Oley Valley School District

Digital Newsletter - February 2020

Big picture

Elementary School News

Kindergarten Registration Information

The Oley Valley School District will conduct its 2020-2021 kindergarten registration on Wednesday, March 18 and Thursday, March 19, 2020 at the Oley Valley Elementary School. Children who reside in the district, and who will be five (5) years old on or before September 1, 2020 may be registered.

Registration packets can be picked up at the Elementary School office or can be found on the district’s website (oleyvalleysd.org) under Headlines, Kindergarten Registration 2020-21. The completed forms should be returned to the Oley Valley Elementary School, 3257 Friedensburg Road, Oley, PA 19547, as soon as possible.

When you return your completed packet to the elementary school office, you will need to bring the following with you:

· Child’s birth certificate – original

· Immunization records

· Two (2) proofs of residency; one from Category 1 and one from Category 2 (see registration form)

Copies of all documents will be made at the school office.

Once the completed registration packet is received by the school office, you may then sign your child up for an appointment time for March 18 or 19.

If you have any questions, please call the Elementary School Office at 610-987-4100, extension 2098.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Big picture
Big picture
Big picture

LEGO LEAGUE CHALLENGE - Sponsored by Oley Valley Community Education Foundation

A total of 53 teams in from our local district spent the entire day at Penn State Berks for a chance to win at this year's First Lego League Challenge. Our middle school sent two teams and the elementary sent a team as well. The Lego League Challenge is a global competition with teams competing from almost every country in the world. The challenge involves four major components including the Robot Game which challenges students to program their customized robot to complete a variety of tasks on a Lego board, and 3 intense presentations: Robot Engineering and Coding Design, Teamwork, and Project Theme. This year's theme was "City Shaper". The challenges focused on city revitalization, infrastructure and renewal. Pictured here is team "Lynx Legends" hoisting their 1st Place trophy for the "Teamwork Inspiration" challenge.

Big picture
Big picture

Artists in the making!

Art in the AM before school club. The students are Vera Schultz grade 5 and Erin Kelly grade 4. These paintings were created during the Painting Session using acrylic paints.

Andrea Usner

Middle School News

Big picture


The 5th Grade Elementary Vocal Ensemble had fun singing the National Anthem at the Reading Royals game on Saturday, February 8th, 2020. There were over 6,000 people in attendance. One of the students, Elayna Wetherheld, entered to confetti and was named the 3 millionth fan!

High School News


The Oley Valley Community Education Foundation invites you to apply for six $2,500 scholarships to be awarded to members of the Class of 2020 who plan to further their education in Fall 2020 at any institution of higher learning.

These scholarships include three Sally Miksiewicz Scholarships honoring the late CEO/Vice-Chairperson of East Penn Manufacturing Company; the OVCEF Scholarship; and the Superintendents’ Scholarship, whose recipient will be selected by a faculty committee. The Foundation will also award a new scholarship this year to an Oley Valley senior who will be pursuing further education specific to a trade in the metal fabrication/manufacturing trades, including (but not limited to) welding, construction, HVAC, plumbing/pipefitter/steamfitter, boilermaker, and millwright.

Application forms for these scholarships are currently available in the High School Guidance Office.

Pick up your application now! Deadline for submitting OVCEF scholarship applications is 3 P. M., Monday, March 6.

Big picture

By Devin Stark

Big picture

By Madisyn Evans

Big picture

By Daphne Langdon

Big picture

By Graham Gernerd

Congratulations to all for a wonderful showing!

The Scholastic Art Show, is a highly competitive juried art show. Four students entered their work in the competition, which includes all of East Central PA. Each of these students received an award, including Graham Gernerd with a painting winning Honorable Mention, Madisyn Evans and Daphne Langdon winning a silver key; Madisyn for a collage, and Daphne for a drawing. And Devin Stark winning a Gold Key for a sculpture. Devin's work will go on to be judged for the National Scholastic Art Show (results will be in March 16th). All four students will have their work shown at Kutztown University's Miller Gallery from March 14-22, with an award ceremony on March 22nd.

