Friday, December 20, 2013

CTE Health Occupations students explore future professions at MMCC Doan Center and Morey Courts


The Health Occupations program from the Clare-Gladwin Career Center visited the Doan Center of Mid Michigan Community College (MMCC) in Mount Pleasant last month to view the facilities available for health professions degree programs.  

During a tour lead by MMCC Physical Therapy Assistant Program Director Amanda Wismer, students explored the nursing labs, physical therapy assistant labs, and medical assisting and pharmacy technician classrooms. Following the tour, the class received an introduction to preventative medicine through exercise at Morey Courts Recreation Center.

“Students heard from the Morey Courts staff about the history of the facility, and then broke into groups to try various types of exercise,” said Erin Lenhart, Clare-Gladwin Career Center Health Occupations instructor. “Each group sampled high intensity interval training (HIIT), TRX suspension training, and had a brief nutrition class. Before leaving, students also heard from fitness professionals at Morey Courts Recreation Center about how they started their careers in fitness and where they plan to go in the future. A huge thank you to Amanda Wismer of MMCC, Morey Courts Fitness Director Kelvin Bolar Jr., and Clare-Gladwin Career Center Counselor Margie Dill for coordinating the trip for us.”


Health Occupation is one of nine career and technical education programs offered to local high school juniors and seniors through the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of Clare-Gladwin RESD. Students spend half of their school day at their CTE class and the other half at their local high school.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Santa and his reindeer share some holiday spirit at the Clare-Gladwin Area School

Santa and his reindeer made a special stop at the Clare-Gladwin Area School last week to spread some holiday cheer.

Officers from the Reserve Division of the Clare County Sheriff’s Office were also in attendance to hand out the gifts they provided to every student, which included a plush toy, a football, or a makeup kit.    


“The visit from Santa and his reindeer was a great way to celebrate the season with the students,” said Area School Principal Mike Simon. “We can’t thank Santa and his helpers enough for their generosity year after year!”



Clare-Gladwin Area School classroom learns basic color theory from CTE students


Students from the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s Culinary Arts and Graphic Arts programs teamed up this month to teach students from the Clare-Gladwin Area School about basic color theory.

The career and technical education (CTE) students used cupcakes, icing, and food coloring to share their lesson with the kids in Rachel DuMond’s Area School class. The local high school juniors and seniors demonstrated how to make different colors by mixing icing and food coloring. After the cupcakes were decorated with the appropriate color, the treats were formed into two color wheels, offering a visual way for the Area School students to learn the basic color theory. 

"Getting to frost cupcakes with the kids was a rewarding experience,” said Graphic Arts student Kaitlyn Corell. “The best part of the whole day was getting to eat the cupcakes with the kids and seeing the joy on their faces.”


Culinary Arts and Graphic Arts are two of nine career and technical education programs offered to local high school juniors and seniors through the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of Clare-Gladwin RESD. Students spend half of their school day at their CTE class and the other half at their local high school.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Culinary Arts students learn from industry mentors at ProStart Symposium


Four Clare-Gladwin Career Center students learned culinary and restaurant management skills first-hand from industry mentors during the Michigan Restaurant Association’s ProStart Student Symposium, held last month at Sysco, the event’s sponsor, in Canton, Mich.
Joined by their peers from around the state, the CTE Culinary Arts students were split into two groups; culinary and management.
Jaime Phillips of Beaverton and Chelsie Eichorn of Farwell participated in the culinary group. “Jaime and Chelsie worked in groups with industry mentors and created a three course meal using mystery basket items, such as whole salmon, orzo, and mushrooms,” said CTE Culinary Arts Instructor Heidi Rocha.
The management group included Heather Baker of Gladwin and Kelsey Kula of Beaverton. According to Rocha, the management students worked with mentors on a case study and presented their response to the study to the more than 150 people in attendance at the symposium.
“The ProStart Symposium is a very rewarding and worthwhile opportunity for the culinary arts students,” said Rocha. “I am extremely proud of them for their demonstration of critical thinking, dedication to their tasks, and creativity. They were a wonderful representation of the Clare-Gladwin Career Center.”
The Culinary Arts program is one of nine career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to local high school juniors and seniors through the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of Clare-Gladwin RESD. Students spend half of their school day at their CTE class and the other half at their local high school.
For more information about the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, please visit www.cgresd.net

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Hundreds of local high school seniors apply to college during College Application Week

In early November, a total of 534 college applications were submitted to both community colleges and four-year universities across the country by high school seniors from Beaverton, Clare, Coleman, and Farwell as part of the third annual College Application Week.

The Clare-Gladwin Career Center, Mid Michigan Community College, and Educational Talent Search joined nearly 200 high schools around the state during Nov. 4-8 in assisting their local graduating seniors in completing and submitting at least one application to community colleges, independent colleges and universities, and state universities in which they were interested. 

“We feel our first attempt at hosting College Application Week was a success,” said Clare-Gladwin Career Center Counselor Margie Dill. “The goal of the program was to give students the tools and guidance they needed to successfully apply to college. We hope this process has given kids additional confidence and drive to continue to submit applications - in turn providing them with more options for their futures.”

