Westlake students share their favorite traditions

For the Observer's annual last-issue-of-the-year feature, students from Mrs. Melissa Graham’s fourth-grade class at Westlake Elementary School share favorite family traditions.

My Special Little Elf
Boom! Woah did I hear a little sneaky elf? It is finally my favorite time of year! Christmas is the best time of year to find your own little, magical, sneaky, and amazing Elf on the Shelf. My elf is named Mr. Jingles. He writes me letters to show how happy he is and how proud he is of being a crazy elf. He is a very interesting elf who does silly things. For example, he once put flour EVERYWHERE! Mr. Jingles is one messy elf but he still makes my family joyful the whole Christmas season. This year my elf is going to love the snow, the smell of the delightful cookies and finally the beautiful Christmas decorations. If you ever want to get your own Elf on the Shelf just get it at the store. The elf set includes a book to tell you how to use and have fun with your elf. I am thankful for these Christmas elves!
– Ariella K., Westlake

Skating in Paradise
Do you do anything special On Christmas Eve morning? Every year my family and I have a skating party! We rent the Rocky River ice arena and have lots of fun together! We always enjoy lots of yummy donuts and of course coffee for the adults. We have a little room to set all of the food in. We play Christmas music throughout the arena. We invite my figure skating friends, my brother’s hockey friends and even some friends from school. We all do a lot of races on the ice and play some games such as tag. We even sometimes make little shows that go along with the Christmas music. Even though it's not going to happen this year because of Covid-19, we are still going to try to make the winter break great! I hope you enjoy your winter and spread Christmas cheer for the holidays.
– Elise A., Westlake

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Volume 12, Issue 24, Posted 9:58 AM, 12.15.2020

Bay Village students share their favorite traditions

For the Observer's annual last-issue-of-the-year feature, students from Mrs. Julie McArn’s first-grade class at Normandy Elementary in Bay Village share favorite family traditions.

Christmas at the Tree Farm
Well, the second to the last day of November, we go to friends and eat bagels and have a brunch. Then we go cut down our trees. When we get back to our house, we get dinner, eat it then we decorate the tree. We call it a tree decorating party. I love it!
– Alice F., Bay Village

Snow is Falling on the Best Family!
Every year we always go to Crocker to see the lights. Don’t you think they are pretty? My family does! My favorite part is going in the big snow globe and getting my picture taken with my sister. It’s so fun!
– Olivia A., Bay Village

Christmas at Grandparents
My family always goes to our grandma and grandpa’s house a couple of days before Christmas. On Christmas Eve, we go to my cousins. My sister Lynn and I love to go there! We eat dinner and then we get to help make the fruit punch. It is really good. You would love it!
– James S., Bay Village

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Volume 12, Issue 24, Posted 9:58 AM, 12.15.2020

Glenview preschoolers spread joy to medical community

Preschoolers at Glenview Child Care Center have been busy spreading joy to the medical community. Students made nearly 80 cards to share with the pediatric residents at Cleveland Clinic. The cards were delivered in early December.

Besides showing their gratitude for the medical community in their cards, the students enjoyed participating in activities related to the medical field.


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Volume 12, Issue 24, Posted 9:56 AM, 12.15.2020

Doctor turned library aide coordinates Bay Village Schools' COVID-19 response

Dr. Michele Moore had no idea she’d be putting her medical degree to work for the Bay Village City School District when applying for a library aide position in 2014. But when Gov. Mike DeWine asked school systems to name district-wide COVID-19 coordinators this past September, Dr. Moore’s name was on the short list.

“Michele not only has the medical training, she knows our district,” said Dr. Holly Schafer, director of human resources for Bay Village Schools. “We immediately thought of her, and she hasn’t missed a beat since accepting the challenge.”

Dr. Moore not only coordinates the district’s confirmed cases and quarantines, she’s involved with compiling student daily health check information, coordinating contact tracing with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health and talking to families daily to help parents decide if they should send their students to school. She is a key member of the district’s COVID-19 Task Force, and assists with projections based on the data she collects. All tasks she had no idea she’d be doing when reentering the workforce six years ago to take on a job in Westerly Elementary School’s library.

