Don't miss out on news and information from Joplin Schools!
May 2, 2016
Stapleton Elementary's Caryn Deckard named Golden Apple Award winner

Stapleton Elementary special education teacher Caryn Deckard was named a Golden Apple Award winner in the grades 3-5 category at the Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce annual banquet held April 21. 

The Golden Apple Awards recognize excellence in the teaching profession among Joplin public and private school educators. Eighty-three teachers from Joplin public and private schools were nominated by students, parents, and coworkers.

Thank you Caryn for your dedication to Joplin students and for representing Joplin Schools so well!
FTC SkillsUSA chapter earns national excellence award, students heading to national competition

Franklin Technology Center's SkillsUSA chapter was recently named one of the top 24 chapters in the nation, earning a GOLD Chapter of Excellence award. This award qualifies the leadership team to attend the national competition in Louisville, Kentucky, this June.

In addition, several FTC students earned medals at the state competition, with several students qualifying for nationals. Overall, students earned 14 medals and 20 out of 33 competitors placed in the top ten in the state. Students also earned scholarships and were awarded tools for their industry amounting to more than $40,000.

Congratulations to our students and SkillsUSA lead adviser Deonna Anderson and co-adviser John Rutledge and classroom advisers Jennifer Barksdale, Steven Bradfield, Heather Coble, Lorin Curtis, Doug Donnel, Karen Essley, Edie Harrison, Dave Noah, Marc Smallwood, and Dr. Tom Strait!

Leadership and Skills:
  • 1st Place: Klayton Richardson, Job Skills Demonstration, Webb City High School (sending school), qualified for nationals
  • 1st Place: Ethan Fannan, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning, Joplin High School, qualified for nationals
  • 1st Place: Tanner Fienen, Collision Repair Technology, Sarcoxie High School (sending school), qualified for nationals
  • 1st Place: Meagan Martucci, Architectural Drafting Technical Information  Joplin High School
  • 2nd Place: Meagan Martucci, Technical Spelling, Joplin High School
  • 2nd Place: Maverick Mai, Extemporaneous Speaking, Joplin High School
  • 2nd Place: Wayne York, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technical Information, Joplin High School
  • 2nd Place: Madison Garrison, Commercial Baking, Sarcoxie High School (sending school)
  • 2nd Place: Spencer Fields, Collision Repair Technology, Joplin High School
  • 3rd Place: Dakota Osborn, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning, Joplin High School
Technical Information:
  • 3rd Place: Brynn Blotter, Samantha Dorsey, Natalie Eudy, Jacy Welch, Health Knowledge Bowl, Joplin High School
Board of Education April 26 meeting update

Joplin Schools Board of Education met for its regular meeting at 7 p.m. April 26. 

Highlights from the meeting:
  • Dr. Ridder will share superintendent search options at the next Board of Education meeting. The board indicated that they hoped to make a decision on the new superintendent by December 2016. They also indicated that they were interested in a national search and establishing a committee made up of a variety of stakeholders to participate in the superintendent selection.  
  • Joplin Area Chamber of Commerce President Rob O'Brian spoke on behalf of the chamber board of directors in support of the district's new strategic plan. Read his comments under President's Message, page 3.
  • Representatives from Joplin Schools' employee health insurance committee presented their recommended plan, based on feedback from employees across the district. The board will vote on the employee health insurance plan at an upcoming meeting. The new health insurance plan year begins Oct. 1, 2016. View their report.  View supporting documents.
  • The capital outlay budget for the 2016-2017 school year was approved. View the planned projects.
  • The board approved a funds transfer up to $650,000 from the district's unrestricted operating fund balance to the internal fund for employee health benefits to attempt to solve the funding gap between the expected level of total annual claims and actual claims (which are exceeding the expected level). Learn more.   
  • The board approved a bid for $654,000 from contractor Dalton-Killinger for renovations at Columbia and West Central elementary schools including restroom remodel, interior paint, and carpet at both schools, sidewalks at Columbia, and concrete foundations to support playground rubber fall protection at Columbia, West Central, Stapleton, and Eastmorland elementary schools. Learn more.
  • The board approved a bid from SchoolMessenger for $26,950 per year for three years to provide the district with website services, a district mobile application, and school notification system. The new website and mobile app should be complete by the start of the 2016-2017 school year. Learn more.

