Arcanum-Butler issues mid-year report


By John Stephens


I want to take this opportunity to thank the students, parents, families, Board of Education members, and the entire Arcanum-Butler staff for an outstanding first semester and for supporting Arcanum-Butler Schools! As we move forward into the second semester, the ending of the first semester marks a great time to celebrate our successes.

K-12 enrollment is right at 1100 students, which Is an increase from last year, and the second highest overall enrollment in the last ten years. The Arcanum Virtual Academy is operating at capacity and Arcanum Early Learning Center enrollment remains strong. The average class size is around 85 students though it ranges from 72 to 99 depending on the grade level. The district has a total of +146 open enrolled students this year, the highest it has ever been, which has forced the district to close the majority of its grade levels to maintain appropriate class sizes.

The Ohio Department of Education & Workforce Report Card was released this fall using a 5-Star grading system. The report card is intended to provide a picture of how our district and buildings are performing using the five-star rating system rather than the previously used letter grades for various measures under six broad categories: Achievement, Progress, Gap Closing, Graduation Rate, Improving At-Risk K-3 Readers and Prepared for Success. Arcanum-Butler received an overall rating of 4 Stars. The district scored higher than the state average on all tests, and scored higher than similar districts on the majority of tests. Each building also received ratings with Arcanum Elementary and Butler Middle Schools receiving a 4.5 Star rating and Arcanum High School receiving 4 Stars. While informative, the district recognizes that many of the report card indicators are based on tests given on a specific day, during a specific time, and may not provide the entire picture of a child’s learning experience nor does it define the district as a whole. The Arcanum-Butler Local School District is proud of our students and staff for their continued efforts and accomplishments. The staff will continue to seek growth and improvement in providing the best experience for students and preparing students for college and careers.

This fall, AHS welcomed a large group of National Honor Society Inductees. New members included: Shiloh Brown, Mackenzie Cantrell, June Cooke, Isaac Dues, Noah Egnor, Jacob Flayler, Alexis Gibbons, Ethan Hartman, Quinn Jorgensen, Kaitlynn Lipps, Brooks Merriman, Katelynne Michael, Landon Miller, Payten Parks, Carter Rice, Emma Rogers, Garrett Rose and Kennedy Rose. A special congratulations to Angie Polley who was chosen as the honorary staff member! The elementary and middle schools held their annual Spelling Bees. In the elementary, Alex Psczulkoski became the champion and Izech Dickensheets was the runner-up. For the middle school it was Genevieve Dues winning and Nora Baumle coming in second. Alex and Genevieve will represent the district this winter in the Darke County Spelling Bee.

In other positive academic-related news, Liam Chadwick qualified for the State Poetry Out Loud Competition after placing 2nd in Regional Competition sponsored by the Ohio Arts Council. The Arcanum-MVCTC FFA Ag Tech and Mechanical Systems team continues to shine as they placed 5th at the Ohio FFA State Finals. This makes 8 top 10 finishes since FFA made its return. Ayden Hess was 3rd individually and Charlie Weiss was 4th to lead the team that also included strong performances by Noah Egnor and Jackson Weaver. The HS continued “Real Life Wednesdays” on our scheduled 2-hour early release days. Students learned about day-to-day activities such as changing a tire, balancing a checkbook, investing for retirement, and several other activities that were taught by community members, local business owners, alumni and school staff. Students continue to be provided opportunities to learn and engage in Career, College and Military related events and activities. For Manufacturing Day, the eighth graders went to Henny Penny and the tenth graders went to Jafe’ Decorating to learn more about what each company does and the career opportunities available. The MS hosted Military Week with some great activities so students can learn more about our Armed Forces, and students participated in our Veterans Day Program organized by our Leadership Class. Community members, alumni and friends came in to share career opportunities with our HS students and recent graduates stopped in to talk about the transition from high school to college. We’ve had visits from the Arcanum Fire Department and local meteorologists, among others, in the elementary.

Students learning to lead and serve our community continue to be key programs. Arcanum FCCLA hosted the Cancer Awareness Luminary Walk along with regular Blood Drives, we welcomed senior citizens to our Christmas Luncheon, and our middle and high school students once again collected donations for our local food pantries. The 5th and 6th grade students created Christmas cards for Dayton Children’s Hospital and the 7th and 8th grade students made cards for nursing home residents.

Students have been active and successful in extra-curriculars so far this year. In the third year of play in the Western Ohio Athletic Conference, AHS teams won several conference titles this fall, including varsity volleyball, girls golf, and 7th grade girls volleyball. The Lady Trojans Golf team found success winning both the WOAC regular season and tournament championship! The team missed qualifying for Districts by just a few strokes. Coach Andrew Bryant was named WOAC Coach of the Year and the team broke the 18-hole team record with a score of 367. The boys golf team had a successful season, highlighted by a runner-up finish in the WOAC Championship and just missed qualifying for District competition placing 5th in Sectionals. Junior Graham Brubaker was named WOAC Player of the Year after winning the WOAC. Graham went on to win Sectionals and just missed qualifying for State competition. Coach Kip Gray was named WOAC Co-Coach of the Year.

