Matching gifts are a fantastic and simple way to double or even triple your donation! Numerous companies support the philanthropy of their employees and their community by “matching” your charitable contribution. First you donate. Then, your employer “matches” it. Easy.
DONATE ONLINE, write a check to "P.S./I.S. 217 PTA" or make a cash donation
It doesn’t cost you a penny more to double your impact. To find out if your employer will match your gift, please check with your Human Resources department today. If they don’t have one, urge them to start one.
Does My Company Match?
To determine if your company matches employee donations:
1) Check your company’s website – generally stated under "Employee Benefits"
2) Ask your Human Resources department
3) Ask 217 PTA Treasury to help, email email@example.com
Ms.Howard & Ms. Zucknovich Grade 1
"Supporting Your Child in Reading and Writing Informational Text"
Ms.Saunders Grades 5-8
"Reading Strategies to Improve Comprehension"
Thursday, December 4, 4pm - Emergency PTA Meeting - School Renaming
What’s in a name?
We have some exciting news to announce! In partnership with Cornell Tech, we are looking to re-name our school and reap the full benefits of an association with the prestigious higher education institution that will soon be our island neighbor. Since this is just the beginning of a two-year process, we wanted to start by giving all our parents up-to-the-minute information about the latest developments. We hope you’ll be as thrilled with the news as the rest of us are!
What is the proposed new name of the school?
The Cornell Tech Roosevelt Island School. The school will retain 217 as its numeric code for the Department of Education.
Why are you adding “Cornell Tech” to the name of our school?
In 2013, Cornell Tech and New York City entered into an agreement to build a university campus on Roosevelt Island. New York City residents and taxpayers would provide free land, hundreds of millions of dollars in construction bond financing and tax abatements. As part of the deal negotiation, Cornell pledged to ‘adopt’ 217 as part of its educational mission. Adding “Cornell Tech” to the official name of the school is a formalization of that commitment.
Why is the name of a school important?
In Sept 2014, NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina directed principals to develop marketing and branding for their schools to make them as attractive to families as possible. Farina said, “Part of the problem that we have is, how do you sell the schools? How do we tell the story of what's happening in your schools so that you keep them as attractive as possible? It’s a competition against each other. And many of the schools have the same message. So how do you have a different message so that you’re doing something a little bit different?”
Why is Cornell Tech’s name valuable to our school?
We have a unique opportunity and a strategic advantage with our relationship with Cornell Tech. We are one of the very few NYC public schools that has a commitment from a university to help with funding, resources, and educational development. The ability to utilize Cornell Tech’s name will help with raising our school’s visibility, grant funding opportunities, and student recruitment.
What will Cornell Tech do for our school?
As part of the deal with the New York City Council, Cornell Tech “embraces the opportunity to adopt PS/IS 217 as part of Cornell’s educational mission.” A number of ways have been identified by Principal Beckman where Cornell would be involved in the school including teacher training and support, STEM education, after-school programming courses, teach events, career day options, and hardware/software programming development. All of these elements are items that Cornell is anxious to pursue and commits to include in its educational outreach as the campus develops.
Has the school sold its naming rights?
No. You can not “sell” naming rights to a New York City public school. However, there are several successful examples of universities adopting NYC public schools such as Hunter, Columbia, and Queens College and thereby formally added their names to the school. Additionally, there are examples, and there is a process for, honorific re-naming in recognition of donors/grantors for school buildings and/or ‘specialized areas’ of public schools such as libraries, playgrounds, auditoriums, etc.
Will Cornell Tech determine the curriculum?
No. The curriculum will always be determined by the school’s administration in collaboration with teachers and parents. Cornell Tech will have an advisory role in curriculum development.
Music, art, writing, and foreign languages are important. Will they be de-emphasized if the name changes?
No. Our school, 217, is committed to the development of the whole child. We will continue to have excellent enrichment resources including music, art, writing, foreign languages, physical education, and cultural studies.
What is the process of renaming or adding a name to the school?
The Chancellor shall have ultimate authority over the naming and renaming of all public schools. Schools shall follow the procedures in this regulation and submit a proposed name change for approval by the Chancellor’s designee by March 1st of the year before the name change is to take effect. There is a codified multi-step process which includes a public notification, public hearing, Community Education Council, PTA endorsement, Principal endorsement, Superintendent approval and finally the Chancellor. However, the Chancellor, or her designee, must give final approval to the name change and retains the right to waive any requirements. For more information on this process, visit the NYC Dept of Education website.
