May 11, 2018
Runnels has always been the school for all races, religions, and national origins.
In this week's edition of the Friday Focus : Social Studies Fair Winners; Valedictorians and Salutatorian Announced; Gearing Up for Summer Reading; Crafting a Colonial Experience; Taking Advantage of Summer Educational Opportunities; Yearbook Updates; STEM Expo; Mayor's Advisory Council; Guest Artist; Kudos and Thank Yous; Friendly Reminders; Weekly Photo Album; and Athletic Corner.

Have a Happy Mother's Day!
Social Studies Fair Champs Take Home Honors
The junior high Social Studies Fair held in the Catalano Gym on May 4 was the culmination of a long-term project that took students through the complex process of writing a formal research paper, from concept to conclusion.

Seventh grade projects focused on people and events in American history, and 8th grade projects explored the culture, resources, industries, history, geography, and demographics of various Louisiana parishes. Each student produced a research paper and a display. Those who advanced to the final round of competition were also required to give oral presentations. The judges were former Runnels teachers Ann Slocum and Tana Cramp and elementary teacher and local writer Rachele Smith. Awards were presented in the categories of Overall Winners and Best Displays in each grade.

The winners and their projects were: 7th Grade - Overall Winners: 1st place, Emma Collett, Salem Witch Trials ; 2nd place, Alex Frederic, Wright Brothers ; and 3rd place, Mason Pentes, Gold Rush ; Best Displays - 1st place, Eddie Tunis, George Patton ; Honorable Mentions - Greyson Torres, Chicago Race Riots , and Eli Latiolais, Cold War . 8th Grade - Overall Winners: 1st place, Michal Gawronski, Beauregard Parish ; 2nd place, Ryan Roper, Bossier Parish ; and 3rd place, Dawson Latona, Cameron Parish ; Best Display - 1st place, Cooper Smither, St. James Parish ; Honorable Mentions - Emily Reid, St. Bernard Parish , and Blaiklee Guillot, Ouachita Parish .

(Photo: Overall 7th-Grade winners, from left, Mason Pentes, 3rd place; Emma Collett,1st place; and Alex Frederic, 2nd place.)
2018 Co-Valedictorians and Salutatorian Announced
The names of the valedictorians and salutatorian of the Runnels Class of 2018 were announced last night. Congratulations to co-valedictorians Alex Matthews and Sam Matthews and salutatorian Isabelle McCall.

Twin brothers Alex and Sam have been at Runnels since they entered preschool at the age of two! Both are headed to Texas Christian University (TCU) in the fall to study mechanical engineering on National Merit Scholarships, TCU Grants and Dean's Scholarships. In addition, Alex is the recipient of a Mu Alpha Theta Scholarship and Sam is an invited walk-on athlete on the men's track team.

Isabelle, who has been with us since 6th grade, is going to Tulane University in New Orleans to study psychology on a National Merit Scholarship, an Academic Scholarship, a TOPS Honors Award, and the school's Dean's Honor Scholarship, which is offered to only 100 incoming first-time freshmen. It covers full tuition and is renewable if certain requirements are met.

Congratulations to these exceptional students and their parents.

( Photo: Co-Valedictorian Alex Matthews, Salutatorian Isabelle McCall, and Co-Valedictorian Alex Matthews. )
Gearing Up for Summer Reading
All Runnels students in grades 4-12 will have summer reading assignments that you can access by clicking the "Summer Reading & Skills Building" icon on the homepage of the school website (

An exciting addition to this summer's agenda for students in grades 4-6 is a shared reading experience called One School, One Book. All 4th-6th graders will be required to read the same book -- Wishtree by Katherine Applegate.

"I think this is a great book that students will enjoy reading," said 4th grade reading teacher and new Elementary Co-Librarian Amanda Albin. "It was written by an already loved author, Katherine Applegate, who wrote The One and Only Ivan , which many 4th graders chose to read for book reports this year."

