January 16, 2023
THIS WEEK’S HEADLINES
Today, we commemorate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This year marks the 60th anniversary of the largest civil rights demonstration to date in American history. In August of 1963, more than 250,000 people descended on Washington, DC to hear Dr. King’s now iconic "I have a dream" speech.
MORE THAN 100 COMMUNITY MEMBERS TAKE PART IN NEW ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PROJECT DISCUSSION AT NAMS
On Tuesday, Jan. 10, more than 100 members of the Bethel Park community joined BPSD's administrators, school board, and representatives from DRAW Collective at Neil Armstrong Middle School for an informational session on the status of the district's planned new elementary school project.
The group discussed many topics, including transportation-related concerns, the building's design and layout, and other practical matters.
FIVE BPSD TEACHERS CHOSEN FOR THE TRANSFORMED TEACHER INNOVATION FELLOWSHIP
Five Bethel Park teachers have been selected for this year’s transformED Teacher Innovation Fellowship, which aims to convene 15 of the area’s top teacher leaders interested in instructional innovation to incubate new approaches to teaching and learning. The fellows each meet a few times in person, and they’ll each receive a mini-grant of $1,500 to experiment within their classrooms.
Katelynn Heider (Learning Support/Autistic Support): Focusing on opportunities to create a classroom for students who would benefit from a curriculum focused on being active participants in ADL skills and having sensory-driven learning experiences.
Jess Mahoney (Autistic Support): Focusing on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion pre-packaged lesson kits/cases to use in any classroom.
Lynne Surrena (Speech Language): Looking at more community-based instruction activities within the school setting to support more functional communication skills.
Melissa Toth (Life Skills) & Jenine Wessel (Speech Language): Utilizing Speech Language games and activities to socialize students with speech language needs and skills supports. All students would be learning/practicing a skill from the week in ELA while playing a game to include and practice social skills. All students would be learning/practicing a skill from the week in ELA while playing a game to include and practice social skills.
The fellowship will allow them to focus more on their problem of practice/big idea to ultimately determine how to utilize their mini-grant funding.
BETHEL PARK TO PARTNER WITH CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF PITTSBURGH ON NEW ELEMENTARY SCHOOL ELEMENTS
On Friday, students from Bethel Park’s five elementary schools and some of their teachers met with representatives from the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. The group collaborated on some potential ideas for the new elementary school, scheduled to open in the fall of 2025.
BPHS’S ENVIRONMENTAL CLUB CLEANS THE AREA BEHIND WALMART
Members of BPHS's newly formed Environmental Club recently cleaned up trash and debris that had accumulated in the area behind the Bethel Park Walmart. The students say they chose that location because it is often covered in trash and plastic bags due to its proximity to grocery stores and other shops.
NHS BLOOD DRIVE: JAN. 19
BPHS's National Honor Society will hold its Winter Blood Drive from 8 a.m. - 1 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 19. Everyone is invited to donate and can do so by completing this form. The more donations Vitalant Pittsburgh gets, the more money is raised for NHS.
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL’S MOE’S TACO KIT FUNDRAISER
The Benjamin Franklin Elementary School PTO is offering Moe’s Taco kits. Order yours here! Each kit gets you a convenient dinner and donates $10 back to the PTO. Pickup will be at the school at 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 24.
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SNOW BALL: JAN. 27
Benjamin Franklin Elementary School will hold its Snowball Dance from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 27.
Please RSVP here - one for each student attending. There is a capacity limit; the form will be closed once reached.
WILLIAM PENN STUDENTS QUALIFY FOR THE ELKS HOOP SHOOT COMPETITION
William Penn Elementary School students Cara Schuster (Girls 8-9) and Jaxon Vuchenich (Boys 8-9) each won their respective classifications at the 2023 Elks District Hoops shoot free throw contest for children ages 8-13 last Saturday at Robert Morris. They have advanced to the state competition on March 4 at Penn State.
GEORGE WASHINGTON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL FOURTH GRADERS HONOR MLK
On Friday, fourth grade students in Mrs. Bethani Bombich's classroom at George Washington Elementary School participated in Dr.Martin Luther King, Jr. themed centers-based learning project. One center was to draw Dr. King and think of inspiring words that best represent him.
BASEBALL TEAM FUNDRAISER
Bethel Park High School Baseball is holding a tasty BBQ fundraiser just in time for Super Bowl Sunday! Funds raised will help support the players' purchase of team gear, equipment, and more.
Baby Back Ribs $23 per rack (11-12 bones in rack) - Fully cooked and roasted for 4+ hours
BBQ Pulled Pork $12 per 18oz. (1.2lbs.) container - Fully cooked, ready to heat, and serve
Big Ben's BBQ sauces 18 oz. bottles $7 each - Mild BBQ, Hot BBQ, Habanero Hot.
