• 2007-2008...

    Empty Bowls Fundraiser Helps Fill Donation Box at Local Charity

    Pine-Richland High School students presented the Lighthouse Foundation with $2,255 on Dec. 20, 2007 following their “empty bowls” sale.

    Students in PRHS Art teacher Mary Anne Andreassi’s ceramic classes and the Interact Club raised the money during their “empty bowls” sale on Dec. 1, 2007. They planned the project from start to finish. The "empty bowls" sale was a project in which students made handmade thrown ceramic bowls and sell them for a fee. The money was given to foundation leaders on Dec. 20 during a special presentation in the DeWitt Blank Conference Room in the Pine-Richland School District Administration Building. The presentation was televised live on PR-TV.

    “I could not be more proud of this group,” Andreassi said. “We are amazed with the amount of support from our community and from within our school.”

    Rev. Vernon Borchert, the foundation’s executive director was on hand to accept the donation on behalf of the Lighthouse Foundation, which is based in Butler and helps local families who are in need of food, shelter and other assistance. Also on hand was Jaime Carter, the foundation’s director of development and public relations and 2001 PRHS graduate Bethany Grubbs, director of transitional housing program.

    Parents and staff members Heidi Davis and Michelle Switala helped to make soups and breads for the event on Dec. 1, which featured a soup/bread buffet.  Participants paid a $10 fee, which included a handmade bowl and unlimited soup and bread. A $5 fee included soup and bread.

    Andreassi says students made 150 bowls for the sale and even took orders during the event.

    “The students have been working very hard to accomplish this,” Andreassi said. “They have volunteered their extra time to do this. It has been wonderful to see.”


    The PR School Board Reorganizes

    The Pine-Richland School Board reorganized on Dec. 4, 2007, during its board meeting at the PR Administration Offices.

    The board elected Stephen Hawbaker as board president and A. Robert Necciai as vice president. Hawbaker, who was serving as vice president, replaces Gary Deschamps.

    “This is a good time to thank Gary Deschamps for his service for the past two years as president and to thank the new board members for coming on board,” said Hawbaker.

    Judge Joy Conti swore in five board members. They include new board members Therese Dawson, Aafke Loney, Kevin Nigh and Scott Stedeford and incumbent A. Robert Necciai, vice president, who was re-elected by voters. They will serve along side President Stephen Hawbaker, Treasurer Dennis Sundo and directors Gary Deschamps and Rich Herko.

    The board appointed Dawson as the board’s legislative representative to the Pennsylvania School Boards Association and Sundo as a representative to the Northern Area Special Purpose Schools Joint Committee (NASPS) for a two-year term and Deschamps as an alternative. President Hawbaker’s term finished this year and Herko’s term will be complete at the end of 2008. The board also appointed Nigh as the School Board's Representative to the Pine Township Parks and Recreation Board.


    RHS Grad to Command Space Shuttle

    A 1982 Richland High School graduate will command the space shuttle Atlantis on Dec. 6, 2007.

    Navy Cmdr. Stephen Frick will help deliver the European Space Agency's Columbus laboratory to the International Space Station, along with six other crew members.

    In 1986, Cmdr. Frick graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and has logged 3,200 flight hours as a Navy pilot.


    PRSD Unveils Name of New School

    Pine-Richland’s future upper elementary school now has a name! The school, which will serve students in grades four, five and six, will be named Eden Hall Upper Elementary School. The new name was unveiled at the PR School Board Meeting on November 20, 2007. The board also agreed to name the Exploratorium in honor of Sebastian Mueller, who served as senior vice-president of the H.J. Heinz Company in the beginning of the 20th Century.


    Mueller was known for being very gracious toward the workers of the H.J. Heinz company. Long before benefit packages existed, he financed medical procedures and operations that were needed by individuals.

    He was instrumental in establishing a convalescent facility that was available at no cost to those who needed it. In 1912, Mueller began to purchase small parcels of land in Richland Township.

     

    Over time, he had acquired 450 acres and named it Eden Hall Farm. Mueller’s original idea was to provide a recreation and picnic area for Heinz employees. Later, Eden Hall evolved into a dream to provide a vacation home for workingwomen in a country setting. 

