June 23, 2016
Welcome to Mason City Schools' e-Newsletter that highlights happenings in   Logo the Mason City School District.

For information, email Tracey Carson at carsont@masonohioschools.com.
MHS Speech & Debate Team Makes History at Nationals

The theme of the 2016 National Speech & Debate Tournament was "Set Your Sights High!" and that is exactly what Mason High School's Speech & Debate team did in Salt Lake City from June 12-17. For the first time in school history, Mason won a 'School of Honor' award in speech for finishing 21st-40th in the nation. MHS was the only Ohio team to receive a speech award.

"I am extremely proud of our national qualifiers this year! Not only did Mason qualify a record number of competitors to Salt Lake City, but the students collectively achieved the highest speech honor to date at Nationals," shared MHS Speech & Debate advisor Melissa Donahue.

In addition to the team's accomplishments, several members had significant performances at nationals, including Chinmay Bakshi, Prajwal Hegde, Vinay Naik, the team of Dominick Peraino and Rahul Ramesh, Nihar Rama and Ajay Saraf.

Read more about the MHS Speech & Debate Team at Nationals.
City of Mason Proclaims June 13 "Comet Cure Cancer Day":
MHS is top LLS Fundraiser in Nation; MMS, MI Among Top Fundraisers in Ohio

The City of Mason proclaimed June 13 as "Comet Cure Cancer Day" in honor of Mason City Schools, staff and families raising more than $85,000 this year for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Tri-State Chapter!

"On this day the City of Mason recognizes and thanks Mason City School staff and students for inspiring their peers, community and schools across the country to dream big, be brave, and never give up until the words are published: Cancer Cured, Someday is Today!" stated the resolution that was approved by Mason City Council in front of staff and student representatives from Mason Intermediate School, Mason Middle School and Mason High School.

The National Honor Society's Pasta for Pennies campaign inspired the entire MHS student body to participate in organized activities, races, and a very popular and effective LipDub viral video that had over 178,000 views on YouTube.

Mason Middle School's National Junior Honor Society's Pasta for Pennies Campaign raised more than $22,000.

Mason Intermediate School raised more than $7,000.

Read more about "Comet Cure Cancer Day."
MCS Board Approves 2017-18, 2018-19 school calendars

The Mason City School Board of Education approved the 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school calendars during the June 8 meeting. The calendars include personal learning days - a new district-wide feature for 2016-2017 that developed as a collaborative idea among teachers, administrators and other district leaders.

Personal Learning Days are a recognition that learning happens outside the school day. On personal learning days, students will experience integration of learning and their life by embarking on projects outside of school that may include service learning, global learning and online learning.

"We appreciate the diligence of the calendar committee members who worked hard to design school calendars that support student learning, and our staff and families' needs," said Dr. Gail Kist-Kline, Superintendent.

View significant Mason City Schools dates for the next three school years.
MMS 7th Graders Engineer By Design with 3D Printing

Two years ago, Mason Middle School science teacher Bethany Jones launched her dream class - a project-based science elective called Engineering by Design. The project-based curriculum was designed to challenge and engage the natural curiosity and imagination of middle school students.

"When the challenge of developing a seventh grade science elective was presented to us, we were brought back to some of the most memorable times in our own educations," Jones explained. "We expanded the idea of using the engineering design process and developed activities we felt would challenge the students as well as get their creative juices flowing."

Over 400 MMS students have now taken the semester-long course where they envision, research, design, build and test their ideas. They are given challenges that test their ability to solve problems, work as a team and collaborate on ideas. This year, Jones' students took their engineering by design to a new level - with 3D printing.

Read more about MMS' 3D Printing Class.
Mason Schools Seeking Sub Bus Drivers

Mason City Schools is searching for reliable, dependable people to train to become substitute school bus drivers.

"You already drive your children places; why not get paid to drive them? You would have the same schedule they do, summers and holidays off. Plus, if volunteering in the classroom is important to you, this job provides ample time in between runs to be the PTA mom/dad," explains CJ Thornton, Mason City Schools Transportation Supervisor.

Because children are precious cargo, the district's goal is to hire only the most competent individuals who meet the physical, emotional and moral requirements of the job.
MI Students Selected as Legislator for the Day

Mason Intermediate fourth graders Erica Clay and Iyanu Folarin were selected to participate in "Legislator for A Day" on June 6 at the Statehouse in Columbus, OH.

