Spotlight on Our District

From the Superintendent

“We have a highly moral and very serious responsibility to prepare our young people for life after their school years in Nyack.  If we accept that the world is rapidly changing: what type of education do our students need?"

In keeping with our District mission and incorporating the results from our  Community Priorities Survey Results and Analysis (2016)  we have established "Core Elements of Education" that we believe are necessary competencies that all students should embody to become global citizens with true success:  Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration, Communication, Compassion, Core Mastery, Cultural Awareness.  

Join Us in the 2017-18 school year with a shared vision for equity, innovation and optimism.  Please peruse our sites and tell us what you think, using Let's Talk!

Dr. James Montesano

News Worthy

  • District Hosts at Third Community Forum with a Film Screening of "Beyond Measure"

    Nyack Schools are pleased to be on the forefront of reimagining school for our students as we ask ourselves what it takes to be successful and how to measure that success in an our rapidly changing, complex world. Some of the highlights of change happening in how we teach and learn are featured in a video that shows our LATI (Learner Active Technology Infused) class rooms in action. 

    Dr. James Montesano, Superintendent of Nyack Schools, is interested in facilitating a trajectory of collaboration for systemic change in our education system. Based on the results of a Community Priorities Survey which were presented at the first community forum in 2016, a Profile of a Graduate was developed to include “core competencies” that Nyack administrators and staff are striving to embed in all students: Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration, Communication, Compassion, Content Mastery, Cultural Awareness. A second forum in the Spring of 2017 included an “Innovation Showcase” featuring new initiatives that teachers are using in class rooms to inspire daily learning.

    In a third forum presentation, the documentary BEYOND MEASURE featured several public schools across the country who are innovating from the inside. By spotlighting success stories, BEYOND MEASURE shows that it is possible to rise above a toxic achievement fixation and build a more empowering, student-centered education culture from the ground up.  Nyack Schools are in this work. We are continuing a community-wide, collaborative conversation of what it takes to ensure that all students succeed with equity. 

    News Worthy
  • “Dimensions,” Nyack High School's literary magazine, was presented with a National Award of Excellence for Student Literary Magazines

    The National Council of Teachers of English has recognized Dimensions the high school’s literary magazine, for “National Excellence in Student Literacy Magazines.”  In our District English Department, there is a shared commitment in fostering a love of writing among our students who participate in such extra-curricular programs.  This good news acknowledges that collective effort.  It certainly contributes directly to our departmental goal of generating a “Culture of Literacy” that everyone in the English Department has set out to build.

    More specifically, as shared by Mr. John Joyce as English Department Chair, we want to recognize and acknowledge the time, effort and guidance of Mr. David Sheehan and Ms. Simona Moldovan, the advisors of Dimensions, as well as the many student writers and editors who contributed to its making.  We are all proud of this achievement!

    Congratulations to Mr. Sheehan, Ms. Maldovan and our Dimensions students upon receiving this prestigious award.

    News Worthy
  • Innovation Now 2017 Showcase Highlights and Virtual & Augmented Reality Project

    News Worthy
  • Edward Hopper House Art Center Collaboration Provides Museum Partnership Program for Nyack Middle School

    Nyack Middle School art class receives an Artist-in-Residence

    News Worthy
  • A Snapshot of Academic, Artistic and Athletic Accomplishments Are Highlighted "With Pride"

    Nyack Public Schools proudly promotes the achievements and accomplishments of our students from all aspects of education.  Take a look at some of the highlights from this past school year in the attached "With Pride: 2016-17 School Year at a Glance", which was included in our annual Budget Newsletter and mailed to all community members.

    News Worthy
  • Annual Spring Arts Show combines a visual arts exhibit, a social message & soup.

