The Raptor – November 2018

THE RAPTOR | Issue 10-4

The Raptor




Veterans Day Tradition

by Staff

When one looks at the program for the annual Veterans Day program at North Fayette Valley High School, they will notice that a program recognizing the Armistice that ended World War I and honors military veterans has been held at this school for 57 years.  While it is not unique among high schools in Iowa to hold this observance, few have been doing this for as long.  This year the annual observance will be held on the designated Federal holiday, Monday, November 12, starting at 10:00 a.m. in the Performing Arts Center.  The community is invited to attend.

At NFVHS, the senior class has traditionally been responsible for putting together and delivering the program.  This year, the local chapter of the National Honor Society is taking a leadership role as well.  Senior government teacher Cassie Gruman and National Honor Society sponsor Molli Steffens provide guidance to the students as they plan and prepare the ceremony.  The program serves a dual purpose.  It is a way for us to honor and recognize those from our communities who have served in the military for our great nation.  It also serves as an educational opportunity that is important for our students.

Veterans Day coincides with other holidays, such as Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, celebrated in other countries that mark the anniversary of the end of World War I in 1918.  Hostilities were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month and have been celebrated ever since.  On what was originally called Armistice Day in the United States, President Woodrow Wilson marked the first anniversary in 1919.  In 1926 Congress asked President Calvin Coolidge to issue an official proclamation calling for an official observance.  In the United States the holiday was officially changed to Veterans Day in 1954.


Principal’s Pen

Each month NFVHS Principal Todd Wolverton shares his thoughts on a variety of topics, most of them having to do with school!

TigerHawk Logo Trademarked

Hey Mr. Clark!

School counselor Bill Clark shares pertinent information relative to the academic, social, and emotional needs of our students.

It’s Social: How To Monitor Your Kids Online

by Staff

In a recent study of teens about their online activity, 43% said they would change their behavior if they knew their parents were watching them.  That being the case, it is important that parents monitor their child’s use, which is done best by not being overly intrusive.  Many parents feel they do not have the skills and knowledge their kids have when it comes to navigating this world, but the reality is that they can learn how to live in that world very quickly by using online resources.  One resource is the Parent App Guide provided by at

Experts identify three tips for parents:

  1. Use the same apps as your teen — Using the app is the best way to learn and gives you a perspective as to what your kids are doing.  When you understand and use them it will give you a much better idea on how to limit and monitor use.
  2. Work with your kids to develop a purpose on social media — Determine with your child what they want to be known for online.  What do they want their digital footprint for future employers and college admissions officers to be.
  3. Help your student develop a healthy relationships with social media through discussion — Talk with your child about the impact social media can have on their health and well being.
Students participating in recreational activity


It’s Social is focused different aspects of social media and the digital world that our students live in. Information shared here will come from a variety of sources, and each one will be cited so you can find out more information.


1 Early Dismissal
1 Parent/Teacher Conferences
7 Early Dismissal for PD
7 9th Graders at Teen Maze
7 Athletic Booster Club Meeting
9 Fall Play The Princess Diaries
10 Fall Play The Princess Diaries
11 Fall Play The Princess Diaries
12 Veterans Day Program
12 NFV Board Meeting
14 Early Dismissal for PD
15 All-State Music Festival
16 All-State Music Festival
17 All-State Music Festival
19 Parent Advisory Meeting
21 Early Dismissal for Holiday
28 Early Dismissal for PD
29 State Drill Team Contest

Thanksgiving Giving

by Staff

What started out as part of an idea for a cross curricular project between our CTE programs has turned in to a very positive experience for a number of our students.  A couple of years ago the Chicken Shack project was started by students at NFV, building a coop, raising chickens and preparing meals using the birds.  A decision was also made to include a few turkeys and then use them for meals for people who otherwise may not have Thanksgiving dinner.  When word of this spread among others at NFVHS, other people started asking what they could do to help out and started offering to contribute other food items.  Others volunteered to help with the meal preparation and delivery of the meals.  This has basically become an effort of a number of student clubs and other volunteers who want to do something to have a positive impact on the lives of others.  On Wednesday when school is dismissed for the Thanksgiving break, a small army of students and adult volunteers will be here in the kitchen and cafeteria putting meals together to make Thanksgiving better for others!


PLC 1 2018 104

PLC Conference

Four teachers and one principal attended a regional PLC Conference in Des Moines to improve their skills.

Students Community Service

Serving the Community

Sophomores helping the community with some service during homecoming week.


Adults with mental illness


43.8 million adults age 18 or older experience mental illness in a give year.

Youth with a mental health condition


The rate of youth with a Major Depressive Episode has increased to 12.63% in the U.S.


Serious mental illness costs workers in the  United States $193.2 billion a year in lost earnings.

