Shorian Nation eNews

October 31st, 2021

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Cup of Joe

A Cup of Joe October 31, 2021 with Dr. Joe DiPonio, Superintendent of Lake Shore Public School

Newsletter Overview

Within this Shorian Nation newsletter, you will hear a video message from Superintendent Dr. DiPonio, stayed informed about upcoming events, review our Positivity Project character focus strengths, and read stories that feature inspiration, innovation, and celebration.

On behalf behalf of the entire district, our Transportation Department randomly booed several students as a thank you for selecting Lake Shore Public Schools. Our bus drivers are simply the best (and so are our students)!

Our 430 employees are thrilled to serve 3,327 students at Lake Shore Public Schools, 1,226 new students who reside in 21 different Macomb County school districts.

The Halloween season is filled with ghosts and goblins, but Lake Shore Public Schools is not a scary place at all. In Shorian “spirit”, we provided several Shorians a lawn sign and bag of sweet treats as a way to express our appreciation to you and your family. In addition, student ambassadors shared a sweet thought, within a hand-written letter, on behalf of the Shorian Nation.

It continues to be spook-tacular at Lake Shore Public Schools. We celebrate the holiday with costumes, parades, treats, and assemblies. Dressed as television show characters, Crayola crayons, spiders, and monsters.

North Lake High School students setup stations for our Lake Shore Early Childhood Center students to walk through as they participated in trick or treating. There was face painting, games, music, and a pumpkin contest! Both teachers and students enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere and classroom celebrations.

Do you remember those bus drivers that we mentioned at the beginning of this story? Dawn B #6 and Fran #8 are decked out for Halloween. #5 Kelly is decorated for fall and Joan #7 is always decked out, but not necessarily seasonal! I bet our students, of all ages, enjoy riding in style!

Happy Halloween!

Upcoming Events

Lake Shore Public Schools Goodfellows Canned Food Drive 2021
Lake Shore Public Schools Gratitude Letter Campaign with Make-A-Wish #mylspscares

Lunch with a Hero

Lake Shore Public Schools would like to honor and remember all those who have served in the United States Armed Forces by inviting you or someone you know to join our students at lunch as a pre-Veterans Day celebration. We challenge you to make Monday, November 8th extra special for our students by volunteering your time to have lunch between the hours of 10:30-1:30 on us!

If interested, please call (586) 285-8483, reference Lunch with a Hero, and we will setup a time and building for you to visit.

In 2019, Veterans joined our students at lunch on Veterans Day. We continue to appreciate Mr. Anderson, Mr. Huyghe, Mr. Smith, Ms. Cook, Ms. McPeak, and Mr. Trail for making that day extra special for our students.

eFunds Fees and Chromebook Insurance

Starting November 1, 2021, parents and guests will be responsible for fees incurred when making a payment through eFunds.

We are resuming past practices before COVID, which means the district will no longer be absorbing fees.

This includes all transactions for Food Service, Child Care, SACC, any payments made to Internal Accounts, fundraisers, camps, field trips, Chromebook repairs, Chromebook Insurance, etc. These fees will now be charged to the parent or guest.

The deadline to purchase Chromebook insurance for this year has been extended to November 12th. It is $25/student or $50/family. You can purchase through eFunds or by sending a check or cash to the main office.

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We're Hiring

Raise your hand if you’d like to join our Lake Shore Family?

We are now hiring skilled, passionate, culturally and academically diverse individuals of the highest caliber to join our team. Apply for these positions (and more):

-Substitute Custodians

-Substitute Bus Drivers

-MOCI Teacher at Rodgers Elementary

-Math Teacher at Lake Shore High School

-Art Teacher at Masonic Heights Elementary/Rodgers Elementary

Positivity Project

Under the guiding principles of our districtwide initiative, the Positivity Project, the #PositivityInAction mindset is our top priority. These past two weeks we focused on the character strengths of FORGIVENESS and CREATIVITY.

