Vanden High School Friday Night Live (FNL) is hosting a Town Hall meeting Wednesday at 6 p.m., 2951 Markley Lane, Fairfield, in the school’s Little Theater.
The meeting is free and open to all parents, youth, educators, and community members interested in learning more about underage drinking and driving among teens and youth drivers. The California Highway Patrol will present the Impact Teen Drivers program to discuss the dangers of drinking and driving along with the local statistics of driving deaths related to alcohol. Attendees will have the chance to ask questions and hold important conversations about this topic after the presentation.
Vanden FNL believes that no teen should waste their life getting wasted. They want to enlighten the community about the dangers of drinking and driving while getting parents more involved in making safe driving choices with their teens, especially at a time of year where celebrations, such as prom and graduation, will be happening.
via: Underage drinking awareness
By Richard Bammer
Vacaville Unified leaders heard the latest update on the school district’s Local Control Accountability Plan, with administrators telling trustees to keep one key thing in mind: As the district receives more money from the state of California, school officials are required to increase services to “unduplicated” students, that is, those who are English learners, poor or foster youths.
As part of Thursday’s regular governing board meeting, Superintendent Jane Shamieh and Mark Frazier presented the latest LCAP proposal, the document that typically guides all of a school district’s spending under Gov. Jerry Brown’s Local Control Funding Formula.
Under the district’s 2016-17 plan — which must be submitted to county and state officials, along with a new budget, by June 30 — there are several goals. They include, Frazier noted, 1) Providing an education that prepares students for college or a career, “with academic interventions in place to eliminate barriers to student success”; 2) Placing into effect “systemic changes” to reduce the so-called “achievement gap,” usually understood to be standardized testing disparities between minorities and primarily white students; and 3) Ensuring that all schools have “safe, welcoming, healthy and inclusive climates” for all students and their families, “so that all students are in their classes ready to learn.”
Source: VUSD leaders hear LCAP update
By Richard Bammer
As enrollment for area school districts gets underway, Vacaville Unified is among those offering a learning option for nonvaccinated students, the home-based Independent Study program.
In response to SB 277, which took effect Jan. 1 and disallows personal and religious belief exemptions for some 10 vaccinations, Superintendent Jane Shamieh said that, as a result of the law, some families may no longer have a school to send their children to. The law affects all California public and private schools and daycare centers.
In a prepared statement, Shamieh noted this major change for the 12,300-student district, which has accepted exemptions for students in the past.
Source: VUSD to offer Independent Study option for nonvaccinated students
By Cindy McNutt
The California All-State Honor Band was held from February 11-14 in San Jose, California. Participants were selected by audition. Six Benicia High School Band students were selected this year: Dominique Sayo (alto sax), Neel Kishnani (tenor sax), Michael Chou (clarinet), Garrison McNutt (bassoon), Devin Rorke (trumpet), Isabela Devia (flute).
Music students from all over the state spent three days rehearsing with guest conductors and attending concerts. On Saturday, February 13th, and Sunday, February 14th, the students performed in concert in the San Jose Performing Arts Center.
Source: 6 Benicia High School Students Make 2016 All-State Honor Band
By Richard Bammer
In his first major presentation to Vacaville Unified leaders, Deo Persaud, the district’s newly named chief business officer, told trustees that he plans to file a “positive budget certification” with the Solano County Office of Education, signifying that the district will be able to pay its bills for the current and next two fiscal years.
While the district has regularly filed such reports for the past several or more years, they are regarded as affirmations of general fiscal health, if not prudent money management, in education circles.
During his remarks and slide presentation Thursday night in the Educational Services Center, Persaud noted major changes since the first interim 2015-16 budget report in December, newly projected revenues and expenses, the ending fund balance, and multiyear projections.
By Richard Bammer
For the RoboDogs, the Vacaville High robotics team, the road to the high school FIRST Robotics Competition World Championships is paved with days of hard work, trial and error, some deadline-related anxiety, high spirits, but mostly just plain old stick-to-itiveness.
After classes Thursday in the team’s epicenter, otherwise known as teacher and adviser Phil Jenschke’s classroom, which by any other terms is a seemingly order-amid-chaos industrial shop, it was enough for some two dozen students just to get ready for the Sacramento Regional contest. It begins Thursday and continues to March 27 at the University of California, Davis. Afterward, they will need to focus on another competition, March 31 to April 1, at Boise State University in Boise, Idaho.
