All posts tagged local schools

United Way Helping to Supply Area Care Closets

Before students can truly focus on learning, understanding, and using the information presented to them in classes each day, their basic needs, such as food, clothing/hygiene, and shelter, must be met. Local school districts are trying to help meet these needs for their students with their “Care Closets.”

Each local district, and usually each school within the district, has a Care Closet set up where students can come for supplies, such as hygiene products, clothing, and even food.

The United Way of Venango County is working to help supply items to our school district’s care closets. In August, the United Way delivered supplies to the Cranberry Area, Franklin Area, Oil City Area, and Valley Grove School Districts.

These supplies included:

  • 240 bottles of shampoo and 240 bottles of conditioner
  • 420 tubes of toothpaste and 1440 toothbrushes
  • 132 bottles of mouthwash
  • 996 packages of feminine hygiene products
  • 384 bottles of deodorant
  • 240 packages of laundry soap pods

Another supply distribution is being planned for January.

Needed items are determined by contact and surveys with the organizers of the Care Closets. The United Way then sources and purchases the products and delivers the items to each school district. Organizations or individuals who would like to help the United Way make a bigger impact may call (814) 676-6545 to make a monetary donation specifically for the Care Closet program.

This article was published in the Venango Chamber’s December 2019 VenangoWorks! Newsletter.

Local Schools Seek Business Input

Oil City High School (OCHS) and Venango Technology Center (Vo-Tech) are asking businesses to take their short surveys.

OCSDOCHS would love to hear your thoughts about their school climate. All you have to do is take an online survey that takes 5 minutes or less and it will provide the School Climate Committee with valuable information that will help shape and change future programs at the high school.

You can assist Oil City High School in 4 easy steps.  Here’s what you need to do:

1. Visit

2. A blue box will appear at the top of the page that says Home Page, Are you a survey respondent that was given an invitation code? Enter your invitation code by clicking here.  Click on “Clicking Here” and a window will appear asking for a code.

3. Your code as a community member is GMEADK

4. Answer the questions to the survey and submit your results anonymously.

You do not have to reside in Oil City to take the survey; you just need to be familiar with the community and school.

VotechRobert Moore, Cooperative Education Director at Vo-Tech, assists students with securing employment. One of the topics they cover is resume development and he is seeking input from local businesses as to what you look for on a quality resume.

He would appreciate your feedback so that he may provide students with the most relevant information possible.  Please feel free to gather input from any of your staff involved with the hiring process.
Find the survey by visiting

Thank you in advance for your willingness to help improve our local schools!

This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s December 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.


Local Catholic School Teachers Participate in UPSTREAM Conference

On June 20th, four teachers from Venango Catholic High School, St. Patrick’s and St. Stephen’s Elementary VCHSSchools traveled to Loyola University in Chicago to participate in the UPSTREAM Conference. “A Paddle and a Plan” was the theme of the 2018 conference presented by The Diocese of Buffalo. STREAM, an NCEA Best Practice Model, stands for Science, Technology, Religion, Engineering, Art and Math. Participants included Debbie Mitchell (St. Stephen), Julie Parquette (St. Patrick), Katie Chandley (Venango Catholic High School), and Shani Baughman (Venango Catholic High School).

The conference highlighted the most effective components of the STREAM Education Initiative piloted at 25+ schools within the Diocese of Buffalo since 2014. The initiative has been implemented in 100+ schools across the country with great success. The program delivered a 21st Century STREAM principled agenda for teachers around the eight principles of STREAM and how to create a 21st Century STREAM culture within the classroom and school.

By sending a team of St. Stephen’s, St. Patrick’s and Venango Catholic High School teachers, the local schools envision a vertical alignment of content, skills and knowledge PreK through 12th grade. This core team will provide, via the teacher as trainer model, professional development and support for faculty and staff at all three schools. Such efforts support a cost effective model to train all of the faculty for school wide implementation vertically and horizontally.

This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s July 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.