Boss's Day 2018

Principal’s Pen

by Todd F. Wolverton

We have had some very good things happen for us in the past few weeks at NFVHS that I want to shed a little bit of light on.  One of the really neat things that has happened is that we had a story appear in a popular state-wide magazine.  Our school received some very good publicity from Iowa Farmer Today in a recent edition.  Search for Students and teachers agree consolidation was right move and October 12, 2018 and you should be able to find it.  In addition to a very good story about our “new” school, there are some good pictures of some of our students and other individuals you will recognize.  I have been asked by other principals, educators, and community members from other parts of the state about our sharing and consolidation and my standard reply is that we could not have asked for a better process and experience.  We did it the right way and I am so proud of the people in our communities, especially the students who have made this work.  When I say Proud to Be NFV, I mean it.  We have a special place where there are high expectations for our students and challenges to prepare them to be the best they can be. 

We also are just finishing up our exchange with students from Uberlingen Gymnasium from Germany.  What a great group of young people!  Just as important, I am very pleased by the hospitality provided by our students and their families.  Herr Borde and Frau Gimminder have been very complimentary of our students and the experiences their students have had on this trip.  This exchange is one of the things that I truly believe makes NFVHS great!  Yes, there are other schools in Iowa that have an exchange similar to our’s, but none as small as us and certainly none have been doing it as long as we have.  I will repeat what I have a number of times before, we offer a number of trips, but none gives the student more for their money than the trip to Germany.  If you are reading this and have a student who is currently a 9th grader, or one that is in 8th grade, stay tuned for announcements about the next exchange as your kids will be eligible to apply.

I also want to point out a few kids who have done some great things.  Nathan and Davan Crooker were able to walk across the big stage and the National FFA Conference to be honored for their 2nd Place Agri Science project.  That's big stuff on a national level!  Congratulations to them!  We had some very talented musicians for All-State and Ava Hutchinson was selected as a member of the chorus.  This is an elite group of vocalists and one of the most challenging groups to audition for in the state.  Chandler Douglas was one of four NFV students who qualified for the state cross country meet this year, and placed 9th in a competitive class 2A boys race, the best performance for an NFV boys runner since 2015. 

I am going to segue into an issue that  apparently needs some explanation.  I have had this conversation with a number of people, but not a mass audience.  We have been questioned as to why we don’t hang banners or posters of senior athletes in the gym or at the sports complex.  There are a few reasons.  First and foremost, we have a fundamental belief of Team Before Me.  All of our athletic programs are team sports.  Our coaches believe in the fundamental philosophy of sacrificing individual wants and desires for the good of the team.  “It is not about me, it’s about we.”  Putting individuals pictures up on the wall takes away from that.  We have no problem putting pictures of the whole team on the wall, but not a few members.  Team is everyone, not just some.

Banners are associated with honor.  Teams raise championship banners into the rafters when they win championships.  Being a senior is not an honor.  Being a senior means a person has spent twelve years in school.  We already have a strong sense of entitlement assumed by members of the senior class in this school, something we have been trying to resolve for a number of years with marginal success.  Putting big pictures up on the wall only reinforces that.  Also, what if the best player on the team is a junior.  Why doesn’t that player have her picture on a big banner?  Because she’s a year younger? 

When we put large pictures of people on the wall generally speaking we consider those people role models.  There have been some people suggest that all the seniors have banners of themselves on the walls in the elementary building because they can serve to motivate and inspire younger students because they are role models.  Just being a senior does not make them a role model.  We do have some outstanding students in our school that are positive role models, but not just because they are a senior.

By the same token we do have some individuals who do incredible things, and we are very proud of them, as I mentioned a few paragraphs back.  I believe we do need to celebrate major accomplishments, and recognize that we need to do a better job of doing that.  We are working to put some things in place to honor individual excellence that we hope to have in place soon.  We are in a transition phase right now, starting a new legacy as NFV.  It won’t be long until you start seeing things to honor our history.

TigerHawk Talk

By Ron Imoehl, Activities Director

We are at the first transition period between seasons at NFVHS.  All of our fall sports teams have finished their seasons, marching band has had its last event and chorus students have participated in the conference festival, put on a concert, and saw some members audition for all-state.  FFA members just got back from their national conference.  Fall is a busy time, but now gives way to the winter season.  So what’s on deck!

Things are kicking off with the fall play as noted elsewhere in this newsletter.  Drill team has competed in one event and has a couple of others coming up in the next few weeks.  Basketball, bowling, and wrestling are all ready to get underway.  Both the band and choir have started putting together music for their winter concert.  Jazz band and jazz choir have started rehearsing, and it won’t be long before large group speech starts.  We have a lot going on and we hope that you will find the time to come out and support our students!

TigerHawk Cross Country Runner with Coach


TigerHawk Talk is dedicated to providing information about the activity program at NFVHS.


Hey, Mr. Clark!

by Bill Clark, School Counselor

This is the second of a three part series of articles on why our kids are so anxious.  This comes from the Linda Stade Educaton Blog.

Part I of this series started off by discussing four reasons why our kids today are so anxious.  These four reasons are anxiety, social media, body image, and being raised on praise.  Today we look at a few more reasons.


