Education

Four San Bernardino County Mock Trial teams qualify for semifinals

Los Osos, Oak Hills, Rancho Cucamonga and Redlands high schools have advanced to the semifinals of the 38th annual San Bernardino County Mock Trial competition. The semifinals for the competition will be held on Jan. 15-16 – beginning at 5 p.m. – at the San Bernardino Justice Center (247 W. Third St.).        In the semifinals, Los Osos (Gold) from the Chaffey Joint Union High School District will take on Redlands of Redlands Unified. In the other semifinal, Rancho Cucamonga (Purple), also from the Chaffey district, faces Oak Hills (White) of Hesperia Unified. During the semifinals, the teams will compete as both the prosecution and defense over the two days of competition.        The top two teams from each semifinal match advance to the county Mock Trial finals, which are scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. on Jan. 18 and will be held at the Foothill Law and Justice Center in Rancho Cucamonga.        Redlands High has made the finals in each year since 2010 and is seeking its record 16th county title. Los Osos (Gold) has qualified for the semifinals for five consecutive years.…

County Board of Education elects Mancha as new president

The San Bernardino County Board of Education elected Laura Mancha as president of the five-member governing body during its monthly meeting on Dec. 2.   Mancha, who will serve a one-year term, represents Trustee Area C, which includes the school districts of Chaffey Joint Union, Chino Valley, Cucamonga, Fontana, Mountain View and portions of Ontario-Montclair. She replaces Hardy Brown II, whose one-year term ended on Dec. 2. Mancha acknowledged and thanked Brown for his service and leadership during the past year as board president. “It has been my honor to serve as president and represent the County Board of Education,” Brown said. Mancha has served on the County Board since 2010 and was previously president of the group during the 2013-14 term. In addition to the presidency, Alen Ritchie was elected as vice president of the Board. Ritchie represents Trustee Area E, which includes the school districts of Bear Valley, Colton, Morongo, Redlands, Rim of the World (east of Highway 138) and Yucaipa-Calimesa. Board members are elected to four-year terms. The Board establishes policy, adopts an annual budget, approves building plans and hears student expulsion, inter-district…

Regional Educators of Year honored by Cal League of High Schools

Five San Bernardino County teachers are among 10 educators who were honored at the annual California League of High Schools’ Region 10 Educator of the Year awards ceremony on Nov. 22. Along with five other teachers from Riverside County, the San Bernardino educators were celebrated during a banquet at the Ontario Airport Hotel (700 N. Haven Ave.). The five San Bernardino County teachers honored, including their schools and districts, were: Jamie Anderson, Twentynine Palms High, Morongo Unified School District; Jose Gomez, Arroyo Valley High, San Bernardino City Unified; Steven Marouf, Cobalt Institute of Math and Science, Victor Valley Union High School District; Heather Robers-Gundrum, Alta Loma High, Chaffey Joint Union High School District; Brenda Tilford, Colony High, Chaffey Joint Union High School District. At the awards banquet, an overall regional educator of the year was announced from the field of 10 honorees – James Adkins of Indio High in the Desert Sands Unified School District. San Bernardino County Superintendent Ted Alejandre attended the banquet and congratulated all of the honorees. For more information on the Educator of the Year program, visit the California League of…

How a Crafton alumnus earned an internship with the city of Eastvale

Like all college students before graduation, Ibraheem Lawal was busy mapping out the next step. Looking to expand his resume, the Crafton Hills College alumnus stumbled upon what he thought would be a great opportunity: an internship for the city of Eastvale. So, he applied. Six months went by before he got a call from a would-be colleague offering him the job. The timing, Lawal said, couldn’t have been more perfect. “I applied in January and they called me a week after I finished my master’s program (at the University of Redlands) in August,” he said. Located in western Riverside County and surrounded by more populated areas such as Corona and Norco, Eastvale, one of California’s newest cities, incorporated in October 2010 and continues to experience strong growth each year. Today, more than 73,000 residents – including Lawal – call Eastvale “home,” in large part because of its small-town feel. Lawal is becoming a jack-of-all-trades for Eastvale, where currently, he shoots and edits videos for the city’s social media channels and conducts research for “different projects whenever they pop up,” he said.  Lawal’s internship is…

