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LSHS Band Program hosting mattress sale fundraiser Sept. 20

The Lee’s Summit High School Band Program will host a one-day mattress sale fundraiser from 10 a.m. sp Mattress Sale Artto 5 p.m. Sept. 20 at the school. More than 20 brand-name mattress floor models will be on display.  All beds are brand new, manufactured to order, available in all sizes and have factory warranties.

In addition, the event will include pillows, mattress protectors, frames and adjustable bases. Unlike most fundraisers, the products are priced less than retail stores because of the company’s unique business model. All forms of payment will be accepted, including layaway.

Cedar Creek Elementary creates sensory garden thanks to volunteers

Cedar Creek Elementary has a new sensory garden thanks to volunteers. The garden was created during the summer by Kohls Cares volunteers from the Lee’s Summit store, PTA President Angela Fite and other PTA volunteers as well as life skills teachers at Cedar Creek. The collaborative effort resulted in a garden that is used by all students. The sensory garden serves as a place for students to visit when they need a quiet place to regroup. Students will also help care for the garden by helping water, prune and maintain the flowers.

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Amy Krinke of LS R-7 named finalist for Missouri Teacher of the Year

LSWHS music teacher named R-7 Teacher of the Year in April

Amy Krinke, Lee’s Summit West High School director of choirs and R-7 School District 2015-16 Teacher ag Amy Krinke Portraitof the Year, was named one six finalists for Missouri Teacher of the Year on Aug. 25. She will participate in an interview with a state selection committee on Sept. 14 with the state’s Teacher of the Year being named later that month.

Mrs. Krinke was named R-7 Teacher of the Year during a surprise announcement April 2 at a community-wide reception, sponsored by the school district and the Lee’s Summit Chamber of Commerce. She was selected as the district’s Teacher of the Year by a committee composed of R-7 staff and representatives from the Chamber of Commerce and the community.

At the school district’s All-District Convocation, held Aug. 13, Mrs. Krinke was a featured speaker, sharing an inspirational message with employees from throughout Lee’s Summit R-7.

Through the Missouri Teacher of the Year program, teachers representing their school district submit a nomination packet for Missouri Teacher of the Year.  

Mrs. Krinke has been an educator for 16 years, including seven years with the Lee’s Summit R-7 School District. Mrs. Krinke has refined the music literacy program for each choir class at Lee’s Summit West High School to develop fundamental music literacy skills through daily sight-singing and audiation. Her choirs have performed nationally including in Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C.

“I believe deeply in the value of music as a tool for self-expression and personal growth.  I want my students to feel and understand the inspirational sources of the music as well as give them the technical foundations to bring music to life for themselves and for others. I strive to show students how to draw parallels between music, their life experiences and their prior learning,” said Mrs. Krinke.  

“Music provides opportunities for expression in real time with real human interaction. This connects the students in a unique way, giving them powerful tools for understanding human experiences and learning to communicate with each other and the changing world around them.”

In nomination forms, Mrs. Krinke was praised for her caring attitude towards her students and for assisting them to enhance their musical knowledge.

“Mrs. Krinke’s love for her students is obvious to all around her. She expresses this love through her caring, positivity, enthusiasm and through a great deal of hard work. She holds her students to high standards, but ensures that they hold her to high standards as well, and she continuously works to develop her skills as a teacher and mentor.”

At Lee’s Summit West High School, Mrs. Krinke serves as lead teacher and chair for the Music Department. She has previously served on the district’s curriculum writing team. She makes it a priority to provide opportunities for her choral students to support community organizations, whether organizing a food drive or performing at a retirement community.

In the community, Mrs. Krinke is a member of Kantorei of Kansas City, a professional choral ensemble.  She has also been involved in several church choirs, as a director or member. Mrs. Krinke is a member of the National Association for Music Education, American Choral Directors Association and Missouri Choral Directors Association. She currently serves as a hospitality chairperson for Missouri Choral Directors Association, as well as a mentor for the association’s new teacher program.

She received the Missouri Choral Directors Association’s Kansas City Metro Director of the Year award in 2010. She was selected Teacher of the Month at Lee’s Summit West High School in 2009 and District Teacher of the Month for the Blue Springs School District in 2008.

Before coming to Lee’s Summit R-7, Mrs. Krinke taught vocal music in the Blue Springs School District and Independence School District. She previously taught for Music Arts Institute and St. Charles Borromeo School.  Away from school, Mrs. Krinke also teaches private voice lessons. She earned a bachelor’s degree in music education from Wichita State University, graduating magna cum laude.  Mrs. Krinke is the 12th Lee’s Summit teacher to be selected as a finalist for Missouri Teacher of the Year.

Site work underway at new Summit Technology Academy / Missouri Innovation Campus thanks to no-tax-increase bond issue

$40 million issue also funding improvements at each R-7 school

Site work at location of the new Summit Technology Academy / Missouri Innovation Campus is underway in preparation for school’s opening in August 2017. The 15-acre site is located near Ward Road and Tudor Road in Lee’s Summit. The new Summit Tech / MIC and facility improvements throughout the school district are funded by a voter-approved Lee’s Summit R-7 April 2015 bond issue.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Summit Tech / MIC is scheduled for March 2016. Currently, the nationally recognized school is located in leased space, near the location of the new school site.

