SCH Digest

Scott E. Miller, Superintendent

Issue 19 - October 28, 2020

Dear SCH Family,

As we start the second 9 weeks of eLearning, I want to encourage everyone to continue to share with your colleagues both your successes and your challenges. Things can get desperate when we feel all alone, but there is both strength and confidence when you feel connected to a team. I’ve tasked our Leadership Academy with filming some exemplar lessons at different grade bands and content areas so we can all help each other out. I find that it’s always easier to hit the mark after I’ve seen someone else hit if first. So if you are personally interested in having one of your lessons or strategies recorded or know a colleague who we need to all see, please send that recommendation to Lynn Lange, our Leadership Coordinator, at


Adult Education

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Area Career Center

If you think that becoming a skilled trade person is a dead-end for your career, think again. You can climb far and high in the construction industry. The School City of Hammond has a great program at the Hammond Area Career Center. Students should talk to their counselor about their career plans and graduation pathway.

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Hammond Academy for the Performing Arts

HAPA extends into serving diversity and cultural responsiveness by introducing the Over the Rainbow Series. We highlight artists and their varied journeys to success in the arts and in life. This free (and soon to be annual event) coincides with our upcoming district wide virtual presentation of THE WIZARD OF OZ. We hope to see you there!

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Head Start

Pumpkin Patch Reverse Field Trip

What do you do when there’s a pandemic and you can’t go on a field trip? You bring the field trip to you! Thanks to the ingenuity of Head Start staff and the help of Scheeringa Farms, Head Start students got to go to a pumpkin patch after all. Scheeringa’s delivered the pumpkins, then Head Start staff picked them up and set up “pumpkin patches” at each of the buildings that house Head Start classrooms. Students and their parents were scheduled five to ten minutes apart to pick out their pumpkins in the “patch”. In addition to pumpkins, there was hand-sanitizer and social distancing (helped by using hula hoops). Most importantly there was excitement, lots of smiles and much joy. It’s unclear who was happiest to finally meet in person – the staff or the students! Thanks to everyone who helped make this idea a successful reality!

Head Start Awareness Month

October is Head Start Awareness month! Head Start has been a part of the School City of Hammond since the program’s inception in 1965. It began as a summer program as part of President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty. It is designed to provide preschool children of low-income families with a comprehensive program to meet their social-emotional, early learning/school readiness, health, dental, nutritional and mental wellness needs. The program also supports parents and families in achieving their own goals, engages families in their children’s learning and development and involves parents as part of the programmatic decision-making process. The Hammond program is currently funded to serve 284 children and their families through full-day and part-day programming.

Health Services

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What can you do?

  • Early detection and prevention
  • Annual mammogram starting at age 40
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Exercise on a regular basis
  • Talk to your health care provider if something does not feel right
  • Don’t be afraid to seek medical care. It can save your life

Human Resources

Wishing a very Happy Birthday to all the staff members who have birthdays in October!

