By Amy Maginnis-Honey
Rolling Hills students accepted The Great Kindness Challenge then shared it Thursday with their parents, school staff and Tony Thurmond, California State Superintendent of Public Instruction.
“This is amazing,” Thurmond said during a short break an hour-long program of music, talk of kindness — and even a dance lesson for Thurmond.
“It was awesome and inspiring,” Thurmond added. So much so that Thurmond said he would love a return visit.
Source: Rolling Hills special guest gets lessons in kindness
By Nick Sestanovich
Sixth-graders at Dixon Montessori Charter School (DMCS) became botanists, geologists, hydrologists and ornithologists all over the course of one morning Thursday as they did activities at the Suisun Marsh.
They were among nearly 2,000 sixth and seventh-graders to visit this month as part of the Solano Resource Conservation District’s Watershed Education Program. The youths hike through the largest brackish water marsh on the West Coast and learn about wildlife, plant life, soil and water, as well as ways to protect it from pollution. Along the way, they perform numerous activities and record data.
Source: Dixon Montessori students become citizen scientists at Suisun Marsh – The Reporter
The Vacaville Library Commission is seeking applicants for a seat on the five-member board.Commissioners serve to advised the Vacaville Unified School District Library District Board.Applicants must live within the boundaries of the Vacaville Unified School District.This is a volunteer position.
The Commission meets the second Monday every other month at 6:30 p.m. in the Conference Room of the Vacaville Public Library-Cultural Center.
Applications, which are available at the Information Desk of Vacaville Public Library-Cultural Center or the Vacaville Public Library-Town Square, must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. Feb. 18.
Source: Applicants sought for Vacaville Library Commission seat – The Reporter
By Maggie Fusek
Super Bowl LIV isn’t the only huge competition happening this weekend. Students from Dixon High School are among 300 students from 15 high schools across six Northern California counties preparing to battle it out Saturday in the North Bay Region’s Academic Decathlon at Solano Community College in Fairfield.
The team from Dixon High is set to compete against teams from Lake, Mendocino, Solano, Sonoma, Napa and Yolo counties in an event modeled after the Olympics but to stimulate academic achievement and honor “athletes of the mind.”
Source: Dixon High Students To Battle In North Bay Academic Decathlon | Dixon, CA Patch
Benicia High School’s Friday Night Live (FNL) student club has been named as the recipient of the Tobacco Free Solano Coalition’s (TFS) annual Alvina Sheeley Memorial Advocate Award. The award was presented at the TFS Coalition’s annual luncheon meeting Jan. 22 by the Mayor of Benicia, Elizabeth Patterson. The student club along with their community partners were recognized for their efforts to encourage and support new tobacco ordinances that not only bans smoking in public places including multi-unit housing, but also bans the sale of flavored products within Benicia.
Source: Benicia students honored with Youth Advocacy and Leadership Award
By Daily Republic Staff
Vanden High School senior Cecilia Morales has been selected as a 2019 QuestBridge National College Match Scholarship recipient.
QuestBridge is a national program that connects high-achieving, low-income high school seniors with full scholarships to the nation’s top colleges. Recipients are admitted early to QuestBridge college partners with guaranteed scholarships provided by the colleges and universities.
Morales plans to attend medical school, eventually becoming an emergency room doctor.
Source: Vanden senior earns scholarship to help pay for medical school
By Cathy Ritch
Fairfield-Suisun Rotary Club President Kelly Rhoads-Poston today announced the recipients of the “Sixth Annual Rotary/Kaiser Permanente Good Character Youth Awards” from the Fairfield Suisun Unified School District.
The winners are:
Aidan Anderson-Mason, Junior Amataga, Mary Welch, Taijhan Lennitt-Dixon, Telicity Pisarck, and Yenessa Hokum from Fairfield High School.
Source: Rotary/Kaiser Announce Good Character Awards | Suisun City, CA Patch
By Vallejo Times Herald
The Solano County Office of Education is participating in “Operation Recognition” which honors U.S. Veterans and Japanese-American citizens who were unable to finish high school due to wartime circumstances with retroactive high school diplomas.
The deadline to submit an application is Friday.
Eligible Individuals include those who served in World War II, the Korean War or Vietnam War, and Japanese-American citizens who left high school due to internment in World War II relocation camps.
Source: Solano County Office of Education looking for veterans who never received high school diplomas – Times-Herald
By Daily Republic Staff
Foxboro Elementary has earned membership in the No Excuses University Network of Schools.
