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Great Day to Be a Hornet

October 27, 2015 - Daniel Gottron
Back in July, we wrapped up the 2014-15 school year encouraging everyone to Look Before You Leap. In the last line of that blog post, I made the observation that with everything that is taking place in our school and community that it truly is a Great Day to Be a Hornet. With the new school year 2015-16 well under way, I would like to elaborate why it truly is a “Great Day to Be a Hornet.”

First of all, I must confess that I have stolen the phrase from two other sources; “Badger” Bob Johnson and Alex Cairns.

Bob Johnson is best known as a hockey coaching legend, but it is also fitting to mention that he had a degree in secondary education. After a stint as a medic in the Korean War, Johnson began his life’s work as a high school history teacher and hockey coach in several Minnesota high schools.

Johnson eventually moved on to the college level and the role that would earn him his nickname, serving as the hockey coach at University of Wisconsin from 1966-1981. The moniker “Badger” was quickly added to reflect the school’s mascot, and he became forever known as “Badger” Bob. Johnson found great success while at Wisconsin, leading his team to seven NCAA tournaments and winning three national championships. His tremendous success at the college level led to additional coaching opportunities, and he added US Olympic Coach, US National Team Coach, US Canada Cup Coach, and coach of the NHL’s Calgary Flames, as well as president of USA Hockey to his growing resume.

All of these life experiences led him to an opportunity to coach the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1990. Before his arrival, Pittsburgh was a franchise loaded with superstar talent, but unable to put all of the pieces together, missing the playoffs seven times in the eight years before he arrived. Upon taking over as head coach, “Badger” Bob instilled an instant positive atmosphere, energy, and enthusiasm to the team and city that he represented. He was known to be intolerant of doom and gloom and did not engage those who refused to get caught up in his upbeat attitude. Johnson always encouraged his players, prodding them to reach for greater success. Johnson had many catch phrases symbolizing his positivity, and the one he is best known for is “It’s a Great Day for Hockey.”

Johnson quickly endeared himself to players and fans alike and the 1990-91 season proved to be quite a magical one, concluding with the team raising the Stanley Cup as league champions. This marked the franchises first championship and everyone in the city was riding high.

However, this euphoria was short lived as Johnson was diagnosed with brain cancer just a couple of months later. He stepped away from his coaching duties in order to seek treatment, but his condition steadily worsened. “Badger” Bob Johnson died on November 26th, 1991. The next night, November 27th 1991, the team had a moving pre-game ceremony honoring “Badger” Bob, and “It’s a Great Day for Hockey” became the team’s slogan.

While I was very young (actually, November 27th 1991 was my 6th birthday) I remember this all very vividly. Of course at age five or six, I had a vastly different perspective than I do now, but the one thing that was true in 1991 and remains true in 2015 is that “Badger” Bob’s intense positive outlook was able to permanetly alter an entire hockey franchise in a very short amount of time. He knew the potential that existed in Pittsburgh and was able to establish a foundation that has made the Penguins one of the model franchises of the past twenty-five years.

This leads me to Alex Cairns, a college Track and Cross Country teammate at Waynesburg College (now University). Alex may not have the lengthy coaching resume or national recognition of “Badger” Bob, but he certainly has shown that he matches the positive energy.

When we were in school, our Cross Country and Track programs were not exactly top notch, and in fact we only established a varsity Track and Field program during this time. None of this mattered to Alex, he just wanted the opportunity to compete and represent his school, and that is exactly what he did.

On an almost daily basis at practice, Alex would exclaim “It’s a great day to be a Yellow Jacket” as we completed our workout. No matter the circumstance or conditions, this was his statement. It did not matter that during our conference meet in the Spring of 2005 our entire team scored less points than one athlete from another school, it was a great day to be a Yellow Jacket.

Since 2005, Waynesburg’s Track and Cross Country programs have had an ever increasing level of success and annually rank at or near the top of the conference standings. While Alex graduated several years before this became a reality, his positive outlook was part of the transformation that allowed a brand new track and field program to transform into the current reality.

