Hamilton 9th, 10th grades to take standardized tests Dec. 9

In an effort to assist Hamilton High School students with educational and career planning, the EXPLORE test will be administered to all freshman and the PLAN test will be administered to all sophomores on Dec. 9. The test begins promptly at 7:20 a.m. and ends at approximately 10:45 a.m. Parents are reminded that attendance on this day is important and are asked to schedule all out-of-school appointments at another time.

The EXPLORE test assesses academic progress, helps students investigate the full range of career options, assists in developing a high school coursework plan, and provides practice on a test that is similar to college entrance exams. The EXPLORE is designed to measure educational development in four curricular areas: English, math, reading, and science. In addition, it serves as the entry point into ACT’s Educational Planning and Assessment System (EPAS). The other primary EPAS components are PLAN (mandatory in grade 10) and the ACT Assessment (college admissions).

The PLAN is a shortened version of the ACT and is designed to measure educational development in four curricular areas: English, math, reading, and science. It also includes an interest inventory that facilitates career and educational planning along with information about the core courses students have taken and plan to take. Students who take the PLAN test score an average of one to two points higher on the ACT and nearly all universities use ACT scores as one of the measures to determine admission.

Parents should watch for the planning guide that will be distributed to students in late November and read through the instructional booklet with their children. If you have any questions, please contact the guidance department at (262) 246-6476.

Templeton chorus to perform for veterans

The Templeton Middle School Eighth Grade Show Choir will travel to Milwaukee Nov. 20 to perform a concert for the residents of the Clement J. Zablocki Veterans Affairs Medical Center extended care facility.

The concert, which begins at 9 a.m., will include a selection of patriotic songs, including such standards as “You’re A Grand Old Flag,” “God Bless America” and “Armed Forces Salute” as well as several more contemporary tunes.

This is the third year in which the chorus has been invited to perform. Before the concert, students enjoy a tour of the facilities, followed by a brief reception in which they are able to socialize with the veterans and their families.

Woodside to kick off science celebration

Woodside Elementary School will kick off a celebration of science in November. Students in grades K-2 will explore a mobile planetarium Nov. 5. Students in grades 3-5 will participate in “The Wonders of Physics” Nov. 24 in which they will view live demonstrations about electricity, physics, magnets and heat.

Both experiences will give students a glimpse of the science excitement that school will experience during the Science Fair 2009, which is slated March 2-5.

Woodside is located at W236 N7465 Woodside Rd., Sussex.

Hamilton presents “A Game of Gold, or Deadwood Dick”

Hamilton High School drama students invite community members to attend a rootin’, tootin’ production of “A Game of Gold, or Deadwood Dick.” Performances will be at 7 p.m. on Nov. 6, 7 and 8 and a 2 p.m. matinee on Nov. 9 in the Hamilton Fine Arts Center.

Long lost daughters, stolen gold mines, kidnapped heroines and hairbreadth escapes abound. Come and boo, hiss, cheer – and especially laugh – as Hamilton students entertain their audiences with this lighthearted Western melodrama.

Ticket prices are $8 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens. For advance ticket purchases and additional information, please call the Drama Department Box Office at (262) 246-6471 x1552.

The Hamilton Fine Arts Center is located at W220 N6151 Town Line Rd., Sussex.

Hamilton graduates, students named AP Scholars

Eight 2008 Hamilton High School graduates and three current students have earned the designation of AP Scholar by the College Board in recognition of their exceptional achievement on the college-level Advanced Placement Program (AP) Exams. About 18 percent of the more than 1.6 million high school students worldwide who took AP Exams performed at a sufficiently high level to merit the recognition of AP Scholar.

The College Board’s Advanced Placement Program offers students the opportunity to take challenging college-level courses while still in high school, and to receive college credit, advanced placement or both for successful performance on the AP Exams. Hamilton High School currently offers AP courses in biology, chemistry, calculus AB/BC, English, government and politics, European history, statistics, U.S. history and studio art – drawing.

