The Canyons Board of Education is interested in hearing from those who are directly affected by the policies and procedures of the District — the students.

To that end, for the second year, 10 students from Alta, Brighton, Corner CanyonJordan and Hillcrest high schools have been selected to serve on a CSD Student Advisory Board. The group’s main function is to provide input to the Board from a student’s perspective.  

The student board consists of two students from each Canyons high school. The members are selected through an application process. Council representatives are asked to attend the Board of Education’s semi-monthly meetings and discuss issues facing the elected Canyons Board. 

Members of the second Student Advisory Board are:
  • Alta: Jake Kohler and Maddie Dismuke
  • Brighton: David Warr and Carter Brown
  • Corner Canyon: Brady Thayer and Coleman Broman
  • Hillcrest: Allison Rimmasch and Antony Cheng
  • Jordan: Kate Lesuer and Bronson Battaglia

"What you will bring to some of the discussions and decisions we make as a Board will be valuable," Board of Education member Nancy Tingey told the members of the student advisory group at a recent meeting. "Thank you for getting involved ... we will look to you for advice and counsel.”

To the cheers of dozens of students clad in black and silver, the leaders of Canyons District and Alta High sliced through a rippling-in-the-wind red ribbon to ceremoniously mark the recent renovations and upgrades at the Sandy high school. 

The ribbon-cutting ceremony, held Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2014, also marked the completion of an impressive new entrance at Alta. Students, teachers and parents who attended the event were able to walk for the first time through the new vestibule, which features Alta’s school colors and plenty of natural light.

In addition to the new entrance, which is emblazoned with the school’s name in giant silver letters, crews have been working since the start of summer on new classrooms; art, robotics, and engineering labs; a Healthy Lifestyles Center equipped with new cardio and exercise machines funded by a donation from the Larry H. and Gail Miller Family Foundation; a wrestling room; sprinkling systems, and landscaping. 

“I’d like to acknowledge the sacrifice of the students and faculty at Alta in the past few weeks,” Sherril H. Taylor, President of the Board of Education, said at the ceremony. “You’ve done a great job of making the best of a difficult time, when construction was happening all around you.  It couldn’t have been easy with all of the trucks and construction workers and dust — but you have done it with good cheer and an eye toward the future.”

The project is the latest in a string of school-construction and -renovation initiatives in Canyons District. The Board of Education last spring approved a budget that included $7.5 million in small capital-facility projects at Jordan Valley, Eastmont Middle, and Oakdale, RidgecrestSandy and Sprucewood elementary schools.

But that’s not all. Canyons District also is about halfway through the projects promised to voters at the approval of the $250 million bond in spring 2010. Five new or renovated schools have been built since CSD patrons graciously approved the bond issuance. Taylor publicly thanked patrons for voting in favor of the bond proposal.  “Any applause (for the new buildings) is meant for the parents who are paying for the bond,” he said.

Principal Brian McGill, who also is a graduate of Alta High, thanked the Board and CSD Administration for their “efforts to make sure the new and improved Alta High will benefit not only the students who will attend it, but the Sandy community and beyond.” 

“As principal, I can tell you for sure that students and teachers feel better and do better in schools that are well-maintained and welcoming,” McGill said. “They feel better and do better in schools that are easily accessible, aesthetically pleasing, energy-efficient, and wired for the high-tech demands of a 21st century education.”

 Superintendent Jim Briscoe said that the recent improvements at Alta High should be celebrated — but urged the community to always remember that brick-and-mortar upgrades aren’t what make a school special.  “You are the heartbeat of this building,” Briscoe told students. “I believe the best is yet to come for Alta High.”

High school seniors: Get ready! College Application Week is Nov. 17-21. During that time, all CSD high school seniors will complete a college application during the regular school day with the help of counselors, faculty, support professionals and parent volunteers. Utah College Application Week, sponsored by the Utah System of Higher Education's StepUp to Higher Education campaign, complements the Canyons Board of Education's mission to ensure all students are ready for college and careers when they graduate high school.

