September 14, 2018
Runnels has always been the school for all races, religions, and national origins.
 In this week's Focus : 2019 National Merit Students Announced; Teachers Go Back to School for Pointers on Google Classroom; ACT Prep Workshops at Runnels; New Officers Elected in Junior and Senior High; Flu Facts Available at; Check Out Our Billboard; Kindergarten Open House; We Sincerely Thank; Friendly Reminders; Weekly Photo Album; and Athletic Corner.
Congratulations To Our Five National Merit Students!
Seniors Kayla Evans, Anna Kadi, Daniel Mayeaux, and Emma Tooraen have been named Semifinalists in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program, and Alex Morgan, also a senior, has been recognized as a Commended Student.  

Semifinalists will remain in the program to vie for Finalist standing and the opportunity to compete for scholarships worth more than $31 million. Though Commended Students do not continue in the competition, they do receive Letters of Commendation in recognition of their outstanding academic promise and may become candidates for special scholarships from businesses and corporations.

According to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, approximately 1.6 million high school juniors entered the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2017 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Only 16,000 of these students qualified to be Semifinalists. They represent less than one percent of all U.S. high school seniors.

All five of our National Merit Students have been at Runnels since junior high or before. Kayla, the daughter of Rachel and Brian Evans, joined us in the sixth grade; Anna, the daughter of Lisa and Joe Kadi, started in kindergarten; Daniel, the son of Susan and Keith Mayeaux, came to us in seventh grade; Alex, the son of Norma Marsh and Craig Morgan, began his Runnels career in kindergarten; and Emma, the daughter of Tish Karl and John Tooraen, joined us as a two year old at the preschool. ( Photo: National Merit Semifinalists, from left, Anna Kadi and Daniel Mayeaux, Commended Student Alex Morgan, and National Merit Semifinalists Kayla Evans and Emma Tooraen. )
Picking Up Google Classroom Pointers
Several Runnels teachers took advantage of the opportunity to learn more about Google Classroom last Saturday by participating in workshops presented by elementary computer teacher Sheri Allen in the Elementary Computer Lab.

Joining her for a morning session were teachers Katherine Phillippe, Gina Golda, Jill Swetnam, Michelle Barnett, and Rachel Smith. "We went over the basics of Google Classroom, how to create assignments with Google Forms and Docs, and how to grade and return student work," Mrs. Allen explained.

An afternoon session entitled Tips and Tricks to Tech Up Your Google Classroom dug deeper into the subject. "I talked about add-ons, websites and new features available to make teaching with tech easier," Mrs. Allen said. The five morning participants stayed on for the afternoon workshop and were joined by teachers Renee' Miller, Kitty Gant, Colleen LeBlanc, Kathy Judd, Leah Pizzalato, and Rachel Laiche.

"In both classes," Mrs. Allen added, "I had a Google classroom for the participants to join that has material for reference and even more tips, templates, and creative ideas for use with Google Classroom." If you missed the first round of workshops, don't worry. The class will be repeated on Sept. 25 from 3:30 - 5:00 p.m. For more information, contact Mrs. Allen in the Elementary Computer Lab.

( Photo: At last Saturday's in-house Google Classroom workshop are, from left, Gina Golda, Katherine Phillippe, instructor Sheri Allen, Michelle Barnett, and Rachel Smith.)
Sign Up for ACT Prep Workshops
Runnels will hold a series of after-school workshops next month to help high school students prepare for the Oct. 27 ACT Exam. The 90-minute sessions will be held in Room 153 of Novak Hall on Oct. 2, 4, 9, and 13 from 3:15 – 4:45 p.m. Students attending at least one workshop are eligible to take a full-length practice test that will be professionally scored and analyzed by The Princeton Review at no charge.

The workshops are: English and Reading on Oct. 2; Mastering ACT Science on Oct. 4; ACT Math Skills on Oct. 9; and a full-length practice test Oct. 13.

Sign up will be through Sept. 28. The cost is $15 per session. Spots will be billed to Smart Tuition and are non-refundable. A Google Form with registration details will be sent out early next week to high school students and parents (10th grade and above). Space is limited!

New Officers for Junior and Senior High
After hearing candidates' speeches last week, students in grades 7-12 had the chance to cast their votes for the class officers of their choice on Sept. 11 in the Jr./Sr. High Library using voting machines from the Secretary of State's Office. Congratulations to the newly elected class officers for junior and senior high.

