Mustang Moments

Strongsville City Schools News (2016-17 Vol I, Iss 17)

Strong Schools. Strong Community. Strongsville.

In This Issue - December 22, 2016

  • Important Dates to Remember

  • 60 Seconds with the Superintendent

  • Happy Holidays! Next Mustang Moments Issue on Friday, January 6

  • Muraski Elementary “Jingle Bell Jog”

  • Mustang Spotlight - Strongsville High School Spanish Teacher Tonya Barba-Minor

  • 2017-18 Kindergarten Information Session + Deposits for Full Day

  • SHS Main Entrance Brick Pavers

  • Susan Fee Event - Thursday, January 12

  • Strongsville Jump Rope Club - Session II

  • SHS Alumni Questionnaire

  • Love & Logic Parent Survey

  • Community Events

Important Dates to Remember

Thursday, December 22 - Monday, January 2
Winter Break - NO SCHOOL

Thursday, January 5 - 7pm
Board of Education Work Session (Administrative Offices - 18199 Cook Ave.)

Monday, January 16
Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday - NO SCHOOL

Tuesday, January 17
Records Day - NO SCHOOL

Thursday, January 19 - 7pm
Board of Education Meeting (Administrative Offices - 18199 Cook Ave.)

Thursday, January 26 - Muraski Elementary School

Begin Accepting Full Day Kindergarten Deposits ($300) - 5:00pm
Kindergarten Informational Meeting - 7:00pm

60 Seconds With The Superintendent

Strongsville Middle School enjoyed a “Championship” assembly, as the Cleveland Cavaliers mascots and Scream Team visited this week. The assembly was a reward for the hard work accomplished by our middle school students. SMS had over 200 students earn straight “A’s” - the most for any middle school in the Greater Cleveland area - in the first quarter of a season-long program presented by the Cavs and Westfield Insurance. For highlights of this high energy assembly, click HERE.


It has been a fantastic first half of the school year. We hope all of our students, parents, teachers, staff, and administration enjoy this holiday season with family and friends. We look forward to an even better 2017!

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Muraski Elementary hosted a “Jingle Bell Jog” - giving students at all grade levels the chance to brave the winter temperatures and run a few laps around the building. The event not only burned some pre-holiday energy, but it also raised over $730 for Strongsville families in need. Thanks to Muraski PTA for providing the hot chocolate and for Muraski’s Physical Education teacher, Mrs. Alexander, for coordinating this event!


Mrs. Tonya Barba-Minor teaches Spanish at Strongsville High School. She is a 1994 graduate of Strongsville High School. She also attended Zellers and Allen Elementary Schools, and Center Middle School in our District. Mrs. Barba-Minor earned her undergraduate degree in Spanish & Art Education at Baldwin Wallace University and her graduate degree in Latin American Civilization & Culture from Cleveland State University.

A world traveler (she has been to 17 different countries) and a volunteer for many worthwhile programs, Mrs. Barba-Minor was instrumental in the coordination of a recent visit by eight teachers from El Salvador as part of a “Connecting Communities & Cultures” event. She has volunteered for over 7 years with CAMO (Central American Medical Outreach) providing awareness about asthma, and with COAR (Comunidad de Oscar Arnulfo Romero), a children's home in El Salvador.

When asked about what she enjoys most about working with her students, Mrs. Barba-Minor says “It makes me happy when I see them teaching a classmate or other students. I love to see them get excited when they see that their Spanish makes a difference whether writing a pen pal letter, or a friendship card for Latino children in the United States, or when they connect with students their age and adults through video calls.” She adds about her colleagues “the staff is very talented and I am blessed and humbled to work with them. My students and my colleagues inspire me. The World Languages Department is comprised of passionate and creative individuals that have allowed me to be a better teacher.”

Thank you Mrs. Barba-Minor for inspiring students to see the world from a different perspective and for your valuable work both inside and outside of the classroom.


