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Killexams : SUN Administrator teaching - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/310-615 Search results Killexams : SUN Administrator teaching - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/310-615 https://killexams.com/exam_list/SUN Killexams : Opinion: I left teaching because, decades after Columbine, not much had changed

April 20, 1999, was a beautiful bluebird day in Littleton, one of those days where the Mile High sun reflected off the foothills and warmed the soul. I was standing stone cold on the steps of Littleton High School, while just over 5 miles away chaos was unfolding at Columbine High School. In the end it was revealed 12 students and a teacher died, 24 were injured and countless others were forever changed by what was, at the time, the deadliest school shooting in U.S. history. 

The next day in our gym, counselors awkwardly tried to start conversations, but no one knew what to say. The idea of a school shooting was new to us then. I was only a junior but I was hopeful the atrocities of that day would be a catalyst for positive change. 

I was wrong.

Years later, as a teacher, I watched students milling about on a normal morning in my seventh-grade classroom when I spotted the words “Celebrate Diversity” on a shirt. Initial feelings of pride were squashed by the accompanying graphic, detailing a diverse selection of guns.  

Little, it seemed, had changed. Children’s lives were still being put in danger for a love of guns. 

After 15 years of teaching, I was not surprised by the shirt, or by the school administration’s decision to do nothing about it. I have seen many schools turn a blind eye to the culture of violence and guns, not wanting to take responsibility or offend anyone. This year, a teacher in Virginia reached out to her administration several times about concerns that a student with violent tendencies might have a gun, but those fears were disregarded. Later, that 6-year-old student shot her. 

And so, frustration surrounding guns continues to escalate, and incidents of violence continue to devastate lives.  The Washington Post estimates that since Columbine, more than 331,000 students nationwide have been exposed to gun violence and this number grows daily. According to a CNN summary of a National Center for Education Statistics report, there were 93 school shootings during the 2020-2021 school year. 

In the classroom, students are asked to address the problem by watching videos on how to throw things at shooters to distract them, or how to barricade doors so they can’t come into a room or how to reach for an AR-15 to safely disarm a perpetrator. I have crouched with students in darkened rooms, hidden behind tables, trying to keep students from crying while the school’s alarm system screams. And then later, I tried to reassure them that school is a safe place.

I’ve dedicated more than 20 years and two college degrees to becoming the best teacher I could be. I’ve taught in many states, several countries and have gained a wealth of experience. I’ve held hope and compassion for every student I’ve had the honor to teach. 

But this year I am no longer teaching. The last straw came when a student at my school  — I was teaching out of state at the time — admitted to bringing a gun inside the building. He said he carried it in his backpack all day. His impulsive anger could have easily turned to tragedy. But because no one saw it and we learned about it after the fact, there were no consequences. No support. No future guidance on how to deal with emotions or difficult situations such as this one. 

Coming as it did just days after the May 2022 school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, the absurdity of sweeping this under the rug was too much. I knew I could no longer participate in a system that ignored the problem. 

Guns continue to be a real concern in today’s classrooms. As a teacher I could choose to leave, but students cannot. They remain in classrooms, sometimes with violent peers, and continue to lock themselves in dark rooms for active-shooter drills. They rely on adults in their lives to make decisions that keep them safe and to prevent guns and violence in schools. These adults are failing. 

Students don’t need more armed guards or locked doors. They need a society willing to protect them with common-sense gun legislation. Colorado has made positive moves to help prevent gun violence such as background checks, extreme-risk laws and keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers — but more can be done, such as banning assault-style weapons. 

We need to reevaluate what it is we truly love. 

Important things are happening in schools. Our kids are learning, cooperating and growing to become thoughtful human beings. Inaction on gun policy is impacting these classrooms. 

I’m sad that I left the teaching career I loved. But the positive change I hoped for as a high school student shivering in the shadow of Columbine never materialized.

Stephanie Dungan, of New Castle, is a former elementary and middle school teacher, now a student at Western Colorado University.

Sat, 18 Feb 2023 18:30:00 -0600 More by Stephanie Dungan en-US text/html https://coloradosun.com/2023/02/19/schools-teaching-shootings-guns-students-consequences-opinion/
Killexams : African American Studies course is about pushing an agenda, not education | Commentary

As we mark Black History Month, the irony is not lost on me that latest headlines are focusing on anything but our history.

Being a lifelong education advocate, especially for at-risk youth, I can see that our community is in dire need of intervention to curb the many educational roadblocks that have plagued our youth for generations.


To be clear: The intervention we need is not a revised AP African American studies course, but significant and systemic changes to how our youth learn and to the support they receive.

Across the state of Florida, much like in the rest of the country, a significant achievement gap still exists. In our state, on average, there is a 30-point difference in the practicing levels between white and Black students. This statistic is a precursor to future academic success and without immediate remediation, compounds into future problems for Black youth.


Glenton Gilzean Jr. is president and CEO of the Central Florida Urban League.

Yet, in the face of a pandemic, which exacerbated this number across the country, in Florida, due to an increase in funding and support for inner-city schools and an expansion in school-choice legislation, this number has fallen.

Even more concerning to our community is the school-to-prison pipeline, an often-bandied-about term that has a very real impact on our community. Black students in Florida are 2.5 times more likely to be removed from classrooms and twice as likely to be referred to law enforcement than their white peers. The root of these issues more often than not stems from a lack of family values and unstable home life among our youth.

Let me be unequivocally clear: As the president and CEO of the Central Florida Urban League, an affiliate of the nation’s largest civil-rights organization, I know that this media cycle has nothing to do with helping our community thrive, but everything to do with pushing an agenda that will only set our community back.

Having worked closely with Gov. Ron DeSantis, I can attest to the fact that his commitment to family values stem from his innermost beliefs. For our community, these values are critical to our overall growth and success, and it is for that reason that the governor championed HB 7065 this past spring, which directly supports youths living in fatherless homes. Our governor is keenly aware that the lack of a father in the home has a severe, negative impact on our children. I was proud to stand by his side when he signed a bill to bring expanded educational programs, mentorship programs and one-on-one support to encourage responsible and involved fatherhood in our state.

As the leader of an organization that works directly with at-risk and justice-involved youth, this bill has already had a positive impact on our programming and will undoubtedly save many lives and families.

Black students need a strong foundation, both in school and at home, to overcome the myriad systemic obstacles they are faced with. As a society, we need to work together to remove these roadblocks and deliver our youth every opportunity to succeed. I have had the honor of working with four governors in my lifetime. DeSantis has built upon the work of his predecessors by creating new opportunities, giving our youth every chance to succeed.

Black history is American history, which is why the teaching of Black history is already mandatory across the state. Yet, the proposed course, which runs contrary to state law, clearly has a component that does nothing to advance the teaching of Black history, but only the political agenda of a small minority.

As he continues to be mischaracterized in the public, history will show that DeSantis has already provided more opportunities for African Americans in his administration than any of his predecessors, fulfilling a promise he made shortly after taking office to ensure the most diverse administration in state history.


As a proud African American, Floridian and someone who has made education the focal point of my career, I support the College Board amending this course, not only to comply with state law, but also hopefully to include members of our community as a part of the discussion.

History cannot be discussed without including our community’s present-day realities, which thanks to common-sense legislation and strong allies in Tallahassee, have remarkably improved. Please cease from using our community as a pawn to advance the agenda of a small few — in doing that, you are truly hurting those whom you claim to protect.

Glenton Gilzean Jr. is president and CEO of the Central Florida Urban League.

Sat, 18 Feb 2023 22:11:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.sun-sentinel.com/opinion/commentary/os-op-college-board-florida-what-matters-20230219-oqfdasp5nbglxmpvrhcow3z7ce-story.html
Killexams : My administration has revamped education sector, says Buhari at FUOYE 7th convocation

Institution appoints Olanipekun visiting Prof of Constitutional Law, Onasanya, Odegbami bag honourary degrees

From Priscilla Ediare, Ado Ekiti

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the education sector has been revamped under his administration.

He noted that this was made possible through increased funding for human capital and infrastructural development.

