August 27, 2019

Mark Your Calendar

Tuesday, September 3
New Student Orientation
Lower School: All PS & K and new students to LS | 9:00-10:30 a.m.
Middle School: All 6th grade and new students to MS | 10:00-11:15 a.m.
Upper School: All 9th grade and new students to US | 8:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. (parent portion ends at 9:30 a.m.)

Academic Center for Enrichment (ACE) Orientation
Note: The MS and US orientations are for students only; parents will meet on ACE Parent Night in School. All new students and students entering 6th and 9th grade should attend. All other current ACE students are strongly encouraged to attend.
Lower School: Amy Laurent will be available to discuss the ACE program with enrolled and interested families during the Lower School Orientation.
Middle School: 8:30-10:00 a.m. | Campbell Conference Room
Upper School: 12:00-1:30 p.m. | Campbell Conference Room

Wednesday, September 4
First Day of School! | Busing Begins
Grades PS – 8 & Grade 12: 9:00 a.m. start
Grade 9: Class trip to Berkshires | 8:00 a.m. arrival to campus
Grade 10: Class trip to Gifts to Give | 9:00 a.m. arrival to campus
Grade 11: Class trip to Massachusetts | 7:30 a.m. arrival to campus
PTL Welcome Back Meet & Greet: 8:45 – 10:00 a.m. | Campbell Courtyard (open house style – please stop by)

Other Important Dates
Head of School Parent Socials: RSVP HERE
Thursday, September 5 | 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. | Hopelands
Tuesday, September 10 | 8:30 – 10:00 a.m. | Head’s Residence
Wednesday, September 11 | 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. | Head’s Residence
Wednesday, September 18 | 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. | Head’s Residence

ACE US & MS Parent Night: Thursday, September 12 | 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. | Campbell Conference Room
Lower School Picture Days: Thursday, September 12 | Friday, September 13
Middle School Picture Days: Thursday, September 19 | Friday, September 20
Parent Night in School: Thursday, September 19 | 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Fall Classic Golf and Tennis Tournament and Dinner Auction: Monday, September 23 | Potowomut Golf Club
Upper School Picture Days: Wednesday, September 25 – Friday, September 27
Blue & White Night: Friday, September 27 | 5:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Homecoming Celebration: Saturday, September 28 | 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Welcome New Faculty and Staff

We are pleased to welcome our newest faculty members to the RHS community. Pictured left to right, back row: Sean Tucker (K-6 PE and Health), James Himmelmann (Music), Karl Sutterlin (US Math), Dan Shaker (Technology Support Specialist), Bridget Keane (MS English), Iveth Streisand (US Spanish), Anna Slaybaugh (US Math), Helen Dembinski (ACE Learning Specialist), Elaine Bernadino (LS Language) Around table: Christine Comeau (US Science), Natalie Joseph (3rd Grade), Katy McNamara (School Nurse), Brady Wheatley (US History and Social Science), Emily Seddon (Kindergarten), Hannah Hudson (French) Missing: Lisa Paolino (Accounts Payable)

Veracross Family Portal Update
We have updated the Family Portal! You will find updated information about PTL and division news. If you need information for a carpool, you’ll find in the Directory area a list of other Rocky Hill families that live within five miles of your home address. Please remember to update your household information if any changes have occurred.

Health Forms
If you haven’t submitted your health forms for the 2019-2020 school year, please do so as soon as possible. You can drop them off to the Nurses’ office or Hopelands in the Business Office. You can also fax them to (401) 885-4985 or email the forms to

Student Accounts
This summer we have had some staff changes in our Business Office. If you need assistance with your account, please contact Martha Cunningham at or (401) 884-9070 x 222.

Afternoon Snack Bar & New Food Service
We are happy to announce an afternoon snack bar will be open from 3:15 – 3:45 p.m. daily beginning September 9, 2019. This will be a cash snack bar with a variety of items. Some choices will be available daily while other menu options will change from day to day. Our hope is to offer nutritious snacks for our students who remain on campus after school.

