Strong roots sustain legacies
The Oak Tree
A mighty wind blew night and day.
It stole the Oak Tree's leaves away.
Then snapped its boughs and pulled its bark
until the Oak was tired and stark.
But still the Oak Tree held its ground
while other trees fell all around.
The weary wind gave up and spoke,
"How can you still be standing Oak?"
The Oak Tree said, I know that you
can break each branch of mine in two,
carry every leaf away,
shake my limbs and make me sway.
But I have roots stretched in the earth,
growing stronger since my birth.
You'll never touch them, for you see
they are the deepest part of me.
Until today, I wasn't sure
of just how much I could endure.
But now I've found with thanks to you,
I'm stronger than I ever knew.
by Johnny Ray Ryder Jr.
Every July, the Murray's travel to South Carolina for a family vacation. Along our journey, we always seem to stop at the sacred ground of the Angel Oak Tree. Standing in the presence of this nearly 500 year old tree is providential. The gentle giant stands firm in the quietness of a remote sanctuary. The story that this tree shares test time, countless storms, and environmental pests. The roots of this magnificent tree remain strong throughout the trials of time.
Throughout our journey of life, the question is not, “Will storms arise?” Rather, the question is, “When will the next storm arise?” And even more important than that question is, “What type of person will I be when the next storm arises?”
During this time of year, it is important to reflect on our resilience to balance our lives throughout the deadlines, trials, celebrations, and changes to our routines.
Identifying the "roots" of your core personal values is key to sustaining who you are meant to be. Doing so means that you have developed a philosophy of living and a moral framework for behaving and modeling decision-making skills. Ultimately, these values and principles will serve as roots that will give you nourishment when the storms of adversity pound against you. At Chardon, I do not hide from our focus on our core values. Every single day, I share the various ways how our values are lived through the actions of our students and staff members.
In the most responsible and developed stage of morality and values, we have an obligation to use our gifts and talents to serve others, even in the midst of difficulty and anxious moments.
During this season, focus on simple ways that you can refine your insight, your relationships, your independence, your initiative, your creativity, your humor, and your values. Challenge yourself during the next four weeks to create new habits towards celebrating the true meaning of this season which will carry forward into rooting a new you in 2018.
This year AC4P and the Actively Caring Leadership class will raise funds for the 18th annual Jeremy's Kids Christmas fundraiser. This fundraiser is in memory of Jeremy Mizen, the 6-year-old son of teacher Rob Mizen, who died in a car crash on Christmas Eve in 1999. Instead of dwelling on their horrible loss and having this tragic event destroy their lives, Mr. Mizen and his wife decided that they would instead celebrate Jeremy’s life focusing on the positive aspects of his life.
AC4P and the Actively Caring Leadership class will use the raised funds to support less fortunate families in the Chardon Community. Many local families are struggling financially with giving their children gifts on Christmas. Every year the students of Chardon High School have joined together with the community to make sure relief was available to these families. At Chardon High School, money will be collected during 1st period classes. At the end of the 2 weeks the class that donates the most money will win a donut party for their classroom.
Business that donate 100 dollars or more will be named and posted on the school’s morning announcements and on the large TV’s throughout the school and on GTV. Thousands of dollars pour in every year to benefit the young children of Chardon. An average of four-thousand dollars a year has been raised since the program's conception in 2000. The students of Chardon High School and our community have generous hearts. We have raised tens of thousands of dollars.
Remember, Christmas is a time of giving and Christmas giving is in the hearts of the people of Chardon. You can help bring joy to a child this Christmas. Please send your donation to Rob Mizen by December 8th.
Thanks you for your generosity.
Please make checks payable to Chardon Local Schools. (memo: Jeremy's Kids)+
AIR Fall Tests
EOC AIR make-up testing will occur in the Chardon High School Media Center/Learning Center.
December 4, 2017 English Language Arts I and English Language Arts II
December 5, 2017 American History
December 6, 2017 Algebra I and Geometry
December 7, 2017 Biology
December 8, 2017 MAKE-UPS
December 11, 2017 MAKE-UPS
December 12, 2017 MAKE-UPS
Students taking an EOC AIR test must report to the media center promptly at 7:30 am. All of these have been notified by their school counselors. Testing will commence approximately at 7:30 am in our media center/learning center and conclude approximately at 10:30 am. Our building bell schedule WILL NOT be altered on these dates.
EOC American Government AIR testing will occur in Chardon High School classrooms and Chardon High School Media Center/Learning Center.
December 13, 2017 American Government
STUDENTS TAKING AMERICAN GOVERNMENT AIR TEST
7:15 - 7:30 Students will report to their testing location.
7:30 - 7:40 Complete required preparation to commence American Government AIR Test
7:40 - 10:40 Allotted time to complete American Government AIR Test
10:45 - 12:55 Fourth Period
1:00 - 2:31 Sixth Period
STUDENTS NOT TAKING AMERICAN GOVERNMENT AIR TEST… NO CHANGE
7:15 - 9:00 Normal Delayed Start
9:10 - 10:40 Second Period
10:45 - 12:55 Fourth Period
1:00 - 2:31 Sixth Period
Our building bell schedule WILL NOT be altered on this date.
