A Rockford fourth-grader was among students who responded to an essay contest and were chosen as winners to attend the premiere of a Michigan movie. Kaleigh Blockland, who attends Valley View Elementary School in Mrs. Patzer’s class, was among winners who were treated to the movie “Mickey Matson and the Copperhead Conspiracy” and met the stars of the film personally. Blockland’s essay was titled “Michigan’s 4 Treasures.” She enjoyed meeting the stars, Derek Brandon, who plays Mickey in the movie, and Francesca Derosa, who plays the character Sully.
Valley View Elementary School
by CINDY M. CRANMER This is a continued summary of what each school in Rockford Public Schools has come up with to contribute to the Rockford Relay for Life. Encouraging each school to organize their own fundraiser has been a goal of Relay organizers from year one. Last Friday through Saturday, May 18-19, from 3 p.m. to 3 p.m. was the town’s 10th Relay for Life event. “We actually lost a couple staff members to cancer, so it hits close to home for us,” said Doug VanderJagt, Rockford Freshman Center principal. “Knowing people gives you another reason to want to be involved with Relay for Life,” said Deb Gibson, a co-captain of the freshman center’s team and a counselor there. Events include a Buffalo Wild Wings dinner, jeans days, luminary sales, bake sales, putting feet around the building and T-shirt sales. “Our goal is to get as many people involved and just make as much as we can,” Gibson said. “Some years that may be $3,000 and others $5,000. This just pulls us together as a staff. It’s been a unifying experience to have a team. It’s about the spirit of Relay for us.” Losing former principal Ron Faurot and teacher Bev Finch has made the school extremely supportive. The team is named after the staff members and the first team was pulled together in memory of Finch as she passed away shortly before the Relay for Life in 2008. “It was almost a grief project the first year for staff to help us get through the loss,” Gibson said. Faurot, who had moved on from Rockford but was remembered by staff, passed away in September 2009. “Relay for Life has been a good way for us to focus some of that grief and hope and anger and celebration,” Gibson said. “It’s also a time for remembering. It’s been a very significant experience for us.” Frank Schiller, a high school teacher, who lost a battle to leukemia, also had taught at the freshman center before moving on to the high school. Schiller also had taught at the middle school. Dan Zang, Rockford High School principal, said a big goal at the high school is to encourage involvement. “Students are involved in a myriad of capacities,” […]
by CINDY M. CRANMER This article is a summary of what each school in Rockford Public Schools has come up with to contribute to the Rockford Relay for Life. Encouraging each school to organize their own fundraiser has been a goal of Relay organizers from year one. This Friday through Saturday, May 18-19, from 3 p.m. to 3 p.m. is the town’s 10th Relay for Life event. Rockford plans to celebrate a decade of having a Relay for Life event to raise money to fight cancer this weekend, and a key segment involved is the Rockford school district. According to Shannon Ouellette—who served as committee chair for the first nine years and currently is on the committee as well as the City of Rockford and Rockford Public Schools (RPS) liaison—the school district raises between $60,000 and $80,000 of the total raised yearly. The goal of the Relay for Life this year is to again raise between $340,000 and $360,000. “Our financial goal in these economic times is to stay consistent with monies raised the past few years,” Ouellette said. “Most relays will peak at year five or so and then show a decline. We have been able to maintain consistently in the mid threes, so we are happy with that.” “In the past nine years we have raised nearly 2.9 million so we will top the three million mark this year,” she added. Ouellette was on the committee for a few years for the Ada Park Relay for Life before helping to start the Relay for Life in Rockford in 2002. “Participation from schools range from administration, bus garage, sports teams, clubs and every year almost every school is represented with a team from elementary through high school,” Ouellette said. “Our school teams are key to our success for sure.” Besides being involved while in school, many Rockford graduates then go on to participate at Relay for Life events on their college campuses. Bringing in new members to the Relay for Life is important to the future, Ouellette said. “The youth have been such a strong and positive aspect of our event. They volunteer at the event, such as help with parking and entertainment, as well as be a part of teams.” Ouellette said RPS […]
The Thursday, April 12 visit to the Squire newspaper office of Tiger Cubs from pack 3264 was as entertaining as such visits usually are when students come up with interesting questions and answers about the newspaper industry. The Valley View Elementary School first-grade students were shown the framed copy of the first edition of the Rockford Weekly Register dated February 8, 1871. They were asked the question that usually starts out such tours, “Do you remember where you were in February of 1871?” One alert Tiger Scout responded, “We weren’t even born yet and our moms were probably 20.”
Student always puts others first William Riddering is 11 years old, the son of Joe and Barb Riddering and brother to Michelle and Jennifer. Teachers and staff at Valley View Elementary School describe him as a born leader with a strong willingness to help others. “He does everything right without being told,” they stated. William has a caring heart and is always concerned about someone being left out. He is polite and one of his classmates said he has the best manners. William works well with others and doesn’t care who he is paired with or who is in his group at school. Putting others first makes others want to follow his lead. One of William’s classmates stated, “He is nice—I mean really nice. He would never put anyone down and is a great person.” Strength of character stands out in whatever activity William is involved in, from school, on the playground, or in church. Every day William exhibits strength of character and qualities of excellence. William’s teachers say he can be counted on to do his best in any task set before him. His strong work ethic helped him in overcoming learning challenges at school. Classmates and teachers today would never suspect he once found class work difficult. He is a real leader, who has proven that hard work and determination pay off. As an athlete, William loves all sports, but his favorites are baseball and hunting. He is a Holy Family Catholic Church server and a busy family member who attends events for his older sisters. This student has a strong Christian faith and an inner drive that guide him to be positive and kind every second of his day. His teachers say he is truly a model, not only for other students, but also for adults.