Two Canyons District educators have joined the elite ranks of teachers to earn a National Board Certification. Philippe Vanier, a science teacher at Eastmont middle, and Anne Clyde, an achievement coach at Jordan Valley, recently completed the rigorous certification process overseen by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

The voluntary program is widely regarded as the gold standard in teacher certification, requiring years of work for completion. “It feels good to be able to get it and to reach that standard,” Vanier said. “I wanted a professional development experience to help push me to the next level. It helped me hone in my teaching practice.”

Vanier and Clyde were recently recognized for their achievement by the Utah State Board of Education, Canyons Board of Education and the Utah Legislature. Statewide, only 269 teachers have the certification, and as of 2011, less than three percent of the nation’s educators have become National Board Certified Teachers.

In Utah, teachers are able to receive reimbursement for the costs associated with the certification process. Through a law passed in 2016, known as Utah Legislative House Bill 331, teachers can be compensated if they meet certain criteria in the certification process. 

The certification is a standard that was established by educators. A task force of policy makers, educators, teacher associations and business leaders combined to create the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, and established five core propositions for teaching, which form the basis of the National Board Standards. 

Vanier, who hails from Montreal, Canada, wanted to receive the certification to build on his teaching skills. Through the process, he examined data on his students’ progress and reviewed films of himself teaching his classes. The exercise was enlightening, Vanier says. 
IMG_4215.jpg “The one thing that it made me do is reflect on what I really wanted out of a school,” he said. “I realized as much as I worked hard to support my students, being part of a system I was a good match for made a huge difference as well. I also realized I was doing a lot of the right things, but I wasn’t doing them well enough.”

For Clyde, the certification was a reminder that teaching is a practice, and that learning is a process, not a product. Clyde pursued the certification while she worked on her Master’s degree. “What is really special about the National Board, it doesn’t matter if what you do (in the classroom) passes and has the impact you want to see or if you fail,” Clyde says. “The bigger purpose is to have you learn from the experience and help you to become a more impactful teacher.”

Clyde says she learned she didn’t need to overcomplicate instruction with manipulatives, and that sometimes she needed to allow her students to turn to each other to solve problems. She draws on these lessons to help other teachers at Jordan Valley. “There is so much to learn and it can be so overwhelming, but we put together the goal of, ‘Let’s get these big pieces in place,’ and how are you working with your students and parents,” Clyde says. “Those are the biggest nuggets in learning how to be a great teacher.”
From the first American production of an epic war play to a tale told with fog, gun shots and strobe lights, high school students in Canyons District are hard at work to bring a variety of stellar performances to the stage this spring. You don’t have to travel all the way to New York City to experience the magic of the theater, just head down the street to your closest high school and see one of these timeless plays:

Originally premiered by the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre of Scotland in 2010, David Grieg’s sequel to Macbeth will experience its first all-American production this spring at Hillcrest High School. The play has been performed in the United States, but it was a touring production by the National Theatre of Scotland. Written in modern vernacular, it starts right where Shakespeare left off as a British idealist invades Scotland with his army of young men to establish peace in a foreign country. Peace, however, is not as easy to create as they expect. With a cast of over 120 actors portraying male and female warriors, this modern epic with surprising twists will be performed with a company of students from throughout the school, with a thoughtful exploration of the idea of peace in the modern era. Tickets are $10, though sometimes discounted tickets are available in advance on the school’s website.
When: March 16, 17, 19
Where: Hillcrest High School

This classic tale from Shakespeare tells the story of choice and consequence. It chronicles the tale of Macbeth, a Scottish Lord overcome with ambition. He kills the king and takes his place, only to find himself sick with paranoia about maintaining his position. Because of the mature themes of the play, only those age 10 and above are invited to attend. The performance will allow the audience to sit on stage with the performers in the style of a black box theatre. Time period and gender roles are removed to give new perspective to the story, which will be told with fog, gun shots, sword fighting, strobe lights, live sound effects and lots of fun. Tickets are $9.
When: Feb. 21-24 at 7 p.m.
Where: Alta High school auditorium

"The Comedy of Errors"
This Shakespearean play tells the story of Antipholus and his servant, Dromio, who go looking for their long-lost twins, from whom they were accidentally separated at birth. When the pair ends up in the same town as their siblings without knowing it, suddenly everyone is seeing double in this fast-paced comedy of mistaken identity, which ends with the happiest of family reunions. Tickets are $5.
When: Feb 22-24 and 26 at 7 p.m.
Where: Jordan High School

