The Lancer Life Blog captures the life and pride of a General McLane student behind school doors. This District-wide Blog is a chronicle of news and events, as well as a platform to showcase the achievements and accomplishments of students, faculty and staff within this District. For story ideas, please e-mail Marissa Orbanek at

Annual Senior Citizen Luncheon takes place at GMHS

Posted on December 9, 2016


General McLane High School hosted their annual Senior Citizen Luncheon today.

Hosted by the School District, the Principal’s Cabinet and the GM instrumental music program, members from the Edinboro Area Senior Citizens group and McKean Lions Club were invited for lunch and a performance by the General McLane High School jazz ensemble.

This event started nine years ago as a way to show gratitude to the District’s senior citizens for what they’ve done for the General mcLane School District as taxpayers. Through this luncheon, students also have the opportunity to interact with instrumental members of our community. There were about 40 people in attendance to this year’s event.


HS students learn programming through #HourofCode

Posted on December 9, 2016


General McLane High School students practiced computer programming today through #HourofCode.

This one-hour introduction to computer science inspires students to learn computer programming. Students in Mr. Reed’s Algebra II Accelerated classes started with a video about the importance of programming and then practice coding and animating birds through Tynker.

This is the third year that students participated in this annual campaign, which is organized by® is a non-profit dedicated to expanding access to computer science, and increasing participation by women and underrepresented minorities. organizes the annual Hour of Code campaign which has engaged 10% of all students in the world, and provides the leading curriculum for K-12 computer science in the largest school districts in the United States.

This event takes place during Computer Science Education Week, which is December 5-11, 2016.


Holidayland Kid’s Shoppe opens at elementary schools

Posted on December 8, 2016


The Holidayland Kid’s Shoppe took place this week at both Edinboro and McKean Elementary schools. Students were able to come in and get some gifts for their family members and friends. Students select from more than 125 different items for all ages, ranging from .25 to $10.

Edinboro Elementary’s shop continues through Holiday Fun Night, which takes place tonight. This year’s holiday-themed event includes a Giant Kid-Friendly Raffle. Families donated $5 – $10 items for the basket. There are also pictures with Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

Both the holiday shoppe and Holiday Fun Night at Edinboro were sponsored by the Edinboro Elementary Parent Teacher Organization (PTO). McKean Elementary Parent Teacher Association (PTA) hosted McKean’s Holiday Shoppe and Pictures with Santa, which took place Thursday.







Education Academy students tour EUP

Posted on December 8, 2016


General McLane students in the high school’s Education Academy program toured Edinboro University yesterday. After their tour, students met with EUP professors in regarding their specific career interest.

Students in the Education Academy explore careers in education. They gain experience in the field through tutoring Edinboro Elementary students.

General McLane alumn Matt Astorino guided the tour. He currently works in the University’s Admission Department and serves as an EUP Football Coach. He is pursuing a Masters Degree in Secondary School Guidance Counseling.


JWPMS explore computer science through #HourofCode

Posted on December 8, 2016


James W. Parker Middle School seventh and eighth math classes hosted its own Hour of Code yesterday.

This one-hour introduction to computer science inspires students to learn computer science. Students in Miss Manzella, Mrs. Irwin, Miss Mook and Mrs. Nickou classes explored how to program games such as Minecraft, Angry Birds and Flappy Bird.

This is the third year that students participated in this annual campaign, which is organized by® is a non-profit dedicated to expanding access to computer science, and increasing participation by women and underrepresented minorities. organizes the annual Hour of Code campaign which has engaged 10% of all students in the world, and provides the leading curriculum for K-12 computer science in the largest school districts in the United States.

This event takes place during Computer Science Education Week, which is December 5-11, 2016.






GMHS students analyze foreign policy at Worlds Affair

Posted on December 6, 2016


General McLane High School students McKenah Bryson, Halle Minner and Zachary Gray attended the 46th Annual Worlds Affair Institute in Pittsburgh.

Approximately 350 high school juniors and seniors attended this event, which was held at the Senator John Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh.

The Institute engages high school student leaders to think critically about their world through discussion of key issues in international affairs. Experts discuss key issues with the student delegates through panel presentations and small breakout sessions. Students then meet in groups to analyze a foreign policy scenario from an assigned viewpoint.

The 2016 topic was Foreign Policy Challenges for the New Administration and focused on the global concerns the next President of the United States will have to contend.  This year, the students specifically analyzed the effect a dispute between China and Japan would have on the United States.

Gray served on a group that represented the US Department of Homeland Security, and Bryson and Minner served on a group that represented the National Security Council. Gray served as his group’s spokesperson and represented the Department of Homeland Security when the whole group reconvened for discussion.

High school students were selected by local Rotary Clubs in cooperation with schools. Each Rotary Club pays for the number of scholarships it is sponsoring. The Edinboro Rotary Club No. 5133 sponsored the General McLane students.

Rotary is a worldwide organization of more than 1.2 million business, professional, and community leaders. The mission of Rotary International is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through its fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders.

The World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting a deeper understanding of key contemporary international issues throughout Western Pennsylvania.





GM students among 2016 VFW Essay Contest Winners

Posted on December 6, 2016

Nine General McLane students were recently selected as winners of the 2016 VFW Post 740 Patriot’s Pen and Voice of Democracy Essay Contests.


Junior Mary Claire Cousins was this year’s Voice of Democracy Essay Contest winner. This contest was for students in grades 9-12. Cousins received a $600 award and will now advance to the District 28 Competition. The 2016-17 theme was “My Responsibility to America.”

The VFW established the Voice of Democracy program (VOD) in 1947 to provide students grades 9-12 the opportunity to express themselves in regards to democratic ideas and principles. The national first-place winner receives a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school.


