Free Family Fun Night - Friday, June 3rd - 4-8 pm

Summertime is here, so let’s celebrate!  The Children’s Smile Center downtown at the corner of Church & Madison is having a Free Family Fun Night on Friday, June 3, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.!  There will be food, drinks, pony rides, live music, children’s activities and much more, and all of it is free!  Bring a lawn chair and enjoy the evening with your friends!

Summer School-June 6th Through June 29th

Summer School will be in session from Monday, June 6th through Wednesday, June 29th.  We encourage you to enroll your child(ren) for the summer session.  For more information, please contact the office in the building where your child attends.  

EOC Results Provided To High School Students

The following letter was sent to High School parents on Tuesday, May 17th regarding the 2016 Spring Administration of the End-of-Course Exams.  If you have questions, please call the High School or Central Office.  

May 17, 2016

Dear Parent or Guardian,

Individual Score Reports (ISR) from the 2016 Spring Administration of the End-of-Course assessments were provided to students today.  If your child was enrolled in any of the following courses, he or she should have a report to share with you.  These courses include: English II, Biology, Algebra I, Government, and Algebra II. 


Please contact the counselor’s office if you have questions regarding the results.  If your child did not bring home a report, you may contact the High School counselor to obtain another.  You may also visit the Central Office located at 409 West Locust Avenue to receive a copy.    


We are very proud of how the students performed on the assessments.  Both students and teachers worked very hard to reach the highest possible levels.  Assessment is one way to ensure we are meeting your child’s needs.  We are committed to ensuring all children in our district are prepared for success.  In order to meet this commitment, the results from this administration will be reviewed and used to effectively revise instructional practices.   


Again, if you have questions or need another copy of the ISR please contact the counselor or principal at the High School or call Central Office at 678-3373.



Billy A. Redus

Assistant Superintendent

Basketball Camps for Kindergarten Through 6th Grade Students (For The 2016-17 School Year)

The Houn' Dawgs and Lady Houn' Dawgs will be having an elementary basketball camp (for boys and girls) starting
Monday, May 16th and running through Wednesday, May 18th at the Aurora High School Gymnasium. This will be for students entering grades K-6th for the 2016-2017 school year. Grades K-3rd will be 4:00 p.m. until 5:15 p.m. and grades 4th-6th will be 5:15 p.m. until 6:30 p.m.. The cost will be $20, and each camper will receive a camp t-shirt.

Girls' Basketball Parent Meeting For Junior High And High School (For The 2016-17 School Year)

There will be a Girls' Basketball Meeting for all Junior High and High School players and parents on Monday, May 16th at 7:00 p.m. in the Aurora High School Gym (those wanting to play during the 2016-2017 school year).  

Carissa Simagna-Winner Of The Future Chefs Contest

Carissa Simagna recently won Sodexo's "Future Chefs National Challenge" while representing Robinson Elementary. Way to go Carissa!

Logan Herrell-2016 Mark Twain Reader's Award

Congratulations to Logan Herrell for being the only student in grades 4th-6th to accept and complete the challenge of reading all twelve of the nominees for the 2016 Mark Twain Reader's Award.  Logan will be receiving a pizza and soda during lunch this Friday.  Pictured with Logan is his favorite nominee, Will in Scarlet (Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library was the winner).  Logan has already begun on next year's nominees!  

Drug Testing Program For The 2016-17 School Year

The Aurora R-VIII School District will be implementing a drug testing program during the 2016-17 school year. Students participating in athletics, co-curricular activities, and clubs will be required to submit to random drug screens.  This program will apply to students in grades 7th through 12th.  For more information, please call 678-3355.

Drug Testing Handbook 2016-17

Educational Spotlight-May 2nd Board Meeting

Students from Mr. Brownlee's and Mr. Ortman's classes at Robinson Intermediate presented science experiments for the Aurora R-VIII Board of Education at the May 2nd meeting.  Nice job students!

Big 8 Art Show Winners

The following students won or placed in the show.  Great job!

