District News
Genoa’s Ben Clark Advances to Middle School Chess Tournament in May

All Genoa Middle School students were invited to participate in a school-wide chess tournament which took place on Thursday, April 3.  The competition was fierce, but in the end eighth grade student Ben Clark emerged victorious.  He will represent the building in the Middle School Chess Tournament in May.  Placing second was sixth grader Andrew Lin.  Eighth grade student Tyler Lenoy came in third. 


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Heritage Students Lauded at Science Competition

Heritage Middle School students Jenny Courts, Brian Courts, Jack Lovell, Cheyney Carr and Kasyn Scarantine participated in District Science Day, which took place on Saturday, March 15 at Columbus State Community College.  They qualified to advance to the Ohio Academy of Science State Science Day, which will be held on May 10 at The Ohio State University.  Austin Yanichko and Henry Robbins also participated in District Science Day.


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WPE Starry Night Festival Draws more than 1,500 Participants

More than 1,500 people packed into Westerville South High School for the Westerville Partners for Education’s Starry Night family festival on Sunday afternoon, April 6.  Critters, robots, origami, LEGOs, music, costumes, bonsai trees and over 60 different exhibits from Columbus’ premier educational organizations were on hand to present interactive experiences for students and families.  Students watched puppet shows, drove robots, acted out dramas, explored live insects, learned about 3-D printing, and watched sky shows from within the indoor planetarium.  Dr. Tom Burns from Perkins Observatory and the Ohio State University’s Meteorology Club presented to auditorium audiences and Tim Kaiser demonstrated handmade instruments.


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Pointview Activities Engage Families

Pointview Elementary School hosted a number of extracurricular activities in recent weeks designed to engage families.


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Middle School Students Advance to State Invention Convention

The fifth annual Westerville City Schools Middle School Invention Convention was held at Blendon Middle School on Wednesday, April 9, where 42 students represented each of the four middle schools.  Sponsored by the Gifted Education Department and each middle school, students competed at the building level and were invited to the district competition to set up displays and be judged by a panel of distinguished educators, administrators, and community members.


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Wilder Student Wins Top Honors at Eighth Annual Lego Competition

Fifth grade Wilder Elementary School student David Osborne (pictured above) was named Overall Grand Winner at the eighth annual Westerville City Schools Lego Competition held April 5 at Heritage Middle School.  Dr. Scott Ebbrecht, facilitator of the annual event, commented to the nearly 130 student participants and their family members, “Perseverance paid off for David in that he has competed each year since kindergarten, and on his final attempt, took home the grand prize!”  Proceeds from the event benefited Westerville’s Elementary Leadership Summit and the Children Supporting Children Foundation.


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Sixth Grade Science Classes Take On the STEM ‘Chip Challenge’

Sixth grade students from advanced science classes took part in the fourth annual Chip Challenge, a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) initiative.  Teams of students were asked to design and test a container for shipping a single “Pringles” potato chip to Westerville City Schools Superintendent Dr. John Kellogg, whose office is located at the Early Learning Center, 936 Eastwind Drive.  Upon arrival, the packages and the chip they contained were evaluated and scored.  The goal was to design a package to have the smallest volume and smallest mass that protected the chip so that it would arrive at its destination undamaged.


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Students Spread the Word to End the Word

From April 7-11, the Otterbein University Special Olympics Club, along with Westerville City Schools students from the Best of Both Worlds program, engaged in a campaign to get individuals to sign a pledge to stop using the ‘R’ word – retard(ed).  The R word hurts those with intellectual disabilities because it is exclusive, offensive and derogatory.


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Health and Fitness Activities Enjoyed by all at Mark Twain Elementary School

Students from Otterbein University and the Westerville City Schools Best of Both Worlds program joined forces to host the Mark Twain Elementary Health and Activity Night on Thursday evening, April 3. A number of interactive activities were offered, all of which were designed to educate children and adults about health topics. 


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Rotary Club of Westerville Names April Students of the Month

The Rotary Club of Westerville, which sponsors a Student of the Month program, recognized recipients at a luncheon at Villa Milano held on Thursday, April 3.  April students are:  Jessica Stroh, Westerville Central High School; Roderick (R.J.) Hutcherson, Westerville North High School; and Rachel Putnam, St. Francis DeSales High School.


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Genoa Firefighters Blaze a Trail for Literacy

The Genoa Township Professional Firefighters completed their successful 2014 Blaze a Trail for Literacy reading program, and have announced that the school that read the most minutes is Alcott Elementary, with 22,881 minutes read.  Top individual readers were Laura Richards, Fouse Elementary; Isaac Leigh, Alcott Elementary; and Nicholas Struntz at Walnut Creek.


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Robert Frost Student Council Hosts Spring Dash 5K

The Robert Frost Elementary School Student Council hosted a Spring Dash 5k on Saturday, April 5, at Westerville Central High School.  A portion of the proceeds from the event benefitted the Oakstone Academy, which provides services for children with autism spectrum disorder.


