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Sheriff Bouchard's school safety message
Thinking beyond traditional teaching and learning

We remain truly grateful for our dedicated teachers, administrators, support staff, families and community members who work together to ensure all RCS students receive the necessary supports to excel.

As a future-focused organization, we strive to think beyond traditional teaching and learning opportunities to enhance student engagement. Last week, some of our adult students with special needs joined me for a new experience at Three Moons Farm, where we explored opportunities to pilot equine-assisted therapy. Pictured are students enjoying their field trip which focused on team building and communication.

RCS 2022-23 revised school calendar

The RCS 2022-23revised school calendar is attached below.  Specific school information can also be found on the district website under the "District Calendar" section.

2022-2023 RCS school calendar, revised 11-17-22

Below are some key dates:

  • First day of school for students: Aug. 29, 2022 with a half day.
  • Winter break:  Dec. 24, 2022 – Jan. 8, 2023. Students return to school on Jan. 9, 2023.
  • Spring break:  March 25 – April 2, 2023. Students return to school on April 3, 2023.
  • Last day of school: June 9, 2023 with a half day for students.
RCS celebrates our veterans

At the RCS Veterans celebration, Superintendent Dr. Robert Shaner, U.S. Marine Corps, hosted 30 veterans who have served our country and our school district with great dedication. These outstanding individuals have our profound respect and gratitude. 

If you are a veteran and you retired from RCS, please reach out to us at 248-726-3000, as we continue to have our annual celebration grow.   

Stewards of the Great Lakes

The Van Hoosen Vikings are stewards of the Great Lakes! Eighth grade stream leaders learned on location. They collected new data and compared data from previous years to check the water quality, oxygen levels and soil of Lake Michigan.

Celebrating excellence in art education!

Congratulations to Amy King, who earned the 2022-23 Michigan Elementary Visual Arts Educator of the Year award from the Michigan Art Education Association! For the past 23 years, Mrs. King has been inspiring RCS students to discover their talents and creativity through artistic mediums. In addition to her duties as the Musson Elementary School art teacher, Mrs. King serves as the RCS elementary art department chairperson, a position that she has held since 2012 to enhance the program for young artists across the district. Please join us in congratulating Mrs. King as we celebrate excellence in art education. She will be formally recognized at an upcoming Board of Education meeting.

RCS provides dependable childcare

The strategic plan ensures that the district focuses resources on developing and enhancing curriculum and instruction, to include preschool programs, global awareness opportunities, and technology and infrastructure. The RCS Caring Steps Children’s Center was established in 2018 as a much-needed childcare option for students from six weeks through age 5 who reside in the greater Rochester area.

On October 2021, U.S. Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh visited Caring Steps to learn more about how the post-pandemic labor challenges had a significant impact on our ability to provide childcare for the community. At that time, the facility was operating with only 11 employees; 126 students remained on a waiting list.

Efforts to recruit and retain employees is improving; however, shortfalls still exist. Approximately one year later, the number of compassionate and highly qualified caregivers has increased significantly to 34; however, 350 students are now on the waiting list. WXYZ-TV Broadcast Journalist Kim Russell recently visited Caring Steps and shared additional information about how the national labor shortage continues to impact childcare.

RCS Caring Steps Children’s Center employment opportunities are available for nurturing caregivers through the Genesee Education Consultant Services (GECS). For more information, please go to: https://www.gecs-inc.org/rochester.html.

ATPS students develop daily life skills for independence

Special education activities for RCS students 18-26 years old take place in the classroom, at work sites and in the community. The Adult Transition Programs and Services (ATPS) Trailblazers is happy to resume its popular Jitterz pop-up coffee shop, allowing students to serve customers and practice work skills in a supportive learning environment. Hot and cold coffee options and pre-packaged snacks are available, along with handmade craft and gift items that are created through ATPS microenterprises. All proceeds benefit RCS special education programs.