The president stated this on Saturday during the 7th convocation ceremony of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti, Ekiti State.

Buhari who is the Visitor to the university was represented by the Minister of State for Education, Goodluck Nanah Opiah, said: “My administration has revamped the education sector through increased funding for human capital and infrastructural development.

“While it is an impossibility to channel all the available funds in the country to the education sector, it is a matter of public knowledge that my administration, since its inception on May 29, 2015, has been incrementally increasing funding to the sector in its yearly budgets”.

At the event, three eminent personalities were conferred with Honourary Degrees(Honoris causa) of the university, they include, Chairman, Nigerian Body of Benchers, Chief Wole Olanipekun( SAN), former Managing Director of First Bank, Mr Stephen Olabisi Onasanya and former captain of the Nigeria National team( Super Eagles) Chief Segun Odegbami, for their contributions to national development.

While Olanipekun(SAN) was appointed a visiting Professor of Constitutional Law, Onasanya was conferred with the Degree of Doctor of Fnance and Odegbami, Degree of Doctor of Sports.

In his speech, Buhari disclosed that his administration has delivered on its campaign promises made to Nigerians in 2015.

The president who said that his campaign promises were based on enhancing the economy, improving security and anti-corruption fight, noted that he was fulfilled that huge successes were recorded in the three fundamental issues.

He noted that though the country has not reached its eldorado, his government has set Nigeria on irreversible paths of greatness through the implementation of masses-centric policies.

“Let me remind us all that my campaign to become president in 2015 was built on the promise to Strengthen security, strengthen the economy and combat corruption. It is with immense gratitude to Almighty Allah that I make bold to say that we have delivered on the three promises.

“At my inauguration, the country was practically under the siege of terrorism and other forms of insecurity. With every sense of responsibility, I state boldly that the war against terrorism has been fought and won as all the territories lost to these groups have been reclaimed. And terrorism in Nigeria today is breathing its last breath.

“It is also noteworthy that under my watch Nigeria rose from the brackish waters of near-economic collapse to become acknowledged as the largest economy on the African continent. This is no mean feat. It is not a given. It can only be the result of a well-orchestrated developmental plan.

“Corruption also held the country by the jugular before I assumed office in 2015. It is also an acknowledged fact that the policies of my administration, including the introduction of the TSA, the whistle-blowing policy and the intensification of prosections by anti-corruption agencies have rolled back the tide of corruption in the country.”

Speaking the institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Abayomi Fasina said that the university within the shortest time of creation has carved a niche for itself on an international grid of academic excellence.

While congratulating the graduands on the academic feats, Fasina admonished them to positively project the image of the institution.

Sat, 11 Feb 2023 05:44:00 -0600 en-us text/html https://www.sunnewsonline.com/my-administration-has-revamped-education-sector-says-buhari-at-fuoye-7th-convocation/
Killexams : FALA leadership: Flagstaff school sees impacts as administrator positions shift

Flagstaff Arts and Leadership Academy's (FALA) leadership situation has continued to unfold over the past two months, with administrator positions changing, and students and staff experiencing impacts to their education and work. 

In the second of two meetings hosted the week before winter break, the school's board of directors moved to administratively reassign executive director Eli Cohen to remote work after a discussion that took place in public session.

Board treasurer Ron Borkan spoke against the reassignment, noting latest resignations and saying he had concerns about “the unintended consequences,” but other board members disagreed.

“We have lost 30 out of 40 faculty in the last three years, 26 of them in the last two years,” said board member Debra Edgerton. “What became alarming was to have more, the largest number of faculty that left in the past year.”

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A chart depicting staff attrition at FALA over the last three school years that Cohen presented to the board at its Sept. 27 meeting.

She continued: “What was happening after this past year is what started, at least for me, thinking what is going on and to talk about students when we had the report of how many students were leaving and not connecting it to the reason faculty were leaving. That is the question we have in front of us. Yes, we will probably lose more faculty, but you can’t blame the entire incident on us when most of this has happened in the prior three years.”

The motion passed 3-2, with Borkan and James Yih, the board president,  voting against.

During discussion of appointing an interim executive director later in the meeting, Borkan resigned, citing his disapproval with the way the board was handling the situation.

He later said this “was not some rash decision,” noting dissenting votes he’d made throughout the fall.

“When you’re on the board, sometimes you lose a vote, but you’re expected to then support the majority decision," he said. "For the most part, I could, but as we got into reassigning Eli to work from home or reassigning Christina [Wolfe] to work from home, those decisions I thought were very ill-advised, very short-sighted and downright wrong. I figured I can’t support these decisions [and] I can’t be on the board if they’re going to be making decisions I can’t support, so I resigned.”

ESS director position eliminated

The latter of those two reassignments had happened at the board’s meeting on Nov. 28.

Borkan was absent, but the rest of the board voted unanimously, due to a reduction in force, not to renew Extended School Services (ESS) director Wolfe’s contract after it is set to end on June 30. It also appointed board Vice President Kyle Winfree to lead a committee — including staff, parents, FALA leaders and outside experts — to explore how to restructure the department.

“We’ve been deliberating with thoughtfulness and care,” board secretary Andy Bessler is summarized as saying in the minutes. “We can move forward in positivity and growth. This has been tough for everyone, and it involves confidential information we cannot disclose. Please trust that we are working in the benefit of the school, legally and for the care of the students.”

Although Borkan believed Wolfe had performance issues that needed to be addressed, he moved during the meeting to rescind the decision to eliminate the position until the new structure had been finalized.

He had been on the finance committee for about a year at time and said neither reduction in force nor changes to the ESS director position had ever been discussed.

“If the issues were how Christina was performing at her job, that she wasn't what the school needed in a SPED director, the process the board was going through was wrong,” he said. “You do a performance evaluation, you collect your data, you talk to the employees and you work on a performance improvement plan. You’re not just having performance issues and eliminating the position; that's not how it's done.”

Other members noted that without this motion the position would still exist at FALA, with Wolfe in the role, until the end of her contract at the close of the academic year.

“I am feeling extraordinarily challenged and concerned that this is not objectively being considered,” Wolfe said when recognized at the meeting.

In response, Bessler said he was “considering all the stuff objectively as best as I can,” but that he was not comfortable discussing certain items in public “to protect people.”

“I’ll say that finances were not the only thing that we considered,” Yih said. “We had a long discussion of this.”

The motion did not continue.

ESS restructuring

According to Winfree, the reduction in force was the first step in addressing a need to restructure the ESS department. While he said he thinks everyone in the department has a "big heart" and is “in it for the right reasons,” his belief is that the structure is not serving them well.

“As it was earlier this year, we have one person at the top with certification and then multiple others who have these conditional certifications that are dependent on a mentor in the school to retain their certification and complete their education,” he said. “I think it’s great to have a mentor supporting your education, but if it is your direct supervisor and there is no other [supervisor], how are you going to speak up if there’s an issue? This person controls your job [and] they control your education."

Having multiple people at the top of the hierarchy does not necessarily require hiring new staff, he said. Instead, he offered, “it should be interpreted as an opportunity for advancement.”

Wolfe, however, was skeptical that the department could function without any sort of director, saying one is needed for tasks such as reporting to the state, providing oversight and SPED-specific crisis management.

“I just don’t see how a full-time teacher has the level of flexibility that's needed sometimes to support the department running as smoothly as it needs to,” she said. “I would never recommend that a SPED department completely eliminate the director or the leader of that entirely because there are too many moving pieces at all times for that to all be distributed out. But my hope was to actually move to more distribution and building more autonomy within all of the professionals.”

Cohen and Borkan had similar concerns about removing the position, both saying it was a necessary role for the school to have filled.

“[This position is] the one that keeps you from getting sued,” Cohen explained. “Which is frankly what schools get into trouble for -- they get SPED lawsuits or a lawsuit from the office of civil rights or the ADA or IDEA. That's when you get into trouble.”

During the Dec. 12 meeting, the board discussed interim solutions for determining the structure of the ESS department going forward with the director position eliminated.

