Friends of the Dixon May Fair award seven scholarships – The Reporter

By Kimberly K. Fu

Seven Solano County scholars — six from Dixon and one from Vacaville–are sharing $12,000 in college agricultural scholarships awarded by the Friends of the Dixon May Fair.

The Friends, the service-oriented and fundraising arm of the fair, annually awards scholarships to Solano County residents enrolled in an agricultural-related field at either a four-year university or a two-year community college in California. The organization, headed by president Donnie Huffman of Vacaville, has awarded $222,750 in college scholarships since 2003.

Natalie Victorine of Dixon, a 2021 graduate of Dixon High School, received the $3000 Ester Armstrong Scholarship, the top award. She will major in agricultural communications this fall at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

Source: Friends of the Dixon May Fair award seven scholarships – The Reporter

May Fair scholarships awarded to 7 Solano County students – Daily Republic

Natalie Victorine, a 2021 Dixon High graduate, was awarded the top agriculture scholarship from the Friends of the Dixon May Fair.

Victorine, who will major in agricultural communications this fall at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, received the $3,000 Ester Armstrong Scholarship. The award is named after the industry veteran and 2006-09 interim chief executive officer of the Dixon May Fair, who died of cancer.

Six other Solano County students will share the remaining $9,000 in scholarships awarded, the Dixon May Fair group announced in a statement.

Source: May Fair scholarships awarded to 7 Solano County students

Sky’s the limit for Dixon High graduates – The Reporter

By Kimberly K. Fu

Clear blue skies, tropical temperatures and cooling breezes Saturday were a perfect backdrop for Dixon High School’s Class of 2021 graduation.

Gathered at Finney Field, loved ones cheered and foot-stomped as their loved ones entered through a green-and-white balloon arch and took their places on white folding chairs.

An estimated 220 teens were slated to hang up their student status and graduate to academic adulthood, moving on to jobs and careers, the military, college. With their diplomas in hand, every pathway would be open for exploration.

Source: Sky’s the limit for Dixon High graduates – The Reporter

Maine Prairie graduates resilient in more ways than one – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

The graduation ceremonies at Maine Prairie High School are always inspirational events, given all that students have had to accomplish just to reach the stage.

Wednesday’s ceremony was momentous on another level: Students had the added challenge of a global pandemic, and it did not deter their graduations one bit. Some had even graduated early.

“(It’s) a relief,” new graduate Joel Chambers said ahead of the ceremony. “It’s a huge weight off my shoulders.”

Source: Maine Prairie graduates resilient in more ways than one – The Reporter

Dixon High to present farm-to-fork proposal to school board – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

The farm-to-fork movement, which promotes the serving of ingredients often sourced directly from or other food producer at restaurants or school cafeterias, has continued to make gains in recent years. More eateries have adopted farm-to-fork approaches, and even Dixon High School could be offering courses for its students.

At least that’s what Principal Stephanie Marquez and Miranda Will, a career technical education teacher on special assignment are proposing. They will be presenting their proposal at Thursday’s school board meeting.

The farm-to-fork courses would serve as a replacement to the school’s current culinary program, which is currently offered trough the Family Consumer Science Department. The present program has two courses, the first of which teaches students the basics of food and preparing meals and the second of which teaches students to preserve and market foods and even open “businesses” to sell their items to students and teachers, per the DHS 2019-20 school catalog.

Source: Dixon High to present farm-to-fork proposal to school board – The Reporter

SELPA advisory committee recognizes 28 for work with children who have special needs – Daily Republic

Nearly 30 school district staff, community members and one student have been selected for the annual Solano County Community Advisory Committee Recognition Award.

This year’s selections were specifically chosen “for demonstration of outstanding accomplishments and services for individuals with special needs during the 2020-2021 (Covid-19) pandemic.”

Among the qualities attributed to the nominees are “knowledgeable, approachable, welcoming, energetic, enthusiastic and 100% student-focused.”

Source: SELPA advisory committee recognizes 28 for work with children who have special needs

DUSD board to consider new outreach coordinator for district – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

The challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a need to further meet Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) goals, have presented a need for increased communication between Dixon Unified School District and the community.

To that end, DUSD is working to establish a new public information officer position — referred to as the coordinator of outreach, engagement and innovation — to serve that function. The Dixon school board will be voting on a job description for this position at its Thursday meeting.

Cindy Nguyen, the district’s executive director of human resources and employee relations, wrote in a staff report that a number of factors necessitated the need for such a role. The first was to meet the district’s third LCAP goal, which aims to “engage families and the community to form active partnerships which ensure the academic and social growth of students.”

