By Daily Republic Staff
The Solano Youth Coalition is accepting applications for new members.
The coalition, open to county residents ages 14 to 21 who are full-time students, is a youth advocate organization that addresses issues that face students and young adults in the community.
To apply, go to http://tinyurl.com/zfdtxvp. The deadline is Aug. 31.
For more information, call Johanna Nowak-Palmer, program manager of Youth Development for the Solano County Office of Education, at 646-7608 or send an email to email@example.com.
Source: Solano Youth Coalition seeks new members
By Richard Bammer
A public hearing on the appeal of a Vallejo-based charter school petition, previously denied by the city’s education leaders two months ago, an update on the Local Control Accountability Plan, or LCAP, and a Patriot Day resolution are on the agenda when Solano County Office of Education trustees meet tonight in Fairfield.
The seven-member governing board will hear from Marie Issa Gil, whose petition to form Rocketship Vallejo Elementary Charter School was nixed by Vallejo City Unified trustees on June 20, after district staffers characterized the petition as “deficient in many key respects.”
SCOE governing board members will “consider the level of support for the petition by teachers employed in the school district, other employees of the school district, and parents,” according to agenda documents.
By Ian Thompson
Former Suisun City police chief Tom Alder entered the race for Suisun City council this week, pulling candidate papers on Wednesday.
Alder had last considered running for the City Council in 2010, saying he has long been a resident of the town and government experience.
He joins a field of candidates who have pulled papers to run for council that includes Thomas Kamin, Wanda Williams and incumbents Jane Day and Mike Hudson.
It’s still a two-way race between Suisun City Councilwoman Lori Wilson and incumbent Mayor Pete Sanchez for Sanchez’s seat.
Source: Former Suisun police chief pulls papers for council race
By Richard Bammer
His has been a life of service, in the U.S. Air Force, as a teacher, as a Reporter columnist, and as a longtime Solano County Office of Education governing board member.
But Dixon resident Doug Ford, who represents rural District 6 on the county school board, has announced that he will not, after 17 years as a trustee, seek re-election in November.
With a caveat, however:
If no one declares their candidacy by the Aug. 10 filing deadline at the county Registrar of Voters, “Then I’ll run” and file by the close of business on that day, he said during a brief interview Friday to confirm his intentions.
If he is the sole candidate, Ford will be automatically re-elected; but, he noted, he will have the remaining board members search for a replacement shortly after he begins a fifth term.
Source: Solano County school board member declines re-election bid
By Daily Republic Staff
A financial boot camp that targets young adults returns Wednesday to Fairfield.
The Mad Money program has for the past nine years helped many young adults – ages 14 to 24 – learn about properly handling finances as an adult.
The session is scheduled from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the Solano County Office of Education, 5100 Business Center Drive. Walk-ins are welcome. To register as an attendee, or if interested in volunteering as a sales merchant, visit www.traviscu.org/mcm. On-site registration starts at 12:30 p.m.
Source: Travis Credit Union offers annual Young Adult Financial Boot Camp
By Jessica Rogness
The Solano Coalition for Better Health, the Vacaville Neighborhood Boys & Girls Club and Dixon Family Services were just some of the Solano County nonprofit organizations that recently received grant funding from Kaiser Permanente.
Kaiser is awarding a total of $956,459 in grants to 38 nonprofit organizations that improve the health of under-served communities in Solano and Napa counties.
These community benefit grants are awarded every year to local organizations working on specific programs and projects that align with Kaiser’s missions and goals.
The program supports local nonprofit, public health and human service organizations by investing in programs that focus on improving access to care and coverage, community and family safety, mental health and wellness and Healthy Eating Active Living.
Source: Kaiser Permanente awards nearly $1 million in grants to Solano, Napa nonprofits
By Kimberly K. Fu
Cheers and applause and uber support just never gets old, especially when you’re a Special Olympics athlete.
That’s what three Solano and Napa runners received Wednesday morning as they crossed over to Cal Maritime in Vallejo, about to embark on the third of the eight legs of their journey during the first of two days of the annual Special Olympics Law Enforcement Torch Run.
By 10 a.m. they’d already been on the road two hours, with Benicia police passing the torch to Vallejo and Cal Maritime police.
At the academy’s boat dock, the runners received words of encouragement before passing the torch to the Solano County Sheriff’s Office’s Marine Patrol.
