Canyons District's “More for 4” has been created to help parents of 4-year-old children learn quick, fun, and easy activities that will build excitement for kindergarten.
Please plan to join us at a More for 4 Parent Academy on Thursday, May 17, 2012 at Altara Elementary, 800 E. 11000 South, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. The event is free.
"The aim of the More for 4 program is to work as partners with parents to support the growth of children in the areas of early literacy, numeracy, motor, language and social development so they can be successful in kindergarten," said Terri Mitchell, coordinator of Canyons' early childhood programs.
Mitchell says parents who attend the More for 4 Parent Academy are presented with tips to use in everyday life to prepare their children for school. For example, she says, parents could reinforce early knowledge of numbers and quantity by asking their child to count out five dinner plates in order to set the table. They also could ask their children to count the number of red cars they may see while running errands.
Both exercises are easy ways to help children learn about numbers and colors, she said. Participation in the More for 4 Parent Academy is not required. It is designed as a support for parents whose children will attend kindergarten in the coming year in Canyons School District.
Free, on-site child care is provided at the events, which are conducted in both English and Spanish.

Questions?  Please call the District's Office of Evidence-Based Learning at 801-826-5045.
Tanner Jones couldn’t help but check his e-mail every 5 minutes last Friday.

April 20 was the day the Alta senior was told he would receive a note indicating if he’d been selected as a 2012 Coca-Cola Scholar. The prize: a $20,000 scholarship.

The message he was waiting for pinged his in-box right before he arrived at the Hawks’ Friday baseball game — and it was worthy of a smile. Indeed, Jones had been selected as one of 50 students in the U.S. to receive the prestigious award.

Celebration of the good news, of course, included ice-cold Cokes.

Jones, an Alta High student body officer, was one of two Canyons students who had been named a finalist in the 24th annual scholarship program. Hillcrest senior Nikos Liodakis joined Jones on the list of 253 students nationwide who were being considered for the top awards. Only two other Utah students were named finalists.

The finalists receive a $10,000 scholarship and compete to become one of the 50 students to receive the $20,000 scholarships. The final stages of the competition occur at an all-expenses-paid trip to Coca-Cola’s Georgia headquarters. There, the finalists are interviewed by Coca-Cola executives and participate in a service project.

They also are the guests of honor at the Coca-Cola Scholars Banquet, which this year featured an onstage question-and-answer session with Coca-Cola Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Muhtar Kent and Oscar-winning actor Morgan Freeman.

Jones, who at 18 already owns and operates a dozen vending machines throughout Salt Lake and Davis counties, said the executives who interviewed him asked about his experiences with the Boys Scouts of America, including his efforts to become an Eagle Scout, and the initiatives Alta’s student leaders launched to unify the school and enhance the school’s reputation in the community.

Jones plans to defer his scholarship for two years while he completes a mission in Mendoza, Argentina for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Upon his return, he will attend Brigham Young University.
Canyons District will have four-day work weeks during the summer. Starting June 11, the Canyons Administration Building, Canyons Support Services Center, and all schools will be open Monday through Thursday of every week, except on the weeks when employees have days off for the Independence Day and Pioneer Day holidays. The schedule is as follows:

June 11-14 — Four 10-hour work days (Monday-Thursday)
June 18-21 — Four 10-hour work days (Monday-Thursday)
June 25-28 — Four 10-hour work days (Monday-Thursday)
July 2-3, 5 — Closed Wednesday, July Fourth for the holiday; work 10-hour work days (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday)
July 9-12 — Four 10-hour work days (Monday-Thursday)
July 16-19 — Four 10-hour work days (Monday-Thursday)
July 23, 25-26 — Closed Tuesday, July 24 for the holiday; work 10-hour work days (Monday,Wednesday, Thursday)
July 30 — Return to five 8-hour work days

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Jordan High physics teacher David Morrill was surprised Wednesday with one of Utah’s most prestigious awards in education — a Huntsman Award for Excellence in Education.

Karen Huntsman, who created the annual awards with her husband, Jon M. Huntsman Sr., personally delivered the good news to Morrill.