Class of 2019 (Seniors) - Daniel Mayeaux, president; Emma Tooraen, vice president; Kayla Evans and Anna Claire Pousson, representatives. Class of 2020 (Juniors) - Anna Manning, president; Catherine Bonaventure, vice president; Annie Fink and Ryan Ly, representatives. Class of 2021 (Sophomores) - Madisan Milam, president; Ansley Brown, vice president; Mollybeth Wilkinson and Sophie Edwards, representatives. Class of 2022 (Freshmen) - Blaiklee Guillot, president; Sydney Worsham, vice president; Dawson Latona and Ryan Roper, representatives. Class of 2023 (Eighth Grade) - Sadie Allelo, president; Emma Collett, vice president; Mira Badawi and Zeena Shammout, representatives. Class of 2024 (Seventh Grade) - Ben Hader, president; Olivia Chiasson, vice president; Malek Badawi and Caroline Pousson, representatives.

( Photo: Casting their votes for class officers in the Jr./Sr. High School Library are, from left, Ryan Lam and Griffin Kennedy. )
Find Flu Facts on
To help you weather the inevitable flu season, our school nurses have added an influenza resource page to our website. The "Influenza Information" page at is chock full of links that will deliver you to resources on preventing and battling the flu from the Center for Disease Control and the Louisiana Department of Public Health. To access the "Influenza Information" page on, go to Contacts/Nurses/Influenza Information.

Check Out Our Billboard at Jones Creek and S. Harrell's Ferry Road
Kindergarten Event Wraps Up Open House Season
Parents joined their kindergarten students in class this morning for our final Open House of the school year. As the students moved between rooms, following their regular daily schedules, parents traveled beside them, sometimes participating in lessons and activities. In art class, they worked alongside their children to put the finishing touches on pictures of giant jellyfish (previously outlined in black glue) by painting with watercolors like American artist Georgia O'Keefe.

Since this week's theme in kindergarten was Sea Creatures, parents and students also did a lab together in Science using water and black paint to show how an octopus camouflages itself as a defense against predators. Later, parents moved outside to observe their children taking on the challenge of moving through a rigorous Kindergarten Fitness obstacle course.

( Photo: Lucy Williams and her dad Tony Williams paint a jellyfish together with watercolors at the Kindergarten Open House. )
We Sincerely Thank...
Used Book Sale Thank Yous ... We extend a huge thank you to the many parents, grandparents, faculty and staff members, and friends of our school who so generously helped make the Library Used Book Fair a tremendous success. Proceeds from the sales in both libraries exceeded $1,600. The profits will benefit our elementary and junior and senior high libraries as well as the preschool library program. Jr./Sr. High Librarian Wendy Herumin and Elementary Librarians Amanda Albin and Leah Pizzalato plan to share 10 percent of the profits with the preschool for the purchase of new books.

Shout-outs go to Meredith Wartelle (PAR Bookends Coordinator), Wendy Dolan, Kristin Morgan, Laura Tomlinson, Amanda Francois, Catherine Shain, Stacy Corder, Nichole Mena-Rovai, Julie Martin, Shasta Felton, Shanna Drescher, Patty Clavette, Annalee Campbell, Brittany McCauley, Sarah Sheikha, Elizabeth Murphey, Kasia Baranska, Nick Erickson, Violet Tremblay, Heather Shay, and Alecia Tate. A special thank you also goes to Jean Martinez and her gym class for helping unpack boxes and to Kenny Copsey and his crew for setting up tables. In addition, we thank the staff of the Jones Creek Library for donating books for the sale. Any books remaining from the Used Book Sale will be donated to LSU's Friends of the Library.
Guest Speaker in Environmental Science ... We sincerely thank McKaila Darden from LSU's Les Voyageurs student ambassador group for visiting Dave Marschall's Environmental Science class this morning to provide an interactive presentation on what's available for graduating seniors at the College of Agriculture.

