Category: Schools

New MHS principal says you get back what you give to others
New MHS principal says you get back what you give to others

New MHS principal says you get back what you give to others

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Jim Piper

Along with more than two decades of experience as an administrator and educator, Jim Piper is bringing his approach to wholeness in education to the principal?s office at Marion High School.

In his time as a teacher at high schools ranging from the Class 4A campus at Louisburg to the 1A setup at Hartford, Piper has picked up two important lessons that demarcate similarities and differences between communities large and small.

?In my experience, I?ve kind of found out that people are somewhat the same everywhere,? Piper said.

?If you treat people with respect, and if you?re always honest with them, and you try to be fair, you get that back from both the kids and the staff,? he added.

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New Goessel principal at home in small-town environment
New Goessel principal at home in small-town environment

New Goessel principal at home in small-town environment

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Mark Grout. Click image to enlarge

This fall at Goessel Junior-Senior High School, Marc Grout is entering his 10th year as a professional educator and first as a head principal.

?I think the Goessel job is unique for several reasons, one of which is that it?s a small school in a small community,? Grout said. ?That fits with my background, because I grew up in Mankato, Kan., which is a town of similar size. And I taught for eight years at Centre, so I?m used to the small-town aspect.?

Beyond demographic distinctions, Grout pointed to the school?s location near the top of Kansas academics.

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Goessel board welcomes new principal and board member

The Goessel school board welcomed Marc Grout as the district?s new grades six through 12 principal at its July 9 meeting.

Grout grew up on a farm near Mankato and received both his bachelor?s and master?s degrees from the University of Kansas.

He
taught junior high and high school English at Centre for eight years
and last year served as the assistant principal at Lakewood Middle
School in Salina.

Grout has made numerous educational presentations at the state and national levels. He has also coached track and basketball.

Grout
and his wife were married at Alexanderwohl Menno?nite Church near
Goessel last summer. His wife is a social worker in Newton and has
relatives in the Goessel community.

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Nine classmates gather for DHS 60-year reunion

Nine of the 12 members of Durham High School Class of 1947 met June 23 at Durham for their 60th class reunion. The group enjoyed dinner together at Main Street Cafe, followed by a time of reminiscing and 60-year updates at the Durham Senior Center. On display were pictures, school annuals and publications of the ?Durham Dope,? the school newspaper. […]

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Marion seeking up to $250,000 through KDOT?s ?Safe Routes to School?

The City of Marion may receive notice of up to $250,000 in grant funding by January to encourage more children to walk to school, a consultant told the city council Monday.

David Johnson said that under Phase 1 of a companion grant for $15,000 already received, he discovered from a survey that only 10 percent of Marion children walk to school.

He said the Kansas Depart?ment of Transportation hopes to raise such percentages under its Safe Routes to Schools program to combat such issues as child obesity. Among other things, the grant might fund construction of new sidewalks on North Cedar and from Cedar to Lawrence.

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Three county musicians to participate in Masonic band camp

Three high school musicians from Marion County will be among the 214 scheduled to comprise the 24th annual Kansas Masonic All-State High School Marching Band Camp at Fort Hays State University, July 24-28. KimberLea Spencer, from Hillsboro High, and Kimber Hardey and Jessica Vogel, from Marion High, have been selected to participate. Spencer plays clarinet, Hardey plays horns and Vogel […]

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USD 410 Board approves bids for two out of tour projects

AMPI building and new athletic facility on hold for time being?

Unified School District 410 approved bids Monday for civil engineering and geotechnical services for two projects authorized in the June bond election.

That vote, which excluded approving those services for the transportation facility and central office at the former AMPI building, came after the board met in executive session with architects Kevin Helmer and David Riffel to discussion property acquisition.

?We need to discuss engineering bids,? Helmer said prior to the executive session. ?Otherwise it will slow everything down.?

Civil engineers determine the infrastructure for utilities while geotechnical services include recommendations for building foundations, Helmer said.

The firm Howard & Helmer does not provide those services, but will coordinate the work. The agreement is through USD 410 and must be approved by the board.

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Individual attention key for USD 398 superintendent
Individual attention key for USD 398 superintendent

Individual attention key for USD 398 superintendent

Rex Watson

We need to educate the whole child, and we need to take into consideration their individuality when we do that.?
?Rex Watson, USD 398 superintendent

Click image to enlarge.

At least one thread connects Rex Watson?s vocational commitment as the new superintendent of the Peabody-Burn school district with his otherwise unique avocation of building hot rods.

Watson, whose customizing talents have been featured in hot-rod publications, is convinced that whether it?s kids or cars, individual attention can turn a clunker into a classic.

?I?m a proponent of individualizing,? said Watson, who began his first superintendency July 1.

?The model we currently use in K-12 education is about 150 years old,? said the St. John native. ?It was built about the same time we were doing the Industrial Revolution. It looks, feels and tastes a whole lot like an assembly line.

?That was probably an excellent model 150 years ago, but we?re in the technology age now, and it?s time that we embrace change.

?It?s time where we individualize for students, and we take talents into consideration, we take interests into consideration, we take abilities into consideration and we take disabilities into consideration.?

Watson?s conviction applies to the behavioral development of children as well as their academic development.

?I don?t know if, in 2007-2008, it?s fair to expect all kids to behave in the same time and the same way to meet our cookie-cutter mold,? Watson said. ?We need to educate the whole child, and we need to take into consideration their individuality when we do that.?

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HHS band booster meeting rescheduled; camp set for July 23-25

The Hillsboro High School Band Booster meeting has been rescheduled from July 23, to 7:30 p.m., Aug. 6, according to Gregg Walker, director of bands. Walker is inviting all band students from grades eight through 12 to participate in the annual band camp from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., July 23-25. The camp will culminate with the march-through at the […]

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From competitor to collaborator
From competitor to collaborator

From competitor to collaborator

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?With kids, we have plenty of emphasis on competition. We don?t need our leaders being great competitors. We need our leaders being collaborators, people who understand the underprivileged, the ?losers.???Gordon Mohn at the conclusion of his 15-year stint as USD 410 superintendent. Click image to enlarge.

The headline for a retrospective story on Gordon Mohn?s 15-year tenure as Unified School District 410 superintendent could read: ?Local boy does good.?

Then again, Mohn probably would be the first to suggest a clarifying subhead: ?No one is more surprised than those who knew him as a youth.?

?People who would know me from high school would say I was kind of a bully,? the Hillsboro High School grad admitted Friday, his last day on the job after announcing his retirement earlier this spring.

In the days of youth, being the stereotypical rip-their-heads-off football jock was the role Mohn had cast for himself.

?I got in to fights, I liked to intimidate people,? he said. ?I was always bigger than kids in my class. I don?t know what happened. That?s all changed.?

Radically so, for those who know Mohn today as a thoughtful, soft-spoken, consensus-building advocate for kids?especially kids who are underdogs in the system because of economic or family background.

?With kids, we have plenty of emphasis on competition,? Mohn said. ?We don?t need our leaders being great competitors. We need our leaders being collaborators, people who understand the underprivileged, the ?losers.??

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