Kennett High School Football Team Welcomes Honorary Captains

When the Kennett High School football team took the field for its first home game of the season, a very courageous little boy led the way.gray-1-small

On Halloween 2012, when he was two years old, Grayson Savery was diagnosed with a form of pediatric brain cancer, medullary fibrillary astrocytoma. Grayson’s tumor is enmeshed within his brain stem, the powerhouse of the brain, and entwined within the nerves that control major gross and sensory reactions, such as breathing and swallowing. In January 2013, Grayson began what would total 18 months of weekly chemotherapy at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). Grayson’s tumor is currently stable.

“He is a larger-than-life kid,” his mother, Mrs. Jaclyn Savery, says. “Through it all, he always wanted to live.”

This year Grayson began first grade at New Garden Elementary School. In honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, the Kennett High School varsity football team named Grayson and his older brother Aydan honorary captains for their game against Chichester High School on Friday, September 2.

It was an exciting and emotional night. Before the game, the Savery family was given a private tour of the campus, and Grayson and Aydan received custom Kennett High School football jerseys and helmets. Both boys were all smiles as they raced around the gymnasium and put on their jerseys in the locker room.

Fully outfitted in Kennett Blue Devil gear, Grayson and Aydan waited patiently to lead the football team onto the field. The Savery brothers were greeted with vigorous applause as they rushed onto the field with the entire Kennett High School Football them behind them. As the honorary captains, Grayson and Aydan were then asked to participate in the annual coin toss to begin the game.

As the game got under way, Grayson and Aydan watched eagerly from the stands and waited for their biggest moment of the night. At half-time, they were called onto the field to run one of the best plays of the night.

As the brothers marched onto the field for the big play, their parents looked on with delight.

“It was an amazing moment,” Mrs. Savery said with a smile. The Savery family may be fighting the odds, but it is clear that the love they have for each other is a force to be reckoned with.

Grayson and Aydan lined up on the field and Chichester High School’s defensive players lined up against them. The officials gave the signal and the pgray-3-smallay began. Grayson took the handoff, swerved to the right and left, and rushed into the end zone for a brilliant touchdown that was met with roars of delight from the student section, who waited for Grayson in the end zone.

“This is amazing!” Grayson exclaimed, still holding onto his game football. Both brothers were all smiles—and wanted to continue playing with the team.

Then there was another revelation: The Chichester football team, marching band, and cheerleading team had organized a campaign to collect more than $500 in gifts for the Savery family.

“He’s such an inspiration,” said Chichester cheerleading coach Mrs. Karen Baney. Having experienced the battle against cancer with her own family members, Mrs. Baney understood the family’s challenges and decided to help out.

It was an extraordinary night. The community and the Kennett Consolidated School District came together to support a little boy who is truly larger than life.

“The Kennett Consolidated School District has always rallied around ‘our own,’ and we want Grayson and his family to know that they have our unwavering support. That is what we do,” says superintendent Dr. Barry Tomasetti. “Our prayers for Grayson’s complete recovery are with him each and every day.”

This is not the first time the Kennett Consolidated School District has united to support a member of its community. Last spring, the District was shocked to learn that a high school student, John Paul Dean, had been diagnosed with stage four non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

“It was very gratifying to see how our school community rallied around this young man and his family,” Dr. Tomasetti comments. “John Paul demonstrated unwavering spirit and courage during his time of recovery. His cancer is in remission and he has moved on to the next step in life, as he entered Emory Riddle University this fall.”

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Kennett Consolidated School District Flu Clinic

November 1st, 2016 – 2:30PM to 6:30PM

Stopping the Flu Starts with You!

The school year is underway, and you’re feeling like you have your family’s routine down pat. You’re making sure the kids are on top of their homework. You’re getting them to and from after-school activities. Have you also made plans to get you and your family vaccinated against the flu?

School season means flu season—the flu virus is most active from October to May. While the flu causes mild illness in most people (think fever, sore throat, body aches, among other symptoms), it can lead to serious health complications and even death in others. Young children, older adults, pregnant women, and people with certain chronic health conditions are at a greater risk for serious complications.

