#SV50Years

2015-16 Seneca Valley Annual Report Celebrating 50 Years of Excellence

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tracy

How do you describe such a momentous year? For me, the one word that comes to mind isn’t any of the tried and true descriptors for such an occasion. In this instance, the word I believe that best characterizes our banner year is connected.

I believe that we have worked hard to successfully connect our students to academic subject matter and extracurricular interests in our schools. I am immensely proud of the work that continues to be made to connect our students to their communities and with their peers and staff members who motivate and inspire them. I was also pleased to see a surge in the connection with our schools through school spirit and by honoring the history that is unique only to Seneca Valley.

I will fondly look back on this year as a time when I, too, was able to connect by revisiting our legacy with students and staff, sharing our vision with the community and catching up with alumni. I also enjoyed celebrating this milestone with our school board by sealing a capsule full of mementos for the 100th anniversary in the 2065-66 school year; an exciting event that connects our present with our future.

As we move forward, we are pleased to offer this Annual Report as one last look over our shoulder at all of the accomplishments and achievements that define who we are today. We hope you enjoy connecting with us by reading our important statistics, demographics and highlights for 2015-16. I hope you will also enjoy the brief glimpses into some of our past. It really does make our motto shine that much brighter as we continue to be “Proud of the Past, Committed to the Future.”

Sincerely,
signature

Dr. Tracy Vitale
Superintendent of Schools

#SV50Years

To view more Seneca Valley 50th Anniversary photos, search #SV50Years on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

School Board of Directors

To learn more about each school board member, roll over their picture.

Eric O. DiTullio, 2016 Board President (2017 Board Vice President)

Serving second term, expiration 2017
Lancaster and Forward Townships, Region 8

James Nickel, 2016 Board Vice President (2017 Board President)

Serving second term, expiration 2019
Cranberry Township West I and West II, Region 2

Susan Harrison

Serving first term, expiration 2019
Cranberry Township West III, Region 3

Timothy Hester

Serving first term, expiration 2017
Cranberry Township East III and West V, Region 5

Jeanette O. Lahm

Serving second term, expiration 2017
Cranberry Township East I and II, Region 1

Rev. Reid Moon

Serving second term, expiration 2019
Zelienople Borough, Region 6

Frederick Peterson Jr.

Serving first term, expiration 2017
Cranberry Township West IV and West VI, Region 4

James K. Welsh

Serving second term, expiration 2017
Callery and Harmony Boroughs and Jackson Township, Region 9

Kathy H. Whittle

Serving second term, expiration 2019
Evans City and Seven Fields Boroughs, Region 7

School Board Meeting Information

The agenda development (work session) meetings are typically held on the first Monday of each month, and the regular action board meeting is typically held on the second Monday of each month. These meetings are open to the public and allow for public comment.

School Board meeting agendas and minutes can be found on the school district Web site at www.svsd.net/school_board.

School Board Fast Facts

  • All School Board Directors serve as volunteers, without pay.
  • 23% of Pennsylvania board members have more than 10 years’ experience in 2015.
  • Pennsylvania school directors continue to keep adequate school funding at the top of the list of the most important educational concerns facing public schools.
  • 43% of school directors identified public service, and desire to give back and contribute to public education as the primary motivating factor in their decision to run for school director.

Source: Pennsylvania School Boards
Association

Timeline

Click on the year to learn more.

Housing more than 1,000 students in grades K-6, the existing Evans City School consists of three separate wings built over a 50-year period. The original building was dedicated as the Evans City High School on March 11, 1938. In 1944, the first addition was constructed, and the new elementary school, now Complex “B,” was completed in 1953.

The “shop wing,” or one-story section of Complex “A,” was built in 1958, and the cafeteria wing and Complex “C,” once a separate building, were built in 1959. In 1989, an addition/renovation project was complete, creating 54 new rooms including two music rooms, a computer room, a lobby and elevator, and library and library support rooms.

With several major additions to the front wing and areas between the wings, the school is now configured to handle distributions of grades separately in each wing, with all grades using a central core of shared facilities, including the library, health suite, cafeteria, music rooms, art rooms, and computer rooms.

Rowan School was originally built in 1952, replacing four, one-room school houses. Approximately 36,176 square feet of the instructional and non-instructional space was added to the existing 41,500-square-foot structure. Additional renovations were made in 1955 and 1959, but the most extensive addition/renovation project occurred in 1990 when 17 classrooms were added to the building. Rowan is divided into separate areas for academics and activities. There are a total of 31 classrooms, a 3,500-square-foot library, an art room, an instrumental music room and a general music room.

On May 14, 1956, ground was broken for construction of CVE-a joint decision of the school districts of Lancaster Township and Zelienople and Harmony Boroughs. Approximately 16 months later, the doors opened to students for the first time. During its more than four centuries of service, CVE has had playground expansions, boiler and roof replacements, and a 50,000-square-foot addition and renovation. The substantial building project was completed in 1992 and provided 26 new classrooms, plus two special education rooms, three kindergartens and two seminar rooms. Also added were a gymnasium, cafetorium and a 3,200-square-foot library, computer room, art room, and two music rooms. In 2003, a six-room construction project called “Twoville” introduced a second grade classroom wing.

An agreement is reached by local school board entities to unify several area schools into one School District to be named the Southwest Butler County School District. This area would cover 100 square miles and include nine municipalities: Cranberry, Forward, Jackson and Lancaster townships, and Callery, Evans City, Harmony, Seven Fields and Zelienople Boroughs.

Approximately 35-40 students from Evans City (the Rams) and Zelienople (the Bears) High Schools meet to research a name and logo to represent the merger of the two high schools. The group, after discovering rich Native American Indian history, comes up with possible school names as either Oneida or Seneca. They choose these since both tribes spent time in this area, as it’s known to be part of the Venango Trail.