All of this leads us to the current version of Hundred High School, which has many parallels to the Penguins of 1990 and the Yellow Jackets of 2005.

When I arrived at Hundred a little over two years ago, I immediately noticed that we had a tremendous potential for success. Our school staff, our student body, and our community had tremendous talents. Much like the Penguins, we had the superstar talent in place from the outset. Much like “Badger” Bob could not have won a Stanley Cup without Mario Lemieux, I cannot pretend to be an effective school leader without the superstars that walk into our building on a daily basis.

Additionally, a positive philosophy is one that we have worked very hard to createwith our school community. “Badger” Bob was once quoted as saying “There are a lot of ways to coach, you can coach from fear, when it’s ‘you do it this way or you’re gone tomorrow’, or you can develop pride in performance.” This pride in performance is what we are striving to establish.

Much like the 2005 Yellow Jackets, it is our positive vision for where we are heading that will allow us to reach greater heights with each passing year. The Yellow Jackets of 2005 had many obstacles in front of them – we did not have our own track facility, we belonged to the same confernce as several traditional powerhouses, we were a brand new program, etc. – but each of these obstacles were attacked with an energy and determination that would not be deterred. Like these Yellow Jackets, our Hornets have faced many challenges over the past two years and will undoubtedly face more, but also like the Yellow Jackets, our Hornets attack every day with a vision, with a determination, with a resolution to be successful.

Because of all of this, I have developed the absolute belief that TODAY is a Great Day to Be a Hornet, and TODAY there is great pride in where we are and where we are headed. At our Local School Improvement Council (LSIC) presentation to our school board, I shared several pieces of evidence showing exactly why we believe this to be true. I would like to share some of this information for those who did not have an opportunity to attend the meeting.

1.) We have been fortunate to receive a tremendous amount of facilities upgrades, faculty additions, and increased resources.

2.) We have completely revamped our instructional bell schedule, moving from an eight period to a nine period day and adding several course options. This has allowed our students to participate in more meaningful courses and to participate in enrichment courses called “Flex Block.”

3.) We have increased our Advanced Placement (AP) Course offerings and student enrollment in these advanced courses, with 34% of our school taking at least one AP course and many students taking multiple advanced courses.

4.) Our Health Education Assessment Project (HEAP) Scores exceeded the state average and were the highest in our region.

5.) Our Science Bowl Team competed in the state science bowl. We were the smallest qualifing school, and the average enrollment of the eighteen schools we competed with was 1,009 students.

6.) Our ACT scores from 2015 showed increases in English, Math, Science, and Overall Composite score. They also exceeded the county average ACT scores in each of these categories and met the state average for science.

7.) Our student attendance from 2013-14 and 2014-15 both exceeded the state target of 93% and were our two strongest attendance years in over a decade. 8.) A comprehensive ranking of all high schools in West Virginia ranked Hundred High School as the 28th best high school in West Virginia and the top ranked in Wetzel County.

9.) Our parliementary procedures FFA team has won the West Virginia state championship and will be competing in the national competition.

10.) Our 2015 “Red Hat” Mining students once again produced a 100% pass rate on their 40 hour surface and 80 hour underground mining exams.

11.) Our 2015 graduates earned $250,000 in scholarships, including five students who earned the West Virginia Promise scholarship.

9.) Our ACT plan scores from 2014-15, which project student future performance on the ACT, were .1 point below the state average and exceeded the scores of many nearby schools, including Magnolia, Valley, North Marion, and John Marshall.

10.) Our 2015 General Summative Assessment (GSA) results show that our average student scaled scores in Reading Language Arts for grades 9-11 were above the county average , with grades 9 and 10 exceeding the state average and grade 11 scoring within 5 points of the state average, while our math scale scores were above county average for grades 10 and 11, with our 11th graders exceeding the state average scale score. All of this leads me to believe that there is no doubt that today is a GREAT DAY TO BE A HORNET!

