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Seneca Valley School District 2018 Annual Report
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At the opening of the 2017-18 school year, I had the honor of introducing NASA Astronaut Nicole Stott to our assembled staff as she was serving as keynote speaker during our kick-off meeting for the school year. And, at the risk of sounding too cliché, she really did “blast off” the year on a positive and energizing note.

As a former English teacher, I must tell you the idea of using space science was a bit outside of my comfort zone. However, at the core, I am a teacher who is always curious about all subjects. I am someone who is willing to study new things. And, to be honest, I will always be a student who craves to learn more. I find tremendous inspiration - and am motivated by - people and events that cause me to see things from a different perspective. Therefore, in 2017-18, when fellow administrators and I began to develop content and a graphic to best define the educational process here at Seneca Valley, I was brought back to this photographic moment.

This picture captured two women with completely different professional trajectories. On many days, I feel as though we move at the speed of light here at Seneca Valley. But, the reality is that I couldn’t imagine what it would feel like to be launched into space at 18,000 miles per hour. Truth be told, I couldn’t wait to learn more from this accomplished scientist (and artist!). And, my wish is that we were able to return the favor to her. I hope that in spending time with us, Ms. Stott learned more about the important work taking place in public education and, most especially, Seneca Valley.

Ultimately, the graphic we thoughtfully developed (and that we feature on the coming page) is one that identifies our education groundwork and goals; and highlights the many contributing factors to our continued success. The biggest takeaway is knowing that the journey we are all engaged in is one we do as a team. “Learning Together, Growing Together,” really is a theme that defines our educational journey now and into the future.

Sincerely,

Dr. Tracy Vitale

Superintendent of Schools

Mr. James Nickel, Board President Cranberry Township West I and West II, Region 2

Mr. Eric O. DiTullio, Board Vice President Lancaster and Forward Townships, Region 8

Ms. Susan Harrison Cranberry Township West III, Region 3

Mr. Timothy Hester Cranberry Township East III and West V, Region 5

Ms. Leslie Bredl Cranberry Township East I and II, Region 1

Rev. Reid Moon Zelienople Borough, Region 6

Mr. Frederick Peterson Jr. Cranberry Township West IV and West VI, Region 4

Mr. Jeff Widdowson Callery and Harmony Boroughs and Jackson Township, Region 9

Ms. Kathy H. Whittle Evans City and Seven Fields Boroughs, Region 7

School Board Meeting Information

The agenda development (work session) meetings are typically held at 7 p.m. on the first Monday of each month, and the regular action board meeting is typically held at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month. These meetings are open to the public and allow for public comment.

Meetings may be moved to accommodate a holiday. For more information, contact the board secretary at (724) 452-6040, ext. 1638.

If you require special accommodations to participate in the proceedings, please call Ms. Kyra Bobak, human resources director, at (724) 452-6040, ext. 1760 or via email at bobakka@svsd.net.

School Board meeting agendas and minutes can be found on the school district Web site at www.svsd.net/school_board. Please note that board meeting minutes must be approved at the next month’s meeting before they can be posted.

Academic Excellence

  • Promote academic growth
  • Implement a guaranteed and viable curriculum
  • Utilize effective instructional practices to engage with and meet the needs of all students
  • Apply metacognition and growth mindset

21st century skils

  • Stimulate critical thinking and encourage the development of personal skills
  • Encourage leadership and responsibility
  • Promote environmental sustainability
  • Teach digital citizenship

wellness

  • Respect self and others
  • Cultivate student connectiveness
  • Consider quality of life

college & career readiness

  • Embed career pathways across K-12 classrooms
  • Provide opportunities and foster preparedness through career and technical programs
  • Offer academically challenging opportunities

diverSity

  • Promote respect
  • Practice inclusivity in all we do
  • Create a sense of community

lifelong learning

  • Instill passion and purpose
  • Encourage curiosity, creativity and innovation
  • Strengthen student agency
Tree

Learning together, growing together

Safety

We establish a fair, nurturing and safe environment that creates a productive place for learning for our students and employees.

data

We aggregate and analyze district, regional, state and national data to identify trendsm monitor our progress and determine future goals.

resources

Through instruction, technology and innovation, we are able to meet our students' growing needs. We allocate resources to incorporate the diverse interests of student and community groups.

communication

We continue to share information with and solicit feedback from our employess, parents, students and other stakeholder groups utilizing a variety of communication mediums.

community

By engaging family, community and business partners, we are able to create and sustain a collaborative and inviting atmosphere.

Preparation

We provide academically challenging opportunities. We emphasize digital citizenship, innovation and global awareness, all of which prepares our students to be productive and contributing citizens.

