By Ray M. Wong
December 8, 2010 (Lakeside)--The school doesn’t look that impressive: A waist-high, chain-link fence separates a gravel parking lot from the school, a cluster of portable structures But appearances can be deceiving. River Valley Charter, a small public school in Lakeside serving 7th to 12th graders, has been the highest rated high school in San Diego County for seven years running.
Funds raised will help stop abductions, child soldiers in Africa
By Jeremy Los
December 4, 2010 (Santee)--Santana High School students channeled their inner super models on Friday night for a charity fashion show at the New Heights Community Church in Santee. Using clothes from their own wardrobes, students from Santana high’s Invisible Children club took to the catwalk to raise money for the Invisible Children Foundation.
Program proves winning formula for algebra students
Story and photos by Tanya Huang
November 29, 2010 (Lakeside) — Lakeside Middle School students' math scores have risen dramatically ever since its teachers incorporated new learning methodologies last summer from GEMDAS® Educational Services, LLC, a company founded by Lora Kermode, a former teacher with vast experience helping at-risk youth in inner-city schools overcome their math phobias.
November 30, 2010 (La Mesa)--The next time that third grade teachers of the La Mesa Spring Valley School District need students to look something up in a dictionary – they can. Thanks to the Rotary Club of La Mesa, all third-graders in the District now have dictionaries of their own to keep.
(November 29, 2010 ) San Diego--Hundreds of DREAM Act students and supporters are expected to light up San Diego County bridges with banners displaying the word “DREAM” and a candlelight vigil during rush-hour on Monday, November, 29, from 5:30—7 p.m.
They are raising awareness for the DREAM Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) bill, which will come to a vote in Congress as early as Tuesday, November 30. The DREAM Act would provide an opportunity for undocumented students who were brought to the U.S. as babies or children to obtain permanent residency and eventually citizenship.
MORE CALIFORNIANS WORRIED ABOUT HIGHER EDUCATION COSTS, HALF WOULD APPROVE RAISING TAXES INSTEAD OF HIKING STUDENT FEES
November 24, 2010 (San Diego) -- Californians are becoming increasingly worried about the cost of higher education. A new survey from the Public Policy Institute of California found that 74 percent of those polled said the state does not provide enough money to its public colleges and universities.
Project manager Sonja Petek says the survey also found a large increase in the number of people who would rather pay higher taxes than see student fees increase. The survey found almost 60 percent of all parents, and 72 percent of Latino parents, are very worried about paying for college.
By Ray M. Wong
November 23, 2010 (Lakeside) -- Winter Gardens Elementary in Lakeside is a small, often overlooked Title 1 school comprised mostly of economically disadvantaged children. Sixty-three percent of the students qualify for a free or reduced lunch. Some of the kids have never been to a show or the beach. The school has only one administrator, Denise Goulart, who splits her time as the Vice Principal and also teaches second grade.
By Tanya Huang
November 23, 2010 (San Diego) — San Diego State students, faculty and staff were blocked from areas around the trolley station for almost three hours while the San Diego State University (SDSU) Police Department investigated an undisclosed, suspicious package which was later deemed nonthreatening.
November 18, 2010 (Rancho San Diego) – Two departing Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District Governing Board trustees who helped oversee the transformation of the Grossmont and Cuyamaca College campuses were honored Tuesday for their years of service to the district.
By Miriam Raftery
Tanya Huang also contributed to this story
November 15, 2010 (San Diego)--Student reactions ranged from dismay to outrage upon learning that the University of California regents will consider an 8% fee increase for the 2011-2012 school year, while the California State University board of trustees has proposed a 5% increase for spring semester and a whopping 10% increase for 2011-2012.
Following last year’s 32% fee increases at the UC and a 5% increase at CSU campuses, many students fear that their dreams of a college education are fast disappearing.
November 12, 2010 (El Cajon) -- Two local artists from La Mesa are organizing an East County Art Festival.
