Thursday, May 27, 2010

Idaho Student Places Third at National Geographic Bee

An Idaho student won 3rd place at the National Geographic Bee, competing against millions of students nationwide to win a $10,000 scholarship.

Karthik Mouli is a 12-year-old 6th grader at Hillside Junior High School in Boise. He represented Idaho at the 2009 National Geographic Bee. According to the National Geographic Bee website, Mouli likes to dissect computer hardware discs and see how electronic components work. He hopes to use geography in the future to track bird migrations and eclipses.

Each year, thousands of schools in the United States participate in the National Geographic Bee using materials prepared by the National Geographic Society. The contest is designed to encourage teachers to include geography in their classrooms, spark student interest in the subject, and increase public awareness about geography. Schools with students in grades four through eight are eligible for this entertaining and challenging test of geographic knowledge.

Moulie made it to the top 10 finalists round along with students from Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Aadith Moorthy, 13, of Florida won the National Geographic Bee, which includes a $25,000 college scholarship, free trip to the Gálapagos Islands and lifetime membership to the National Geographic Society.

Oliver Lucier, 13, of Rhode Island, took second place and won a $15,000 college scholarship, and Moulie came in third and won a $10,000 scholarship.

Listen to Boise State Radio's interview with Karthik Mouli.

~ Melissa M.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Join us for the College Access Summit this July

You’re invited to attend the Idaho College Access Summit on July 7-8 at Boise State University.

The Idaho State Department of Education and Idaho State Board of Education are teaming up to offer this free summit in an effort to improve the number of Idaho students who go on and complete post-secondary education.  The College Access Summit will be offered through the GEAR UP Idaho and the Idaho College Access Challenge Grant programs.

The Summit will focus on professional development, networking, sharing of best practices and working together towards common goals as we strive to best serve the students of Idaho. Educators, policy makers, and members of the local business and non-profit communities are encouraged to attend.
  • Educators: You can earn in-service credit while helping to shape the futures of students!
  • Policy makers: This is the perfect venue to collaborate to ensure we have the most solid approach to education in Idaho!
  • Private business, industry, non-profit organizations: Here’s a way strengthen our local economy through the betterment of our future workforce!
Increased collaboration between all stakeholders will result in the best, most sustainable approach to the future of education policy and practice in Idaho. Idaho is a great place to live, work and learn, but we can do more! Come participate in this first annual College Access Summit and help improve post-secondary completion in Idaho.

Learn more about the College Access Summit. Space is limited, so register soon!

~ Melissa M.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Board Appoints Interim President of LCSC

The Idaho State Board of Education today appointed Dr. Tony Fernandez Interim President of Lewis-Clark State College - calling him the right man at the right time.

“We have the upmost confidence in Tony,” said Board President Richard Westerberg. “He has an impeccable record in his position as VP/Provost and we fully expect that to continue as interim president.”

The Board made the announcement naming Fernandez after a teleconference meeting that resulted in a unanimous vote. Under the agreement with the Board, Fernandez will earn $162,654 annually. The Board also set forward general parameters for a search for the permanent replacement for Dr. Dene K. Thomas, whose resignation becomes effective June 30, 2010. Thomas has accepted the position of President of Ft. Lewis College in Durango, Colorado.

“A search will go forward, run, managed and staff by the State Board of Education. This will allow us to minimize costs but still help us accomplish the necessary transparency and due diligence we must and want to exercise in hiring a president of a public institution of higher education,” said Westerberg. “Mr. Fernandez is our interim president and, should he desire, he will be considered for the permanent position.”

The appointment is of undetermined length as the Board has strongly indicated they will take whatever time necessary to ensure the best person is identified, interviewed and properly vetted.

“Searches are expensive, especially when a national search firm is involved,” said Board Secretary Don Soltman. “We will run this search as efficiently as possible while saving the cost of firm, which in this case could run as high as 60 thousand dollars.” 

Soltman will chair the search committee which is charged with delivering a list of five finalists to the Board. The Board will determine how many of the five will be interviewed and brought in for campus visits. No time frame nor deadline for hiring a permanent president has been established at this time. Parties interested in serving on the search committee should contact Mark Browning, Chief Communications & Legislative Officer for the Idaho State Board of Education via email: or phone by dialing 208.332.1591.

The Board will meet in Idaho Falls on the campus of Eastern Idaho Technical College, June 16-17, 2010.

Learn more about the Idaho State Board of Education online or via Twitter @IdSBOE.

