Grand Island School Board News

Previous News Pages

School Board Meeting - January 2010

Fri., January 8, 2010 Meeting..

School Board Meeting Agenda - January 2010

Mon., January 4, 2010 Meeting..

Community Education Winter 2010 Session - December 2009

    Grand Island Community Education classes for Winter 2010 will begin on January 25th. Walk-in registrations will be held on the same day from 6:00-7:00 p.m. in the foyer of the Grand Island high school on Ransom Road. The Bridge /Community Education brochures were mailed to Grand Island residents the week of December 28th.
     The Grand Island Community Education Winter brochure may also be viewed and registration forms downloaded online at (link Dpt & Svcs)

School Board Invites Alumni To Speak Out At Meeting - Jan. 5, 2010

    The Grand Island Central School District Board of Education would like to invite all alumni from the graduating classes of 2007, 2008 and 2009 to attend an upcoming linkage meeting for constructive conversation. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, January 5, 2010 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the Grand Island High School Senior Cafeteria and will allow alumni the opportunity to share their thoughts on what the district is doing right and what they feel can be done better.
School Board Sets Alumni Meeting for complete information.

School Board Meeting Agenda - December 21, 2009

Mon., December 21, 2009 Meeting Agenda..

Grand Island School District Holiday Concerts - NEW TIMES - December 2009

School District concerts - NEW DATE - NEW TIMES:
• Middle School Winter Concert #1 Wednesday, December 16 at 7:00 (NOTICE TIME CHANGE)
• Middle School Winter Concert #2 Thursday, December 17 at 7:00 (NOTICE TIME CHANGE)
    Scroll down for other concerts

School Board Meeting Agenda - December 11, 2009

Fri., December 11, 2009 Meeting Agenda..

School Board Meeting
Mailing Questionnaire To Be Considered For Gathering Feedback - December 2009

     See Buffalo News article of
Mon., 12/7/09 School Board Meeting..

Grand Island School District Holiday Concerts - December 2009

     Grand Island School District concerts are listed below:
• Huth Road Elementary School Choral Concert - 7:30 p.m. Thursday, December 3
CANCELLED Connor Middle School Winter Concert #1 (6th & 7th grade band; 6th and 7th grade chorus) - 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, December 9 - high school auditorium - See below for rescheduled concert
• High School Winter Concert - 7:30 p.m. Monday, December 14
• Beginner Band & Strings Concert 7 p.m. Tuesday, December 15 - Grand Island High School
• Huth Road Elementary School 3rd Grade Choral Concert - 1:15 p.m. Wednesday, December 16
• Middle School Winter Concert #1 Wed., December 16 (6th & 7th grade band; 6th and 7th grade chorus) 7:00 (NOTICE TIME CHANGE)
• Sidway School Kindergarten Holiday Musicale - Thursday, December 17
• Sidway School Kindergarten Holiday Musicale - Thursday, December 18
• Kaegebein Elementary School Holiday Musicale - 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, December 22

School Board Meeting Agenda - December 7, 2009

Mon., December 7, 2009 Meeting Agenda..

School Board To Analyze Capital Project Vote Results - November 2009

     As part of its December 7th meeting agenda, the Grand Island Board of Education will begin a very thorough and thoughtful process of analyzing the results of its recent capital project vote. Included in the process will be the consideration of implementing an online survey of residents and feedback on the defeated project. In addition, Board members will continue their efforts to learn more from staff and parents on their perceptions. Board members have already listened to the viewpoints expressed by one school’s PTA board and anticipate attending the PTA board meetings of the remaining four schools. Community attendance at future Board meetings along with their participation in the public comment portion of the agenda is being viewed by the Board as positive and helpful. The Board will also gather information from the recent discussions by the NYS Board of Regents and NYS Legislative budget actions as part of its comprehensive study.
     Following this widespread, on-going effort on the Board’s part to listen and learn, a decision will be made by the Board as to what, if anything, it will do in the aftermath of the project defeat. Residents are encouraged to attend Board meetings, to visit the Board website, and to call and/or email Board members with their ideas on the capital project or any other school related topic. Community involvement is welcomed and appreciated.

School District's Capital Project Referendum Defeated - November 2009

    The Grand Island School District's capital project referendum in the amount of $47,369,800, brought to a vote on Tuesday, November 17th, was voted down with 1020 votes opposed and 586 votes in favor.
11/18/09 Buffalo News Story..

Capital Project Referendum - November 17, 2009

Capital Project Referendum..

Special School Board Meeting Agenda - November 16, 2009

Mon., November 16, 2009 Meeting..