RCS students excel at extraordinary levels

 

  • Twenty-one RCS seniors were named as National Merit Scholar Semifinalists this year. These students have scored in the top one percent of approximately 1.5 million students nationwide who took the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Another 39 students received Letters of Commendation through the program in recognition of their outstanding academic promise.
  • Approximately 46 percent of RCS graduates from the Class of 2022 maintained a cumulative 3.7 grade point average or higher (straight A’s) through their entire high school education.
  • The RCS Class of 2022 also celebrated 444 Scholars of Highest Distinction. Each of these scholars achieved a cumulative grade point average of 3.9 or higher and completed four or more Advanced Placement courses.
  • All three comprehensive RCS high schools have been ranked as a best high school in Michigan by U.S. News and World Report. Out of 660 Michigan schools who made the most recent rankings, RCS high schools ranked number 6, 18, and 41.
  • According to MISchoolData, during the past two school years, Adams, Rochester and Stoney Creek significantly outperformed comparable local and state high schools in performance summary, defined as the percent of students proficient in all subjects on state tests.
  • Numerous RCS schools have achieved U.S. Department of Education’s National Blue Ribbon status and/or were designated as a Reward School. These honors affirm the hard work of students, educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging content.
  • RCS student opportunities are vast and varied. The district offers 25 Advanced Placement courses; 26 Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses in business, marketing, engineering and computer science; 180 high school electives; 75 Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) varsity teams; 90 sub-varsity athletic teams; STEAM opportunities; hundreds of student clubs; and choir, band and orchestra instruction which earned the designation as a Best Community for Music Education.
  • We believe that accountability, communication, transparency, and trust throughout the system are vital components of a healthy organization. For the fifth straight year, RCS has earned the Meritorious Budget Award, indicating excellence in school budget presentation and transparent budget development. Additionally, for the third time, RCS has earned a Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting for meeting the highest standards for financial reporting and transparency. These designations are awarded only to school districts who have undergone a rigorous review by professional auditors and continue to meet or exceed the program’s stringent criteria.
SCHS teacher participated in NASA research flight

Eric Thuma, Stoney Creek High School teacher, participated in a research flight on NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). He was one of 28 teachers from across the country selected by the SETI Institute as a 2020 NASA Airborne Astronomy Ambassador. Thuma’s recent week-long immersion experience and training in astrophysics, planetary science and pedagogy will help formulate a curriculum module for RCS students that focuses on the electromagnetic spectrum to engage students in real-world STEM learning. 

Enrollment registration is available online

New to RCS? Don't delay, register now!

Online enrollment is open for all new students from transitional kindergarten through grade 12.

Enroll Now!

RCS and our partners are hiring!

The Rochester Community School District and our partners are hiring! Be a part of our team.

Full- and part-time positions are available with competitive pay.

Positions include:

All shifts are open, and training will be provided. Benefit packages may include life insurance, medical, and 401K with matching contributions.

Be a part of a team of professionals that strive for excellence!

Call NOW!  (248) 726-3171.

For more information, visit the Rochester Community School District website at www.rochester.k12.mi.us.

Rochester Community Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, creed or ancestry, age, sex, marital status, height, weight, familial status, arrest record or physical and mental disabilities.

Congratulations MHSAA state champions!

Earning a state championship is the highest honor that a high-school athlete can achieve. It takes superb athleticism, self-discipline, strength, skill, determination and a commitment to excellence. Congratulations to the following Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Division 1 state champions.

  • Nathan DeHart, AHS boys ski, giant slalom
  • Katie Fodale, AHS girls ski, slalom
  • Armon Howard, AHS boys track and field, 300-meter hurdles
  • Jack Van Howe, RHS boys swim, two-time winner, 100-yard backstroke
  • Rochester Adams High School cheer team: Celeste Barnard, Trisha Bartolo-may, Ava Bolin, Sophia Bondra, Katie Burgin, Elizabeth Doran, Destini Dorkins, Reese Falconer, Francesca Ford, Carley Hedlund, Lily Hittle, Emilia Honingford, Laurel Kania, Anna Kelly, Sabrina Lee, Ella Malinowski, Emma Maynard, Skylar Menzies, Peyton Regalado, Alex Ris, Megan Robinson, Ashley Rosati, Gigi Schultz, Cece Shay, Christina Truszkowski

Rochester Community Schools remains extremely proud of our student athletes and their accomplishments.

Adult Education class information

Rochester Community Schools offers learning opportunities for people of all ages. Adult education programs may provide individuals with language proficiency, pathways for new careers, mastery of academic skills, and personal growth and satisfaction.

English As a Second Language (ESL) classes are provided for all learning levels, from beginner to advanced conversation. In-person classes are held in the morning and evening, two times per week, in Rochester Hills. Enrollment is happening now and students are encouraged to register for quick admittance.  

Adults who wish to earn their high-school diploma or complete GED skills classes can begin now. In-person and online, afternoon and evening, classes are available two times per week. Discounted GED exams and waiving of the registration fee, are available if you qualify.  

By advancing their educational achievement, adult students may find that learning more helps them earn more in the workforce. Others are simply interested in building personal skills to improve their quality of life.

