Central Mountain High School
|Central Mountain High School|
|64 Keystone Central Drive
Mill Hall, Pennsylvania, United States
|School type||Public, Secondary|
|School district||Keystone Central School District|
|Assistant principals||Steve Turchetta, Robert Kreger, and Nick Verelli|
|Color(s)||Royal blue, light blue, and white
|Website||Central Mountain High School|
Central Mountain High School is a public high school located in Mill Hall, Pennsylvania, USA. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2010, the school reported an enrollment of 1,333 pupils in grades 9th through 12th, with 490 pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch. The school employed 78 teachers yielding a student teacher ratio of 17:1. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of its teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under No Child Left Behind.
Central Mountain High School is one of two high schools in the Keystone Central School District. Keystone Central is the geographically largest school district in Pennsylvania. Central Mountain's colors are royal blue, light blue and white, and their mascot is the Wildcat. The school is the combination of three other high schools, Lock Haven High School, Bald Eagle-Nittany High School, and Sugar Valley High School, which were heavy rivals in the past. Construction of the building began in 1997 and the school was opened for the 1999-2000 school year. It was designed by the Quad 3 construction group.
In 2012, Central Mountain High School declined to School Improvement II AYP status when it failed to achieve a single one of the 8 academic targets. In 2011, Central Mountain High School was in Making Progress: in School Improvement I AYP status. In 2010 the school is in School Improvement I status due to chronically low student achievement.
Under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, Central Mountain school administration was required to notify parents of the school's poor achievement outcomes and to offer the parent the opportunity to transfer to a successful school within the District. Additionally, the school administration was required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, to develop a School Improvement Plan to address the school's low student achievement. Under the Pennsylvania Accountability System, the school must pay for additional tutoring for struggling students.
PSSA Results: 11th Grade Reading:
- 2012 - 62% on grade level, (19% below basic). State - 67% of 11th graders are on grade level.
- 2011 - 65%, (17% below basic). State - 69.1% 
- 2010 - 63%, State - 67% 
- 2009 - 59%, State - 65%
- 2008 - 63%, State - 65% 
- 2007 - 66%, State - 65%
11th Grade Math:
- 2012 - 52% on grade level (24% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 59% of 11th graders are on grade level.
- 2011 - 61% (19% below basic). State - 60.3% 
- 2010 - 54%, State - 59% 
- 2009 - 53%, State - 56% 
- 2008 - 57%, State - 55%
- 2007 - 48%, State - 53%
11th Grade Science:
- 2012 - 33% on grade level (21% below basic). State - 44% of 11th graders were on grade level.
- 2011 - 29% (22% below basic). State - 40% 
- 2010 - 33% on grade level. State: 39% of 11th graders were on grade level.
- 2009 - 33%, State - 40%
- 2008 - 25%, State - 39% 
By law, all Pennsylvania secondary school students must complete a project as a part of their eligibility to graduate from high school. The type of project, its rigor and its expectations are set by the individual school district.
By Pennsylvania School Board regulations, for the graduating classes of 2015 and 2016, students must demonstrate successful completion of secondary level course work in Algebra I, Biology, English Composition, and Literature for which the Keystone Exams serve as the final course exams. Students’ Keystone Exam scores shall count for at least one-third of the final course grade.
According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education study released in January 2009, 7% of Keystone Central School District graduates required remediation in mathematics and or reading before they were prepared to take college level courses in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education or community colleges. Less than 66% of Pennsylvania high school graduates, who enroll in a four-year college in Pennsylvania, will earn a bachelor's degree within six years. Among Pennsylvania high school graduates pursuing an associate degree, only one in three graduate in three years. Per the Pennsylvania Department of Education, one in three recent high school graduates who attend Pennsylvania's public universities and community colleges takes at least one remedial course in math, reading or English.
From January to June 2011, 165 Central Mountain students took the SAT exams. The district's Verbal Average Score was 470. The Math average score was 485. The Writing average score was 462. Pennsylvania ranked 40th among states with SAT scores: Verbal - 493, Math - 501, Writing - 479. In the United States, 1.65 million students took the exam in 2011. They averaged 497 (out of 800) verbal, 514 math and 489 in writing.
Central Mountain sports are cross country, volleyball, football, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, boys and girls tennis, wrestling, track and field, golf, swimming, softball, and baseball. The school participates in PIAA. The school qualifies as an AAAA school but some sports play in AAA competition. They participate in the Mountain League Athletic Conference.
Central Mountain is the high school that originally brought to light the alleged sexual predation of minors by former Penn State Defensive Coordinator Jerry Sandusky. The school district reported an incident involving Sandusky and Central Mountain student Aaron Fisher (identified in court papers as "Victim 1") after Fisher and his mother, Dawn Daniels, reported it to authorities in the Spring of 2008.
On November 22, 2011, it was reported that Fisher, by then a 17-year-old senior at Central Mountain, was forced to leave the school because of bullying. The other students blamed Victim 1 for Penn State University's firing of football coach Joe Paterno.
Fisher and Daniels have claimed that principal Karen Probst and vice principal Steve Turchetta actively tried to persuade them not to report the incident to police. Although the Grand Jury indictment against Sandusky stated that the school called the police immediately upon being notified, Fisher and Daniels have both stated this is false. In an interview with ABC News' 20/20, Fisher and Daniels said that when Probst was notified of Fisher's charges, Probst replied that Sandusky had "a heart of gold" and would never harm a child, and that Fisher and Daniels needed to "go home and think about it" rather than report the incident to police. Daniels and Fisher later learned that school officials only reported the incident after they left Probst's office.