Thanks to a partnership with the University of Central Missouri (UCM), the school district and university will construct and operate a cost-saving shared facility. Under the plan, R-7 is paying approximately 40 percent of the new school with UCM paying the remaining 60 percent. Based on an agreement between the two organizations, Lee’s Summit R-7 will be the sole owner of the facility which will house Summit Tech / Missouri Innovation Campus as well as UCM programs currently located in the UCM Summit Center Campus. UCM is paying its portion through a rental agreement.

The shared facility will reduce operating expenses for the R-7 School District, allowing the district to move Summit Tech / MIC from leased space into a building owned by the school district. It is anticipated that due to increased rental costs resulting from the expiration of a long-running tax abatement, Lee’s Summit R-7 will save approximately $9 million over the next 20 years by construction of the new facility.

In addition, each R-7 school is receiving facility improvements thanks to the approximately $40 million bond issue. Work on the school improvements began in early summer 2015 with all school improvement projects being complete by either fall 2015 or fall 2016. For more information about the bond issue, which was approved by nearly 80 percent of voters, visit the Lee’s Summit R-7 web page.

Site work for the new SummagSTA-MICsite B 8-25-15 (2)it Technology Academy / Missouri Innovation Campus was underway by summer 2015.

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R-7 School District ACT college-entrance exams are well above state and national averages

Lee’s Summit R-7 School District students taking the ACT college-entrance test scored well above stateACT scores 2015 and national averages, according to results recently released from the 2014-15 school year.

R-7 students averaged a 23.3 on the composite score, compared to 21.7 for the Missouri average and 21 for the national average.

“We were pleased with our students’ scores which were well above the state average in all areas tested and at each of our three high schools,” said Dr. David McGehee, R-7 superintendent. “In addition, we had an excellent participation rate at each school with a high percentage of 2015 graduates taking the ACT test.”

A total of 986 Lee’s Summit R-7 students took the ACT test during the previous school year. This is 76 percent of the 2015 graduating class of all three R-7 high schools combined. Lee’s Summit High School, Lee’s Summit North High School and Lee’s Summit West High School graduated a total of 1,295 students in May 2015.

Lee’s Summit R-7 School District students also scored above the state and national averages in all four specific subjects tested – English, mathematics, reading and science.

The ACT is America’s most widely accepted college entrance exam. It assesses high school students’ general educational development and their ability to complete college-level work. The multiple-choice tests cover four skill areas: English, mathematics, reading and science. The writing test measures skill in planning and writing a short essay.

Lee’s Summit R-7 School District Special Services to host informational meeting Sept. 24 for parents who homeschool their children

The Lee’s Summit R-7 School District Special Services Department will hold an informational meeting for parents who homeschool their children or who enroll their children in private/parochial schools located within the R-7 School District boundaries.  The purpose of the meeting is to provide information on how they may access special education services if needed.

This meeting will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Sept. 24 in the Loyalty Conference Room located at the Stansberry Leadership Center, 301 NE Tudor Road, Lee’s Summit, Missouri.

Sunset Valley Elementary students enjoy produce from school garden

Sunset Valley Elementary students recently had the opportunity to try pickles made from cucumbers grown in the school’s community garden, known as the Jaguar Jungle. The garden was initiated with the help of Amy Mothersbaugh, a teacher at the school before moving to Longview Farm Elementary.

After this summer’s garden produced an abundance of cucumbers, Mrs. Mothersbaugh; her mother, Barb Knobbe; Connie Kingsley, school cafeteria manager; and Lori Danella of Lee’s Summit R-7 Nutrition Services worked together to turn the cucumbers into pickles. During late August, students at Sunset Valley had the opportunity to taste the pickles, which were served during lunch in the cafeteria.

“The pickles taste so good you just want to keep eating and eating them,” shared one third-grader.

Another third-grader added, “Hey look, today they gave us two pickles instead of one. Yay!”

The Sunset Valley garden was funded through a Fuel Up to Play 60 grant and by the school’s PTA. Through the garden, students learn about where foods come from and have the opportunity to plant and care for the produce and sample the items grown.

ag SVE cucumbers Staff ag SVE cucumbers Student ag SVE cucumbers cafeteria

Student gains confidence and is ready to be successful in school

The Story Project features personal stories about our students and their accomplishments in school. If StoryProjectLOGOfinalyou would like to submit a story about your child, visit

Underwood Elementary teacher helps pave the way for kindergarten student’s success
Starting kindergarten is scary for kids. Only 5 to 6 years into life and you are thrown into a big school with kids you probably don’t know and all of the sudden you can’t play all day! Looking at it from the eyes of a child you can see how important kindergarten teachers really are to helping children get started on a successful school career.

