The coronavirus has presented communities across the United States with a host of problems, including shortages of items like hand sanitizer. Stores are sold out, hospitals have resorted to rationing medical supplies, and hand sanitizer has become a precious commodity.
While some companies are using the crisis to make a profit, one Whitehall pharmacist, Rikin Patel, Pharm.D., decided to use his resources to help others. Patel and his staff are compounding hand sanitizer to give to police officers, firefighters, first responders and medical staff — free of charge.
When Brandon Larkin, a student at Catasauqua Middle School, visited Chick-fil-A on MacArthur Road in Whitehall March 12, he thought he was there for his 13th birthday party.
As part of the festivities, Brandon had his picture taken with Doodles, the restaurant’s cow mascot. He had no idea his father, Peter Larkin, was actually the person wearing the mascot costume.
Peter had just returned from Kuwait to give his son a true birthday surprise.
During Whitehall-Coplay School Board’s March 9 meeting, members approved the retirements of Richard Gierula, health and physical education teacher at Whitehall-Coplay Middle School; Elizabeth Hawk, second-grade teacher at Steckel Elementary School; Jean Marsteller, Spanish teacher at Whitehall High School; Lisa Rex, secretary at Steckel Elementary; Laurie Farver, inclusion teacher at Zephyr Elementary School; and Deborah Vilbas, secretary at WHS.
At the Whitehall-Coplay School Board meeting March 9, Gockley Elementary School Principal Denise Saylor gave a presentation that included two short videos showing first-grade classes participating in activities promoting both STEM and literature skills. The project was pioneered by Abby Koch, first-grade teacher at Gockley Elementary, as part of her graduate work.
STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
At the Feb. 11 Whitehall-Coplay School Board meeting, members approved field trip requests.
Samantha Neas was approved to have the Science Olympiad team travel to and compete in the Science Olympiad competition at Penn State, Wilkes-Barre, March 11, at the cost of one bus, with one school day missed, and to travel to and compete in the Science Olympiad competition at Juniata College, Huntington, April 24-25, at the cost of three school vans, with one school day missed.
At the Whitehall-Coplay School Board meeting Feb. 10, Demi Ogozalek, a learning support teacher at Gockley Elementary School, discussed her experience with Inclusive Schools Week during a presentation to the board.
Ogozalek discovered Inclusive Schools Week, an annual event held the first week of December each year, while taking a graduate course. Sponsored by the Inclusive Schools Network, a web-based educational resource, and Stetson & Associates Inc., the week celebrates and supports diversity in schools.
Anyone driving through the Whitehall-Coplay School District campus has probably noticed the construction site between Whitehall Township Public Library and the district administration building. This will be the location of the new building replacing Gockley Elementary School.
Veronica Laroche, the new director of Coplay Public Library, didn’t always know she wanted to be a librarian.
Laroche first received a degree in music recording from Lebanon Valley College, Annville, in 2005, then received her teaching certification from Moravian College, Bethlehem. She began her education career at Good Shepherd Catholic School, Northampton, where she taught music for two years, eventually teaching library skills as well.
After deciding careers in music and teaching were not her passions, she decided being a librarian was her true calling.
Whitehall-Coplay School Board members approved several new appointments during the Jan. 13 school board meeting.
At the Whitehall-Coplay School Board meeting Jan. 13, Whitehall-Coplay School District Superintendent Dr. Lorie Hackett applauded the board’s dedication in observance of School Director Recognition Month.
“I’d like to take a moment to thank our school board members who give so unselfishly of their time in an effort to give our students every opportunity possible to succeed. Our board members are committed to providing every student the opportunity to grow and achieve,” she said.