People with the character strength of forgiveness like to forgive those who have done wrong. They accept that people make mistakes.

It is a busy day for Shorian student chefs who are stationed at the South Lake Bistro, wearing red hats and working side-by-side with student chefs from Lakeview and South Lake to make corn chowder!

Between classroom and kitchen instruction, Chef Shepherd and his students plan weekly menus, develop recipes, and learn all aspects of the food service industry. In the initial weeks, they discussed kitchen workflow, sourcing products for quality and price, and volunteer opportunities!

Shorian Assistant Chef Amy Saunders shares that she sees many cooking blunders in this path toward culinary excellence. For example, students were cutting themselves as they prepared vegetables. Knife skills take time to perfect. The biggest lesson is to accept that mistakes are inevitable and forgive yourself, letting go of the frustration and shame. Sometimes a recipe can evolve into something even more delicious than expected! In this case, by continuous practice, knife skills will become easier.

With these mistakes comes success. Students can also earn their ServSafe Food Handler Certificate which verifies basic food safety knowledge and is for individuals in food handler employee-level positions.

People with the character strength of creativity like to come up with new and original ways to think about and do things.

In partnership with CARE of Southeast Michigan, Community Health Educators Erika Bradbury and Noah Locke and Prevention Program Supervisor Ryan Reblin visit Rodgers Elementary during Red Ribbon Week (RWW).

This is an ideal way for people and communities to unite and take a visible stand against drugs. Rockets showed their personal commitment to a drug-free lifestyle through the symbol of the Red Ribbon, October 25th-29th!

Dressed in red, 1st and 3rd grade classes recited the Drug-Free Pledge as a reminder that everyday Americans across the country make significant daily contributions to their communities by being the best they can be because they live Drug-Free!

The week prior, Bradley presented characteristics that made each Kindergarten student in Ms. O'Shee and Ms.Wojik's class unique. Some examples were Karate lessons from Madalyn, helping in the kitchen from Emison, having a prosthetic leg from Max, and memorizing every president from William. She also shared safety rules about medicine. "Who are safe and trustworthy adults that can assist with medicine?," she asked. The students answered with dad, mom, police, fire, and teachers." Today Noah visited Masonic Heights Elementary and we captured a lesson on respect.

Teaching students how to be safe, control their bodies and emotions, and make good decisions in creative ways are important life skills. We are appreciative that CARE steps up to teach and reinforce these values.

Looking forward, our upcoming character strengths are PERSPECTIVE (10/31-11/6) and BRAVERY (11/7-11/13).


Music Everywhere

At every level, Shorians love music.

In Mr. Bays' 6th grade Band class at Kennedy Middle School a small group of 6 students are learning a drum rhythm called Bucket of Fish using snare drum pads. Students will eventually be able to play the timpani, snare drum, bass drum, cymbals, triangle, and tambourine.

Caleb Foster continues his passion for percussion in this class. His first learning experience was with an expensive pair of real drums, borrowed from his cousins, and quick YouTube tutorials.

In Mr. Arnold's Wind Ensemble class at Lake Shore High School a whole class of 20 practiced B♭ concentration.

This band teacher loves starting with beginners at any age. "The marching band is experience is so much fun," he said. Mr. Arnold's smile and enthusiastic approach to teaching is the reason why his students are eager to grow musically.

In Mrs. Wischmeyer's Music Special at Rodgers Elementary, Ms. Haas' 5th graders were reviewing familiar, simple rhythm patterns as they progressed through 12 steps to music literacy that include listening, reading and then writing. They responded to music by moving artfully across the room using "Sasha", a folk dance from Russia, as their guide.

Active learning in Mrs. Wischmeyer's class is a staple. She explained, "Folk dancing is a fun way to experience traditions of other cultures while connecting with peers and moving artfully to a variety of music genres. Folk dancing also reinforces musical concepts of beat, rhythm, and form.

With 10 years of experience, Freelance Choreographer Molly Zaleski visited Mrs. Elkins Fusion class at Lake Shore High School to rehearse their choreography.

Both Dani Pryor and Cameron Salk were "going all out" in this practice. Dani said, "I am so excited to perform for a live audience. It makes me push myself even more." Cameron added, "I work harder when I enjoy a song. In this case, the music of Earth, Wind & Fire motivates me."

In addition, the 55 members of Lake Shore High School's Marching Band toured the elementary schools, demonstrating their music talents while offering a sampling of their Fall Music Festival performances of Star Wars main theme and Cantina Band. They even gave our Masonic Heights, Rodgers, and Violet students individual instrument demonstrations!

Drum Fit

At Masonic Heights Elementary, Mrs. Elkins and Mrs. Gaigalas' high school classes visited to get a first-hand demonstration of Drum Fit from 4th graders David, Armanul, Shia, and Grace. Drum Fit is a cardio drumming program that combines the mental health benefits of drumming with the overall health benefits of physical fitness for a full body workout.

These student leaders were selected by Mr. Osterland for their exemplary behavior. "At first I was so scared, shaking as the high school kids entered the gym. But, after a few practice rounds, I felt more comfortable," said Shia. #TeachTuesday

Bonus: Our Building Trades class at Lake Shore High School built the Drum Fit rack for the benefit of Drum Fit storage at Masonic Heights Elementary!

Double Bonus: Masonic Heights and Violet received Drum Fit using grant funds from the Lake Shore Foundation in March 2020.

Masonic Heights Elementary Drum Fit


Literary Love

We are featuring a cross-building lesson on reading between Lake Shore High School and our Lake Shore Early Childhood Center.

Reading is widely recognized as the single most important activity leading to language development.

Mrs. Lebiecki's Honors Literature and Rhetoric students visited our Lake Shore Early Childhood Center to read self-published Halloween books to Preschool 3 Saint Clair Skippers and Preschool 4 Junior Mariners. Even some of the characters were named after the preschoolers!

October marks National Bullying Prevention Month, which was initiated by PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center in 2006 to raise awareness about the devastating and often long-term effects of bullying. Both high school and preschool students chose to wear orange on this Unity Day together to promote kindness, acceptance, and inclusion, which coincidently were the themes of their books. #UnityDay2021

Ninth grader Lilly Benson was so excited to share her book called Boo the Lonely Ghost. This book addressed bullying and ultimately resulted in a happy ending for both Frank Frankenstein, Zed Zombie, and Boo. "This experience was so fun! I loved the students' questions and the ability to give back to our own preschool. I did something similar to this in 7th grade with Mrs. Gough. Everything about reading to an authentic audience is fun," she said.

The surprise treats gifted from preschool students to high school students was also appreciated!

Bonus: Thank you students and families for your participation in our Fall Scholastic Book Fair at our three elementary schools across the district. District Elementary Librarian Mrs. Kraus said, "I know we haven't had an in person one in quite awhile. Hopefully the next one will be able to accommodate parents coming in to shop with students, but the students did great and had so much fun picking out new books to read."

She added, "Our grand totals made were Rodgers with $8,998, Masonic Heights with $8,511, and Violet with $7,054. We get to keep half of that in Scholastic dollars as profit to buy new books for our elementary libraries! Thank you to everyone involved and for all of your support."

Double Bonus: Thank you to everyone who sponsored book initiatives for so many classes across the district, allowing teachers like Mrs. Sheats to purchase each child a new book to keep at home every month of the school year!

Triple Bonus: The #MacombReads event, geared toward PreK-Elementary, will be a drive-thru where families register and choose a pick-up time to receive books and materials on Saturday, November 6th. Registration is mandatory and limited to please register online today.

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Mix It Up

Mix It Up at Lunch is a time to make new friends by sitting at a different lunch table in the cafeteria at Kennedy Middle School. It is an activity to help us break out of our “comfort zones” and explore new ways of relating to and getting to know the people around us.

When students came into lunch they picked a sucker and there was a number on each sucker. Students sat at the lunch table with the same number as their sucker. Then they were able to enjoy their lunchtime games and some conversation with new people around them!

