The goal of the pep rally was to get students excited about taking the ACT and to help students understand the importance of the test.
“We want to make taking the ACT a fun process. Students need to understand how important it is that they do their best on the ACT,” said Kristie Miller, OHS guidance counselor.
To start the rally, a couple of teachers dressed up as Wayne and Garth from Wayne’s World served as the hosts of the rally. After that, an ops administrator dressed up as the popular “Terry Tate Office Linebacker” talked about getting his students in shape to take the ACT.
All performances are free and open to the public and begin at 7 p.m.; doors open at 6:30 p.m.
“Collectively, 30,000 OPS students have performed on stage or had their artwork exhibited over the past 18 years! To stage evening performances in a professional venue for Orchestra, Choir, Band, Theatre and Dance with over 700 works of Art also on public display is pretty amazing. The commitment from our district that every school is represented and that every child has the opportunity to participate is truly remarkable,” said Tom Stites, OPS Fine Arts Coordinator.
Stites estimates audiences have totaled over 100,000 during that 18-year period.
“Our 2017 Fine Arts Festival theme "Wisdom Begins With Wonder" is a reflection from Socrates on how all real learning (Wisdom) is based upon an awareness of the world around us (Wonder). Socrates valued the arts as a way to gain valuable insight in nature and in all learning,” said Stites.
In summer of 2016, the Owensboro Public Schools’ Board of Education was given the Award for Excellence by the Kennedy Center and the National School Boards Association.
March 20-30- Visual Art Display
March 20- Orchestra
March 21- Band
March 22- Choir
March 28- Theatre
March 29- Dance Night
The idea for the topic is based on two articles, Leonard Pitts Jr.’s “N-word Keeps Spreading with Stubborn Insistence” and Allen Francis’ “The “N” Word, It Just Slips Out.”
“It’s so important to expose our students to leaders in the community. I think an outside influence always provides a good learning opportunity,” said Lori Thurman, OHS Teacher.
The panel guests were Owensboro NAACP President Rev. Rhondalyn Randolph, City Commissioner Pamela Smith-Wright, attorney Dion Moorman and Owensboro Middle School Principal Cheri Smith.
The percentage of OPS employees giving to the OPS Foundation is well above the national average, as reported by the National School Foundation Association.
“With additional funding resources being so hard to come by, it’s incredible to see our employees sacrificing their own money for enhanced opportunities in the classroom for our students,” said Dr. Nick Brake, OPS Superintendent.
During this time of the year, OPS teachers are encouraged to apply for the foundation grants. The OPS Foundation for Excellence awards the grants on Opening Day in August after a long deliberation process. This past year, money went to help fund new microphones for students at Cravens, a Boys2Men and Girls Etiquette club at Newton Parrish, renewable energy science kits at Owensboro Middle School North, Project Lead the Way at Estes, a journalism project at OHS, an Early Childhood Pathway at OHS, as well as funds for needed instructional supplies at all eleven OPS schools.
“OMS South is using our foundation grant to offset the cost of digital programs that we make available to our students in order to better individualize instruction,” said Patrick Tines, OMS South Principal.
The rest of the money for the grants, which have been given out since 2005, comes from other foundation donors including foundation board members. The Foundation for Excellence is made up of OPS alumni and community members who have a passion for maintaining and improving Owensboro Public Schools’ Tradition of Excellence. The Foundation recently named retired OPS employee and alumna Janet Suwanski executive director.
To Register for Kindergarten
Parents should visit the elementary school their children will attend and complete application forms. Registering for next year’s preschoolers and kindergarten is important in helping schools prepare for next year. If you are not sure which school your child will attend, please call central office at (270) 686-1000. Kindergarten registration is open to children who will be 5 years old by Aug. 1, 2017. Kindergarten is a full-day program Monday through Friday.
Preschool Registration: Hager Preschool will begin accepting applications March 6 for the 2017-18 state-funded KERA preschool/Head Start program. Preschool is available free of charge to children who will be 3 or 4 years old by August 1, 2017 AND whose families meet income eligibility guidelines. This program is also available to 3- and 4-year old children who are determined to have a developmental delay in one or more of the following areas: speech/language, cognition (learning), social skills, or motor movement. Preschool is provided Monday-Thursday, 3.5 hour session per day. Tuition openings are also available at the rate of $175 per month or on a sliding fee scale according to documented income. To register, please call (270)-686-1125 to schedule an appointment with a Family Advocate PRIOR to March 6, 2017. Hager Preschool is located at 1701 West 7th Street. Preschool forms are available online but must be completed at the school.
