Category: DistrictNews

Broadband Benefit Outreach Program

The Oswayo Valley School District is a participating partner in the Emergency Broadband Benefit outreach program.   With the help of OV and many other school districts, the Broadband Benefit program has enrolled over 4M households! We knew from the beginning that the success of the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program would largely depend on mobilizing trusted on-the-ground advocates and community leaders.  We’ve made terrific progress, but the FCC remains committed to building on this initial momentum so we can connect as many families as possible and help those struggling to get online.

As we continue to work together to get more households enrolled, we wanted to provide you with helpful contacts for program questions, complaints, and other support.

Resources 

For questions about the status of an online or paper application, or questions about the application process including documents needed, contact the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) at:

To file a complaint with the FCC about a participating provider:

For Emergency Broadband Benefit general program information:

To request a speaker for your next meeting or community gathering:

Feel free to reach out to the Oswayo Valley School District if you have any questions or concerns as well!

Middle/High School Schedules

Middle/High Students may view their 2021-22 schedules via the student portal.

For High School students:  If you wish to make a change to your class schedule, be sure to consider the following:

  • Graduation requirements
  • Your post-high school career goals
  • Conversations with parents/guardians

Classes in the morning are scheduled based on core requirements; classes in the afternoon are electives based on student interest. You can view the high school elective options by clicking the “Electives Schedule” link on the Guidance webpage.

Schedule change days will be August 10, 11, 16, and 17.  Course changes can be made in person at the school or by accessing the “Schedule Change Request” links on the Guidance webpage. Changes requested after this time require administrative approval and may not be able to be granted.

For Middle School students:  You will be able to explore semester-long electives in Tech Ed, STEM, ELA, Music, Current Events, and Yearbook (8th grade) in addition to your rotation specials. More information on these classes will be given on the first day of school.

Vacancies

Elementary Short-Term Substitute 

The Oswayo Valley School District is accepting applications for an Elementary Short-Term Substitute available at the start of the 2021-22 school year and through November 30, 2021 with the potential to be extended through December 31, 2021.  Applicants must possess PA certification.   Interested individuals should apply online at www.oswayovalley.com.

K-12 Art Teacher 

The Oswayo Valley School District has a vacancy for a K-12 Art Teacher available at the start of the 2021-22 school year.  Applicants must possess Pennsylvania Art certification.  Interested individuals should apply online at www.oswayovalley.com and include a letter of interest, resume, copy of certificate, copy of transcripts, and three letters of recommendation.

Substitute Employees for the following:

  • Cafeteria Worker
  • Custodian
  • Instructional Aide
  • Secretary
  • Teacher

Positions will remain open until successful candidates have been found.

For any questions or assistance with the application process, please contact Mrs. Christi Stedman in the District Office at 814-260-1700 or by email at christi@oswayo.com.

Act 66 of 2021

On June 30, 2021, Governor Tom Wolf signed into law Act 66 of 2021 which gives parents/guardians the option to request that their student(s) be permitted to repeat a grade level during the 2021-2022 academic year due to COVID-19. Parents/guardians must inform the School District by July 15, 2021 at the latest in order to make this election. School Districts must allow students to repeat a grade if a parent makes this election, even if the student satisfactorily completed the grade during the 2020-2021 academic year.

In addition, Act 66 of 2021 allows special education students who turned 21 during the 2020-2021 academic year or during Summer 2021 to continue to attend the School District during the 2021-2022 academic year. Any special education student who elects this option shall continue to receive services in accordance with their IEP under IDEA.

If you wish your child to repeat a grade level during the upcoming 2021- 2022 school year, please complete the following form and submit it to the District by July 15, 2021.  If you have any questions, please contact your child’s school.

Act 66 Student Grade Level Retainment Notification Form

Act 66 of 2021

Summer Feeding Program

The District will be offering the Summer Feeding Program again this year. The program will run on Tuesdays from June 15 through August 10. Each week 5 breakfasts and 5 lunches will be sent home. The program is open to all children 18 years and under and is free of charge. Meals will be distributed on Tuesdays from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at the MSHS cafeteria loop.
If you have any questions about the Summer Feeding Program, please contact Mrs. Sharron Gustin, Food Service Director, at 814-260-1701 ext. 5 or by email at sgustin@oswayo.com.