~ Melissa M.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Taft Elementary Unveils Outdoor Learning Center

The students, staff, parents, and community at W.H. Taft Elementary School in Boise celebrated the opening of the W. H. Taft Outdoor Learning Center and Community Garden today.

In Spring 2009, W. H. Taft students, staff, and parents embarked on a partnership with the Boise Urban Garden School (BUGS) to transform a quadrant of the playground into a school-based garden and outdoor learning center.  This center will be an outside classroom for hands-on learning that embraces the state curriculum standards and offers opportunities for students to intimately explore the connection between food and health.  The garden will provide fresh organic food to the Taft school community and promote connections to the natural world that will foster both personal responsibility and stewardship.

Three years ago, Taft had two raised-bed plots and a small composting area, both of which were started and maintained by the after school Eco-Club. Beginning in the fall of 2009, with strong support and involvement by the BUGS consultants, Taft began the process of developing a permanent garden site and garden design. The school obtained private donations to cover the costs of irrigation and fencing, solicited volunteers to build twenty-four 4X4 square foot boxes, fenced the 7,000 plus square foot area, appointed a community advisory board, and provided students and teachers with classroom-based lessons.  The classroom-based lessons included topics such as compost and soil, beneficial insects, pest management, seeds and plants, and companion planting. 

Community participation has been the key to bringing this garden and learning center to life. Community partners include: Franz Witte, Action for Healthy Kids of the Ada County Health Department, Idaho Women’s Charitable Foundation, Eagle Scouts, Sunrise Rotary Club, and Noel Weber of Classic Signs.

Taft Elementary was also one of 78 Idaho schools to be awarded with a Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Grant from the Idaho State Department of Education this week.  Taft Elementary has had a Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program in place for at least a year.

~ Melissa M.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Idaho Teacher Honored at Milken Awards Ceremony

Aaron McKinnon, a teacher at South Junior High School in Boise, was in Santa Monica, California, where he was honored as Idaho’s Milken Educator of the Year at what Teacher Magazine has hailed as the “Oscars of Teaching” by Teacher Magazine.  McKinnon received a $25,000 award.

Every year, the Milken Family Foundation hosts the Milken Educators of the Year at the Milken Educator Forum, one of America’s premier education events, inviting top teachers to celebrate with education reform leaders.

First presented in 1987, the Milken Educator Awards represent the nation’s preeminent teacher recognition program in the U.S., having bestowed more than 2,400 outstanding educators with $60 million in unrestricted cash awards.

Here’s a photo of Aaron McKinnon receiving his award with Milken Family Foundation Co-Founders Lowell and Michael Milken:

~ Melissa M. 

Department Awards 78 Schools with Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Grants

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna announced today that 78 Idaho elementary schools have received Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program grants to fund healthy and nutritious snacks throughout the school day.

“The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program is a great way for Idaho schools to promote healthy eating habits among students by providing nutritious snacks throughout the day, instead of just during breakfast and lunch,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna said.

The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program is part of an initiative by U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to offer schools a wider variety of fresh produce than would be available through normal USDA programs, such as the National School Lunch Program.  The goal is to create healthier school environments by providing healthier food choices, expanding the variety of fruits and vegetables children experience, increasing children’s fruit and vegetable consumption and making a difference in children’s diets to impact their present and future health.

The 78 Idaho schools awarded grants this year will use the funding to provide students with a variety of free fresh fruits and vegetables. It is an effective and creative way of introducing fresh fruits and vegetables as healthy snack options.  Schools receive reimbursement for providing the fresh fruits and vegetables to students throughout the school day, but the fresh fruits and vegetables must be provided at a different time than the school lunch or breakfast programs.

Through the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, many schools offer mid-morning or mid-afternoon snacks to students.  The healthy snacks are delivered to the classroom, passed out in the cafeteria or distributed in hallways.  Students may be given the opportunity to try exotic fruits and vegetables such as kiwi, jicama, rambutan and dragon fruit.  Students may also get to try fruits and vegetables that they may recognize, but in a different form.  For example, many children have not eaten fresh peaches or fresh green beans. Teachers often use these opportunities to incorporate lessons about healthy eating, geography and writing about their experiences into the curriculum.

Schools were awarded the grants through a competitive application process.  The grant funding for these schools will begin July 1, 2010 and last until June 30, 2011.  See below for a complete list of schools that received grants.

