Friday, February 12, 2016

The What If Post

Volume 2 - Issue 2

For most of my life, I have found myself to be infatuated with the question stem “What if?”  While it may be made up of only two of the simplest words in the English language it evokes meaning that can be equal parts diverse and profound. 

“What If” Can be a tool of learning and discovery about the world

 In the earliest days of my childhood, “What if” was my go to question.  I know I am not alone on this one, as so many kids through the years have questioned “What if dinosaurs still existed?”  “What if aliens came to our house?”  or “What if I could fly?” 

My wife has recounted a story in which her 3rd grade classmates asked so many “what if” questions about their homework that it prompted the teacher to instruct the class that there were to be no more what if questions.  One boy in the class responded to this with “What if the world ends tomorrow, do I still have to turn in my homework?”

While these childhood “What ifs” may seem trivial and nonsensical to an adult, they are in fact a vehicle for exploring the world and how it works.  This is most certainly true in my experience, and I now stand on a foundation built on this powerful question.

“What If” can be used for reflecting on choices that have shaped our life

As I grew, my life grew and changed, but my use of “what if” did not.  At each life stage I discovered a new application for my question, ranging from the ridiculous to the profound.  I also discovered that many of my “what if” questions did not have an answer, but that the most important ones always did.  

As I approached high school graduation and all of the life shaping choices that come with it, I found myself choosing between St. Vincent College and Waynesburg College.  I eventually settled on Waynesburg.  Waynesburg was a wonderful experience and absolutely the right choice.  However, St. Vincent was in our conference, and every time we traveled to their school for a cross country meet, I would wonder “What if I had chosen St. Vincent?”  Part of me wanted so badly to see this alternate path, this alternate reality.  I was so curious about what my life could have been like given different choices that I typically drove myself crazy and had my worst races at St. Vincent. 

While in college, I was encouraged by some friends to apply for a summer job as a camp counselor at Pine Springs Camp.  I ended up spending four summers there and had an incredible experience.  The crazy thing is, I almost didn’t turn in my application and was not exactly thrilled about spending the summer away from home.  I sometimes reflect back on that experience and I wonder “What if” I hadn’t applied (more on this later). 

After college, I interviewed unsuccessfully for several teaching jobs in Pennsylvania and ended up making the winding trip to McDowell County, West Virginia.  Standing where I am now, I wonder “What if” I had gotten one of those jobs in Pennsylvania. 

Fast forward several years later, and I found myself wondering “What if” I asked this girl to marry me.  This was one of those rare and significant occasions where I did find out the answer, and thankfully the answer was yes. 

This proposal gave me an answer to my question about Pine Springs, as it was during my time there that I met my future wife.  It also gave me an answer to my question about St. Vincent and my question about the teaching jobs in Pennsylvania.

 If any of those three things had turned out differently, it may have drastically altered the way that my life has played out.  Everything that happens to us, every “what if” builds upon the past, for better or worse, to shape us into the people we will become. 

“What if” can be a way to try to process that which cannot be understood

More recently, I found myself once again applying “what if” to some things I did not understand about the world, just as I had when I was a child.  Unlike when I was a child, I found this set of questions taking on a much more serious tone based on what I was seeing and hearing about the world. 

Recent examples include “What if the parents of four children, ages 6-13, were not killed in a car accident while driving to buy Halloween candy and face paint for their children?”  “What if the pregnant wife of an Indianapolis pastor, and mother of a one year old, had not been killed during a home invasion?” and “What if a three month old baby hadn’t died on his first day of daycare?” 

While I did not know the people in any of these three cases, I found myself being very much impacted by their stories.   This most recent round of “what if” proved to challenge me more than any other “what if” question I have ever asked myself. 

 I think these stories struck such a cord because they all are tragic examples of the frailty of life.  I am sure that none of these people woke up thinking that this would be the day that they would tragically lose their wife/mother/husband/father/child/sibling. 

I also believe they struck a chord because they transpose the frailty of life with the resiliency of life.  What if those left to pick up the pieces had decided to be defeated?  In all three stories, this would have been a reasonable and completely understandable response, but in all three stories those most deeply affected elected to respond. 

The state trooper sent to the family home, and greeted by four children in full costume, responded by treating the children to dinner, movies, and Halloween candy, along with a sleepover at the state patrol post. 

The husband who tragically discovered his wife responded with his words, saying “Though everything inside of me wants to hate, be angry, and slip into despair, I choose the route of forgiveness, grace, and hope.  If there is one thing I’ve learned from Amanda in the 10 years, it’s this: Choosing to let my emotions drive my decisions is recipe for a hopeless and fruitless life.  Today I am deciding to love, not hate.” 

The mother who dropped her happy three month old at day care and returned to find his lifeless body has responded by sharing her story,  forming the website, and lobbying for better parental leave policies. 

Most importantly, these stories struck a chord because they all show the importance of living life with a fullness, an urgency, an appreciation that every moment matters. 

“What if” is not a question, it is a way of life, a calling, a purpose

All of these “what if” moments and questions leads me to one conclusion, and it is a conclusion that is very applicable to Hundred High School.

All of this time, I thought that “what if” was a question to be asked, but I now see that “what if” is so much more.  “What if” is the difference between success and failure, between victory and defeat, between excellence and apathy. 

What if we decided as a school, as a community, to rise up and show the world just what a small rural school in a small rural community can be?

What if we made it our mission to equip our students with the best resources, the best teachers, the best school possible?

What if we lived out the belief that students in rural Appalachia deserved the same quality of opportunity as students at larger, wealthier, suburban communities?

What if we stop simply sitting and wait for "Something Magical" to happen,
and instead develop the Inability to Do Nothing and the
 desire to do Whatever it Takes

What if every single one of us as stakeholders decided that this seemingly impossible goal was within our grasp, that if we all pulled together we could reach heights others never could have even imagined?

What if at this exact moment in time we all could agree that it’s a great day to be a Hornet?
I don’t know about you, but what this picture looks like in my mind is what drives me to work harder and do better with each passing day. 

