Friday, January 11, 2019

January/February 2019

**Second quarter grades have been published to parent and student Infinite Campus accounts**

From the Principal...

Dear High School Families;

Happy New Year to all of you. I hope you enjoyed time with friends and family over the break while finding a moment to relax.

One of my goals as West Geauga High School principal is to eliminate barriers that exist to accessing the many academic, social and athletic opportunities for our students. Ideally, we would like students to come to school with their minds focused on giving their best. We realize this can be difficult with the daily life and distractions commonly associated with being a teenager. In prior newsletters and parent meetings, I have discussed ways to reduce or eliminate these distractions that include, but are not limited to, bullying and harassment, school safety and healthy living.

It is important to make you aware of a recent nicotine trend among teenagers. Fortunately, cigarette smoking among teenagers has declined in the past several years. Unfortunately, another habit is being developed by many teenagers across the country. This trend is called vaping or “Juuling”. Vaping or Juuling is a method of delivering nicotine using an electronic device. Many parents and students believe these are harmless devices and users are only inhaling water molecules. Instead, what is inhaled typically includes large amounts of addictive nicotine and other chemicals.

Vaping devices are hard to detect by someone not familiar them. They are easily hidden and used in homes and schools. Many of them look like a USB drive and emit little or no odor, unlike cigarettes. In fact, many of the chemicals used are flavored and emit a pleasant smell. Side effects from using the products include difficulty learning and memorizing, lack of focus, and irritability. 

Most students are aware of these devices and many know how to use them. Please take time to have an open conversation with your child about vaping and Juuling and discourage them from using these highly addictive products. For more information, please click on the links below.
Center for Disease Control and Prevention
American Heart Association
American Lung Association
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration
The U.S. Surgeon General

Thank you,

Jay Bishop

A Message from the Assistant Principal. . . .

Happy New Year! I wish everyone the best in 2019

The second semester began on Monday, January 7th. Some students will have schedule changes due to semester classes. There are still some parking permits available for this year. Permits are offered to sophomores, juniors, and seniors and can be purchased in the school’s main office. A permit is required to park on school property. Students who are in violation of this rule may be subject to disciplinary consequences. Parents are urged to make sure your children are in compliance with all school parking regulations, especially the following:
  • All students must use the south entrance off of Chillicothe to enter the high school parking lot.
  • Students are not to use the north entrance or drive through the middle school lot. 
  • The gates behind the school (in front of Howell Field) are opened every winter to accommodate the trucks during snow removal. For the safety of our students, this drive is not to be used by students at any time. Suspension of driving privileges will be the consequence for violators.
Winter weather is upon us. Students are cautioned to be extremely careful driving in these hazardous conditions. For many students, this may be their first winter driving experience. Leave home earlier and drive slower. It may be advisable to take the bus when the conditions are unsafe.

As we enter the new year, I wanted to take this time to remind parents to monitor their child’s use of technology. According to a recent study, 68% of all teens between the ages of 12-17 have downloaded apps to their personal cell phones. Apps have become the new way for teens to engage in at-risk behavior (sexting, bullying, etc.). Below is a list of apps that are currently being used to engage in these behaviors:
  1. Snapchat. Snapchat allows users to send images and videos to their friends. Senders can place a time limit on how long the receiver can view the image or video. The contents of the “snap” are erased from 1-10 seconds based upon the time limit set by the users. Students like Snapchat because of the simplicity and speed. It sends photos and videos much faster than standard text messages. Snapchat is the number one app students use for sexting. Teens send nude snaps to other student under the impression that the image will be erased. However, there are countless ways for the receiver of the image to save it. Forensic experts have stated the snaps can easily be recovered, thus, are never truly deleted from the receiver's phone.
  2. The Whisper App. This app allows users to superimpose text over a picture. The users are anonymous thus allowing for secrets to be posted. This allows users to share feelings and emotions over simple pictures. Teens have started using the app for cyberbullying. Due to the anonymous features of the app, teens are posting pictures of other teens with derogatory text superimposed on the image.
  3. Ask.Fm. This is a question and answer site that allows users to ask anonymous questions. Ask.Fm has Twitter and Facebook integration that allows users to connect with all their friends on those popular sites. Due to intense bullying, Ask.Fm has led to 4 documented cases of suicide in the United States. Users engage in cyberbullying by constantly asking inappropriate and derogatory questions. The app is totally anonymous and is not being monitored by the developers.
The key for parents is to monitor downloaded apps on your child’s phone. Google the app to learn if they are dangerous or inappropriate. Gather all of your child’s passwords and usernames for monitoring purposes. It is always better to be safe than sorry.


Ron Dahlhofer
Assistant Principal


The date for 2019 graduation has been changed to Thursday, June 6th and will be held at Severance Hall.

