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Updated: 2 hours 31 min ago

Edinboro Elementary Drawing Contest Winners

Fri, 2017-11-17 15:39

In honor of National Child Grief Awareness Day, Edinboro Elementary School held a drawing contest. The theme was, “Hope.”

Winners included Natasha Leslie (4th grade). Lucas Hammer (3rd Grade), Julie Wagner (2nd Grade), Tarence Noble (1st Grade) and Amya Wheeler (Kindergarten).


Congratulations to our students!

Holiday Arts Fair: Vendor Feature

Fri, 2017-11-17 12:12

The General McLane Foundation’s 11th Annual Holiday Arts Fair is quickly approaching.

This year’s event will be held Saturday, November 18, at General McLane High School and runs from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Nearly 100 vendors will be in attendance, including a variety of new vendors. This year’s crafts include: hand-carved santas, glass sculptures, wood working signs and décor, purses, jewelry, puzzles, soup, birdhouses, ceramics, paintings, pottery, and quilted, croched, stitched and sewn items.

One of the vendors will be Alex’s Puzzles, hand-crafted wooden puzzles for the young and old alike. The puzzles do not have any finish on the puzzles in order to be painted or stained as creatively as buyers would like!  It also makes a great “bonding time” between children, parents and/or Grandparents.

These puzzles are created by Alex Giles and his father David. Alex is intellectually and developmentally disabled (IDD), and his IQ is lower than most folks. In addition, he has been diagnosed with epilepsy. To help control his seizures, Alex has been taking medications since age 2 and has a Vagus Nerve stimulator (VNS) implanted in his chest to help control brain waves that may initiate seizures.  Although he was having severe tonic-clonic seizures, formerly known as grand mal seizures, up to 3 times a week, the medicine and VNS have been controlling Alex’s seizures reasonably well since 2012.

A native of Londonderry, NH, Alex has always had a fascination with both hand and power tools. While taking wood shop during his junior year as part of his Activities For Daily Living (ADL) class, Alex learned to use a scroll saw to cut out a pattern that had been applied to a piece of wood.  Alex cut the pattern out with incredible accuracy and in a very timely manner — and then Alex’s Puzzles were born!

“Everyone has a gift. The key is recognizing it,” David said. “I feel we have identified Alex’s gift. Even though he has intellectual challenges, Alex is able to minimize and overcome those challenges.  With guidance and patience, Alex is able to utilize his talent and become a productive member of our community.”

Alex’s favorite puzzle is a rabbit puzzle.

Here is a sneak-peak of just some of their items that will be available on Saturday!

School Board member honored for years of service

Fri, 2017-11-17 11:36

Mr. James Bucksbee was recently recognized for 32 years of service as a General McLane School Board director.

Mr. Bucksbee was presented with a plaque adding him to the PSBA “Honor Roll of School Board Service” during Wednesdays’s school board meeting.

PSBA representative James Summerville spoke about him and his dedication as a volunteer to children, the community and public education. Summerville commented that board members are ordinary citizens who volunteer their time consistently, performing extraordinary work on behalf of their communities and the students they serve.

The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) has been honoring long-term school directors across the state since 1983. School directors are recognized for their years of service from 8 to 44 years.

GM students win VFW essay contests

Thu, 2017-11-16 13:11

Six General McLane students were recently selected as winners of the 2017 VFW Post 740 Patriot’s Pen and Voice of Democracy Essay Contests.

Junior Anna Alberti and senior Brion Zacherl were this year’s Voice of Democracy Essay Contest winner. This contest was for students in grades 9-12. They will receive a $600 award and advance to the District 28 Competition. The 2017-18 theme was “American History: Our Hope for the Future.”

The VFW established the Voice of Democracy program (VOD) in 1947 to provide students grades 9-12 the opportunity to express themselves in regards to democratic ideas and principles. The national first-place winner receives a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school.

James W. Middle School students Kaitlyn Dubynskiy, Ian Kennedy, Olivia Mussett and Camille Andrzejewski were the winners of the 2017 VFW Patriot’s Pen Essay Contest. Each was awarded with a monetary prize of $400, along with a chance for their essay to move on to the District 28 Competition. The 2017-18 theme was “America’s Gift to My Generation”.