I would like to pose a final “what if” to anyone who is reading this post: What if you joined me?  

Staff News

The incredibly talented Mrs. Greathouse
A huge congratulation is owed to Mrs. Jessica Greathouse.  She has elected to leave her position as our art teacher in order to spend time with her wonderful new son.  We are very happy for her family.  We will very much miss the dedication and excellence she brought to the classroom on a daily basis.  While we will miss her as one of our teachers, we are thrilled that she will continue serving as our girls track coach and will also be continuing to help us with the ever popular "Plates and Palettes". 

Thank you Mr. White for serving our students

We also say congratulations and farewell to choir director Mr. James White as he has had the opportunity to take a position as a music teacher much closer to his family.  Thank you Mr. White for your service to the students of Hundred High School and Long Drain School, your commitment to your students was much appreciated and will be missed. 
Welcome to HHS Mrs. Hayes!

Mrs. Hayes in the first of many concerts

On the flip side, we have had the opportunity to welcome Mrs. Melissa Hayes to our staff as our new choir director.  Since taking over as director just before the end of the first semester, it is evident that Mrs. Hayes will do incredible things with our choir program and we are very excited to have her as part of our staff. 

Our counselor Mrs. Van Scyoc
October was a busy month, as we recognized both “College Exploration Week” in an effort to encourage college application and enrollment and “Red Ribbon Week” in an effort to raise awareness about drug abuse and educate our students.  School counselor Mrs. Beverly Van Scyoc was instrumental in the organization and planning of both of these important weeks.  Thank you Mrs. Van Scyoc for all of your hard work! 

Mrs. Moore and Mr. Sapp made our blood drive a success
The end of October also marked our fall student council blood drive.  We are very fortunate to have Mrs. Janet Moore and Mr. Kasey Sapp as our student council advisers and they did a great job organizing the blood drive. 

Mrs. Bonnie McGlumphy put her creative powers to good use and turned some of our old textbooks into a vibrant book tree

Our new book tree

Ms. Watson leading her band 
It is not hard to know where to find Ms. Jeanine Watson, she is always here at the school working in her numerous capacities as our band director and music teacher.  In the recent months, she has organized our Christmas concert, which was a resounding success, and also put together fall plays performed by our theatre class, which were performed to rave reviews. 
Coaches Wilkins and Bartlett

Coaches Dakan and Allen
Mr. Rush mans the ticket table
Our winter sports seasons would not be possible without the coaches and staff that help make them a success.  Our boys basketball team is led by head coach Mr. Virgil Wilkins and assistant coach Mr. Brian Bartlett, our girls basketball is led by head coach Mr. Steve Dakan and assistant coach Mrs. Crystal Allen, and our cheerleading squad is led by head coach Mrs. Diana Wheeler and assisted by Mrs. Crystal Allen.  Additionally, our sports could not be a success without the involvement of our athletic director Mr. Rex Rush and our winter events coordinator Mr. Jeremy Kelch, who take care of making sure our coaches, players, and fans can have a positive game experience.  

Student Spotlight

Our state champions and national silver award winners
It seems that our FFA program is constantly in the spotlight, and our FFA Parliamentary Procedures made waves at the national convention where the team of Hailey Eastham, Taylor Fetty, Annie Fox, Holden Moore, Valerie Soles, and Meliah Umstead scored the 10th highest on the placement test out of 45 participating teams and brought home a silver recognition. 

Andrew and Emily at the Wetzel County PAC

 Meliah Umstead also shined as an individual, where she had the 8th highest placement score out of 250 students. 

Our Red Ribbon Week poster contest saw Logan Moore, Victoria Hawkins, and Airadeea Williams claim the three prizes for the top poster designs. 

As two of our outstanding seniors, Andrew King and Emily Rine got to represent our school at a Wetzel County Parents Advisory Council meeting.  Andrew also had the opportunity to represent our school at the 21st annual First Exchange Groundhog Day breakfast in his role as student body president. 

First Place essay: Tyler Simms

Tyler Simms was recognized as the first place winner for our Veteran’s Day essay contest this year with Annie Fox recognized as the runner up.  Their essays were selected from a pool of more than ninety submissions. 

Brandon Rine was recognized as Hundred High School’s first place winner and Jasmine Patterson as the runner up in the annual Attendance Matters Poster contest held across all of the schools in West Virginia. 

Additionally, Brandon Rine was the second highest scoring 9th grader for the annual Wetzel County math field day

Kaitlyn Kuhn was recognized by Fairmont Regional Medical Center for her commitment to volunteering and community service through her volunteer work at FRMC

Long Tall Lester
Members of our theatre class put on a production of two short plays which showcased their incredible talent as actors.  Their fall production included performances of two short plays, Long Tall Lester and Rollin’ in Dough in Mistletoe. 

Rolling in the Dough in Mistletoe 

The talented cast and crew

Honors band students ready for their concert
Awaiting the audition results
Honors choir students at West Liberty
Our concert band and choir put together an outstanding Christmas Concert as always, entertaining all in attendance with some sounds of the Christmas season.

Additionally, three of our choir members, Macy LeMasters, Madysen Wheeler, and Airadeea Williams had the opportunity to participate in the Tri-State Honors Choir at West Liberty University, and band members Katherine Henderson, Macy LeMasters, Emily Metz, Rachel Watson, and Amber Yoho had the opportunity to travel to Marshall University to participate in the Marshall University Honors Band. 

Celebrating a great milestone

In sports news, our boys basketball, girls basketball, and winter cheerleading seasons are in full swing.  Each of our three winter teams have brought a lot of excitement and a lot to celebrate; most notably our boys basketball team receiving a positive sportsmanship commendation from the West Virginia Secondary Schools Activities Comission, and senior Holden Moore reachingthe 1,000 point plateau.  Over the past three years I have seen all of our sports programs take on a new mentality that reflects the direction our school is going, establishing an attitude of excellence, sportsmanship, and never giving up that I believe will bring us much athletic success over the coming seasons. 

