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Chagrin Falls Schools

August 2018




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Message from Our Superintendent On behalf of the Chagrin Falls Exempted Village School District's Board of Education and our entire staff, I would like to welcome back our students, parents and community for the 2018-19 school year. This is an exciting year for the District as we build upon the work accomplished through our strategic plan over the last four years. Last school year, the District conducted a comprehensive instructional audit that focused on 10 key areas of effective schools. The audit resulted in 18 recommendations for the District. We also engaged in a conversation with our community and staff through a new tool called Thoughtexchange. This exchange provided clear themes for continuous improvement. This work has driven the goals and priorities this school year. There are a variety of student achievement measures that we monitor annually. Academic achievement improved throughout the District last year. The initial release of the Ohio School Report Card indicates a significant improvement in the District performance index score which is a combination of all state testing in grades 3-8 and high school end of course exams. We expect the final version of the report card to be released the first week of September. We believe the improvement is a result of increasing intervention services and providing double block of instruction in historically low achievement areas. At the high school level, we have provided more access to Advanced Placement (AP) courses demonstrated by higher participation while maintaining a passage rate

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significantly higher than state and national averages (87%). We look forward to sharing this information at the Board of Education meeting on October 3 as well as a community forum on academic achievement sponsored by our Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) on October 25. Significant progress has been made on the construction of Chagrin Falls Intermediate School. The school is taking shape as steel is being completed and we anticipate decking to be poured shortly. Progress can be monitored at the District construction website found at the following link: http://www. On September 7, there will be a community beam signing event prior to the home football game at the Booster tailgate. Take time to stop by and “make your mark” on a piece of history. The beam will be then be placed in the cafeteria portion of the building. This has been a tremendous start to the 2018-19 school year. We are fortunate to have a supportive community and engaged parents. We encourage you to utilize the new start to the school year to take time to sit down and set academic and personal goals with your child. The District theme for this school year is “Mission Possible” as daily we develop students academically, socially and emotionally. Welcome back, Tigers! Robert W. Hunt Superintendent Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools 440-247-4363 @Hunt_Edleader

A Review of the August Board of Education Meeting - “Board Briefs” The Board of Education extends a warm welcome to all our new staff members, our new students and their families. Welcome back to our returning students and their families and our veteran staff members. And a huge thank you to our year-round staff members who spent the summer making sure everything was ready for the start of the 2018-19 school year. Our August Board of Education meeting started with a field trip to our Intermediate School construction site. Wearing hard hats, work shoes, gloves, vests and safety glasses we toured the area and were able to get a good sense of the shape of things to come. Being inside of the 1914 building with the interior walls removed was very interesting. It was as though my eyes were playing tricks on me as some spaces, like the former office, looked much smaller without walls while other areas appeared much larger than I remembered. From the old building, we moved on to the new. Climbing the scaffolding stairs to the top floor of the new classroom section and then walking around on the corrugated metal floor decking was a bit of an adventure, but very thrilling and worthwhile. I was able to imagine what the new classrooms will be like this time next year when they are full of students and teachers interacting. I didn’t need to use my imagination to realize that the views out the windows from the top floor will be nice! After concluding our tour of the construction site, we reconvened back in Sands Community Room and

discussed school safety and security. Mr. Ryan Schmit from ThenDesign Architecture, who is also a resident of our District, presented plans and recommendations for augmenting security at our entrances at both Gurney Elementary School and Chagrin Falls High School. Continuing with the safety and security topic, we heard from our new school resource officer. Officer Mike Baldwin shared about the training he received this summer, the work he has done reviewing our safety and security plans, as well as plans for his interaction with students and helping with lessons in the classroom when appropriate. We also learned about the LobbyGuard visitor management system that we have in place in each of our buildings. We trust that all our visitors understand that the safety of our students and staff is of utmost importance, and that the little bit of extra time needed to sign in and out when you visit is an important step in the safety management process. Our next and only Board meeting scheduled for September is Wednesday, September 5 at 6 p.m. in the Lewis Sands Community Room. Yours sincerely, Mary Kay O’Toole Board Member Chagrin Falls Board of Education

Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools Board of Education President: Sharon Broz (440) 715-0326 Vice President: Kathryn Garvey (216) 401-7735

Greg Kanzinger (216) 346-8272 Mary Kay O’Toole (440) 338-8636 Phil Rankin (216) 280-9092

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Photos from August 15 Board of Education Site Visit at the Intermediate School

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Chagrin Falls Schools Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee Update By Lisa Shannon, Assistant Superintendent During the summer months, the District focused on many initiatives, including recommendations made by the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee. You may recall from a previous Super News article that the full DEI committee is comprised of four smaller subcommittees working positively toward improvements in the areas of: 1) Instruction and Professional Development, 2) Non-Instruction Practices and Community Involvement, 3) Policy, Law, and Handbooks, and 4) District Beliefs and Practices. Subcommittees one through three provided recommendations to the Board of Education at the regular June meeting. The District would like to update the community on the actionable steps taken since that time, plus work that is on the horizon as we begin the 2018-19 school year.

