The Bird Call

News and Notes from Clever High School

Hello and welcome to another edition of The Bird Call!

As I write this, it has been more than 3 weeks since we last had students attending seated courses. I can't help but feel like I might need to review some of our beginning of the year policies and expectations when we return on Tuesday! In all seriousness, the staff here at CHS is eager to welcome students back on campus.

I won't lie, there have been moments in the last 15 months where I have foolishly asked myself "what else could go wrong?!?" only to be answered by a new challenge. Here's a quick review:

  • November 2019 - the entire district was brought to a grinding halt when we were attacked by a Ransomware Virus which took weeks/months to recover from.
  • March 2020 - the entire world was seemingly brought to a grinding halt in many ways with the rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus which still affects us daily.
  • February 16, 2021 - a sprinkler head burst in the ceiling of the CPAC entryway resulting in flooding throughout the high school. Extensive mitigation and restoration efforts have taken place and will likely last through the summer.

At this point, I know better than to ask the question mentioned above. Partly because I don't want to jinx ourselves but mostly because at this point I know that whatever is thrown at us, we will roll up our sleeves and get to work for the sake of our students and the community. I am incredibly proud of the resiliency I have seen from the staff here at CHS. Who could blame them if they reached a breaking point, chose to feel sorry for themselves, or just threw up their hands and said "enough is enough!"? We realize that the last year or so has been far from perfect. I can assure you that the staff are equally frustrated and saddened by the toll the three events above have taken on our students and their experiences. But, not once have I heard a staff member place blame or say "I can't" when a new challenge is presented.

I am also incredibly proud of our students. Even during the small sample size of 4 days of virtual instruction through our Alternative Methods of Instruction plan, the vast majority (easily 80% or more) of students persevered and showed tremendous flexibility and diligence. Students logged in to Zoom meetings, interacted with teachers and peers, and submitted assignments at an extremely high rate. Again, it was not perfect but it showed the type of character that makes our students unique, and this school such a great place.

The majority of the work done at the school revolved around wet walls and insulation. Eleven classrooms, the library, the main office area, the CPAC, the concession stand, the north, south, and west hallways, the commons, and the gym were all impacted by water. Hundreds of square feet of sheetrock were removed to a height of 24.5 inches and temporary foam has been installed as a short-term solution. The gym floor will need significant repair and will likely result in a few hundred square feet of the floor being replaced and the entire surface stripped down and re-finished. New carpeting and tiles will be necessary for several locations. Many small and large items (papers, books, furniture, etc.) have sustained damage as well. Long story short, things will look different for a while and we will likely continue to uncover issues along the way.

Truth be told, I have found myself a little overwhelmed from time to time as I continued to assess the impact of this latest event and navigate more uncharted territory. Seeing the school under such stress and watching the demolition take place was emotional. At the end of it all though, what has kept me in a (mostly) positive mindset is a simple truth: what makes Clever High School somewhere I love to be is not the physical structure, it is the people and the relationships with them. It is the students and the staff, not the brick and mortar. What these hallways and classrooms need to bring back the great energy we are used to is not new sheetrock, insulation, carpet, or paint it is the interaction between individuals - the sound of teaching, students socializing, laughter, conversations, and even the teenage angst we often complain about.

We will be back and stronger than ever. As they say, TOUGH TIMES DON'T LAST, TOUGH TEAMS DO.

Go Jays!

Joe Casey

High School Principal


Remind: Text "@clever9-12" to 81010

Twitter: @CleverPrincipal

Mitigation, Demolition, and Restoration at the High School

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Hickman's Happenings

Character Education in the HS

Our character word of the month for February is Honesty. An honest Clever Bluejay does their own work and writes their own papers without copying from another student or source. They accept responsibility by admitting a mistake or an error in judgement/choice. And above all, an honest bluejay does the right thing even when no one is looking.

A+ News:

Seniors going to OTC: There are scholarships available that are stackable with your A+ scholarship. These include the A+ Advantage Scholarship and the OTC Leadership Book Scholarship. The deadline is March 15th. Please see Mrs. Waisner or Mrs. Hickman for details.

Seniors going to Crowder College: There are scholarships which are stackable with your A+ scholarship and will pay for books/labs. Application priority deadline is March 1st. Please see Mrs. Waisner or Mrs. Hickman for details.

All A+ Students: Check your emails for A+ Status Reports. If a student is out of compliance, a report has been mailed home. Please let me know if you have any questions.

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!!

Counselor's Corner

The ASVAB will be on March 9th starting at 8 AM. All juniors will take this test along with any senior who didn't take it last year or would like to take it again.

End of Course (EOC) testing will be taking place this May. Students will be testing on specific dates and times. Please make sure your student is present that day and ready to test. Students can sign up for breakfast each day.

May 5 - Government

May 12 -13 - English 2

May 14 - Biology

May 19 - 20 - Algebra I

Advanced Placement (AP) testing is also taking place in May. Students will be testing on specific dates and times. AP testing fee is $95 per test and it is due at this time.