For parents of students who will be attending kindergarten beginning in the Fall of 2017, please plan to attend an informational session on Thursday, January 26th at 7:00pm at Muraski Elementary School (20270 Royalton Rd.). That same evening, deposits ($300) will be accepted by cash or check beginning at 5:00pm for families interested in securing a space for full day kindergarten. According to State Law and District policy, any child who becomes five years old on or before August 1, 2017 is eligible for admission into the Strongsville School District's Kindergarten program in August.

Individual registration will take place at Strongsville City Schools Administrative Office (18199 Cook Ave.). Registration times will be from 8:00am to 12:00pm. Dates for kindergarten registration are as follows:

Chapman Elementary - Monday, March 13, 2017 (at SCS Administrative Office)

Kinsner Elementary - Tuesday, March 14, 2017 (at SCS Administrative Office)

Muraski Elementary - Wednesday, March 15, 2017 (at SCS Administrative Office)

Surrarrer Elementary - Thursday, March 16, 2017 (at SCS Administrative Office)

Whitney Elementary - Friday, March 17, 2017 (at SCS Administrative Office)

Click HERE for additional information on Kindergarten registration.


As part of the expansion of Strongsville High School in 1998, brick pavers were purchased by donors and installed in the main entrance area. During recent construction and renovation at the high school, it was necessary for these brick pavers to be removed. For those who are interested in retaining their brick paver, they may be found on pallets in front of our Maintenance Department on Rademaker-Miller Lane.

Click HERE for the specific list of donors and brick pavers available for pick up through March 31, 2017.


Don’t miss a special event coming to the Strongsville Middle School on Thursday, January 12 at 7:00pm. Our District’s counselors and the Strongsville Civic Team are bringing Susan Fee to our city for a parent workshop on student anxiety and practical strategies to empower children and ways to encourage growth versus enable fears. Click HERE to register for this presentation.


The second session of Strongsville Jump Rope Club is starting up and will be held Fridays, 5:00pm - 6:30pm, on January 6th, 13th, 20th, 27th, and February 3rd at Muraski Elementary School. We hope you are able to join us! Please contact Dot Hepp at or call/text 216.924.1475 for more information.

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Are you an SHS graduate? Do you know an SHS graduate? We are working on building our alumni database in order to reconnect with those who have graduated from SHS, share with them the good stories of student achievement and other positive news about the District, as well as encourage them to return for alumni-specific events which will be planned in the future. Please share this LINK with any SHS alumni! #foreveramustang

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Love and Logic, developed by Jim Fay and Foster Cline of the Love and Logic Institute, Golden, CO., is a program where parents learn parenting skills that put the fun back into parenting by teaching parents the skills of using empathy, choices, and natural consequences that lead to raising responsible children.

Our District is planning to bring this program to our elementary school families in early 2017. In hopes of tailoring this to as many interested families as possible, please fill out this SURVEY. Answers to the survey will help us select topics and location for this program.


Strongsville Early Childhood PTA Event

The Strongsville Early Childhood PTA is hosting the 13th Annual Preschool, Kindergarten and Childcare Open House. This is a free event! It will be held on Tuesday, January 17, 2017 from 7:30pm - 8:30pm at the Strongsville Middle School.

Local preschools and childcare centers will be there and ready to meet with you! This is a great opportunity to explore options and interview different schools, all in one evening. Please visit or for additional information.

Head Start Basketball Holiday Camp

The Head Start Basketball Holiday Camp will emphasize the FUN-damentals of basketball with individual attention given to each camper. The camp will not only provide a fundamental base for each player, but will also be a fun and enjoyable experience for each and every camper! The camp will be directed by former Strongsville High School and Kent State University player Mike Klinzing who has more than 20 years of basketball camp experience.

The Head Start Basketball Holiday Camp will be held from 1:30pm - 4:30pm on December 29 & 30, 2016 at the Hoop Guru Courthouse, which is located at 1669 West 130th St., Hinckley, OH 44233, Building #5. In order to assure individual attention for each camper the camp will be limited to the first fifty applicants. The cost of the camp is $45.