Source: Athletes carry the torch during annual Special Olympic Law Enforcement Torch run
By Joel Rosenbaum
Eddie Fabi, 15, of Vacaville talks with volunteer Natasha North as he examines his purchase options Monday while shopping for household items during Travis Credit Union’s ninth annual Mad City Money Financial Boot Camp for Young Adults at the credit union’s headquarters in Vacaville. The workshop teaches teens about managing their money, giving them an identity complete with employment, monthly salary, marital status and even the possibility of having a child. They were then sent to visit with merchants (drawn from community volunteers) to make purchases for everyday living expenses such as food, clothing, entertainment and transportation all while staying within their set budget. Other economic skills taught included balancing a checkbook and how credit cards work. Travis is offering more of these boot camps, July 11 at the Solano Office of Education in Fairfield July 27 at the Solano Community College, Vallejo campus.
Source: Travis Credit Union’s financial boot camp
By Richard Bammer
For Lisette Estrella-Henderson of Vacaville, her race to gain the job she now holds, superintendent of the Solano County Office of Education, was never in doubt: She was unopposed, had been so for months, but she is now officially elected.
By 11 p.m. Tuesday night, her total vote count, with 77 of 167 percent of county precincts reporting, was 36,278.
(As expected for a midterm election year, voter turnout was relatively light. Some 220,000 Solano County residents are registered voters, and John Gardner, assistant registrar of voters, predicted 50,000 to 60,000 would cast ballots.)
Source: Unopposed, county school supe Estrella-Henderson is officially elected to post she holds
By Richard Bammer
A 24-year Reporter employee, Bammer this year earned a John Swett Award for Media Excellence for a series of six stories in the category of continuous coverage of schools/education issues. He competed in the Community Daily Newspaper class, for publications with up to 100,000 subscribers.
And as he did last year, he earned another Certificate of Merit, this time for a news story about Buckingham Charter High students and the American Civil Liberties Union taking Vacaville Unified to task for censorship of a Black Lives Matter article in the school’s yearbook. After The Reporter story was published, the student article, as written, and a photo showing several female students raising a “black power” salute were eventually restored to the yearbook.
“For us at The Reporter, we appreciate Richard’s hard work and attention to detail,” said Managing Editor Melissa Murphy. “He offers experience and knowledge to his colleagues and maintains great relationships with the community he covers. He appreciates being recognized for his work, but that’s not what drives him. Rather, he strives for producing great community journalism and he’s very successful at that.”
Source: Reporter staffer earns another CTA writing award
By Mayrene Bates
As I do every year, I make every effort to attend as many year-end events as I possibly can. I love to celebrate the accomplishments of educators, students, parents, nonprofits, the business community and, even the newspaper reporters who take the pictures and write the stories.
That’s what makes all of these events so great, because we celebrate as a community the accomplishments of everyone involved. Needless to say, there’s not enough space here to write about every successful program across the county.
Someone once said that throughout history, there have been few events of significance that have occurred purely by accident. We know that success happens, because many care enough to make a difference for the good of all. According to Helen Keller, “Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much.”
Source: Solano Voices: Year-end events celebrate accomplishments
By Tim Goree
This year, Armijo’s FRC robotics team went to the World Wide robotics competition in Houston, Texas. Even though the team was formed last year, they have gone to the World Wide competition twice. In their first year, they won the “All-Star Rookie of the year” award, which qualified them to go to Worlds. This year, they place second in the Sacramento Regionals at Davis, California and was given a “Wild Card”, which qualified them for Worlds, yet again.
The FRC (FIRST) team is actually a branch of Armijo’s robotics program, which was formed four years ago. Another branch of Armijo Robotics (VEX) also qualified for Worlds, which took place in Louisville, Kentucky. Originally, the program only supported VEX teams, but over the years, the students formed a FIRST team in order to further their engineering skills. The VEX branch provided a foundation for the students to learn coding, designing, and building while the FIRST branch allows them to build upon this foundation in a more complex setting.
Source: Armijo High School Inspiring Engineers One Student At A Time
By Amy Maginnis-Honey
Gustavo Macias didn’t need music to enjoy the annual Adapted Physical Eduction prom Friday morning at the E. Gary Vaughn gymnasium on the Armijo campus.
Before the DJ started playing tunes, Macias was already showcasing his joy. Once the music began, the Armijo High student could be found near the free throw line, breakdancing.
His prom dates, Julia Harrison and Madison Kudsk, both members of Armijo’s leadership class, cheered him on.
