Tuesday, November 6, 2007


It is hard to believe that last night, in this small building, close to five hundred people attended our Open House for prospective students and that everything went smoothly. In fact, parents were so impressed by the way our students ran the evening from directing traffic, to their ability to articulately respond to questions and talk about the work we do, and to express how they feel about our school and why attending a small school has been beneficial to them that they were compelled to email me their feedback. They were equally impressed by our wonderful and involved parent partners who participated on the parent panels to offer the parents' perspective on the school. As I walked from room to room last night to meet prospective parents and students, I was extremely proud of each of you who participated. I heard phrases like,
"We are like a family here." "When my second child was accepted I felt like I had won the lottery a second time." "Advisory helped me adjust to high school and it is a place where I can share my feelings." "I can trust my advisor." "Our graduate profile talks about who we will be when we graduate and our yearly portfolio projects help us reflect on that and on our learning." "Through the International Insider we blog with students in other countries so that we can learn about their perspectives on different issues." "We respect one another." "We have a lot of freedom and our teachers trust us."

As I listened to our freshman, sophomore and junior students as well as to our parents and teachers I could not help but think about how much I value this community that we have all helped to build with hard work, and tender love and care. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for helping to build and perpetuate our school community.

Many thanks to Ms. Jennifer Zinn, our wonderful Assistant Principal, and to Ms. Annette Lentini, our energetic Parent Coordinator, for empowering our students to plan this event. I would also like to thank Chris Liviccari and Chris Chieh, two teachers who every day go above and beyond the call of duty, for volunteering to be part of Open House. Your volunteerism is a great example for our students. Of course, we could not have had a successful Open House without our parents, Lisa McSherry (parent of Michael and Katie), Kelly Cevallos (parent of Rob Palumbo), Esther Mallozzi (parent of Jackie), Mrs. Yatco (parent of Haynes), Vivian Borzi (parent of Lisa), and Carlotta Levine (parent of Adam). You too are wonderful examples for your children and for all of our students. And of course our articulate, energetic, and enthusiastic student volunteers: Danielle Ianizzi, Katie McSherry, Breanna Pizzolo, Steven Cecere, Elizabeth Cecere, Paulina Plata, Martin Sanchez, Alyssa Ditre, Dylan Luke, Alessandra Asperti, Emma Starace, Priscilla Torres, Marisch Perera, Vincent Arcello, Haynes Yatco, Adam Levine, Marissa Mule, Dana Pistilli, Brianne Hannafey, Lisa Borzi, Aisha Musi, Carolina Jiminez, Isaiah Jenkins, Sarai Wanyoni, Michelle Naidoo, Rosa Carucci, Brianna Kohm, Samantha Goodman, Josephine Barone, Conor McGinn, Emily Marks, Samantha Furman, and Vanessa Kreytak, Daelina Lockhart, and Kasey Fausak. Thank you all for contributing to making our Open House a success. Stay tuned for Thursday, November 15 at 6:30!!!


Aimee Horowitz said...

Feedback I received from a parent whoDear Ms. Horowitz,

Last night I attended your open house with my daughter and husband and felt that I had to write this letter to let you know how impressed we were with your school, faculty, students, and the parents who spoke to us. I also had the opportunity to speak with you briefly at the end of our tour with regard to the lottery process and the availability of the SETSS program. I am sure that you can’t possibly remember all of the people you spoke with as we, thankfully, were one of the first groups to go through and saw you early in the evening. The line that wrapped around the parking lot as we exited must be a testament to the “rumors” that I heard regarding your school.

When we first heard about your school last month my daughter, and I immediately went to the internet to learn all we could. We were impressed with the things we learned there and were more impressed after leaving your school last night. As I mentioned to you in our brief conversation, my child has been doing very well in school. She is a hard worker and the SETSS program has also been a major contributor in her success. I left your school last night feeling two very strong emotions. The first emotion was disappointment. I was disappointed that your school was not around when her sister, who is now an A+ junior at Moore Catholic, was choosing a high school. The second emotion was encouragement. I was encouraged by you, your staff, your students, and the parents who spoke with us but the majority of my encouragement came from the excitement and sincere interest my daughter showed as a result of your open house. We have always called her our “out of the box” child and one of the parents who spoke used that same phrase when referring to the type of student that succeeds at CSIHSIS. Never mind the intimacy of a 432 person student body! As we progressed from Ms. Zinn’s introduction to the Q & A’s with the students and parents, our interest continued to grow. The more we heard, the more we thought your school would be a perfect fit.

I can see very easily that your program will be shaping many bright futures. We have been to quite a few open houses these past few weeks and while we were impressed with some, none have quite left a feeling like we received last night. I just wanted to say thank you and good luck in your continued success. Hopefully we will meet again as after a family meeting last night; my child has decided that CSIHSIS will be her #1 pick on her high school application.

attended last night:

Aimee Horowitz said...

Another letter from a parent:

Good Morning Ms. Horowitz

We wanted to thank you for the opportunity to tour your school last night. Your student presenters and staff were well spoken, informative and helpful.
We very much appreciate the time everyone took to provide us with an overview of your outstanding program.
We would feel quite fortunate if our daughter were able to attend your school.

Again, thank you

Aimee Horowitz said...

Another letter from a student:

Knowing that this is a competitive world (as my parents constantly remind me) and getting into any high school is just as competitive, I have thought very hard about what makes me stand out among all the other applicants that are applying to this high school. Even though I have in the past few months looked retrospectively at my last three years in junior high school and realized that although I have been on the honors roll for the last three years I could have contributed a little more, could have studied a little more, and could have taken my future a little more serious, After my visit to your open house I truly believe that I will be a great student at your high school.

I have the determination and definitely a strong drive to make sure that I get the education I need to succeed and get into a great college in four years. I take myself seriously to know what I need to do in the next four years to make sure that these years are fulfilling and rewarding to me as an individual. I will utilize the school's resources to help me achieve my goals. I have learned to work independently (or collectively as a group) to make sure that any project or any task is completed to the best of my ability. I feel I am an innovator and am able to lead my fellow students by example. I think out of the box on problem solving – at times looking at problems that might not just have a black or white answer. I am competitive in sports and always looking for the win (sometimes a loss will happen). I am truly a people person. I love to be around people especially around people that are goal oriented. I am honest, trustworthy and a great young lady (according to my parents).

I hope that these are some of the qualities that you are looking for as a prospective student which will exclude me from being just a "regular" student.

Aimee Horowitz said...

More positive feedback from parents and students who attended our Open House events:

Good afternoon Ms. Horowitz:

I've been meaning to contact you regarding your open house held earlier this month. My son (Stephen) and I were so impressed with your school.

It was a pleasure to learn about such an exciting and innovative program.

We thoroughly enjoyed listening to your students share their enthusiasm about their school....And as a parent, it was also nice to see parents who were not only involved in their student's education, but moreover, were so pleased and proud that their children were receiving a first-rate education !

Keep up the great work!

Respectfully yours,

Richard Gross
District 18 Media Coordinator