Students recognized for essays

The Orrick Board of Education met this past Monday and among the many topics on the agenda were the recognition of two Students of the Month, and four students were recognized by teacher Joyce O’Dell for their outstanding essays on “Why Veterans Should be Honored.”
The four students were then asked to read their essays aloud to the board members, administrators, and guests present. Each essay reminded each person of the extreme sacrifices made by these brave men and women, past and present.
The four students recognized were: 8th graders Hunter Guthrie, Cailin Sumpter, and Makayla Easley along with 7th grader Amity Parks.
Students of the Month recognized by High School Principal Brock Dover were: 7th grader Blake McNulty and junior, Patrick Parker.
In other news, congratulations are in order for the Marching Bearcats under the direction of director Jason Moll as they took second place in the at the Missouri Western Marching Band contest recently held at Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph.
Also, Friday night, Oct. 17, Orrick High School was awarded the HyVee Spirit Award given by KSHB NBC Action News. The school received a $100 gift certificate from HyVee. Dover stated this money had been turned over to the high school cheerleaders for all their hard work and support for the Bearcat Football team.
Superintendent Marcus Stucker gave his report to the board. He stated that financially the district is in good shape and is in the process of paying off the Bond Issue. Student attendance at the Excelsior Springs Career Center is up this year with 19 students as opposed to last year’s attendance of 10 students.
The board voted to raise the salaries of substitutes for the support staff. It was also voted to revise the 2008-2009 budget as per the recommendation of Supt. Stucker. The board also discussed the probability of eventually hiring an architect to develop plans to remodel the building in order to ensure safety for the students and staff alike.
Elementary Principal Keri Cavanah gave a detailed presentation on Orrick’s Missouri School Improvement Plan progression. She gave an outline of the district’s Goals, Objectives, Strategies, and Action Steps involved in meeting the goals and expectations of the state mandates. Some of the areas discussed were: At-Risk students and how better to serve them; high quality collaboration time for the teachers; continuing advancement in technology district wide; integration of grade-level objectives and how to better integrate these into the classroom(s) in order to make a direct impact on student achievement; and professional development for the staff. Also in this list was safety of the students and how to help them recognize and respond appropriately to strangers. The concern was that oftentimes children don’t know exactly what a stranger is, and therefore can potentially place themselves in harm’s way.
The board also discussed the possibility of having written biographies of each member so that students as well as patrons would have access to information and knowledge on the backgrounds of the school board members.
The next regularly scheduled board meeting will be Monday, Nov. 17. The closed session will be at 7 p.m. with the open session beginning at 7:30 p.m. This will be held in the school’s library.

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