    On Thursday, April 20th, the Nyack High School Visual Arts Department, ArtWorks and S.O.S. (Students Opposing Starvation) join forces to present a truly unique evening that is designed to raise awareness as well as funds. This Annual Spring Arts Show supports the work of our student artists while also raising money for: Soup Angels of Nyack, Helping Hands in Rockland County, Midnight Run in NYC and Mzuzu Academy in Malawi, Africa.

    Attendees can donate to “Empty Bowls” by purchasing an original, glazed soup bowl that will be filled with homemade soup from some of our staff and BOE members who are participating as "District guest chefs". Bowls will be sold at $20. The concept of “Empty Bowls” began with S.O.S., a Nyack High School group which has been active for over 30 years and promotes community service to provide meals to the hungry and end hunger. All proceeds from “Empty Bowls” will benefit the noteworthy organizations, listed above, that serve locally and globally.

    “ArtCards” is a second piece of the evening and is sponsored by “ArtWorks”, a parent group that supports the District’s extracurricular programming in visual arts.  Aspiring and local artists were invited to participate by creating and donating a postcard-size original work of art.  All submitted ArtCards can be purchased at $20 per card; proceeds from “ArtCards” will support extracurricular art programs in Nyack Public Schools.

    This Spring Arts Show is open to the public and will be held at Nyack High School, 360 Christian Herald Road, Upper Nyack, NY, from 6:00pm – 8:00pm. Over 300 works of art will be on exhibit in addition to the 100 glazed bowls and over 100 ArtCards included in the fund raising portion of the event.  Come and enjoy the soup and the show!

    News Worthy
  • "Going Green" Initiative: Saving Paper and Using Peachjar... Here's How YOU Can Help:

    The District is interested in saving time, money and trees.  We are also interested in continuing to improve our school - to - home connections so that all families are informed and engaged in their child's education.

    In February, a District-wide initiative has begun in preparation for "going green".  We understand that our families will need support and step-by-step communication if we are to be successful.  The goal is to ensure that more families can have easy, online access to importance information generated from our schools and Central Administration Office.  The first step is to make certain we have correct contact information for every household in our District. This means, we need your help to update our database with each household's current email address(es),  phone numbers and additional emergency contacts (2).

    Elementary students were sent the attached flyer home in back packs during the week of February 6th. Middle & High School parent/guardians will receive it in the mail with 2nd quarter report cards.


    The next step will be to focus on activating Parent Portal accounts for all elementary level parents or for MS/HS parents who do not yet have one established.

    We NEED your help and appreciate you taking a few minutes of your time to fill out this form.

    News Worthy
  • Children at Valley Cottage Elementary vote to support a project that re-builds schools in our neighboring country, Haiti

    Principal Gina Cappiello is proud of her students as they sing from their hearts each morning program and begin their school day together.  This week, she is extra proud of the entire VCE community, under the leadership of the PTA and staff, for the very impressive demonstration of kindness, compassion and commitment they have all shown for the world outside of their own. 

    In December, the VCE PTA sponsored a fun-filled, sold-out event that raised over $1,000 for a local non profit organization of the students' choice.  VCE students were given a list of several well-deserving, local organizations from which to choose.  Upon learning about the children in Haiti, it was decided in a school-wide vote, that the check for $1000 would go to Rockland County Haiti Relief to help provide opportunity and space for children there to learn.  On January 12th's morning program, the check was presented to Executive Director Renold Julien and Program Coordinator Sandra Oates.  Amidst smiles, listening ears and alert faces of our VCE students, a presentation to students featured stories of how the children of Haiti are determined to continue going to school even when there is no building to house their daily education. 

    Thank you "Miss Julie", (VCE Family Resource Center), and Ms. Leibel (VCE teacher) for organizing efforts and to the fabulous VCE PTA and Staff for participating in the Lip Sync and for helping to instill compassion in our children by the work you do each day.  Photos of the event can also be viewed in our District's "Spotlight" at the top of our home page.

    News Worthy
  • Nyack Public Schools and OCADA join forces to address an issue that is taking our communities by storm: Why is it "A Perfect Storm" ?

