White Hill Middle School’s 7th and 8th grade choirs performed and earned top honors at the CMEA (CA Music Educators Assoc.) Choral Festival, held at the incredible Weill Hall on the campus of Sonoma State University.
Two pieces “Coro Forte” and “Bella Voce” earned UNANIMOUS SUPERIOR ratings - the highest possible achievement at a CMEA Festival!
After delivering stunning performances on a professional stage in front of three expert judges, our choirs then went to the sight-reading room to perform both rhythmic and melodic music notation with just a few minutes to study each exercise. They earned Superior ratings from the sight-reading judge as well as the three performance judges.
A few highlights from the judges' comments:
"Beautiful part work, guys - wow! I wish you fed my high school!"
"Poetically convincing, musically subtle and refined, and you have great stage presence... your intonation, your tone quality, your posture, your connection with your conductor, and your conviction as a performing ensemble are just superlative."
"Every time I've judged a festival there is always one group who makes my day. It doesn't matter how big or small they are, it's about how they perform, how they are connected to what they're singing, and their sound. Yesterday at the CMEA Festival in Weill Hall, the White Hill Middle School Bella Voce was that group! Susie Martone, Brava Tutti on an incredible performance! As a bonus, they were also one of the best group of audience members I've had the pleasure of sitting behind whilst judging. No talking, no phones, and so supportive of everyone who was on stage while they were in the audience. This is what it's all about!"
Congratulations to Susie Martone and all of our WHMS students who participated in this event and thank you for making such beautiful music!
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We are very excited to share our very first District video, “RVSD – A Beautiful Magical Place to Be” which is now available for viewing on YouTube. In this short film, teachers, administrators and students share their reflection on what makes RVSD special to them. Inspired and created by two RVSD parents, Nancy Main and Jennifer Gonzalez, this video captures the essence and joy of teaching and learning in the Ross Valley School District!
Many students and adults turned-out on a beautiful Saturday morning to represent RVSD for the first time in the Annual Fairfax Festival Parade! In addition to students and student musicians, a number of parents also participated, as well as Superintendent Rick Bagley and Board President Anne Capron. Special thanks to Pete Santucci for helping lead the RVSD contingent while playing trombone and accompanying our students in a rousing rendition of “When the Saints Go Marching In!” Super special thanks to all the parents who helped organize this event, transport their children to participate in it, transport instrument cases and much more!
7th and 8th grade choral and instrumental music students from White Hill performed their spring concert onstage at College of Marin’s James Dunn Theater. The program, led by music teachers Susie Martone, Rebecca d’Alessio, Rosemary Montgomery and Pete Santucci, packed the house with family, friends and guests!
At the Board of Trustees meeting, several students representing our rapidly-growing Children for Change club, shared a presentation regarding their recent visit to Ecuador, where they helped residents of a local village improve the infrastructure needed to bring clean, drinkable water to villagers’ homes.
Hidden Valley students, teachers and staff, along with District administrators, Trustees Annelise Bauer and Anne Capron, as well as members of the building team, all gathered to celebrate completion of the 2016 construction project. The project, which replaced outdated classrooms with new, green buildings, re-shaped the southern part of the campus and provided a completely new playground, is the latest modernization phase of voter-approved Measure A. Everyone gave thanks for all the hard work done and students will soon be distributing tasty goodies to all HV neighbors who were inconvenienced by the noise and dust of last summer’s construction. The event culminated with students and adults (including Board President Anne Capron) trying out the new play structure.
The 2016 Men's Chorus Festival at CSU East Bay was held on November 14th and the guys from White Hill Middle School were there to make their musical voices heard! They rehearsed and performed with about 250 boys and men from around the Bay Area under the direction of Mr. A.J. Walker and Dr. Buddy James. Congratulations and thanks for being wonderful musical ambassadors for Ross Valley School District!
To see more pictures and watch videos, please click on the image below to visit our photo album
At the November 1, 2016 meeting of the RVSD Board of Trustees, six representatives from White Hill’s “Children for Change” club shared all their club is doing to make our world a better place for everyone. With membership in all schools encompassing over ten percent of RVSD’s entire student population, it is not only those in our community and around the world who are benefitting from their efforts. Students themselves are learning the importance of service to others and that, in spite of the differences caused by circumstance, all should be valued as fellow humans and members of our global community. Pictured above are the six WHMS students who presented to the Board, as well as fellow club members from WHMS and other district schools.
It may only be Halloween, but we are already looking to the future and planning for the 2017-18 school year! Below is a picture of our new banner, encouraging families to register their students for next fall. This banner will be hanging over Sir Francis Drake soon, so watch out for it on your next drive!
The foundations are being wrapped up, new concrete sidewalks are being poured, and the 13 modular building sections are in the midst of being delivered. The modular buildings are manufactured in California and transported from the Central Valley on flatbed tractor trailer trucks. Due to the size and logistics, only two modular components are delivered each day causing traffic delays primarily on Butterfield Road.
Partially completed, the modular sections are scheduled to be set upon their foundations on July 25th which will change the look of the campus instantaneously and is the benefit of this type of construction. Once set and secured to the
foundations, the interior finish work begins. This includes installing wiring, ceiling and floor tiles, and technology . In addition, the remaining hardscape and landscape work will begin which will include a new playground!
