2019-20 School-Wide Theme: Citizenship

Throughout the 2019-20 academic year, the Rye Country Day community will actively engage around the school-wide theme of citizenship, which will be woven into community discussions, curricular conversations, guest speaker events, faculty meetings, advisory group work, and more.

This summer, faculty and staff prepared for the year's theme through reading from a list of recommended books related to the topic of citizenship. Back-to-school meetings will include time for faculty and staff to have generative conversations and collectively discuss the most meaningful integration of the study and practice of citizenship throughout the RCDS program, both in the classroom and beyond. This is just the beginning of a meaningful year of teaching, learning, and being in community.

One of the "big four" in the RCDS Portrait of a Graduate, citizenship was selected as the 2019-20 theme because of its inherent incorporation of the other attributes and outcomes articulated in the Portrait—citizenship represents character in action, and it requires skills and knowledge. Knitting together the Portrait and showcasing how it is most meaningfully put into daily, lived practice, the theme of citizenship will serve as a learning opportunity and guide for the entire Rye Country Day community, students, faculty, and staff alike, in a shared effort to encourage and recognize the ways in which all can be prepared to make a positive difference in the world as aware, engaged, and purpose-driven citizens who embody Rye Country Day's motto, Not for Self, but for Service.

For the RCDS community, citizenship means a collective commitment to encouraging students of all ages to approach others with empathy, to examine local and global issues, to appreciate differences in opinion, to recognize stereotypes and bias, and to embrace and understand the importance of diversity. It is also rooted in school-wide agreement that aware, engaged, and purpose-driven citizens are upstanders, not bystanders; they are thought leaders and innovators who engage in open, appropriate, and effective interactions across difference; they are changemakers who seek solutions and take bold action to address societal needs and issues. As the RCDS community works together to distill, understand, and put into action collective and individual citizenship, the conversations and lessons that will result from the year's theme will have poignant relevance for students through the various stages of their lives.

Citizenship in the RCDS Portrait of a Graduate