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Getting Involved

Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2013

2013-2014 School Calendar Approved

Following suggestions received by the Canyons Education Association last December, the Board of Education approved the 2013-2014 school calendar, which schedules Aug. 19, 2013 as the first day of school. The calendar includes two, non-contract end-of-quarter days for teachers to prepare grades and end-of-term reports. It also includes slight changes to accommodate for grade reconfiguration in the 2013-2014 school year, during which ninth grade will be moved to high school and a new middle school curriculum will be introduced. One change includes placing middle schools on the same school year calendar as elementary schools to better meet the needs of middle school students, who are moving from a schedule of four quarters per year to three terms per year.

Additional features of the grades K—8 and 9—12 calendars include the traditional days for Fall, Winter, and Spring Recesses, and two half days for teacher professional development. The Brighton High School trimester school year calendar remains similar to what it has been in the past. The calendar had been drafted by a Calendar Committee of 18 parents, teachers, District Office representatives, school administrators and education support professionals. Additional years’ school calendars will come before the Board at a future date.

Board Discusses Locating Dual Immersion at Union Middle

The Board is examining the possibility of locating the middle school Dual-Immersion English-Spanish Language Program at Union Middle School in fall 2014. The districtwide magnet program had been scheduled to be placed at Albion Middle School. However, Albion’s enrollment has exceeded projections and doesn’t have room for the magnet program. Union, on the other hand, has room for the program, is located on a public transportation line that can be used by students, and is a feeder school for Silver Mesa Elementary, which also has a Dual-Immersion English-Spanish Language Program. The middle school Dual-Immersion Language Program is projected to enroll 90—200 students. Board President Sherril Taylor said the Board will further discuss the proposal in the next meeting and welcomed public input.

Board Action

The Board approved the Consent Agenda, which includes the Jan. 15 minutes; overnight travel for Jordan High Baseball and Softball; purchasing bids, the Board Meeting schedule; Nondiscrimination Policy Review Committee membership; Drug and Alcohol Policy Review Committee; and the easement, impact fee, and sewer connection agreements for Crescent View Middle School.

The Board also assigned members to speak at commencement ceremonies. The Board discussed a proposal from Alta student Katrina Jones to create a student Board member position, and directed staff to study how to create a student advisory council. The Board discussed a Board Governance working document, drafted by Board Member Chad Iverson and Second Vice President Nancy Tingey. The proposal includes Board goals and objectives, roles of Board Members and Leadership, roles and responsibilities of members, working structure, rules of interaction, and guidelines for setting the agenda and community engagement. Board members praised the proposal as a good start, but noted that the work of past committees and members should not be ignored.

Board Recognitions

The Board recognized the achievements of the following schools and leaders:

Patron Comments

Region17 PTA President Betty Shaw welcomed the new Board and said she looks forward to working with them.

Teacher Tiffany Smith, joined by two other teachers, said creating report cards is time consuming and asked the Board to approve the calendar with provided two full days to teachers for report card preparation.

Alta View Dual-Immersion Language Program teacher Leslie Conklin urged the Board to consider teacher workloads in its calendar discussions.

Parent Nate Call said he and other parents are concerned the 2013-2014 calendar is late in coming. He said school has always started after Aug. 22, and that an earlier date with such late notice puts his and other families in a bad position in terms of vacations and planning.

Jordan swimmer Samantha Hyer urged the Board to take steps to ensure her community has access to a pool facility to continue to introduce youth to the sport and cultivate excellence on the team.

Superintendent’s Report

Dr. Doty attended the funeral of the mother of Sandy Principal Sandra Dahl-Houlihan, who appreciated the support. He expressed condolences for the family of a Jordan Valley student who died last week. He praised the student swimmers for bringing their concerns about a community pool to the Board several times this school year, noting that he too was a competitive swimmer as a teenager, and that his team did not have access to a school pool.