IMPORTANT: Starting July 21st through July 26th, the field at Hidden Valley will be CLOSED as the modular sections are temporarily located there until they are set on the foundations. Also, during August 2nd, PG&E has
notified certain residents that power may be affected as PG&E connects power to accommodate the buildings.
We appreciate and thank you for your patience. If you have any questions, you can contact Principal Fish at 415-454-7409, Bret Joyner, Director of Maintenance & Operations at 415-451-4067, or Midge Hoffman, Chief Business
Official at 415-451-4075.
The Ross Valley Free the Children Club is a student-led organization focused on volunteering and fundraising to help those in need, both locally and globally. The club includes RVSD students between eight and fourteen years old from White Hill Middle School as well as Wade Thomas, Brookside and Manor elementary schools, supported by engaged parents and supportive educators.
Students, parents and educators meet weekly during lunch to learn about, plan, research, and reflect on doing great things for others. The Ross Valley Free the Children Club provides opportunities for local volunteerism and cultural learning by focusing on planning, research skills, technology integration, collaboration, creativity, problem solving, critical thinking, civic and life skills.
The club focuses on two major initiatives:
The club works with the International Free the Children Club and is now planning a spring 2017 trip to Ecuador so the students can work directly in the communities they have been directly supporting this year and will continue to support next year in 2016-17.
In April, the club organized and held a “Walk for Water” event, raising more than $12,000 for clean water in Ecuador. The walk was attended by more than 250 community members (pictured below).
At their regular meeting of June 7, 2016, the Ross Valley School District Board of Trustees recognized and thanked three retirees for their many years of service and support to our students, staff and families of Ross Valley. Honorees included Tina Louie of Hidden Valley (not pictured), Margie Wilson of White Hill Middle School and Marilyn Grove of Brookside.
All three retirees were introduced by their principals and presented with a special framed "wordle" containing descriptors of their unique special qualities and characteristics most appreciated and valued by their RVSD colleagues. A brief reception followed the ceremony. Congratulations to all our retirees and thank you again for all your many contributions to RVSD over the years!
Congratulations to our White Hill Music Department on last Saturday’s (May 7, 2016) outstanding showing at the Music in the Parks Festival. Over 160 White Hill musicians performed at Vanden High School or Golden West Middle School in Fairfield along with bands, choirs and orchestras from 24 other schools. This was a record-breaking year for the White Hill music program that is funded entirely by the YES Foundation. All five of our performing groups earned the highest possible rating of Superior as well as placing first in their categories.
Advanced Orchestra: Superior rating, 1st place in category, 1st place overall middle school orchestra
Concert Band: Superior rating, 1st place in category
Concert Choir: Superior rating, 1st place in category
Intermediate Orchestra: Superior rating, 1st place in category
Festival Choir: Superior rating, 1st place in category
The White Hill Middle School Music Department was also chosen, out of all 25 participating schools, to receive the festival Esprit de Corps award for excellent character and conduct. We are so proud of our student musicians for their accomplishments both on and off the stage!
You can hear some of the award-winning pieces (and more!) at our upcoming spring concerts:
Monday, 5/23/16: White Hill 7th/8th Grade Band, Chorus, and Orchestra Concert, 7pm at College of Marin James Dunn Theater
Wednesday, 6/1/16: District-Wide 5th/6th Grade Band Concert, 7pm in White Hill Gym
Thursday, 6/2/16: District-Wide 5th/6th Grade Chorus and Orchestra Concert, 7pm in White Hill Gym
Special recognition and thanks to our wonderful music staff, Susie Martone, Rebecca d’Allesio and Rosemary Montgomery, for all they do to help our students make such beautiful music!
At the April 5, 2016 meeting of the Board of Trustees, White Hill Middle School Principal, David Finnane and Science Teacher Heidi Moore introduced five WHMS students, who made a brief presentation on their "ECO Club" and "Zero Waste Marin Project." The presentation was followed by questions from Trustees, student introductions of parents, pictures with the Board and the distribution of well-deserved certificates of recognition. As a token of the Board’s appreciation, each student also received a gift card to “Swirl.” We are all excited about the work these students are doing and look forward to joining the “Zero Waste Marin Project” in our own RVSD District Office!
Over 100 students from White Hill Middle School (two complete casts) are performing “Grease” this weekend in the YES Theater Spring Festival at the San Anselmo Playhouse, with matinees both today (Saturday) and tomorrow and an evening show tonight.
Brookside 4th graders in Ms. Nees’ class are showing mastery of their math skills, by continuing to rank in the top 100 on “Cup 2” of the 2016 LearnStorm Bay Area Math Challenge! Check out the leaderboard results here for the first and second LearnStorm Cups! We are now into Cup 3, the third segment of this nine-week challenge, designed to challenge students’ persistence and perseverance at tackling math challenges through the Khan Acacemy. Congratulation to Ms. Nees and her students! Keep up the great work!
At the March 15, 2016 meeting of the RVSD Board of Trustees, students proudly representing Manor Elementary School shared their thoughts and perspectives, as well as samples of their work, in accordance with the “Four Cs” of the Common Core. The Four Cs are:
Introduced by Manor Principal, Peg Minicozzi and supported by many parents, family members, teachers and friends, the students shared a brief presentation and then answered questions from the Trustees. For more information on the “Four Cs,” feel free to download the educator’s guide to “Preparing 21st Century Students for a Global Society.”