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Volume 12, Issue 24, Posted 9:55 AM, 12.15.2020

Bay Village second-graders work with children's author to create books

Budding authors in Kelsy Hoy’s second-grade class at Normandy Elementary School in Bay Village had the rare opportunity to confer with children and young adult author Rachel Vail late last month via Zoom. The award-winning author joined the class for a brainstorming session and discussed Vail’s “Elizabeth” book series, about a second-grader and her experiences growing up.

Hoy said there are a lot of things in school that aren’t normal right now, so she welcomed the opportunity to have her students work on a unique project. “I thought having these discussions would be fun and engaging for our students and would really make these books come alive,” Hoy said.

Students worked on their ideas with Vail, and will turn them into book covers that they’ll present to Vail before Thanksgiving break. Then the 16 students will write their stories for their books. Vail said she may even consider using one or more of the student ideas as the basis for her next storyline.

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Volume 12, Issue 23, Posted 10:04 AM, 12.01.2020

BHS inducts 87 students into National Honor Society

On Nov. 9, the Bay High School Chapter of National Honor Society inducted 87 new members. The ceremony was broadcast on the Bay High Live YouTube Channel with parts pre-recorded so each student could safely be honored. Families were able to livestream the event, hosted by Bay High School principal Jason Martin. This event marked the 81st annual induction ceremony at Bay High School.

Membership in National Honor Society is the highest honor that can be bestowed on a high school student. It is the recognition of outstanding performance in both the classroom and the community. 

“These students truly represent the principles of character, scholarship, leadership and service,” said Kathryn McCarthy, Bay High School’s National Honor Society advisor. “It is my privilege to serve with them as their advisor.”

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Volume 12, Issue 23, Posted 10:04 AM, 12.01.2020

Bay school board appoints new member

During its Nov. 9 regular meeting, the Bay Village Board of Education voted unanimously to appoint Bay Village resident and parent Dr. Scott Schulz to fill its board vacancy.

A Bay Village resident for the last six years, Dr. Schulz has spent the majority of his professional career in post-secondary education. He currently serves as Vice President for Enrollment Management at Baldwin Wallace University. He is also an adjunct assistant teaching professor for Pennsylvania State University.

Dr. Schulz has also served in several volunteer capacities, including assisting military veterans in furthering their education through American Corporate Partners, and working with GED students to explore their education and career options via Seeds of Literacy.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 9:24 AM, 11.17.2020

Bay Village Schools hosts virtual town hall on anxiety, adapting to change

Bay Village Schools invites community members to attend a virtual Town Hall – “Anxiety and Adapting to Change” – from 6:30-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 19, via Zoom. The webinar event is hosted by Bay Village City School District, with experts from MetroHealth, Recovery Resources and the Educational Service Center of Northeast Ohio.

The event is geared toward parents and guardians of students in grades PreK-12, and the panelists will help families adjust to change and uncertainties. As families move from crisis mode to adapting to a new way of functioning, they may seek advice, tips and resources to help their students better adapt.

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Volume 12, Issue 22, Posted 9:21 AM, 11.17.2020

BHS Key Club welcomes 71 new members

The Bay High School Key Club welcomed 71 new members on Thursday, Oct. 22. The induction took place outdoors in the high school courtyard. New members received a gift bag that included a club T-shirt and membership pin.

Induction project chairs Zoe Cox, Bay High School Key Club president, and Meredith Florez, Bay High School Key Club webmaster, led the event, which was "designed to develop leadership and celebrate a new group of teens committed to serve others," according to Anita Bauknecht, Bay High School family and consumer sciences teacher and Bay High School Key Club advisor.

Bay High School Key Club has 151 members and is sponsored by Bay Village Kiwanis. Bay High School Key Club meets virtually every Thursday at 3 p.m.