Big picture
Big picture
Big picture



The 18th Annual Souper Bowl was held at the Crowne Plaza in Wyomissing on January 27th, a charity event that benefits the Opportunity House of Reading and features ceramic work from Oley Valley High School students, as well as that of many other Berks County schools. For this ticketed event, art students, art centers, and artists alike contribute by making and donating handmade bowls that are then gifted and sold to guests as they sample soups made by restaurants from across the region in a lighthearted "best soup in Berks" competition. To participate, two groups of Oley Valley High School ceramics students spent their pre-winter break early dismissal day creating their contributions in both Ms. Luft's and Mrs. Tomel's studio classrooms. [first attachment Camille Bertin; second attachment Sydney Trimbur; third attachment shown from left to right Grace McElderry, Camille Bertin, Sydney Trimbur]


On January 16th, Camille Fuentes-Oliver [fourth attachment; her artwork is fifth attachment] was recognized at the BCIU Board Meeting among a group of her peers, for artistic excellence in creating artwork about the "Faces and Places" of our Berks County communities. Her work will be on view in the BCIU Board room throughout the 2020 calendar year.


Oley Valley High School students' artworks are on view at the BCIU Secondary Art Exhibit, held at the GoggleWorks Center for the Arts from February 19 through March 8. Awards ceremony and reception will be held March 1, following the results of judging on February 21.

Rhonda Tomel

Art Teacher
Big picture

5th Place Architectural Design Team: (Left to Right) Cameron Rittwage, Sierra Krick, Lolah Walker, Andrew Kline, Addison Muir, and Alice Bogia

Big picture

5th Place Biotechnology Design Team: (Left to Right) William “Kit” Jackson, Cody Degler, Sara Hoover, Trenton Wagner, and Michael Cleaveland

Big picture

2nd Place Board Game Design Team: (Back; Left to Right) Cameron Rittwage and Sierra Krick (Front; Left to Right) Lia Vocu (Holding their original game, “Zoo Escape”), Freya Oesterle, and Lolah Walker

Big picture

2nd, 3rd, and 5th Place Individuals in Flight Endurance: (Left to Right) Michael Cleaveland (5th Place), Isaiah Meals (3rd Place), and Cody Degler (2nd Place)

Big picture

Andrew Kline: 1st Place in Essays on Technology

Big picture

Ryan Sheetz: 1st Place in Technology Bowl and 3rd Place in Extemporaneous Speech


On Saturday, February 1st, 2020, the Oley Valley High School TSA Chapter sent 24 students to the Pennsylvania Technology Student Association (PA-TSA) Region 9 Conference held at Stroudsburg Junior High School in Stroudsburg, PA. Our chapter’s 24 students competed in approximately 30 teams spread over a wide variety of events. This year’s regional conference was considerably the most successful in school history with 16 students advancing to the state conference and our chapter receiving not only its first ever first place finish in any event, but also first place in two events.

Our school’s chapter has a long history of success in events like biotechnology design, children’s stories, and flight endurance and this year's regional conference was no exception. Both our biotechnology design and children’s stories teams placed fifth and will be taking their projects to the state conference in the middle of April. We also brought home ribbons for second, third, and fifth place for flight endurance. Our chapter also found new success in events that were new to our chapter as well as events that we had never placed in before, like structural design and engineering, board game design, technology bowl, and essays on technology. We had two freshman enter an amazing trestle bridge design in the structural design and engineering event and they placed seventh which qualified them for the state conference. We had five students enter a completely original board game which earned them a second place finish. As for the events technology bowl and essays on technology, Ryan Sheetz and Andrew Kline earned our chapters first and second ever first place finishes at the regional conference and will have the opportunity to compete at the state conference. A full list of results is included at the end of the article.