May 4 - Calculus

May 6 - Computer Science

May 7 - Chemistry

May 17 - Computer Science Principles

May 17 - Statistics

Seniors attending OTC next year or in the summer are required to attend a STAR advisory session. We will attend this session together on March 31st at 8:45 AM. Seniors need to sign up to attend this session with Mrs. Waisner by March 11th.

Multiple College visits are happening at Clever High School this Spring. Juniors and Seniors can sign up through Mrs. Wasiner to attend these sessions.

March 3 - Missouri State University

March 11 - Missouri S&T

March 24 - Mizzou

March 30 - Missouri Southern State University

Scholarships are in full swing. Please keep on your seniors to fill these out. Scholarships

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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.

Office Barney's 4-1-1

Hello again from Officer Barney.

Do you know who John Walsh is? He was the host for the show “America’s Most Wanted” and it all started when he lost a child to a predator who abducted him and he was brutalized and murdered. John and a few others started the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). During my career in law enforcement, I had training with NCMEC when I was a task force officer with the U.S. Marshal’s Service to apprehend fugitives. We hunted down and brought to justice many predators. Some shared with us in detail how they stalked their victims and today they use many platforms of social media to stalk their intended victims.

So, how would you rate yourself 1-10, ten being the best, for online/social media and gaming safety? Most think they are pretty safe, but have you ever thought you are just one click or one tap from being a victim of “online enticement” or “sextortion”?

Do you open a text, tweet, instant message, email, or online gaming if you don’t really know who it is? Yes, it’s tempting, but that’s where enticement from a predator starts. I’ve been tempted to see who this unknown person is that I got a “like” on FB, but choices have consequences.

Have you lied about being older to get access to certain platforms or sites?

Have you ever sent explicit photos to anyone (sexting)?

Have you ever communicated with someone you don’t know?

Have you ever offered to send explicit photos in exchange for something?

If you have or even thought about it this is how these predators catch their victims.

Red Flags of tactics used on “online enticement and “sextortion include:

  • Engaging in explicit conversation/role-playing as a grooming method, rather than a goal.
  • Asking them for explicit images of themselves or mutually sharing images.
  • Developing a rapport through compliments, discussing shared interests or “likes” on posts
  • Sending or offering explicit images of themselves.
  • Pretending to be younger.
  • Offering an incentive such as a gift card, alcohol, drugs, lodging, transportation or food.
  • Approach on social media after using it to learn about the interests, friends, school, family, etc.
  • Intentionally move their communications from one online platform to another (e.g., moving from social media to private video chat or messaging apps)
  • Initially offering something, such as money or drugs, in exchange for explicit photos/videos
  • Pretending to work for a modeling agency to obtain explicit images
  • Developing a bond by establishing a friendship/romantic relationship
  • Secretly recording explicit videos during video chats
  • Physically threatening to hurt them or family members
  • Using multiple online identities to make contact
  • Pretending to be younger and/or a member of the opposite sex
  • Accessing the online account without authorization and stealing explicit images or videos
  • Saving explicit conversations/photos/videos and threatening to post them online

Let me bring it home. Recently a man in Christian County was arrested and is facing federal charges. So, don’t put anything out on the “net” you don’t want everyone to see or know, because you can’t get it back. Just one “click” can change your life for the worse.

Remember Think Before You Click.

Be Safe Online,

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

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, please consider submitting a form to be featured in an upcoming edition of The Bird Call!

Name: Kathy (Kraemer) Emerson

Class of 1992

Hobbies and interests: Still love my volleyball and basketball (playing and coaching), hanging watching movies with my family, and going back to my hometown to visit my family.

Family: My parents and sister still live in Clever. I moved to Kansas City in 1996. With stents of time in Denver, Colorado, and Brandon, Mississippi. I reside currently in Parkville, Missouri. (a suburb of Kansas City)

Current Job: Administrative Assistant to the Assistant Principal, Park Hill School District

College or Career Training after CHS: I attended William Woods University

Extracurricular activities you participated in at CHS: Played Varsity Volleyball and Varsity Basketball all 4 years with All-District and All-State honors. I was also part of the Springfield Juniors Club Volleyball team for 2 years. I also played in the All-Star City vs Area Basketball game my senior year. I also participated in Science/History Club - 4 years, Science Olympiad team - 4 years, Math Club - 4 years, Student Council - 3 years, FHA – 4 years, Miss Merry Christmas Candidate, Miss Jay Candidate, Homecoming Queen Senior Year.

Favorite Class – Art!

Advice to current CHS Students: My advice to current students is to not forget that there is an entire BIG world out there. After you graduate high school that will be your time to find yourself, explore and see this big beautiful world. Always remember to keep an excellent work ethic. Whether you continue your education, start your career right away, or even just in your exploration to find yourself. Remember sky’s the limit! Keep reaching and there is ALWAYS success no matter what! It is your destiny and you can do it!