Staff News

I must say that in order for it to be a Great Day to be a Hornet we need to have a committed staff that has the expertise and passion to realize the visions we have as a school. We are very blessed right now to have outstanding teachers and a dedicated non-teaching staff that are taking our school to greater heights with each week. We will use the staff news section to tell the stories and celebrate the achievements of our school staff.

Mr. Jeremy Kelch joined our staff at the beginning of the school year as a Special Education teacher with a primary focus on Math and Science. He is also serving as a member of our Student Support Services Focus team and our Outdoor Education program. Jeremy is a 2004 Hundred High School graduate. He has been a great addition to our staff and has a lot of really outstanding ideas for building our school. We are very happy to welcome Mr. Kelch to our faculty.

Ms. Hannah Evans has also become a fixture on our staff this fall, as she is serving as the long-term substitute for Mrs. Jessica Greathouse, who is enjoying a maternity leave of absence to spend time with her family.

Mr. Jonathan Snider marks for our third new addition, and we are very excited to have him in our building serving as a teacher’s aide.

We have been fortunate to have two long-term substitute custodians who have done a great job for us this fall. Mr. David King was with us throughout the summer and through most of September before taking a full time position at Magnolia High School. Since late September, we have been fortunate to have another outstanding substitute in Mr. Steven Zajdowicz

Mrs. Lee Ann Snedden has been a member of our staff since last fall, but we are welcoming her into a new role, as she has become our media specialist. Mrs. Snedden works with our virtual school students and also manages our school library.

Mr. Dan Gottron had the opportunity to present at the College Foundation of West Virginia (CFWV) annual statewide student success summit at the Waterfront Place in Morgantown. His presentation Hornets Take Flight, was a sequel to his Principals Leadership Academy (PLA) presentation from 2013-2014, also named Hornets Take Flight, and detailed the recent positive gains taking place at Hundred High School.

Mrs. Sharon Snider and Mrs. Stephanie Long, teachers at Long Drain School, also had the opportunity to present at the CFWV conference about the novel units they have been utilizing in their classrooms. It was great to see our attendance area well represented at a statewide conference.

Mr. Rex Rush worked very hard to organize our Hundred High School Block Party, expanding on our annual car show by adding vendors and activities to our outstanding event. He has also been working to improve our school facilities by writing grants that have allowed us to get materials for our industrial arts, including a T-Shirt Screen Press, new equipment in the shop, and a 3-D printer.

Mr. Sean Snedden also made a huge contribution to our Block Party by organizing the first annual Hive Hustle 5-K Race as part of our Block Party. In his role as a math teacher, Mr. Snedden has been actively involved in the Wetzel County contingent of the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) Math Design Collaborative (MDC) and has been planning many exciting mathematics lessons and activities.

Mrs. Crystal Allen has been busy serving as our assistant cheerleading coach and also organizing many of our fall school activities such as our homecoming. She has also served alongside Mr. Snedden as part of our MDC and is working to develop in her students a lifelong interest in and passion for mathematics.

Mr. Scott Ash continues to build our agriculture program and has students competing in many different events. He will be taking his parlementary procedures team to the national competition and has been awarded $15,000 dollars in grant money to enhance the learning opportunities for his students.

Mr. Ryan May has worked very hard with his health education students and has seen his efforts pay off in the form of some of the highest Health Education Assessment Project (HEAP) scores in our region.

A number of our teachers have recently jumped into a Literacy Design Collaborative (LDC) partnership with the SREB. It has been VERY encouraging to see Ms. Stephanie Goodnight, Mrs. Bonnie McGlumphy, Mr. Kasey Sapp, Mr. Pariksit Spicher, and Mrs. Rebecca Spicher participate in this process. They all have outstanding ideas about how to improve literacy in our school.

Ms. Jeanine Watson has been in full swing with the fall marching band season. She has led her marching band students in a number of festivals this fall, and of course in our fall football season.