Winfree said he met with four Flagstaff SPED experts to discuss ways FALA could better support its ESS students (only naming one, to the disapproval of meeting attendees).

The committee, which will eventually provide a recommendation to the board, has not yet met and is expected to take “several months” to come to a decision -- Winfree estimated next fall.

In the meantime, the board has hired two experts to help guide the ESS department -- interim director Michele Lucci and consultant Russ Randall, both of whom have decades of experience in special education.

In an email to the Daily Sun, Yih specifically noted their knowledge of IEPs, 504 plans and transition plans, saying they along with school improvement specialist Kara Kelty "have been instrumental in bringing the highest quality of services to our students."

Wolfe’s resignation

“I want people to understand that the story the board is trying to tell is a lie,” Wolfe said about a month after these meetings. “I, for sure, understand and appreciate that reality is based on perception and that perception is subjective. But this whole 'we’re going to fix the school after we broke it, but we're not going to say that we broke it.' ... It's wrong, it’s gaslighting.”

Like almost everyone cited in these articles, Wolfe described her initial experience at FALA as one of the best work environments she’d experienced in education, and, similar to former dean Jed Hayes, she believed some of the issues came from a lack of support as she entered an administrative position for the first time.

While the 21-22 school year was especially difficult, she said she’d started this year with new staff and a plan to “pivot and grow.” She had hired three educators who were in the process of completing a master’s degree and was building extra support for them. Eventually, she said, the hope was to grow a strong team in-house and move to a more distributed leadership model that matched FALA overall.

Wolfe expressed several concerns with the board’s decision. Among them were Borkan’s absence, that her position was the only one affected by the reduction in force, that the next school year’s budget had not yet been reviewed (she was also a member of the finance committee) and that a continuance clause in her contract meant that reduction in force was one of the only nonperformance (specifically a PIP) reasons the board could decide not to renew it.

Her primary reason for resigning, she said, was the Dec. 13 meeting and the board’s treatment of staff during the open forum that night.

She had also found the situation personally stressful.

“I have plenty of documentation about how the board’s been pretty crappy to me, but it was painful on a different level last night, watching everyone be treated that way,” she said the day after the Jan. 12 meeting.

Students walk between classes Monday morning at Flagstaff Arts and Leadership Academy.

Student, staff letters

The school began its winter break on Dec. 16, with students and staff set to return Jan. 2 (snow later delayed the return from break to Jan. 3).

Issues again surfaced after the break, with a total of 10 staff now having resigned, including the student services director. By the end of January, the board had hired three education professionals to help provide guidance for the school -- two specifically for its ESS department.

Two group letters were sent to the board -- one from 14 staff members, one from 47 students -- expressing disapproval with the board’s handling of the situation and asking for changes, as were several individual emails on the same themes.

The staff email, sent Dec. 14, included seven demands they asked to be recognized by 2 p.m. Dec. 16 (the last day of school before winter break), after which they would “have no choice but to coordinate escalating actions until our demands are met.”

The student letter, sent Jan. 11, expressed concerns with Cohen and Wolfe’s removal and the lack of explanation for those actions in particular.

“In the immediate aftermath of your actions, we are left without administrators on our campus and without answers to our questions,” they wrote. “Rather than promote our well-being, you have chosen to take actions that place stress on students and staff, disrupting our education and damaging our school.”

Both emails asked that three board members -- Yih, Winfree and Edgerton -- resign and that some form of staff and student voice replace them, and on the board more generally. This had also been expressed in meeting comments throughout the process.

A clip from the public comment section of FALA's Dec. 12 board meeting, in which the school's executive director asks the entire board to resign.

The board has so far had two community discussion sessions on different subjects related to the situation in its meetings and, in a letter to the community published Feb. 12, said FALA would hold a public town hall "in the near future."

The Jan. 23 meeting included reports from student representatives and staff advocates -- which Yih said would be the first of many.

In this meeting, he addressed the request to resign, saying it was "a fair request," and that he was past his three-year term, but that it was difficult to find suitable candidates. Winfree gave a similar answer, with both noting that the board cannot legally function with fewer than five members, so to fulfill the request would have risked FALA's charter school status.

Board members also acknowledged the impact the situation was having on students and staff in their comments.

"We will get through this, and I think part of this healing process does start with us being called out and us owning up to the situation that we are in," Yih said. "I'm hopeful, based on your participation today, that we can go down this road together to Strengthen our communications with you, to meet you, to learn from you and to hear your voice."

Student impacts

Borkan said this situation has also caused at least a “handful” of students to leave FALA -- on Jan. 5, Cohen mentioned about 10 leaving over the previous two weeks. Other educators described the effects they’d seen in their students.

“Students on campus are afraid, some of them to the point of tears daily, that the school’s going to shut down and that this is the only place they’ve felt safe at school,” said Chad Fields, FALA’s mental health counselor. “At every other school, they felt ostracized, marginalized and unseen. [They] felt safe here and they’re afraid that’s going to go away.”

One student shared an email they wrote to a board member as part of an exchange in response to the group letter. At the end, they explained why they decided to join the other students in signing.

“Personally, my hope for the letter from students wasn't that it would immediately prompt everything it calls for, because I'd seen nothing that made me expect any quick action," they wrote. "Rather, I hoped that it could demonstrate the cost of the direction the Board is moving in, as well as the stress and frustration it creates for students when we're not given a way to affect that direction."

It went on to read: “At worst, I expected it to be taken as a demonstration of conviction and capability from FALA's students. I did hope and do still hope that it will encourage the Board to deliver students the seat at the table we're entitled to, and that the Board will deliver us more reasons to believe that our voices actually have an impact on their decisions.”

Staff impacts

Fields’ job means he works closely with the school’s ESS team -- Wolfe was his direct supervisor for the roughly 80% of his work that had to do with special education, he said.

Fields has attended every meeting since October and said the board’s actions in that time have seemed “at best, illogical.”

“It feels like a hostage situation, where our care for the children and the services we provide for them are leveraged against our moral sense of integrity to not want to be a part of this system anymore,” he said. “But we know what will happen if we all choose to be a part of this immoral disaster. ... So many staff feel like we have to sacrifice our sense of integrity to be what is just because of our commitment to holding this community together for the students that we love.”

The reassignments and resignations have impacted Fields’ work “massively,” he said in early January. The ESS department went from having a director, counselor, three teachers and an administrative assistant to just himself and one teacher.

Fields said he has been helping out in other areas to try to fill those gaps, and while he’s continued to be able to meet the required number of counseling minutes, ”it’s becoming harder and harder.”

“It’s huge,” he said. “There are compliance issues -- IEPs are tied to legal documents and our funding is tied to the ability to satisfy the stipulations in those contracts with students and their families. We’re getting close to not being able to do that legally and, I would say, definitely ethically.”

Such concerns are echoed by many current staff’s communication with the board and some of the resignation letters.

One current employee, who asked to remain anonymous due to fear of retaliation, said they would like to resign from the school as well, but needed to stay to support their family’s livelihood. They’d seen other staff making similar decisions.

In an email to a board member in late December, another employee (who asked for anonymity for the same reason) gave the example of the student services team needing to cover multiple positions due to the absences created by the reassignments and resignations.

“I just want to do my job. I want to come to work and be amazing,” they wrote. “I miss where the hardest problem I had was telling kids to get out of the bathroom. I understand we all have the same mission, ‘to do what is best for kids.’ That is hard to do when we ended up in a place of distrust and endless discomfort towards the people around us.”

Police reports

That email was part of a thread about the third FALA-related police report filed in December.

The first two, filed by Winfree and another staff member, both focused on the same incident, which had happened in May of 2021.

One report summarizes Winfree as saying he’d heard from a school employee that Wolfe had taken a student with disabilities to music class, which was auditorily overstimulating for them and caused significant distress. Wolfe, however, said the student had asked to be taken to the class, the reporting educator had misread the situation and that the student's parents agreed this was not a concern.

Both reports ended with the case being closed unfounded, with the stated reasons that there was no criminal conduct and the allegations don’t rise to the level of child abuse.

The timing and reason behind these reports has been in contention, however.