In the 2014-15 school year, one specific teacher redefined the words “success in school” for our family. Mrs. Sari Williams at Underwood Elementary simply epitomizes the essence of what it means to love children and help them be successful. Mrs. Williams was new to the school and in her first year of teaching in Lee’s Summit but you would never have known that. She was the absolute rock that our childSarah West UWE Story Project-Aug2015 needed to ease some of those kindergarten fears and put her on the road to success. Mrs. Williams exceeded every expectation we had of a teacher. As a result, we have a first-grader who is not only prepared for success but is confident she can be successful. This is all thanks to one special kindergarten teacher who loved “her kids” enough to pave the way!

Submitted by Jason and Jill West


Race for the Future 5K Run/Walk to be Oct. 10 at LSWHS

The Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation will host its Race for the Future Logo 2015popular Race for the Future 5K Run/Walk, scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. Oct. 10 at Lee’s Summit West High School, 2600 S.W. Ward Road. The event is recognized throughout the metro-area as one of the Midwest’s premier run/walk events with more than 900 people participating in 2014.

The 19th annual Race for the Future is a fund-raiser for the Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation Inc. and the Carrie Foresee Memorial Scholarship Fund. The 5K race includes hundreds of dollars in prizes. Packet pick-up and late registration will be held from noon to 6:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 9 at the R-7 School District’s Stansberry Leadership Center, 301 NE Tudor Road (on the northeast corner of the Lee’s Summit North High School campus). Free T-shirts will go to the first 850 5K entrants.

The Oct. 10 race morning schedule begins with late registration and packet pick-up from 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. at the Lee’s Summit West High School activity complex concession stand. The 5K begins at 8 a.m. with the Kids Dash immediately following at approximately 8:45 a.m.  

Race fee is $22 for entries postmarked by Sept. 10, $25 by Sept. 24, $30 by Oct. 9 and $35 Race Day. The Kids Dash is for children up to sixth grade, and the fee is $5. Children will run short distances on the track. Participants will be entertained by B.J. Productions live DJ throughout the race.

Supporters who cannot attend the Race have the opportunity to become Race for the Future “dream partners.” For a $25 donation to Race for the Future, “dream partner” supporters can receive their own commemorative race t-shirt, but can then “sleep in” on Oct. 10.

Additional Race for the Future information is available at

Since the event began 19 years ago, Race for the Future has raised more than $340,470 for the Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation and the Carrie Foresee Memorial Scholarship Fund.

The Lee’s Summit Educational Foundation is a non-profit, 501c3 organization established in 1993 to raise and manage resources in order to expand and initiate educational opportunities for students at all levels. The Foundation is a way for citizens to invest in today’s youth, tomorrow’s leaders, and the future of Lee’s Summit by making tax-deductible donations.

The Carrie Foresee Scholarship Fund was established in memory of Carrie Foresee, a former Lee’s Summit High School student. Carrie died Sept. 3, 1996, as the result of injuries suffered in a car accident. Funds from Race for the Future help support scholarship opportunities for graduating seniors.

For more information about volunteering, sponsoring, running or walking, call (816) 986-1015.

Trailridge Elementary and Trailridge Elementary PTA Recognized Nationally as School of Excellence

National PTA® has recognized Trailridge Elementary and Trailridge Elementary PTA as a National PTA ag TRE PTA School of Exc imageSchool of Excellence for their achievement in building effective family-school partnerships. Research shows that when families and schools work together, student achievement increases, schools improve and communities grow stronger. Being recognized as a National PTA School of Excellence demonstrates Trailridge Elementary and Trailridge Elementary PTA’s leadership and commitment to partnering to support student success and continuous school improvement, said a spokesperson for National PTA.  

“The partnership between Trailridge Elementary and Trailridge Elementary PTA is a true example of what can be accomplished when schools and families work together,” said Otha Thornton, president of National PTA. “Trailridge Elementary and Trailridge Elementary PTA have put strong practices into place that involve families in the life of the school, and we are pleased to recognize them as a National PTA School of Excellence.”

National PTA launched its School of Excellence program to help strengthen family-school partnerships across the country and make measurable progress in the areas of education, health and safety, and arts and cultural exploration. At a National PTA School of Excellence, families feel welcomed and empowered to support student success, and PTA is a key partner for continuous school improvement.

To be recognized as a National PTA School of Excellence, PTAs evaluate their current family engagement strategies and submit a goal for school improvement that families, teachers and administrators have set together. They improve upon their family engagement strategies throughout the year, while focusing on their goal. The National PTA School of Excellence designation is awarded with demonstrated improvement in the family-school partnership and significant progress toward their goal.

“Family has always been No. 1 at Trailridge Elementary,” said Dr. Marcia Sutton, Trailridge Elementary principal. “One of the many amazing strengths of our PTA is the desire to partner with families and staff to promote excellence, not to complain and tear down. For our PTA, it is even more than families plus schools, we are family.”

To celebrate their achievements, National PTA presented Trailridge Elementary and Trailridge Elementary PTA with a National PTA School of Excellence banner. For more information about the National PTA School of Excellence program, visit

About National PTA

National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of parent involvement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c) (3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth.

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