The RPS Weekly Message

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Dear RPS Parent/Guardian,

This week’s message includes information on the following topics listed below:

RPS Staff Appreciation Week: We Invite You to Say Thank You

Congratulations to the Ralston Schools Foundation Heart of Learning Recipients
RHS Theater Presents “Middletown”
Ralston High School Auto Show Next Saturday!
RHS Senior Social Media Tributes
Get Signed Up for Ralston High School Athletic Camps!
OneWorld Mobile Health Clinic to Offer Sports Physicals
Ram Recognition

RPS Staff Appreciation Week: We Invite You to Say Thank You

We invite you and your student(s) to participate in Ralston Public School’s Employee Appreciation Week. There are a couple of ways to show your support for our staff members during the week of May 1-5, 2023.

• Write a Special Note to a Staff Member: Nothing says thank you like a handwritten note from someone you know! RPS invites you and your student to write a note of thanks to a staff member who makes a difference in your student’s educational experience. It could be an educator, para, bus driver, food service employee, custodian, etc. Any employee who goes out of their way to have a positive impact on your student or family.

Download and print out the provided template below. Cut along the dotted lines and write a special note to an RPS staff member. Your student can drop off their messages in the main office of their school. The deadline to submit is Wednesday, May 3rd.

Notes will be distributed to staff members on Friday, May 5th. If you do not have a printer at home, paper copies of the appreciation message template will be available in the office of your student's school starting on Monday, April 24th.

• Donate a Gift Card to our Gift Card Grand Give-A-Way: As a family, make a monetary or gift card donation to be part of our Gift Card Grand Give-A-Way (any amount to any business or restaurant).

Donations can be dropped off at the District’s Administration Office (8545 Park Dr.) Monday through Friday 8:00 am to 4:30 pm. All donations must be received by 2:00 pm on Friday, April 28, 2023.

** Please know this is optional. As part of our school community, we wanted to make sure our parents/guardians were aware of our Employee Appreciation Week. Thanks for your consideration. **

Congratulations to the Ralston Schools Foundation Heart of Learning Recipients

The Ralston Schools Foundation is excited to announce the 2023 Heart of Learning Award recipients! We are so grateful for the amazing staff members who go above and beyond to make a difference in our students' lives every day.

Congratulations to these outstanding employees who have made a huge impact in our school community. They will be honored at a special ceremony on Wednesday, April 26th at the Liberty First Credit Union Arena.

Classified Staff: Cari Guzman - Secretary, Meadows Elementary School

Elementary Educator: Janice Rhods - 5th Grade Teacher, Karen Western Elementary School

Secondary Educator: Jovan Lucero - Auto Tech Teacher, Ralston High School

Foundation Staff: Heather Krein - Preschool Teacher, Lil' & Tiny Rams - Ralston Schools Foundation
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RHS Theater Presents “Middletown”

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Ralston High School Auto Show Next Saturday!

The first annual Ralston High School Car Show is coming up quickly - Saturday, April 29th! Mark your calendars, tell your friends and neighbors, and round up everyone you can to attend the car show with you! All the funds raised help support the Ralston High School Auto Club and SkillsUSA Student Organization!

Check out this great podcast featuring Ralston High School educator Jovan Lucero and RPS Career Education & EL Coordinator Dr. Josh Wilken, as they discuss the upcoming RHS Auto Show and the Automotive program. They really represented Ram Nation well!

Click HERE to listen to The Front Stretch Podcast. We extend a special thank you to hosts Dan Taylor and Dirk Huston. The interview starts at the 41:30 mark.

RHS Senior Social Media Tributes

Starting Monday, April 24th, Ralston Public Schools will be posting senior tributes to the District’s Facebook and Twitter social media pages.

Graduating seniors' families can start to submit answers to four questions and email two photos (one baby or “little” picture and one a senior picture) to

This information will help create our senior tributes to post throughout the last week in April and the first part of May leading up to the graduation ceremony.

Be on the lookout for our first post on Monday, April 24th! Please follow the District on social media to view these tributes and learn about the Class of 2023.

The questions are:
What is your student’s preferred name?
Did they attend a Ralston elementary school?
What do they plan to do next?
What is their favorite Ralston High School memory?

Get Signed Up for Ralston High School Athletic Camps!

Ram Nation, did you know Ralston High School offers a variety of athletic camps, workout sessions, and lessons just for your student(s) throughout the spring and summer? These are great opportunities for your future Ram to learn a sport, improve their skills, meet other athletes and coaches, and have fun!

Visit the District website by clicking this link - - for more information and download the registration forms. The webpage will be continually updated with new opportunities.

OneWorld Mobile Health Clinic to Offer Sports Physicals

Starting in May, the OneWorld Mobile Health Clinic will begin to offer sports physicals to Ralston Middle School and Ralston High School students. This will benefit RPS students. They will be able to receive their sports physicals early and will not have to leave their school campus to receive their sports physicals for the 2023-2024 school year.

Parents can schedule students’ sports physicals after May 1st by calling the OneWorld Mobile Health Clinic number at 402-880-4870. As a reminder, the OneWorld Mobile Health Clinic is located at RHS every Tuesday from 8 am to 3:30 pm and at Ralston Middle School every Friday from 8 am to 3:30 pm.

Ram Recognition

Each week in Ram Recognition, Ralston Public Schools will highlight some good news happening across the District.

