Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Reflections Supports Arts in Schools

Regional projects are being judged using a national score card
Reflections is a National PTA program which allows students to explore ideas and learn through the arts. During the 2017-18 school year, hundreds of thousands of students nationwide have reflected on a common theme "Within Reach" and created original works of art in the categories of dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts.

The Reflections program builds support for the arts in schools
Students enter through their school's PTA. Parents can watch for announcements at the beginning of each school year. Once projects are judged at the school level, a select number advance to the exciting regional and national levels. Owen J. Roberts PTA leaders hope the program continues to be a vibrant way to support student success and serve as a valuable tool for building strong partnerships in our school community. "It's really exciting to see the awards at the national level," said regional reflections coordinator, Mrs. Heather McCreary.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Holistic Admissions Process Defined by Panel of Experts

Drexel University, Moravian College, Penn State University, St. Joseph's University and West Chester University
Owen J. Roberts extends a special thank you to the following guests who provided an excellent college admissions panel discussion for the Board of School Directors and public last night:

J. Scott Myers
Director of Undergraduate Admission
Moravian College
Catherine Campbell-Perna
Associate Director, Freshman Admission
Drexel University
Becky Eckenrode
Assistant Director of Admissions
Penn State University
Summer Davey
Assistant Director of Admissions
West Chester University

Maureen Mathis
Assistant Provost for Undergraduate Enrollment
Saint Joseph's University

Representatives fielded a variety of questions about SAT/ACT scores, grades, GPA and class rankings. While the each college and university had variances in the college admissions process, the overriding theme which emerged from the panel is that the college admissions process is a holistic one. Each student application is reviewed in a way that brings context to the student, his school experiences and how he or she may fit at the college or university to which he or she is applying. Many factors are considered. Some students may work, others may play sports, others may dance or play a musical instrument. No one activity is more meaningful than another.
"Students need to pursue [in high school] what they enjoy, what they are able to do, what they may be good at or want to try, and what makes them happy," said Maureen Mathis of Saint Joseph's University. Each panelist expressed that there is no one factor that makes an admissions decision.

The audience learned that GPA is only one factor that is considered by colleges for admissions and merit monies. GPA cannot be compared from one high school to another as the scales are not standardized and, in fact, vary tremendously. Students apply from all over the state, the country and the world are reviewed in the context of the high school profile.

High School PMEA Region 6 Choir

As a result of successful re-auditions at the recent PMEA District 12 Choir festival at Conestoga High School,  11 of 13 students will represent Owen J. Roberts High School in the PMEA Region 6 Choir Festival at Central Bucks High School South in March 2018.  Students must place in the top ten in each voice part to advance to the Region 6 Choir.

Congratulations are extended to:

Kaiden Roberts, 1st Place, Alto 1
Becca Emery, 1st Place, Tenor 1
Michael Maher, 1st Place, Tenor 2
Maxwell Gallagher, 2nd Place, Tenor 1
Madison Frederick, 3rd Place, Alto 1
Robin Mailum, 5th Place, Tenor 2
Samuel Turley, 5th Place, Bass 2
Wyeth Casperite, 7th Place, Tenor 1
Tristan Fish, 7th Place, Bass 1
Emily Reitz, 10th Place, Soprano 2

Lucas Gray, 10th Place, Bass 1

Monday, January 29, 2018

Hand Hygiene Lesson

Grade 2 works with MPH provider, Lindsay Smith on proper hand hygeine

Lindsay Smith, MPH,  from the Chester County Health Department, is vising every East Coventry Elementary School classroom this week to demonstrate proper hand washing. 
Glow Bug allows students to see microbes on their hands

Before handwashing

Students take home a hand washing poster for their bathroom
Students learned that washing your hands is easy, and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs. They also learned what types of germs may linger on hands.