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Volume 12, Issue 21, Posted 9:28 AM, 11.03.2020

Bay High School honored for college preparedness

Bay High School was recently recognized as a 2020 College Success Award winner from This award honors public high schools doing an extraordinary job preparing students for college and beyond. Bay High School was one of only 2,158 public high schools across the country that was recognized. is a national nonprofit organization that provides ratings and school information to help parents find the right school for their family, and educational opportunities for their children.

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Volume 12, Issue 21, Posted 9:27 AM, 11.03.2020

Superintendent grateful for support during pandemic

As the Bay Village City School District nears the end of the first quarter, I write to our community to convey my gratitude during this uncertain time. My family and I love living in Bay Village and we would not want to be anywhere else. What sets our community apart are our hometown values: family friends through generations; children riding bikes to school; meeting friends at Friday night Rocket football games and supporting organizations like The Village Project, who heal through giving. The heart of our village touches so many lives.

When COVID-19 disrupted our world, I knew this would change our daily routines significantly. It was hard to imagine how to reopen schools while addressing difficult budget decisions; especially since we were required to refund monies to the state of Ohio due to state cuts. But, our team – who consisted of Board of Education members, teacher leaders, parents and administrators – worked for months to create several iterations of what teaching and learning is today. As expected, we experienced moments of intense, productive struggle, but we leaned on one another to develop a comprehensive plan.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 10:16 AM, 10.20.2020

Bay Village Board of Education seeks applicants for open seat

The Bay Village Board of Education seeks applicants to fill the unexpired term of Board member Dr. Gayatry Jacob-Mosier, who resigned Oct. 13.

The Board is accepting applications through Tuesday, Oct. 27, for the open Board seat. Applicants must be residents of Bay Village and registered voters. Candidate interviews with the Board will take place following the application deadline. The Board expects to swear in the newly appointed member on Monday, Nov. 9.

The new Board member will be appointed for the term ending Dec. 31, 2021. He or she must run in the next general election – Nov. 2, 2021 – in order to serve the next four-year term, which would begin January of 2022.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 10:25 AM, 10.20.2020

Bay Village Schools brings in experts to ‘Respond to COVID-19’ in virtual town hall event

About 130 Bay Village residents attended a virtual town hall – “Responding to COVID-19” – on Oct. 15, to learn how Bay Village Schools is responding to the virus since implementing its Safe Reopening Plan. The webinar event was hosted by Bay Village City School District, with expert panelists from Cuyahoga County Board of Health (CCBH), MetroHealth, Recovery Resources and the Educational Service Center of Northeast Ohio (ESCNEO).

The virtual town hall was broken down into three sections: health symptoms and processes, mental health symptoms and school district-specific questions. Town hall guests submitted questions when they registered, or asked them through a live chat session during the webinar.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 10:15 AM, 10.20.2020

10 WHS students recognized in National Merit program

The Westlake City School District announced that 10 students at Westlake High School have been recognized in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program, an annual academic competition for recognition and college undergraduate scholarships.

Luke Heberle, Rahul Jain, Colt Rujawitz, Macy Sinreich and Kevin Xu have been named as Semifinalists. Evan Cowin, Abigail E. Dumm, Arya S. Parikh, Hannah C. Powers and Sagan D. Woolner were recognized as Commended Students. The students were identified as Commended or Semifinalists based on their Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) scores.

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Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 10:13 AM, 10.20.2020

Bay has 11 students recognized in National Merit Scholarship Program

The Bay Village City School District announced that 11 students have been recognized in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program, an annual academic competition for recognition and college undergraduate scholarships.

Thomas Beckwith, James Bish and Samuel Ferry have been named Semifinalists. Abigail Donahue, Ryan Duffy, Anya Krumbine, Cooper Lyons, Molly Mullahy, Kayla Poling, Emma Spirollari and Kendall Thomas are recognized as Commended Students. All are seniors at Bay High School.

These students were identified based on their Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) scores.

