Rye Country Day School: A Busy Summer on and off Campus

Once again, the Rye Country Day campus was a sea of activity over the summer. In addition to the two-week Mini-Camps and six-week Summer School session, Rye Country Day hosted ACTION, its academic enrichment program for 70 middle schoolers from public schools in Westchester and the Bronx.

Published August 21, 2012 5:00 AM
5 min read


C5THUMBOnce again, the Rye Country Day campus was a sea of activity over the summer. In addition to the two-week Mini-Camps and six-week Summer School session, Rye Country Day hosted ACTION, its academic enrichment program for 70 middle schoolers from public schools in Westchester and the Bronx.


C5DanceOnce again, the Rye Country Day campus was a sea of activity over the summer. In addition to the two-week Mini-Camps and six-week Summer School session, Rye Country Day hosted ACTION, its academic enrichment program for 70 middle schoolers from public schools in Westchester and the Bronx.


The school also made its facilities available to a number of community groups this summer. The Port Chester Council for the Arts youth theater program staged three productions in the Dunn Performing Art Center in July; New York City-based Prep for Prep held its annual summer outing on the campus; for the eighth consecutive summer, Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Westchester enjoyed a fun-filled day of games, food, and activities on the school fields; more recently, Rye Recreation conducted a one-week field hockey camp on one of the turf fields.


The school was busy installing a new roof on the Dunn Performing Arts Center and new duel-fuel (oil or natural gas) boilers in the Main Building. The latter is a component of the school’s ongoing sustainability initiative, which also includes the installation of two electric charging stations for plug-in electric hybrid cars.


Curriculum Work and New Programs


Teachers in all three divisions have been busy working on various curriculum projects during the summer break. Two-dozen teachers participated in RCDS “Digital Wave” workshops on Haiku (curriculum management software), iPads in the classroom, using iMovie, creating iBooks, using GoogleDocs, and advanced SmartBoard techniques.


Faculty were off campus attending workshops on the Responsive Classroom, iPad teaching techniques, diversity training, learning and the brain, AP Biology, and AP Calculus. Other faculty attended national conferences focusing on technology, foreign languages, and physics.


All faculty will be implementing Haiku, curriculum management software that will make curricula, assignments, and resources available online. The school’s faculty evaluation process will be restructured this year. School-wide efforts will continue in support of the Public Purpose Service Learning initiative, which is in its second year. Lower and Middle School teachers will explore ways to incorporate strands of Singapore math into the curriculum. In light of New York’s Dignity for All Students legislation, all divisions will reinforce the school’s policies about bullying.


Rye Country Day has hired a third college counselor to support students and parents in the college process. The Middle and Upper school divisions will add filmmaking and several computer electives to the program.





Erin Dolan


Ms. Dolan comes to RCDS from Stanwich School in Greenwich. She also has served as Art Director for the Rock and Renew Foundation, and as Art Department Chair at The Browning School in New York City.


Dr. Michael Franzblau


Dr. Franzblau has taught physics in Westchester public schools, mostly at Mamaroneck High School, for over 30 years. He also has experience with scientific research and teacher training.


Naima Green

Teaching Fellow, Upper School Art

A graduate of Barnard College, Ms. Green has served as Editor-in-Chief and Artistic Director of The Proxy Magazine and has interned at Harper’s Bazaar and The New York Times. She works as a freelance photographer for City Atlas New York.


Casey Hallen

Filmmaking and Videographer

Ms. Hallen completed her student teaching at Rye Country Day last year while completing her graduate degree at Manhattanville College.


Kerry Hand


Ms. Hand comes to the school from Cheshire Academy, where she taught Biology, Ecology, and Environmental Science, served as an advisor and dorm parent, and coached both cross country and track. She has worked as a science educator or naturalist at the Bruce Museum Seaside Center and the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk.         


Kirk Hatcher


Before joining the school, Mr. Hatcher was an English lecturer at the University of Miami in Florida. He has also taught English at Palmer Trinity School in Florida and in the Montgomery, Alabama public schools.


Kaori McManus


Ms. McManus worked previously at the Trinity School in Manhattan, where she taught Upper School Math and served as an advisor and division diversity coordinator.


Dr. Maggie Parker


Dr. Parker was an instructor of French at NYU before joining the French Department at Collegiate School in Manhattan in 2000. At Collegiate, she taught all levels of French in grades 6-12, and also served as chair of the Senior Projects Committee.


Jennifer Pfeiffer

College Counselor

Ms. Pfeiffer comes to the school from George Washington University, where she served as Senior Assistant Director of Admissions.


Andrew Sage

Upper School English

Mr. Sage has taught at both the college (Barnard and Columbia) and high school level (Harlem Village Academies, a New York City charter school, where he chaired the English Department). He also served in administrative roles at KIPP NYC and The Grow Network.



Beatrice DeSabatino


After serving as a Latin tutor for several years and a maternity leave substitute at RCDS this past year, Ms. DeSabatino joins the Middle School faculty as a full-time Latin teacher.


Ofelia Rodriguez-Marquez

Middle School Math

Most recently, Ms. Rodriguez-Marquez taught part-time at Westchester Community College, while also serving as a maternity leave substitute in the RCDS Middle School.



David Burns

Assistant Teacher

Mr. Burns comes to the school from the Whitby School in Greenwich, where he served as a teaching intern.


Megan Lohrs

Assistant Teacher

While earning an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education, with an endorsement in Special Education and a concentration in Mathematics, at the University of Vermont, Ms. Lohrs served two internships and completed two student teaching assignments in four different Vermont public elementary schools.



Erik Kallio

Boys’ Varsity Ice Hockey

Mr. Kallio most recently coached a Westchester Vipers youth hockey team, as well as the Mt. Pleasant Icecats, a combined public school varsity team. In addition, he is vice-president and certified head instructor of Laura Stamm International Power Skating.


Courtney Doucette

Psychology, Admissions, Girls’ Varsity Ice Hockey Coach

Ms. Doucette served previously at Choate Rosemary Hall, where she taught various psychology courses, including Advanced Placement, served as a dorm parent, and coached girls’ varsity ice hockey to a seven-year record of 112-24-7.


Jenny Smith

Physical Education

Ms. Smith served as a leave replacement this fall in the RCDS Physical Education Department and as the assistant girls’ varsity basketball coach this past winter. She has over 30 years of teaching and coaching experience at Nightingale-Bamford School in New York City, where she was Director of Physical Education and Athletic Director.



Lisa Young

Assistant Director of Development for Alumni Affairs

Ms. Young returns to her high school alma mater after having served as Director of Development at Wooster School and Director of the Annual Fund and Alumni Relations at Riverdale Country School.


Rye Country Day School

Cedar Street, Rye



Year Founded: 1869

Head of School: Scott Nelson

Grades: Pre-K-12

Enrollment: 873 students

Student/Teacher Ratio: 8:1

Tuition: $20,900-$33,900

First Day of School:

September 5 for Upper School students

September 6 for Lower and Middle School students

Rye Country Day provides $3.9 million in need-based financial aid to 14% of the student body.

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