School briefs: Contribute to schools for tax break - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Education News

School briefs: Contribute to schools for tax break

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Posted: Sunday, December 13, 2009 1:05 pm | Updated: 2:53 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

Contribute to schools for tax break

It’s that time of year when people can donate to public schools and private schools for a tax credit. Taxpayers can donate up to $200 per individual or $400 per couple to a public school — district or charter.

Contribute to schools for tax break

It’s that time of year when people can donate to public schools and private schools for a tax credit.

Taxpayers can donate up to $200 per individual or $400 per couple to a public school — district or charter.

Contact schools or districts for more information on the public program.

For more information on the private school program, visit the Arizona Department of Revenue’s Web site at

Workshop on growing school gardens

The Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center Vocational & Life Skills Academy will host a workshop on growing school gardens 10 a.m. to noon Saturday . The free event will be held at 2225 N. 16th St., Phoenix.

AZHomegrownSolutions is a 501(c)(3) organization run by volunteers. Roberta Paolo, known as “Granny in the Garden” to the Valley, will lead the event. Information can be found at

Peralta Trail lauded as good workplace

The Phoenix Business Journal and BestCompaniesAZ, co-founders of the “Best Places to Work” list, has awarded the No. 2 ranking to Apache Junction Unified School District’s Peralta Trail Elementary School in the small-businesses category for 2009.

The Best Places to Work list, started in 2003, recognizes Valley companies which, through a third–party-administered employee satisfaction survey, have been ranked as being the best places to work. The areas surveyed are different parts of employee life, including workplace environment, leadership direction, culture and management practices.

Tours for career, technical education

Eighth-grade students in the Chandler Unified School District will get an opportunity to tour and view Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs at their home high school in January. CTE programs prepare students for work force success and continuous learning.

Classes are currently offered in a number of areas, including agriscience, engineering, graphic design, nursing, photo imaging, sports medicine and drafting. Not all courses are available at all high schools. Tours will take place Jan. 11–15.

More information regarding Chandler Unified School District CTE programs can be found at

Chandler offers intersession camp

Chandler Unified School District will hold a “Whispers of Winter” intersession camp for students Dec. 21 through Jan. 4. Registration is under way online at Enrollment is $40 for first-time attendees. Tuition ranges from $22 to $32 daily. The processing fee is $5 per child prior to Dec. 16 and $25 afterward.

Camps will be held at Conley, Ryan and Frye elementary schools, with Frye being the only site open Jan. 4. Camps will be closed Dec. 25 and Jan. 1.

Car raffle to help out education

The Chandler Education Foundation is selling tickets for its annual luxury car raffle. A red two-door, four-seat convertible 2010 Lexus IS250C is up for grabs with the purchase of a $20 ticket. The car is valued at $45,000 and is on display at Chandler Fashion Center.

Raffle tickets are $20 and can be purchased at the display on the upper level near the food court, at any school or online at

Former school board member honored

Retired Chandler Unified School District governing board member Charlotte Patterson was honored last week by the Arizona School Boards Association for her outstanding contributions in support of public education and ASBA’s mission through servant leadership over an extended period of time.

The annual award, known as the Barbara Robey Lifetime Achievement Award, was presented before school board members and district leaders from across Arizona Thursday evening. The Chandler governing board was one of 12 from across the state honored the same night for its dedication to training.

Students learn about giving

Students at The Learning Foundation & Performing Arts School/Alta Mesa have gone beyond textbooks this year and are learning the definition of practicing altruism.

Students have visited a nursing home to provide companionship to the elderly, held a school food drive for a local food bank, and had their own coat drive to donate coats to the One Warm Coat organization.

EVIT students help fight autism

Health students from the East Valley Institute of Technology presented a $6,000 check to Autism Speaks last week after spending the semester fundraising. The students in the Health Occupations Students of America organization raised the funds by hosting a comedy hypnosis fundraiser show in November and collecting donations from family, friends and businesses.

Mesa board to hold study session

The Mesa Unified School District governing board will hold a study session at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday to discuss seven administrative changes proposed for next school year and all of the public comment that has been heard so far. The session does not include a public hearing.

The next time the community can address the board will be Jan. 12, when the board hopes to vote on the matter. For more information and a summary of the recommendations, see

52 students to get new bikes

The Mesa Fire Department, the East Valley Hispanic Bomberos and State Farm Insurance agents Mary Alice Aguilar and Linda Gomez Dyster are sponsoring a bike giveaway event.

Preschoolers from Adams, Eisenhower and Lowell elementary schools who are enrolled in the Family Tree Program through Mesa schools will receive a bike, a bike helmet and a goodie bag with injury prevention information. Bikes for 52 students from the three sites will be presented to each student individually by Santa Claus next week .

Lindbergh’s Carson Exemplary Teacher

Lindbergh Elementary School teacher Barbara Carson will receive a $10,000 U.S. Savings Bond from the Rodel Charitable Foundation of Arizona after being named a 2010 Exemplary Teacher.