San Bernardino Valley College to build new teaching hub for 21st century skills

Students, lawmakers, board members, instructors, and community members gathered Wednesday inside a cavernous building where, for decades, San Bernardino Valley College students have learned to repair autos, airplanes and even helicopters.  They came to celebrate the fact that this plain brick building — one of the oldest on the campus — is about to get a 21st-century overhaul to become a career training hub for Inland Empire students. Gov. Gavin Newsom allocated the first $2.5 million for the new Applied TechnologyBuilding in his recently signed budget. The college will eceive $35 million from state construction bonds passed by voters in 2016. The district will match that from Measure CC money voters approved locally in 2018. Construction tarts in summer 2021 on a 99,500-square-foot building outfitted for modern workforce training. The new building will be accessible, sustainable, and filled with the tools needed for training students in water management, automotive repair, and machining, among other fields.  Currently, there are about 5,600 students enrolled in Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses on the campus.  “This is the fun part of the job,” said State Senator Connie M.…

Colton Joint Unified Superintendent Almendarez accepts new position in Santa Ana

The Colton Joint Unified School District’s Board of Education announced Wednesday, Nov. 20 that it has begun the process to appoint a new Superintendent to replace long-time CJUSD leader Jerry Almendarez. Almendarez, Superintendent of CJUSD the past nine years, accepted a position this week as the new superintendent of the Santa Ana Unified School District. He will begin his new duties Jan 1 and will remain Superintendent of CJUSD until then. Almendarez became superintendent of CJUSD in November 2010. Focuses of his leadership include community involvement, collaboration, and seeking innovative ways to inspire student achievement and engagement. In addition to moving forward with an appointment process, the CJUSD Board also has a scheduled special meeting on Dec. 9 to discuss its goals, which set the district’s direction and priorities and are part of the superintendent’s evaluation process. “We wish Superintendent Almendarez the very best and congratulate the Santa Ana school district on an excellent selection,” CJUSD Board President Joanne Thoring-Ojeda said. “We are also excited about continuing the outstanding work in our district to prepare all of our students for successful lives and to do…

Breakfast for every student at Eisenhower High School in Rialto

At the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year, on August 5, Eisenhower High School rolled out its Breakfast in the Classroom (BIC) program. Since then, the school has gone from serving 400 meals per day, to serving 2,000 meals – during breakfast alone. The BIC program has received much critical acclaim from local dignitaries, district superintendents and the community. “Breakfast in the Classroom provides every student at Eisenhower High School a quick breakfast at the beginning of second period, every day of the week,” said Kristina Kraushaar, program innovator for Rialto Child Nutrition. Every morning each second period class has a designated student who is responsible to go and grab the prepared breakfast cart. “We’re bringing the cafeteria to the classroom. The rolling cart consists of one red bag and one blue bag. One of the bags is filled with the main meal item and the other is filled with the drinks,” continued Kraushaar. Photo RUSD: Pictured from left – Agent: Nutrition Services Fausat Rahman-Davis, student Steve Paez, Assistant Principal Gilbert Henriquez Pulido, Principal Frank Camacho, student Juan Galvez, Custodian Carlos Flores, and student Daphne…

University of Redlands students are first to write the Feast of Lights ‘masterwork’

Since the annual University of Redlands Feast of Lights was conceived in 1947, this musical portrait of the birth of Christ has been renowned for its artistry— the music, the costumes, the tableaux, the candlelight — as well as for its hopeful, joyous spirit. This year’s performance is even more exceptional, as the composers of the show’s musical centerpiece are U of R music composition majors Jamison Stevens ’22 and Timothy Cunningham ’22. A handful of students have written music for the Feast of Lights before, but Stevens and Cunningham, who are also members of U of R’s Chapel Singers, are the first ever to have composed the central “masterwork.” The idea came to Stevens after he witnessed his first Feast of Lights in 2018; he was so inspired he immediately went to Cunningham and suggested writing a piece for it. Cunningham’s response? “Is that even allowed?” When the students proposed the idea to their composition professor, Antony Suter, however, he was supportive. Suter says, “Taking on that big of a project is generally not something that would be prudent for a couple of first-year…