College Application Week Resources 

Students in all five Canyons high schools – Alta, Brighton, Corner Canyon, Hillcrest and Jordan – are participating in the weeklong event, and are planning a number of activities in the weeks prior to raise awareness among peers that college is not only within reach, but an important part of their futures.

"It sets everyone on an equal playing field ... and lets them take their education to the next level," Jordan High Student Body Officer Bronson Battaglia said of College Application Week. "That's what college is all about."

College Application Week is part of the American College Application Campaign, a national initiative that aims to remove barriers to higher education and increase the number of first-generation and low-income students who pursue a postsecondary education.

"I was the first person in my family to go to college – on either side of my family. I didn't think I had what it takes," said Canyons Board of Education Member Tracy Cowdell, who since has earned two undergraduate degrees and a law degree. "Education opened doors, and literally changed my life and my family's life."

At least 45 states this year are expected to participate in the American College Application Campaign, launched in 2005 by the American Council on Education. CSD middle schools also are participating in Utah College Application Week activities.

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  • Wednesday, 29 October 2014 00:00

    Headlines Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014

    Around Canyons
    5A State Football: Hillcrest's Thompson powers Huskies to first playoff berth in a decade
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865614212/High-school-football-Tanner-Thompson-powers-Hillcrest-to-1st-playoff-berth-since-2004.html

    Great Pumpkin Patch, grown by inmates, delights Jordan Valley students
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865614175/Students-pick-pumpkins-grown-by-inmates.html

    What's up with sixth-grade math? Albion teacher Kaier offers insights
    http://www.sltrib.com/news/1755363-155/grade-math-percent-students-sixth-district?page=1

    Alta View Elementary to be rebuilt
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865614170/Alta-View-Elementary-School-to-be-rebuilt.html

    Canyons Idol Lexi Walker performs with American Idol star David Archuleta
    http://fox13now.com/2014/10/28/lexi-walker-david-archuleta-perform-a-whole-new-world-duet/



    Utah
    Education, business leaders outline education, economic-development plan in light of low SAGE scores
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865614172/Group-outlines-long-term-plan-to-bolster-education-and-economy.html

    SAGE: Charter schools' performance mimicks that of regular public schools
    http://www.sltrib.com/home/1751717-155/charter-schools-students-percent-test-utah


    National
    Teachers to Time magazine: Apologize for 'bad apples' cover
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865614063/Magazine-touches-off-firestorm-over-call-to-fire-bad-teachers.html


    Opinion
    DNews: SAGE advice: Act now on poor results to boost education
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865614198/SAGE-advice-Act-now-on-poor-results-to-enhance-education.html


    x
    The Great Pumpkin Patch has arrived at Jordan Valley School. Students at the school were treated to a special Pumpkin Patch set up on the campus the morning of Oct. 28, 2014. Students strolled among the gourds to pick their favorites to take home for a Halloween jack-o-lantern. The pumpkins were grown by inmates at the Utah State Prison and placed on the school grounds by correctional officers. The Pumpkin Patch is an annual tradition at Jordan Valley School, which serves students with severe disabilities, and for inmates who work in the prison's greenhouse program to serve the community.

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  • PROGRAM INFORMATION FOR SCHOOLS 

    Homebound Services are provided when students cannot attend school due to a documented condition or circumstance. Short Term or Long Term services are available to any approved student. Contact Homebound Services for applications. 

    Short Term: 45 Days and Less 

    1. Student is out of school for 45 days or less. 

    2. Student remains enrolled in their school and retains a regular class schedule for the duration of services. 

    3. School administrator meets with parent/guardian and student to review Homebound Services. The Request for Homebound Services and Homebound Instruction Disclosure Statement forms are completed. 

    4. Homebound Instruction Health Professional’s Statement of Need form is given to parents, to be completed by student’s treating health professional and returned to the school. This form may include the professional’s relevant notes/letters as support for the Statement of Need. 

