School News

News for McCulloch Junior High School

Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News In order to give our staff, students, families and fans opportunity to enjoy and support both our outstanding athletes and our talented musicians, Marion Community Schools has rescheduled the Spring Choral Festival, set for this Friday, to next Friday, March 14.

Due to the post-season success of the MHS boys’ basketball team, the Giants’ sectional semifinal game in Kokomo is now at the same time as the previously scheduled concert. This presented a tough choice for many students, families, staff and community members. So rather than forcing people to choose between the arts and athletics, Marion Community Schools leaders are taking action to give each event its own separate spotlight.

The Spring Choral Festival, featuring musicians from Marion High School and McCulloch Junior High School, will now take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 14, at Marion High School’s premier F. Ritchie Walton Performing Arts Center, 750 W. 26th St.

The boys’ basketball team will play Kokomo High School at 6 p.m. Friday, March 7, in Kokomo Memorial Gym, 200 Apperson Way N., Kokomo.

We are so proud of all of our students who work to excel in their chosen activities beyond the school day, and of our teachers and coaches who go the extra mile to help provide such great opportunities. We are grateful, too, for the support of our families and fans. We believe this change, despite any inconvenience it could cause, gives all of us the best chance to enjoy and support both our artists and our athletes.

We hope to see a big crowd in Kokomo cheering on the Giants this Friday, and a big audience at Marion High School next Friday enjoying our singers’ performances!
Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News Link From the Chronicle-Tribune

Three of the Marion Community Schools’ lowest scoring buildings presented plans for improvement in the coming year at the district board meeting on Wednesday night.

It is a legal requirement for priority schools to have a public hearing on their improvement plans and all of the individual schools focused on how to increase their student test scores.

— More from MCS: The minutes of the Feb. 26, 2014, School Board meeting will be posted once they have been approved by the board. To view meeting minutes, click here. —
Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News Due to the high number of school cancellations caused by this winter’s extraordinary weather, Marion Community Schools will be lengthening its school day for about two months, to regain lost instructional time in a way that is most effective for continued student success.

This plan is in line with alternative make-up solutions offered recently by the state Department of Education, and it would address the seven days MCS has canceled so far this winter for which waivers were not granted. That means at this time, the make-up days built in at the end of the school year would all still be available, should more cancellations be needed. More importantly, it means that teachers and students would regain instructional time now, when it is needed most, prior to high-stakes testing such as ISTEP+ and IREAD.

“We have explored multiple solutions with a broad base of stakeholders, and we believe this is the best solution to meet the challenges of this extraordinary winter that has caused our children to miss a significant amount of valuable instructional time,” Superintendent Brad Lindsay said. “We will be able to custom fit this extra time at each building and within each department, so that we can maximize this additional learning time and make better possible for our students students prior to essential high-stakes assessments including ISTEP+ and IREAD.”

In general, the plan would add an hour to the school day — moving the start time earlier in the morning, and moving the end time later in the afternoon — starting Monday, Feb. 24, and ending Friday, April 18. In addition, Marion High School will have have no shortened days when this alternate schedule is in place. The MHS schedule would be the same Monday through Friday. (Please see the links at the bottom of this post for specific start and end times at each building during this time.)

This alternate schedule will not be extended past April 18. If further cancellations are needed, the make-up days at the end of the school year will be used. (And if delays are needed during this alternate schedule period, they will be delays starting from the alternate, earlier time.)

We know this change will greatly affect scheduling for our students and their families, along with our staff members. 

In the days leading up to the schedule change, building administrators and district department heads will be working with their staffs to determine the best way to use this additional learning time each day.

We will work to ensure extra-curricular activities have the least disruption possible. And we will work with families to try to make the transition to this modified schedule as smooth as possible.

“There are challenges with any solution when you’re talking about such a high number of cancellations,” Lindsay said. “We believe this gives us our best chance to help all of our students succeed.”

For specific start and end times at each building, click on the links below.
Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News Twenty-three McCulloch students took part in the annual Circle the State With Song choral festival last weekend, along with about 5,000 students from across the state who participate in the festival over the course of several weeks.

The festival – which is held at 12 different sites around the state (this year from Feb. 15 through March 8) – exposes young singers to new music and gives them the chance to have a choral experience quite different from the regular school class or performance.

After weeks of practice on their own and at their schools, students from across the state come together and work with a guest clinician on the day of the performance.

According to the Indiana Music Educators Association website, CSWS began in 1989 as a festival for elementary students. In 1991, it expanded to middle school and junior high students.

