Tippecanoe Valley’s Coach Shriver Carries Bicentennial Torch

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TVSC teacher Jeff Shriver, along with Stephanie Bibler, carry the Bicentennial Torch in honor of his late friend Scott Bibler. Behind them, Tippecanoe Valley football players and cheerleaders participate in the relay festivities.

Thursday morning, Sept. 29, the Bicentennial Torch Relay made its way through Kosciusko County, and one of Tippecanoe Valley’s own had the honor of carrying it at Warsaw Community High School. Current high school teacher and co-head football coach Jeff Shriver was selected to carry the torch in place of his late friend and colleague, Scott Bibler, who passed away in a plane crash a year ago. Scott’s wife, Stephanie Bibler, accompanied Shriver as he accepted the torch and carried it aloft through a tunnel of students who lined the street. Once Shriver and Bibler had passed, the students, including Tippecanoe Valley High School football players and cheerleaders and Akron Elementary fourth graders, fell into line behind them as they continued up the road.

Shriver was honored and excited to be selected as a torchbearer for the relay. “It was really an awesome trifecta,” he said of the experience. “First, to be able to participate in the celebration of 200 years of statehood was incredible. Second, TVSC and the football program have been a tremendously important part of my life. The inclusion of this year’s coaches, players and cheerleaders in the relay made the event extra special,” he explained. But those two things couldn’t touch the pride he felt in being selected to represent his friend.  “Most important to me was the ability to walk with Stephanie Bibler and our team and carry the torch in tribute, honor, and memory of Scott Bibler,” he said. It was certainly a day to remember.

Thriving Rural Communities

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By Brett R. Boggs
Superintendent of Schools
Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation

The information to be shared in this Valley Insight article comes from the March 2016 issue of Thriving Communities, Thriving State in an article titled, “Recommendations for Thriving Rural Communities”.  The Rural and Small Town Commission brought together 16 individuals from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors – people with an interest in small towns, rural communities, and unincorporated areas throughout the state – to identify common community challenges and opportunities and to develop strategies to address them over the next ten years.

After analyzing the issues important to 58 Indiana rural counties and small communities throughout the state, the commission found that throughout Indiana’s history, small towns and rural areas offer select economic and quality-of-life advantages.  They have consistently been wonderful places to live, work, and raise families.  Hoosiers in small towns and rural communities look out for each other and their communities.  In small towns there are many opportunities to get involved and exercise leadership.  Rural and small community leaders are more accessible and visible than leaders in other communities.  These assets position rural communities to effectively develop and exercise social capital in ways that would be difficult in larger communities.  Many of Indiana’s rural and small towns benefit from tremendous natural assets, a strong community and civic heritage, unique spaces and structures, and a history of civic investment.  All of these assets can serve as the basis for attracting a talented workforce, developing local business, and energizing local economies.

While rural and small towns have charm and economic potential, they face significant challenges.  The greatest demographic concern for many rural communities is the out-migration of rural youth to other places within the state and nation.  Many rural communities disproportionately lose population as rural-educated youth enter college and then to do not return to the community after college. This is a cause of economic development challenges for many rural communities and also diminishes the pool of emerging and potential leaders.  Many rural communities have also experienced the demise of local businesses and employment options in favor of broader regional options.

The commission found four priorities for making Indiana’s rural communities and small towns more successful.  To help rural Indiana communities thrive in the immediate future they must embrace:  1) Identifying, developing, and engaging strong leadership; 2) Entrepreneurship is the key to creating jobs and retaining young residents; 3) Increased access to and quality of education are critical to rural workforce development; and 4) For quality of life and quality of place, rural and small towns must think beyond the status quo.

In future Valley Insight articles I plan to address each of these priorities with a look at what Tippecanoe Valley is doing to ensure our small towns and rural community are thriving places for years to come.

Valley’s Focus on The Growth Mindset

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By Blaine Conley
Assistant Superintendent
Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation

Over the summer months, teachers from Tippecanoe Valley participated in the Professional Learning Communities at Work Institute for four days, All Write Summer Institute for two days, IDOE training on the new high school science standards for one day, ACP training for two days, Project Lead the Way training for two days and the e3 Conference for two days.  The time away from their families is a sacrifice during the summer months and demonstrates the dedication teachers at TVSC possess in improving instructional practices to meet the needs of our students.

“Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”  As we have completed the first few weeks of school, I’ve been reflecting on John Wooden’s quote.  The data shows that many teachers at Tippecanoe Valley continue to work during the summer months to improve their craft in preparation of the upcoming year.  These individuals exemplify our school corporation’s vision by doing whatever it takes to equip all students to be outstanding today, tomorrow and beyond.