Rooter in Success

SENECA VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT

BUILDING DIRECTORY
124 Seneca School Road, Harmony PA 16037
(724) 452-6040

CONNOQUENESSING VALLEY
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
(Grades K-4)
300 South Pittsburgh Street
Zelienople, PA 16063
Ext. 6000

EVANS CITY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
(Grades K-4)
345 West Main Street, Rear
Evans City, PA 16033
Ext. 7000

HAINE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
(Grades K-4)
1516 Haine School Road
Cranberry Township, PA 16066
Ext. 4000

ROWAN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
(Grades K-4)
8051 Rowan Road
Cranberry Township, PA 16066
Ext. 5000

EVANS CITY MIDDLE SCHOOL
(Grades 5 & 6)
345 West Main Street
Evans City, PA 16033
Ext. 7500

HAINE MIDDLE SCHOOL
(Grades 5 & 6)
1516A Haine School Road
Cranberry Township, PA 16066
Ext. 4500

RYAN GLOYER MIDDLE SCHOOL
(Grades 7 & 8)
122 Seneca School Road
Harmony, PA 16037
Ext. 3000

SV INTERMEDIATE HIGH SCHOOL
(Grades 9 & 10)
126 Seneca School Road
Harmony, PA 16037
Ext. 2000

SV SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL
(Grades 11 & 12)
128 Seneca School Road
Harmony, PA 16037
Ext. 1000

SENECA VALLEY ACADEMY OF CHOICE (CYBER & ARTS, K-12)
126 Seneca School Road Harmony, PA 16037
Ext. 1015

In collaboration with family and community, the mission of the Seneca Valley School District is to provide a nurturing and safe environment with academically challenging opportunities, emphasizing digital citizenship, innovation, and global awareness in order to prepare our students to be productive and contributing citizens.

Seneca Valley School District will continue to foster academic integrity, offer advanced educational opportunities, and serve as an innovative leader in education while preparing all students to be productive members of society.

Students and staff participated in a poignant renaming ceremony for
Ryan Gloyer Middle School (formerly known as Seneca Valley Middle School) in June 2018 .To learn more, visit www.svsd.net/Gloyer.

Elementary School

School K 1 2 3 4 Total
C.V Elementary School 136 145 124 157 161 723
Evan City Elementary School 115 113 117 122 108 575
Haine Elementary School 169 166 151 148 182 816
Rowan Elementary School 96 91 94 92 101 474
Elementary (K-4) Total 516 516 486 519 552 2588

Middle School

School 5 6 Total
Evan City Elementary School 239 253 492
Haine Elementary School 292 296 588
Middle School (5-6) Total 531 549 1080

Secondary School

School 7 8 Total
Ryan Gloyer Middle School 571 600 1171
School 9 10 Total
SV Intermediate High School 587 569 1156
School 11 12 Total
SV Senior High School 610 568 1178
Seneca Valley District Total - 7173
Staff Population
  • Professional Staff.........................591
  • Administration Teachers
  • Classified Staff.............................249
  • Total District Employment............840

Additional assessment information is available through the Pennsylvania School Performance Profile. Learn more at www.futurereadypa.org.

Seneca Valley offers so many academic opportunities, all students have to do is take advantage of them. The possibilities are endless, and we continue to offer new opportunities to fit the needs and interests of our students.

“Students have so many opportunities at Seneca Valley, perhaps more things than they could get at any other area high school,” said Dr. Matthew McKinley, Assistant Superintendent, 7-12 Instruction.

Students may take Advanced Placement courses, many available in the traditional classroom setting and cyber format.

“Our AP offerings have really grown over the past 15 years,” Dr. McKinley said. “We started with eight courses and have now tripled those options. We are always, always considering ways to expand those courses.”

Seneca Valley also has new partnerships with Butler County Community College and Point Park University, allowing students to take college courses -- and possibly receive college credit for them -- while they are still in high school.

“We’re really excited about these new partnerships, and they allow us to greatly expand our offerings,” said Dr. McKinley. The district initially had six College in High School (CHS) courses available and now students may choose from 18.

“Of course, it is up to the student to decide whether they want to take a test to earn the course credit on a college transcript, but that option is there for them,” Dr. McKinley said.

The district’s Academy of Choice Cyber Program allows students to take courses online, possibly opening time to take a traditional class during the school year. While there are 60-65 full-time cyber students in the district, McKinley estimates that another 1,000 Seneca Valley students are using the program for coursework at any given time.

“Students can move in and out of it seamlessly, and we can customize a schedule for them,” Dr. McKinley said.

An additional 8,000 students across the state can access SV courses through partnerships with other school districts. “It’s a way for us to help other districts that might not have the same resources that we do,” Dr. McKinley explained.

Students seeking more flexibility can enroll in SV Academy of Choice courses, including a number of highly acclaimed Fine Arts and Performing Arts programs.

“You might have a student taking traditional coursework in the morning and then spending the afternoon in our dance studio,” said Mr. Jeff Roberts, Supervisor of Gifted Education and Student Services.

“Seneca Valley has a longstanding tradition of excelling in the performing arts. We have amazing instructors and are always attracting more students,” Dr. McKinley said.

In combination with academics, the district stresses the importance of looking forward.

“Career readiness is a thoughtful process, not a one-day event,” said Mr. Roberts.

Activities to explore careers start as early as third and fourth grades. Parents are invited to schools for Career Cafes, where they talk with students about their careers and the steps they took to get there, Roberts said.

Beginning in ninth grade, students are asked to select one of 16 nationally defined career clusters that represent groups of related industries and occupations that interest them. Within this system, students can select a path that best fits their interests and abilities. If one path isn’t a good fit, it’s easier to change direction in high school than in college.

“We’re talking about a potential savings of tens of thousands of dollars, given today’s education costs,” added Mr. Roberts.

Sophomores and juniors can experience Career Treks, where they visit businesses and experience what it might be like to have a job in a particular career cluster. For example, a trip to WPXI showcased the business and marketing fields while students visiting the Mario Lemieux Center learned about health and hospitality.Also, students and parents can meet for hour-long Lunch and Learn programs, where they can learn about the post-secondary options, including the college financial-aid process or the application process. At another Lunch and Learn, Seneca Valley graduates visited and shared their experiences as college freshmen.

Seneca Valley’s Naviance guidance program connects parents, students and faculty and gives students tools to help plan for the future. Mr. Roberts said students can take interest inventories, consider college majors and explore occupations. He adds that system can conduct very specific college searches, focusing on interests and geographical locations.

“You can focus on your interests first, then pick a school,” said Mr. Roberts. “It enables students toreally look beyond the school colors and sports teams.”

-Tricia Bennett, SV AR Contributor/SV Parent

Graduation

2018 Graduates: Post-Secondary Plans

Education beyond SV, 2018...........85%
4-year college........................69%
2-year college........................14%
Technical schools................... 2%
Employed/Military/Other...............15%

Here’s a sampling of the colleges and universities chosen by 2018 graduates:

Bright futures - Class of 2018

Special Education

The Seneca Valley School District’s Special Education Department is committed to meeting the needs of students with disabilities and helping them reach their potential. The Seneca Valley School District offers a continuum of services and placement options to meet the needs of each student. Services include but are not limited to:

  • Life Skills Support
  • Speech and Language Support
  • Emotional Support
  • Learning Support
  • Autistic Support

In addition, services for eligible students may also be provided by Midwestern Intermediate Unit IV (MIU-IV). Services provided by MIU-IV may be provided in the district by itinerant MIU-IV staff or in multi-district programs. Multi-district programs include: Deaf/Hard of Hearing Support, Blind-Visually Impaired Support, Life Skills Support, Autistic Support, Speech/Language Support and Multiple Disabilities Support.

Gifted Education

If a student demonstrates a potential need for gifted services, a multidisciplinary evaluation is conducted to determine if the child is in need of special programming. The evaluation process may be initiated by school staff or by a child’s parent, who may do so by contacting the building principal. The amount and type of gifted support to be received by a student is determined on an individual basis annually by the child’s Gifted Individualized Education Program (GIEP) team, of which the parent is a very important member.

2017-18 Special Education Programs included the following:

  • Community based vocation training
  • On-the-job training
  • On-campus vocational training (Raider Roast Coffee Shop)
  • Shopping
  • Banking
  • Community based travel instruction
  • Independent living room
  • Best Buddies – www.bestbuddies.org/Pennsylvania

Seneca Valley’s Special Education Department underwent an audit as part of the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s six-year cyclical monitoring process in the spring of 2018. This rigorous review included interviews with various personnel and parents, a review of over 900 special education-related documents, district policies, and completion of a Facilitated Self-Assessment that required documentation and data related to twenty-three different topics. The result was no findings of non-compliance. In addition to being 100 percent in compliance, the district received a commendation from the Pennsylvania Department of Education for its extensive post-secondary transition program. Seneca Valley is very proud of the teachers and related service personnel who work tirelessly to meet the needs of all our students.

In 2017-18, a new sport rolled out at SV.

The new indoor bocce team at Seneca Valley started through a partnership with Slippery Rock University and the Unified Sports Program through the Special Olympics. The teams were made of student athletes in grades 9-12 with and without disabilities.

SV had eight team members who competed against various teams throughout Butler County with a final tournament at Slippery Rock University in March 2018.

Indoor bocce is the first initiative at Seneca Valley to create inclusive sports programs within the school.

“As both a varsity coach, and special education teacher, I find this new initiative to be such a valuable asset to the district for all students both with and without disabilities,” said Seneca Valley Senior High School Learning Support Teacher Katie Conn. “I think this program is such a valuable experience for all students involved to continue to create discussions about inclusive environments. I think this is just another example of how Seneca Valley is working to include all students.”