Special School Board Meeting Agenda - November 14, 2009

Sat., November 14, 2009 Meeting..

School Board Meeting Agenda - November 2009

Mon., November 2, 2009 Meeting..

School District Responds To H1N1 Influenza Swine Flu Virus Concerns - October 2009

    The School District has responded to the request for information about the H1N1 influenza swine flu virus. See
H1N1 Influenza Swine Flu Virus..

School District Provides Information On Capital Project - October 2009

    The Grand Island Board of Education lists information about the District's capital project which will be voted on Tuesday, November 17th from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. in the High School Gymnasium, 1100 Ransom Road.
Community Forum..
See Capital Project Vote Information..

School District Absentee Ballot Applications Available October 19 - October 2009

    On Tuesday, November 17, 2009 Grand Island residents will have the opportunity to cast their ballots for the school district capital project vote. For those voters who qualify, absentee ballots will be available. See
Absentee Ballot Information..

School Board Meeting Agenda - October 2009

Mon., October 19, 2009 Meeting..

School Board Meeting Agenda - October 2009

Tues., October 6, 2009 Meeting..

Community Forum to Outline Proposed Capital Project at GICSD - October 2009

Grand Island High School Principal Sandra Anzalone shows a high school science lab slated for replacement under the proposed Capital Project plan.
Click photo for larger view

   Grand Island, NY September 30, 2009 . . . Grand Island residents are invited to attend a Community Forum at Veronica E. Connor Middle School from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, October 8, 2009 to learn more about the scope of the proposed Capital Project at Grand Island Central School District. The proposed project will target infrastructure, health and safety, and energy efficient improvements at all schools. Tours will also be conducted at the Grand Island High School on Wednesday, October 14 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and again on Saturday, October 24 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Tours will begin in front of the high school main office and will showcase various areas affected by the scope of the proposed Capital Project.
   “Our facilities planning team has worked for 18 months to develop a fiscally responsible plan that will meet the needs of our students. With the plan approved by our Board of Education, we now ask all residents to join us at the community forum or building tour to learn more about the intentions of the proposed capital project,” states Richard Little, Board of Education president.
    Grand Island residents will be asked to vote on the proposed Capital Project on Tuesday, November 17, 2009. Polls are located at the Grand Island High School gym and will be open from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. For further information, call the District Clerk at 773-8801.

School Board Meeting Agenda - September 2009

September 28, 2009 Meeting..

Scholarship Awarded to Andrés Rafael Arroyo - Outstanding Administrator - Sept. 2009

Andrés Rafael Arroyo - GIHS Assistant Principal

   The New York State Council of School Superintendents recently selected Grand Island High School Assistant Principal Andrés Rafael Arroyo as the recipient of the Raymond R. Delaney Memorial Scholarship. This annual scholarship awards $2,500 to an outstanding administrator who is in the process of completing a doctoral degree and holds the promise to become a successful superintendent. The scholarship is presented in memory of Raymond R. Delaney, former President of the NYS Council of School Superintendents who died of brain cancer while in office.
    Each year outstanding administrators are nominated and only one is selected by a committee of present and former Council presidents. Mr. Arroyo’s strong work ethic and commitment to education earned him this honor. Born in Puerto Rico, Mr. Arroyo came to the United States with his family at a young age and struggled to learn English as he began to attend school. Just a few years later his family moved back to Puerto Rico until his father was transferred to Bogotá, Columbia. In 1988, Mr. Arroyo and his family had to leave the country to escape civil unrest that brought rebel factions close to them. This time the family moved to New York City. His limited English background made school a challenge but his hard work and desire to succeed in school helped overcome the limitations he faced. Upon graduating from high school, Mr. Arroyo attended the University at Buffalo to become a teacher.
   He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. at the University at Buffalo in the Educational Leadership and Policy Program. Last year, Mr. Arroyo was also awarded a national award from the University Council of Educational Administration (UCEA) which provided scholarship dollars to assist in his efforts of earning a doctoral degree. This award was based on academic achievement at the university level as well as character, motivation and potential for future success.
   Mr. Arroyo will be honored this October during a session at the NYS Superintendents Conference held in Rochester, New York. “I am proud to say that I knew and admired Ray Delaney. Ray would have considered Andrés to be a worthy recipient to carry on his legacy as a superintendent,” states Robert Christmann, Superintendent of Grand Island Schools and President Elect of NYS Council of School Superintendents. “Our school district is fortunate to have Andrés as part of our administrative staff. No one works harder, is more dedicated, caring and motivated to assist those students and families who face the same problems as he did as a student himself.”
   The New York State Council of School Superintendents is a professional and advocacy organization with over a century of service to school superintendents in New York State. The Council provides its more than 800 members with numerous professional development opportunities, publications and personal services, while advocating for public education and the superintendency.