Ms. Smith brought a device called the Glow Bug which had a black light so that students could see germs before washing their hands and do a germ check after washing. 
How did I do?
 East Coventry nurse, Mrs. Lisa Bailey set up the Chester County Health Department visit in September, knowing that hand washing is always a good first line of defense from getting ill and spreading sickness. "It's timely that students can experience this now when the flu has hit so many communities," she said. 

In his weekly newsletter, EC Principal Todd Oswald had also shared the following timely ideas with staff and families:

Directions for Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Gadgets:

  • Remote controls – Use a dry cloth or vacuum cleaner with an appropriate attachment to remove all visible particles. Then swab with a well-wrung-out, commercial, pre-moistened disinfecting wipe.
  • Computer keyboards –Swab with a well-wrung-out, commercial, pre-moistened disinfecting wipe.
  • Video game controllers – Disconnect from the game console and use a vacuum cleaner with the appropriate attachment or a dry cloth to remove all visible particles. Then swab with a well-wrung-out, commercial, pre-moistened disinfecting wipe.
  • Computer mouse – Disconnect from the computer and use a dry cloth to remove all visible particles. Then swab with a well-wrung-out, commercial, pre-moistened disinfecting wipe.
  • Smartphone and tablet covers (plastic / fabric) – Remove cover from device and use a dry cloth to remove all visible particles. Then swab with a well-wrung-out, commercial, pre-moistened disinfecting wipe.
  • Touch screens – Disconnect device from its electronic source and use a dry cloth to remove all visible particles. Then clean with a scratch-free product designed for electronics.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Great Day for Producing Energy

It's a sunny day! That means Owen J. Roberts is producing lots of energy! 
Check out the energy being produced by our solar panels:

Solar panels are generating plenty of energy today on the roof of the high school
An estimated 30% of the energy needs on Owen J. Roberts main campus are generated with solar as part of an aggressive project to create renewable energy while reducing energy consumption throughout the district. A huge step toward reducing the dependence on non-renewable fuels was the installation of more than 2,200 solar panels in 2012 on the rooftops of the high and middle schools capturing solar energy with a 525 kW solar photovoltaic array.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Virtual Robot Allows Student to Learn and Interact with Peers

 Owen J. Roberts Middle School students embrace “Perfect Attendant” just as though it were any other classmate. The robot is involved in whispers, laughs, and all the subtle interactions one might expect from any group of teens. Peers speak to the person running the robot, addressing Perfect Attendant by the name Makenna.  Makenna is the robot’s controller, a homebound classmate who recently spent an extended period of time at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia fighting her second leukemia battle.
The Perfect Attendant technology gives Makenna the ability to be fully supported by her school, teachers, and peers. She can practice her Spanish or be present at lunch and special events. The Middle School hopes Makenna is able to attend some of the special Relay for Life events they will hold in her honor. The North Coventry Cancer Busters & Fight On Makenna team has been there for Makenna in the past and continues to be there in the present with the entire Middle School community supporting her fight. The school will raise money at the annual Dodgeball tournament (March 16th) as well as the Faculty vs. Student Basketball game (Feb. 9th). Additionally, one of Makenna’s classmates, Hunter Kqira, and his family have designed a T-Shirt and established a website with proceeds from those sales to also be donated to the American Cancer Society in Makenna’s name.   

The Perfect Attendant technology is offered through the Chester County Intermediate Unit as an innovative solution for students in grades K-12 who may have a restricted setting, allowing them full access to their comprehensive educational program as well as the ability to maintain and build peer relationships. “It looks a bit like a Segway with an iPad on top,” described Middle School Assistant Principal Corbin Stoltzfus. The iPad tablet allows the controller to be “present” via video and audio. In addition, Makenna can command the Perfect Attendant to wheel down the hallways to change classes while she is fully engaged in conversation with friends—as if she were physically present. If she is feeling up to it, Makenna will also be able to be virtually present with her peers for the epic annual dodgeball tournament and the ever-popular faculty-student basketball game.

Read today's Philadelphia Inquirer article about Makenna as an Eagle's fan: