The Bird Call

News and Notes from Clever High School

It's a Learning Experience

Happy New Year and welcome to another edition of The Bird Call!

Recently, the Clever School District modified one of our COVID-19 protocols which has the potential to drastically reduce the number of students and staff excluded from school if/when a positive case is reported. This information has been shared with our families previously and on the morning of January 14th, I met with the staff and each class to review the changes. So, this may be a review for many of you reading this or, more importantly, if you have not seen this information it is worthwhile.

You may remember that Governor Parson made a joint announcement in late November with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Department of Health and Senior Services. At that time, Governor Parson shared new recommendations and individual school districts were left scrambling. While the announcement from the state said one thing, our local health departments were still following CDC guidance. In short, we were getting two very different sets of recommendations.

Fast forward to January, and as a result of the collaboration between district leadership, the School Board, the county health departments, neighboring school districts, and others, we have adopted a new set of guidelines. To be clear, face coverings are still required for all staff, students, and guests at Clever High School when social distancing of 6 or more feet is not possible.

The new guidelines are pretty straight forward: if both the individual who tests positive AND the individual identified as a close contact (within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more cumulatively in a 24 hour period) are PROPERLY wearing an approved face covering, only the individual who tests positive will be excluded from school. Governor Parson's guidance does still require the close contact individual to be excluded from extracurricular activities.

This really is a game-changer. Prior to this, all close contacts were excluded from school regardless of whether or not they were properly masking. When talking to students throughout the first semester, the question "What's the point of wearing a mask?" often came up when students knew they were going to be excluded regardless. In fairness, it is a great question and the answer was, and still is, that according to experts in both the medical and science communities, wearing a face covering properly can drastically reduces the spread of the virus. The second answer I have given to students is simple and maybe a little more personal: this is what we have to do to be here, and after shutting down last Spring, I am willing to make sacrifices to be back at school together.

Ultimately, this new policy puts the control in the hands of each of us here at CHS. It gives us another great answer to the "What's the point?" question: If we all wear a face covering properly, then only the individual who is sick will need to be excluded from school. If we want to do all we can to stay in school and ensure that our friends, peers, or colleagues can stay here as well, we each have influence over that now more than ever. And, if an individual chooses not to properly wear a face covering, that person is now directly affecting those around him/her. There are times throughout the day, such as eating breakfast or lunch, where generating close contacts is unavoidable. While we may not be able to completely eliminate the need to exclude individuals from school, we can reduce the number significantly if we all work together.

Below is a visual that helps clarify the different scenarios we face as well as the expectations of what it means to properly wear a mask.

As always, if there are questions please reach out.

Go Jays!

Joe Casey

High School Principal


Remind: Text "@clever9-12" to 81010

Twitter: @CleverPrincipal

Masking Scenarios

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What do we mean by "Properly Wearing a Mask"?

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Hickman's Happenings

Character Education in the HS

Our character word of the month for January is Tolerance. A tolerant Clever Bluejay encourages understanding and acceptance for beliefs or practices differing or conflicting with their own. They demonstrate empathy and compassion through their words and actions. A tolerant Bluejay uses appropriate language including words, content, and voice level and is non-judgemental towards others.

A+ News:

All A+ Students: A+ Status Reports will be emailed out to students in a few weeks. If a student is out of compliance, a report will be mailed home.

Senior Male Students: Just a reminder that one of the requirements for A+ is to sign up for the Selective Service. If you have reached the age of 18 (or 17 years and 3 months), please go to to register.

Seniors: Just a reminder to fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). This is one of the requirements to be eligible for the A+ scholarship. If you have any questions, please contact Mrs. Hickman or Mrs. Waisner.

  • Students and parents should first set up a FSA ID:

  • File the FAFSA online at This is a free website - beware of other sites which may charge a fee!!

Congratulations to our November Jays of the Month winners for representing the character word Perseverance and our CHS staff Trophy of Awesomeness winner!

Counselor' Corner

Attention 10th and 11th-grade students

The application window for the OTC Career Center is now open. The deadline to apply is March 1st so do not miss out on the opportunity to spend half of your day on the OTC campus earning up to 40 college credits while earning high school credits. Go here to see the 20 career and technical programs we offer with more coming in the future. Classes meet on the OTC campus Monday – Friday. Most Clever students attend the afternoon sessions from 12:20 p.m. and end at 2:50 p.m. Students leave after 3rd hour and return at 3:30 PM. You pay nothing for tuition, books, and transportation to be a part of this amazing program. See your counselor for more information and submit your application soon to be a part of this great opportunity for high school juniors and seniors. Submit your application here today!

A few programs are only in the AM and you will have to request permission to drive yourself.

Helpful tips for the application:

You can also see me with help and questions.


Please remember to complete scholarship applications.

Check here for updates.

Join my senior remind -

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Virtual Learning

COVID-19 has presented a unique set of challenges for the staff, students, and families of Clever High School. We have adopted the theme of 'Grit, Grace, and Gratitude" this year to help remind us that we are all better together. While changes happen quickly, we want to ensure we are doing all we can to support our students who are learning virtually, whether by choice or not.

Click below for a link to our expectations for students learning remotely. While originally designed to help our Bluejays@home learners navigate virtual learning, this information applies to any student who finds him/herself learning from home.

Officer Barney's 4-1-1

Hello again from Officer Barney.

COMING SOON, there will be a safe driving compliance check by the Clever Police Department. The focus will be on younger driver’s safety. I could bore you with statistic after statistic, but the truth is staying alert (not being distracted), staying off your phone (no texting or reading text messages), and wearing your seat belt keeps you safer if you should be involved in a motor vehicle crash. There are laws prohibiting inattentive driving, driving while texting or reading a message 21 years old and under, and driving without a seat belt, and passengers without a seat belt. My daughter is an emergency department doctor and she shares real-life impacts of motor vehicle crashes. By now, if you kept reading, you may wonder why does he keep repeating this? It may be the cop in me, the parent in me, or maybe I just care about your safety.

Until next time be safe!

Officer Barney

District Long-Range Planning

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District Events Calendar

Click here for a comprehensive list of all upcoming activities!

Clubs and Activities at CHS

Clever High School offers a variety of extra/co-curricular activities for our students. Now is the time to get involved! Check out the list below for what is offered and who to contact:

Future Teachers of America - Mrs. Neely

Fellowship of Christian Athletes - Coach Jones

Science History Club - Mr. Burry

Clever Student Alliance - Mrs. Money

Art Club - Mr. Schmidt

Future Business Leaders of America - Mrs. Lumpkin

National Honor Society - Ms. Lathem

Future Farmers of America - Ms. Hultz

Student Council - Mrs. Grant and Mrs. Waisner

Yearbook - Mr. Boyles

Speech and Debate - Mr. Rea

Academic Team - Mr. Walker and Mr. McGarry

Spirit Squad - Mrs. Neely

Theatre - Mrs. Scheibe

Math Club - Mr. McGarry

Alumni Spotlight

CHS Alumni we need more individuals to feature in our monthly spotlight!

Here is a list of questions you can copy/paste into an email and send your answers to Mr. Casey (


Class of:

Hobbies and interests:


Current Job:

College or Career Training after CHS:

Degree/Certificate Earned:

Extracurricular activities you participated in at CHS:

Favorite class at CHS:

Advice to current CHS students:

**A picture to include in the newsletter would be great!**

Thanks in advance!

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