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So far Bryan Andersen has created 7 blog entries.

Whiteaker Middle School Student Wins National Poetry Contest

The student will receive a $500 award and have her poem set to music

Rachael Lang, a student at Whiteaker Middle School, was recently announced as the youth category winner of a national poetry contest hosted by the Wick Poetry Center at Kent State University. Rachael’s poem titled “Consequences” was among 600 entries and was chosen by poet, songwriter and novelist Naomi Shihab Nye.

“The contest was part of a national call for poems about peace and conflict transformation,” said Györgyi Mihályi-Jewell, the assistant director of marketing at the Kent State College of the Arts and Sciences. “The purpose of this contest was to connect writers from around the world to the 50th anniversary commemoration of the May 4 shootings at Kent State University and the resulting appeal for peace and student advocacy.”

In addition to the $500 prize, a student in Kent State University’s School of Music will create a composition based on Rachael’s poem. The composition will be performed at the Ludwig Recital Hall on April 21 as part of the commemoration event.

“Rachael is an extremely thoughtful, kind and hard-working student,” said Andrew Tennant, language arts teacher at Whiteaker. “We’re so proud of her hard work and ambition. The staff at Whiteaker are so happy for Rachael’s much-deserved success.”

2020-01-31T16:30:03-08:00January 27th, 2020|

Spotlight on Success: Whiteaker Middle School National Junior Honor Society

The Salem-Keizer School Board spotlighted the Whiteaker Middle School National Junior Honor Society for outstanding community service at its December meeting.

You will find Whiteaker’s honor society students volunteering at the Keizer Festival of Lights Parade, the Iris Festival, the Mayor’s Pet Parade, Keizer Park Clean Ups and the monthly Keizer Community Dinner.

Students also help those closer to their own ages by participating in a sixth-grade mentoring program, and volunteering at Gubser Elementary School’s Christmas Lights and Food Collection Drive.

School counselors Renee Hanson and Pat Curran are the fearless leaders of Whiteaker’s National Junior Honor Society. All this wouldn’t be possible without them.

Pat says these fantastic students all contribute on a regular basis to bettering their school and community. Last year, the honor society students volunteered almost 2,000 hours.

Whiteaker’s honor society students must maintain a 3.5 or higher cumulative Grade Point Average. In addition to maintaining their GPA, students must complete a minimum of 10 community service hours each semester, although many go above and beyond.

Students go through an application process to become members of the honor society, focusing on five pillars: leadership, character, scholarship, citizenship and service.

Awesome job, Whiteaker National Junior Honor Society. We’re so proud of your hard work and volunteerism!

2020-01-15T12:17:09-08:00December 20th, 2019|

Salem-Keizer Public Schools Instructional Mentor Wins Technology Educator of the Year Award

Whiteaker Middle School Instructional Mentor Matt Hurst was honored as the Northwest Council for Computer Education (NCCE) 2019 Outstanding Technology Educator of the Year for Computer Education at the Northwest’s largest educational technology conference in Seattle on Feb. 27, 2019.

Hurst was honored for being a strong peer leader and instructional mentor at the middle school level and throughout the district and state. His passion for helping educators and students integrate technology made him an early adopter of touch devices in classrooms. He has assisted app-based technology developers like Remind and Class Dojo by providing professional feedback and piloting their new technology.

Hurst is a Google Certified Innovator, Raspberry Pi certified and a Learnzillion DreamTeam teacher. During the last few years, he has worked with Salem-Keizer’s Career Technical Education programs and Oregon MESA to provide teachers with resources to teach students problem solving skills using maker technology.

“If we believe that the kids we work with in our classrooms every day are our future innovators and problem solvers, then we must provide them with the opportunities, structures and technology to practice innovative problem solving,” said Hurst.

“You give Matt Hurst a vision and he takes it to the next level,” said Whiteaker Principal Julia Dewitt. “He is a great supporter of educational technology and knows that it has to be partnered with quality professional learning. He models that he is a learner by being a role model and pushes himself to be vulnerable and to be always learning.”

According to Gwen Bruey-Fink, SKPS Director of Secondary Curriculum and Instruction, “Matt is always willing to step up and lead by designing professional learning around STEM topics for district employees and in the region, coaching individuals on implementing their own technology goals or providing guidance to district leadership. I so appreciate Matt and his constant, steadfast leadership and reliability in our coaching ranks in Salem-Keizer. Matt is someone I can always turn to for advice, leadership and to gain input from teacher stakeholders.”