Seneca Valley is dedicated to cultivating compassion and a sense of community in its students. The district strives to provide a safe, supportive environment where students and their families can reach out and receive help when it is needed.

In our elementary schools, support groups are available. Guidance counselors meet weekly with small groups of students about concerns such as coping with worry, building self-esteem, improving learning skills, managing emotions and developing friendships. A grief support group is also offered on an as-needed basis.

“Being part of a group is a way for students to realize that other students may think, feel or act the same way they do,” said Dr. Rebecca Rockey, Haine Elementary School Counselor. “The students also learn skills and strategies that can help them inside the classroom and at home.”

Rockey sends a letter home to parents at the beginning of the school year, asking whether their child might benefit from joining a group. “We’ve had a great response from parents,” said Dr. Rockey, who estimates that 100 of Haine’s K-4 students participated.

Also at the elementary level, all Seneca Valley students start the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, which begins in kindergarten and continues throughout high school. Olweus focuses on long-term change that creates a safe and positive school environment.

Weekly classroom meetings focus on team-building activities and discussions on ways to prevent bullying. Teachers also work with students to teach strategies for addressing bullying and other difficult situations.

If a student witnesses bullying, it can be reported anonymously through Sprigeo. If a student feels unsafe or knows someone who feels unsafe, it can be reported through a website and the information is immediately forwarded to a school administrator. Parents may also report concerns through Sprigeo, which can be found on the District’s website as well as in the mobile app.

Students can find help for themselves or their peers on “SOS sheets” that can be found on doors in restroom stalls. The sheets were placed in all restrooms in 7-12 buildings midway through the school year.

“There are so many community resources available, and we’ve tried to pare down that list for our students,” said Mr. Jeff Roberts, Supervisor of Gifted Education and Student Services.

Additionally, Ryan Gloyer Middle School guidance counselors and teachers painted inspirational and supportive messages in restrooms, as that is where students might retreat during difficult moments.

Seneca Valley also sought to reduce student stress by eliminating class rankings, effective for the 2017-18 school year

“We still have a valedictorian and salutatorian, but those are announced at the end of the year,” Mr. Roberts said. “There no longer is a running list, eliminating comparisons throughout the school year.”

Students who are facing emotional challenges can receive instruction in the district’s three Supportive Classrooms. They can have immediate access to therapy when it is needed.

“It keeps kids learning and in school,” explained Mr. Roberts. “It’s well worth every minute that we put into it.”

The district has also allocated space for Glade Run, a local therapeutic service agency the District has partnered with for dozens of years. Approximately 96 students throughout the District meet with therapists during school hours. By making services more convenient, school officials hope students can get help more consistently.

“They can put what they learned in therapy to use right away when they return to the classroom,” Mr. Roberts said.

The District also provides, K-12, The Youth Education Support Services (Y.E.S.S.) program as part of the District’s Student Assistance Program. The YESS program helps to identify barriers that may impede a student’s learning and academic and personal development. The primary goal of student assistance is to help students overcome barriers in order that they may achieve, remain in school, and advance by providing programs to address these barriers.

As you can imagine, barriers to a student’s learning can be complex and may include things such as a recent move or relocation, sudden grief and loss, depression and anxiety, strained relationships, and a sudden change in academic achievement.

This is where YESS comes in to help.

YESS is a multi-step process that begins with a referral that may be made by students, parents/guardians, teachers, and any other school personnel. The YESS team works with and supports the referred student as all team members are specially trained and certified to work with students. YESS also has a prevention component which promotes healthy lifestyles through student education, leadership programs, and alternative activities.

“We have the ability and expertise to reach children at every level and at every age in order to help them thrive,” said Mr. Roberts. “At the end of the day, we want to see every child succeed.”

-Tricia Bennett, SV AR Contributor/SV Parent

  • 12 Teams that qualified for WPIAL Playoffs
  • 3 Teams who placed in WPIAL Championships
  • 1 Team won a WPIAL Championship
  • 7 Teams competed in PIAA Championships
  • 32 Athletes qualified for PIAA Championships
  • 2 Athletes winning named (individual) PIAA Champion
  • 68 Athletes who qualified as individuals for WPIAL Playoffs
  • 1 Athlete who was named individual WPIAL champion
  • 27 Athletes who placed/medaled at WPIAL Championships
  • 5 Athletes who medaled (individually) at PIAA Championships
  • 32 Athletes who qualified for Big 56 Conference Honors
  • 2 Athletes named individual PIAA Champions
  • 1 Athlete who was named to All-State Honors
  • 12 Athletes who participated in WPIAL Golf and Tennis Tournaments
  • 1 Penguins Cup Champion
  • 4 The number of new school records set
  • 19 Athletes who were named to first team All-Section Honors Championships
  • 13 Athletes who were named to All-WPIAL Honors

Nearly two-thirds of the Seneca Valley secondary (grades 7-12) population is involved in clubs and activities. The following is a list of the more than 75 opportunities Seneca Valley is able to provide students due to our size and a dedicated group of teachers/advisers/mentors.