To earn membership into this network, Foxboro needed to complete an extensive online application focused on the “Six Exceptional Systems” the school has developed based on the No Excuses University model.
The school also was required to submit a video to the No Excuses University Application Committee to demonstrate the “culture of universal achievement” they have developed on their campus.
Foxboro earned the recognition by demonstrating a commitment to college and career readiness and through efforts to ensure all children meet standards in reading, writing and math, no matter their challenges, according to a press release.
Source: Foxboro a new member of No Excuses University Network of Schools
Average teacher pay in California public schools rose to $82,746 last school year, an increase of 2.6 percent from the prior year, new state data show.
Teacher pay was highest in Silicon Valley’sMountain View-Los Altos Union High school district, where teachers earned, on average, about $136,500. A teacher making that salary still likely could not afford the median-priced home in Mountain View, which sold for about $1.7 million late last year, according to tracking firm Zillow.com.
More than a dozen very small districts in rural areas of California paid their teachers, on average, less than $50,000 last school year. Among districts employing at least 100 teachers, the lowest average pay was about $57,400 at Plumas Unified. The median-priced home in Plumas County sold for about $276,000 late last year, according to Zillow.
Source: Are teachers paid enough? See the average pay for every California school district [The Sacramento Bee]
By Daily Republic Staff
The Benicia High School Friday Night Live club has received the Alvina Sheeley Memorial Advocate Award from the Tobacco Free Solano Coalition.
The award was presented last week by Benicia Mayor Elizabeth Patterson at the coalition’s annual luncheon meeting.
“I was impressed when seven members of the club confidently stood in front of me and the rest of the council, staff and residents of Benicia on (Nov. 19) and spoke to us about the effects of tobacco on their peers and their campus,” Patterson said in a prepared statement. “Speaking from a personal perspective, when youth stand up and tell adults who are making decisions about their lives and about their future, by-golly you will see those decision-makers make the right decision.”
Source: Benicia High FNL earns award for tobacco-free efforts
By Nick Sestanovich
Foxboro Elementary School is continuing to ensure college and career readiness for its students starting from a young age.
To make this easier, the school has earned membership to the No Excuses University Network of Schools, according to a Travis Unified School District news release.
The program was founded in San Diego in 2004 by Damon Lopez, district officials wrote. It seeks to build a bridge for all students to attend college or join the workforce by promoting a comprehensive college readiness model starting in pre-kindergarten. Currently, hundreds of schools are participating in the program.
Source: Foxboro Elementary becomes partner in college readiness program – The Reporter
The Instructional Quality Commission (IQC) was charged with developing an Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum that shall be a guide to allow school districts to adapt their courses to better reflect the pupil demographics in their communities. Last week at the IQC meeting, California Department of Education (CDE) staff presented a brief update on the status of the Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum. CDE recommended that revisions to the draft follow the State Board of Education guidelines and follow Assembly Bill 2016, the legislation that directed the state to create a model curriculum. This will ensure that the curriculum is written to encourage cultural understanding of how different groups have struggled and worked together, as well as highlight core ethnic studies concepts such as equality, justice, race, ethnicity, and indigeneity. CDE also recommended that it be written in language that is inclusive and supportive of multiple users.
Since the last IQC meeting in November, much work and outreach has been done by CDE after receiving thousands of public comments about the draft released in summer 2019. In October, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond hosted a panel discussion that included subject matter experts as well as legislators. The panel provided different perspectives on ethnic studies implementation at the K–12 level. CDE staff have also used this time to review, analyze, and synthesize the more than 20,000 public comments to make recommendations to the IQC in spring 2020. WestEd is currently conducting focus groups for CDE that are comprised of teachers with ethnic studies experience as well as teachers who have not taught ethnic studies but may in the future. CDE is also working with districts that have implemented ethnic studies to utilize their learnings in our recommendations.
Source: Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum Update – Year 2020 (CA Dept of Education)
By Richard Freedman
There were about the same number experts in the anti-human trafficking field on stage as there were citizens in the audience Thursday night at First Baptist Church in downtown Vallejo.
No matter, said Mayor Bob Sampayan. “We’re starting off small and moving this forward. I don’t see solutions tonight. It’s us getting the message out that we’re looking at it as a national and local issue that needs to be addressed.”