Crafting a Colonial Experience
To cap off their studies of the 13 Colonies, the 5th graders enjoyed an afternoon of games, foods, and toys that children in 18th century America would have found familiar.

Organized by 5th-grade social studies teacher Cheyenne Davis, the elementary school's Colonial Days activities featured sack races, games of Nine Men's Morris (a cross between checkers and tic-tac-toe), designing quilt squares, whipping up batches of Johnny Cakes with "churned" butter and genuine maple syrup, sipping apple cider, and crafting whirligigs and rag dolls.

"Children in Colonial America played games based on their chores," said Mrs. Davis. "They used the sacks they carried grain and corn in for for sack races, eggs they collected for egg-and-spoon races, made dolls from leftover quilting scraps, and built whirligigs out of string and buttons or spare pieces of wood."

"The students really enjoyed the afternoon," said Mrs. Davis, "especially the food. Thirty-seven students requested the recipe for Johnny Cakes!"

Many thanks to parent and grandparent volunteers Alecia Tate, Aprille Wright, Erin Scott, Matt Hebert, Rachel Evans, Becky Hillman, Michelle Harper, Shanna Drescher and her mom Joyce Reid, Herschel Brunner, Meredith Wartelle and Rachel Garrison and teachers John Baird, Jennifer Leeper and Renee' Miller.

(Photo: Fifth graders participate in sack relay races as part of their Colonial Days activities. The sacks are genuine coffee sacks from Old Time Farm Supplier in Gonzales .)

Taking Advantage of Summer Educational Opportunities
HOBY Leadership Workshop ... Sophomore Janie Schlotterer will attend the Hugh O'Brian Youth (HOBY) Leadership Workshop at the West Baton Rouge Conference Center in Port Allen this summer. The workshop is designed to help high school sophomores recognize their leadership potential.

Apex Leadership Summit ... Collin Bueche, grade 11, has been chosen to participate in the 10th Annual Apex Leadership Summit at the University of Mississippi in Oxford this summer. Also attending the program, which provides sessions on leadership development, social responsibility, ethics, and team building, will be Runnels juniors Emma Toorean and Rachel Wehbe ( See last week's Friday Focus ).

DEMCO Finalist Joins D.C. Trip ... Junior Ian Lansing is going to Washington, D.C. this summer as a DEMCO essay finalist. Though not originally selected as one of the four Baton Rouge winners by DEMCO, he was invited to participate in the trip when space became available. Ian said he is excited to be going.

( Photo: From left are Ian Lansing, Janie Schlotterer, and Collin Bueche. )
2016-2017 Yearbook Update
Though we were hoping the 2016-2017 yearbooks would make it to campus before the end of the semester, we were informed by the publisher this week that they will not be ready for delivery until mid-June. We sincerely apologize for the long delay and any inconvenience it has caused you and your family.

As soon as the books arrive, we will notify you via the website and email so you can pick them up from Miss Pam on the main campus in the elementary office. Again, we are very sorry for the problem and will make every effort to get back on track with an early fall delivery of the 2017-2018 yearbooks.

( Photo: 2016-2017 Yearbook Divider Page unpublished PDF )
STEM Expo ...Physics honors students, from left in photo, Catherine Henning, McKenna Tregre, Natalie Justus, and Elizabeth Daigle went to the Louisiana STEM Expo 2018 at LSU on May 7 with physics teacher Amy Guillory and Admissions Director Sarah Haase. They were there to provide STEM demonstrations to the local middle and high school students attending the Expo.
Mayor's Youth Advisory Council ... Juniors Anna Claire Pousson (at left in photo) and Tyler Robbins (at right in photo) with Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston-Broome attended a celebratory dinner for members of the Mayor's Youth Advisory Council recently. Anna Claire and Tyler are among the 25 high school juniors and seniors representing EBR Parish schools on the council.
Guest Artist ... New Orleans artist Nonney Oddlokken paid a visit to Runnels on May 4 as part of the Baton Rouge Gallery's program to bring professional artists into schools to inspire future artists. Many thanks to Ms. Oddlokken for sharing her story and artwork with our students and to art department head Lee Brandt Randall for facilitating the visit.
Kudos and Thank Yous...
Songs on the Bayou ... Kudos to the students in 1A, 1B, 1C and 2A who presented their charming musical review Down on Da Bayou in the Drama Room on May 10. The show, which highlighted the value of friendship and nature, was written, choreographed, and directed by elementary drama teacher Julie Horridge. ( Photo: In a scene from "Down on Da Bayou" are, from left, Dessa Tremblay, Lorelai Welch, Karam Sheikha, Ryan Funk, and Gavin Foley. )

