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JWPMS students work on exhibit for Erie Art Museum

Fri, 2015-12-11 15:52





James W. Parker Middle School seventh grade students are working on their exhibit for the 12th Annual Erie Art Museum Kids As Curators event.

Working with local painter Tom Ferraro, the students are creating pieces that focus around “Pop culture and Illusion.” JWPMS students are using inspiration for their project from “The Veldt”, a short story written by American author Ray Bradbury about a virtual reality room that gets out of control. Students are creating their own individualized shelves for one of the three parts to their exhibit.

The other parts include displaying their own 3D emojis, as well as incorporating emojis onto plastic balls for display.

Ferraro has been at the Middle School working with the art classes, as well as Mrs. Calfee and Mr. Williams’ classes to incorporate the cross-curricular element.

Each year, 3-5 schools participate in this program where students conceptualize, design and ultimately build exhibits with the assistance of an artist in residence, provided in cooperation with Erie Arts & Culture. The exhibits are installed in the Hagen Family Gallery (formerly the main Customs House space).

The exhibit will be on display starting in January, with an opening reception at the Museum on March 11, during gallery night.

General McLane High School hosts annual Senior Citizen Luncheon

Fri, 2015-12-11 15:19




On Friday, General McLane High School hosted their annual Senior Citizen Luncheon.

Hosted by the School District, the Principal’s Cabinet and the GM Band, members from the Edinboro Area Senior Citizens group and McKean Lions Club are invited for lunch and a performance by the General McLane High School wind ensemble.

Pat Koloskee, president of the Edinboro Area Senior Citizens group, thanked all those involved from the District.

This event started eight years ago in order to show gratitude to the District’s senior citizens for what they’ve done for our school district as long time taxpayers, as well as to give students the opportunity to interact with those who have gone before them. There were about 40 people in attendance to this year’s event.






EE hosts Candy Bag Fundraiser for families in need

Fri, 2015-12-11 14:23


Edinboro Elementary fourth graders learned the value of working together to help others.

They hosted a candy bag / bookmark fundraiser to raise money for local families in need during the holiday season. Students created the bookmarks, candy bags and advertising signs and then sold the products at the PTO Holiday Fun Night.

Within 35 minutes, the students were sold out and raised over a hundred dollars!

Way to go Edinboro Elementary!





Santa makes his annual visit to McKean Elementary

Fri, 2015-12-11 11:17





On Thursday, Santa visited McKean Elementary School students to send them some early holiday cheer.

Every student received a picture with Santa, completely free of charge, courtesy of the McKean Elementary PTA. Santa’s visit culminated McKean Elementary’s week-long Annual Holiday Shop for the students. The McKean PTA has been doing the holiday shop and Santa visits for over 15 years.

McKean PTA is a non-profit organization comprised of parents/guardians of current students, current administrators and teachers, and patrons who wish to support McKean Elementary School. The group’s purpose is to foster a sense of support, pride, and enthusiasm for the school. Through various family and community activities, the PTA promotes positive school and community relationships to enhance the educational environment for our children. Ensuring our children’s future and fostering quality public education today are two of the primary goals of the McKean Elementary PTA. For more information or a schedule of events, please visit McKean Elementary PTA.

Andy Schulz joins GMSD Board of Education

Fri, 2015-12-11 09:54


General McLane School District welcomed Andrew Schulz to the General McLane School District Board of Education this month.

Schulz is a former high school social studies teacher and basketball coach for General McLane School District. He worked for the District for 33 years and retired in 2014.

Schulz represents Region 2 (Washington Township and Franklin Township) and replaces Deb Howard Greenleaf, who did not run for re-election. Greenleaf served seven years on the Board.

Schulz joins Board members James Bucksbee, Carrie Crow (Board President), Peter Dobrzynski (Board Vice President), Amy Eisert, Shari Gould, Annette Rilling, Kahan Sablo and Timothy Wise.