Proud Parents

Students Featured in the Chronicle
So Much to Celebrate

We recently celebrated our student achievements during the fall 2015 semester with an academic awards assembly.  This assembly served as an opportunity to recognize students for a variety of accomplishments.  It is always wonderful to get our student body together and reflect on all of the things they are accomplishing.  Check out the full article: Hundred High School Students Lauded in the Wetzel Chronicle

Alumni Connection

We were happy to welcome West Virginia State Trooper Sgt. Jeff Shriver (1989) to our school to discuss the perils of drug addiction and abuse as part of our Red Ribbon Week.  Additionally, we welcomed Wetzel County Sheriff candidate, Chief Deputy Mike Koontz who brought some recovering drug addicts to address our student body. 

The month of November allowed us to honor a number of our alumni, as well as so many other members of our community, who served as veterans of the United States Armed Forces.  We owe a great debt of gratitude to all of those who served our country and allow us to have the freedoms we enjoy today. 
We owe a great debt of gratitude for those who have served our Nation
Thank you Henderson Farms for your generosity!

In just one of their many examples of extreme generosity in support of our school and students, Howard and Linda Henderson (1973, 1981) purchased the fall sports banners for our senior athletes and will be doing the same for our winter athletes.  We are very fortunate to have them as alumni and as part of our school community. 

HHS Alumni Shelly Brown 
We are always thrilled when we are able to add a new partner to our school.  It is even more special when that partner is a Hundred High School alumni.  We have recently begun working with Mrs. Shelly Brown (1979) and her company Direct Results on several school initiatives.  There is more information about our partnership with Direct Results in the community corner. 

Several of our young alumni have proven to give us a lot to celebrate in the recent months.  Ethan Umstead (2014) was recently named second chair in the West Virginia University concert band, and Mitch Moore (2012) found out during Christmas break that he has officially been accepted into the West Virginia University College of Law where he will be a member of the class of 2019.  

Community Corner

Mrs. Lazan speaking about her life and triumph
Our entire school was very fortunate to hear Holocaust Survivor and Award Winning Author of “Four Perfect Pebbles” Marion Blumenthal Lazan share some of her story.  All in attendance were moved by her story.

Mrs. Lazan poses for a picture 

Mrs. Lazan with some of the HHS Staff

We also owe a special thank you to Cameron High School teacher  Mrs. Brittany Springer for coordinating this moving assembly.

Captain Brown gives his address

We were honored to have Captain John Brown give the keynote address for our Veterans Day program. 

Mrs. Lauren Matthews, reporter for the Wetzel Chronicle, has been a great supporter of Hundred High School and our students over the past several years, frequently writing articles and feature stories showcasing our students and their accomplishments.  She has recently received the much deserved position of interim editor at the Chronicle, with the prospects of taking over as full time editor in the near future. 

The unexpected passing of Magnolia High School teacher Mr. Mark Lemasters saddened all of the Wetzel County community.  He was a great example of dedication to his school and students and will be greatly missed by all who had the opportunity to know him. 

Our FFA program welcomed West Virginia FFA representative Miss Samantha DeBolt to share some of her expertise on leadership with our FFA chapter members.  It was a great experience that benefitted our students immensely. 

We welcomed Grammy nominated trumpet player Mr. David Wells into our auditorium where he spoke with our students about the importance of desire, determination, and discipline.  He even challenged four of our students to try their own hand at the trumpet. 
David Wells discussed desire, determination, and discipline

One of the screen presses at Direct Results

We are proud to welcome Direct Results as our newest school partner.  They are a company with the ability to do a vast array of graphic, multimedia, and print design to develop and promote the positive brand of the organizations with whom they partner.  In the past several months, we have already seen the “direct results” of working with them as a partner in the form of our Alma Mater and Fight Song banners hanging in the school gym, the new decals on the front of the scoring table, and the senior sports banners hanging on the wall in the gym.  It will be very exciting in the days and weeks ahead to work with the team at Direct Results as we continue to build a school brand that matches the educational excellence we strive to provide to our students.  In addition to the opportunity to continue building our school brand, they will serve as a great partner as we work to build our own graphic, multimedia, and print design curriculum.  The fact that one of their owners is a proud Hundred High School graduate makes it even more exciting to add them to our growing stable of amazing community partners.  

Learning how to make a t-shirt
Direct Results, 185 Wade St. Waynesburg PA 15370
The Hundred table at the Groundhog Breakfast
Speaking of school partners, our connection to First Exchange and Union Banks is one that I am very grateful and appreciative to have.  Both of our local banks have built a longstanding bond with our school.  This partnership was on full display at our student awards ceremony in which Amy Miller (First Exchange) and Jennifer Kolat (Union) presented the  1st and 2nd grading period students of the quarter with a monetary award.  I was also honored to recently attend the 21st annual Groundhog Day breakfast in which First Exchance celebrates all of their community partners.

Additionally, the Green Acres Exxon-Mobil Station has chosen to partner with Hundred High School as part of the Exxon-Mobil Math and Science Educational Alliance.  

Mrs. Trina Fetty has recently come on board as our community advisor for the West Virginia RAZE program, an anti-tobacco program that aims to educate high school students and involve them in tobacco free initiatives. 

RAZE students presenting information at a basketball game
Mr. Cisar poses with students who have perfect attendance
The newest member of the Wetzel County Board of Education, Mr. Aaron Cisar, has quickly made his support for our school and students evident, visiting our school and meeting with teachers as well as attending our student awards assembly.  We are happy to welcome him to our board and are excited to have him on board as a leader committed to our students. 

One thing that has recently been a huge encouragement to me has been the community involvement in our winter sports season.  It seems that every single game night we have had a packed gym full of our community members.  In addition to coming out and supporting our student athletes, I have been humbled by the generosity of our fans, who game after game support our students through donations to our half court contest and 50-50 raffle.  On so many occasions the winner of the 50-50 raffle has turned right back around and donated their split back to the school.  A special thank you is owed to those generous 50-50 winners: Kathy Moore (Twice!), Rick Kolat (Twice!), Charlie Miller, Jeanie Long, and Paul Huston. I am reminded with every game that it is agreat day to be a Hornet!  