The Patriot’s Pen Essay contest is for students in grades 6-8, and the national first-place winner wins $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., in March.

Congratulations & good luck to all of our winners at the District 28 Competition!

GMSD announces new entrepreneur-based education

Wed, 2017-11-15 14:12

In honor of Global Entrepreneurship Week, General McLane School District, Inventionland and Innovation Collaborative hosted a news conference to announce a new initiative that will encourage creativity, innovation and collaboration within middle school and high school students.

“General McLane remains committed to preparing today’s students to compete in the global economy,” said General McLane Superintendent Richard Scaletta. “Through both curriculums, General McLane’s students will be thinking outside of the box to create things we can’t even fathom.”

General McLane School District superintendent Richard Scaletta, Inventionland CEO Ken Burk and Innovation Collaborative’s Beth Zimmer introduced curriculum intended to prepare students to compete in today’s global economy.

Starting in 2017-2018, General McLane will begin a two-year project to systematically plant seeds in our students and give them the tools to become inventors and entrepreneurs.

James W. Parker Middle School will utilize the Inventionland curriculum. Seventh graders will have the opportunity to walk through the nine-step invention process, developing their own ideas. At the end of the class, each group of students in the class will have the opportunity to pitch their idea to a team from Inventionland.

This will be only the second year this curriculum has been used anywhere as we will join about 35 schools in the Pittsburgh area using the curriculum.

General McLane High School students will engage in the Ice House Entrepreneurship Program curriculum. This program enables participants to engage their entrepreneurial mindsets. They will acquire the tools that empower them to succeed with 21st century workforce skills such as critical and creative thinking, collaboration, and problem solving.

During the 18-19 School Year, the Inventionland Curriculum will be added for General McLane’s Entrepreneurship Academy.

General McLane School District offers a variety of programs and classes to empower students with 21st century skills for today. The Entrepreneurship Academy is an additional individualized program tailored to meet student needs and joins our many STEM-focus programming, including our Academy of Medical Arts and Engineering and Manufacturing Academy. Our robust offerings provide students opportunities to utilize our STEM Lab, which includes 3-D printers, CNC machines and CAD software.

Following the news conference, Zimmer, Burk and community leaders were invited to speak with students and see the curriculum being used in the classroom. Some of the special guests in attendance included Teresa Koon from Senator Brooks’s office and State Representative Ryan Bizzaro.

McKean students deliver bags to Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home

Wed, 2017-11-15 13:16

McKean Elementary School students recently created and delivered treat bags to veterans at the Pennsylvania Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home. Each class made the treat bags and then kindergarten students delivered them on Friday.

Teachers take on students in Wiffle Ball game

Tue, 2017-11-14 16:46

James W. Parker Middle School students raised more than $800 for sixth grader Jacob Haugh’s “Wins for Kids Wiffle Ball World Series”, pitting James W. Parker Middle School fifth and sixth grade homerooms against each other to raise funds.

The winning homeroom earned a Wiffle Ball game between teachers. Haugh’s homeroom, Mr. Sturgess’ class, won and represented all of sixth grade. Although they won the fundraiser, the teachers took home the victory of the Wiffle Ball game.

Pittsburgh Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle sent a video specifically thanking James W. Parker Middle School for their efforts.

What an awesome job by everyone involved!


Holiday Arts Fair: Vendor Feature

Tue, 2017-11-14 16:09

The General McLane Foundation’s 11th Annual Holiday Arts Fair is quickly approaching.

This year’s event will be held Saturday, November 18, at General McLane High School and runs from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Nearly 100 vendors will be in attendance, including a variety of new vendors. This year’s crafts include: hand-carved santas, glass sculptures, wood working signs and décor, purses, jewelry, puzzles, soup, birdhouses, ceramics, paintings, pottery, and quilted, croched, stitched and sewn items.

One of the vendors will be Willow Creek Barn Wood Furniture, who creates barnwood furniture and farmhouse decor items.