Sports Physicals and Impact Testing

Students in grades 7 – 12 that are participating in a sport during the 2021 – 2022 school year must have a sports physical and impact test.

Once again, the school district has contracted with the UPMC Cole Shinglehouse Health Center to provide students with the opportunity to obtain a physical at a cost of $18 per student.  Physicals will take place on Friday, July 23, 2021, from 1:00 – 4:15 p.m. and Thursday, July 29, 2021, from 8:30 – 11:45 a.m.  Please contact Mrs. Unverdorben by Friday, July 16, 2021 to make an appointment.

Students may also choose to have a sports physical completed by their private health care provider at their cost.  If a private health care provider is used and is going to fax the physical form to Mrs. Unverdorben, it is the student’s responsible for making sure the completed form was faxed and received by Mrs. Unverdorben before practice starts.   The Oswayo Valley MS/HS fax number is 814-697-6375.

Please note: The PIAA has updated the CIPPE (Sports Physical) Packet.  Please be sure you have the most up to date CIPPE packet.  Old CIPPE (Sports Physical) Packets will not be accepted.

Impact Testing will take place on July 27th, July 29th, August 3rd and August 5th from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. and 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.  Please contact Mrs. Unverdorben at 814-260-1701 to schedule a time.  Impact testing must be completed before an athlete is permitted to start practice.

Emergency Broadband Benefit

The FCC announced that on May 12, 2021, eligible households will be able to apply for the Emergency Broadband Benefit.

In announcing the official launch date, Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel stated:

“Families in every corner of the country have been struggling to get online throughout this pandemic. For those families, we now say help is around the corner. In less than two weeks, we will have a new way for disconnected Americans to access the internet to carry out their day-to-day life, so they can reach the virtual classroom, take advantage of telehealth, and seek new employment opportunities.”

Beginning on May 12 households can apply in three ways:

  1. Contact your preferred participating broadband provider directly to learn about their application process.

 

  1. Go to org to apply online and to find participating providers near you.

 

  1. Call 833-511-0311 for a mail-in application, and return it along with proof of eligibility to: Emergency Broadband Support Center

P.O. Box 7081

London, KY 40742

Materials that partners can use to help promote the Emergency Broadband Benefit to the communities they serve will be available soon on www.fcc.gov/emergency-broadband-benefit-outreach-toolkit.

 

Earlier this week the FCC hosted a webinar that provided an overview of the benefit, eligibility criteria, how to apply, and the FCC’s partner toolkit materials. If you missed the event live, a recording can be viewed online.

Technical Difficulties at Recent Board Meeting

Due to technical difficulties, we will not be able to publish the emergency board meeting recording held on Tuesday, April 20, 2021.  Even after trying to download the livestream and edit the video for the two executive sessions that were held, we were not able to produce a quality video for the public to review. We apologize for the technical issues we have encountered.  Posted below are the draft meeting minutes for review.

April 20, 2021 Special Board Meeting Draft Minutes

Career Readiness Job Profile Project

 

The Oswayo Valley School District in partnership with The Potter County Education Council is working to compile a list of videos that are produced to showcase what careers local employers offer in the North Central region of Pennsylvania. This is a valuable resource for students to start to explore career choices so that we can gear their course selection towards their career goals.

 

 

Gas Field Specialists is a local employer in the Oswayo Valley School District focusing on a broad array of career choices that all pertain to the natural gas industry. Check out their job profiles in the Gas Field Specialists Video!

PSBA

In the past week at OV, we received multiple phone calls and emails regarding the role of a school board member. We reached out to the Pennsylvania School Boards Association to see if we could offer a community training from a third party to educate our residents on the roles and decisions that school boards are designed for in the state of Pennsylvania. PSBA does not offer trainings for community members but shared this video with us to post for community members to have a better understanding of the roles of school board members.

Please feel free to watch the video and reach out to Mr. Jed Hamberger, Superintendent, with any questions you may have after you’ve seen the video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=buYnEj3IdMM

Mansfield University Early Start Program

Mansfield University’s Early Start Program (ESP) allows qualified high school students to take Mansfield University Courses in online, hybrid, or face-to-face formats and earn college credits while still enrolled in high school.

