Exceptional Student Musicians March in Rose Parade
Six talented student musicians from Hart School District high schools were selected to join the Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band, performing with the world watching the annual parade tradition on January 1st. The first Rose Parade took place in 1890 and it is a big honor for students to be selected to participate. More than 600 high school students audition each year for the 200 spots in the band and pageantry. The Honor Band rehearses every Sunday in November and December and almost every day during the winter break to prepare for the six-mile trek down Colorado Boulevard. The students will have marched over 25 miles in rehearsal before they step off on the parade route on January 1st. As part of the honor band program, the 10 member elite Herald Trumpet Unit has the distinct honor of heralding in the New Year by proceeding the Rose Queen and her Court. This year, two students were selected as part of the prestigious Herald Trumpet Unit: Brian Kuhn of Saugus High School and Scott Dagg of Golden Valley High School. Other Honor Band members were Joshua Malone, bass trombone and Michael Smalley, trombone, both of Valencia High School; Kenneth Lee Eernisse, euphonium and Teddy Chik, flute, both of Hart High School. Congratulations to these outstanding musicians!
Students Find Jobs with Career Visions
The District’s Career Visions (CV) program reported a significant increase in the number of students seeking program related workforce preparation and job placement services since the school year began in August 2012. Supervisor Kevin Sarkissian commented on the encouraging trend. “We’re continuing to focus on several key areas of growth including: community outreach, family education, workforce preparation, and local job development, leading to long term employment for any special education student expressing a desire to work. The Career Visions team, with financial support from California’s Department of Rehabilitation and Department of Education, has been working hard to develop quality, private sector work training partnerships with local employers throughout the SCV. As a result, we’ve enjoyed tremendous success this school year, helping more than 150 students find work since late summer.” This news supports a continued statewide interest to bring proven workforce preparation fundamentals into the classroom while offering the added incentive of a paid work training experience intent on embracing a direct hire and long term employment philosophy. “In this time of economic challenge, it’s encouraging to see state and local government continue to acknowledge the importance of having workforce development training opportunities such as CV’s Workforce Preparation and the special education department’s LifeWorks classes. Ultimately, the great thing about this opportunity is that it helps many of our student participants become productive, gainfully employed members of our local community,” Sarkissian said. Business owners and managers seeking more information about participating in the Career Visions program can visit www.cvworks.org or contact 661-250-0022 X 552.
Bowman Students Create Unique “Butterfly Project”
ASB students organized the annual Butterfly Project event for all Bowman High School students. The Butterfly Project was created as a way to show love and support for people who are engaging in risky behaviors or harming themselves by cutting. The butterfly “tattoo” is drawn using permanent markers and was originally designed to remind people who are cutting themselves to not “harm” the butterfly. Since then, it has expanded to draw attention to all forms of self-harm. By having a butterfly drawn on your hand or face, you are pledging to take care of yourself and to persuade friends or family to discontinue self-harming behaviors.
Golden Oak Student Gets a “Re-do”’
Riana Kort, 22, is wrapping up her last class at Golden Oak Adult School after spending the last two years burning through courses at breakneck speed in pursuit of earning her high school diploma. A native Californian and single mother, Riana left high school after struggling most of her junior year and headed to Alabama with her infant son looking for a fresh start. After four years, she realized that her lack of education and the absence of support and encouragement from family close by were hindering her opportunities. Riana and her son Anthony returned to California to accomplish her objectives of both completing high school and ultimately pursuing higher education. She once thought her obstacles were too great to overcome; now that she is securely on her way, she is extremely proud of herself and thankful to Golden Oak for what she refers to as her ‘re-do’. Fluent in Spanish, Arabic and French, Riana plans to attend College of the Canyons and then Fresno State University where she will study linguistics and earn a teaching credential. Riana plans to further continue her education by attaining a master’s degree. After graduation, she intends to work with English as a Second Language students who are struggling academically due to their English language limitations, using her multilingual ability to its best advantage by helping others overcome their obstacles.
Placerita Students Gain Lifelong Dance Skills in Popular PE Class
Over the past 40 Years, the Placerita Junior High School physical education department has taught a five-week dance unit to all students. This unit is a fan favorite with every seventh and eighth grader. Students are partnered and taught square dancing and social dancing including: Cha Cha, Waltz and Swing, as well as line dancing such as Electric Slide, Power Jam, Ghost Busters, and Texas Stomp. Students are taught proper social skills, such as etiquette, courtesy, and respect. Teachers have reported running into former students around town, who often ask if they still teach the dance unit. Many former students can recall the dance steps, have fond memories of the class and share that they appreciated the dance lessons as part of the PE program. The dance unit has been a great success at Placerita.
Rio Norte Students Bring Awareness Through Operation US
Rio Norte Junior High School students proudly present the Operation US (United Students) program to third graders at North Park, Helmers, Bridgeport, West Creek, Mountainview, and Tesoro elementary schools each year. Operation US is a diversity awareness program, focused on teaching third graders to take personal responsibility for their words and actions, reducing conflict, and accepting others as they are. Students are guided into understanding the importance of recognizing that everyone has the right to be treated with dignity and respect. Operation US follows the motto: “Everyone matters in Santa Clarita.”
Hart District ROP Virtual Enterprise Students Win Competition
Hart School District Regional Occupational Program (ROP) Virtual Enterprise students Andrew Ponce and Angel Chinchilla participated in the Youth Entrepreneur Program (YEP) Business Plan competition held in December at College of the Canyons. Representing the virtual company Acoustic Cakes and Apparel, the two led their team to victory, winning the overall best business plan for the 14-17 age group. The team submitted a written business plan critiqued by business leaders in the community. Ponce and Chinchilla gave a brief pitch to a separate panel of industry judges as part of the competition. The combined scores gave them the overall win, $300 cash and the opportunity to work with YEP coordinator Tora Brown as they advance to the state competition in Sacramento with a chance to win $10,000. Virtual Enterprise is a simulated business class offered to juniors and seniors through the Hart District ROP Program.
Sierra Vista PE Program Stars in Nike Feature
Representatives for the international renowned brand Nike filmed Sierra Vista Junior High School students participating in its nationally-recognized physical education program in action. Nike has a sub-division called Designed to Move that visits schools all around the world to promote physical activity and physical education and Sierra Vista was selected as the Nike model school. Nike plans to promote the Sierra Vista PE program to schools and administrators as the best practice for 21st century learning! The video link can be viewed on this website: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPC9R7f1L5k. “Nike’s initiative to promote physical activity and improve physical education programs will educate schools all around the world for teacher best practice and the philosophy change to the New PE,” George Velarde, PE department chair said. “We are very proud to be Nike’s model for their Designed to Move program. This continues to validate our PE slogan: No Child Left On Their Behinds.” Principal Mark Crawford expressed the mutual goal that he and Velarde share to spread the idea of teaching physical education by using the idea of life-long fitness and not to just restrict programming to sports skills. “This is just another validation that we are on the right course of action in regards to the fitness education of our youth,” Crawford said. “Nike’s partnership with Sierra Vista will better promote these ideals not just throughout the state of California, but through the nation and beyond.”
Contact for more information: Gail Pinsker, Public Relations Officer,
email@example.com, 661.259.0033 x. 227
William S. Hart Union School District website: www.hartdistrict.org