Flexible programs are designed to meet the needs of busy adults who may have multiple roles and responsibilities.

Interested individuals may call 248-726-5950 to register. For more information on available classes and schedules, visit the Adult Education homepage.

The RCS BOE adopts the District Equity Statement

The Board of Education of the Rochester Community School District unanimously passed a resolution at the Monday, May 9, meeting with a 5-0 vote to adopt the District Equity Statement. Two board members were absent from the meeting with notice but submitted letters for the record affirming their support.

“The RCS District Equity Statement serves as commitment to honor and affirm the complete humanity of all students, staff, caregivers, and members within our organization,” said Executive Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Tiffany Goliday.

The District Equity Statement reads:

Rochester Community Schools is committed to providing an equitable education that prepares all students for an interdependent, evolving world. We believe in a unified culture of belonging for all. We recognize that systemic inequities exist that create educational equity gaps among various identity groups, specifically those who have been marginalized. Through a multifaceted approach of inclusion, we commit to creating opportunities and access, protecting the well-being of all, eliminating barriers, and educating within a safe environment where all individuals are valued, respected, included, welcomed, and acknowledged.

“I wholeheartedly support the RCS Equity Statement and am proud to work alongside the smart, dedicated individuals who made sure every word of it meaningfully contributes to the mission of our organization,” said Board Vice President Kristin Bull in a statement. “We have a long way to go to address equity gaps in education — as a district and as a greater community. My hope is that this statement serves as a guide for that work going forward.”

The District Equity Statement is the result of a collaborative process that was initiated by the District Equity Committee, a representative group of students, parents, caregivers, staff members and community members who serve to advance Rochester Community Schools on its journey toward cultural proficiency, inclusion and belonging. Community stakeholders, support networks and employee bargaining groups also had the opportunity to provide feedback before the statement was presented to the board for a vote.

“Having worked on the statement as part of the District Equity Committee, I know first-hand the thought and care that was put into crafting it,” said Amber Gress, RCS information literacy specialist. “It truly shows the commitment of the district to continue to lift up all voices, support an inclusive learning and work environment, and foster positive change. What is even more exciting to me, is that this equity statement is just the beginning. It is a stepping-off point for taking action and creating sustainable change that will benefit both our district and community. I look forward to continuing the work of the District Equity Committee.”

Rochester High School Parent and RCS Equity Committee Member Albert Rush said, “As a parent, I have volunteered at RCS since my 10th grader was in first grade and am currently serving as the vice president of membership for the Rochester High School PTSA (Parent Teacher Student Association). I am excited that after five years of intense discussion and challenging work, RCS has adopted this District Equity Statement. It is my hope and prayer that this statement will help RCS advance as a more equitable district.”

As the largest district in Oakland County, Rochester Community Schools has been acknowledged for actively embracing and signing into practice a statement that strengthens their commitment to the work of diversity, equity and inclusion.

Dr. Jay Marks, Oakland Schools education consultant, attended the May 9 board meeting and read a memorandum of support on behalf of the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Council of Oakland Schools, a body of equity leaders representing 14 school districts within Oakland County.

Dr. Marks said in part, “We applaud the work done by Mrs. Tiffany Goliday and her committee to clearly articulate the purpose, intentions and rationale for advancing equity. In our current climate of division and controversy, many organizations have suspended this important work. Others have chosen to continue, but are doing so in ways that avoid public scrutiny. This statement represents a transparent and collaborative effort toward honoring the shared humanity of all Rochester Community School stakeholders.”

Goliday reinforced that the District Equity Statement is an important first step in the process to cultural proficiency. “The District Equity Statement is the beginning of a journey. It is an intentional effort to amplify the voices and experiences of groups and individuals who have been marginalized; analyze the equity gaps that exist in our data; and dedicate ourselves to creating an environment free from barriers so all members of our community can thrive and succeed,” said Goliday.

“We are proud of our community’s commitment to supporting the health and well-being of our students, teachers, administrators, staff and families. An important part of that work includes ensuring all members of our district have a sense of belonging and are safe, valued, respected,” said Superintendent Dr. Robert Shaner. “The District Equity Statement is an excellent example of how great advancements can be made when we all work together for the common good.”

Kindergarten information for 2022-23

Dear Families of the Class of 2035,

Rochester Community Schools is excited to welcome incoming kindergarten students for the 2022-23 school year.

An updated kindergarten video presentation for families is available on the RCS website. Click here to view the informational video, which includes enrollment requirements, school-age care (SAC) information, student-focused inspiration, and a look inside our kindergarten classrooms.