The following is part of a nomination letter penned by Jordan Principal Tom Sherwood:

“If you want to see a great teacher in action, step into Mr. Morrill’s classroom. You will not find a quiet classroom with students sitting quietly reading their books and answering questions. Instead, you will find students engaged in a variety of activities in an effort to learn and understand physics. Some students may be working on computers doing simulations, others will be using tracks to perform experiments, but all of them will be actively engaged in the learning process. He takes a personal interest in the success of each and every student.”

Colleague Mark Petersen, chairman of the JHS Science Department, wrote in a nomination letter that Morrill's “commitment to his students and his willingness to work alongside them to help them progress through this difficult subject is one of his most admirable qualities as a teacher.”

“Students really do feel and understand that he is doing what he does for them. They are not made to feel inferior at all in the learning process, but rather they feel he is learning right along with them, so everyone in his classes can succeed,” Petersen wrote. “I have never observed any teacher who spends more time and effort in helping students learn than David Morrill.

Each year over the past 19 years, the Huntsman family has presented 10 special awards to outstanding teachers, administrators and volunteers. The winners receive a $10,000 check and a crystal obelisk.

This year, to mark the 20th anniversary of the awards program, an 11th recipient will be selected to receive the Mark H. Huntsman Award. This award will recognize excellence in the field of special education. The winners will be recognized at a banquet in May.   

The Canyons Board of Education issued this statement at the regularly scheduled Board meeting on Tuesday, April 17, 2012. 

The statement was read by Dr. Paul McCarty, a member of the Canyons Board of Education. 

"The Canyons Board of Education would like to reiterate its full and unequivocal support of Superintendent David Doty.  We are his direct supervisors, and for four years have worked closely with him as he has led our District. We believed he was the right person to lead this District when we hired him four years ago. And we are even more convinced now that he is the right person to lead Canyons School District. 
Furthermore, we find the recent KSL-TV news story about him to be completely baseless and the product of shoddy, unethical and intentionally biased journalism. Additionally, the District has on three separate occasions provided KSL-TV with written statements outlining our position on the issues they claim to be covering. In each case they have ignored our statements. Unfortunately, we have become familiar with treatment from KSL-TV. Last year, they aired a story on the Canyons School District K-3 testing program, which was also biased and filled with errors. Even though KSL-TV has been made aware of the factual inaccuracies in their story, more than a year later they continue to promote the story on their Web site. 
It now appears that certain members of our community would like to use this malicious reporting to further their own political agenda. KSL-TV is poised and ready to assist them to that end.  It is disappointing that an institution such as KSL-TV, which enjoys a prominent position in our community, cannot be more careful, ethical and objective in their reporting. 
With regard to the employee transfers that have come into question, the Board obviously cannot and will not comment in public about personnel matters.  However, we would like to state on the record that we were briefed on the transfers and the reasons for them before they were made. We unanimously supported them. After the transfers were made approximately eight months ago, about the same time KSL-TV conducted the interviews, we became aware of these allegations. As a Board, we re-examined the transfers and the way they were handled and found that they were correctly and appropriately handled. 
For the last three years, each year we have been in operation, we have had budget cuts totaling more than $10 million. Our No. 1 priority for dealing with these budget shortfalls has been to make sure that they have the least possible impact on the classroom. At the same time we are trying to prepare our students for the increasingly competitive demands of a global marketplace. For these and other reasons we have been forced to make sure all of our resources are maximized. Part of this process has been to reduce Central Office costs, and required administrative transfers.  We are glad that we have been able to adapt to the significant challenges without layoffs of any kind.
By comparison, KSL-TV's news media partner recently decided to shift its organization to a 'more competitive model' and in doing so laid off over half its work force. We wonder if their employees, rather than being laid-off, would have appreciated the opportunity to transfer to a different position where they could still make important and valuable contributions. While they were not given that choice, Canyons District has gone to great lengths to protect employees from this kind of treatment. 
The Canyons School District is home to the best students, teachers and administrators to be found anywhere. We would like to offer our sincere thanks to our teachers and administrators for joining with us in making sure our students receive the best possible education and are college- and career-ready when leaving our schools. You have our heartfelt admiration and appreciation. Thank you."
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