“Our products are unique because every piece has a story behind it.  All of the lumber we use for our projects is at least 100 years old and have been in the form of a barn and now has been given a new life as your dining table, or a cabinet in your home.  We said from the beginning all of our furniture will be hand crafted and made to last,” said Casey Brown of Willow Creek Barn Wood Furniture. “The character and story you get with barnwood you simply can’t replicate.”

Here is a sneak-peak of just some of their items that will be available on Saturday!

They also do custom orders. Two of their favorite creations to date either is what they call their super table, which was first made for a very close friend and an entertainment center built when they first started.  The entertainment center was 10ft in length and was relatively intricate.


GMHS Thanks Veterans!

Mon, 2017-11-13 15:24

McKean Door Decoration Contest Winner

Mon, 2017-11-13 13:50

McKean Elementary School hosted a Door Decoration Contest for its Veteran’s Day Celebration.

Prior the the assembly, the Veterans attending voted on their favorite door.

The winning door was Mrs. Miller’s, our 3rd and 4th grade learning support teacher! In addition to the door, Mrs. Miller created a traditional ‘Place Setting for A Missing Soldier’, and displayed an authentic uniform.

Her class will receive an ice cream party as a special reward. Here are some of the other doors:

McKean Elementary Veteran’s Day Assembly

Mon, 2017-11-13 13:43

McKean Elementary School hosted its first ever Veteran’s Day Assembly. This event featured Veteran Speakers, challenges with active duty military and attendance of our students’ family members who have or are serving. There were also vocal performances by students.

Thanks to all those who came and thank you to our veterans!

Students complete professional T-shirt screen printing

Wed, 2017-11-08 15:46

General McLane students have the opportunity to gain exposure to a new art medium — a professional screen printing station.

James W. Parker Middle School’s eighth graders recently learned how to successfully design a unique t-shirt design. Through this project, students learn how to use stencils and different color combinations to create their work, as well as how to prep the screen, care for the equipment and clean up production. This lesson focuses on creativity and exposes students to a real-life creative job opportunity, while developing artistic ideas and work processes and learning from trial and error.

“Pop culture is an important element of the middle schoolers’ lives. They are influenced by it in many ways including fashion and printed t-shirts are a very common type of attire for them,” said JWPMS art teacher Christina Martin. “I want to show them how to create their own printed products in a very professional manner.”

This project is possible thanks to a grant from the General McLane Foundation. As a 2017 William E. and Mary S. Smith Middle School Innovative Education Program Grant recipient, Martin acquired professional equipment for creation, printing, and clean up.

“General McLane has truly become a district that meets students where they are by providing up-to-date technology to its students,” Martin said. “This technology is leading to a more independent learner who needs flexibility and the opportunity to work in an environment more suited to developing the soft skills needed for the job market they will be entering. Grants like the William and Mary Smith Grant help make this happen.”

The grant stems from former James W. Parker Middle School math teacher Bill Smith and his wife, Mary. These classroom grants provide middle school teachers with up to $500 for special projects/activities/enhancements. Since 2013, thirteen JWPMS teachers have received this grant to enhance their curriculum. JWPMS teacher Chris Triola was also awarded a 2017 grant. Triola’s innovative grant, Modern Mathematics, transforms the physical structure of the classroom from being teacher-centered to student-centered through environmental enhancements.

The General McLane Foundation was founded in 2005 as an organization exclusively for charitable educational purposes that will benefit the students of the General McLane School District. Each year, the Foundation hosts the Holiday Arts Fair and the Golf Outing – two major events that help fund scholarships to graduating seniors.

GMHS hosts Healthcare Career Fair

Wed, 2017-11-08 14:20

General McLane High School hosted a Healthcare Career Fair to give students exposure to careers in healthcare.