Established in 2005, College Application Week is a national campaign committed to the common goal of increasing the percentage of first-generation and low-income students to pursue a post-secondary education. Last year, 73 Michigan high schools participated, helping seniors complete more than 8,500 applications. Michigan College Application Week is sponsored by the Michigan College Access Network.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Full and partial scholarship preschool opportunities still available; High quality programs offered up to four days per week


The Quality Preschool Partnership (QPP) of Clare and Gladwin counties continues to enroll local children, ages 3-5, in free and reduced cost high quality preschool programs for the 2013-2014 school year.

As a joint recruitment effort by Mid Michigan Community Action Agency, NEMCSA Head Start, Harrison Elementary, and Gladwin Elementary, the Quality Preschool Partnership ensures an efficient preschool application process for all eligible families in Clare and Gladwin counties.  Those who apply will be referred to either Head Start or Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP).

Enrolled children have the opportunity to attend full-day or part-day programs four days per week.  
While full scholarships for Head Start and GSRP are available to those who meet federal and state guidelines, including income, partial scholarships for the high quality preschool programs are also offered to those who exceed the income limits.

“A sliding fee scale exists for children whose parents surpass the income requirements, but face other challenges that could keep their child from attending a preschool program,” said Kendra Curtiss-Tomaski, director of early childhood and family services at Clare-Gladwin RESD (the QPP’s implementing agency). “Health, family, and financial stressors are just a few of the many situations taken into consideration when determining if one is eligible for a partial scholarship. We encourage all families interested in a high quality preschool experience to call us at 386-8075 so we can help identify your best next steps.”

Research has shown that during the first five years of life, important skill sets such as emotional intelligence, motor development, visual recognition, early sound recognition, and music are optimally developed, providing the foundation for learning throughout life. “These findings illustrate that a high quality early childhood education is essential to a child’s future success,” said Curtiss-Tomaski.

For more information or to request an enrollment packet, call 989-386-8075.  

Clare-Gladwin Career Center automotive students learn about future education opportunities at Mid Michigan Community College


Beaverton and Gladwin High School students of the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s Automotive Technology program recently spent an afternoon exploring higher education opportunities in the automotive field at Mid Michigan Community College (MMCC). 

Following a discussion with MMCC Auto Instructor Dave Demski, the high school juniors and seniors took part in the college’s engine repair course, receiving further hands-on experience as they worked alongside current Mid Michigan Community College students.

“I was impressed with the equipment at Mid,” said Clare-Gladwin Career Center student Clay Bowen.

Chris Pellerito, MMCC admissions representative, also provided guidance on the current application and financial aid processes. 

Automotive Technology is one of nine career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to local high school juniors and seniors at the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of Clare-Gladwin RESD. Students spend half of their regular school day in CTE and the other half at their local high school. For more information, please visit www.cgresd.net.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Nov. 11-15 is National School Psychology Week


Nov. 11 – 15 is National School Psychology Week, recognizing the vital role that school psychologists play in the personal and academic development of the community’s children.

The school psychologists employed by Clare-Gladwin RESD, serving the students of Beaverton, Clare, Farwell, Gladwin, and Harrison school districts, are specially trained to deliver a continuum of mental health services and academic supports that lower barriers to teaching and learning.

“School Psychologists work to identify learning and behavior problems that interfere with school success,” said Jan Weckstein, Clare-Gladwin RESD assistant superintendent for special education. “They're trained in both psychology and education and collaborate with others to help improve academic and social performance for children.  Their role is crucial to the healthy development of students.”
                       
Clare-Gladwin RESD thanks the local school psychologists for their service:

Jay Kirchheimer - Beaverton Rural Schools
Noelle Konkel - Farwell Area Schools
Julie McNeilly - Harrison Community Schools
Anna O'Dell - Gladwin Elementary School and Clare-Gladwin Area School
Marsha Shields - Gladwin Community Schools and Beaverton Rural Schools
Matt Smith - Harrison Community Schools and Gladwin Community Schools
Joann Smylie - Clare Public Schools

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Local preschool students participate in Storytime

Two Harrison preschool classrooms recently joined together for Storytime, a monthly program provided by the Harrison Public Library. Children from Becky Nobis’ Early Childhood Special Education class of Clare-Gladwin RESD spent the afternoon with Cindy Scare’s Great Start Readiness Preschool class of Harrison Community Schools.

“Storytime is a great opportunity to bring the community into the schools, as well as to stress the importance of literacy and how it can be so much fun,” said Scare. “Storytime is a wonderful asset to our early childhood program and we absolutely love it!”

According to Nobis, another benefit of the shared afternoon was that it allowed her students with special needs to experience quality inclusion time with their peers. “It is important for the children in special education to have good role models during play, and in speech, sitting, and attending,” she said. “This is also positive for the children enrolled in the regular preschool because they learn that we are all unique and it helps to build compassion and understanding of others.” 

More than 530 local children celebrate National Food Day

On Oct. 24, more than 530 children in the Clare-Gladwin RESD S.P.A.R.K.S. program, local preschool classrooms, and local daycare programs celebrated National Food Day; an annual initiative that aims to promote safe, healthful diets, and supports sustainable organic farming.