In fact, the Seneca Indians once inhabited most of the Upper Ohio Valley, including Southwest Butler County. For a sports name, the group decides to choose from the Raiders, Warriors, or Chiefs. The color choices are blue and black, green and black, taupe and gold or crimson and white. The final decision: Seneca Valley-Home of the Raiders (blue and black colors). A mascot is also developed and appears in yearbooks during that time as a profile or silhouette of an Indian head.

The intermediate high school was originally built in 1964 as the first official campus building. The former high school housed students in grades 10-12 until 1994 when class configurations were changed due to the construction of a senior high school. The name is changed to the Seneca Valley Intermediate High School for grades 9-10. Significant building renovations to the IHS were made in 1996 to the swimming pool, auditorium and technology. In 2003, a three-story addition was constructed on the south side of the building and included much needed classroom space as well as new technology education classrooms.

On July 1, 1965, the Seneca Valley School District, known at that time as the Southwest Butler County School District, was notified that it was an officially established school district after several years of unification planning. The first class had just graduated (our high school doors opened in 1964) and the secondary campus only had one building on it (oh how things have changed!).

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Public Instruction issues an official certificate establishing the Southwest Butler County School District.

Original construction of what is now Haine Elementary School was completed in the summer of 1968. Renovations were made in 1975 and 1985, where 21 classrooms were added. In 1996, the fifth and sixth grade middle school wing was completed with three floors and 38 classrooms. Approximately 212,300 concrete blocks were needed to complete the new addition, which includes a gymnasium, cafetorium, art room, music rooms, library and administrative offices.

Construction of the Seneca Valley Junior High began in 1971. Once completed, it housed students in grades 7-9. Minor renovations were made to the building in both 1987 and 1988. In the fall of 1994, after the senior high school was built, the junior high building configuration was adjusted to house grades 7-8. In the fall of 1997, change came again in the form of a new name - the Seneca Valley Middle School. This new name was a reflection of the middle school team teaching concept being introduced districtwide in grades 5-8. The first major building renovation began in 2001. Due to growth, student capacity had reached its limit and students were being taught in ten modular units placed around the building. Once construction was completed in the 2003-04 school year, building upgrades included a lobby area, gymnasium, auditorium, art rooms, music rooms, cafeteria, library and technical education areas. In addition, classrooms were added to the sides and rear of the building near where the modular units once stood.

The Southwest Butler County School District is renamed the Seneca Valley School District on July 1, to complement the already existing senior high and middle schools of the same name.

The senior high school, grades 11-12, opened its doors for the first time in the fall of 1994. The original three-floor structure included a television studio, 35 classrooms, five computer labs, seven science labs, three home economics labs, four industrial arts areas and facilities for band, chorus and art. In addition, there was a new gymnasium, library, cafeteria and 600-seat auditorium.

In 2007, a three-story classroom addition was constructed in the senior high school and included a new guidance suite, as well as additional classrooms and lab spaces. The old guidance suite was converted to house the administration offices of the Seneca Valley Academy of Choice, a cyber and arts program for students in grades K-12.

In celebration of SV’s 50th Anniversary, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Tracy Vitale and School Board Director Vice President Mr. James Nickel placed the final items in the time capsule at the school board meeting on April 4, 2016. The time capsule was secured in a wall opening in the senior high school marked with a plaque signifying its existence. It won’t be opened again until 2065, the District’s 100th anniversary.

In our 50th year, we featured all of the wonderful happenings and opportunities here at Seneca Valley in a District Video entitled, “Proud of the Past, Committed to the Future.” In these videos, we feature our students, our staff and our many successes (we filmed at all nine buildings!). #SVProud #ChooseSV

Awards and Recognitions

Seneca Valley is one of 425 school districts in the U.S. and Canada being honored by the College Board with placement on the 6th Annual AP® District Honor Roll for increasing access to advanced placement (AP) course work while simultaneously maintaining or increasing the percentage of students learning scores of 3 or higher on AP Exams.

Reaching these goals indicates that a district is successfully identifying motivated, academically prepared students who are ready for the opportunity of AP. To be included on the 6th Annual Honor Roll, Seneca Valley had to, since 2013, increase the number of students participating in AP while also increasing or maintaining the number of students earning AP Exam scores of 3 or higher.

“AP courses give students the opportunity to explore the world from a variety of perspectives and study subjects in greater depth and detail,” said Dr. Tracy Vitale, Superintendent of Schools. “I’m pleased we are being recognized for the continued growth of AP offerings and interest here at Seneca Valley, and congratulate our staff for their efforts in making this goal a reality for our students.”

National data from 2015 show that among black/African American, Hispanic, and Native American students with a high degree of readiness for AP, only about half of students are participating. The first step to delivering the opportunity of AP to students is providing access by ensuring courses are available, that gatekeeping stops, and that the doors are equitably opened so these students can participate. Seneca Valley is committed to expanding the availability of AP courses among prepared and motivated students of all backgrounds.

“That the committed teachers and administrators in this district have both expanded AP access and also helped their students achieve high levels of performance on AP Exams shows they’re delivering opportunity in their schools and classrooms, and it is a real testament to their belief that a more diverse population of young people is ready for the challenge of college,” said Trevor Packer, the College Board’s senior vice president of AP and Instruction. “Congratulations to these teachers and administrators, and to their hard-working students.” Helping more students learn at a higher level and earn higher AP scores is an objective of all members of the AP community, from AP teachers to district and school administrators to college professors. Many districts are experimenting with a variety of initiatives and strategies to determine how to simultaneously expand access and improve student performance.

In 2015, more than 3,800 colleges and universities around the world received AP scores for college credit, advanced placement, and/or consideration in the admission process, with many colleges and universities in the United States offering credit in one or more subjects for qualifying AP scores. Inclusion on the 6th Annual AP District Honor Roll is based on the examination of three years of AP data, from 2013 to 2015, looking across 34 AP Exams, including world language and culture. The following criteria were used.

