By Breanna Feathers
April 12, 2011 (San Diego)--While the Spring semester comes closer to an end and daunting final exams creep up on students at SDSU, an exciting project is underway to build a new, sustainable Aztec Center.
During March 2010, students voted in favor of a $94 per semester fee increase, from which funding would be provided to tear down the current Aztec Center and rebuild this improved facility. Currently, Aztec Center is not able to service the growing number of students who use the facility, and alternative plans to renovate the structure because of imminent safety concerns would actually cost the University more than it would to rebuild it in its entirety.
April 12, 2011 (Washington D.C.) – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) introduced legislation to restore cuts made to education aid for veterans going to college. The Post 9/11 GI Bill Payment Restoration Act (H.R. 1451) would reinstate living expense stipends during school breaks.
“Our service members earned and deserve their educational benefits,” said Davis, a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee. “We have a responsibility to keep these benefits worthy of their dedication and sacrifices to the nation.”
About 5,000 students will be unable to get the classes they need
Even worse cuts may be on horizon in what Chancellor calls a “true budget Armageddon”
April 5, 2011 (El Cajon) – Facing an $8.1 million cut in money from the state, officials at the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District are planning to eliminate more than 780 class sections in the next school year – turning away almost 5,000 students -- and reduce summer school to a bare minimum. Fees are also being raised by more than a third.
SDJA was the big winner at the 2011 Greater San Diego Science and Engineering Fair, with 50% of its high school entries taking home the grand prize, or Sweepstakes Awards, and over half of its middle school entries receiving a first place award.
Standardized Assessment Would Save $4 Million in Testing Costs and Increase the Number of Students Assessed by 2.2 Million
March 30, 2011 – In an effort to increase efficiencies in California’s higher education system and boost student success, Assemblymember Marty Block (AD-78) announced that his community college student assessment legislation has been approved by the Assembly Higher Education Committee on a unanimous vote.
March 30, 2011 (Sacramento)--Assemblymember Marty Block (AD-78) announced today that the Assembly Committee on Higher Education, which he chairs, has approved his bill to improve the campus climates for LGBT students at public colleges and universities. AB 620 would require the California State University and California Community Colleges, and request the University of California, to adopt policies on harassment, intimidation and bullying in their student codes of conduct.
March 29, 2011 (Rancho San Diego) – Cuyamaca College will again provide free classes and hands-on work experience in green building and sustainable energy to eligible students through a training program funded by San Diego Workforce Partnership. The $1.6 million in funding comes from federal stimulus money along with grants from the State Energy Program, Workforce Investment Act, State Energy Sector Partnership and others.
Robert Garber, interim president of Cuyamaca College, said the green building program is part of the college’s commitment to train workers for the expanding green economy.
You can help by collecting Box Tops, Campbell Soup Labels, Coke Rewards and joining Target’s Take Charge of Education program
March 27, 2011 (Alpine)--Public schools are getting hit with major budget cuts. Now, Alpine Elementary School hopes to raise its own money--with your help.
“Each fundraiser brings lots of money and educational items to our school and requires minimal effort and almost no cost to you,” says spokesperson Sharmin Self, who said teachers are currently having to pay for many school supplies out of their own pockets.
Scroll down for details that Self provided on how you can help.
March 25, 2011 (Alpine) – The Alpine Sheriff Station is hosting a free “Kidzwatch” crime prevention program on Friday, April 22 from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The program, held during spring break, is open to ages 7-11; parents are welcome but are not required to attend.
March 25, 2011 (El Cajon)--Grossmont College is soliciting assistance from the public for photos of campus activities from the 1990s for inclusion in its 50th anniversary commemorative book. The soon-to-be-published book will highlight the college’s history since it opened in 1961, and more photos are needed from the 1990s, college officials said.
Photos can be placed on flash drives or CDs or sent to the college via e-mail by Tuesday, March 29.
Options range from “splash” and “equestrian” camps to “web design” camp and more
March 21, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Instead of spending the summer at home and indoors, the East County Family YMCA is encouraging parents to give their kids a chance to explore nature at the Y’s Summer Day Camp. YMCA campers gain new experiences, develop essential social skills and create lifelong friendships, while enjoying camp adventures.