Join Us for the Fall Classic
Monday, September 23, 2019 | Potowomut Golf Club
Join us as we hit the links, swing our rackets, and raise our bidder paddles to benefit our students, faculty, and programs at the 21st and final Fall Classic. You need not be a golf or tennis player to participate. Many guests come just for the dinner and auction in the evening. This is our big fall fundraiser, so please join in the fun and show your support!

If you would like to volunteer, have an auction item to donate, or have any questions, please email Missy Walker. Proceeds support a new yellow bus, athletics, scholarships/financial aid, and student programs.

Pick-up & Drop-Off – Front Lot Only
We ask all students to be picked up and dropped off in the front parking lot only. The rear parking lot is limited to bus traffic. Please refer to correspondence from your division heads in regard to division-specific policy and procedure related to late arrivals, early dismissals, and students staying late who are not in sports.

Faculty & Staff Parking Spots
Please take note of parking spots marked as reserved for faculty and staff members and avoid parking in them during the school day. There are open spots for families and visitors in front of Hopelands, near the tennis courts, and near the Sharpe Gymnasium. Thank you.

Hack for Global Good is Back For 2019
Join us in making the 2019 Hack for Global Good a must-experience event of the year for the state of Rhode Island.  This multi-day event brings teams of students together to develop a solution to one of the UN Global Grand Challenges. Teams collaborate and then pitch their ideas to a panel of experts, competing for prizes and real-world opportunities to put their idea into action. We anticipate an exponential increase in statewide participation from across all sectors in support of this year’s theme: Solution2Pollution. We need you, your expertise, your participation, and your support. Our community of schools has grown, and our network of mentors and game-changers working to tackle all forms of pollution: air, water, soil, noise, social media, light, and environmental pollution must grow as well! All areas of expertise are wanted: designers, communicators, artists, scientists, coders, activists, writers, etc. Join us for some real-world learning. Students will build their network, have fun with peers, and collaborate with experts in the field. Contact Meg Stowe to get involved.

Download the Mobile App!
Be sure to download Rocky Hill School’s mobile app from the iPhone App Store or Google Play. This free app is full of useful information and features.

      • Portal Links
      • Events Calendar
      • Athletics Schedules and Rosters
      • Notifications
      • Campus Map and Tours
      • eCurrents
      • School Store
      • Lunch Menu
      • Weather
      • Social Media Links
      • Emergency Numbers

Be sure to also connect on our social media sites:  FacebookInstagramTwitterLinkedIn


Sign-up for After-School Programs at Rocky Hill

Rocky Hill offers before – and after-school programs that are open to the public and provide academic, artistic, and athletic opportunities for students in grades Pre-K through 8. A variety of engaging courses are offered Monday through Thursday afternoons and are led by highly talented Rocky Hill faculty members and instructors.

2019 Fall Courses:
Soccer – Grades PK-5
Full STEAM Ahead – Grades 2-5
Enchanted Fairy Houses – Grades K-3
Patty Cakes – Grades 3-6
Stay tuned for more information and to register!

Emergency Alerts
Rocky Hill School uses Veracross to rapidly communicate health, safety, or emergency information using text messaging. This method is not used for regular communication, but rather only for emergency notifications or information related to abnormal events (i.e., extreme weather and school closings). All members of the Rocky Hill School community (especially parents, students, faculty, and staff) are encouraged to update their cell phone numbers in the family portal.

Most major TV, radio, and internet news sites in Rhode Island embed the RI Broadcasters Closing & Delay website on their websites. You can receive school closure text messages from the RI Broadcasters Association by clicking here to register your phone. Be sure to select “Rocky Hill School” from the list of schools.

