Schodack Central School District
Schodack Central School District is a small, rural public school district located in southern Rensselaer County, approximately 10 miles south of Albany, N.Y.
The district serves about 900 school children in three school buildings - Castleton Elementary School, Maple Hill Middle School and Maple Hill High School. The district includes 34-square-miles, including much of the town of Schodack and a small part of Stuyvesant.
Schodack CSD is renowned as one of the best small school districts in the region. The Business Review ranked in the top #20 out of all 87 school districts in the Capital Region in its 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 School Reports Publications.
One of the district's greatest strengths is its community, which is greatly involved in the district. The community regularly volunteers to help in its schools, from volunteers helping in classes to students leading community projects such as improving the school's softball and baseball fields.
While relatively small, Schodack CSD offers challenging and varied curriculum for students comparable to much larger schools. Each year, the district invites recent graduates back to talk candidly about what prepared them for college and what the district needs to improve to better prepare future graduates. Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) curriculum is a focus in all three school buildings along with traditional core subjects. In 2012, Schodack CSD was one of the only school districts in the region to receive a $600,000 competitive state grant to provide more opportunities for Middle School students. The district also is a leader in Distance Learning, providing opportunities for students to take courses that would otherwise be unavailable while also preparing them for similar Distance Learning opportunities in college.
Schodack CSD is also a leader in energy conservation and green energy. Both Castleton Elementary School and Maple Hill Middle School have been designated as ENERGY STAR buildings by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for meeting strict energy performance standards, using less energy and causing fewer greenhouse gas emissions than its peers. In 2012, the district worked with a local solar panel company to install photovoltaic systems on its three school buildings and bus garage. The arrangement does not cost the district anything and reduces its electric bill. The solar panel technology is also incorporated into curriculum at all three school buildings to encourage student interest in science and math.
The rural/suburban district was originally formed out of a number of small, rural schools in the late 1940s. Originally a Dutch settlement along the banks of the Hudson River, the area was largely agricultural until the late 20th century, when it became more suburban. Schodack CSD's proximity to the state capital allows for many links between the district and a variety of educational, cultural and political institutions.
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