The following McCulloch singers performed with a group of students from around the region at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, at the Honeywell Center in Wabash:

  • Nikeela Edwards
  • Rhianna Gary
  • Alicia Guillen
  • Miranda Holland
  • Aubrionna Perkins
  • Montana Roane
  • Azhaiya Sharp
  • Vivica Watkins
  • Taleia Wells
  • Saenya Bell
  • Alyssa Dellinger
  • Lynnzee Dungey
  • Azira Fisher
  • Leilanu Jackson
  • Harmony Fair
  • Natalya Williams
  • Trevor Bennet
  • Brandon Brooks
  • Lane Charlton
  • Amonte King
  • Jalen Springer
  • Zach Stephens
  • Collin Swan
Two of those performing at Circle the State, Amonte King and Alyssa Dellinger, were also chosen to participate recently in the All-State Honor Choir. Click here for more information on that honor.

Local performance coming up

The McCulloch choir has a local performance coming up as well, a joint concert with the Marion High School choir at 7 p.m. March 7 at MHS.
The choir will also be competing in contests at Manchester High School on March 15. This year, the seventh grade choir and eighth grade choir will compete separately, because participation in the choirs has outgrown the stage capacity at such competitions. There are 85 to 90 choir students in each grade level this year.

We're proud of our young musicians, and wish them continued good luck in their performances and competitions!
Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News Dozens of Marion Community Schools students competed recently in the annual ISSMA Solo and Ensemble vocal and instrumental competitions, and many brought home top ratings for their performances.

At Marion High School, 14 students competed with Group I pieces – the most difficult – at the regional vocal competition. Six of them earned Gold ratings and will continue on to state-level competition later this month.

Here’s a look at the MHS musicians who participated in the regional vocal Solo and Ensemble competition Feb. 8 at Southside High School in Muncie:
  • A'Brianna Adams; freshman; "Deep River"; Gold rating
  • Izzy Case; junior; "O Del Mio Dolce Adore"; Gold rating
  • Ted Fry; senior; "The Rovin' Gambler"; Gold rating
  • Alaina George; senior; "Nymphs and Shepherds"; Gold rating
  • Wesley Luttrell; junior; "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen"; Gold rating
  • Karlton Morrell; senior; "The Black Dress"; Gold rating
  • Lindsay Holt; senior; "Ici Bas"; Silver rating
  • Gracie Graham; freshman; "Se tu M'ami"; Silver rating
  • Taylor Parker; sophomore; "Alma del Core"; Silver rating
  • Madeline Spence; freshman; "American Lullaby"; Silver rating
  • Myla Townsend; junior; "O Mio Babbino Caro"; Silver rating
  • Oshiana Tyson; sophomore; "Lullaby"; Silver rating
  • Stacia Tyson; freshman; "Homeward Bound"; Silver rating
  • Austin Stodghill; senior; "Pur Dicesti, O Poco Poco Bella"; Bronze rating

There were also three MHS students who participated in the instrumental Solo and Ensemble competition on Feb. 1 at Eastbrook High School:
  • Brianna Garr; senior; clarinet solo; Gold rating
  • Kodie Young; junior, clarinet solo; Gold rating
  • Bethany Hovermale, senior; French horn solo; Silver rating

At McCulloch Junior High School, nine students participated in the vocal and piano Solo and Ensemble competition Feb. 8 at Southside High School in Muncie:
  • Alyssa Dellinger; eighth grade; "In My Own Little Corner"; Group III solo; Gold rating
  • Amonte King; eighth grade; "My Lord, What A Morning"; Group III solo; Gold rating
  • Dannyelle Vanderpool; seventh grade; "We Deserve Each Other"; Group IV solo; Gold rating
  • Nikeela Edwards; eighth grade; "Make Them Hear You"; Group IV solo; Gold rating
  • Collin Swan, Riley Worland, Amonte King; all eighth-graders; "Star of the County Down"; Group III ensemble; Gold rating
  • Elizabeth Fix; eighth grade; "My Favorite Things"; Group IV solo; Silver rating
  • Rhianna Gary; eighth grade; "Ten Minutes Ago"; Group IV solo; Silver rating
  • Elizabeth Wuertley; eighth grade; Group II piano solo; Silver rating

Also at McCulloch, eight students participated in the instrumental Solo and Ensemble competition Feb. 1 at Eastbrook High School:
  • Caitlin Griffin; seventh grade; "Gliding Along"; Group IV alto saxophone solo; Gold rating
  • Seth Beal, Macie McCarthy, Jalen Springer; all eighth-graders; "The Calypso Kid"; Group III marimba trio; Gold rating
  • Josh Kelley, Amonte King, Riley Worland; all eighth-graders; "Poco Loco"; Group III woodwind trio; Gold rating
  • Dannyelle Vanderpool; seventh grade; "Echo Song", Group V flute solo; Silver rating

Congratulations to all of our outstanding young musicians, and good luck to those continuing on to state-level competition!