January 12, 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.
Mason School District Releases Quality Profile Video Series

Watch Dr. Gail Kist-Kline, Mason City Schools Superintendent, introduce an overview of the district's Quality Profile video series.
In September, Mason City Schools released its third Quality Profile. The Quality Profile helps characterize the overall educational value of public education beyond standardized testing. This year's report highlights six key areas: Academics, Finances, Innovation, Learning Environments, Global Awareness and the Whole Child.
Over the next several weeks, the Mason City School District will release a series of videos that highlight each section - and our district's commitment to Growing Greatness Together.

Read more about the MCS Quality Profile.
Mason's Elementary Science Labs Evolve into Innovative STEM Learning Centers


Over 25 years ago, the Mason City School District became the first district in Ohio to offer science lab as a special in its elementary schools. Today, those science labs have evolved into Innovative STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Learning Centers that are inspiring the next generation of coders, engineers and scientists.
"I love that we get the opportunity to have STEM lab, because I really want to be an engineer when I grow up. I really like to build things and use robotics and I just think that's really fun. That's why I love doing STEM labs on Fridays. Every time I walk into STEM lab I am just ready to start because I love doing it!" explained Malia Requejo, a Western Row Elementary third grader, during a presentation to the Mason City School Board about the STEM Learning Centers.
The Centers were supported with a $25,000 grant from the Mason Schools Foundation, and impact more than 2,100 first, second and third graders at the Mason Early Childhood Center and Western Row Elementary during the 2015-2016 school year.

Read more about the STEM Learning Centers.
MCS School Meals Leader Wins National Award

Tamara Earl, Mason City Schools Child Nutrition Supervisor, is a national leader when it comes to serving healthy, delicious meals to school children.
Her efforts to improve nutrition and enhance communication with students and families are paying off in a big recognition from her peers. On January 17, Earl will receive the Silver Rising Star Award at the National Foodservice Achievement Management Excellence (FAME) award ceremony in San Diego during the School Nutrition Association's 2016 School Nutrition Industry Conference.
Earl's ingenuity and collaborative spirit are felt throughout the district that serves about 22,500 meals a week. She's worked with first grade STEM Center teacher Shannon Sterle to help Mason Early Childhood Center students grow their own veggies that are then served in the school's cafeteria, developed Chef to School projects, and produced a collaborative Let's All Go to the Lunchroom video to explain the lunch process to elementary students while tapping the talents of the high school chorale department and a video firm that included Mason High School graduates.

Read more about Earl's National Award.
MHS Band Performs in 2016 Rose Parade

Nearly 1K Band Members, Fans Travel to Pasadena

The William Mason High School Marching Band rang in the new year with a 5.5 mile trip down Colorado Boulevard in the 2016 Rose Parade. After over a year of planning and fundraising, Ohio's top band traveled to Pasadena to perform in front of their largest audience of over 79 million parade fans. View the televised coverage on HGTV and NBC.
For Mason's band director, Bob Bass, marching in the Rose Parade with his wife, Susan Bass, his colleagues, and band members was a career highlight. "When we turned at TV corner, the first thing I saw was the enormous group of our family members and friends, and then I heard the roar of their cheers," shared Bass. "To see the tears of joy and celebration of the parents as their kids marched by was so inspiring and motivating."
The 313-member band, along with seven staff members, 42 parent volunteers, and nearly 700 friends and family members, embraced the 2016 Rose Parade theme, Find Your Adventure, with a week of performing, touring, and sight-seeing in California.  The band visited local attractions, including the Farmers Market, Santa Monica Pier, and Universal Studios, and marched in the famous Disneyland parade.
At BandFest, Mason had the opportunity to perform their award-winning 2015 competition show one last time. The show, Somewhere, based on the musical West Side Story, featured the color guard members as Maria, complete with bright yellow dresses that made quite a statement during the Rose Parade later in the week.
OH Auditor Recognizes Mason Schools for Excellent Financial Accountability

A recent financial audit of the Mason City School District by Auditor of State Dave Yost's office returned a clean audit report. The district's excellent record keeping qualified it for the Auditor of State Award with Distinction.

"Taxpayers expect accurate financial records from their local governments," Auditor Yost said. "The Mason City School District's dedication to accountability is evident."