    Most Americans know someone with a substance use disorder, and many know someone who has lost or nearly lost a family member as a consequence of substance misuse. Yet, at the same time, few other medical conditions are surrounded by as much shame and misunderstanding as substance use disorders.

    According to a recent report from the U.S. Surgeon General misuse is a “pervasive and increasing problem” in U.S. and youth and young adults are especially at risk. “Although substance misuse problems and use disorders may occur at any age, adolescence and young adulthood are particularly critical at-risk periods,” said U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy. People who use alcohol before the age of 15 are four times more likely to develop an alcohol use disorder later in life compared to those who have their first drink at age 20 or older. Consequences of alcohol misuse include compromised physical and mental health, including heart and liver diseases, various forms of cancer, suicide attempts and fatalities, and overdose deaths.

    The educational evening on January 19, which is a must for parents of teens, will be held at Nyack Seaport and will feature speakers Dr. Parinda Parikh and Dr. Ayodele Adeigbola from Second Arc Psychiatric Associates of White Plains. Drs. Parikh and Adeigbola will also take part in a panel discussion along with Dornzella Milligan, MA, CPP, Student Support Services Prevention Coordinator at Nyack High School; Rockland County Undersheriff Robert Van Cura, OCADA’s Board President; India Perez-Urbano, NHS Alumnus and founder of Rockland Connects; and “John,” a young adult in recovery. The panel will be followed by a question and answer session with the audience.

    Refreshments will be served. The evening is a first in a planned series of Town Hall style forums that are FREE AND OPEN TO THE COMMUNITY.

    Please join us  on January 19th as we come together to learn more about prevention, treatment and how to weather this perfect storm.

    News Worthy
  • District Administrators, Staff and Members of our BOE Attend "Undoing Racism Workshop" Together

    A group of thirteen from Nyack Public Schools participated in a weekend-long Undoing Racism Workshop on October 28th -30th.  The program is based out of a New Orleans organization called The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond.  The organization and its trainers provide a focus on understanding what racism is; where it comes from; how it functions; why it persists; and how it can be undone.   The Undoing Racism Workshop has been brought to Rockland County each year for 37 years by VCS of Rockland;  it took place at Rockland Community College.

    Thank you to the members of our Nyack Board of Education, who made it possible for NPS representatives to attend this year.  A take-away quote was shared by BOE President, Karen Hughes:  "When you are dead, you do not know you are dead.  All of the pain is felt by others.  The same happens when you are ignorant".   All attendees agreed that it was impossible to leave unchanged by what was learned.  The Nyack Public School's community looks forward to continued learning as we examine what needs to be "undone" and how to foster positive systemic change.  We believe that all students deserve to learn and grow with equity and efficacy.  

    News Worthy

District Initiatives Showcase

 NEW  District Technology Vision

 Technology 5-Year Plan & Presentation


STEM Update (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)

S.T.E.M. Update in the Nyack Public Schools


 NEW  District Communication Plan 2016-17

"CITE": Connect, Integrate, Tell, Engage


K-12 Social Studies Curriculum   

Social Studies K-12 


  Bilingual Classrooms Pilot, K-2   

  Raising Bilingual Children 


   Guidance Program Review

   Nyack Guidance Department Program Review


     Let's Talk!  Engaging in Authentic Communication

     Lets Talk Overview 


Community Matters


InspireNyack The Foundation to Inspire Excellence in Nyack Schools

Nyack Center  More than a community building; a place for building community

Nyack Library

Valley Cottage Library\I

Village of Nyack

Village of South Nyack

Village of Upper Nyack

Information Rockland services, events, organizations in Rockland County

Rockland 21C ensuring the optimal development of every child

Rockland County Department of Health

Rockland County Department of Social Services

Rockland BOCES, Rooted in the Community

Nyack Heart & Soul on the Hudson

Edward Hopper House Arts Center