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Morris County USD 417

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    Preschool Screening April 19th

    Early Childhood (often called Preschool) Screening will be held at Council Grove Elementary School (CGES) on Friday, April 19, 2019. All students who would like to participate in the the district Pre-K program and any upcoming Kindergarten student who has not attended the current district Pre-K program are encouraged to attend the developmental screening. This screening is required for consideration to attend the district Pre-K program in the Fall. There will be NO regular preschool on screening day.

    Children from birth to 5 years of age are welcome to attend the screening. Please call the CGES office at 620-767-6851 to schedule an appointment.

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    Kindergarten Roundup

    Kindergarten Roundup will be held April 12, 2019 at the Council Grove Elementary School and April 26, 2019 at the Prairie Heights Elementary School. If you have a child who will be 5 years old by August 21, 2019, please call Council Grove Elementary at 620-767-6851 and Prairie Heights School at 785-499-6313 to schedule your child for roundup. If your child is attending our pre-school program, you do not need to call for an appointment. There will be NO regular kindergarten and preschool classes on kindergarten roundup.

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    Kansas Master Teacher

    USD 417 is extremely proud and excited to announce that Lisa Jarvis, CGJSHS English Lang. Arts teacher, was selected as one of seven Kansas Master Teachers.  Congratulations Mrs. Jarvis!  Below is the press release with the announcement.

    2019 Class of Kansas Master Teachers Announced

    Talented. Phenomenal. One in a million. These are the words used by the people who work and learn from the seven teachers chosen as the 2019 Kansas Master Teachers, announced today:

    • Paula Barr, Second-Grade Teacher at Quail Run Elementary School in USD 497 Lawrence;

    • Dedra Braxmeyer, Mathematics Teacher at Manhattan High School in USD 383 Manhattan-Ogden;

    • Laura Gaughan, Elementary Reading Specialist at O’Loughlin Elementary School in USD 489 Hays;

    • Michelle Hilliard, Mathematics Teacher at Complete High School in USD 266 Maize;

    • Lisa Jarvis, English Language Arts Teacher at Council Grove Junior-Senior High School in USD 417 Morris County;

    • Carolynn Phalen, First-Grade Teacher at Grace E. Stewart Elementary School in USD 305 Salina; and

    • Linda Vena, Elementary Reading Specialist at Mission Trail Elementary School in USD 229 Blue Valley.

      The 2019 master teachers represent 180 years of classroom experience.

      Through the support of the Bank of America Charitable Foundation, each Master Teacher will be presented with a check for $1000.

      The recipients were selected by a nine-member committee including representatives from the Kansas Association of Colleges of Teacher Education, Kansas Association of Elementary School Principals, Kansas Association of School Boards, Kansas Association of Secondary School Principals, Kansas Parent Teacher Organization, Kansas National Education Association, ESU’s Kappa Delta Pi student organization, and representatives of the 2018 Kansas Master Teacher class.

      The 2019 Master Teachers will be honored on Master Teacher Day to be held Wednesday, April 3 at Emporia State University. On that day, as part of several recognition activities, the teachers will present a seminar at 2:30 p.m. in the W.S. and E.C. Jones Conference Center in Visser Hall. The teachers will then be honored during a social hour at 5:45 p.m. in Webb Hall Lobby of Emporia State’s Memorial Union followed by the banquet and award ceremony at 6:30 p.m. in Webb Hall.


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  • Junior High Five Period Day

        The enrollment in USD 417 is on the rise!  As you can see in the chart below, over the past two years, the enrollment of USD 417 has experienced a steady increase.  In fact, the enrollment for this school year is higher than it has been since 2009-2010!  This is fantastic news for USD 417, however, it does present some challenges that have to be addressed.  One of the major challenges is class sizes and available staff at the junior high school.  To address this challenge, the administrative team explored numerous scheduling options and presented four options to the board of education.  Of the four options, the most feasible and advantageous option was to move the junior high to a five period day.  I want to stress that the five period day will not operate like the trimester does at the high school.  However, the five period day will align the class periods between the junior high and high school.  This alignment will be beneficial in many ways, as I will explain later in this letter.  In addition, this schedule change is similar to previous middle school schedules, as well as, how English Language Arts is currently being taught in our elementary schools. 