The ACT will be given in school to all Juniors on Wednesday, February 20th.

End-of-Course Testing will be as follows:

Monday, April 15th - English 9, English 10 (Part I)

Tuesday, April 16th - English 9, English 10 (Part II)

Wednesday, April 17th - American History; Government (Part I)

Thursday, April 18th - American History; Government (Part II)

Thursday, April 25th - Biology (Part I) 

Friday, April 26th - Biology (Part II)

Monday, April 29th - Algebra I, Geometry (Part I)

Tuesday, April 30th - Algebra I, Geometry (Part II)


November - Stephen Javorek

December - Richard Kirk

January - Ellie Benedict

November - Mackenzie Hanford

December - Lindsey Kulp

January - Matthew Stewart


Happy New Year from the Attendance Office!

I hope everyone is refreshed and ready to tackle the second half of the year after a wonderful winter break. As a reminder, if your child is going to be absent for an extended period of time due to vacation, you will need to have a Vacation Request form filled out and turned in to the attendance office with all appropriate signatures 5 days before the absences occur. These forms can be found in the attendance office or online under the forms link. If your child is missing school for medical reasons please provide a note from the doctor and turn in to the attendance office. Notes for early dismissal should be turned in to the attendance office the day before your child needs to leave early whenever possible. Last minute phone calls, other than true emergencies cannot always be delivered immediately and create unnecessary disruption to valuable instruction time in the classroom. Tardy arrivals to school are considered unexcused even if a parent calls in for the student. If your student is driving to school this year, please remind them of this policy.

Thank you and have a great second semester!

Mrs. Poelking


West Geauga High School Counseling News                                          January/February 2019


The counselors would like to give students three simple suggestions to help make your life experiences the best they can be while you are at West Geauga High School:
  1. Invest time in your academic studies; there will be a return on your investment!
  2. Find ways to create balance in your life; find time to do an activity that you enjoy!
  3. When you are faced with a problem, try to find a solution. If you struggle with the problem, find someone to help you develop a solution.
The Naviance website has valuable information regarding college planning, scholarships, and careers. You can visit the website at and click on high school, then guidance. If you have any questions or concerns, please call the counseling office.

College Credit Plus (CCP):
The CCP Information Meeting is January 23rd at 7 pm in Room 124. A presentation about CCP’s procedures and application guidelines will be presented. A very important document called the “CCP Intent Form” MUST be returned by April 1st. If this deadline is not met your son/daughter is not eligible to participate in this program.

SAVE THE DATE--Kickstart College Fair:
All students are invited to the Kickstart College Fair. The fair will take place at YOUR school on Monday, April 8, 2019. At 6:00 pm there will be a guest speaker. This year the speaker will be Stefanie D. Niles, Ed.D. She is the Vice President for Enrollment and Communications at Ohio Wesleyan University and the President of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC). The fair will be from 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm. This fair will be a great opportunity to explore schools and meet admissions counselors. Please mark your calendar and plan on attending!

If you are not sure about your post-graduation plans please stop in our office for assistance. We have resources in the counseling office where you can get information on colleges, apprenticeships, and military. The door is always open. Please remember to check your college deadlines, follow the application submission procedures, and check Naviance for updates!
Do not forget that schools will require a final transcript at the end of your senior year. Do your best throughout your whole senior year to earn the best grades possible. The finish line is close!

Continue to make good all have a bright future ahead of you!

Mid-Year Reports:
Some of you applied to schools that require a mid-year report. If you are unsure what your colleges require, you need to go online and check. Please communicate directly with your counselor if you need a mid-year report as soon as possible.

Information on scholarships that our office receives can be found in two places. There are hard copy materials in the scholarship rack in the counseling office. Also, please check Naviance. Scholarship information can be found in the Colleges section of your account. Make sure you take advantage of any opportunity to find dollars to help fund your education.

Financial Aid:
Mrs. Tessa Dicker, our LEAF Financial Aid Advisor, works in WGHS one day per week throughout the year. She will be at our school on Thursdays in the second semester. Students and parents may request an appointment with Mrs. Dicker by contacting her at 729-5922, extension 4164 or by emailing her at All of the financial aid services provided by LEAF are at no charge to our families.

It is time for us to start working with you on your post-graduate planning and college selection process. Please plan for the following activities listed below:

Junior Student Meetings:
During Government classes on Friday, February 22nd

College Visits:
If you have the opportunity try to get on the campuses of the schools you have interest in. Make sure it is an official visit by registering online or calling the admissions office. Showing interest in a school is important.
As part of the State of Ohio graduation requirements, all current juniors will participate in the administration of the ACT on Tuesday, February 20, 2019. Testing will begin at 7:30 am and last approximately 4 hours. Test sections will include English, Mathematics, Reading, and Science. Students will not complete a writing section.