Cohen and Wolfe both say the board knew about and dismissed this employee’s claim; an email from Yih on Sept. 18 asks the board not to respond to the same source cited in the report, as “at this point, I do not believe [their] claims need to rise to the attention of the board.”

Winfree, however, said he was taking the first step in reporting allegations to the state by calling law enforcement. Hearing that Wolfe had threatened to sue a different staff member if they spoke up about the situation was what “solidified” his understanding that it needed to be reported.

The third report is about a different incident: an alleged kidnapping attempt on Winfree’s child.

On Dec. 15, someone called the school claiming to be Winfree’s wife, according to what Winfree and Cohen said was the understanding at the time. The caller said to send Winfree’s child to meet them outside, and that they were not to interact with any school staff.

Winfree said he was concerned enough after putting the pieces together to call the police about this on Dec. 22. The police report closed the case on Dec. 28, noting that this was likely a misunderstanding, as the parent of another child at the school who had the same first name had called their child out of school at the same time as the phone call in question.

Cohen charges

The board brought charges against Cohen at a meeting Jan. 12, delivering them with an intent to terminate on Jan. 26.

Board members went into more detail of their concerns at the meeting as they brainstormed what to include in the charges. (Cohen has admitted to some of these, including breaking reassignment and having a relationship with a subordinate. He said the first was necessary out of a need for safety and that there were no policies against the second at the time.)

Yih summarized the charges in a Jan. 23 meeting as falling into groups of allegations around “inappropriate disclosure of confidential information, violation of administrative reassignments, failure to conduct duties, mishandling of contracts…poor relationship with the board of directors and some unprofessionalism.”

As seen in the comments around the original discussion, particularly an apology Yih made at the beginning, current employees disagreed with the choice to outline these in detail in a public session. To Wolfe and other employees, this discussion wasn’t an act of transparency, because it was both false and unnecessary.

Clip from the Jan. 12 meeting, where Yih introduces the item on making charges against Cohen.

Stating that Cohen broke the terms of his reassignment would have been enough, Wolfe said.

“He has areas to work on in his profile as a leader; we all do, frankly. We don’t all have to suffer through 45 minutes of public criticism,” she said. “Those weren’t discussions. It’s such a gross display of dehumanizing.”

“To learn in the board meeting that James apologized for not taking action in 2020 over things, feels very wrong to take it now. It's 2023. It's punishing us,” another employee wrote to the Daily Sun. “Clearly there have been improvements as all of Eli's staff working near him have stuck our necks out, spoken up, sent emails and said how wrong this is from the beginning. Ron's resignation and letter summed it up that it is wrong and they need to listen to us.”

Board members noted here and in later meetings, however, that Cohen had requested the discussion be done in public, so that is what they did.

When the board turned the floor to Cohen after discussing the potential charges at the meeting, he said he didn’t need to speak, out of concern for legal jeopardy.

“I am not going to deal with lies and whatever. I have legal counsel, we’re done,” he said. “You can continue as you wish.”

The motion passed with four members voting for it, and the two new members abstaining.

This was followed by an explanation of the hearing process from the board's legal counsel, which can be seen about 45 minutes into the recording

On Jan. 26, the board took the next step, moving to approve and deliver the charges against Cohen as well as an intent to terminate his employment. It also amended the terms of his reassignment, instructing him not to report to work or act on FALA's behalf until further notice.

He is currently still employed at the school. 

"I hope we can in due time deliver more information when we feel it is legally appropriate, good timing, that sort of thing," Yih said in discussion of the motion. "We're trying to be careful here -- in large part, legally. We have heard your concerns about transparency and we're working through that."

Bessler added: "We need to have that due process run through and I just ask for everyone's patience while we let that happen."

A hearing, which will not be open to the public, is set for today. Afterwards, the hearing officer will have 10 days to deliver a report with recommendations to the board, which it will then review in a public meeting.

Minutes of all the meetings, including summaries of public and board comments on the matter, are available on FALA’s website at flagarts.com/governance. Recorded versions and transcripts are available for meetings beginning Dec. 12.

Thu, 16 Feb 2023 05:58:00 -0600 Abigail Kessler en text/html https://azdailysun.com/news/local/education/fala-leadership-flagstaff-school-sees-impacts-as-administrator-positions-shift/article_13edf404-acb0-11ed-87e1-6ff445e48ff4.html
Killexams : Bob Cassilly’s nominees for Harford County Board of Education called ‘extremist’ by community leaders Harford County Board of Education logo. © Matt Button / The Aegis/Baltimore Sun/TNS Harford County Board of Education logo.

Harford County community leaders have raised concerns over Harford County Executive Bob Cassilly’s appointments to the Harford County Board of Education, calling them “extremists.”

Cassilly announced the appointments of Aaron Poynton, Theresa Kocher and Lauren Strauss to serve two-year terms, ending in 2025, in a news release Friday.

“I am pleased to appoint three highly qualified individuals who will focus on delivering a world-class education to Harford County children,” Cassilly said in the release. “I look forward to the County Council’s confirmation of my appointments of these outstanding citizens.”

These three new members will serve alongside six elected board members and replace three appointed by former Gov. Larry Hogan.

Poynton, a Joppatowne resident and parent of three Harford County Public Schools children, is an Army Special Operations veteran with four degrees, including a doctorate in public administration from the University of Baltimore, according to the county news release.

Kocher has multiple degrees including a master’s degree in systems management from the University of Florida, and also is a retired Army civilian analyst and a grandmother to Harford County Public Schools students. Strauss has two children at Havre de Grace High School, two bachelor’s degrees from James Madison University and is a Harford County court-appointed special advocate.

In an email newsletter sent out Saturday, the Harford County Democratic Central Committee called for the community to oppose Cassilly’s “extremist” nominees.

In a strongly worded response, Henry Gibbons, chair of the Harford County Democratic Central Committee, referred to the new board members as a “radical slate.”

“Cassilly has now shown where his true allegiance lies — with the radical fringe of his party,” Gibbons said.

Gibbons outlined specific ties that two of the three nominees have to controversial national groups, including Poynton’s alleged involvement with the Council for National Policy, a group of conservative and Republican activists, and with an organization headed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. A link in the newsletter led to an article Poynton posted on a blog last year, where Poynton’s bio states that he “previously served on Ron DeSantis’ national leadership team and finance committee, and was the chairman of the veterans’ coalition.”

“Mr. Poynter’s affiliations paint him as a hyperpartisan, right-wing ideologue who is unfit to steward the institution with which we entrust our children’s education,” Gibbons said in the newsletter.

Gibbons wrote that the nominations “are likely to promote a backward-looking agenda that undermines our public schools, disparages our teachers, further marginalizes vulnerable members of our communities, and fails Harford County students.”

“They’re increasingly pushing what I would consider to be a regressive agenda,” Gibbons said. “And that’s not something that we feel is right for Harford County.”

Gibbons urged residents to “demand that [Cassilly] return to his rich pool of applicants in search of less polarizing individuals.”

The Harford County NAACP sent a letter to the Harford County Council expressing concerns over the candidates’ philosophies. The council has not yet scheduled a vote on the Cassilly’s nominees.

“We’re concerned that these nominations don’t represent the community or its values,” said Vicki Jones, president of the Harford NAACP.

The letter, also posted on the Harford NAACP’s Facebook page, read: “Despite their professional accomplishments, there are MANY reasons why these three individuals are NOT the right nominees for the Board of Education.”

“We want people in this role that will support our children and not shame them,” Jones said.

The NAACP letter details concerns over the three nominees, including Poynton’s affiliation with the Council for National Policy, Strauss’ affiliation with the parental rights group Moms for Liberty, and Kocher’s history of sharing anti-mask and anti-vaccine sentiments on social media during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jones also expressed concerns over what these nominations could mean for the remainder of Cassilly’s term as county executive.

“It actually scares me if he believes that this is what’s best for our children, and for the county,” she said, “knowing that these ideas and views are so extreme of many of these groups and of these individuals.”

Sam Kahl, a public information officer for Cassilly, declined The Aegis’ request to speak to Poynton, Kocher and Strauss directly.

