PCSD Fact Checker

  • Welcome!

    This page is intended to serve as a place where PCSD community members can find accurate information about the District. If you see information about the Pittsford Central School District that you believe is inaccurate and needs a Fact Check, please send your contact information, the facts you would like checked, and where you found the material to: Nancy Wayman, PCSD Communication Director, email: nancy_wayman@pittsford.monroe.edu

  • Pittsford Musicals and Performance Space

    Posted by Nancy Wayman on 6/5/2018

    Date: June 5, 2018

    Source of Inaccuracy: Website

    Pittsford Musicals posted misleading information on its website that was then shared on various Facebook pages and with the local news media. The concerns that were publically posted were never conveyed to the Superintendent, nor sent to the Board of Education. At no point did either Board of Education or Superintendent share that Pittsford Musicals could not use PCSD facilities.

    Instead, Pittsford Musicals chose to voice their dissatisfaction at a public Board of Education meeting. Meanwhile, PCSD staff members had been working with Pittsford Musicals for months trying to find a comfortable compromise that would allow the District to meet our student coursework obligations, functions, assemblies, plays, musicals, and host student-led extra-curricular events. In previous year’s when there was a concern, PM reached out and District administrators, including the Superintendent always found a compromise that worked for both parties.  Again, this did not happen this year.

    On May 16, 2018 PCSD offered its facilities in an email to Pittsford Musicals for a 17-day period in September 2018. This was an offer made in good faith and in advance of finalizing the 18-19 school calendar. As of today, we have not heard back from Pittsford Musicals about this proposal. Pittsford Musicals decided on their own to cancel this year’s fall production. Pittsford Musicals was a valued partner and PCSD is saddened that Pittsford Musicals’ actions have resulted in this cancelation.

    Pittsford Musicals requires a dedicated auditorium facility over multiple weeks/weekends, during the school year, for rehearsals and construction of a set. While Pittsford Musicals is in our school, our students do not have access to the auditorium, its adjacent spaces, and other school events compete for parking spaces. As student programming continues to increase, the window of opportunity shortens for outside organizations to use the facilities, particularly for those groups that need facilities for a multiple week/weekend event. However, PCSD was still more than willing to work with Pittsford Musicals.

    Finally, Pittsford Musicals has grown and evolved over the years into an organization whose membership is predominantly made up of non-Pittsford residents; yet up to now, PCSD has always ensured a space for their performances.

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  • Staff Recruiting Processes

    Posted by Nancy Wayman on 5/17/2018

    Date: May 17, 2018

    Source of Inaccuracy: Facebook

    By its very nature, the school district is a part of many posts and conversations on social media. PCSD avoids interfering with discussions and opinion-making on social media unless the content becomes a safety/privacy concern, the community becomes unsettled, inaccurate facts are shared, or there is a violation of policy or law. In the case of this Fact Checker post, the District would like to provide accurate information about its recruiting processes.

    Having a highly qualified and diverse professional staff is important to PCSD. Nationally, school districts have been challenged with a 30-40% decline in the number of students enrolled in teacher preparatory programs over the past few years. Even before this decline, the number of students with diverse backgrounds entering these programs was a small percentage, exacerbating the challenge.

    However, there are many ways in which PCSD continues to expand its recruiting practices to reach a wider, diverse and highly qualified applicant pool. Some examples of these efforts to attract a robust, qualified applicant pool include, but are not limited to:

    • Attending national job fairs
    • Attending local job fairs, including those sponsored by local colleges
    • Participating in a local high school program called “Careers in Education” that is designed to share information about teaching and other education career opportunities with the goal of developing and recruiting local talent
    • Ongoing professional development on diversity and inclusion through Cornell University’s Industrial and Labor Relations School and other programs

    Our highly collaborative hiring process involves multiple stakeholder representatives who participate from the point of screening applicants through the interviewing and hiring processes. Community members regularly send PCSD recommendations for strong teacher or administrative candidates. We continue to encourage our stakeholders to refer interested candidates to the application found at this link: PCSD Job Application.

