The Board of Education meets on the third Wednesday of each month. To view board agendas and all supporting documents use the attached link.

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The MVR-III Board of Education voted to place Proposition 1: Promise, Purpose, Progress, & Safety for our students, No-Tax-Levy-Increase, $17.9 million bond issue on the April 6, 2021 ballot. Families can learn more about Prop 1 and how it will impact the students at:

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Safety Net Donation

Members of New Beginnings Lutheran Church, Travis Torblaa and Julie Loyet, were recognized at the January Board of Education Meeting for partnering with the MVR-III Safety Net Program. The Safety Net Program was formed in 2014 when students were identified as being homeless in the district. Since that time, Dr. Stephanie Bechard, Homeless Coordinator, has worked with the Safety Net committee to ensure identified homeless students get the basic needs to be effective in the classroom. Funds from Safety Net have helped families with clothing, school supplies, food, and transportation. The New Beginnings Lutheran Church congregation donated $5,000 and many other citizens also made contributions during the month of December. Our community is making a BIG difference in the lives of children in the area.

If you would like to make an online donation to Safety Net, use the following link:

Husereau Real Estate Team Pledges 3% Commission Donation

Pacific High School graduate and business owner, Tim Husereau, and his real estate team have made a pledge to donate 3% of their annual sales to the Meramec Valley R-III School District. The Husereau Team is made up of nine real estate professionals with several of the agents being graduates of PHS or having children attend schools in the Meramec Valley R-III School District. Use the following link to read more about the Husereau Team's Commission Donation:

Safety Training for Staff

Franklin County Sherriff's Department (FCSD) provided a safety training for faculty and staff on the January 15th Professional Development Day. The FCSD Director of School Safety, Tyson Jones, presented a virtual training to ensure MVR-III has the necessary tools to keep schools safe. The District promotes the protection of students and staff for a safe learning and working environment.

Secondary Re-imagine Priorities Identified

Dr. Carrie Schwierjohn, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction, presented the Secondary Re-imagine priorities at the January Board of Education Meeting. The priority standards were narrowed down after a year-long study of current practices and options available to MVR-III secondary schools. The process included teachers, staff, administrators, parents, and students to glean input on possible ideas found during the study. Findings & Goals:

  • Alignment in process and purposeful planning for college and career pathway exploration (Focus on supportive transition models for students in grades 8 & 9 based on student interest)
  • Consistent district grading practices (Focus on alignment of philosophy, mastery, and purpose of grades)
  • Create a consistent, flexible, and student-focused schedule (Allows choice and supports for all students)

District leaders are currently working with building administrators and department chairs on the goals for the 2021-2022 school year.

Pacific High School

Ally Vogt, PHS sophomore, earned third place in the Voice of Democracy essay contest sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW). The VFW holds an annual essay competition to promote patriotism. Vogt was recognized on January 3, 2021 for her outstanding essay on "Is This the Country the Founders Envisioned?" Use the following link to read Vogt's full essay:

PHS Virtual Art Show

This year has encouraged change in many facets of the educational setting. However, PHS art teachers, Joe Fuch and Mari Hall, found a way to display their students' work by hosting a Virtual Art Show. Students submitted their own work and viewers had the opportunity to enjoy the artwork. With positive feedback from parents and students on the Virtual Art Show, teachers are pushing forward for a Spring show. Use the following link to view the Virtual Art Show:

Artwork displayed here was created by Lucy Dunn.

Riverbend Middle School

During the regularly scheduled January School Board meeting, Todd Dempsey was hired to serve as the principal of Riverbend Middle School for the 2021-22 school year. Mr. Dempsey will be replacing Dr. Andy Arbeitman who is retiring at the end of the current school year. Dempsey is actually returning to the Meramec Valley R-III School District where he previously spent 17 years as an Art teacher and Soccer Coach at Pacific High School. In 2018, Mr. Dempsey accepted a position as the Vice Principal at St. Francis Borgia Regional High School and is in his third year in that role.

Dempsey will be tasked in his first year with initializing the implementation of the district’s Re-imagine MVR-III goals focusing on improving transitions for students in 8th grade to high school, increased focus on college and career pathways, and alignment of grading practices and expectations. Dempsey stated, “I look forward to the opportunity to work with the Riverbend faculty, students, and community for many years to come. I am humbled by the opportunity to serve in the MVR-III School District once again. This is my home, and I am truly excited to be back…Once an Indian, Always an Indian.

MVR-III superintendent, Dr. John Mulford, stated, “We are excited to be bringing Mr. Dempsey back to MVR-III. I believe Mr. Dempsey and our assistant principal, Dr. Jill Johler, both have a similar vision and philosophy and I look forward to seeing what the two of them, along with their faculty and staff, can accomplish as a team.”