Victoria Johnson: 
Best in Show Sculpture
1st Place: Ceramic Sculpture
1st Place: Portfolio
3rd Place: Digital Photo (Basic Editing)

Kailey Ryan:
1st Place: Digital Photo (Basic Editing)
1st Place: Digital Photo (High Editing)
4th Place: Digital Photo (Basic Editing)
5th Place: Digital Photo (High Editing)

Gavin Briggs:
1st Place: Open Category

Angel Delos-Reyes:
2nd Place: Digital Photo (High Editing)

Kimberly Rodriguez:
5th: Digital Photo (Basic Editing)
6th: Digital Photo (Basic Editing)
Honorable Mention: Digital Photo (Basic Editing)

Emily Parker:
2nd & 5th Place in Ceramic Sculpture

Ashley James:
2nd & 3rd Place in Airbrush Art

Kaylee Huffman:
6th Place: Digital Photo (High Editing)

Natasha Tuten:
3rd Place in Ceramic Handbuilding

6th Place: Levi Mooneyham
Honorable Mention: Michelle James

Printmaking (Multi-Color):
1st: Tina McGuire
2nd: Devon Hilton
3rd: Julia McVey
4th: Rebbeque Robinson
5th:Taylor Barnes

Buddy Benches To Be Placed At Pate Early Childhood Center

Pate Early Childhood Center personnel wish to thank Engage Church and Matt Maples for donating funds for supplies; Brad Boettler's classes for construction; and the seniors for painting the benches.  

Information Regarding Closure Of Road On Carnation

Effective April 18th, Carnation Drive will be closed between College Street and Pleasant Street.  Parents will still be able to access the pickup line by going north on Carnation to College Street.  If parents access the pickup line by coming south down Carnation (from Highway 39), an alternative route will need to be selected.  

Preschool Openings for 2016-17

MAP Testing
MAP Testing will soon begin for students in grades 3rd through 8th and we encourage parents to visit with their students to do their best.  The results of the tests provide information regarding the growth of the student during the year.  If you have not received information yet from building personnel, you will shortly.  Please assist us by making sure your students get plenty of rest during the testing period and are motivated.  The following letter further outlines the testing process.  

March 30, 2016

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s):

The Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) Grade-Level Assessments evaluate students’ progress toward the Missouri Learning Standards. Grade-Level Assessments provide important information that contributes to decisions concerning individual students, groups of students, and educational programs. Assessments are given in the subject areas of Communication Arts (grades 3-8), Mathematics (grades 3-8) and Science (grades 5 and 8).

A policy statement, adopted by the Missouri State Board of Education, designated the purposes of the Missouri Assessment Program as:

· Improving students’ acquisition of important knowledge, skills and competencies;

· Monitoring the performance of Missouri’s education system;

· Empowering students and their families to improve their educational prospects; and

· Supporting the teaching and learning process.

The effectiveness of an assessment program depends on the wise choice of assessment methods, appropriate administration procedures and accurate interpretation of results.

The Grade-Level Assessments include multiple types of questions or items:

· Selected Response (also known as multiple choice) items are composed of a question followed by a series of possible responses. Students must select the correct response or responses.

· Constructed Response or Short Text items require students to supply an appropriate response rather than making a selection from a list of choices.

· Performance Tasks/Events allow students to work through more complicated items using real-world scenarios. · Technology Enhanced items make use of technology in the presentation of the item, the ways in which students respond, or both. For example, students might listen to a story and then drag and drop labels into a diagram, or click on specific parts of a text to provide a response.


Your child’s Individual Student Report (ISR), includes an Achievement Level, which will describe his or her performance as Below Basic, Basic, Proficient, or Advanced. The report will also include a short description of the knowledge and skills that are typically demonstrated by students in each Achievement Level. The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) publishes a Guide to Interpreting Results (GIR) that provides additional details about the content of the Individual Student Reports. The GIR is available on the DESE website at:

Helping your Child - Test Preparation 

ACT Testing For Students Not Enrolled In The Aurora R-VIII School District - May 3, 2016

The State has chosen to fund the ACT for all juniors in Missouri (no cost to students and their families). The test will be given on Tuesday, May 3, 2016 for anyone not enrolled in the Aurora R-VIII School District, yet living within the District boundary lines. This is the make-up date selected by our State education agency.  Test results will be accepted by universities for the admission process.

As mentioned previously, this opportunity is being provided to non-public students who are at an age corresponding with students who would be considered Juniors (16-17) that reside in the Aurora R-VIII School District boundaries on May 3rd.  Juniors who are enrolled in Aurora Schools will take the test on April 19th (with the make-up date of May 3rd).  Registration for non-public students will be collected through the High School Counselors’ Office.  
On test day, please ensure your student(s) brings a current photo ID or driver’s license, an ACT 
approved calculator (if available) and No. 2 pencils (not mechanical).  Information on ACT 
approved calculators may be found at

In order to participate in the May 3rd ACT administration, students will also have to participate in a session to complete the non-test portions of the administration.  The non-test portion collects information such as the student profile and the ACT Interest Inventory.  Your student will also have the opportunity to submit a list of up to four colleges to which they want the scores provided.  Please discuss this with your student so they are prepared to include those colleges on his/her paperwork.  This is a great opportunity for your student to take the ACT at no cost to you.

ACT informational links

Aurora High School Art Students Receive Recognition

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Our Stories


Aurora, Missouri

MARCH 28, 2016

Editor's note: We want to thank Ashley Bolling, Aurora (MO) High School art teacher and the Community Foundation of the Ozarks for their contributions to this story.

The Project for Public Spaces defines placemaking as a "process that capitalizes on a local community's assets, inspiration, and potential, which results in the creation of quality public spaces that contribute to people's health, happiness, and well being." Missouri's Placeworks program is an excellent example of a regional placemaking program that combines the talents of local artists with rural school students to the benefit of the community.

Sponsored by the Springfield (MO) Art Museum and the Community Foundation of the Ozarks (CFO), Placeworks offers customized, interdisciplinary programs for Ozarks' schools, teachers, and students. The program includes teaching artists covering a range of areas of expertise including visual art, music, theater, tableau and more.

Here's how it works: Teachers from schools involved in CFO's Rural Schools Partnership apply for Placeworks programming and specify the type of lesson they would like delivered. Past examples range from a Veterans Day photography presentation to a musical representation a butterfly's life cycle to school art installations (see more here). With teacher input, Placeworks creates an artistic lesson around the subject. If the lesson requires a field trip, it is part of the program provided to schools. The goals are curriculum knowledge, new ways of learning for students, and an enhanced community aesthetic.

"We want kids to learn how to think critically, solve problems, work collaboratively, take risks, try again after failing and have confidence in their own ideas," said Kate Baird, museum educator for the Springfield Art Museum, who started the Placeworks program in 2010. "The arts are an incredibly effective way to teach those things."

Ashley Bolling had never heard of Placeworks, but a note from a friend prompted her to learn more. "I got an email about an organization that offered field trips and in-school residencies, and I decided to apply. I'd wanted to create some kind of mural or permanent installation since I began teaching at Aurora, and Placeworks seemed like an excellent opportunity."

Bolling's application to the program was accepted, and she was soon contacted by Placeworks' teaching artists Cory Leick and Lillian Fitzpatrick to begin planning the project. "Cory and Lillian were great about cross-referencing information and adapting it to our curriculum," Boling noted. "The plan was to create a permanent mosaic installation with my foundation classes designing impressionistic tiles and my Advance Art students designing the mosaic as a whole."

With the plan in place, student work on the project began last October and continued through February. Bolling reflected on the process: "Some things I'll remember about this time were the students gluing mosaic pieces in the dark using the lights from their cell phones, their revolving playlist on Spotify, a lot of "One Direction" and Styx's "Come Sail Away," and then eventually banning the latter because it became increasingly annoying!" More significant aspects of the collaboration also left a strong impression. "As we came across challenges," Ashley recalls, "Cory and Lillian were always great about providing insight. They even recruited help from a well known mosaic artist, Bruce Anderson, who showed us what materials to use and artist Brian Fiket, who helped us hang the mosaic securely."