Community Education Fall 2009 Session - September 2009

    Grand Island Community Education classes for Fall 2009 will begin on Monday, Sept. 21. Walk-in registration will be held from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the same day, in the foyer of the Grand Island High School on Ransom Road. The Bridge/Community Education brochures were mailed to Grand Island residents the week of August 24th.
     The Grand Island Community Education Fall brochure may also be viewed and registration forms downloaded online at (link Dpt & Svcs)

School District Flyers Explained - September 2009

    From time to time parents will receive flyers brought home to them by their child announcing a wide variety of school and community programs. The School District permits these flyers to be distributed because as a public school either all flyers are distributed or no flyers are. With all the worthwhile organizations and their activities on Grand Island, we did not believe that a “none go home” position made common sense. Some of these community programs may be sponsored by local Grand Island churches. The School District in no way endorses any church-based program or any other program sponsored. Each organization provides its own flyers to distribute at no cost to the District. As an equal opportunity District, we do not discriminate against any not-for-profit organization which desires to inform our Grand Island parents of their upcoming activities. Parents receiving these flyers will make their own decisions as to whether or not their children will participate. One final note: PTA generated flyers may also be sent home to parents. The content of PTA flyers is determined by each PTA.

School Board Meeting Agenda - September 2009

September 14, 2009 Meeting..

GICSD Remains Proactive in Preparation of H1N1 - September 2009

    With the rising concern of the expected recurrence of the H1N1 influenza this fall, Grand Island Central School District is taking the necessary measures to stay informed and remain proactive in keeping the students and community of Grand Island healthy and safe.
    Robert Christmann, superintendent of Grand Island Schools, Cheryl Cardone, director of pupil personnel services and Cindy Kaiser-Sharpe, school nurse, along with school leaders across Erie County, will attend a special informational session on Wednesday, September 16 at Erie 1 BOCES. Erie County Health Commissioner, Dr. Anthony Billittere will address school leaders with H1N1 updates, discuss tentative plans for community-based vaccinations and share a comprehensive approach to planning, prevention, and response to the H1N1 influenza virus.
    As H1N1 continues to remain a health concern for parents, institutions, and communities, Grand Island Central School District will remain vigilant in providing a clean, healthy and safe learning environment for the students, faculty and staff of Grand Island.
    For current H1N1 updates in Grand Island Central School District, please visit the Web site at

Search For New VCMS Assistant Principal Underway - September 2009

    Grand Island Central School District has begun searching for a new assistant principal at Veronica E. Connor Middle School (VCMS) following the recent announcement from Carl Guidotti who has accepted an administrative position with Horseheads Central School District. Guidotti has served as assistant principal of VCMS for the past 14 years. He will remain with the district through mid-October until he begins his post as middle school principal in Horseheads, New York.
    “I’ve enjoyed my time as assistant principal of Veronica E. Connor Middle School and I want to thank the district and the community for the opportunity to serve in this capacity. With every end there is a new beginning and I'm looking forward to beginning my new position as middle school principal in the Horseheads Central School District,” states Guidotti.
    The search to hire an assistant principal is currently underway. A comprehensive screening process will ensure the future candidate has the instructional and academic background suited to meet the high standards of Grand Island Central School District.

GICSD New Teacher Orientation 2009-2010 - September 2009

New teachers (from left) Mrs. Amanda Farnham, Mrs. Joanne Johnson, Miss Deanna MacDougall, Mrs. Carly Chambers, Mrs. Alexis Reddien (School Psychologist MS-HS), Mrs. Jacqueline Morris, Mrs. Ashley Loncar, Ms. Andrea Laux, and Miss Carrie Zimmerman.
Click photo for larger view

   Excitement, anticipation, and inspired are feelings shared by new teachers and staff of the Grand Island Central School District as they prepared for the new school year. New teachers and staff attended New Teacher Orientation August 17 – August 20.
   Throughout the four days they were welcomed by the Board of Education, teachers, as well as district and building administrators. The goal of the program is to provide opportunities for them to learn more about the Grand Island community and district. They were introduced to the Grand Island Central School District professional learning community through participation in discussions focusing on student as well as adult learning.
    Several workshops examined effective instruction, classroom management, assessment, and collaboration. New teachers and staff learned about the district and school cultures on Grand Island. They had the opportunity to interact with one another and ask questions to help prepare for the start of the school year.
   Every person who participated commented on the passion of the teachers, administrators, Board members, and staff who serve as educators in this great school district.