We are so excited to have 16 students travel to Seven Springs Mountain Resort in Champion, PA from Wednesday, April 15th, 2020 to Saturday, April 18th, 2020 for the PA-TSA State Conference. The students who have qualified to advance to the state conference includes Michael Ceaveland, Cody Degler, Sara Hoover, Andrew Kline, Sierra Krick, Alexandra Lopez, Isaiah Meals, William “Kit” Jackson, Freya Oesterle, Cameron Rittwage, Ryan Sheetz, Wyatt Ulsh, Lia Vocu, Trenton Wagner, Lolah Walker, and Jeron Zimmerman. We would like to congratulate all 24 students who competed at the PA-TSA Region 9 Conference for all of their hard work and we want to wish continued success to the 16 students advancing to the PA-TSA State Conference in April!

- Andrew Kline: First Place in Essays on Technology*

- Ryan Sheetz: First Place in Technology Bowl*

- Sierra Krick, Freya Oesterle, Cameron Rittwage, Lia Vocu, and Lolah Walker: Second Place in Board Game Design*

- Cody Degler: Second Place in Flight Endurance*

- Ryan Sheetz: Third Place in Extemporaneous Speech*

- Isaiah Meals: Third Place in Flight Endurance*

- Alice Bogia, Andrew Kline, Sierra Krick, Addison Muir, Cameron Rittwage, and Lolah Walker: Fifth Place in Architectural Design

- Michael Cleaveland, Cody Delger, Sara Hoover, William “Kit” Jackson, and Trenton Wagner: Fifth Place in Biotechnology Design*

- Michael Cleaveland: Fifth Place in Flight Endurance*

- Michael Cleaveland, Cody Degler, Sara Hoover, Andrew Kline, William “Kit” Jackson, and Freya Oesterle: Sixth Place in Children’s Stories*

- Michael Cleaveland and William “Kit” Jackson: Sixth Place in Coding*

- Sierra Krick and Lolah Walker: Sixth Place in Forensic Science*

- Michael Cleaveland, Cody Degler, Sara Hoover, and William “Kit” Jackson: Sixth Place in PA Robotics*

- Wyatt Ulsh and Jeron Zimmerman: Seventh Place in Structural Design and Engineering*

- Freya Oesterle: Eighth Place in Technology Bowl*

* → Will be competing at the PA-TSA State Conference in April

No other teams/ individuals received an official placing

Big picture


Poetry Out Loud (POL) is a nationwide competition focused on keeping poetry alive in our modern society. Competitors must memorize and perform three poems of their choosing from the anthology of eligible poems for competition found on the POL website. Students are judged based on physical presence, voice and articulation, dramatic appropriateness, evidence of understanding, overall performance, and accuracy. Additionally, one poem must be twenty-five lines or fewer and one poem must be written before the twentieth century.

Mrs. Stephanie Kallis, an English teacher, serves as the coordinator for POL at Oley Valley High School. In December, sophomore Paige Schanely competed against other Oley Valley High School students for the title of school representative. Presenting William Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 55,” Schanely won this local competition and advanced to the regional level held at the Ware Center in Millersville.

Schanely recited Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 55,” “Ode for the American Dead in Asia” by Thomas McGrath, and “In the Basement of the Goodwill Store” by Ted Kooser for the regional competition that was held on January 25, 2020. Although she did not place in the competition this year, she enjoyed the creative experience very much and hopes to be able to return next year.

Big picture

Interactive Discussion on the Holocaust

Middle School and High School Students Share Interactive Discussion on the Holocaust

On Friday, January 10th, approximately a dozen students from Mr. Kallis's History of the Holocaust classes visited the middle school auditorium. They had an opportunity to participate in a lively discussion with 7th grade students from Mrs. Breen's classes. The middle school students had recently completed reading Refugee by Alan Gratz. In the book, one of the main characters was a passenger on the infamous St. Louis. This was a German ocean liner that was denied entry to Cuba, the U.S., and Canada with more than 900 Jewish passengers aboard, most of whom had fled Nazi Germany and were later forced to return to Europe. The 7th graders were left with questions that the juniors and seniors were able to answer and further elaborate on based on their own studies and research of this topic. Due to the students' engagement and the clear success of this collaborative format, the teachers anticipate this becoming an annual tradition


STEM Day Activities

On Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019, Mr. Moll, Mr. Buckner and Ms. Hoffman represented the

Oley Valley by presenting information regarding the STEM program. This material

included the school’s advancement in: STEM pathways, STEM Academy, the Anatomage

table and the new STEM courses.