The ribs and pulled pork are fully cooked and sealed. They can be refrigerated for up to 4 weeks or frozen for extended periods.
Orders can be emailed to [email protected]. Orders are due by Sunday, Jan. 29. Pick up orders on Wednesday, Feb. 8, at the High School Stadium parking lot by the Athletic Entrance between 4:30-6:30 p.m. Payment is due at the pickup time.
A huge THANK YOU from the players, coaches, and families of BPHS Baseball. We genuinely appreciate your support!
Kindergarten Registration for Fall 2023 will open in February 2023. Please be on the lookout for more information as we draw nearer to the opening of the registration portal.
ELECTRIFY YOUR STRINGS
ICYMI, Bethel Park performed its Electrify Your Strings performance last weekend, which was incredible!
BETHEL PARK DART TRANSITION NIGHT: FEB. 1
Bethel Park School District will host a DART Transition Night for the families of incoming kindergartners from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 1, at Bethel Park Administration Building [301 Church Road, Bethel Park, PA 15102].
Some of the topics covered will include an overview of the continuum of Student Support Services (SSS), an introduction to the SSS team, an explanation of the re-evaluation procedures, procedures for the development of an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), and a reminder of the most important dates on the school calendar.
For more information or to register, email [email protected]., or call 412.854.8735. DART is a program run by the Allegheny Intermediate Unit for Discovery, Assessment, Referral, and Tracking (DART). Click here to learn more about the program.
POLAR PLUNGE: FEB. 24
BPHS will participate in its first-ever Polar Plunge on Friday, Feb. 24, at Acrisure Stadium. The group seeks to raise at least $2,500 for the Special Olympics of Pennsylvania. Registration: $35 and includes a free shirt and the chance to take the plunge!
LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE TRIP
Bethel Park High School will send a delegation of students on an educational travel experience to Iceland & the Leadership Conference in Berlin, Germany, in the Summer of 2024!
Questions: [email protected]
FRENCH CLUB TRIP
There’s still time to enroll in the Grand Tour of France in June 2024. Please direct any questions to [email protected].
Slots are filling up quickly! Here’s the link where you can enroll: www.eftours.com/2608056ns
Neil Armstrong Middle School fifth graders enjoy learning independently through their Project-Based Learning unit. The students were encouraged by their teacher, Mr. Stephen Yost, to pick a topic of interest and create a project to demonstrate what they’ve learned. The subjects were as varied and exciting as the students who made them. Here are a few examples of the students' creative creations.
THE BETHEL PARK MINUTE
Bethel Park School District Superintendent Dr. James Walsh regularly addresses timely or hot-button issues facing BPSD during video segments he calls “The Bethel Park Minute.” The informal videos are typically brief and a way for Dr. Walsh to answer questions he’s receiving and to address or dispel some of the misconceptions that may arise. The most recent edition discusses the district’s recently announced partnership with the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh on the new elementary school, which is scheduled to open in the fall of 2025.
TECH TALKS: BUILDING DIGITAL HEALTH AT BETHEL PARK
In January, Bethel Park school director, and mother of five, Mrs. Gail Hoppe, will host free parent workshops to collaborate with parents and students to help build a digital world where kids can thrive. Sign up for the free workshops here.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS WEBSITE
Visit our new facilities microsite, http://bpsdbestinclass.org, for the latest developments and most accurate information regarding the ongoing construction projects at Independence Middle School and Bethel Park Elementary Center.
BETHEL PARK SCHOOL DISTRICT’S STRATEGIC PLAN
The district recently released its Strategic Plan (2021-2026), including its Comprehensive Plan (2021-2024) and its ongoing long-term Facilities Planning. See Superintendent Dr. James Walsh’s explanation of the plan. You can also see the district's Professional Development Plan and Induction Plan.
For the most -up-to-date information on events happening within the Bethel Park School District, please consult this daily View All Events Calendar.
UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN A REMOTE INSTRUCTIONAL DAY AND A SNOW DAY
Inclement weather can sometimes impact the operation of our schools, especially in the wintertime. Click here to review the procedures and schedules the district will follow in case of a school delay or closure.
The Bethel Park School District encourages the involvement of parents and guardians in our schools. Pennsylvania State Law requires every volunteer with direct contact with students must have clearances on file with the school district. The required clearances are the Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance (Act 151), Pennsylvania State Police Criminal Record Check (Act 34), and the FBI Federal Criminal History Record (Act 114). PA Clearances are free to volunteers, and the FBI Clearance is $22.60. Volunteers who have resided in Pennsylvania for the past 10 years and have never been convicted of a Disqualifying Offense can sign a waiver to eliminate the need for FBI Clearance.
Click here for complete details on how to become a volunteer in the Bethel Park School District. Please be sure to follow the checklist in the attached link.
