Inspire: Dreams Start Now 2018 – Daily Republic

By Tim Goree

Every 8th grader in the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District visited the Kroc Center in Suisun City on Tuesday, October 16th, 2018 for a unique opportunity to interactively explore future career paths. That’s over 1,600 students.

It’s the 4th annual Inspire: Dreams Start Now event for the Fairfield-Suisun area, a program developed in collaboration with Vacaville Unified School District, Travis Unified School District, Dixon Unified School District, Solano County Office of Education, Fairfield-Suisun Chamber of Commerce, Vacaville Chamber of Commerce, Dixon Chamber of Commerce, Solano Economic Development Corporation, Solano Workforce Development Board, and many other government agencies and commercial companies in Solano County.

Source: Inspire: Dreams Start Now 2018

Dixon taxpayers group launches Measure Q Oversight website – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

The Dixon chapter of the Solano County Taxpayers Association (SCTA) launched a website recently to provide residents with access to documents regarding Dixon Unified School District’s Measure Q bond funds.

Measure Q is a $30.4 million revenue initiative that was passed by Dixon voters in 2016 to provide funds for construction and renovation projects at DUSD schools. Such projects include reopening the old Dixon High School site as a new middle school, repairs and renovations at Anderson Elementary School, and providing security and safety improvements and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance upgrades at all the district schools.

Following the passage of Measure Q, the school board established a Citizens Bond Oversight Committee (CBOC) made up of independent volunteers in Aug. 2017 to ensure that the Measure Q money would only be spent on its projects. Per Proposition 39, which was approved by California voters in 2000, school districts that pass bond measures are required to have a CBOC that meets at least once a year and provide information to the public about bond revenues.

Source: Dixon taxpayers group launches Measure Q Oversight website – The Reporter

Strong schools are hallmark of Solano life – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

One of the great influencing factors for choosing a place to live, particularly for families with young children, is the quality of education available.

As far as Solano County is concerned, the quality of education at all levels is generally strong. Most of the schools in the Fairfield-Suisun School District, for example, are at or above statewide targets for school with a similar makeup of student bodies.

The same holds true for the school districts in Vacaville and Travis, with each of these having a particularly strong collection of elementary schools.

The Benicia district and Dixon district, each representing smaller communities, have high-performing schools throughout different levels.

Source: Solano Life 2018: Strong schools are hallmark of Solano life

DUSD managers, school-support, confidential employees to get 2 percent raise – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Dixon Unified department managers, classified, or school-support, and confidential employees are expected to get a 2 percent raise tonight when trustees meet in Dixon.

Before the five-member governing board votes on the matter, there will be two public hearings, one for the tentative agreement with the district’s Service Employees International Union, which represents school-support workers (bus drivers, custodians, groundskeepers, some clerical staff, etc.), the other for management, confidential and any employees not represented by a bargaining unit.

Trustees are expected to approve the raise, retroactive to Jan. 1, 2018, in accord with the wage-and-benefit agreement reached earlier this year with the Dixon Teachers Association, which represents teachers and some other certificated employees, Melissa Mercado, the district’s chief business officer, noted Wednesday.

The latest employee agreement, which settles negotiations for the 2017-18 academic year, also includes revised contract language to define the district’s contribution to health benefits to be the midlevel of the high medical plan options offered by the district.

Source: Dixon Unified School District managers, school-support, confidential employees to get 2 percent raise

Students in Dixon Unified School District begin new school year – The Reporter

By Joel Rosenbaum

From the shy kindergartner to the confident high school senior, students across the city of Dixon on Thursday headed back to the classroom.

Mia Lodigiani opened the door to her room at 8:15 a.m. when the first bell rang and welcomed in the newest crop of kindergartners, some nervously clinging to their mothers and fathers, others walking around wide-eyed taking in their new surroundings.

Some parents gave their child a big hug and kiss goodbye, while others hung around in the room and watched as Lodigiani gathered the students on a colorful rug to teach them the classroom rules; sitting with your legs crossed, raising your hand and waiting until you are called upon to talk.

Source: Students in Dixon Unified School District begin new school year

Maine Prairie relocation plan, new cafeteria tables on DUSD agenda – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

The strategic plan and timelines for the relocation of Maine Prairie High, cafeteria table replacement at Tremont Elementary, and an update on the process and planning and the carrying out of the sixth-grade transition to middle school are on the agenda when Dixon Unified leaders meet tonight in Dixon.

Superintendent Brian Dolan, recently returned from a short-term medical leave, will lead the discussion about the relocation plan for Maine Prairie, the rural, eastern Solano County school district’s continuation high school. It is currently housed at 305 East C St.

Dolan will review meeting timelines, stretching from tonight to the coming months and beyond; the date when a final decision will be presented to trustees (Nov. 17); stakeholder groups that will figure into the final decision; and potential new sites for the school.

Source: Maine Prairie relocation plan, new cafeteria tables on DUSD agenda

DUSD Supervisor Brian Dolan returns from medical leave – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

After more than two months of medical leave, Dixon Unified Superintendent Brian Dolan will return to work Monday, The Reporter has learned.