Getting vaccinated is the #1 way to prevent the flu. In fact, everyone 6 months or older should get vaccinated each year, as early as possible. We are partnering with the Chester County Health Department to offer a flu vaccine clinic to community members.

When: November 1st, 2016 – 2:30PM to 6:30PM

Where: Kennett High School

Registration: Same day, on site registration only

Please print out and bring the forms below:

Flyer

Flyer (en Español)

Vaccine Information Sheet

Vaccine Information Sheet (en Español)

Consent Form

Consent Form (en Español)

For more information, visit www.chesco.org/health/flu. Same day, onsite registration only. If you have health insurance, bring your cards. All insurance types, including medical assistance, are welcome.

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Kennett Consolidated School District Wins National Communications Award

This year the Kennett Consolidated School District was recognized by the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA) for its excellence in print media. The 2016 NSPRA Publications and Electronic Media Awards recognize outstanding education publications and marketing/informational materials (print and electronic), video/TV/radio programs, social media and websites.

School districts nationwide were invited to submit at least two editions of their district newsletter. According to NSPRA’s web site, entries were judged according to the size of the school district, so publications competed only against those from similar organizations. There were 965 entries in this year’s contest. The Kennett Consolidated School District was one of 147 school districts to receive the Award of Honorable Mention.

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Kennett Consolidated School District Hosts First Annual STEM Family Night

This year, Kennett Consolidated School District held its first fun-filled STEM Family Night. The evening was designed to encourage dynamic interactions among family members and increase awareness of the District’s STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) opportunities. Attendees participated in activities that focused on STEM principles by encouraging students and their families to build, create, and learn together.

Kennett Consolidated School District staff and students volunteered to operate 22 STEM activity stations. Attendees had the opportunity to explore 3-D printing, prepare liquid-nitrogen ice cream, conduct chemistry experiments, learn about the Blue Demon Robotics program, compete in dragster races, play math games, and test out computer apps.

Specific activity stations introduced students to what the Kennett Consolidated STEM program has to offer. One popular station was the IED and Architectural Engineering Table. At this station, students were introduced to courses such as engineering design, principles of engineering, civil engineering, and architecture and aerospace engineering. All 22 interactive stations were designed for children ages kindergarten through eighth grade.

“My favorite activity was the chemistry slime experiment,” exclaimed Mary D. Lang Kindergarten Center student Luca DeAngelis. Luca, who said he wants to be a scientist when he grows up, was accompanied by his father, Kennett Middle School Principal Mr. Lorenzo DeAngelis.

“STEM Family Night is a great event for the entire family,” Mr. DeAngelis said. “Parents have the opportunity to learn about the District’s STEM program, and students have the freedom to explore through age-appropriate activities.”

For more information regarding Kennett Consolidated School District’s STEM program, please contact the District’s math and science curriculum supervisor, Dr. Lydia Hallman, at lhallman@kcsd.org.

Click here to view a short video about the night.

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Kennett Middle School Recognized as a School to Watch

For the second time since 2012, Kennett Middle School was recognized by the Pennsylvania Don Eichhorn Schools: Schools to Watch program.

The Pennsylvania Schools to Watch program annually recognizes a small number of diverse, high-performing, growth-oriented middle schools that demonstrate academic excellence, developmental responsiveness to the unique challenges of early adolescence, social equity, and school structures and processes that support and sustain the path to excellence. The middle school joins a very select cadre of 31 schools in Pennsylvania and more than 370 schools across the country that have earned the distinction of being Schools to Watch; only four others are located in the Delaware Valley Region.

A Pennsylvania Don Eichhorn School is a school that has made marked progress in meeting all of the nationally endorsed criteria for high-performing middle schools, including the following:

  • Academic Excellence. High-performing schools with middle grades are academically excellent. They challenge all students to use their minds well.
  • Developmental Responsiveness. High-performing schools with middle grades are sensitive to the unique developmental challenges of early adolescence.
  • Social Equity. High-performing schools with middle grades are socially equitable, democratic, and fair. They provide every student with high-quality teachers, resources, learning opportunities, and support. They keep positive options open for all students.
  • Organizational Structures and Processes. High-performing schools with middle grades are learning organizations that establish norms, structures, and organizational arrangements to support and sustain their trajectory toward excellence.

