By Ryan Geller
The Vallejo City Unified School District Board of Education voted unanimously Wednesday to release Griffin Technology Academies from a compliance agreement that required the charter school network to correct safety, maintenance and financial issues after district officials reported that it had sufficiently addressed their concerns.
The vote ended a compliance agreement that required Griffin’s four charter schools to address 19 conditions related to student health and safety, facilities maintenance and financial management that the district alleged were violations of the school’s charter and California law.
Source: School board finds Vallejo charter network fixed issues that threatened status
Standing at a lectern on a stage amid Tom Zunino Stadium, Samantha Working, principal of Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy, quoted from Martin Luther King Jr.’s college newspaper article, “The Purpose of Education.”
Looking out at some 100 seniors during commencement Friday morning at Vacaville High School, she noted that the then-young and soon-to-be pastor and globally known racial justice activist said that education must enable a person to “sift and weigh evidence, to discern the true from the false, the real from the unreal, and the facts from the fiction.”
King believed the purpose of education is to think critically but that intelligence was not enough — “Intelligence plus character is the goal of true education,” Working added, directly quoting the civil rights icon’s words, as the 90-minute ceremony got underway at 10 a.m. under largely clear skies but a stiff breeze sweeping across the artificial-turf field.
Source: ‘Noble,’ ‘tough’ Buckingham grads mark their big day – The Vacaville Reporter
By Matt Miller
The 105 graduates of Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy celebrated not only their commencement Friday morning at Vacaville High School’s Tom Zunino Stadium but also their adaptability.
Few seniors faced more challenges in their four years than the assembled group of Knights in burgundy caps and gowns. They went through the worldwide pandemic, online learning and masked in-person academics as all others, but also moved from the Bella Vista Road campus to the new one on McLellan Street. They attended classes while it was being reconstructed from an old elementary school to a modern high school.
Source: Buckingham celebrates its 105 ‘resilient’ graduating Knights
By Kimberly K. Fu
Warming temperatures signal the onslaught of summer and, just before that, the milestone of high school graduations.
Congratulations to outgoing seniors. We at The Reporter wish you the very brightest of futures.
Following is a partial list of northern Solano graduations. They include:
- Wednesday, 6 p.m.: Maine Prairie, at Dixon High Theater
- Thursday, 7 p.m.: Vacaville Christian Schools, at Falcon Field
- Friday, 3 p.m.: Travis Education Center, at Gammon Stadium
- Saturday, 9 a.m.: Dixon High, at Rams Stadium
- Saturday, 10 a.m.: Vanden High, at Gammon Stadium
- June 7, 6:30 p.m.: Muzetta Thrower AEC, at Wildcat Stadium
- June 8, 6:30 p.m.: Ernest Kimme, at Wildcat Stadium
- June 9 at 10 a.m.: Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy, at Zunino Stadium
- June 9 at 6:30 p.m.: Will C. Wood High, at Wildcat Stadium
- June 10, 9 a.m.: Vaca High, at Zunino Stadium
Vacaville Unified School District will be livestreaming the graduations of Will C. Wood High, Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy, Vaca High, Muzetta Thrower Adult Education Center and Ernest Kimme Charter Academy on both YouTube and Facebook.
Source: Graduation season is upon us – The Vacaville Reporter
The 22nd Annual EYE Light Student Film Festival will give students a chance to show off their film talent next week.
The event will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, May 25, at Rodriguez High School, 5000 Red Top Road in Fairfield.
The EYE Light Festival was started by Buckingham Charter Magnet High School using 35mm film. It grew to become an internationally recognized festival. This year it is sponsored by Rodriguez High.
Source: 22nd Annual EYE Light Student Film Festival shows off local talent
Kairos Public Schools received an honorable mention for the California Civic Learning Award, making it one of 18 schools in the state to receive this prestigious recognition.
The California Civic Learning Award is given to schools that demonstrate excellence in civic education and engagement, and Kairos was recognized for “its commitment to preparing its students to be informed, engaged, and responsible citizens,” the school said in a statement.
“We are thrilled to receive this recognition from the California Department of Education,” Jared Austin, co-founder and executive director of Kairos, said in the statement. “At Kairos, we are dedicated to ensuring that our students have the knowledge, skills, and civic dispositions to be active and engaged members of their communities. This award is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our teachers, staff, and students.”
Source: Good News: Kairos Public Schools earns civics honorable mention
By Rebecca Wasik
Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy’s new campus on McClellan Street in Vacaville is finally complete.
The Knights celebrated the completion of their new multi-purpose room with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday morning. Students, staff and members of the community were invited to see the new multi-purpose space and enjoy breakfast from the multi-purpose room’s kitchen. The completion of the campus was made possible through Measure A, which was passed in 2014.
The new multi-purpose room can be used for sports, cooking and as a cafeteria. It also includes a stage for assemblies or performances.
Source: Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy celebrates new multi-purpose room with Ribbon Cutting – The Vacaville Reporter
By Rebecca Wasik
National Honor Society students at Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy in Vacaville are making a difference when it comes to breast cancer awareness.
Recology Vacaville Solano currently leases out pink trash totes for $200 a year, with all funds supporting the Solano Midnight Sun Breast Cancer Foundation. These pink totes replace the traditional gray trash totes that are standard for residents. The totes are vibrant pink to show support to those in the community who may be suffering from or are survivors of breast cancer.
Source: Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy students partner with Recology for breast cancer fundraiser – The Vacaville Reporter
By Jordan Baker
Ken, Ryan and Nina Sarna have already shown a ton of success with their NFL Flag Football league. Now the family is looking to show off its other playmaking abilities with LEGO.
The Coach Sarna League has progressed to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) learning.
The next step is Caliber: ChangeMakers Academy, says teacher Ryan Sarna, and the joy of LEGO.