Made possible by the Clare-Gladwin Health Improvement Planning Committee (a subgroup of Together We Can) in collaboration with the Clare-Gladwin Great Start Collaborative, Clare-Gladwin RESD, and MidMichigan Health, this year’s Food Day focused on food education. Activities and lessons incorporated in the event encouraged children to know where their food comes from, how to cook meals, and how doing so will give them a big advantage when it comes to being healthy and avoiding health problems in the future.

Participants received a Food Day activity book, and each classroom and daycare program was given a copy of a book developed by the Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture titled, “The Two Bite Club,” which teaches kids to try foods from each food group.

Additionally, some groups explored the mission of National Food Day further with hands-on activities.
Children in various daycare programs created a pumpkin dip and integrated locally grown pumpkins into an art project, while S.P.A.R.K.S. students cooked multiple dishes that incorporated locally grown, healthy fruits or vegetables. For example, students from the Harrison Elementary S.P.A.R.K.S. site made homemade salsa from the tomatoes they planted themselves in the school garden last summer.

“National Food Day helped to educate our students on three things – healthy food can be economical, easily accessible, and it can be found locally,” said S.P.A.R.K.S. Director Keri Retzloff. “With our county health ranking being among the lowest in the state, S.P.A.R.K.S. is trying to promote and educate students on living a healthier lifestyle, including more exercise and eating a healthy diet. This day fit in nicely!” 

The students’ recipes will be used in a future S.P.A.R.K.S. cookbook.  Funds raised from cookbook sales will be used toward a backpack program that addresses food security for children in Clare and Gladwin counties.  

“We participated in National Food Day because we thought the information would be wonderful for the young children in our community,” said Sarah Kile of the Clare-Gladwin Health Improvement Planning Committee. “This year’s celebration was a big success and we look forward to bringing the program to kids again next year.” 

Cat in the Hat and friends visit Area School

Clare-Gladwin RESD Superintendent Sheryl Presler, Assistant Superintendent for Special Education Jan Weckstein, and Assistant Superintendent for General Education Deb Snyder appeared at the Clare-Gladwin Area School as Cat in the Hat, Thing 1, and Thing 2 last week to kick off the students’ Halloween celebrations.

For the second consecutive year, the educational leaders agreed to dress in costume if contributions made by RESD staff members toward this year’s United Way campaign met the $4,400 goal set by campaign leader Cheri Umbarger. A total of $5,170 was collected.

“I was very impressed with the generosity shown by employees again this year,” said Umbarger. “It’s a great example of how combining resources can result in a big impact. Plus, Sheryl, Deb, and Jan are great sports!”

The costumes were voted on by staff members. Presler, Snyder, and Weckstein spent the morning passing out healthy snacks to the students and then causing some mischief at Central Office.



From the left, CGRESD Assistant Superintendent for General Education Deb Snyder, Superintendent Sheryl Presler, and Assistant Superintendent for Special Education Jan Weckstein

Monday, October 28, 2013

The latest issue of the, "Clare-Gladwin Close Up," is now available!

The latest issue of the, "Clare-Gladwin Close Up," the Clare-Gladwin RESD's community newsletter, is now available! Click here to read the 12-page publication!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Local high schools to participate in College Application Week

The Clare-Gladwin Career Center, Mid Michigan Community College, and Educational Talent Search are joining nearly 200 high schools around the state in presenting Michigan’s third annual College Application Week. From Nov. 4-8, Beaverton, Clare, Coleman, and Farwell high schools will assist their graduating seniors in completing and submitting at least one application to any of Michigan’s community colleges, independent colleges and universities, and state universities in which they are interested.

“The goal of the program is to give students the tools and guidance they need to successfully apply to college,” said Clare-Gladwin Career Center Counselor Margie Dill. “It is our hope this process will give kids additional confidence and drive to continue to submit applications - in turn providing them with more options for their future.”

Beaverton High School students will work on applications Nov. 5, Farwell High School will take part on Nov. 6, Coleman High School on Nov. 7, and Clare High School on Nov. 8.

Established in 2005, College Application Week is a national campaign committed to the common goal of increasing the percentage of first-generation and low-income students to pursue a post-secondary education. Last year, 73 Michigan high schools participated, helping seniors complete more than 8,500 applications. Michigan College Application Week is sponsored by the Michigan College Access Network.

For additional information, please contact Margie Dill at 989-229-8710. 

Friday, October 11, 2013

50 years and growing; RESD establishes John C. Magnus Center and celebrates Golden Anniversary



More than 110 people gathered on Saturday, Oct. 5, to celebrate the John C. Magnus Center Dedication and the Clare-Gladwin RESD Golden Jubilee. The event recognized the RESD’s 50 years of service to Clare and Gladwin counties, and named the nearly 25 acres of land recently acquired by Clare-Gladwin RESD in memory of John C. Magnus, the property’s former owner.

Previously home to Magnus Tractor sales, the majority of the acreage was donated to the RESD earlier this year by John’s wife, Verna Magnus Green, and their children, Lt. Col. Mike Magnus, Darla Schmittner, and Michelle Maeder. The property will be used to improve and expand learning opportunities for local youth through Clare-Gladwin RESD’s student programs, including career and technical education as well as special education.   