"East San Diego County does not offer many opportunities for artists to share and sell their work, nor are there many events for the art lover to view numerous artists in one location. Kristy Dial and Rosario Wilke want to fill this void," a press release issued by the event organizers states.
On Wednesday, November 10, the Mount Miguel High School JROTC held its 21st Annual Veteran’s Day Ceremony. More than 175 JROTC Cadets participated in the ceremony honoring all military personnel who have served our country throughout history.
"Increasing the cost of attending a CSU or UC translates to more money from the pockets of students already struggling with multiple jobs and heavy class loads.” -- Assemblyman Marty Block (D-Lemon Grove)
By Miriam Raftery
November 10, 2010 (Sacramento) - California State University trustees today approved a two-step tuition increase that will raise fees by 15.5 percent over the next year. Tuition for students at CSU's 23 campuses, including San Diego State University and CSU San Marcos, will rise 5 percent in January and another 10 percent in the fall, a total of $4,884. Average fees at each campus add an additional $950--for a whopping $5,834 total hike that students must pay.
Former Miramar College administrator will head counseling, enrollment services
November 10, 2010 (El Cajon)-- Outside of her professional career in higher education, Wendy Stewart is a self-taught songwriter and musician who dreams of turning on the radio one day to hear one of her pieces being performed by a famous recording artist.
November 9, 2010 (Rancho San Diego) – With construction finishing on 14 projects at Grossmont and Cuyamaca College, leaders of the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District recently took time to honor the architects, engineers and contractors who led the work to transform the two East County campuses.
November 6, 2010 (El Cajon ) – Grossmont Union High School District’s board has announced a special budget workshop on Tuesday, November 9th upstairs in the Cuyamaca College Student Center, 900 Rancho San Diego Parkway. The public session will begin at 5 p.m., with discussion of the new Alpine High School at 7:30 p.m.
The District faces a potential shortfall of millions of dollars due to state budget cuts and the economic downturn, which has reduced property tax revenues.
November 5, 2010 (Lakeside) – Today San Diego Sheriff Bill Gore announced that Ryan Stevens, who recently worked as a part-time assistant diving coach at El Capitan High School in Lakeside, was arrested last night. He is charged with oral copulation with a minor by means of force or fear.
November 4, 2010 (El Cajon) – Henri Migala, former executive dean at Cuyamaca College, has accepted a new post. Migala has relocated at Grossmont College, where he is working under the chancellor to manage grants for the department.
November 3, 2010 (Rancho San Diego) -- If you’re out of a job and looking to go green in your next career, check out the free classes being offered at Cuyamaca College. The Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District received a $1 million grant from the state of California and the California Energy Commission to provide the free classes to 240 students at Cuyamaca College.
2 Democrats won “open” primary to square off Nov. 3: Teacher/legislator vs. retired superintendent
November 1, 2010 (San Diego) – When Republican Abel Maldonado held up the state budget and demanded fellow legislators approve an “open” primary ballot initiative as a condition for his vote, the GOP thought it would result in more Republicans winning high office in California, a heavily Democratic state.
But the new rule, which declared the top two vote-getters in June's primary winners regardless of parties, resulted in two Democrats, Tom Torlakson and Larry Aceves, squaring off in the state superintendent’s race (though Aceves has since changed his party registration to independent).
PREACHER, TEACHERS, COACHES & PARENTS AMONG CANDIDATES IN RUNNING FOR GROSSMONT UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT BOARD
Budget cited as key challenge; District faces $15 million deficit
By Miriam Raftery
October 31, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – Grossmont Union High School District's Board of Trustees has long had a reputation as a lightning rod for controversy. In the past, the Board was dominated by religious right wing interests; meetings often drew huge crowds and protests over moves such as teacher lay-offs and a failed proposal to turn the entire district charter.
More moderating forces have prevailed recently, though the “nonpartisan” board remains controlled by a majority of conservative Republicans. The board could shift further to the right, however, if efforts by a conservative minister, Robert “Bob” Divine, to elect himself and his son, Robert Brian Divine, prevail.
