North Cedar News

One of the benefits of a small school district is that we can immerse ourselves in our community of learners. Get to know the movers and shakers in the North Cedar Community School District! Our News page is chock full of student and staff praise, helpful tips, and information about what’s new in the district.

High School Journalism Continues To Shine In The Gazette

The school years is over, and graduation parties have ended. It’s time to reflect, ok brag, on another successful year for The Gazette’s high school journalism program.

If you are not aware of what this is, it’s a program started in November 2011 to promote journalism and the importance of writing well at high schools across eastern Iowa. Over the past six years, I have been an editor, mentor, and a cheerleader for hundreds of high school students who took part in this program.

Although it’s a small part of my duties at The Gazette, it has become a passion of mine to talk about and teach young journalists the importance of news and telling good stories.

If you haven’t seen or read the work of these talented students in The Gazette or on this site, you’re missing some fantastic stories.

One of this year’s talented students, Hanna Roltgen, who will be a senior at Cedar Rapids Prairie in the fall, has had stories posted and in the paper the last two weeks. Hanna is interning at The Gazette as part of Kirkwood’s workplace learning connections. Later this summer, North Cedar senior Saleena Jones will join our staff as part of that same program. Saleena already has had many photos appear on this page and online.

Please take a moment to read J.R. Ogden's complete high school journalism article in the online version of The Gazette.


Unable to make it to the big game? No problem! We've got you covered! Check out Knightcast for live broadcasts of most North Cedar sporting events.  

Ambitious North Cedar Students

Two ambitious North Cedar students, Tessa Fields and Lydia Esbaum, are extending their educational experience into their summer months by learning Microsoft Office 2016 (Word, Excel, Access, and Powerpoint) and taking the MOS certification exams for Microsoft's specialists certification level. Tessa Fields is on her way as she has two components completed, Word and Powerpoint. Lydia decided to start with the hardest component first, Access, and is very close to being ready to take her first exam. When these girls complete all four components and take the regional area business teacher's exam they will earn one credit for computer business applications, and they will earn one credit toward their graduating credits. They will will also get the right to list these skills on their resume, which will be a great asset in their finding a job in the future.

Senior Picture Information

All seniors will need to turn in at least one senior photo. Seniors may use the same pose for both the yearbook and the class composite. All photos are due to Mrs. Green at the high school by Friday, December 15. Please see our senior picture information flyer for more information.

FBLA At Elegant Barn

On Saturday, May 27 FBLA members Makayla Schluter, Breylee St. John, and Madison Cornelius helped at Beth Bowie's business, Elegant Barn, with parking cars and directing traffic. In return for helping her out, Beth made a donation to the FBLA organization. The money will go toward members competition expenses. FBLA is looking for more opportunities to help businesses out. If you have an interest, please contact advisor Jane Koch via e-mail.

Becoming Fast

From being hidden in the 3200 pack to winning gold junior year, Seamus Raney a junior at North Cedar is becoming a very talented runner. Raney started his high school running career by running cross-country in the fall of his freshman year with his best time of 20.06. Then moving into the spring Raney started running varsity track events. In the 3200 meter with his best time of 11.31, 1600 meter at 5.32 and also running the 800 meter with a time of 2.25. Continuing the running lifestyle, Raney ran cross-country again sophomore year and again improved times every meet. Raney then ran track again in the spring with faster times than his freshman year cutting his mile time 28 seconds and his 800 time by 16 seconds. Raney also ran in the 400 with his best at 55 seconds. 

This fall running cross-country with his best time of 18.40, he is now medaling left and right. At the beginning of his junior year Raney was running his 800 meter at 2.09, his 400 meter at 52 seconds, anchoring the sprint medley with the 400 meter, and finishing most meets with the 4x400. Now Raney is running his 800 meter at a 2.03 cutting 6 seconds off while running his 400’s in 50 seconds cutting five seconds off. 

“I like being considered a leader,” Raney says. From leading stretches to start off practice to leading the runs Raney is no doubt a great leader on the team. 