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Huber Ridge Remembers Connor Talbert

On Friday afternoon, April 4, second grade students gathered to remember classmate Connor Talbert, who passed away last year due to pulmonary hypertension, a disease of the lungs and heart.  Talbert’s friends, family members, neighbors and teachers held a PTA-sponsored memorial service in the cafeteria to remember the young boy.


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GEM Award Winners to be Honored 4/28/14

The Westerville Parent Council and Roush Honda are pleased to announce the 11th annual Great Educator Mentor (GEM) Award winners.  GEM awards are given to individuals who make a difference in the lives of the students in the Westerville School District.  All GEM winners promote the welfare of students in the home, school and community, and each goes above and beyond the call of duty. 


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Heritage Students Learn About Freedom Riders at Ohio Historical Society

Eighth grade Advanced Language Arts classes taught by Candace Shicks at Heritage Middle School enjoyed a recent trip to the Ohio Historical Society to hear a presentation and see a movie about the Freedom Riders.  They learned about the mass effort to challenge the racial status quo in the Deep South, when hundreds of volunteers from various walks of life boarded buses and headed south, risking being jailed, beaten or killed. 


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Chamber Strings Orchestra Performs for Students at Huber Ridge

The Chamber Strings Orchestra performed a mid-day assembly for the students of Huber Ridge on March 4. The orchestra, consisting of Columbus area 6-9 graders, played a variety of music including classical pieces and show tunes. Conductor Dr. Robert Gillespie had the performers show the elementary students how to pluck the stringed instruments.  A few Huber Ridge students got to sit in the performers’ chairs to perform during one song.


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Westerville High School Students View “Chasing Ice” Documentary

Students at all three Westerville high schools got the opportunity during the month of May to view Chasing Ice, an Academy Award-nominated documentary film that captures visual evidence of climate change through the use of time-lapse photography.  The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, has been shown in 172 countries, and has won nearly 40 awards from festivals around the world.  It was also screened at the United Nations, before Congress, and at the White House.


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Math Integrated Enrichment Project Inspires Fouse Students to Ponder Vacation Time

Where would you go if you could go anywhere on vacation?  What would you do when you got there?  Where would you stay?  How much would it cost?  These are some of the questions students in Janelle Genth’s third grade class at Fouse Elementary School were asked to ponder, thanks to a math-integrated enrichment project led by retired teacher Connie Himes.


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Westerville North Students Learn Valuable Lessons from KEMBA Simulation

For the past few years at Westerville North High School, representatives from Kemba Financial have spoken with U.S. Government students about financial literacy. They share information about the importance of having a budget, a bank and a savings plan in order to obtain financial security. 


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Wilder Elementary School Celebrates the Arrival of Spring

Wilder Elementary School’s annual Spring Fling, held on March 20, packed the house with pupils and their families.  The staff scooped and served delicious bowls of ice cream in a variety of flavors.  The fifth grade team sold pizza.  A book fair was held in the gymnasium.  And families were given an “ice cream passport” to use while checking out a number of exciting educational stations.


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Mark Twain’s Empty Bowls Luncheon Benefits Local Charities

On Friday, March 21, students, family members and community supporters packed the gymnasium at Mark Twain Elementary School for the annual Empty Bowls Luncheon.The Mark Twain PTA, fifth grade Service Club Members, participants in the annual Elementary Leadership Summit and children in grades 4 and 5 hosted the event.


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Westerville Education Foundation Receives Donation

The Westerville Education Foundation (WEF) has received a generous donation in the amount of $10,000 from Alliance Data.


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Fouse Student Inspires Classmates to Raise Awareness for Cerebral Palsy

Fourth grade student Adriana Lyons gets by with a little help from her friends.  Lots of friends, in fact, as evidenced by the support she received on March 21, National Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day. Classmates and staff purchased HOPE shirts and wore green to honor Lyons, with proceeds going to Reaching for the Stars, a Foundation of HOPE.


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Wilder Hosts OAA Events for Students and Parents

Parents of fourth and fifth grade students gathered at Wilder on March 13 to listen as Principal Victoria Hazlett and Instructional Coach Kim Wickham shared tips on preparing youngsters for Ohio Achievement Assessments.


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Columbia Gas Provides Energy Efficiency Learning Experiences for Students

Students at heritage and Genoa middle schools are learning to become wise consumers of energy, while at the same time helping their families save money by reducing energy waste at home.  Many pupils are participating in the Be E3 Smart Program, sponsored by Columbia Gas of Ohio.


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Bye, Bye Birdie to be Performed at Westerville South

Bye, Bye Birdie, a timeless and classic musical, will be performed by Westerville South High School students and Thespian Troupe 513 at 7:00 p.m. on Friday April 25; at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 26; and at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 27.  Tickets cost $10 and are available at the door.


