Friday, May 26, 2017

News and Notes: 3.26

No. I didn't mistake a comma for a period. This is the amount in scholarship money offered to the Whitmore Lake High School Class of 2017. That is a lot of incentives that colleges and universities across the country have put in front of the young men and women who are graduating from WLHS on June 4. In fact, it the highest dollar amount I can remember in my 15 years as principal. 
The amount was revealed at last night's Senior Awards Night.  It was the 31st consecutive time our school has presented the seniors with formal recognition of achievement, scholarship and community service.  It is, by far, my favorite night of the year.  Why?  It is the perfect blend of honoring the seniors who put a good deal of effort into making themselves better prepared for their next venture AND introducing them to a whole community of adults working both in and out of our schools to make sure those efforts are rewarded.   
Below is a listing of students honored and the award/scholarship received
A huge thank you to our Community Scholarship Fund for their efforts in helping so many students get financial support for college. Their board is made up of retired and current WLPS staff, parents, community members and alumni. Because of them, half of this year's graduates received a scholarship!  Amazing. You can find out more about their mission and how you can support it on their website
We'll continue to celebrate the Class of 2017 with a brunch and College Decision Day/Step Up assembly next Thursday morning along with baccalaureate in the evening. And then we'll all join together for graduation on June 4 at 2 p.m. We'll be broadcasting graduation live on our Facebook page, so if you have or are a loved one who can't make it, they can tune in there instead.
Congratulations, again, to the Class of 2017.
What a great day to be a Trojan.

Taking #TrojanPride Locally, State and Worldwide
Remember that scene in Mary Poppins where with a simple count of 1, 2...and a jump, she and the cast stepped into the chalk drawing on the sidewalk. Whether our students are learning about the physics of roller coasters, forts on Mackinaw Island or how long it took Michelangelo to paint the Sistine Chapel, I imagine many a-teacher has wished they had the powers to count 1..2.. and jump into the textbooks to really show the students what they are learning about. Luckily, at WLPS, we are intentional about providing opportunities for our students to get into the thick of what they are learning about.
Within the past two months, our 5th graders headed to Howell Nature Center for the long-standing tradition of 5th grade camp (Ms. Matovski took some great pictures which are posted on our Facebook page HERE). Seventh and 8th graders trekked to Washington D.C. (If you haven't viewed the video showcasing a highlight of the trip, you should check it out HERE); A group of juniors and seniors explored London, Paris and Barcelona. Ms. Lemons took her Physics class to Cedar Point, and the list goes on.
Knowing the benefit of experience what they are learning about first-hand, along with the camaraderie and independence gained from an overnight trip, Ms. Otterman presented to the board a proposal to take next year's 3rd and 4th graders on an overnight trip to Mackinaw Island to compliment their Michigan History curriculum. It was approved unanimously by our Board of Education. And a fun side-note, is a district parent, Caro Uhlemann-Short from Bob Rogers Travel will be coordinating the trip.
On their itinerary includes but is not limited to visit to the Historic Mill Creek Discover Park including a Zip Line Adventure Tour. They will explore Colonial Michilimackinac and Fort Mackinac along with a carriage ride around the island.
I'm excited to hear about our students' experiences and encourage 3rd and 4th grade parents to keep an eye out for more information coming your way soon.
Our current 9th and 10th graders have an opportunity to head to the Swiss Alps, Italy (including Venice, Florence and Rome, and the French Riviera) for the WLHS Trip Club 2019 Spring Break Trip. Students will dive into geography, history and culture of Europe.

As I mentioned above, over this year's Spring Break, twenty-four of our WLHS students traveled to Europe to visit iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower and the London Eye, tour Stonehenge and the English countryside, and relax on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea in Barcelona. Students on the trip did a Twitter takeover of the @wlschools twitter account. Check out the tweets in April to get a glimpse of the amazing experience the students had.
Parents of current 9th and 10th graders interested in the trip need to attend the parent meeting coming up on Thursday, June 1 at 6:30 PM in room A105. At the meeting they will learn more details about the itinerary, discuss cost and payment options and review enrollment procedures. 
If you can't make it to the meeting but are interested in learning more, please contact Jill Henry ( and Candy Huddleston ( ASAP.
Blue Out for Kindness
Helping reinforce WLES' commitment to cultivating a culture of kindness within their building and the Whitmore Lake community, yesterday they hosted a Blue out for Kindness. WLES PTA sold shirts for the day (which also served as a fundraiser for the upcoming June Field Day) and encouraged all students and staff to wear blue. Another great reason (though, do we really need more) to shout Go Blue! Check out the full album of pictures HERE.
Class of 2030
The end of the year is full of celebrations, including our Early Childhood Center Preschool graduation! Here are a few pictures of the members of the Class of 2030 to help kick off your Memorial Day weekend with an extra dose of adorable.

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