In addition to discussing the various majors the college offers, Ms. Darden, an undergraduate in the College of Agriculture, talked about the application process, scholarship opportunities, and her own interesting experience doing research on turkeys and how their gobbling patterns help determine locations for turkey hunting. ( Photo: LSU Agriculture major McKaila Darden visits with students in Mr. Marschall's Environment Science class.)
Friendly Reminders
Sept. 16 / Kindergarten Sneak-A-Peek Open House for Prospective Kindergarten Families , Kindergarten Classrooms, 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Sept. 28 / Popsicle Friday , Elementary Playground, Lunch Recess

Sept. 28 / Jr./Sr. High Pep Rally , Catalano Gym, 2:10 p.m.

Oct. 4 / Elementary Dramas , Drama Room, The Adventures of Little Red Robin Hood , 8:30 a.m., 9:20 a.m., and 10:10 a.m. (grades 4-6); Off Their Rockers , 12:15 p.m. (3A); and 2:25 p.m. (3B); Pajama Party , 12:45 p.m. (2B); and 1:40 p.m., (1A)
( Above ) We caught a group of 3rd graders rehearsing for their parts as walker-assisted, cane-carrying residents of a senior citizen center in the musical, Off Their Rockers . Catch their performance Oct. 4 in the Drama Room. Also in production on the elementary side of our campus and slated for Oct. 4 performances is the musical comedy Pajama Party! starring students in 1A and 2B. Director Julie Horridge is running both shows.

In this week's album:
Senior Luncheon, 1st Grade Science Blindfolded Taste Testing, Class Officer Voting, Kindergarten Open House, Preschool Candids, Volleyball (thank you Dana Kahn), Used Book Sale, Life Science Newton's Law and Candids.
Athletic Corner

New fans and old are invited to participate in the support organization for athletics at Runnels called the Booster Club. The Runnels Booster Club assists the Athletic Department and all school sports by providing support in many areas such as facilities upkeep, volunteer help, and athletic equipment. There are many ways for volunteers to get involved, from cooking for a crowd to manning the gate.

Three membership levels are available, in addition to optional Reserved Seating for boys basketball and baseball. Please click on the link below and complete the form. After submitting the form, please return to this message and click on the next link to a secure payment page. Your membership is not complete until you click and complete member payment.

Junior high swimmers submerge for an underwater photo op at junior high swim team practice.

The junior high swim team competed last week at Crawfish Aquatics. Although the meet was not scored, several swimmers finished in the top 16 as preliminary finalists. The finalists in the girls' 50-meter Butterfly were Mikalyn Shay and Annie Garrison. Lilly Hayden also made the preliminaries in the 50-meter Breast- stroke. The finalists in the boys' 50-meter Butterfly were Luke Hillman and Michael Hillman.

On Sunday, the high school swim team will have its first meet beginning at 12:30 p.m. at Crawfish Aquatics.

The varsity volleyball team went 0-3 this week. The Lady Raiders suffered losses to Zachary and Madison Prep in 3 games. At Tuesday’s home game, the Ladies played an exciting 5-game match against Christ Episcopal. Although the Lady Raiders ultimately lost, they went down fighting, 26-24, 13-25, 25-17, 20-25 and 11-15. The team was led by Rachel Wehbe with 10 kills, Karli Hebert with 21 assists and Madison Sutton with 16 digs. 

The Ladies play this weekend in the Tara Classic. On Friday, they take on Brighton Academy at 4:00 p.m. and Ascension Christian at 6:00 p.m. Saturday, the team will play Northeast at 3:00 p.m.

Last Saturday, the Cross Country team participated in the Episcopal High Round Table Run at Highland Road Park. Dawson Latona ran a new personal record of 17:39 for 3-miles, and Annie Fink had the top Raider finish, 16th out of 233, and won a t-shirt. Grant Gueho led the junior high boys' team, finishing 28/469 boys, and Annie Garrison led the junior high girls' team. The high school boys' team placed 25th out of 39 teams; the junior high boys placed 18th out of 34 teams, and the junior high girls finished 18th out of 27 teams. The cross-country team compete this weekend in New Orleans at City Park.

(Photo: Ryan Roper, Sydney Worsham, Angele Lansing, Blaiklee Guillot, Annie Fink and Bailey Hyatt. Photo by Melanie Hyatt.)
Friday — Volleyball Tara Classic
Brighton Academy at 4:00 p.m. and Ascension Christian at 6:00 p.m

— Cross Country City Park, New Orleans Races begin at 8:00 a.m.
— Volleyball Tara Classic: Northeast at 4:00 p.m

Sunday — High School Swim Team Crawfish Aquatics at 12:30 p.m.

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