©2023 Baltimore Sun. Visit baltimoresun.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Tue, 07 Feb 2023 09:36:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/bob-cassilly-s-nominees-for-harford-county-board-of-education-called-extremist-by-community-leaders/ar-AA17dAVs
Killexams : Broward high schools remove book reported by parents’ group and labeled by DeSantis administration as pornographic

Broward school libraries will remove a sexually explicit teen graphic novel that Gov. Ron DeSantis administration categorized as “pornography.”

The book “Let’s Talk About It: The Teen’s Guide to Sex, Relationships, and Being a Human” was in the libraries of three schools, Fort Lauderdale High, Coral Glades High in Coral Springs and Nova High in Davie. It has now been removed.


“Once we received a complaint, we initiated our review process of the material. During the review, the book will be removed from our schools,” Broward school district spokesman John Sullivan said.

The complaint came from the Broward chapter of the socially conservative group Moms for Liberty, and its affiliate Moms for Libraries. “Good. It is pornography,” Bryan Griffin, DeSantis’ press secretary, tweeted Wednesday evening in response to the Broward School District’s removal of the book.


The book also was found in Orange and Seminole counties, Griffin said earlier Wednesday via email. The books the governor’s staff said were in Orange and Seminole county public schools have already been removed, officials said.

“Pornography in the classroom is a real and ongoing issue,” Griffin tweeted Tuesday. “From the book’s own description: ‘Covering relationships, friendships, gender, sexuality, anatomy, body image, safe sex, sexting, jealousy, rejection, sex education ... the first in graphic novel form.’”

“Let’s Talk About It” isn’t recommended for young children, according to publisher Penguin Random House’s website, which said it is appropriate for grades nine and higher. The graphic novel form apparently is an attempt to engage high-school-aged readers.

The book poses these questions, and provides answers, according to the publisher: “Is what I’m feeling normal? Is what my body is doing normal? Am I normal? How do I know what are the right choices to make? How do I know how to behave? How do I fix it when I make a mistake?” Penguin Random House said.

The publisher’s full description, which Griffin quoted, provides additional context: “How do you find the answers to all the questions you have about yourself, about your identity, and about your body? Let’s Talk About It provides a comprehensive, thoughtful, well-researched graphic novel guide to everything you need to know. Covering relationships, friendships, gender, sexuality, anatomy, body image, safe sex, sexting, jealousy, rejection, sex education, and more, Let’s Talk About It is the go-to handbook for every teen, and the first in graphic novel form.”

Penguin Random House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

A review in School Library Journal, which describes itself as “the premiere publication for librarians and information certified who work with children and teens,” praised the book.

“Don’t be afraid. Yes, there are drawings of naked bodies in this book (mostly in the “Body Image” section), and, yes, readers will learn about some of the ways the human body is wired for pleasure. And the detailed drawings of genitals are not solely in service of explaining how babies are made. But every panel of this book, every anatomical drawing, every conversation over tea or in a tent, is loaded with crucial information about consent, respect, consideration, and boundaries,” the review said.


The information is conveyed through “a magnificently varied cast of characters” who “receive reassurance, information, and practical advice.”

It’s one of several books DeSantis’ communications director, press secretary and deputy press secretary identified as problematic in a series of tweets Tuesday, saying the frequently challenged books “Gender Queer” and “It’s Perfectly Normal” also were found in other Florida schools.

In his email Wednesday, Griffin said “It’s Perfectly Normal” had been found in Broward schools, but didn’t identify “Let’s Talk About It” as being in Broward schools as Moms for Liberty reported.

“Let’s Talk About It was found in Orange and Seminole counties. Gender Queer was found in Collier and Orange counties. It’s Perfectly Normal was found in Broward and Duval counties. This Book is Gay was found in Marion and Orange counties,” Griffin wrote.

“It’s Perfectly Normal” was pulled last year from Broward schools after complaints from Moms for Liberty. Palm Beach County schools pulled “Gender Queer” after similar complaints there.

The free-speech organization PEN America’s nationwide Index of School Book Bans covering the 12 months from July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022, found 41 instances of “Gender Queer” being banned, including in Brevard, Orange, Osceola and Pinellas counties in Florida. “It’s Perfectly Normal” had seven bannings during that time, PEN America reported, including Polk and Walton counties in Florida. “Let’s Talk About It,” wasn’t on the PEN America list.


Previously, Broward’s Moms for Liberty chapter has identified more than 20 books that it wants removed from libraries. Parents, using a student’s ID, can log on to a school district system that allows them to find any book in Broward schools. It wasn’t immediately clear Wednesday afternoon if taxpayers without children in the schools could also see what books are available.

Some books have been pulled while others have been restricted to middle or high schools. Corie Pinero, a member of the group, emailed School Board members and district staff Monday evening about “Let’s Talk About,” including photos of graphic pictures showing sexual acts.

“I wanted to bring this additional book (attached) to your attention, it is currently in 3 of our high schools in Broward County,” she wrote. “This book needs to be removed by the end of this week. It is pornographic and very sexually explicit. It does not belong in our schools. As you can see there is no question that it violates Florida law.”

Pinero said she will be “checking again later this week to make sure that it has been removed from all of our schools in Broward County.”

A state rule adopted by the state board last month urges librarians to “err on the side of caution” when selecting books for their campuses. The rule stems from a new 2022 state law pushed by Republican leaders. Critics say it will have a “chilling effect” on educators and will allow those with conservative views to dictate what books all Florida students can select at their schools.

But supporters say the new law, rule and training provide much-needed scrutiny of books in media centers and classrooms and more ways for parents to learn what is on school shelves.


The book “Let’s Talk About It” was at one Seminole County high school — and was never checked out by a student, said Seminole County Public Schools spokesperson Katherine Crnkovich, in an email. The book, praised by the School Library Journal among others, was removed after someone filed a complaint about it in October, she said.

In Orange County, Superintendent Maria Vazquez said in January that “Let’s Talk About It” and “This Book is Gay” were removed for fear they did not comply with new state laws related to libraries. The book “Gender Queer: A Memoir” raised the same worries, but district staff had already removed it in 2021.

Only two to four copies of those three books were available to students in just a few of the 22 Orange County Public Schools’ high schools, according to district staff and a review of online library catalogs.

Stephana Ferrell, co-founder of the Florida Freedom to Read Project, formed to push back against book banning, said Tuesday’s tweets seem part of an effort to create a statewide “banned books list.” One shouldn’t claim books are pornographic simply because they contain descriptions or pictures of sexual acts, she said.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that sexual content does not automatically equate to obscenity as whether the material has “serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value” must also be considered. Ferrell noted the state’s own training material for school librarians makes the same point.

All the books have value and should be available at libraries, she added. If parents don’t want their children to access them, they can say so but neither they nor “big government” should dictate what other parents’ children read, she said.


“Of course, we as parents do not want pornography in our schools,” said Ferrell, a mother of two elementary school students in Orange County Public Schools.

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Opinions vary on whether the book “Let’s Talk About It” is appropriate for high school students. Kirkus Reviews, a widely cited website and magazine, gave the book a positive review.

The book starts with discussions of what sex is, varying types of sexual expression and the meaning of consent, the Kirkus review said, before going on to a chapter that “nonjudgmentally explores various kinds of relationships, including monogamous, polyamorous, open, and companionate. Subsequent chapters discuss gender and sexuality (with joyful and varied illustrations), body image (featuring loving representations of many body types), anatomy (including outstanding drawings that are inclusive of trans and intersex people), masturbation (with how-to ideas presented), and thorough coverage of birth control and STI prevention. The book is rounded out with chapters on what to think about before having sex; orgasms; ground rules for sexting; kinks, fantasies, and porn; jealousy and rejection (including guidance on recognizing abusive patterns); potential impacts on friendship; and more.”

The book cover of "Let's Talk About It, The Teen's Guide to Sex, Relationships, and Being a Human" by authors Erika Moen and Matthew Nolan. It has been removed from three Broward high school libraries pending a further review after a complaint from the conservative organization Moms for Liberty and its affiliate Moms for Libraries.