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Engineering Tomorrow, Today
Students in Mrs. Eby's AP Computer Science Principles are using 3D CAD software to design a wind turbine they will print out using the 3D printer. The turbine and blade designs will be tested and analyzed using a small motor attached to a multimeter (used to measure voltage, current, and resistance), and placed in front of a fan. The goal, of course, is to see which student's design generates the most electricity.
The 3D printers, 3D software, curriculum, and turbine supplies were all provided compliments of a grant from GE Additives.
ICYMI: Topper Club Awards
Topper Club Awards 2017
Welcome: Douglas P. Murray
Our core values recognize Achievement as an essential benchmark of the learning that transpires everyday at Chardon High School. We have extraordinary educators that prepare our students for college, career, and life readiness. Our students refine their learning in the classroom and demonstrate their abilities in so many skill sets in extra-curriculars, service, and clubs.
Being a part of the Topper Club is an extraordinary accomplishment. Students being recognized today have maintained a GPA of 3.75 or higher. Looking throughout the gym today, we are seeing the future leaders of our ever changing world. Together, we are witnessing the development of engineers, doctors, lawyers, educators, chemists, and truly philanthropists who see the good in others and respond to the needs of others.
National Hispanic Scholar: Ryan Bandiera
National Hispanic Scholars are recognized for scoring in the top 2.5 % among Hispanic and Latino PSAT/NMSQT test taking in the region. Over the past 2 months, students were evaluation and recognized appropriately. Participation in the National Hispanic Recognition Program enables students to highlight their outstanding educational achievements. Please join me in recognizing:
National Merit Commended Students: Doug Higham
National Merit Commended students placed among the top 50,000 scorers of more than 1.6 million students who entered the competition by taking the 2016 PSAT/National Merit Qualifying Test. These young men and women are being recognized for their exceptional academic promise. While these students will not continue in the National Merit Scholarship Competition, they have demonstrated outstanding potential for academic success.
Both of Chardon High School’s students who are recognized this year demonstrate academic and service leadership. They are being commended, not only for National Recognition, but for embracing the Core Values of our school with consistent integrity. Please join me in recognizing:
National Merit Semi-Finalist: Douglas Murray
Of the 1.6 million students in some 22,000 high schools who enter the National Merit Scholarship competition annually when they take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), approximately 16,000 students will be recognized as National Merit Semifinalists. Semifinalists are the highest-scoring program entrants in each state and represent the top 0.5% percent of the state’s senior students. To be considered for a National Merit Scholarship, Semifinalists have to fulfill additional requirements to advance to Finalist standing. Please join me in recognizing:
Presentation of Awards: School Counselors: Nikki Hetrick, and Lacey Jacobs
10th Grade Certificates
11th Grade Academic Letters
12th Grade Academic Letters/Pins
RPI Scholarship: Nikki Hetrick
The Rensselaer Medal is awarded to a promising Senior who has distinguished his or her self in mathematics and science. As a Rensselaer Medal Recipient, this individual is eligible to receive a $25,000 merit scholarship, per year, to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Please join me in recognizing this year’s recipient, Asher Vokoun.
Clarkson Scholarship: Lacey Jacobs
The Clarkson University Leadership Award recognizes a student who has demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities and is in the top 15% of their class. This student has been a positive contributor to the school and community. By earning this award, this student qualifies for a $60,000 tuition scholarship to Clarkson University. This year’s recipient is Jackson Selent.
Harvard Award: Tim Hurlbut
The Harvard book award is presented each year by Harvard Alumni Association to an outstanding student who displays excellence in scholarship and high character combined with achievement in other fields. The winners of this award, through their intelligence and variety of achievement, exemplify Harvard’s commitment to excellence. This recipient is no exception; please join me in recognizing:
Chardon Science Olympiad Letter Recipients: Connie Greig-Humbert/Dr. Clouser
For the past 34 years, Science Olympiad has led a revolution in science education. Science Olympiad’s ever-changing line-up of events in all Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines exposes students to practicing scientists and career choices, and energizes classroom teachers with a dynamic content experience. The following students are being recognized for their achievements and contributions and will receive a letter or pin this year from Science Olympiad.
Heather Humbert -- letter
Tyler Mothersbaugh -- letter
Connor Fuerst -- pin
Emily Munoz -- pin
Alex Schragal -- pin
Asher Vokoun -- pin
Drew Williams -- pin
Core Values Award: Principal’s Awards
Closing Remarks: Doug Murray
Health and Wellness
On Sunday, November 26th, Chardon High School hosted a FREE event for the Chardon community. Wellness coaches, Jennifer Nieset and Cherise Goodrich presented a unique opportunity, the chance to jumpstart a MISSION within this community...starting with the family.
We live in a fast paced, highly distractible world. As adults, we remember times when families sat down together for dinners and “screen time” meant time spent as a family in front the TV watching the highly anticipated sitcom on Thursday night. We lived in a world of home cooked meals and playing outside until the street lights came on. But that is not the world we know now, and it’s certainly not the world our kids know.