    5. If student is being served under an IEP, the school’s Special Education department must schedule a “Change of Placement” meeting. 

    6. Once forms are complete, principal may approve student for Short Term Homebound services. 

    7. Next, the school sends the three completed forms to Jo Ann Larsen at Homebound Services (Request for Homebound Instruction, Health Professional’s Statement of Need (including relevant notes/letters), and Disclosure Statement. If the student has an IEP, the Change of Placement must also be sent. 

    8. The school assigns a teacher to work with student for two hours, once a week, at the student’s home, hospital, or an alternate location. Parent/guardian must provide responsible adult supervision during the entire two hour home visit. Teacher will fill out a Teaching Record each month on each student served. 

    9. A completed Teaching Record, timesheet and mileage reimbursement form should be received by Jo Ann Larsen at Homebound Services for payment authorization by the second working day of each month to ensure teacher receives timely payment. 

    10. The School should inform Homebound Services immediately upon student’s return to full-time status. 

    11. Homebound Services will maintain the student’s homebound instruction records. 

    Long Term: More than 45 Days 

    1. Student is out of school for more than 45 days. 

    2. Student is withdrawn from boundary school and will be enrolled with Homebound Services for the duration of services. 

    3. School administrator meets with parent/guardian and student to review the Homebound Services program. The Request for Homebound Services and Homebound Instruction Disclosure Statement forms are completed. 

    4. Homebound Instruction Health Professional’s Statement of Need form is given to parents, to be completed by student’s treating health professional and returned to the school. This form may include the professional’s relevant notes/letters as support for the Statement of Need. 

    5. If student is being served under an IEP, the school’s Special Education department must schedule a “Change of Placement” meeting. 

    6. Next, the school sends the three completed forms to Jo Ann Larsen at Homebound Services (Request for Homebound Instruction, Homebound Instruction Health Professional’s Statement of Need (including relevant notes/letters), and Homebound Instruction Disclosure Statement. If the student has an IEP, the Change of Placement must also be sent. 

    7. Parents and students complete registration in Long Term Homebound Services by calling Jo Ann Larsen, Program Assistant at (801) 826-5506 to set up an intake appointment. 

    8. Parent/guardian then may choose one of the following options: 

    a. A Long Term services teacher meets with student once a week for two hours, in home, hospital, or alternate location (parent provides responsible adult supervision during visit); 

    b. Student attends a learning lab for two to three hours per day, four days a week; 

    c. Student participates through an on-line education program; or 

    d. A student in hospital or other facility with education services will be supported by Homebound Services with student records, transferring credits earned and transition back to boundary school
    Lots of kids like watching the circus, but for Butler Elementary student Mary Ann Jensen, the three-ring experience is something she’ll never forget. 

    When the circus came to town, Jensen had a front-row view of the spectacle — but not as a spectator. The first grader was on the clock as a junior reporter helping ABC4 reporter Felicia Martinez cover the story.

    “I’m having so much fun at the Greatest Show on Earth,” Jensen said, before signing off for ABC4.

    Jensen, 7, interviewed the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey ringmaster and a trainer of a dog performance act as part of her segment. She even got to try on some of the ringmaster’s sparkly clothes. “How many sequins do you have on your outfit?” Jensen asked the ringmaster. 

    Jensen was a natural on the screen — and for good reason. This isn’t her first time on camera. Not too long ago, Jensen, whose dream is to become a meteorologist when she grows up, graced the ABC4 studios as a Pinpoint Weather Kid. We’ll be watching to see where she turns up next.

    Watch Jensen in action on ABC4.

    To watch Corner Canyon High teacher Michelle Ritter lead her students in discussions and guide them through challenging assignments is to get a glimpse into some of the reasons why student achievement is on the rise in Canyons District. From bell to bell, the students are focused, engaged, actively learning — and it’s clear they know they can turn to Ritter for help working through even the toughest scholastic tasks. 