During the pre-administration session, students will have the opportunity to select four colleges/universities to receive their ACT scores (free of charge). Students are required to bring a photo id, pencils, and a calculator. Students are not permitted to possess or access a cell phone at any time during test administration or during the break. Additional details will be shared closer to the test date.

Students can prepare for the ACT by visiting the following website: The ACT Academy can be very helpful as you prepare for this test!

If Juniors wish to take the ACT a second time or take the SAT, the registration process is online. It is a good practice to have students take both exams, and then repeat at least one in order to improve their scores. Students who are planning to apply to selective colleges that require SAT subject tests should make sure they register for tests by the end of the school year. Students must register for these tests online.

ACT Registration

SAT Registration

Please see your school counselor for additional information. 

It is really time to explore what you want to do next year. There are many opportunities to consider, like the various levels of West G courses you choose to take that include Advanced Placement, College Credit Plus (CCP) and Excel TECC. We will be meeting with you about course scheduling during your Advisory period or Study Hall. Please see below for more information about Excel TECC.

Excel TECC:

February 5
– Students accepted to Excel TECC programs are notified via USPS.

February 21 – Students need to accept or decline their offers to be in Excel TECC programs.
Students should have received an email from CollegeBoard with instruction on how to retrieve PSAT scores for the test that was administered in October. If you did not create a CollegeBoard account prior to this test, you are encouraged to start one and have it connected to Khan Academy. See you school counselor if you need assistance.

If you are struggling in any of your classes, don’t give up and think that there is no hope. Ask for help! It is a sign of strength, not weakness. The counselors suggest speaking directly with your teacher if you are having difficulty. Be prepared to ask specific questions. See your counselor for assistance. Our doors are always open! During your Advisory Periods in February, we will be meeting with you to discuss your scheduling options for next year.

David Callahan:                Students with last names A-K           729-5963     

Sarah Widman:                 Students with last names L-Z            729-5965     

Michelle Sargent:              Assistant                                            729-5962     


October 2018

Senior, Alyssa Ranallo - Volleyball
Coach Amber Baker stated that Alyssa won the Most Improved Award this season based on her hard work, dedication and the respectful way she approached the game of volleyball. She will be missed as a player and teammate.

Alyssa was a Varsity letter recipient on the volleyball team this past season while also earning an All-CVC Academic award. She has been on the Honor Roll each year and also on the Dean’s List at Lakeland Community College. Alyssa plans to attend college with interests in fashion, criminology or the medical field.

Senior, Mo Aidja - Soccer
Coach Mario Gerhardt stated that Mo was role model for all West Geauga students both in the classroom and on the soccer field, Mo’s golden goal against NDCL secured the District Championship for the Wolverines, the first in soccer since 2004. Mo indicated that he plans to attend college and major in the field of Biology. His interests include swimming, traveling and playing soccer.

Mo is a three-year letter winner in soccer. His 2018 postseason honors include All-Ohio Academic, All-CVC Academic, 1st Team CVC, 2nd Team Greater Cleveland (Division 2). With 15 goals, 13 assists and 43 points he was West G’s leading scorer both in goals and in points.


The Class of 2019's Commencement Ceremony will be held on Thursday, June 6th, at 7:00 PM at Severance Hall. Each student will receive 6 free general admission tickets. Please contact Chelsea Talty at if you are interested in purchasing additional tickets or reserved seating. Additionally, cap and gown ordering have already taken place. If your student has yet to buy a cap and gown package, please visit and place your order as soon as possible. All students will wear navy blue caps and gowns. If a student is planning on borrowing a cap or gown, please let Mrs. Talty know.


Upper School PTO meeting, Wednesday, January 16th, 7:00-8:00 pm at Middle School Library

Looking for PTO board members: treasurer and secretary


WGEF completed their first grant review of the year in December. WGEF funded over $14,000 total for 3 innovative grants: 'Google Expeditions Virtual Field Trips' presented by Anna Laubscher and Jilene Urbanek for use at both Westwood and Lindsey, 'Aquaponics' (food production, sustainability & population concepts) presented by Mike Sustin for the High School and '21st Century Classroom' (modified and adaptable classroom learning options) presented by Angela Wyatt for use at Lindsey. Over $7,400 is available for additional grants. Deadline for February Grant Submissions is 2/15/2019. 

ACT Practice Test Session is Saturday, January 19th 8:00AM at WGHS Room 124. Please visit for more information.

WGEF's 30th Thanksgiving Pancake Breakfast at McDonald's in Chesterland was a fun and tasty success serving many community, family and district members! 


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