Weekly Cougar News

ConVal High School Happenings - December 4, 2020

Message From Principal McKillop

Good Afternoon, Cougar Nation!

It is hard to believe we are now in the month of December. We have completed the first week of our segmented calendar and have just over two weeks left of learning before our holiday break.

We have some exciting opportunities for students on the horizon. Please check out the important upcoming dates below. I look forward to addressing all classes at their respective virtual class meeting prior to the break. Each class will also hear from their class advisors and members from the class boards.

Please take a moment to read the information below from the school counseling department. "Take Ten" is a new program initiative that I hope many students can virtually visit if possible. The counselors are excited to kick off the mini sessions with the first offering next Monday.

I hear there may be snow in the forecast this weekend. Please stay warm, healthy, and safe!



Important Upcoming Dates

Friday, December 11, 2020 - Freshman virtual class meeting 10:30 - 11:00am

Friday, December 11, 2020 - Sophomore virtual class meeting 11:00 - 11:30am

Friday, December 18, 2020 - Junior virtual class meeting 10:30 - 11:00am

Friday, December 18, 2020 - Senior virtual class meeting 11:00 - 11:30am

Thursday, January 21, 2021 - Junior College Night (virtual)

Thursday, January 28, 2021 - Course Selection Evening Info Session for Parents (virtual)

February - Course Selection (more details as we get closer)

April 13-15th - SATs for 11th Grade (more Info as we get closer)

School Counseling Information


Beginning next week we will be offering bite sized, 10 min. drop in sessions on various topics. These will be aimed at students and the timing of them falls during intervention time, which should allow for flexibility for students to attend without missing new content. All are welcome, but students who need academic support should prioritize their class. The sessions on each day will focus on the following themes:

Mondays - 8:30 AM Program Spotlight (12/7, 12/14, 1/4, 1/11): These will highlight different courses and programs at ConVal, our first session will spotlight Internships and Extended Learning Opportunities.

Tuesdays - 10:00 AM Mental Wellness (12/8, 12/15, 1/5, 1/12): These sessions will be opportunities to connect with others to practice and develop strategies for mental wellbeing. Mindfulness, breathing exercises, and relaxation techniques will be explored.

Thursdays - 2:00 PM College Planning (12/10, 12/17, 1/7, 1/14): These will provide an opportunity for students to dive into topics around the college planning and application process. The first session will focus on Naviance and the college search tools that are available.

The link for the sessions is meet.google.com/zzw-dwit-wpp and will also be shared in Google Classroom and in a direct email to students.


The counseling office will be using Instagram, in addition to our other avenues for communication, going forward. Please follow us at ConvalCounseling for updates, tips, upcoming events and more.

Student Led Groups

The counselors are working with student leaders to organize student led opportunities for students to connect with each other during the remote time. We are still finalizing the details, but plan to offer sessions on Friday afternoons at 1. Trivia, chess, Minecraft are topics that are currently in the works and we will share more details as we have them. Students that that might be interested in leading an activity, reach out to Todd Bennett at tbennett@conval.edu.

PSAT Scores/ Score Interpretation Session

Students who took the PSATs in October should be able to access them beginning on Dec. 7th. Students should receive an email indicating their availability, and students will need to create an account on the College Board website to access their scores. Students are invited to a brief virtual session next Friday, Dec. 11th at 11:30 where we will review the information contained on a score report, and we will discuss next steps for preparing for the SATs. Here is the information to join the session:

Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/5708592676?pwd=SlNMUXdBTjlPWWNkaWcwMnQyQmRzUT09 Meeting ID: 570 859 2676

Passcode: 4KePte

College Applications/January Deadlines

With regular decision deadlines approaching, we are into the busiest stretch of the year with regard to college applications. Seniors with approaching January deadlines should make sure that they’ve communicated clearly with their counselor and recommenders their approaching deadline and make sure that their Naviance list is up to date. Students with January 1 deadlines should have communicated with their counselor by this week in order to ensure timely submission of their school documents (transcripts, recommendations, etc). If you have not and are still planning to apply to a school with a January deadline, please make it a priority to connect with your counselor next week.