    However, Ritter says, it’s not just the time spent in the classroom that has led to higher ACT scores for students in Corner Canyon and at other high schools in the District. While giving credit to the students’ hard work, she also is a firm believer in CSD’s across-the-district strong emphasis on teacher collaboration. “Why are we successful?” she said. “Because we work together. The teachers are always working together.”

    “In my 21 years of teaching I have never felt the sense of community that I have felt in the past couple of years,” Ritter said, adding that her fellow teachers often send lesson-plan suggestions in texts and e-mails while away from the school. “In teaching, there is no place for egos. It’s not about me.  It’s not about you.  It’s about the kids.”

    In a presentation to the Canyons Board of Education, Dr. Kathryn McCarrie, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, reported that Canyons teachers, indeed, are bringing out the best in students. Dr. McCarrie unveiled upward-trend test performance data in elementary, middle, and high schools  “We are outperforming other students across the state,” she told the Board members on Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2014. 

    McCarrie told the Board that Canyons’ student achievement is indicative of how hard teachers are working. The data also demonstrate the effects of the Board's academic initiatives, including the use of evidence-based research to guide decision-making; high academic standards and a strong curriculum; last year’s districtwide grade reconfiguration; Utah’s first college-ready diplomas; and middle school schedule changes.

    In CSD, ACT achievement is rising in all tested subjects and outpacing state averages, with significant gains in English Language Arts, McCarrie told the Board. In addition, the numbers of Canyons high schools seniors earning unique-to-Canyons Advanced or Honors Diplomas is going up.

    The diplomas require students to take more challenging courses and, for the Honors Diploma, achieve college-readiness benchmark scores on the ACT. In 2011, the first year CSD offered the diplomas, 60 percent of students earned one of the diplomas. Last year, 71 percent completed the requirements necessary to earn the honors. 

    McCarrie also told the Board that Canyons middle schools have shown tremendous gains on the Scholastic Reading Inventory (SRI). The percentage of students achieving at advanced levels has increased four fold, and the number of students scoring at below basic has dropped by more than 60 percent. Dr. McCarrie attributed the gains to ensuring eighth-graders are on track for college-readiness and cross-curricular teaching teams.

    Sixth- and eighth-grade teachers at Butler Middle who were invited to speak to the Board at the meeting said teaming allows customization in core classes; use of student achievement data to help students; and feedback and collaboration among teachers. The teachers — David Olsen, Marie Powers, Lisa McDonald, Melissa Engel, Ellen Anderson and Kendra Mallory — also said it also gives students a sense of belonging.

    “We have found, most importantly, that teaming helps the teachers — but it really helps the students,” said Melissa Engel. “We are able to customize interventions among core classes for students. We are able to consistent and precise” with all students.    

    In elementary schools, reading CBM test performance has gone from 56 percent proficiency in fall 2009 to 69 percent proficiency at the start of this school year, with a goal of 80 percent proficiency by year's end. Math trends are similar with proficiency rising from 56 percent in fall 2010 to 75 percent now. Sandy Elementary teacher Bethany Smith said that students are making real-world connections and more fully understanding math.

    “One thing I love about the math standards is the students are making meaning of their problems,” she said.  When she first started teaching, Smith said, students were asked to complete algorithms. Now, students talk about how they arrived at the answer and why.

    Board Vice President Steve Wrigley thanked Dr. McCarrie and the teachers for the presentation, and said teachers' work toward academic improvements has represented a monumental task. He said that testing is needed to ensure that students are not left behind and that teachers have tools to help students achieve.

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    • Alta High Graduates
    • Brighton High Graduates
    • Corner Canyon High Graduates
    • Hillcrest High Graduates
    • Jordan High Graduates

    Introduction

    Students in all five Canyons high schools – Alta, Brighton, Corner Canyon, Hillcrest and Jordan – are participating in Utah College Application Week Nov. 17-21, 2014. They are planning a number of activities in the weeks prior to raise awareness among peers that college is not only within reach, but an important part of their futures. 