Please contact Mike Klinzing at 216-392-4059 or for more information or click on this link to register:

Baldwin Wallace Baseball Holiday Skills Camp

The BW Baseball Holiday Skills Camp is the perfect holiday gift for the young ballplayer. The camp is designed to enhance the overall development of youth baseball players of any skill level. Campers will learn fundamental techniques, approaches, and drills from college coaches and players in a fun, energetic atmosphere. The three day camp runs from December 27th - 29th with sessions available for youth players in grades 2-8. Click HERE for the camp flyer and registration information.

Strongsville Chamber of Commerce

Please note the following events hosted by the Strongsville Chamber of Commerce. Registration is required for all events. Please call 440.238.3366 to register or for more information. Those interested may also visit to register and to see more event information.

January Business Luncheon

Tuesday, January 17th - 11:30am

Ehrnfelt Recreation Center

Learn how to grow your business with email and social media. Diane Helbig of Seize This Day and Constant Contact will be the featured speaker. Cost is $20 per person.

Women in Business Breakfast

New Year New You. Updating Your Look in 2017

Thursday, January 26th – 7:30am

Holiday Inn Strongsville

Are you looking for personalized skin care, color analysis, image or wardrobe tips? The featured speaker will be Anne Cannon, Executive Director BeautiControl and owner Uniquely YOU Image Consulting. Ms. Cannon works with men and women who desire to look and feel their best. Cost is $20 per person.

Strongsville Library

Please note the following January 2017 events at the Strongsville Branch Library. Registration is required for most events. Please call (440) 238-5530 to register or for more information. All events sponsored by our Friends of Strongsville Branch Library. Customers may also visit to register and to see more library event information.

For your Holiday enjoyment and all year round, the Friends of the Strongsville Branch Library have partnered with local roaster Red Cedar Coffee to sell Library Lovers' Brew at the branch, with sales supporting the Friends organization. Twelve-ounce bags of ground regular and decaf are $8.99 each. Stop in and pick up a special gift for yourself and a friend!

**The Library and all branches will be CLOSED Saturday, December 24 through Sunday, December 25 for the Christmas holiday. We resume normal hours on Monday, December 26 at 9:00 a.m.

**The Library, all branches and administrative offices, will be CLOSED December 31 through January 1st for New Year. We resume normal hours on Monday, January 2nd at 9:00 a.m.

Year-Round Story Times!

Cuyahoga County Public Library offers story time sessions year-round for children Birth to Age 5. Our current story time sessions are in full swing! Please call the library for more information about our Winter story time sessions.

Technology Training Classes

Beginning in 2017, Cuyahoga County Public Library will offer a new series of technology training classes for beginners to advanced users. We are also offering more evening classes. All classes are free. Registration begins 30 days before each class date. Classes are for adults age 18 and over. To see a full class list and to register, please visit

Young at Heart. Tuesday, January 3rd from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m.

A book club for adults who love Children’s and Teen books. Meets the first Tuesday evening of every month. Please register in person to pick up a copy of the book. Our next discussion will be Towers Falling by Jewell Parker Rhodes. Pick up a copy of the book at the Children's Information desk and join us for a great discussion.

Adult Coloring Workshop. Saturday, January 7th from 10:00 - 11:30 a.m.

Coloring is not just for kids anymore! Research suggests that coloring is one of the best ways for adults to reduce stress & relax. Our Adult Coloring Workshops have returned! Materials and different coloring pages will be provided each month, or participants are welcome to bring their own. We will have a quiet space for adults who want to join others who love to color! Registration is not required. Stop in once or join us each month to relax, de-stress, & color!

Power of Meditation Series. Mondays, January 9, 16, 23, & 30 at 7:00 p.m.

Meditation has been proven to strengthen memory, lower blood pressure, help with chronic pain, depression, anxiety and decrease stress. Join us for a four-week mini-series of meditation exercises facilitated by Kemper House. No experience necessary.