Christmas Store helps students in need

Fri, 2015-12-11 09:26




There’s nothing that celebrates the holiday season more than the season of giving! And that’s exactly what the General McLane community has done.

The annual Christmas Store for students in need at General McLane High School re-opened yesterday.

High school nurse Laurie Swanson started the store 15 years ago in an effort to help students in need provide gifts to their family during the holidays. Generous community members and district employees donate brand-new items that fill the nurse’s office, and students are then able to pick out gifts for those on their lists.

The store started with just two tables. Now, eight tables and the floor are lined with brand-new items that include anything from clothing to children games to home decor and hobby items, such as fishing rods.

Students, identified through administrators and staff, are able to come in throughout the day and select items for family and friends.

2015 VFW Post 740 Essay Winners

Thu, 2015-12-10 15:56


Essay Winners

Congratulations to our General McLane VFW Post 740 Essay Winners!

High School senior Jessica Kavelish is the winner of the 2015 VFW Post 740 Voice of Democracy Essay Contest. Jessica earned a cash prize of $600 for her winning essay, which has advanced on to the District 28 competition.

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.

In addition to Jessica,  James W. Parker Middle School had six students win the Patriot’s Pen Essay contest. Winners included Nathan Zeigler, Christine Marie Patterson, Elizabeth Coates, Chloe Robison, Ryan Hess and Clayton Banister.

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. The 2015-16 theme was “What Freedom Means to Me.” The essay contest encourages young minds to examine America’s history, along with their own experiences in modern American society, by drafting a 300- to 400-word essay, expressing their views based on a patriotic theme chosen by the VFW Commander-in-Chief.

All winners will be honored at a banquet at Post 740 on January 17, 2016.

Congratulations again to all of our winners!

MS Bridge Building Design Challenge

Wed, 2015-12-09 09:20

James W. Parker Middle School students are quickly learning the necessary critical thinking and problem solving skills that go into design and construction.

Mr. Sturgess’ fifth grade classes just finished up their Bridge Building Design Challenge. Their task? Students needed to build a bridge that would hold at least two textbooks while allowing a foam ball to roll underneath the bridge.

This project was just one of the many hands-on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic) experiences at James W. Parker Middle School that challenges students to use collaborative problem solving and the process of scientific investigation.

Here are some of their designs!

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5th Grader Raises More than $1000 for MDA

Tue, 2015-12-08 08:45


James W. Parker Middle Schooler Aiden Dougan has been inspiring change. In just two weeks, the fifth grader raised more than $1000 for Muscular Dystrophy through a “Coins for A Cure,” a fundraising campaign where he has encouraged friends, teachers and staff to bring in their loose change.

Aiden was inspired to make a difference after his father was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy three years ago.

If you would like to help out COINS FOR A CURE, visit Aiden’s mother, Rebecca’s, Facebook site or call her at 814-450-5021. They will be collecting for a few more days before mailing one large check to the MDA in Pittsburgh.

Shave a Stache!

Mon, 2015-12-07 15:35



General McLane High School teacher Nick Basko gave students and staff the opportunity to shave his beard as part of the Stache for Cash Fundraiser. Basko has been growing this beard for over a year. Today, junior Marcus Kozloff was selected as the winner and officially shaved the beard!

The Stache for Cash Fundraiser returned General McLane High School last week, raising money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to help find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis.

All contestants had their pictures taken and displayed on a donation buckets. Students and staff had the opportunity to vote on the best stache throughout lunch all last week by placing money in the bucket of the person that they think has the best stache.

The contest will conclude this Wednesday with an assembly starting at 2:30. The champ will be crowned and the money will be donated! The worst stache will also get a pie in the face.

Utz of Edinboro donated potato chips to be given out for each one dollar vote. In 2014, a total of $1,700.00 was collected and presented to the daughter of GM wrestling coach Ryan Cook, Charlie, who has cystic fibrosis. Ryan donated that money to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Below are this year’s contestants, plus additional photos from shaving Mr. Basko’s stache today.