Student Spotlight

We have been very happy to have our Hundred Hornets football program return to the field this fall after a one year hiatus. Led by seniors Hunter Goff, Greg Jones, Andrew King, Nicholas Kirby, Arrum Olson and Gary Zedell, the Hornet football program has proudly returned. Our cheerleaders have very much appreciated the return of our football program, as it has given them a LOT to cheer about this fall. Our cheerleaders are led by four seniors Kathy Cork, Ashley Miller, Meliah Umstead, and Mady Wheeler

The Hundred Hornet Marching Band has been making their presence known with an impressive sound as they have traveled to a number of marching festivals and also performing at our football games. The band has earned several awards this fall. At the Sistersville Festival, they earned silver recognition in parade and a bronze in field for their percussion, auxiliary, and field commander. The also took 2nd place at the annual Buckwheat festival. At the Ripley Vikingfest, which included bands from 22 different schools, our Marching Hornets represented as the only 6th – 12th grade band against high school only bands, taking 5th place in their division.

Our Hornets volleyball program is having another great season, and their senior class of Kaitlyn Kuhn, Josie Phillips, Miranda Phillips, Meliah Umstead, and Madysen Wheeler have led the charge into regular season and tournament play.

Hundred High School Senior Holden Moore attended the West Virginia State Police Junior Academy and got to spend a week learning what it would take to be a State Trooper

Our FFA students have started off the year on the right foot, getting a lot of positive recognition and participating in events such as the Regional FFA meeting and the Career Developments Events Program. Our FFA is led by their incredible chapter officers: Holden Moore - President; Meliah Umstead - Vice President; Emily Rine – Secretary; Madysen Wheeler – Treasurer; Hailey Eastham – Reporter; Annie Fox – Sentinel; Ashley Miller – Parliamentarian; Kaitlyn Kuhn – Historian; and Valerie Soles – Chaplain. Several of our FFA officers addressed the school board at our LSIC meeting.

We are also very proud that our Freshmen FFA Quiz Bowl Team took 2nd place at the regional meeting, and Victoria Hawkins took 2nd place and Brandon Rine took 3rd place in the individual competition

In the biggest of the FFA news, our FFA Parliamentary Procedures state champion team will compete at the national level later this month

Congratulations to Emily Rine for being accepted to Fairmont State University and to Madysen Wheeler for being accepted into the music program at West Liberty University

The 2015 Hundred High School homecoming court consisted of freshmen Andrew Zedell and Katherine Henderson, sophomores Andrew Howell and Makayla Postlethwaite, and juniors Tyler Norris and Valerie Soles. Our senior queen candidates included Kaitlyn Kuhn, Ashley Miller, Samantha Opyoke, Josie Phillips, and Madysen Wheeler, while the king candidates included Dustin Adams, Derek Crihfield, and Jordan Tustin. Each class also proudly displayed their class banners during the homecoming parade. At halftime of our homecoming game, we crowned our 2015 homecoming queen Samantha Opyoke and king Dustin Adams.

Andrew King and Meliah Umstead had the opportunity to show off their leadership skills and share their vision with the student body as they were our two candidates for student body president. As elected president, Andrew King also had the opportunity to speak before the school board at our LSIC board meeting and to travel to Long Drain school dressed as “safety pup.”

Alumni Connection

Class of 2014 Hundred High School alumni Peyton Jones and Rocky Tennant received an extremely high honor, as both were bestowed with the FFA American Degree.

An Alumni donor stepped forward and donated our new all red football jerseys. The donor has asked to remain anonymous, but we wanted to give this generous donor our great thanks. The jerseys look incredible!

The Hundred-Littleton Alumni Association held their annual banquet on October 3rd. The event was very well attended as always, and the Class of 1965 received special recognition for their 50th anniversary of high school graduation. Additionally, Our inaugural recipients of the distinguished alumni award, Dr. Carl Long (1956), Dr. Emily McDowell (1952), and Dr. Wilbur Sine (1965), received special recognition for their accomplishments. Mr. Jim McGlumphy (1973) was recognized for his more than 25 years of service as president of the alumni association. Allie Hayes (2015) and Victoria Stevens (2015), the class of 2015 alumni scholarship recipients, both provided updates on their post high school education. Allie is attending the radiology program at United Hospital Center in Clarksburg and Victoria is attending Fairmont State University.