Fundraiser to provide Japan relief set for March 25
By Jeremy Los
March 16, 2011 (San Diego) -- Following the destruction of the 9.0 magnitude quake and tsunami that hit Japan last Thursday, many on the San Diego State campus feared for those studying abroad and for the families of the over 100 Japanese students at SDSU. Shortly after the tsunami, SDSU confirmed on its website that at least 12 of the 16 students studying in Japan were safe and unharmed. The other 4 students were also believed safe because they were studying hundreds of miles away from the areas hardest hit.
“As it stands now all sixteen students traveling abroad in Japan are safe and we’ve communicated to each directly,” SDSU Media Relations Manager Gina Jacobs advised ECM in a subsequent update.
March 17, 2011 (San Diego's East County) --The 2011 Grossmont High School District Cheer Competition will be held on Wednesday, March 23, at 6 p.m. in the El Cajon Valley High School Football Stadium.
The competition will feature teams competing at the Junior Varsity, Varsity, Varsity Advanced and Varsity Co-ed levels. There will also be a Best Jumper and Best Tumbler award.
By Jeremy Los
March 11, 2011 (Alpine)--The Alpine Unified School District will face tough decisions when it comes to passing its annual budget. Like many other school districts, AUSD is facing a budgetary gap that could force the district to enforce deep cuts and increase class sizes. The preliminary budget was passed in February, with the official budget on the docket for June.
ECM has learned that many teachers have already received their pink slips, with one e-mail from a teacher stating that 40% of Joan McQueen Middle School’s staff had received the lay-off notices as of March 4. The district must issue lay-off notices prior to March 15 to comply with state law for any positions that may be cut this year.
By: Jeremy Los
School was in session Saturday morning at Granite Hills High School, as over 300 middle school students and around 100 Granite Hills students took part in S.T.I.N.G. (Student Teachers Igniting The Next Generation), where classes were created and instructed by the participating Granite Hills juniors and seniors.
The brainchild of Granite Hills senior, Andy Keller- who modeled the event after the SPLASH programs at MIT, Stanford, and University of Chicago (where college students teach high school students), S.T.I.N.G. aimed to “instill a love of learning for a lifetime.”
By Doug Deane
March 8, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) -- The following local, state and national education news items are excerpted from a very informative e-newsletter published by Doug Deane, chair of the Business Education Committee at the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce.
Our picks for Deane’s top education stories from the latest issue include:
Update March 11: Trustee Dick Hoy provided this update on the vote.
"The item involving issuing layoff notices was split in two. Librarians were voted on separately. The vote to issue layoff/reassignment notices to teachers and Vice Principals passed 4-1--Hoy dissenting. The vote to reassign librarians passed 3-2--Hoy and Schrieber dissenting. .. It should be posted soon. They were difficult decisions for each member of the board." A video of the meeting will be posted soon on the GUHSD website, he advised.
“…Schools with librarians have their students achieve better on standardized tests than those that don’t.” – Nancy Everhart, president, American Association of School Libraries
By Jeremy Los
March 7, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – High school libraries across East County will soon be losing services of trained librarians, if proposed budget cuts are approved Thursday by the Grossmont Union High School District board. As California struggles to dig itself out of a massive budget hole, the board must also contend with massive budget gaps.
“As I understand the proposal,” Grossmont Union High School District Board Vice President Dick Hoy told East County Magazine, “all librarian positions will be cut.”
GROSSMONT-CUYAMACA LEADERS SERVE UP IDEAS—AND PIE--AT NATIONAL “INNOVATIONS IN COMMUNITY COLLEGES” CONFERENCE
March 5, 2011 (San Diego) -- A national conference that brought more than 1,700 representatives of two-year colleges to San Diego shined a spotlight on the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District, from sessions by faculty and administrators discussing innovative ideas in education to the more than 100 district volunteers who helped ensure the event ran smoothly.
“Make Every Drop Count” video competition open to local high school and college students
March 4, 2011 (Spring Valley) - The Otay Water District today announced its first ever water conservation video contest, “Make Every Drop Count.” The District will recognize the top three student-submitted videos that highlight the importance of water conservation and encourage the community to use water more efficiently.
SD EAST COUNTY CHAMBER PARTNERS WITH LOCAL EDUCATORS AND LIFELONG LEARNERS ON TOUR OF PERU JULY 11-19
March 3, 2011 (San Diego's East County) — Over 150 local educators join the San Diego East County Regional Chamber of Commerce’s annual Summer Educational Tour each year. This year, the Chamber is inviting chamber members, school district colleagues and friends on an exclusive trip to Peru July 11-19 as part of the Chamber Travel Program for 2011.