The installation was a large project for Bolling and her students, bigger than any they had ever attempted before. "I really wanted to bring color into the school environment on a monumental level," she said. "This was the idea from the start, but it truly represented collaborative art. Before we started I had a concept and plenty of student help, but the project would not have possible without the guidance and expertise of Placeworks."

Substitute Bus Drivers and Sports/Activities Drivers Needed!

We are looking for substitute bus drivers and sports/activities drivers.  Training is provided and we will help you obtain your CDL.  Please visit Central Office for an application.  Contact Mykie Nash at Pate Early Childhood Center with questions: 417-678-1552.

Important Information from the Aurora R-VIII Health Staff and Administration

Aurora R-VIII personnel are asking parents to assist with stopping the spread of head lice.  Like many districts in the area, Aurora students are experiencing an increase in the number of cases being seen in school.  While this situation can affect any student, it is the goal of the district to eliminate or minimize the number of students affected.  In order to do this, the following information is being provided to assist parents with better understanding head lice and the steps needed to prevent/treat them. 

There are 3 stages of head lice.  The first is the Nit Stage (louse egg).  The nits are laid on the hair shaft and take 8 to 12 days to hatch.  District policy does allow students with nits to be in school (per recommendation from the Center for Disease Control, The American Academy of Pediatrics, and The National Association of School Nurses). The second stage is the Nymph Stage (immature stage).  The Adult Stage is the last stage.  This is where lice are full grown.  Both the nymphs and adults feed off the blood of the student. 

Signs and symptoms of head lice include itching from an allergic reaction to the bites or irritation from sores caused by bites.  Transmission of head lice occurs through head-to-head contact with an infested person or from hats, combs, pillows, etc.  Please caution your student to not share clothing, hats, combs, other hair items, or to be in close contact with other students. 

Treatment of head lice is recommended only for individuals with live lice or viable eggs.  This can be done by combing with a nit comb, over-the-counter lice shampoo, or prescription lice medications.  Alternative treatments such as petroleum jelly, mayonnaise, or margarine should be avoided because there is not conclusive evidence these work. 

Family members of students with lice should be inspected.  Bedding, towels, nightclothes, and other clothing/toys (stuffed animals) should be washed and/or dried in the dryer at high heat.  Combs, brushes, and hair accessories used by the student should be rinsed in hot water every day until lice are eliminated.  Vacuuming of floors, especially carpets is also recommended. 

More information about lice and prevention/treatment can be found on the school website.  Parents may also call the nurse of the building where their child attends or Central Office (678-3373) regarding additional questions.  Please join with us in our efforts to reduce and/or eliminate head lice which keeps students from obtaining the education they deserve.

CDC - Lice Treatment

Facts about Head Lice

Arvest Bank Named Partner of the Month by Bright Futures USA

Arvest Bank was presented with a certificate and recognized as a Bright Futures' "Partner of the Month" at the 1st Annual Evening of Champions Banquet on Thursday, March 3, 2016.  The banquet was held at Missouri Southern State University in conjunction with the Bright Futures Community Engagement Conference 2016.  

Bright Futures currently has 38 affiliates located in 6 states.  The Aurora Chapter of Bright Futures was also presented with a "Cornerstone Community" certificate for being one of the original 7 school districts to implement the Bright Futures program.  

Thanks to Debbie Weathermon and all the employees at Arvest Bank for the assistance they provide with the program.

The District also thanks all other businesses, churches, and community members who give their Time, Talent, and Treasure to ensure students' needs are met.  Without your assistance, students would struggle with having proper nutrition, clothing items, hygiene products, and school supplies.

Thanks to Loralee Vaught for her guidance and direction in running the program.  

Aurora Rotary 4-Way Speech Contest Winners

The following students were chosen as winners in the Rotary Club's 2015-16 Speech Contest.  From left to right: Austin Carmichael-4th place with the topic-"Christ in School" ($25), Kim Mobley-Advisor, Brianna Vanderlaan-3rd place with a speech on self-worth ($50), Peyton McGlothlin-2nd place with a speech on underage drinking ($75), and Emma Stone-1st place regarding the topic of morals ($100).  Ms. Stone advanced to the District level where her speech was judged versus other contest participants.  Congratulations to these winners and all other students who participated.

