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

Vocal Jazz students take a lesson from Broadway star

Posted on September 22, 2017

Renowned Broadway performer Lisa Vroman met with General McLane High School Vocal Jazz students today.  She offered students advice on achieving music success beyond high school and also worked one-on-one with three leads for our upcoming musical, The Little Mermaid.

GMHS will perform The Little Mermaid as this year’s high school musical. Tickets will go on sale for this musical, which will be staged at General McLane High School from November 16-19, 2017, in the beginning of November.

Vroman starred on Broadway as Christine Daaé in The Phantom of the Opera. She’s also starred in various other productions, including as Rosabella in The Most Happy Fella,  Charlotte in A Little Night Music,  Lili Vanessi in Kiss Me Kate and Marian Paroo in The Music Man.

Vroman is the opening night soloist for the Erie Philharmonic’s “A Night on Broadway” tomorrow night at the Warner Theatre. The Pops Series show starts at 8 p.m. She will perform selections from several Broadway hits, including: The King and I, The Sound of Music, The Music Man and other greats.

For more information or to get tickets, head over to the Erie Philharmonic website. 


Sixth Grade STEM returns to JWPMS

Posted on September 21, 2017

Sixth grade STEM is back on the schedule at James W. Parker Middle School!  The program is an academic class where students are required to apply the skills they have learned in math and science. Rigorous expectations push the students to use both soft skills and academic skills, as they apply the steps of the engineering process to various design challenges.

Currently the students are testing a basic Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV) design to gather base line data so they can determine how their design needs to be improved.  Once they have their data, they will submit it digitally for review by other 6th grade engineers. Based on their findings, the young engineers will then engineer modifications for improving the performance of their ROV.


GMHS Photo of the Week Winners

Posted on September 19, 2017

Senior Max Patterson and sophomore Hope Robbins were the first winners of the Photo of the Week Assignment for General McLane High School’s Photography 1 Class.

Patterson captured the photograph of the sunset and Robbins captured the photograph of the flower. Patterson and Robbins are in two different classes.

This was the very first photo shoot assignment for students, who learned how to manage their camera’s settings and how to focus the camera. They also began looking at the difference between a photography & a snapshot.

Each week throughout the course, there will be a Photo of the Week Assignment for each class period. Their peers will vote for their favorite.

Photography I is an introduction to digital photography. Students learn to take well-composed photographs and post process them in Adobe Photoshop.

Congratulations to Patterson and Robbins!


HS seniors visit new job site

Posted on September 15, 2017

General McLane High School seniors Aaron Wagner and Jocie Connolly headed over to the Erie Times-News to meet about a potential new job site.  The two seniors toured the Times, met some of their employees and established ideas for a new partnership between the paper and General McLane High School students.
General McLane seeks partnerships with local business to obtain and secure new job opportunities for General McLane students with disabilities. Our volunteer work-based opportunities allow students with disabilities to obtain, practice and maintain important job skills.  Through these opportunities, General McLane students offer meaningful work for free and bring joy and happiness to every work place.  Some of the local established partnerships within the the Edinboro area include: Subway, CVS, Little Caesar’s and Flip Cafe.


General McLane student-gymnasts succeed on the mat

Posted on September 15, 2017

Throughout the year, General McLane students will get to do some tumbling and balance activities through their Health and Physical Education classes. Some may wobble for balance, but some students can execute these moves with a bit more grace.

After all, for these students, the moves have become second nature.

Senior Julia Taylor, junior Alexis Throop, sophomore Lynzi King, fourth grader Lily Gee and first grader Claire Delaney have found success on the mat through Lakettes & Lakers Gymnastic Academy, a non-school affiliated gymnastic center in Erie that has trained a variety of competitive gymnasts.

Just ask Delaney, who placed first in two individual events as a kindergartner, earning herself a state title on both Bars and Vault and finishing second All-around during the Pennsylvania Level 3 State Meet. Or ask three-time regional qualifier Julia Taylor, who is looking to continue competing at the collegiate level.

This year, each girl has a significant set of goals. To reach them, these students will train anywhere from 12 to 20 hours a week and compete in several competitions throughout the year, including the upcoming Team Expo on November 4.