“Seamus is fast, really fast, I wish I was as fast as him” teammate Chance Cinkovich says. 

Raney has some big goals for his senior year, the want for more never ends with him. He says qualifying for Drake and breaking the school record for the 800 is what his summer, fall, winter, and spring training will be for. 

Coach Kasik has been Raney’s coach since freshman year and Raney says “Kasik has helped him by being hard on the team in practice so we are ready for meets,” and, “sometimes practices suck but they are making us better”. Raney says the things that help him the most at meets are doing the same stretches, focusing on the event he is about to run, and hearing coach Kasik yelling at him to keep his form. 

Saturday May 20, Raney ran on the blue oval for the first time ever in his high school career. Raney qualified in two events, the sprint medley, and the 800-meter run. Despite getting sick the week of state, Raney still represented North Cedar with his head up and pushed through. Raney represents what a dedicated runner looks like. Not running as well as Raney hoped to he still has the mindset of a winner and says, “Going from the bottom this year to first next year is what I am going to do."

Raney qualified in two events, the sprint medley and the 800 meter run. Despite getting sick the week of state, Raney still represented North Cedar with his head up and pushed through.

Dancing The Year Away

Click to view moreThe North Cedar dance team ended their 2016-2017 dance season with a showcase to show off their talent to their family, friends, and community. This year they included a dance clinic which included the elementary school students. Team members wanted to get the word out about what the dance team is really all about. Having the high school dancers helping with the clinic really means a lot to the younger students. It makes them want to go out for dance.

The showcase featured twelve dances. The dance team took all the dances they have learned this season and presented all of them to the audience. The showcase really is a good cap to the season and a good time to show off their skills to people who might not have been able to make it to one of their performances. The team has been working on this since around June of last year (2016). The dancers were missing a few people at the showcase, so they had to work extra hard to fix the dances the night before and the day of so the dances would still look presentable. 

New to this showcase were two solos performed by sophomore Rachel Hart and junior Mikayla Burcum. Hart performed a solo to “Rise Up” by Andra Day and Burcum performed to “DNA” by Lia Marie Johnson. Burcum and Hart got together for a duet to “Halo” by Beyonce. Hart and Burcum both dance for other teams outside of school dance. Hart is a part of a dance studio in Tipton and enjoys dancing with girls from all over.  

Also new to the show this year was the dances the high schoolers taught the young children at the dance clinic. The high schoolers split the kids into different grades at the beginning of the clinic to teach them the dance separately, then at the end of the clinic all the grades got together and practiced the dance together as one big group, which is the way they performed it at the showcase. Preschool through first grade was taught by junior Chelsea Lovell and junior Mikayla Burcum. Second through fourth grade was taught by sophomore Kayla Sander and sophomore Rachel Hart. The fifth and sixth graders were taught by freshman Alyssa Higbee and freshman Haven Brown. 

A special thank you to Elizabeth Lovell, freshman yearbook student, for writing this article and to Saleena Jones, junior yearbook photographer, for taking the photos.

Book It

Congratulations to North Cedar Elementary students that successfully hit every goal for Book It this year! They were awarded a book for their accomplishments, compliments of the KCO. Great work!

Lowden's Final PBS Winners

At Lowden, we celebrated our final PBIS winners. Thanks to everyone for showing respect to self, respect to others, and respect to property. They include: 

  • Back row - Addi Ehlts, Ashton James, Ava Wenndt, Logan Eiselstein, and Kasen McDowell.
  • Front row - Marx Dittmer, Isaac Tharp, Phoenix Mayberry, Izzy Errthum, Aiden Carney, Cooper Heister, and Evan Tjaden.

Summer Reading

Summer reading sheets will be coming home with all elementary students in grades preschool through fifth. Please encourage your children to keep reading over the summer, and keep track of the books they read. They will fill in one sun for each book they read on the back of the flyer. When they come back in the fall they can bring the completed flyer to their teacher to receive their incentive for continuing to read. Summer reading is important for the students to maintain what they have learned and to avoid a lapse in their learning.