The land contains multiple outbuildings, a barn, and a house - many of which will be used to further the students’ skills.

Students in the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s Construction Trades program have already been busy this fall cleaning up the grounds and preparing to make the home handicapped accessible for future use by Clare-Gladwin Area School students.  “The improvements that have already taken place have been exciting – and it is only the beginning,” said Verna. 

Succeeding an invocation performed by Rev. Karen Blatt, the dedication ceremony included an historical overview of Magnus Tractor Sales and Clare-Gladwin RESD.  Superintendent Sheryl Presler also shared the journey that merged the two entities. “John’s family felt he would approve of the facilities being used to teach the trades to young people,” she said. “Some kids learn best with their hands. The trades offer a purpose for learning math and English, a chance to work with others on projects, and an opportunity to learn there are rewards from a hard day’s work. There’s honor and dignity being employed in the trades and I don’t think John would want anyone to ever forget that.”  

Remarks by members of the Magnus family reinforced the significance of the property’s past and the benefits it will bring to the community in the future.

“My married life with John revolved around this business. The buildings and grounds hold so many memories,” said Verna. “John would be pleased to know that it will be used for those in need for many years to come.”

Following the program, attendants gathered around the property’s barn to witness the ribbon-cutting that revealed the sign that now identifies the location as the John C. Magnus Center. 

“I want to especially thank Verna, Mike, Darla, and Michelle for their generosity,” said Presler. “Also, thank you to the former and current CGRESD staff, students, administrators, and board members for your energy and dedication to the last 50 years and as we grow in the future.” 

To see more photos from the event, click here

To watch the sign reveal video, click here

Monday, September 30, 2013

Approximately 600 attend Worldwide Day of Play



Around 600 children and parents ran, danced, skated, created, and explored at the first annual Worldwide Day of Play on Sept. 20 at the shared campus of the Isabella Community Sportsplex and the Mt. Pleasant Discovery Museum.   

Shayla McArthur, a student volunteer at  
MidMichigan Medical Center-Clare  
helps a child pick out a free helmet  
at the first annual Worldwide Day of Play. 
Organized by the Clare-Gladwin and Gratiot-Isabella Great Start Collaboratives as well as representatives from Morey Courts, the Discovery Museum, the ICE Arena, MidMichigan Health, and the Central Michigan District Health Department, the Worldwide Day of Play featured free activities for parents and kids to enjoy together, including Zumba, ice skating with free rentals, and hands-on fun at the museum. Morey Courts also used a portion of their facilities to host basketball, volleyball, ball toss games, and an obstacle course set up by the Health Department.  


MidMichigan Health provided 300 bike helmets to local kids, as well as 1,000 fruit snacks and 500 bottles of water. Additionally, 200 apples were donated by Papa’s Pumpkin Patch, and GreenTree Cooperative Grocery handed out 500 samples of healthy smoothies blended by bicycle power!

“This was an awesome event,” said local parent Autume Griffus. “The activities accommodated multiple age levels and they kept kids moving and engaged. We will definitely be back next year!”

Emulating Nickelodeon’s annual Worldwide Day of Play which shuts down television programming for a day to encourage kids to get off the couch and get active, the evening of action emphasized the multitude of benefits play provides in the lives of children. “The Worldwide Day of Play not only supports physical health, but it also encourages social and emotional well-being and family support, all of which are proven to be vital in preparing children to be happy and ready to succeed in school and in life,” said Clare-Gladwin Great Start Parent Liaison Rachel Haltiner. “We wanted families to have the chance to spend time moving, laughing, and learning together while getting familiar with the resources in their area so they will hopefully come back to visit in the future.” 

Local public service agencies, including the Mount Pleasant Police Department, Saginaw Chippewa Tribal Fire Department, Isabella County Sheriff’s Department, Mount Pleasant Department of Public Works, Mobile Medical Response, and Mount Pleasant Parks and Recreation were also in attendance to showcase their vehicles and interact with the kids. 

Chippewa River District Library and Eileen DeLorenzo also supported the Worldwide Day of Play.

“A special thanks to the organizations and 46 volunteers who contributed so much of their time and resources to make this event possible,” said Jennifer Fields of the Mount Pleasant Discovery Museum. “Horns sounded, sirens sung, and children played - it was a very successful first annual Worldwide Day of Play!”


A child takes the driver’s seat in  
one of the many service vehicles available  
for kids to explore at the Worldwide Day of Play. 



Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Career and Technical Education student completes Law Enforcement Career Academy

Haley Forbes

Clare-Gladwin CTE Criminal Justice student Haley Forbes of Beaverton graduated from the 38th Kiwanis Law Enforcement Career Academy at the Michigan State Police Training Academy this summer in Lansing. 

As one of 50 students who participated in the week-long camp led by ten Michigan State Troopers, Forbes’ days began with physical training at 5 a.m., followed by a strict schedule allowing limited time to get ready, eat breakfast, and attend classes covering a variety of topics, including the canine team, first aid, defensive tactics, drug and alcohol patrols, the forensics lab, and more.  

Forbes also practiced water safety using the training tanks, rode in the patrol cars with the troopers on the drive track, and shot rounds at the shooting range. “At the drive track, the troopers were hitting speeds of up to 90 mph,” she said. “It was a heck of an adrenaline rush.”   

Forbes’ knowledge and passion for criminal justice proved to be beneficial as the troopers selected her as a Class Commander for the final two days of the week, giving her the responsibility of leading her fellow cadets to and from class, through the graduation ceremony, and ensuring they always arrived at their destination on time. “It was scary, but exciting at the same time,” she said. “I got to yell just like the troopers!” 

Forbes credits the Clare-Gladwin Career and Technical Education (CTE) class for her success at the academy. “CTE really put me at an advantage because, for the most part, I had an idea of what I was doing,” she said. “I felt a lot more comfortable because I had learned so much in CTE last year.”   

Although Forbes is still discovering exactly what career she’d like to eventually pursue in the criminal justice field, she said the academy gave her a new respect for those in law enforcement. “As our class progressed through the week, I learned a lot about what it takes to become a State Trooper, and it takes all you have,” she said. “It’s truly unbelievable. I can honestly say this job takes the most amazing men and women.”  

Forbes will be attending Delta College in the fall of 2014 and plans to get involved in the school’s criminal justice program. 

Forbes encourages her peers to take part in a CTE class to gain experience in a profession they may be interested in. “Most people think the CTE Criminal Justice class is just for kids wanting to be police officers, but you learn so much about all the different jobs within the field,” she said. “If you don’t know what you want to do, CTE classes are great because they give you an idea of what the job is really going to be like.” 

Criminal Justice is one of nine career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to local high school juniors and seniors at the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of Clare-Gladwin RESD. Students spend half of their regular school day in CTE and the other half at their local high school. For more information, please visit www.cgresd.net.

Monday, September 9, 2013

GSRP Outcome Report; Majority of students ready for kindergarten


Nearly 88 percent of the 455 children from Clare and Gladwin counties who attended Great Start Readiness Preschool (GSRP) or Head Start programs last school year, tested ready for kindergarten in all areas excluding mathematics, according to the recently released 2012-2013 GSRP Outcome Report. 

The report’s data is based on Teaching Strategies GOLD, an assessment system that measures the knowledge, skills, and behaviors that are most predictive of school success. Used by all GSRP and Head Start programs, Teaching Strategies GOLD aids teachers in being intentional in their instruction by accurately pinpointing where children are in their development and learning. Children are assessed individually through classroom observation and work samples. 

This comprehensive, on-going assessment tool is used three times each year to evaluate children’s progress in several areas of development, including social-emotional, physical, language, and cognitive. Teaching Strategies GOLD is research-based, and encompasses the developmental milestones from birth through kindergarten. 

“We are pleased to see the majority of students attending these preschool programs are meeting or exceeding the developmental expectations considered necessary to begin kindergarten,” said Kendra Curtiss-Tomaski, Early Childhood and Family Services Director at Clare-Gladwin RESD. “We will use the results of these assessments to shape the topics of our training and mentoring sessions for our preschool staff, as well as assist in identifying the subjects that need additional attention, such as math.” 

Administered by the Michigan Department of Education (MDE), the Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) is Michigan’s state-funded preschool program for four-year-old children with factors which may place them at risk of educational failure. Head Start is a federally-funded program that promotes the school readiness of children ages 3-5 years old. 

Research on preschool programs indicates that children provided with a high-quality preschool experience show significant positive developmental differences when compared to children from the same backgrounds who did not attend a high-quality preschool program. Clare-Gladwin RESD connects eligible children in Clare and Gladwin counties with these free and low-cost preschool programs with the goal of all children being ready to succeed in school and in life.     

The Quality Preschool Partnership is still enrolling children in high quality preschool programs for the 2013-2014 school year. Please call 989-386-8075 for enrollment information. Eligible children must be 4-years-old by Nov. 1. 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Summer EBT for Children benefits must be redeemed by Sept. 2


For the past three summers selected Michigan families have received food assistance through a pilot program called Summer EBT for Children.  This program has been conducted through a grant that the State of Michigan received from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Food insecurity during the summer months among school-aged children is a nation-wide issue.  Children from low-income families receive school meals either free or at reduced-price throughout the school year.  When school ends so do these meal benefits.  Many families struggle to provide these additional meals to their school-aged children without the help of any additional food stamp dollars.

This pilot provided a food package to selected qualifying families valued at $60 per children per month during the summer.  The food package included milk, cheese, eggs, fresh fruits & vegetables, tuna, whole wheat bread, corn tortillas, cereal, juice and peanut butter and/or beans.  A $30 food package was also tested this past summer.

Over 32,000 Michigan children received these benefits this summer.  The program ends soon and the participating families have until MIDNIGHT, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2013 to redeem the last of their food benefits. 