Districts must:
  • Increase participation/access to AP by at least 4 percent in large districts, at least 6 percent in medium districts, and at least 11 percent in small districts;
  • Increase or maintain the percentage of exams taken by black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, and American Indian/Alaska Native students; and
  • Improve or maintain performance levels when comparing the 2015 percentage of students scoring a 3 or higher to the 2013 percentage, unless the district has already attained a performance level at which more than 70 percent of its AP students are scoring a 3 or higher.

When these outcomes have been achieved among an AP student population in which 30 percent or more are underrepresented minority students (black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian/Alaska Native) and/or 30 percent or more are low-income students (students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch), a symbol has been affixed to the district name to highlight this work.

Water Safety Day wins State Excellence Award

Seneca Valley School District’s Water Safety Day, in part with Cranberry Township, was held in early June 2016 for elementary students (grades 1-4), and was recently nominated to Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society, Inc. (PRPS) and selected as a 2016 Excellence in Recreation and Parks Award Winner.

This honor was conferred at the Awards Banquet at the PRPS Annual Conference at Seven Springs on March 15. As part of the banquet ceremony, PRPS featured a slideshow presentation which included photos from SV’s award-winning submission in addition to information about the Water Safety Day program.

The Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society (PRPS) is the principal state organization promoting quality recreation and park training, networking, and leadership opportunities for those working and volunteering in the field. Members include professionals who manage municipal recreation and park systems and state parks, therapeutic recreation specialists and activity coordinators at health care institutions, college and university professors and students, staff of privately-operated recreation facilities, and citizen members of recreation and park boards and commissions in communities across the Commonwealth. PRPS is a non-profit, 501.c.3 membership association with over 1,700 members statewide.

That’s Perfect!

SV students earn perfect scores on ACT, Keystone Exams

In the 2015-16 school year, classmates Urvi Gupta, a 2015-16 junior at Seneca Valley, earned the highest possible ACT composite score, and Carmyn Talento, a 2015-16 freshman, earned a perfect score on the Biology Keystone Exam.

ACT

On average, less than one-tenth of one percent of students who take the ACT earn a top score. In the U.S. high school graduating class of 2016, only 2,235 out of nearly 2.1 million graduates who took the ACT earned a composite score of 36; Miss Gupta earned a 36. The ACT consists of tests in English, mathematics, reading and science, each scored on a scale of 1-36. A student’s composite score is the average of the four test scores. In a letter to the student recognizing this exceptional achievement, ACT Chief Executive Officer Marten Roorda stated, “(Miss Gupta’s) achievement on the ACT is significant and rare. While test scores are just one of multiple criteria that most colleges consider when making admission decisions, (her) exceptional ACT composite score should prove helpful as (she) pursues (her) education and career goals.”

Keystone Exam

Miss Talento earned her perfect score after taking the Keystone Exam in spring 2016. Despite having several more years to make her decision about her post-high school education, Miss Talento told us she intends to major in a STEM-related field. “I especially enjoy space sciences,” she explained. The Keystone Exams are end-of-course assessments designed to assess proficiency of content in core subject areas. These exams are rigorous, and successful completion is necessary, as they are part of the Commonwealth’s graduation requirements. It also provides in-depth performance levels to help guide teachers and parents in determining student mastery of course work.

National Coca-Cola Scholar

Siona Sharma, a 2015-16 exceptional senior at Seneca Valley Senior High School in Harmony, was recognized as one of the country’s most outstanding high school leaders by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and was awarded a $20,000 college scholarship as a member of the 28th class of Coca-Cola scholar.

Miss Sharma demonstrated superior leadership and dedication to her community and was selected from a pool of over 87,000 initial applicants. The Coca-Cola system believes that investing in students who are leaders, both academically and in service to others, will result in positive, lasting change and sustainable communities.

“Siona Sharma is part of a diverse group of extraordinary high school seniors that have shown a steadfast commitment to educational excellence, leadership and service to the school and community,”said Claude Nielsen, Chairman of the Board of the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and President and Chief Executive Officer of Coca-Cola Bottling Company United in Birmingham, AL. “The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation is proud to name Miss Sharma as a 2016 Coca-Cola Scholar.”

On March 31, 2016, Miss Sharma joined other Coca-Cola Scholars as they traveled to Atlanta, the international headquarters of The Coca-Cola Company, for Scholars Weekend. During this four-day weekend, the Scholars participated in a Leadership Development Institute to further develop their leadership skills, toured local landmarks, engaged with former Coca-Cola Scholars, and participated in a group community service project. The 2016 Class of Coca-Cola Scholars were also the guests of honor at the 28th annual Scholars Banquet, where they were celebrated by representatives from the Coca-Cola system, educators, local dignitaries and friends of the Scholars Foundation. David Rubenstein, American financier and philanthropist best known as co-founder and co-chief executive officer of The Carlyle Group, served as the keynote speaker.

“It truly was a defining point to be in a room with 149 of the country’s most accomplished individuals, each of us determined to serve the globe in some way,” said Miss Sharma. “I had the opportunity of interacting with fellow Scholars as well as business professionals and alumni throughout the weekend, all while expanding my perspective of the world and our posterity’s role in it. At the close of our time in Atlanta, I left with the realization that the change I personally wanted to initiate in the future, I could readily bring to life today.”

SV students recognized for academic excellence by Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth

Jacob Geil and Rishin Sharma, high-achieving 2015-16 freshmen from Seneca Valley Intermediate High School, were awarded high honors for being among the highest-scoring participants in the 2015 International Talent Search. This award recognizes excellence in mathematical, verbal and spatial abilities by the Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth (CTY).

Geil and Sharma have been selected to receive a one-course scholarship at Grove City College in recognition of their outstanding performance on the SAT in the 2015 Talent Search.

As part of the CTY Talent Search, advanced young learners take above-grade level tests that identify academic talent and reveal gaps between a child’s academic program and his actual capacity for learning. Seventh and eighth graders take the SAT or ACT—the same tests used for college admissions. These students, along with second through sixth graders, can also take the School and College Ability Test (SCAT), an above-level test, or the Spatial Test Battery (STB), which measures spatial ability.