    "Sebastian Mueller was a man of great character,” said Dr. James C. Manley, PRSD superintendent. “Many of the traits he possessed are ones to which we all aspire. He is a great example of values we would like to instill in our students today.”

     

    The principal of the new building says that a biographical study of Mueller’s life could enhance the curriculum and provide some excellent topics for discussion in the classroom.

     

    “Eden Hall Farm has been a landmark in the community for the past 70 years,” said Robert Cooper, Eden Hall Upper Elementary principal. “Although the purpose of the Mueller estate has changed in some ways, the memory and positive character of Mueller can live on.

    Students in Pine-Richland need examples of character and values on which to model their own lives. Knowing the history of the land on which the new school sits can become a vehicle towards that goal.”

    The Exploratorium, which will be named after Mueller, will be more than an assembly room or auditorium. The room will have a retractable seating area, which will provide an intimate setting for musical performances (band, chorus, orchestra), assembly programs that enrich instruction and other opportunities for large group presentations.


    The district envisions depicting Mueller’s life and beliefs through photographs on the five main panels in the lobby area outside the Exploratorium. Each panel would have a photograph and a description for students and visitors to read which would pertain to Mueller’s life and beliefs.


    PA House of Representatives Commend Pine-Richland Middle School

    The Pennsylvania House of Representatives officially commended Pine-Richland Middle School, Lenape Middle School in Bucks County and Dubois Area Middle School in Clearfield County by recognizing them with the introduction of House Resolution 482. The schools were honored for being named 2006-07 Pennsylvania Don Eichhorn Schools “Schools to Watch”.

    Schools qualifying for the “Schools to Watch” program are those that demonstrate academic excellence, developmental responsiveness, social equity and organizational structures and processes.

    Dr. Kathleen Harrington, PRMS principal, and Dr. Susan Frantz, PRMS teacher, escorted eighth graders Kathryn Rausch, Helen Loughead and Karissa Febert to Harrisburg on Monday, Oct. 29, 2007.

    The group enjoyed lunch at the Capitol, were honored on the House floor and then had a chance to tour the House, Senate, Governor’s Office and the Supreme Court.

    The Pennsylvania Don Eichhorn Schools “Schools to Watch” team announced March 4, 2007, at the PA Middle School Association State Conference in Harrisburg, that PRMS was only one of three middle grade schools to that meet its strict criteria.

    PRMS Principal Dr. Kathy Harrington, PRHS Principal John Pietrusinski (PRMS Principal at the time of award) and teachers Dr. Susan Frantz, Jennifer Latronica, Angela Morascyzk, Andrea Peck, J.P. Prager, T.J. Srsic and Ryan Woods accepted the award at that special conference. The group made a presentation highlighting the middle school’s academic teams, pre-advanced placement programs, technology and community service projects. Delegates toured PRMS virtually through a video that students and staff created.
    State leaders based its selection criteria on many factors including the following:

    • Academic excellence
    • Responsiveness to the needs & Interests of Young Adolescents
    • Commitment to Helping All Students Achieve at High Levels
    • Strong Leadership Team
    • Teachers Who Work Together to Improve Curriculum & Instruction
    • Commitment to Assessment & Accountability to Bring About Continuous Improvement

    “We congratulate these schools for being places that do great things for all of their students,” said Dr. John Harrison, president of the National Forum. “These schools demonstrate that high-performing middle grades schools are places that focus on academic growth and achievement. They are also places that recognize the importance of meeting the needs of all of their students and ensure that every child has access to a rigorous, high-quality education.”

    To be considered, schools submitted a written application showing how they met criteria developed by the National Forum. Schools that appeared to meet the criteria were then visited by state teams who observed classrooms, interviewed administrators, teachers, and parents, and looked at achievement data, quality of lessons, and student work. Schools are recognized for a three-year period, and at the end of three years must repeat the process in order to be re-designated.

    While PRMS makes up of only one of three schools chosen in 2007 for the middle school award, it is only one of 34 in the US.

