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The Journal Gazette

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Teacher Regina Schuckel reads a book to students in the Lady Bugs classroom at Crescent Avenue Weekday School last month.

Monday, November 06, 2017 1:00 am

Education Notebook

Crescent Avenue school winning raves

ASHLEY SLOBODA | The Journal Gazette

When Lisa Fischer moved to Fort Wayne and sought child care for her son, she got a list of top-rated Paths to Quality programs from the Early Childhood Alliance.

Once she began making calls, however, first impressions left her unimpressed. That changed when she contacted Crescent Avenue Weekday School, which won her over with its affordability and receptionist's professionalism, she said.

“We were just blown away,” said Fischer, who now serves on the school's board.

Crescent Avenue Weekday School, which has programs for ages 2 to 12, has years of practice attracting students. It marked its 60th anniversary on Sept. 30.

Director Rhonda Rasnic noted the milestone in a recent school newsletter, saying it is an honor to belong to the staff that continues this tradition in the community.

“CAWS may not be big and we are far from being new,” she wrote. “Our love for children is something that cannot be bought.”

It began as a nursery school with 15 children and now offers full-day care, before- and after-school care and summer school care with capacity for 135 children. It is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Nearby Lakeside Park inspired its classrooms' names. Each room is named after animals found in the park – honeybees, ducks, ladybugs, bunnies, turtles and caterpillars and butterflies.

The school has benefited from dedicated staff members, an inclusive and welcoming environment and its relationship with Crescent Avenue United Methodist Church, board chair Jeanne Sheridan said.

“It's just ingrained in our church to support the weekday school,” she said.

Although the school offers programs in a Christian atmosphere, officials said it accepts students of all faiths and is respectful of parents who don't want their children to attend weekly chapel services.

Parent Melinda Knoblauch commended the school for its individualized approach regarding families' and children's needs.

“They are very invested in the families,” she said.

By the time Fischer's son started kindergarten elsewhere, she said, he knew how to read and how to count past 100.

“He started kindergarten on such a great foot,” she said. 


• Questa Education Foundation is seeking donations to fund 10 additional students next school year. Go to to make a contribution.

• Simplified IT Products is accepting applications until Dec. 31 for a $1,500 scholarship. Applicants must be a high school senior or college student. Go to for more information.

• Ivy Tech Community College students Josiah Clark of Woodburn and Edward Scott of Columbia City were among 13 students statewide who received a scholarship from the Indiana Homeland Security Foundation. Clark is studying paramedic science, and Scott is studying emergency response management.


• Eight Defiance College alumni were recognized during homecoming last month for their accomplishments. Judy Small Dally and John Scheu received the Alumni Citation for Academic Excellence; Dale Bruskotter, David Robinson and the late Tim Leuzarder received the Alumni Achievement Award; Terry Boyd and Carolyn Keilig received the Schauffler Legacy Award; and Casey Gibson received the Young Alumni Service Award.

• Four Homestead High School radio students received first-place awards at the 14th annual Terri Hemmert Midwest Regional High School and College Radio Conference at Columbia College Chicago last month. Regan Jones won in the interviewing category; Matt Schreck won in the sports play-by-play category; Garrett Willis won in the live on-air newscast category; and Cory Balkenbusch won in the voice-over category. Willis and Balkenbusch also got second-place awards.

• Trine received a best-in-class award for having the most improved student voting rate within the four-year, small, private-institution category at the first ALL IN Challenge Awards ceremony. It also earned a bronze seal for achieving a student voting rate between 50 percent and 59 percent. The student voter registration rate increased 16 percent and its voting rate for students increased nearly 13 percent from 2012 to 2016.


• Canterbury School, 5601 Covington Road, will hold open houses from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. Go to for more information.

• The Huntington University Foundation breakfast Wednesday will feature a military panel discussion moderated by communications professor and Army veteran Mike Rowley. Contact Jan Yost at 260-359-4046 or for more information or to RSVP. The breakfast, open to the public, runs from 7:45 to 9 a.m. in Habecker Dining Commons. Cost is $10.

• Bishop Luers High School will offer the Henry-Keefer Scholarship Exam from 8 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday for eighth-graders interested in attending the school. Scholarships will be awarded to the top-10 scoring students. No preregistration is required. Call Jenny Andorfer at 260-456-1261, ext. 3139, for more information.

• Trine University will host a write-in from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday for National Novel Writing Month, which unites writers every November with the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 p.m. Nov. 30. The event is open to the public and will be in Wells Gallery inside Trine's Taylor Hall of Humanities.

• IPFW's annual Fall Campus Visit Day will be from 12:30 to 4 p.m. Sunday with check-in beginning at 11:30 a.m. at Rhinehart Music Center. A resource fair, departmental open houses and campus tours are planned. Register at or contact James Velez at 260-481-0349 or

• Indiana Tech will show “Taken” on Nov. 13 and “I Am Jane Doe” on Nov. 15 as part of its Tech Talks series on human trafficking. Faculty members will lead a discussion afterward. Both start at 7 p.m. in the Magee-O'Connor Theater in Andorfer Commons.

• The Grace College School of Business will present “Giving Back to the Community,” from 8 to 11:45 a.m. Nov. 20 at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center, 610 Wooster Road, Winona Lake. Tickets are $30 and available at The keynote speaker is Rep. Jim Banks, R-Ind.


Lisa Maxwell-Frieden is Trine University's new vice president for development. She most recently was director of gift planning at Butler University.

Students and parents who have a favorite teacher can nominate the individual for Teacher Honor Roll. Send nominations to The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802; fax 461-8893 or email

To submit an item, send a typed release from the school or organization to Education Notebook, The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802; fax 461-8893 or email at least two weeks before the desired publication date.