The HS Cross Country teams competed well under new Head Coach Adam Klipstine and Assistant Coach Liz Watren. Receiving WOAC All-Conference honors for the Lady Trojans included: First Team – Arianne Garrison, Special Mention – Shyanna Cunningham. Boys All-Conference honors: Special Mention – Kolin Frazee. At the MS level, Ella Warren (3rd) and Brynn Byers (10th) both placed in the top 10 at the WOAC Championship Meet for the girls, and Evan Rieman finished in 8th.

The football team, under Head Coach Matt Macy, gave a great effort on Friday nights in a competitive WOAC. The team picked up 3 wins, including 2 conference wins, with many younger players gaining valuable experience. The following football players earned all-conference honors: 2nd Team Defense – Devin Craport and Special Mention – Dakota Kendig and Rylan Murray. Devin was also named to the Division VI All-Southwest District Second Team Defense. The JH football team finished a game under .500, but competed well in all their games.

The Lady Trojan Volleyball team, under Coach Jacie Holman, had a season to remember, finishing as WOAC Co-Champs. It was the first conference championship since 2004. The Trojans finished with a 19-6 overall record (10-1 WOAC) and recorded two tournament wins. Coach Holman was named WOAC Coach of the Year and senior Katie Sharp was named the WOAC Player of the Year. Several players earned all-conference honors including: First Team – Haley Smith; Second Team – Mackenzie Byrne and Emilie Fout; Special Mention – Ashlyn Miller. The future looks bright as the JV team was undefeated in WOAC play as was the 7th grade team who finish undefeated and went on to win the WOAC Tournament. The 8th grade team made a run in tournament play finishing as WOAC Runners-Up.

AHS and AMS Cheerleaders have represented the school showing their Trojan Spirit at football and basketball games. Additionally, they have performed well at several competitions this fall including our own Booster Cheer Event and the WOAC Competition. The JH girls team finished as Overall Champions after winning the three categories of Game Day, Cheer and Dance! The HS girls had a strong showing finishing 3rd in Cheer and 5th in Game Day.

Under Director Bryce Hopwood, the HS Marching Band excelled on the field throughout the year in OMEA competition! They finished the year with another trip to the OMEA State Marching Band Competition and received an “Excellent Rating” competing in Class C. In addition to their competitions and performances at football games on Friday night, the band made a trip to Disney World to learn and perform. Additionally, the MS and HS concert bands performed for a large crowd at the Christams Concert. The Arcanum High School Drama Department presented an entertaining performance of “Night at the Wax Museum”. The music department has grown under new teacher and assistant band director, Jessica Berry. The MS and HS Choirs performed extremely well at the annual Veterans Day Program, Christmas Concert and District Christmas Extravaganza. Under the direction of Music Teacher Becky Hootman, our 3rd and 4th graders sang for family and friends for their annual Christmas Concert.

It has been a rewarding first semester with programs, activities, and extra-curricular participation that further supports our students and the goals of the Arcanum-Butler Local School District. The list could easily go on to include the many other music, drama, art, academic team, and other sports activities. A special thanks to all of the coaches, directors, and program advisors! Arcanum-Butler is proud to provide quality instruction while offering a variety of ways for students to explore their passions.

The Arcanum Board of Education and its administration would like to thank Beverly Delk for her service to the district as a Board of Education member. Bev served on the Board for 12 years and always placed students at the forefront of her decision-making. It was a pleasure working alongside her during her tenure. The seat left vacant with Bev’s departure will be filled by Mike Fearon who was voted into office in the recent November elections. Mike says, “I am proud to join the Arcanum – Butler School Board and serve the district. My wife, Rachel, and I have been blessed by the community and operate a family business in the district and look forward to giving back to the community that we live and work in. We have two children currently enrolled in Arcanum-Butler Schools and our oldest child graduated from the district. We have been thankful to raise our children in such a wonderful community and school system. I look forward to serving on the board and helping to ensure that Arcanum-Butler Schools continues to thrive for many years to come.” Thanks to Mike for joining the Board and to all of our Board Members serving the students and the district: Kelly Norris (President), Mark Trask (Vice-President), Eric Moore and Joe LeMaster.

The Arcanum-Butler School District has much to be proud of and I am thankful to be able to lead and serve with such a talented group of educators, support staff, and students! A special thank you to all of our district staff; from teachers to cafeteria staff, from aides to office staff, and from bus drivers to custodians. Furthermore, thank you to the Arcanum-Butler Local Community for your continued support. I look forward to a positive second half of the school year!

No posts to display