Because of the difficulty of the tests, only about 30 percent of students who participated, including Geil and Sharma, earned an invitation to a CTY Awards Ceremony. The ceremony, held this past spring, individually honored Mr. Geil and Mr. Sharma for their academic performance and potential.

In the 2015-16 school year, more than 100 pages of student news was featured
in the pages of Raider Pride. Read more at www.svsd.net/RaiderPride.

Click on the arrows to see more things we love about SV.

Enrollment Tally

2015-16 Seneca Valley Academy of Choice Figures

During the 2015-16 school year:
  • Seneca Valley students took 1,952 cyber courses
  • Seneca Valley full-time cyber students: 74
  • Number of students from other school districts enrolled in the Seneca Valley Outreach Program for Technology (OPT): 4,000
  • Programmatic growth in cyber, career and performing arts opportunities for students, both Seneca Valley and partnering school districts: 42
  • Teachers for Seneca Valley classes:
    Full-Time: 8
    Part-Time: 4
    Singleton (a teacher who teaches both traditional and cyber courses): 20

Visitors Welcome!

2015-16 Seneca Valley Website Statistics (taken from July 1, 2015 - June 30, 2016)

Total Visitors: 1,911,290
Total views: 2,226,227
Total Targeted Visits (this is when a page on the site was a user's final destination): 1,823,513

Total Webpage Building Visits:

Connoquenessing Valley Elementary - 53,643
Evans City Elementary - 33,317
Haine Elementary - 34,748
Rowan Elementary - 34,667
Evans City Middle School - 50,111
Haine Middle School - 82,047
Seneca Valley Middle School - 202,378
Seneca Valley Intermediate High School - 216,576
Seneca Valley Senior High School - 250,161

Top 5 Months with the most visits:

1. February - 227,160 visits
2. March - 220,120 visits
3. January - 219,471 visits
4. October- 198,643 visits
5. September - 181,125 visits

Busy, Busy, Busy:

• September is the busiest month for Athletics and Activities with over 6,000 visits.
• January is the busiest month for the SV Academy of Choice with nearly 3,000 visits.

Captured

A look back in videos. Please click to download the videos of activities taken by Seneca Valley Television (SVTV) over the years.

1984 Band Christmas Concert
1996 Girls Basketball Game vs. Moon Area School District
1996 Winter Jazz Concert
2005 Football Game vs. North Hills
2015 SV Musical ‘The Addams Family’
2016 Graduation

Did you know?

Seneca Valley Television (SVTV) is Pennsylvania’s first school television station which provides broadcasting for both the district and community. SVTV can be seen on Channel 50 or digital Channel 208 for cable subscribers.

Click on the artwork for a larger view.
Celebrating 50 Years of Art
In celebration of our 50th, Seneca Valley art teachers Mr. Jason Woolslare, Ms. Megan Bonistalli, Mr. Jason Shorr and Mr. Aaron Shafer, organized and hosted a 50th Anniversary Art Alumni/Art Teacher Exhibit featuring work from alumni, teachers and retirees.
"I really wanted to do something for the 50th anniversary of SVSD and promote the amazing art traditions that have been a part of the district for such a long time," said Mr. Woolslare. "As an SV art teacher, SV alumni, and SV parent in the district, I was really proud of the show."
Over 40 SV art alumni and teachers contributed a piece for the exhibit. The gallery opened during the Spring Instrumental Concert in May 2016 that featured a special collaboration of arts through the performance of the well-known piece "Carmina Burana."

Pieces on display included various paintings, installations, sculptures, mixed media, photography and sketches.
"Two words come to mind about the Alumni Exhibit—community and legacy," stated Ms. Bonistalli. "I am so lucky that I was able to witness how Seneca Valley has created a thriving artistic community through its 50 year legacy of commitment to the visual arts."

To see more about what the arts mean to SV, watch SVTV's video that celebrates our many incredible art programs featuring band, visual arts, video production, singing, acting, and dance here.

Click on the year to view more.

Seneca Valley Feasibility Study

The Seneca Valley School District worked with Stantec Architecture and Engineering LLC during the 2015-16 school year to conduct a district-wide feasibility study. This long-range planning tool addresses building capacity, utilization, condition, energy efficiency, operating costs, safety and security, and learning environment responsiveness.

It was an important time to conduct such a study as Seneca Valley buildings are getting older, the District’s maintenance list is getting longer, and 21st Century Classrooms are vital in this day and age of advanced technology. In addition, we anticipate increases to student enrollment based on population growth in various municipalities that make up the Seneca Valley School District.

Listed below are links to the results of the feasibility survey:

A Facility Snapshot
Evans City ES/MS
Constructed 1939
Renovations ‘46, ‘59, ‘64, ‘89
Acreage 18.13
Square Feet 138,318
Haine ES/MS
Constructed 1968
Renovations ‘85, ‘90, ‘96
Acreage 25
Square Feet 177,986
Rowan ES
Constructed 1951
Renovations ‘59, ‘90
Acreage 11
Square Feet 76,359
CVE
Constructed 1958
Renovations ‘91, ‘03
Acreage 18.78
Square Feet 103,902
Seneca Valley Middle School
Constructed 1972
Renovations ‘02, ‘03
Square Feet 229,211
Seneca Valley Intermediate
Constructed 1964
Renovations ‘91, ‘96, ‘03
Square Feet 229,351
Seneca Valley High School
Constructed 1994
Renovations ‘02, ‘07
Square Feet 247,277
Total acreage approximately 150

Same vantage point of Seneca Valley Intermediate High School in 1989 (top picture) versus 2016.

Seneca Valley Graduation
Graduating Class of 2016

I personally have been (hiring) young adults from Seneca Valley for a number of years now. I can't tell you how much I have enjoyed meeting and watching young adults from the Seneca Valley system grow and succeed. The quality of human being that comes from Seneca Valley is a blessing to the local community and us as an employer.

