Bridger Spirit Day at Highland Elementary
This first week at Ambridge Junior High has been off to an exciting and promising start! We have several initiatives this year that will enhance the climate of the school and strengthen relationships among our staff and student body. Our theme this year at the Junior High is GRIT. GRIT stands for Gratitude, Respect, Integrity and Teamwork. Our staff and students have identified behaviors that demonstrate these four pillars of character. We are focusing on showing GRIT in the hallways and cafeteria this year. It has been wonderful hearing students talking about and showing enthusiasm for GRIT amongst themselves. Their introduction to GRIT kicked off with grade level assemblies where they got their first taste at brainstorming about GRIT – what the words mean and how it might look in the school. They learned that through the demonstration of GRIT, they can earn spots on the Principal’s 100 Club and that they’ll be recognized for their positive behaviors and given the chance to win mystery motivators.
This School-Wide Positive Behavior Support Program is an extension of the program they participated in at the elementary schools. In addition to our focus on increasing positive behavior and a sense of community in our school, we introduced a new academic initiative, iStation. This program will help our staff identify academic strengths and weaknesses of each student and customize online instruction to their individual needs. Students will work within this program consistently throughout the year. The program is highly engaging and interactive and we predict the students will enjoy their time working in it. Quarterly assessments will allow our staff to appropriately program for our students during the Intervention/Enrichment period. Junior High is a special time for our children. They are starting to increase their independence and sense of identity while still needing structure and our support. We believe that our School-wide Positive Behavior Support Program, that includes our theme of GRIT, will help our students make the connection between independence and responsibility. Working together, respecting differences, taking responsibility for our actions and words, and showing appreciation for our school, teachers and community, will improve the daily climate at the Junior High and continue to show that this is a great place to be!
State Street was an exciting place to be on Monday, August 21st as the kids headed into school for the 2017-2018 school year! Students attended an assembly on the STAR behavior reward program and had the opportunity to view the solar eclipse.
Andrew Crofoot and Madison Holcomb were awarded prizes for completing the summer activity packet and returning it to Mr. McKelvey (photo below).
Mackenzie Sutton, Colin Sutton, Braden Vukovcan, and Ben Vukovcan (not pictured Candise Russin) completed the summer reading challenge sponsored by the Ambridge Area Federal Credit Union (photo below).
Welcome back to all the students!
For additional photos from the Beaver County Times, click here:
The Ambridge Area School District is pleased to announce that teachers have voted to accept a decision issued by the Act 88 arbitration panel on Aug. 11.
During a special vote late this afternoon, the teachers voted on and approved the arbitrators’ ruling. The Ambridge School Board approved the decision at its Aug. 16 voting meeting.
The agreement, which is retroactive to the start of the 2015-2016 school year, includes a fair salary and health insurance package. Savings achieved through the healthcare plan will be used to support well-deserved teacher salary increases without an impact to taxpayers. Details of the deal are available on the District website here.
Following the vote, Dr. Jo Welter, Superintendent, expressed her appreciation to both sides of the negotiating table for their diligence and dedication to working out a deal that was fair to all parties involved.
“We are pleased the teachers have voted to accept the arbitrators’ ruling, and thank them for their willingness to thoroughly review the offer before casting their votes,” she said. “We know our teachers truly care about the education of our students, and we are thrilled to be able to announce the start of the new school year without the threat of a strike looming.”
Mr. Scott Angus, School Board President, thanked both sides of the aisle for their steadfast determination to reach a deal. “We are appreciative that we were able to reach a fair agreement that addresses the needs of the District, the teachers, the students and the community as a whole,” said Angus.
Students return to the classroom on Monday, Aug. 21.
The Ambridge Area School District is pleased to announce the Act 88 arbitration panel has returned a majority decision in favor of the District’s final, best offer to the Ambridge Area Education Association (AAEA). The decision, issued Aug. 11, determined the District’s offer is the most reasonable and feasible option for all parties involved.
The arbitration team consists of the District’s appointed representative, a Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) representative and a neutral third-party representative selected by the District and PSEA arbitrators. All three arbitrators possess extensive experience in labor negotiations.
“In a good faith effort, the District worked diligently and met frequently to develop an offer that the neutral arbitrator would find acceptable and fair, considering the state of the District and the restraints of the budget,” said Dr. Jo Welter, Superintendent. “The District is satisfied with the decision and is hopeful that the teachers will have faith in the arbitrators making the decision.”