• The District is recreating the Bullying and Harassment form to support students and families that wish to report any suspected issue and communicate more clearly the process for reporting and the applicable terminology. • Staff will complete a course on cultural sensitivity as a part of their professional development schedule for the 2018-19 school year. • The District will engage with the Cleveland Area Minority Educators Recruitment Association (CAMERA) whose goal is to develop coordinated recruitment and retention of qualified minority educators that will enable the District to diversify faculty.

• Chagrin Falls Intermediate School staff underwent training on a positive behavior intervention support system called PAX.

• The District will review and incorporate the Social Emotional Learning standards as adopted by the Ohio Department of Education (expected adoption in fall 2018).

• With subcommittee input, the District reworked handbook language related to discipline and bullying to provide clarity on reporting and processes for students, staff, and families.

• With the assistance of the Educational Service Center, the District will formally evaluate our needs to determine if school-based mental health support is warranted and to what degree.

• A goal related to mental health support and services was written for work to begin in the 2018-19 school year.

• The District will review current student organizations and gain student input to the type of extracurricular activities offered at each building.

• The District developed a system for all administrators to review policy as revisions occur, approximately four times per calendar year. • The District uses an empirically-based employment screening tool called, “Teacher Fit,” developed through Frontline, which has indices that screen candidates for qualities related to best teaching practices like fairness and respect, concern for student learning, adaptability, communications, planning and cultural competence.

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Chagrin Falls Schools Community Relations Department The goal of the Chagrin Falls Schools' community relations department is to provide accurate, up-to-date and effective information to our parents and community members by working closely with the District administration and communications department. We recognize that there are many ways to get information and strive to ensure that we provide enough trustworthy sources. This department also serves as a resource for prospective, new and existing families to the District. We offer an easy way for users to get questions answered through the “Ask Us� link on the website directing them to appropriate staff, documents or other information. We also provide school tours at each of our four buildings. The department is managed by Laurie McCormack. McCormack grew up on the east side of Cleveland and has lived in the Chagrin Falls School District for

24 years. She has been a parent and a volunteer in the District for 18 years. She currently has a senior as well as two children who have graduated from Chagrin Falls Schools. McCormack has an MBA in Finance from New York University Stern School of Business and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Middlebury College. Her prior professional experience includes working for Ernst & Young as a consultant in the healthcare/ non-profit sector. She has held leadership positions in Chagrin PTO (treasurer, chair of financial planning, and building representative at CFIS, CFMS, and CFHS). Her role in PTO here at Chagrin has kept her current with important issues and activities across the District and has given her more insight into how each building operates. McCormack also served on the levy and strategic planning committees.

If you have a questions, please contact: Laurie McCormack Director of Community Relations (440) 247-5500 x4022

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Chagrin Falls High School Students Travel to Sister School in China

As part of the trip to Shanghai, Xi'an & Beijing, a group of 12 Chagrin Falls High School students and teachers traveled to China for an additional twoday trip on June 15 and 16 to visit their sister school in Linhai City. Huipu High School is located in the Zhejiang Province and welcomed the Chagrin Falls community to their exchange study program. This trip was a part of the Chagrin Falls School’s “Bridge to the World” program. When the students arrived, the high school held a grand opening ceremony in the VIP room of the administrative building. There, Vice President of the school, Ren Meigin, hosted the welcome. President of the school, Li Xiaodong, said he hoped the exchange activities could deepen the educational cooperation between the two schools and enhance mutual understanding and further friendships. Then, Ms. Yan Guo, a teacher representative, delivered a speech. She expressed her gratitude to the school and parents for their warm reception. Ms. Guo said, “I hope that the two schools can carry out multi-disciplinary, multi-form and multi-level exchange activities in the future, thus promoting Sino-U.S. cultural exchanges and promoting the