- Hiring Manager of a Local Business in the Seneca Valley School District.

Seneca Valley Graduation

2016 Seneca Valley Post Secondary Plans (students are attending the following colleges/institutions):

Allegheny College
American University
Arizona State University
Bloomsburg University
Bowling Green State University
Bradford School
Brigham Young University
Bucknell University
Butler County Community College
California University of Pennsylvania
Carlow University
Carnegie Mellon University
Chatham University
Clarion University
Clemson University
Cleveland State University
Coastal Carolina University
Colorado State University
Community College of Allegheny County
Community College of Beaver County
Delaware Valley University
Duquesne University
East Tennessee State University
Edinboro University of Pennsylvania
Empire Beauty School
Endicott College
Fairmont State University
Florida Gulf Coast University
Gannon University
Geneva College
George Mason University
Georgetown University
Gettysburg College
Grove City College
Harvard University
Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Instituto Nueva Inglaterra
John Carroll University
Juniata College
Kent State University
La Roche College
Lawrence Technological University
Lebanon Valley College
Liberty University
Lock Haven University
Mansfield University
Maryland Institute College of Art
Mercyhurst University
Michigan State University
Morehead State University
Motorcycle Mechanics Institute
North Carolina State University
Northern Kentucky University
Ohio Northern University
Ohio State University
Ohio University
Ozark Christian College
Penn Foster College
Penn State University
Pennsylvania College of Technology
Pittsburgh Technical Institute
Point Park University
Portland State University
Purdue University
Roanoke College
Robert Morris University
Rochester Institute of Technology
Saint Francis University
Saint Vincent College
Slippery Rock University
Temple University
The Catholic University of America
The Citadel
The Digital Animation and Visual Effects School
Thiel College
Towson University
Triangle Tech
U.S. Naval Academy
University of Akron
University of Dayton
University of Edinburgh
University of Kentucky
University of Maryland
University of Michigan
University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill
University of North Carolina – Charlotte
University of North Carolina School of the Arts
University of Pittsburgh
University of South Carolina
University of Tampa
University of Tennessee - Knoxville
University of Toledo
Valparaiso University
Vanderbilt University
Villanova University
Virginia Tech University
Washington & Jefferson College
Waynesburg University
West Chester University of Pennsylvania
West Liberty University
West Virginia University
Westminster College
Youngstown State University

Assessment

2016 SAT Scores

Click on the subject to view scores.

2016 ACT Scores

2015-16 Keystone Testing Results

2015-16 PSSA/AYP Results % At/Above Proficiency

Special Education

Special Education

The Seneca Valley School District’s Special Education Department is committed to meeting the needs of students with disabilities and helping them reach their potential. The Seneca Valley School District offers a continuum of services and placement options to meet the needs of each student. Services include but are not limited to:

  • Life Skills Support
  • Speech and Language Support
  • Emotional Support
  • Learning Support
  • Autistic Support

In addition, services for eligible students may also be provided by Midwestern Intermediate Unit IV (MIU-IV). Services provided by MIU-IV may be provided in the district by itinerant MIU-IV staff or in multi-district programs. Multi-district programs include: Deaf/Hard of Hearing Support, Blind-Visually Impaired Support, Life Skills Support, Autistic Support, Speech/Language Support and Multiple Disabilities Support.

Gifted Education

If a student demonstrates a potential need for gifted services, a multidisciplinary evaluation is conducted to determine if the child is in need of special programming. The evaluation process may be initiated by school staff or by a child’s parent, who may do so by contacting the building principal.

The amount and type of gifted support to be received by a student is determined on an individual basis annually by the child’s Gifted Individualized Education Program (GIEP) team, of which the parent is a very important member.

Highlights in Special Education

Independent Living

Students in the Independent Living Room of the Seneca Valley Special Education Department take great pride in their work whether it’s folding clothes, setting a table or making a meal.

Stop by the room to visit with those in the program and you can find them learning about daily life skills, including household cleaning, applying measurement skills, applying temperature skills, personal hygiene and safety.

“Students are leaving us more independent than ever before,” said Gerald Miller, Special Education Director. “The skills that these students are acquiring will be used for the rest of their lives.”

Students in the program also have the opportunity to transfer independent living skills and math skills learned in the traditional classroom, to the community by shopping for the SV Senior High School Family and Consumer Science department and Independent Living Room weekly. Students follow a grocery list to locate food items, quantity, and prices for the FACS classes in the senior high school. Students in the Independent Living course make weekly menus, create grocery list, estimate prices, locate coupons, and shop for items in the community. They also pay for the items in the store.

The class makes a list, shops in the local grocery store, makes and packages sandwiches to donate to Zelienople Z Town Café for Feed My Sheep. Twice a month these sandwiches are distributed in Pittsburgh on the Boulevard of the Allies. Additionally, students make and donate food/snacks to the Seneca Valley Best Buddies’ gatherings twice a month.

“Students in this program are often the recipients of additional help and services,” explained Mr. Miller. “Now they get the experience of helping others which increases their confidence and connects them to their community. There are many layers of student success that can be found in this program.” This room is maintained by the students in the class and supplies are purchased from funds that students raise through local fundraisers.

Vocational Training

The Independent Living class is pleased to partner with and offer nine community-based vocational training sites, including the Courtyard Pittsburgh North Marriott, and Zelienople Library, BiLo, Pittsburgh Marriott North, Slippery Rock University, TJ Maxx, Walgreens, The Strand Theater, Giant Eagle, and UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex. Students participating in the program go out into the community 3-7 times a week.

Travel Instruction

Students participate in travel training instruction and travel awareness. These are monthly trips to neighboring communities, including downtown Pittsburgh. Based on student needs, community-based travel instruction trips are designed to introduce the students to concepts which may include an overview of public transportation, awareness of the environment, pedestrian safety, street-crossing skills, orientation skills, appropriate social interactions, map reading, public transit procedures, and ability to solve problems and handle travel contingencies. We also address community awareness and community involvement on these trips. To date, the group has completed travel instruction in Zelienople and Evans City. Future trips will include downtown Pittsburgh, North Hills, and Grove City.