When these students train, they get to see a familiar face. One of their coaches is General McLane High School biology teacher Chris Gilbert, who has coached gymnastics for 15 years.

“Each girls brings something special to the gym, and I am proud to be their coach,” Gilbert said.

Read more about each student below:

Julia Taylor, Class of 2018
When I started gymnastics: 2002
Years competing: 11 years
Current level: Level 9
Titles: 3x regional qualifier
Favorite thing about gymnastics: Working out with amazing teammates
Best memories: Meeting Olympic level gymnasts throughout the years
Goal for 2017-2018 season: Having my last season be my best season

Alexis Throop, Class of 2019
When I started gymnastics: Age 3
Years competing: 7 years
Current Level: Level 8
Titles: Level 8 State Qualifier
Favorite thing about gymnastics: The feeling of accomplishing a new skill and getting to work with a great team.
Best memories: Getting to meet an Olympic gymnast
Goal for 2017-2018 season: To qualify for Level 8 regionals

Lynzi King, Class of 2020
When I started gymnastics: 7 years old
Years competing: 6 years
Currently Level: Level 7
Titles: 2015-2016 X-cel Platinum All-Around champion
Favorite thing about gymnastics: The sisterhood of all the girls, and how you don’t just learn gymnastics, you learn important life lessons such as strength, discipline, confidence and dignity.
Best memories: At my first competition, I was so proud of myself for getting a 9.2 on bars, and at Steel City last season, I got my highest scores on 3 events up to that point.
Goal for upcoming year: Get stronger and get all the new skills I need and more.

Lily Gee, Class of 2026
When I started gymnastics: 2 ½ years old.
Years competing: 2 years, entering 3rd year
Current Level: Level 4
Titles: Level 3 State Qualifier
Favorite thing about gymnastics: Accomplishing personal goals in the sport, and of course, spending so much time with her friends!
Best memories: Making my round-off back handspring, and my team placing first at the Living the Dream meet in February 2017.
Goal for 2017-2018 season: Qualifying for the Level 4 State Competition, and earning a State Title.

Claire Delaney, Class of 2029
When I started gymnastics: 2 years old
Years competing: 2 years, entering 3rd year
Current Level: Level 4
Titles: 2016-2017 Western PA Bars State Champion and 2016-2017 Western PA Vault State Champion
Favorite thing about gymnastics: Every day I practice, I get better and better! Gymnastics makes me strong, and I can do more things because I’m so strong. I love flying on the uneven bars.
Best memories: Being able to move up to level 4 so I can learn harder skills. Winning State Championship on Bars and Vault this year.
Goal for 2017-2018 season: Work hard and earn 1st place AA at Level 4 States!!

Coach Chris Gilbert, GMHS Teacher
Years Coaching: 15 years, the last 10 as a head coach at Lakettes.
Accomplishments: Has helped numerous girls earn state, regional and national titles and has helped six girls earn full collegiate scholarships to Penn State, Kent, George Washington University, Rutgers and Gannon in the last 8 years. During the 2016-2017 Season, he coached 20 state champions.


GMHS senior named National Merit Scholarship Semi-finalist

Posted on September 15, 2017

General McLane High School senior Alex Lofgren has been named a semi-finalist in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program.

The National Merit Scholarship Program is a nationwide competition for recognition and awards conducted by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. In each annual program, approximately 16,000 academically talented high school students are honored and have the opportunity to compete for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $32 million.

As a High School student, Logren is involved in the Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the United States Air Force, and various General McLane High School clubs, including: Robotics Club, TEAMS, National Honor Society and the Principal’s Cabinet. Last February, Lofgren received a Pennsylvania House of Representatives Citation by Representative Ryan Bizzarro.

Lofgren qualified for this recognition through scoring among the highest on the 2016 Preliminary SAT/NATIONAL Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). Next, he will need to fulfill several requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. Students will be notified in February of the Finalist Designation. All National Merit Scholarship winners will be notified starting in April and selected on basis of their skills accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

Congratulations to Alex on this wonderful honor!



HS Students Win Plein Air Competition

Posted on September 13, 2017

Edinboro University hosted its annual Scottish Highland Games Festival this past weekend. The Festival hosted a Plein Air Landscape Drawing Competition. Two General McLane students won in the high school division. Senior Hannah Dylewski took first and senior Mia Campbell took second.