Learn more about Child Nutrition Programs at the Idaho State Department of Education.

The following is a list of schools that were awarded the Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Program grant:

The Intermediate School 4-5    American Falls S.D.       $10,893.40      
Hillcrest Elementary School    American Falls S.D.       $21,987.60      
Woodside Elementary School     Blaine Co. S.D.     $18,624.20      
Whittier Elementary School    Boise S. D.       $18,724.60      
Whitney Elementary School    Boise S. D.       $21,736.60      
William Howard Taft Elementary School    Boise S. D.       $18,825.00      
Jefferson Elementary School    Boise S. D.       $15,612.20      
Koelsch Elementary School    Boise S. D.       $17,570.00      
Morley Nelson Elementary School    Boise S. D.       $26,455.40      
Bridgewater Elementary School    Bonneville Jt. S.D.       $23,443.40      
Cloverdale Elementary School    Bonneville Jt. S.D.       $28,965.40      
Valley View Elementary School    Boundary County S.D.       $24,045.80      
Mount Hall Elementary School    Boundary County S.D.       $4,919.60      
Bruneau Elementary School    Bruneau-Grand View Jt SD     $3,162.60      
Grand View Elementary School    Bruneau-Grand View Jt SD     $7,981.80      
Sacajawea Elementary School    Caldwell S.D.       $25,300.80      
Van Buren Elementary School    Caldwell S.D.       $31,174.20      
Washington Elementary School    Caldwell S.D.       $28,513.60      
Lincoln Elementary School    Caldwell S.D.       $20,933.40      
Cambridge Elementary School    Cambridge S.D.    $3,313.20      
Almo Elementary School    Cassia County Jt. S.D.       $451.80      
Mountain View Elementary School    Cassia County Jt. S.D.       $25,351.00      
Dworshak Elementary School    Cassia County Jt. S.D.       $30,069.80      
Raft River Elementary School    Cassia County Jt. S.D.       $10,893.40      
Albion Elementary School    Cassia County Jt. S.D.       $1,455.80      
Borah Elementary School    Coeur D'Alene S.D.       $18,674.40      
Bryan Elementary School    Coeur D'Alene S.D.       $20,682.40      
Coeur D'Alene Tribal School    Coeur D'Alene Tribal School     $4,016.00      
Council Elementary School    Council S.D.     $5,622.40      
Butte View Elementary School    Emmett S.D.       $27,108.00      
A W Johnson Elementary School    Firth S.D.       $14,859.20      
Glenns Ferry Elementary School    Glenns Ferry S.D.       $10,090.20      
Gooding Elementary School    Gooding Joint S.D.     $30,170.20      
Hagerman Elementary School    Hagerman S.D.       $10,291.00      
Dora Erickson Elementary School    Idaho Falls S.D.       $23,493.60      
A H Bush Elementary School    Idaho Falls S.D.       $24,146.20      
Hawthorne Elementary School    Idaho Falls S.D.       $18,674.40      
Roberts Elementary School    Jefferson Jt. S.D.       $8,132.40      
Harwood Elementary School    Jefferson Jt. S.D.       $19,778.80      
Horizon Elementary School    Jerome S.D.       $34,035.60      
Summit Elementary School    Jerome S.D.       $27,810.80      
Jefferson Elementary School    Jerome S.D.       $26,154.20      
Kamiah Elementary School    Kamiah Jt. S.D.       $10,542.00      
Sunnyside Elementary School    Kellogg Joint S.D.     $12,801.00      
Hope Elementary School    Lake Pend Oreille S.D.    $5,271.00      
Northside Elementary School    Lake Pend Oreille S.D.    $5,873.40      
John Brown Elementary School    Lakeland S.D.       $22,841.00      
Lapwai Elementary School     Lapwai S.D.       $16,867.20      
McGhee Elementary School    Lewiston S.D.    $15,662.40      
Downey Elementary School    Marsh Valley S.D.     $5,170.60      
Marsing Elementary School    Marsing Jt. S.D.       $21,736.60      
Meridian Elementary School    Meridian S.D.    $25,652.20      
Rupert Elementary School    Minidoka County S.D.       $28,212.40      
West Minico M.S.    Minidoka County S.D.       $6,676.60      
West Park Elementary School    Moscow S.D.     $9,889.40      
Central Elementary School    Nampa S.D.       $18,674.40      
Endeavor Elementary School    Nampa S.D.       $26,756.60      
Centennial Elementary School    Nampa S.D.       $26,505.60      
Notus Elementary School    Notus S.D.     $9,889.40      
Timberline Elementary School    Orofino Jt. S.D.       $5,572.20      
Maxine Johnson Elementary School    Parma S.D.       $21,234.60      
Parma M.S. - West Wing    Parma S.D.       $8,333.20      
Westside Elementary School    Payette S.D.       $12,349.20      
Payette Primary School    Payette S.D.       $27,610.00      
Lakeside Elementary School    Plummer-Worley Jt. S.D.       $12,198.60      
Seltice Elementary School    Post Falls S.D.     $18,825.00      
Mullan Trail Elementary School    Post Falls S.D.     $18,724.60      
Riggins Elementary School    Salmon River S.D.     $4,016.00      
Salmon Pioneer Elementary School    Salmon S.D.     $14,608.20      
Shoshone Elementary School    Shoshone S.D.    $15,662.40      
Leadore School    South Lemhi S.D.       $2,610.40      
Harrison Elementary School    Twin Falls S.D.       $25,351.00      
Oregon Trail Elementary School    Twin Falls S.D.       $28,112.00      
Lincoln Elementary School    Twin Falls S.D.       $22,841.00      
Pioneer Elementary School    Weiser S.D.     $24,497.60      
Idaho Hill Elementary School    West Bonner County S.D.     $8,082.20      
Terreton Elementary School    West Jefferson S.D.     $15,612.20      
Holmes Elementary School    Wilder S.D.       $10,592.20   