    Mission

    All CSD high school seniors will complete a college application during the regular school day with the help of counselors, faculty, support professionals and parent volunteers. 

    Paving the Way to College

    Utah College Application Week, sponsored by the Utah System of Higher Education’s StepUp to Higher Education campaign, complements the Canyons Board of Education’s mission to ensure all students are ready for college and careers when they graduate high school.

    "Many students are planning on military, humanitarian or religious service immediately following high school. For those students, it is recommended they still apply for college in the fall of their senior year of high school, and then follow the deferment process at their institution of choice."
    -Utah State Board of Regents

    CSD Foundation Applying to colleges can be expensive. The Canyons School District Education Foundation wants to make sure fees won’t stand in the way of student success. The Foundation Board has agreed to pay up to $25,000 to cover college application fees for students in need. Several colleges and universities also have agreed to waive fees for students in need who apply during College Application Week.

     

    Monday, 27 October 2014 00:00

    Headlines Monday, Oct. 27. 2014

    Around Canyons
    Draper Park Middle School No. 1 in state for SAGE Middle School Language Arts scores; four other CSD middle schools -- Albion, Butler, Indian Hills, Eastmont -- rank in Top 25
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2830/25/Draper-Park-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2830/18/Albion-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in-language.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2830/16/Butler-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in-language.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2830/15/Indian-Hills-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2830/8/Eastmont-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in-language.html

    Granite Elementary No. 1 in state for SAGE Elementary Science results; two other CSD schools -- Sunrise, Quail Hollow -- round out Utah's Top 25 
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2827/26/Granite-Elementary-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-science.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2827/4/Quail-Hollow-Elementary-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-science.html

    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2827/9/Sunrise-Elementary-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-science.html

    4 CSD schools -- Quail Hollow, Willow Springs, Granite, Willow Canyon -- in Utah's Top 25 for SAGE /Elementary Language Arts results
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2825/9/Willow-Canyon-Elementary-School-Tie-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-language-arts.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2825/14/Granite-Elementary-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-language-arts.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2825/15/Willow-Springs-Elementary-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-language-arts.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2825/17/Quail-Hollow-Elementary-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-elementary-schools-in-language-arts.html

    3 CSD schools -- Eastmont, Indian Hills and Draper Park -- in Utah's Top 25 for SAGE Middle School Science scores
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2828/21/Eastmont-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in-science.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2828/18/Indian-Hills-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2828/17/Draper-Park-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in.html

    2 CSD schools --  Draper Park, Albion -- in Utah's Top 25 for SAGE Middle School Math scores 
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2829/10/Draper-Park-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in.html
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2829/17/Albion-Middle-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-junior-highmiddleintermediate-schools-in.html

    Corner Canyon in Utah's Top 25 for SAGE High School Language Arts scores
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2822/8/Corner-Canyon-High-School-Tie-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-high-schools-in-language-arts.html

    Brighton in Utah's Top 25 for SAGE High School Math scores
    http://www.deseretnews.com/top/2823/1/Brighton-High-School-SAGE-scores-2014-Top-25-high-schools-in-mathematics.html

    KSL-TV's 'Read Today' program celebrates achievements in 4 CSD elementary schools
    http://www.ksl.com/?sid=32079341&nid=148&fm=latest_videos

    Football: Corner Canyon finishes season undefeated; State Tourney to include 4, possibly 5 CSD schools
    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865613954/High-school-football-State-tournament-pairings.html

    Football: Brighton, Jordan could give defending champs a stiff challenge in 5A State Tourney
    http://www.sltrib.com/sports/1744858-155/tba-champion-class-season-title-region


    Utah
    Statewide SAGE results: Utah kids have a long way to go to be ready for college and career
    http://fox13now.com/2014/10/27/sage-test-results-indicate-majority-of-utah-students-not-on-track-for-college/