The Reading Public Museum was welcomed to this presentation along with the teachers

from local schools who participate in these meetings monthly. This was a whole day affair,

and the Oley Valley was honored to present the technological achievements our school has

received within these past few months. This day went very well, and according to Mr. Moll,

there are high chances of collaborating with the Reading Public Museum in the future.

Mr. Moll elaborates, “One of the presentations was on our Anatomage Table, and it was

shown to a group that included the Reading Public Museum. This allowed them to bring

their CT scans of the mummy Nefrina, and it was shown on the table, like they have never

seen before.” The advances of the Anatomage Table affect the school district, but it allowed

an incredible growth for the future.

On Jan. 31, 2020, students from the Oley Valley High School and Mr. Buckner attended the

Engineering and Industrial Technology Pathway Advisory Panel at the Reading Area

Community College. This introduced a panel of professionals in the EIT field to collaborate

with and inform the teachers and students about for the opportunities, needs, and forecasts

in the field. In addition to the district becoming more involved with STEM, this was a great

way to encourage students in the district to discover amazing pathways for the future!

Congratulations to our seniors who were nominated for Berks Best!


  • Sierra Krick
  • Justin Rittwage


  • Sophia Blank
  • Julia Damon

Taylor Seitzinger Award for Community Service

  • Andrew Kline (348 hours)
  • Sage Jackson (146)

Computer Science

  • Michael Cleaveland
  • Andrew Kline

Foreign Languages

  • Abriel Franckowiak
  • Paige Deane


  • Casey Lang
  • Emily Nye

Performing Arts

  • Coby Conrad
  • Olivia Cameron


  • Paige Graber
  • Danielle Trimbur

Social Studies

  • Amelia Fisher
  • Sarah Beers

Visual Arts

  • Madisyn Evans
  • Daphne Langdon


  • Paige Rohrbach
  • Brandon Gust


By Julia Damon

On Monday, Jan. 27, 2020, an assembly was held during third period and almost all of

fourth with an extremely strong message- worldwide inclusion. This assembly was given

by Dr. Michael Fowlin, better known as Mykee. Mykee is an actor, psychologist, and poet

from New York. He has an undergraduate degree in psychology from Evangel University in

Springfield, Missouri, and in the fall of 2001, he obtained a doctorate degree in clinical

psychology from Rutgers University.

After this presentation, there were many mixed emotions on the topics he discussed and

how he addressed them. To get a better grasp on how everyone was feeling, I decided to

interview two teachers and two students.

I asked each person the same six questions:

  1. What were your overall thoughts about the presentation?
  2. What did you like the most/ which part was your favorite?
  3. What did you like the least/ which part was your least favorite?
  4. How do you think it could have been improved/ what would you have done differently

if this were your presentation?

  1. Do you think this presentation should happen next year?
  2. What was the biggest message you received from this presentation?

For the first question, the students said a combination of things like how they liked it,

thought it had a good message, how it was very well performed, and how they thought it

definitely helped and influenced a lot of people. Teachers also said very positive things,

such as how they thought it was a “Good opportunity to discuss mental health and

tolerance issues that aren’t always brought to the forefront of assemblies” and how they

were pleasantly surprised we had a person of color present in the valley.

Every student’s favorite part seemed to be the characters he acted out, or at least one of

them. One student specifically mentioned the football player character he played saying, “It

shows you can’t judge someone by how they look, what they say, etc. Everyone has a story

that most don’t know about.” Another student just said their favorite part was the

characters overall, and how “They were all connected, and how he could change from

character to character so fast.” Teachers liked that he spoke about his own personal

struggles, thought that it was very inspirational, and liked the poem he kept going back to

in between characters.