Deion Adams, Tammy Allenbaugh, Jennifer Allen-Rycerz, Susana Alvarez, Alana Anderson, Ella Anderson, Martin Anderson, Diana Arce, Lynda Arce, John Arena, Richelle Aubin, Yolanda Ayala, Brett Bach, Arielle Bahena, Lea Bell, Christina Bisbee, Elva Bradshaw, Melissa Brassard, Claudia Brito, Justin Browning, Peggie Bryant, Timothy Burfield, Crystal Bustillos, Kriss Byquist Miller, Tera Cains, Brianna Camacho, Jesus Campos, Anansi Carmichael, Beth Castagna, Andrea Celestin, Rebecca Champagne, Consuela Clark, Karen Clark, Julie Clayton, Laura Cochran, Nancy Craft, Daniel Crook, Esteban Cruz, Norma Cruz, Abigail Cuadrado, Gregory Day, Iris Day, Hector De La Rosa, Petrita DeLEon, Brian Demantes, Jerome Detloff, Maricela Diaz, Robert Difiore, Kim Dobis, Evelyn Docks, Daniel Driscoll, Carolyn Dunn, Aimee Fausto, Lisa Filiczkowski, Danette Florentine, Martha Flores, Michael Flores, George Fotopoulos, Laurie Gacki, Robert Gajewski, Barbara Garcia, Denise Geiser, George Goodmun, Cynthia Gordiah, Jeanine Grauvogl, Billie Graves, Stanley Griffin, Josephine Grubb, Erica Guerrero, Barbara Gustin, Michelle Gutierrez, Marilyn Hampton, Jocelyn Hanley, Nancy Hardesty, Donnette Henderson, Joanne Hennessee, Anita Henricy, Sonia Hernandez, Tamara Hijazeen, Ernest Huffman, Johnny Igartua, Michael Jackson, Toni Jacques, Christopher Jagadich, Debra James, Kanisha Jenkins, Katie Jens, Barbara Johnson, Joscelyn Johnson, Maria Kaminsky, Carlotta King, Timberly Kinnie, Carol Kitchens, Alexandria Knox, Marilyn Kosior, Melissa Kuchar, Shelley Kurcz, Aimee Legg, Megan Leland, Daniel Leon, William Lewis, Jennifer Liss, Zinhua Liu, Danielle Lopez, Isamar Luna, Alicia Madeka, Caleb Marrero, Daniel Massey, Morgan McDonald, Eliza McGruder, Lisa McMillion Miller, Dawn McNeil, Carla Mendoza, Keiona Miller, Kristen Mitcheltree, Robert Moreno, Dana Morganelli, Crystal Nelson, Onna Nieto, Sarah Olson, Ryan Orr, Margaret Ortiz, Christopher Pajdzik, Athene Pappas, Melanie Partain, Mary Payonk, Marisa Perryman, Jacquelynn Peters, Gearson Plaza, Stephanie Porter, Katherine Rachowicz, Elizabeth Ramirez, Mary Ramirez, Ewelina Ramos, Rosalee Recio, Tierra Redmond, Jennifer Rees, Stephanie Reiser, Eric Richards Jr, Robin Richards, Michael Richardson Jr, Madeline Rodriguez, Sophia Rodriguez, Amparo Romo, Alan Ross, Jordan Rouse, Devin Sanders, Marcia Schoeneck, Mark SeDoris, Olga Serafin, Ryan Sexson, Ashley Siegfried, Charles Sizemore, Kari Smith, Patricia Smith, Thomas Smitka, Scott Sowinski, Dana Stephens, Meagan Stephens, Nancy Talavera, Melissa Tatalovich, John Thiel, Aubrey Thomas, Kimberley Thunherst, Lori Thursby, Crystal Torres, Deborah Trevino, Bertha Tuskan, Debra Twitdy, Patricia Urbanczyk, Temple Vandas, Lisa Vega, Enrique Villa, Rafael Villanueva Garcia, Kyle Wagers, Eric Wallace, Sheryl Walters, DaNetra Washington, Renee Whelan, Sheryl Wilson, Tiffany Wilson, Brenda Wright, Marlisa Wright, Marely Zermeno Arena, Jovita Zurita, and Amy Zwierz.

Leadership Academy

Since August, the Leadership Academy has been proud to support SCH Teachers and Staff

through professional development opportunities focused on Google Classroom, Google Meet,

Curriculum Maps, Envision Math, Benchmark Literacy, ParentSquare, PowerSchool, NearPod, PearDeck, FlipGrid, and more!

We look forward to upcoming opportunities to support our new administrators, and administrative teams, with NIET Training, our Instructional Coaches through a partnership with Dell and Advanced Learning Partners, and ongoing support for our teachers, at both the district and building levels.

Shout out to our building level Instructional Coaches Jen Meyer, Amy Sweeney, Katherine Martinez, Rhonda Fehr, Timberly Kinney, Monica Sajn, Ashley Taylor-Ebert, Katherine Broadnax, and Nate Foor. These coaches are doing an outstanding job of finding creative ways to support their teachers in these unusual times.

Great things are happening in the Leadership Academy! Hope you'll join us!

Teacher Challenges

To put a little joy in your day, check out Gladys Ullstam's Teacher Challenges!

Teach Tech Talk

Watch for our weekly updates, and check out Alisha Foor's recorded past sessions at Teach Teck Talk.

Special Education

A special thanks must be given to SCH Special Education Teachers, Speech Pathologists, Speech Pathologist Assistants, Physical Therapists, Physical Therapist Assistants, Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapist Assistants, Recreational Therapist and Para Educators who are providing some in-person services to many of our students in the Applied Skills classrooms. The special education department is truly honored to have such a dedicated staff who care so deeply for our students and families. For those staff members who continue to provide virtual services and support, the special education department appreciates your collaborative effort and attention to the educational process. Thank you for making this a positive experience for our families.

