Alumni Newsletter: March 1, 2019
The 2018-19 school year has brought some new faces and many exciting changes to the Corinth Central School District. I appreciate being able to use this space to keep the community and our alumni informed about the initiatives of the district where we continue providing a quality education to our students. The goals set by the Board of Education formed the foundation of our focus for the past three years. Below are some of these changes, as well as our priorities for the remaining months ahead:
New staff at Corinth
Since the start of the year, the district has seen multiple changes in administration and staff, including welcoming a new Elementary Principal and hiring a School Resource Officer, as well as, adding two new faces to our Support Services in the Elementary School. Saratoga County Deputy Sheriff Mark Nelson joined the district as Corinth’s School Resource Officer, a new position that was approved in the 2018-19 school budget. Officer Nelson has not only helped to provide a safe learning environment for our students, but has become an increasingly valuable resource to staff members and has fostered many positive relationships with our students. The district also welcomed new Elementary School Principal Renee Young on January 2 as she welcomed back students from the holiday break. Principal Young has been an educator for 22 years and has been a wonderful addition to our administrative team.
The 2016 Capital Project included important infrastructure improvements needed to ensure the health and safety of students, staff, and visitors, and was broken up into two phases. Phase 1, which has been completed, included roof work and site improvements at both the elementary school and the middle/high school, as well as, new tennis courts, new windows, and the removal of the folding gym partitions at the middle/high school. Phase 2 is currently underway and includes a new bus garage with additional space for the grounds department, a new boiler and storage building for the elementary school, as well as the demolition of the old bus garage. Phase 2 is on schedule to be completed by the end of the summer.
Technology in the classroom
A total of 700 new Chromebooks have been purchased which has allowed the district to provide a Chromebook to every faculty member and every student in grades K-12 in the district. To meet the needs of students of all ages, the use of the Chromebook looks a little different at each level with students in grades 8-12 taking them home and students in grades K-7 keeping them in school. The Chromebooks provide Corinth students with an enhanced and personalized learning experience. We strongly believe that by providing our students with a Chromebook, they will be able to interact with both teachers and their peers to produce digital content, work collaboratively, and gain both college and career readiness. The district also purchased 45 more Promethean Panels to complete the replacement of the old Smartboards and projectors in the classrooms. We now have a total of 96 Promethean Panels. The Promethean Panels allow for students and staff to transform classrooms into collaborative and immersive environments by promoting engagement and energizing students throughout the learning process.
Safety improvements across the district
As a district, we continuously seek out ways to better safeguard the health and well-being of our students and staff. I wanted to share information about safety measures currently in place as a way to strengthen our school community. In addition to our School Resource Officer, security cameras have been installed at each of our buildings. The Oak Street building has 50 security cameras in total, with 8 cameras being on the exterior of the building and 42 in the interior of the building. The Center Street building has a total of 24 security cameras, including 9 exterior cameras and 15 interior cameras. Additionally, blue beacons were installed on the outside of each of the school buildings that are activated during a lockdown. When activated, they are a signal to let anyone coming to a school building know that we are in lockdown and no one is to enter the building. In an effort to further improve the safety and security of our campus, the district has also installed a visitor management system that captures information from a driver’s license and/or valid government-issued ID. The system maintains a record of individuals entering and exiting of our school buildings, allowing staff to know who is in the building and why they are there. The system also has the potential to be networked to public safety databases such as the national sex offender registry as a means to enhance campus safety.
The Corinth faculty, staff and administration strives to promote excellence through a rigorous, relevant, challenging, and innovative educational program for all of our students. Students in Corinth are given many opportunities that provide different paths to a successful future. One of those opportunities is through the Career and Technical Education (CTE) program, offered through Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex (WSWHE) BOCES, which combines academic programs with real hands-on learning. Some of these students even go right into a successful career after high school. Our students are also offered the chance to participate in the Early College Career Academy, an Early College High School Program, through a partnership between SUNY Adirondack and WSWHE BOCES. Through this program, students are eligible to earn up to 32 college credits (depending on degree choice), acquire national or internationally recognized industry credentials, participate in work-based learning projects and industry challenges, and be mentored by practicing professionals in their field of study. Beginning in ninth grade, our students are also able to participate in the Southern Adirondack PTECH program which focuses on two different program pathways: Electrical Technology/Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology/Computer Networking. Lastly, thanks to a wonderful partnership between Queensbury UFSD and Superintendent Huntley, our students are now able to participate in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IB DP) at Queensbury High School. This is a rigorous course of study that prepares students to succeed in college and to effectively participate in an increasingly global society. It helps students become confident learners and critical thinkers who desire to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.
Saratoga Center for Family
Corinth area residents now have access to mental health counseling services thanks to a partnership between the district and the Saratoga Center for the Family. Saratoga Center for the the Family has expanded to a satellite office located in the Oak Street building in an effort to allow more people to access the center’s services. A trained clinician is now available to help Corinth area residents with a variety of issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder, physical and sexual abuse, anxiety and depression, personality disorders, substance use disorders, grief and loss, sexuality and gender identity, attention disorders and family dysfunction. Visits are by appointment. The center accepts most major insurance programs. While Corinth students and their families will benefit from easy access to the services offered by the center, the services are available to the entire community. Families can call the Saratoga Springs office at (518) 587-8008 for more information or to schedule an appointment.
Corinth CARE Committee
The Corinth Aims to Reach Everyone (CARE) Committee has been working to meet the evolving needs of our Corinth students and families by developing programs and services that provide support for some of the challenges they face. The committee currently has two clothing stores in our school buildings for students and families to go and pick out items for themselves. Each person can select clothing items, health care items, school supplies and basic cleaning supplies. The committee feeds 45 elementary students through our backpack program and up to 15 students in the High School and Middle School from our free choice pantry. These students receive breakfast items, fruits and vegetables, three non-perishable entrees, a milk card and a card for a dozen eggs through Stewarts weekly from October to beginning of June. They have connected with local groups like The Jimmer Fredette Foundation, Captain's House, Saratoga Hospital, retired teachers, Starbucks and Skidmore CARE in an effort to collect donations. Even our student body has got in on it! The National Honor Society and athletic students have helped to fund raise, clean the clothing stores and serve at events. As a bonus, Channel 6 news helped raise money for our backpack program. The School to Employment Program (STEP) was featured and explained how important the backpack was not only about feeding students in need, but helped other students in our district with learning job skills.
United Way district campaign
This year the district has partnered with United Way, a non-profit organization that is helping the district pool efforts in fundraising and support of our community. All Corinth employees are now able to make donations of any amount from their paychecks to some of our local organizations such as; the Corinth Community Scholarship Association, the Saratoga Regional YMCA, Head Start, as well as the Corinth CARE Committee. If you are interested in contributing to our efforts, please contact the business office at (518) 654-9000.
Finally, I am pleased to announce that Corinth has been removed from the New York State Comptroller’s Office fiscal stress list. It is a wonderful testament to all of the hard work that our Business Administrator and our Board of Education have dedicated to maintaining a fiscally responsible budget over the past year. Additionally, I would like to take the time to thank all of you and the Corinth community. Your continued support of the district and our students allows for us to offer the support, care, safety and instruction our students need to succeed. Go Tomahawks!