7th Grade Girls Basketball Conference Champs

Congratulations to the 7th Grade Girls Basketball team on their undefeated season!
Great job ladies!

Pate Pictures-Students Meeting Goals and High School Students Working with Pate Students

School Counseling Department Wins Gysbers Award

Award Letter from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.  The award was presented last night-Sunday, November 8, 2015.

Dr. Travis Shaw:

CONGRATULATIONS! On behalf of the Guidance and Counseling Services Section of the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Missouri School Counselor Association, it is with great pleasure that I inform you that Aurora School District has been selected as the recipient of the Gysbers Success Designation Award. 

This award is in recognition for commitment to fully implementing a comprehensive guidance and counseling program focusing on the academic, career and personal/social development of all students.  Full implementation signifies that the program incorporates a results-based approach in the evaluation of its program using relevant student data to demonstrate the impact of guidance interventions on student outcomes.

The Gysbers Success Designation is a state award named in honor of Dr. Norman C. Gysbers.  Dr. Gysbers is a retired Curators Professor of Educational/School & Counseling Psychology at the University of Missouri – Columbia and has been a major contributor to the field of guidance and counseling. He is considered by many to be the ‘Father of modern guidance and counseling’ and is best known for his work in comprehensive school counseling and for his many national leadership positions.

There is a growing body of evidence at both the state and national levels that more fully implemented comprehensive guidance and counseling programs make a value added contribution to student achievement and other positive student outcomes.  The work of your school counselors in the delivery of Aurora School District’s comprehensive guidance and counseling program is further testament to those findings.

Fully implementing a comprehensive guidance and counseling program does not occur without the support of the central office and building administrators, teachers, parents and students.  This award recognizes that Aurora School District has demonstrated that commitment through its willingness to provide the resources that allow school counselors to devote their time to working with students to promote their academic, career and personal/social development.  Your entire staff and community can be proud of the work being done by the school counselors in your district.  We convey our sincere congratulations to you and your School Guidance and Counseling Department!

Aurora School District will be recognized at the fall conference of the Missouri School Counselor Association.  We invite you to participate in this recognition at the The Gysbers Gala (details attached) and look forward to recognizing your school counselors at the conference and Gala.

Way to go, ladies!

Pictured (left to right): Skylar Davis-High School, KayLynn Pennell-High School, Cindi Grace-Junior High, Karen Bader-Pate Early Childhood Center, Sis Ann Broyles-Robinson Intermediate, Dr. Travis Shaw-Superintendent, Lauren Parrish-Robinson Elementary and Intermediate, and Billy Redus-Assistant Superintendent

Great Job Aurora R-VIII Students and Teachers!

Congratulations go out to both students and teachers regarding overall improvement on the MAP tests and other areas associated with the Annual Performance Report (APR) and Missouri School Improvement Program (MSIP) during the 2014-15 school year! 

The APR is part of the overall MSIP 5 process used to distinguish the performance of schools and districts in meaningful ways.  Established in 1990 to act as the State’s accountability system for school districts, it is now in the fifth cycle or revision-MSIP 5.

Aurora R-VIII’s APR, as calculated by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, showed growth and significant improvement regarding the 2014-15 school year.  The District scored at the Accredited Level by achieving 94.3% of the points possible (132 out of 140 points).  This was more than 21 percentage points higher than the 73.2% (102.5 points of the 140 points) scored during the 2013-14 school year.   It was also higher than the average State MSIP 5 score of 91.3%.

More specific information may be viewed at on the DESE website.

Key Points Regarding Aurora R-VIII’s APR and MSIP 5 Results for 2015

*Aurora Students earned 54 of 56 points regarding the category, Academic Achievement.

*Aurora Students earned 12 of 14 points regarding the category, Subgroup Achievement.

*Aurora Students earned 26.5 of 30 points regarding the category, College and Career Readiness.

*Aurora Students earned 9.5 of 10 points regarding the category, Attendance.

*Aurora Students earned 30 of 30 points regarding category, Graduation Rate.