Students took AP Exams in May 2008 after completing challenging college-level courses at Hamilton High School. The College Board recognizes several levels of achievement based on student performance on AP exams.

Nine students qualified for the AP Scholar Award by completing three or more AP Exams, with grades of 3 or higher. The AP Scholars are Kathryn Doyle, Joshua Gratz, Andrew Hoell, Theresa Klees, Kathryn Klein (current junior), Alex Schwartz, Marissa Sheets, Erik Vowels and Mike Whitt (current senior).

Jaclyn Michl (current senior) and Emily Sheeks qualified for the AP Scholar with Honor Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and grades of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams.

Angela Zeng qualified for the AP Scholar with Distinction Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and grades of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams.

Most of the nation’s colleges and universities award credit, advanced placement or both based on successful performance on the AP Exams. More than 1,400 institutions award a full year’s credit (sophomore standing) to students presenting a sufficient number of qualifying grades.

Hamilton DECA doubles goal for MDA

Hamilton High School’s Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) collected double its fundraising goal as it celebrated national DECA Week Oct. 12-18.

DECA Week allows chapters to showcase the exciting programs offered through membership. Hamilton members conducted Miracle Minutes each day during lunch periods. For one minute, DECA members raced through the lunch room collecting donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). At the end of the week the group had collected $1,200 which was double its goal. All donations will go to the MDA to assist in sending a child with muscular dystrophy to summer camp.

Business education teacher Skip Hay is the Hamilton DECA advisor. DECA is an association for students interested in marketing, management and entrepreneurship that provides opportunities to compete in more than 50 categories related to business career development.

Templeton honors veterans at ceremony

Templeton Middle School will recognize the contributions of American veterans Nov. 7 beginning at 8:30 a.m. at its eighth annual Veterans’ Day Program.

U.S. Marine Corps Sergeant and Iraq War Veteran Ryan Shogren will provide the Veterans’ Address.

A ceremonial color guard from the Sussex Armory will post and retire the colors and will lay wreaths to honor soldiers who became prisoners of war or missing in action. Guest veterans who attend the program will be individually introduced and their military service recognized.

Students will honor the country’s veterans during the ceremony as well.

  • The Student Council will lead the “Pledge of Allegiance.”
  • The Eighth Grade Chorus and Eighth Grade Band will perform a selection of patriotic songs including “The National Anthem,” “Blades of Grass and Pure White Stone” and “God Bless America.”
  • VFW Auxiliary Essay Contest winner will read the essay about “Why American Veterans Should Be Honored.”
  • Eighth Grade Band members Caroline Hope and Frances Weiss will perform “Taps.”

Music teacher Jaye Mier is coordinating a video production that will feature photos of military personnel and veterans who are related to Templeton students. The video will play continuously in the school lobby and will be featured during the ceremony.

Following the program, honored veterans will be invited to participate in a small reception. Area veterans and public officials are invited to attend. Please call the school at (262) 246-6477 by Nov. 3.

In addition to the Nov. 7 ceremony, Templeton students will participate in a Power Lunch Nov. 10 featuring veterans Alex Kolander and Larry Gonzalez.

Templeton Middle School is located at N59 W22490 Silver Spring Drive, Sussex.

October 20, 2008

School Board approves budget, tax levy
The Hamilton School District’s 2008-09 budget will be $47.16 million, which is a 4.45 percent increase over last year. Hamilton School Board members approved the $27.54 million levy. The mill rate will be $9.29, which reflects a 9.1 percent increase.

The tax rate is increasing at a higher rate than actual spending because the district is losing $1.1 million in state aid, a 5.39 percent decrease over 2007-08. In addition property valuation as determined by the state Department of Revenue increased only 2.58 percent. In the last 10 years the district has experienced annual property value increases of eight to 10 percent. Higher property valuation lowers the mill rate.