Clippers for a Cause

One in three people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. Kennedy Middle School's Clippers for a Cause campaign continues to support all individuals with cancer.

This year, our middle school participated in their 7th annual Cancer Awareness campaign by selling t-shirts, designed by Teagan Klott, and raised a total of $500. All funds will be donated to the GoFundMe for Hudson Adamo and his family. Hudson is a 6-year-old boy who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. Hudson will have weekly trips to Children's Hospital and has already started chemotherapy. He is a tough young man with an army of support behind him. We want Hudson to know that the KMS Clippers are wishing him and his family strength and courage on his road to recovery.

In addition, seventh grader Aiden Coleman is wearing his shirt for his older brother who is currently going through chemo and radiation for brain cancer. Treatment started this past Thursday.

Aaron Rickabaugh was just 26-years-old when he was diagnosed with both brain and kidney cancers in July 2021. Prior to this diagnosis, brothers Aaron and Aiden were travel buddies, experiencing Paris and Peru together. They also both enjoy the sport of Lacrosse as well as cooking and baking. Kristi Coleman, mother of the siblings, described their relationship as "very close." Even though Aiden is the little brother by rank, he is doing big things to step up and step in to help Aaron.

Aiden visits Aaron at his house every other weekend. At 12-years-old, Aiden mows his brother's lawn without complaint, and additional chores as needed. Since Aaron sleeps 18 hours per day, Aiden knows the importance of his visits.

"Raising cancer awareness is not only important for the patient, but for families, too," Kristi said. "It affects everyone. We appreciate the support of Kennedy Middle School for supporting this cause."

If you would like to send a get well message to Aaron Rickabaugh, please visit the main office at KMS for a blank postcard and to turn it in. We will make sure your thoughtful notes are mailed to Aaron.

Bonus: Our Varsity Volleyball team played a Volley for a Cure game while students in neighboring school buildings wore pink to support a beautiful cause!

Safety Starts with our Students

Sixteen Safety Patrol members from Violet Elementary contribute to the 654,000 students nationwide who are helping keep other students safe on their way to and from school. Our Patrollers direct peers, teaching them about traffic safety, protect students from hazards of crossing roads, and serve as role models.

To become a Safety Patrol member, the students complete an application and submit to Advisor Ms. Finn.

Safety Patrol members, like fifth grader Faith Guerra, love talking with peers, being their first smile of the day at school, and of course, ensuring safety. She said, I applied (for this position) because I love helping people."

Thank you, Faith and your Safety Patrol team, for watching over us this year! With Halloween approaching on Sunday, we are thankful to have people like you to remind us all to exhibit caution and follow these safety tips: Carry flashlights, be alert, and cross the street at corners or crosswalks.

Bonus: We also bumped into 4 safeties at Rodgers Elementary who were just as excited to serve!


Fall Music Festival

Thank you for attending our Fall Music Festival at the John U’ren Stadium located at Lake Shore High School this past Saturday for an afternoon filled with music, food, and fun. We loved supporting our students while we showcased the district's talented musicians in field performances.

Guests enjoyed a collection of music from our Bands and Choirs at all levels including the Lake Shore High School Marching Band and Choir, Kennedy Middle School Jazz Band and Choir led by Mr. Arnold and Mrs. Elkins and Mr. Bays and Mrs. Perryman, and elementary singers led by Choir Directors Mrs. Wischmeyer and Mrs. Rueger-West.

Full Rack BBQ, Go Cheez, and Rachel's Cochina food vendors offered up mouthwatering fare. Kids their candy fix dessert from our National Honors Society students. Guests also enjoyed family-friendly, action-packed entertainment that included a petting zoo and pony rides, inflatables, pumpkin painting, and DJ.

We appreciate the planning and preparation in order to make this community event a success and hope this Saturday afternoon overwhelmed you with good cheer.

C&G Newspapers and Staff Photographer Deb Jacques.