James W. Middle School students Savannah Rauscher, Aiden Michaelis, Clay Kuntz, Chloe McMullen, Adrianna Evankovich, Makaela Persons, Riley Clever and Ellie Shade were the winners of the 2016 VFW Patriot’s Pen Essay Contest. Each was awarded with a monetary prize of $400, along with a chance for their essay to move on to the District 28 Competition. The 2016-17 theme was “The America I Believe I”.

The Patriot’s Pen Essay contest is for students in grades 6-8, and the national first-place winner wins $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., in March.

Congratulations to all!


PTSA hosts Winter Fun Night

Posted on December 6, 2016

James W. Parker Middle School’s PTSA hosted its Winter Fun Night this past weekend. The night featured a bouncy house / obstacle course, Minute-to-Win-it games and dancing to music from a DJ. Food and beverages were also available.

There was also an Ugly Sweater contest with a winner from each grade. Each winner won candy and a $5 gift card to Walmart from the PTSA.

Winners included Ben Kernick (5th), Abbey Walker (6th), Alexis Wescoat (7th) and Chandler Villanueva (8th).

This event is hosted by the Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA), a volunteer association where parents, educators, students and other citizens can be active in their schools and communities. The next event hosted by PTSA is  the cookie reception after the Middle School Chorus concert on December 12th. They are also working on hosting another Fun Night in early 2017.


GM students win in STEM Ingenuity Challenge

Posted on December 5, 2016


General McLane School District placed second at the Annual STEM Ingenuity Challenge, with multiple students earning numerous achievements .

The STEM Ingenuity Challenge is a problem solving competition organized by grade level. This is the 27th annual event sponsored by the Technology Education and Engineering Association of Northwest PA and the Erie Engineering Societies Council (EESC). It is hosted at Edinboro University.

Students from the Tri-county area can participate in three main events and a Spontaneous Challenge. In each event, students are judged on four categories; the overall event, technical drawing, craftsmanship and presentation (students give a written and oral report to judges).  Each of these categories has a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place award based on point value (1st-100pts, 2nd-75pts, 3rd-50pts)

Students in sixth through eighth grade built a car to push a disk and points were scored according to where the disk ended up.

Team members were: Kaci Smith, Kaden Wright, Grace Juliano, Kendyl Reichard, Haley Desell, Henry Salvo, Tyler Chorney, Gabe Harrison, Rylee Reichard, Marin O’Lone, Shannon Rohrer, Catrina Miller, Kiera Schoolcraft, Dana Minns, Rayleigh Burger, Mallory Grucza, Sierra Griffith, Coletin Barto, Kyle Cousins, Wilson Spires.

Ninth and tenth grade students designed and built CO2 Dragsters from a given kit. The cars are powered by an 8gram CO2 cartridge.  Students try to create a lightweight aerodynamic car for fastest speed.

Derek “Pablo” Mejias place first and Zack Lofgren placed second.

Derek Waltz placed first for Craftsmanship and second in the Spontaneous Challenge.

Students in eleventh and twelfth grade built a crane to lift 10lbs 20 inches and points were scored based on the fastest.  Each team was give a small electric motor and 12 pieces of 1/8 x 1/8 basswood.. This year, students use our CAD and CNC equipment to 3D print a block and tackle system and cut out parts using the laser engraver and CNC router.

Lizzie Bennett and Nathan Miller placed first overall, first for technical drawing and second for speech. Jonah Pamula and Tristian Beach placed third for speech.

For the spontaneous challenge, students had to build the highest freestanding structure with given materials. This year’s materials were spaghetti and marshmallow. Students do not know the challenge ahead of time.

Pamula and Beach placed first for this challenge and Bennett and Miller placed second.

After the events, all grade levels earned points are added up and the school district with the most is awarded 1st place.  General McLane School District placed second in the overall event.


GM raises more than $1,500 for Caring Place

Posted on December 2, 2016



General McLane School District raised more than $1,500 for the Caring Place through their National Child Grief Awareness Day fundraising efforts.

Through November 16, 2016, a series of activities and fundraising took place throughout the District. Events, which were coordinated by the Caring Club and igh school guidance counselor and Caring Club coordinator Brenda Hertel, included:

– Supply Drive:   Tissues, hand sanitizer, crayons, markers, stickers, colored pencils, glue and other crafts items etc were donated.  Every item gave students and staff a chance to win some fabulous prizes.
Memory Tree & Messages of Support:  Students and staff filled out a butterfly in memory of a loved one or write a word of encouragement.
Chinese Auction and Bake Sale:  Baskets were donated by various community groups and families, and enjoy some delicious treats.
Blue Streak: HS students gave those interested a blue streak in your hair to show your support for NCGAD.
Photobooth: A homemade Photo Booth was set up outside the main office during lunch.  Cash donations for the caring place were accepted but not necessary.  
WEAR BLUE:  Everyone wore blue on November 16 to show support. T-shirts were for sale in October.
Edinboro Elementary School held a poster contest. The theme was, “he theme was how would you support a friend who has suffered a loss.” Winners included Pacey Moran (1st) and Jasmine Dzeskewicz (2nd).
In addition,  several community sponsors hung signs in their window indicating their support.

In total, the District raised 1518.28 for the Highmark Caring Place, a Center for Grieving Children, Adolescents and Their Families that offers a safe place for grieving children and families to come together. The Caring Place offers these services at no charge to grieving families from throughout the community.

General McLane High School and Parker Middle School began offering grief support group meetings in September of 2014 as part of a regional program sponsored by the Highmark Caring Place, which has offered grief support for children at its Erie facility since opening in 2001. Students and counselors meet every Wednesday for about an hour.

Thank you to everyone who support this wonderful event!

For more pictures, visit our Featured Photos Page.


December 2016
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