Both students and teachers agree that this presentation should definitely happen again

next year. Students mentioned how “There are a lot of kids who feel alone and struggle

with suicidal thoughts, and his story can help a lot of kids” and that “Others should see it

again to refresh.” One teacher mentioned that the assembly should happen in some format

or another, but not necessarily the same presentation as the one that took place this year.

They said we need to “Cover topics important to students and their everyday life, and

acknowledgment of these issues is very important.” Another teacher mentioned everyone

needs to realize “It’s not all rosy in people’s lives, and many people are struggling.”

Each person took a big message away from this presentation. One student said the biggest

message they took away is to “Never give up. There is still hope out there for everyone.”

Another student said the biggest moral they received is “Don’t judge people based on their

looks or the categories they fit.” One teacher said the thing that stuck with them the most is

the reality of the struggles that everyone goes through on a daily basis. Everyone has

baggage, and everyone needs to be aware of and sensitive to everyone else’s baggage.

Another teacher said the biggest message was “To encourage people to seek help if they

need it” and that it’s okay to seek help. They explained that no one should suffer in silence.

Overall, the responses to this presentation were very positive. Students and teachers alike

really enjoyed the presentation, thought it engaged students and had a good message, and

would like to see this presentation, or something like it, again next year.

FFA News

Big picture

Our Keystone Recipients (top row from left to right) Andrew Kline, Andrew Schaeffer, Matt Conrad, and Kate Smith. (bottom row from left to right) Danielle Trimbur, Haley Weidman, Paige Rohrbach, Hollie Bower.

Big picture

Our FFA Jacket Recipients (from left to right) Wyatt Ulsh, Katie Kowalski, Lilly Hetrick, Colby Templin, Nick Guldin

Big picture

Our Food Science Team getting recognized (our students from left to right) Anthony Neil, Haley Weidman, Andrew Kline, Erin Readinger

Oley Valley FFA Members Working Hard at the Farm Show

The 104th annual Farm Show was a very productive event for the Oley Valley FFA. We had several members show their animals, get recognized for their involvement in CDE’s, and receive their Keystone Degree and Jacket. In the livestock show, Austin Kopfer showed his market goat and placed eighth in his class. Marshall Kerper was the next to compete, winning grand champion Tunis ram and Tunis ewe in the junior show. Kerper also received the Premier Tunis Exhibitor Plaque. Wyatt Kerper competed in the junior show, winning grand champion AOB with his ram and ewe. Rebecca Kugler competed in the open and junior sheep show earning champion Corriedale ewe in both shows, reserve champion Corriedale ewe in junior show, and champion Corriedale ram. Kugler also won first place showmanship for her age, along with being presented with her PA Wool Queen certificate by House of Representatives. The last Oley Valley FFA member to show sheep was Haley Weidman. Haley competed in the sheep show junior classes and placed fourth in the showmanship class. Weidman also earned third place Corriedale yearling ewe. Colby Templin and Ethan Sterner competed in the dairy show. Templin's Ayrshire calf placed second in his class. Sterner won first place Spring Red and White Holstein Claf and junior champion Red and White Holstein. Congratulations to all of our exhibitors! We also had several members enter applications to receive their Keystone Degree and FFA jacket. The members who were successful in these acts attended a ceremony on Monday, January 6, to get their jacket and Degree. Earning their jackets were Nick Guldin, Lily Hetrick, Katie Kowalksi, Colby Templin, and Wyatt Ulsh. Our Keystone recipients consisted of Hollie Bower, Matt Conrad, Andrew Kline, Paige Rohrbach, Andy Schaeffer, Kate Smith, Danielle Trimbur, and Haley Weidman. Two of our CDE teams also received recognition at Farm Show. Congratulations to all of our FFA members who participated in the 2020 Farm Show!