August 6, 2017
As you may already know, Kevin Hudac passed away Friday, after an unfortunate accident. Kevin was a recent graduate from the class of 2017. We know that this type of loss can greatly affect our children and our school community.
We will bring in our professionals and prevention specialists from the Prevention Network to help our children deal with their emotions and reactions to feelings of fear and loss. Services will be available in the High school office Monday August 7th from 9am to 1pm and by appointment as needed moving forward. Please contact the Guidance office at 724-266-2833 x2377
This type of death can produce many different responses to loss. There can be shock, fear, sadness, shame, anger, and guilt. Every individual is different. Some may not react at all while some children will display grief openly and want to talk about the death and their feelings. Talking can help children with their fears about their own possible losses.
Sometimes grief can be expressed in actions. Be aware of behavior changes such as crying, over-reacting to small stresses, complaining of stomach or headaches, or acting tired or withdrawn. If you become concerned about your child’s behavior, please call the school to ask for help.
Know that your teachers and counselors are here to help with any problem your child may encounter. Please call your school if you need assistance for your child.
Ms. Janice L. Zupsic
Senior High School Principal
Ambridge Area School District
The Ambridge Area School District is pleased to announce that we will begin using the Raptor Visitor Management System in all of our district schools to build on the district’s program of campus safety for students and faculty. Part of keeping students and faculty safe is knowing who is in our building at all times and the Raptor system will allow us to do that. The Raptor system will better allow us to track visitors, contractors, and volunteers in our schools and provide us with a safer environment for our students and staff.
Upon entering a district building, visitors will be asked to present a valid state-issued ID, which will be scanned into the system. The Raptor system will check to ensure that registered sexual offenders are not entering our buildings. It is important to note that the Raptor system only scans the visitor's name, date of birth and photo for comparison with a national database of registered sex offenders. Additional visitor data from the driver's license is not gathered nor is the system connected to any other system such as the Department of Motor Vehicles. Therefore, any other information on the ID is not scanned by the system and is not accessible to any of the users. Once entry is approved, Raptor will issue a badge that identifies the visitor, the date, and the purpose of his/her visit.
A visitor’s badge will not be necessary for those who visit our schools simply to drop off an item in the office or pick up paperwork. In the event that a person does not have identification, the campus administrator on duty will be called to assess the situation.
If you are interested in learning more about the Raptor visitor management system, please visit the Raptor Technologies website (www.raptortech.com). If you have any questions for the district personnel, please contact the school office.
The safety of our students is our highest priority and the Raptor visitor management system provides a consistent way to aid in keeping away people who may present a danger to our students. Therefore, all visitors to the school must be scanned into the system and obtain a visitor badge. Thank you, in advance, for your understanding and support of enhancing school safety protocols in our district.
L. Joan Welter, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Dear Residents of the Ambridge Area School District,
As a 20 year resident of the community and a parent of two children who were educated in this District, I am honored to be the Superintendent of the Ambridge Area School District. From first- hand experience, I assure you that your children will be engaged in a variety of educational and extracurricular opportunities that will successfully prepare them for their future. This school community is filled with caring adults who work hard every day to support our students and create an environment that is conducive to learning and growing. As parents, we too must be committed to helping our children learn and grow.
Upon visiting any of our schools you will find that they were all built or renovated in the past few years. They are clean, updated and functional for the needs of our students. Teachers make our schools welcoming and I have personally witnessed the support by many professional educators going above and beyond to create a positive experience for students. A recently added STEAM initiative provides integrated technology experiences for all students and all ninth graders will have the opportunity to complete a coding class for the first time this year. The professional staff is proud of what they do and work hard to help students be successful every day.
Students have a wide variety of extracurricular opportunities from which to choose. Athletics, the arts, and technology challenges all await them in our schools. The District’s High School Steel Drum Band tours the local area to entertain and perform at numerous venues. Most of their time is spent outside school hours. This is a testimony of how great our students really are. The District provides opportunities for athletic competition and a large number of students take advantage of these challenges as well. You will quickly find that when your child is involved in any of these activities, parent involvement also becomes a huge aspect of the experience. This is a tribute to our entire school community.
Our schools pull our community together. My closest acquaintances and friendships have been made through the school environment. As it should be, Ambridge Area School District remains a strong catalyst for bringing our community together. I invite you to engage and stay involved with our schools. It is a great place!
Jo Welter, Ed. D.
National Junior Honor Society Members
Current 8th Graders
Newly inducted 7th Graders