Saturday, Dec. 15, will be all things robotic at Park City High School as the Robotics Club hosts a Robotics Tournament for teams from Utah, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming.
The event, held in the Main Gym, begins at 11 a.m. with the opening ceremony and matches will begin directly afterward. A lunch break is scheduled from 12:15-1 pm. Matches will resume at 1 and continue until approximately 4:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Parking is available in the east Eccles lot (entry is only through the doors next to the gray mailbox). The public is invited to attend.
Park City High has several robotics teams who compete. Team Checkmate 12384 was the only PCHS team that competed earlier this month at West High High School in Salt Lake City, placing five times and winning the Innovative Award. The team also competed this month at a tournament held at Carroll College in Helena, Montana.
The club meets every Tuesday after school. For more information visit their website.
Fifth-grade dual-immersion students in Joe Dvorak’s Spanish class at McPolin Elementary have been studying the human rights and farmworkers’ movements the past few months. As part of their study, they created a class mural.
The students painted the mural of Dolores Huerta and Cesar Chavez, American labor leaders and civil rights activists who co-founded of the National Farmworkers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers.
Thanks to the generosity of parent volunteer Nikki Keye, the students spent the past month creating the artwork. Keye has an extensive background and degree in art. She visited the class every week teaching the students how to make the various components of the mural.
This week, students produced a google drawing with links to videos explaining their contributions to the mural. See the mural and learn more from the students here.
Park City High School Athletic and Activities Director Jamie Sheetz will be honored Dec. 18 in San Antonio, Texas, with the 2018 Distinguished Service Award given by the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (NIAAA).
Sheetz is one of 11 athletic directors from across the country who will be honored during the 49th annual National Athletic Directors Conference conducted jointly by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and the NIAAA.
The Distinguished Service Award is presented annually to individuals from within the NIAAA membership in recognition of their length of service, special accomplishments, and contributions to interscholastic athletics at the local, state and national levels.
Sheetz, who has been at PCHS since 2013, oversees 23 athletic programs and nine activity programs. In his five years with the school, PCHS has had 19 student-athletes recognized as academic all-state and 33 teams win state championships.
Prior to his involvement with athletic administration five years ago, Sheetz spent 20 years as a baseball coach, instructor, teacher and scout at multiple levels. He coached baseball at Missouri State University, which reached the 2003 College World Series.
He recently became the president of the Park City Education Foundation Men4Ed Grant Committee. Through 2017, he was the athletics subcommittee chair of the PCSD Master Planning Steering Committee, PCSD Design Team and Calendar committees, and is a former member of the PCSD Start Times Committee.
Within the Utah Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (UIAAA), Sheetz was president in 2016-17 and is chair of the UIAAA Third Strategic Plan. He helped develop the UIAAA Second Strategic Plan in 2014. He has served as the association’s website manager since 2015 and as the assistant coordinator for the UIAAA Leadership Training Institute (LTI) and Certification since 2016.
The Utah High School Activities Association has benefited from Sheetz’s leadership as the UIAAA representative on the UHSAA Realignment Committee (2019-21) and a UIAAA representative/judge for the UHSAA Battle of the Fans.
Sheetz, who received the NIAAA State Award of Merit in 2016 and an NFHS Citation in 2017, currently serves on the NIAAA Resolutions Committee and will become its vice chair in 2019. He also is vice chair of LTC 790 and the NIAAA Revision Committee. To date, Sheetz has taken 41 leadership training courses.
He is a Certified Interscholastic Coach (CIC) through the NFHS and a Certified Master Athletic Administrator (CMAA) through the NIAAA.
Park City High School custodian Candelario “Cande” Ponce was recognized as Utah’s 2019 Outstanding Education Support Professional of the Year during a surprise assembly at the high school today, Tuesday, Nov. 20. Park City School District administrators along with leaders from both the Utah School Employees Association (USEA) and the Park City Classified Employees Association (PCCEA) joined students and staff in honoring Ponce as their unsung hero.
Education support professionals (ESP) are the support staff — clerical services, custodial and maintenance, food services, health and student services, paraeducators, security services, skilled trade services, technical services and transportation services — who work tirelessly to ensure students are healthy, safe, engaged, challenged and supported.
As the winner of USEA’s award, Ponce will be Utah’s nominee to the National Education Association’s ESP of the Year. He will attend the national conference in March 2019 in Las Vegas. Ponce will also travel throughout the state to meet members, raise awareness of ESP issues and advocate on their behalf.
Ponce has been a custodian at Park City High since 2009. “Schools today are filled with many young people who are hurting emotionally and struggling with self-identity,” says PCHS biology teacher Ed Mulick. “To have a humble, caring role model like Cande present in our school and taking interest in others, helps create an environment of security, peace, and acceptance…his strong dedication to his job represents the essence of his character.”
A father of five, he and his wife own a successful food business open 12 hours a day, seven days a week – all while working full-time as a school custodian. “All who know Cande and his calm and humble way tend to gravitate to him,” says Maryann Gilmore, Area 4 USEA Executive Board member.
Daniel Bernhardt, a junior at Park City High School, is one of 15 students appointed by the Utah State Board of Education’s inaugural Student Advisory Council.
“The students will advise the USBE on issues relevant to high school students throughout the state,” according to a press release from the USBE. “They were selected following an application period this fall after the USBE approved a new policy establishing the council.”
Students appointed to the council represent both traditional and charter schools. They will be advising the board of student issues such as: mental health and bullying, racism and discrimination, access to STEM and technology, homelessness, LGBTQ challenges, students with disabilities, college readiness, and school funding.
The SAC will meet at least every other month to discuss how decisions made at the state level affect students.