  • Academic Decathlon
  • Academic Games
  • All-School Musical
  • Anime Club
  • Art Club (IHS)
  • Art Club (MS)
  • Art Club (SHS)
  • Badminton Club
  • Band (Marching)
  • Best Buddies
  • Biology Club (9-12)
  • Business Careers Club
  • Chemistry Club
  • Chess and Checkers Club (MS)
  • Chess Club (SHS)
  • Christian Fellowship Club
  • Class - Freshman
  • Class - Junior
  • Class - Senior
  • Class - Sophomore
  • Colorguard, Band Auxiliary
  • Cooking Club
  • Environmental Club (MS)
  • FACS / ARTS (MS)
  • FCCLA
  • Fishing Club - MS
  • Fitness Club
  • Game Research Club
  • Gender and Sexuality Advocacy Club
  • German Club
  • Global Leadership Club
  • Golf Club (MS)
  • Graphic Arts & Tech Ed. Club (IHS)
  • Graphic Arts Club (SHS)
  • Helping Hands Club (MS)
  • Industrial Technology Club (9-12)
  • Interact Club
  • JROTC
  • Junior Classical League (Latin Club)
  • Key Club
  • Knitting Club
  • Library Club (7-8)
  • Literacy Works Club (9-12)
  • Madrigal Singers
  • Medical Careers Club
  • National Honor Society
  • Newspaper (IHS)
  • Newspaper (MS)
  • Newspaper (SHS)
  • Outdoor Adventure Club (MS)
  • Pickle Ball Club
  • Play (IHS)
  • Play (MS)
  • Pom Pon, Band Auxiliary
  • Pottery Club (SHS)
  • Raider Review
  • Rock Out SV
  • SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions)
  • Science Honors Society
  • Seneca Valley Television (SVTV)
  • Ski Club (10-12)
  • Ski Club (7-9)
  • Spring Play (9-12)
  • Stage and Light Crew (IHS)
  • Stage and Light Crew (SHS)
  • Starts with Soap Club
  • Student Council (IHS)
  • Student Council (MS)
  • Student Council (SHS)
  • Teens‘n Tots Club (SHS)
  • Thespian Troupe (9-12)
  • Tri M National Honorary Music Society
  • Varsity Club
  • Video Club
  • Weight Lifting Club (MS)
  • Winter Guard Club
  • Yearbook (9-12)
  • Yearbook (MS)

The Seneca Valley JROTC celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2018. The spirit of the program is captured in the JROTC motto, *To motivate young people to be better citizens.” The JROTC motto directly supports the Seneca Valley School District mission of providing “an academically rigorous experience in a progressive environment, emphasizing civic responsibility and global awareness.” The program is one of the oldest of the 1,709 JROTC programs nationwide. Since 1968, Seneca Valley JROTC has provided high school cadets with practical hands-on application through physical fitness, hard work, service learning, and civic duty to their community. Through it all, Seneca Valley JROTC has strongly emphasized and wiil continue to be the pinnacle of leadership for our school, community, state and nation for years to come.

In honor of Thomas Edison’s 171st birthday, the Edison Awards Steering Committee announced the 2018 Edison Awards Finalists, and Seneca Valley was the only K-12 public school in the nation to be included on the list. Specifically, Haine Schools’ Creativity, Innovation and Research Center (CIRC) was chosen from over 3,000 professionals from the fields of product development, design, engineering, science, marketing and education, including professional organizations representing a wide variety of industries and disciplines.

“It is an incredible honor to be considered for this prestigious award,” said Dr. Sean McCarty, assistant superintendent for K-6 instruction. “Recognition such as this demonstrates an investment in children and acknowledges the importance of encouraging creativity and innovation from a young age. The fact that this is coming from another industry, one in which understands and values the efforts of public education, is very gratifying.”

Seneca Valley collaborated with Pittsburgh based Inventionland Institute to design an innovative space and introduce creative resources at all Seneca Valley K-6 elementary schools to help students find inspiration in their academics. The first of four spaces was installed during summer 2017 at Haine Middle School with plans in the works to create similar spaces at Connoquenessing Valley, Rowan and Evans City Elementary Schools in the coming year. Known as the Creativity, Innovation & Research Center (CIRC), CIRC offers students an opportunity for students to use a “constructivist approach to all sorts of project-based activities,” said Dr. McCarty. In one area, a visitor may find students taking part in a demo on the many applications of a laser printer, from cutting fabric to creating food art to designing plastic.