Source: DUSD board to consider new outreach coordinator for district – The Reporter

Dixon USD selects Care Solace for enhanced mental healthcare services – The Reporter

Dixon Unified School District is pleased to announce that it has selected Care Solace, an organization determined to streamline mental health care to support behavioral and mental health referrals for our nearly 3,000 students, families and staff members.

Care Solace equips school districts with a web based tools making it easier for students, families and staff to connect with resources and providers in their communities.

“School is more than a place to learn, it’s a place where students come to feel safe and supported. Even with the resources and support provided by our district mental health staff, we see that there’s an unmet need,” Superintendent of Dixon Unified School District Brian Dolan said in a press statement.

Source: Dixon USD selects Care Solace for enhanced mental healthcare services – The Reporter

Dixon school board gathering input on planning for next year – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

With campuses now open on a hybrid schedule, following a year of being closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Dixon Unified School District is already looking ahead toward how campuses might look in the 2021-22 academic year.

Following the discussion at the last school board meeting on potential COVID-related funding sources for the district, the board will hold a special meeting Thursday to review the input gathered from family, staff and student surveys.

A presentation at the April 15 meeting highlighted 10 funding sources for DUSD to use over the next three years. One of these is an in-person instruction grant, with $474,354 to be spent starting July 1. Permitted uses for this money outlined in the presentation include COVID-19 testing, ventilation and other site upgrades for health and safety, personal protective equipment, cleaning and disinfecting, salaries for employees providing in-person instruction or services, and social and mental health support provided in accordance with in-person learning.

Source: Dixon school board gathering input on planning for next year – The Reporter

SCOE to honor top 2021-22 educators, school staff – Daily Republic

Seven teachers and eight classified employees have been nominated as the top educators in Solano County for 2021-22.

The certificated educators nominated are:

Kelly Hughes, a fifth-grade teacher in the Benicia School District; Jenny Campbell, a response to intervention and English language development K-3 teacher at Dixon School District; Joseph Arbizu, a math, Algebra II, integrated math and geometry high school teacher in the Fairfield-Suisun School District; Ronald Major, a multiple-subjects (8-12), teacher for the Solano County Office of Education; Kylie Negin, an English and journalism high school teacher in the Travis School District; Laura Roberts, a U.S. history and ethnic studies (11-12) teacher at Vacaville School District; and Vivet Beckford-Nelson, a biology and engineering design and development high school teacher in the Vallejo City School District.

Source: SCOE to honor top 2021-22 educators, school staff

FAFSA Completions Down In CA: How Dixon Area Schools Compare | Dixon, CA Patch

Among the many disruptions caused by the pandemic is a decline in the number of students filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, which is used to apply for college financial aid.

FAFSA form completions are often seen as a harbinger of future enrollment. The decline of applications this year, especially among low-income students, has some experts worried.

“This year is clawing back relative to last year, but it’s still not a good FAFSA completion situation,” said Bill DeBaun, director of data and evaluation for the National College Attainment Network.

Source: FAFSA Completions Down In CA: How Dixon Area Schools Compare | Dixon, CA Patch

SCOE names educator nominees of the year – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

The nominations are in, and the Solano County Office of Education will name the county’s two educators of the year during a virtual celebration on Tuesday.

Every year county school districts nominate one teacher and one classified, or school-support, employee to be recognized as the best of the best for the year.

During the online celebration, which begins at 3 p.m. on the SCOE Facebook page and at www.Solanocoe.net, each nominee for the 2021-2022 awards will be honored.

Source: SCOE names educator nominees of the year – The Reporter

Dixon school board tables vote on finalized reopening date – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

Dixon school board members at a special meeting Monday unanimously approved tabling a resolution to reopen schools — due to the resolution’s concerning language.

Though members support a March 18 reopening date, the resolution also establishes an emergency resolution in the event of a concerted refusal by teachers to work, despite Dixon Teachers Association (DTA) members emphasizing that they have no intention to do so.

At its Feb. 18 meeting, the board unanimously voted to approve a phased-in approach to return students to on-campus classrooms, which have been closed since March 16 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Dixon Unified School District aimed for schools to return to in-person classes in the middle of March, provided Solano County remains in the red tier for two weeks. With cases declining in Dixon and the anticipated announcement of a return to the red tier — which occurred Tuesday — the district set March 18 as a possible return date with the board asked to finalize it Monday.