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Giving Tree Returns to McKean Elementary

Mon, 2015-12-07 14:18



The Annual Giving Tree has returned to McKean Elementary School.

The Autistic Support Classroom is hosting their annual Giving Tree from now through Friday, December 18. Students, faculty and community members can bring in new hats, gloves or a scarves for any age or gender that will be displayed on the tree in the cafeteria. At the end of the fundraiser, the class will donate the items to the Mercy Center for Women in Erie and McKean Elementary Nurse’s Office for students in need within our own community.

“This project is a great way to teach the students in our building the art of giving and to also bring awareness to students that some students are in need,” said McKean Elementary Autistic Support Teacher Kristen Ewings.

The Giving Tree started in 2012 and has since collected hundreds of items that have been donated back to the GM and Erie community.

Last year, the Giving Tree raised a new high in donations, with a total of 181 donations. Donations included one coat, 74 hats, 91 gloves, four scarves and one pair of boots. The school donated half of the items to the Mercy Center for Women in Erie and the other half to the Social Concerns Committee at Thrifty Threads in Edinboro. Gently-used items went to the school nurse.

“Last year, we had a great response from the parents, students and teachers,” Ewings said. “As the holiday season approaches, what better way to teach our students the art of giving than by helping others?”

GMHS students talk to EE students about respect

Fri, 2015-12-04 14:46


General McLane High School’s Principal’s Cabinet performed an assembly to Edinboro Elementary students on respect.

General McLane High School’s Principal’s Cabinet is a group of students who help create a positive environment among students within the District. This group is an active member of the Positive Youth Development initiative. In fact, General McLane High School was the first school-based group to adopt the promotion of the 40 assets. The Cabinet has put on a variety of assemblies since it launched in 2007, including their annual “You Make a Difference” event.

Each year, the Cabinet hosts a variety of assemblies at both the High School and other General McLane schools. During the fall, the Cabinet taught middle schoolers proper behavior at sporting events.






Alum finds Lancer license plate in Nashville Flea Market

Fri, 2015-12-04 12:16


GM alum Sarah Buckholtz (’07) was exploring the Nashville Flea Market on her day off and found this metal license plate. How cool!

“I picked it up and examined it with the biggest smile and shock on my face imaginable,” Sarah said. “Like seriously, here I am in Nashville, at this giant flea market, and of all the things to find … a metal GM lancer license plate.”

Buckholtz works at Nasvhille’s Antique Archaeology, where Mike Wolfe of the American Pickers stores his collections from the show. The Nashville Flea Market, which is ranked number one among flea markets in Nashville, hosts an average of 2,000 booths.

McKean’s Winter Run Club has begun!

Fri, 2015-12-04 10:02





McKean Elementary’s Winter Run Club started this week, and the students are back in action!

McKean Elementary teacher Lisa Celeski runs this program, with the help of parents, Edinboro University athletes and their Health and Physical Education students. Students in grades k-4 participate in each winter session on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school through January 14.

While increasing overall fitness through flexibility, strength and endurance, the students practice for their culminating run at Edinboro University Dome on January 14.

Edinboro University athletes and coaches help with this program by speaking with the students and helping them train.

The McKean Elementary Run Club and the Spring Recess Laps program started as part of McKean Elementary’s 2013 grant from the ING Run for Something Better School Awards Program. Celeski started the program to help students increase their physical activity.

For more pictures, please visit out Featured Photos Page.

JWPMS Students Star in A Christmas Story

Thu, 2015-12-03 12:20


James W. Parker Middle School students Gabe Bayle and Ben Crow will be starring in the Erie Playhouse’s A Christmas Story, which debuts today until January 3, 2015. Bayle will be playing Ralphie and Crow will be playing Flick. Both students are seventh graders.

This adaptation is based on the writings of radio humorist Jean Shepherd and follows Ralphie Parker’s journey to his desired Red Ryder Action Air Rifle BB Gun.

For showtimes or more information, please visit The Erie Playhouse online.

