eLearning Day for April 8 due to Solar Eclipse

At the P-H-M Board of School of Trustees meeting on Monday, February 26, district administration made a presentation to the Board regarding the total solar eclipse taking place on Monday, April 8. As part of the presentation, district administration announced that for a variety of reasons Monday, April 8 will be an eLearning Day. If the district has used all of its allotted three eLearning Days (we currently have used two), the day will be a Virtual Learning Day. No P-H-M sponsored field trips or planned evening activities will take place on this date. Monday, April 8 is the first day back after Spring Break (April 1-5). 

Indiana is in the path of totality and is centrally located in the United States, thus the Indiana Department of Homeland Security is telling tourists, residents, school districts and public agencies to be prepared for three days of potential impact such as, oversized crowds, gridlock traffic, communications disruptions, and even nocturnal animal confusion. Click here to see the full presentation from last night’s Board meeting.

The Indianapolis area and south will experience 100% totality; while the St. Joseph County area will experience 96%. Click here to see a map of Indiana regions that will experience varying degrees of darkness from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources website. The South Bend area will start experiencing darkness at 1:53 p.m., lasting until 4:23 p.m., with 96% totality occurring at 3:09 p.m. and lasting just over 4 minutes. Because these times are around school dismissal times and based on the recommendations of the Indiana Department of Homeland Security and the IDOE, P-H-M will not be holding in-person instruction on April 8. 

Thanks to Old National Bank and P-H-M Education Foundation, all students in the district will receive eclipse glasses to use at home with instructions. Mrs. Mindy O’Malley, Director of P-H-M’s Arthur M. Klinger Planetarium and Digital Video Theater, and a team of teachers, are preparing grade-level eclipse information to send home with students. In the classrooms leading up to April 8, teachers will educate students about this nearly once-in-a-lifetime event; the next total solar eclipse where portions of Indiana will be in full totality will be 2099.

If parents have any questions, they should contact their students’ principals. Employees should contact their supervisor or Human Resources.

2024 Penn Musical, “The Music Man”

Penn’s school musical this year is “The Music Man.”

You won’t want to miss Penn’s talented student performers as they act out the play that follows fast-talking traveling salesman, Harold Hill, as he cons the people of River City, Iowa, into buying instruments and uniforms for a boys’ band that he vows to organize – this, despite the fact that he doesn’t know a trombone from a treble clef!

This year’s musical also includes the talents of a few P-H-M elementary and middle school students:

  • Mary Cortes, 5th grade, Prairie Vista Elementary School
  • Maxwell MacMillan, 5th grade, Mary Frank Elementary School
  • Anniston Steele, 7th grade, Grissom Middle School
  • Ezra Carrico, Katherine Hawkins, Benjamin Robertson and Noah Rohde, all in 8th grade, Schmucker Middle School

Click here to see the playbill.

   

This isn’t the first year Penn’s musicals have included students from younger grades. In 2016, younger students also participated in “Mary Poppins.” But this is the first year in recent memory to have this many!

Visit bit.ly/PennMusicMan to purchase tickets.

 

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FIRST-IN District Robotics Competition, March 2 & 3

The 2024 FIN Mishawaka FRC District Event will once again be held at Penn High School March 1st – 3rd (open to the public on Saturday, March 2 and Sunday, March 3). The event will be held in Penn’s Main Arena. See below for a daily schedule:

Saturday, March 2

  • 10:30 – 11:00 a.m., Opening Ceremonies
  • 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Qualifying Matches (No matches during Lunch, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.)

Sunday, March 3

  • 9:30 – 10:00 a.m., Opening Ceremonies
  • 10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Qualifying Matches
  • 12:30 – 1:00 p.m., Alliance Selections
  • 1:00 – 2:00 p.m., Lunch
  • 2:00 – 5:00 p.m., Playoff Matches & Awards Ceremony

Click here for the detailed daily schedule.

For elementary aged children, there’s also the Next Gen event from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. on Saturday. The event will be upstairs–above Penn’s Main Arena–in the Fitness Center. This event is open to all children, not just P-H-M students. Children have the opportunity to do hands-on STEM activities, even operate a robot! Click here for pictures from last year’s event.

This year’s game is CRESCENDOSM presented by Haas; click here to view a video about the game. FIRST© Robotics Competition teams will use their STEM skills and creative power to turn up the volume as they design, build, and program their robots for action-packed game play. Watch the game animation to inspire ideas.

During our 2023-2024 arts-inspired robotics season, FIRST® IN SHOWSM presented by Qualcomm, FIRST Robotics teams will celebrate the roles STEM skills play in the arts and design, and how these skills help build a world of endless possibilities for students. Click here to learn more about FIRST® IN and the District event being held at Penn High School.