Children are highly scheduled from a young age. Santa Maria College Psychologist, Jane Carmignani, cites a lack of play as one of the reasons for our children’s anxiety. While we are desperately pushing kids to reach milestones in reading, motor skills and social outcomes, we have forgotten about the natural development that comes with play. In play, children learn to resolve conflict, regulate their emotions, socialise and make decisions. They are receiving ‘real world’ feedback and they are learning that they have an impact on their world. When we take them away from this developmental play, we deprive them of coping skills that will help them in an ever-changing world. Skills that will make them feel safe and protect them from anxiety.


There are two extremes in parenting that cause attachment issues that can lead to anxiety.  First, there are the helicopter parents who constantly hover over their children keeping them out of harm’s way. They are the ‘no, no, no’ parents who don’t let their children take safe risks and establish their own boundaries. For these children, the only safe place is with Mum and Dad. They have not been given the confidence to safely explore their world and learn all the skills that help them cope with challenges.

Insecure attachment is created when children are pushed out into the world prematurely. While aiming to give their children a head start in the world and ‘toughening them up’, parents sometimes create fear. In trying to get children to meet milestones they miss signals of need. It is okay for kids to need their parents. Developing and maintaining strong attachment is a protective factor against anxiety.

There is no doubt that it can be hard to get the balance right. And as I said before, nobody intends to create anxiety in his or her child.


The internet allows us access to the news at all times. Television competes with this by having hourly news bulletins and ‘Breaking News’ cutting into programmed shows. That is a lot of time and space to fill with news. As there really is only a limited amount of real news content in any one day, news agencies have to create sensation and drama. Unfortunately, this dramatic, 24-hour exposure to disaster and mayhem has created a real culture of fear. When I was a kid, the news was on at 7pm. If you missed it, you missed it. The other 23 ½ hours a day were about friends, family, hobbies and school. It was actually quite difficult to be afraid of the world back then. There is no doubt this culture of doom is affecting our kids.

Coming next month are a number of ways that you as a parent can help your child with anxiety.  We are seeing more students display anxious behavior at school.  We encourage you to have regular conversation with your son or daughter about school, as well as other aspects of their life.


FFA National Convention.

Davan and Nathan Crooker honored for their Agri Science project at the FFA National Convention.

Cross Country Qualifiers

State Cross Country qualifiers and coaches.  Chandler Douglas placed 9th at the state meet.


The TigerHawks on state-wide and regional television vs. Waverley-Shell Rock to open the season!

Princess Bride on stage at NFVHS Nov. 9-11

by Staff

“Torture, miracles, sword fights, and blood tonight!”  This fall's Drama production is an adaptation of the book "The Princess Bride", a comedy by William Goldman, published by Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich.  We have a heroine, Buttercup, her farmhand, Westley, a Spaniard named Inigo, a giant named Fezzik, and Vezzini who finds all things "Inconceivable".   Inigo needs revenge, Prince Humperdinck needs a war with Guilder, and Buttercup needs Westley. 

Questions:  Will Prince Humperdinck really marry Buttercup?  Is Westley only mostly dead?  Will Inigo get revenge on the six-fingered man?  What is "twwoo wuv" and is Fezzik really good at poetry?  There's only one way to find out...for a paltry sum of $6 and a trip into the miraculous world of "The Princess Bride"!  

You can join us November 9 and 10 at 7:30 PM and/or November 11 at 2 PM at the North Fayette Valley Performing Arts Center.  We look forward to an outstanding show with some very talented young people at NFV!

North Fayette Valley High School Staff

Administration and Guidance

Todd Wolverton - Principal
Bill Clark - School Counselor
Ron Imoehl - Liaison
Robin Albert - Secretary
Barb Schroeder - Secretary
Stephanie Wagner - Nurse
Cassie Peterson - Interventionist

Downtown Academy

Brent Kuker - Teacher
Jacob Pedersen - Interventionist
Antwyan Cullar - Associate
Debbie Ruroden - Associate


Neal Bentley, Garrett Crandall, Megan DeBack, Stephanie Ellis, Darcy Einck, Tim Feldman, Cassie Gruman, Kathy Hageman, Elaine Hanson, Kyle Harms, Cyndy Hinton, Molly Holthaus, Ryan Holthaus, Dan  Hovden, Amy Ihde, Kelli Kovarik, Matt Krambeer, Jon Kullen, Bob Lape, Brooke Lodge, Julianne Meyer, Tracy Nuss, Sarah Pisney, Kayla Pollock, Ted Schacherer, Molli Steffens, Kari Straube, Rachael Strong, Denice Vandersee


Tina Bodensteiner
Bonnie Fisher
Krystal Gronowski
Michelle Hurlbut
Donna Kasel
Bobbi Jo Koch
Sarah Lerch
Shanda Miller
Christy Radloff
Melissa Schupbach
Amanda Turner
Elise Vandersee
Janeane Vorwald