One of many packed houses this season

Hundred in the News

In our newest section, we will look at “Hundred in the News” in which we feature any news stories that feature our school or students.  

Wetzel Chronicle, January 20th 2016, by Lauren Matthews: Hundred High School Students Lauded 

Wetzel Chronicle, January 20th 2016, Editorial: Hail Hundred High

Wetzel Chronicle, February 10th 2016, by Bruce Crawford: Moore Scores 1,000th 

Classroom Strategy of the Week

In the world in which our students will soon enter, they will be expected to synthesize and utilize skills from multiple disciplines together.  To be successful, they will need to understand and apply how each of the different concentrations they studied in school is interrelated in the complex world we live in.  The inability to successfully put these pieces together is a real struggle for our students as they enter the workforce, and a rigid school day in which each of the content areas exists as its own island serves to further this struggle.  This is why the use of cross curricular teaching and learning is such a powerful tool to show students how each thing they are learning is connected to the things they are learning in other places.  Check out the article Deeper Learning: Why Cross-Curricular Teaching is Essential from the site Edutopia.  

Article of the Week

Joshua Cowen, professor at Michigan State University and Katharine Strunk, professor at University of Southern California, discuss whether or not a “War on Teachers” has contributed to the teacher shortages currently facing our school systems.  

Video of the Week

An artist placed a giant chalkboard in the middle of New York City asking people to write their biggest regret. 

Quote of the Week

“And you ask ‘what if I fall?’ Oh but my darling, what if you fly?”

-- Poet Erin Hanson 
Upcoming Events

February 10 – LSIC Meeting – 3:30
February 10 – Academic and Athletic Boosters Meeting – 5:30
February 12 – Valentine’s Day Blood Drive – 8:30 – 2:30
February 13 – FFA Regional Competition
February 15 – Regular Board Meeting – 6:30
February 15 – Girls Basketball @ Valley JV 6:00 / Varsity 7:30
February 16 – Boys Basketball Senior Night V. Clay-Battelle and 1,000 Point Ceremony – 7:00
February 18 – Girls Basketball Senior Night V. Clay-Battelle – 7:00
February 19 – Three Hour Early Dismissal for Students
February 22 – Boys Basketball @ Valley – JV 6:00 / Varsity 7:30
March 4 – Two Hour Early Dismissal for Students
March 5 – Travel Club Basket Bingo
March 7 – Regular Board Meeting – 6:30
March 8-11 – Class Tournaments
March 16 – LSIC Meeting 3:30
March 16 – Academic and Athletic Boosters Meeting 5:30
March 21 – Regular Board Meeting/Levy Rate Determination – 6:30
March 24-28 – Spring Break
March 30 – West Virginia Dance Assembly – 1:00
April 1-2 – County Wide Art Show
April 4 – Regular Board Meeting – 6:30
April 6 – LSIC Meeting 3:30
April 6 – Academic and Athletic Boosters Meeting – 5:30
April 8 – Hundred High School Quiz Bowl – 9:30
April 9 – FFA Spring Banquet
April 18 – Regular Board Meeting – 6:30
April 22 – Spring Semester Awards Program – 9:30
April 30 – Spring Choir Concert – 7:00
May 14 – Graduation – 7:00
May 18 – LSIC Meeting - 3:30
May 18 - Academic and Athletic Boosters Meeting – 5:30

Remember to follow our school on Twitter @HundredHornets
Check us out on Instagram: HundredHornets
Visit our School Website:

Thank you for all you do as a part of our school and community.  True flight would not be possible without the contributions of all of us.  Please let me know if you have any suggestions or information you would like included in an upcoming edition of the Flight of the Hornet: 304-775-5221 or
Dan Gottron,
Principal, Hundred High School


"Trooper Comforts Children after Halloween Tragedy." 11Alive. 05 Nov. 2015. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Cowen, Joshua, and Katharine Strunk. "Did a War on Teachers Lead to New Shortages?"Education           Week. 08 Feb. 2016. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Hanson, Erin. "" Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Johnson, Ben. "Deeper Learning: Why Cross-Curricular Teaching Is Essential." Edutopia. 2013.                   Web. 12   Feb. 2016.

Mcquaid, Russ, and Amanda Rakes. "Two Men Arrested on Murder Charges in Amanda Blackburn           Investigation." Fox 59. 23 Nov. 2015. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Myatt, Mike. "The Power Of “What If” | N2Growth Blog." The Power Of “What If” | N2Growth                   Blog.      08 Feb. 2013. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Myatt, Mike. "The Power of "What IF"" Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 08 Feb. 2013. Web. 12 Feb. 2016
Niculae, Adi. "What If..." Adi Niculae RSS. 27 Oct. 2012. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Scorah, Amber. "A Baby Dies at Day Care, and a Mother Asks Why She Had to Leave Him So                    Soon." Motherlode A Baby Dies at Day Care and a Mother Asks Why She Had to Leave Him              So Soon. 15 Nov. 2015. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Venosdale, Krissy. "Venspired." Venspired. 04 Oct. 2013. Web. 12 Feb. 2016.

Friday, October 23, 2015

It's A Great Day to Be a Hornet

Volume 2 – Issue 1

Back in July,  we wrapped up the 2014-15 school year encouraging everyone to Leap Before You Look.  In the last line of that blog post, I made the observation that with everything that is taking place in our school and community that it truly is a Great Day to Be a Hornet.  With the new school year 2015-16 well under way, I would like to elaborate why it truly is a “Great Day to Be a Hornet.” 

First of all, I must confess that I have stolen the phrase from two other sources; “Badger” Bob Johnson and Alex Cairns. 