IMS WINTER JAZZ CONCERT: Wednesday, Jan. 25 at 7 p.m.
CLICK HERE to view the IMS Weekly Bulletin
SCHOOL BOARD NEWS
SCHOOL BOARD ACTION SUMMARIES
Bethel Park School District provides school board action summaries after each meeting. The summary includes a short description of the main topics and action items. These summaries are meant to supplement minutes, which are approved and posted after the next regularly scheduled meeting. We hope these summaries provide some basic information and context around the reports, presentations, and action items. Also, you can follow the agenda for the next school board meeting here and watch the school board meetings streamed live online or on-demand on the school district's YouTube channel.
SCHOOL BOARD 2023 MEETING CALENDAR
The school board’s current meeting calendar can be found on our website. All school board meetings begin at 7 p.m. and are held in the Dr. Thomas A. Knight Memorial Community Room in the Bethel Park Administration Building unless otherwise noted. There are no school board meetings scheduled for July. If you cannot attend the school board meetings in person, know they will be live-streamed through the school district’s YouTube channel. Meeting dates and times are also available on the school district’s website.
ANNOUNCEMENTS & REMINDERS
BETHEL PARK PARTNERS WITH PEACHJAR E-FLIER SYSTEM
Bethel Park School District is partnering with Peachjar to provide an electronic alternative for distributing fliers.
Peachjar’s e-flier management system electronically approves fliers and emails them to parents’ and guardians’ inboxes. Parents can view e-fliers from their smartphones or computer. In addition, fliers are also posted on the school's website for easy viewing. More information about Peachjar can be found on their website.
The district is encouraging schools to use Peachjar because it saves time for school staff, it sends fliers directly to parents rather than using students as the distribution channel, and it saves paper.
BETHEL PARK CHEERLEADING CLINIC: JAN. 21
The Bethel Park High School Sideline Cheerleaders & Coaches are conducting their annual cheer clinic for children in Kindergarten through 6th grade who are interested in learning basic cheerleading techniques!
The clinic schedule is as follows:
A snack & water will be provided; please note any food allergies below.
You may also send a snack, but please mark any items that need to go back home.
*Parents do NOT need to stay but are encouraged to come back to watch the children cheer at 3:45 p.m.
Each registered child receives the following:
Bethel Park Cheerleading Clinic T-shirt
Certificate of Completion
Entry into a drawing for a chance to cheer with the cheerleaders at an upcoming varsity basketball game.
Registration Cost: $25 per child
*Please make your check payable to
BP Cheer Boosters:
BP Cheer Boosters
4607 Library Road; Suite 220-213; Bethel Park, PA 15102
Bethel Park School District is looking for bus drivers and aides. The benefits include a signing bonus, a competitive starting salary, health care coverage, and entrance into the state pension system. Interested applicants should visit the Employment section of the website or call 412.854.8414.
Metz Culinary Management is growing and is seeking Team Members for full and part-time roles in a busy Student Dining Services setting. Whether you enjoy cooking, serving, or customer relations, our Food Service Team comprises multi-talented individuals, all contributing to the Culinary and Hospitality services, ensuring our Students, Staff, and Guests enjoy a fantastic dining experience!
Metz Culinary Management offers flexible schedules, mostly daylight hours, competitive wages, benefits, and Career Growth in the Contract Dining Services Industry! Interested parties should reach out to John Rambo by email or calling 412.854.8754.
BLACK HAWKS ATHLETICS
Stay updated with the latest information and changes to the BPHS sports schedules at https://bpathletics.bigteams.com/main/calendar/. Get information on all Bethel Park sports teams or those you’re interested in. Sign up on the site to have updates and schedule changes emailed to you, so you will know if something is canceled due to inclement weather. It’s a great Octoberway to stay in touch with our athletic teams, mainly when unpredictable weather necessitates postponements and rescheduling! Go Hawks!
HAMEL NAMED TO PSU WILKES-BARRE DEAN'S LISTShane Hamel ‘21 was recently named to Penn State Wilkes-Barre’s fall 2022 dean’s list. To be eligible, undergraduate students must achieve a one-semester grade-point average of 3.5 or higher. COMMUNITY NEWS
NAMS JAM IS LOOKING FOR CHAPERONES FOR ITS FEB.3 EVENT
Bethel Park Recreation will host the next NAMS Jam for fifth and sixth graders living in Bethel Park, from 7-9 p.m., on Friday, Feb. 3.
Admission is $5 per person, paid at the door, and located on the side of the gym. Activities will include SNOWY BINGO, crafts, and a caricature artist. The event will also feature a film in the auditorium. The gymnasium will also be open for basketball and other ball sports. Guests can also make purchases at the FCCLA-sponsored Snack Bar.
Also, children must be picked up/signed out by an adult. They may not leave on their own.
