Fire causes evacuation at high school

At approximately 10:15 a.m., a student in the Introduction to Cabinetry course alerted the teacher and the rest of the class that there was a fire in the paint booth of the Spray Room in the wood shop. The teacher directed a student to pull the fire alarm, used fire extinguishers to douse the flame in the immediate area and ordered the 21 students in the class to evacuate. Sussex and Lisbon Fire Departments arrived.

With activation of the fire alarm, the entire school was evacuated and approximately 1,200 students and 120 staff members walked across the athletic field in an orderly manner to Templeton Middle School. The high school students were directed to Templeton’s two gymnasiums where school staff reported that students were well-behaved and responded in a cooperative manner.

The fire was contained to the paint booth within the Spray Room and ducts that lead to the roof. The flames in the booth had been put out with fire extinguishers, and fire department personnel extinguished flames in the ductwork from the roof. The sprinkler system in the Spray Room activated as well.

The fire department declared the area all clear at approximately 11 a.m. Students and staff returned to school and the regular schedule resumed.

No injuries were reported, however the teacher who extinguished the immediate fire went to the hospital as a precaution to ensure there was no smoke inhalation. There was no structural damage to the room and the area had only minor water damage due to the sprinkler system. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

School officials said they grateful for the conscientious manner in which students and staff responded to the situation.

“The safety and well-being of all at Hamilton High School remained our top priority at all times,” Hamilton Principal David Furrer said.

Hamilton students compete at national DECA event

Hamilton High School students Chelsey Laper and Amber Schmitz recently competed at the national Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) 58th Annual Career Development Conference in Nashville, Tenn.

The high school seniors earned the opportunity to compete at national competition by first earning high scores at district and state level contests. In Nashville, they competed in the E-Commerce Team Decision Making Event against 160 other teams from across the country and Canada.

DECA is an association of marketing and management students that provides opportunities to compete in more than 50 categories related to marketing and management career development.

Hamilton student receives German award

Hamilton High School senior Joseph Semrad was awarded the Outstanding High School Senior in German Award presented by the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG). Semrad’s German teacher and AATG member Robin Tessereau selected him based on criteria that he:

  • maintained an A average in German classes and at least an overall B average;
  • demonstrated exceptional commitment to German studies through extracurricular activities;
  • completed at least three years of formal German study; and
  • is a graduating senior and a non-native speaker of German.

”Joe has proven himself to be an outstanding student who has an interest and appetite for learning as much as possible about the German language, culture and history,” Tessereau said.

Semrad was the recipient of the prestigious Congress-Bundestag Scholarship and is spending his senior year in Alszey, Germany. As a result, his language skills are “nothing short of remarkable,” Tessereau said.

Semrad plans to continue his German studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and recently learned that he was selected into Madison’s International House.

AATG is a nonprofit, educational association devoted to the teaching of the German language and cultures of the various German-speaking countries. It promotes scholarship by publishing several journals and newsletters, and awards scholarships and stipends for teacher professional development. In addition, the association administers the National German Honor Society and travel-study programs, and supports 61 regional chapters.

May 17, 2004

High school Honors Program grows

The number of honors courses Hamilton High School students have taken since they were first offered has jumped from 116 in the 2001-02 school year to 295 in the current year.

Hamilton Principal David Furrer said the Honors Program was developed to challenge top students identified as being intellectually capable, motivated, possessing a deep interest in the content and seeking a highly rigorous learning environment.

Student survey results show positive perceptions about honors courses from those who took them.

Furrer said students who take honors courses are likely candidates to take Advanced Placement (AP) courses, also on the rise at Hamilton. Enrollment in AP classes increased from 132 students in 2003-04 to more than 164 students in 2004-05. More students are expected to participate in 2004-05 AP classes when enrollments for English, government and calculus are finalized.

Ten AP courses are scheduled for the 2004-05 school year, compared to six in 2003-04. Low enrollment forced the school to drop five AP courses that were offered for 2003-04, but only two were dropped for 2004-05.