"The Crucible"
"The Crucible" is Arthur Miller’s masterful retelling of the witch trials in Salem Massachusetts. This chilling and poignant story is as relatable and relevant today as it was in 1693 when it occurred and in 1953 when it was written by Miller. All are invited to enjoy this unique and intimate production of this timeless tale. Tickets are $9 for adults and $4 for students and children.
When: March 9, 10, 12 at 7 p.m.
Where: Brighton High Auditorium 

"Dr. Faustus"
"Dr. Faustus" is the story of a man who sells his soul to the devil in order to get whatever he wants. Viewers of this play may be inspired to ask themselves, how far would you go to achieve greatness? The performance will also include a presentation of individual pieces used in competition, including monologues, scenes, songs and pantomimes. Tickets are $5.
When: March 16-17 at 7 p.m.
Where: Corner Canyon Little Theatre

"The Beautiful Game"
This rarely performed musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber will have its Utah high school premiere this spring at Hillcrest High. The musical sets rioting in 1970 in Ireland against a backdrop of a high school soccer team, telling a tale that’s part West Side Story, part Newsies. With soaring ballads, an intense narrative and incredible choreography, the performance will feature an incredible evening of dance, soccer, and the fight for a world without violence. Tickets are $10, though sometimes discounted tickets are available in advance on the school’s website.
When: May 17-19
Where: Hillcrest High School
Wednesday, 07 February 2018 04:45

Board Meeting Summary, Feb. 6, 2018

Note: Recordings and documents for agenda items can be accessed via BoardDocs by clicking on the corresponding agenda items.

Sixth-Grade Mathematics Curriculum 

In an effort to address a mathematics proficiency-level drop from fifth to sixth grades, the Board of Education approved a proposal by the Canyons District Instructional Supports Department to start using a new sixth-grade math curriculum. The program is called “Illustrative Mathematics” and is an open-education resource developed by leading math researchers. Student and teacher materials are available digitally for free or schools can purchase a consumable student workbook for $22.50 per student. The curriculum was selected in accordance with the District’s curriculum-adoption policy

Disciplinary Fines

In the wake of changes in state law that have made it more difficult for schools to refer children to juvenile court for truancy, drug possession, disorderly conduct and other offenses, Responsive Services Director BJ Weller is proposing a new restorative justice model for reinforcing behavioral standards at CSD’s schools. The model would entail imposing fines for various transgressions as a means of encouraging students to show up for restorative programs. For first offenses, the fines would be waived when students participate in whatever intervention program is required. The fines aren’t meant to be punitive. They’re meant to serve as an incentive, explained Weller. The idea behind restorative practices is to hold students accountable for their actions and to use their transgression as a teachable moment for making a plan to ensure the misbehavior doesn’t happen again. But without the enforcement tools previously available through the courts, there is currently no way to hold students accountable. This year, as of Jan. 31, there have been 63 students cited for substance abuse violations, and only a handful of those completed the District’s Early Intervention Program. The Board will take up the matter again at a future meeting. If approved, the fines, which, depending on the nature of the offense range from $25 to $50, would take effect with the start of the 2018-2019 school year.

CTESS Update

Canyons’ Administrator of Evaluation and Leadership Development Sandra Dahl-Houlihan briefed the Board of Education on continued progress to refine the District’s educator-evaluation system.

Digital Citizenship Week Resolution

The Board of Education approved a resolution to continue sponsoring a districtwide Digital Citizenship Week, the intent of which is to empower students to safely navigate the online world and be responsible digital citizens. This year’s Digital Citizenship Week, Feb. 5-9, is CSD’s third.

Legislative Update

External Relations Director Charles Evans updated the Board on progress with key pieces of education-related bills being weighed during the 2018 General Session of the Utah Legislature. 

Cell Tower

The Board held a second reading of a proposal for a micro cell tower at Ridgecrest Elementary. According to the proposal, the tower would generate an additional $350 a month for the school. Ridgecrest’s School Community Council has given an OK to the proposal, which must be approved by the Board of Education. The proposal, presented by Business Administrator Leon Wilcox, calls for the micro tower to be placed atop a 20-foot light pole in Ridgecrest’s parking lot.  The Board will entertain the proposal at a future meeting.

