School Zone

By: Superintendent Phil Pempin


Despite the weather, the switch to daylight savings time this week signaled the start of spring, and the final few months of the school year.  This time of year brings a flurry of student performances and fun events.  We hope that you will come out and support our students as they share their talents.  Below is a brief list of some of our more popular annual activities.  Please check our website for a complete month-to-month calendar.

March 16-17-18 VHS music department presents the spring musical “Little Women”

March 21   2nd grade music program at Vermilion High School   6:00 PM

March 21   6th and 7th grade Band and Choir program at Sailorway Middle School 7:00 PM

April 7 Vermilion High School annual Student Film Festival 7:00 PM

May 4   Vermilion High School Evening of Excellence 6:30 PM

May 6   Vermilion High School Prom – Community viewing 6:30 to 7:00 PM

May 11 School-wide Fine Arts Fair at VHS  3:00 to 6:30 PM

May 16 VHS Instrumental Spring Concert  7:00 PM

May 17 VHS Choral Spring Concert   7:00 PM



Last week I came across a very interesting and thought-provoking article describing one of the first live audio-video demonstrations of computing and networking in history.  The demo took place in December 1968 when Dr. Douglas Engelbart of Stanford University’s Research Institute International presented a tech demo showing off his team’s oN-Line System (also known as NLS) and its many capabilities, for example:

  • A multi-window interface
  • Underlined hypertext links
  • A graphic interface
  • Video conferencing
  • Real-time, collaborative editing online
  • The computer mouse
  • Revision control / editing
  • Dynamic file linking

It is worth noting that Dr. Engelbart is also credited with inventing the computer mouse.

Many of our students (and even some of our teachers) cannot imagine a world where tools like cell phones, Google, web browsers, Skype and texting did not exist.  Their world encompasses so much more information than was available when computing was in its infancy.  Yet many of the innovations shared in this 50 year-old presentation form the cornerstone of both the Mac and Windows operating systems used today.

One thing we have learned through the years is that computing possibilities are endless.  Every day we hear about another new innovation.  It is exciting to think about all of the new ideas that will become commonplace in the future.  One thing is clear:  the students of today will need to be “lifelong learners” if they are to keep up in this fast-paced and ever changing world of technology.

If you are interested in learning a little more about the history of computing, visit the following website to read the article and view a video of the original demonstration:


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