Hamilton will experience a decrease in state aid despite the fact that district enrollment is up. The state Legislature failed to put new state aid into the budget for the past two years. Instead, state money was put into the tax levy credit, a move that benefits the state’s wealthier communities versus incorporating the funds into the school state aid formula.

Although Hamilton’s tax rate has increased, it is consistent with neighboring districts. Prior to this year, the district tax rate fell 12 of the last 14 years. With this year’s 78 cent increase in the mill rate, Hamilton’s tax rate will return to the 2006 level.

School facilities projects completed during summer
Summer may be a time for vacation for some students and employees, but for the maintenance and custodial staff, it’s a time to prepare facilities for the coming school year.

Buildings and Grounds Manager Jeffrey Grove provided School Board members with an exhaustive list of projects accomplished at each school that included items such as maintenance on mechanical systems, floor refinishing, painting, roof replacements and outdoor projects. The summer’s most notable projects were remodeling of the high school’s main gymnasium, locker rooms and restrooms. In addition, the high school guidance office was remodeled and the baseball field was renovated.

The projects were completed before the start of school despite an ever-increasing use of the high school throughout the year and growing summer school program, according to the report.

School Board member Michael Hyland said the amount of work done at the high school over the summer was phenomenal.

District holds Chapter 220, Open Enrollment numbers
The number of seats available for students to enroll in the district though the Chapter 220 and Open Enrollment programs will be the same in 2009-10 as current levels.

Chapter 220 is a voluntary integration program that brings Milwaukee Public Schools students to suburban districts. The Open Enrollment Program allows students to attend school in other districts if space allows. The School Board voted to maintain 110 seats for Chapter 220 and 62 seats for Open Enrollment at schools that can handle additional students.

While increasing the numbers could bring additional revenue, the district is cautious about increasing enrollment because some schools are nearing or past intended capacity.

Nonproficient students get intervention through various programs
Students who do not reach proficiency levels on standardized assessments get support from a host of programs and interventions at all grade levels. Educational Services and Human Resources Director John Roubik outlined the measures that are taken to help all students reach success.

The high school offers: Club Success, Empower Academy, English Language Learner (ELL) support, Freshman Seminar, Guided Academic Practice, Gateway to HHS, Math Advantage, Portable Assisted Study Sequence and Proficiency Portfolio Advisement.

Templeton has Content Mastery, ELL support, Gateway to TMS, summer school invitational for reading and math, promotional summer school, Reading Resource, Student Training for Academic Responsibility (STAR) Math, Study Center, Success Club and afterschool homework support.

Elementary schools have before- and afterschool tutorial, Early Reading Empowerment, Early Mathematics Empowerment, ELL support, summer school invitational for reading and math, Title I services and writing support.

Youth Options requests approved
A total of 19 high school students requested admission to the Youth Options Program that will allow them to take classes next semester at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha and Milwaukee, Waukesha County Technical College and Wisconsin Lutheran College. Hamilton Principal Candis Mongan noted, as in the past, many students will not be able to take the courses because of scheduling conflicts or full classes. A total of 28 students requested admission to Youth Options last year.

Youth Options is a program mandated by the state that allows students who have completed 10th grade, are in good academic standing and have no disciplinary problems to attend a technical college or university if they have exhausted their high school curriculum.

Woodside celebrates Red Ribbon Week

Woodside Elementary School students will celebrate Red Ribbon Week Oct. 23-29 with activities that promote a drug-free lifestyle. The school’s theme is “Drug Free, The Healthy Way To Be.”

