Staff donate hundreds of pair of jeans to The Caring Center


Marshalltown Schools staff donated hundreds of pairs of new and gently used jeans to The Caring Center in Marshalltown, which provides clothing for those in need. Pictured, from left, are MCSD Superintendent Dr. Theron Schutte, Lisa Villegas and Donna Patton of The Caring Center, Jim Kopel of MCSD Buildings & Grounds and Karen Weltzin of The Caring Center.

Employees of the Marshalltown Community School District donated hundreds of pairs of jeans to The Caring Center on Main Street in Marshalltown on May 22. The Caring Center provides clothing and other household items for those in need in our community, with jeans being a popular item among visitors.

Staff in Marshalltown Schools held a “Jeans for Jeans” day on May 17 where they were able to wear jeans to work if they donated new or gently used jeans to The Caring Center.

Thanks to Jim Kopel of our Buildings and Grounds department for collecting the 18 boxes and 10 bags of donated jeans from our schools throughout the district.

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Two more AEDs donated to Marshalltown Schools


Laura Jackman, left, of the Iowa Heart Center Foundation, presents a donation of a new AED to Lenihan Intermediate School nurse Toni Freese for the Lenihan gym. Also pictured in back row, from left, Lenihan staff Lisa Crouch, Elaine Johnson, Casey Moberly and Dr. Liz Jurgensen.

Total now at 15 AEDs in 10 school locations

The Marshalltown Community School District now has a total of 15 AEDs placed in its 10 schools after a donation of two of the devices was made on May 21.

The Iowa Heart Center Foundation donated two automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) to be located in the Marshalltown Learning Academy and the Lenihan Intermediate School gym.

AEDs are state of the art devices that when used in conjunction with effective CPR, assist in the resuscitation of a sudden cardiac arrest victim. AEDs do not require extensive medical knowledge to understand or operate.

The Iowa Heart Center Foundation has been instrumental in this effort to place more AEDs in Marshalltown Schools, as were donations from the Community Foundation of Marshall County (CFMC)

“I am so happy to say that we will have AEDs placed in all the buildings and needed areas of our district,” said Stacey Tool-Crawford, Marshalltown High School nurse and district lead nurse. “We are fortunate to have the support of CFMC and Iowa Heart Center Foundation to make this possible.”

Tool-Crawford also said the district has a Cardiac Emergency Response plan in place throughout the district which provides for a team of staff members that are trained to respond to a cardiac emergency until EMS arrives.


Laura Jackman, center, of Iowa Heart Center Foundation presents an AED to Marshalltown High School and district lead nurse Stacey Tool-Crawford to be used in the Marshalltown Learning Academy and Four Oaks area. Also pictured, from left are Nurse Sheryl Edwards, Melissa Brummel of Four Oaks, MLA Principal Eric Goslinga and MLA resource specialist Reji Kurian.

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A passion for working with people


Leah (Landt) Struthers is a 2006 Marshalltown High School graduate. She is working toward her master’s degree to become a therapist.

2006 MHS graduate works to become a therapist

Story written by volunteer writer and MHS graduate Samantha Edwards

Leah (Landt) Struthers loved playing sports and was a wrestling cheerleader all four years of high school; but, she said, her preferred activity — pottery — was completed in the art space.

“I think the favorite part of my school time was all the time spent in the pottery studio, in the art room,” said Struthers, who is a 2006 Marshalltown High School graduate. “Looking back, what I valued the most then, and value even more now, was learning about the creative arts, and pottery in particular.”

Struthers currently lives in Omaha, Nebraska and works in foster care.

Her undergraduate degree is in family life and counseling from Nebraska Christian College, and her master’s degree will be in counseling and psychology from Hope International University.

“My hope is to become a therapist,” she said.

College courses at MHS
When asked how MHS helped get her ready for college, she said, “Definitely all the college classes that I was able to take in high school was a huge asset for me, in not only getting me college credit, but not have as stressful of a course load when I went to college. So, just getting to take those classes and getting a taste of what college credit classes would potentially be like.“

It was in those college-level classes in high school that exposed her to psychology and sociology, which led her to a career decision.

“Those two [classes] helped me make a decision about wanting to work with people, wanting to work with kids in particular,” Struthers said. “I think for me, growing up in the church and wanting to do ministry in some way, just feeling that God had a plan for me — in terms of having a positive impact on people. So, I think that also influenced me to choose that path that I did.”

Living in Omaha now, she sees how a town that is the size of Marshalltown creates a strong environment where teachers care about the students, and they have time to invest in them.

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Kindergarten students learn water safety in local program


Shelley Lechnir, aquatics director at the Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA, reads the book “Josh the Baby Otter” to kindergarten students at Rogers Elementary School on May 16. This water safety program is being delivered to all Marshalltown kindergarten students this month.

The Marshalltown Rotary Club and the Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA are sponsoring a water safety program focused on the book “Josh the Baby Otter” for all Marshalltown kindergarten students during their physical education classes this month.

Presenters from Rotary and the Y deliver the one-time program about how to stay safe around water from the point of view of Josh the otter, who is featured in the book. Students receive a free book to take home to share with their families. Shelley Lechnir, aquatics director at the YMCA-YWCA, visited Rogers Elementary School on May 16.