Folarin and Clay received a flyer from MI on State Representative Ron Maag's essay contest then researched and submitted their essays, and were chosen to join Representative Maag and the other contest winners for a day at the state capitol learning more about how our government works.

Read more about Legislator for the Day.
Mason City Schools, OAPSE Approve Three-Year Contract 

The Mason City School Board of Education and the Ohio Association of Public School Employees (OAPSE) Local 070 approved an agreement that gives OAPSE members the same salary and benefit package as all other district employees for the next three years.

Under the agreement, in 2016-2017, 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 OAPSE members will receive a salary schedule base increase of 2.5%, including a step increase if eligible. District and OAPSE negotiators also agreed to increase employee health insurance premium costs. For the first two years of the contract, employees will pay eight percent of their health care premiums. In 2018-2019 employees will pay 10 percent.

OAPSE Local 070 represents 35 members of the district's custodial, grounds, HVAC and maintenance staff.

Read more about the OAPSE Three-Year Contract.
High Fives to... 




... Warren County Sheriff's Deputy and 1998 MHS graduate Katie Barnes, who was a stellar student-athlete, and who has committed her life to serving others. Her quick response during a recent event no doubt prevented a further tragedy, and we are so glad to learn that she is doing well!




...  MHS Class of 2013's  TJ Zeuch , who was selected by the Toronto Blue Jays as the #21 pick overall in the first round of major league baseball's draft! TJ is the first-ever Comet to be selected in the first round of the baseball draft. 

Currently a junior at the University of Pittsburgh, he's considered among the best college pitchers in the draft. He was a two-time 1st team All GMC selection his junior and senior seasons at Mason. View WCPO's coverage.



...  MMS Coding & Robotics Teacher Marty Fish , whose great review of "Learn to Program with Small Basic" was recently published on Microsoft's Developers Network blog. Mr. Fish's Coding and Robotics STEM Lab started out as a club in 2014.  The community interest was so strong that the club became an elective course available to 7th graders in the 2015-2016 school year with support from the Mason Schools Foundation and is in full-swing for next year!





... MHS Spanish National Honor Society members, who were devoted daily volunteers for our three-week Mason ESL Summer School. Our English Language Learners loved learning and playing with these terrific students!








... Comet Dads, who are Caring, Creative, Cool, Courageous, Compassionate! We hope you all had a wonderful Father's Day!
1,449 MMS Students Named to 2nd Semester Honor Roll

Mason Middle School is pleased to announce that 1,449 students made the honor roll during second semester.
2,626 MHS Students Named to 2nd Semester Honor Roll

Mason High School is pleased to announce its 2015-2016 second semester honor roll. 1,475 students earned highest honors, 727 students earned high honors, and 424 students earned honors.
2015 American Idol to Perform Concert at The Beach Water Park Benefiting Mason Schools Foundation

WHERE: The Beach Water Park, Mason, Ohio

WHEN: Saturday, July 16, 2016
6:00PM - 8:00PM

2015 American Idol performer Alexis Gomez will perform at the Beach Water Park a division of Adventure Landing Corporation on Saturday, July 16, 2016. The Beach Water Park that day will donate a portion of all Single Day Ticket Sales to two Academic Projects that benefit the Mason School Foundation and the Mason School District. The Concert will also remember the contributions Mrs. Susan Faber made to the lives of many Mason City Schools students during her life serving the school district. There is no additional cost to attend the Alexis Gomez Benefit Concert to Single Day or Season Pass ticket holders.

Purchase tickets online. Specially priced Single Day Tickets are available at the Beach Water Park Ticket Office after 4:00PM that day.

Tickets are available at www.beachwaterpark.com

Proceeds raised support the Mason Schools Foundation, an independent non-profit 501(c)3 organization designed to support the Mason City School District. The Foundation funds innovative programs and grants that promote academic, artistic, and athletic excellence. For 2016-17 grants include ensuring all at risk students start the school year with the right supplies, innovative seating for special needs students, the Western Row Steam Center, mentoring programs across the district, digital resources for special needs students, middle school band expert residencies, and new STEM Learning Additions at MECC and Western Row.
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