Note: Additional photos will be available to view at in an upcoming November 10th edition of the Sentinel newspaper.

LSPS Fall Music Festival October 23, 2021
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Elementary Spirit Walks

We wanted to recognize our elementary Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) leaders for facilitating our Spirit Walk fundraising events for students!

The PTO works to encourage interaction between family and school, serve as a source of support, and work with teachers, staff, and the community at large to improve our children's educational experience.

At Violet Elementary and Rodgers Elementary’s Spirit Walk parade and assemblies, students celebrated Stephen Covey’s habit of highly effective people, Begin with the End in Mind, by setting goals and raising $25,901 at Violet and $22,863 at Rodgers to purchase school assemblies, teacher resources, field trips and transportation, one book, one school, and playground equipment. PTO President Ms. Rogers at Rodgers Elementary explained that the new Color Run brought so much excitement. "We will use this money to meet our budget and buy soccer nets and cleanup the black top," she said.

In first place at Violet Elementary, 2nd grader Autumn W. raised the most money. Raymond and Brady F., Parker T., Kaden A., Jade W., Marilyn K. were ranked top per grade. Mrs. Todd's class won Weeks 1 and 3 to earn a movie and popcorn experience and a visit from Canine Officer Maz and a pizza party! Ms. Salem's class won Week 2 and earned ice cream and extra recess, and the special gift basket weekend winner was Mrs. Perkins-Rose's class.

Rankings in Top 10 order from Rodgers Elementary were Landon L., Caden P., Brianna C., Grace H., Maxwell W., Clinton R., Logan O., Benjamin W., Jace C., and Maya C. Mrs. Leppen and Ms. Domagalski's classes earned pizza parties! Ten students also won McDonald's lunches. The student favorite prize was placing a pie in Mr. Warrick's face!

The assembly consisted of announcements, Rodgers Rockets cheerleading performances, and the Lake Shore High School Band and Cheerleaders. We heard from students and staff about their personal and professional goals and ways they accomplished them. Thank you to everyone for your participation in another successful Spirit Walk!

Follow our PTOs on Facebook at,, and

Bonus: Our Masonic Heights Creature Crawl was a success thanks to the preparation of the PTC and participation of our community!

October Slurpee Surprise Honorees

Congratulations to our October Slurpee Surprise Positivity Project Honorees:

Lake Shore Early Childhood Center

Evelyn Bross: Kindness

Masonic Heights Elementary

Hailey Ceresa: Supporting others when they Struggle

Bryson Haislip: Teamwork

Kayla Haislip: Kindness

Rodgers Elementary

Clare Moore: Teamwork

Maya Chapman: Teamwork

Jenny Babat: Teamwork

Violet Elementary

Adalyn Allison: Leadership

Callum Gelinski: Perseverance

Albert Lesko: Teamwork

Kennedy Middle School

Dylan Spadafore: Teamwork

Emilia Demopoulos: Kindness

Charity Dickerson: Leadership

Ms. Kennedy: Kindness

Lake Shore High School

Alex Morrison: Bravery

Dalton Rutt: Kindness

Cecilia Beaver: Respectful, Kind

Sidney Johnson: Kind, Respectful

Jose Manuel Monreal Escobar: Kindness

Andrew Miller: Helpfulness

North Lake High School

Audrey Lutkins: Teamwork

Thank you, building principals, for your sweet deliveries! Because of 7/11 Store Owner Virgil Johnson's generosity, these are BOGO slurpees!

Student Representatives

Seniors Valerie Belleck and Katie Budnick have taken the Oath of Office, becoming the newest student representatives for the Board of Education. These two ladies will sit on the Board for the 21-22 school year, providing valuable input and student insight. Learn more about Valerie and Katie below:

Valerie is currently a part of the Senior class at Lake Shore High School, and she has been in the Lake Shore family since Kindergarten at Masonic Heights Elementary. She swims for the Varsity Swim team, works at Bittos Little Italy, and is the Co-President of the Senior class. She works very hard to maintain above a 4.054 GPA and aspires to go to the Michigan State University for Criminal Justice.

Katie is a Senior at Lake Shore High School. She started her Kindergarten year at Violet Elementary and has been a part of the Shorian Nation since. She is a paid tutor and plays Varsity Basketball and Golf. Named a scholar athlete with a 3.5 GPA, this Homecoming Queen is a hard worker. This is her first time serving as a representative and she is very happy to see what comes this year!

National Honor Society Induction

The National Honor Society induction ceremony, held last night, celebrated 72 students who demonstrate excellence in the areas of scholarship, leadership, service, and character. We are proud to recognize the following students for their accomplishments and efforts which allow them to be a member of such a prestigious organization:

Class of 2023

Carson Best, Joshua Blevins, Christina Cantin, Madison Carlisle, Carlie Chamberlain, Paul Cooksey, Jaidyn Davis, Samantha Dietz, Alyssa Estes, Cadence Fields, Anna Finazzo, Madeline Fremont, Emma Fries, Richelle Gattinger, Miles Huffman, Lindsay Jacob, Tyler Kiroski, Troy Lorenger, Faith Lowry, Emma Miller, Brian Milstead, Jamie Owens, Enno Papadhima, Peyton Peiffer, Michael Pilka, Presley Saleh, Cameron Salk, Owen Storbeck, Mariah Studavent, Kelsey Wargo, Anna Whittle, Mariah Zielke

Class of 2022

Isabelle Adkins, Benjamin Augustitus, Noah Baier, Valerie Belleck, Alexander Bonello, Katie Budnick, Lauren Cataldo, Sebastian Cherry, Morgan Clausen, Madison Conner, Layla Conte, Angela Cook, Keira Cseryant, Chloe Cuppetelli, Ezekiel Fante, Mira Felczak, Chandler Fox, Alivia Fonning-Rice, Nina Harkonen, Kaylee Harwick, Nevaeh Kempinski, Peyton Lees, Nicholas Lipinski, Mary Merheb, Davon Pearson, Ian Rafferty, Lukas Rohloff, Christiana Shakori, Sarah Showers, Aidan Snarski, Emily Spear, Rachel Stepanenko, Isabella Taylor, Emily Tomlian, Abbey VanAssche, Bailey VamCoppenolle, Emma VanDenstrom, Zac Vanderdonckt, Sydney VanDerHaegen, Connor Wandzel, Kaleigh Wioskowski

Thank you to our National Honor Society President Morgan Clausen, Vice President Isabella Taylor, Points Secretary Alivia Fronning-Rice, Correspondence Secretary Chloe Cuppetelli, Treasurer Niko Lipinski and Advisor Mrs. Ketelhut for the planning of such a beautiful ceremony.

Bonus: National Honor Society students are holding a blood drive on Monday, November 8th from 9am-3pm. Visit this link to schedule an appointment.

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Our Varsity Boys Soccer team played in their 7th straight Division II district final against Grosse Pointe North.

After a 3-2 OT win on Tuesday, this competitive group understood the challenge they would face and played start to finish on Thursday. We ended with a 0-6 loss.

We appreciate Seniors Joe Washburn, Gavin Price, Kristoffer Bak, Niko Lipinski, Lukas Rohloff, and Alban Shaholli for giving their best effort this season; Your biggest fans were in the stands tonight.

Bonus: The new, state of the art video scoreboard looks amazing!

Congratulations to Jackson Hermes for being named our Athlete of the Week!

Jackson has improved his PB time this season alone by 4:30 and 9 minutes since last season! He is a 3 sport athlete as he is a member of Cross Country, Swimming, and Track.

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Lake Shore Public Schools will provide an exceptional education for all 3,327 students in a safe and nurturing environment.

Our guiding principles, Inspiration, Innovation, Celebration, are woven into the fabric of everything we do and will be the focus of every update. Expect an eNews email biweekly update as a reliable way to communicate with our stakeholders.