Source: RoboDogs gear up for regional competitions
Open letter to Jodie Peters, transportation supervisor, Vacaville Unified School District:
My name is Robert Pflueger, my son Robert Pflueger II, a kindergartener at Cooper Elementary school is part of the School Choice program making the choice to attend Cooper instead of Padan.
I am writing you today in regards to the situation that my family has been going through this year and our ability to choose the best public school for our children. I found out that Padan Elementary was a school that enabled me as a parent to make the choice of where my child attended public school, and was even more pleased to learn that Cooper was one of the choices available to me.
Source: Letter: Thanks to VUSD transportation for your help
by Ryan McCarthy
Students gathered the day before spring break to see the conviction of a 24-year-old woman for driving under the influence and to hear a Solano County Superior Court judge tell them of the broken lives that can follow a DUI.
“People think – it’s not going to happen to me,” Judge E. Bradley Nelson said.
But 17,520 people a year die in America because of drunken drivers, said the judge. He told Fairfield High School students about local cases that include the permanent brain injury of a person as a result of a DUI-related driving incident.
Source: Fairfield students see conviction of 24-year-old woman for DUI
By Bill Hicks
“We need to have a little talk” is often something parents say to their children. For an upcoming Friday Night Live town hall meeting, a group of Vanden High School students are turning that statement around not only on their own parents, but on all parents.
The meeting, which will feature presentations by the California Highway Patrol and other groups, is the first of several efforts designed by Vanden’s Friday Night Live organizers to help both teens and their parents.
Source: Friday Night Live seeks parent audience for town hall meet
By Matthew Adkins
The Vallejo Police Officers’ Association is accepting submissions for its annual youth scholarship award.
Five $500 scholarships are up for grabs to high school graduates in Vallejo who are interested in going to college. “We want to give back to the community we serve,” said Lt. Michael Nichelini of the Vallejo Police Department.
The scholarship given by the Vallejo Police Officers’ Association not only will give money to local students, but also is intended to honor officers who have “made the ultimate sacrifice to the City of Vallejo and its citizens,” according to the association’s website.
“We remember these officers by naming the scholarships after officers Calvin Thacker, William Easson Jr., Jeff Azuar and Jim Capoot,” reads the website. “In addition, we also recognize Lieutenant Doug Clark who supported high school seniors in our community.”
via: Vallejo youth scholarship’s submission period begins
By Richard Bammer
Area colleges and high schools have announced their 2016 graduation times, dates and locations.
• Solano Community College: 6 p.m. May 19, Doc Hollister Stadium, 4000 Suisun Valley Road, Fairfield.
• Vacaville Christian High School: 7 p.m. May 26, Falcon Field, 1117 Davis St., Vacaville.
• Maine Prairie Continuation High School: 6 p.m. June 1, Dixon High Little Theater, 555 College Way, Dixon.
• Country High School: 6 p.m. June 2, Zunino Stadium, Vacaville High, 100 W. Monte Vista Ave., Vacaville.
• Buckingham Charter High School: 10 a.m. June 3, The Mission, 6391 Leisure Town Road, Vacaville.
Source: Area high schools, colleges set graduation dates
By Patch Staff
Macaroni Kid invites Suisun City to join in the Cool School Fun!
Local Macaroni Kid publisher and mom, Mary DeMartile, shares this information:
“We have an awesome contest going on right now called ‘The Cool School’ contest where everyone in the community can vote for their favorite school.”
Is your school the “COOL SCHOOL” in Vacaville-Fairfield-Suisun City-Cordelia? Would you like to win your school a catered lunch from Freebirds World Burrito with some ice cream from Baskin Robbins, Fairfield for the faculty and teachers? How about $500 cash for supplies from Janna Swank-Mohney McGuire Capital Group Realty?
Source: Macaroni Kid Hosts Cool School Contest in Suisun City | Patch
By Murray Bass
Using false claims of “racism,” a long-term nationwide program to strip Indian names from athletic programs has reached Fairfield and Suisun City.
Trustees of the Fairfield-Suisun School District were told by a group of strangers on Oct. 23 that Armijo High School must end the Indian as the mascot at Armijo High School. A costly change.
The community does not agree. They recognize that the Armijo Indian is less a mascot than a symbol of pride, fighting spirit, nobility and bravery. The mascot is always presented in a respectful way.
Source: No reason to scrap Armijo mascot
By Bill Hicks
One of the most difficult things to do at Vanden High School is locating the teammates that make up the school’s most dominant, successful team.
They aren’t in the gym. They aren’t out on the field and they almost certainly aren’t in the weight room.