As part of the evaluation process, a group of educators visited Kennett Middle School to observe, firsthand, how the school functions on a daily basis. During their observation, they noted several areas where Kennett was exceeding expectations, including the following:

  • Daily grade level team meetings effectively address student needs and challenges.
  • The entire staff knows and appreciates the complexities of each student’s life and makes extensive efforts to know each student well as early in the year as possible.
  • Faculty should be commended for making learning meaningful and relevant by tapping into the diversity with their school community.
  • Implementing the LEAD program to provide every middle school student with an advocate.

Representatives from Kennett Middle School attended the Pennsylvania Association for Middle Level Education Professional Development Institute. At this conference, not only was the school officially announced and recognized, Kennett Middle School’s representatives presented highlights of the school’s programs.

The middle school was also recognized in Washington, D.C., at the National Schools to Watch Conference.

Since 1999, the Schools to Watch program has recognized more than 380 schools in 19 states, including 35 schools in Pennsylvania. A middle school that is designated as a School to Watch retains that honor for three years and must reapply, as Kennett Middle School did.

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Kennett High School One of America’s Most Challenging High Schools

The Kennett Consolidated School District is proud that the Washington Post has named Kennett High School one of America’s Most Challenging High Schools.

In order to name its Most Challenging High Schools, the Washington Post uses a “Challenge Index.” This index is based on the total number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Cambridge tests given at the school each year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated in May or June. Schools that had as many tests in 2015 as they had graduates and received a ratio of at least 1.00 earned a spot on the national list. Kennett High School was ranked 17th out of 39 schools that made the national list.

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Kennett High School One of America’s Best High Schools

The Kennett Consolidated School District is proud that U.S. News & World Report has named Kennett High School one of America’s Best High Schools.

To produce the Best High Schools rankings, U.S. News & World Report teamed up with North Carolina–based RTI International, a global nonprofit social-science research firm. The comprehensive rankings methodology is based on the key principles that a great high school must serve all of its students well, not just those who are college bound, and that it must be able to produce measurable academic outcomes to show it is successfully educating its student body across a range of performance indicators.

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Kennett Education Association Recognizes Top Students

The Kennett Education Association (KEA) held its 25th Annual Scholarship and Awards Reception, May 31, to recognize outstanding students for their academic merit and school citizenship. These students represent the excellence that the members of the Association encourage in the Kennett Consolidated School District.

The Kennett Education Association is the professKEA Scholarshipional organization of teachers, librarians, guidance counselors, school nurses, and school social workers of the Kennett Consolidated School District. Each year members of KEA select students from different levels and disciplines for special recognition for their outstanding academic achievements and school citizenship qualities. The awards are funded by contributions from members of KEA. This event represents over $7500 in support by members.

Receiving awards for their accomplishments at the elementary level were fifth grade students Norah Peterson and Jesus Ochoa-Fonseca (Bancroft Elementary School), Hayley Holder and Cooper Seele (Greenwood Elementary School), and Thomas Linderman and Sarah Burns (New Garden Elementary School). These students were awarded certificates and $50 book gift cards.

Recognized for their performances at Kennett Middle School were eighth grade students Lauren Wilson and Ryan Barish who received certificates and $100 book gift cards.

Earning accolades at the high school level for excellence throughout their high school careers in their disciplines were seniors Nicholas Young (Business Education), Jennifer Almanza (Family and Consumer Science), Olivia Avedisian (Fine Arts), Julie Bates (Mathematics), Erin Dooley (Music), Sean Rodgers (Technical Arts), Dennon Hoernig (Science) and Alex Wilson (World Languages). Becca Shoemaker earned awards in two disciplines (English and Social Studies). Each of these awards carried with it a check for $200.

Association President Mr. Michael Kelly presented the most prestigious award of the evening to Kennett High School senior Daniel J. (DJ) Augustine who will be pursuing a teaching career. Mr. Kelly welcomed DJ into the profession and commended him KEA Scholarship 2for his dedication to building the future. DJ will major in Secondary Education-History at Temple University. In his application letter, DJ did not write about knowing that he wanted to be a teacher from early on. In fact, he wrote that that decision did not occur until last summer, 2015.

