BCSD Superintendent Updates

  • Superintendent Update - June 18, 2021

    Posted by Victoria Jackson on 6/21/2022

    Superintendent Update June 18, 2022

    Congratulations to our BHS graduates!

    We had a very special graduation ceremony last night, the speeches were inspiring and the performances were amazing!  And the weather was wonderful!  We will be updating our district social media feeds this week with more pictures.

    Happy Juneteenth!  

    I want to remind everyone that there is no school on Monday to celebrate the holiday.  Here is a list of regional and local Juneteenth events if you are looking for ways to celebrate: https://www.recordonline.com/story/entertainment/2022/06/14/juneteenth-2022-events-mid-hudson-valley-ny/7581416001/

    Here is a good overview of the holiday: https://www.nytimes.com/article/juneteenth-day-celebration.html

    Upcoming Bulldog Bulletin

    We are working on our June Bulldog Bulletin and it will be coming out next week.  We will have highlights from awards and ceremonies from the end of the year, an article about our Kaleidoscope Club from Rombout Middle School who marched in the Dutchess Pride Parade to represent BCSD last weekend, an article about our connection with Common Ground Farm and our cafeterias, and much, much more. 

    COVID-19 Test Kits

    We still have a few left.  If you need some, reach out to your school or me at landahl.m@beaconk12.org.

    Where are our graduates going next year?

    Alfred State College of Technology, California Polytechnic State University, Cuny- College of Staten Island, Curry College, Dartmouth College, Dutchess Community College, Eastern Gateway Community College, Fairleigh Dickinson University, Fashion Institute of Technology Flagler College, Fordham University, Goucher College, Ithaca College, Loyola University-Maryland, Manhattan College, Manhattanville College, Marist College, Montclair State University, Morgan State  University, Mount St. Mary College, North Carolina State University at Raleigh, Northeastern University, Pace University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, San Diego State University, Seton Hall University, Simmons University, Springfield College, SUNY-Albany, SUNY- Binghamton, SUNY- Brockport, SUNY-Cortland, SUNY-Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY-New Paltz, SUNY-Oneonta, SUNY-Oswego, SUNY-Plattsburgh, Syracuse University, Temple University, Ulster County Community College, University of Arizona, University of Buffalo, University of California-Irvine, University of Connecticut, University of Greenwich, University of Maryland, University of New Hampshire, University of Oregon, University of Rhode Island, University of Scranton, University of South Florida, Vassar College, Western Connecticut State University, The United States Marine Corps, United State Navy. 

    Several students have successfully obtained employment in their specific field and will begin working full-time after graduation.

    Have a great weekend!

     

    Matt Landahl

    Comments (-1)
  • Superintendent Update - Informational about District Security/Safety Work- Non-Urgent

    Posted by Victoria Jackson on 6/7/2022

    Dear Beacon Community:

    I know last week was hard for all of us due to the tragic mass shooting in Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas.  I wanted to take an opportunity to review several school safety/security initiatives we have undertaken over the past few years.  In short, safety is our highest priority and one we focus on daily.  Below are some of the key initiatives we have worked on.

    District and Building Emergency Planning

    The district and each of our school buildings have emergency plans that are updated and reviewed every year.  Our buildings have secured doors and one point of entry for visitors to schools.  Visitors are screened by our security staff and identification has to be presented and checked.  

    Positive Relationship with the Beacon Police Department and the Town of Fishkill Police Department

    Our local law enforcement agencies are involved in all of our state-required school lockdown drills.  They regularly tour all of our buildings and work closely with our administrative team.  They also help to provide security at our largest events like Friday night football games which attract hundreds of spectators.  We are grateful for our ongoing and positive working relationship and appreciate all of the support they give us.

    Altaris Security Consulting

    In the winter of 2017, we hired Altaris Security Consulting through a BOCES contract to provide us with a full security audit of all of the buildings in the district.  Altaris works with a large number of school districts in the region on improving school and district safety and security.   They also provide training to our administrative team, guidance to our District Emergency Response Team, and ongoing support to all of our Building Emergency Response teams as well.  

    BCSD Director of Security and the Security Team

    We established the Director of Security position in the spring of 2017.  Our Director of Security, Mark Thomas who is retired from the Beacon Police Department, works with all of our school security staff and building and district administration to provide day-to-day security for school, after-school and weekend events, and anything else that comes up.  Mark also works closely with each building on drills and reviews security concerns on a regular basis with each school.  Our school security team does an excellent job monitoring our buildings.

    Investment in Upgrading External and Internal Security Systems

    This past summer and during this school year, the BCSD had all of our security cameras replaced and every building was outfitted with a lockdown system that alerts the police immediately when a school goes into lockdown.  We used New York Smart Bond money instead of district funds for these needed upgrades of our security technology infrastructure.

    Increased Mental Health Funding

    Over the past three years, the BCSD has added two full-time social workers to the secondary level to assist with growing mental health needs.  Rombout and Beacon High School have two psychologists, and four social workers combined.  Each elementary school has a psychologist and social worker as well.  In next year’s budget, we added a one-year position to foster restorative practices and peer mediation programs at the high school and have increased funding for social/emotional programming at the elementary and middle school levels.

    Anonymous Tip Line

    The district has an anonymous tip line on our website for all to use to share concerns with district administrators anonymously.  Here is what it looks like at the top of our website or you can use this link: https://www.beaconk12.org/Page/1938

    Communication

    We use our school messenger system when issues of safety and security arise during the school year.  More general and/or non-urgent updates are done through email and if messages are time-sensitive we will add a text and phone call aspect to the message.

    The Work is Ongoing

    We constantly refine and revise our safety and security planning.  We take it very seriously in the Beacon City School District and please let us know if you have any feedback, questions, or concerns.

    Thanks,

    Matt Landahl

    Comments (-1)
  • Superintendent Update - Response to Buffalo and Texas

    Posted by Victoria Jackson on 6/7/2022

    Dear Beacon Community:

     It is with deep sadness that I write to you about the school shooting in Texas only a few days after the racist mass shooting in a grocery store in Buffalo.  I am reaching a point in my career where I struggle to find words.  I grieve all of this senseless violence and I pray for all of the victims and their families.  

    It is important to remind ourselves of what we do in our district regarding school safety.  We have solid emergency and safety plans and our school administrators and security director work closely with the Beacon Police Department and the Town of Fishkill to review these plans frequently. Our mental health professionals are available to speak with and provide assistance to students who want to talk more tomorrow and in the days moving forward.  

    If you need resources about discussing this with your children at home, this is a good guide. If you want to review community mental health and crisis resources, this link provides information.  A key message in this resource and in others is that children benefit from factual information, provided in an age-appropriate way, but none of us benefit from exposure to the repetition of disturbing images and headlines.  This is advice I try to follow myself.

    We will continue to monitor the situation and make changes to our emergency plans as we learn more about what happened.  We will work to be there for our children and for each other to provide support and kindness as we work through this together.  If you have any concerns, please reach out to me or a school administrator.

    Sincerely,

    Matt Landahl

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