Park City High School graduates outscored their counterparts in Utah and across the country on the 2018 ACT (American College Test)
PCHS had a composite score of 23.7, compared to Utah’s composite of 20.4 and the national composite of 20.8. Park City graduates have seen a steady increase in ACT scores the past four years
“We have amazing students and teachers,” said Principal Roger Arbabi. “The results are an indication of rigor in the classroom and college readiness.”
Scores by section include:
English: 23.6 compared to 19.4 in Utah, 20.2 nationally
Mathematics: 22.6 compared to 19.9 in Utah, 20.5 nationally
Reading: 24.3 compared to 20.0 in Utah, 21.3 nationally
Science: 23.8 compared to 20.5 in Utah, 20.7 nationally
The ACT is is designed to measure skills needed for success in first-year college coursework. ACT Research has shown that it is the rigor of coursework – rather than simply the number of core courses – that has the greatest impact on ACT performance and college readiness.
Some 390 PCHS students took the ACT in 2018, 43,791 students took the ACT statewide, and nearly 2 million students nationwide took the ACT in 2017-18.
It is one of the country’s most prestigious scholarship competitions — the National Merit Scholarship Program.
Today, three Park City High seniors were announced as semi-finalists in the program: Harrison Paas, Dennis Rothwell, and Cameron Stevens.
The 2019 nationwide pool of semi-finalists represents less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, and are chosen from a field of 1.6 million students at more than 22,000 high schools.
The finalists and winners will be announced Spring 2019 and will be selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The finalists will compete for $31 million in scholarships.
Park City School District Interim Superintendent David Gomez has announced the addition of four new secondary assistant principals for the 2018-19 school year.
By adding an additional assistant principal at each secondary school, Superintendent Gomez said it will bring the ratio of administrators to students more in line with the Utah ratio. Principals have also said they need additional administrators in their buildings to help with licensed evaluations, assist with UHSAA and club sports, school clubs, student supervision, safety, student wellness, discipline, evening and weekend activities, increase in 504s, and parent communication.
–Jamie Weekes, currently an assistant principal at Ecker Hill Middle, appointed assistant principal at Park City High
–Melissa Tschabrun, currently an instructional coach at Treasure Mountain Junior High, appointed assistant principal at TMJH
–Claustina Mahon-Reynolds, currently Educational Equity Supervisor for Salt Lake City School District, appointed assistant principal at Ecker Hill Middle
–Tracy Fike, currently Interim Principal at Parley’s Park Elementary, appointed assistant principal at Ecker Hill Middle (one-year appointment)
Weekes has been teaching for the past 15 years at middle school, high school, and summer school levels. She has worked as a math interventionist for eight years in both middle school and high school. Weekes has taught at Park City High for six years.
Tschabrun started her career in education 14 years ago in Vermont where she was a math teacher, alpine ski coach, and soccer coach. She has taught middle school math at a charter school, and taught high school math and served as the department chair at a private school in Salt Lake City. She came to PCSD two years ago as a math teacher at TMJH. She spent half her time this past school year as an instructional coach at the school.
Originally from Westchester County, New York, Mahon-Reynolds is starting her 19th year in education. Her educational experience includes teaching (K-12), coaching (K-6), middle school administrator, higher education instructor, and staff developer. She is currently completing her doctoral studies at the University of Utah in the Educational Leadership and Policy Department. She has lived in Utah for 13 years.
Fike has been the Instructional Technology Coach at Parley’s since 2016 and has been an administrative intern at Parley’s Park, Ecker Hill Middle, and Park City High. From 2013-16 she was a reading intervention teacher at Ecker Hill Middle.
Mellissa Mellin, a 2018 Park City High graduate, was awarded a $10,000 scholarship at the Comcast Leaders and Achievers Scholarship Luncheon held at the Capitol Rotunda today, June 20.
Mellin was one of 34 students recognized for her academic achievements, demonstrated leadership, and commitment to community service. She has been accepted to Westminster College where she plans t0 study political science.
Scholarships were awarded by the Comcast Foundation and ranged from $1,000 to $10,000. Mellin was the only student to receive the $10,000 award. This year she served as co-president of Latinos in Action at PCHS. Her two sisters attended the luncheon with her as well as PCHS Interim Principal Kathleen Einhorn.
The Comcast Leaders and Achievers Scholarship Program is a nomination-based award, and one student per school is nominated by their principal or guidance counselor.
Park City High School is implementing homeroom for students next year in an effort to provide a space for students to reflect and grow socially and emotionally, and develop authentic relationships with their peers and teachers.
Homeroom, which is required for all students, will be held 35 minutes during second period every Monday. Students will not be graded but will receive credit for attendance and participation. Students will be randomly assigned by Powerschool to homeroom and classes will consist of students in grades 10-12.
“Two years ago, students proposed the idea with the intent of reducing student stress, increasing academic engagement, providing greater student support, and creating a greater school community,” said Interim Principal Kathleen Einhorn. “Over the course of the past two years, our Leadership Team has examined various curricula and best practices to best meet the needs of all of our students. Research shows that students who have a greater school connection and consistent time to reflect are better prepared for success beyond high school.”
Homeroom will consists of activities such as YouSchool topics, study skills building, counseling curriculum, school culture building, and class competitions.
PCHS counselors will educate students about stress management, bullying, test-taking strategies, mental health, and substance abuse. Parents will be informed on the topics being discussed so they can continue the conversations at home with their students.
Einhorn also noted that the most recent visit from the AdvancEd accreditation team suggested the school improve upon its systemic student-teacher connections. PCHS is also using homeroom to satisfy the Federal and State mandates around Social and Emotional Learning.
“The high school’s new principal, Roger Arbabi, has been included in the implementation of homeroom and is excited to see how homeroom improves students’ relationships with not only their teachers but also other students,” Einhorn said.