Mr. Kelly remarked, “He started thinking about the people who have had the greatest impact on his life and he realized they were all teachers. It was then that he realized that being a teacher is in his blood and part of who he is. Being a teacher is what he wants to be. He wants to be the teacher who makes a difference and whose impact goes far beyond the classroom.”

Mr. Kelly presented DJ with scholarship money in the amount of $5000 to be paid over his four years of college.

A reception hosted by KEA followed the presentations.

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Kennett High School Named One of Nation’s Best and Most Challenging High Schools

The Kennett Consolidated School District is proud to announce that U.S. News & World Report and the Washington Post have named Kennett High School one of America’s Best High Schools and one of America’s Most Challenging High Schools, respectively.

To produce the 2016 Best High Schools rankings, U.S. News & World Report teamed up with North Carolina–based RTI International, a global nonprofit social-science research firm. The comprehensive rankings methodology is based on the key principles that a great high school must serve all of its students well, not just those who are college bound, and that it must be able to produce measurable academic outcomes to show it is successfully educating its student body across a range of performance indicators.

In order to name its Most Challenging High Schools, the Washington Post uses a “Challenge Index.” This index is based on the total number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Cambridge tests given at the school each year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated in May or June. Schools that had as many tests in 2015 as they had graduates and received a ratio of at least 1.00 earned a spot on the national list. Kennett High School was ranked 17th out of 39 schools that made the national list.

“These awards are meaningful because they are a reflection of the growth in academic achievement realized by our students. I congratulate our parents for their influence on our students’ efforts to work to their potential, our teachers and principals who teach and give of their time to our students each and every day with the expectation that they all succeed, and the students themselves for their desire to do their best,” says Kennett Consolidated School District superintendent Dr. Barry Tomasetti. “These types of high school recognitions are a credit to all of our teachers, from kindergarten through twelfth grade, as each teacher has a hand in molding our students for a successful future.”

Kennett High School principal Mr. Jeremy Hritz says, “These recent recognitions from U.S. News and World Report and the Washington Post are the result of the hard work of our committed and dedicated students and staff. Teachers expect academic excellence and our students deliver. We are all tremendously proud of this accomplishment.”

For more information on the U.S. News & World Report’s and the Washington Post’s ranking processes and details on Kennett High School’s rankings, please visit http://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/pennsylvania?int=9abb08 and http://apps.washingtonpost.com/local/highschoolchallenge/schools/2016/list/pennsylvania-schools/.

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Kennett High School Artists Win Big at Chester County Show

Two Kennett High School seniors, Olivia Avedisian and Bailey Reigel, were recognized for their exceptional talent at the 42nd annual Area High School Show. The juried exhibition was held at the Chester County Art Association in West Chester from April 23 to 30.Olivia Avedisian art award

Olivia Avedisian earned a First Place Award/Chester County Art Association Board Excellence Award for her untitled charcoal work. Olivia is a student in Mr. Tom Hironimus’s Advanced Art III class. She carries on a proud tradition, as this is the same award Amelia Pagliaro won in 2012, and Noelle Raezer won in 2014.

When describing why she selected the photograph on which she based her drawing, Olivia said, “What I loved most about the piece was the emotion in her face. You could see the happiness in her eyes.”

“Winning was a big surprise. It’s an honor that I wasn’t expecting, and it’s really special, since it’s my senior year,” she added.

Senior Bailey Reigel, a student in Mr. Hironimus’s Advanced Art II course, won a Chester County Art Association Board Honorable Mention for “Buffalo,” an acrylic painting.Bailey Reigel art award

“Art makes me feel peaceful. I’m a high energy person, and art makes me feel calm. The reason I chose to do the buffalo is because I just liked the picture I based it on. I took the picture myself when my family was in Yellowstone last summer,” explained Bailey.

“I owe a lot to Mr. Hironimus. He’s a great teacher. An inspiration. Everybody likes him. Everybody respects him. Everybody listens to him. He’s amazing,” she added.

The exhibition displayed over five hundred pieces of artwork from all Chester County high schools brought together by the Chester County Intermediate Unit, including over twenty-five works by Kennett High School artists. Everything from drawing and painting to computer generated art, to found object sculpture, ceramics, jewelry, and more showcased the talents of area students.

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