When over 40% of the staff works to improve over the summer, how do we implement these strategies throughout our schools when the year begins?  It starts with what Peter Drucker wrote in The Effective Executive, “Organization is a means of multiplying the strength of an individual.”  Our teachers meet twice a week for 40-minute sessions before school during collaboration time as grade level and department teams.  Using the problem solving method, teams work to address the basic needs of students and then address academic issues.  Aligning curriculum, developing formative assessments and analyzing data are a few examples of how teachers at TVSC work collaboratively.  Individual teachers produce amazing results in their classrooms, but when they collectively work together, we achieve so much more.  The success of walking across the stage at graduation is a K-12 endeavor that takes teamwork, sacrifice and dedication from many adults working together.

In Carol Dweck’s work, Mindset:  The New Psychology of Success, the growth mindset vs. the fixed mindset is discussed in detail.  In a nutshell, the growth mindset focuses on a person’s belief that they have the ability to change their level of intelligence through the process of learning from one’s mistakes.  The fixed mindset is a belief that you can learn new things, but your level of intelligence cannot substantially change.  TVSC staff members work within their collaborative teams to meet students at their ability level and then challenge them through processes that focus on the growth mindset.

On October 2, 2015 four amazing men who positively influenced our community lost their lives in a tragic accident.  Those in education, no matter their roles, are nation builders as they work with students to develop greater intelligence through the growth mindset.  The time educators sacrifice from their families to help students become valuable contributors to society is appreciated by the community and demonstrates the values exhibited by those lost on that October night.

Distinguished Alumni Dinner and Halftime Recognition

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On Thursday night, Sept. 15, Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation honored the nine members of the Distinguished Alumni Class of 2016. Each honoree and his or her family members were invited to enjoy a delicious dinner prepared by middle school and Mentone cafeteria staff at Tippecanoe Valley Middle School. The dinner was followed by an interview portion moderated by local radio personality Rita Price.

This year’s class of Distinguished Alumni is made up of Greg Gibble, graduate of the class of 1978; the late Scott Bibler, graduate of the class of 1982; Mindy (Creighton) Truex, graduate of the class of 1983; Tim Doud, graduate of the class of 1988, and Lisa (Harger) Fear, graduate of the class of 1996. The other part of the group, recipients of the Legacy Award, is made up of a combination of graduates from Akron, Beaver Dam, Burket, Mentone, and Talma High Schools. Recipients include the late Ann (Kindig) Allen, who graduated from Akron in 1952; Lee Norris, who graduated from Beaver Dam in 1947; Norman Wagoner, who graduated from Talma in 1955, and Tim Harman, who graduated from Mentone in 1972.

Celebrations continued on Friday, when honorees gave presentations and ate lunch with students, in addition to touring Tippecanoe Valley High School. Finally, each person was celebrated and presented with a plaque during halftime of the football game. We are proud to have these Distinguished Alumni represent our schools and inspire our next generation of leaders!

Pictured, back row, L to R: Tim Harman, Tim Doud, Norman Wagoner, and Greg Gibble. Front row, L to R: Stephanie Bibler (wife of Scott Bibler), Lisa (Harger) Fear, and Mindy (Creighton) Truex. Not pictured: Lee Norris and a representative of Ann (Kindig) Allen.

Digital Citizenship

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TVSC is privileged to have access to technology in and around the classroom. With this privilege, comes a responsibility to use this technology in the way that it was intended. We call this being a good “Digital Citizen.” We expect staff, students and parents to uphold their role in creating good digital citizens.

As a parent or adult, you will need to set ground rules on technology use. In addition to this, monitoring media use and discussing appropriate sites to visit will help. It is also recommended that you know your children’s passwords and codes for their devices. Regularly checking their social online behaviors will help as well.

It is important for students to be aware of acceptable online practice. Students should avoid sharing or posting inappropriate images, sharing passwords, posting personal information and communicating with unknown numbers or individuals. Students can also be aware of suspicious behavior such as being asked for pictures, being asked to use a webcam and being asked if they are alone. Students are also expected to refrain from cyber bullying, spreading rumors or gossip, posting pictures of others without their permission, pretending to be someone they are not and threatening or harassing others. If students are aware of cyber bullying, they are asked to inform an adult immediately.

Students must be aware that once a picture, comment or file is placed on a public internet site, it’s out there forever and it cannot be taken back or deleted. It is more important now than ever that parents know what their children are doing online. Take the time to talk to your children about this important subject. For more information, please visit www.commonsensemedia.org.

Safe School Zone!

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Help us create a safer school zone! A new school year brings another reminder of where TVSC stands with bullying. We are very serious about having a safe school zone, and this starts with you!

Report bullying by sending an anonymous report to us. Your reports are confidential and will be acted upon quickly. Thank you for making our schools safer!  Click here.

Bullying Presentation (PDF)

Bullying Presentation (PPT)

Valley Insight by Cory Cooper

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VALLEY INSIGHT By Cory Cooper, Assistant Principal, Tippecanoe Valley Middle School

“There’s an app for that” and one of our students designed it!