Mason City Schools Treasurer Ronda Johnson credits the entire district for its diligence in protecting the community's investment in our schools. "It's a group effort to ensure that our schools are operating efficiently, and remaining accountable to our taxpayers," said Johnson. "Our district is committed to delivering high impact learning and outstanding opportunities for this community's children, and we take great pride in doing that in a fiscally responsible manner.
MI 4th Graders Create Living Wax Museum

Fourth  graders in Mason Intermediate language arts and social studies teacher April Raleigh's class created a Living Wax Museum featuring well-known people, from the past and present, including historical icons like Cleopatra, Rosa Parks, Neil Armstrong, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Betsy Ross. 
"The students each chose someone who made a difference, and who was either involved in a disaster, overcame a challenge or had some type of well-known achievement/success in their life," said Raleigh. "The whole project was about three weeks long, in which the students researched the person by gathering facts from multiple resources, categorized the information and put together an essay."

Read more about the Living Wax Museum .
2016-2017 Mason Kindergarten Registration Drive


The Mason Early Childhood Center's 2015-2016 kindergarten registration is underway. On February 24, 2016 prospective kindergarten families may attend a pre-registration meeting at MECC located at 4631 Hickory Woods Dr. Parents may sign kindergarten packets out from 6-6:30 pm, and will learn about the kindergarten program from 6:30pm-7:30pm. Due to limited seating, the meeting is for parents only.
Kindergarten packets are available at the Mason Central Registration Office at 211 North East Street or at MECC, 4631 Hickory Woods Dr. In order to ensure that the Mason Early Childhood Center is able to accurately project staffing and services for next year, packets will not be mailed and cannot be downloaded.
"MECC provides a unique opportunity to meet the needs of every child based upon sound, developmentally appropriate practices and a wide variety of instructional programs. We encourage parents to become actively involved in their child's school experience, and look forward to meeting all our new families!" noted MECC Principal Melissa Bly.

High Fives to... 

... all the Mason students who recognize that winter is here, and are making sure to bundle up! Lost your gear? Check out the Bus Garage - they just might have it in their Lost and Found. Want to learn more about how @DocGKK makes the decision to close school? Check out Mason City Schools' Winter Weather Guidelines.



... MHS senior Jailyn Mason, whose basketball prowess earned her a coveted nomination for the McDonalds All American Game! Ms. Mason averages 8.5 points, 4.4 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.9 steals for the Comets, and has committed to playing basketball for the University of Arkansas next fall.
Mason High School Theater Presents Timeless classic, Romeo and Juliet

On January 29 & 30 and February 5 & 6,  Mason High School Theater will present Romeo and Juliet in the school's Studio Theater. Curtain for each performance is at 8pm with a 3pm matinee scheduled on Saturday the 30th.  Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for students, children, and seniors.  All senior citizen Mason Golden Comet Card holders are invited to attend the final dress rehearsal on January 28 at 7pm free of charge, or can reserve a limited number of free tickets by calling the Public Information Office at 398-0474, option 7.  Tickets will be available at the door one hour before curtain, or online at www.showtix4u.com.  Additional information can be found at www.masondrama.com.
Romeo and Juliet  features a cast of 22 Mason High School students and features Drew Stidham as Romeo, Gabrielle Medina as Juliet, Anna Kosiarek as Sister Laurence, Rebekah Cychosz, as the Nurse,Brandon Cole as Mercutio, Seth Rapp as Tybalt, Sam Terribilini as Lord Capulet, and Brianna Smith as Lady Montague.    The play is Stage Managed by Jazmin Tangi, Assistant Technical Directed by Matt Schlusser, and Assistant Directed by Anna Kosiarek.  

Read more about  Romeo and Juliet.
Celebrate Mason City Schools Diversity at "Taste of Mason" on Feb. 3

Don't miss this year's "Taste of Mason" showcasing our community's diversity!
WHAT:  At the Taste of Mason you can sample a new dish, catch up with old friends, and be mesmerized by incredible talent! The whole family will enjoy exciting offerings from many ethnic, and independent local restaurants. Watch multicultural acts perform. Children can learn about international currency by "purchasing" Mason Comet Zone items (including global candy) with their cash, and get their passports stamped at each continent as they take their trip around a global carnival hosted by MHS World Language Honor Societies -- right here in Mason!
WHEN:        Wednesday, February 3, 2016
                  5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
WHERE:      Mason High School Commons (Natatorium or Theater Entrance)
                  6100 Mason-Montgomery Rd.
Mason City Schools' Diversity Council Vision
Continue to build an equitable learning community which values and respects the dignity and uniqueness of all students, staff, and members of the community, empowers diverse learners' achievement, and enhances growth and development.
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