VWES Turkey Trot and Pancake Breakfast

Join us for our Turkey Trot and Pancake Breakfast on Saturday, Nov. 4th from 8-10:30 a.m. at Van Wert Elementary School. Pre-register by Friday, Oct. 27th or register the day of the race beginning at 8:30 a.m. The race begins at 9:30 a.m. Registration fee is one can of food per participant to be donated to the Salvation Army. All proceeds support our wellness initiatives, especially the Roadrunners Program. 

Van Wert H.S. earns 1st place in the 2nd annual Makerfest STEM Competition!

Van Wert High School competed in the 2nd annual Makerfest STEM Event held in Lima, Ohio.  Over 30 schools from the area competed in 19 STEM-related events.  Over 1400 students competed in various competitions.  Van Wert High School was awarded 1st place overall among over 30 schools.  The competition event results for Van Wert are listed...

Business Simulation Challenge (2nd place):  Nicole Clay, Jared Hernandez, Dalton Heppeard
Cupcake Catastrophe: (1st place):   Aeris Blakeley, Anna Reichert, Storm Matthews
Engineering in a Box (2nd place):  Ryan Chen, Sydney Maller, Jenna Covey
Explosion Mindcraft (3rd place):  Andrew Hamblett,  Zach Lape, Angel Haller
First Robotics (3rd place):  Nick Carter, Noah Carter, Michael Etter
Video Game Design (3rd place):  Lauren Cooper, Wesley Wagner, Anthony Salcido
Pallet Furniture Assembly (1st place):  Brad Fuerst, Nathan Bidlack, Korey Oechsle
Math Challenge (3rd place):  Sterling Rigdon, Madison Turnwald, Zach Lape
Operation Challenge (3rd place):  Chloe Brake, Madison Jarrett, Madison Turnwald
Animation Design (1st place):  Angel Haller
Logo/Branding Design (3rd place):  Caton Williamson
Photo Manipulation (2nd place):  Heaven Winters
Photo Manipulation (3rd place):  Katie McVaigh
Photography (2nd place):  Brook Zimmerman
Engineering CAD (2nd place):  Nathan Bidlack
Engineering CAD (3rd place):  Nick Carter

This was Van Wert High School's first time attending and competing at Makerfest.  Coaches Bob Spath and Kerry Koontz were excited and proud of the students!!!

Complete the VW Football Stadium Survey

The Van Wert football stadium online survey is open! Please be sure to read the articles regarding all 3 options and make an informed decision now through October 10th.

Read Option A here: http://www.thevwindependent.com/…/vwcs-provides-info-on-op…/

Read Option B here: http://www.thevwindependent.com/…/stadium-option-b-build-n…/

Read Option C here: http://www.timesbulletin.com/…/Option-C-Buil…/-3/1168/211971

Please be mindful this is an online survey only. For those needing assistance, you may visit the Brumback Library or the Van Wert County Council on Aging located on Fox Road.

Click to take the survey! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VanWert2017

Van Wert graduate illustrates first book

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Becca Johnson spent her youth drawing comics for fun, these days she’s making a career out of illustration, with a book, “Kindness in a Scary World”, recently released. The Van Wert High School graduate of 2013 spent a lot of her time in high school in the art room and knew she wanted to go into an art related career. “All four years of high school I took the art class,” said Johnson. “When I was younger I got really into graphic novels and comic books, and drawing was always a way for me to communicate.”

Johnson recalled drawing comics for her sister at a young age. After high school Johnson attended Huntington University for digital media arts and animation where she graduated earlier this year in May. In the summer of her senior year, Johnson was hired to illustrate a book. “I was hired by my author, Rebecca Hubbard,” said Johnson. “I met her through a past client I had.”

Johnson worked on the illustrations on and off during the school year and finished it shortly after she graduated. She noted that she was given artistic freedom to interpret what the author wrote. Hubbard would send Johnson the script of each page and Johnson would send layout sketches back. “They were in a sketchbook,” said Johnson. “It was drawings of what I had in mind, where the characters were placed, what the characters looked like, and then I would get them approved by her.” After approval, Johnson had to continue the process which included inking and re-sizing.

Hubbard, a practicing children’s psychologist, wrote the children’s book as the start of a series to help children cope with different issues in life. “The whole series aims to help families with kids who have gone through different types of trauma,” said Johnson. “In this case the book is focusing on terrorism.”

“Kindness in a Scary World” was released Sept. 8, 2017, and follows a young child who sees an act of terrorism on the news. The character doesn’t quite understand why their parents are feeling the way they are feeling. The book takes readers into the emotions of the child who is trying to understand what is happening in the world.

“I personally connected with the character because 9/11 happened when I was a young child,” said Johnson. “So trying to figure out those emotions I had, helped me connect with the character in this book.” The book also includes a guide to help parents talk to their children about things that are happening on the news.