2024 Middle School Instrument Selection Night

Every P-H-M 5th grader who will be attending a P-H-M middle school as an incoming 6th grader in the Fall 2024 has the opportunity to join an instrumental music class, which includes either band or orchestra. “Instrument Selection Night” is when students and families get to make their choice!

Fifth graders at Moran, Bittersweet, Elsie Rogers, Walt Disney, and Prairie Vista Elementary Schools will attend Schmucker Middle School for 6th – 8th grades.

Schmucker’s Instrument Selection Nights are Monday, March 4th and Tuesday, March 5th.

Penn-Harris-Madison School Corporation is nationally recognized as one of the “Best Communities for Music Education” offering choir, band and orchestra at Schmucker, Discovery and Grissom Middle Schools.

At “Instrument Selection Night,” a music professional will be available to give students advice about which instrument may be best suited for them. They will be allowed to “try out” instruments from various instrument groups. Click here to download, view and print more information on Instrument Selection Night.

In order to join 6th grade band or orchestra, students must select an instrument that they will learn, practice and perform for the school year. Click this link to sign-up for your appointment at your designated school and date. 

2022 One-day Penn Winter Dance/Poms Camp

Students in grades PreK – 8th can take advantage of a one-day Penn Dance Clinic.

DATE: Saturday, December 3, 2022

TIME: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. 
              (Pre-K and K 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.)

LOCATION: Penn High School Fitness Center (Enter through Door D)

COST: $40 (Pre-K & Kindergarten),
            $50 (1st-8th grades)

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER TODAY! Please register by Friday, November 25, 2022 so t-shirts can be ordered. Late registration could result in no t-shirt.

PERFORMANCE:  Students will perform that evening at a Penn Boys Basketball Game TBD.

  • JV Game:  PreK – 2nd Grade
  • Varsity Game:  Grades 3rd – 8th

Homecoming Weekend Set for September 23rd & 24th

There is going to be a little something for everybody happening at Penn High School on September 23rd and 24th, so mark your calendars and be sure to bring the whole family!


Friday, September 23rd, 2022

P-H-M Education Foundation Family Fun Zone

*All monies raised by the P-H-M Education Foundation goes into funding innovative school and teacher grants which in turn provide #PHMExcellence in all 15 P-H-M schools!

Saint Joseph Health System Health Fair

  • Time 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
  • Cost: FREE!
  • Free Health Screenings PLUS interactive booths for children

Homecoming Parade

  • Time: 5:30 p.m.
  • Location: Behind Schmucker Middle School > Bittersweet > Ends at the P-H-M ESC
    **SEE THE MAP BELOW**
  • Parade Grand Marshal P-H-M Superintendent Dr. Jerry Thacker, 2022 Penn Homecoming Court, Kingsmen Marching Band, Penn Cheerleaders, Penn student groups and clubs, local Fire trucks & Police cars

 

September 3rd Map

 

Penn Homecoming game, Kingsmen vs. Marian Knights

  • Kickoff: 7:30 p.m.
    • Homecoming Court Presentation at halftime
  • Cost: $6
  • Children in grades K-5 get in FREE with a paying adult

 

Saturday, September 24th, 2022

Silver Mile Bubble & Color Run for Education – Sign up Here!
All monies raised by the P-H-M Education Foundation goes into funding innovative school and teacher grants which in turn provide #PHMExcellence in all 15 P-H-M schools!

  • Late Registration & T-Shirt Pickup
    • ​Time: 7:15-8:00 a.m.
    • Location: TCU Freed Field
  • Warm Up
    • ​Time: 8:15
    • Location: TCU Freed Field Track
  • 1-Mile Fun Run / Walk
    • ​Start Time: 8:30 a.m.
    • Cost: $10 Per Person (4 & under free!) | T-Shirt $10
      • ​Price for Preregistration by September 22nd, 2022
      • Friday & Saturday (Day of) Registration: Cost $15
    • Location: TCU Freed Field Track
  • Water and light post race snacks will be available to participants
    race map

Penn Harris Madison COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic

The Penn-Harris-Madison School Corporation considers the health and safety of our school community as a top priority. The FDA has issued an extension of the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), allowing the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to prevent COVID-19 in individuals 5 years of age and older. As such, in conjunction with the St. Joseph Regional Medical Center, we are offering a free COVID-19 Vaccination clinic for all students, staff, and parents/guardians.

This voluntary event is being held after school hours as a convenience for those families wishing to participate. P-H-M recognizes and respects family decisions in regards to non-IDOH immunization requirements.