Source: Dixon school board tables vote on finalized reopening date – The Reporter

Dixon school board approves hybrid reopening plan – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

The Dixon school board unanimously approved a hybrid reopening plan that aims to bring students back to school for in-person learning at its Thursday meeting.

The reopening of Dixon Unified School District campuses will be dependent upon Solano County returning to the red tier, but Superintendent Brian Dolan said the district is aiming to have students back in class March 16 in the “best case scenario.” If conditions do not improve, the reopening date will be modified.

Dolan said Thursday’s meeting was the most important in a long time and acknowledged that the closure of schools on March 13 to stop the spread of the coronavirus has been very difficult for students and their families.

Source: Coronavirus: Dixon school board approves hybrid reopening plan – The Reporter

Dixon school board to consider reopening plan – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

Students at Dixon Unified School District may be heading back to class soon. The when and how will be up for debate once the school board considers a reopening plan at Thursday’s meeting.

As with all schools in California, DUSD schools closed for in-person learning in the middle of March to stop the spread of COVID-19. Initially, the campuses were to remain closed until May 1, but as cases continued to rise throughout the state, the school board voted to keep campuses closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 academic year.

Schools continued to remain closed through the Fall 2020 semester and the start of the Spring 2021 semester. In the intervening time, students have been taking part in distance learning through applications like Zoom.

Source: Coronavirus: Dixon school board to consider reopening plan – The Reporter

John Knight Middle School students  get glimpse at new campus – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

Usually, students receiving their novels during the spring semester is nothing more ceremonial than a teacher passing out copies in class. For students at John Knight Middle School in Dixon, it was an opportunity to set foot on campus after a long period of distance learning.

And it was not just any campus they set foot on but one that had not been occupied by students since before most of the current Knight student body had been born.

On Wednesday, the school hosted a spring novel pickup, where students could come by to obtain novels, textbooks and supplies for the next semester. It marked the first student event at 455 East A St. since the relocation of Dixon High School in 2007. The newly rebranded John Knight Middle School, previously known as CA Jacobs Middle School, was scheduled to open at the old high school campus in the fall of 2020, but the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and a delay in the final stages of renovation pushed Knight’s opening back to January.

Source: John Knight Middle School students pick up books, get glimpse at new campus – The Reporter

Maseda, Bowen apparent victors in Dixon school board race – The Reporter

By Nick Sestanovich

An incumbent and a newcomer are the apparent winners in the Dixon school board election.

With all precincts reporting, Trustee Melissa Maseda leads at 40.01 percent followed by David Bowen, a math teacher at Armijo High School in Fairfield, at 33.22 percent. Board President Luke Foster fell short of another term with 26.77 percent of the vote so far.

Maseda was happy that the voters appeared to have given her another term.

Source: Maseda, Bowen apparent victors in Dixon school board race – The Reporter

Dixon Unified School District Town Hall Meetings For Parents | Dixon, CA Patch

The recent transition of Solano County into the red tier in the State’s monitoring system for COVID-19 allows schools within our county to begin in-person instruction for students. Dixon Unified has not made any decisions about in-person instruction and wants to involve our families before doing so.

These Town Hall Meetings are intended to provide families with information, take input, and answer any questions there are about the possibility of students returning to their campuses.Please note that the purpose of these meetings is to get input prior to any decision regarding a physical return to school. The District is committed to having an open process that allows for public input before any decision about in-person instruction is made.

Source: Dixon Unified School District Town Hall Meetings For Parents | Dixon, CA Patch

Solano Office of Education honors top educators – Daily Republic

The Solano County Office of Education on Wednesday celebrated all the certificated and classified employees nominated as part of the Educators of the Year program.

“The video highlights that honor each nominee in this year’s virtual celebration are truly heartwarming. Solano County’s certificated and classified employees of the year nominees are all passionate and committed people who have put their colleagues and students first. We are so proud to recognize each honoree with a video celebration of their dedication and hard work,” Solano County Superintendent of Schools Lisette Estrella-Henderson said in a statement.

Source: Solano Office of Education honors top educators

SCOE honors employee of the year nominees – The Reporter

BY Richard Bammer

Solano schools’ common mission to support, educate and graduate students was in high relief Wednesday when the Solano County Office of Education held an online celebration for a select group of school-support employees and teachers.

Every year, school districts countywide nominate one teacher and one classified employee to be recognized as an Educator of the Year.

The prerecorded celebration, which got underway at 3 p.m. and made necessary because of the ongoing pandemic, was a salute to six classified employees and seven teachers and paraeducators.

Source: SCOE honors employee of the year nominees – The Reporter