 

If your child is interested in taking college courses while in high school, be sure to check out this great program!  Applications are currently being accepted for the Early Start Program.  The cost of tuition is currently only $50 per credit.   Registration for the summer sessions is currently underway and registration for fall courses opens on March 29.

 

Click on the links below to view additional information, apply to the Early Start Program, and view upcoming course selections.

 

 

Early Start Program Application

Summer 1 session begins on May 24 and Summer 2 session begins on July 1

ESP Summer Sessions Course Listings

Fall courses begin August 23

ESP Fall 2021 Course Offerings

 

Free or Reduced Meal Applications

COVID-19 relief packages recently passed by the United States Congress contain numerous benefits for families financially impacted by the pandemic. Some of these benefits are available to students who are eligible for free or reduced-priced school meals. If you believe your school-aged child(ren) may qualify for free or reduced-price meals this school year and have not yet submitted the application for free or reduced-price meals to the school, we encourage you to do so as soon as possible.  Please request a paper application be sent home by calling 814-260-1701 ext. 5 or by emailing Sharron Gustin at sgustin@oswayo.com. You can also access an application online at www.compass.state.pa.us.  The application then will be used to determine which benefits your child(ren) and/or household may be eligible to receive. Please be aware that applying for free or reduced-price meals will not impact the free meals that your child(ren) currently receives through the school.

Free Meals for All Students Throughout the Entire 2020-21 School Year

**UPDATE:   The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is extending flexibilities to allow free meals to continue to be available to all children throughout the entire 2020-2021 school year. 

We are pleased to announce, the USDA has extended several of the Summer Food Program waivers that allow us to feed all students free breakfast and lunch until December 31, 2020 or until funding is no longer available.

Breakfast and lunch will be provided free of charge for ALL students until further notice. Please note, students must take a complete meal and are only eligible for one free breakfast and one free lunch per day. Any extras would result in a charge to the student’s account.

All student account balances will remain on hold until December 2020 or until we receive further guidance.

As a reminder, the program is also available to all children ages 0-18. If your child is not currently attending Oswayo Valley and you wish to participate, please contact Mrs. Sharron Gustin at 814-260-1701 to make arrangements to pick up the week’s worth of free meals.

Elementary Morning Transportation

During the morning drop off time at the Elementary School, there should be only one lane of traffic around the building at each drop off point.  No car should go around any stopped vehicle to move up in line.  We understand that this new procedure may add time to the morning drop off routine, but student safety is our number one concern.  Parents should allow more time in the morning to combat any possible issues that would increase their time at the school for the morning drop off.  This procedure is to ensure the safety of all students, parents, and van/ bus drivers.  It is important that everyone follows this procedure to help the school keep everyone safe.

Update on Information Regarding Limits for Sporting Events

On October 1, 2020, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stay order on Governor Wolf’s limits regarding group gatherings, including sporting events. After careful consideration and review, it is in the best interest of the Oswayo Valley School District to comply with the guidelines immediately. Due to our capacity restrictions, each Oswayo Valley athlete will have 4 tickets available for indoor sporting events moving forward starting on Friday, October 9. Outdoor sporting events will continue at the 250 person capacity including all people in attendance. As per the District’s Health and Safety Plan, we are required to comply with legal actions, orders, and recommendations set forth in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Oswayo Valley School District apologizes for all of the changes and reminds everyone that games are being streamed live through our Facebook page.  We thank you for your continued support of our students and schools.

Please review the following for more information:

         Third Circuit Court of Appeals – Stay Order on Gatherings

       Governor Wolf’s Crowd Limits Remain for Weekend’s High School Football Games

Governor’s Motion to Stay Granted

Governor Tom Wolf filed a Motion for Stay of the District Court’s Order in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, which would restore the 25/250 person indoor/outdoor crowd limitations during the pendency of the appeal. The Third Circuit Court of Appeals issued an Order this afternoon granting Governor Wolf’s Motion to Stay. This Order restores the 25/250 person limitations at the current juncture. As such, The Oswayo Valley School District must reduce capacities for indoor and outdoor events to 25 and 250 persons respectively until further notice. Unfortunately this means we cannot have spectators at our indoor events effective immediately and must limit our outdoor events to 250. We will continue to livestream our indoor home events when possible.

