School bells: January is School Board Recognition Month

The Michigan Association of School Boards has declared January as School Board Recognition Month to show appreciation and begin to better understand how school trustees work together to provide a better future for children.

“Although they wear many hats in the workday world, school board members put on a collective hat when they get down to the business of leading their school districts,” the MASB said in declaring the month. “Board members must pull together as a team toward a common goal—helping students achieve. Though they may individually disagree on certain issues, their role as a board is to consistently strive toward that goal.”

Members of the current Ann Arbor Board of Education include: President Deb Mexicotte , Vice President Irene Patalan, Secretary Glenn Nelson, Treasurer Randy Friedman and trustees Susan Baskett, Adam Hollier and Simone Lightfoot. Email the entire Board at:

Other items of note around the district:

• Sixteen-year-old Huron High School student Arjun Nagpal, a member of Ann Arbor Boy Scout Troop No. 4, completed his Eagle Scout Project last fall in which he built seven doghouses for the Humane Society of Huron Valley. The project took 10 months of work and he said he had help from about 60 people in completing the project. He wrote a guest column in December about his experience for Here is the link to the full story:

• The Washtenaw County Health Department and Clague Middle School received a grant that will enable a health department staff person to work in tandem with Clague to develop a Safe Routes to School Action Plan.  Clague will receive $1,000 to spend toward implementation of Safe Routes activities.

• Community High School students recently hosted a two-week cash drive for Food Gatherers of Washtenaw County. They used a variety of activities including craft and baked goods sales, door-to-door collections, gaming night events and donating their own money to raise $4,257.60. Using Food Gatherers formulas, this will buy more than 11,000 meals or will provide 17 families with meals for six weeks.

• Twenty five Lawton Elementary School families each received a large bag of gifts thanks to the school’s “Warm Wishes” program. Grace Bible Church donated large plastic containers of food items for each of the families.  The project touched the lives of 65 students from the school. Also, Lawton students collected more than 30 boxes of canned goods to donate to the Salvation Army during the holiday season.

• Skyline High School’s Peter Pasque had his ExamView Pro for Mac software posted on iTunes. Visit here for tutorials of the program, how to use it, now to import class rosters and to download or subscribe. Also at Skyline, teacher Allan Porter was asked to write an opinion piece for about how to develop a Graphic Novels as Lit curriculum and it has been published on the Web. He mentions both Ann Arbor Public Schools and Skyline High School in his piece. According to Porter, it’s a popular site for people across the country who ove and use comics and graphic novels in the classroom to enhance student reading Visit and click on the article titled “Building a curriculum of comics” or follow this link.

• The Ann Arbor Student Building Industry Program was acknowledged by Lowe’s home improvement centers and Kobalt Tools as one of 50 programs nationally recognized for work with young people. The 40-year-old district program was awarded $600 worth of tools under their “Tough Tools for Cool Schools” program. Lowe’s kicked off the program last year, with plans to donate tools to building and construction trades programs around the country.

• Fourth- and fifth-grade students of Haisley Elementary School teacher Susan Haines were awarded Youth Council mini-grants from the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation.  The goal of the mini-grants is to encourage children to think of ways they can help their community. Students received grants for a project to supply needed items to the Delonis Shelter, to buy CDs, DVDs, and other supplies for the Ronald McDonald House, to donate pet toys and treats to the Humane Society and to provide knitting supplies for the children at Mott’s Children’s Hospital.

• Community High School counselor John Boshoven and Eastern Michigan University Professor Suzanne M. Duggar have collaborated to provide a chapter in the recently published school counseling textbook, “Professional School Counseling: A Handbook of Theories, Programs and Practices: 2nd Edition” by Bradey Erford. The book is widely used in graduate school counseling classes throughout the USA. Their chapter is entitled, “Secondary and Postsecondary Educational Planning.” The book is published by CAPS Press, an imprint of Pro-Ed Publications.

• Michael Madison, Dicken Elementary School principal, has been asked to serve on the Michigan Space Grant Consortium’s Advisory Board. The vision and mission of the Michigan Space Grant Consortium are to foster awareness of, education in, and research on space-related science and technology in Michigan. Its mission is to create, develop, and promote programs that support its vision and reflect NASA’s strategic interests, and encourage cooperation between academia, industry, state and local government for space-related science and technology in Michigan.

•  The Pioneer DECA Chapter received 91 awards at the District IV DECA Conference at Eastern Michigan University on Jan. 7.  Fifty of students were event finalists and qualified for participation in the State DECA Conference March 12-14 at the Hyatt Regency – Dearborn. Following are the student names and their events: Jade Alexander, Apparel & Accessories Marketing; Sara Manne, Apparel & Accessories Marketing; Tayeeb Beydoun, Accounting Services; Edward Ersoy, Accounting Services; Ruby Liu, Accounting Services; Jeremy Ross, Accounting Services; Steven Delicato, Automotive Services Marketing; Jasnik Parmar, Automotive Services Marketing; Mike Rumford, Automotive Services Marketing; Alivia Ebenhoeh, Business Services Marketing; Mani Herring, Business Services Marketing; Kevin Muscott, Business Services Marketing; Amanda Scull, Business Services Marketing; Bradley Kralik, Business Services Marketing; Eric Miller, Food Marketing; Garrett Warren, Food Marketing; Steven Lawton, Marketing Management; Arush Vij, Marketing Management; Andrew Pape, Marketing Management; Jennifer Lyu, Marketing Management; Taylor Jahnke, Quick Serve Restaurant Management; Alejandro Ortiz, Quick Serve Restaurant Management; Raven Thompson, Quick Serve Restaurant Management; Joaquin DelaCerda-Harlow, Restaurant & Food Service Management; Jonathon More, Restaurant & Food Service Management; Eli Cornblath, Retail Merchandising; Grant Cole, Sports & Entertainment Marketing; Gregory Dallas, Sports & Entertainment Marketing; Kelley Wier, Sports & Entertainment Marketing; Robert Beckett, / Team A, Business Law & Ethics Team Event; Benjamin Brenner, / Team A, Business Law & Ethics Team Event; Megan Fearday, / Team B, Business Law & Ethics Team Event; Lauren Fearday, / Team B, Business Law & Ethics Team Event; Ella Marra-Ketelaar, / Team D, Buying & Merchandising Team Event; Diana Steele, / Team D, Buying & Merchandising Team Event; Jasper Hanifi, / Team A, Financial Analysis Team Event; Tim Schroeder, / Team A, Financial Analysis Team Event; Aries Lucas, / Team A, Sports & Entertainment MktTeam Event; Joe Frakes, / Team A, Sports & Entertainment MktTeam Event; Kirby Lee, / Team C, Sports & Entertainment MktTeam Event; Matt Yoder, / Team C, Sports & Entertainment MktTeam Event; Zach Mann, /  Team D, Sports & Entertainment MktTeam Event; Brandis Yarrington, / Team D, Sports & Entertainment MktTeam Event; Connor Lawrence, / Tm C, Travel & Tourism Mgt. Team Event; Alex Richert, / Team C, Travel & Tourism Mgt. Team Event; Alicia Herrera, Principles of Business Management; Matthew Paquin, Principles of Business Management; Dayne Whitebull, Principles of Finance; Andy Dai, Principles of Marketing; Jack McWhinnie, Principles of Marketing; Quinn Vollink, Principles of Marketing; and Callaghan Wise, Principles of Marketing.

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