March 2017
The Shaker Schools Connection

A Message from the Superintendent
The Shaker Heights City School District is always looking for ways to keep our stakeholders informed. That's why we are launching a new, electronic newsletter. Every month, you'll receive the latest news, features and information that is vital to all Shaker parents, staff and community members. Please help us keep all our community members informed by forwarding this newsletter to friends or neighbors who may not receive our news, and inviting them to subscribe.

If you haven't done so already, mark your calendars for this year's State of the Schools Address, which will take place at 6 p.m. this coming Tuesday, February 28, 2017, at the High School's Large Auditorium. We will share information about our progress toward our goals, discuss our next steps and answer questions you may have. It will be an honor to have you in attendance.

Parking will be at a premium, so please plan to arrive early and consider carpooling or walking to the event.

If you are unable to attend, you can watch the State of Schools live, for the first time, on the District website, .

Our District is on the move. We have made significant academic gains and are well on our way to realizing our vision of being the first-choice school district for all students, both locally and around the globe. Guided by our five-year Strategic Plan, our school buildings and department are working hard to attain their goals. Check out our mid-year update here. Join us Tuesday to celebrate our successes, and talk about our challenges -- and invite a friend to join you.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr.
Superintendent of Schools

District Seeks 3.75-mill Bond Issue
The Board of Education is seeking voter approval May 2 of a bond issue that would provide money to meet the District's most critical capital needs and improve the teaching and learning environments for our students and staff.  The 3.75-mill bond issue, which includes a permanent improvement levy, will enable the District to implement its first master facilities plan, the blueprint for keeping our schools safe, warm, dry and educationally viable for years to come.  Learn More about the District's capital needs.

Treasurer's Office Lauded for Stewardship of Public Funds
The District has again received a clean audit report and earned the Auditor of State Award with Distinction for its stewardship of public funds. District Treasurer Bryan C. Christman was presented the commendation earlier this week. Statewide, only 5 percent of school districts and local governments receive the honor. "Taxpayers place their trust in us, and that is a responsibility that we take very seriously," said Christman, the District's treasurer and chief financial officer.   Read More about the award.

Reading Raiders Combine Literacy and Fun
On Thursdays after school, a group of students from the Middle School visits Boulevard Elementary to mentor second- and third-graders in a program called Reading Raiders. The Middle School students work one-on-one with the younger students to bolster their reading skills by reading stories aloud together, performing readers' theatre, and enjoying poetry.  Learn More  about the Reading Raiders program.

Shaker Makers Event Seeks Exhibitors 
The City of Shaker Heights will host its first Shaker Makers event, a show-and-tell for innovators, hobbyists and creators of all ages to share their ingenuity with the public. The event will take place from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday, April 22, at The Dealership, 3558 Lee Rd. There is no charge to exhibit at Shaker Makers.

This free, family-friendly event invites visitors to learn, discover, create and play with "makers" and creators who will exhibit their work. The maker community, which hosts events around the world that promote and celebrate technology, design and creativity, was the inspiration for the Shaker Makers event. 

Event organizers currently seek a well-balanced selection of exhibitors. Makers interested in exhibiting may submit proposals online by April 1: . A jury will review proposals the week of April 3 and notify selected exhibitors on April 7. All participants will have full Internet access to The Dealership's fiber network.

For more information about becoming an exhibitor, contact Annie Weiss, 216-589-9444.

Student News
Senior Isabel Wang was selected as one of two winners for the 12th-grade writing competition for the 2017 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Art, Writing & Multimedia Contest, sponsored by the Ohio Civil Rights Commission with support from PNC, Honda of America and Wright State University. Winners accept their awards March 2 in Columbus.  Senior Sam Katz earned a Gold Medal and seven other Shaker students earned recognition for their performance on the 2016-2017 Medusa Mythology Exam. This year's exam theme was "The Rise and Fall of the Titans." Twenty-nine students of Latin and Greek from Shaker Heights High School took away 21 medals after participating in the seventh annual National Classical Etymology Exam. The students' Latin teachers are Mary Coffey, Nora Murphy and Andrew Spencer Shaker Heights Middle School's 7th-grade Power of the Pen Team claimed first place at the District Power of the Pen Tournament held Saturday, February 4. The team will be going on to compete in the regional competition in April. Shaker's Power of the Pen coaches are Sara Lambert and Erika Pfeiffer. The Shaker Heights High School Chamber Orchestra, under the direction of Donna Jelen, travels to New York City next week to compete at the National Orchestra Cup Competition at Lincoln Center. They are one of only 10 schools nationwide invited to compete. Read the Plain Dealer article.  For more news about student accomplishments throughout our District, visit  

Faculty and Staff News
A group of Shaker Heights High School faculty and staff presented the school's Bridges and Summer Experience Program on March 20-21 in Washington, D.C., at the College Board and HBCU Dream Deferred Conference.  The Shaker team included two AP History teachers, Sarah Davis and Brian Berger, Assistant Principal Ramsey Inman and MAC Scholars advisor Mary Lynne McGovern. The College Board selected Shaker to share our program so that more schools can effectively recruit and retain African-American and other minority students in their AP programs. The Bridges program at the High School helps recruit students currently under-represented in our AP History courses. The Summer Experience program (part the SELF initiative) assists students with assigned summer reading, best study techniques and leadership skills, with continued support throughout the school year. 

Community Engagement
Police Awareness & Student Safety

More than 50 students and 10 members of the Shaker Heights Police Department gathered in the Upper Cafeteria of the High School January 24, 2017, for the inaugural meeting of the Police Awareness & Student Safety (PASS) program. Read more

MLK Day of Service
Hundreds of Shaker students honored the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by serving the homeless and the home-insecure locally and throughout Greater Cleveland. The first districtwide MLK Day of Service took place on Jan. 16, 2017, at the High School. Read more

Father-Daughter Dance
Shaker dads and daughters were dressed to the nines at this year's Shaker Schools Father-Daughter Dance, which took place February 17, 2017, at the Middle School. Male parents and guardians of Shaker Schools K-4 girls enjoyed an evening of dancing and fun!  

Board of Education Issues Statement on Immigration
On February 17, 2017, the Board of Education issued the following statement:

"The Shaker Heights City School District wishes to reassure the many international citizens in our community that it welcomes and cherishes the rich cultural diversity of visitors and residents from every nation. The District has welcomed immigrants, international families and visiting students for decades. Students from all over the world are part of the rich tapestry that helps make the Shaker Schools unique. ..." Read full statement

We Want your Feedback
Have a comment, suggestion or concern? Share it with us using our new Feedback form on the District's website, . Simply choose the "Contact" drop-down menu at the top of the website and click on "Feedback." You can select the particular department you want to receive your message.  

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