Johnson had artistic freedom when it came to the images, and because she connected the character, Johnson found herself drawing the character’s home to resemble her family’s home growing up, and imagining the character’s actions as her own as a child. Currently three other books are planned in Hubbard’s series, all of which Johnson is set to illustrate.

These days, Johnson spends her time in Bloomington, Indiana. She advises any aspiring artist to keep practicing and to never be afraid to ask for help. She said the entire process has been surreal. “It’s really been crazy; the process moves really quickly,” said Johnson. “It’s weird to see the book come up on Amazon for people to order. The amount of supportive people in my life that have said they want to order it has really meant a lot to me.”

VW Football Stadium Survey Now Open!

The VW football stadium online survey is now open! Please be sure to read the articles regarding all 3 options and make an informed decision now through October 10th.

Read Option A here.

Read Option B here.

Read Option C here.

Click to take the survey! https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VanWert2017

 

Please be mindful this is an online survey only. For those needing assistance, you may visit the Brumback Library or the Van Wert County Council on Aging located on Fox Road.

VW Football Stadium Option 3 of 3

The Van Wert City Schools Stadium Facilities Committee is looking at three options to restore or replace the current Van Wert High School Football Facility and in creating a first-class, state-of-the-art facility that will serve the school system and the community for future generations.

This is the third of three options the committee is considering. Following the presentation of all three options, the committee will conduct an online survey of the community to assist the committee in making its final recommendation to the Board of Education. A link to the survey can be found at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VanWert2017.

The survey will begin on Sept. 30, 2017 and end on Oct. 10, 2017. For those who do not have access to the internet, the Van Wert County Brumback Library and the Van Wert County Council on Aging have agreed to allow concerned citizens to use their facility during regular business hours to complete the survey.

The Stadium Committee has determined that something has to be done. The current age and condition of Eggerss Stadium has compelled them to act, and that time is now.

Option C: Building a new facility at Van Wert High School

Building a new facility at the High School allows for the students and athletes to have their home field located at the same location as their school. The football team will be able to enjoy the simplicity of using the same locker room for games and practices. The construction will include a new 3,000 bleacher seat home stadium which will be enclosed with a brick facing and siding in the rear and sides and new press boxes (home and visitor).

Both home and visitor bleachers will be handicapped accessible. A new multi-functional building will include additional restrooms and concessions as well as locker rooms for football and other outdoor athletic teams. This option will allow for multiple users of the field, including the Band to practice on the field during the school day.

The game field will also be home to our daily practice facilities and locker rooms. There will be no need to transport equipment downtown on game days (Football and Band).

Additionally, having lights at this location will allow the track and soccer programs to host events which extend into the evening without concern of darkness. Furthermore, it will allow for the vast majority of varsity athletics to be played at the high school site (golf, swimming and bowling being exceptions). Eggerss Stadium would continue to be used during the fundraising and construction phase of the new facility. A new artificial turf field can be used by other sports, physical education classes and our marching band. Maintenance costs will be less expensive than at the current facility, and this is the least expensive of the options.

Things to consider with this option are that the facility will not be in the downtown area, thus making it more difficult for people to walk to the games. Wind may be more of a factor for games and spectator comfort. A new facility at the high school will put the fans further away from the game, and although adequate parking is available, the distance to the seats from the parking location may actually be a greater distance to walk. Finally, the concession stand/restroom complex will be further from the stadium than it would be at Eggerss Stadium.

Below is a list of the estimated costs:

  1. Locker Room, Toilet Room, 2-Ticket Booths, Concessions-Storage Facilities – 10,000 square feet at $155 a square foot for a total cost of $1,550,000
  2. Site Pavement - Concrete – 35,000 square feet at $6 a square foot for a total cost of $210,000
  3. Relocate Existing Bleachers – 2,000 seats for a total cost of $235,000
  4. New Home Bleachers – 3,000 seats for a total cost of $708,000
  5. Home and Visitor Press Boxes – $160,000
  6. Stadium Wrap (Three Sides Brick w/Aluminum Back – $150,000
  7. Football Field Lighting – $240,000
  8. Tear Down and Remove Existing Structure – $150,000
  9. “Cougar Wall” With Graphics – $30,000
  10. Artificial Turf – $699,000
  11. Fencing – $17,000

The subtotal thus far would be $4,149,000. Another $75,000 would be needed Permits, Soil Boring, and Due Diligence putting the subtotal at $4,224,000. A 5 percent ($211,200) Contingency and a 6.5 percent AE Fee ($288,288) would also be needed.

The grand total of Option C would be $4,723,488.

The survey will go live tonight at midnight. On Saturday, Sept. 30 committee members will be discussing the options on 1220 WERT Radio from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.

Read about Option A here.

