Superintendent's Summary DR. JACK PARKER ~ 11.24.2021

Since the start of the school year, our data shows we have had 257 positive cases of COVID in our student and staff population. Those have yielded 1,816 quarantines. Approximately 85% of the students/staff quarantined were before the Indiana Department of Health (IDOH) updated their control measures which allowed substantially fewer close contacts if all parties were wearing masks. Because of that change, Mt. Vernon quickly took advantage of that opportunity in an effort to keep more students in school. As a result, we are now quarantining far fewer students/staff. Even though we have had 112 COVID positive cases since the start of September, we have only had to quarantine 356 individuals, primarily due to exposure during lunchtime.

We are committed to providing the best possible learning experience for our students and we believe that in-person learning provides the highest level of engagement and maintains focus on one teaching modality for our teachers. When our students can learn at their best and our teachers can teach at their best, we know we are providing an optimal environment for teaching and learning.

For now, we will continue to follow the law and will use every rule to maintain in-person learning for as many of our students as possible. Right now, that means wearing masks so we only have to quarantine when not wearing masks, which more often than not, means during lunch. If the IDOH does not change its control measures in the near future, we plan to revisit our COVID data and procedures in mid-January.

This time of year always helps me focus on how grateful I am for our dedicated and amazing employees, students, and our supportive families. This Mt. Vernon community is truly special, and I am sincerely grateful to be a part of it! I want to wish you and your family a happy Thanksgiving filled with abundance and bright moments.

New Welding Lab at MVHS

MVHS Launches Welding Certification Course

This fall, dozens of Mt. Vernon High School (MVHS) students will graduate with knowledge and skills that are in high demand and are well paid throughout central Indiana. By once again finding and working with industry partners, MVHS transformed an underutilized space into a modern welding lab. The result is a state-of-the-art space in which students will receive training and earn 12 Ivy Tech College dual credits and American Welding Society (AWS) certifications that will launch well-paying careers close to home.

The new welding booths enable students to learn shielded metal arc welding, gas metal arc welding and gas tungsten arc welding. In the second and capstone year of the two-year welding program, students will be eligible for internships and apprenticeships that will give them a further boost toward earning their place in the workforce once they graduate.

Community partnerships were again key in expanding this opportunity for students. Assistant Principal Stan Wilkison worked closely with the J. Everett Light Career Center, which serves 13 central Indiana schools. Mt. Vernon High School also has received assistance from Lincoln Electric, Awning Innovations, Lennox, the Indiana Kentucky Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters, and Fortville Feeders. This welding opportunity for students would not be possible without the partnership of these community members. While the lab is operational, MVHS still has a wish list and is still seeking grants and business partners to add even more state-of-the-art features. Local businesses can partner in an array of levels, such as serving as a guest speaker, serving on the advisory board, accepting student interns or investing financially via booth sponsorship. Additional information can be found in the article HERE.

MVMS's Thomas Named MS Geography Teacher of the Year

Mt. Vernon Middle School (MVMS) teacher, Deb Thomas, was recently named the Indiana Middle School Geography Teacher of the Year from the Geography Educators’ Network of Indiana (GENI). This award is given each year to a middle school and a high school teacher in Indiana who live out the organization’s mission by promoting the value and significance of geography. This award was announced at the annual Indiana Council for the Social Studies Conference, of which GENI is a sponsor.

“It has been a privilege to guide my students along a part of their educational journeys for over thirty years. Although some of them may never scale the heights of Mt. Kilimanjaro or tour the Taj Mahal, many will now live and learn alongside others who possess diverse customs and beliefs,” said Ms. Thomas. “Students must prepare for a world that has become exponentially smaller, so history, geographic literacy, and cultural awareness are more critical than ever. GENI helps me and other Indiana educators expand our students’ knowledge and understanding in these areas by offering a variety of student programs, professional development opportunities, and resources.”

MVCSC would like to congratulate Ms. Thomas on her award! Additional information is linked HERE.

MVHS Lilly Scholarship Finalists

Maitlyn Griner & Hayden Kovell

Mt. Vernon High School seniors Maitlyn Griner and Hayden Kovell were selected as finalists for the Hancock County Community Foundation (HCCF) annual Lilly Endowment. The two finalists were honored at the MVCSC Board of Trustees meeting on November 16.

To become qualifiers for this highly esteemed scholarship, Maitlyn and Hayden proved their academic excellence by being in the top 15% of their graduating class while also displaying their outstanding involvement and service to the community. These two students exemplify the qualities that the award was founded on.

The winner of the Lilly Endowment Scholarship will be chosen in December and MVCSC wishes the best of luck to Maitlyn and Hayden. We are proud to have such amazing students who go above and beyond to help those in need! For additional details on all the activities these two students are involved in, please see the article HERE.

MV Community Rallies Around the MVHS Football Team on their Successful Journey to State

Special thanks to our incredible Mt. Vernon businesses, alumni, parents, and community members who shared their Marauder spirit last Friday when the MVHS football team left via police escort to their semi-state competition in Evansville. Let's continue that spirit as MVHS competes at STATE on Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium!

Cost-Cutting Corner

MVCSC continues to take advantage of any cost savings as we maintain our focus on being good stewards of our finances. Here is one of our latest cost savings:

The East Central Indiana Natural Gas Consortium, which Mt. Vernon is a member of, has agreed unanimously to purchase natural gas at current market rates, stockpiling supplies for winter 2021-2022. With gas rates expected to increase rapidly, this early purchasing will save MVCSC 58% in anticipated costs.

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We're Hiring!

Join our Marauder team! MVCSC has a great need to fill food service positions, as well as custodians, and instructional assistants. Please visit mvcsc.k12.in.us/employment and consider making some wonderful memories as you work with students, helping to provide a wonderful educational experience!


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MVCSC Superintendent Dr. Jack Parker

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MVCSC, 1806 W. State Road 234, Fortville, IN 46040 ~ (317) 485-3100