Fontana Unified named PBIS District Of Year

Fontana Unified School District was named Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) district of the year for the West End and East Valley regions of San Bernardino County during an awards ceremony on Nov. 14. The district also had two platinum award-winning schools – the highest honor bestowed by the California PBIS Coalition – and 14 other silver and gold medal schools at the event. Harry S. Truman Middle School and Citrus Elementary School were Fontana’s platinum-winning schools. The districts’ other gold and silver schools honored during the ceremony were: Alder (silver);Cypress (gold); Date (silver); Fontana High (gold); Dolores Huerta International Academy (gold); Juniper (silver); Jurupa Hills High (gold); Live Oak (silver); Mango (silver); Randall Pepper (silver); Sequoia (gold); Sierra Lakes (silver); Southridge Tech (silver); and West Randall (silver). They were among a record 186 schools and programs from the West End and East Valley regions of San Bernardino County that received recognition for their platinum, gold and silver awards at the ceremony, which was held at the Way World Outreach Church in San Bernardino. The event was hosted by San Bernardino County Superintendent of…

Aguilar learns new trades on latest Job for a Day Tour stop

Last week, Rep. Pete Aguilar took his Job for a Day tour of the Inland Empire to the Inland Empire Job Corps Center, where he spent the day learning trades with students participating in work-based learning programs. Aguilar began the day by working with students enrolled in the tile setting program, installing tile at one of the campus facilities before joining a group of culinary arts students in preparing food and ingredients at the campus kitchen. “The Inland Empire Job Corps provides young people in our community with a chance to learn a skilled trade to jump start their careers and serve them throughout life. I’m grateful for all the hard work of the instructors and students, and I’ll continue working to support this program so that more Inland Empire residents can gain the skills and confidence they need to enter the workforce,” said Aguilar. “Both students and staff were thrilled and humbled to host Congressman Aguilar for his job for a day. He is friendly, humble and an incredibly hard-worker. He worked side by side with our students laying tile and was not afraid…

Activist discusses the issues of using Native American mascots

Native American activist, artist, educator and lecturer Charlene Teters spoke about the issues of using Native American mascots in the 21st century as part of Cal State San Bernardino’s Conversations on Diversity series, presented by the University Diversity Committee, on Nov. 12. Teters’ talk was co-sponsored by CSUSB’s Native American Speaker Series in celebration of Native American Heritage Month and was held at the university’s Santos Manuel Student Union. Teters discussed the harm that comes with stereotypes and how Native nations must compete with mass media imagery, such as Disney and the military’s use of their historical heroes as code for the country’s enemies. “There are more than 500 Indian nations within the United States,” Teters said. “We all have our rich history, language and culture. To turn us into stereotypes is to stop seeing us as individuals and traps us in someone else’s mistaken idea of who they think we are. These images are so powerful that non-Indian people do not see us as modern people with a valued history, a living culture and language, and a future.” Teters also discussed the issues that…

Cal State San Bernardino celebrates formal opening of Center for Global Innovation

Cal State San Bernardino celebrated the formal opening of its newest building, the Center for Global Innovation, during the official ribbon-cutting ceremony on Nov. 14. Located across from the John M. Pfau Library and constructed at a cost of $55 million, the three-story, 71,000-square-foot building is the new home of the university’s College of Extended & Global Education. CSUSB President Tomás Morales called the CGI “a magnificent structure that adds to the beauty of this campus,” in addressing the more than 150 people in attendance for the ceremony, “This building’s location did not occur by accident. It is near the center of campus, close to both the library and the student union, placing the students it serves in the heart of day-to-day activity,” Morales said. “This center is now the hub for international education at CSUSB. It is a one-stop shop for international students and those seeking a global learning experience through our study abroad offerings.” The center will play a vital role in the university’s international education programs, said Morales, who is a staunch advocate of study abroad programs. “Studies have shown (study abroad…

Hazel Health provides on-site virtual health care to San Bernardino City schools

Students K-12 in the San Bernardino City Unified School District (SBCUSD) have easy and immediate access to health care with the implementation of Hazel Health at the onset of the 2018-2019 school year at nine school sites.  Hazel Health, based in San Francisco, is an innovative model that offers students a virtual health clinic through an iPad that connects them to health care providers who assess them in a matter of minutes – regardless of insurance or immigration status. According to Hazel Health CEO Josh Golomb, 90% of students return to class, contributing to a 40% drop in health related absenteeism. Dr. Lorraine Perez, SBCUSD assistant superintendent of Student Services, noted that Muscoy Elementary and Sierra High schools in particular have seen significant improvement in attendance as a result of the program’s implementation. “Working with Hazel is part of our commitment to provide access to services,” Perez said, and added that the program is intended to assist school nurses. “This is not to undermine or replace school nurses, but provide support to school nurses.” Sharon Lip, school nurse at Muscoy Elementary and three other school…

Meditation Garden at Carter High School promotes wellness, provides support to Rialto students

After a year of development, Carter High School’s Meditation Garden opened to both students and staff on Wednesday, Nov. 6. The Meditation Garden, an extension of its on-campus Wellness Center, gives students a space to clear thoughts, cope with life stresses and feel safe. “When entering the Meditation Garden, first you have to walk in through the Wellness Center. Inside it’s a very calm environment, there’s no fluorescent lighting, and it’s nicely painted. It brings your anxiousness down. When entering the garden, you open the door and hear the fountain right away,” said Principal Greg Anderson. Photo RUSD: Carter High Principal Dr. Gregory Anderson, was among the students who took the opportunity to meditate after the garden’s official opening. Over the past three years, the Wellness Center has provided support to students with both low and high levels of stress, and the Meditation Garden is an expansion that will allow more students to utilize the various wellness services. “There are trees all around and even the bark scent and nature of the Meditation Garden is filled with serenity. It brings your anxiousness level down naturally.…

San Bernadino City Unified School Board honors October Outstanding Students

The San Bernardino City Unified School District Board of Education honored 11 students with Outstanding Student Awards at the October 15, 2019, Board meeting. Students were also recognized by the San Bernardino Symphony, which provided them and their families with free symphony tickets, and Assembly member James Ramos, who provided each student with a Certificate of Recognition. Outstanding Student Award winners are recognized for achievement in academics, athletics, fine arts, citizenship, or for showing significant improvement in these areas. Students are awarded and inspired to have hope for their future by thinking about long-term educational and career goals. Davidson Elementary School Outstanding Students Sixth-grader Mileyon Edwards models the behavior that Davidson hopes for in all students. She is responsible and respectful in class and across the campus. Mileyon wants to become a nurse or a hair stylist in the future. Third-grader Alfonso Del Toro Vasquez has made the greatest improvement in his reading skills. He has mastered more than 200 new sight words in one year. Alfonso is considering a career as a truck driver. Fifth-grader Natan Mejia is courteous and thoughtful. He is always…

SB Valley College offers film studies classes to students K-12

San Bernardino Valley College (SBVC) is giving K-12 students and the community a glimpse into the art of filmmaking with its monthly lab series. The Inland Empire Media Academy (IEMA) series was developed to help students find their voice and develop an appreciation for the art and craft of film and visual storytelling. Labs, free to elementary, junior and high school students and $15 for members of the community, are held on Saturdays and participants can expect to receive a broader knowledge of film, TV and media production. “This is a great way to learn about everything that goes into making a movie or TV show right here in San Bernardino,” said IEMA Director and SBVC Radio, Television and Film (RTVF) Instructor Lucas Cuny.  “It also gives people a chance to work with state-of-the-art technology and learn about the RTVF program here at SBVC.” In the final lab of 2019, SBVC presents “Experimental Film” on November 16. This lab, taught by SBVC’s Miguel Tarango, explores abstract and experimental films, new ways of thinking regarding content creation and expression and allows students to implement their visions…

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