Strength Building with Coach Hillhouse

While Riverbend students were learning from home, the physical education teachers were committed to helping their students stay healthy. Click on the button above to access the Strength Building video created by teachers.

Virtual Learning

New to the Virtual Learning instructional team is Kelsey Vancil. She will be overseeing all students in Grades 7-12 enrolled in an elective course through the Acellus program. Acellus is an accredited online program that provides self-paced courses, engaging video lessons, and personalized instruction. Ms. Vancil will work with the students to offer additional support with their coursework. Email Kelsey Vancil at or contact her at 636-271-1414.

Open House

Virtual Learning teachers held an Open House for students and families new to virtual learning for the Spring semester. Families were able to join the Open House by joining remotely or by attending an in-person session held on January 7, 2021. Activities included frequently asked questions, lessons on how to engage in the learning platform, and available resources.

Pacific Intermediate

Sixth grade Odyssey students studied aerodynamics with air powered rockets. Aerodynamics is the way air moves around things similar to how an airplane is able to fly. Using only a fixed amount of power, students were able to design straw body rockets that traveled over 9 meters in distance with a flight time of just over a second. Students made modifications to the rockets on a very small scale--to the thousandth of a gram.

Coleman Elementary

Scholastic Reading Sponsor Update: Third grade teacher, Mrs. McElwain, challenged parents and friends to be Reading Sponsors for the students in her classroom. Since that time, students have been able to select five books. The Scholastic Reading Sponsorship has four months remaining for the school year with a total of 9 new books being gifted to the students. Students are excited to receive their own books to take home, some students have never been able to select a new book from the Scholastic magazine prior to this initiative. Mrs. McElwain goes on to report, "I have noticed students are far more engaged in reading one of their own books than when they select one of the books from my shelves."

Nike Elementary

The Nike Elementary PTO held a calendar sale in December. The 2021 calendars were created by students and teachers. They include photos and/or artwork from each classroom. Proceeds from the calendar go right back to Nike students.

Robertsville Elementary

Mrs. Wade's second grade students demonstrated reading and research skills in response to their investigation of Martin Luther King Jr. Student explained their findings using Google Slides when giving their oral presentations.

Truman Elementary

Third grade students in Mrs. Oskin's class conducted a science experiment constructing wind-proof paper houses. Students worked collaboratively to design and test their homes against wind conditions. The hands-on learning activity was a hit with the students. This is an easy activity that parents could do at home using paper, tape, glue, scissors, and a creative mind-set.

Zitzman Elementary

Student leaders were recognized with a Chief Leadership Award for second quarter. Teachers and staff nominated students for exhibiting the following skills: being responsible, working hard everyday, being a great friend to others, being respectful, and putting forth effort each day. It's important for students to experience leadership opportunities during their school day, to learn to cooperate with others, and achieve tasks effectively.

Doris Hoffman Early Learning Center

Pre-school students in Ms. Michele's classroom held a parade to recognize their school nurse, Jessica Graham, on Nurse Appreciation Day. School nurses provide basic healthcare to students in case of injury or illness, they develop health plans for students with chronic illnesses and disabilities, and they educate students and staff on healthy habits, such as proper nutrition and hygiene. This year, among all years, nurses play an important role in our schools.

The Great Kindness Challenge

One Week. One Checklist. Infinite Happiness.

The Great Kindness Challenge is a proactive and positive bullying prevention initiative that improves the school and community. The Great Kindness Challenge is January 25th - January 29th devoted to performing as many acts of kindness as possible in their community. A kindness chart will be sent home with students and you can use the link to download the chart to participate as a family. Use the checklist of 50 kind acts, to accept the challenge and show the world that KINDNESS MATTERS! Link to Kindness Challenge Chart.


Use the link above to access the recently approved Academic Calendar for the 2020-2021 school year.

Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education Updates

Pioneer in Education Award

Each year since 1974, the State Board of Education and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education have selected individuals to be honored as Pioneers in Education, in recognition of their distinguished careers and contributions to public education.

Individuals named to this group include outstanding school teachers, administrators, local board members, college and university deans and presidents, former legislators and governors.

While nominations can be submitted throughout the year, those submitted prior to February 28 will be considered for recognition in 2021. For more information and to access the nomination form, click here.

Interested in becoming a substitute teacher? For more information, click here

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The Meramec Valley R-III School District continues to qualify for the nationwide free meal waiver through June 30, 2021. In accordance with the United States Department of Agriculture COVID-19 Nutrition Act, children up to age 18 qualify for the free breakfast/lunch meal program.

Dates to Remember

January 25-29: The Great Kindness Challenge

January 20: Inauguration Day

February: Black History Month

February 1: Kdg. Registration Opens

February 10: Mid-Quarter/School Counselor Recognition Day

February 15: President's Day Holiday (No School)

February 17: Cook Recognition Day