March 2, 2011 (Spring Valley) -- Monte Vista High School in Spring Valley was placed in lockdown briefly shortly after 10 a.m. this morning after a teacher reporter overhearing students talking about a gun in a bush.
“It’s all over now,” Lt. James Bovet with the San Diego Sheriff informed ECM at 11:15 a.m. “There was no indication that the gun was on or even near the school, however they did a search but did not find anything.” Ten patrol cars were dispatched to the school is located at 3230 Sweetwater Springs Blvd.
February 27, 2011 (San Diego’s East County)—Santana and West Hills went head to head on February 23rd to determine the 1st place Varsity team to represent the 2010-2011 Grossmont League in the county finals this Spring.
Ruth Weiss moderated the match and over 150 people crowded into the Grossmont High School library, where the standing-room-only crowd watched two brilliant teams of scholars move back and forth with the lead.
March 24-27 Greater San Diego Science & Engineering Fair is among top science fairs in the U.S.
By Mary Domb Mikkelson
February 26, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) -- Budget woes. School funding cuts. American kids left behind. You’ve read the headlines, endured the political posturing, heard – and shared - the concerns of parents and teachers. The litany of protests is long – and worrisome. Is there good news anywhere?
Yes! San Diego and Imperial County students, bucking the downward trend, are known for their scientific achievements. Do these kids have an edge, have something special going for them? Absolutely.
City invites residents to help make a more walkable community
February 25, 2011 (La Mesa)--The “La Mesa Kids Walk & Roll to School ” Safe Routes program is inviting the public to attend Walkability Workshops being held at local schools.
By Kristin Hobbs Kjaero
February 25, 2011 (La Mesa) -- Golden Artistry Jewelry Design of La Mesa is hosting their third annual jewelry design contest for high school students in the Grossmont Union High School District. The theme this year is water.
The competition is the creation of jeweler Terry Whyte, who hopes to inspire artistic students to consider careers in jewelry making, the same way he was inspired when he saw one of his professors solder a ring.
February 22, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) -- The following local, state and national education news items are excerpted from a very informative e-newsletter published by Doug Deane, chair of the Business Education Committee at the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce.
Our picks for Deane’s top education stories from the latest issue include:
- Grossmont school district looks at layoffs
- GUHSD Superintendent Swenson's newsletter
- City of El Cajon Youth of the Year award
- In the glee era, youth choruses pop up all over
- Flurry of data as rules near for commercial colleges
- Among nation's youngest, analysis finds fewer whites
- On evolution, biology teachers stray from lesson plan
- U.S. plan to replace principals hits snag: who will step in?
- Charges against Muslim student prompt debate over free speech
- Recruiting in China pays off for U.S. colleges
- Teachers colleges upset over plan to grade them
- Grading the education president
- Financial aide available for low-income students
- Charter schools face relocation, growth challenges
- La Mesa-Spring Valley schools bond program nears end
Multiple locations on district campuses were available, but GUHSD chose to use church instead, ECM research reveals
By Miriam Raftery
Jeremy Los contributed research for this report
February 18, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, a national nonprofit organization, says that it’s “problematic” and likely unconstitutional for the Grossmont Union High School District to host a school event at Sonrise Church, a fundamentalist place of worship in Santee.
Teachers call for "pink hearts, not pink slips"
February 14, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) -- The American Federation of Teachers is asking people to wear a pink heart today, Valentine’s Day, to show support for public education.
February 12, 2011 (El Cajon)--Grossmont College seeks former students, faculty and staff members who met their spouses at the campus. Couples who respond to college officials will be invited to a free pre-Valentine’s Day reception next year on Friday, Feb. 10, 2012 at the El Cajon community college.
The event will be one of several that the college is planning as part of its year-long 50-year anniversary celebration from June 2011 to June 2012. The reception will feature live music--including love songs from the past five decades.
February 11, 2011 (La Mesa) -- The City is currently looking for a youth representative to serve on the Environmental Sustainability Commission. Applicants must live within the city limits of La Mesa and may not be more than 21 years of age. Applications may be obtained by accessing the City of La Mesa website, www.cityoflamesa.com or from the City Clerk’s office in La Mesa City Hall, 8130 Allison Avenue, during normal business hours.