Earlier, in an interview with Huffington Post, Daniels (identified in the story as "Mother 1") said she first grew suspicious about Sandusky when she learned that Turchetta—who also serves as the school's head football coach—had given Sandusky nearly unfettered access to her son during school hours without any parental notification or permission. Sandusky had even taken Fisher off campus on several occasions. Daniels also reported (a) that she'd been chastised, and told by, a grandmother in a market "that Turchetta brought [Sandusky's banning from the school] up at his weekly football parent meeting, presumably with family members of the football team. According to Daniels, the woman added, 'Coach Turchetta said these charges are never going to stick and he'll walk away'"; (b) "that her son developed a close bond with a 28-year-old volunteer coach, which Turchetta abruptly ended"; and (c) that "her son told her that Turchetta was in his face, yelling at him: 'With what you've done already, no 28-year-old man needs to be around you.'" Later, Fisher and Daniels learned that Turchetta had his own concerns about the relationship between Fisher and Sandusky, but made no further inquiries.
The volunteer coach, Thom Hunter, detailed his own relationship with Fisher, his friends and track teammates, and the school which ultimately terminated his position. Neighbors and friends also spoke of gift-giving, car trips and arguments around the relationship between Fisher and Sandusky. Sandusky's attorney spoke of a night alone in a hotel room with Fisher, with "a pull-out cot ... paid for". A friend spoke at length of a 3-boy trip with Sandusky to a swimming pool, ending with Fisher alone in the car with the coach and "Sandusky holding the boy’s hand". Hunter and others spoke of a car accident Fisher suffered, and the process of comeback. Hunter also described the process of his interaction with another coach at the school, of Hunter's then being told to “stop showing up to practices”, and of the "Bring Tom Back" t-shirts thereafter "printed ... [by d]ozens of team members".
"'That’s Jerry — he was always a very physical kind of teddy bear, like an overgrown kid,' [Sandusky's attorney Joseph] Amendola said when asked about the friend’s account [of the swim trip]. 'He would hug kids, he kissed kids, but it wasn’t sexual.'" Amendola also questioned Victim 1's accounts—saying that Victim 1 "has, over time, exaggerated his claims of being molested"—and spoke of Sandusky's gift-giving habits, in response to the reporting.
- National Center for Education Statistics, Common Care Data -Central Mountain High School, 2010
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Professional Qualifications of Teachers Central Mountain High School, September 29, 2011
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2012). "Central Mountain High School AYP Overview 2012".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Keystone Central School District AYP report 2010, September 20, 2012
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (2012). "Pennsylvania Accountability System Frequently Asked Questions".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 21, 2012). "Central Mountain High School School AYP Data Table 2012".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Central Mountain High School School AYP Data Table, October 20, 2010
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2012). "2011-2012 PSSA and AYP Results".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "2010-2011 PSSA and AYP Results".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education. "CENTRAL MOUNTAIN HIGH SCHOOL School AYP Performance Report 2009 and 2010".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education Math and Reading PSSA Results 2009
- Pennsylvania Department of Education Math and Reading PSSA Results 2008
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 21, 2012). "Central Mountain High School Academic Achievement Report Card 2012".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, High School Academic Achievement Report Card 2011, September 29, 2011
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Central Mountain High School Academic Achievement Report Card 2010, October 20, 2010
- Pennsylvania Department of Education, Area High School Academic Achievement Report Card 2009, September 14, 2009
- Pennsylvania Department of Education Math and Reading PSSA Results 2007
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 29, 2011). "2010-2011 PSSA results in Science".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education Science PSSA Results 2008
- "Pennsylvania Code §4.24 (a) High school graduation requirements".
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 2011). "Pennsylvania Keystone Exams Overview".
- Pennsylvania College Remediation Report
- National Center for Education Statistics
- Pennsylvania Department of Education (2011). "Public School SAT Scores 2011".
- College Board (September 2011). "SAT Scores State By State - Pennsylvania".
- "While U.S. SAT scores dip across the board, N.J. test-takers hold steady". NJ.com. September 2011.
- "Key dates in the Penn State Nittany Lions sex abuse case - ESPN". Espn.go.com. 2011-11-09. Retrieved 2011-11-16.
- "Mothers of two of Jerry Sandusky's alleged victims lash out at Penn State officials' handling of scandal". PennLive.com. Retrieved 2011-11-16.
- Cuomo, Chris (2012-10-20). "Sandusky Victim 1 Steps Out of Shadows, Says Justice Took Too Long". 20/20 (ABC News). Unknown parameter
- "Penn State victim forced to quit school because bullies blame him for Joe Paterno losing coach job", Daily Mail, 23rd November 2011 7:45 am update. Retrieved 2011-11-22.
- Buell, Ryan D., "Penn State Scandal: Mother Of Alleged Jerry Sandusky Victim Claims Mistreatment By Son's School", Huffington Post, 11/23/11 10:58 am ET update.
- Schweber, Nate, and Jo Becker, "For a Reported Penn State Victim, a Search for Trust" (limited no-charge access), The New York Times, November 22, 2011. Retrieved 2011-12-01.