April 18, 2014
Yellow Brick Road Leads to Green Bear Ball Success
We’re not in Kansas any more.
Just as Dorothy’s world was transformed from the black and white tediousness of her Kansas home to the colorful and vibrant world of Oz, the Valentine Theatre was transformed into the Emerald City as Ottawa Hills celebrated its 14th Green Bear Ball.
Over 400 attended this year’s ball and enjoyed bidding on almost 300 silent
auction items and eight live auction items that featured trips, a mink coat, a catered feast from Shorty’s American Roadhouse, and one adorable Labrador Retriever puppy. They took part in a reverse raffle, with the winner taking home $5,000 in winnings. They enjoyed delicious grazing stations throughout the evening and ended the night by dancing to the music of Velvet Jones.
The Green Bear Ball is sponsored by the Ottawa Hills Schools Parent Association and the O.H. Athletic Boosters. One-third of the funds raised go
to the Boosters to support our athletic programs. The remaining two-thirds go to projects that have been chosen by the Green Bear Ball Committee. This year’s Ball will fund three different projects. The projects have a focus on “STEAM,” which stands for S
rts, and M
athematics. We’ve spoken quite a bit lately about the importance of STEM education in our schools, but the “STEAM” concept emphasizes the need for the Arts as an integral part of the educational experience.
The Ball will help fund the start-up of an elementary and junior high theatre arts program that will impact students in grades 4 through 8. A second project will impact students in kindergarten through third grade where three
carts of iPad minis will be provided for use in those grade levels. The iPad mini is an appropriately sized technology tool for younger students and the “touch technology” can provide access to apps with a variety of uses and applications in the elementary classroom. The third project is the funding of Computer Based Lab (CBL) technology for our science teachers and their students in Grades 7 through 12. According to Science Department Chair, Mary Kate Hafemann, “A computer-based lab generates accurate and reliable data that is collected by digital sensors and incorporates it into tables and graphs. It is a powerful tool for collecting and analyzing lab results.”
So in the end, our students are the fortunate beneficiaries of the generosity of all those who attended the Ball or supported it by making a contribution. And that’s a beautiful thing. The money that is raised is significant (though final numbers are not yet available), but what I took away from the Ball is this: We have a community that cares.
The success of this year’s Ball was due to the work of many individuals who gave an extraordinary amount of time and energy to this cause, and I extend heartfelt thanks to all of them. Chairperson Beth Rotman was the
very able conductor who directed an incredible orchestra of volunteers. The steering committee also included the following: Wendy Greeley—Secretary; Lynne Davis—Treasurer; Lisa Lay and Kelly McCullough—Advertising/Patron Solicitation; Amy Findley and Erica Scharer—Auction Operation; Julie Kowalczyk and Michelle Walker—Auction Solicitation; Suzette Kanarowski and Kristy Amonett—Physical Arrangements; Penny Smith—Program Book; Michelle O’Brien—Publicity; Lisa Brown—Student Art; Jenny Furey and Nicole Marshall—School and Community Auction Items; Susan Croy and Kathy Lathrop—Ticket Sales/Ambassadors.
We talk often about how fortunate we are at Ottawa Hills Schools to have an amazing partnership with our parents and our community. The work of
these individuals is indicative of the kind of support we enjoy. You mix in the army of volunteers who worked behind the scenes, the individuals, families, and companies who made contributions to the evening’s affair, and our administrators and teachers who joined in by providing many fun, unique silent auction items, and you’ve got the makings of something very, very special.
It’s always good to question ourselves. To discuss what we can do better. To be constructively critical. But there are times when I wonder if we spend too much time criticizing and not enough time counting our blessings. We
get so busy climbing over the fence to see if the grass is greener on the other side that we forget to look around and enjoy all that is good and right with the world in which we're living. Sounds like a familiar story, doesn’t it? Of a girl who had to travel to a far-off place to realize that the world of love and support she yearned for was right before her. Right there in Kansas. She shared the lesson learned by saying, “If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won't look any further than my own backyard. Because if it
isn’t there…I never really lost it to begin with.”
If you were at Saturday night’s Green Bear Ball, you walked away with a similar lesson—that to be reminded of all that is good and right with the world, with our community, with our school district, you don’t have to look too far. It’s right here--in our own backyard.
Take a Quick Facilities Survey
Last week's district newsletter summarized the Public Forum which was held on March 26. Attendees at the forum were updated on the work of the Facilities Committee, which has been charged with making a recommendation to the Board of Education regarding a Master Facilities Plan
for the district.
Everyone in attendance at the Forum had a chance to ask questions and share comments during the meeting. A “clicker system” allowed 100% of those in attendance to respond to nine different questions. You can also answer those questions by clicking here
and taking a short survey. Please realize that these are representative questions and are not meant to be all-inclusive regarding the focus of the Facilities Committee. These questions provided a means for those at the forum to be actively involved in the evening’s activities. They do the same here—they give you a chance to respond to the questions and make your voice a part of the bigger picture. Please take a few minutes to provide your input on these various questions. There is room after each question for your comments.