The 2014-15 school year was the first year that all 11th grade students were required to participate in an administration of the ACT.  The ACT consists of curriculum-based tests of education development in English, math, reading, and science designed to measure the skills needed for success in first year college coursework.  The reportable participation rate for Aurora R-VIII was 97.2% with an average composite score of 19.4.    For Missouri, the average participation rate was 95.5% with a composite of 19.4. 

As mentioned previously, students and teachers are the reason for these increased scores.  They should be praised and honored for their hard work.  Please join with us in congratulating your child or children on the improved efforts. 

If you have any questions or comments regarding the performance of the District, please call me at 678-3373 or 229-0277.  You may also come by my office located at 409 W. Locust Avenue or through email

It is very satisfying to see that improvement has been made regarding our mission of “Ensuring all Students are Successful Learners.”

Teacher of the Month

Jimmy Michel Motors has once again teamed up with the Aurora School District to sponsor our Teacher of the Month program. Winners of the award will have a new car to drive for a month compliments of Jimmy Michel Motors. The award is based on criteria including teacher evaluation, perfect attendance, and service above and beyond for students. All certified teachers are eligible for the award. The Aurora R-VIII School District would like to thank Jimmy Michel motors for this generous gift and unique partnership.

APRIL 2016

Jessica Kristek is our Teacher of the Month for April. Ms. Kristek is a 2nd grade teacher at Pate Early Childhood.

MARCH 2016

No picture available
Becky Land is our Teacher of the Month for March. Mrs. Land is a Language Arts teacher at Aurora Junior High.


Courtney Mills is our Teacher of the Month for February. Ms. Mills is a Kindergarten teacher at Pate Early Childhood.


Jenessa McCulloch is our Teacher of the Month for December. Ms. McCulloch is a 6th grade teacher at Robinson Intermediate. 


Jessica Rapert is our Teacher of the Month for November. Mrs. Rapert is a 5th grade teacher at Robinson Intermediate.


Peggy Henson is our Teacher of the Month for October.  Mrs. Henson is our Elementary and Intermediate Library Media Specialist.

Substitute Teacher Openings
The Aurora R-VIII School District is seeking applicants for substitute teaching. Substitute teacher requirements include: 60 college credit hours, a substitute certificate (obtained from the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education), and an acceptable background check. 

Applications can be found here.

You may also obtain an application from the district office at 409 W. Locust, Aurora, MO 65605.

More information can be found here: Substitute Teacher Guide

For any questions, please call 678-3373 or Billy Redus at 229-0277.

Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) and End of Course Exams Spring 2015 Results

Results from the 2015 Missouri Assessment Program (MAP) tests have been finalized and are available to the District for the majority of areas.  The results were distributed during Parent-Teacher Conferences.  If you did not receive a copy, please contact the building office.  The assessments represent the first time students were tested on new academic standards for English and math.  The new standards raise expectations for learning in Missouri to meet our goal of preparing all students for success throughout their school years and beyond.  The 2015 tests set a new baseline for student performance in Missouri.  Please note that these test results cannot be compared with results from previous years as these are new tests with different learning expectations.  Our students and teachers have done very well to reach the new, higher standards.  Please join with us in telling your students how proud we are of their accomplishments.   

Aurora R-VIII and City of Aurora Partner to Add School Resource Officer (SRO)

The Aurora R-VIII School District is proud to partner with the City of Aurora to provide a School Resource Officer (SRO) for the 2015-16 school year. Officer Tim Swadley will be the designated SRO to assist buildings with ensuring safety and security.  For the last seven years, Officer Swadley has been employed by the City in the capacity of patrolman and supervisor.  

The duties carried out by Officer Swadley during the school year will include: building relationships with students, assisting school personnel with student issues, and working as a liaison between the City and the District. Officer Swadley has been teaching the D.A.R.E. program at the 5th grade level for the last few years which has allowed him to get to know students and their needs.  Please join us as we welcome Officer Swadley and celebrate the important job he has with our students.

Upcoming Events

5/18/16- Students' last day

6/06/16- Summer School starts

6/29/16- Last day of Summer School

District Calendar

2015-2016 Downloadable Calendar

2016-2017 Downloadable Calendar


Homebound Form