Cass County Democrat Missourian

Kindergartners at the Harrisonville center dressed as their favorite helpers

Phil Rogers, principal of Sherwood Elementary School in Creighton, fosters school pride and community by meeting with students first thing each week. Rogers uses that time to celebrate kids, set expectations and talk with students on how to show good character.
Phil Rogers, principal of Sherwood Elementary School in Creighton, fosters school pride and community by meeting with students first thing each week. Rogers uses that time to celebrate kids, set expectations and talk with students on how to show good character.

Hello, we’re here to help you

To conclude a unit on community helpers, kindergartners at the Harrisonville Early Childhood Center dressed as their favorite helpers — veterinarians, bakers, teachers and more — and marched in the center’s annual community helper parade.

Before the parade, each student got some practice in giving a presentation by telling classmates about his or her persona. This year’s event took place inside because of the weather.

Ray-Pec board member earns statewide award

Ruth Johnson, president of the Raymore-Peculiar Board of Education, is the recipient of the 2019 Carter D. Ward Excellence in Advocacy Award presented by FutureBuilders, the education foundation of the Missouri School Boards’ Association.

The award, presented late last month, is designed to honor a school board member who exemplifies leadership skills in public education advocacy. It’s named for Carter Ward, who advocated for public schools during his 30-year tenure as MSBA’s executive director. He retired in 2014.

Five years ago, Johnson conceived the idea of creating a public education advocacy group for the Cass County area. She collaborated with Jerry Miller of the Belton school board, county school superintendents and others to create Cass County Kids First, which represents the interests of more than 18,000 students in the 10 Cass County school districts.

The group creates a list of legislative priorities endorsed by all 10 school boards each year, and has established a more regular dialogue with Missouri lawmakers.

As a member of the Ray-Pec school board, Johnson volunteers often for Ray-Pec Public School Foundation programs and has been involved in strategic and long-range facility planning, boundary revisions and innovation initiatives. She’s been active in the Missouri School Boards’ Association and has earned every certification available through that organization.

Ray-Pec posts survey to aid in superintendent search

Through an online survey, the Raymore-Pecular Board of Education is consulting district employees, students and patrons about the leadership qualities most desired in a new superintendent.

The survey results will be used by the board and consultants from Missouri School Boards’ Association as they seek and screen applicants. The information also will factor into the content of candidate interviews.

The survey will be open through Oct. 21 at

The new superintendent will replace Kari Monsees, who will retire after the current academic year.

Mustang Teams bring students of all ages together

Educators across the country recognize the importance of relationships and school culture in promoting proper behavior, a sense of belonging and academic achievement.

Every other month, students at Bridle Ridge Elementary School participate in Mustang Teams not only to create a shared culture but to learn Conscious Discipline skills as well. The teams at the Raymore school comprise students from each grade level, which fosters friendships throughout the school..

Marching musicians excel

The Raymore-Peculiar and Harrisonville marching bands have distinguished themselves at recent competitions.

The Harrisonville High School Royal Regiment placed first in its class and second overall among 18 schools competing Oct. 12 in Odessa, Mo.

The Ray-Pec High School Panther Pride Band took first place Oct. 5 at the Valhalla Marching Festival in Springfield. The band was honored for Outstanding Winds, Outstanding Drum Line and Outstanding Drum Majors.

A week later, the band won first place in the preliminary rounds and finals at the Park Hill High School Marching Festival, taking awards for Outstanding Effect, Outstanding Percussion, Outstanding Music, Outstanding Brass Group and Outstanding Woodwind Group.

Making up the brass group were Hayden Smith, Noah Bruton, Jackson Hurley and Angelica Zagar. The woodwind group consisted of Sage Buckley and Lilah Manning.

Harrisonville food drive concludes on Halloween

The annual Halloween food drive is underway in the Harrisonville School District, held in conjunction with the high school drama department’s Trick or Treat so Tots Can Eat program. Donations will be given to the Shepherd’s Staff Food Pantry sponsored by the Harrisonville Ministerial Alliance.

Drama Club members planned to go trick or treating for donations Oct. 22 in neighborhoods around the high school, and the school drive will take place Oct. 28-31 at all district buildings. Community members can drop donations at any district building or any Bright Futures Blue Barrel around Harrisonville. Donations also will be collected as the admission fee at the Trunk-or-Treat on the Square, to be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Oct. 27.