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construction and development of the Confucius Classroom.” The Confucius Classroom is supported by the Asia Society and is a national network of exemplary Chinese language programs chosen through an application process. The network has over 35,000 students studying Chinese in more than 100 elementary, middle, and high schools in 27 states and the District of Columbia. The schools involved have a mutual commitment to international exchange, collaboration, and helping students become globally competent. Confucius Classrooms are linked to partner schools in China to increase opportunities for language learning and joint projects and exchanges among students, teachers, and administrators. Huipu created several activities to immerse the students in the Chinese culture and academia. Following the welcome, students went to their host homes to participate in family free activities and interacted with families on “zero distance.” This was meant to help students experience daily life, etiquette, diet, and culture of Chinese families and see the similarities and differences between China and the Western culture. They also participated in

“Han Culture” special experience courses and a “Millennium Ancient City” local culture experience. On June 16, students discovered what learning was like in a Chinese classroom through Chinese calligraphy, martial arts, Tai Chi Kung Fu fans, and stepping on a cereal known as sorghum. In addition to the courses, Chinese and American students joined at the gymnasium for a Sino vs. U.S. basketball game. Members of the Huipu men’s basketball team participated and students bonded through sharing their athletic ability. Later that day, both Chinese and American students and teachers visited the Linhai Museum and Ziyang Ancient Street to experience the charm of the city of Linhai. After the museum trip, American teachers and students understood the long history and cultural heritage of Linhai. The immersion stimulated the student’s enthusiasm for learning Chinese and the Chinese culture. Teachers and students agreed that though the activities were short-lived, they left a deep and unforgettable impression. The last week of August, Huipu High School teachers and students visited Chagrin Falls High School for their own exchange studies.

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MEET THE TEAMS NIGHT On Sunday, August 19, the Chagrin Falls Booster Club held a “Meet the Teams” night at Harris Stadium. The evening began with a welcome from Athletic Director Charlie Barch, as well as High School Principal Monica Asher, Superintendent Robert Hunt and Chagrin Falls Middle School Principal Laila Discenza. There also was a welcome by Chagrin Falls Booster Club President Laura Weiss. Next, Band Director Kathy Shoenfelt introduced the Chagrin Falls High School Marching Band who shared a sneak preview of the songs they will be performing this football season. After the band performance, the coaches and following teams were introduced: cheerleaders; boys and girls golf; boys and girls soccer; girls tennis; boys and girls cross country; volleyball, and football. Keep track of all the District’s athletic teams throughout the year at www. The site contains updated schedules and results, coaches information, online athletic form instructions, email alerts, news and notes, and helpful links. Questions can be directed to the athletic department direct line at (440) 2472890.

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Thank you Chagrin Falls High School photojournalism student Ava McFarlane for her outstanding photography skills.

Welcome TO THE TEAM!

Gurney Elementary School Chris Rooney Math Tutor


Brooke Mako

Curtis Howell

Patrice Voto

Assistant Elementary Principal

Reading Tutor

K-3 Music Teacher

High School

Mallory Mazzola

Nancy Vondrak

Exempt Employee

Business Teacher

Intermediate School Kristen (Kristy) Boss Art Teacher

Alannah Hamstead Tutor

Whitney Miller Tutor

Kindergarten Teacher

David Bargar

Assistant Athletic Coordinator

Classified Staff Sarah Petrash

Educational Aide, Gurney Elementary School

Angela Berger

Preschool Aide, Gurney Elementary School

Performing Arts Academy Cody Swanson

Peforming Arts Instructor

Nora Dlugo

Technical Theatre Coordinator 14 | August 2018

Chagrin Falls Schools Fourth Grader's Invention Receives State Recognition

Ella Beatty, fourth grader at Chagrin Falls Schools, created an invention to help people remember their “to-dos” that has earned her recognition and a future college scholarship. Beatty was always forgetting things, so she decided to make a fun and fashionable way for people to remember their errands and chores. Her invention, called the “Rememblet,” is a bracelet that uses interchangeable snap-on icons to, as her slogan states, “make your to-do list unforgettable!” The wearer can snap on different icons depending on what category they want. These categories include home, school, or chores. Each starter pack includes a bracelet and 10 of the most commonly used icons. In building a prototype, Beatty’s father taught her how to use a sewing machine and she chose the fabric she wanted to use. After four different revisions, it was ready for presentation to the public. On Sunday, July 29, Beatty among 437 other students, presented her idea at the Ohio State Fair. The top 10 presenters from each grade level were recognized on stage. Groups were broken up into grade levels K-4 and 5-8. The categories that students competed in were: Transportation/Financial Infrastructure,

Technology/Wearables, Sports/Games/Toys, Household Tools, Home Technology/Smart Home, Home Organization, Health/Medical Technology, Government/Public, Safety, Energy, Earth & Geosciences, Consumer Goods & Fashion, Agriculture/ Pets-Animal Care. Beatty was the top winner in the K-4 age group and received a $2500 Ohio Advantage 529 scholarship. A 529 Ohio Advantage savings plan is a way for families to save money for their child’s college education without taxes affecting the funds. She also won a free consult with a patent attorney. She plans to continue to improve the design and process and will hopefully reach the point where the “Rememblet” and its pieces can be sold. The winners of these competitions will meet at the annual National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan to celebrate the nation’s best young inventors and entrepreneurs. It will take place from May 31-June 2 of 2019.

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Chagrin Falls Schools Convocation Day Highlights - August 14, 2018 On August 14, the staff of Chagrin Falls Schools convened for the start of the 2018-19 school year. After a delicious breakfast was served by the Food Services Department in the Middle School cafeteria, the morning continued in the Performing Arts Center with the recognition of staff who have been with the District for 20 years. The Ray Markuszka 20-Year Service award was presented to Diane Henry, Melanie Hoffmann, William Kline, Vanessa Mattson, Polly Mitchell, Katherine Owen, Sarah Read, Lisa Todaro and Laurie Walsh. Janelle Ranieri, president of the PTO, gave a warm welcome to the staff as well. The Teacher of the Year and Staff Employee of the Year were also announced. Congratulations to Alan Zdolshek and Josh Maas. (See story on the following pages).

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The Ray Markuszka 20-Year Service award recipients: Front row (left to right): Lisa Todaro, Katherine Owen, Vanessa Mattson, Polly Mitchell, Diane Henry, Janelle Rainieri, PTO President Back row (left to right): Sarah Read, Bill Kline, Melanie Hoffmann and Laurie Walsh

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Teacher/Staff Member of the Year Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools announced the Teacher and Staff Member of the Year at the convocation meeting of all staff on Tuesday, August 14 in the Performing Arts Center. The Teacher of the Year is Chagrin Falls High School teacher Josh Maas. This year’s Staff Member of the Year is District bus driver, Alan Zdolshek. Alan Zdolshek was described as someone who makes every student feel welcome when they board the bus. One nominator said, “He always makes sure to stop and look to see if each child is there in the afternoon. It is almost as if he is taking a roll in his head of when each one gets on the afternoon bus. He knows all the children by name and this adds so much to the comfort level of a kindergartner.” Teachers also described him as dedicated, genuine and caring with the students. They said, “He tries to make a connection with each child.” He was noted as having a huge smile on his face every day. Teachers and parents alike feel that the children are in great hands when they are on his bus. It is not only his concern for the passengers that stands out, but his organization and professionalism when planning field trips. A teacher said, “As a teacher I love the structure that Mr. Z provides on the bus. It is super clear what the expectations are and very rarely is there any ‘bus drama.’ I once was on a field trip with a substitute bus driver for Mr. Z and he commented how wellorganized Mr. Z's plans were and how he leaves such exact directions and routes. The sub commented that most drivers do not.” A parent said, “I saw Mr. Z every morning for about 7 years and he always looked out for my kids, especially when they needed it the most. He goes above and beyond to make children comfortable each day as they head off to school.” Students love riding the bus

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because they know that Mr. Z cares for them. Parents and teachers know that when kids are on bus 13, they will always travel safely. Teacher of the Year Josh Maas’ passion for teaching coupled with his friendly nature make for an environment where students want to learn. One of his nominations stated, “Students care about doing well in his class for reasons that extend past grades, as many students aim to do well simply to avoid disappointing such a kind-hearted man.” Maas teaches calculus and one senior student explained how lucky he is to have Maas as his teacher. “I have had the pleasure of calling Mr. Maas my calculus teacher for the past two years, and over that time he has proved himself to be one of the most effective teachers I have seen in my entire academic career.” He continued by saying that Maas can connect and inspire his students. He has the ability to serve simultaneously as a teacher and friend, which sets him apart from the pack. “As a result, students no longer see the class as a faceless obligation, but rather as an exciting environment to come to everyday. His dedication and enthusiasm make AP Calculus one of the most successful classes in the high school.” When covering difficult topics, Maas always makes himself readily available and gives opportunities for extra help and practice. He wants to make sure students can deepen their knowledge and master the subject at hand. Maas’ dedication and passion for educating the students that come through his class have earned him this year’s award. “He has had such a great impact on my life in so many ways,” concluded a former student.