Final reports and evaluation of SEBTC will be presented to Congress.  The future of this program will be determined based upon this data.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Susan Wooden chosen as new leader of Beaverton Rural Schools

Susan Wooden
Superintendent, Beaverton Rural Schools

The students, staff, and community of Beaverton Rural Schools welcomed Susan Wooden this summer as the district’s new superintendent.   

After an extensive three-month search process, Beaverton Rural Schools Board of Education President Adam Zdrojewski said Wooden’s, “very strong education background and many valuable experiences,” made her stand out among the other candidates vying for the job. “Susan also had a very professional, well-articulated position on her desire to succeed and her passion for education,” he said. 

A few of the many notable career achievements found on Wooden’s resume include serving as superintendent of East Jordan Public School District, director of curriculum/instruction/assessment for Owosso Public Schools, and professor of English at Alpena Community College and the U.S. Air Force Combat Readiness Training Center in Alpena. 

Wooden said she was drawn to Beaverton Schools for a variety of reasons, including the district’s strong academic and extracurricular programming, compelling sense of pride, and the sheer beauty of the Beaverton area. “BRS has huge potential to soar to the next level because of extremely talented Board members who have a common vision for the district, the district staff who genuinely care about kids, and the supportive community.” 

With a few weeks under her belt as Beaverton Rural Schools’ new leader, the Byron native said she is eager to move the district forward in all aspects of the organization, such as student achievement, communication, technology, community partnerships, and more. Additionally, Wooden said she is excited to become an active member of the school district’s community; a goal she is clearly committed to as she and husband, Russell, recently moved to Beaverton. 

“The Board believes that having someone living in the district allows them to have the ability to be available for the varied events that take place, as well as have a finger on the pulse of the community and become a proud member of the Beaverton area,” said Zdrojewski. “Susan’s leadership and desire to become vested in Beaverton Rural Schools will do nothing but benefit everyone involved.  We welcome the Woodens to our school and our community.” 

Free preschool; now enrolling children for 2013-2014 school year


 

The Quality Preschool Partnership (QPP) of Clare and Gladwin counties is now enrolling local children, ages 3-5, in free preschool programs for the 2013-2014 school year.  As a joint recruitment effort by Mid Michigan Community Action Agency, NEMCSA Head Start, Harrison Elementary, and Gladwin Elementary, the QPP ensures an efficient preschool application process for all eligible families in Clare and Gladwin counties.  Those who apply will be referred to either Head Start or Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP). 

Research has shown that during the first five years of life, important skill sets such as emotional intelligence, motor development, visual recognition, early sound recognition, and music are optimally developed, providing the foundation for learning throughout life. “These findings illustrate how significant an early childhood education is for a child’s future,” said Kendra Curtiss-Tomaski, director of early childhood and family services at Clare-Gladwin RESD (the QPP’s implementing agency).

During the last year, many of the state’s legislators have also taken notice to the proven long-term benefits of granting Michigan kids with a quality preschool experience. As a result, Gov. Rick Snyder recently allocated funds to increase the number of GSRP slots statewide for the 2013-2014 school year, giving more children the chance to attend preschool at no cost. Clare and Gladwin counties received an additional 194 GSRP slots, creating five more GSRP classrooms. A total of 421 GSRP slots will be available this fall. 

“We are thrilled for the opportunity to provide even more local kids with a high-quality preschool experience which will set the stage for success in kindergarten and give them an overall great start to their lives.” 

To be eligible for Head Start or GSRP, children and families must meet federal and state guidelines, including income. All programs serve children with disabilities and/or special needs.  For more information or to request an enrollment packet, call 989-386-8075.  

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Deadline for school of choice application slated for 2013-2014 school year


Under the Schools of Choice legislation (Section 105 and Section 105(c) of the School Aid Act), kindergarten through twelfth grade students residing within the Clare Gladwin Regional Education Service District (RESD) and contiguous intermediate school districts may apply to attend participating public school districts in the two-county region, including Beaverton Rural Schools, Clare Public Schools, Farwell Area Schools, Gladwin Community Schools, and Harrison Community Schools. 

Transportation for these students is the responsibility of the parents or guardians.

The participating schools are listed below. For those grades or programs allowing an unlimited number of students from other school districts, request/application must be made to the preferred school district by no later than the end of the first week of school. For those grades or programs with a limited number of openings, the 15-day application period is from August 12 to August 30, 2013. 

The schools accepting students from other school districts during the first semester/trimester of the 2013-14 school year include:

Beaverton Rural Schools, Gladwin Community Schools, and Farwell Area Schools

  •          All grades and programs (unlimited openings)  


Harrison Community Schools

Larson Elementary
  •          Kindergarten: 10 openings
  •          1st grade: 5 openings
  •          2nd grade: 10 openings

Hillside Elementary
  •          3rd grade: 7 openings
  •          4th grade: 5 openings
  •          5th grade: 12 openings

Middle School
  •          6th grade: 7 openings
  •          7th grade: 25 openings
  •          8th grade: 15 openings

High School
  •          9th grade: 0 openings
  •          10th grade: 0 openings
  •          11th grade: 10 openings
  •          12th grade: 15 openings


Clare Public Schools

Primary
  •          Kindergarten: 10 openings            
  •          1st grade: 10 openings
  •          2nd , 3rd, and 4th grades: Unlimited

Middle
  •          5th and 6th grades: No openings
  •          7th and 8th grades: 10 openings, each grade

High School
  •          9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th grades: 5 openings, each grade
  •          Alternative Education: No openings

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

FREE Parent Boot Camp slated for Aug. 12-14


*Due to lack of participation, this event has been canceled*  (updated 8/9/13) 

The Clare County Youth Council (CCYC) invites local parents and grandparents, as well as those who are expecting a child to attend Parent Boot Camp 2013. The free, three-day program will cover topics including dental care and substance abuse prevention, and will feature a presentation by Community Service Tpr. Michael White of the Michigan State Police about changing one’s self-image and the important role fathers play in parenting. 