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Rotary Club of Westerville Names March Students of the Month

The Rotary Club of Westerville, which sponsors a Student of the Month program, recognized recipients at a luncheon at Villa Milano held on Thursday, March 6.  March students are: Morgan Beck, Westerville Central High School; and Katelyn Pollock, St. Francis DeSales.


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Alcott First Graders Release CD Entitled “Snow Days Rock”

A CD release party was held at Alcott Elementary School on Friday evening, March 14.  Friends and family members packed the Media Center to hear Jim Ledford’s first grade students perform 18 songs from their newly-released CD entitled “Snow Days Rock.” 

Accompanying the children were Ledford on guitar, Casey Wright on drums and Rich Robinson on bass guitar.  The recording was made at the Blue Moon Recording Studio in Columbus. 


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Westerville Safety City Program Announces New Registration Procedure

Parents of children who will be attending kindergarten this fall are eligible to register their youngsters online for Safety City beginning on April 21.  The program will be held Monday through Friday, June 2-13, at Robert Frost Elementary School, which is located at 270 North Spring Road.  Two sessions will take place each day – one from 9:30 - 11:30 a.m., and one from 12:30 - 2:30 p.m.


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Three Westerville Students Advance to State Laws of Life Essay Competition

Twenty-nine State finalists have been chosen in the 2014 Laws of Life Essay Contest, three of whom are students in the Westerville City School District.  At the high school level, Avery Pierson and Christopher Scheren from Westerville North were selected, along with middle school participant Arianna Kellum from Genoa.  Elizabeth Glenn is the Westerville North High School contest coordinator, and Brandy Spears is Kellum’s teacher.  Westerville’s middle school Laws of Life contest is facilitated through the Gifted Education Department. 


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Local High School Students Win Otterbein University Contest

Three central Ohio high school students have been recognized by Otterbein University in the third annual Martin Luther King Jr. Multimedia, Essay and Art Contest.  Twenty-seven students participated in the contest.


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Pointview Students Raise Money to Purchase Activity Kits for Children Battling Cancer

Every school day, 46 children are diagnosed with cancer.  These youngsters spend from weeks to months at a time in hospitals as they undergo chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery and other procedures.  In order to help make their stay a little more pleasant, the Pointview Elementary Leadership Team, along with The Friends of Faith Pruden Foundation, raised money to buy items for activity kits, which contain puzzles, puzzle books, card games, markers, colored pencils, crayons, etc.


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Westerville Central Freshman Awarded State Fencing Crown

Westerville Central High School freshman Kelli Wozniak extended her reign as the state champion in women’s saber at the Ohio High School Fencing Championships in a tightly called bout on Saturday, March 29, at Royal Arts Fencing Academy in Columbus.


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Bald is Beautiful at Walnut Springs Middle School

Students, staff and the PTSA at Walnut Springs Middle School have spent the last few weeks supporting the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, which helps to conquer childhood cancers by funding research projects.On March 15, at Fado’s Irish Pub in Easton Town Center, Assistant Principal Becca Yanni joined dozens of others by getting her head shaved in public as part of a fundraising effort called “Be the Answer for Kids with Cancer.”


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School Board to Meet in April
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Starry Night STEAM Festival Returns to Westerville

On Sunday, April 6, from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m., the Westerville Partners for Education (WPE) will host the second annual “Nationwide Children’s Hospital Starry Night” family learning festival at Westerville South High School, 303 S. Otterbein Avenue.  The festival will offer the community interactive learning opportunities with experts from Columbus’ premier educational and non-profit organizations.


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Westerville South Graduate Traevon Jackson to Compete in Final Four

Westerville South High School graduate Traevon Jackson will play in the NCAA Men’s Final Four tournament this weekend in Arlington, Texas.  Jackson, a 2011 graduate of Westerville South, is now a junior at the University of Wisconsin and starts as point guard for the Badgers.  This year Jackson has helped lead Wisconsin to a 30-7 record and to its first Final Four since 2000.


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Westerville Delays OAA Exam Dates for Elementary, Middle School Students

Recent action by the Ohio Department of Education has expanded the window in which school districts can administer Ohio Achievement Assessments (OAA) to students in grades 3-8.


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Kindergarten Registration is Underway in Westerville Schools

Kindergarten registration is under way in the Westerville City School District for children who will be five years old on or before September 30, 2014.  Individual appointments are being conducted at the Enrollment and Family Resource Center, which is located in the OhioHealth building at 300 Polaris Parkway. 


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Summer School Dates are Announced
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Westerville Schools Receives Grant for Installing Security Locks

Westerville City Schools will receive $72,179.98 from the Ohio School Facilities Commission (OSFC) as part of its School Security Grant Program, for having installed new security locks throughout the district.  The grant will cover the cost of the new locks.


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Updated Financial Forecast Indicates District Will Stretch Levy through Fiscal Year 2018 Maintaining a cash balance through FY18 is three years longer than originally projected when voters approved an emergency operating levy in March of 2012.
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