    In May 2007, PA Secretary of Education Gerald L. Zahorchak helped celebrate this extraordinary achievement with students, teachers, staff and administrators during a special recognition ceremony.

    The “Schools to Watch Team” has established partnerships with the Pennsylvania Middle School Association, the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Duquesne University and Lehigh University.

    More Than Five Dozen PRHS Students Earn College Board AP Scholar Awards

    (Gibsonia, PA) – The College Board announced that 64 students at Pine-Richland High School earned the designation of AP Scholar in recognition of their exceptional achievement on the college-level Advanced Placement Program Exams. Four of those students earned an additional National Scholar Award.

    The College Board’s Advanced Placement (AP) Program offers students the opportunity to take challenging college-level courses while still in high school, and to receive college credit, advanced placement, or both for successful performance on the AP Exams. About 18 percent of the more than 1.4 millionhigh school students in 16,000 secondary schools worldwide who took AP Exams performed at a sufficiently high level to merit the recognition of AP Scholar.

    Students took AP Exams in May 2007 after completing challenging college-level courses at their high schools. The College Board recognizes several levels of achievement based on student's performance on AP exams.

    At PRSD, four students, who are now graduates, qualified for the National AP Scholar Award by earning an average grade of 4 or higher on a 5-point scale on all AP Exams taken, andgrades of 4 or higher on eight or more of these exams.  They include 2007 graduates: Kelsey Ballance, Laura Keeley, Ashwin Shinde and Nicholas Sirera.


    Seventeen PR students/graduates qualified for the AP Scholar with Distinction Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and grades of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams. They include the four National AP Scholars (listed above) and 2007 graduates: Danielle Bendicksen, Luke Ceurvorst, Constance Clive, David Donatelli, Taylor Eddens, Laura Hilger, Kelsey Jones, Donna Kaltenbaugh, Nagisa Kodama, Kathryn Peters and Jonathan Yigdall and current seniors Julie Behr and Michelle Calabrese.     

    Seventeen students qualified for the AP Scholar with Honor Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken and grades of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams. Those students include: seniors John Delacio, Elizabeth George, Nicholas Park, Thomas Randazza, Lauren Roberts, Dana Rosen, Benjamin Smithgall and Benjamin Whiting. 2007 graduates who qualified include: Brett Cawley, Nicholas Kluthe, Reid Loughead, John Nowak, Lindsay Randall, Stacey Smith, Kurt Stadterman, James Steckler and Audra Zimmer.

    Thirty students qualified for the AP Scholar Award by completing three or more AP Exams, with grades of 3 or higher. The AP Scholars include: seniors Amanda Carto, Margaret Christenson, Neena Davisson, Travis Donnelly, Emily Hitechew, Brenna Jones, Taylor Kennedy, Alyssa McAnney, Camila Ortiz, Vincent Salpietro and Christine Wasilewski. 2007 graduates Katelyn Dornburg, Eric Duerr, Kayla Florian, Abraham George, Lauren Houlik, Erin Hulland, Nathan Hunter, Christopher Kaminsky, Ashley Kasunich, Erin King, Cullen Kortyna, Louis Londino, Tyler Newcombe, Natalie Schaefer, Meredith Stalker, Christopher Valeska, Danielle Williams, Meghan Williams and Kristina Zarenko also earned the AP Scholar award.

    PRSD now requires students to take the AP Exam. As a result, the number of students who took the exam in 2006 compared to the number of students taking the exam in 2007 nearly doubled. In 2006, 111 PR students took 206 AP exams. In 2007, 228 students took 471 exams.

      "PR believes students who enroll in AP Courses and decide not to take AP exams are missing an academically rigorous experience that would serve them well in their college preparation," Dr. James C. Manley, superintendent.

     Most of the nation's colleges and universities award credit, advanced placement, or both based on successful performance on the AP Exams. More than 1,400 institutions award a full year's credit (sophomore standing) to students presenting a sufficient number of qualifying grades. In 2007, 37 AP Exams were offered in a wide variety of subject areas, each consisting of multiple-choice and free-response (essay or problem-solving) questions (except for the Studio Art exam which evaluates students' original artwork).