“I would have liked to have seen more community participation, but, overall, I was pleased with the event,” Sampayan added. “It was a good discussion with the panelists … human trafficking is not something we can sweep under the rug and hope that it goes away. We need to educate parents about how child human trafficking starts and how they can learn of the danger signs. We need to talk about this more and I hope that the conversation continues.”
Source: Vallejo panel offers information to help fight human trafficking – Times-Herald
By Shawna De La Rosa
Microcredential PD programs are gaining popularity as more districts implement them for teachers to select, learn and demonstrate their strengths and skills. While not a substitute for more robust professional learning, these programs can be tailored to any aspect of the career — from learning to work with parents to gaining skills for leadership roles — where an educator needs or wants to improve.
That added personalization allows more ownership in professional learning, while also providing convenient access for teachers who would otherwise have to travel great distances for personalized opportunities based on their career interests.
Source: Customized microcredential programs benefit rural schools with convenient PD options | Education Dive
By John Glidden
The Vallejo school board unanimously approved a new three-year contract with Superintendent Adam Clark, giving him a $12,000 raise on Wednesday.
The raise bumps Clark’s salary from $238,000 annually to $250,000, starting Feb. 1.
When first hired in September 2017, Clark received a yearly base salary of $230,000. However, through a “me too” clause in his contract, Clark has received matching pay increases from the “highest annual percentage salary adjustment to the base salary schedule for any employee group during the term,” according to his previous contract.
That “me too” clause was removed from his new contract which is retroactive to July 1, 2019.
Source: Vallejo school board increases Adam Clark’s salary; praises his leadership – Times-Herald
By Matt O’Donnell
Corbus Field has given Vallejo and Jesse Bethel high school athletes plenty of thrills over the years.
Now the old stadium will receive some much-needed upgrades in the next few years.
The Vallejo Unified School Board approved a contract between the district and the Napa-based Chaudhary and Associates for a site survey of Corbus Field and Casper Oval refurbishment project at last week’s meeting. The contract is worth $16,240 and will be paid through Measure S funds, according to the district.
The district has scheduled construction of phase one, which includes the turf and track, following high school graduations in June. Phase two of the makeover is not expected to happen until 2024 and will be much more involved. That will include demolishing the bleachers on both sides, the press box, bathrooms and locker rooms.
Source: Changes coming for Corbus Field in Vallejo – Times-Herald
By John Glidden
Vallejo’s top school official is expected to receive a $20,000 raise and have his employment contract extended by several years during the school board meeting on Wednesday.
If approved by trustees, Vallejo City Unified School District Superintendent Adam Clark will start making an annual salary of $250,000 starting on Feb. 1.
When he began with the district in September 2017, Clark made a base salary of $230,000 each year, according to his current employment contract with the district. The new contract is retroactive to July 1, 2019 and runs through June 30, 2022.
Source: Vallejo school board asked to give Adam Clark $20,000 raise – Times-Herald
By Nick Sestanovich
As was typical for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, no classes were held at Fairfield High School Monday. Nonetheless, the campus was alive with activity as close to 100 volunteers worked to pick up litter, paint classrooms and construct garden boxes for the school’s culinary program.
In the words of Rebuilding Together Solano County, it was “a day on, not a day off.”
For the 11th year in a row, Rebuilding Together joined forces with local agencies and volunteers who demonstrated hearts full of grace to help spruce up Fairfield High’s 56-year-old campus as it has for other Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District schools. The work began at 8:30 a.m. and continued until about 4 p.m.
The day drew in efforts from everybody from Fairfield High students and faculty, elected officials and volunteers from such agencies as Travis Air Force Base, Medic Ambulance, Liberty Church, the Matt Garcia Foundation, Vallejo Executive Lions Club, California State University, Maritime Academy, Fairfield Public Safety Academy, Home Depot and Kaiser Permanente, the latter two of whom donated substantial amounts of money to fund the event.
Source: Volunteers beautify Fairfield High campus on MLK Day – The Reporter
By John Glidden
It appears the oldest public school in the city of Vallejo won’t close anytime soon.
Vallejo school district Superintendent Adam Clark sent notice Friday afternoon, shortly before the school board’s Wednesday agenda was released to the public, that his office is recommending Lincoln Elementary School remain open.
However, three other school sites — Beverly Hills Elementary School, Franklin Middle School and the Farragut Academy — are being recommended to be closed or consolidated for the 2020-21 school year.
Source: Vallejo Superintendent Adam Clark recommending Lincoln remain open – Times-Herald