    Please note, PCSD has no affiliation with the diversity.hires.pcsd@gmail.com email address listed in recent social media posts. We would like any candidate applying to PCSD to know that the District does not generally utilize outside recruiting services and would only use official email addresses with the @pittsford.monroe.edu extension.

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  • Gmail accounts not used for Official PCSD Business

    Posted by Nancy Wayman on 5/16/2018

    Date:

    May 16, 2018

    Source of Inaccuracy:

    Facebook

    Job applicants: Please be aware that PCSD does not utilize Gmail accounts for official business. Candidates for employment opportunities at PCSD must apply using applications found here.

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  • Youth Risk Behavior Survey

    Posted by Nancy Wayman on 10/12/2017 4:00:00 PM

    Date: 
    October 5-8, 2017

    Source of Inaccuracies:       
    Facebook

     

    The correct name of the survey is the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), not National Student Risk Survey.

    Is the YRBS a Monroe County survey? Where can parents see the survey questions?

    PCSD participates through the Monroe County’s Department of Public Health, and uses a survey based upon a survey that was developed by the Center for Disease Control. The survey is available for parental review prior to implementation.

    The survey is administered every two years. This means no survey will be administered during the 2017-2018 school year. The County's Department of Public Health and Monroe County school districts meet during the year of no survey to review the survey instrument and make adjustments as needed for our community.

    What is the difference between the high school and middle school survey?

    In Monroe County, only PCSD has fewer questions on the middle school survey because PCSD has chosen NOT to include the sexual activity questions in the middle school survey.

    Why does PCSD participate in this survey when the majority of students do not report risk behaviors?

    Identifying student behaviors and monitoring trends related to youth risk behaviors is important to the health and welfare of our students. The District collects this data to inform decisions related to services and supports and to provide information to students and families about ways to address the identified concerns.

    Identifying risk behaviors that students participate in or have experienced is critical to guiding prevention and early intervention strategies and for monitoring trends. For example, monitoring alcohol consumption is important because underage drinking has many dangerous and unhealthy consequences, including vehicle crashes, unintentional injuries (such as burns, falls, and drowning), alcohol dependence, risky sexual activity and academic problems. Youth who start drinking before age 15 years are six times more likely to develop alcohol dependence or abuse later in life than those who begin drinking at or after age 21 years. Monitoring access to and use of drugs is critical to educating students and families about this increasingly serious issue in all communities in our area.

    Identifying student mental health issues, (e.g., sadness, lack of concentration, thoughts of suicide) informs practices for counselors, psychologists and social workers.

    Identifying the protective factors that students experience (e.g., having trusted adults in their lives, knowing who to talk to if they need assistance, etc.) helps the District and families understand those factors which help students to cope with concerns or issues they may have.

    The District and families can celebrate the high percentage of students who report that they do not participate in risk behaviors and continue the efforts which support non-risky behaviors.

    Are parents told in advance about this survey?

    During the years the YRBS is offered, a letter is sent to parents from principals at each secondary school. The letter outlines the rationale for the survey, the types of questions, the opportunity to opt their child out of the survey, and the availability of the survey for parent review. Attached is a sample letter that was sent to families.

    How does a parent indicate that a student is not to participate in the YRBS?

    Should a parent choose not to have a child participate in the YRBS, the letter contains a form which can be completed and returned to the school to opt their child out of the survey.

    Is it anonymous?

    Yes. While students use District computers, they do not log in to the system so there are not identifiers linked to students.

    How is the data used? Do the schools follow through on concerns?

    There are many important ways that data is used: 

    • Development of programs and services to address needs
    • Student education based upon results
    • Informing parents and community of trends
    • Health teachers utilizing data to promote positive normative behaviors through classroom and school wide activities
    • School wide programs and activities targeting specific areas, levels
    • Development of community partnerships to address identified areas

     

     

     

     

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