    The College Board is a not-for-profit membership organization whose mission is to connect students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the association is composed of more than 5,000 schools, colleges, universities, and other educational organizations. Each year, the College Board serves seven million students and their parents, 23,000 high schools, and 3,500 colleges through major programs and services in college admissions, guidance, assessment, financial aid, enrollment, and teaching and learning. Among its best-known programs are the SAT, the PSAT/NMSQT, and the Advanced Placement Program (AP). The College Board is committed to the principles of excellence and equity, and that commitment is embodied in all of its programs, services, activities, and concerns.


    SEVEN PRHS STUDENTS NAMED COMMENDED STUDENTS IN NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLAR PROGRAM

    (Gibsonia, PA) – The National Merit Scholarship Corporation is naming seven Pine-Richland High School students as Commended students in its 2008 National Merit Scholarship Program.

    A letter of Commendation from PRHS and the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which conducts the program, is being issued to these scholastically talented seniors.

    These students include: Michelle Calabrese, Carolyn Deutsch, Travis Donnelly, Elizabeth George, Nithyapriya Ramalingam, Vincent Salpietro and Benjamin Whiting.

    About 34,000 Commended students throughout the national are being recognized for their exceptional academic promise. Commended students placed among the top five percent of more than 1.4 million students who entered the 2008 competition by taking the 2006 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT).

    “We are truly pleased that these young people are being named Commended students in the 2008 National Merit Scholarship Program,” said Dr. Laura Davis, Pine-Richland High School principal. "They have distinguished themselves and honored us by their strong academic performance in this rigorous competition."

    On September 12, 2007, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced that four PRHS students were named semifinalists in its annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The students include: Julie Behr, Sara Deuschle, Brenna Jones and Nicholas Park. They are among 16,000 semifinalists across the US. The students were selected from more than 1.4 million students who took the PSAT during their junior year.

    The academically talented seniors have the opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,200 Merit Scholarship awards worth $34 million that will be offered in the spring of 2008. To be considered for a Merit Scholarship award, Semifinalists must advance to the Finalist level of the competition by fulfilling several requirements. About 90 percent of the Semifinalists are expected to attain Finalist standing and about half of the Finalists will be selected as Merit Scholarship winners earning the Merit Scholar title.

    To become a Finalist, a Semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by the school principal and earn SAT scores that confirm the student’s earlier qualifying test performance.


    PRSD EARNS AWARDS OF EXCELLENCE IN THE 38TH ANNUAL PUBLICATIONS CONTEST

    (Gibsonia, PA) – Pine-Richland School District earned two Awards of Excellence in the 38th Annual Educational Publications Contest sponsored by the Pennsylvania School Boards Association.


    Only one other district in Southwestern Pennsylvania earned an Awards of Excellence in the calendar category, and only 10 other Awards of Excellence were given statewide in this category.


    In addition to winning award for its 2006-2007 “Formula for Success” activities calendar, the district earned an Award of Excellence for its Strategic Plan report to the community. Statewide, only 11 institutions earned Awards of Excellence in the special publications category.


    Independent judges determined the winners from among 248 entries. Entries were judged on appearance, writing and style, editing, layout and design, use of artwork and photography, printing and value to the audience.


    The purpose of the contest, since its inception in 1970, has been to recognize outstanding communication efforts by local school entities and educational agencies, but also to encourage school officials to find different methods to communicate more effectively with their various publics.


    In addition, PR earned an Award of Excellence for its 2006-2007 calendar from the National School Public Relations Association and from the Pennsylvania School Public Relations Association. Only 12 schools from across the US earned an Award of Excellence in the national publication contest.


     Four Pine-Richland Students Named Semifinalists in National Merit Scholarship Program

    The National Merit Scholarship Corporation is announcing that four Pine-Richland High School students have been named semifinalists in its annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The students include: Julie Behr, Sara Deuschle, Brenna Jones and Nicholas Park.