We Love a Mystery ...The upper elementary drama students treated audiences to a compelling mystery with comic interruptions this week when they staged The Mysterious Case of the Missing Ring in the Drama Room. Congratulations to the 4th-6th grade actors and their director, Kendall Krebsbach. ( Photo: In "The Mysterious Case of the Missing Ring," first hour drama students consult a crystal ball for clues. )

Spring Dance Recital ... Congrats to our junior and senior high dancers and teacher Rachel Harper Hart for a lovely spring program in the Theatre May 4 and 5. The show featured ballet as well as jazz, contemporary and lyrical dance numbers. Guest viola player Harrison Bonaventure appeared at the Saturday performance. Seniors Ally Garrity, Natalie Justus, Jade Tew, and McKenna Tregre danced solos. ( Photo: Emily Daquano and Quin Dukaric. )

We Sincerely Thank...

...The Broadmoor United Methodist Church community, Church Administrator Michael Cockrell, John Schatzle, and Senior Pastor Donnie Wilkinson , father of John Harper, grade 4, and Mollybeth, grade 9, for inviting Runnels to hold this year's AP Exams on their campus.
"They truly go out of their way to accommodate us for these exams," said Assistant Head of School and Junior and Senior High Principal Conchetta Foshee. (Photo: A group of Runnels High School students returns to the campus of Broadmoor United Methodist Church "Runnels West" to take their AP Exams.)

... We made an error in last week's article about the school-wide Runnels Spring Art Show. The names of preschool art teachers Laura Russell and Amy Sandifer , who helped organize and install the artwork of our preschool students, were inadvertently left out of the thank yous in the story. We sincerely apologize for the oversight.

... In last week's issue, we also inadvertently neglected to thank three guest musicians who performed in the May 2 Runnels String Orchestra Concert in our Theatre. We sincerely thank bass player John Baird , harpist Gabi Werries , and piano accompanist Gladys Runnels for joining our students on stage. We apologize for the error.
Friendly Reminders
May 11 / J unior Beta Spring Dance , Catalano Gym, 7:00 pm

May 12 / Playwriting/Directing Class Presents One-Act Plays , Gladys Hague Runnels Theatre, 2:00 pm, with Kelly Awards presented at 4:00 pm in the Theatre.

May 15 / Elementary Chorus Concert , Elementary Drama Room, 8:45 am

May 17 / Kindergarten Fun in the Sun Day

May 17 / Senior Sunset , 7:00 pm

May 18 / Senior Stroll, Main Campus Walkways, 10:45 am

May 19 / High School Commencement, Gladys Hague Runnels Theatre, 4:00 pm ( Due to limited seating, this event is by invitation only .)

Click here for summer camp information. Be sure to check back next week for newly added camps.
( Above ) "Let's Go to the Movies" ... Congratulations to the students in the Beginning Band and the 5th-Grade Band and their director, Shanna Drescher, for two sensational spring concerts in the Gladys Hague Runnels Theatre on May 7 . The program, which featured some of our favorite songs from the movies, demonstrated the strides these students have made in their development as musicians this school year. Click here for more photos...

