Community invited to attend Unified Game Day on May 8

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An event designed to help special needs kids become more active is taking place May 8 at the Tippecanoe Valley High School track.

The community is invited to attend Unified Game Day from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Students with and without disabilities will participate in the inaugural event.

Unified Game Day is part of Unified Champion Schools, a 12-week program recently launched by Special Olympics Indiana, with the focus of providing youngsters with different physical activities that lead to improved skills and fitness.

“The ultimate goal is for these students to become physically fit, active and also someday hopefully participate in some type of Indiana High School Athletic Association-sanctioned event,” said school psychologist Jon Ekhoff.

Students ages two to seven will participate in activity stations during Unified Game Day, while students ages eight and up will participate in track and field activities. A closing ceremony and awards program will also be held.

The Unified Champion Schools program is designed to implement a physical education curriculum with activities that promote motor, cognitive, social and emotional skill development as well as inclusion of students with and without disabilities.

“Students learn a lot of the basic skills they may not have developed naturally,” said Ekhoff.

Unified Game Day is one of the last components of the program. The event gives students the time to demonstrate and celebrate the skills they have practiced and learned.

Photo: Eighth graders Dakota and Shawnitta Webb (front row) along with seventh grader Carolyn Roth and eighth grader Cheyenne Barngrover (back row) practice the 50-meter dash for Unified Game Day.

Tippecanoe Valley to host community job fair on May 6

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Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation, in cooperation with WorkOne of Northern Indiana, will host a community job fair on Saturday, May 6, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Tippecanoe Valley Middle School commons.

Several employers will be present to share their career opportunities. Some of those employers include Acument Global Technologies, Bourbon Street Pizza, Consolidated Container, Craig Welding, D&D Electric, Flexaust, Four Winds Casino/Resort, KGP Logistics, Kroger (Rochester), Miller’s Health Systems, Rochester Metal Products, Subway (Mentone), Timbercrest, Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation, Topp Industries, Indiana Composites, Grace Village Retirement Community, United States Marine Corps, Whitley Manufacturing and more.

A variety of positions will be available – some part-time, full-time, temporary and seasonal. Attendees are encouraged to bring copies of their résumé and be prepared to fill out applications. Employers may also conduct interviews during the event.

Tippecanoe Valley is also hosting the job fair as a means of recruiting potential employees for teaching opportunities and employment in the following areas – bus driver, instructional assistant, cafeteria staff, and custodial staff.

There is no charge to attend the event. Tippecanoe Valley Middle School is located at 11303 W 800 S, Akron, IN, 46910. Attendees should enter through the main doors on the north side of the building.

VALLEY INSIGHT: Technology Enhances Tippecanoe Valley’s Mission

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Written by Tippecanoe Valley Technology Team members Gwen Cooper, Matt Cavender, Brendan Marsillett and Keith Lang

At Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation (TVSC) we are dedicated to our mission:  TVSC will do whatever it takes to equip all students to be successful today, tomorrow and beyond. The TVSC Tech Team is having an exciting and busy year rolling out and supporting new devices and programs at all levels in support of that mission. Here are just a few of those highlights.

At Akron Elementary and Mentone Elementary, the new Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Launch curriculum introduces students from kindergarten through fifth grade to computer science, engineering, and biomedical science among other areas through the use of hands-on activities and challenges. Each school has an iPad cart dedicated to PLTW Launch with specific apps that are used as part of this course.

At the beginning of the school year, Tippecanoe Valley Middle School (TVMS) rolled out its new in-house One-to-One program and each student was issued a new Dell laptop running Windows 10 to use during the school day. The devices stay at school overnight where they get charged to be ready to use for the next day. One key benefit from this program is the improvement it has brought to ISTEP testing. Before, students would have to cycle in and out of three computer labs, taking weeks to complete testing in order to get everyone through all the sessions. Now, since all the students are testing on their own school-issued devices, TVMS completed the first round of testing in two half-day sessions only, resulting in less stress for the students and less instructional time being lost.