Pledge of Allegiance and Reverence

The Brookwood Elementary Cub Scout Troop 4605 led the audience in a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance and Principal Corrie Barrett gave the reverence. In updating the Board on the state of Brookwood, Barrett said she could list test scores or talk about programs, but chose instead to share the results of an informal survey of parents, teachers and students. Teachers, she said, love the school because they feel part of a focused team that is striving to make a difference in the lives of students. Parents say they chose Brookwood because of the amazing teachers, parental involvement and programs. Students say they like the activities, kind teachers and inclusive atmosphere. “This is a good school where I get a good education,” said one. “Kids are nice and class is fun.”

Consent Agenda

The Board approved the consent agenda, including minutes of the Board’s Jan. 16, 2018 meeting; hire and termination reports; purchasing bids; student overnight travel plans; and new members of the Joint Educator Evaluation Committee.

Arts Education

The Board of Education heard a status update on the health of arts education in Canyons District. CSD Arts Specialist Sharee Jorgensen told the Board that robust arts programs are being provided to students in elementary, middle and high schools. Elementary arts programs reach 14,600 students. This includes the orchestra program, which draws 432 students at 20 locations. In middle school, 123 percent of students participate in an arts-education offering. How is this possible?  Some students take multiple arts class at once, Jorgensen told the Board. Arts courses also reach some 11,677 high school students. In addition, the District enjoys partnerships with the Utah Symphony, Ballet West, the Utah Film Center and the Utah Shakespeare Festival, among other arts organizations. Arts shows and music festivals for students at all levels are being planned for the spring months. 


The Board of Education honored the following students, teachers and staff for their achievements:
  • Albion Middle’s Sandy LeCheminant, Utah Assistant Principal of the Year
  • Eastmont teacher Louis Phillipe Vanier and Jordan Valley Achievement Coach Anne Clyde, who have earned National Board Certified Teacher status. 
  • CTEC Principal Ken Spurlock and teacher Gary Snow, Diesel Technology Program Certification
  • The following CSD Academic All-State student athletes
5A Drill Team
Alexis Kilgore, Corner Canyon

5A Girls Swimming
Olivia Huntzinger, Brighton  
Michaela Page, Brighton  
Ashley Pickford, Corner Canyon 

5A Boys Swimming
Stephen Hood, Alta  
Kevin Metcalf, Jordan

6A Wrestling
Scott Abbott, Hillcrest 

Superintendent, Business Administrator Reports

Superintendent Dr. Jim Briscoe thanked Jorgensen for her hard work and passion for the arts in Canyons District. He also reported on the Job Shadow Day luncheon, featuring keynote Gail Miller. Dr. Briscoe also thanked the CTE coordinators for working so hard to successfully execute the school-to-careers event.  

Mr. Wilcox attended the recent CTEC Open House, held annually to inform the community about the programs offered at the technical-education center. He also commented on the change in health-insurance providers this year, and said the District would be providing additional information to employees.

Board of Education Reports

Mr. Mont Millerberg reported on attending the announcement of LeCheminant as the Utah Assistant Principal of the Year. The ceremony was held in St. George. He also thanked Jorgensen for her work as the coordinator of arts programs in Canyons District

Mr.  Steve Wrigley also expressed appreciation for Jorgensen’s work.  He reported on visiting schools with Utah legislators and attending the CTEC Open House and the Job Shadow Day luncheon at Gardner Village.

Mrs. Amber Shill reported on attending the Utah High School Activities Association’s State Drill Team Championships.  She congratulated all the teams that competed and mentioned the second-place overall finish in 5A by the Brighton High Accadians. She also said she would be hosting a Town Hall with 1st Vice President Nancy Tingey at Butler Middle. 

Mrs. Tingey reported on attending a conference in Washington, D.C. She said she met with Utah’s elected representatives to discuss education-related issues.  She thanked teachers, students and staff for their wonderful work.  She said she’s looking forward to attending Albion Middle’s musical production. Tingey also will hold a 7-8:30 p.m. Feb. 15 Town Hall meeting at Jordan High with Mr. Wrigley.

Mrs. Clareen Arnold thanked Jorgensen for her passion and dedication. 

President Taylor thanked everyone who works hard in CSD to help students achieve — from teachers and custodians to bus drivers to nutrition-service workers. He gave a special shout-out to the secretaries and administrative assistants in offices all across the District. He predicted Canyons District would soon be known as a world-class school district.
Canyons District students are learning how to safely blaze a digital trail. 

Starting today, Monday, Feb. 5, 2018, all schools in Canyons District will begin the 3rd annual Digital Citizenship Week, which was started to help students stay safe as they navigate the online world. Special lessons will be taught in classes and morning announcements will feature tips on cyberbullying, online privacy and safety. 