The Plein Air, or Quick Draw, competition is a two-hour “en plein air”(open air) painting competition. At the end of the 2 hours, the work is judged. This competition is open to artists using oils, acrylic, water color, or pastel. Cash prizes were awarded to the winners.

Congratulations Hannah and Mia!


EE students recognize heros on 9/11

Posted on September 12, 2017

Edinboro Elementary third graders completed an activity on September 11 yesterday.

Students then wrote about both their heroes from 9/11 and their everyday heroes, with their reasons why to support their selections. On Friday, the teachers read two different books to teach the kids about the historic event.

Here were some of their responses to “My Hero Is …. ”

“The Army because they found Osama bin Laden. My every day hero is my Grandma because she cooks a lot of food.”

“Chief Pitch from September 11th because he saved a lot of people. My everyday hero is my mom because she helps me, loves me and feeds me.”

“The firefighter community on Sep. 11, 2001, they risked their lives to save other people, but still a lot of people and firefighter lost their lives. Another hero is my dad because he used to be a policeman and in the war and he is really nice and cares for other people.”  

“The fighter community on September 11, 2001. They were brave to rescue people for the Twin Towers. Another hero is my mom and she does all the laundry and cleans the house and takes care of us and we love her so much and she is the best.” 

“The police officer community on Sep. 11, 2011. They helped and made sure people were safe after the Twin Towers fell. Another hero to me is my mom. She writes math text book[s] for children to learn.

“The military people helped searched for Osama bin Laden when he hid in the mountains. They also help innocent people. My everyday hero is my family because when I fall they help me up. They teach me how to ride my bike.”

“The police because they help our community and they catch the bad guys. My other hero is my kitten Leo. He plays with me, he sits with me and he is always there for me.”

Great jobs students!


Digital artists at work!

Posted on September 8, 2017

General McLane High School had designers at work on Friday!

Students in Mrs. Hodas’ Graphic Design II class were working on designs for t-shirts. The designs may appear on shirts for sale at the High School’s General’s Store!

Graphic Design II is a continuation of the concepts learned in Graphic Design I that challenges students to take their digital art creation to the more advanced level.

The General’s Store is operated by the high school Retail Management class and runs during their lunch (11:15 a.m. until 1:15 p.m.). Retail Management is nine-week business elective offered to sophomores, juniors and seniors. This course applies classroom theory to the actual operation of the store. Students assume full responsibility for the entire operation of the store – advertising and promotions, accounting, merchandising, inventory, pricing, purchasing, scheduling and selling.


Introducing School Resource Officer Jose Montes

Posted on September 8, 2017

General McLane has a new sheriff in town — literally!

Mr. Jose Montes is the District’s new School Resource Officer.

Montes began his career in Law Enforcement after attending a Correctional Officer Training Academy in Tucson, AZ. After graduating from the Academy, he was stationed at a State Correctional Facility outside of Phoenix. Shortly later, he traded in the weather and started working with the Erie County Prison as a Correctional Officer and then the Erie County Sheriff’s Office. Since 2014, Montes has served in a variety of roles within the Sheriff’s Office and now serves as School Resource Officer for General McLane School District.

“Working at General McLane and being surrounded by young minds and personalities is a way that I see I can be most helpful and resourceful,” Montes said. “I feel that I could make a more positive impact on the community through the safety, education, and guidance of our youth.”

The California native has lived in Tennessee, Ohio, Arizona and New York. One of his passions is his love for cooking and food.

Montes replaces Paul Hagerty, who retired this summer. Montes is one of five Deputy Sheriffs who work full-time as a School Resource Officer through the Erie County Sheriff’s Office. The other districts that participate in this program are Harbor Creek, Northwestern, North East, and Fairview School Districts.

School Resource Officers work toward educating students in the safest possible environment and also ensures a first responder to emergencies. The Deputy Sheriff, as a School Resource Officer, is involved in Parent and Student Organizations, attends sporting events at the school, and presents many Law Enforcement Education and Diversion programs, including the Officer Phil Program in the elementary levels throughout the County of Erie.

General McLane welcomes Mr. Montes to the District!

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