At Tippecanoe Valley High School (TVHS), students were recently given their own TVSC email addresses to facilitate communication between the administration, the students, and the teachers. Thanks to the recent conversion to Office 365, our students now have access to all of the Office programs they use in their various classes through the Cloud, free of charge while they are students at TVSC. This means that, as long as students have access to the internet, they can login to Office 365 from any device, anywhere, and have access to any Office application, including online storage for any work created in Office 365. Students who do not have internet access at home will also have the ability to install Office 365 directly onto their device.

Looking to the future, our department is also gearing up for next school year with a major refresh of the 1:1 devices at TVHS. TVSC is in the process of acquiring new laptops that are both powerful and modern. These machines will also be equipped with Windows 10, which has a strong integration with Office 365, and will not only be easier to use than the previous ones, but also more reliable and less prone to damage.

Another addition will be the interactive multi-touch touchscreens replacing aging projectors at Akron Elementary and several classrooms at TVHS to provide a more dynamic and interactive learning environment for our students.  This technology will enhance the ability of our teachers to meet the diverse learning styles of the students in today’s classroom.

Finally, one of our goals for next school year is to promote, coordinate, and increase the participation of our students at all levels in the Hour of Code event. The Hour of Code takes place every year in December, during Computer Science Education Week, and offers children of all ages an introduction to coding through age-appropriate, fun-filled activities.

Picture from left to right: Matt Cavender, Keith Lang, Gwen Cooper and Brendan Marsillett

Valley Insight is a recurring monthly article written by administrators on a variety of topics related to education and the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation. Articles will be posted to the district’s website and also shared with the local media.

Akron Elementary online auction runs May 4 – 14

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The Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation will offer a variety of items for sale to the public via online auction starting Thursday, May 4, and concluding Sunday, May 14.  The items to be sold are primarily the result of phases #2 and #3 of the Akron Elementary School renovation and construction project scheduled to conclude in December 2017.

Interested individuals may bid on pieces of outdoor play equipment from Akron’s Head Start playground and the playground at the Burket Educational Center.  Also to be auctioned are items from the 1987 wing (Art Room tables, Media Center wood tables and chairs, steel student hall lockers, classroom steel shelving, water fountains, and heavy duty tables and storage cabinets from the Staff Workroom.

Items to be sold from the kindergarten wing include classroom sink & storage units and folding vinyl doors. Commercial items from the kitchen/cafeteria include a three-door freezer, food warmer, serving area with electric warmers, milk coolers, food preparation tables of various sizes (butcher block and stainless steel), convection ovens, six-burner gas stove and oven, steamer, 2-door refrigerators, food grinder, meat slicer, and assorted carts.

Gym items to be auctioned include the wood gym floor (approximately 80’x120’), steel retractable bleachers (seat 700), scoreboards  with a control panel, clear glass basketball backboards and goals, wall padding, ceiling mounted acoustic panels, a sliding net curtain & track, a gym divider curtain, volleyball posts & nets, volleyball post protectors, and a garage door & hardware.  Locker room items include a chalkboard, steel restroom partitions, shower heads and stainless steel containment, and assorted steel partitions, sinks, toilets, urinals, and mirrors.

A dust collection system, wood working tables with attached vices, a drill press, a portable speaker system, a sound system with two speakers and an amplifier, and over 20 folding tables from the custodial storage area will be sold via the online auction.

Items to be sold from the Akron Elementary School Office include the main office counter and storage, storage from the office workroom, the intercom system, the wall-mounted staff mailboxes, four-drawer lateral filing cabinets, upholstered office chairs, and a Nurse’s Office bed and locking two-door medicine storage cabinet on wheels.

Items from the 1949 wing include classroom doors, wood classroom lockers & storage closets (6 rooms), black chalkboards, steel shelving, and aluminum classroom windows (6 classrooms and 4 smaller areas).

Miscellaneous items to be sold via online auction include bulletin boards, chalkboards, several two-door vertical steel storage cabinets, wood doors from classrooms and other areas, steel entrance and interior doors, and wood shelving.  Restroom partitions, sinks, urinals, toilets, and mirrors from all restroom areas will be included in the online auction.