Affordable Care Act Assistance. Thursday, January 12th from 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Get free help with Affordable Care Act enrollment. Our Library is partnering with a regional Enrollment Assistance Program to raise awareness, facilitate access and assist enrollment of qualified individuals. You may drop in any time during this free session.

21-Day Fresh Start Series. Thursdays, January 12, 19, and 26th from 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.

Join Melanie Jatsek, Heinen's Corporate Wellness Specialist and Registered Dietitian, for this 3-week program and learn how to take the confusion out of healthy eating. Week 1 - Integrate Superfoods; Week 2 - Manage Fats and Sugars; Week 3 - Smart Supplementation (held in the Strongsville Heinen's Store). Registration is Requested.

Just 4 You Student Friends Volunteers. Ages 10-18. Saturday, January 14th from 2:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Join Just 4 U Student Friends and get involved at the Strongsville Branch and in your community. Pick up an application at the Teen Desk.

Parkfit Mall Walkers Wellness Talk: "Advance Directives" Tuesday, January 17th from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m.

This month's speaker will be Chris Cameron LISW-S from Southwest General Hospital speaking about living wills, advanced directives and the legalities of these documents. Gain tips on how to have these important conversations with your family member. The ParkFit Mall Walkers Club is a combined effort of Southwest General and SouthPark Mall in Strongsville. The Club provides an opportunity for community residents to improve their health by walking for exercise in a safe, interesting and climate-controlled facility. Walk at the mall first, then come over to the Library for this informative wellness talk!

LED Cloud Workshop. Teens ages 11-18. Tuesday, January 17th from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Join Progressive Arts Alliance for an exploration of simple circuits and art making. Participants will each create their very own cloud, lit by an LED, that they can clip on to their collar or backpack and take home.

Parents/guardians must complete a Release and Hold Harmless form. Participants may be recorded and/or surveyed to capture program’s effectiveness. More information can be found at

Good Morning, Strongsville Speaker Series: Stick to Your New Year's Resolutions. Wednesday, January 18th from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m.

Please join us for our bi-monthly Good Morning, Strongsville Speaker Series. Each month we bring a special speaker of interest to seniors and residents of Strongsville. Our January speaker will be Wendy Zullo from Life Works of Southwest General to learn different ways to stick with those New Year’s resolutions. She will discuss ways to stay motivated all year long! Refreshments served.

Wednesday Evening Book Discussion. Meets the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. New Members Welcome! Our next discussion will be on Wednesday, January 18th. This month we will be discussing The Hundred-Year House by Rebecca Makkai. Copies of the book will be available at the check-out desk. Registration for this program is not needed. Join us for an evening of great discussion!

Income Tax Talk. Thursday, January 19th at 7:00 p.m.

Join us as tax expert, Chuck Dixon from H & R Block, shares information on tax law changes and valuable information you need to know to file your 2016 Income Taxes. A Q&A session will follow his presentation.

Monday Afternoon Book Discussion. Meets the 4th Monday of each month at 2:30 p.m.

New Members Welcome! Our next discussion will be held on Monday, January 23rd. This month we will be discussing Be Frank with Me by Julia Clairborne Johnson. Copies of the book will be available for check-out at the circulation desk. Join us for great conversation!

Meaningful Life & Work After Retirement. Tuesday, January 24th from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Many people are discovering that retirement provides them with an opportunity to now do what they have always wanted. If this sounds like you, come to this workshop to find out about the opportunities available to you. Learn how to put your business acumen to work by becoming a mentor at SCORE, go back to school utilizing the 60+ programs colleges offer, and more.

2017 Building Competition. All Ages/Families. Saturday, January 28th from 10:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Come to our third annual LEGO™ bricks competition. Official entry forms and rules are available Monday, January 2nd. Entry forms MUST be dropped off by Wednesday, January 25 to be entered into the competition. Drop off your built creation 10:00 AM to 12 noon. The public exhibition and judging will take place from 12 noon to 3 PM. Prizes will be awarded for various age levels including a Family category this year.