Annual Alumni Luncheon: Another Success

On December 20th, 2019, the Oley Valley FFA held its annual Alumni Luncheon. Oley Valley FFA would like to thank the six past members that agreed to come back to educate current members about their experiences after high school. Our first speaker, Taylor Helbig, a 2010 Oley Valley graduate, prepared a PowerPoint presentation with several pieces of advice along with information about his success. After graduating, Taylor attended college at Penn State and now works at Godiva as a food scientist and enjoys fly fishing in his spare time. Our next speaker, Nate Guldin, 2017 graduate, spoke about his past and present experiences at DelVal, as well as his experiences in the FFA when he was in high school. Nate spoke about available courses and electives offered at the college. Jesse Bitler, our next speaker graduated in 2003. He gave a very informative speech about dairy farms, specifically the one he owns, Vista Grande Dairy. A few of our FFA members previously took a field trip to the farm where they were able to see the cows, robotic milkers, and technologies they use. At this point, there was a break from the speakers where everyone was offered lunch from Wegman's Catering. For dessert, we indulged in homemade cookies and brownies from the officer team, cheesecake from our PeeJay’s fundraiser, and Godiva Chocolate from Taylor Helbig. Shortly after lunch, Reese Kauffman, 2018 graduate, began speaking about his experiences at Clemson University and his interest in food science. He described some of the experiments and labs he has completed so far during his time at Clemson. The next Oley Valley FFA Alumni to speak was Kevin Guldin who graduated in 1986. Kevin told a timeline of events in his life, starting as a child, and ending where he is today, a successful business owner. He described working at Oley Valley Feed before college and how eventually he bought the business which gave him the opportunity to travel. Wrapping up the Alumni Luncheon was Sam Wittman, a 2019 graduate. Sam was able to offer valuable information on the field of welding, which he is currently pursuing academically at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Once again, we are very thankful for all six of the alumni that came to speak and help to make this year's luncheon another success!

Athletic Update

For Athletic Schedules & Information visit www.ovlynx.org

*Please note that you can sign up on the athletic website for schedule change notifications which will send you an email or text message to alert you as soon as games are postponed.

For directions on where Berks County High Schools and Middle Schools play their home contests please visit www.bciaa.org. Please note that clicking on an opponent on www.ovlynx.org will only give you directions to the opposing school’s High School, which is not necessarily where they play their contests.

Follow the Athletic Department on Twitter @OVLynx for varsity scores and live playoff updates each season.

Current Spring Coaching Vacancies:

HS Assistant Track & Field – Throws

HS Assistant Track & Field - Jumps

MS Assistant Baseball

High School Spring Sports start on Monday, March 2nd.

Middle School Spring Sports start on Monday, March 9th.

*All Spring paperwork is due back to the Athletic Office by Friday, February 21st. Students are not permitted to start practicing until all completed paperwork is on file. Anyone handing in paperwork on the first day of the season will not be deemed eligible to participate for 24 hours while the athletic training staff reviews all medical information with the coaches.

Save the date: Friday, May 29th at 7:00PM will be our All-Sports and Senior Sports Awards.





3/6/2020 MS MUSICAL 7:00 PM

3/7/2020 MS MUSICAL 7:00 PM



3/12/2020 K-12 PARENT TEACHER CONFERENCES 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM












3/27/2020 ES MOVIE NIGHT 7:00 PM




Oley Valley School District Board of Directors

David R. Pollock Jr., President

Robert A. Heckman, Vice President

Dawn Zackon, Treasurer

Eric Clemmer, Member

Nancy Jackson, Member

Darrell L. Markley, Ed.D., Member

Mary Lou Parry, Member

Ralph Richard, Member

Stuart Salen, Member

John M. Stott, Esquire, Board Solicitor

Maria H. Jones, Board Secretary, non-member

Oley Valley School District

The Oley Valley School District is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Educator who fully and actively supports equal access for all people regardless of Race, Color, Religion, Gender, Age, National Origin, Veteran Status, Disability, Genetic Information or Testing, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity or Expression and prohibits Retaliation against individuals who bring forth any complaint, orally or in writing, to the employer or the government, or against any individuals who assist or practice in the investigation of any complaint, or otherwise oppose discrimination. Compliance issues/questions should be directed to the Office of the Superintendent.