The foundation honors highly successful educators who have a track record of extraordinary student achievement in high-poverty schools. Carson teaches second-grade English language development classes at the Mesa school.

Poston’s Higbee science teacher of year

Jay Higbee of Mesa’s Poston Junior High School is Arizona’s Middle School Science Teacher of the Year. The Arizona Science Teachers Association honored Higbee at its annual awards breakfast. “Everyone can be a scientist. Simply being curious about the world around us makes us all scientists,” Higbee said.

Students create packages for troops

The students at Mesa Fremont Junior High School received a mini-grant from Mesa Unified School District’s Service Learning program to create about 300 “Reindeer Pockets” for service men and women stationed in Afghanistan. On Saturday , the students put the packages together. For more information, check out

Hendrix wins auditions for events

Hendrix Junior High School’s concert band, under the direction of Brian Wilson, will perform at Music for All in Indianapolis, Ind., in March. The band will also make its 12th appearance at the next Arizona Music Educators Association conference.

A taped audition earned Hendrix an invitation to both events, where the band will present the world premiere of “Danza Latina,” a piece featuring Latin dance melodies written specifically for Hendrix, by Emmy award-winning composers J. Samuel Pilafian and Patrick Sheridan.

Mesa High ROTC wins contests

Mesa High School’s Air Force Junior ROTC finished No. 1 in the first two competitions of the season.

“Apollo High’s statewide Blue and Gold Drill Meet was our toughest yet. Mesa High earned Grand Champion status over 24 schools from all branches of the military,” said Maj. Dan Leos, USAF retired and senior aerospace science instructor at Mesa High. “Our school finished first in Four-Person Armed, Four-Person Unarmed and Commanders Cup categories.”

Earlier at Hamilton High School’s Desert Talon Drill Meet, Mesa High cadets placed first and second in six different categories to earn the Grand Champion title. Fifteen schools throughout Arizona participated.

Q.C. district board to meet Tuesday

The Queen Creek Unified School District governing board is meeting 5 p.m. Tuesday at the district office, 20740 S. Ellsworth Road, Queen Creek.

The work study session has been canceled, and the board meeting is being held earlier so parents can attend a performance by Newell Barney Junior High School students at the Queen Creek Performing Arts Center, said Ruby Morris, the board secretary.

Board members are expected to discuss and possibly approve a pay raise for teachers and the high school course catalog for the 2010-11 school year.

They will also discuss employee dress code policies and have presentations on the student and employee of the month.

Information: (480) 987-5935 or

Eat out, help out education

The Texas Roadhouse restaurant at Power and Ray roads in Gilbert will donate 10 percent of food purchases from 3:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday to the Higley Education Foundation.

Families should bring a flier from the school and attach it to their receipt for the Higley Unified School District to receive the donation.

Information: (480) 988-1414.

Higley offers H1N1 flu shot clinics

The Higley Unified School District is offering a second round of H1N1 flu shot clinics from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday at the district office, 2935 S. Recker Road, Gilbert.

Parents can register on the Mollen Immunization Clinics Web site, at, or can just show up to the clinic.

The clinics are for children younger than 9 who are receiving the influenza vaccination for the first time in their lives. These children require two vaccine doses, at least one month apart for the injectable vaccine and at least six weeks apart for the nasal vaccine, to ensure the highest amount of protection.

Information: (480) 279-7000 or

Gilbert board to meet Thursday

The Gilbert Unified School District governing board is meeting 7 p.m. Thursday at the district office, 140 S. Gilbert Road.

Board members are expected to approve the junior high and high school course catalogs.

For agenda information, call (480) 497-3300 or visit

Higley board meeting Thursday

The Higley school district governing board is meeting 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the district office, 2935 S. Recker Road, Gilbert.

For agenda information, call (480) 279-7000 or

Register for winter break camp

Registrations are now being accepted for the 2009 Winter Break Camp, 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dec. 21-23 and Dec. 28-30, at Gateway Pointe Elementary School, 2069 S. De La Torre Drive, Gilbert.

The camp will feature a visit from Carter’s Petting Zoo and the Gilbert Fire Department, and a trip to USA Skateland.

The camp costs $30 a day, or $80 for each three-day week.

Camp rates include field trips and special events.

Lunch will not be served at the camp.

Information: (480) 279-7055 or

San Tan donates 305 pounds of food

San Tan Learning Center students recently collected 305 pounds of food and donated the items to Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank.

About 150 students collected food.

San Tan Learning Center is a pre-kindergarten Montessori and kindergarten through fifth grade public charter school in Gilbert.

Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank is a Chandler nonprofit organization that provides assistance, resources and education to East Valley residents.

For more information on San Tan Learning Center, call (480) 222-0811 or visit

Education briefs run on Sunday. To submit an item for Gilbert and Queen Creek schools, send information to Hayley Ringle at Apache Junction, Chandler and Mesa school briefs are compiled by education reporter Michelle Reese. Contact her at or (480) 898-6549.

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