Community Involvement

We kicked off the school year with our annual Hundred High School Car Show. This year we expanded the car show into a Block Party and held the first annual Hive Hustle 5-K. Mr. Shaun Kuhn took top honors as the winner of the inaugural race. The Block Party was highlighted by a number of different community vendors and partners and was a great event for our school and community.

We held our annual fall open house on September 9th. Thank you to all who came out to take part, and thank you to Mrs. Denise Huggins and her foods classes as well as Mrs. Beverly Van Scyoc for contributing the refreshments for the open house.

September 21st marked our LSIC school board presentation at Long Drain School. Mr. Paul Huston and his staff proved to be excellent hosts, and the board members enjoyed some refreshments provided by Mrs. Denise Huggins and her students. The meeting had a very large and supportive community turnout and the school vision was with those in attendance. Check out the presentation here if you were unable to attend.

Upcoming Events

October 26-31 – “Red Ribbon” Week for Drug Abuse Awareness and Education October 27 – Volleyball @ Beallsville – 5:30PM October 29 – Wetzel County Sheriff’s Department Drug Court Presentation – 9:00AM October 30 – Hundred High School Fall Blood Drive – 8:00AM – 4:00PM November 2-7 – Volleyball Sectional Tournament – TBD November 2 – Board Meeting @ New Martinsville School – 6:30 PM November 4 – Holocaust Assembly with Guest Speaker Marion Blumenthal Lazan – 1:00 PM November 6 – Veterans Day Assembly – TBD November 10 – Wheeling Nailers Education Day – 10:30 AM November 14 – Junior Class Bingo Fundraiser – 10:00 AM November 16 – 20 – Bullying Awareness Week November 16 – Board Meeting @ Board Office – 6:30 PM November 18 – Local School Improvement Council Meeting @ HHS – 3:30 PM November 20 – Three Hour Early Dismissal – Dismiss at 12:15 PM November 20 – Second Nine Weeks Midterm November 23-27 – Thanksgiving Break

Classroom Strategy of the Week

The strategy of the week for this week comes courtesy of Mr. Kasey Sapp. In his Advanced Placement United States History class, the students took on the roles of significant figures from the American Revolution and held a “Meeting of the Minds” in which they discussed their perspective on the events leading up to and during the revolution.

Article of the Week

High school teacher Andrew Simmons discusses Seven Things He Wishes People Understood About Being a Teacher

Quote of the Week

“There are a lot of ways to coach, you can coach from fear, when it’s ‘you do it this way or you’re gone tomorrow’, or you can develop pride in performance – “Badger” Bob Johnson.

Remember to follow our school on Twitter @HundredHornets and Instagram: HundredHornets Thank you for all you do as a part of our school and community. True flight would not be possible without the contributions of all of us. Please let me know if you have any suggestions or information you would like included in an upcoming edition of the Flight of the Hornet: 304-775-5221 or Dan Gottron, Principal, Hundred High School Citations/Sources

"It's a Great Day for Hockey: Remembering "Badger" Bob Johnson." Bleacher Report. 22 July 2008. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

"Pittsburgh Penguins." Pinterest. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Simmons, Andrew. "7 Things I Wish People Understood about Being a Teacher." Vox. 29 July 2015. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

"Twitter." Https:// Twitter. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

"Waynesburg Athletics." Waynesburg Athletics. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Yannis, Alex. "Bob Johnson, Top Hockey Coach In Pros and College, Is Dead at 60."The New York Times. The New York Times, 26 Nov. 1991. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Zellers, Ted, Justin Cherok, and Eric Fleming. "History of the Penguins." NHL Awards and Trophies. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.


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