As parents, educators, and coaches we are faced with the constant battle of competing for our children’s attention while also trying to manage the busyness of our life and maintain healthy family relationships. Just as life has changed, so must the way we interact with our kids. Research has shown that families who exercise and eat healthy meals together experience stronger family bonds, better communication, and a decrease in oppositional behaviors.
Enclosed is a recap of their event. We are planning on a round two event in January...stay tuned.
A Message From Dr. Hanlon
Dear Parents and Community Members:
I trust that your Thanksgiving was enjoyable and you had an opportunity to connect with family and friends as we launch into the holiday season!
During the past two weeks, the topic of district reconfiguration has generated discussion and questions within our school community. In an effort to keep the lines of communication on this important topic open, the following is being sent to update you on our progress with this critical work. In this communication I will address some frequently-asked questions that have arisen regarding this process.
Q1. Is the district looking at reconfiguration because Issue 26 failed earlier this month?
A1. NO. The Enrollment/Reconfiguration Task Force was formed in September 2017 to begin exploring options for possible restructuring of the school district that would lead to improved operational efficiency and even stronger educational outcomes for students. This task force began meeting before the result of Issue 26 was known.
During the 2014-15 school year the district undertook an extensive process to develop the current Strategic Plan - Vision 2020. The plan was approved by our Board of Education in November 2015. The plan, available on our web site, contains five vision statements and implementation strategies to achieve our shared vision for the Chardon Schools. The document continues to guide our work today with many strategies being accomplished since approval of the plan.
During the development of the Strategic Plan, the Curriculum and Instruction and Resources working groups both reviewed enrollment trend information (See below) for the school district and recognized that the steady decline in enrollment combined with a projected continuation of that trend meant that we needed to consider steps to operate as cost-effectively as possible. As a result, the strategic plan included the following:
Resources. Chardon Local Schools will maximize capacity, effectiveness and efficiency of all of our current and future resources.
IMPLEMENTATION STRATEGY 4
Study, staffing, enrollment, building capacities and grade level structure for recommendations to improve programmatic effectiveness, operational efficiency, and fiscal stability.
In addition, the Curriculum and Instruction work group recognized that as enrollment declines it becomes more difficult for fewer teachers in a particular grade level to work together to plan instruction. We also see more variability in class size from school to school with some having larger classes while others are smaller due to uneven enrollment patterns. Finding ways to bring more teachers of the same grade together by consolidating buildings provides instructional benefit for students and also offers a better opportunity to balance class size for all students.
Q2. Is this really going to happen, or is this simply a threat to gain approval of a future levy attempt?
A2. The simple answer is that our Board of Education and school district would never resort to threats of action to gain approval of an operating levy.
The longer answer is that the Enrollment/Reconfiguration Task Force must complete its important work before any determination is made by our Board of Education to move forward with a restructuring plan. The Task Force is comprised of at least one parent and two teacher representatives from each building, and district and building administrators. While the significant planning work is being completed by district personnel with particular expertise in various areas of our program (transportation, special education, curriculum, etc.), the parent representatives serve as a valuable sounding board, offering important questions and feedback to inform the process.
Among the tasks that must be completed are the following:
it is important to understand that with the failure of Issue 26, the district will not see additional revenue during 2018 to offset the continued loss of revenue due to cuts by the Ohio Legislature. Therefore, it is imperative that we continue to explore opportunities for cost-effective operation of our schools.
Q3. If the Board of Education places another operating levy on the ballot in May, and the issue passes, will that end discussion of reconfiguration?
A3. No. Our long-term enrollment projections indicate that we need to take action to continue operating our schools as cost-effectively as possible while achieving the high quality education our residents have come to expect from Chardon Schools.
We know that all public school districts continue to be on a fixed income and many (like Chardon) are seeing significant cuts from the Ohio Legislature. Districts continue to return to their communities on a regular basis for additional property taxes as operational costs increase. If reconfiguration results in greater operational efficiency, the school district will be returning to the voters less frequently. This is a win-win for the community.
Q4. When can we expect the Task Force to have a recommendation and what will be the next steps when it is ready?
A4. The target to have a recommendation from the Task Force is February of 2018. Assuming that is accomplished, it is possible that the Board of Education would consider the reconfiguration plan during a public meeting in February. If the Board approves the reconfiguration plan, we would then begin the roll-out process to our entire school community.
This being said, a strong line of communication is always our priority. Any statements of “fact” in the community that a particular school is closing, or that certain actions are being taken is simply not accurate at this time. We are continuing to explore the feasibility of reconfiguration and carefully evaluating the cost/benefit of implementing a plan that is right for our district.
Between now and February, I am committed to continuing to sharing information as it becomes available to assist our stakeholders in understanding where we are in the process. We are always available by phone or email to respond to questions as we move through the process. The best and most accurate source of information is to contact the school district directly and we will be pleased to answer your questions.
Michael P. Hanlon, Jr., Ph.D.
Have a wonderful weekend with your family and friends!