A PROJECT OF RURAL SCHOOLS COLLABORATIVE & NREA

Emily James, Seneca Falls, NY

Community relationships fuel extracurriculars and support systems

June 18, 2020 |
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Seneca Falls is a special town for many reasons. First, it is the birth place of Women's Rights. For many schools, it is just another piece of history you read about in a textbook, but for our students it holds a special place in their hearts. In the elementary schools, students take field trips to the National Women's Rights Hall of Fame, as well as Elizabeth Cady Stanton's house (whom one of our schools is named after). At the middle and high school levels, we have hosted powerful female leaders as guest speakers, this year being US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. This piece of history connects our students, faculty and staff to Seneca Falls and is one of the reasons why we are #SFCSDProud.

Second, our school district has always built strong relationships with the community. This is apparent at sporting and musical events when community members can be found cheering on students from the side lines. It is also apparent during budget votes when the community votes to support these athletic and music programs for students. Even during quarantine, I am amazed at how quickly our small town can come together. Two community members, who don't even have students in the Senior class, worked together to raise enough money, and then some, to purchase banners displaying the photos of each member of the Senior class along our downtown street. Within hours, the Seneca Falls community graciously donated to this cause, despite any financial burdens families may be facing at this time. A local hardware store donated zip-ties and other supplies needed for the project, and the Seneca Falls police and fire department helped put up the signs. Now, when you drive down Fall Street in Seneca Falls, you are welcomed by the smiling faces of the Mynderse Academy Class of 2020 and it lifts your spirits! The Seneca Falls community has always been supportive of our school district and always know how to come together in times of need.

I was fortunate enough to be a student in the Seneca Falls CSD before becoming a teacher here many years later. Almost half of our faculty are former students of the district, which speaks volumes! We all loved our education in Seneca Falls so much, that we wanted to continue to be a part of the Seneca Falls CSD.

Although it has been difficult to be apart from our students and colleagues during this time, I have seen amazing work from all of the teachers, administrators and support staff. I am thankful to be part of a district that does what's best for students. We are #SFCSDProud!

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