Organizations that attended included:

· Edinboro University Career Development
· Edinboro University Department of Nursing
· Fortis Institute Dental Assistant
· Fortis Institute Medical Assistant
· Fortis Institute Practical Nursing LPN
· Gannon University College of Health Professions
· Great Lakes Institute of Technology
· Great Lakes Institute of Technology Medical
· Great Lakes Institute of Technology Practical Nursing
· LECOM LifeWorks Erie
· LECOM Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) of Erie County
· LECOM School of Dental Medicine
· LECOM School of Pharmacy
· LECOM School of Osteopathic Medicine
· LECOM School of Osteopathic Medicine
· LECOM School of Osteopathic Medicine
· LECOM School of Osteopathic Medicine
· LECOM School of Osteopathic Medicine
· Mercyhurst University Nursing
· Penn State Behrend’s Admissions
· Penn State Behrend Nursing

Students learned about the various careers available in healthcare and what is needed to secure a job for each branch.

“It’s very important for students to gain exposure to different careers to learn about the various employment opportunities beyond high school,” said General McLane High School Counselor for Special Programs Gary Astorino. “Regardless of the economy and where you are located, healthcare is a field where people are needed.”

In addition to General McLane students,Northwestern High School and the Erie County Technical School Health Assistant Lab students also attended this event.


Soboleski signs National Letter of Intent for Panthers

Wed, 2017-11-08 13:50

General McLane High School hosted a Letter of Intent Signing Ceremony today.

Senior volleyball player Maddie Soboleski signed her letter of intent to continue her athletic career as a Division 1 student-athlete at the University of Pittsburgh.

Congratulations to Maddie!

GMHS students install tape sculpture

Tue, 2017-11-07 14:53

Students, staff and visitors were surprised this week with an unexpected as they stepped through a familiar General McLane High School lobby. And that was exactly the purpose of a recent art project by GMHS students.

After studying work of street artist Mark Jenkins, who places dressed tape sculpture bodies in cities across the world, the students in Mrs. Thompson’s Art Introduction class created one of their own. Their final project: A General McLane student trapped in a spider’s web after being wrapped in its cocoon.

The purpose of the exhibit was to explore how an environment can influence the choices artists make when designing art to be placed in a particular space.  The project is meant to have the viewer experience that space in a different way. The class was split into groups that came up with their own idea for the exhibition space. Students then voted on their favorite idea and split into teams to complete the project. Students spent a week using packaging tape, plastic wrap and a subject model and some props to create the completed project.

This is not the first time for this project. Last January, students created their first tape sculpture.


What a wonderful job by some creative students!

JWPMS hosts Veteran’s Day Celebration

Mon, 2017-11-06 12:11

James W. Parker Middle School hosted its annual Veteran’s Day Celebration on Friday, November 3.

This annual salute to veterans event brought together close to 100 veterans. All veterans were invited to breakfast and a celebration that included the Posting of Colors, vocal performances and a series of student speakers. In addition, students provided caricatures this year as well.

Edinboro University’s President Dr. H. Fred Walker served as this year’s guest speaker. Dr. Walker served in the U.S. Navy from 1983 to 1992. While in the Navy, he worked as a technician, work center supervisor and program manager and database administrator.

The event has taken placed since 2003 and corresponds to the 8th grades’ social studies curriculum on American History. As part of this curriculum, 8th graders also take a three-day trip to Washington D.C. every spring.

“Throughout American History, our success as a nation has been dependent upon the sacrificial service of generations of men and women in our military. We want students to understand and honor the sacrifices made for us and for our country,” said James W. Parker Middle School principal Jason Buto. “This event gives us an opportunity to interact with and honor the great men and women of our community who have served in our military.”

Mr. Nathan Everhart, a veteran and school nurse, gave the opening and closing marks for the ceremony.

This year’s celebration featured more student leadership and speaking than in previous years. JWPMS students Wes Hakanen, Brandon Dedrick, Jake Lewin, Bianca Fenstermacher, Madison McLaughlin and Avery VanDyke served as student speakers. There were student vocal performances by Serenity Scantling, Taylor Faulkner and Kiersten Marendt. Recitations were done by Olivia Mussett and Trent Fellows.

JWPMS Students Zach Hart, Ryan Passmore and Danny Damore performed the folding of the flags and GMHS Band Director and Veteran Jacob Malec performed the taps. The Erie and Crawford County Veterans Burial Detail performed the Posting of the Colors.