Enrollment forms can be downloaded from the Owensboro Public Schools’ Website at: https://owensboro.kyschools.us/Parents/Enrollment.
Those forms can be filled out online, printed, and taken to the school. Forms will also be available at the school at the time of registration.
What to bring to registration: Items your child’s school will need for new student enrollment include original birth certificate, child’s Social Security card and the following medical records on a Kentucky Form Only: physical examination record, immunization certificate, vision examination performed by an eye doctor and a dental screening/exam completed after the child’s 5th birthday.
“I’m honored to serve as OPS’ new finance officer. It’s a position that holds great responsibility. I look forward to embracing and contributing to the district’s motto of tradition, innovation and excellence. It’s extremely fulfilling to know that the work I’ll do every day will ultimately benefit the students who I work for,” said John David Sandefur, OPS finance officer-elect.
OPS chief finance and operations officer Paula Roberts is retiring at the end of June.
Roberts has worked for OPS in a variety of ways as a teacher, principal, assistant superintendent of instruction, finance officer and operations officer.
Sandefur holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Kentucky Wesleyan College. He’s also a licensed Certified Public Accountant. Prior to working for Hausner Hard-Chrome, Sandefur worked for Community Health Centers of Western Kentucky and before that was an audit manager for Riney Hancock CPAs. Sandefur will start training with Roberts on March 6.
“Mr. Sandefur has nearly 20 years of experience in finance in the public, non-profit and private sector. What really stood out to us is his experience with school audits and his overall collaborative leadership style. I’m confident he’ll continue to lead OPS to a successful financial future,” said Dr. Nick Brake, OPS superintendent.
“It’s one thing to look at pictures of Europe in a book. It’s a completely different experience to use virtual reality to walk through Europe,” said Lori Thurman, OHS teacher.
The headsets only cost about $7 each. They were purchased with money from Donors Chose and the Gates Foundation.
“Virtual field trips are a great way to close out a unit on Europe. My students learn best through hands-on, real application experiences,” said Thurman.
Each elementary school chose a different book to read, then to bring to life in the form of a multi-faceted piece of art.
“This project-based learning celebrates the OPS literacy initiative and is a great example of the arts making learning memorable for our students,” said Tom Stites, OPS fine arts coordinator.
This is the second year Molly Eric has worked with OPS elementary students. Last year, they created a large-scale art project celebrating Kentucky that currently hangs in the OPS central office stairway.
“OPS is a mecca when it comes to providing art opportunities for students. Whether it’s the visual arts or the performing arts, OPS truly does believe in every art for every child,” said Molly Eric, Kentucky Arts Council artist.
So far, Eric has worked with Estes students. They recently finished reading “The Polar Express” and created a decoupage canvas depicting author Chris Van Allsburg and some imagery from the book. Eric also already visited Sutton Elementary School. Below is Eric’s schedule for the rest of the elementary schools.
Jan. 30-31- 1-3 p.m. – Cravens
Feb. 1-2 – 1-3 p.m. – Newton Parrish
Feb. 8-9 – 1-3 p.m. – Foust
“We are thrilled to partner with KWC to offer an opportunity where our students will get exposure to not only a college athletic event, but an overall collegiate experience,” said Dr. Nick Brake, OPS superintendent.
There will be several announcements during both games highlighting the Owensboro Public Schools and all of the programs OPS offers. At halftime of both games, several students will be recognized for various achievements. KWC will have an Admissions booth available at the games. All students and parents are encouraged to stop by to learn more about KWC.
“Kentucky Wesleyan College is thrilled to sponsor this event and partner with OPS. We welcome this opportunity to showcase our phenomenal academic programs and extra-curricular activities to our area schools and community. I hope everyone will visit our admissions booth and take a moment to learn about all the great things going on at Wesleyan,” said Jeremy Pittman, Vice President of Admissions.
Members of the Owensboro High School Chorus program will perform the National Anthem before the men’s game. Owensboro High School cheerleaders will cheer for both games. Both teams play Trevecca Nazarene University. The women play at 1 p.m. The men play at 3:15 p.m.