Just across the room, first graders may be working diligently on puzzles while sixth graders are seen trying out the green screen technology and fourth graders are brainstorming story topics. Now and in the future, students will be collaborating with their peers on such subjects as coding, robotics, engineering, communications, and graphic design. They are also experiencing self-discovery, learning problem-solving skills and taking home real-world knowledge. Seneca Valley is one of the first school districts to work with and offer Inventionland’s K-4 curriculum, and one of just a few in the region to offer such a space. For certain, SV is currently the only District that features a tree house, complete with a bright yellow slide!

The National Council for Home Safety and Security announced their 2018 ranking of the Best School Districts in America and out of 9,577 eligible districts, Seneca Valley School District came in at number 349.

The National Council for Home Safety and Security is a trade association comprised of home security professionals across the United States. The council advocates for safe communities and home safety with a strong focus on community involvement.

Seneca Valley earned four awards of excellence and an award of honor in the 2017-18 Pennsylvania School Public Relations Association’s (PenSPRA) “Excellence in Education Communications” 2017 Contest.

Awards of Excellence:
  • “Raider Pride,” the SV E-Newsletter
  • “Worth a Thousand Words,” the SV 17-18 District Calendar
  • “Takeover Tuesdays” on SnapchatTwitter and Instagram
Award of Honor:
  • “Staff of Seneca Valley” feature on Facebook

Seneca Valley also earned four awards in the National School Public Relations Association’s (NSPRA) 2018 Publications and Digital Media Contest.Seneca Valley School District’s Communications Department received an Award of Merit for the District website, an Honorable Mention for the 2017-18 SV Activities & Information Calendar “Worth a Thousand Words,” an Honorable Mention for Seneca Valley’s Instagram Account and an Honorable Mention for the holiday video “Happy Thanksgiving from Seneca Valley.”

Seneca Valley School District is one of 447 school districts in the U.S. and Canada being honored by the College Board with placement on the 8th Annual AP® District Honor Roll. To be included on the 8th Annual Honor Roll, Seneca Valley School District had to, since 2015, increase the number of students participating in AP while also increasing or maintaining the percentage of students earning AP Exam scores of 3 or higher. Reaching these goals shows that this district is successfully identifying motivated, academically prepared students who are ready for AP.

“Congratulations to our students and staff for their continued dedication and hard work,” said Dr. Tracy Vitale, Seneca Valley Superintendent of Schools.“I think this recognition speaks volumes for how far we have come in the number of Advanced Placement course offerings for our students and the way in which we prepare students for college. AP classes challenge student thinking, advance necessary 21st century skills and set the tone for higher-level learning.”

National data from 2017 shows that among American Indian/Alaska Native, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, and Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander students with a high degree of readiness for AP, only about half are participating. The first step to getting more of these students to participate is to give them access. Seneca Valley School District is committed to expanding the availability of AP courses among prepared and motivated students of all backgrounds.

“Congratulations to all the educators and administrators in this district who have worked to clear a path for more students of all backgrounds to participate and succeed in AP,” said Trevor Packer, head of AP and Instruction. “These educators and administrators are fostering a culture in their schools and classrooms that allows students to face new challenges and build the confidence to succeed.”

The primary source of Local Revenue for Seneca Valley are real estate and earned income taxes. Also included in Local Revenue are federal funds that pass through our intermediate unit, as well as funds generated when Seneca Valley provides cyber services to outside school districts. We are cognizant of the significance – and take very seriously – the responsibility that comes with spending revenue from local sources (see expenditures below).

Revenue
Local Revenue $88,692,363 69.89%
State Revenue 35,204,696 27.74%
Federal Revenue 869,000 0.68%
Fund Balance Use 2,143,699 1.69%
TOTAL REVENUE $126,909,758 100%
Expenditures
Instruction $79,745,665 62.84%
Instructional Support Service 34,459,426 27.15%
Non-Instructional Support Services 1,926,887 1.52%
Facilities Acquisition & Improvement 25,000 0.02%
Debt Service 10,002,780 7.88%
Budget Reserve / Contingency 750,000 0.59%
TOTAL EXPENDITURES $126,909,758 100%

2017-18 Seneca Valley Budget

The Board of School Directors unanimously passed the 2017-18 general operating budget for the Seneca Valley School District in June 2017.

The board has and will continue to focus on reducing spending and finding new revenue streams while pursuing cost avoidance efforts. The budget helps, in part, to support ongoing technology, curriculum improvements and updates to our district facilities.

The development and final adoption of the budget is a very detailed and complex process for which the board of school directors is responsible by state law per Section 679 of the Pennsylvania Public School Code of 1949.

The final document is a product that was developed with the cooperation and effort of the board, administration and staff. The process and final budget provides for the best education possible for our students as well as sensitivity to the burden of expense on the local taxpayer.