James W. Parker Middle School is named after James W. Parker, who served the United States Army during WWII. He was a Staff Sergeant of the 83rd Infantry division and received two Purple Hearts during his service. General McLane High School, which was built in 1960, is named after Colonel John W. McLane of Erie who served as a Civil War Union Army Officer. The District remains the only school district to be named after a person and not a location.

Women in Engineering Day

Fri, 2017-11-03 11:07

Some of General McLane’s sophomores in the Academy of Medical Arts and Engineering are attending the Women in Engineering Day at Penn State Behrend today!

General McLane’s Academy of Medical Arts and Engineering prepares students for careers in medicine and engineering. Through partnerships with local businesses, hospitals and universities, the curricula features hands-on activities designed to provide students with quality, live-learning experiences.

Former Teacher Creates New Endowment Fund

Fri, 2017-11-03 10:47

If you ever stepped into Jean Smith’s classroom, there was something obvious that stood out – there was no desk.

Instead, she’d pull up a chair and get down to the student’s level. For her, it was all about making her classroom student-focused.

“Getting to their level was so important to me. You learn by doing, that was my philosophy,” said Smith, who was hired as an elementary teacher in 1965.

Smith gave back to General McLane for more than 40 years. Yet, she’s not done giving. Smith recently made a significant donation to the General McLane Foundation to start a new endowment fund that will directly benefit General McLane students.

“I’ve been in the District over four decades and I got to thinking that I wanted to give back to a District that has given me so much,” she said.

Starting this school year, the J.L. Smith Endowment will annually award a grant to elementary teachers in special area subjects, including health, library, music, art and physical education. This will be available to both McKean and Edinboro Elementary teachers.

A committee of current teachers and administrators will decide each year which project should be awarded the money. Edinboro Elementary students created the logo for this fund.

“I choose to use the funds specifically for the specials because it would make the biggest impact since all elementary students take specials,” she said. “The specials within General McLane School District are important because they create well-rounded students.”

Creating well-rounded students was something Smith practiced during her time at General McLane School District. She provided her students with a solid educational foundation through Writing Portfolios, Shakespearean Research Project and the famous mini-society she formed within her classroom throughout the years. From Beanieboro to Gum City to State Champsburgh, Kitty City and even Scooterville, Smith’s most well-known classroom project involved transforming students into entrepreneurs, who would try their hardest to earn Lancer Bucks through their businesses’ products and services.

“Our students need to experience everything,” she said. “One of my favorite things about teaching was when the window would open for a student and they’d experience those daily lessons.”

Smith taught fourth grade for two years at McKean Elementary School and third grade for 42 years at Edinboro Elementary School. She retired at the end of the 2007-2008 school year and received the Lancer Legacy Award for Distinguished Service to the General McLane School District in 2011.

Her pride for General McLane hasn’t diminished.

“I am very proud to have taught in the District. They were always so good at keeping up with the latest trends and engaging students,” said Smith, who hopes to help teachers stay current through this fund.

The General McLane Foundation was founded in 2005 as an organization exclusively for charitable educational purposes that will benefit the students of the General McLane School District. Each year, the Foundation hosts the Holiday Arts Fair and the Golf Outing – two major events that help fund scholarships to graduating seniors.

PTSA hosts Halloween student fun night

Thu, 2017-11-02 14:48

James W. Parker Middle School’s PTSA hosted its Halloween Fun Night. More than 150 students attended this year’s event, which featured a bouncy house / obstacle course and a variety of games and dancing to music from a DJ. Food and beverages were also available.

There was also a costume contest with a costume contest from each grade. Each winner won a prize from the PTSA.

The 5/6th grade costume contest winners were Will Olson as Jack Skellington, Kasey Ramey as a Rubik’s cube, Alana Puller as an Autumn princess and Scout Adamski as a pineapple.

The 7/8th grade winners were Abby Walker as a social Butterfly, Myles Bruce as a goul, Billy Sechrist as a Dr. Pepper salesman and Jake Lewin as a dinosaur.

This event is hosted by the Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA), a volunteer association where parents, educators, students and other citizens can be active in their schools and communities.