Unlike their counterparts in basketball, football, soccer and other sports, the extracurricular break from schoolwork the members of the school’s Academic Decathlon team take involves yet more schooling.
Vanden’s Academic Decathlon team is heading to the state championships Friday and Saturday in Sacramento, a trip the team has made for 14 consecutive years, bringing home a championship on three of those occasions.
Source: Vanden High Academic Decathlon team surges toward state finals
By Ryan McCarthy
A mock trial of Christopher Columbus, an event a fifth-grader at Laurel Creek Elementary School said asks children who was the most guilty in the demise of millions of Indians during Columbus’ exploration of the West Indies, was a part of Common Core studies presented to Fairfield-Suisun School District trustees.
The fifth-grade social studies class intended to show Common Core critical thinking was part of a video presented to the school board.
Written classroom material shown as part of the March 10 presentation includes the arguments of Columbus’ men that they are innocent because it was Columbus’ idea to kill Indians – and all he wanted was money.
Source: Christopher Columbus goes on trial in Fairfield classroom
By Michael Janofsky
In the face of widespread pockets of resistance around the state, the California Charter Schools Association has embarked on a new expansion campaign, aiming to serve 1 million students in charter schools across the state by 2022.
If the goal is reached, it would almost double the 581,100 students now attending state charters, bringing to about 12 percent the number of public school students who would be enrolled in them. Currently, it’s about 9 percent.“We have to stay focused on our core mission of expanding high-quality charter schools as quickly as we can,” Jed Wallace, the association’s president and chief executive officer, said during a break at the group’s 23rd annual conference in Long Beach this week. “We definitely want growth, but we do not want growth if it’s at the expense of quality.”
Source: California charter schools set goal of 1 million students despite pushback | EdSource
By Michael Meehan
Getting “smart on crime” means we cannot focus solely on arrests and continue to look for upstream solutions. After 29 years in law enforcement, I’m concerned with the cycles of violence and poverty that threaten the future of our children.
We can do a better job preventing crimes before they occur and keeping kids in school and off the street is a good place to start. A high school diploma goes a long way towards steering kids down a crime-free path. But each year well over 200,000 California students are suspended from school, many for relatively minor misbehavior, and close to 100,000 California students fail to graduate from high school on time.
There are proven interventions we can use to address California’s dropout crisis. But we stand the best chance of success if we shine a light on the most significant contributors to dropping out, and incentivize schools to help high-need students before it’s too late, through a quality accountability system.
Source: California must continue push for school discipline reform | EdSource
By Richard Bammer
Filling a board member vacancy, an update on public opinion polling related to a bond measure, and the second interim report of the 2015-16 budget are on the agenda when Dixon Unified leaders meet tonight.
Trustee Andrew Bloom, citing a family medical issue, resigned from the five-member board March 2, making a public announcement at the March 3 board meeting.
Superintendent Brian Dolan will tell the board its several ways it can fill the seat.
They include making a provisional appointment until the next general election, on Nov. 8. That person will then hold office until the end of Bloom’s term, Dec. 7, 2018. Secondly, the board may order a special election, but, under state law, there is not enough time to hold such an election before the Nov. 8 general election. Therefore, the board would operate with only four members until the November election.
Source: Dixon Unified leaders to mull vacant trustee seat, hear update on bond measure polling
By Richard Bammer
Vacaville Unified leaders, when they meet tonight, will hear a presentation on the second interim report of the 2015-16 budget, likely approve two Measure A-related contracts, and be updated on the district’s special education strategic action plan.
Deo Persaud, the district’s newly named chief business official, will update the seven-member board about the 2015-16 budget. He will note major changes since the first interim report in December, newly projected revenues and expenses, the ending fund balance, and multiyear projections.
He will tell trustees that he plans to file a “positive budget certification” with the Solano County Office of Education, signifying that the district will be able to pay its bills for the current and next two fiscal years.
Source: Budget, Measure A contracts, special education plan on Vacaville Unified agenda
By Daily Republic Staff
An education fund has been established for Vestia DeMarco, the 6-year-old girl who was hit Feb. 1 while playing on San Marco Street.
Those who wish to contribute can go to any Bank of the West. The account number is 043141597.
The Cleo Gordon Elementary School kindergartner, who has a twin sister, celebrated her sixth birthday in the hospital last month. She has returned to school and is doing well, according to her stepgrandmother, Doris Kogo.
Source: Cleo Gordon establishes fund for injured youngster