The classes will take place Aug. 12-14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Brown Corners Church, located at 5540 S. Clare Avenue in Clare. Free on-site child care and lunch will be provided each day. 

“Parent Boot Camp is a great place for parents to get updated on current topics related to their family’s health and development,” said Betsy Ulicki of CCYC. “Every parent can use some help and support when raising children; it can be a stressful job!”   

Please pre-register by calling Erin Balbough at 539-5895.

The Clare County Youth Council is a member of the Great Start Collaborative of Clare and Gladwin counties and a partner of the United Way of Clare County and the Children’s Trust Fund of Michigan. Special Funding is provided by United Way to support Parent Boot Camp.

Graphic Arts students participate and place at state competition


Students from the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s Graphic Arts program recently submitted eight projects showcasing their skills acquired in the classroom to the 2013 Michigan Industrial and Technology Education Society (MITES) State Convention and Student Competition, held at Central Michigan University. 


With a mission to encourage and recognize fine craftsmanship in the field of industrial technology and career technical education, the annual MITES student competition allows kids of all grade levels to compete against their peers from other states and Canada in a variety of divisions, including graphic arts, architectural drawing, machine shop, wrought metal, and more.

“MITES is a wonderful organization to be a part of that supports both teachers and students in the areas of industrial and career and technical education,” said Andrea Boettner, instructor for the Clare-Gladwin Career Center’s graphic arts program and MITES member since 2005. “I believe in the power of hands-on, relevant, and real-world learning. This organization gives my students a place to shine and show off their skills.”

In order to qualify for the state competition, projects needed to place fourth or better at the previously held MITES Regional Student Competition.

The local high school juniors and seniors from the Clare-Gladwin Career Center who entered at least one project to the 2013 MITES State Student Competition included Erik Canute of Farwell, Tabatha Chambers of Clare, Steven Clink of Farwell, Dallas Howell of Farwell, Richard June of Clare, Julie Lester of Gladwin, Lacey Martinez of Farwell, Jacob Schlaack of Beaverton, and Samantha Tomaski of Clare.

Of the eight projects submitted, four placed at the state level. For their individual projects, Martinez placed third, Clink placed sixth, and Canute placed fourth. A group project submitted by Schlaack, Clink, and June finished sixth.

“I was very excited to see the results of the state competition,” said Boettner.  “This was my first year as an instructor competing. My goal was to have at least one student place at states. Finding out that three students and one group project placed was a dream come true.”

In addition to the student project competition, the MITES convention featured a Pen Turning for Troops event. Using a lathe, the kids created 50 wooden pens that would be sent to the country’s service men and women overseas. The participants were then entered into a drawing to win a $500 mini-lathe donated by Barn Door Lumber in Hemlock.

Farwell’s Steven Clink was the winner of the equipment. With some past woodshop experience, Clink said he was looking forward to making, “a lot of really cool projects with the lathe. I can make pens, fix my mom’s dining room chair, and maybe make a wooden bowl!”

Boettner said Barn Door Lumber is a faithful contributor to MITES and supporter of industrial education. “Barn Door Lumber’s generous gift provides the financial and moral support needed for MITES to continue their mission,” she said. “There is no way to fully express our gratitude for their loyalty.”

Graphic Arts is one of nine career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to high school juniors and seniors at the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of the Clare-Gladwin RESD. The students spend half of their day at their CTE program and the other half at their local high school. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Making a 'change' for area youth; Clare County students collect more than $1,000 in change for Clare County Youth Council

Mrs. Mellish's Class at Clare Primary. 

Children from Clare Primary and Hillside Elementary schools recently collected more than $1,000 in change for the Clare County Youth Council (CCYC); a non-profit organization dedicated to prevent and reduce child abuse and neglect in Clare County.

Mr. Long's Class at Hillside Elementary. 
The classes that collected the most change included Mrs. Mellish’s kindergarten class at Clare Primary and Mr. Long’s class at Hillside Elementary. Both classes were awarded with a pizza party. The CCYC also gave every student in each school a popsicle to recognize and thank them for their participation.

The CCYC would like to thank the schools for their efforts to help make a difference to prevent child abuse and neglect in Clare County.

The Clare County Youth Council is a member of the Great Start Collaborative of Clare and Gladwin counties. With the Clare-Gladwin RESD as its fiscal agent, the Great Start Collaborative works to coordinate a system of community resources and supports to all local families to give their children a great start from birth to age five. In alliance with parents, businesses, and community leaders, the Great Start Collaborative strives to ensure all children in Clare and Gladwin counties will enter kindergarten safe, healthy, and ready to succeed in school and in life.