Vote for EE student as USA Football’s Playmaker of the Year Award

Wed, 2015-12-02 15:41


Edinboro Elementary fourth grader Olivia Kulyk has been nominated for USA Football’s Playmaker of the Year Award.

USA Football and EA SPORTS Madden NFL 16 are honoring and celebrating boys and girls who dominate the competition on the field. Olivia, who is a 4th grader in Mrs. Skelton’s class, was nominated based on her participation in NFL Flag Football through the County YMCA.

She is currently in the second phase of the competition and needs people to vote for her to continue to the semi-finals.

The next level will be determined by the top 16 vote-getters from all the weeks/groups. Voting for Olivia’s Week/group ends on December 20th.

The link to vote for her is here — scroll down and search for Olivia under “Week Two Girls”.

Share & vote for Olivia!

GM raises funds and awareness for the Caring Place

Wed, 2015-12-02 14:16


National Child Grief Awareness Day, a day designed to help raise awareness to the needs of grieving children and the benefits they obtain through the support of others, was held November 19, 2015.

To help raise awareness for the Highmark Caring Place, a center in Erie for grieving children, adolescents and their families, a variety of activities took place throughout the day within General McLane School District.

General McLane High School coordinated a Photo Booth, a Color Me Blue Hairspray Station, a Memory Wall, a Wall of Support, a Basket Raffle and Butterfly Pins Give-a-way for people who signed the banners. The High School raised $227.

James W. Parker Middle School handed out Birds of Broken Hearts for loved ones who passed away and also hosted a Pajama Day, which raised $340.

The high school, middle school and Edinboro Elementary School all hosted a “Blue Out”.

All donations raised for the Caring Place will be matched by Highmark.

General McLane High School and Parker Middle School began offering grief support group meetings in September of 2014 as part of a regional program sponsored by the Highmark Caring Place, which has offered grief support for children at its Erie facility since opening in 2001. Students and counselors meet every Wednesday for about an hour.

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GM Marching Band Performs in Disney

Wed, 2015-12-02 09:33


The General McLane Marching Band and Jazz Ensemble performed in Disney Monday night. This is an annual trip where students perform in the holiday parade at the Magic Kingdom.

In addition to the parade, the students enjoy the Magic of the parks and celebrate a super year for the band.

Congratulations to the students on another job well-done!

Daughter collecting stories of former teacher

Wed, 2015-12-02 09:32

Former McKean Elementary teacher Bonnie Langill has been fighting an exceptional fight against colon cancer for more than 10 years. Unfortunately, she recently transitioned into hospice care.

Her daughter, Erica (Langill) Rushing, is looking for memories/stories that the GM community may have that can be collected, saved and compiled into a book for Bonnie’s grandchildren to read as they grow up.

“I have four nephews who will have far less time than I, or many of you have had, to know my mom and create really wonderful life stories with her in them,” Erica said in a post. “My plan is to take all of the stories that I receive and create a book that will give my nephews a better sense of the amazing lady they call Nana. If your e-mails come soon, I will share them with my mom so that she, too, can reminisce.”

If you are willing to share those stories with Mrs. Langill’s grandchildren, please e-mail Erica at We will continue to keep Bonnie and her family in our thoughts and prayers.

GMHS faculty and staff took the “Plunge”

Tue, 2015-11-24 09:33

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GMHS faculty and staff tok the “Plunge” on Saturday to support the Special Olympics of PA. In doing so, the General McLane HS Team raised a little over $2,300 for Special Olympics of PA!

General McLane High School teachers Nicole Mcfadden and Helen Skelton sponsored the Polar Plunge team.

The 2015 Polar Plunge was held Saturday, November 21, 2015 at noon. The event took place at Presque Isle State Park, Beach #7, where individuals jumped or ran into icy cold waters to support Special Olympic athletes.

General McLane School District partnered with Special Olympics Pennsylvania to offer a fully-inclusive Interscholastic Unified Track and Field program last school year.

THANK YOU to everyone that donated to the GM Polar Plunge team!