At previous School Board meetings, two parents asked that the school reconsider a decision to drop the AP computer programming course that 13 students signed up to take. Because of scheduling issues, some students were likely to drop the class which would leave the class with fewer than 10 students when classes began in the fall.

Furrer said that when classes are dropped, the school tries to provide other avenues for students to get the high-level courses including jointly offering the classes with neighboring districts, allowing students to take classes at a college or university through the Youth Options Program or finding on-line coursework.

School Board finalizes budget for June 21 Annual Meeting

Community members will have an opportunity to vote on the district levy June 21 at 7:30 p.m. at Hamilton High School. The School Board approved a $38.4 million budget that is up 4.38 percent over the current budget. The local levy is expected to increases 5.22 percent, but the mill rate is projected to go from $11.40 to $11.42 per $1,000 of property value. The budget was built assuming the district will see an additional 56 students.

Hamilton Education Foundation, retirees, student representatives recognized

The School Board presented its annual Community Service Award and recognized this year’s retirees and student representatives to the board.

Hamilton Education Foundation board members who served within the last five years were recognized with the Community Service Award, which is presented to an individual or organization that has provided outstanding service and assistance to the entire district.

A dozen employees were recognized for providing 289 combined years of service to the district. Hamilton Superintendent Kathleen M. Cooke described the career contributions of the following retirees and School Board President Gabe Kolesari handed them a clock, a citation from the state Legislature and a certificate from the Department of Public Instruction: Hamilton science teacher John Alexander, technology and assessment executive assistant Midge Anton, elementary guidance counselor Sam Gabell, Templeton physical education and health teacher Bobbie Husak, speech-language specialist Kathleen Keller-Weber, Maple Avenue instructional aide Pat Manyo, Maple Avenue kindergarten teacher Patricia Olberg, Willow Springs custodian Arthur Rude and Hamilton administrative assistant Diane Schroeder. Retirees who were mentioned, but were not able to attend the meeting were special education teacher aide Judy Duquaine, Hamilton physical education teacher David Fink and Templeton science teacher H.Jay Johns,

Cooke presented high school students Jeralee Briggs, Nicole Guenther and Abbey Paton with a pen set for providing reports to the School Board in 2003-04 as board representatives.

Staff Development Plan approved

District staff development in 2004-05 will focus on informative writing, reading strategies, mathematics instruction, diversity, assessment practices and research-based instructional practices for new teachers, and specific building site goals and content-area needs. The School Board approved the Staff Development Plan after Instructional Services Supervisor Margaret Bauman, Ph.D., presented it. The Professional Development Advisory Council (PDAC) helped create it.

The goal of professional development is to improve student learning and achievement. The PDAC identified specific goals that include:

  • Student learning needs drive professional development.
  • The impact of staff development on student achievement will be measured through a result-based model.
  • Professional development is closely tied to classroom curriculum, instruction and assessment.
  • Professional development involves collaboration among teachers and between teachers and administrators in solving problems related to student learning.

Summer curriculum projects, workshops approved

Bauman also presented information about the projects and activities that will keep many school district staff members busy throughout the summer. She reported that the summer curriculum work will focus on:

  • building site plans;
  • K-12 music and mathematics curriculum revision;
  • middle and high school enriched and honors science and communication arts curriculum alignment;
  • middle school science classroom-level curriculum development;
  • learning strategies curriculum completion;
  • kindergarten curriculum development to address literacy standards;
  • 4K curriculum mapping project;
  • Computer Application course update for transcripted credit to Waukesha County Technical College;
  • 10th grade health curriculum update;
  • Chemistry, Earth Science and AP Biology new materials curriculum alignment;
  • healthcare occupations curriculum update; and
  • School-Age Parents Program update.

The professional development workshops will include:

  • informative writing;
  • a Wisconsin Mathematics Council offering;
  • development of implementation plan for learning strategies;
  • middle and high school data analysis;
  • Einstein science units for new teachers;
  • literacy instruction in grades 2 and 3;
  • mentor-new teacher training;
  • CPR, defibrillator and first aid training; and
  • specific software training for administrators.