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Chagrin Falls Schools First Day of School Highlights

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Community Invited to Beam Signing at Boosters’ Tailgate on September 7 To celebrate construction progress being made at Chagrin Falls Intermediate School, the Chagrin Falls Schools’ community is invited to a beam signing at the Chagrin Boosters’ tailgate on Friday, September 7, beginning at 5 p.m. The beam will eventually be raised and placed in the cafeteria area of the new Intermediate School. At the tailgate, the beam will be on Lenny May baseball field, and the community will have the opportunity to “make their mark” by signing their name in this historic event. The Chagrin Falls Intermediate School has completed year one of a two-year construction project under the design of Stantec Architects and construction managed by The Gilbane Building Company. As of summer 2018, the project is on time and on budget with construction progress continuing on the site and updates being published on the District website. “We are grateful to the community for investing in this real need to rebuild and renovate Chagrin Falls Intermediate School,” said Superintendent Robert Hunt, Chagrin Falls Schools. “This is certainly an exciting time for our School District as we progress forward and invest in our future. We look forward to celebrating our progress with the community in this beam signing event.” We are grateful to the community for investing in this real need to rebuild and renovate Chagrin Falls Intermediate School. This is certainly an exciting time for our School District as we progress forward and invest in our future. We look forward to celebrating our progress with the community in this beam signing event. Robert Hunt Superintendent, Chagrin Falls Schools

e k a M your ! k r a m 22 | August 2018

Stop by and talk lls Schools’ with Chagrin Fa Bob Hunt Superintendent 9-10 a.m.

Café Time

with the Superintendent

2018 September 14, 18 October 19, 20 018 November 30, 2 9 February 8, 201 March 15, 2019 April 26, 2019 Heinen’s Cafe ge Villa in Chagrin Falls In the event of a cancellation or rescheduling of date, please check the district website under the Superintendent’s page or the district Facebook page.

Middle and High School Families . . . Did you know that you can download calendar events straight to your personal calendar? Click on the event you want from the list on the right side of the website and then click "Add to Google Calendar" if you use a Google calendar or on "Add to Calendar" for all other calendars.

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Follow Us on Social Media and On-Line Facebook • Twitter • Website • Constant Contact The Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools intends to use a variety of avenues to communicate to the district stakeholders. The list below outlines the various methods to connect with the district through social media. District Website Facebook Twitter Join the conversation on Twitter. Use #CFEVS. You can also follow the School District administrators: #CFCONSTRUCT - To follow our construction project updates and photos Robert Hunt Superintendent @Hunt_EdLeader

Monica Asher High School Principal @MonicaJAsherED

Sarah Read Intermediate School Principal @read_chagrin

Christopher Woofter Director of Operations and Strategic Initiatives @ChrisWoofter

Amanda Rassi High School Asst. Principal @cf_rassi

Dr. Rachel Jones Gurney Elementary Principal @DrJ_cfprincipal

CFHS Counselors @cfcounselors

Charlie Barch District Athletic Director @ChagrinAD

Mike Daugherty Director of Technology @MoreThanATech Becky Quinn Director of Curriculum @becky_quinn1

Laila Discenza Middle School Principal @CFMSdiscenzaPal Curtis Howell Assistant Principal (Gurney & Intermediate School) @howell_cfevs

District All Calls Our District uses an automated calling system to send out important messages such as school closings, school delays, or other valuable information when necessary. This service is only for the parents of District students. Parents will be eligible to receive these calls when they enroll their students. If you are a parent in the District and you are not receiving the automated calls, or if you need to change the number that these calls go to, please contact Pupil Services at (440) 247-4564. Stay Connected Would you like to be notified via email of what’s happening in the Chagrin Falls Exempted Village School District? Register to receive emails through Constant Contact. Go to the homepage, In the upper right hand corner, click the “Stay Connected” icon to sign up. 24 | August 2018

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Super News - August 2018  

Super News is the digital magazine of the Chagrin Falls Schools.

Super News - August 2018  

Super News is the digital magazine of the Chagrin Falls Schools.