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Eighteen Mount Vernon High School students depart for Paris

Eighteen Mount Vernon High School students depart for Paris

At the Board of Education meeting on Thursday, February 15, 2024, the Mount Vernon City School District said, ‘Bon Voyage!’ to 18 Mount Vernon High School students who are going to Paris. Students departed on their plane to France on Friday, February 16. 

The students received travel bags from the District that contained journals, pens, toothbrushes and other essentials.  

“Not only do we educate the students, but we want to have well-rounded students,” said Board of Trustees President Lorna Kirwan. “We want to have them be full global citizens, so this is very important for me especially. So, I said to Dr. Smith, ‘You have to make this possible,’ and we put a plan in place.”  

To qualify for the trip, students were required to have an average GPA of over 75% and attendance over 80%. Enrollment in French was not required to make the trip. 

Students will partake in six days of experiential learning about art, history, culture and language. They will visit museums, try authentic French food and learn about life in France.  

“Since I haven’t traveled much in my life, this gives me a unique opportunity. Because not a lot of people have this opportunity to be able to go to France,” said Ryan Freckleton, 11th grade student at MVHS. “I think it’s important for people to go and travel outside of their normal school and home life to enjoy the world and have different perspectives on life.”

To defer some of the costs, students put on bake sale fundraisers with Brooke Toomey, a French teacher at MVHS. Over $5,000 was raised on GoFundMe as well. 

“We had weekly meetings, did some bake sale fundraisers and really developed a great community and supportive learning environment,” said Ms. Toomey. “I can’t wait to just go and see how much fun they’re going to have and all of the things they are going to learn. I wanted to do this because my aunt took me to Paris when I was about their age, and it changed my life. I expect this trip will be equally as valuable and memorable for our students.” 

MVHS Paris students


Danielle Browne

Danielle R. Browne, Esq., founding attorney of the Browne Firm PLLC and city councilperson for the City of Mount Vernon, graduated from Mount Vernon High School in 2006. She attended Barnard College, Columbia University, where she was the captain of the women’s basketball team, and received her law degree from the University of Miami School of Law. Since then, she has started her own law firm and made her impact on her hometown as a city councilperson.

Dr. Smith receiving proclamation.

Acting Superintendent Dr. K. Veronica Smith received a proclamation from New York State Senator Jamal Bailey, recognizing her for her exemplary service to the community and the State of New York for Women’s History Month on Friday, April 5, 2024. Nakia Hiland, director of Safe Place for Our Girls, from the Mount Vernon Youth Bureau and Unique Groom, community liaison for Jamal Bailey presented the proclamation to Dr. Smith.  

Logo for news post

Dr. K. Veronica Smith, Acting Superintendent of Schools: 

Greetings MVCSD Community,

At approximately 10:23 a.m., there was a 4.8 magnitude earthquake in New Jersey. The aftershocks were felt throughout the Tri-State area. Several of our school buildings felt the tremors, which lasted for less than 30 seconds.

There have been no reports of staff or student injuries due to this incident. As a precaution, we will have indoor activities for our students for the remainder of the day. We will keep you updated on any developments on this matter if necessary.

Students strapping instructor onto board

Mount Vernon City School District students, equipped with medical supplies, administered care to mannequins during their emergency medical technician (EMT) training course at Mount Vernon High School on Wednesday, April 3, 2024. The Career and Technical Education (CTE) Department added a new EMT program earlier in the school year, and classes began in December. 

Dr. Waterman Superintendent for a Day

A new, but familiar, face occupied the Mount Vernon City School District superintendent’s desk on Wednesday, April 3, 2024. Dr. Crystal Waterman, Edward Williams School principal, served as the superintendent for the day to begin Acting Superintendent Dr. K. Veronica Smith’s “Superintendent for a Day,” series. Dr. Smith served as the principal at Edward Williams.