Two Local Men Killed in Porter County Accident

Two area residents died in a two-vehicle accident in Porter County Thursday night.

An initial investigation by Porter County Sheriff’s deputies found that Roderick Heise, 34, of Knox was southbound on State Road 49 and drove left of center to pass other vehicles near 285 S. in Morgan Township when he struck a northbound van driven by Jade Michael Schneider, 20, of Francesville, according to report in “The Times”. Both drivers were pronounced dead at the scene. The vehicles did not carry any passengers.

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West Central Students Collect Change in Pennies for Patients Campaign

west central logoStudents participating in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes program at the West Central School Corporation were successful in collecting funds for the Pennies for Patients initiative.

The goal was set at $2,500, but Superintendent Don Street told WKVI News that the goal was surpassed. The students collected over $3,000 to benefit patients who are part of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Any loose change was donated by students in the high school, middle school, and elementary school.

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West Central School Board Reviews E-Learning Survey Results

 Students at the West Central School Corporation participated in their first e-learning day of instruction on Saturday, March 14. The school board reviewed returned surveys last week following the experience.

Superintendent Don Street said that the responses were favorable for this type of method in making up missed days of instruction.

“Out of the parents that responded to the survey, 87.4 percent found that the e-learning day was effective,” explained Street. “From the students that responded to the survey, 65.6 percent found e-learning to be effective. Forty-nine of our staff members responded with 85.7 percent stating that our students made the expectations for the day.”

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Pulaski County K9 Aids in Arrest

The Pulaski County K9 was instrumental in the arrest of two people during a traffic stop on Friday.

A witness told police that a vehicle was driving erratically in the Medaryville area. The responding officer saw the vehicle after 4 p.m. ET on U.S. 421 near the West Central School. The officer saw the vehicle as a traffic hazard and conducted a traffic stop.

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West Central Students to Participate in First E-Learning Day this Saturday

 West Central students have missed six days of school due to bad traveling conditions this winter. The school board has approved three of those days to be made up with e-learning days.

Superintendent Don Street said they’re getting ready for the first e-learning day on Saturday, March 14.

“Our staff has been busy preparing and getting ready for some of the items that are necessary in helping our students be successful with e-learning days,” said Street.

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West Central School Receives Grant for Industry Classes

The West Central School Board heard a report from Principal Patrick Culp and others who recently went to Indianapolis to accept a $82,355 Region 1 Works Council for a Career and Technical Education innovative-curriculum grant.

The grant will fund a Pulaski County Repair and Maintenance Technology program at West Central High School. Superintendent Don Street says a program for machine maintenance will assist students in giving them the skills they need to be productive in local industry.

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West Central Students Participating in FFA Week

West Central FFA students are getting in the spirit of educating others about FFA.

FFA Leader Shaw Haselby told WKVI News that the students have been participating in spirit days. Today is Denim Day while tomorrow the students will be driving their tractors to school. Friday is Cowboy/Western Day.

Haselby says FFA is vital in giving students information about agriculture, but also public speaking, leadership skills, and other experiences to promote agriculture.

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West Central School Board Holds Work Session

The West Central School Board held a work session last week to look at the corporation’s strategic plan.

Superintendent Don Street said a presentation of the progression of the one-to-one technology program was given which led into the discussion of e-learning days. Street said the state has approved the corporation’s request to make up missed school days on Saturdays.

“Our first one is March 14 and a few will be held in April as opposed to adding those days on at the end of the year. This will make it a more meaningful and educationally related to our students,” said Street.

The students will receive assignments on Friday which will be due on Monday. The Board also discussed how the staff will prepare for e-learning days.

Principal Patrick Culp discussed a change in classes at the middle school level.

“We’re currently on a four-period day. We would be dividing a couple of those periods up for English and Mathematics. We would go to an eight-period day where those students would get instruction for 40 minutes and go into a lab setting for 40 minutes to get extra assistance if needed.”