Read about Option B here

VWCS Presents Football Stadium Option 2 of 3

Editor’s note: This is the second of three articles providing options for either the renovation or replacement of Van Wert City School District’s Eggerss Stadium football facility. Each article will deal with one of three options developed by a committee formed to research the issue.

The Van Wert City Schools Stadium Facilities Committee is looking at three options to restore or replace the current Van Wert High School football facility and in creating a first-class, state-of-the-art facility that will serve the school system and the community for future generations.

This is the second of three options the committee is considering. Following the presentation of all three options, the committee will conduct an online survey of the community to assist the committee in making its final recommendation to the Board of Education. A link to the survey can be found at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VanWert2017.

The survey will begin on September 30 and end on October 10. For those who do not have access to the Internet, Brumback Library and the Van Wert County Council on Aging have agreed to allow concerned citizens to use their facilities during regular business hours to complete the survey.

The Stadium Committee has determined that something has to be done. The current age and condition of Eggerss Stadium has compelled the committee to act, and that time is now.

Option B: Building a new facility at the current Eggerss Stadium location

Building a new stadium in the current location will allow many Van Wert fans to walk to the game and enjoy our downtown. It will be constructed close to the field as is the current stadium, allowing fans a view of the game unique to Van Wert football. Aesthetically, it will continue to be one of the finest venues in the Western Buckeye League.

The renovations will include a new 3,000-bleacher seat home stadium that will feature a brick facing and siding in the rear and sides and new press boxes (home and visitor). The construction of a new multifunctional building will include locker rooms, restrooms, concessions, and ticket sales. Additional parking and new fencing will be built on the lawn south of the current field. A new 2,000-seat visitor section, south end zone bleacher section for the band, an artificial turf field, additional parking area, and new fencing will complete the complex.

The proud tradition of the Cougar Pride wall, as well as the ability to stand along the south end zone fence, will continue to allow generations of players, students, and fans to enjoy Van Wert’s storied football tradition. This new facility will be up to code, have adequate handicapped seating on the home and visitor sides, and will be less expensive to maintain than the current facility.

This option provides limited parking and it will be used for football only. This is the most expensive of the three options (click here for a line-by-line cost analysis of Option B).

Tomorrow: Option C: Building a new stadium facility at the current high school-middle school site.

Be sure you don't miss option A! Click here for the article. 

Renovate or Replace? Option 1 of 3 for the VWCS Football Stadium

Editor’s note: This is the first of three articles providing options for either the renovation or replacement of Van Wert City School District’s Eggerss Stadium football facility. Each article will deal with one of three options developed by a committee formed to research the issue.

The Van Wert City Schools Stadium Facilities Committee is looking at three options to restore or replace the current Van Wert High School football facility and in creating a first-class, state-of-the-art facility that will serve the school system and the community for future generations.

This is the first of three options the committee is considering. Following the presentation of all three options, the committee will conduct an online survey of the community to assist the committee in making its final recommendation to the Board of Education. A link to the survey can be found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VanWert2017.

The survey will begin on September 30 and end on October 10. For those who do not have access to the Internet, the Brumback Library and Van Wert County Council on Aging have agreed to allow concerned citizens to use their facilities during regular business hours to complete the survey.

The Stadium Committee has determined that something has to be done. The current age and condition of Eggerss Stadium has compelled us to act, and that time is now.

Option A: Renovate the Current Facility at Eggerss Stadium

Eggerss Stadium has been a center piece of the Van Wert community for 81 years. This historic structure is centrally located within the community, allowing many of the district’s football fans to walk to the game and enjoy the downtown area. Built in 1936, the stadium is located close to the field, allowing fans a view of the game unique to Van Wert football. Aesthetically, this may be the finest venue in the Western Buckeye League.

The restoration/renovations will include concrete repairs and re-facing to the stadium handicapped seating on the visitor side and new press boxes (home and visitor). The construction of a new multifunctional building will include locker rooms, restrooms, concessions, and ticket sales. Additional parking and new fencing will be built on the lawn south of the current field. A new 2,000-seat visitor bleacher section, south end-zone bleacher section for the band, and an artificial turf field will complete the complex.

The proud tradition of the Cougar Pride wall and the ability to stand along the south end zone fence will continue to allow generations of players, students, and fans to enjoy Van Wert’s storied football tradition.

This option provides limited additional parking. Furthermore, it is expected that ongoing maintenance costs of preserving the current stadium will be at a higher level than the other options (click here for a line item cost analysis of Option A)

Tomorrow: Option B: Build a new stadium on the current Eggerss Stadium site.

Stay Informed About the Future of Eggerss Stadium

Don’t miss the information-packed articles in the Times Bulletin and the VW Independent about the options for Eggerss Stadium. Articles will run Sept 27, 28 and 29 with the community survey opening on Sept. 30th – Oct. 10th.

A link to the survey can be found at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VanWert2017.