To participate in the online auction visit the Asset Auctions Online website at or Auction Zip at  Questions about the online auction may be directed to Director of Asset Liquidation Auctions John Winkel at [email protected] or (317) 284-1420.

Anyone that would like to view the items in person prior to or during the online auction may arrange to do so by contacting Akron Elementary School Principal Chrissy Mills at [email protected] or (574) 598-2367, ext. 2325.  Viewing will be scheduled to occur during the non-school hours of 4:00-5:00 p.m.

Winning bidders may pick up their items starting Monday, May 15, through Friday, May 26.  The purchaser will be responsible for the removal of the items purchased.  Items not removed by May 26th will be removed by the contractor and set aside.  The Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation will not be responsible for the condition of items removed by the purchaser or the contractor.

During the pick-up window of May 15-26, an additional point of contact will be Tippecanoe Valley Maintenance Director Todd Glenn at [email protected] or (574) 265-1308.

Please note that items from the 1987 wing’s west and north classrooms and the west student hall lockers will be sold in this auction, but will not be removed and available for pick-up until Monday, October 2.


TVHS senior to play football at Trine University

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Tippecanoe Valley High School senior DeSean Heckman will continue his academic and football career at Trine University.

Front row left to right: Sister, Nykole McGuire, Brother-in-law James Zimmerman,  DeSean, Mother, April Grossman, Step-father, Matt Grossman

Back row left to right: Taneisha Brown,  TVHS Athletic Director, Duane Burkhart, TVHS Assistant Principal, Jon Hutton, Former Head Coaches, Jeff Shriver and Aaron Norris,  Brother, Quentin Aldridge

K21 Health Foundation awards grant to TVHS

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The Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation board of trustees approved at its April 17 meeting a grant to fund biomedical science classes at Tippecanoe Valley High School.

The K21 Health Foundation awarded the corporation with a $28,237 grant to fund instructor training, classroom supplies and the implementation of Project Lead the Way Biomedical Sciences curriculum.

“This curriculum is important because it exposes students to early education in medical fields that they might not otherwise be aware of,” said K21 Health Foundation Grant Coordinator Holly Swoverland.

Students enrolled in the program will develop skills essential to careers in the orthopedic industry– a main component of the Kosciusko County economy. Coursework will mirror engineering tasks employees experience in the workforce, as well as critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

“We’re also in the process of making this a dual-credit course for students. This grant will help expand our science department, which has really been limited to biology, chemistry and physiology,” said TVHS Assistant Principal Jon Hutton.

There are currently 22 students signed up for the class for the upcoming school year. The high school is also planning to add a second-level course for the 2018-2019 school year. Students will also have the option to take two additional advanced-level courses through the Warsaw Area Career Center.

“We hope to see kids taking advantage of the opportunities this curriculum provides in order to help them determine possible future career plans in a medical field and so they are more prepared when they seek higher education,” said Swoverland.

Class of 2017 Graduation Information

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Graduation for the Class of 2017 will take place on Sunday, June 4. The north doors to the main gym will open at 1 p.m. Baccalaureate will begin at 2 p.m. and graduation will begin promptly at 2:45 p.m.

Senior Breakfast will be on the last day of school, currently May 24 at 7 a.m. in the high school commons area. Academic awards will follow at 8:30 a.m. in the main gym. Graduation rehearsal will be immediately after the awards. Seniors must be at rehearsal to participate in graduation on June 4.

Anyone with questions regarding graduation can call the high school at (574) 598-2100.

Pancake breakfast fundraiser set for April 22

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The Tippecanoe Valley Football Program will hold a free-will-donation pancake breakfast fundraiser on April 22, 2017 at the Mentone Fire Station from 7 to 11 a.m.

Money raised from the pancake breakfast supports Tippecanoe Valley football youth and high school programs.

The breakfast is also an opportunity to meet varsity players and coaches. Attendees can also learn more about the Tippecanoe Valley Youth Football and Cheer Program for ages 7 to 12.