As this continues to progress, we will keep the community and staff updated as possible. We thank you for your understanding and continued support.

Prepackaged Healthy Snacks

For the safety of all students at the Oswayo Valley School District, please only send prepackaged snacks for birthdays or any special events. The risk of allergies for students and the current Covid 19 situation have forced us to limit what can be brought into the district for students. This is not saying that we don’t want to be able to celebrate special events for the students, we just have to do our part in limiting the exposure to food allergens and Covid 19 possible exposures.

Athletic Spectator Update

Good afternoon OV,

 

Yesterday’s court decision has provided ample amounts of confusion for all of us.  Our goal in the bubble was to preserve educational opportunities for our students.  We did not address spectators at the formation of our bubble, yet now we need to come to a consensus on a direction as this legal battle continues.  Each district’s perspective is important and should be respected.  Bubble administration supports the following:

 

School Districts in the four-county IU9 sports bubble do not support participating school districts opening sporting events to the general public.  There is support for permitting home teams to allow parents and families to attend events in limited numbers.  School districts reserve the right to cancel participating in a contest that is open to the public.

 

School districts have worked so hard to open schools.  Mass gatherings promote the (increase risk) spread of the COVID-19 virus.  4 or 5 cases of the virus may result in shut down of our in person learning models, disrupt the educational process and inconvenience all of our families and their daily lives.  We must reduce the risk of a school shut down as much as possible for safety and educational reasons.

 

Due to the risk of mass gatherings, we will be issuing one (1) ticket per student athlete who would participate for indoor sporting events.  Each ticket will permit two (2) individuals to attend the event.  Students will be issued their ticket today before dismissal.  I am aware that many other spectators would like to attend, but the two (2) person limit will continue and families will have to consider rotating who can attend each of the indoor events. For those who cannot attend, we will also be conducting live streaming of the games on our Facebook page.   Public comments may be made on the Facebook page, but please be advised school policies apply and must be adhered to.  I would regret to be forced to shut down the live feed due to public comments being inappropriate.

 

Doors will be open for spectators for 25 minutes prior to the start of the game. For example: a 6:00 p.m. game time, doors will be open from 5:30 p.m. – 5:55 p.m.  No other spectators will be permitted to enter the building after 5:55 p.m. due to the screening procedures. Spectators will be permitted to bring only water bottles into the building.  There are designated fountains where bottles can be refilled.  The concession stand will be closed.

Outdoor sporting events will not be issued tickets due to the low number of visitors that are attending our outdoor events. Yesterday’s cross-country meet was at 174 people total in attendance including staff, students, and spectators. We will continue to only allow home team spectators to attend all of our events.

All other mandates still apply:

  • Spectators will be prescreened at the door
  • Masks are required
  • 6 ft. of social distancing is required
  • Families will have marked areas to sit together in the bleachers to maintain social distancing.

Jed Hamberger

Superintendent

 

Press Release

Following the PIAA’s vote on Friday, August 21, 2020, to allow fall sports to be a local decision and in the absence of a response from Governor Wolf and Secretary Levine, the Superintendents of the public schools in the McKean, Elk, Cameron, and Potter counties will propose to each of their respective School Boards, a regional fall sports schedule with the first week of competition being September 14, 2020.  The athletic directors and high school principals are in the process of revising schedules in preparation for the individual District’s proposals. The pandemic coordinators are revising fall sports health and safety plans and moving those plans forward for approval to each School Board. Per the PIAA’s position, if each school’s coaches, athletes, officials, and parents/guardians strictly adhere to the school district’s health and safety plan for athletics, student athletes and coaches should be reasonably safe to play fall sports.

 

Regardless of the precautions in place, there is an increased risk of an exposure to COVID 19 for participants in fall sports. Ultimately, it is the parent/guardian’s decision regarding whether their child will participate.  The Superintendents and School Boards wish to provide student athletes with every opportunity to have a fall sports season in the safest manner possible.

 

We believe the opportunity for students to participate in athletic and extra-curricular activities is important to their overall mental health and well-being and such experiences create an overall positive school climate. We also recognize the balance between physical health and mental health during a global pandemic. School organized events that include strict adherence to protocols, wellness screenings of participants, and district to district communication affords a balance between ensuring physical health and mental health.

 

Each school district’s pandemic coordinator will carefully monitor the extent of community spread in their counties and school districts and will cancel games in order to ensure not risking an exposure beyond an athletic team’s membership in a specific school district.  School districts will not exceed the participation guidelines per Governor Wolf and Secretary Levine.  Specifically, at outdoor venues there can be 250 participants and at indoor venues there can be 25 participants. Those participants include: student athletes, band members, cheerleaders, coaches, directors, officials, game management/help, and ambulance staff (football). Spectators will not be permitted.  There will be no concessions. Further, senior nights will be planned for very early in the season to ensure that seniors are properly honored. Each District will make every effort to live stream Fall athletic events to their communities, to the extent that they are capable.

Public Parking

Due to our changes in transportation procedures at the school, we are going to have to limit public parking for track use to the blacktop parking lot at the Middle/High School. All student transportation vehicles will be using the gravel parking lot and will need the space to make the turn without other vehicles restricting the buses.

Superintendent Update

The Department of Education (PDE) announced today all schools in the Commonwealth will remain closed through at least April 6, 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 response efforts. The closure order could be extended beyond April 6 if necessary to save lives and stop the spread of COVID-19.

Under the new timeline, school buildings would reopen on April 7, 2020 for two days to allow school administrators, teachers, and other staff time to prepare classrooms, set up cafeterias, schedule transportation, and arrange other business operations. Students would return to school on April 9, 2020, unless extending the closure is needed in response to the situation with the virus at that time.

To assist schools during the extended closure, the state’s 29 intermediate units are ready to provide technical assistance to help develop continuity of education plans for all students beginning tomorrow, Tuesday, March 24, 2020.

Additionally, we are cancelling standardized testing for students in career and technical education (CTE) programs for the 2019-20 school year. These include exams from the National Occupational Competency Testing Institute (NOCTI) and National Institute of Metalworking Skills (NIMS).

We appreciate your patience and flexibility as we navigate this unprecedented time together and thank you for your dedication to serving and supporting your school communities.

Jed Hamberger, Superintendent

Superintendent’s Update

Governor Wolf’s order calling on all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania to close their physical locations as of 8 p.m., March 19, does not prohibit school districts from continuing to offer food services to children during the statewide school closure. It does require schools to not let administration or staff work in the buildings. Administration will continue to work from home and be present during the lunch time between 11:30-12:30 LEAs may continue to bring in essential employees involved in the preparation and distribution of meals for children.

2019-20 Statewide Assessments

Dear Oswayo Valley Parents and Community Members,

Later today, the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) will be announcing a cancellation of statewide assessments for the 2019-2020 school year. This cancellation includes the PSSA, PASA, and Keystone Exams.

We understand that during these unprecedented circumstances, school communities across the state are managing more pressing issues on the education landscape, like providing access to food and nutrition, and putting appropriate systems in place to continue student learning.  Assessments should not be the focus of school leaders right now.

The Department is monitoring emerging federal guidance, working with other states to advocate for flexibility, and will pursue appropriate waivers to the fullest extent allowable as soon as the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) guidance is clarified.

Please continue to monitor your email and PDE’s website for ongoing updates and guidance as it becomes available.

Pedro A. Rivera II | Secretary of Education

Governor Wolf Announces Closure of Pennsylvania Schools

Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced that all K-12 Pennsylvania schools will be closed for 10 business days including all before and after school activities, effective Monday, March 16.  All District activities are canceled effective immediately and will continue through the ordered period.  The Wolf Administration will continue to monitor Covid-19 in the Commonwealth, and at the end of 10 days will reevaluate and decide whether continued closure is needed. More information will be coming soon on lunch options for the Oswayo Valley School District. For more information from Governor Wolf, please see the link below.

Interscholastic Events Canceled/Postponed

Oswayo Valley School District in cooperation with all area school districts has decided to cancel/postpone all planned interscholastic events through the end of March.  Spring sports practices/rehearsals will continue based on specific guidance from administration.  Additionally, any large-scale events (of over 250 persons) will be evaluated carefully.  Our focus is minimizing any unknown exposure to the COVID-19 virus through reduction of nonessential events.
Oswayo Valley School District (c) 2019