~ Melissa M.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Idaho Will Not Reapply for Race to the Top Funds

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna announced today that Idaho will not reapply for the second round of the federal Race to the Top grant program. 

“I believe the Race to the Top grant program does provide opportunities for states to be innovative and forward-thinking,” said Superintendent Luna. “However, throughout my administration, I have been consistent in my belief that the victory is not in asking; it is in delivering.  I will not ask Idaho schools and districts to spend their precious time and resources competing for an unrealistic goal that has been set by the federal government, not by the state of Idaho. Therefore, I will continue my work as State Superintendent to implement the vision, mission and goals created by Idahoans to raise student achievement and improve our public education system.”

Race to the Top is a competitive $4.35 billion federal grant that U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan created with discretionary dollars he received through the federal stimulus package. Idaho applied for $120 million in grant funding in the first round of Race to the Top. Idaho’s application in the first round was aligned to the state’s strategic plan for education. More than half of Idaho school districts and public charter schools chose to sign up to participate in Race to the Top in the first round.

In April, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced only two states – Delaware and Tennessee – were awarded Race to the Top grants in the first round.

Since the peer reviewers’ comments on Idaho’s first grant were released in April, Superintendent Luna has worked with educational stakeholders and staff at the State Department of Education to evaluate the application and gather feedback from educators, parents, and community members across Idaho. Based on this feedback, it was decided Idaho would not to reapply for Race to the Top in the second round for several reasons.

Specifically, the short application timeline would place an undue burden on Idaho school districts as they work to set budgets during a tough economic year. Second round applications are due June 1. Since the U.S. Department of Education released the new guidance for the second round in April, states and local school districts were only given a matter of weeks to fully evaluate peer reviewers’ comments, meet with stakeholder groups, revise applications and decide whether or not to sign up.

The U.S. Department of Education also imposed funding caps based on the size of each state for the second round. Under these new guidelines, Idaho could only apply for up to $75 million, significantly less than the state’s initial application of $120 million. These funding limitations make it unlikely the state will be able to improve its application while reducing its projected budget.

Idaho also faces challenges in gaining points in the areas of longitudinal data and educator evaluations. The Race to the Top grant program does not recognize the significant progress Idaho has made toward implementing a longitudinal data system over the past two years. While Idaho scored high on our plans for fully implementing the statewide longitudinal data system and learning management system, Idaho earned few points for what the state currently has in place.

In addition, to be competitive under Race to the Top, Idaho must tie at least a portion of teacher and principal evaluations to student academic growth and achievement. While Superintendent Luna is not opposed to this concept, he does not believe this a change Idaho can or should make overnight. This change will require all educational stakeholders working together to come up with a plan that best meets the needs of Idaho students.