Athletics

Fall Season – 2015

Cross Country, Boys

  • Overall Boys Record: 6-2
  • Boys team finished 2nd in WPIAL’s
  • Boys team qualified for PIAA’s and finished 11th
  • Michael Kolor finished 6th at WPIAL’s and Trey Razanauskas placed 14th
  • Michael Kolor was a PIAA State Qualifier; Michael Kolor medaled in 13th place

Cross Country, Girls

  • Overall Girls Record: 8-1
  • WPIAL Team Champions
  • Girls team qualified for PIAA’s and finished 3rd
  • Three top-15 finishers at WPIAL’s: Rachel Hensler (2nd), Mariah Mack (11th) and Isabelle Biase (13th)

Football

  • Overall Record: 5-4
  • All Quad-A Conference First Team: Cody Boozel
  • All Quad-A Conference Second Team: Shane Stadtfeld, Jack Cook, Corbin Kessler
  • All Quad-A Conference Honorable Mention: Zach Wilson and Corey Laskey
  • Butler Eagle Sweet 16: Cody Boozel, Jack Cook, Shane Stadtfeld, Corbin Kessler, Corey Laskey
  • Butler Eagle Sweet 16 Honorable Mention: Zach Wilson, Hank Royal, Mark Smith, Gabe Miller

Golf, Boys

  • Overall Record: 9-3; Section Record 7-2
  • Qualified for WPIAL Team championships, missing finals by one shot
  • WPIAL Individual championships semi-finalists: Garrett Schlick, Andy Smathers and Tyler Leake
  • WPIAL Individual championship finals: Adam Bushee

Golf, Girls

  • Overall Record: 2-12
  • WPIAL Individual championships finalist: Courtney Wahlstrom

Soccer, Boys

  • Overall Record: 18-3-1
  • Section 2 Champion with 10-1-1 mark
  • WPIAL Semi-Finalist
  • PIAA Finals: Lost 2-0 in the State Finals
  • All Section: Adam Mascio, Matt Saluga, Jorge Olan, Griffin Mathew, T.J. Turley
  • All WPIAL: Adam Mascio, Matt Saluga, Jorge Olan, Griffin Mathew
  • All State: Adam Mascio and Matt Saluga
  • Butler Eagle Players of the Year: Adam Mascio and Matt Saluga
  • Section 2 Coach of the Year: George Williams
  • Set 18 School Records

Soccer, Girls

  • Overall Record: 17-5
  • Section 2 Champion: 10-2 record
  • WPIAL Semi Final
  • PIAA First Round
  • All Section: Emily Cekella, Megan Mageski, Sarah Anderson, Cassidy Testa, Caroline Miller
  • All WPIAL: Sarah Anderson, Cassidy Testa, Caroline Miller

Tennis, Girls

  • Overall Record: 9-7

Volleyball, Girls

  • Overall Record: 17-4
  • Section 3 2nd place finish at 10-2 mark
  • WPIAL 4th place finish
  • All PIAA: Melissa Carter and Tatum Poirier
  • All WPIAL: Melissa Carter, Tatum Poirier, Bella Seman
  • All Section: Melissa Carter, Madison Chapman, Madeline Poirier, Tatum Poirier, Bella Seman, Maria Alfano

Winter Season – 2015-2016

Basketball, Boys

  • Overall Record: 7-15
  • All Quad-A Conference Honorable Mention: Payton Skalos

Basketball, Girls

  • Overall Record: 16-7
  • WPIAL Qualifier
  • All Quad-A Conference First Team: Erin Danik
  • All Quad-A Conference Second Team: Paige Montrose
  • All Quad-A Conference Honorable Mention: Brooke Lyczek

Swimming, Boys

  • Overall Record: 10-4
  • WPIAL’s - 11th place team finish
  • PIAA’s - 35th place team finish
  • WPIAL Medalist: Spencer Tretter (4th in 200 free and 6th in 500 free)
  • IAA Medalist: Spencer Tretter (8th in 200 Free)

Swimming, Girls

  • Overall Record: 13-1 and a perfect 10-0 at home
  • WPIAL’s - 5th place team finish
  • WPIAL Medalists: Hannah Fernandes (7th in 50 Free),
    Sophia Gaguzis (4th in 100 Free and 6th in 200 Free),
    Abby Parsons (8th in 100 Backstroke),
    Girls 200 Freestyle Relay place 4th and 400 Freestyle placed 5th
  • PIAA Qualifiers: Girls 200 Free Relay, Girls 400 Free Relay

Wrestling

  • Overall Record: 10-5
  • Section and WPIAL Champion: Louis Newell
  • PIAA Medalist
    - Louis Newell – 2nd place medal
  • Section 3 Individual Championships & WPIAL Qualification
    - Alex Fischer, WPIAL Qualifier
    - Ty Gross, WPIAL Qualifier
    - Alex Lynch, WPIAL Qualifier
    - Ben Lynch, WPIAL Qualifier
    - Louis Newell, Champion & WPIAL Champion
    - Dante Santelli, WPIAL Qualifier

Spring Season – 2016

Baseball

  • Overall Record: 5-14
  • All Quad-A Conference Second Team: Mike Collins, Corey Greiner, Corbin Kessler
  • All Quad-A Conference Honorable Mention: Anthony Cinicola, Corey Laskey, Zach Wilson

Lacrosse, Girls

  • Overall Record: 4-12 overall
  • Karina Latsko made the Pennsylvania National Team and selected as Division I, Section II All-Star
  • Pittsburgh Positive Athlete for Girls Lacrosse: Peyton Moriarity

Softball

  • Overall Record: 9-11 overall
  • All Quad-A Conference First Team: Elayna Nagy
  • All Quad-A Conference Second Team: Morgan Aloi, Katie Hickmann, Tori Pfab, Maddie Schultz