Finally, organizers are STILL LOOKING FOR CHAPERONES FOR THIS EVENT! Any volunteers interested in chaperoning the Feb. 3 NAMS Jam or learning more about what clearances you might need should contact James at the Bethel Park Community Center at 412-831-6800, Ext. 224.
Please note this is not a Bethel Park School District event! The municipality is required to keep separate records from the school district. The deadline to volunteer is Tuesday, Jan. 31.
As always, the Bethel Park Recreation Department thanks you for your continued support!
TIES & TIARAS
Bethel Park Recreation is bringing back its Annual “Ties &Tiaras” event. The event will take place on Saturday, February 25, from 7-9 p.m. at the Bethel Park Community Center. The ticket cost is $25/couple ($10 for each additional daughter). Tickets are on sale NOW at the Community Center. Create a beautiful memory for your family by attending this memorable evening at our annual Daddy & Daughter Event. Dads (and father figures) can whisk their little princesses off to an enchanted evening where they will be "Belle of the Ball"! This exciting evening will include a DJ featuring special dances for dads & daughters. We'll also have light refreshments/desserts and a photo area. Grab your tickets before this event sells out!
2023 SPRING REC BASEBALL REGISTRATION IS OPEN
Registration is open now and will go on until 3/1/23. This is a firm close of registration date. We need time to coordinate coaches, teams, and uniforms. Spring Rec Baseball is for ages 4 to 14 (T-Ball to Pony)! Please visit our website at www.bethelparkbaseball.org to register today!
2023 JR. LEGION/COLT & LEGION REGISTRATION IS OPEN
For HS-age players interested in playing Jr. Legion / Legion baseball for the Spring/Summer 2023 season, we have opened registration on our website at www.bethelparkbaseball.org. Please sign up at your earliest convenience to book your spot. There will be a tryout in the spring—more details to follow.
YOUTH UMPIRES NEEDED FOR THE SPRING SEASON
Youth umpiring is for ages 12 and up. If your child is interested in umpiring this upcoming spring season please email us at [email protected]. We will add you to the list and be in contact in the spring for our umpire training! If you have any questions, just let us know.
BOY SCOUT TROUP 215 WELCOMING NEW MEMBERS
Want to join the Scouting community? Troop 215 from Bethel Park Presbyterian Church would love to welcome you! Troop 215 has been around for 100 years and is looking for new scouts to continue its legacy. If interested, please get in touch with Scoutmaster Craig Blocklin ([email protected]) or Senior Patrol leader Nathan Disori ([email protected]) for more information on how to join Scouting!
BETHEL PARK’S DANCHIK IS COLLECTING NECESSITIES FOR THE HOMELESS
Bethel Park sophomore George Danchick is working towards Eagle Scout status in a project with Red Door Ministries, which provides necessities for the area’s homeless.
George is looking for travel-size shampoo, soap bars, conditioner, body wash, razors, and deodorant for the cause. Look for donation boxes outside the Rite Aid and the Dollar Tree in the South Park Shops.
Danchik also accepts monetary donations via Venmo to buy products for those in need. If you want to donate to his cause, Venmo George at @Toni-Danchik-1.
FCC ANNOUNCES AFFORDABLE CONNECTIVITY PROGRAM
The Affordable Connectivity Program is a Federal Communications Commission program that helps connect families and households struggling to afford internet service. This new benefit provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward broadband service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for families on qualifying Tribal lands. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 from purchasing a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers.
Eligible households can enroll through a participating broadband provider or directly with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) using an online or mail-in application.
You can learn more about the benefit, including eligibility and enrollment information, by visiting www.fcc.gov/ACP or calling 877-384-2575.
· Bethel Park School District: www.bpsd.org
· eSchoolPlus/PowerSchool Home Access Center Login:
· Twitter: www.twitter.com/bpsdinfo
· Facebook: www.facebook.com
· Instagram: bethel_park_school_district
· YouTube: BETHEL_PARK_SCHOOL_DISTRICT
· Linked In: www.linkedin.com
The Bethel Park School District will not discriminate in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices based on race, color, national origin, sex, sexual preference, disability, age, religion, ancestry, union membership, or any other legally protected classification.
The announcement of this policy is per state and federal laws, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Employees and participants who have an inquiry or complaint of harassment or discrimination, or need information about accommodations, for persons with disabilities should contact:
Dr. Zeb Jansante
Title IX Compliance Officer
301 Church Road
Bethel Park, PA 15102-1696
If you are receiving this newsletter in error, please email Mr. James Cromie at [email protected], and you will be promptly removed from the list. Also, if someone you know is not getting this newsletter but would like to receive one, please encourage them to contact Mr. Cromie. Finally, all of this year’s email newsletters are posted on the district’s website, so you can go back and look at past editions if you’d like.