284 South Liberty Street Powell, Ohio | contact@villageacademy.org | (614) 841.0050

Academic Heisman-3Seniors, Jake Block and Erin Schraitle, were recently named School Winners for the prestigious Wendy’s High School Heisman Award. This award highlights exceptional high school seniors and their achievements in the classroom, on the field and in the community.

Created by Wendy’s founder Dave Thomas in 1994, the Wendy’s High School Heisman Award has honored more than 600,000 of the nation’s most esteemed high school seniors. For 22 years, Wendy’s, in partnership with the Heisman Memorial Trophy, has rewarded these students with commitment to academics, athletics and community on a national level and we are proud to highlight Jake and Erin as the school winners.

In addition to playing soccer and tennis, Jake is president of National Honor Society, and plans to major in business in college. He is keeping an open mind about attending law school. He helped start the Business Club Village Academy, and has started his own car detailing business. His top college choice is University of Pennsylvania.

Erin wants to major in physical therapy. Her top choice college is Marshall University. She is a member of several clubs and organizations and is a member of the Dance Ensemble. She is an awesome baker, and spent time baking with the preschool students, incorporating counting, measuring, safety in the kitchen, etc. On the court, Erin enjoys cheerleading and playing volleyball.

Both seniors had to apply for the award, and include all their classes, their grades, their sports, their extracurricular activities, and more. Congratulations to School Winners, Erin and Jake, for their well-deserved High School Heisman Awards!

Orthopedic One sponsored a 5K even5KFinisht that gave all Central Ohio High Schools the opportunity to show their school spirit and earn money for their Athletic Department. In order to win the prize, Village Academy had to register as many Griffins as possible for the Spirit Sprint 5K event that took place at Huntington Park in downtown Columbus, Ohio, the morning of November 1, 2015.

The registration cost was only $25 and VA Athletics received 100% of each registration fee. Due to the overwhelming support of our Griffins, over $2500 was raised by the fees alone! Points were awarded to each school according to how many participants they had and the top schools earned a cash prize.

The weather was beautiful and the energy was contagious as staff members, students, VA athletic teams, and families gathered at the starting line. 3.15KCheck miles later, along the Scioto River and downtown Columbus, the runners approached the finish line inside the ballpark stadium. Although the finishing time was displayed, it was ignored as everyone smiled and congratulated their teammates on a great finish. After everyone rehydrated and ate the complimentary food, Orthopedic One presented Village Academy with a check for $6375 for taking 2nd place in participation!

This was a wonderful opportunity for current students, teachers, coaches, athletes, and alumni to come together for an exciting morning full of #GriffinPride. Thank you to all of those who supported VA Athletics and came out for this fun and rewarding event, and special thanks to Orthopedic One for making it possible. See you next year!

Joey Edgington proposed an idea to alleviate overpopulation and hunger in Brazil and received recognition for his research at the recent World Food Prize Conference in Iowa.  In order to create awareness of the problems of rapid urbanization in Brazil, Joey submitted a paper as part of a competition among high school students across the world.Joey_Presentation

In April, Joey was one of eighty students to be invited to the Ohio Youth Institute at OSU’s Center of Agricultural and Ecological Studies in Columbus, Ohio.  In just four minutes, Joey summarized his research and presented to a panel of three esteemed judges.  He was then chosen as one of twelve students for a final, in-depth, interview with four experts in the field of food security.

Joey’s journey did not end at OSU.  He was selected as one of a group of delegates to represent Ohio at the Global Youth Institute in Des Moines, Iowa.  The three day program took place between October 14 and 16, 2015 and Joey, among 200 students from around the world, presented his paper to a group of students and experts.  After sharing his ideas he was then selected by his group to speak in front of the assembled Global Youth Institute during the final symposium of the conference.IMG_1050

As a result of his hard work and his participation in the conference, Joey is now eligible to apply for the Borlaug-Ruan International Internship and the USDA Wallace-Carver Fellowship.  One of the academic experts who heard Joey’s paper congratulated him on his performance and confided: “You’re going to do big things, Joey. Stay in touch.”