    They are among 16,000 semifinalists across the US. The students were selected from more than 1.4 million students who took the PSAT during their junior year.

    The academically talented seniors have the opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,200 Merit Scholarship awards worth $34 million that will be offered in the spring of 2008. To be considered for a Merit Scholarship award, Semifinalists must advance to the Finalist level of the competition by fulfilling several requirements. About 90 percent of the Semifinalists are expected to attain Finalist standing and about half of the Finalists will be selected as Merit Scholarship winners earning the Merit Scholar title.

    To become a Finalist, a Semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by the school principal and earn SAT scores that confirm the student’s earlier qualifying test performance.


    PRHS Names Top 10 As Graduates Prepare for Colleges/Universities This Fall

    More than 94 percent of Pine-Richland’s Class of 2007 plans to attend college/universities this fall.  

    PRHS named Nicholas Sirera as valedictorian, Ashwin Shinde as salutatorian and Kelsey Ballance as Tertiary at its graduation ceremonies on June 1, 2007, when 325 students graduated.

    More than 250 Pine-Richland High School awards and scholarships were presented at the school’s annual awards program this spring. The scholarships and awards only represent district and community awards not college/university awards and scholarships.

    The top 10 students from the Class of 2007 in order are:

    1. Nicholas Sirera
    2. Ashwin Shinde
    3. Kelsey Ballance
    4. Nick Kluthe
    5. John Yigdall
    6. Laura Keeley
    7. Donna Kaltenbaugh
    8. John Nowak
    9. Kelsey Jones
    10. Taylor Eddens

       

    During ceremonies, the Pine-Richland High School Band performed along with the PR Choir Quartet.  Class of 2007 President Kathryn Doucette, Vice President Edward Aló, Class Treasurer Julieann Louise Pennell and Class Secretary Terhea Doaty participated in the introductions and presentations, as well as kindergartner Victoria Compernolle.

    The top three students Nicholas Sirera, Ashwin Shinde and Kelsey Balance spoke to the graduating class. This year’s special guest speaker was PRHS Teacher David Krakoff. Dr. James Werkmeister officially congratulated the class. The PR School Board, Superintendent Dr. James Manley and Assistant Superintendent Dr. Robert Johnson presented students with diplomas.  Dr. Laura Davis, PRHS principal, officially declared the students graduates.

    PRHS Earns Six Gene Kelly Awards

    Pine-Richland High School earned six Gene Kelly Awards in the 17th Annual Gene Kelly Awards for Excellence in High School Musicals Program.

    PRHS earned best musical in the level 3 budget category for its production of “CATS”. In addition to best musical, PRHS earned awards in the following categories: best scenic design, costume design, lighting design, crew/technical execution and best supporting actress – Natalie Schaefer (Grizabella). The top 10 schools performed including PR who provided the first musical number “Jellicle Cats.” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette entertainment writers Lake Fong and Christopher Rawson, who reviewed the Gene Kelly Awards said PRHS set a very high standard by featuring a front line of dancers seemingly ready for college musicals.

    PRHS earned the most Kelly Awards of the 30 Allegheny County schools that competed in the program, which is hosted by the Pittsburgh CLO and the University of Pittsburgh.
    The awards program was created in 1991 to highlight the importance of music theater and arts education.


    PRSD Earns Gold Medal Distinction in 2007 Education Quotient Ratings

    Expansion Management Magazine rated Pine-Richland School District with the Gold Medal designation in the 2007 Education Quotient ratings. These scores are presented as percentiles, with 99 being the highest and 1 being the lowest. The percentage reflects how a district compares to all other school districts in the US with a K-12 enrollment of at least 3,300 students or more. Pine-Richland earned an overall score of 92 percent.

    Parade Magazine Names PRHS Senior to All-American Team
    Parade Magazine named its All-American High School girls and boys soccer teams for 2007. Senior Meghan Klingenberg was one of 12 midfielders honored nationwide. Klingenberg had 22 goals this season and was named the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Player of the Year. She will play for NCAA champion North Carolina in the fall.