VALLEY INSIGHT: Maintaining Quality School Facilities – A Continual Process at Tippecanoe Valley

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Written By: TVSC Superintendent Brett Boggs

In the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation, providing attractive, efficient, and modern school facilities is a priority.  Our community expects – and our students, staff, and parents – deserve educational facilities that are safe and designed to meet the educational needs of twenty-first century learners.

Tippecanoe Valley serves almost 2,000 children in preschool through twelfth grade in our elementary schools in Akron and Mentone, Tippecanoe Valley Middle School, Tippecanoe Valley High School, and the Burket Educational Center.  In addition we have several auxiliary facilities such as the bus garage, administration office, wastewater treatment plant, and wind turbine.  Providing quality school facilities is vital to fulfilling our commitment to student success today, tomorrow, and beyond.

The challenge is in how to provide such facilities while maintaining a reasonable and consistent tax rate.  This has been accomplished at Tippecanoe Valley by looking forward and prioritizing our facility needs.  When the debt for a facility is paid off, we have already planned to move into a new commitment that will keep the tax rate at a consistent and reasonable level.

The best way to illustrate this concept is with a brief history of the major construction projects that have taken place in the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation since Tippecanoe Valley High School opened in January 1975.

  • A new junior high school was constructed at Akron in 1987. At the same time, six new classrooms, restrooms, and dressing rooms were added at Mentone.  A new multipurpose room/library/cafeteria was added at Burket.
  • In 1989-90 a new administrative office complex, new boiler rooms and boilers were added at Mentone.
  • In 1993 a new auxiliary gym, classrooms, and locker rooms were added at Tippecanoe Valley High School.
  • The new Tippecanoe Valley Middle School was opened for the 1995-96 school year.
  • A new bus garage was built and opened in 1998.
  • Mentone Elementary School underwent a major renovation of existing areas and over 62,000 square feet of new construction for the 1999-2000 school year.
  • A major renovation and construction project took place at Tippecanoe Valley High School during the 2005-2006 school year. Ten new classrooms, new office spaces, a new receiving area, restrooms, and a weight room were added.  There were extensive renovations to the existing building and systems.
  • A new wastewater treatment plant that serves the middle school and high school was built in 2006-2007.
  • In 2007 a new multi-purpose facility – concession area, ticket booth, and restrooms – was constructed at the main entrance to the TVHS Football Field and Track.
  • In 2009 a Guaranteed Energy Savings Project was completed at the Burket Educational Center. This included a new geothermal heating and cooling system, renovation of restroom areas, a new roof, and new energy efficient doors and windows.
  • A 900 kWh wind turbine was built on the TVMS/TVHS campus in 2011.
  • December 2017 is the anticipated completion date of the current renovation and construction project at Akron Elementary School.

The Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation is blessed with excellent educational facilities, thanks to our taxpayers and leaders who have continually looked ahead in determining our facility needs.  History shows that in a district the size of Tippecanoe Valley multiple facility needs must be addressed each decade so our school facilities continue to serve the growing and changing needs of our students, staff, and the community.

Valley Insight is a recurring monthly article written by administrators on a variety of topics related to education and the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation. Articles will be posted to the district’s website and also shared with the local media.

TVHS senior wins top prize in career expo contest

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The Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce held its 4th Annual GPS 2 Success Career Expo on Tuesday, April 11, 2017 at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capitol Center.

The Chamber would like to thank the following sponsors for making this event possible, Grace College, KGP Logistics, Kosciusko Cares, Flexaust, Rainbow Child Care, Old National Bank, Oakwood Resort, and Lake City Bank.

Over 50 businesses, colleges, and organizations participated in the event in order to showcase career opportunities to high school students from Warsaw, Wawasee, Whitko, Tippecanoe Valley, Lakeland Christian Academy, and Fairfield.

During the event, students had the opportunity to participate in an Instagram challenge for the chance to win an iPad Mini and other smaller prizes. The winner of the iPad Mini was Kourtney Combs who is a senior at Tippecanoe Valley High School.

Photo from left to right: Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Rob Parker, TVHS Senior Kourtney Combs, TVHS Assistant Principal Jon Hutton, TVSC Superintendent Brett Boggs.

Editor’s note: This article was submitted by the Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce.