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

GM Students Perform in Disney

Posted on November 29, 2017

The General McLane Marching Band and Jazz Ensemble performed in Disney on Sunday and Monday.  This is an annual trip where students perform in the holiday parade at the Magic Kingdom, as well as onstage at Disney’s resort.

In addition to the performances, the students enjoy the Magic of the parks and celebrate the end of another superb year for the band.

Congratulations to the students on another amazing performance!


McKean Elementary 100 Lappers

Posted on November 29, 2017

Since October, McKean Elementary students have been staying active through McKean Elementary’s Recess Laps, an optional program encouraging students to increase their physical activity.

McKean students choose to participate in this program, which takes place during recess for students in K-4 and started a. McKean Elementary teacher Lisa Roberts started the program, as part of McKean Elementary’s 2013 grant from the ING Run for Something Better School Awards Program, to give students who could not stay after school the opportunity to be involved in some way and increase their physical activity.

First and second grade students run up to five laps per day and third and fourth graders can run up to 10 per day (six  laps is approx. 1 mile).  In the spring, kindergarten will practice running laps to practice for 1st grade. Students keep track of their laps and earn healthy rewards at the end of the eight-week program.

This program has helps students with time management, goal setting and social skills. Students can walk or run their laps.

100 Lappers from grades third through fourth included: 

Ella Wieczorek, Gavin Anderson, Emily Grutkowski, Lakin Lutch, Wil LoCastro, Chase Durlin, ( front row)
Maddox Morre, Bella Weed, Emma Dubynskiy, Holly Goodwill, Kayci Hinkle, Preston Hobson, Andrew Gula( 2nd row)
Clark Pattulo, Etta Spires, Ashley Cummings, McKenna Laughery, Vanessa Bennet, Annie Howard, Charlie Salvo(3rd row)
Mrs. Roberts, Ms. Hinkle, Ms. Hanley( back row)

Third grader Emily Grutkowski ran the most with 180 laps, this is 30 miles!!

McKean’s Run Club begins December 12 and will end with an indoor meet at EUP in January.

Congratulations to all of this year’s participants!



Thankful Turkeys

Posted on November 23, 2017

There are some thankful turkeys at Edinboro!

Edinboro Elementary first graders participated in their annual home, family project.  In this project, students will work with their family to disguise a turkey to prevent him/her from getting eaten for Thanksgiving!

This is an annual project that has become a favorite tradition at the School.

What a wonderful and creative job by all of the first graders and their families!


GM participates in Food Drive

Posted on November 23, 2017

All four General McLane schools and the Service Center contributed to the Erie News Now and Second Harvest Holiday Food Drive, which ended last week!

Nick’s Place coordinated the collection, and all donations went to the Edinboro Food Bank.

Last year, our community donated almost 8000 pounds of food, $10,241 and 50 turkeys that stayed at the Edinboro Food Pantry.

This year, our community donated 8,939 lbs of food, $11,613.88 and 61 turkeys.

Edinboro Elementary donated 1251 items. Mr. Frick’s class came in first place with 135 items.

McKean Elementary donated more than 2000 items. Mrs. Troyer’s class came in first place with 471 items.

James W. Parker Middle School donated items 1280 lbs of items.

General McLane High School donated 120 lbs of items.

The Service Center donated three large boxes of food, one 24 lbs. turkey and $110.41.

The winning classes will receive a pizza & putt putt party in the spring at Sunview Golf.

Great job to all those who donated!



Students spend day at CMU

Posted on November 21, 2017

General McLane High School Students in the Academy of Medical Arts and Engineering spent the day at Carnegie Mellon University last week.

Students had the opportunity to meet College of Science (MCS) Associate Dean Maggie Braun, an Associate Dean from the College of Engineering, Health Professions Program Director Jason D’Antonio and representatives from the Office of Admission and Office of Financial Aid.

Students participated in a Chemistry Lab Activity, Workshop with History Professor Nico Slate and his students and a Statistics/Data Science Activity.


General McLane students recognized in Join the Shift contest

Posted on November 21, 2017

Sponsored by Erie Insurance and facilitated through Hamilton Insurance Agency, Join the Shift is a safe teen driving program that uses fun, interactive activities to help teens learn about and spread the safe driving message. Students participate in point-earning activities that include creating safe driving videos, taking a safe driver pledge and sharing content on social media. Students can also earn points by referring friends to sign up during the eight-week contest.

More than 4,000 students from 42 schools across 10 states participated in this annual contest.

The top three students and schools earn cash prizes. In addition, there is a $1,000 schoolwide prize for best video.

Junior Haley Andrzejewski was named the “Best Video” prize winner of the overall contest, earning herself a $1,000 prize. Her video, which is below, was selected by a panel of judges at Erie Insurance and will be featured on for the next year as well.

Hamilton Insurance Agency, a local Insurance Agency representing Erie Insurance in Edinboro, also recognized the top three winners from General McLane, based on points. These students are Aimee Campbell, Ben Howe-Jones and Ben Lipinski. They each received  gift cards.

Georgiann “Turk” Hamilton,  Lauren Pusch and Lisa Rodgers, Erie Insurance District Sales Manager, presented the check and gift cards to General McLane students on Monday.



Edinboro Elementary Drawing Contest Winners

Posted on November 17, 2017

In honor of National Child Grief Awareness Day, Edinboro Elementary School held a drawing contest. The theme was, “Hope.”

Winners included Natasha Leslie (4th grade). Lucas Hammer (3rd Grade), Julie Wagner (2nd Grade), Tarence Noble (1st Grade) and Amya Wheeler (Kindergarten).


Congratulations to our students!


Holiday Arts Fair: Vendor Feature

Posted on November 17, 2017

The General McLane Foundation’s 11th Annual Holiday Arts Fair is quickly approaching.

This year’s event will be held Saturday, November 18, at General McLane High School and runs from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Nearly 100 vendors will be in attendance, including a variety of new vendors. This year’s crafts include: hand-carved santas, glass sculptures, wood working signs and décor, purses, jewelry, puzzles, soup, birdhouses, ceramics, paintings, pottery, and quilted, croched, stitched and sewn items.

One of the vendors will be Alex’s Puzzles, hand-crafted wooden puzzles for the young and old alike. The puzzles do not have any finish on the puzzles in order to be painted or stained as creatively as buyers would like!  It also makes a great “bonding time” between children, parents and/or Grandparents.

These puzzles are created by Alex Giles and his father David. Alex is intellectually and developmentally disabled (IDD), and his IQ is lower than most folks. In addition, he has been diagnosed with epilepsy. To help control his seizures, Alex has been taking medications since age 2 and has a Vagus Nerve stimulator (VNS) implanted in his chest to help control brain waves that may initiate seizures.  Although he was having severe tonic-clonic seizures, formerly known as grand mal seizures, up to 3 times a week, the medicine and VNS have been controlling Alex’s seizures reasonably well since 2012.

A native of Londonderry, NH, Alex has always had a fascination with both hand and power tools. While taking wood shop during his junior year as part of his Activities For Daily Living (ADL) class, Alex learned to use a scroll saw to cut out a pattern that had been applied to a piece of wood.  Alex cut the pattern out with incredible accuracy and in a very timely manner — and then Alex’s Puzzles were born!

“Everyone has a gift. The key is recognizing it,” David said. “I feel we have identified Alex’s gift. Even though he has intellectual challenges, Alex is able to minimize and overcome those challenges.  With guidance and patience, Alex is able to utilize his talent and become a productive member of our community.”

Alex’s favorite puzzle is a rabbit puzzle.

Here is a sneak-peak of just some of their items that will be available on Saturday!


School Board member honored for years of service

Posted on November 17, 2017

Mr. James Bucksbee was recently recognized for 32 years of service as a General McLane School Board director.

Mr. Bucksbee was presented with a plaque adding him to the PSBA “Honor Roll of School Board Service” during Wednesdays’s school board meeting.

PSBA representative James Summerville spoke about him and his dedication as a volunteer to children, the community and public education. Summerville commented that board members are ordinary citizens who volunteer their time consistently, performing extraordinary work on behalf of their communities and the students they serve.

The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) has been honoring long-term school directors across the state since 1983. School directors are recognized for their years of service from 8 to 44 years.


GM students win VFW essay contests

Posted on November 16, 2017

Six General McLane students were recently selected as winners of the 2017 VFW Post 740 Patriot’s Pen and Voice of Democracy Essay Contests.

Junior Anna Alberti and senior Brion Zacherl were this year’s Voice of Democracy Essay Contest winner. This contest was for students in grades 9-12. They will receive a $600 award and advance to the District 28 Competition. The 2017-18 theme was “American History: Our Hope for the Future.”

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 Kaitlyn Dubynskiy, Ian Kennedy, Olivia Mussett and Camille Andrzejewski were the winners of the 2017 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 2017-18 theme was “America’s Gift to My Generation”.

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 & good luck to all of our winners at the District 28 Competition!

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