Ottawa Hills Local School District Receives Auditor of State Award
A recent financial audit of Ottawa Hills Lcoal Schools by the Auditor of State Dave Yost's office has returned a clean audit report. Ottawa Hills Local Schools District's excellent record keepign has earned it the Auditor of State Award.
The Auditor of State Award
is presented to local governments and school districts upon the completion of a financial audit. Entities that receive the award meet several criteria of a "clean" audit report, including no findings for recovery, no material citations, and no questioned costs, among many things. Less than 10% of local governments and school districts receive the award.
"This award is a reflection of the due diligence, proper procedures, and exemplary record keeping demonstrated by staff in the treasurer's office," said Treasurer Bradley Browne. "The award shows that we are outstanding stewards of the funds entrusted to us. We take great pride in the fact that we do the job right when it comes to finances so that teachers can teach and students can learn."
At the Board of Education meeting on April 15, 2014, Derek Merrin, Northwest Ohio Regional Liaison for the State Auditor's Office, was on hand to present the Auditor of State Award
to Mr. Browne.
Cookie Collision Means Funds for Quiz Bowl Team
Potbelly Sandwich Shop is donating $0.50 from each Cookie Collision Shake sold in April 2014 to the Ottawa Hills Quiz Bowl Team. The funds will help the team with their upcoming trip to national competition.
By virtue of the team's performance at National Academic Quiz Tournaments in the past, Ottawa Hills was invited to the first ever NAQT Small School National Championship Tournament. In years past, the team went to the open NAQT HS National Championship Tournament, and within that tournament was a separate playoff for the small public high schools, of which Ottawa Hills is one. The NAQT Small School Championship is in Minneapolis, Minnesota this May 2 through 4.
Representing the Green Bears are senior Harrison Leinweber; juniors Kathleen Johnson, Adam Wright, and Quinn Wright; sophomores Jack Wolff, Kirsten Cousins, and Waverly Hart. To see the results of the team's competitions through the year, visit the website of Mr. Torio, team advisor, here
. Good luck at national competition, Green Bears!
Oliver! Tickets Available--Online or In Person
The curtain will soon rise on Ottawa Hills' Theatre Department's production of Oliver!, the musical adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic tale of an orphan boy who runs away from the orphanage and falls in with a group of
boys trained to be pickpockets by an elder mentor.
Showtimes are Friday, April 25 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 26 at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, April 27 at 2:00 p.m.
Ticket prices are $25 for Premier Seating, $15 for Select Seating, and $10 for General Admission.
Ticket sales for Oliver! will be the introduction of a new online ticketing system which Ottawa Hills Schools will be using for all ticketed athletic and performing arts events. Tickets for Oliver! can be now purchased online at TICKETRACKER.COM. Follow the steps below to purchase your tickets:
•Click on this link
to access Ticketracker
•On the Events Calendar, scroll down to April 25-27
•Click on the Oliver! link for your preferred performance date(s) and time(s)
•Choose your seats, or for the best available seats, click "Best Available" in your pricing level and Ticketracker will find you the best seats
•Add your seats to your cart
•Checkout using a credit card
You will receive a confirmation email from Ticketracker with your receipt and your tickets, which you can print out at home at your convenience. Prefer to go paperless? Download the TICKETRACKER app for free from the app store. There is also information about the app on the TICKETRACKER website. Ushers will scan your ticket printouts or smart phones as you enter the theater.
You will still be able to buy tickets at the the Ottawa Hills High School ticket office which will be open from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm, Monday through Friday, April 21-25.
Ottawa Hills Police Department Sponsoring Drug Take Back Day
Do you want to get rid of medications from your medicine cabinet that you no longer need or that have passed their expiration dates? The OH Police Department is working with the City of Sylvania and the Sylvania Township Police Departments to organize “Drug Take Back Day.”
On Saturday, April 26, you can dispose of unused medications by bringing them to any of the three police department locations. The collection sites will accept narcotics, over-the-counter medications, pet medications, prescriptions and vitamins, disposing of them in an environmentally friendly way. The collection sites WILL NOT accept syringes, inhalers, liquid medications, ointments/lotions. NO commercial or medical vendors, please! An information flyer about the Drug Take Back Day can be found here
Mr. Adkins is May BCSN Teacher of the Month
Recently, O.H. was notified that Tim Adkins has been named BCSN’s Teacher of the Month for May. BCSN will be visiting Mr. Adkin's classroom in the near future to film a short video that will be played on BCSN during the month of May. Our school's nomination to the BCSN Teacher of the Month program is chosen by a committee comprised of Jackie Patterson, Tom McCarthy, Becky Hauck, and Julie Graham. Many thanks to them for their work this school year. Steve Wipfli, who was a BCSN Teacher of the Month earlier this year, and Tim Adkins are both candidates for the BCSN Teacher of the Year award. They will be invited to a banquet on May 8 where the winner will be announced. Congratulations, Mr. Adkins!
