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    Michele Schirf
    Subject/Grade: High School Learning Support/Gifted Support
    Phone:(814) 674-3601x3141
    Best Time To Call: 10:30-11:15

    **At this time, we do not have any idea when we will return to normal operations, therefore families should
    prepare for an extended shutdown period. In consideration of that possibility, there have been many
    questions about how we are planning to continue as many educational opportunities as possible for our
    students. This plan will be ongoing, and is termed the Cambria Heights School District’s Continuity of
    Education Plan (CEP).
    As we navigate through this uncertain time, I want you to know that I am here to help guide and support you (parents and students) as we venture through this new way of learning.  If you have any questions or concerns, please email me and I will respond promptly.  If you would prefer talking over the phone, please leave me your phone number and I can help walk you through any problems you may be facing with technology.  We will get through this together!!! 
    Stay healthy!!
    Welcome to my classroom website.  If you ever feel the need to contact me, you can do so by email or calling to the school.  I check my email daily and will respond promptly.  My daily schedule is as follows:

    1st period-  Gifted Support
    2nd period- Principles of Supportive Studies
    3rd period- Computers/Keystone Prep w/ Mr. Manifest
    4th period- Prep
    5/6 period- Lunch
    7th period- English 11B w/ Ms. Owens
    8th period- English 11B w/ Ms. Owens
    9th period- Applied Physics w/ Mr. B. Vescovi
    10th period- Support/Enrichment


    Classroom Rules and Regulations 
    Principles of Supportive Studies

    1. Come to class prepared with necessary materials (textbooks, pencil, notebook, etc…).
    2. Be in your seat, quiet, and prepared to work when the bell rings.
    3. Students will support other students in their learning.
    4. Students will engage in behavior which is beneficial to themselves and to others.
    5. Keep your hands, feet, and other objects away from others.
    6. Always sign-out when leaving the room.
          7.Cell phones or any other device with a camera will not be permitted in class.  

    Grading Policy
    Principles of Supportive Studies


    I  Arrival

              1-Arrives to class on time

              0-Arrives late to class


    II Preparation

              2-Has all appropriate/organized materials to work with

              1-Has materials but very disorganized

              0-Does not have needed materials


    III Work Ethic

              3-Self starter-readily begins without prompts

              2-Begins work after short delay/upon initial request

              1-Among the last to start working/needs constant reminders to work

              0-Last to start work and first to quit


    IV Behavior

              2-Stays in seat/on task

              1-In seat yet off task

              0-out of seat/off task

    *Students will be graded on the criteria above, based on a total of 8 points. 



    Events from this school year


    Fall Park CLean Up

    On September 19, high school students volunteered their time to help clean up the local park.  They moved picnic tables and benches, raked leaves and sticks, took down volleyball nets and boundaries, painted signs and cleaned up garbage.  

    park 1

    park 2

    park 3

    park 4

    park 5



    Open Heart Surgery Observation 

    On October 1, 2019 students were provided the opportunity to viefw open heart surgery at Allegheny General Hospital (AGH) as it was happening!!  Students viewed the surgery in a dome located directly sbove the operating table and were walked through the entire procedure by an AGH staff member.  


    open heart group

    open heart 1

    open heart pic


    Tour of Carnegie Mellon University (CMU)

    On October 9, students attended a tour, informational session, and admissions session at CMU.  Several students were also provided the opportunity to tour the Mellon School of Fine Arts where they met 1:1 with professors, students, and admissions counselors.  

    cmu 1

    cmu 2


    College Fair

    On November 5, students helped run the Cambria Heights High School College Fair.  Students were responsible for greeting our guests, helping them carry materials into the school, checking them in and helping them find their designated spot.  They also helped college and post secondary training facility representatives locate the coffee and donuts, restrooms, and lunch facilities.  Students cleaned up after the college fair concluded, which included tearing down tables and chairs and also worked on creating and mailing out the Thank You letters.  

    college fair group


    college fair mailing

    Carnegie Science Center - High School Sci-Tech Days

    On November 14, 17 students traveled to Carnegie Science Center for their High School Sci-Tech Days.  There were interactive sessions and theater shows available throughout the day as well as vendors set up throughout the center with interactive lessons and hands on activities.  All students participated in the CSI In a Nutshell session and it was an amazing experience!!  Students were given some background in forensic science and were then given a mystery to solve based on clues they could uncover when given a 3-d model of the crime scene.  Students did an amazing job cracking some tough cases.  

    Carnegie Science Center was very generous and provided our school with a grant which covered our students and teacher admission into the center.  Cambria Heights is very appreciative to receive this grant and have this amazing opportunity!!  Thanks again Carnegie Science Center.  

    sci tech group

    sci tech 1

    sci tech 2

    Sci Tech 3

    sci tech 4

    STEAM Day @ SFU
    November 26

    Students from Cambria Heights attended a day at SFU which focused on STEAM and STEAM related fields.  Students were able to chose three sessions to attend from over 30 different fields of interest.  

     Steam Day SFU

    Science Bowl SFU


    Chain Reaction Contraption Competition 
    December 10, 2019

    Students in Honors Physics were challenged this year to compete in an engineering competition held in Pittsburgh called, "Chain Reaction Contraption" competition.  Students were given a task, guidelines, and a set amount of time to work, and really went above and beyond.  The task this year was to create a Rube Goldberg machine that would make a mess and clean it up.  Our cleaver students used our HS renovation as their theme and titled their contraption, "The Renovator."  They were able to spend a grand total of $4.98 in order to build the entire machine since they recylced scraps from our current renovation.  Students worked in class, during enrichment period, during school assemblies and after school in order to complete their contraption.  Some of the guidelines included size (2'x3'x5' max) and time (30 seconds-2 minutes).

    Not only did the machine have to efficiently run, but students also had to give a presentation to the judges describing the physics principles behind each step.  Cambria Heights earned 3rd place as well as a special award for "Best Use of Gravity" 


    CRCC working

    CRCC Best use of Gravity

    Third Place


    Altoona Mirror


    TSA Regional Competition

    February 1, 2020, over 30 students from Cambria Heights HS traveled to NCSD to compete in the TSA Regional Competition.  TSA advisors were proud of student preformances in all categories.  Our CH students represented our school well.  We brought home some blue, red, and white ribbons and all learned a lot from the experience.  Great job! 



    TSA 2

    Engineer the Future

    On February 20, 2020, 17 students from CHHS attended the "Engineer the Future" event held at Carnegie Science Center.  Honors physics students were awarded tickets to this event for free as a reward for winning "Best use of Gravity" award at the Chain Reaction Contraption Competition back in December.  At this event, students were able to walk around and talk to over 50 professionals in the field of engineering and related fields.  They were able to make connections and learn about organizations/partnerships which will help them in their future endeavors. 


    Engineer Future

    PSU Main Campus Tour and Tour of Breazeale Nuclear Reactor

    On Tuesday, February 25, students from Cambria Heights were given a tour of the Breazeale Nuclear Reactor at PSU.  They were also given a lesson on alpha, beta, and gamma rays and how nuclear fission works to create enegry.  Students then attended an admissions session and participated in a campus tour.  


    PSU Nuc Reactor