Moms for Liberties/Moms for Libraries included two attachments to its Monday email to the school district in which it demanded the book’s removal.

One attachment has three pages from the book in which cartoon characters are shown having sexual intercourse, female masturbation is depicted and two people are performing in a pornography video. “Watching porn uncritically can leave you with unrealistic expectations about what to do in the bedroom, so do yourself a favor and consume it with a hefty pinch of salt,” the text says.


The Moms for organizations also included a lengthy report from Book Look, which the liberal organization Media Matters for America reported is “crowdsourcing parents’ book reviews and using them as justification for literature bans in public schools.”

Book Look’s “Summary of Concerns” reports, “This book contains obscene, sexual illustrations and commentary; obscene sexual nudity; profanity; and alternate gender ideologies.”

Wed, 15 Feb 2023 05:03:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/education/fl-ne-graphic-books-schools-20230215-gvfqgfibmjdbnknzer7b6flaka-story.html
Killexams : Maryland Gov. Wes Moore promised to deliver Latinos power in his administration. Here’s where things stand.

Last November, Democratic state Del. Joseline A. Peña-Melnyk said she’d never seen a candidate as dedicated to engaging Latino voters as her party’s gubernatorial nominee, Wes Moore.

As the Moore administration takes shape, her enthusiasm over the inclusion of Latino voices is evident.


“The cabinet is very diverse and you can see he has been very intentional about it, which is really wonderful and a great example for many other people to follow,” Peña-Melnyk said. “I know that this transition team has emphasized bringing our community to the table, every community to the table.”

Peña-Melnyk, who represents parts of Anne Arundel and Prince George’s counties, is also vice chair of the Maryland Legislative Latino Caucus.


She said in November that Moore planned to appoint Latinos to both his transition team and his cabinet. It seems he’s delivered on that front.

On Jan. 12, the Moore transition team announced two key appointments: Dr. Laura Herrera Scott, who is Puerto Rican, as secretary of health and Rafael López, who is first-generation Mexican American, as secretary of human services.

Dr. Laura Herrera Scott speaks at a conference sponsored by Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Both are serving as acting secretaries as they await confirmation by the Senate. Its Executive Nominations Committee recommended Wednesday that the Senate confirm Herrera Scott. López is in a group of nominees that the committee will consider at a meeting Monday.

Herrera Scott would be the first Latina to hold her position, she said. López would replace Lourdes Padilla, who was born in Puerto Rico, as secretary of human services.

“I think about the trajectory of the growth of the Latine population not just in Maryland, but the country. So many of us have the honor and the privilege of being those firsts,” López said. “We want to make sure that when you are those firsts, that we are opening the door wide open for so many others, to both learn from our own stories, but also share the richness and the privilege and the honor of serving in these positions.”

Peña-Melnyk and other prominent Latino voices were on the transition team, which made recommendations for cabinet appointments. She was a member of the team’s steering committee.

Gustavo Torres, who identifies as Black and Latino, was a co-chair of its jobs and workforce development executive policy committee. He’s also the president of CASA in Action, which endorsed the Democratic primary campaign last year of Tom Perez. The organization endorsed Moore in September in the general election.

Torres said he was “very excited” about the appointments of Herrera Scott and López, who he said are “two strong Latino leaders who are going to make a difference for all Marylanders.”


In early January, Torres said the way to judge whether the Latino community would have a voice in the Moore administration would be through cabinet appointments.

“I believe that the governor delivered for our community and we are ready to work,” Torres said in a follow-up interview Jan. 27, after Moore had nominated 20 of his 24 agency secretaries.

Torres said priorities for the Latino community include health care for all, jobs, and affordable and safe housing.

When asked about making sure all Marylanders have medical care, Herrera Scott said she’s assessing the health care landscape and what barriers residents face, especially those who do not have English as a primary language.

“We have to look at the whole population and I don’t yet have a good sense of all that we’re able to do,” said Herrera Scott, who is a doctor, an Army reservist and a former health care executive.

According to the Maryland Health Care for All! Coalition, the uninsured population in Maryland has fallen from 15% in 1999 to 6% in 2022. Last year, the General Assembly passed the Healthy Babies Equity Act, which expanded Medicaid prenatal and postpartum care to all pregnant people regardless of immigration status.


The acting secretary said her priorities so far include health care access, addressing a crisis in providing behavioral health treatment and identifying trusted partners in the community. She also wants to focus on translation services and training to reduce implicit bias. A December report by two Baltimore-based social justice groups said children from area immigrant families face language barriers that impede access to mental health services.

Herrera Scott said that just being the secretary could make a difference. She said that, for instance, it goes a long way with the Latino community if the doctor encouraging them to get flu shots or get regular checkups looks like them.

She added that she wants to be mindful of subcultures within the Latino community, such as different countries of origin and Spanish dialects.

“Diversity brings diversity of thought, diversity of opinions, diversity of needs that need to be addressed,” Herrera Scott said. “Having a seat at the table to represent the Latino community I think is incredibly important, and it’s certainly not a job I’m going to take lightly.”

The state agency López heads works with people — such as those with low incomes and people who are disabled or ill — who need food and homes. It also oversees the Maryland Social Services Administration, which works with children in need.

He is a former nonprofit executive and was commissioner of the federal Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration on Children, Youth and Families from 2015 to 2023.


Maryland cabinet secretaries’ annual salaries averaged $192,000 in the fiscal year that ended June 30. The health secretary and the human services secretary were each paid $193,595.

Moore has said his cabinet will be the most diverse in Maryland’s history.

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Former Gov. Larry Hogan pushed for more diverse hires in the state during his tenure, such as when he pressured an education reform panel to reopen applications for more diverse nominees because the initial nominees did not represent Latino communities and some rural jurisdictions. In 2017, he unveiled policy initiatives that aimed to draw more girls and people of color into computer science.

During his reelection campaign in 2018, he faced criticism from Democratic gubernatorial nominee Ben Jealous. He said Hogan’s cabinet did not reflect the state’s gender and racial diversity. At the time, six of Hogan’s 23 cabinet members were women. A spokesperson at the time told The Washington Post that the Republican had made 5,000 government appointments by then, 44% of them women and nearly 30% who were minorities.

López said he and Herrera Scott have become fast friends and he remembers how refreshing she found it that he was able to pronounce her name correctly on the first try.

“[My] first observation of working with cabinet colleagues has been a joy, to find other people who want to both move swiftly, quickly, efficiently and do right by people. I love that. I love that energy,” López said.


“It’s beautiful to look across the room, to see people from so many different backgrounds from all over the state of Maryland and beyond. Their, both their own, upbringings are diverse, how they came into their roles are diverse. And I think all those things strengthen the points of view and perspective that will shape the governor’s thinking around how we will bring to life his vision.”

Torres’ work on the transition team ended Feb. 4, but his time advocating for Latinos and immigrants hasn’t.

“The Moore administration is going to elevate the Latine community,” Torres said. “But also, we are going to be ready in case that is not going, in case that is not happening. CASA, that is part of what we’re doing — elevate our community, working with our members, mobilize and fight for justice and dignity. And we are going to keep doing this, regardless of who is the administration.”

Sun, 12 Feb 2023 22:00:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.baltimoresun.com/politics/bs-md-pol-moore-latino-appointments-20230213-fkldozw6wbf5ta5tyeq5tuvudi-story.html
Killexams : Things to do this week: Community kitchen, education programs and more

Looking for something to do this week? Here are some of the events happening in Clark and Champaign counties:

Urbana Library Activities

The Champaign County Library, 1060 Scioto St., will host activities this week:

Winter Story Time will be held today at 9:30 a.m. for children six months to 2.5 years and at 10:30 a.m. for children ages 2.5 to 5, and Barks and Books will be held at 4 p.m. today for children to read with a furry friend.

Community Kitchen

The High Street United Methodist Church, 230 E. High St., will host a central community kitchen from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. today, serving warm meals indoors. For more information, call the Church Office at 937-322-2527.