Yes, the Internet is a valuable tool for learning. Every day, 92 percent of teenagers across the United States go online to complete homework assignments, conduct research, and watch tutorials in preparation for exams. But, overwhelmingly, it’s also teens go to make and keep social connections. From Snapchat to Instagram, teens are heavy users of social media. So how can parents make sure their use is responsible? And how can parents guide a pre-teen’s entry into social media? 

Digital Citizenship Week 2018“One of the most important things you can do is sit down with your children before they even begin using social media and set clear ground rules and expectations — and even consequences if those rules are broken,” says Janae Hunt, a Canyons District Education Technology Specialist.

Hunt, who appeared on ABC4 to talk about Digital Citizenship Week, encouraged parents to talk often with their children about the pitfalls of oversharing, teasing and posting too-personal information on social media sites.  Also, think twice before hitting “send” or “enter,” she says.   

“Digital footprints are permanent. A lot of time today, even college admissions boards and employers are looking at your digital trail to see what kind of person you are,” she told ABC4 anchor Emily Clark. “It is important that we are teaching our children to put their best foot forward online.” 

Another idea:  Keep tabs on what your children are posting — and who is part of their “Friends” and “Followers” lists. “Sit down with your kids on a regular basis. Go through those lists. It’s important they are friends with or follow people they know in real life.” 

Should you have your kids’ passwords? “Absolutely,” she says.  Start with an open-door policy and keep it that way: Children should know parents are watching and observing when they post or make comments. They also should know they can go to parents for help if they “see something that makes them uncomfortable.”

CSD’s Internet safety effort started with School Community Councils, which have been given statutory responsibilities regarding digital citizenship in their respective schools. In partnership with SCCs, CSD schools also are planning Parent Information Nights to discuss such issues as the filtering systems used by the District to stop inappropriate content to be accessed at school. Contact your child’s school to find out when and where their event will be held. 

Parents, teachers and students can join the online conversation about Digital Citizenship Week by following the hashtag #usetech4good on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
If you didn’t already know she was Hillcrest High’s new head soccer coach, you might have mistaken Kyra Peery for one of her players at Thursday’s meet-and-greet with prospective team-members and parents. The former college athlete stood shoulder-to-shoulder with her team captains whom she invited on stage to explain goals for the coming year, their easy banter a mark of their growing camaraderie.

“My passion for coaching is fueled by the energy that these girls bring to the program,” she said.

Hillcrest is getting a new school and a new soccer program to match. Crews break ground next summer on a rebuild of the home of the Huskies, which will include a new, state-of-the-art fieldhouse.

“Girls are going to want to come here to play soccer. We’re looking for athletes that are committed to soccer, committed to the program and committed to becoming one pack, one goal,” said Peery, who comes with years of experience as an all-conference cross country rPeerykids.jpgunner and starting midfielder at William Penn University.

This will be Peery’s first year as head coach, but she is no stranger to the team, having served as their assistant coach for three years. She’s married to Brock Peery, a popular math teacher who doubles as the team’s fitness coach. The duo will share duties with goalie coach Dan Pia, and two assistant coaches, Laura Benson and Robin Cecil, a Doctor of Physical Therapy who will bring a focus on injury prevention.

Peery is coaching to win, but not by chasing the leaderboard, said Assistant Principal Justin Matagi. “She’s coaching to build a winning team, which means putting the well-being and development of her players first.”

To build a strong junior varsity pipeline, Peery and her coaching team will prioritize skills-building, teamwork and strength and conditioning. Once players reach the varsity level, they’ll be expected to earn their time on the field. But the emphasis will always be on player development and teamwork. “That’s important. The confidence that comes from being part of a team is what enables you to do hard things. It empowers you, and you can pour this competitive edge that you peeryportrait.jpgdevelop in soccer into anything you do,” Peery told her players.

To build pride and a winning attitude, the coaches are expecting players to always wear their practice uniforms, black shorts and a gray shirt. To build up the team’s resilience, they are considering test-piloting a sports injury prevention program. And they’ll be using a popular app to keep in close communication with everyone, including parents.

“We’re lucky to have her,” Matagi said. “Just in the past month to see the energy and organization that Coach Peery and the others have brought has been amazing.”

With off-season just around the corner, there’s not a minute to lose, Peery said. “It starts here and it starts now.”
Page 3 of 150