"Badger" Bob Johnson
Bob  Johnson is best known as a hockey coaching legend, but it is also fitting to mention that he had a degree in secondary education.  After a stint as a medic in the Korean War, Johnson began his life’s work as a high school history teacher and hockey coach in several Minnesota high schools. 

Johnson eventually moved on to the college level and the role that would earn him his nickname, serving as the hockey coach at University of Wisconsin from 1966-1981.  The moniker “Badger” was quickly added to reflect the school’s mascot, and he became forever known as “Badger” Bob.  Johnson found great success while at Wisconsin, leading his team to seven NCAA tournaments and winning three national championships. 

His tremendous success at the college level led to additional coaching opportunities, and he added US Olympic Coach, US National Team Coach, US Canada Cup Coach, and coach of the NHL’s Calgary Flames, as well as president of USA Hockey to his growing resume. 

All of these life experiences led him to an opportunity to coach the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1990.  Before his arrival, Pittsburgh was a franchise loaded with superstar talent, but unable to put all of the pieces together, missing the playoffs seven times in the eight years before he arrived. 

Upon taking over as head coach, “Badger” Bob instilled an instant positive atmosphere, energy, and enthusiasm to the team and city that he represented.  He was known to be intolerant of doom and gloom and did not engage those who refused to get caught up in his upbeat attitude.  Johnson always encouraged his players, prodding them to reach for greater success.  Johnson had many catch phrases symbolizing his positivity, and the one he is best known for is “It’s a Great Day for Hockey.” 
The 1991 Stanley Cup Champions

Johnson quickly endeared himself to players and fans alike and the 1990-91 season proved to be quite a magical one, concluding with the team raising the Stanley Cup as league champions.  This marked the franchises first championship and everyone in the city was riding high.

However, this euphoria was short lived as Johnson was diagnosed with brain cancer just a couple of months later.  He stepped away from his coaching duties in order to seek treatment, but his condition steadily worsened.  “Badger” Bob Johnson died on November 26th, 1991.  The next night, November 27th 1991, the team had a moving pre-game ceremony honoring “Badger” Bob, and “It’s a Great Day for Hockey” became the team’s slogan. 

While I was very young  (actually, November 27th 1991 was my 6th birthday) I remember this all very vividly.  Of course at age five or six, I had a vastly different perspective than I do now, but the one thing that was true in 1991 and remains true in 2015 is that “Badger” Bob’s intense positive outlook was able to permanetly alter an entire hockey franchise in a very short amount of time.  He knew the potential that existed in Pittsburgh and was able to establish a foundation that has made the Penguins one of the model franchises of the past twenty-five years. 

This leads me to Alex Cairns, a college Track and Cross Country teammate at Waynesburg College (now University).  Alex may not have the lengthy coaching resume or national recognition of “Badger” Bob, but he certainly has shown that he matches the positive energy. 

Alex Cairns

When we were in school, our Cross Country and Track programs were not exactly top notch, and in fact we only established a varsity Track and Field program during this time.  None of this mattered to Alex, he just wanted the opportunity to compete and represent his school, and that is exactly what he did. 

On an almost daily basis at practice, Alex would exclaim “It’s a great day to be a Yellow Jacket” as we completed our workout.  No matter the circumstance or conditions, this was his statement.  It did not matter that during our conference meet in the Spring of 2005 our entire team scored less points than one athlete from another school, it was a great day to be a Yellow Jacket. 

Since 2005, Waynesburg’s Track and Cross Country programs have had an ever increasing level of success and annually rank at or near the top of the conference standings.  While Alex graduated several years before this became a reality, his positive outlook was part of the transformation that allowed a brand new track and field program to transform into the current reality. 

All of this leads us to the current version of Hundred High School, which has many parallels to the Penguins of 1990 and the Yellow Jackets of 2005. 

When I arrived at Hundred a little over two years ago, I immediately noticed that we had a tremendous potential for success.  Our school staff, our student body, and our community had tremendous talents. 

Much like the Penguins, we had the superstar talent in place from the outset.  Much like “Badger” Bob could not have won a Stanley Cup without Mario Lemieux, I cannot pretend to be an effective school leader without the superstars that walk into our building on a daily basis.

Additionally, a positive philosophy is one that we have worked very hard to createwith our school community.  “Badger” Bob was once quoted as saying:
“There are a lot of ways to coach, you can coach from fear, when it’s ‘you do it this way or you’re gone tomorrow’, or you can develop pride in performance.”  
This pride in performance is what we are striving to establish. 

Much like the 2005 Yellow Jackets, it is our positive vision for where we are heading that will allow us to reach greater heights with each passing year.  The Yellow Jackets of 2005 had many obstacles in front of them – we did not have our own track facility, we belonged to the same confernce as several traditional powerhouses, we were a brand new program, etc. – but each of these obstacles were attacked with an energy and determination that would not be deterred.  Like these Yellow Jackets, our Hornets have faced many challenges over the past two years and will undoubtedly face more, but also like the Yellow Jackets, our Hornets attack every day with a vision, with a determination, with a resolution to be successful. 

Because of all of this, I have developed the absolute belief that TODAY is a Great Day to Be a Hornet, and TODAY there is great pride in where we are and where we are headed.  At our Local School Improvement Council (LSIC) presentation to our school board, I shared several pieces of evidence showing exactly why we believe this to be true.  I would like to share some of this information for those who did not have an opportunity to attend the meeting. 

1.) We have been fortunate to receive a tremendous amount of facilities upgrades, faculty additions, and increased resources.

Sample Student Schedules

2.) We have completely revamped our instructional bell schedule, moving from an eight period to a nine period day and adding several course options.  This has allowed our students to participate in more meaningful courses and to participate in enrichment courses called “Flex Block.”

3.) We have increased our Advanced Placement (AP) Course offerings and student enrollment in these advanced courses, with 34% of our school taking at least one AP course and many students taking multiple advanced courses. 
Advanced Placement (AP) Trends from 2013 - 2016

4.) Our Health Education Assessment Project (HEAP) Scores exceeded the state average and were the highest in our region. 