View the meeting:

All-Missouri Page Design - "Destination World" Matt McMullen
JHS Spyglass and Joplinmo Yearbook staff earn Missouri Interscholastic Press Association awards 

Congratulations to our Spyglass and Joplinmo Yearbook staff and their adviser and JHS instructor Mary Crane! They recently earned numerous awards from the Missouri Interscholastic Press Association. 
Recognition is awarded using the following levels: All Missouri (the highest award), Superior, Excellent, and Honorable Mention.

All Missouri:  
All-Missouri Sports Feature Photo - "Maroon Madness" Halli Robinson

All-Missouri Sports Feature Photo - "Pride Speaks Louder Than Words" Payton Ledford
  • Matt McMullen, Page Design, Destination World
  • Halli Robinson, Sports Feature Photo
  • Payton Ledford, Sports Feature Photo
  • Meagan Martucci, Cartoon/Art/Infographic
  • Matt McMullen, Page Design, Miracle League
  • Shelby Witzman, Academic Photo
  • Kathleen Hughes, Feature Writing
  • Emma Thompson & Jennifer Nguyen,News Story
  • Shelby Witzman, Academic Photo
  • Sarah Peterson, Feature Writing
Honorable Mention: 
  • Carsen Steele, Organizations Design
  • Hailey Newell, Organizations Design
  • Emma Simon, Reference Page Design
  • Shelby Witzman, Reference Page

    All-Missouri Cartoon - "Media Bias" Meagan Martucci

     Design and Yearbook Theme/Concept
  • William Henness, Feature Writing
  • Gil Salgado, Online Photography
  • Payton Ledford, Yearbook Photography
Joplin Schools to join the Central Ozark Conference

Joplin Schools is excited to share that the Central Ozark Conference Board of Superintendents voted on April 15 to give final approval to Joplin's request for membership in the large division of the COC for all sports and activities effective in the 2018-2019 school year.

The large school division of the COC currently includes the area school districts of Carl Junction, Carthage, Neosho and Webb City. It also includes the regional districts of Branson, Nixa, Ozark, Republic, and Willard.

Joplin Schools submitted its application last fall. As part of the application process, the COC superintendents granted their executive committee of conference principals and athletic directors the approval to review the application. This review included research about the district, site visits, and interviews. Following the review, the executive committee made a recommendation for approval to the COC superintendents. Final approval by the COC superintendents came April 15 after a two-month waiting period allowing COC superintendents to seek consensus regarding the approval from their boards of education.

"We are grateful and excited to be accepted into the COC. This approval not only enables Joplin Schools to renew local rivalries in all sports and strengthen our programs to meet the level of competition in the COC, it will also lessen travel time and increase learning time for our students and provide cost savings related to travel. This ties directly to the goals in our new district strategic plan," noted Joplin Schools Athletic Director Jeff Starkweather. "We have had a great relationship with the Ozark Conference and look forward to competing in that conference through the 2017-2018 school year."
Joplin High School/Franklin Technology Center earns national design award

LEARNING BY DESIGN, a publication showcasing the nation's best education design and construction projects, recently recognized Joplin High School/Franklin Technology Center and architects Corner Greer and Associates and DLR Group with a Citation of Excellence award. JHS/FTC was one of 13 projects out of 58 submitted projects to earn the spring 2016 awards. Projects were evaluated for being functionally designed to meet the educational program, supporting and enhancing 21st century learning, reflecting the needs of the community it supports, for innovation in architecture and interior design, and by helping to reduce the carbon footprint by adopting sustainable design measures.

Community News Share: Joplin Proud Events

In May 2016, the community will mark five years since the devastating EF-5 tornado that tore through Joplin and Duquesne. To honor this, community volunteers announce Joplin Proud - several days of events leading up to the May 22 anniversary to remember what was lost, thank the volunteers who came to the community's aid, and share pride in the progress made. Events include children's activities, a disaster recovery summit, pet reunion, community beautification project, concert at the JHS Performing Arts Center, and much more!

Meet Joplin Schools' Eagle of the Week

This weekly honor recognizes Joplin Schools' employees who demonstrate the qualities and behaviors that benefit the day-to-day operations of the district and promote student success. Joplin Schools' employees, parents, and community members can nominate a Joplin Schools' staff member for this recognition.  

Joplin Schools Eagle Minute brought to you by:
May 10
Board of Education Work Session
6 p.m.
Memorial Education Center

May 11
Last day of school - half day

May 22
2 p.m.
Missouri Southern State University

May 23
Summer School begins

May 24
Board of Education Regular Meeting
7 p.m.
Memorial Education Center

We hope you enjoyed this issue of the Eagle Minute. If there are specific topics you would like to see covered, please email your suggestions to