The Central Bucks Board Note
October 2020 ~ Vol. 3, No. 1
Student and Staff Achievements
National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists
Dr. Kopicki announce that 27 Central Bucks seniors have achieved semifinalist status in the National Merit Scholarship Competition. These students will continue in the prestigious 66th annual nationwide scholarship competition.
- CB South’s semifinalists are Kevin Chen, Kevin He, William Huang, Amy Liu, Alexander McMoil, Kevin Pan, Kevin Parker, and Daniel Strobel.
- CB East’s semifinalists are Mason Bates, Chayton Dalby, Polina Guslyakova, Grace Mahony, Grace McDonald, Michael Rybalkin, Sajan Shah, Lawrence Song, Carina Sun, Annie Wang, and Andrew Whinney.
- CB West’s semifinalists are Hafsah Ahmad, Vidya Balaji, Ethan Esserg, Mudit Gulgani, Sophie Kadan, Anirudh Nangunoori, Vineet Nahak, and Cameron Schmidt.
These academically talented high school students have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring. Over 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2019 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, which served as an initial screen of program entrants.
To be considered for a Merit Scholarship award, semifinalists must fulfill several rigorous requirements to advance to the finalist level of the competition. About 90 percent of semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and about half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar title.
Dr. Kopicki congratulated the students for their hard work and strong academic achievement, while noting that their success is also a testament to the support of their families and teachers.
Bucks Fever FilmFest Winners
A number of Central Bucks MBIT students were recognized for their imaginative talents at the 20th annual Bucks Fever FilmFest. A 21-year-old tradition, the Bucks County FilmFest encourages and supports the growth of Bucks County’s filmmaking community by providing a venue to view the works of area professional and student filmmakers.
- Several 2019 graduates, including CB West’s Shamus Duffy and Ian Kozlik, as well as CB South’s Tom Hetrick, were recognized for work completed in the 2019-2020 school year. Their film, “Slip Up,” was the winning submission in the narrative film category.
- CB South students Eddie Kenna and Billy Kubacki, and CB West student Tia Lowry and graduate Shamus Duffy were members of the student group that was awarded both best screenplay and best music video for their submission, “Upside Down.”
- Shamus Duffy, Eddie Kenna, Billy Kubacki, Ian Kozlik and CB South student Brendan McCreesh also achieved finalist status for other work submitted in the narrative film category.
All of these films may be viewed online through the MBIT website.
Dr. Kopicki also reported on the achievements of two members of the district's professional staff.
- Unami Science and Technology Teacher Colleen Haag was recently named among the Canvas Educator of the Year award winners. The 2020 Canvas Educator of the Year Awards recognize outstanding educators in the United States who are working to embrace remote learning, prepare students for the workforce, and support student success and achievement in an evolving education landscape.
- Tamanend Technology Education Teacher Kerri Brumbaugh was recognized with the Innovative Educator of the Year award, presented by the Technology and Engineering Association of Pennsylvania. Ms. Brumbaugh is an active member of the Tamanend community, serving as yearbook co-advisor, STEM club co-advisor, and CERT Team member.
Technology by the Numbers
Jason Jaffe, CBSD's director of technology and innovation, presented a unique "data-focused" update on the district's efforts to accomplish the technology and innovation goals outlined within the "Vision for Our Schools," as well as support the unique needs of the district's students and teachers amid the challenges presented by the pandemic.
With a focus on three key areas: infrastructure, classroom tools, and flexibility of instruction, Mr. Jaffe brought attention to the ways in which five-year goals that were established during the district's strategic planning work in 2016 have enabled the district to rise to the unforeseen challenges brought about by the pandemic. “Having over 17,500 devices is a challenge. But our staff has done an amazing job supporting our staff and students in this challenging time," Mr. Jaffe said.
Efforts to ensure that the district's infrastructure was stable and updated provided the district with resources to provide the significant bandwidth necessary to support teaching and learning both online and in classrooms, simultaneously. Investments in instructional technology software and tools – especially the district's 1:1 device rollout, Microsoft Teams, and the Canvas learning management system – positioned the district well to support the needs of teachers and families when students are learning in traditional, hybrid, or virtual environments.
Investments and professional development efforts undertaken as a result of the district's planning, combined with the foresight and support of the school board, will provide the resources Central Bucks teachers need to provide excellent instruction in any circumstance. While these investments in technology are critical to providing the high quality educational experience CBSD families expect, the ways in which Central Bucks' dynamic, creative teaching staff uses these tools is the most important measure of success. Central Bucks teachers will no doubt use the new skills they gained and strengthened during the pandemic to engage students in new and innovative ways as the district looks forward to returning to traditional in-classroom teaching and learning.
Amended Athletic Health and Safety Plan Approved
District athletic director Danielle Turner presented the board with a detailed outline of amendments to the COVID-19 Athletic Health and Safety plan. Later approved by the board, changes reflect new guidance from the commonwealth on crowd gathering limits, efforts to ensure the athletic health and safety plan is aligned with the district's health and safety plan, and outline guidelines for fall and winter sports.
Revisions employ a tiered approach (below) to allowing attendance at athletic events. Spectators will be allowed at tennis, golf, field hockey, soccer, cross country, football (marching band and cheerleading), volleyball events. Currently, individuals who fall within tiers 1, 2 and 3 may attend games. Student athletes and other student participants (i.e. band) will receive two passes per family to allow entry into the extra-curricular event.
Spectator tiers for attendance at athletic events:
- Tier 1 (Essential) – Athletes, coaches, officials, event staff, medical staff, security
- Tier 2 – Media
- Tier 3 – Parent/guardians - 2 complimentary game passes per athlete
- Tier 4 – Student body/faculty members
- Tier 5 – Public Spectators and Vendors
Read more on the district's website.
Central Bucks School District
The members of the Central Bucks School District's Board of School Directors each represent one of nine regions in the district. Each region includes one or more municipality. While each region elects one school director, members represent the interests of the district as a whole once elected.
Meetings are held on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month except for February, July, August, October, November and December. In February, the board will meet on the first and fourth Tuesdays. In July and August, the board meets on the fourth Tuesday only. In October, the board will meet on the third and fifth Tuesdays. In November, the board meets on the second Tuesday only. In December, the board meets on the first Tuesday only. Meetings are being held virtually at this time, look for meeting notices on the district's website, which will include a link for submitting public comment.
Correspondence for the Board of School Directors should be sent to Stephanie Radcliffe, Secretary to the Board, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The "Central Bucks Board Note," is an e-newsletter designed to provide Central Bucks School District constituents with an overview of the work of their Board of School Directors.
Please share any feedback with Angela Linch, communications and public relations administrator, at email@example.com or by calling 267-893-2073.