5.) Our Science Bowl Team competed in the state science bowl.  We were the smallest qualifing school, and the average enrollment of the eighteen schools we competed with was 1,009 students.

2015 State Science Bowl
6.) Our ACT scores from 2015 showed increases in English, Math, Science, and Overall Composite score.  They also exceeded the county average ACT scores in each of these categories and met the state average for science. 

ACT Trend Data 2011-2015

7.) Our student attendance from 2013-14 and 2014-15 both exceeded the state target of 93% and were our two strongest attendance years in over a decade. 

8.) A comprehensive ranking of all high schools in West Virginia ranked Hundred High School as the 28th best high school in West Virginia and the top ranked in Wetzel County. 

Parliamentary Procedures State Champions
9.) Our parliamentary procedures FFA team has won the West Virginia state championship and will be competing in the national competition.

10.) Our 2015 “Red Hat” Mining students once again produced a 100% pass rate on their 40 hour surface and 80 hour underground mining exams.

11.) Our 2015 graduates earned $250,000 in scholarships, including five students who earned the West Virginia Promise scholarship. 

9.) Our ACT plan scores from 2014-15, which project student future performance on the ACT, were .1 point below the state average and exceeded the scores of many nearby schools, including Magnolia, Valley, North Marion, and John Marshall.

10.) Our 2015 General Summative Assessment (GSA) results show that our average student scaled scores in Reading Language Arts for grades 9-11 were above the county average , with 9th and 10th grades exceeding the state average and  11th grade scoring within 5 points of the state average, while our math scale scores were above county average for grades 10 and 11, with our 11th graders exceeding the state average scale score. 

All of this leads me to believe that there is no doubt that today is a GREAT DAY TO BE A HORNET! 

Staff News

I must say that in order for it to be a Great Day to be a Hornet we need to have a committed staff that has the expertise and passion to realize the visions we have as a school.  We are very blessed right now to have outstanding teachers and a dedicated non-teaching staff that are taking our school to greater heights with each week.  We will use the staff news section to tell the stories and celebrate the achievements of our school staff. 

Mr. Kelch at the HHS Block Party
Mr. Jeremy Kelch joined our staff at the beginning of the school year as a Special Education teacher with a primary focus on Math and Science.  He is also serving as a member of our Student Support Services Focus team and our Outdoor Education program.  Jeremy is a 2004 Hundred High School graduate.  He has been a great addition to our staff and has a lot of really outstanding ideas for building our school.  We are very happy to welcome Mr. Kelch to our faculty.

Ms. Hannah Evans has also become a fixture on our staff this fall, as she is serving as the long-term substitute for Mrs. Jessica Greathouse, who is enjoying a maternity leave of absence to spend time with her family. 

Mr. Jonathan Snider marks for our third new addition, and we are very excited to have him in our building serving as a teacher’s aide. 

We have been fortunate to have two long-term substitute custodians who have done a great job for us this fall.  Mr. David King was with us throughout the summer and through most of September before taking a full time position at Magnolia High School.  Since late September, we have been fortunate to have another outstanding substitute in Mr. Steven Zajdowicz

Mrs. Lee Ann Snedden has been a member of our staff since last fall, but we are welcoming her into a new role, as she has become our media specialist.  Mrs. Snedden works with our virtual school students and also manages our school library. 

Hornets Take Flight Presentation at CFWV Summit
Mr. Dan Gottron had the opportunity to present at the College Foundation of West Virginia (CFWV) annual statewide student success summit at the Waterfront Place in Morgantown.  His presentation Hornets Take Flight, was a sequel to his Principals Leadership Academy (PLA) presentation from 2013-2014, also named Hornets Take Flight, and detailed the recent positive gains taking place at Hundred High School. 

Mrs. Sharon Snider and Mrs. Stephanie Long, teachers at Long Drain School, also had the opportunity to present at the CFWV conference about the novel units they have been utilizing in their classrooms.  It was great to see our attendance area well represented at a statewide conference. 

Mr. Rex Rush Showing off his design
Mr. Rex Rush worked very hard to organize our Hundred High School Block Party, expanding on our annual car show by adding vendors and activities to our outstanding event.  He has also been working to improve our school facilities by writing grants that have allowed us to get materials for our industrial arts, including a T-Shirt Screen Press, new equipment in the shop, and a 3-D printer. 

Mrs. Wells, Mr. Snedden, Mr. Huston, and Mrs. Longwell at MDC

Mr. Sean Snedden also made a huge contribution to our Block Party by organizing the first annual Hive Hustle 5-K Race as part of our Block Party.  In his role as a math teacher, Mr. Snedden has been actively involved in the Wetzel County contingent of the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) Math Design Collaborative (MDC) and has been planning many exciting mathematics lessons and activities. 

Mrs. Crystal Allen has been busy serving as our assistant cheerleading coach and also organizing many of our fall school activities such as our homecoming.  She has also served alongside Mr. Snedden as part of our MDC and is working to develop in her students a lifelong interest in and passion for mathematics.   

Mr. Scott Ash continues to build our agriculture program and has students competing in many different events.  He will be taking his parlementary procedures team to the national competition and has been awarded $15,000 dollars in grant money to enhance the learning opportunities for his students. 

Mr. Rik Spicher at LDC
Mr. Ryan May has worked very hard with his health education students and has seen his efforts pay off in the form of some of the highest Health Education Assessment Project (HEAP) scores in our region. 

A number of our teachers have recently jumped into a Literacy Design Collaborative (LDC) partnership with the SREB.  It has been VERY encouraging to see Ms. Stephanie Goodnight, Mrs. Bonnie McGlumphy, Mr. Kasey Sapp, Mr. Pariksit Spicher, and Mrs. Rebecca Spicher participate in this process.  They all have outstanding ideas about how to improve literacy in our school. 