Nick Girimonte, assistant superintendent for educational services, made the announcement in an email Friday.

“As you can imagine, he is excited to be back and resume serving the students and staff of Dixon Unified,” Girimonte, who served interim superintendent while Dolan was sidelined, wrote.

Dolan’s executive secretary, Cicely Bernhardt, confirmed the superintendent’s medical leave in mid-April, but provided no further details.

Serving in the rural eastern Solano district’s top post for some seven years, Dolan oversees nearly 3,500 students, hundreds teachers and support staff and is helping to guide the district through the administrative processes of Measure Q, a $30.4 million bond measure passed by voters in 2016, as a way to upgrade and refurbish the district’s many aging school buildings.

Source: Dixon Unified School District Supervisor Brian Dolan returns from medical leave

Dixon City Council OKs police department fence and SRO – The Reporter

By Jessica Rogness

The Dixon City Council approved a fence for the police department parking lot, and will consider in the near future adding a second School Resource Officer (SRO).

The council voted 5-0 Tuesday to approve the purchase and installation of a wrought iron fence from Golden Bay Fence Plus Iron Works, the only company to bid on the project. The base bid amount is $330,283 for the installation of a wrought iron fence with an attached screening panel system.

City staff requested the bid for three options: an 8-foot-tall fence of wrought iron, concrete panels or concrete blocks, with motorized gates at the entrance and exit to the lot. There would also be a pedestrian gate with an emergency crash bar to allow access for police department staff.

Police Chief Robert Thompson said all three options provide the same functional aspect, but there was one issue with concrete blocks.

Source: Dixon City Council OKs police department fence

New $37M budget, district response to immigration on DUSD agenda – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

The 2018-19 annual budget, with its accompanying LCAP, a review of the school district’s policy and administrative regulation about responses to immigration enforcement, and an update on the naming ceremony for the Dixon Community Performing Arts Center at Dixon High are on the agenda when Dixon Unified leaders meet tonight in Dixon.

Melissa Mercado, the district’s chief business official, will present the budget, which must be submitted to the Solano County Office of Education for approval on or before June 30, the end of the fiscal year.

Source: New $37M budget, district response to immigration enforcement on Dixon Unified School District agenda

Dixon High Migrant Ed Debate Team rises to 2018 state championship – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Debate has deep roots in the 2,500-year-old Western intellectual tradition. It can be traced to medieval universities and original Greek and Roman educational practices. Also called forensics, debate, at the high school and college level, may be called a varsity sport for the mind and heart, the ability to use the power of logical thinking coupled with clear — and perhaps passionate — expression, to argue effectively while examining problems with a point in mind.

Which is what the Dixon High Migrant Education Debate Team did early last month during the annual statewide Speech and Debate Tournament in Visalia, taking home the first-place trophy in the Spanish division in debate (the other division is conducted in English).

Source: Dixon High Migrant Ed Debate Team rises to 2018 state championship

Area high school graduations, the pomp and circumstance, are set – The Reporter

The 2018 graduation season in central and eastern Solano County is underway, with most of the ceremonies, pomp and circumstance occurring next week.

Solano Community College minted new graduates earlier this week in Hollister Stadium at main Fairfield campus.

Source: Area high school graduations, the pomp and circumstance, are set

School Resources Officer agreement goes to Dixon City Council – Daily Republic

The Dixon City Council will review Tuesday a memorandum of understanding with the Dixon Unified School District for the services of a School Resources Officer (SRO).

The school district has agreed to fund 60 percent of the total cost of employment of one police officer assigned full-time to the school system. The police department will coordinate with the school district to create a training matrix and provide a core training program to the officer.

If the assigned SRO is expected to be absent from campus for more than five school days in a row, the police department will be responsible for assigning another SRO-trained police officer to this post.The SRO would earn a base salary of $81,091 in the first, with total salary and benefits up to $126,053.The council will also consider authorizing a temporary services agreement with waterTALENT for a temporary water operations supervisor for a duration not to exceed 12 months.

Source: School Resources Officer agreement goes to Dixon City Council

Solano County’s top school district employees named – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Vanden High science teacher Marilyn Lewis and Vallejo City Unified bus driver Samantha Bradshaw were named Solano County’s top educators of the year.

The leader of Solano County schools, Lisette Estrella-Henderson, made the announcement in a press release.

Besides Lewis and Bradshaw, named Teacher of the Year and Classified Employee of the Year, respectively, 12 other school district employees were honored Tuesday during a ceremony in Suisun City. The event recognized teachers, paraeducators, child nutrition, support services, security and school staff who give their time, talent and skills to support student achievement, educational innovation and community involvement in Solano County schools.

“It is an honor and a privilege to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of our Solano County educators and support staff,” Estrella-Henderson added in the prepared statement.

Source: Solano County’s top school district employees named

Dixon USD leaders to consider pay hike for teachers – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Two public hearings about a tentative salary agreement with the Dixon Teachers Association and the possible approval of the contract, and updates on the LCAP and possible relocation of Maine Prairie High are on the agenda when Dixon Unified leaders meet tonight in Dixon.

A public hearing will precede the approval or possible modification of the contract, with a follow-up public hearing to revision the contract’s initial proposals.

According to agenda documents, the agreement, ratified April 26, calls for a 2 percent ongoing increase to the salary schedule, retroactive to Jan. 1. That decision will affect all active union members as of April 1.

Additionally, the contract calls for increasing elementary teacher preparation time from 360 minutes to 450 minutes for every 10 working days.

Source: Dixon Unified School District leaders to consider pay hike for teachers

SCOE honors classified employee, teacher of the year – Daily Republic

By Amy Maginnis-Honey

A school bus driver convinced by her cousin to give the job a try and a high school science teacher who taught three of her four children were named Tuesday as Solano County’s Classified School Employee of the Year and Teacher of the Year.

Samantha Bradshaw, lead trainer and bus driver for the Vallejo City School District, was nominated for her can-do attitude and getting grants to retrofit the buses.

“Samantha has gone over and beyond the call of duty to help out the Transportation Department,” her nomination read.

Source: Solano office of education honors classified employee, teacher of the year

Solano County school Employees of the Year to receive recognition – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

The Solano County Office of Education on Tuesday will honor 14 school employees nominated for the 2018-19 Solano County Educators of the Year Award.

Those being recognized hail from Vacaville, Travis, Dixon, Fairfield-Suisun, Benicia, and Vallejo City unified districts and SCOE.

The event begins at 5:15 and continues to 7 p.m. in the Joseph A. Nelson Community Center, 611 Village Drive, Suisun City. The public is invited to join the celebration. To attend, R.S.V.P. at https://goo.gl/forms/fkcNsmEechg7Oy9u2.

For more information, call Rebecca Floyd at 646-7602 or email her at RFloyd@solanocoe.net.

The teachers and school-support employees “contribute to student achievement, educational innovation, and community involvement,” Lisette Estrella-Henderson, superintendent of county schools, noted in a press release.

Source: Solano County school Employees of the Year to receive recognition

Solano districts nominate top teachers, school employees – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

Fourteen educators and school support employees have been nominated for the 2018-19 Solano County Educators of the Year Award.

“Solano County’s educators inspire and support our students to learn, grow and thrive. Their hard work and dedication make a profound and lasting impact on the lives of our pupils and their families. I want to extend our deepest appreciation to all the nominees, for their admirable work in education,” Solano County Superintendent of Schools Lisette Estrella-Henderson said in a statement announcing the nominations.

Source: Solano districts nominate top teachers, school employees for educator awards

North Bay Decathlon Teams Compete At State Level | Dixon Patch

The results are in from the 2017 North Bay Regional Academic Decathlon and the California State Academic Decathlon. This year, over 275 students from 13 high schools across Napa, Solano, Sonoma, and Yolo counties participated in the North Bay Region’s Academic Decathlon. The Academic Decathlon is a competitive event modeled after the Olympics to stimulate academic achievement and honor “athletes of the mind.” The competition provides students the opportunity to participate in an educational forum, which fosters a deep respect for knowledge, cooperation, and self-esteem. The theme of this year’s academic decathlon contests was “Africa.” “The Academic Decathlon is a rigorous academic program and team competition which develops students’ confidence and improves their study skills,” said Lisette Estrella Henderson, Solano County Superintendent of Schools. “As a result, students are more prepared for career and post-secondary education options.”

Source: North Bay Decathlon Teams Compete At State Level | Dixon, CA Patch

Solano County SELPA Community Advisory Committee – Daily Republic

Educators, Youth and Community Members Who Work with Special Education Students Recognized for Outstanding Service

The 12th Annual Community Advisory Committee (CAC) Recognition Awards Ceremony will be held on Monday, April 30, 2018, from 3:30 to 5:00 p.m. at the Solano County Office of Education, 5100 Business Center Drive, Fairfield.

CAC Awards are presented to educators, youth, and community members for outstanding service to students with special needs. Award recipients are from each school district within the Solano County Special Education Local Plan Area: Benicia, Dixon, Fairfield-Suisun, Travis, and Vacaville Unified School Districts, as well as the Solano County Office of Education.

Source: News Release – Solano County SELPA Community Advisory Committee

Updates of school safety plans on Dixon USD agenda – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Updates of school safety plans and two related matters, the approval of principals at Dixon High, and a policy regarding involuntary student transfers are on the agenda when Dixon Unified leaders meet tonight in Dixon.

By law, California school districts must approve school safety plans to make sure that schools are as prepared as possible for emergencies while maintaining safe and secure learning environments.

School safety plans must present clear policies that deal with hate crimes, acts of violence, their perpetrators. Additionally, school safety plans must include a discrimination and harassment policy.

Mark Monachello, the district’s information technology services director, will make the presentation.

His remarks will come six weeks after the mass shooting at Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Fla., where a former student, using a military-style assault rifle, shot and killed 14 students and three educators, which later prompted the national student-led march against gun violence last weekend in Washington, D.C., and in more than 850 cities, small and large, across the globe.

Source: Updates of school safety plans on Dixon Unified School District agenda