Students Honored at BP Recognition Dinner
On April 9, 2014, BP sponsored the 29th Annual Academic Recognition Dinner at the Hilton Garden Inn at Levis Commons. The top seniors from 30
area high schools were honored at this event. Following a welcome by Mary Caprella from the public affairs department at BP-Husky Refining and an address by Mark Dangler, President of BP-Husky Refining, a keynote speech was presented by Will Lucas, a renowned technology entrepreneur who attended Rogers High School and now resides in Toledo with his wife and children. All of the honored seniors were then introduced by a representative from their respective high schools. Michael Geisler, Mara Horn, Ella Rohm-Ensing, and John Sun were recognized and accompanied by Mark Nusbaum, Ottawa Hills College Guidance Counselor, and Jackie Patterson, Assistant Principal.
O.H. Students Get Front Row Seat to the Ohio Supreme Court
On April 9, twenty students from Tom McCarthy’s AP US Government and Politics class attended the Ohio Supreme Court’s “Off-Site Court Program” at the University of Toledo Law School. They participated in a twenty-five minute question and answer session with all seven Justices before the beginning of
the official procedures. The class then heard the oral arguments for Cedar Fair, L.P. v. Jacob Falfus.
The conclusion of the morning’s program consisted of a forty-five minute question and answer session with the two lead attorneys who had just argued the case. The students commented that the opportunity to see the Ohio Supreme Court in action was one of the highlights of their entire school year. Tom McCarthy and his students extend a huge thanks to Ottawa Hills resident Randy Dixon, who served as the class’s attorney educator in preparing for the program. The class would also like to thank the UT Law School’s Dean, Ottawa Hills resident Daniel Steinbock, for inviting OHHS to participate in this program.
Jai Ho for the O.H. Jazz Band
The Hindu Temple of Toledo invited the Ottawa Hills High School Jazz Band
to their celebration gala of 25 years. The students played a variety of jazz classics throughout the evening, but the audience favorite was the band’s version of the song Jai Ho from the soundtrack of the 2008 movie Slumdog Millionaire.
The band played the song four times at the request of the organizers. The event organizers will be making a donation to our school's music program in recognition of the Jazz Band's performance at the gala. Many thanks to Michael Leeds and the Jazz Band for building important community partnerships. Congratulations on an exceptional performance and for continuing to expand our instrumental music program. Photo by Beth Leeds
Spring Cleaning for Youth to Youth
On Saturday, April 12, Ottawa Hills Youth-to-Youth students participated in Global Youth Service Day at University Trails by picking up trash. Global Youth Service Day is the largest annual service event in the world. Each year on this day, millions of youth work together to improve their communities. In the greater Toledo area, the United Way Volunteer Center collaborates with over 2,000 youth, local agency partners, and companies to volunteer and celebrate Global Youth Service Day. Established in 1988, Global Youth Service Day is the largest service event in the world, and the only day of service dedicated to children and youth. GYSD is celebrated each year in over 100 countries. More information can be found by clicking here
O.H. Youth-to-Youth volunteers included Sam Assi, Joe Boesel, James Schwann, Rumer Ochoa, Neha Kazmi, Sam Shockey, Grace Dunbar, Eli Zinck, Nick Durfee, Christian Heindenreich, Sara Abdouni, Conner Muse and Jon Durst. Thanks to Youth-to-Youth advisor Julie Boesel and parents Chris Dunbar, Kim Shockey, and Jen Muse for volunteering and chaperoning.
Ottawa Hills Students Visit Cadaver Lab at UTMC
Several students from Jeanine Bailey’s Anatomy and Physiology classes participated in a cadaver dissection at the University of Toledo Medical Center. This opportunity was made possible by a generous contribution from the Ottawa Hills Schools Parent Association and the Dave Larabee Scholarship Fund. This year’s participants included Muna Abdouni, Alex Scott, Zi-Yang Liew, Stephen Wohlfarth, Quinn Wright, Jessica Kona-Stanciu, Ella Rohm-Ensing, Sara Eskandari, Hannah Loeser, and Kelly Rudolph. Many thanks to science teacher Jeanine Bailey for organizing the field trip.