Mrs. Rebecca Spicher, Ms. Stephanie Goodnight, Mr. Kasey Sapp, and Mrs. Bonnie McGlumphy at LDC

Ms. Watson leads the band
Ms. Jeanine Watson has been in full swing with the fall marching band season.  She has led her marching band students in a number of festivals this fall, and of course in our fall football season.  

Student Spotlight

First Game Against River

We have been very happy to have our Hundred Hornets football program return to the field this fall after a one year hiatus.  Led by seniors Hunter Goff, Greg Jones, Andrew King, Nicholas Kirby, Arrum Olson and Gary Zedell, the Hornet football program has proudly returned. 

Andrew King led the Hornet charge all season and finished the year with over 1,000 yards rushing.    

Taylor Fetty also deserves special recognition as part of the Hornet Football program.  She served the important and sometimes under-appreciated role of team manager and did an outstanding job. 
Debuting the Red Uniforms

Celebrating a Season Ending 41-0 Victory Over Lincoln

Andrew and Greg Enjoying the Victory

Our Awesome Football Manager Taylor Fetty
Our Seniors

The 2015-16 Hundred Hornets

Leading Our First Pep Rally of the Year

Our Cheerleaders

Our cheerleaders have very much appreciated the return of our football program, as it has given them a LOT to cheer about this fall.  Our cheerleaders are led by four seniors Kathy Cork, Ashley Miller, Meliah Umstead, and Mady Wheeler

The Girls of Fall
Small School, Big Sound

The Hundred Hornet Marching Band has been making their presence known with an impressive sound as they have traveled to a number of marching festivals and also performing at our football games.  The band has earned several awards this fall.  At the Sistersville Festival, they earned silver recognition in parade and a bronze in field for their percussion, auxiliary, and field commander.  The also took 2nd place at the annual Buckwheat festival.  At the Ripley Vikingfest, which included bands from 22 different schools, our Marching Hornets represented as the only 6th – 12th grade band against high school only bands, taking 5th place in their division. 

The Best Halftime Show Around
The Award Winning Hundred-Long Drain Marching Hornets

The Fight Song has become a Post Game Tradition
Our Hornets volleyball program is having another great season, and their senior class of Kaitlyn Kuhn, Josie Phillips, Miranda Phillips, Meliah Umstead, and Madysen Wheeler have led the charge into regular season and tournament play. 

Talking Strategy

Celebrating the Point

Our Volleyball Seniors

Hundred High School Senior Holden Moore attended the West Virginia State Police Junior Academy and got to spend a week learning what it would take to be a State Trooper
Holden Moore at the Junior State Police Academy

Our FFA President Holden Moore
2015-16 FFA Officers

Our FFA students have started off the year on the right foot, getting a 
lot of positive recognition and participating in events such as the Regional FFA meeting and the Career Developments Events Program.  Our FFA is led by their incredible chapter officers:  Holden Moore - President; Meliah Umstead - Vice President; Emily Rine – Secretary; Madysen Wheeler – Treasurer; Hailey Eastham – Reporter; Annie Fox – Sentinel; Ashley Miller – Parliamentarian; Kaitlyn Kuhn – Historian; and Valerie Soles – Chaplain.  Several of our FFA officers addressed the school board at our LSIC meeting. 

Our FFA Sentinel Annie Fox

Our FFA Secretary Emily Rine
Our FFA Parliamentarian Ashley Miller 
Mr. Ash with his FFA Students

 We are also very proud that our Freshmen FFA Quiz Bowl Team took 2nd place at the regional meeting, and Victoria Hawkins took 2nd place and Brandon Rine took 3rd place in the individual competition

In the biggest of the FFA news, our FFA Parliamentary Procedures state champion team will compete at the national level later this month

Congratulations to Emily Rine for being accepted to Fairmont State University and to Madysen Wheeler for being accepted into the music program at West Liberty University

On September 18th, we held our homecoming football game.  It was wonderful to see football return, and we were very appreciative of Cameron traveling over here during their bye week to allow us to host a proper Friday night homecoming.

The 2015 Hundred High School Homecoming Court

 The 2015 Hundred High School homecoming court consisted of freshmen Andrew Zedell and Katherine Henderson, sophomores Andrew Howell and Makayla Postlethwaite, and juniors Tyler Norris and Valerie Soles.  Our senior queen candidates included Kaitlyn Kuhn, Ashley Miller, Samantha Opyoke, Josie Phillips, and Madysen Wheeler, while the king candidates included Dustin Adams, Derek Crihfield, and Jordan Tustin.  Each class also proudly displayed their class banners during the homecoming parade.  At halftime of our homecoming game, we crowned our 2015 homecoming queen Samantha Opyoke and king Dustin Adams

The Freshmen Banner and Freshmen Representative Katherine Henderson

The Sophomore Banner and Sophomore Representative Makayla Postlethwaite
The Junior Banner and Junior Representative Valerie Soles

The Senior Banner
King Candidates Dustin Adams, Derek Crihfield, and Jordan Tustin
Queen Candidate Kaitlyn Kuhn

Queen Candidate Ashley Miller

Queen Candidate Josie Phillips
Queen Candidate Samantha Opyoke
Queen Candidate Madysen Wheeler

King Dustin Adams and Queen Samantha Opyoke

Andrew and Meliah address the student body
Andrew Address the School Board
Andrew King and Meliah Umstead had the opportunity to show off their leadership skills and share their vision with the student body as they were our two candidates for student body president.  As elected president, Andrew King also had the opportunity to speak before the school board at our LSIC board meeting and to travel to Long Drain  school dressed as “safety pup.”

Safety Pup

Alumni Connection

Class of 2014 Hundred High School alumni Peyton Jones and Rocky Tennant received an extremely high honor, as both will bestowed with the FFA American Degree at the 2015 national convention. 

Looking Good in Red thanks to a generous alumnus
An Alumni donor stepped forward and donated our new all red football jerseys.  The donor has asked to remain anonymous, but we wanted to give this generous donor our great thanks.  The jerseys look incredible! 