Heidi Rogers, NCCE chief executive officer, states that Hurst has been attending NCCE events for several years and usually presents and shares his expertise. “Matt’s contribution to the educational tech profession in the Northwest is immeasurable,” said Rogers. “He finds a way to get big concepts accomplished and brings a positive attitude along with it. It is a pleasure to honor one of our long-standing presenters as the 2019 NCCE Teacher of the Year award recipient.”

The NCCE 2019 Technology Educator award is provided by NCCE, a national educational technology professional development organization and Big Deal Media, publisher of trusted resources for educators.

2019-03-25T12:52:24-08:00March 25th, 2019|

Marion Co. Health & Human Services: No Confirmed Cases of Measles in Marion County | Servicios Humanos y de Salud del Condado de Marion: No se han presentado casos confirmados de sarampión en el Condado de Marion

Marion County Health & Human Services has asked us to share this information with you regarding a measles outbreak in Clark County, Washington.

“Due to the current measles outbreak investigation in Clark County, Washington, we’ve received numerous questions about the local county public health response in schools. Below (linked PDF), you’ll find a list of standard procedures related to communicable disease in educational and childcare settings. We’d like to remind everyone that there are currently no confirmed cases of measles in Marion County.”

Please see this information in PDF format for more details, visit the Marion County Health & Human Services website or call them at 503-588-5621.

Servicios Humanos y de Salud del Condado de Marion: No se han presentado casos confirmados de sarampión en el Condado de Marion

Acerca del sarampión:

  • El sarampión es una enfermedad viral contagiosa que puede propagarse por el aire cuando una persona enferma con sarampión tose o estornuda. También puede propagarse por contacto directo con la secreción nasal y saliva de alguien enfermo con sarampión.
  • Los síntomas del sarampión comienzan con fiebre, tos, secreción nasal y ojos rojos, seguidos de una erupción roja que generalmente comienza en la cabeza o la cara y se extiende al resto del cuerpo.
  • Las personas son contagiosas con el sarampión durante cuatro días antes de que aparezca la erupción y hasta cuatro días después de que aparezca la erupción.
    Después de que una persona susceptible está expuesta al sarampión, los síntomas generalmente se desarrollan en 1 a 2 semanas, pero pueden desarrollar hasta 3 semanas.
  • Las complicaciones del sarampión incluyen infección del oído, infección pulmonar y, en casos raros, inflamación del cerebro.
  • Aproximadamente 1 de cada 1000 niños mueren de sarampión.
  • Cualquier persona que no sea inmune al sarampión y crea que tiene síntomas de sarampión debe comunicarse con su proveedor de atención médico o atención de urgencia por teléfono para hacer arreglos para evitar exponer a otros al virus.
  • Las personas se consideran inmunes al sarampión si se cumple alguna de las siguientes condiciones:
    • Usted es un niño en edad preescolar con al menos 1 año de edad con una vacuna contra el sarampión (MMR – sarampión, paperas, rubéola).
    • Usted es un niño en edad escolar actualmente en el grado K o superior o un adulto que ha recibido dos vacunas contra el sarampión (MMR – sarampión, paperas, rubéola).
    • Usted nació antes de 1957.
    • Ha tenido la enfermedad del sarampión (diagnosticada por un proveedor de atención médica y confirmada con una prueba de laboratorio).
  • Ha tenido un análisis de sangre que demuestra que es inmune al sarampión.
  • Cualquier persona que tenga preguntas sobre la infección por sarampión o la vacuna contra el sarampión debe llamar a su proveedor médico generalo al departamento de salud de su condado local:
    • Marion County Health & Human Services, 503-588-5621
  • Para mayor información:
    • Visite la página web de los Servicios Humanos y Salud del Condado del Marion: www.co.marion.or.us/HLT/Pages/Measles.aspx
    • Llamar 2-1-1 para obtener la información más reciente de la Autoridad de Salud de Oregón (OHA, por sus siglas en inglés) sobre el sarampión
2019-06-11T12:38:01-08:00January 30th, 2019|

Every Day 24J

Missing a day or two of school may not seem like a big deal, but that time matters. If a student misses just two days of school a month, by the end of the year, that adds up to an entire month of lost instruction.