Alzheimer’s Education Programs

The Alzheimer’s Association Miami Valley Chapter will offer two virtual education programs on how to communicate with your loved one through the stages of dementia and how the transition to the middle stage of Alzheimer’s disease looks for caregivers.

The programs, free to the community on Zoom, include Effective Communication Strategies from 6 to 7 p.m. tonight, and Living with Alzheimer’s for Care Partners: Middle Stage from 1 to 3 p.m. on Wednesday.

Pre-registration is required. To register for tonight’s session, call the Alzheimer’s Association’s 24/7 Helpline at 800-272-3900. To register for Wednesday’s session, contact helkinslopez@alz.org or 937-610-7011. Instructions on how to join the webinars will be emailed following registration.

ExploreShortage of Black teachers persists in region’s schools

Homebuyer Class

The Neighborhood Housing Partnership of Greater Springfield will host an in-person Homebuyer Education class from 6 to 8 p.m. today.

The course is taught by NHP staff and local experts. subjects include steps in the homebuying process, building good credit, budgeting, home inspections, applying for a mortgage loan, working with a relator, avoiding predatory lenders and more.

The class fee is $50 per household. To register, email your name, number, number of people in your household and address to information@springfieldnhp.org, or call 937-322-4623.

Food Pantry

Christ Church Food Pantry, 409 E. High St., will host a food pantry distribution from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., or until all food is distributed, on Wednesday. Clients should bring valid identification.

Break For Health Webinar

Community Health Foundation’s free Break for Health one-hour webinar will be held at noon on Wednesday.

The subject is Aging with Awesomeness. The discussion will cover subjects such as how to face the challenges and opportunities of growing older, how to access resources, tips for caregivers and how to excel at aging gracefully.

The panel of experts includes an attorney, long-term care facility administrator, older adults and their adult children and an older adult advocate. Nettie Carter Smith of Rocking Horse Community Health Center continues as moderator.

For more information or to register, contact Joan Elder at 937-523-7007.

Tutor Workshop

The Warder Literacy Center will host a volunteer tutor workshop from 2 to 5 p.m. on Wednesday at 137 E. High St. There are two adults, 12 children and several ESL adults from other countries waiting for a tutor. To volunteer, call 937-323-8617.

ExploreSpringfield dance competition to highlight Black dance culture, artistic excellence

Children and the Internet Presentation

Detective David Arriaga of the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force will speak to parents and guardians at 6 p.m. on Wednesday at Risen Christ Lutheran Church, 41 E. Possum Road.

ICAC is a national network of 61 coordinated task forces, representing over 5,400 federal, state, and local law enforcement, dedicated to educating, investigating, prosecuting, and developing effective responses to internet crimes against children. As children’s knowledge of technology and internet use expands, crime against children via the internet also expands.

Arriaga will discuss the social media apps children use and how they might hide their activities from their parents. The free presentation is designed for parents of children that have access to a smartphone, computer, tablet, or gaming device with internet access. For more information, call Rebecca Reid at 937-323-3688 x11.

Clark County Crows Program

The Heritage Center will host a free virtual program, “The Crows of Clark County” at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.

Anyone who has visited downtown Springfield in the evenings during the fall and winter is aware of the many crows that roost throughout the area. For years downtown businesses have struggled to keep the cawing crowds at bay.

Clark County Historical Society Education Director Donna Lewis will share information about crows and help us understand why they behave the way they do. The program will also look back at different downtown efforts to scare the crows away, other bird “friends” from the past, other areas with similar issues, and hopefully find ways to understand and appreciate these creatures.

Registration for this Zoom program can be found at https://cutt.ly/cccrows.

Jane Austen Books Event

The Margaret Ermarth Institute for the Humanities at Wittenberg University will host “Why Always Jane? The Enduring Appeal of Jane Austen” with Robin Inboden at 6 p.m. on Thursday in the Gaier Room at the Clark County Public Library.

Mon, 13 Feb 2023 15:21:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.springfieldnewssun.com/news/things-to-do-this-week-community-kitchen-education-programs-and-more/24IVUV6VRRFDJNV3VIVTY4DZNE/
Killexams : How a child of Paraguayan immigrants became 1st Latina leader of Valley of the Sun United Way

Valley of the Sun United Way's first Latina CEO, Carla Vargas Jasa, poses for a portrait at the VSUW offices on Jan. 20, 2023, in Phoenix, Ariz.

Valley of the Sun United Way has been serving Maricopa County since 1927, tackling systemic inequities that lead to issues in health, housing, education and employment.

Maricopa County is home to many communities of color, but none larger than the Latino community, which represents 32% of the county’s population, per latest Census data.

So when Carla Vargas Jasa was named the organization’s first Latina president and CEO in 2019, it dawned on her how impactful that feat was — for her and her community.

“I didn't even know that until I read the press release that the group had drafted and asked me to approve before it was sent out announcing me coming onboard,” Vargas Jasa told The Arizona Republic. “I was like, really? So yeah, it did surprise me and certainly was an honor.”

Since being appointed as the president of the organization, Vargas Jasa has implemented goals and strategies that aim to address the needs of all Maricopa County residents, especially when so many identify as Latinos and immigrants. She sees them, she said, in a way that only a child of immigrants can.

Settling down in the United States

Vargas Jasa’s parents migrated to the United States from Paraguay when her mother was pregnant with her. She was born while her parents were living in student housing at Penn State University, where her father was working on his doctorate degree.

Her parents had been blacklisted from their home country of Paraguay. Vargas Jasa’s father was a leader of the student movement against the dictatorship of Alfredo Stroessner in Paraguay, the longest-standing dictatorship of the 20th century in the Global South.

After being jailed and tortured for leading protests against the dictatorship, Vargas Jasa’s parents left the country as soon as they married.

Once Vargas Jasa was born, her parents began their careers. Her father alternated between being a professor of business administration and working in that industry; her mother became an English teacher. Despite her mother not being as fluent in English when she first arrived in the U.S., Vargas Jasa said it became a priority for her to learn and instill that in her daughter.

“She didn't speak much English when we came here,” Vargas Jasa said. “She had studied it, but she made a point of teaching English first, knowing that they likely wouldn't be able to return to Paraguay and wanting me to be able to function in the society.”

Vargas Jasa didn’t learn to speak Spanish fluently until her family moved to Mexico for a couple of years while her father was working in Guadalajara.

Vargas Jasa’s father relocated for jobs a few times during her childhood. Vargas Jasa moved to Tucson twice, where she lived while her father worked at University of Arizona. She permanently moved to metro Phoenix in 2019.

Finding her calling

After graduating from El Dorado High School in Orange County, California, Vargas Jasa went on to earn her bachelor’s degree in political science from UC Berkeley. Her goal was to become a human rights lawyer, but after working at a law firm during college, she decided to pursue a career in the nonprofit sector.

“I shifted my thinking about wanting to work in the nonprofit sector to really influence issues that I cared about that I realized were human rights issues,” Vargas Jasa said. “Like people being able to have a safe home to live in and having access to education no matter where it was that they grew up, and being able to be healthy and having a good job. And I realized that the nonprofit sector was the best place to do that work and ultimately made that transition.”

Vargas Jasa remained in California for a few years and used the legal skills she learned during college to work as a legal advocate at a domestic violence shelter organization, assisting women in filing restraining orders and guiding them in other legal procedures.

Valley of the Sun United Way's first Latina CEO, Carla Vargas Jasa, poses for a portrait at the VSUW offices on Jan. 20, 2023, in Phoenix, Ariz.

In 1998, Vargas Jasa joined Orange County United Way as vice president of investor relations. She later became senior vice president of community impact and chief operating officer in 2017. In September 2019, the organization named her president of the Arizona chapter.

According to Vargas Jasa, her move to Arizona and to Valley of the Sun United Way was inspired by her time spent in Tucson, as well as a long-distance relationship-turned-marriage that she maintained for five years. Vargas Jasa was able to learn more about Arizona’s different communities and the issues they faced because her now-husband held a job in Scottsdale and she’d visit him every weekend.