“We wanted to do more. We’re big on creating community so let’s reach kids that may not be interested in football.,” Ryan Sarna. “LEGO is a lot of fun, but it increases their engineering capabilities. This is really an engineering competition. We wanted to start a low-cost league that was high quality.”
Source: Building a LEGO bridge – Times-Herald
Support students at Buckingham Collegiate Charter Academy by indulging in crab.
The BCCA SHIELD parent group is hosting a crab feed at 6-10 p.m. Saturday at the McBride Senior Center, 91 Town Square Place in Vacaville.
Proceeds will go toward scholarships and fund student club supplies and activities.
Doors open at 5 p.m., followed by no-host cocktail service at 5:30 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m.
Source: Buckingham crab feed supports students – The Vacaville Reporter
By Jeannie Nguyen
More than 1,000 students are waiting their turn for a chance to get into a Vacaville charter school after hearing about its recent academic success.
Success is not the word many would use over the few years when dealing with the pandemic, but for the staff and students at Kairos Public Schools, success is a word that they’re pleased to share given what they’ve endured.
A few minutes before Lauren Goff’s fourth grade class, it was clear that having fun while learning is a top priority.
Source: Northern California charter school has academic success following tough years during pandemic
By John Glidden
The Vallejo school board will be asked to approve a tolling agreement with Griffin Technology Academies (GTA) on Wednesday as the charter network works to fix several alleged violations levied by the school district.
The Vallejo City Unified School District Board of Education voted on April 28 to send a notice of violations to each of the four charter schools operated by GTA alleging the charter network mismanaged its finances, allowed mold to flourish inside school facilities, and violated the state’s open meeting law.
Source: Vallejo school board to consider new agreement with charter network
By Richard Bammer
Thirty seniors made their way to the stage and, about 30 minutes later, it was all about diplomas, that emblem of adulthood and a figurative ticket to a new life.
Newly graduated from Vacaville Unified’s summer school, the seniors, who picked up their diplomas Friday afternoon in the filled-to-capacity Catwalk Theater at Will C. Wood, did not walk across the stage in June with their respective classmates at Vacaville, Buckingham Charter and Wood high schools, and Ernest Kimme Charter Academy.
Source: New roads ahead for 30 VUSD summer school graduates – The Vacaville Reporter
By Thomas Gase
Continuing with its remedy for being served with a Notice of Violation by the city’s school district, Griffin Technology Academies is appointing new members to its accountability team this week.
Nick Driver, the Vallejo City Unified School District’s new superintendent, named Brent Zionic — an educator and technology expert with a deep background in workflow and compliance processes — as GTA’s new Chief Accountability Officer.
Driver also named Jane Henzerling, charter school founder and educational systems and measurement expert, as a second key member of the new team.
Source: Griffin Technology Academies announces new members to accountability team – Times-Herald
The Griffin Technology Academies (GTA) Board of Directors formally responded this week to allegations of wrongdoing levied by the Vallejo school board in late April.
The Vallejo City Unified School District Board of Education voted on April 28 to send a notice of violations to each of the four charter schools operated by GTA – paving the way for the district to strip the charters of their status. The district alleged the charter board committed numerous violations, including failing to protect students, mismanaging the network’s finances, allowing mold to flourish inside school facilities, and violating the state’s open meeting law.
Source: Vallejo charter schools promise ‘turnaround’ after district’s threat to status
By Susan Hiland
The Fairfield-Suisun school board will hear a presentation Thursday on the California Interscholastic Federation Multi-School Agreement that could allow students at private and charter schools to compete on public school athletic teams.
A CIF agreement such as this is between two schools and allows students from a school that does not have an athletic program to participate in their “resident school’s” athletic program.
Source: Fairfield-Suisun board to consider multiple-school sports agreement
The Vallejo school board took its first steps toward potentially stripping Griffin Technology Academies (GTA) of its four school charters over concerns that the organization has mismanaged finances, failed to protect students from mold infestations, and violated state open meeting law.
The five-person school board unanimously approved sending notice of violations to the GTA board of directors on Thursday, giving them until June 6 to remedy or refute the alleged violations. If the school board believes the organization hasn’t shown enough improvement, the board could continue the process of revoking the charters.
Source: Vallejo school board tells charter schools to fix issues or risk losing status
Kairos Public Schools has received the state 2022 Pivotal Practice Award for its pandemic response – the only Solano County school to receive the recognition.
Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond announced the award Tuesday.
“We are proud of the courageous efforts of our staff and students as they responded with student-centered decision-making in the most challenging times of the Covid-19 pandemic. The team’s perseverance and dedication to create learning systems for our scholars in a time when no school was prepared speaks to our spirit of innovation,” Jared Austin, the executive director of Kairos, said in a statement.
Source: Kairos Public Schools earns state award for pandemic response
By Thomas Gase
The Vallejo City Unified School District announced in a news release Tuesday that it sent out draft Notices of Violations and Opportunity to Cure to Griffin Technology Academies (GTA) concerning its four charter schools.
Those schools include Mare Island Technology Academy middle and high schools as well as Griffin Academy middle and high schools.
The VCUSD’s Board of Trustees will review, consider, and vote on whether to formally issue the draft notices sent to GTA’s four schools on Thursday at 5 p.m. during a special board meeting.
Source: Vallejo City Unified School District sends notices to four charter schools – Times-Herald
By Susan Hiland
McKayla Klein brought her handmade jewelry collection to the vendor fair to help support her school, Buckingham Charter on Saturday.
The seventh-grader began making jewelry for Girl Scouts and found it so relaxing she just couldn’t stop creating.
Last year she began selling her creations at craft fairs with the help of her parents.
Source: Buckingham vendor fair helps support teachers and students