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Just a few weeks ago, Kyrene School District experienced a clear election victory for both the continuation of our Maintenance and Operations Override and our second ballot question to allow our governing board to lease, sell or exchange real property (our vacant land). We appreciate this strong vote of confidence and message of support from our community. While Kyrene has a total of 25 schools, 12 of them are in Ahwatukee, educating more than 8,000 students and employing nearly 500 staff members (many who live in the community).
With BASIS Ahwatukee finishing up its first fall term, the administration has decided to add fourth grade for the 2014-15 school year.
The Phoenix Chapter of Executive Women International (EWI) announced that its 2013-2014 governing board of directors was installed on Oct. 15. The new board will serve through September of 2014.
For the past 30 years, I have been a literacy advocate. During the summer of 1983, I learned that my grandfather was illiterate.
As I follow the recent controversy over naming, identity, and cultural representation connected with the NFL’s Washington football team’s nickname and mascot, “Redskins,” I am surprised and confused that there is such vocal resistance to changing the name not just a few deem a racial slur that offends (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tag/washington-redskins-name-controversy).
Each year the Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce honors local business women through the Palo Verde Women in Business Award.
Assistant to Attorney General Rear Admiral Nadine Simmons spoke to Arizona State University students, faculty and staff Sept. 26 on the future of health care and the Affordable Care Act.
In 2004, I received my doctorate in American Studies. Upon graduation, I moved to Arizona for job opportunities and the warm climate. Six months after my move, I noticed a series of Rio Salado Community College advertisements regarding alternative paths to certification.
Arizona students are back in class and in addition to the notebooks and lunch boxes, some parents are packing smartphones or tablets in their kid’s backpacks. Some school districts are even now requesting that kids bring their own technology to school to enhance their learning.
BASIS recently received high acclaim in education from author and TIME magazine journalist Amanda Ripley’s new book, “The Smartest Kids in the World (and how they got that way).”
A mentoring organization for at-risk youth in south Phoenix is in desperate need for volunteers and is turning to Ahwatukee Foothills for help.
May 24, 2013 marked my last day of work for the 2012-2013 school year. As soon as I received notification that my final paycheck was available, I literally “threw up the deuces,” hugged my colleagues, and “eased on down the road.” I was determined to have a carefree summer — one devoid of daily commentaries regarding instructional strategies and the effectiveness of Common Core.
Arizona got a B on a recent national report card that graded states for their efforts to improve financial literacy in high schools.
Sharon Lechter, founder and CEO of Pay Your Family First
The Phoenix Alumnae Club of Pi Beta Phi recently received the fraternity’s highest and most prestigious honor, the Premier Club Award. Pi Beta Phi alumnae clubs promote and support fraternity philanthropic endeavors, assist collegiate chapters and offer friendship to new graduates and alumnae.
A recent Champlain College report gave Arizona a “B” in teaching financial literacy to high school students. This is a credit to a critical collaboration of educators, the Arizona Legislature, the business community and nonprofit organizations working to help individuals lift themselves out of poverty.
As Arizona mayors, we work to find solutions to the issues facing our cities and towns. We roll up our sleeves to get the job done.
Whether you’re a parent or caregiver, we all want the best for our kids. Part of that is making sure they have the reading skills to succeed in school and in life.
Leslie Patricelli didn’t keep junk food in the house when her three kids were toddlers, but the goofy, bald baby in her board book “Yummy Yucky” grins from ear to ear over chocolate sauce and cookies. The prolific picture book writer also included pepperoni pizza as a positive, acknowledging in a recent interview that some of her empty calorie imagery for kids too young to seek out sugary and fatty foods on their own have earned her a kvetch or two from parents. “If I were to do it again I would probably make a few different choices, but I don’t think I would leave everything out,” said Patricelli, in Hailey, Idaho. “All you have to do is watch a kid eat a piece of cake to know that they’re in heaven.” Heaven, indeed, especially when it comes to an abundance of frothy pink cupcakes, chocolate chip cookies and candy in books aimed squarely at babies, toddlers and preschoolers who may not be intimate with the meaning of moderation. But some authors and publishers are focused on creating alternatives to c-is-for-cupcake picture books for parents struggling to promote broccoli. Even Cookie Monster sometimes eats smarter, chowing down on celery and demonstrating smaller portions of his namesake treats in “Ding Dong, Elmo’s Here!” and other books from the folks on “Sesame Street.” “Food is everywhere kids turn,” said Betsy Loredo, executive editor for Sesame Workshop’s publishing group. “So it’s natural for us to want to think of ways we can integrate that and make choices that are healthier. We try to go for at least equity.” “Sesame Street,” with an appearance by obesity fighter and first lady Michelle Obama, took on nutrition and exercise as an initiative back in 2004. The effort expanded to other divisions and special projects that included distribution of kits to six million families and child care centers offering ways to eat healthy on a budget and educate parents on the difference between “sometime food” and “anytime food.” With the childhood obesity rate tripling in the past 30 years to 1 in 3 children in the United States overweight or obese, books with healthy eating pictures and messages may not be everything, but they’re something, advocates said. Sesame Workshop, for instance, concluded in a 2010 study that when children are shown fruits and vegetables linked with favorite characters from the show they choose those foods at a much higher rate and eat more of them, according to Sesame researcher Jennifer Kotler. Even broccoli, she laughed. “Something happens between 3 and 5 where there’s a growing awareness of what healthy means. Where 3-year-olds like the foods they like, 5-year-olds know things they might choose might not always be the healthiest,” Kotler said. David Goldbeck in Woodstock, N.Y., isn’t an absolutist, but he does care about what kids see in their books when it comes to food. He wants more of them to eat fruits and vegetables, so he co-wrote an alphabet book that puts broccoli and yams in equally healthy company. The Michigan Fitness Foundation, which is home to that state’s Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness, Health and Sports, uses Goldbeck’s “The ABC’s of Fruits and Vegetables and Beyond” in take-home book bags that are part of a health literacy program in more than 400 public elementary schools, said Marci Kelly Scott, the organization’s vice president for health programs. The book includes an alphabet format with illustrations (E is for eggplant!) but also history, fun facts and recipes for older kids. Scott ordered 500 of the books in 2008 and routinely reorders to keep up her supplies. In this alphabet world, C is for carrots, D is for date, as in the “desert fruit found in Kuwait,” and O is for organic.
The 94th annual Children’s Book Week, the national celebration of books for young people and the joy of reading, officially starts May 13, but youngsters can join activities sooner at Changing Hands Bookstore in Tempe:
Dr. Neal Lester, author and professor of English at Arizona State University, was honored with an achievement award for the College of Arts and Humanities at the University of West Georgia 36th annual Alumni Association Awards Gala. A native of Jefferson, Ga., Lester graduated from the University of West Georgia in 1981 with a bachelor of arts degree in English.
Having observed the failure of our education system by dumbing-down our children for the past 50 years, concern has to be expressed about the “new” Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI).
Wednesday, May 1 is Customer Appreciation Day at Joe’s Real BBQ in Gilbert. Anyone who shows up between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. and then from 4 p.m. through the rest of the evening — until they run out of food — will get a free BBQ sandwich made from pecan-smoked meats like chicken breast, pulled pork and beef brisket and pit ham; a free side, like sweet cut corn, potato salad, mac and cheese or BBQ pit beans; and a free drink.