Making a Difference with the Power of Music
Vocal Music director Donna Wipfli and students Haidar Hassan, Sara Eskandari, and Jillian Frye dropped off a $1,000 check to the Make-A-Wish Foundation last week. The Choraliers raised the money during their annual
Valentine’s Day Concerts. Many thanks to Donna Wipfli, Jenny Brunner, and the Ottawa Hills Music Theater Association for organizing the fundraiser. According to the mission of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, “We grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.” If you wish to learn more about the Make-A-Wish foundation or to make a donation click here
First Annual “Mind, Body, and YOU” a Huge Success!
This past Friday, 63 mothers and their daughters participated in a first-ever exclusive event for girls: "Mind, Body and YOU!" Throughout the evening the participants took part in a variety of informative and inspiring sessions. They included Kristine Hoffman from Total Package Girl and yoga with Ann Heckler. Other presenters included school nurse, Laura Baird, Debbie Dolgin of OHPAC and Amanda Gavins, who provided advice on facials. At the end of the evening the girls and moms went to the new gym to enjoy "Make Your Own Granola" and "Put on the SWAG!" It was a great evening for all in attendance. The goal of the evening was to help develop secure, confident young ladies to help them with the transition of going into the middle years and early adolescence. The focus was on building leadership skills and emotional understanding of each other and self.
A huge thank you to Darcy Browne and Sue Mather, co-directors of the event, Hannah Moreau ('14) for the artwork, Linda Bode for the decorations, Michelle Sprott and Shelley Demko
for registration, Laura Randall for the food, and Clare Mather for the music. Additional thanks is extended to OHSPA for their financial support of "Mind, Body, and YOU!" Mrs. Browne would also like to acknowledge and thank Mrs. Zake for her support and wisdom throughout the organizational process.
Thank you's also go out to the 5th, 6th and 7th grade teachers for advertising the event and to Julio Rodriguez, Rose Stevens, and Eric Swisher for staying late to help clean up. Also thanks to Challenge Crew members for helping in the OHPAC session, and to Priya Varanasi, Caelan Carter, Claire McLean and Addie Eichbauer, who served as docents.
This was the first of many such events. Look for "Me and MY SUPERHERO " for boys in the Fall!
Learning the importance of recycling
Recently, the first graders were busy making paper in connection with their Ecology unit. After learning about natural resources and ways to protect them, they experienced first hand how to recycle paper to save trees. Please continue to encourage our young ecologists as they work toward saving our earth!
A Few Notes About Spring…
As warm weather approaches, we emerge from hibernation and enter the
fast-paced life that comes with spring. Each day after school, dozens of student gather out back for baseball, softball and lacrosse practice, as well as to hang from the monkey bars and swing with friends. The activity and positive attitudes are contagious!
Along with the spring frenzy come a few reminders.
*Please help us take good care of our athletic facilities by reminding children to refrain from touching, pulling, kicking and hurdling the baseball fencing. This is temporary fencing installed only for the spring athletic season, but can be very costly to repair and replace.
*The school dress code requires students to dress appropriately for the learning environment. When standing with harms hanging at your sides, all shorts and skirts must be long enough to reach your extended fingertips. Tops should not fall off the shoulders, and should provide adequate coverage. Underclothing should not show at any time.
*Remember that with spring comes rain. It may be appropriate to send rain boots or just a spare pair of shoes (not your favorite pair) for outside recess. Students are excited to be outside, and often are so busy they do not realize they are wet and/or muddy until they re-enter the building.
*The number of walkers we have after school now, compared to through the cold winter, has multiplied significantly. Please be extra mindful as you drive through the circle. PLEASE DO NOT wave your child across the pick-up car lane to the through lane to get picked up.
This is extremely dangerous. Safety is our #1 concern.
||Good Friday - Schools Closed
Elementary, Junior High & High Schools
|Girls Varsity Softball doubleheader @ Swanton HS
||Boys Varsity Tennis @ Bluffton HS
Elementary, Junior High & High Schools
||Coed Varsity Track and Field Tri-Meet vs Danbury HS & Gibsonburg HS
||Boys Junior Varsity Baseball @ Gibsonburg HS
||Boys Varsity Baseball vs Gibsonburg HS
OH Baseball Field
||Girls Varsity Softball vs Gibsonburg HS
OH Softball Field
||Boys Varsity Lacrosse @ Bowling Green HS
||Boys Varsity Tennis vs Northview HS
OH Tennis Courts
||Boys Varsity Lacrosse vs. Perrysburg HS
||Boys Varsity Tennis @ Archbold HS
||Boys Varsity Baseball @ Emmanuel Christian High School
||Girls Varsity Softball @ Emmanuel Christian HS
Ottawa Hills Parent Association: http://ohspa.digitalpto.com
In partnership with our community,
Ottawa Hills Local Schools
will challenge and inspire each student
to realize his or her unique potential;
to embrace learning as a lifelong process;
and to become an active, responsible citizen.
The moments of happiness we enjoy
take us by surprise.
It is not that we seize them,
but they seize us.