RFH Education Foundation: What It Is and What It Does

Since its inception in 2001, the Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School (RFH) Education Foundation’s aim has been to enrich the learning experiences of students both in and out of the classroom.

More than $500,000 has been contributed for capital projects and smaller grants.

Grants from the RFH Education Foundation made three recent events possible:

• On Jan. 21, students from Kristen Lanfrank’s Jewelry Design Class visited and toured Lydell NYC Jewelry Company, following up on a necklace design assignment from owner Michelle Serruya-Barry. Necklace designs by RFH students Sarah Nelson and Ana Shaud were chosen by the Design Team and will be manufactured and made available on the Lydell NYC web site.

• RFH Principal Dr. Tracy Handerhan, guidance counselor Jason Lippart, art teacher Kate Okeson, and health teacher Kim Pierson, all of the RFH School Climate Team, attended an event at the Central Jersey Consortium for Excellence and Equity entitled Boys Will Be Boys and Girls Will Be Princesses. Dr. Lisa Dinella presented and school districts joined together to discuss the topic of inequities often attributed to characteristics such as race, gender, and sexual orientation.

• On March 3, Spanish III and IV Honors Students enjoyed a Spanish language production of Cuerdas (Ropes) at Two River Theatre along with their teachers Christina Gauss and Seth Hermann and Spanish teacher Tom Larkin. “We were able to use the interpretive skills that we are learning in the classroom to understand a play that uses conversational Spanish,” said student Chloe Smith.

• The RFH Education Foundation recently provided a small grant for the filming of a performance by RFH drama students of the play The Bystander: A Portrait of Apathy. The film will be used to educate students about harassment and bullying.

“The RFH community is incredibly grateful for the sustained support from our Education Foundation,” said Handerhan. “Because of our foundation, our students’ high school experience is enhanced in so many ways; we are truly able to turn it up a notch.”

The RFH Education Foundation is currently working with the administration on some larger capital projects as well. Recent projects include: the world language computer lab, auditorium projection system, and auditorium sound and lighting.

It is the generosity of the RFH community that makes all of this possible. A community fundraiser currently underway is dubbed Sponsor a Seat. Parents can purchase a personalized plaque with their students’ name and graduation date to be permanently installed on the arm of an RFH auditorium seat. Details can be found at www.rumsonfairhaven.org/rfh-high-school-foundation/.

Also planned is a Ladies Night Out this fall.

The RFH Education Foundation is a non-profit organization, and all donations are tax-deductible. More information can be found on the RFH Education Foundation web page, on Facebook (rfhhsfoundation) or by following the BLOG rfhhsfoundation.blogspot.com.

Officers for the RFH Education Foundation are: president, Kathryn Singleton; vice president nancy freeman, secretary Mary Heins; and treasurer, Ray Eckhoff.

Lisa Atallah, Dorothy Bailey, Maura Beyer, Lisa Brown, Star Burnett, Deane Hiles, Michelle Mandia, Maria Oberlander, Pat Raphael, and Judi Tavill serve on the board of directors.

“We’re really excited about our partnership with the RFH teachers and administration,” said Singleton. “Together we are able to give our children impactful, one-of-a-kind learning experiences they will never forget.”

John Caroli
BCS Wealth Management