During the Chagrin Fall schools’ convocation meeting to welcome back staff, Director of Operations Chris Woofter presented the Ray Markuszka 20-Year Service Award to the following employees: Amy Acton, Katherine Adick, Amy Belew, Amy Fenton, Lisa Fetterman, Tracie Guggenheim, Cindy Hanculak, Heather Heartz, Ellen Jones, Rachel Jones, Stephanie Malley, Cindy Matejcik, Colleen McHugh, Julia O’Neill and Debbie Sirk.

Charlene Paparizos 440-247-4363

Falls schools salute teachers

During their Aug. 16 convocation meeting, Chagrin Falls schools welcomed back their staff members for the 2021-2022 school year. As part of this event, two school employees received the highest award given by the district, Teacher and Staff Member of the Year.

Justin Wise, a first-grade teacher turned virtual kindergarten teacher last year, received recognition as the Teacher of the Year, and Shawn Carlson, head custodian of Gurney Elementary School, received recognition as the Staff Member of the Year. Principal Rachel Jones presented both of these employees with the award.

In addition, Director of Operations Chris Woofter presented 15 employees with the Ray Markuszka 20-Year Service Award.

District to read one book

Chagrin Falls Exempted Village Schools will conduct a year-long One District One Book for the first time. With the success of the One School One Book at the schools, district administration will implement the theme of “Choose Courage” and have all students and staff read the book “Courage” by Bernard Waber throughout the 2021-2022 school year. The district will integrate the theme in all subject areas in all grade levels throughout the year and use the tag #CFChooseCourage on social media.

Each month, students and staff will focus on different courage-related themes, like meeting new people and making the right decisions. Activities will be cross-curricular, cross-grade level and cross-building, as well as take place at home and in the community.

With the support of the Chagrin Falls PTO, every kindergarten through eighth-grade student will receive a copy of “Courage” on the first day of school. High school students will receive electronic copies of the book.

“Creating a community of readers across grade levels and between home and school, all engaged in connected activities and discussing the same book, leads to an excitement for learning that has a long-term impact,” said Superintendent Jennifer Penczarski. “Extending that community from just one school to the entire K-12 district presents us the opportunity to create a sense of connectedness throughout Chagrin Falls like never before. As we all make our way through this pandemic, realizing all the challenges, changes in school learning, quarantines and isolation we have faced, our theme of ‘Choose Courage’ could not be more timely and relevant to unite our entire school community.”

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