The cost for the curriculum work and workshops total $18,500.

Education for Employment Plan presented

School Board members approved an Education for Employment Plan presented by Hamilton Associate Principal Candis Mongan. Mongan reported that the plan is a Department of Public Instruction requirement that compiles all of a district’s career education programming in one report. The plan must be approved each year by the School Board before it is submitted.

Personnel matter approved

In personnel matters, the School Board:

  • accepted the retirement of Hamilton physical education teacher David Fink, effective at the end of the 2003-04 school year
  • increased from 67 percent to full-time the contract of Hamilton physical education teacher Kathleen Block;
  • appointed Lori Schlapman as part-time Marcy counselor, Kimberly Kowaleski as Marcy second grade teacher, Julie Greenwald as Marcy fifth grade teacher, Kelly Flanagan as Woodside fifth grade teacher, Melissa Sosic as Woodside first grade replacement teacher, Jennifer Fellman as Marcy first grade replacement teacher, Angela Walechka as Templeton eighth grade science teacher, Colleen Casper as Maple Avenue guidance counselor and Heather Thompson as Templeton physical education and health teacher; and
  • approved the lay-off of Woodside cognitive disabilities (CD) teacher Melissa Neuharth. The lay-off was due to a reduction in the need for CD teachers, but Neuharth is being considered for other open teaching positions in the district.

Hamilton to honor volunteers with appreciation breakfast

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the Hamilton School District’s Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast May 19 from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. The event will be held at Maple Avenue Elementary School, W240 N6049 Maple Ave., Sussex.

More than 1,350 invitations were sent to people who generously gave of their time and talent in the Hamilton schools during the past year.

Hamilton Superintendent Kathleen M. Cooke will speak to the volunteers, followed by entertainment from the Hamilton High School Jazz Ensemble, directed by music teacher Jon Waite. To give mothers of preschool children a well-deserved break, Hamilton High School child care students have volunteered to care for little children while their mothers participate in the event. Also, school administrators will serve coffee to volunteers.

Hamilton announces April students of the month

Hamilton High School students representing 11 curriculum areas were selected April students of the month. They are:

  • Elaine Carsky and Amber Sweda, science;
  • Timothy Clausing, communication arts;
  • Melissa Elsinger, family & consumer education;
  • Kristine Gielow, mathematics;
  • Joseph Jurasovich, art;
  • Simon Larscheidt, social studies;
  • Bryan Macpherson, physical education;
  • Brian Schlei, world languages;
  • Amber Schmitz, technology education;
  • Cassandra Voss, music; and
  • Daniel Zobrak, business education.

Templeton hosts former Packer LeRoy Butler

Former Green Bay Packer LeRoy Butler will give an inspirational talk to Templeton Middle School students May 18 at two assemblies that will begin at 9:20 a.m. and 10:10 a.m. He will share his unique life story that includes growing up in the projects of Jacksonville, Fla. while struggling with health problems. Ultimately, Butler made it as a high school and college football All-American and became a football hero with the Green Bay Packers, winning Superbowl XXXI.

The Templeton Home and School Organization and Student Council are sponsoring Butler’s speaking engagement. A limited number of autographed books, “The LeRoy Butler Story: From Wheelchair to Lambeau Leap,” will be available for purchase by students during lunch periods for $25 each. If all the books are not sold during the lunch hours, the books will be sold on a firstcome-first-served basis through the Templeton school office.

Hamilton students to learn about impact of drunk driving

Hamilton High School students will see and hear about the consequences of bad decisions and driving May 12 and 13, thanks to the efforts of the school’s Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) chapter.

Lisbon Fire Department will show the results of real-life car crashes and techniques to extricate patients from vehicles when doors won’t open. The demonstrations will occur May 12 during each of three lunch hours beginning at 10:30 a.m., 11:20 a.m. and 12:10 p.m.