To All Parents and Students,

Since student safety is our highest priority, we would like to remind you of safe practices to use in our parking lot. It is very important that students exit/enter vehicles from the passenger side making their way to/from the school doors. Using the driver’s side door could put students in a position to be struck by passing traffic. Additionally, the arc by the flagpole, the entry area to the main/lower school building, can become congested during morning drop-off and pick-up so please take extra care. 

Here are a few safety reminders:

  • Traffic in the arc should be single file and there should be no parking at any time. This area is for drop-off/pick-up only. 
  • The speed limit in the parking lot is 5 mph, which is approximately walking speed.
  • Pedestrians, especially children, always have the right of way, followed by school buses.
  • In the parking lot, traffic in the two southernmost lanes (closest to the fence) is inbound, and in the northernmost lane (closest to the building) is outbound.
  • There is no afternoon parking along the playground fence line until after 3:30 p.m. when the buses have left for the day.
  • Cell phone use should be minimal, to allow for your best attention to pedestrian traffic on the parking lot, and  be limited to communicating your whereabouts with your student exiting the building.   

These instructions are in the best interest and for the safety of students and should to be followed with care.  We appreciate your attention and further use of these procedures.


David Sellers,

Facilities Director

Fifteen years ago, CheryCherylRockl Driesen began her relationship with Village Academy as a parent of her young son, Jim, who was starting preschool. Coming from a successful, fast-paced fashion career in New York City and Europe, Cheryl moved back to her home state of Ohio to care for several of her family members and needed an exceptional school for her son to begin preschool. She volunteered at Village Academy until knowledge of her background in marketing surfaced and the faculty realized she would be an asset to VA.  Over the next 10 years she held positions in the front office, admissions and marketing before becoming the Director of Development. After four years in her current position, Cheryl’s last day with Village Academy was Friday, August 28, 2015.

As a Director of Development, Cheryl’s primary responsibility was to bridge the financial gap between tuition income and operating costs of Village Academy. Building strong, trusting relationships with stakeholders and the Powell community was the key to success in this position and Cheryl thrived.  Her enthusiasm for the students and her community showed through in her work.

Now that retirement has begun, Cheryl plans to continue to travel to Italy and other parts of Europe with her son, Jim.  While working for Calvin Klein and other fashion companies, Cheryl got a glimpse of life in Europe and can now travel for pleasure rather than business.  Also, Jim has a passion and talent for sculpting so the history and art of Italy are never taken for granted.  Here in the states, Cheryl plans to continue playing golf and singing in a jazz band for private venues, which she has been doing for 25 years!

After sitting down one-on-one, Cheryl expressed what she cherished most about her time at Village Academy. “It has been an honor and a privilege, not only to have met and worked with parents, but to watch the kids grow up.  There is a reason why so many tears are shed at graduation.”  Cheryl will miss the relationships she has built throughout her years at Village Academy most of all.  However, Cheryl may be out of her office, but she is not gone from our community.  She hopes to keep in touch with her VA family and continue seeing the students flourish.  We wish her the best of luck and no matter where her retirement journey takes her, she’ll always have a home at Village Academy.

Morgan C. was selected as a finalist in the fourth annual Shearer Perfection Student Contest for Young Inventors and honored for his invention on July 24th.

This annual competition is open to students in grades 4-8 in the Ohio and Greater Pittsburgh, PA area who accept the challenge of inventing a product from used Shearer’s snack products. Morgan constructed a windsock by reusing the company’s empty potato chip bags and was selected as one of 25 semifinalists, along with several other Village Academy students. The contest required a video submission, press release photo, and the invention sent to the National Museum of Education for a panel review, located in Akron, Ohio.  Each student was judged on how creatively they chose to repurpose the used product containers in an environmentally friendly way.

