West Central earns AdvancED accreditation
Saturday, 09 September 2017 23:47

FRANCESVILLE - Superintendent Don Street, elementary school principal Dan Zylstra, and middle/high school principal Pat Culp presented the AdvancED External Review Team Report to the West Central School Board at its September meeting.

The report highlighted the powerful practices occurring as well as improvement priorities for the district. The review team visit occurred during the spring and consisted of five educators from outside the district.

The report is based on needs identified in a self-assessment, conversations with school stakeholders, the examination of school artifacts, and observations. Marci Kennedy and Zylstra served as chairs of the committee. West Central School Corporation earned the distinction of accreditation by AdvancED Accreditation Commission for the positive work at West Central.

In other business, Zylstra and Culp reported that they presented a Bullying Prevention Information session, open to all parents. The presentation explained the Indiana Code for Bullying, school procedure, and other helpful information. The principals explained that they must know about situations in order to help anyone with a bullying situation.

WCHS student Corri Shepherd led a presentation for the school board on the Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) national conference. Corri, Renee Conner, Caitlynn Brigman, along with teacher sponsor Stephanie Thilges, attended the conference in July. Corri and Renee received silver medals and Caitlynn received a bronze. The school board congratulated the students on placing and representing West Central, and expressed its appreciation for the "outstanding" presentation given by Corri.

The superintendent reported on the following:

  • Provided information from the Indiana Department of Education on the A-F Timeline, ISTEP on-line testing requirements, and the upcoming fall regional meetings.
  • Reported on the Summer Food Service Program received outstanding comments from a state review.
  • Provided information about a future Work Ethic Certification for students.
  • Reported a recycling grant has been granted from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to assist with recycling plastic bottles.
  • Reviewed the utility usage, along with the wind turbine production.


Personnel items:

The board approved the following resignations as presented: cafeteria employee Lori McIlvain, instructional assistant Morgan Danford, and Reba Shepherd of Cooperative School Services

Approval was given to the employment of the following, as presented:

  • Jessica Kaeb – Instructional Assistant
  • Lea Overman – Instructional Assistant
  • Holly Benesh – Instructional Assistant
  • Laura Faler – Instructional Assistant
  • Stacy Anliker – Instructional Assistant
  • Courtney Mestrovich – Instructional Assistant
  • Shane Pack – Head Middle School Football Coach
  • Ike Grevers – Assistant Middle School Football Coach
  • Victoria Oliver – Head Middle School Cheerleading Coach
  • Jerilean Hendrickson – Cafeteria
  • Toni Weltmeyer – Cooperative School – Occupational Therapist

The board approved the employment transfer of Katie Bell, Cooperative School job

Approval was given to the maternity leave of absence for Jennifer Istre.

Conference requests were approved for the following:

  • Kellis Gutwein and Leanna Nielsen – Writing Remix/Smekens Conference- Nov. 6-7.
  • Marilyn Bernal and Jennifer Byrne – Growth Mindset & Genius Hour – Oct. 3-4.
  • Pat Culp – AdvancED Conference – Sept. 21-22.
  • Ashley Reinhold and Amber Leman – NCTM Conference – Nov. 30- Dec. 1.
  • Monica Gainor – Trauma Informed School Conference – Nov. 5-7.
  • Alicia Cotner – 2017 Indiana Liberty Federation Annual Conference – Nov. 13-15.
  • Brian Pilarski – Anatomy in Clay – Sept. 15-16.

Field trip requests were approved for the following:

  • West Central High School Choir – Sunday performance – Sept. 17.
  • FFA – FFA National Convention – Oct. 25-28.
  • West Central High School Band – Midwest Honor Brass Ensemble – Wheaton College, IL – Sept. 15.

The school board approved the second reading of the Criminal History Information-Applicants and Contractors, Criminal History Checks-School Employees, Reporting Child Abuse/Neglect, Transfer Students, and Teacher Appreciation Grants policies.

The board conducted a public hearing for the 2018 budget, capital projects plan, transportation plan and bus replacement plan. Superintendent Street went over line items in the budget. Board president Jeff Lowry asked for questions or comments; hearing none, the 2018 budget hearing was closed.

The board reviewed property insurance quotes for the 2017-18 school year. The board voted to approve the property and liability insurance renewal and cyber insurance with Regions Insurance as presented.

The board reviewed the July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017 Extra-Curricular Account Balances.


Principal Reports:

Zylstra reported that on Aug. 21, students had the chance to view the solar eclipse.

All K-5 students have been benchmarked in reading and math, and the new schedule for interventions is underway.

The PTC finished its autumn “No Hassle” fundraiser on Aug.28 and will hold its autumn Port-a-Pit on Sept. 8.

Staff has spent their professional development time collaborating regarding the new online science textbook as well as more training on the math curriculum and its digital content.

Culp informed the board that the during PLC time on Thursday mornings, math teachers are reviewing and discussing ISTEP data. Teachers are specifically seeking any common themes or trends in the data to improve the instruction within the classroom. Lead by the English department, the remainder of the staff is working on improving student comprehension of nonfiction texts. Teachers are using strategies modeled by the English department on partner reading, finding details, and recalling the basic gist of nonfiction texts.

Homecoming week is Sept. 18-22, culminating in the football game against North Judson. Students are designing various activities, including dress-up days, a pep session, and dance to celebrate the week.

On Saturday, Sept.30, the FFA is hosting the annual Farmer's Breakfast (8-10 a.m.).

West Central middle/high school extends a huge "thank you" to Pulaski Memorial Hospital for the wheelchair recently donated to the school. The chair has already served as a blessing to the students of WCMS/WCHS.