In this week's album: 6th-Grade Field Trip to the Coca-Cola Factory, Preschool Candids and Water Day, Biology Biomes, Advanced Twizzler Math, Social Studies Fair, Parents vs. Students Softball Game, Seniors' Last Day, More Preschool Pictures; 4th-Grade Poetry Cafe'.
Athletic Corner

Last night, junior and senior high student athletes gathered in the Catalano Gym for sports physicals needed to participate in team sports at Runnels. The gym was transformed into a makeshift medical clinic, with visiting doctors and physical therapists in attendance. With the assistance of several volunteers, 134 physicals were performed, making this year's turnout the largest ever.

The athletic department thanks the volunteers for their hard work and the parents and athletes for their patience and cooperation. Special thank yous go to the following volunteers: Team Physicians Vincent Shaw, Jr., of Baton Rouge General Family Medicine and Stephen Etheredge of the Baton Rouge Orthopedic Clinic; Baton Rouge General Family Physicians Matt Bumgardner, Vineeth Kumar, Robert Sudduth, and Ben Levron ; Runnels Athletic Trainer Marcella Babcock ; Runnels School nurses Melanie Hyatt and Karen Rhinehart ; Runnels coaches Julie Fink, Mitch Reeves, Jean Martinez, Angie Mitchell, Karen Matthews, Monique Howe, and Sam Coates ; Runnels Booster Club members and parents Julie Stevenson, Doug Gulley, Kristine Guillot, Wendy Worsham, Aislynn Coates, Marc Sager, Ellen Sager, and Amy Taliaferro ; Sports Medicine students Spencer Spivak, Blake Porciau, and Madelyn Burney ; Junior and Senior High Assistant Principal Dana Schlotterer ; and Rice & Roux.  
Senior Colin Bonine at the mound.
Senior JP Guillot crossing home.
Eighth grader Kyle Nicholson loses a shoe in a quick play to tag third.
(Photos: The Raiders at the state semifinals on Wednesday in Sulpher.)


Last Friday, the Raiders' ten run ruled the fourth seed, Family Community, in the state quarterfinals in Winnsboro. The final score was 15-5 in six innings. The game was close until the Raiders exploded for 10 runs in the third inning. All of the runs were scored with two outs. Colin Bonine had a two out triple to start the rally, then followed up by an RBI single from Jake Best. The next five hitters walked, and Sam Haase had a two-run single. Then Ricky Harrison hit a two-run triple and Jake Best added an RBI double to finish the rally. Colin Bonine threw 5 and 2/3 innings with 7 strikeouts. Ricky Harrison got the last out to preserve the 15-5 win in six innings. The Raiders had 10 hits on the game from eight different players for their first playoff win in 3 years.

On Wednesday, the Raiders were defeated by the defending state champs, Grace Christian, 10-1 in the LHSSA semifinals at Sulpher. Colin Bonine started the game on the mound and gave a great effort. JP Guillot had the only hit and only run for the Raiders. 

District honors were given to Colin Bonine, who was named 1st team pitcher, and Jake Best for first team outfield. Ricky Harrison and Grayson Gulley were both named 2nd team infield.

Congratulations to the Raiders, Head Coach Ben Young, and Coaches Tookie Johnson, Mark Landry, and Brent Hoeprich on an exciting season!

Wednesday evening, the junior high baseball team scored a victory against the Raptors, 8-7, on Nick D'Gerolamo's walk-off hit. Rossie Harrison contributed 3 RBIs. Shelby Anders and Rossie combined to keep the Raptors down, tallying 7 strikeouts in 4 innings.

Thursday, the Raiders defeated the Indians 17-0 in two innings of play. Jonathan Harper and Archer Amedee shut down the Indians on the mound. Alan Lam, Rossie Harrison and Jonathan all combined for 8 RBIs in the victory.

Come out and support the boys when they play next Monday and Tuesday at 5:45 p.m. Both games at Cedar Ridge Park.

(Photo: Nick D'Gerolamo up to bat.)

Junior High Baseball
5:45 pm at Cedar Ridge

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