Make an informed decision and make your voice heard! Online assistance to take the survey is available at the Van Wert County Council on Aging and the Brumback Library.

Learn more here

Read about option 1 here

Homecoming Supper for Scholarships!

September 29th kicks off Homecoming weekend and the Van Wert Federation of Teachers will be hosting its annual Scholarship Supper which raises money to provide scholarships for high school seniors. Dinner consists of brats, burgers, and hot dogs along with baked beans, potato salad, applesauce, chips, and desserts.  The supper is before the home football game from from 4:30-7:00 on Friday, September 29 in the Goedde Building Gymnasium. Tickets can be purchased from any Van Wert Teacher or at the door. The Cost is  $7.00 for Adults; $4.00 for 10 and under. 

Marching Band Celebrates 90 Years - Alumni Performance This Friday Night

The Marching Band's fall program celebrates the 90 year history of the band program and is titled "WHAT LIES BETWEEN".  "What Lies Between" is "THE DASH" inspired by the Linda Ellis poem "The Dash", which speaks of the dash between birth and death being the most important part of the time span.  THE DASH is what gives our lives meaning and for us (the band) THE DASH is what gives the program meaning.  The Dash is what defines us.  "It matters not how much we own - the cars, the house the cash...what matters is how we live and love, and how we spend our dash".  1928 - 2018 (and beyond).  

In celebrating the 90th Anniversary of the VW Bands we hope you will join us on September 1 for the home game against Wapakoneta. Different this year - Alumni will perform at Pregame and/or Halftime. For halftime we have selected two tunes that the Alumni will perform that evening. MACARTHUR PARK (from the Jay Hall years) and SWEET CHILD O' MINE (from the Anthony Alessandrini era) will be featured at halftime (no marching!). Of course we'll also play a Cougar Fight Song!

 
 

Second Year Gets Started for CEO Program at VWHS

Stacy Adam, Director of Economic Development for Van Wert County, addressed a group of senior students at VWHS on Thursday.  The group of 27 Van Wert High School seniors will be participating in an internship throughout the school year.  Students will gain first-hand knowledge, exposure and experience in a variety of career fields and will be reporting to local businesses every day throughout the school year.  Such career fields include:  Accounting, Nursing, Fire Fighting/EMT, Customer Service, Education, Engineering, Marketing, Real Estate, Human Resources, Psychology, Graphic Design, Physical Therapy, Sports Management and Marketing, and Medicine.

Kerry Koontz, Careers Counselor at Van Wert High School, continues to promote partnerships and career awareness within the business and school communities. This is the second year of the CAREER EDUCATION OPPORTUNITY (CEO) program where Koontz serves as the CEO Internship Coordinator.  

This year, Van Wert High School students are partnering with the following 15 businesses...

Alliance Automation
Bee Gee Realty
Central Mutual Insurance Company
Kenn-feld Group
National Door & Trim
Northwest Ohio Screenprinting
Rick Sealscott, CPA
Westwood Behavioral Center
Van Wert County Hospital
Van Wert Elementary School
Van Wert Fire Department
Van Wert Manor
Vancrest
YMCA
YWCA

VWCS Rebrands with New Websites/Logos

Van Wert City Schools recently announced its visual rebranding, including the launch of the newly rebuilt and reimagined website, vwcs.net. Van Wert City Schools has also adopted several logos, which include the new slogan: “Education — Innovation — Tradition”.

“Education is our first and foremost priority for our students,” explained Bill Clifton, VWCS administrative assistant to the superintendent. “Innovation encompasses our belief that the world is constantly changing and we must adapt our methods to best prepare our students for tomorrow.

“And finally, tradition, because we believe that our past helps shape our future and we cannot move forward without remembering where we came from,” Clifton added.

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VWCS has always prided itself on being an innovator within the classroom and wanted a better way of showcasing its students’ experiences with the community.

A district website, as well as four new building websites, went live August 1. VWCS also plans to add a new athletic website in the coming months. The new websites were created with the help of VWCS alumna Taylor Ford (class of 2011) and included several enhancements:

  • Simplified platform for organization and ease of viewing.
  • Responsive design to optimize user experience across devices.

Easier access for those maintaining the site so information is always up-to-date.

Van Wert City Schools developed their Strategic Plan in 2016 which identified Public Relations as one of the top five goals. VWCS continually tries to stay relevant in today’s world and creating a formal plan was the catalyst for change. “It’s essential to find ways to market ourselves in today’s world,” said Clifton. “Our former superintendent, Ken Amstutz, understood the importance of educating our community on what we do and made the implementation of our district vision a priority.”

District residents should visit each of the websites to gain a better understanding of what VWCS students are learning and achieving every day. They can navigate the various menu options by clicking on the three bars in the upper left-hand corner of the screen. District websites include the following:

Van Wert City Schools make national, state, and local headlines