What's Right with Spackenkill! May 12



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What's Right with Spackenkill!

May 12, 2017

A tradition of excellence with a vision for tomorrow

Dear Spackenkill Community,

Next Tuesday, May 16th, is the Budget Vote. The Board of Education has worked very hard to craft a budget that they believe provides a good balance between supporting the instructional needs of our students while remaining cost effective. We hope you remember to turn out and vote.

I’d also like to remind you of the special Board Meeting on May 23 to discuss the capital facility needs of the district, which will include topics such as roofs, fields, and track. This meeting will be held at 7:30 pm. We will be sending a flyer next week with more details of this event. 

In addition, while I’ve never met Mr. Kutch, who was considered the “Voice of Spackenkill” for many years and was a teacher in the district, I’ve learned quite a bit about him in the last couple of weeks through the eyes of other people. I want to thank Mr. and Mrs. Devenny for their strong efforts in trying to both memorialize Mr. Kutch and provide a scholarship for seniors at the high school. There’s a link in the newsletter where you can find more information about the scholarship that they’re trying to establish.

Finally, a lot of great things are continuing to happen in the district, and I hope you enjoy learning more about them in this newsletter.


Mark Villanti

Mark Villanti, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools


On, Tuesday, May 16, the School Budget Vote and Trustee Election will take place at the Richard D. Woolley Auditorium, Spackenkill High School. Polls are open from 7 am to 9 pm.  Please remember to vote!




The Spackenkill Football Association has established the Tony Kutch Memorial Scholarship. Mr. Kutch served in various capacities in the district for 45 years, including coach, physical education teacher, and game announcer ("Voice of Spackenkill"). 

Please help support Mr. Kutch's memory while helping Spackenkill seniors advance their education. The link to the donation page is below.



Spackenkill High School Finals/Regents Exam Schedule

June 7 -  Last Day of Classes
June 8 - 19 School Exams
June 13 - 22 Regents Exams



Thurs, June 8

June 9

Mon, June 12

Tues, June 13

Weds, June 14

Thurs, June 15

June 16

June 19

Tues, June 20

June 21

June 22

June 23

7:30 am

French 2

Spanish 1

Spanish 2

Pre Calc

Pre Calc H


Global 9

World Lit

English 9

French 3

Spanish 3

History Regents

Algebra XT 1

ELA Regents


Global History Regents

Geometry  Regents

French 4

Spanish 4

English  10

Chem Regents



Regents Rating Day

No Students in Attendance

11:30 am

Part In Gov

Intro to Engineer

Principles of Engineer

Computer Studies


Applied Fin Math

Algebra 1

Living Environ Regents


Earth Science Regents

Physics Regents

Algebra II Regents


Environ Sustain




Best Community for Music Education

Fifth Consecutive Year: District Named Best Community for Education

Spackenkill Union Free School District has been honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The NAMM Foundation. Spackenkill is one of 4% of districts across the nation receiving the prestigious award in 2017.

The Best Communities for Music Education designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in efforts to provide music access and education to all students.  Please honor the department by attending one of their spring concerts.

Todd Dean of Students Presents at Conference

Anchala Sobrin at conference​​​​

Anchala Sobrin, Dean of Students at Todd Middle School, recently attended the American Educational Research Association (AERA) conference in San Antonio, Texas. A doctoral candidate in the Division of Educational Leadership, Administration, and Policy at Fordham University,  Ms. Sobrin, along with her Fordham-affiliated research group, presented an abstract of Analysis of the Relationship Between Socioeconomic Status and Student Achievement using HLM (Hierarchical Linear Modeling).  This paper is the second in a series of quantitative studies examining the impact of race/ethnicity, gender, and socioeconomic status on academic achievement using Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 data.  Preliminary findings of this study have the potential to challenge widely held beliefs that socioeconomic status and achievement are strongly correlated.  Results indicate that “within school” factors have a much larger impact on student achievement than “between school” factors, and that socioeconomic status has a significant impact on academic achievement only in schools with high concentrations of poverty.

The team presented the first paper, Race, Gender, Socioeconomic Status, and Achievement Gap,  at the AERA 2016 Conference in Washington, DC. That study found that race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and gender explain only 15% percent of the variance in students’ math achievement.  Identifying what factors explain the remaining 85% is a task that needs to be undertaken by researchers, policymakers, and practitioners, and the prevalent belief that children from ethnically diverse, disadvantaged backgrounds cannot achieve at the same level as their socioeconomically advantaged counterparts must be challenged.

Both papers will be submitted for publication in an educational publication in fall of 2017.

Varsity Baseball Takes Division Title ... Again!

Varsity Baseball Team with CoachesOur varsity baseball team clinched the Division title this week for the 7th year in a row. Congratulations to the team and head coach Don Neise and assistant coach Greg Diamond. They play in the MHAL Championship on May 16th at Cantine Field in Saugerties.  Go Spartans!

Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival Visits Todd

Teaching artists from the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival recently visited the 7th and 8th grade English classes of Mrs. Morehead, Mr. Shanks, and Mrs. Grega. In Mrs. Morehead’s 4th period 8th grade class, they focused on the prologue of "Romeo and Juliet" and how it acts as a teaser for the entire play, much like a movie trailer. Students did warm-up exercises that would help them follow stage directions, then broke into groups to read from and act out the prologue using props. It was an enriching experience for all and a wonderful follow-up to the touring show students saw in mid-April.

HVSF at Todd

HVSF scenes

acting out the prologue from Romeo and Juliet

.warmup with HVSF

.HVSF warmup exercises





Recipes for Success 

Lisa French, our Director of Food and Nutrition Services, recently invited students of Mrs. Rogers and Mrs. Ott into the kitchen to see parsley and rosemary that the students grew themselves being used in a potato dish.  The students also sampled a refreshing tea made from mint that they grew. The students really enjoyed being a part of this entire experience! 

students prepare recipe

students try foods


students smelling mint students tasting mint tea  



Elementary Field Days Inspire Collaboration

field day projectElementary PE teachers Tim Molon and Carrie Spiegel, along with Nassau Elementary Principal Nancy Ferrarone, visited Donna O'Sullivan's classroom at the high school to view potential activity stations for elementary field days. Ms. O'Sullivan's physics students brainstormed presenMs. Spiegel confers with Mr. Molontations on poster boards for the group to consider. The schools have collaborated on this project for several years. Stay tuned to see the high school students' designs in action on June field days!

Kindergarten Classrooms Host Mother's Day Tea

Mothers visit classroomNassau's kindergarten classrooms celebrated Mother's Day early this past Monday. Moms enjoyed treats, student-made cards, and even a song or two. Happy Mother's Day!



15 Croft Road, Poughkeepsie, NY 12603; 845.463.7800 
Mission: Inspired by a tradition of excellence and a spirit of continuous improvement, the Spackenkill School District will provide all of our students with the academic and social skills necessary to pursue their goals and become responsible citizens in an interdependent global community.
Vision: All Spackenkill graduates will be lifelong learners who are inspired to pursue their dreams and contribute to the global society.

Please submit story ideas to mary.forsell@sufsdny.org

Issues of the newsletter are available on the Spackenkill website: www.spackenkillschools.org/district_newsletter_ archive