Establishing leadership during the pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic started less than a year after Vargas Jasa began her leadership role in Phoenix. Vargas Jasa said that despite the hardships of the pandemic, Valley of the Sun United Way was able to continue working smoothly because they already had a hybrid work environment set up.

With that system already in place, Vargas Jasa and her team were able to launch a COVID-19 response fund within a week and partnered with Arizona Community Foundation to distribute more than $400,000 to nonprofits across the Valley. The response fund ultimately raised $3 million.

“It felt like every day we would wake up and not know what was going to be going on that day,” Vargas Jasa said. “And so, you know, that was hard. It's hard for anybody, right? It was hard for me too but you know, you need to roll with it. And I feel like I really stepped into my authentic leadership style during that time frame.”

Vargas Jasa and her team launched MC2026 in March 2021, a five-year plan for Mighty Change in Maricopa County. Some of those goals include:

  • Decreasing food insecurity by 50% by 2026.

  • Increasing the number of individuals with access to affordable health care by 100,000 by 2026.

  • Reducing homelessness by 50% by 2026.

Valley of the Sun United Way received a $25 million gift from Amazon co-founder and philanthropist MacKenzie Scott in December 2020, the largest single donation ever received by the organization. Vargas Jasa told the Republic that receiving the gift from Scott was one of her proudest moments as a leader.

Being the first Latina President and CEO of Valley of the Sun United Way, Vargas Jasa said that she feels the community has been very receptive to her and that her background as a Latina woman helps provide insight into the community that she serves.

“I have seen firsthand a lot of the challenges that people deal with in their home countries and coming here, and yeah, I do think that that's been helpful.” Vargas Jasa said. “I'm also an only child of two immigrants who again have their own trauma and issues that they dealt with both in their childhoods and coming here and I hope that people understand that and see that and know that I see them.”

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Becoming the 1st Latina leader of Valley of the Sun United Way

Sun, 12 Feb 2023 00:00:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.yahoo.com/news/child-paraguayan-immigrants-became-1st-140013925.html
Killexams : Horoscope Today, 13 February 2023: Check here Astrological prediction for all sun signs Horoscope Today, 13 February 2023: Check here Astrological prediction for all sun signs © Provided by India Today Horoscope Today, 13 February 2023: Check here Astrological prediction for all sun signs

Dear Aries, don't make decisions in haste. Cancer, you will feel more positive than usual. Gemini, be emotionally strong. Wondering what your luck has in store for you today? Check the daily horoscope for Aries, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Sagittarius, Aquarius, Capricorn, Pisces.  

Aries Daily Horoscope:

You will move forward in your career. Will increase interest in leadership work. Property-related matters will be positive. Business will be better than expected. Stay true to your word. There will be a feeling of taking everyone along. You will focus on your skills. Increase focus. There will be intimacy in friendships. Cooperation with loved ones will remain. Will be excited about a good news. Don't take decisions in haste. Contacts will be better. Sweetness will increase with marriage. Durability will gain strength. Will be active. Read more.

Taurus Daily Horoscope:

Will maintain balance in various tasks. The employed people will be able to Strengthen the expected performance. Avoid taking risks. Will be cautious in transactions. There is a possibility of being cheated. Don't get into things in a hurry. You will have faith in yourself. Hard work will get results. Don't be wary of white-collar people. Increase health awareness. Will move forward with the cooperation of colleagues. Will show patience in important matters. You will maintain a good speed at work. Read more.

Gemini Daily Horoscope: 

Will win the trust of friends and colleagues. Will keep the promise. Will be cautious in financial transactions. Will do better in exam. Your mind will be engaged in study and teaching. Will listen to elders. Will increase interest in family matters. Everyone will be affected by your behaviour. Will be ahead in efforts. Mutual trust will remain. There will be an atmosphere of joy all around. Opportunities for excursion or entertainment will increase. Will spend pleasant moments with friends. Auspiciousness will increase in important matters. The company of elders will increase enthusiasm. Read more.

Cancer Daily Horoscope:

You will think of everyone. Work together in the family. Pay attention to the features. Management plans will gain momentum. Personal subjects will remain of interest. Will listen to the close ones. There will be energy in relationships. Proposals will get support. Keep moving forward with ease. Income will be on the rise. Avoid arguments and arrogance. Abandon selfishness and narrow-mindedness. Will promote privacy. Happiness will increase. The company of friends will increase. Read more.

Leo Daily Horoscope:

Will be influential in commercial matters. Will maintain positivity. Will fulfil the responsibilities well. Will be ahead in cooperation. You will bond with your siblings. Closeness with siblings will increase. There will be cooperation of blood relatives. Act with courage. There will be an emphasis on communication. Proceed with humility. You will be patient. Will speak on occasion. You may be involved in numerous activities. Will pay attention to the work of public welfare. Will be interested in numerical work. Complete various tasks on time. Read more.

Virgo Daily Horoscope:

Will keep harmony with everyone in the family. Will take an interest in the collection of valuables. Will keep pace in important decisions. There will be joy in the family. Attractive offers will be received. Blood relations will get stronger. You will maintain courage. Will take everyone along. The arrival of guests will continue. Will keep an emphasis on grandeur. Will carry forward the traditional work. Will join various events. The number of occasions for celebration will rise. Wealth will be on the rise. Confidence will remain high. You may go on a trip. Read more.

Libra Daily Horoscope:

Ease will be maintained in emotional matters. There will be an increase in credibility and respect. Will join the creative work. Important matters will gain momentum. There will be a communication of auspiciousness. Will keep moving towards the goal. There will be an increase in credibility and respect. Will get the best offers. Profit will be as expected. Will get suitable offers. You will get the desired results. Happiness will increase. Will get cooperation with close ones. The success percentage will be high. Speech and behavior will get stronger. Will carry forward various tasks. Read more.

Scorpio Daily Horoscope:

Will pay attention to the work of investment. Will be influenced by the behavior and thoughts of relatives. Emphasize order. Avoid haste. Will pursue professional efforts. Make transactions better and clearer. Will pay attention to the interview. Will be interested in the affairs of a distant country. There will be a meeting with the best people. Working opportunities will remain. Your plans will gain momentum. Don't show off. Will maintain control over expenses. Will be influential. Will win the trust of close ones. Will work with great thinking. Will keep a routine. Read more.

Sagittarius Daily Horoscope:

Will keep harmony in economic and commercial work. Sweetness will increase in matters of the mind. Will increase focus on the target. Stalled matters will gain momentum. Will be patient in the transaction. You will be interested in teaching. The profit percentage will remain on the mend. Will complete the work with caution. You will be successful in negotiating agreements. Will stay active in career and business. Will take important decisions. Will move ahead with the preparation. Demonstrate versatility. There will be influence all around. Read more.

Capricorn Daily Horoscope:

There will be a possibility of profit in the subjects of administration. The cooperation of the responsible person will remain. Economic profit will continue to rise. Be faithful to your work. Will follow the rules. Counterparts and officers will be allies. Your performance will be as expected. Career and business matters will be fine. Get involved in professional activities. Shared relations will improve. Will keep a check on your emotions. There will be a sense of competition. Will work with clarity. Will have a sense of cooperation. Read more.

Aquarius Daily Horoscope:

You will feel lucky. The results of pending schemes will improve. Goals will be accomplished faster. Desired work will be done with the help of elders. Personal matters will gain momentum. The percentage of compatibility will remain high. Will maintain an all-round remarkable performance. Business will be better. Have a sense of cooperation. Make the most of opportunities. The economic side will remain strong. Emphasis will be placed on management topics. Coordination with people will increase. Will get the support of friends and colleagues. There will be a meeting with the seniors. Read more.

Pisces Daily Horoscope:

Do not get into greed and temptation. Family work will be done. Increase closeness with the responsible person. Be alert in systematic activities. Be comfortable with transactions. Health may remain uneasy. Will move forward with patience. Will adopt discipline and compliance. Avoid situations of debate, dispute and indecision. Work will be done with understanding and alertness. Will move forward easily. Follow the rules and regulations. Personal matters will remain in favor. Traditions will be followed. Follow your diet and focus on your health. Read more

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