Former Mountain Empire teacher: `Misspent or reshuffled' monies should go back to the classroom
By Billie Jo Jannen
Special report for East County Magazine
October 27, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) --In the wake of East County Magazine’s story about the abrupt reshuffling of principals at two elementary schools, new questions have risen about site management and the handling of special funds in Mountain Empire Unified School District.
By Ray Wong
October 22, 2010 (San Diego)--Last week, a 19-year-old student named Diana Gonzalez was found dead in a men’s bathroom at San Diego City College. Investigators are looking for her estranged husband because there has been a history of domestic violence reported between them. It’s a shocking incident that has made front-page headlines.
I work as a counselor at San Diego City College and I don’t want to focus on the horror of the violence. What I want to tell you about is the candlelight vigil organized by the campus Associated Students in front of the school cafeteria Thursday evening in honor of their fellow student.
"It is a public good, and that’s why to starve it is crazy. We should invest more, not less.” -- Jerry Brown, on higher education funding
By Tanya Huang
Photos by David J. Olender
October 21, 2010 (San Diego) — Gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown addressed a crowd of hundreds at San Diego State University on Thursday afternoon—his only stop in San Diego—about the importance of funding higher education while criticizing his opponent, Meg Whitman for excessively spending on her campaign. See full video of Brown's speech at SDSU or scroll down for details.
DUTCH TREAT: TECHNOLOGY TALK CREATES BOND BETWEEN DUTCH AND GROSSMONT-CUYAMACA COMMUNITY COLLEGE DISTRICT EDUCATORS
Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District news
October 15, 2010 (Rancho San Diego)--A group of 36 educators from the Netherlands who traveled 5,600 miles to Cuyamaca College this week to hear about innovations in education agreed that technology is changing the way people around the world are being taught.
“The future school will be a partly virtual school, open 24/7 year round, and accessible from all over the world,” Dutch educator Rein Rijlsma said after hearing presentations that ranged from e-learning techniques to electronic data systems that track students’ performance from kindergarten through college.
LMSV SCHOOL DISTRICT ELECTION: 4 CANDIDATES COMPETE FOR 3 SEATS AND THE CHANCE TO ALLEVIATE BUDGET CRISIS
Challenger Jay Steiger joins race with incumbents Bob Duff, Penny Halgren, and Rick Winet
By Tanya Huang
October 13, 2010 (La Mesa)—While the La Mesa Spring Valley School District faces the struggle of an ongoing budget crisis, three incumbents and one challenger compete for the opportunity to incorporate their suggestions on how to provide the best education for students and support for employees with limited financial resources.
“We have pretty much spent all our restricted funds down to the bone,” Assistant Superintendent of Business David Yoshihara said recently to the San Diego Union Tribune.
October 13, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) – The San Diego Union-Tribune has published Q&As with candidates for eight East County school districts: Alpine Union, Cajon Valley, Grossmont Union High School, La Mesa-Spring Valley, Lakeside Union, Lemon Grove, Mountain Empire Unified, and Santee school districts. Below are links to the questionnaires and replies from those candidates who responded:
October 12, 2010 (El Cajon) – Kerry Kilber has been named dean of learning resources and technology at Grossmont College. Kilber comes to the district from the University of San Diego, where she served as the director of a web-based master’s degree program in supply chain management in the college of business administration.
October 12, 2010 (San Diego) – Want to learn more about Prop 23, one of the most important environmental battles ever in California’s history? Prop 23 would overturn the landmark AB 32 measure that reduced greenhouse gas emissions and strengthened clean air standards.
Students at San Diego State University are sponsoring a debate on Prop 23 to be held Thursday, October 14 from 5 to 9 p.m. at the “Back Door” in the lower Aztec Center at San Diego State University. Free pizza is included.
Over 7,000 East County Students & Parents Expected to Attend Largest Career/College Fair in San Diego County
October 12, 2010 (El Cajon) The Grossmont Union High School District will host its seventh annual “Got Plans?” Career & College Fair for 9 - 12th grade students and parents on Wednesday, October 20, 2010, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Cuyamaca College.