More advanced learners would get more challenging assignments during that lab time.

No final decisions were made, but information from the work session will be presented at the March board meeting for approval.

West Central School Board Reviews Capital Projects Plan

The West Central School Board members discussed their capital projects plan during a work session last week.

Superintendent Don Street said that one focus in the next three years will be work at the high school.

“It’s kind of an aging building so we discussed sewer drains, water lines, water, electric panels, lighting, windows, doors, security, restrooms, storage, locker rooms, sidewalks, and fitness facilities were all discussed. We’ll come back to this later in the spring and review many of those items that we see as a need for the future,” said Street.

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Grant Will Help Students with Industrial Maintenance Skills

Pulaski County Community Development Commission Executive Director Nathan Origer told the county commissioners last night that the county is the recipient of an $82,355 Region 1 Works Council for a Career and Technical Education (CTE) innovative-curriculum grant.

Origer said the grant will fund a Pulaski County Repair and Maintenance Technology (RAM-Tech) program at West Central High School to give students the skills they need to be successful in an industrial setting.

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West Central School Board to Hold Work Session

The West Central School Board has a work session planned for next week.

Superintendent Don Street said the board will not be focused on one single item. The board will be discussing the overall scope of school operations at the corporation and the strategic plan.

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West Central School Board Approves E-Learning Application

 West Central School Corporation students could make up school days missed if the Department of Education approves the corporation’s application to incorporate e-learning days into the school calendar.

Superintendent Don Street said students have missed four days of school due to snow so far this semester.

“We have to built-in snow days so we will go to school on February 16 and April 20 to make up two days. Currently, we have two days that are still outstanding,” said Street.

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West Central School Board Approves Turbine Maintenance Agreement

west central logoThe West Central School Board members discussed the wind turbine maintenance agreement during this week’s meeting.

Superintendent Don Street said they looked at maintenance agreements from other schools and decided on a provider.

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West Central School Board to Meet Tonight

The West Central School Board will discuss a maintenance agreement for the corporation’s turbine when they meet for their regular board meeting tonight.

Superintendent Don Street previously reported that the wind turbine has been a positive addition in helping the corporation with energy needs. At last report, the turbine has been working and collecting several credits. The board will be looking at the maintenance contract with the current company. Street said that the board is working with five other school districts in the state to get the best fee possible.

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West Central School Board Approves Driver’s Education Fee

The West Central School Board approved driver’s education fees for this year’s round of classes. Superintendent Don Street said the summer classes were approved as presented to the school board members.

“Driver’s education for West Central students will be $200 and for non-corporation students it will be $300,” explained Street. “Our students also take an online portion of the course and that’s an additional $25. That do that test on their own.”

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West Central School Board Focuses on Budget

The West Central School Board closed out the 2014 books and looked at the budget for this year when the members met this week. Superintendent Don Street said the board won’t be making any big changes to the budget.

“There were no big cuts,” said Street. “We anticipated where we would be in our annual budget. Our assessed evaluation has increased for our school district from last year which has reduced, just slightly, the amount of taxes that will be charged for each individual.”

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One-Time Energy Assistance Available to Struggling Citizens

$Applications for the Energy Assistance Program can still be submitted for a one-time benefit on electric and heating bills. North Central Community Action Agencies, Pulaski County Human Services, and Community Services of Starke County began taking applications for LaPorte, Pulaski and Starke residents in November. Applications will continue to be accepted until all funds are obligated.

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Pulaski County Considering Career and Technical Education Grant Application

Pulaski County Economic DevelopmentThe Pulaski County Community Development Commission may apply for a state grant to provide job skills training to high school students. County economic development director Nathan P. Origer says funds are available through the Career and Technical Education Innovative Curriculum Grant program to set up industrial repair and maintenance training programs at Winamac Community and West Central High Schools. Origer says it is a really high-demand occupation in the manufacturing sector locally and regionally. Continue reading