ShearersAwardCeremony_MorganAt the end of June, Morgan received a letter from Shearer’s, congratulating him on earning one of the seven finalist positions in the competition.  Morgan, along with his family and science teacher, Missy Fendrick, were invited to attend an awards ceremony in Massillon, Ohio, on July 24th. At the ceremony, Morgan received an honorable mention and was awarded $600 to show that his hard work had paid off.  Following the ceremony, the finalists and guests took a tour of the Shearer’s factory to get a personal view of the company’s dedication to their employees, customers and surrounding community. Through this experience, Morgan and Shearer’s Snacks proved that committing to a clean and healthy environment can be both fun and rewarding.

20150522-_EAM9606Several new pieces of legislation were considered in the 2015 session of the Third Grade General Assembly which took place on Friday, May 22.  The second grade class looked on from the gallery as third grade congressional leaders gave thoughtful consideration and spirited debate to bills that were presented and voted on in both the House (Ms. Wasil’s class) and Senate (Ms. Jones’ class).20150522-_EAM9613

The Bill of Griffin Grill and Friday Time Bill passed easily through both chambers with little debate. The Bussing Time Bill passed by a narrow margin while the Soccer Bill failed to garner enough votes to pass out of session. The Education Bill and the Bill of Fun stalled in the Senate, but Representatives Thompson, Sela, and Wells who co-sponsored the Bill of Fun promised they would make changes to the bill and reintroduce it at a later date. “A second recess is just too important to kids today, and we will not give up on passing this important piece of legislation” said Representative Thompson.


Valedictorian2Village Academy proudly announced the 2015 Valedictorian at the annual Academic Awards ceremony on May 18, 2015. Congratulations to James Reed McGraw for all of his accomplishments throughout his Upper School career. Reed plans to attend The Ohio State University in the Fall where he will not only participate in the Honors College, but Swim for the OSU team. Reed, your VA family wishes you the best of luck in all of your future endeavors! #GriffinPride



Joey Edgington, 11th Grade, has been competitively selected to represent the State of Ohio as a delegate to the Global Youth Institute and World Food Prize in Des Moines, Iowa, in October of this year. Joey’s research concerns the challenges of rapidly increasing urbanization in Brazil and his paper outlines a possible solution to some of the problems in Brazil’s overcrowded cities. He submitted his findings in a formal essay in March and, after scrutiny by expert readers from academia, he was invited to defend his ideas at the Ohio Youth Institute, held in the Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center at OSU on April 17th.

Between 80 and 90 students were dispersed to nine separate seminar sessions where each of them presented their material to a panel of three judges. Students were asked follow-up questions after each presentation, giving an opportunity to share more information about their research. Based on their papers and presentations, approximately twelve students were selected for in-depth, ten minute interviews with a team of judges.

In spite of stiff competition, Joey made it to the interview stage where he experienced a further round of questioning. After much deliberation, based on the research papers, presentations and interviews, the judges selected Joey to join over 300 high school students and teachers for the three-day conference in Iowa. Joey will have the opportunity to interact with Nobel and World Food Prize laureates and over 1000 global leaders from 75 countries attending the World Food Prize’s annual international symposium.

In partnership with ARMADA Ltd., Village Academy will be participating in an Active Threat Response Full Scale Exercise on Monday April 20th beginning at 1:30pm.  Village Academy has been presented with the unique opportunity to conduct this exercise in partnership with our community stakeholders; Powell Police Department, Liberty Township Fire, Delaware County Sheriff and Delaware County Emergency Management Agency.  This Full Scale Exercise is another step Village Academy is taking to ensure preparedness of our Students, Faculty and extended Village Academy family.

As you know, Active Threat Response is one of the incidents that the Emergency Operations Team prepares for as part of our All Hazard Emergency Operations Plan. This Full Scale Exercise will include both the Administrators (Emergency Operations Team) and all teachers. The teachers will be provided an opportunity to practice the action steps they could employ in the event of an active threat situation. The Emergency Operations Team plans to practice both the immediate action steps as well as test the Emergency Operations Plan as it relates to notification, response, recovery and reunification.

We are providing this notice to you to ease any concerns and quash any rumors that may spread during exercise play on Monday April 20th.