Lines From Larry E. Long – Millcreek/West Unity School District Superintendent

HELLO!! Let me start by sharing that I am very proud and honored to be the Superintendent of Schools for the Millcreek-West Unity District. I look forward to developing a great working relationship between the school district and all associated with our communities. My office will always have an open door policy or you can also reach me via phone: 419.924.2365 ext. 2322 and via e-mail at: Llong@hilltopcadets.org.
I am big on communications as I believe that is so important in letting folks know what is going on and taking place in our schools. We have great students, a great staff and I see nothing wrong with us wanting to share the many great things that are taking place at Hilltop. We have a lot to be PROUD of. With that let’s get started for the 2013-2014 school year:

• A big Thank You to Dr. Bob Smith and his leadership of this district over the past three years. He has made the transition very smooth and we wish him and Melanie nothing but the BEST as he moves to the next phase of his life.

• We will be seeing many new faces this year as Hilltop: Mr. Steven Riley will be taking over as the new High School Principal; Ms. Katie Mescher will be our Guidance Counselor for K-12; Ms. Sarah Degroff will be handling the older elementary students as an Intervention Specialist; Mr. Sam Maran will be taking over the High School Band and Choir programs; Ms. Mackenzie Welz will be handling the youngest elementary students as an Intervention Specialist: and Ms. Desiree Arps will be overseeing our Art program for grades K-12. Educational Service Center (ESC) changes include Ms. Amanda Kujawa as the new School Psychologist; Ms. Wendy Hogrefe will be the new pre-school teacher with Ms. Lori Pilmore as the new classroom aide. We are very excited to have these new people on board as they will be positive, welcome additions to our district.

• Internal moves include Mrs. Vickie Rhodes teaching Kindergarten and Mrs. Janie Rivera will be moving to teach Grade 3.

• Name wise – Ms. Angie Riley is now Mrs. Angie Dunson and Ms. Michelle Clark is now Mrs. Michelle Steffes.

• The phone system here at the school has been made more user friendly and we want to advise all of this change. The main number to be used is 419.924.2365! It will welcome you and if you know the extension you are calling, you can enter that at this time. If not, then you will get a menu for the various areas of our school. I have heard lots of concern expressed with lines being constantly busy and by going this direction, we now will have more lines open and available to serve you.

• We encourage folks to get involved with our various support organizations such as the Hilltop Music Boosters and Hilltop Athletic Boosters in the promotion of our students and school. School districts cannot do it all and these two organizations such as these serve as a great support system for our students in various endeavors. Contact Troy Grime (260.413.1503), Tim Clark (419.799.0253), or Melinda Norris (419.551.2808) for Athletic Boosters and Sherry Ackley (419.630.7721) for Music Boosters. MARK YOUR CALENDAR – Music Boosters will meet the first Tuesday of the month at 7:00 p.m. in the Band Room and Athletic Boosters will meet the first Wednesday of the month at 7:00 p.m. in the HS Conference Room. I have always believed in the more people involved, the less amount of work for all!! These two groups need your help and support and remember – ALL of this is being done for OUR KIDS!!!

• A real effort is being made to make our website more useful, informational and beneficial to all so we encourage folks to check that out and try to use that as much as possible. One of our big focal points this year will be in the area of technology and we are talking in a vast array of areas. We need to be providing our students and staff with the same equal advantages they would have with other staff and students from other districts. Cost savings, time and more efficiency can happen but the development of a plan is vitally important. With this being shared:
PLEASE be advised that, effective immediately, we will be placing all the DISTRICT NEWSLETTERS, INTERIMS and GRADE CARDS on the school website (http://www.hilltop.k12.oh.us). Parents – we strongly encourage if you have computer availability to sign up so that we can work together in monitoring your children (s) academic progress. In the event that you do not have computer availability, contact the following individuals and we will get paper copy to you:
DISTRICT – Mrs. Jana Griffin @ 419.924.2365 Ext. 2321
JH/HS – Mrs. Cathie Batt @ 419.924.2365 Ext. 2329
ELEMENTARY – Mrs. Karen Kuney @ 419.924.2365 Ext. 2350

Thanks for your cooperation and understanding!

• Also want to touch base on the fact that the Millcreek-West Unity Board of Education will be placing a 9/10th of a mill levy on the November ballot for the School Resource Officer (SRO) position. Additional information is included in this newsletter under the Treasurer’s Dept. on Page 4.

In closing, let me say again that I am excited and looking forward to this coming school year and the future. I want to work as a TEAM from all angles in providing all of our students with the best education possible. HILLTOP CADETS – MARCHING TO TOTAL EXCELLENCE is the goal! Good things happen when we are all working towards the same common goal. Sure, we will not necessarily agree on everything but if we are committed to doing what is right, then I know we will survive and we will be better school district for it. I want all to know that – I care! Your thoughts, ideas, suggestions and ways to make our school better are always welcome. I care about our communities! I care about our staff! I care about our parents! Most importantly I CARE about our students which include your children as they are what we are all about. Yes – education is a business, a kid business and we need to remain focused to that reality!!

Looking forward to a great year!

GO HILLTOP CADETS – Show that PRIDE and CLASS!!

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