Semester 2 Internships/Extended Learning Opportunities

Any student interested in an internship or Extended Learning Opportunity for second semester that is not scheduled for one yet should make sure to contact Ms. Knarr as a first step to make this happen. You can reach out to her at kknarr@conval.edu.

Extra Math Help Available For Algebra 1 Class

Starting Monday, December 7, students in both Part 1 and Part 2 of Algebra 1 will be able to attend support sessions that will be held remotely after school from 3-5 pm Monday through Friday. The sessions will be led by math faculty, consist of roughly three to five students, and last between half an hour to an hour. Students will be invited based on a weekly assessment covering recent materials.

If you have questions, please contact Mathematics Department head Lance Flamino at lflamino@conval.edu or your student’s Algebra 1 teacher.

Athletic Update

As the winter sports season begins, the ConVal Athletic Department looks back and honors the 2020 fall sports seniors with a tribute video. Please click here to watch a slideshow of the honored athletes.

The winter sports season will begin on Monday, December 7th, with a one week required NHIAA skills and drills conditioning period. Team practice schedules can be found here.

Student-athletes can register to participate this winter by visiting Family ID. The Registration deadline December 11, 2020

All athletes and coaches must wear a face covering and report to the pre-practice screen station 15 minutes prior to the beginning of practice, and this screening will include standard COVID-19 screening questions and a temperature check. All athletes shall bring their own water bottle, as there will be no sharing or common use water bottles or drinking stations allowed.

Face coverings must be worn while on the high school campus, this includes while in locker rooms or during team meetings. Please note that the Division 2 Athletic Directors voted unanimously to require that face coverings be worn at all times.

If you have any questions please contact Athletic Director John Reitnauer at jreitnauer@conval.edu.

Avenue A Teen Center December Schedule

Please click here to view Avenue A December schedule

Picture Retake Information

We had a chilly, but successful picture retake day on Wednesday. We will be in communication once the photos are available for pick up. Anyone who did not have pictures retaken and have not picked up their original photos, can come retrieve them Monday-Friday from 7am-3pm at the “pick-up window” located next to the main entrance. If you cannot make it to the school, but would like the information to order photos online please email lseymour@conval.edu and we would be happy to send your personalized ordering information.

Mrs. Coopers AP Language Class

Wicked Witches or Wicked Fungus?

As part of their studies of The Crucible, students in Mrs. Cooper’s AP Language class wrote letters to the people of 1692 Salem, Massachusetts. Speaking from the perspective of 17th Century botanists and medical doctors who understand the hallucinogenic nature of the Ergot fungus, the students warn the Puritans not to eat moldy bread. Ergotism, or poisoning resulting from the consumption of ergot-infected rye flour, has been hypothesized to have caused the hysteria leading to the Salem witch trials.

From Avery Swasey, Sophomore

Dear Cousin,

Eureka! You are not a witch, and now, I can prove it! None of the accused have really been witch’d; it’s the devil’s fungus, creating false dreams. There is a fungus called ergot that causes all sorts of symptoms like hallucinations, vomiting, and muscle spasms. I believe your village's food supply has been contaminated with this fungus. It thrives in damp, warm areas, and you all live near a swampy meadow. Rye can be easily contaminated, and that's your main source of grain. The food is making people sick and everyone is so quick to turn to witches and magic. It’s not magic cousin; it’s science! Eating the rye is causing the symptoms of delusion. People think they see witches, but it’s just their own minds playing tricks on them. Don’t worry, there will be no more hangings thanks to this breakthrough. It’s not your fault your neighbors are sick, and I won’t see you hung for it. The cause is a wicked fungus, not a wicked witch. That's where the blame lies. Tell the village! Help them see!


Your cousin

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Our ConVal Teachers Instructing Our ConVal Students