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Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 9:50 AM, 10.06.2020

Bay High School holds virtual Homecoming

Things may have looked a little different with no dance and a virtual Homecoming Assembly, but the Bay High School Class of 2021 was still upbeat about Homecoming 2020.

Class officers organized a Spirit Week (from tropical shirt day to wearing the Bay Rockets pride colors of blue, white and red), and they played '80s music between classes.

The 2020 Homecoming Court was Queen Bridget Dougherty, and attendants Claire Edman and Alex Jensen; King Hayden Coffman, and court members Peter Appenheimer and Nathan Grace.

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Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 9:51 AM, 10.06.2020

Bay Village Schools superintendent honored by national communication association

Bay Village Schools Superintendent Jodie Hausmann has been named a "2020 Superintendent to Watch" by the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA). 

Hausmann was one of 24 district leaders in the country honored, selected for her use of communication technology in innovative and effective ways. According to NSPRA's Sept. 2 announcement, Hausmann and the other 23 honorees "engage and inform their school communities with new communication technology tools combined with tried-and-true techniques, and possess dynamic, fast-paced leadership with strong communication at its core."

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Volume 12, Issue 18, Posted 10:23 AM, 09.15.2020

Bay school board passes resolution of commitment to equity, excellence

On Aug. 10, the Bay Village Board of Education unanimously passed a Resolution to Commit to Equity and Excellence in Education. (One of the five Board members, Gayatry Jacob-Mosier, was not in attendance.) The Resolution, in its entirety, is shared below:

The Bay Village City School District Board of Education rejects all forms of racism and discrimination as being destructive to the District’s mission, vision, values and goals. We are committed to the success of every student and providing an educational experience empowering students to maximize their potential.

We value each student as an individual and are committed to meet each student where the student is academically, emotionally, mentally, physically and socially.

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Volume 12, Issue 17, Posted 9:34 AM, 09.01.2020

BMS students start birthday club

At the start, it was just a simple idea of making everyone feel welcome on their birthdays.  We didn’t really know if it was going to succeed or even become a club. We were not really planning on it being an actual club, but it ended up that way, created by the three of us.

In the summer of 2019, as we entered eighth grade at Bay Middle School, Mrs. Lang helped us form an idea for this club. We were all thinking about how decorating lockers are allowed in our school. It had its own pros and cons as many children would get their lockers decorated every year, and others have never had their lockers decorated at all. We all very well understand why it is not allowed in other schools, but in our school, we did not want the privilege to be taken away, so we improved it.

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Volume 12, Issue 16, Posted 9:20 AM, 08.18.2020

Karen Uthe-Semancik is new Bay Schools communications director

The Bay Village Board of Education voted unanimously in July to appoint Karen Uthe-Semancik as the district’s next Director of Communications. Uthe-Semancik assumes her new role in August. She succeeds Karen Derby-Lovell, who recently retired after serving in the role for more than two decades.

A Bay Village resident, Uthe-Semancik most recently held the position of communications director for Menlo Park Academy, a school for gifted children in Cleveland. She has also served as director of marketing for Magnificat High School in Rocky River. She has worked as a community reporter for WestLife newspaper covering several Westshore school districts, and was a columnist covering pet ownership for the Elyria Chronicle Telegram for more than a decade. Her experience also includes owning a boutique communications firm and working in the nonprofit, broadcasting and advertising agency sectors.

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Volume 12, Issue 15, Posted 9:51 AM, 08.04.2020

Bay Village Schools announce fall reopening plan

The Bay Village Board of Education approved an amendment to its teachers contract that accommodates changes to school this fall due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The July 13 vote and meeting was held virtually in accordance with state directives that limit gatherings. More than 100 parents, staff and community members attended via phone and online.

The current plan is to open school buildings on a five-day, Monday-through-Friday schedule with a variety of COVID-19 safety protocols in place. Daily schedules will condense learning into somewhat shorter school days. Families who are not comfortable sending their children into school buildings with the safety protocols in place have the option of accessing a high-quality, remote learning program with Bay Village Schools teachers.