What makes a font dyslexia-friendly?

"With increasing awareness of the visual differences associated with dyslexia and the high incidence of dyslexia in the general population (15-20%), the world seems poised to change how they present print to dyslexic readers. What fonts are best for dyslexic readers affects the overall readability of texts and there for speed, accuracy and potentially persistence of the reader. Children are known to find larger fonts easier to read than smaller ones, and as a group, dyslexic readers are more likely to read words by shape than non-dyslexic ones, making certain fonts more readable." (Fernette Eide 2018).

While most fonts were designed to be aesthetically pleasing, there are some dyslexia-friendly options that were created with functionality in mind. People with dyslexia often struggle to decipher certain pairs of letters, but by changing the height and weight of a letter, you can make it look different. It’s also possible to put letters on a slant or adjust the empty spaces to help differentiate it's shape.

In terms of common font styles, Helvetica, Courier, Arial and Verdana are the best known fonts for dyslexics. Lightly colored paper as a background, larger fonts and bolding letters may also enhance their visibility. There are commercially generated fonts, (Dyslexie, Gill Dyslexic, Lexia Readable) that were designed specifically for the dyslexic reader, but recent studies have not supported their benefit.


Helpful Information

  • SCH has many options for Technical Support available to both students and staff. You can fill out a form, send an email or call (219) 937-1680. Our Live Technical Support will be available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Teachers please make sure you put in a work order for any technology need as we are actively processing all requests; you should hear back from us soon.
  • If you have a student that still has a need, please have them submit a request form on our on our site.

SCH Highlights

Clark MS/HS

Congratulations to George Rogers Clark’s boys Soccer team on winning the 2A Sectional Championship. They defeated Griffith HS 2-1. This is the first sectional championship for boys soccer and we did it in our last year of play. #LASTDANCE #GoPioneers

Scott MS

Recently, at Charles N. Scott Middle School we had a parent reach out to express much gratitude towards two teachers, Celia Ramirez and Charles Bais, that brought great joy and yielded a boost to finish grading period 1 on a positive note. Although we have all experienced much adversity this year, this added boost grounded many stakeholders alike and provided the WHY we do what we do as united stakeholders in education. The parent shared, ”…there’s two of your teachers there that I think are very awesome… they do a great job reaching out to their students and helping them and having energy and everything, and I just wanted to pass that along and I hope that you can pass this along…”. More importantly, thank you to all united stakeholders in education!

Hammond Education Foundation

Fifteen 2020 high school graduates of the School City of Hammond have received $16,500 in college scholarships for the 2020-21 academic year, thanks to financial contributions made to the Hammond Education Foundation.

Seven scholars from Morton, three each from Clark and Gavit, and two from Hammond High received the awards.

Katrina Hill and Linda Mendieta each received a $2,500 Biel Scholarship, awarded to Hammond High graduates from a gift made anonymously by a Hammond High alumnus and spouse in memory of late Hammond teacher and administrator Mark Biel. Both students are furthering their education at Purdue University Northwest.

A gift by retired Hammond teacher Zlatana Draskovich is supporting 10 $1,000 Brundidge Scholarships. The recipients are Morton graduates Enali Rogers (Butler University), Lia Witherspoon (Indiana University Northwest), Ce’Etter Stevens (Indiana University), Megan Lively (Indiana State University), Lilly Musgraves (DePaul University) and Johnathan Whitehorn (University of North Texas); Clark alumna Hannah Denys (Culinary Institute of Michigan); and from Gavit Ana Almanza (Indiana University), Tyler Peppers (Indiana University) and Katie Zwierz (Indiana University Northwest).

Additionally, selected to receive $500 awards were Jenna Tapper of Clark, Kiwanis Scholarship (Purdue University); Rafael Maciel of Clark, James Hornak Trades Scholarship (Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis); and Daija Pellot of Morton, Dr. Gary Jones Scholarship (Indiana University Northwest).

The Hammond Education Foundation is a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization and philanthropic partner of the School City of Hammond. Since its origin in 1983, HEF has generated more than $1.5 million in scholarships, classroom grants, programs and other support for extraordinary learning experiences and opportunities to help Hammond students succeed—in school and beyond.

Stay Informed

An update from the Superintendent is distributed monthly.

View previous updates from Mr. Miller here.

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