Who can get the vaccine?

  • The vaccine is now available for children 5 – 11 and everyone age 12 and older. For the scheduled dates, we are providing an opportunity for any P-H-M student, parent/guardian, and staff member eligible to be vaccinated with their first dose, second dose, or booster shots to those already vaccinated.
  • Only the Pfizer vaccine is approved for the ages 5-11 age group at this time. Two doses of the Pfizer vaccine are needed to provide full immunization. The first one primes the immune system, helping it to recognize the virus, and the second one strengthens the immune response. If the vaccine you received requires two doses, you should receive both doses, the second dose for this age group being 3 weeks after the first dose. An individual is considered fully protected 2-weeks after the second/last dose.

When will the vaccinations be offered?

  • Tuesday, January 18th, 5-7:30 p.m.

Where will the vaccinations be offered?

  • The walk-up clinic will take place at Schmucker Middle School
  • Please enter through Door C (see map). Please note that this is the same door as the previous clinics. 
  • Address: 
    Schmucker Middle School
    56045 Bittersweet Rd. Mishawaka 46545.

Keynotes about the vaccine for ages 5 -11?

  • All children in the eligible group of ages 5-11 will have to be accompanied by a parent/guardian.
  • Children ages 5 through 11 years receive one-third of the adult dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.  Smaller needles, designed specifically for children, are used for children ages 5 through 11 years.
  • COVID-19 vaccine dosage does not vary by patient weight but by age on the day of vaccination.
  • Your child will need a second shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine three weeks after their first shot.
  • The experience of getting a COVID-19 vaccine will be very similar to the experience of getting routine vaccines. Use the tips to support your child before, during, and after routine vaccinations when getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

Registration Form (needed for 1st dose Only):

  • Pre Registration will NOT be required. Individuals will be served in the order in which they arrive.
    If possible, please print off and complete the registration before arrival.
    LINK: Registration (English)
  • Although there is NO COST to the participants, St. Joseph Health Systems asks that you please bring your insurance cards & state-issued IDs to help the registration process. If you do not have insurance, you will not be turned away. 

If the dates or times won’t work for my family, how can I sign up to get vaccinated elsewhere?

Winter Guard Open House, Tuesday, Nov. 16

The Penn Winter Guard Open House will be from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 16, in the Auxiliary Gym.

The Open House is for all 4th – 12th  grade P-H-M students.

Questions, contact Jen at (574) 903-9200 for more information about Winter Guard.

U.S. News Ranks Bittersweet Among Indiana’s Top Public Elementary Schools

U.S. News & World Report “Best Schools” Designations has recently expanded to include elementary and middle schools. With Penn High School earning a “Best High School” designation for several years, P-H-M now has several elementary and middle schools who also have earned this distinction, including our very own Bittersweet. We’ve earned the distinction of being among Indiana’s Top 30% of Public Elementary Schools (data is based on the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 school years).

A total of 10 of P-H-M elementary schools earned the high ranking as a U.S. News “Best Public Elementary School.” See the full ranking list below:

  1. Northpoint Elementary
  2. Prairie Vista Elementary
  3. Mary Frank Elementary
  4. Horizon Elementary
  5. Bittersweet Elementary
  6. Meadow’s Edge Elementary
  7. Elm Road Elementary
  8. Moran Elementary
  9. Walt Disney Elementary
  10. Elsie Rogers Elementary

Two of our middle schools, Discovery and Schmucker, are also named “Best Public Middle Schools.” Discovery is ranked #4 in Indiana and Schmucker is ranked #96.

Here’s how U.S. News calculated the rankings:

For each state, schools were assessed on their pupils’ proficiencies in mathematics and reading, as measured by state assessment tests. Half of the ranking formula was the results themselves; the other half was the results in the context of socioeconomic demographics. In other words, the top-ranked schools are high achieving ones that succeeded in educating all of their students. All data for the rankings are from third-party sources, including the U.S. Department of Education.

U.S. News has published state rankings for more than 47,000 public elementary schools and more than 23,000 public middle schools. Most schools with an elementary school ranking offer grades K-5 or K-6, while most with a middle school ranking offer grades 6-8 or 7-8. Some schools with wider grade spans were ranked in both categories.

U.S. News has published an in-depth methodology article that provides more information about the rankings and how they were calculated.

Penn Robotics October & November Workshops

Penn High School Robotics Team 135 is pleased to once again offering Next Gen Camps this Fall to inspire elementary and middle school students pursue Robotics. The dates are October 29th & 30th, as well as three dates in November: Nov. 13th, 26th, and 27th.

Click the images of the flyers below to enroll your student today.

 

October Workshop    November Flyer