Rye Country Day School

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Coordinates: 40°59′23″N 73°40′50″W / 40.989712°N 73.680514°W / 40.989712; -73.680514

Rye Country Day School
Rye Country Day School logo.jpg
Rye, New York
United States
MottoNot for Self, but for Service
Head of schoolScott Nelson
Number of students886[2]
Average class size14 students
Student to teacher ratio8:1[3]
Campus26 acres
Color(s)Blue and Gold
MascotWilly the Wildcat
RivalSt. Luke's School
NewspaperRye Crop

Rye Country Day School, also known as Rye Country Day or RCDS, is an independent, co-educational college preparatory school located in Rye, New York. Its Upper School (grades 9–12), Middle School (5–8), and Lower School (Pre-Kindergarten-4) enroll a total of 886 students on its 26-acre campus.[2] Rye Country Day attracts students from over 40 school districts in the tri-state area.


Rye Country Day School was founded in 1869, when a group of local parents contacted the Reverend William Life and his wife, Susan, who ran a small school in Pennsylvania. The Lifes came to Rye and established the Rye Female Seminary under the direction of Mrs. Life. During its first year, 1869, sixty students (25 boarders and 35 day students) enrolled in the Seminary, which was located on the present school property on Grandview Avenue. In 1896, the Seminary was purchased by the Misses Harriet and Mary Stowe, two members of the faculty. Upon assuming leadership, the Stowe sisters initiated significant changes in the curriculum. During this period, the Seminary was part of a national trend, namely the introduction of college preparatory programs for women. Conscious of the potential financial risk for a strictly proprietary institution, a group of parents bought the Seminary in 1917 and established it as a nonprofit day school under the direction of a Board of Trustees.

The year 1921 saw the Seminary merge with a boys' school from nearby Harrison, the Rye Country School, and became known as the Rye Country Day Schools. In 1928, the "s" was dropped from the word "Schools". At this time, the School offered a program for girls from kindergarten through grade twelve, and a program for boys from kindergarten through grade nine. In 1964 this pattern of organization was changed when the Board of Trustees extended the enrollment for boys through grade twelve.[4]


Rye Country Day's mission statement: “To provide students from Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12 with an excellent education using both traditional and innovative approaches. In a nurturing and supportive environment, we offer a challenging program that stimulates individuals to achieve their maximum potential through academic, athletic, creative, and social endeavors. We are actively committed to diversity. We expect and promote moral responsibility and strive to develop strength of character within a respectful school community. Our goal is to foster a lifelong passion for learning, understanding, and service in an ever-changing world.”[5]

Diversity & Inclusion[edit]

36 school districts from which RCDS draws students
30 percent identify as students of color
5.6 million dollar annual financial aid budget
16 percent of students are served by financial aid
6 staff members on the Diversity Team


RCDS has three divisions, each focused on the different cognitive and emotional needs of students as they progress from early childhood to pre-adulthood. The Lower School offers a nurturing environment that focuses on citizenship skills; the Middle School is structured to be responsive to students in a transitional time; and the Upper School models an intense but affirming environment that prepares students to achieve excellence at the college level. Each RCDS student gradually and surely achieves ever-evolving levels of sophistication in a given subject as he or she progresses through the School’s three divisions.


Fall Sports: Cross Country, Field Hockey, Football and Soccer.
Winter Sports: Basketball, Fencing, Ice Hockey, Squash and Wrestling.
Spring Sports: Baseball, Golf, Lacrosse, Sailing, Softball, Tennis, Track and Field.

Championship Titles
Baseball: FAA 1998, 2008 & 2017. NYSAIS 2003 & 2015.
Boys: NYSAIS C 2009, 2010 & 2014.
Girls: FAA 1999, 2000, 2013 & 2015. NYSAIS C 2010, 2012, 2015 & 2017.
Boys: ISFL 1998, 1999, 2000, 2008 & 2017.
Field Hockey: NYSAIS 2004, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017 & 2018.
Football: FAA 2002, 2010 & 2011. NEPSAC C 2011. MIFL 2018.
Boys: FAA 2007, 2010 & 2011. NYSAIS 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011.
Girls: FAA 2009, 2010 & 2017.
Ice Hockey
Boys: FAA 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2017 & 2018.
Girls: WIHLMA 2017.
Boys: FAA 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017. NYSAIS 2010, 2015 & 2017. WNESSLA DII 2015.
Girls: FAA 2015. NYSAIS 2007, 2014 & 2015. WNEPSWLA-B 2015.
Boys: FAA 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2013 & 2015.
Girls: FAA 1999, 2000 & 2013. NYSAIS 2014.
Softball: FAA 2008, 2013 & 2015.
Boys: NEPSAC B 2015.
Boys: FAA 2005.
Track & Field
Boys: NYSAIS 2018