SADD has arranged for students to hear from Mary Reinhart May 13 at an assembly from 8:45 a.m. to 9:40 a.m. Reinhart – a teenager from Deerfield, a community outside Madison — was involved in a car accident Nov. 30, 2002 that took the lives of her boyfriend and two friends. Alcohol was a factor in the crash.

She wrote a story about the experience for Seventeen magazine and does public speaking at schools telling students about the perils of drinking and driving, and the importance of wearing a seat belt.

Hamilton is located at W220 N6151 Town Line Rd., Sussex.

Maple Avenue celebrates Greece

Maple Avenue Elementary School students and staff members will celebrate ancient and modern Greek cultures in May and June. Parents and community members are invited to see the Greek artifacts, maps, books on Greece and its culture, and Olympics information on display in the main lobby and library. Student artwork will be continually added to the hallways throughout May.

Other activities planned include:
May 13 — Madison artist David Giffey will share examples of Greek-style icons and show slides of his studies in Greece. He will hold group sessions with fourth and fifth grade classes from 10:15 – 11 a.m., 12:10 – 12:55 p.m., and 2:15 – 3 p.m.

May 17 — Musical performance by ETHNICITY, a Milwaukee folk music group. The group will perform Greek music and teach Greek dance steps in the gym. Sessions will be from 1:45 – 2:05 p.m. for grades kindergarten and 1; 2:15 – 2:35 p.m. for grades 2 and 3; and 2:45 – 3:05 p.m. for grades 4 and 5.

May 18 — Zenophon Bamiatzoglou, a Greek student at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, will talk to students about modern Greek life. Also, Maple Avenue parents will share their Greek- American heritage with memories, artifacts and a slide show.

May 19 — Kathleen Zmuda, storyteller of Greek myths and stories, will present to fourth- and fifth-graders in the gym from 8:50 – 9:40 a.m. Then Zmuda will visit each fourth and fifth grade classroom teaching students the art of storytelling. A Greek luncheon is planned for staff and guests and will feature Greek salads, soup, moussaka, gyros and baklava.

May 20 – Zmuda returns to tell Greek stories and myths from 9 – 9:45 a.m. for kindergartners; 10:30-11:15 a.m. for grade 3; 12:20 – 1:15 p.m. for grade 2; and 2 – 2:45 p.m. for grade 1. There also will be a sampling of Greek foods served during the students’ lunch in the cafeteria.

May 27 — Hardy Garrison, storyteller of Greek folktales and myths, will share his tales in the gym from 9 – 9:45 a.m. for grades kindergarten and 1; 10:45-11:30 a.m. for grades 2 and 3; and 2 – 2:45 p.m. for grades 4 and 5.

June 8 is Olympic Day — countdown to the Summer Olympics in Athens. The Opening Ceremony will be from 9 to 10 a.m. in front of the school and will feature representatives of each classroom. Field activities will begin behind the school at 10 a.m. and continue until 2:55 p.m.

The school is located at W240 N6059 Maple Ave., Sussex.

Woodside plans Family Fun Night May 21

An evening of rides, games, food, shopping and fun awaits those attending the May 21 Family Fun Night at Woodside Elementary School. The event, which runs from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., is a fundraiser to expand the school’s playground.

Among the attractions at the event are:

  • nine inflatable rides including moonwalks, slides, bungee run, funhouses and rock climbing;
  • 11 carnival games;
  • a dunk tank;
  • trackless train ride;
  • concessions featuring hot dogs, barbecue, brats, chips, ice cream, popcorn, cotton candy, sno-cones, pretzels, nachos and drinks;
  • silent auction; and
  • car show.

The event is open to the public. Tickets for rides, games and food will be available at the event. For more information, contact parent Mary Jo Menzel at (262) 246-9913.

Woodside Elementary School is located at W236 N7465 Woodside Rd., Sussex. The event will be held indoors if it is raining or windy.