At Salem-Keizer Public Schools, we want all of our students to graduate prepared for successful lives. Students who regularly attend school are more likely to graduate, setting the stage for success in college and higher rates of employability.

Be there all day, every day in District 24J.

2019-06-12T07:00:14-08:00September 25th, 2018|

Diariamente, todos los días en el Distrito 24J

El perder un día o dos de clases podría parecer irrelevante, pero ese tiempo es muy importante. Si un estudiante pierde solo dos días de clases al mes, al final del año escolar, esto representa un mes entero de clases perdidas.

En las Escuelas Públicas de Salem-Keizer, queremos que todos los estudiantes se gradúen preparados para una vida exitosa. Los estudiantes que asisten regularmente a la escuela, tienen 172 porciento mayor probabilidad de graduarse, estableciendo así las bases para el éxito en la universidad y mayores índices de empleabilidad.

Asistir a la escuela diariamente, todos los días en el Distrito 24J.

2018-09-26T14:08:00-08:00September 25th, 2018|

Salem-Keizer Public Schools Launches “Every Day 24J!” to Address Chronic Absenteeism

Buses were rolling this morning carrying almost half of Salem-Keizer Public Schools’ (SKPS) 42,000 students, but with the back-to-school excitement was another message: “Every Day 24J!” Nearly one in three students in SKPS is chronically absent, and this year, schools and community organizations are collaborating to identify barriers to attendance and develop solutions.

The campaign officially launched at Auburn Elementary, where Principal Katie Shumway identified the shift in weather as one of the contributing factors to absenteeism. Auburn is a neighborhood school, and many of its 700 students live within the one-mile radius of the school, meaning they don’t have access school bus transportation. Through the work of the Every Day 24J committee, One Thousand Soles was able to purchase 50 pairs of rain boots at a reduced cost from Wilco. Students who attended the school’s back-to-school picnic received raffle tickets, and winners will be announced at the school on Mondays and Fridays – the days the school has the lowest attendance. Auburn is just one example of the purpose of Every Day 24J! – to identify barriers, create solutions and encourage positive behaviors.

“We believe that all parents want what’s best for their kids and that’s why we continue to look for ways to build relationships with families and strengthen community partnerships,” said Shumway. “We strive meet families where they’re at and provide the tools and resources necessary to get kids here and learning at Auburn every day. When we begin to see dips in student attendance, our community school outreach coordinator works to find out why and then identifies those resources that can create solutions.”

Additional community organizations have come forward to help provide rain gear for more students.

“We know that September is the most critical month for setting a student’s attendance pattern,” said Superintendent Christy Perry. “What happens during that first month sets the tone for the entire year, and we know there’s a direct correlation between attendance and graduation. We see chronic absenteeism from students across all spectrums – cultural norms and socioeconomic statuses play roles, but we also see students who are performing really well at school who might not see the connection between attendance and employability after graduation. We must all use our sphere of influence to make those connections for our children – their futures depend on it.”

Students who miss just two days of school a month will miss a month of school each year. If a student continues that pattern through elementary and middle school, he or she will have lost an entire year of instruction by ninth grade. According to the Oregon Department of Education, students who attend school regularly are 172 percent more likely to graduate.

South Salem High Senior Kudzai Kapurura shared her perspective as a student: “In high school, you’re an independent, so it’s no longer really your parents telling you to go to school – it’s more of a personal decision. Some students don’t want to go because they don’t feel like they’re included in the community at their school. I think more than it’s credited, that’s a big part of why attendance drops in high school. When students don’t feel included, their grades start to drop. That combination makes people not want to go.”

The Every Day 24J committee comprised of district staff and community members will continue to meet throughout the year to identify benchmarks for success and develop additional solutions to remove barriers for attendance. Through a grant from Kaiser Permanente, the Salem/Keizer Coalition for Equality is simultaneously developing attendance supports for families in the North Salem High feeder system. For more information on how to support the campaign, please contact Community Relations and Communications at (503) 399-3038 or by emailing info@salkeiz.k12.or.us.

2018-09-19T15:10:32-08:00September 5th, 2018|