School Board Meeting Agenda - August 2009

August 31, 2009 Meeting..

School Board Meeting - August 2009

August 24, 2009 Meeting..

School Board Meeting - August 2009

August 3, 2009 Meeting..

Grand Island Central School District Fills Administrative Vacancies - July 2009

    After a comprehensive screening process, the Grand Island Board of Education approved the appointment of Kerri Nowak as Huth Road Elementary School principal and Jerry J. Parisi as secondary assistant principal of Grand Island High School during the Board of Education meeting held on Monday, July 20, 2009.
    Kerri Nowak currently serves as principal of St. Benedict School in Amherst. Prior to her current position, she was an elementary school teacher in Amherst Central School District, completed a one-year assistant principal internship at Smallwood Drive Elementary School, and a second internship under the Amherst Central School District assistant superintendent for instruction. “Kerri has the instructional and academic background, along with the interpersonal skills needed to be very successful in working with Huth Road Elementary School’s staff and parents. "I am confident she will continue to make the great strides in which that school has made in recent years,” states Robert Christmann, superintendent of Grand Island Schools.
    Appointed secondary assistant principal for Grand Island High School, Jerry Parisi most recently served Maryvale Central School District as a high school guidance counselor. Previously he completed two internships in Maryvale and Lake Shore school districts and is now in his third here on Grand Island as the summer school assistant principal intern. “Jerry's references have been outstanding and we believe his skill set and ability to listen will serve him, as well as our staff and students, very well in the years ahead,” states Robert Christmann.
    In the wake of the retirement of Carol Jones, director of pupil personnel services, the Board of Education approved the appointment of Grand Island resident, Cheryl Cardone to this position at the Board of Education meeting held on July 15, 2009. Cheryl Cardone now serves as the director of student services in North Tonawanda City School District. Prior to this position, Cheryl served as a high school science teacher, guidance counselor, elementary assistant principal and elementary principal. Robert Christmann comments, “We were unsuccessful in our first search for a person to fill this vacancy because we didn't find the right person who could meet the high standards of our district. In starting over we were able to employ Cheryl who more than exceeds those standards.”
    Kerri Nowak, Jerry Parisi and Cheryl Cardone will begin working for the district in mid-August 2009.

School Board Meeting - July 2009

July 20 Meeting..

Special School Board Meeting - July 2009

Special meeting - 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, July 15, 2009 - District Conference Room.

School District Offers True Grand Island Hospitality to Reach Workcamp - July 2009

Click for larger view

   Grand Island Central School District extended a warm welcome as they opened their doors to Reach Workcamp during the weeks of June 28 – July 11. Reach Workcamp is a non-profit organization from Colorado and was formed for the purpose of organizing and operating charitable home repair programs and equipping individuals with the skills and opportunities necessary to impact their world. Approximately 300 junior and senior high students and their adult leaders from Christian youth groups and organizations across the US and Canada joined together here in Grand Island for a week of hard work and education at Reach Workcamp.
   Reach staff members moved into Veronica E. Connor Middle School on Sunday, June 21 as they prepared for workers to arrive. Classrooms were converted to sleeping quarters as workers laid out sleeping bags and luggage. The gymnasium was transformed into an elaborate meeting facility complete with a sound system, lighting and theatrical set as morning and evening programs were conducted daily for all participants. The locker rooms provided shower facilities for the workers while the cafeteria and kitchen were also utilized to prepare and serve the workcamp meals. All expenses incurred from utilizing district facilities including utilities, custodial, technology, security, supplies and food services were paid for entirely by Reach Workcamp with no costs to Grand Island taxpayers.
   During the organization’s stay at Veronica E. Connor Middle School, workers performed home repair projects on area homes for the elderly, handicapped and poverty stricken. Repairs included basic weatherization, painting, drywall projects, porch construction, wheelchair ramps and outhouses. All repairs were made at no cost to the residents. Participants took part in morning quiet times, daily on-site devotions, evening programs and youth group reflections. These activities were designed to build community and self-esteem, encourage spiritual growth and enable participants to understand their role in combating poverty.
   “The District was pleased to extend a warm welcome to Reach Workcamp participants. We were happy to provide them with the services they required to pursue their charitable efforts,” states Bob Christmann, Superintendent of Grand Island Schools.
   The Board of Education encourages groups to utilize school facilities when they are not being used for school programs. The District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age or disability. All recognized civic, social, fraternal and religious organizations are welcome to apply. Groups wishing to use school facilities should make their requests well in advance by completing the appropriate application forms available from the technology department. All requests must be accompanied by a current insurance form before consideration can be made for scheduling the facility.

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