Class of 1965 Senior Portraits
The Hundred-Littleton Alumni Association held their annual banquet on October 3rd.  The event was very well attended as always, and the Class of 1965 received special recognition for their 50th anniversary of high school graduation.  Additionally, Our inaugural recipients of the distinguished alumni award, Dr. Carl Long (1956), Dr. Emily McDowell (1952), and Dr. Wilbur Sine (1965), received special recognition for their accomplishments.  Mr. Jim McGlumphy (1973) was recognized for his more than 25 years of service as president of the alumni association.  Allie Hayes (2015) and Victoria Stevens (2015), the class of 2015 alumni scholarship recipients, both provided updates on their post high school education.  Allie is attending the radiology program at United Hospital Center in Clarksburg and Victoria is attending Fairmont State University.  

Class of 1965 Memories
Some Alumni enjoy the evening

A great night for all our past HHS graduates
Many great memories were shared

So much to celebrate

Mr. Gottron was happy to be part of the evening
Dr. Carl Long addresses the alumni body
Allie and Victoria, two of our newest alumni

Dr. Sine addresses the alumni body
Mr. McGlumphy, 25+ years as alumni association president

Community Involvement

Shaun Kuhn paced the field
We kicked off the school year with our annual Hundred High School Car Show.  This year we expanded the car show into a Block Party and held the first annual Hive Hustle 5-K.  Mr. Shaun Kuhn took top honors as the winner of the inaugural race.  The Block Party was highlighted by a number of different community vendors and partners and was a great event for our school and community. 
The Race is On

Sophomore Alexis Bragg served up refreshments at open house
We held our annual fall open house on September 9th.  Thank you to all who came out to take part, and thank you to Mrs. Denise Huggins and her foods classes as well as Mrs. Beverly Van Scyoc for contributing the refreshments for the open house. 

Mr. Gottron Addresses the Board 
September 21st marked our LSIC school board presentation at Long Drain School.  Mr. Paul Huston and his staff proved to be excellent hosts, and the board members enjoyed some refreshments provided by Mrs. Denise Huggins and her students.  The meeting had a very large and supportive community turnout and the school vision was with those in attendance.  Check out the presentation here if you were unable to attend.  

The refreshments courtesy of Mrs. Huggins's food class

We are very grateful for those in our community that make our fall sports and activities possible.  We are especially thankful for our fall coaches.  Ms. Diana Wheeler, Head Cheer-leading Coach, Mr. Greg Hostutler, Head Football Coach, Jim McGlumphy and Shayne Minor, Assistant Football Coaches, Candy Watson, Athletic Trainer, Terry Ritter, Head Volleyball Coach, and Roger Tustin, Assistant Volleyball Coach.  
Our Football Coaches

Our Volleyball Coaches

Classroom Strategy of the Week

Meeting of the Minds
The strategy of the week for this week comes courtesy of Mr. Kasey Sapp.  In his Advanced Placement United States History class, the students took on the roles of significant figures from the American Revolution and held a “Meeting of the Minds” in which they discussed their perspective on the events leading up to and during the revolution. 

Airadeea Williams as Thomas Jefferson

Libbie Baker as King George III

Miranda Gray as Benjamin Franklin

Rachel Watson as Martha Washington

Article of the Week

High school teacher Andrew Simmons discusses Seven Things HeWishes People Understood About Being a Teacher 

Video of the Week

Not education related, but very much related to this week’s post, and just very awesome period.  The Civic Arena tribute to “Badger” Bob Johnson from November 27th, 1991.  

Quote of the Week

“There are a lot of ways to coach, you can coach from fear, when it’s ‘you do it this way or you’re gone tomorrow’, or you can develop pride in performance" – “Badger” Bob Johnson.  

Upcoming Events

October 24 - Volleyball @ Weir High Tournament – TBD
October 24 - Ohio Valley Athletic Competition (OVAC) Band Competition – TBD
October 26-31 – “Red Ribbon” Week for Drug Abuse Awareness and Education
October 27 – Volleyball @ Beallsville – 5:30PM
October 29 – Wetzel County Sheriff’s Department Drug Court Presentation – 9:00AM
October 30 – Hundred High School Fall Blood Drive – 8:00AM – 4:00PM
November 2-7 – Volleyball Sectional Tournament – TBD
November 2 – Board Meeting @ New Martinsville School – 6:30 PM
November 4 – Holocaust Assembly with Guest Speaker Marion Blumenthal Lazan – 1:00 PM
November 6 – Veterans Day Assembly – TBD
November 10 – Wheeling Nailers Education Day – 10:30 AM
November 14 – Junior Class Bingo Fundraiser – 10:00 AM
November 16 – 20 – Bullying Awareness Week
November 16 – Board Meeting @ Board Office – 6:30 PM
November 18 – Local School Improvement Council Meeting @ HHS  – 3:30 PM
November 20 – Three Hour Early Dismissal – Dismiss at 12:15 PM
November 20 – Second Nine Weeks Midterm
November 23-27 – Thanksgiving Break

Remember to follow our school on Twitter @HundredHornets 
and Instagram: HundredHornets

Thank you for all you do as a part of our school and community.  True flight would not be possible without the contributions of all of us.  Please let me know if you have any suggestions or information you would like included in an upcoming edition of the Flight of the Hornet: 304-775-5221 or

Dan Gottron,
Principal, Hundred High School


"It's a Great Day for Hockey: Remembering "Badger" Bob Johnson." Bleacher Report. 22 July 2008. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

"Pittsburgh Penguins." Pinterest. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Simmons, Andrew. "7 Things I Wish People Understood about Being a Teacher." Vox. 29 July 2015. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

"Twitter." Https:// Twitter. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

"Waynesburg Athletics." Waynesburg Athletics. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Yannis, Alex. "Bob Johnson, Top Hockey Coach In Pros and College, Is Dead at 60."The New York Times. The New York Times, 26 Nov. 1991. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.

Zellers, Ted, Justin Cherok, and Eric Fleming. "History of the Penguins." NHL Awards and Trophies. Web. 23 Oct. 2015.