Slave Medallion Project
On Sunday, August 25th, the Slave Medallion Project held a ceremony at Patriot’s Park in Portsmouth, a battle site of the 1st Rhode Island Regiment of the Continental Line (1775-1783), for the installation of its first official marker. Charles Roberts, the Director of the program, invited our fourth grade teacher, Charlie Laurent, and members of his 2017-18 fourth grade class as honored guests, given their work as Junior Historians with the Medallion Project and Smith’s Castle. Luke Lehouiller, supported by his classmates in attendance, Naseem Ankoma, Alexa Laurent, and Eva Richards, read his essay on the importance of studying history to the audience. Our campus will be the future site of a medallion installation. NEWS ARTICLE

Students Spend Summer Developing Start-up
Three Rocky Hill students and one Wheeler student who participated in Rocky Hill’s 2018 Hack for Global Good spent the summer developing their idea, a mobile app to encourage energy conservation, into a startup. One of the prizes from the Hackathon gave the team an opportunity to pitch their app idea to the CEO, Incubator Director, and others at Social Enterprise Greenhouse (SEG), after which they received an invitation to participate in the SEG Incubator Program. This team of high schoolers is the first ever to be invited to participate in this esteemed program. With support from the Director of Innovation, Meg Stowe, the team will begin the formal program in early September.

Isabel’s Emoji in New York Times for Kids
3rd grader, Isabel Asen responded to a New York Times appeal for new emoji ideas. Here emoji, optimistic, was selected to appear, along with an artist’s illustration of Isabel’s idea, in the New York Times for Kids section on August 25th!


Delilah Completes Race 4 Chase
2nd grader, Delilah Vecoli, completed her first Triathlon this summer. You can see her joy in the photos! She completed a 6-week program called Race 4 Chase honoring the memory of 6-year-old triathlete Chase Kowalski who died during the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. Dee was both challenged and encouraged during this amazing program, and her confidence has grown so much.

Hitting the Ground Running
Rocky Hill rang in the 2019-20 fall athletic season with a bang!  Upper School student-athletes and coaches were joined by Applied Performance Sciences, which is a company run by two former Navy Seals, Anthony and Jason.  The Seals put our student-athletes through rigorous physical training and substantial debriefs on topics ranging from decision-making, stress management, optimizing performance, communication, and listening skills. This day-long program kicked off a week of preseason in a camp-like setting that included sport-specific practices, sessions on mindful performance, goal setting, and team building.

Schedules and Recaps
Please use the family and student portals to view practice and game schedules as well as other athletics events. You can view results and recaps, as well as photos from each team, on your mobile app under Athletics. Recaps can also be found on the Athletics Blog.

Faculty and Alumni Giving Back
Art teacher Rachel Armentano volunteered for Amenity Aid by delivering toiletries to the Amos House in Providence. She was pleasantly surprised to hand off the donations to recent BU grad and RHS alum Ellie Farber ’15 who was interning for the development department this summer!

Serious Science
New Upper School science teacher, Christine Comeau, spent three days this summer at a Teachers on the Estuary (TOTE) professional development workshop on Prudence Island which was put on by the Narragansett Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and sponsored by NOAA. Christine spent time reviewing estuarine science concepts and active ways to bring these ideas into the classroom.  Activities included salt marsh research, national water quality data sets, and climate change with a special focus on Narragansett Bay. Much of what Christine participated in is a natural fit to Rocky Hill’s waterfront campus. Christine also attended a professional development workshop sponsored by the University of Rhode Island, in collaboration with KIdWind Energy. This workshop focused on the topic of wind energy and renewable energy infrastructure, wind energy technology, and the environmental impacts of offshore wind farms. The workshop also covered curriculum related to electricity, wind turbine function, and engineering and design related to developing wind turbine models.  The culmination of the workshop was a trip out to Block Island to view the nation’s first offshore wind farm.

Jess Russell – Mastering English
This summer, Upper School English teacher Jess Russell graduated with a Masters in English from the Bread Loaf School of English, which is part of Middlebury College. For the past five summers, she took graduate classes ranging in topic from Old English to post-colonial South Asian Literature, Milton to poetry writing, Joyce’s Ulysses to Contemporary Latinx Literature. This is her second Master’s. Her first is in French Literature.

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