To view Idaho's first application for Race to the Top, visit our Race to the Top website

~ Melissa M.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Barbara Morgan Visits Ronald Reagan Elementary

It wasn't an ordinary Wednesday at Ronald Reagan Elementary School in Nampa today.  Students got to meet and talk science and space with teacher and astronaut Barbara Morgan.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna worked with the school to schedule Morgan's visit after student Bronte Preece made the special request. Superintendent Luna met Bronte at a community event and asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up. Bronte said, "A scientist." She also said she was eager to meet Barbara Morgan. Superintendent Luna said he could make that happen.

Superintendent Luna and Barbara Morgan spent more than two hours at Ronald Reagan Elementary, speaking with students, answering questions, and encouraging them to follow their dreams.  They also visited classrooms and learned first-hand about the innovative math program the school recently implemented.

Here is some of the Q&A between Barbara Morgan and students:

Why did you decide to go into space? I decided to go into space because I’m a teacher. As a teacher, we're always trying to figure out how to make the classroom more interesting and more fun. How can we help you reach your dreams and make sure you're prepared? To do that, we go and study new things, go new places.

How long does it take for you to run out of air in a spacesuit? Those spacesuits generally last about 6.5 hours. We usually have about 7.5 hours of air. Then, we have 30 minutes of emergency air.

What did you like best in space? There are so many things... I really liked working with my crewmates, as a team. I liked working with the robotic arm. My other two favorite things were floating and working in weightlessness, and looking out in the beautiful universe and looking at all the stars and also looking back on our beautiful Earth.

~Melissa M.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Superintendent Luna Visits One of Idaho’s Smallest Districts

A winding road is all that leads to the northern Idaho town of Avery.

Nestled among the beautiful scenery just east of St. Maries sits the Avery School District, which consists of one school building, two full-time teachers, and 12 students currently enrolled in grades K-8.

Since taking office in 2007, Superintendent Luna has visited more than 200 schools 78 school districts across Idaho.  Avery was No. 79.

It’s one of Idaho’s smallest and most remote school districts.  It’s also the last district in northern Idaho he hadn’t yet visited.

The Avery school is a solid two hours from Coeur d’Alene and hour-long drive from St. Maries.  But it’s one of the most beautiful drives you’ll ever take along the St. Joe River.  Along the way, you see mountains, meadows, elk, and deer. 

Despite its geographic challenges, Avery is like any other school.  The superintendent, teachers and other staff are dedicated to the students and raising their achievement.  The students are hard at work.

And these students have big dreams.

The students in Avery dream of being zoologists, veterinarians, mechanics, herbologists, doctors, writers, and Marines.  And they all want to go on to postsecondary education after high school. 

While they understand their rural school faces some challenges, such as connectivity, these students recognize the many advantages they have of attending a school so small.

In such a close-knit community, everyone makes sure these students are succeeding in school, one student said.

Another student said he gets one-on-one time with his teachers each and every day in every subject area.  That’s something he knows he probably couldn’t get in a larger classroom setting.

What’s even better: Avery students are performing well. More than half the students scored advanced.  Those are amazing results!

~ Melissa M.

Lucky Duck Test Incentive Program

Heyburn Elementary School, in the Minidoka School District, found an interesting way to keep their students focused and doing their best on the Idaho Standard Achievement (ISAT) test. The Times News reported yesterday that the school is using colorful rubber ducks with student’s names written on the underbelly to remind students to practice good test-taking skills, read questions twice, and stay focused.

The ISAT test is a statewide student assessment required by No Child Left Behind that is administered to students in grades 3-10 to provide ongoing monitoring of individual, school, district, and state progress. The ISAT measures proficiency in four key areas: reading, language usage, mathematics, and science.

The ducks, which are part of the “Lucky Duck” test incentive program, are placed near the student’s computer as a reminder, but if the student fails to focus during the test, the duck is taken away. Those who earn a proficient score, raise their score from last year, or do their best in their teacher’s estimation get to float their duck in a plastic wading pool from which 10 names are drawn each day and awarded prizes. Signs around the school, such as “Get your ducks in a row,” encourage students to do their best on the tests.

Does your school or classroom use another innovative or fun way to motivate students to do their best? Let us know!

-Camille W.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Preston School District Converts to Four-Day School Week

The Preston School District will switch to a four-day school week for the 2010-2011 school year, the Idaho State Journal reports.  Barbara Taylor, Preston School District Superintendent, said the district will save about $150,000 by making the switch.

The conversion to four-day school weeks is one of many changes districts across Idaho are considering in the face of budget shortfalls.  The decision whether to switch is made at the local level, and four-day school weeks do not reduce the student-teacher contact time.  Districts are still required to adopt a school calendar that provides its students with the same required instructional hours.