Tennis, Boys

  • Overall Record: 8-9

Track & Field, Boys

  • Overall Record: 5-1
  • WPIAL Runner Up – Team Championships
  • WPIAL Medalists
    - Michael Kolor, WPIAL Champion – 800 & 1600m
    - Parker Laughlin, Alex Dixon, Mike Kolor, Mark Smith – 2nd in 4 x 400
    - Alex Dixon, Justin Gaydos, Sam Owori, Luke Bellack – 2nd in 4 x 800
    - Zach Gehm – 8th in Discus
  • PIAA Medalists
    - Michael Kolor, 2nd place – 1600m

Track & Field, Girls

  • Overall Record: 5-1
  • WPIAL Fourth Place – Team Championships
  • WPIAL Medalists
    - Rachel Hensler, 7th place – 3200m
    - Erin Danik – 4th in Javelin
    - Jordan Jamieson – 3rd in Discus
    - Toni Augustine – 5th in Discus

Volleyball, Boys

  • Overall Record: 15-5
  • WPIAL 4th Place Finish
  • All-State: Matt Gagnon
  • All-WPIAL: Matt Gagnon, Sean Cavanagh, Marshall Price, Jon Dolfi
  • All-Section: Matt Gagnon, Sean Cavanagh, Jon Dolfi, Luke Pecora, Marshall Price
2015 Hall of Fame

Pictured above: Front row (L-R): Kylie Gamelier ‘05, Mandie Huffman Starkey ‘05, Kelly Connolly ‘07, Stacie Safritt Anderson ‘05. Back row(L-R): Chris Tully ‘98, Mike Schall ‘97, Coach Ralph Gross, Barb Hamilton Druschel ‘80, C.J. Brown ‘09.

  • Coach Ralph Gross, Retired golf coach
  • C.J. Brown, Class of 2009
  • Barb Hamilton Druschel, Class of 1980
  • Mike Schall, Class of 1997
  • Christopher Tully, Class of 1998
  • The 2005 PIAA Champions in Girls’ Swimming, 200 m. Medley Relay Team coached by Tom Donati (members include: Stacie Safritt Anderson,‘05, Mandie Huffman Starkey,‘05,Kylie Gamelier,‘05, and Kelly Connolly,‘07)

The Seneca Valley Sports Hall of Fame committee held an informal meet and greet reception on Oct. 2, 2015 in the senior high cafeteria prior to the introduction of the honorees during pre-game festivities at the SV vs. Butler Varsity Football Game at NexTier Stadium. The 2015 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony was held at the senior high school auditorium on Oct. 3. The banquet was followed by the ceremony and speeches from the hall of famers were made in front of an audience of family members, teammates and fans.

Roll over each image for color.

As we found ways to celebrate and highlight our 50th Anniversary, SV students joined in with a special celebration of their own. We are proud that Seneca Valley always embraces and encourages individuality and a sense of self. The IHS displayed this beautifully with their “I Am Wall” in the fall of 2015.

The wall received much praise and applause, so the Seneca Valley Diversity Committee extended this idea to the whole district. Students had the opportunity to express who they are and showcase this throughout their schools with “I Am” message cards.

During winter Olweus bullying-prevention meetings, teachers shared with classes the IHS “I AM” video as an introduction to the activity (to see the video, click here). Students then received their own personal cards. Whether students are shy, outgoing, a music lover, an athlete or an artist – they all had the opportunity to express on paper who they are to the whole school.

See below to view additional “I Am” videos:

ECM I Am Video: http://svtube.svsd.net/play?id=ug7fg38yae

HE/HMS I Am Video: http://svtube.svsd.net/play?id=uxctzv3n6b

Seneca Valley Foundation

A fundraising arm of the Seneca Valley School District, the Seneca Valley Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging excellence and innovation in all grades of the Seneca Valley Schools. The Foundation strives to achieve this by seeking donations and patrons to facilitate the development of new capital projects, programs and scholarships. Its board members consist of stakeholders who are local business leaders, community leaders and school leaders. As a non-profit organization, the Foundation is also utilized as a vehicle by which memorial and other charitable donations may be made to the Seneca Valley School District.

The Seneca Valley Foundation is proud to say we are providing mini-grants for STEM initiatives (STEM Fair, Women in Engineering class & travel expenses to the Creek Connections Symposium), early literacy support (purchased leveled readers for our elementary buildings) and financial support for extracurricular activities (donations toward much needed repairs to the Natatorium). The Foundation also helped Connoquenessing Valley Elementary School to unveil a Situated Multimedia Arts Learning Lab (SMALLab), also known as “Inspiration Station.” All good work. However, there’s so much more to be done. Join us in providing “The Gift of Hope, the Promise of Excellence.”

We thank our many 2015-16 donors for their support of the Seneca Valley Foundation:

Click here to view the Seneca Valley Foundation Board of Trustees.

Visit www.svsd.net/SVF to learn more about the many ways your gifts impact our students’ lives.

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Staff

My own children are graduates of Seneca Valley. I believe, that my oldest son was the first blind child to attend Seneca from the kindergarten through graduation and I might proudly say a graduate of Point Park University. My younger son took the entrepreneur route.

Working with the IU, the Special Education Department and along with the many people involved with my son that needed special services helped me to make the decision to change careers, go back to school and become a paraprofessional!

I have had the privilege of working with some of the best teachers at SV and in the educational field. I sincerely will miss the children and their willingness to let me be a part of their school day.

Thank you again for the privilege of working for Seneca Valley. It was a pleasure!

- Kathy Doerfler, Special Education Paraprofessional (retired in 2015-16)

SV teachers earn ‘best’ ranking

Niche.com released the 2016 Districts with the Best Teachers in Pennsylvania. See the link for the complete list here.

Seneca Valley placed #810 in the nation. Out of 10,538 schools in the nation that were ranked here, that’s top ten percent (top 7.7 percent to be specific).