    PRHS Grad Signs with Steelers
    The Pittsburgh Steelers signed offensive tackle Jason Capizzi of IUP (a transfer from Pitt) and a graduate of Pine-Richland High School. He was named All-American while at IUP. Capizzi signed with the Steelers on April 29, 2007 as an undrafted free agent.


    PROF Announces 2007 Scholarship Winners
    The Pine-Richland Opportunities Fund (PROF) is announcing the recipients of its 2007 Scholarship Program. The following students earned scholarships:

    Scott Crawford Scholarship - $1,000

    Thomas Randazza, Jr.

    Ruth W. Mattison/Ruth Lefevre Long Memorial Scholarship - $1,200
    (Four-Year Continuing Scholarship)

    Christin Grace Bridge

    Foster Family Chartable Trust Scholarship -$1,250

    Jordan Loscar

    Richland Civic Club/Opportunities Fund Scholarship - $1,000

    Kelsey Lynne Jones

    Pasquinelli Insurance Scholarship - $1,000

    Derek Schleiden

    Dennis King Scholarship - $500 (Two)

    Jordan Loscar
    Heather Lange

    The purpose of the Pine-Richland Opportunities Fund is to enrich, foster and promote education, to encourage and reward academic excellence and achievement to support unique, creative and innovative instructional and educational programs for students and, to reward, encourage and recognize students, teachers and other staff members of the Pine-Richland School District for distinguished service.


    Wal-Mart Honors PRMS Teacher Dr. Susan Frantz


    Wal-Mart honored Pine-Richland Middle School (PRMS) Teacher Dr. Susan Frantz with the Teacher of the Year Award. They gave her $1,000 to be used for programs at PRMS.

    Wal-Mart Representative Dusty Coffman surprised Dr. Frantz with the award on May 22, 2007.

    “I’m honored to work with my students every day,” Dr. Frantz said. “They put a smile on my face and make a difference in the world.”

    A former student, who remembered all the community service projects Dr. Frantz encouraged her to participate in, nominated Dr. Frantz for the award.

    The Teacher of the Year program is a part of Wal-Mart's long-term commitment to support education throughout the United States. 2007 marks the 12th year of this program and more than $5 million given to schools across the country in honor of their outstanding teachers.

    Since it's inception in 1995, Wal-Mart's Teacher of the Year program has recognized more than 26,000 teachers at the local, state and national level for their hard work and dedication to the betterment of our children. This year, Wal-Mart will contribute more than $45 million in support of educational initiatives.

    Dr. Frantz is now eligible to apply for the state Teacher of the Year award.

    Pine-Richland Middle School Named School to Watch

    Pine-Richland Middle School (PRMS) is one of only three Pennsylvania middle-grades schools to be named “Schools to Watch” as part of a recognition program developed by the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform.

    The Pennsylvania Don Eichhorn Schools: Schools to Watch Team announced March 4, 2007, at the PA Middle School Association State Conference in Harrisburg, that DuBois Middle School, Lenape Middle School and PRMS are schools that met its strict criteria.

    At that conference, PRMS Principal Dr. Kathy Harrington, PRMS Assistant Principal John Pietrusinski and teachers Dr. Susan Frantz, Jennifer Latronica, Angela Morascyzk, Andrea Peck, J.P. Prager, T.J. Srsic and Ryan Woods accepted the award. The group made a presentation highlighting the middle school’s academic teams, pre-advanced placement programs, technology and community service projects. Delegates toured PRMS virtually through a video that students and staff created.

    State leaders based its selection criteria on many factors including the following:

    • Academic excellence
    • Responsiveness to the needs & Interests of Young Adolescents
    • Commitment to Helping All Students Achieve at High Levels
    • Strong Leadership Team
    • Teachers Who Work Together to Improve Curriculum & Instruction
    • Commitment to Assessment & Accountability to Bring About Continuous Improvement

    “We congratulate these schools for being places that do great things for all of their students,” said Dr. John Harrison, president of the National Forum. “These schools demonstrate that high-performing middle grades schools are places that focus on academic growth and achievement. They are also places that recognize the importance of meeting the needs of all of their students and ensure that every child has access to a rigorous, high-quality education.”

