting time between virtual learning and attending classes, with 246 in the first cohort and 208 in the second. There are also 78 students who are on campus every day.

Teachers conduct online classes that are dedicated to that role, Grillo said, with none doing both online learning and in-class learning.

"We decided to do that at the middle school level," Grillo said. "We didn't want to overwhelm the kids or overwhelm the teachers."

During the first two weeks of school, the emphasis was on getting students accustomed to being back in school after six months away from the classroom environment and getting them familiar with the new routines.

Homeroom has also been extended. In the past, homeroom has lasted 10 to 15 minutes before the first period. It's been extended to accommodate a video stream into the classrooms for morning announcements. The students get help getting their assignments and schedules organized for the day. They turn in their lunch orders. And there is some theme that primes them for learning. In the first weeks, it was Hispanic culture, then anti-bullying, and now veterans are being highlighted with students and staff providing photos of veterans from their families for the video stream.

"It helps them get their day organized and start on the right foot," Grillo said.

There is a team of teachers dedicated to social and emotional learning who meet regularly to review the school's progress and needs. There are also activities on campus for staff, such as yoga and meditation and team-building activities.

"This is not an easy job and we're trying to find ways to balance that," Grillo said.

There are also regular faculty meetings and training that focuses on professional learning. They're also working on better ways to track student progress and identify students who need extra attention.

"We do that every year," Grillo said, "But we're not letting this year hinder us. We're continuing to improve our process."

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Staffer and 50 students at BMS on quarantine after two adults test positive

By Press Release

Press release:

Dear Batavia Blue Devils Community:

I am writing to provide you an important update regarding COVID-19 and Batavia Middle School.  

I have been notified and in contact with the Genesee County Health Department and the District’s Medical Director that there have been two new positive COVID-19 cases of Batavia Middle School staff members.  The employees were NOT in school with any symptoms and were considered asymptomatic prior to getting tested.

As a result of contact tracing, which focuses on a 48-hour window of time this has caused one additional staff member and 50 students who were deemed as “close contact” to quarantine for 14 days.  Any student and staff member that was identified as a “close contact” has already been contacted by the Batavia Middle School administration. The Genesee County Health Department will also follow up with identified students and staff. 

These cases do not impact our ability to continue to operate Batavia Middle School and the school will remain open for our in-person hybrid learning model. 

New York State has launched the “School COVID Report Card” site, where you can view COVID-19 data associated with all schools in New York.  To protect the privacy of students and staff, we will never release personally identifiable information. 

Please continue to be vigilant in your efforts and help us prevent the spread of COVID-19. For additional reliable information on preventing the spread of COVID-19, please go to or

Please also don’t hesitate to contact Batavia High School or the District if you have any questions or concerns. 

Better Together… WE are Batavia!

Anibal Soler Jr.
Superintendent of Schools
Batavia City Schools

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