Activities include:

  • Oct. 27 – Students will wear red and white to kick off the week. They will learn about the history of Red Ribbon Week and be encouraged to do healthy activities with their families such as bike riding, walking or playing sports. Red Ribbon stickers and pencils with the “Drug Free, The Healthy Way To Be” theme will be handed out. Students who draw or write about how they can be healthy will be entered in a raffle for a drawing. One winner per classroom will receive a “Drug Free, The Healthy Way To Be” water bottle.
  • Oct. 28 – Students will be encouraged to wear athletic apparel to support a healthy lifestyle, and they will pledge to do one exercise.
  • Oct. 29 – Storyteller Bob Kann will present an entertaining, anti-drug performance that promotes healthy living. Kann’s performance will begin at 1:15 p.m. for students in grades K-2, and at 2:15 p.m. for grades 3-5. The presentation is sponsored by Woodside’s Home and School. In addition, as part of Healthy Lunch Day, students will eat a healthy lunch at school and make another pledge to exercise.

Red Ribbon week got its start in 1988 when drug enforcement agent Enrique Camarena was killed during an investigation into Mexican drug trafficking. In his memory, red ribbons were worn to symbolize the stand against the illegal use of alcohol and other drugs. From this memorial, Red Ribbon Week has turned into a national event. Schools and communities across the nation celebrate this week to renew their commitment to healthy and drug free lifestyles and to show their support for drug and alcohol abuse prevention.

Woodside Elementary School is located at W236 N7465 Woodside Road, Sussex.

HFAC season begins with Christmas special

The Hamilton Fine Arts Center (HFAC) has lined up another performing arts season packed with entertainment for the whole family that begins with an Elvis Christmas performance.

Elvis Christmas special featuring Tony Rocker – Dec. 19
Award-winning Elvis tribute artist, Tony Rocker, and his band, The Comeback Special, invite you to a special holiday celebration. Enjoy the very best songs of Elvis and the holidays, including “Blue Christmas,” “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” and “Santa Bring My Baby Back.” Bring a non-perishable food item for the local food pantry, and enjoy a special meet-and-greet with Tony following the show. Celebrate the holidays with Elvis on Friday, December 19 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors (55+) and $10 for students.

Additional popular performances are being booked. Among the upcoming performances are the following.

Onstage Soiree featuring The Comeback Special – Jan. 16
Put on your dancing shoes and enjoy an evening at the Hamilton Fine Arts Center like never before. Join us for our first annual Onstage Soiree, as we convert the Hamilton Fine Arts Center stage into a club lounge, complete with a full-size dance floor, lounge seating, mood lighting, and the popular 1950s-1970s dance band, The Comeback Special. Delectable desserts and beverages will be available for purchase. Seating is limited for this special event. The party starts at 7 p.m. on Friday, January 16. Tickets are $20 for adults and seniors and $10 for students.

Think Floyd USA-The American Pink Floyd Show – Feb. 27
Performing Pink Floyd’s classic hits from legendary albums “Dark Side of the Moon,” “Wish You Were Here,” “Animals,” and the Pink Floyd classic, “The Wall,” nationally known Think Floyd USA take you on a musical flight through the Pink Floyd galaxy. Featuring dynamic sound effects and a phenomenal light show, you’ll “think Floyd” was on the Hamilton Fine Arts Center stage on Friday, February 27 at 8 p.m.. Tickets are $20 for adults and seniors and $10 for students.

ComedySportz presented by Cub Scout Pack 62 – March 28
ComedySportz is back by popular demand. ComedySportz is competitive improv – two teams battle for laughs and points as they make up scenes, games and songs on the spot. The audience votes for winners, and a referee calls the fouls. Volunteers from the audience are encouraged to join the players in the fun, fast-paced comedy for an evening to remember – or live down – for years to come. It is entertainment perfect for the whole family. Join us for laughs on Saturday, March 28, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 for general admission. All proceeds go to Cub Scout Pack 62.

Tickets may be purchased online at www.HamiltonFineArtsCenter.com or by visiting the HFAC box office on Wednesdays from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. The Hamilton Fine Arts Center is located at W220 N6151 Town Line Road, Sussex. No phone orders accepted, please.

Stay tuned for more entertainment that will be booked in the coming weeks.