The kindergarten information presentation is also available in a printable format by clicking here: Kindergarten Information Night 2022.pdf.

If you plan to enroll your child, please complete the kindergarten information slip. This will allow us to directly share information, reminders and updates from the curriculum department and from your home school. This also helps to support staffing for next year.

Online kindergarten registration begins March 8, 2022. Virtual welcome events will be hosted at each school on March 23 at 6 p.m. Details will be shared from each student’s home elementary school.

Families interested in the transitional kindergarten (TK) program can expect more detailed information to be shared soon. Transitional kindergarten, commonly known as “young fives,” was developed to meet the varying educational and social-emotional needs of our youngest learners. The program provides the gift of time for students who may benefit from an additional year of support in transitioning from preschool to kindergarten. For more TK information, please visit the RCS website.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me or your building administrator.

We look forward to continuing this educational journey with the Class of 2035.  

Sincerely,

Cory Heitsch

Assistant Superintendent of Early Childhood and Elementary Education

52585 Dequindre Road

Rochester, MI 48307

cheitsch@rochester.k12.mi.us

(248) 726-3130

Is your child ready for transitional kindergarten?

Welcome to Rochester Community Schools! Thank you for your interest in our Transitional Kindergarten (TK) and Kindergarten programs for the 2022-2023 school year. To support planning and preparations for spring registration events, perspective families are invited to visit the RCS website link below to complete the “Request for TK/K Information Form”. The information provided will be used by building leaders for future communications regarding the TK and Kindergarten enrollment process and events to support families. 


Per the state of Michigan, TK/K students must be 5 years old to enter TK/K for the 2022-23 school year. Cutoff birthdate is Dec 1, 2017

Please complete this TK survey to receive information for 2022-23 TK programs: http://ow.ly/srqc50HmVBO.

Curriculum details can be found at: https://www.rochester.k12.mi.us/.../curric.../tkkindergarten.

RCS earns Music Education designation

Rochester Community Schools has again been honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The NAMM Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education.  Now in its 23nd year, 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. Rochester Community Schools earned this honor in 2014, then yearly since 2016.

To qualify for the Best Communities designation, we answered detailed questions regarding funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program and community music-making programs. Responses were reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas.

The award program recognizes outstanding efforts by teachers, administrators, parents, students and community leaders who have made music education part of a well-rounded education.  Designations are made to districts and schools that demonstrate an exceptionally high commitment and access to music education. 

Positivity Project promotes inclusion

The RCS Foundation is pleased to support diversity, equity and inclusion as a component of the Positivity Project. Students are empowered to build positive relationships and become their best selves. Grant funding has been awarded to enhance the Positivity Project in all 13 RCS elementary schools. 

To learn more about the RCS Foundation mission, visit: https://rcs-foundation.org/.

Mobile STEM lab visits RCS

Middle school students are combining science, technology, engineering and math at the Oakland Schools STEMi Mobile Innovation Station, a lab on wheels that brings together evolving areas of technology, education and innovation. Students get hands-on experience with autonomous vehicles, robotics, extended reality and smart manufacturing.

RCS recognized with two honors from the Association of School Business Officials International

 

ASBO Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting
Meritorious Budget Award

Rochester Community Schools has been recognized with two honors from the Association of School Business Officials International. For the fourth straight year, RCS has earned the Meritorious Budget Award, indicating excellence in school budget presentation and transparent budget development. The latest award is for the 2020-21 budget. Additionally, for the second time, RCS earned a Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting for meeting the highest standards for financial reporting and transparency. The latest award is related to the RCS Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the fiscal year ended 2020. 

These designations are awarded only to school districts who have undergone a rigorous review by professional auditors and continue to meet or exceed the program’s stringent criteria.

The RCS business team is led by Dana Taylor, deputy superintendent for business affairs; Matthew McDaniel, executive director for business operations; and Christie Bueche, director of financial services. This team of distinguished professionals supports student achievement through effective resource management in various areas ranging from finance and operations to food services and transportation, with a commitment to high-quality education.

Taylor and McDonald with ASBO awards

 

 

 

Childcare enrollment open to nonresidents

Childcare enrollment open to nonresidents! Now enrolling curious, young learners! The RCS Caring Steps Children's Center provides outstanding infant/toddler care and year-round preschool programs. Our loving staff will serve your needs in a beautiful, spacious Oakland Township facility, specially designed for kids. Enrollment is open to neighboring communities. RCS residency is not required. Please call 248-726-4800 or visit our homepage on the RCS website for enrollment information.