Preparing students for the workforce of tomorrow is an always-evolving task. The Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation (TVSC) continuously evaluates the entire K-12 curriculum to ensure that it offers its students the best opportunities for success while at TVSC and beyond graduation.

The projected number of job openings in 2018 for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields will reach 2.8 million. Of these, approximately 1.4 million jobs will be for computer specialists. Indiana Hot Jobs and The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics both list software developers, applications/Computer Science (CS) degree fields as occupations with the most job growth between the years 2014 to 2024. The average salaries for CS related fields currently range from $65,000 to $100,000. The projected industry demand for students with these skills will likely exceed the supply of qualified workers.

In light of these projections, TVSC has added more STEM components to its K-12 curriculum that will not only provide challenging problems for students to solve, but involve them in exciting, real-world, hands-on activities. And what could be more exciting for students than learning how to design, program, create, and test apps for a multitude of devices or programming a robot that their group built to solve a challenge?

This past year Tippecanoe Valley Middle School (TVMS) became the second school in the TVSC to add a STEM curriculum program through Project Lead the Way (PLTW). Tippecanoe Valley Middle School’s PLTW STEM program initially offered two courses: Design and Modeling (DM) and Automation and Robotics (AR).

Starting in August of the 2016-2017 school year all TVSC schools will offer STEM programs with computer science-related curriculum components that will prepare students for the 21st century workforce.

Through the Corporate Partnership for Economic Growth (CPEG) Northern Indiana PLTW School Grant, TVMS will send its PLTW STEM instructor to receive the additional Intro to Computer Science (ICS) course training this summer. TVMS students from grade 6 to 8 will take two foundation courses: Design and Modeling, Automation and Robotics; and the newly added specialization course: Introduction to Computer Science.

Mentone and Akron Elementary Schools will both be starting new STEM PLTW Launch programs that will have computer science components embedded into the curriculum as well, and are sending two teachers to training this summer. This STEM program for kindergarten through fifth grade will help students become problem solvers. Students will use structured approaches, like the engineering design process, and critical thinking. They will apply STEM knowledge, skills, and habits of mind, basic computer science concepts, and learn that it is okay to take risks and make mistakes.

Tippecanoe Valley High School (TVHS) will also send a business instructor to receive the high school level of Computer Science training. TVHS students in grades 9 to12 will be offered this new Computer Science and Software Engineering course through the business department this year. Computer Science and Software Engineering is a PLTW course in which students will create apps for mobile devices, automate tasks in a variety of languages, find patterns in data, and interpret simulations. Students will collaborate to create and present solutions that can improve people’s lives.

With the addition of these new courses and the implementation of this new program at the elementary level, TVSC is now offering a fully aligned STEM curriculum from Kindergarten through 12th grade, and in the near future, we’ll be able to proudly say “There’s an app for that and one of our students designed it!”.

As Tippecanoe Valley’s vision statement states, TVSC does whatever it takes to equip all students to be outstanding – today, tomorrow, and beyond.

School Safe Zone

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Help us create a safer school zone! Report bullying by sending an anonymous report to us. Your reports are confidential and will be acted upon quickly. Thank you for making our schools safer!

Visit www.tippecanoevalleyschools.com and click on the School Safe Zone link in the bottom right-hand side of the page. TVSC also offers a Safe Schools Hotline, a telephone application (voice or text message) that allows students, parents and members of the community to report threats of violence, bullying, suicide, theft, gang activity, drug use, vandalism or any other concern at any TVSC school. When someone calls the number to report a threat or problem, the caller is prompted to leave a message along with any other important information.

The message is immediately transmitted via telephone, cell phone and email to the building administrators and the TVSC school resource officer. TVSC has the ability to manage the calls through a web site, where school officials can see and download call reports. A full transcript of the call is transmitted with each email so that the administrator has first-hand knowledge of the call received. A school administrator will evaluate the potential threat level and respond accordingly. If you have first-hand knowledge of a potentially harmful situation, please call the TVSC Safe Schools Hotline at (574) 387-3825.

Back to School Quick Info

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First Day of School:

           August 8th, 2016

School Hours

Regular school hours at Akron and Mentone Elementary

Schools are 8:30 a.m. to 3:40 p.m.

Regular school hours at Tippecanoe Valley Middle School

6th grade: 8:11a.m.-3:16 p.m.

7-8th grade: 8:15a.m.-3:20 p.m.

Regular school hours at Tippecanoe Valley High School are

8:25 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Meal Prices

Lunch Prices

Elementary/Middle School ………………………………………$1.60 per day

High School………………………………………………………………$1.65 per day

Reduced Price …………………………………………………………… $.40 per day

Adults ………………………………………………………………………….$3 per day

Additional Milk ……………………………………………………..$.25 per carton

Breakfast Prices

Full Price…………………………………………………………………… $.75 per day

Reduced Price ……………………………………………………………$.30 per day