“Kindergartners were very receptive to the tale of Josh the Baby Otter,” said Nicki Boliver, PE teacher at Rogers Elementary School. “The importance of water safety is something that many of the students have already been introduced to and this activity helped reinforce the efforts of our community and its mission to keep kids safe around bodies of water. As the activity concluded, kindergartners pledged to stay away from water unless they were with an adult. They made a real connection to what was being taught to them through this program.”


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Retirees honored for their dedication in their careers


Miller Middle School special education teacher Anita Ringgenberg, left, honors retiring Miller special education teacher Linda Russell during the MEA/MCSD retirement tea held on May 15.

Nearly 250 years of combined service to the district was recognized during the Marshalltown Education Association/Marshalltown Schools annual retirement tea held on May 15 at Dejardin Hall on the Marshalltown Community College campus. Many of the school employees set to retire in just a few weeks were in attendance.

“The impact they’ve had on generations of students cannot be truly measured,” said School Board Member Sean Heitmann.

MEA Scholarships


The MEA Scholarship recipients were Trenten Finders (left), who plans to attend Marshalltown Community College and Juliana Arifi (right), who plans to attend Grand View University.

Friend of Education Award


Franklin teacher Angie Pietig, right, presents volunteer Shirley Mann with the Friend of Education award.

The Friend of Education Award was presented to Shirley Mann, a retired teacher who volunteers in third grade at Franklin Elementary School.

“I cannot think of a more deserving individual for this award,” said Franklin teacher Angie Pietig.


Below are more photos of retirees who were honored at the event:


Sue Cahill, left, honors retiring Woodbury Elementary School 3rd grade teacher Rita Byers.



Hoglan Elementary School Principal Amy Williams, left, talks with retiring Hoglan 2nd grade teacher Deb Friday.


Rogers Elementary School teacher Chris Melde, right, honors retiring Franklin/Rogers music teacher Jolene Kubli.


MHS nurse Stacy Tool-Crawford, left, honors retiring Woodbury Elementary School nurse Elly Mack.

Other retirees not in attendance included Rollie Ackerman, Mike Eggleston, Darlene Gilliland, Jeff Hoogensen, Mike Loupee, Leah Mattox, Elda Reyes and Maralyn Schulze. Piano music was presented prior to the start of the event by Miller 8th grader Hannah Seltman.



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Miller students learning real world skills in job shadowing program


Miller Middle School eighth grader Yessenia Alvarez Zamora holds a cat as she learns from Dr. Grant Jacobson at the Hometown Veterinarian office during a job shadow experience recently.

Eighth grade students in the Extended Learning Program at Miller Middle School are participating in a job shadowing program which has them at several area businesses learning real world skills.

“Before my students set off for high school and really start focusing their studies on a career path I wanted to give them some exposure to what careers really look like in practice,” said Miller XLP teacher Ann Jackson. “Each student conducted some background research on a career they were interested in, and then I tried to find something similar in the Marshalltown area to give them a real-life experience.  The students then go to the work sites for a half-day to get a feel for their chosen career. “

Students have chosen a wide variety of careers from chemical engineers to librarians and Marshalltown businesses have been tremendously supportive and accommodating for our students.  A student interested in architecture got to go to the Crosby Park Townhomes construction site. A student interested in veterinary medicine got to do a pregnancy check on a cow and another student interested in physical training learned how to set up workouts.

“I feel like these job shadows are a great way for my students to learn not only the academic requirements needed for success in the workplace but also the ‘soft skills’ they will need, like collaboration, time management, and collegiality,” Jackson said.

Mrs. Jackson would like to thank the following local businesses for supporting this effort: Stover Controls, the Marshalltown Public Library, Crosby Park Townhomes, Steckelberg Vet Clinic, Hometown Veterinarian, Sports Plus, Wertzberger Architects, Emerson and Clapsaddle-Garber Associates.

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JA in a Day presented at Miller Middle School


Nate McCormick of Emerson presents to seventh graders at Miller Middle School as part of the Junior Achievement “JA in a Day” program on May 14. Students learned about the global marketplace from 18 Emerson employees who volunteered as instructors.

Emerson employees volunteer to instruct on global marketplace

Eighteen volunteers from Emerson gave an entire day to help Miller Middle School 7th graders learn more about business in the Junior Achievement program “JA in a Day” held on May 14.

Students rotated through five different lessons presented by Emerson employees as part of the JA Global Marketplace curriculum including Business and Customer, Business and Culture, Global Trade, Why Countries Specialize and Trade Barriers.

The students also were able to learn about Emerson, which is a global leader in valve manufacturing and one of the largest employers in Marshalltown.

“This is a great opportunity for Emerson to partner with Miller Middle School and really highlight to the students the impact they can have on the global marketplace,” said Jason Olberding, engineering director at Emerson.

Thank you to Emerson and Junior Achievement for partnering with us on this special day.

For more photos from the event, visit the MCSD Facebook page.


Jason Olberding of Emerson points out a valve manufactured by the company.


Keri Gaschler of Emerson helps out a Miller student.

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