Campus Facilities[edit]

The 26-acre campus includes academic buildings; two libraries; administrative buildings; a separate performing arts center with classrooms, music rooms, a dance studio and a 450-seat theater-auditorium; a 23,000 square-foot innovative creative arts center; a 40,000 square-foot athletic center; and 4 turf fields. Two dining rooms serve lunch every day.
Arts Facilities
The Cohen Center for the Creative Arts, a 23,000 square-foot innovative creative arts center, built in 2018. This state-of-the-art facility, brings together the disciplines to inspire new ways of thinking, collaborating, and innovating. The Edward B. Dunn Performing Arts Center is the centerpiece of music, drama, and dance activity at Rye Country Day School. Built in 1990, the PAC features a 450-seat theater, a dance studio with a sprung floor, separate choral and band practice rooms, and four private music lesson studios. Each division has a developmentally appropriate, visual arts classroom. Memorial Hall, built in 2010, provides classroom space, as well as a rehearsal and performance facility in a more intimate setting. Memorial Hall seats 125.
Athletic Facilities
Athletic facilities include four artificial turf fields; the Scott A. Nelson Athletic Center (2000), which houses a two-court gymnasium, four squash courts, four locker rooms, an athletic training facility, a state-of-the-art fitness center and a multipurpose gymnasium that serves as the home for the wrestling and fencing programs; the LaGrange Field House (1972) with its indoor ice rink/tennis courts.


Rye Country Day is ranked #26th best K-12 private school in America.
In Westchester county, Rye Country Day is ranked #1 best high school for STEM and #1 best college prep high school.

College Matriculation[edit]

Classes of 2014-2018 matriculation with 5 or more attendees:
Cornell University (31)
University of Pennsylvania (28)
Harvard University (19)
New York University (18)
Colgate University (16)
Georgetown University (15)
Washington University in St. Louis (15)
Brown University (15)
Vanderbilt University (14)
Duke University (13)
University of Michigan (13)
University of Southern California (12)
Yale University (11)
Bucknell University (9)
Northwestern University (9)
Stanford University (9)
University of Chicago (8)
Dartmouth College (8)
Princeton University (8)
Tufts University (7)
Tulane university (7)
Wake Forest University (7)
Wesleyan University (7)
University of Wisconsin, Madison(7)
Lafayette College (6)
Middlebury College (6)
University of St. Andrews, UK (6)
Williams College (6)
Amherst College (5)
Boston University (5)
Columbia University (5)
University of Notre Dame (5)
Skidmore College (5)

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Rye Country Day School". Private School Review. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
  2. ^ a b "About RCDS". Rye Country Day School. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  3. ^ "web author". Private School Review. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  4. ^ Nelson. "web author". Dir of Publications. Retrieved 5 July 2011.
  5. ^ Nelson, Susan. "web author". Dir Publications. Retrieved 5 July 2011.
  6. ^ Gussow, Mel. Edward Albee: A Singular Journey : a Biography. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1999. Pg 37
  7. ^ 5:04 pm (2012-10-10). "Harry Brant Knows You See Him 'As a Brat'". Nymag.com. Retrieved 2017-08-10.
  8. ^ Siegler, Mara (2016-07-29). "Harry Brant busted for drugs and bailing on taxi fare". Page Six. Retrieved 2017-08-10.
  9. ^ "Barbara Bush Biography :: National First Ladies' Library". firstladies.org. Archived from the original on 3 March 2009. Retrieved 1 December 2015.
  10. ^ Rye Country Day: John Treacy Egan
  11. ^ Amazon.com: Raymond Khoury: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle
  12. ^ Burke, Jason (14 October 2001). "Profile: Leila Pahlavi". The Guardian. London.
  13. ^ "Elizabeth Weinberg Fiancee Of Peter B. Smith, a Banker". New York Times. 16 March 1980. Retrieved 13 December 2017.

External links[edit]