2017-18 Final Budget General Information

ESTIMATED REVENUE: $124,766,059

  • Increase of $5,884,459 over 2016-17 (4.95%)
  • Real estate millage increased 3.0 mills from 123 to 126, which is under the Act 1 Index of 2.5% or 3.07mills
  • Value of a mill increased to $597,000, a 2.54% increase over 2016-17
  • Other tax lines adjusted to reflect current collections
  • Interest earnings increased to reflect current market rates
  • Basic Ed and Special Ed subsidies increased to reflect current information provided by the state
  • Transportation subsidy decreased in anticipation of state-wide cut
  • State subsidy for social security and PSERS increased to reflect 50% of budgeted expenses
  • Title I and Title II program revenue moved from local to federal due to no longer passing through IU IV

BUDGETED EXPENDITURES: $126,909,758

  • Increase of $5,409,676 over 2016-17 (4.45%)
  • PSERS increase from 30.03% to 32.57% - rate increase of 8.46%, accounts for approx. $2.13M
  • Healthcare decrease - $145,000 and dental decrease - $75,000
  • Hiring of new positions, including guidance counselors and social worker
  • Includes contractual increases for cleaning, snow removal, etc.
  • Includes additional amounts for transportation, including parochial transportation
  • Tech equipment increased for one-to-one project
  • Interest and principal payments adjusted to reflect current debt schedule, principal increased, interest decreased,of $200,000
  • Retained $750,000 on contingency line
  • Planned transfer to Capital Reserve fund included in the amount of $4.25M

We thank our many donors for their support of the Seneca Valley Foundation

Founding Member ($1,000+):

  • Fun Fore All
  • Mr. Randy Hart
  • Ms. Heather Lewis
  • Mr. Jim Pearson
  • Dr. Tracy & Mr. Greg Vitale

Foundation Fellow Level ($500-$999):

  • Ms. Lynn Burtner
  • Mr. Jack McDermott
  • Mr. Fred & Mrs. Cecelia Peterson
  • Ms. Linda Starosta
  • Mr. Tom & Mrs. Lynn West
  • Ms. Claire Zovko

Foundation Patron Level ($100-$499):

  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous
  • Ms. Beth Allen-Boyle
  • Ms. Darlene Carmack
  • Mr. Joe Cieslo
  • Ms. Celeste Foley
  • Ms. Lisa Fornadel
  • Mr. Steven Fortunato
  • Ms. Jessica Kerr
  • Dr. Anne Koch
  • Ms. Kasey Kraus
  • Ms. Megan Lizewski
  • Mr. Matthew Martin
  • Ms. Christine McCormick
  • Mr. Joe Logsdon
  • Ms. Carrie McNally
  • Ms. Bridget Miller
  • Ms. Lisa O’Brien
  • Ms. Joanne Ranayhossaini
  • Mr. Chad Robertson
  • Dr. Rebecca Rockey
  • Ms. Leslie Rymer
  • Mr. David Silvester
  • Ms. Margaret Tkatch
  • Ms. Kelly Weston
  • Ms. Elizabeth Williams
  • Mr. Stephen Wolfe

Foundation Partner Level ($75-$99):

  • Ms. Cassandra Doggrell
  • Mr. Jeffrey Roberts
  • Ms. Kristen White

Foundation Friend Level ($50-$74):

  • Ms. Bobi-Jean Alexander
  • Ms. Kim Blakley
  • Ms. Melissa Borgoyn
  • Ms. Anna Capone
  • Ms. Nicole Eaton
  • The Henry Family
  • Ms. Patricia Smith

Additional Donors ($5-$49):

  • Anonymous
  • Ms. Valerie Damiani
  • Mr. Ron Gibson
  • Ms. Tracy Richards
  • Ms. Sara Snyder
  • Ms. Cheryl Zorich

Honoree Level ($25+ given in honor of a Seneca Valley Teacher/Student or Community Member):

  • Evans City Faculty and Staff in honor of 2018
  • Retirees Ms. Amy Nelson and Mr. Timothy Parish
  • Seneca Valley Family and Consumer Sciences Department in honor of the 2017 Retired Family and Consumer Sciences Teachers, Gail Simpson and Sue Harmon

Memorial Level (Any memorial donation):

  • Mr. & Mrs. Fred Peterson in memory of George E. McKinley

Fun Fore All, a locally owned family fun park donated $5,000 to the Seneca Valley Foundation (SVF). Specifically, the contribution was split with $2,500 going to the Creativity, Innovation and Research Center (CIRC) space at Rowan Elementary School and $2,500 for five teacher mini-grants. Chris Camp, president and owner at Fun Fore All in Cranberry Township presented the check to Rowan Elementary students and staff on Feb. 28, 2018.

Donor Randy Hart awards staff mini grants

The Seneca Valley Foundation and Mr. Randy Hart, a Seneca Valley Alumnus and retired educator, announced that several members of Seneca Valley School District’s elementary and secondary staff were named mini grants winners.