    To be considered, schools submitted a written application showing how they met criteria developed by the National Forum. Schools that appeared to meet the criteria were then visited by state teams who observed classrooms, interviewed administrators, teachers, and parents, and l ooked at achievement data, quality of lessons, and student work. Schools are recognized for a three-year period, and at the end of three years must repeat the process in order to be re-designated.

    Dr. Harrington says the selection committee described PRMS as an “exciting, electric environment for learning inspired by a hardworking staff”.

    “This is a team award,” Dr. Harrington said. “I am really proud of the middle school. The staff gives 110 percent every day. The kids are marvelous. That’s because of the parents. This starts with the central administration and the school board. They’ve been really supportive.”

    While PRMS makes up of only one of three schools chosen in 2007 for the middle school award, it is only one of 34 in the US.

    In May, the middle school students and staff will host a celebration in recognition of the award.

    From June 21-23, representatives from the middle school will attend the Schools to Watch Annual Conference, in Washington, D.C.


    The Schools to Watch Team established partnerships with the Pennsylvania Middle School Association, the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Duquesne University and Lehigh University.  



    Two Pine-Richland Teachers Earn TEC Awards

    (April 2007) The Teacher Excellence Center (TEC) named seven teachers as "Teachers of Excellence". Two of those seven teachers were from Pine-Richland School District.

    TEC named Pine-Richland Middle School Teacher Dr. Susan Frantz and Hance Elementary School Teacher Shelley Byers “Teachers of Excellence,” during the Annual TEC Program April 19, 2007 in Oakland.

    Pine-Richland was pleased to have two top teachers as well as a total of five honorees. In addition to Dr. Frantz and Byers, PRSD was proud to have PRHS Teacher Jeff Byko and Hance Elementary School teachers Anne Haught and Deb Walters named honorees.

    Only 100 teachers from 51 districts earned the honoree distinction, and only seven teachers were named teachers of excellence.

    PR tied with Hempfield School District in having the highest number of honorees excluding Pittsburgh Public Schools.

    All honorees were asked to answer essay questions and participated in personal interviews.  The teachers with the top cumulative scores from the nomination form, application, essay and personal interview were deemed “Teachers of Excellence”.  The Teacher of Excellence awardees were chosen form the following categories:  Grades K-4 (two teachers); Grades 5-8 (two teachers), Grades 9-12 (two teachers), and a new teacher (one) would receive the Rising Star Award. 

    Byers and Dr. Frantz each won a $2,500 grant for their respective schools.

    Dr. James C. Manley, PRSD superintendent escorted the honorees on stage. He said Dr. Frantz and Byers gave outstanding acceptance speeches and was honored that PRSD had five honorees in the TEC program.

    “This speaks volumes on the high quality of teachers we have in the Pine-Richland School District,” said Dr. James C. Manley, PRSD superintendent.  “We have an opportunity over the next two years to become the top performing school district in the region, and I am confident we will achieve this status based on the quality of our staff.  Thank you for the excellent job you do each and every day.” 


    Congratulations to the 2007 Pine-Richland State Champion Hockey Team

    Congratulations to the Pine-Richland Hockey Team. The team earned its second Pennsylvania Cup. The team completed its sweep through the playoffs with an 8-6 win against Haverford in the state Championship game Saturday, April 7, 2007. 

    The Rams beat Haverford in 2006 during the state championship match up 3-0. The Rams seemed well on their way to an easy victory after scoring the first four goals of the game to take a 4-0 lead early in the second period. 

    Haverford had some fight left in them and scored four goals in the second period while the Rams scored another goal to maintain a lead of 5-4 late in the second period.  However, with only a second remaining in the second period the Rams scored a backbreaking goal to regain a 2-goal cushion. The teams each scored two third period goals and the Rams sealed their second consecutive state championship victory with a goal at 4:47 of the third
    period. 