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 10:07 AM, 07.21.2020

Westlake City Schools hires new principal at Lee Burneson

Westlake City Schools has announced the appointment of Kristina Yako as principal of Lee Burneson Middle School. Yako will replace Amanda Musselman who is taking over as the director of academics K-6.

Yako received her middle school teaching license from Ashland University and principal license along with a master's degree from Baldwin Wallace University. She previously served as the assistant principal at Cloverleaf Middle School in Seville, Ohio, where she helped the school earn the 2020 National Middle Schools to Watch award.

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 10:05 AM, 07.21.2020

BHS Science Club teams with Westerly for virtual STEM challenges

Floating eggs, density tube, floating paper clips! Driveway maze, robotic friend, maze through your house! These are just some of the free virtual STEM challenges for Bay Village students in grades K-4.

Working with Westerly Elementary School's Lindsey Harris and Martha Fisher, retired third-grade Westerly teacher, Bay High School Science Club members Casey Bartman, Jimmy Bish and Leo Cavalier created mini challenges that highlighted the focused challenges, "Build a Boat" and "a-MAZEing." All the challenges used materials that could easily be found at home.

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Volume 12, Issue 14, Posted 10:07 AM, 07.21.2020

Bay Village Schools hires Alexa Davey to lead Glenview

Alexa Davey is the new director of Glenview Child Care and Learning Center in Bay Village. She replaces recently retired Dorothy Chadwick.

Asked why she chose early childhood education as a career, Davey, who is the daughter of two teachers, explained she discovered through a student teaching position her passion for early childhood.

“I fell in love with this age group because it is a rare, but vital opportunity to set the stage for children to fall in love with learning,” she said. “In the classroom, I loved developing relationships with children and their families. Doing so helped me discover their strengths and interests, and I was able to use those to foster individual success in the classroom.”

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Volume 12, Issue 13, Posted 10:01 AM, 07.07.2020

P.E.O. scholarship awarded to BHS senior

The prestigious P.E.O. STAR Scholarship for the 2020-21 academic year was awarded to Olivia Reed, a senior at Bay High School. Olivia, the daughter of Amy and Bob Reed, was recommended for this scholarship by Chapter BG, Cleveland West. Reed has been accepted and will attend The Ohio State University where she plans to study environmental engineering beginning this fall.

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Volume 12, Issue 13, Posted 10:11 AM, 07.07.2020

Bay’s Glenview Childcare and Learning director, Dody Chadwick, retires

After leading the care and education of the youngest of Bay Village’s children for more than a decade, Dorothy (Dody) Chadwick will retire from her position as director of Glenview Childcare and Learning Center, part of the Bay Village City Schools, on July 1.

The Bay Village resident joined Glenview as a teacher in 2008 and became the program’s director in 2009. Prior to that she served as the site administrator for the West Shore Ecumenical Ministry’s Youth and Family Learning Center and the director of the West Shore Child Care Center.

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Volume 12, Issue 12, Posted 9:45 AM, 06.16.2020

Westlake continues Tree City poster contest tradition

The City of Westlake Tree Commission and Mayor Dennis Clough were determined to offer the annual Tree City poster contest to this year’s fifth-graders at Dover Intermediate School.

The coronavirus made the possibility of it happening more difficult but this year’s fifth-graders certainly came through. Two days before the contest was to begin school was closed ... but determination prevailed. The students were given directions online including a video as to what they needed to do. The deadlines were extended and the students could design posters online, create actual posters and submit photographs of their posters, and were able to use a wide variety of means to decorate their creations! Their work was exemplary.

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Volume 12, Issue 12, Posted 9:46 AM, 06.16.2020

Virus fails to stop Bay High music concerts

While Bay High auditorium won't be filled with audiences of family and friends for this week's spring concerts due to the COVID-19 virus, Bay High vocalists and instrumentalists will perform as groups virtually, making music together in a historical, new way.

Choral Director Devon Gess said that Bay High Choraleers will begin their performance on Tuesday, May 19, at 7 p.m. with music that was individually pre-recorded and then merged together via the magic of video editing.

