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Perrysburg Schools News Article

Perrysburg Schools Spotlight – July 2019 Edition

Perrysburg Schools Spotlight
We hope you enjoy our monthly eNewsletter, spotlighting excellence in our programs, students and employees!

Program Spotlight
Speech and Debate Team advances to State
Two Freshmen qualify for Nationals

Dakota Bach and Merritt BackusFor the first time in the Perrysburg Speech and Debate 20-year chapter history, the team advanced all 18 students who competed at the Toledo District State Qualifying Tournament to the Ohio State Speech and Debate Tournament this past school year.

Representing Perrysburg for the third time at the State Tournament were seniors Gwyn Burns, Emma Rohrs, Elaine Park, Mateo Gutierrez and Gavin Rogers. Seniors Andrew Hogle and Emma Jaromin joined Sophomores Hanan Sjah and Evan Leong in competing for the second time at the state level. Rounding out the team were first year competitors senior Emily Marzari and six freshmen, Hana El Nemr, Merritt Backus, Dakota Bach, Bella Aromas, Sydney Rettig and Yasmine Maklad.

Also, for the first time in the Perrysburg Chapter’s history, two freshmen – Merritt Backus and Dakota Bach – qualified to represent Western Ohio at the National Speech and Debate tournament in Duo Interpretation, which they just attended from June 16 to 21 in Dallas, Texas. They performed “All I Really Needed to Know I Learned from Being a Zombie” by Jason Pizzarello.

During the 2018-19 season, the team competed in nine regular season tournaments, state and national qualifying districts and the State Tournament. The team is coached by Debra Kemp with supported coaching by Jennifer Lake, Alex Leong and Rick Rettig.

Pictured: Perrysburg’s 2019 National Qualifiers - Western Ohio Champions in Duo Interpretation (L to R) Dakota Bach and Merritt Backus


Student Spotlight
Harper Bly
Going into 3rd grade
Ft. Meigs Elementary School

Harper Bly“Harper Bly is a student who always shows the Jacket Way,” shared teacher Sarilyn Sintobin. 
“She has a wonderful sense of humor and does her work with a smile. She works hard in the classroom and strives to do her best. When given a challenge she rises to it. She seeks out ways to help her peers and support their learning. Harper loves to pair up with her classmates to be a math partner. Her understanding of math concepts allows her to do this well. She is quiet, thoughtful and a true joy to have as a student.”

Harper is also a dancer outside of school. Her mom shared: “Dance has many styles: jazz, lyrical, ballet, hip hop, tap. Harper Bly loves them all. When she's not dancing, she trades her rehearsals for time with friends, skiing on black diamonds, a ball and stick only LAX rats understand, her cat Howie and making slime!”

We’re so proud of you, Harper!



Employee Spotlight
Val McConkey
Speech Language Pathologist
Frank Elementary School and Hull Prairie Intermediate School

Val McConkeyOne of our school district’s Speech Language Pathologists, Val McConkey, has been doing a lot of work with Kulture City, an organization that works to provide accessibility options for individuals with autism and other disabilities in community locations. The group has been working with the Toledo Zoo and the Mud Hens to create sensory bags that families can check out for students with disabilities to use while visiting these places. The sensory bags have things such as noise cancelling headphones, fidgets, visual cards for nonverbal children, etc. These bags are designed to address the challenge that some families face doing activities of this sort because it can be very overwhelming for some visitors.

“Val has a vast amount of knowledge on a wide variety of speech and language-related concepts,” shared Dr. Chad Warnimont, 2018-19 Principal of Frank Elementary. “Val is often asked for help, while also always providing assistance and feedback. Val is a team player. She creates many instructional resources that teachers may use within the school to help the students in the general education classroom be successful.”


To suggest a program, student or employee for an upcoming Spotlight, please contact Rachel Zickar at rzickar@perrysburgschools.net.

Posted Monday, July 1, 2019
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