The ranking criteria (and sources) for this particular list were based on parent/student surveys on teachers, academics grade, average teacher salary, teacher absenteeism, teacher salary index, teachers in their first/second year and student-teacher ratio.

The 2016 Districts with the Best Teachers ranking provides a comprehensive assessment of the teachers of a school district. This grade takes into account key factors such as the academic performance of a school, an index of teacher salaries, student-teacher ratio, as well as student and parent reviews, in an attempt to measure the quality of teachers working at a district.

At the time of calculation, our database contained records for 12,153 school districts. School districts were not included in the ranking process if they did not have sufficient data. The final ranking results in 10,538 school districts receiving a grade, with 7,350 of those also receiving a numerical ranking.

Click circles to read more

I would like to congratulate the teachers/mentors for the exceptional work they did hosting the first Science Honor Society Cub Scout STEM Academy at Seneca Valley High School. I have been running Scouting programs across Western Pennsylvania for the last ten years, dealing with exceptional volunteers that make a difference in the life of young people and I can proudly say that these Seneca Valley secondary teachers are some of the best. Teachers are already known for engaging personalities, giving clear lesson objectives and classroom management skills, but all of them surpassed many expectations for the academy. They took the initiative to perform the tasks and completed them with no expectation of reward. They also helped build a program that will allow our next generation of critical thinkers and innovators to grow.

- Moraine Trails Council, Boy Scouts of America

I'm very appreciative of the kindness/welcome. From the greeter at the door to each individual I met with I was impressed with friendliness, questions about my child (what type of teacher he would best learn from, his interests, feelings about kindergarten, etc...) and overall helpfulness with my questions. My son was with me and even though it wasn't mandatory that he be there, it helped him greatly. He left very excited about kindergarten activities given to do at home over the summer and the nice people he met.

- Recently Relocated Haine Elementary Parent

The dedication and professionalism of your art teachers is exemplary and your students' work is exceptional-it was a pleasure to see that diverse work filling the hallways at your schools.

- California University of Pennsylvania Associate Professor

I graduated from Seneca in 2001 and I am so excited that the kids will be back in this school district. After experiencing another school, we knew right away that we had to move back to this area. My husband is from Missouri and is amazed with this school on so many levels. I wanted to thank you and the rest of the staff for everything that you do to provide our children with a safe learning environment.

- CVE and Evans City Middle School Parent

The Seneca Valley music program consistently excels every year because of the very high standards and talents of its music staff. The music staff at Seneca Valley are all to be commended for helping to inspire, train and instill the values necessary for a lifetime of achievement in the arts and in life.

- Evans City Parent

Budget

2015-16 Revenue/Fund Balance Use

Total Revenue $115,480,997 100.00%

The primary sources of Local Revenue for Seneca Valley are real estate and earned income taxes. Also included in Local Revenue are federal funds that pass through our intermediate unit, as well as funds generated when Seneca Valley provides cyber services to outside school districts. We are cognizant of the significance - and take very seriously - the responsibility that comes with spending revenue from local sources.

* We approved a deficit budget to intentionally use fund balance savings as a way to help limit the tax increase.
2015-16 Expenditures

Total Expenditures $115,480,997 100.00%

Instructional Services accounts for more than 60 percent of the expenditures budget and provide educational services for regular, special and vocational education. Our Instructional Support Services provide logistical support to further enhance and facilitate instruction, and includes guidance and pupil health. We are committed to maintaining an expenditures budget that provides the tools necessary for maximum student success.

To view the budget in its entirety, please go to www.svsd.net/1516Budget
Rowan Elementary School Kindergarten Teacher Lucy Balzer is pictured here with her students, a.k.a. “Balzer Bears,” during a classroom activity.

2015-16 Seneca Valley Budget

The Board of School Directors unanimously passed the 2015-16 general operating budget for the Seneca Valley School District in June 2015. A home with a market value of $150,000 will pay approximately $58 more in taxes per year-or about $5 a month more with the millage increase.

The board has and will continue to focus on reducing spending and finding new revenue streams while pursuing cost avoidance efforts. The budget helps, in part, to support ongoing technology and curriculum improvements and maintains our district facilities.

The development and final adoption of the budget is a very detailed and complex process for which the board of school directors is responsible by state law per Section 679 of the Pennsylvania Public School Code of 1949.

The final document is a product that was developed with the cooperation and effort of the board, administration and staff. The process and final budget provides for the best education possible for our students as well as sensitivity to the burden of expense on the local taxpayer.

2015-16 Final Budget General Information, June 2015

ESTIMATED REVENUE: $113,242,835
  • Value of a mill increased to $548,120, a 2.2 percent increase over 2014-15
  • Total millage included at 119.9 mills, an increase of 3.45 mills, 2.97 percent
  • Earned Income Tax revenue increased to reflect current collection trends
  • Transportation subsidy increased to reflect current data and costs
  • State subsidy for social security and PSERS increased to reflect 50 percent of budgeted expenses
  • No other increase to state subsidy included due to lack of state budget
BUDGETED EXPENDITURES: $115,480,997
  • Contractual salary increases included
  • PSERS increase from 21.4 percent to 25.84 percent
  • Healthcare increase of 10 percent
  • Includes contractual increases for contracted services including transportation and cleaning services
  • Payment budgeted for 3-year cyber licensing agreement in the amount of $300,000
  • Interest and principal payments increased by approximately $520,000
  • Retained $1,000,000 for year-2 of new textbooks and learning resources purchases
  • Maintained $750,000 in contingency
* The budgeted expenditures exceed estimated revenue by approximately $2.2 million. This is an intentional use of fund balance directed to textbook adoptions and to mitigate the current year’s increase in retirement rates.

The Seneca Valley Secondary Campus, grades 7-12, in Jackson Township.

The Seneca Valley Annual Report is an award-winning publication of the SV Communications Department.

Send questions or comments about the annual report to the Communications Department,
124 Seneca School Road, Harmony, PA 16037, 724-452-6040, ext. 1756 or email andreassill@svsd.net