They will present "When I Think About Angels" and "Light of a Clear Blue Morning." Interns Cami Drenkhan and Eddie Papp, working this year with Mrs. Gess, will perform "You Matter To Me." Choral award recipients will be announced, and seniors will be recognized.

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Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:39 AM, 05.19.2020

Bay Village School District moves eLearning forward in phases

After several weeks of setting up online classrooms, mastering online meetings, creating video messages and wading through a tsunami of email, the Bay Village School District has settled into distance learning. Teachers and students, as well as parents, have learned a lot about teaching and learning online, or eLearning, since schools closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We recognized that eLearning presents unique challenges and is a new experience for our students and teachers,” said Superintendent Jodie Hausmann. “We had to pivot into this process quickly. So for those first weeks of this year’s final quarter, we asked teachers to review material previously covered, and to not assign grades.”

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Volume 12, Issue 8, Posted 9:03 AM, 04.21.2020

Morning announcements at Bay Schools are a fun part of eLearning routine

Most of us can remember scooting into a school desk seat early in the morning. The tardy bell would ring, the teacher would make a sign to be quiet, and morning announcements would come over the public address system. It was a routine that let us know the school day had begun.

Fast forward to 2020, where students in the Bay Village Schools, like those throughout much of our country, now attend school virtually from their homes due to the COVID-19 virus. Social distancing has closed the school buildings and silenced those public address system. But thanks to the internet, students can begin their days watching videotaped morning announcements featuring their school principals, teachers and news about fellow students.

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Volume 12, Issue 7, Posted 9:41 AM, 04.07.2020

COSI comes to Westerly School

The students at Westerly Elementary school had a visit from a company called COSI, Center of Science and Industry. You can visit them in Columbus. The COSI worker set up centers for the whole school to do experiments with and we got to try a lot of cool stuff!

We learned a lot about science. Here are some things we did and saw. First, there was a machine called SAM. When a person pulls a hammer the hammer hits a ball. The ball would start to roll and would knock one thing, that would knock another thing, that would knock another thing, and so on. It was a chain reaction machine. It was pretty cool.

Two centers we liked were about energy. One of our favorite things was the light machine. You turned a handle and a light would turn on. If you flipped a switch a different light would turn on. This center showed which light bulb uses less energy.

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Volume 12, Issue 6, Posted 9:45 AM, 03.17.2020

Saint Raphael stages living wax museum

Saint Raphael fifth-grade students presented the most anticipated event of the year at the annual Living Wax Museum this past month. Through research and preparation, 90 students ages 10 and 11 transformed into our world’s past and modern-day heroes.

Athletes, musicians, inventors, philanthropists, historical leaders, actors and entertainers filled the rooms of Saint Raphael as family members, parishioners and students pressed play to listen to their biographies. The event was not only considered a unanimous success by all who attended, but was a great history lesson for students and listeners as they presented.

Congratulations to all students for the hard work and preparation done in order to bring such an interactive teaching event to the community!

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Volume 12, Issue 6, Posted 9:43 AM, 03.17.2020

Westlake Council of PTAs celebrates Founders' Day

PTA's mission is to make every child's potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children. On Thursday, Feb. 20, the Westlake Council of PTAs honored 11 outstanding individuals who carry out this mission and give of their time and talents to the students of the Westlake City School District.

The annual Founders' Day Celebration was held at LaCentre. Guests were treated to rolling slide show that featured photos of PTA-sponsored events since the beginning of the school year. As part of the slide show, the names of all the volunteers who assisted the PTA in any way figured prominently.

Superintendent Scott Goggin welcomed the attendees by highlighting the relationship between the PTA and the administration. Dr. Goggin related how wonderful it is to see all of the people in the room come together to celebrate "star players in a room full of all-stars." Lauren Backus, president of the Westlake Council of PTAs noted that the National PTA is the largest volunteer child advocacy organization in the nation. In the Westlake City Schools the PTA is 1,255 members strong!