For more information on four-day school weeks, please visit the State Department of Education’s Rural Education website.

-Camille W.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Superintendent Luna to Raise Money for Idaho Students in Need

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna announced today he will be raising money for The Idaho Foodbank to help Idaho students who are hungry and in need.

Superintendent Luna will complete the Famous Idaho Potato Marathon on Saturday, May 15, 2010, to promote the importance of health, nutrition, and physical fitness and to raise money for The Idaho Foodbank’s Backpack Program, which provides food for students identified as chronically hungry over the weekend.

“As I have traveled across Idaho, I have seen how The Idaho Foodbank’s Backpack Program has helped hundreds of Idaho students, but many more are still in need. I am honored to have this opportunity through the Famous Potato Marathon to emphasize the importance of nutrition and physical fitness and to raise money so we can help ensure no child goes hungry,” Superintendent Luna said.

You can make a donation online now or learn more about the Backpack Program. To see a short video explanation of the Backpack Program, click here.

The Idaho Foodbank works in partnership with school officials to identify chronically hungry children who could benefit from the Backpack Program. With parental permission, backpacks are distributed discreetly to participating children on Fridays or the last day of the school week. The weekend backpack provides two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners, and two snacks. Meal plans are reviewed by a dietitian, and the contents of each backpack are nutritious, child-friendly, easy to prepare and non-perishable.

Currently, The Idaho Foodbank distributes 1,780 backpack refills each week throughout Idaho. However, the need is much greater, and with additional funding support, the Foodbank could distribute 7,000 refills a week.

Superintendent Luna has already completed two marathons since taking office in 2007. He wants to use this third marathon as an opportunity to help meet the growing need among Idaho students.

To help support this cause, please contact the Idaho Foodbank and make a donation under “Superintendent Luna’s Strides for Students.”

Since taking office in 2007, Superintendent Luna has worked to improve the health and nutrition of students across Idaho.

In 2008, he established the Coordinated School Health Team at the State Department of Education with representatives from the Health Education, Safe and Drug-Free Schools, Child Nutrition, Health and Welfare, and Physical Activity programs working together to improve health, nutrition and physical fitness in Idaho schools. Last year, the Coordinated School Health Team awarded $50,000 in federal grants to Idaho schools.

In addition, in 2009, Superintendent Luna unveiled New Nutrition Standards for School Meals, which are more nutritious than current federal standards. As a result, Idaho schools are now serving more whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Schools have discontinued serving deep-fat fried foods and foods with trans fats.

~ Melissa M.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Superintendent Luna to Host Community Meeting in Post Falls

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna will host a community meeting in Post Falls on Tuesday, May 4, 2010.

Parents, students, educators and community members are encouraged to attend.  Superintendent Luna will speak with community members about important issues facing Idaho students and take questions from the audience.

Here are the details of the community meeting:

Date:    Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Time:    7 p.m. PT

Place:    Post Falls High School, 2832 E Poleline Road

What:     State Superintendent Tom Luna to host community meeting

~ Melissa M.

McCall School District Turns Junk into Funk

Last week, I visited the McCall-Donnelly School District with Superintendent of Public Instruction.

While there, we had the opportunity to visit all schools – Barbara Morgan Elementary, Payette Lakes Middle, and McCall-Donnelly High School – and visit with staff after school.

Superintendent Luna speaking with students at Barbara Morgan Elementary School.

When we stopped by the high school art class, I was amazed. The teacher had on display several outfits made out of recyclable materials.

We soon came to find out it’s not just an art project. It’s part of the third annual Junk to Funk Eco-Fashion Event, an opportunity for McCall-Donnelly High School students and local Valley County artists to show off their work and the benefits of being eco-friendly.

This year, the show will include an evening gown made out of soup labels and reused candy boxes, a flapper dress made out of aluminum cans, and much more.

The show is Saturday, May 15 at 6:30 p.m. at 115 Commerce Street in McCall, if you are interested in attending. 

The eco-friendly fashion show is just one part of the district’s efforts to improve the environment. The district focuses on recycling and energy efficiency in all of its buildings and often incorporates these lessons into the curriculum.

For example, at Barbara Morgan Elementary School, students not only recycle cardboard boxes. They also stack the boxes and calculate their weight.

Learn more about the McCall-Donnelly School District.

~ Melissa M.