Why is the proposal to rename the school going forward now?
It takes approximately 1-2 years to rename a school. We are starting the process now because construction of Cornell Tech on Roosevelt Island recently commenced. Roosevelt Island community leaders have identified Cornell Tech’s contributions towards 217 as one of the positive and productive benefits that the university can give back to the local community. We are pursuing the re-naming now to synchronize the benefit to the school with its presence in the community.
Middle school applications will be available from public elementary schools by November 14, and due back to schools on December 2. Private school students in 5th grade will be able to fill out an application at a local enrollment office.
View the middle school directories here. Check out the translated directories by clicking on the languages on the right side of this page.
Check the calendar and events page for scheduled open houses.
If you are new to New York City, find information on enrollment for fall 2014 here.
Fifth grade public school students must participate in Middle School Admissions. Each fall, all fifth graders currently enrolled in a New York City public elementary school receive customized middle school applications. The application will include all the middle schools to which each student is eligible to apply. To complete the application, students rank schools in preference order and return the application to their current school. Decision letters are available in the spring. Click here for the middle school admissions checklist.
In New York City:
2015 Kindergarten Directories are now available online! If you live in NYC and your child was born in 2010, you can use the Directories to help you decide which schools you'd like to apply to for fall 2015. Each borough's Directory contains information about the kindergarten admissions process, schools located in that borough, district maps, and a list of charter schools.
During the month of December, you can pick up printed copies of the Kindergarten Directories from your local elementary school or at an Enrollment Office. Translated directories will be available in early December on our website.
The Kindergarten application period for the 2015-2016 school year will be January 7 through February 13, 2015. Be sure to check our website as updated information becomes available. If you have any questions throughout the process, please call 718-935-2009 or ES_Enrollment@schools.nyc.gov.
217 PTA,The NY International Children's Film Festival, and GKIDS are proud to present a new film from the creators of the Academy Award Nominated Secret of the Kells. Song of the Sea tells the story of Ben and his little sister, Saoirse, who embark on a fantastic journey across a fading world of ancient legend and magic in an attempt to return to their home by the sea. The film takes inspiration from the mythological Selkies of Irish folklore, who live as seals in the sea but become humans on land. It is a beautifully animated film the whole family will enjoy this holiday season! Come Opening Weekend (December 19th - 21st) to meet Tom Moore, the director of both Secret of the Kells and Song of the Sea
Song of the Sea opens December 19th at the IFC Center.
The film is Rated PG.
To purchase tickets visit, make sure to choose 217 from the pull-down menu:
**K-2 Chorus members, please arrive to school at 4:45pm, 5th grade and Middle School Band please arrive at 5:15pm.**
3rd and 4th graders WILL NOT be performing at this concert instead they will perform in the Spring Concert.
Dress Attire for Girls: white shirt or sweater, black skirt or dress pants, black socks, black shoes or boots (no sneakers please).
Dress Attire for Boys: white shirt with a long black tie. Black tie is preferred, but any colorful tie will also be fine. Black dress pants, black socks, black shoes.
Suggested donation at the door $5 per person. All proceeds support 217's wonderful music program - hiring piano player for the concert, purchasing music books and instruments for the band. Thank you for your support!
Buy raffle tickets ($1 a ticket) and win a blue tooth PORTABLE SPEAKER!
Drawing at the Winter Concert, you don't have to be present to win. More information and raffle tickets coming home via backpack soon!
We are excited to inform you that per administration's request and according to your vote at the last PTA meeting, funds have been allocated towards more professional development for our wonderful teachers!
Special thank you to Nicola Godwin, math consultant working with 217 teachers, for her informative presentation about professional development at our November 19th PTA meeting!
▪ Parent Workshop on beginning reading strategies and Common Core Standards for Kindergarten Families - Room 121
▪ Science in Middle School for Middle School families.
New York Public Library TOWN HALL Forum on Roosevelt Island Branch on Thursday, Nov 20 at 6:00 pm at Good Shepherd, 543 Main Street. This is your chance to provide thoughts & ideas for programs and services for NEW library to be built at remodeled interior of 504 Main St.