         A few years ago, the district reorganized to be more efficient and better utilize fiscal resources.  Part of that reorganization was moving the junior high to the high school building.  Moving the junior high to the high school building provides numerous advantages for the district, both financially and in terms of opportunities for students.  For example, 8th graders are eligible to take career and technical education electives to explore different career interests.  However, only licensed high school teachers can teach those courses, hence the benefit of having junior high and high school students on the same campus.  This not only increases the opportunities for our students, but having junior high and high school students in the same building also allows the district to share all teachers between the junior high and high school, allowing maximum efficiency financially as well.  The common denominator in making the above a possibility is a common class schedule between the junior high school and the high school.  The new schedule for the junior high and high school allows the above benefits to become a reality! 

        I would like to invite you to attend one of three meetings where the administrative team will be presenting information and better explaining the new schedule for the 2019-2020 school year at Council Grove Junior High School.  We will be meeting on three separate dates; March 7th, March 19th, and March 25th.  All three meetings will start at 7pm and will be held in the commons area at Council Grove Junior/Senior High School.  All three meetings will be the same so you only need to plan to attend one date.  If you have any questions or are not able to attend one of the three meeting dates but would like additional information, please call me at the district office, 620-767-5192. 

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  • Recent FBLA Business Activities

    In recent months the FBLA Chapter has been quite busy with chapter activities related to the business world where they have provided opportunities for students within, and with, the community.

    During the months of November and December, which included American Enterprise Day, FBLA members implemented various activities to promote knowledge and understanding of the American Enterprise System. Members first surveyed the student body, and found out that very few students even knew about American Enterprise Day. From that point, chapter members created a public service announcement which they shared with the entire student body over the intercom, had a meeting with all FBLA members where they played American business trivia, provided a trading game with 8th graders to develop a better understanding of markets, and brought in an entrepreneur panel to talk with business students and FBLA members about experiences with owning a business. Those participating in the panel were Sandy Bachura, Perry Crabb, Maria Ochoa, and Patricia Schroeder.

    In December, another committee of FBLA members partnered with businesses in Council Grove to create an activity for students to explore business and careers in our own town. This experience ties in with the goals of the Council Grove Economic Development Committee, to find ways to keep our young people coming back to Council Grove in future careers.

    Sixty percent of all FBLA members, along with 22 other CGHS students, explored Morris County Hospital, Rockin’ K Veterinary Clinic, TCT Telecommunications, Bachura Family Automotive, Council Grove Realty, Farmers and Drovers Bank, and Alexander Artworks in a job shadowing experience.

    Special thanks to FBLA members Brylea Burnett, Hailey Hewitt, Hailey Hower, and Aubrey Powell, who put in many hours of work to make all of these activities successful!

    Story by Mrs. Bachura

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  • Breakfast Every Child, Every Day

    I will eat breakfast: Then I will change the World

    Grab and Go at the Junior Senior High School

    USD 417 applied for a Breakfast Grant and received a little over $4,000 to help get more kids to start eating breakfast.  Starting January 3rd your child will be able to get breakfast from a Grab and Go cart by the front office.  It will be stocked with items like muffins, pop tarts, donuts, whole fruit, juice, and milk.  Other options will be added as the year progresses along. 

    The main question, how is this going to work?

    • Kids will be able to choose 3 items 1 must be a fruit/fruit juice.
    • They will input their lunch number just like they do for lunch every day.
    • Breakfast costs / Paid $2.75 Reduced - $.40
      If you receive Free/Reduce Lunch and Breakfast this will apply for Grab and Go as well.
    • They will then get their food and go to class, eat on the way to class, or the first 15 min. of class.
    • Grab and Go will be open from 8 - 8:20a.m. so we can get the latecomers, would hate to have students thinking on empty stomachs.
    • Hot Breakfast will still be served at its normal time 7:45 - 8:15a.m in the Cafeteria

    This is a huge opportunity for USD 417 to reach kids who really need food for brain power to start each day with their best foot forward.


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Notice of Non-discrimination:   USD #417 does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age in its programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Aron Dody, 17 S Wood Street, Council Grove, Kansas 66846 (620)767-5192