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9-26-18 — September Awards

Sept. 26, 2018

Olathe Student Selected for Playwrights’ Roundtable

LyLena Estabine, junior at Olathe Northwest High School, was selected to be a member of The Coterie’s annual Young Playwrights’ Roundtable. This selection allows Estabine the opportunity to work through writing and developing plays in a series of workshops. Some members of the roundtable will receive a production or staged reading on The Coterie’s mainstage.

“LyLena has consistently demonstrated an affinity for writing,” said Olathe Northwest Principal Chris Zuck. “We are so proud of her past accomplishment, her talent, and her acceptance for this opportunity.”

Staff Member Elected to Serve on National Board

Olathe South High School theater director David Hastings was elected to serve on the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA) Board of Directors. This appointment is a three-year term. Hastings recently produced the Kansas Thespian All-State Musical.

“I’m honored to be selected to the board,” said Hastings. “I feel grateful for the honor to serve EdTA and to represent Thespian Troupe Directors and theater educators from around the country.”

“David Hastings does an incredible job directing the theater department at Olathe South and we are extremely fortunate to have his leadership for our students,” said Clint Albers, Olathe South principal. “David’s election to the EdTA board is a reflection of his excellent leadership and the high regard in which he is held by those involved in theater around the country.”

Three Music Educators Earn Recognitions

Three Olathe music educators earned honors from the East Central Kansas Music Educators Association (ECKMEA). Frontier Trail Middle School band director Sara Smitko has been selected as the Middle Level Band Teacher of the Year. J.J. Wallace, Olathe West High School orchestra director, has been selected as the High School Orchestra Teacher of the Year and Olathe West assistant band director John Wickersham has been selected as the High School Band Teacher of the Year.

“Sara Smitko is an amazing band director and has built a very successful program at Frontier Trail,” said Frontier Trail Principal Rod Smith. “She puts her students first and gives them the tools they need to become outstanding musicians. Our band program has received state and national recognition because of Mrs. Smitko’s leadership.”

“J.J. Wallace is an incredible person, a tremendously gifted teacher and I cannot think of a person worthier of this award,” Olathe West Principal Jay Novacek said. “John Wickersham has helped to create a powerful band movement at Olathe West. He is a dedicated teacher who spends many hours working with our students and visiting our feeder elementary schools as well.”