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 10:08 AM, 03.03.2020

WHS holds annual prom assembly

The Westlake High School Class of 2020 held their Prom Assembly on Friday, Feb. 28. This year's emcees were Bella Zannotti and Tim Gerent. Students modeled prom attire provided by David’s Bridal and American Commodore Tuxedo. Students participated in prom trivia surrounding the origins of prom as well as prom conduct and safety. SADD officers led students in the Prom Pledge to promote safety during prom season for themselves and others.

Senior parents, staff and school board members attended the event. The event was sponsored by the WHS Parent/Teacher Association.

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 10:00 AM, 03.03.2020

Home of the Rockets gets closer to goal

The Bay Village "Home of the Rockets" team is making significant progress toward its goal of raising $1.6 million for the planned construction of a new building at Bay High Memorial Stadium that will house two team rooms, a new concession stand, restrooms and more. 

Home of the Rockets presented a check for their first installment of $350,000 to the Bay Village Board of Education on Monday. The account with the board now holds $750,000, including a board contribution of $400,000. Home of the Rockets also has more than a quarter of a million dollars in pledges lined up. Rockets fans can learn all about this project and donate at various levels, including seeing their name on a recognition brick, paver, plaque and more, at:

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 9:59 AM, 03.03.2020

3 WHS seniors named National Merit Finalists

Westlake High School has three National Merit Finalists. Seniors Seohyun Choi, Teagan Walsh and Eric Kronz are among 15,000 students to achieve Finalist standing in the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program.

More than 1.6 million juniors in about 22,000 high schools entered the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, which served as an initial screen of program entrants. A pool of nationwide Semifinalists, which represents less than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors, was selected.

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 10:02 AM, 03.03.2020

DIS for the 'WIN'

Every Wednesday, Dover Intermediate School students kick off their day working on academic interventions, addressing social/emotional needs or participating in enrichment activities like yoga and music during WIN (What I Need) Day.

DIS Principal Nick Miller said the purpose of the program is intervention and enrichment.

“Flexible grouping changes each week, so students are exposed to a number of different activities,” Miller said. “The goal is to give each student what they need each week.”

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 10:02 AM, 03.03.2020

Closing the computer science gap

A field trip to a local software company opened the doors to Westlake High School students to learn about coding and information technology (IT) opportunities straight from industry professionals.

WHS offers Introduction to Computer Programming and Python Programming courses thanks to a partnership with Microsoft Philanthropies TEALS (Technology Education and Literacy in Schools). The program pairs computer science professionals with high school teachers to help build computer science (CS) teaching capacity.

WHS is one of 625 TEALS schools in the United States. This school year, 45 students have participated in the program.

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Volume 12, Issue 5, Posted 10:02 AM, 03.03.2020

DIS students work on mousetrap challenge

Dover Intermediate School students are in the middle of the first Mousetrap Interschool Design Challenge with two neighboring schools.

DIS students are busy designing mousetrap cars to rally for a spot in a race with cars from Troy Intermediate School in Avon Lake and East Intermediate School in Midview. DIS Principal Nick Miller said the race was born out of discussions by three principals looking for a friendly competition among buildings.

“It’s a STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) activity during our enrichment periods. The students are really excited and working together on their designs and builds,” Miller said. “This is the first time we’re doing something like this. We might create a traveling trophy and make it an annual event if it goes well.”

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 10:04 AM, 02.18.2020

Helping Hands program provides role modeling for Westlake students

Eleven years ago, Dover Elementary School launched the Helping Hands program, matching typical peers with students with disabilities to offer peer tutoring, role modeling and participation in social skill activities.

That program is continuing at Westlake Elementary School, and this school year Dover Intermediate School (DIS) intervention specialists Emma McHugh and Kerry Brickman launched the program at the intermediate school.

“Emma was interested in getting some helpers at the beginning of this year at DIS. We used the same idea that Dover Elementary had with their program, as many of the Dover kids were already asking about it,” Brickman said.

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 10:04 AM, 02.18.2020