CFO’s Report

Bradford offered an update on Canyons building projects. He said he hopes Butler Middle School can begin moving into the new building in June, and added that moving in and tearing down the old building to make way for a parking lot in time for school to start will be a challenge. He said the new Crescent View Middle School will have all but the gym and auditorium completed when school starts. Brighton’s upgrades were progressing well, and the roofing and drywall are in progress at the new multi-purpose facility and looks good for an early August completion. Corner Canyon High classroom wings are nearly complete, and most of the school is enclosed so weather has not been an issue. The floor in the auxiliary gyms will go in in March. Hillcrest High’s addition will receive a second floor next week and is back on schedule to open in the fall. Other projects underway include Union Middle air-conditioning, old Midvale Elementary abatement, and field work and tennis courts adjacent to Butler Middle School.

Board Reports

Robert Green is visiting schools in his area and meeting leaders, faculties and staff. He enjoyed his visit to East Midvale, praising the principal and the Lego League robotics presentation. He also enjoyed his visit to Midvale Elementary and meeting the principal there and viewing the Dual-Immersion Language program and new building. He praised Union Principal Mary Anderson on her accomplishments and for vastly improving student achievement, which he would like to see replicated districtwide. He also enjoyed visiting Copperview and meeting the principal and staff. He noted that Canyons needs to equip students with the knowledge needed to support job growth.

Kim Horiuchi noted the Utah High School Activities Association, of which she is a Board member, honored Hillcrest’s Josh Long as the UHSAA Theatre Teacher of the Year. She said the UHSAA is appreciative of the partnership created with Rio Tinto Stadium, noting revenue has doubled for girls soccer following the excitement of holding games at the stadium. She noted the UHSAA’s work to strengthen eligibility requirements, and suggested the Board examine the idea of hiring an athletics director. She said she attended the Utah School Boards Association’s Day on the Hill, where she introduced Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, R- Sandy, who talked about his school grading bill. She said she and Tingey spoke later with Sen. Niederhauser about his other ideas regarding public education. She attended the Bella Vista School Community Council meeting, and noted theirs — and other SCCs’ — robust discussions about trust land money expenditures and Board policy matters. She also enjoyed the Ridgecrest Elementary talent show, and commended the PTA’s work to organize it. She also commended a young standup comic’s presentation there.

Tingey attended the USBA conference with board members statewide, and enjoyed her experience. She praised the USBA presentation made by the Canyons Communications Team. She is looking forward to serving as the Canyons representative to the USBA Board of Directors. She also attended the statewide SCC conference hosted at Crescent View Middle School.

Vice President Steve Wrigley attended the statewide SCC conference hosted at Crescent View Middle School. He also visited Alta View and Peruvian Park elementaries and Eastmont Middle School, where he enjoyed observing teacher collaboration time and SALTA and Dual-Immersion classrooms. He praised efforts to ensure as many permit requests as possible were granted at Albion Middle School, and thanked Canyons School Performance Director Mike Sirois and Principal Joann Ackerman for their efforts.

Tracy Cowdell said he would like time in an upcoming Board meeting to share what was learned at the USBA Conference. He attended the Canyons School District Education Foundation Board’s meeting as a Board liaison, and praised the work of the Foundation to secure money for STEM and STEAM curriculum efforts. He said he is purchasing a table for the Foundation’s April 25 gala and asked the Board to spread the word to other potential supporters to attend or donate auction items. He also wants to provide further information about the Foundation before the next meeting. He reiterated his support for Board leadership and said he is enjoying working with new Board members.

Chad Iverson invited his constituents provide him with feedback and said he looks forward to constituent meetings. He enjoyed the Altara Elementary spelling bee and Canyons District Ski and Shred night at Brighton Ski Resort. He thanked the student swimmers for expressing their desire for a pool, and noted he would like to approve the school calendar at least one year in advance in the future.

President Sherril Taylor thanked the Board and Administration for their hard work. He noted this is an important year of implementation, and said everyone needs to come together to make it happen. He thanked Corner Canyon Principal Mary Bailey and Crescent View Middle School Principal Greg Leavitt for joining him at a Draper meeting with city officials and patrons, and the public for attending Board Meeting.

Closed Session

The Board met in Closed Session to discuss the character, professional competence or physical or mental health of an individual.

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Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

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