“It’s fun to see the kids so happy,” Kudsk said.
Source: Promise of prom: Special-needs, general ed students dance morning away
The Solano County Office of Education (SCOE) proudly announces students from the Solano County Juvenile Detention Facility (JDF) School will receive their high school diploma at a Graduation Ceremony on Tuesday, June 5, 2018. The JDF School, operated by SCOE, serves minors that have been remanded to the Solano County Juvenile Probation Department’s Juvenile Detention Center. “Our students demonstrate their resiliency daily while prevailing above their current circumstances. They are receiving a valuable education, through our SCOE programs, that will make a difference in their lives and help them become contributing members to our community,” says Solano County Superintendent of Schools Lisette Estrella-Henderson.
Students at JDF receive a rigorous course of study that provides an opportunity for them to earn course credit toward meeting their home district’s graduation requirements. Students receiving their high school diploma on June 5th have completed all graduation requirements outlined by the California Department of Education. After graduation, students can enroll in Solano Community College courses online and earn units toward an associate degree or complete general education requirements before transferring to a four-year college. Students at JDF also receive career technical education instruction and earn Work-Ready Certification which prepares them as they seek employment by developing the skills local businesses consider essential when hiring.
Source: Solano Co. Juvenile Detention Inmates Earn High School Diplomas | Dixon, CA Patch
The Solano County Department of Health and Social Services nominated Solano County Office of Education’s Director of Student and Program Support Nicola Parr for their Behavioral Health School Provider Hero Award. She will be recognized during the 4th Annual Mental Health Month Celebration on Saturday, May 12th from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at 1234 Empire Street in Fairfield, California. “We are thrilled that our very own Nicola Parr is receiving this well-deserved recognition. Nicola exemplifies our guiding principles of leadership, collaboration, and support. She is a true advocate for putting students’ needs first. The Solano County Office of Education is student centered in our efforts and we take great pride in providing a variety of services based on the needs of our students and their families,” says Solano County Superintendent of Schools Lisette Estrella-Henderson.
Source: Nicola Parr Honored As Solano Co. Behavioral Health School Hero | Benicia, CA Patch
From Solano County Office of Education: Monday, May 7,2018, Solano County Office of Education Youth Development Department took three student representatives to Sacramento to address the State Assembly’s Budget Subcommittee. The youth group spoke about the importance of the Friday Night Live (FNL) program, work they provide to their communities, the state, and why the Subcommittee should increase FNL program funding.
Solano County has FNL Chapters at Armijo, Fairfield, Jesse Bethel, and Vanden High Schools (in the Fairfield-Suisun, Vallejo City, and Travis Unified School Districts respectively); with student representatives throughout the county serving on the Solano Youth Coalition (SYC). “The Friday Night Live program provides Solano County youth with an opportunity to develop civic leadership skills that are significant for our community. This program is designed to challenge students to address issues that may potentially impact outcomes for citizens of Solano County,” says Solano County Superintendent of Schools Lisette Estrella-Henderson.
Source: Solano Youth Coalition Members Address State Assembly | Suisun City, CA Patch
By Daily Republic Staff
Ninety-three Solano County Office of Education employees will be recognized during a service awards event Wednesday.
Employees with five to 30 years of service time will be acknowledged during the ceremony, which is scheduled from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at 5100 Business Center Drive.
Tokens with the employee’s name and years of service will be handed out. Those with five years will get a bell, while a crystal apple will be awarded to those with 10 years, a rosewood pen and pencil set for those with 15 years, a rosewood book clock for those with 20 years, a crystal award with silver star for those with 25 years and a crafted mahogany box for employees with 30 years of service.
Source: Solano schools office set to hand out employee service awards
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
By Daily Republic Staff
Art from local students in fourth through 12th grades will be featured as part of the Solano County Student Art Faire that’s scheduled May 16-18 and May 21-22.
“Art is an essential component in a child’s development of motor skills, language, critical thinking, creativity and cultural awareness. It is also linked to increased academic performance. This countywide art faire showcases the immense talent of our local student artists,” Solano County Superintendent of Schools Lisette Estrella-Henderson said in a statement.
Students from 25 schools submitted about 300 art pieces in categories that included computer art, clay pottery, sculpture, drawing, fiber, mixed media, painting, photography and print making.
Source: 300 art pieces featured in Student Art Faire that begins May 16
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