    Stoney Hildreth stopped 20 of 26 shots and made many key saves to keep the Rams ahead during the game.  PRHS players George Saad (3 goals and 1 assist), Dylan Trombetta (1 goal and 4 assists), Matt Lohman (1 goal and 3 assists), Phil Trombetta (1 goal and 3 assists), Eric Febert
    (1 goal), Reed Loney (1 goal and 1 assist), Evan Goetz (2 assists) and Bryan Watt (1 assist) each helped the Rams to score.

    In addition, the Rams earned its second consecutive Penguin Cup March 24, 2007 at the Mellon Arena.


    Richland Elementary School Teacher to Share Work in DC

    Richland Elementary Teacher Kathleen Giegel will be sharing her classroom stories at the National Writing Project’s Spring Meeting on March 29-30, 2007 in Washington, DC. She will be representing the Western PA Writing Project. The meeting provides writing project teachers the opportunity to share their classroom successes with members of Congress and each other. The event will kickoff with a meeting on Capitol Hill. 

    Hance Elementary School Hosts Jump Rope for Heart Event 

    The American Heart Association says cardiovascular disease ranks as the number three cause of death for children under age 15.

    That’s why organizers were anxious to get more people involved in this year’s “Jump Rope for Heart” event at Hance Elementary School on Feb. 23, 2007. 

     

    This year, Dr. Richard Pysch, Hance principal, challenged the staff members and teachers to jump as well this year. 

    This year's jump rope stations included: a relay station, two educational stations, an individual jumping station and the long rope station.


    The competition benefits the American Heart Association.

    This year, students and staff collected nearly $6,600. That's more than the $4,400 collected last year. 

     

    The American Heart Association says “Jump Rope For Heart” promotes the value of physical activity to elementary school children while showing them they can contribute

    to their community's welfare.  

    Students collected donations and were entered in a raffle drawing. Raffle prizes include such items as: gift cards, Pirates tickets, bicycle helmets, and Steelers items.  

     

    The American Heart Association also awards prizes at different donation levels, and these prizes were on display in the lobby at Hance Elementary School. 

     

    All Occasion Limousine in Mars donated a limousine ride for the top two fundraisers. The top students include Megan Lieberman, first grader, who raised $575 and Abbey Bissell, fourth grade, who raised $405.


    Those students will get a chance to ride in style and enjoy lunch with their teachers and Dr. Pysch on Friday, March 9, 2007.

    Last year's winners were Abbey Bissell and Bailey McCue.  DJ Greg Boff provided musical entertainment to inspire the jumpers.  


    PTO Parents Katie Kukieza and Florence Oakes are co-chaired the event. 

    Students Seek Community Support in Pittsburgh's Version of the Apprentice 

     

    Four Pine-Richland High School students enlisted the help of Steelers Defensive End Brett Keisel to raise $17,705 for Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.

     

    He signed autographs for donations at the Sheraton Hotel at Station Square in Pittsburgh on Friday, Dec. 15, 2006.

    The students were challenged to see how much money they could raise for the Children’s Free Care Fund. The fund was started in 1946 between KDKA Radio and Children’s Hospital to help families who couldn’t afford hospital care for their children.

    Pine-Richland High School (PRHS) students Emily Hitechew, Patrick Nowak, Lauren Roberts and Melissa Sirera competed against four students from Seton LaSalle High School and four students from Upper St. Clair High School. The three schools raised a combined total of $23,605.

    Radio Host Larry Richert served as PR’s captain.

    They students used their strategic planning and fundraising skills to be the number one group. KDKA Radio mirrored the program after the TV program “The Apprentice”. 

    PR Middle School (PRMS) Teacher JP Prager, who served as faculty advisor for the project, says these students are some of the school’s finest fundraisers. He’s worked with them on various projects and says they come up with some creative fundraising strategies.

    Thanks to Children’s Free Care Fund, no child in the tri-state area has been turned away because of their parents’ lack of insurance or ability to pay. Parents whose children are in need of medical care shouldn’t have to worry about whether they have enough insurance or the money for treatment. Thankfully, since Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh opened their doors in 1890, no child in the tri-state area has been turned away for their parents’ lack to pay, because of the Children’s Free Care Fund.