RHS Prom King & Queen

We are excited to announce to Ram Nation the 2023 Ralston High School Prom King and Queen! Congratulations to Samantha Cunningham and Wilson Overfield! RHS students enjoyed their Prom last weekend at the Granary in downtown Ralston.

RHS Students Display Talents at State Skills USA Competition

On April 13th, more than 1,600 students from across the State converged in Grand Island to compete in the 2023 SkillsUSA Nebraska Championships. SkillsUSA serves middle school, high school, and college students in programs preparing them for technical, skilled, and service careers. Students compete in over 140 career and technical competitions.

The state championships showcase the best career and technical students in Nebraska, including three Rams! Juan Fontanez competed and placed third in the state in the welding category.

Brandon Cavender and Conner Leu competed in the construction category. RHS student Luis Tirado did not compete but got State experience to gear up for next time when he competes in the autobody body and paint category.

Nice job Rams! Special thanks to Mr. Lucero and Mr. Becklun for being our RHS Skills USA sponsors and preparing our students to show off their amazing skills at the competition.

RHS Students Recognized at Trailblazer Art Show

The results are in and we have some exciting news to share! Ralston High School students showcased their skills in the annual Trailblazer Conference Art Show Competition. Our students represented their school really well! Help us congratulate the following students and enjoy seeing pictures of these award-winning artists' art pieces. #RamProud

Outstanding Artist: Ralston High School - Nevaeh Navarro

Digital Art/Photography

1st Place - Andrew Creek

2nd Place - Bella Kirkland

3rd Place - Cassidy Culjat

Miscellaneous/Mixed Media

1st Place - Isaac Lee


3rd Place- Emilie Reich

Colored Pencil

2nd Place - Fae Zietk


1st Place - Nevaeh Navarro

2nd Place - Lillian Payne


3rd Place - Kyla Skorniak

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Mentor Nebraska Honors Two Individuals from our Ram Family

For more than 20 years, MENTOR Nebraska has led the mentoring movement in Nebraska. Their mission is to improve the number and quality of mentoring programs available for Nebraska’s youth, ensuring our state’s youth and mentors have access to high-quality mentoring experiences.

Each year they honor individuals in our State who are champions of mentoring at their Excellence in Mentoring Awards. Ram Nation, we had two members from our family who were recognized this year! #RamProud

2023 Young Leader of the Year - RHS Senior Tatiana Tonsil

Tatiana is actively involved in mentoring, cheer, soccer, Educators Rising, and future teacher internships. Her experience as a mentor through the Douglas-Sarpy 4-H program at Seymour Elementary has helped shape her passion for education and desire to make a positive impact on the lives of young people. Following graduation, Tatiana plans to pursue a career in teaching!

2023 Mentoring Advocate of the Year - Seymour Elementary Principal Ms. Jody Blessen

Ms. Blessen has been a source of inspiration to students at Ralston Public Schools since 1999. She began her journey with RPS as a classroom teacher and now serves as the principal at Seymour Elementary, where she helps connect her students to mentoring opportunities through programs like 4-H. RPS is so grateful for Ms. Blessen's unwavering dedication to mentoring and for her leadership in providing students access to valuable mentoring resources.

Vehicle Day - An Awesome Experience for RPS First-Grade Students

The first annual Ralston Public Schools Vehicle Day was a huge success! The event provided over 250 first-grade students a chance to hear, see, and touch vehicles used in a wide variety of careers. Businesses who participated were able to showcase their vehicles, share a little about their job, and how they help others in the community. Students had a blast while climbing and exploring each of the vehicles and asking amazing questions to our business participants.

Special thanks to: Nebraska Department of Transportation, Ralston Fire & Rescue Inc., Ralston Police Department, Omaha Police Mounted Patrol, Papillion Sanitation, Omaha Public Power District, US Army Recruiting Millard Omaha, The Weitz Company, Nebraska Humane Society, RDO Truck Centers, Defiance Harley-Davidson, American Arborist, OneWorld Community Health Centers, Inc., The Salvation Army Western Division, the City of Ralston, Ralston Post Office, and the Granary District for your tremendous support!

RHS Students in Automotive Classes Enjoy Ford Day

Woodhouse Ford, Southeast Community College, and representatives from the Ford Motor Company visited with students enrolled in automotive classes at Ralston High School during Ford Day. They brought two new top of the line Ford vehicles for the students to check out, including a Ford Bronco and Mustang. Woodhouse also brought their Ford Mobile Service Unit Van, opening it up and showcasing the equipment the van technicians can use to help service vehicles in any situation. Members of the Woodhouse team also provided demonstrations for the students with the latest in automotive technology.

Woodhouse and Southeast Community College discussed career pathways and opportunities in the automotive industry and the Ford ASSET program associated with Southeast Community College. ASSET stands for Automotive Student Service Education Training Program. The program prepares students to step into a career as a highly qualified and prepared entry-level technician. It incorporates the most advanced automotive technical training with a strong academic foundation of math, reading, electronics, analytical, and technical skills.

RHS Medical Academy Students Experience Surgery Simulators

What an experience! Medical Academy students at Ralston High School participated in a surgery simulator recently at CHI Bergan Mercy Hospital. Students got to hear from professionals at the hospital who explained the different roles in the operating room and their responsibilities.

Then, in groups of three, students put on surgical masks, gowns, and hair coverings while working as a team with the surgery simulator. One operated a camera, while the others worked together to pick up tiny beads or put a rubber band around two targets. Our students learned so much!

Click HERE to watch a great story on their experience from KETV Channel 7.