Repost from PTOToday.com
Hundreds of research studies show that when parents get involved, children do better in school. We sum up the details that every parent should know—and you should tell them.
Building parent involvement is the single most important thing that parent groups do. Often, it's the most difficult, too. And that's too bad because there are many compelling reasons why parents—all parents—should get involved in their children's education. If you're having trouble building involvement, the problem might be that you're not making the right argument. You simply need better ammunition.
A common way to think about getting people involved is to counter their objections. People say they don't have time, so you make it clear you only need them for an hour or two. People don't feel comfortable at school, so you work to make it more welcoming. Schedules won't allow busy people to come to the school, so you find ways they can contribute from home.
Each time you address the "don't" issues, you open up your group to more people: people with time and schedule issues, those who haven't felt welcome in the past, dads, grandparents, people who don't speak English well.
All of that is important. But don't assume that once you tear down the barriers, people will flock to get involved. They should, sure. But they should go to the dentist more often, too.
It's up to you to make a stronger case for parents to get involved than "It's for the kids." For many people, that's simply not enough to get them energized. The good news is that there are compelling, definitive reasons to get involved, and they are backed up by volumes of research. Plus, they apply to everyone—no matter their bank balance, ethnicity, work schedule, education level, or anything else.
What Every Parent Should Know
Researchers have been studying the effects parent attitudes and actions have on their children's academic success for more than 30 years. The results have been consistent. Anne Henderson and Nancy Berla summed it up in their book A New Generation of Evidence: The Family Is Critical to Student Achievement, which reviewed the existing research: "When parents are involved in their children's education at home, they do better in school. And when parents are involved in school, children go farther in school and the schools they go to are better."
Get More Parents Involved
Host a School Family Night and get more parents to connect with your school. Our FREE SFN planning kits make planning and organizing your event a breeze. Order yours now.
Much of the information here is taken from publications by Henderson, a consultant at New York University's Institute for Education and Social Policy, and various coauthors that examine parent involvement research; and from publications by Joyce Epstein, director of the National Network of Partnership Schools at Johns Hopkins University; the National Center for Parent Involvement in Education, which Henderson helped found; and summaries of research prepared by the Michigan Department of Education, San Diego Unified School District, and others.
Research shows that when parents are involved in their children's education, the children are more likely to:
When parents get involved early in their children's education, the results are more pronounced and long-lasting.
At All Levels
Studies indicate that parent involvement in education has a positive effect at all grade levels: elementary, middle, and high school.
In both two-parent and father-only households where dads are highly involved in their schools, children are more likely to:
A Significant Difference
One study found that students from families with above-average parent involvement were 30 percent more successful in school than those with below-average involvement. Success was measured by GPA; test scores in math, science, reading, and social studies; promotion and retention rates; and teacher ratings.
Another study found that in schools where teachers reported high levels of outreach to parents, test scores grew at a rate 40 percent higher than in schools that reported low levels of outreach to parents.
Home and School
A three-year study of 12,000 high school student concluded that "When parents come to school regularly, it reinforces the view in the child's mind that school and home are connected and that school is an integral part of the whole family's life."
Reading and the Parent Group
A two-year study of home and school influences on literacy achievement among children from low-income families found that the single variable most positively connected to all literacy skills was formal involvement in parent-school activities such as PTO participation, attending school activities, and serving as a volunteer.
Tell the Principal
Schools with involved parents enjoy:
Parents Benefit, Too
When parents become involved in their children's education, the parents are more likely to:
A Final Note
Why should parents get involved? Because involvement can make a dramatic difference for their children.
Why should school administrators encourage involvement? Because it can make a significant difference, both in school atmosphere and in the success rate of students—especially when parents are included as partners in the educational process.
Parent involvement is a powerful tool. Spread the word.
African Dance Performance
Join Bike New York and Roosevelt Island Historical Society for a fun free bike tour this Sunday! The tour will stop at six different landmarks where a member of historical society will share some of the history that makes our island so unique. Report to the Bike New York container under the Helix Ramp, next to Gristedes at1:15pm. Bikes and helmets will be provided if you need them. All participants will receive a free t-shirt. The ride will conclude at Main Street Sweets where we'll enjoy a nice hot beverage!
To sign-up for this ride, please email Caitlin Goodspeed at firstname.lastname@example.org.