Grants were awarded based on each applicant’s intent to enrich curriculum and/or provide students with additional learning opportunities through the grant funds.

Each project was awarded $500 each, respectively, as noted. They are:

  • Bria Koch, Rowan Elementary School Technology Facilitator and Kelly McDonald, Rowan Elementary School CIRC K-4 Teacher, “Lights, Camera, Action!”
  • Sandy Thompson, Evans City Elementary Fourth Grade Teacher, “Osmo Coding and Creative Thinking”

Hart Mini Grant, Secondary Winners:

  • Steve Wolfe, Seneca Valley Senior High School Industrial Technology Education Teacher, “All the Rage”
  • Steve Fortunato, Seneca Valley Senior High School Industrial Technology Education Teacher, “Women in Engineering”

SV Foundation Mini Grant, Elementary Winners:

  • Anita Hershberger, Rowan Elementary School Second Grade Teacher, “Vocabulary Word Heroes”
  • Victoria Hinchee, Haine Middle School Sixth Grade Teacher, “Flexible Seating to Support Individual Student Learning Needs”
  • Natalie Ranalli, Evans City Elementary First Grade Teacher, “Flexible Seating for First Grade”
  • Christine Roe, Haine Middle School Learning Support Teacher and Joan Widdowson, Haine Middle School Learning Support Teacher, “Developing Mindfulness Through Yoga in the Classroom”

SV Foundation Mini Grant, Secondary Winners:

  • Lisa Tyson, Ryan Gloyer Middle School Reading Teacher, “While I Live, A Portrait of Student Wishes”
  • Bruce Clark, Seneca Valley Senior High School Industrial Technology Education Teacher, “A New Perspective”
  • Joe Logsdon, Seneca Valley Senior High School Industrial Technology Education Teacher, “Robot Virtual Worlds”

The District thanks Mr. Hart for his generous $2,000 donation, and SVF for their $3,500 generous donation.

“While I Live” Wall at Ryan Gloyer Middle School (RGMS)

Seneca Valley Foundation

A fundraising arm of the Seneca Valley School District, the Seneca Valley Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging excellence and innovation in all grades of the Seneca Valley Schools. The Foundation strives to achieve this by seeking donations and patrons to facilitate the development of new capital projects, programs and scholarships. Its board members consist of stakeholders who are local business leaders, community leaders and school leaders. As a non-profit organization, the Foundation is also utilized as a vehicle by which memorial and other charitable donations may be made to the Seneca Valley School District.

The Seneca Valley Foundation is proud to say we are providing mini-grants for STEM initiatives (STEM Fair, Women in Engineering class & travel expenses to the Creek Connections Symposium), and financial support for extracurricular activities (donations toward much needed repairs to the Natatorium). The Foundation also helped Connoquenessing Valley Elementary School to unveil a Situated Multimedia Arts Learning Lab (SMALLab), also known as “Inspiration Station.” Join us in providing “The Gift of Hope, the Promise of Excellence,” by visiting our SVF donation page: www.svsd.net/howToGive.

The Seneca Valley Foundation (SVF) fully funded the lettering and installation of Ryan Gloyer Middle School (formerly Seneca Valley Middle School).

How SVF Helps

Family members of Sgt. 1st Class Ryan Gloyer are seen above unveiling the new building name for seventh and eighth graders in the District: Ryan Gloyer Middle School (RGMS). Students, staff, family and friends gathered for a special ceremony on June 7, 2018 that recognized and celebrated the many wonderful qualities of this SV graduate (’00), teacher and courageous soldier.

To learn more about SVF, including our Gift of Hope Golf Classic, visit: www.svsd.net/SVFoundation.

The Seneca Valley Foundation (SVF) received a gracious and substantial donation of $22,500 on behalf of NexTier Bank. Additionally, Farmers National Bank officials donated $4,000 to SVF; all of it through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) Program grant.

A statewide program, EITC enables businesses to make donations to organizations they choose from a Commonwealth – approved list. EITC is a statewide initiative enacted by the PA Department of Community and Economic Development in 2001. EITC enables eligible businesses to apply credits against their tax liability for the tax year in which they make a contribution to support education in Pennsylvania.

Specifically, the donations were applied to STEM classes at Seneca Valley.

Give Pack giving back

Giving Back to Cranberry Township, Inc. is a foundation arm of Victory Family Church (VFC) in Cranberry Township.

Every year, they work to raise funds to purchase backpacks that are amply filled with school supplies for nearly 1,000 SV students who are identified as economically disadvantaged.

In 2017-18, additional funds were left over from the foundation’s backpack fundraising efforts, so they generously donated $2,500 of it for equipment purchases that will assist with the Creativity, Innovation and Research Centers (CIRC) at CVE and Evans City schools.

We thank them for their
continued support of Seneca Valley!