For more information on the Clare County Youth Council, call 989-386-8644. To learn more about the Great Start Collaborative, call 989-386-8613.

Friday, June 28, 2013

$1,500 in grants awarded to Clare-Gladwin Career Center graphic arts instructor

Graphic Arts Instructor Andrea Boettner and
Clare-Gladwin Career Center Director Doug Pummell displaying
the grants Boettner was awarded during the MITES State Convention
last month. 

Graphic Arts Instructor Andrea Boettner of the Clare-Gladwin Career Center has been awarded $1,500 in grants by the Michigan Industrial and Technology Education Society (MITES) to fund classroom activities and professional development opportunities. Specifically, Boettner will receive $650 to purchase class cameras, $250 for educational field trips, and $600 to attend special workshops and trainings.

According to their website, the generosity of the Abrams Foundation allows MITES to offer numerous scholarships and grants to help support career and technical education in Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, and Canada.

Graphic Arts is one of nine career and technical education (CTE) programs offered to high school juniors and seniors at the Clare-Gladwin Career Center, a program of the Clare-Gladwin RESD. The students spend half of their day at their CTE program and the other half at their local high school. 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Four graduate from Clare-Gladwin Area School



Donned in their caps and gowns, Jonathan Barager, Zachariah Braley, Melissa McBride, and Jacob Shrock represented the Clare-Gladwin Area School’s class of 2013 during the school’s graduation ceremony earlier this month. With the, “Pomp and Circumstance,” melody playing in the background, the graduates entered the Area School gym where they were met by their classmates, teachers, family, and friends to celebrate the milestone.

Following the processional, the audience enjoyed singing and dancing performances by each Area School class to tunes including The Beatles’, “All We Need is Love,” Dierks Bentley’s, “Home,” and more.
Between performances, Clare-Gladwin Area School Principal Mike Simon shared school-year highlights such as the students’ fundraising efforts for community organizations, and the 62 students who were recognized throughout the year for their outstanding work habits, good behavior, and positive attitudes. He also expressed his gratitude to the local businesses that have partnered with the school to help students gain work experience.     
                                                     
“The graduation program is a wonderful showcase of the hard work and success of the Area School’s students and staff,” said Simon. “I’m very proud of their efforts toward making this year’s program the best it could be and I’m moved by the number of people who attended the program to support and encourage our school.”

At the conclusion of the program, Simon and Clare-Gladwin RESD Superintendent Sheryl Presler presented Certificates of Completion to the 2013 graduates. Keeping with tradition, Simon read words of reflection written by each student and their parents.

“The job everyone has done in caring and helping Zachariah is certainly commendable and we want to thank everyone involved in making our experience a most positive one,” said Braley’s father, Rob. “Respect, love, and great care should be afforded to each and every one of us, no matter what our abilities or disabilities are and we are proud to state that all personnel at the RESD greatly exceeded our expectations.”

Barager’s mother, Laurie, wrote a speech on his behalf and explained how for all the years Barager has attended the Area School, many changes have taken place, including staff, students, and bus drivers. “But with all the changes,” she continued, “the important things have stayed the same; the dedication, care, compassion, and respect of all those responsible to provide a safe, healthy, and happy learning environment for all of the students. My time here has been wonderful. I will miss you all and I thank you all.”

For more information on the Clare-Gladwin Area School and the Clare-Gladwin RESD, please visit www.cgresd.net.  

Friday, June 14, 2013

Local school board members recognized for exemplary service



Local school board members Connie Cauchi, Therese Haley, Don Hannah, Barbara Richards, and Marie Roth were celebrated during the recent Clare-Gladwin Area School Board Association meeting for their exceptional contributions to the school districts they serve. 
In honor of his 26 years of participation on local school boards, Don Hannah, current treasurer of Clare-Gladwin Regional Education Service District (RESD) Board of Education, was presented with the 2012-2013 Forrest Sogge Memorial Board Member of the Year Award. Created in 2004,the Board Member of the Year Award recognizes a local school board member who demonstrates high standards of service, educational enrichment, and leadership to the school district he or she serves.  Over the years, Hannah has filled seats on the boards of education for Beaverton Rural Schools and Clare-Gladwin RESD, and has performed the roles of president, vice-president, treasurer, and trustee.
The remaining four award recipients accepted certificates acknowledging their successful completion of classes offered to school board members by the Michigan Association of School Boards (MASB). These classes are designed to help in the development of new skills and keep participants informed on the latest educational issues.    
Harrison Community Schools Board President Roth, Vice-President Cauchi, and Secretary Haley, along with Clare-Gladwin RESD Board President Richards were each given Level One Certifications for conquering  MASB’s nine 100-level courses covering topics such as school budget and finance, curriculum and instruction, the legislative process, data informed decision making, and more. The community leaders were also granted the Award of Merit for gaining an additional 45 education credits through professional development, leadership experience, and service.
Richards and Roth earned further acclaim with the Award of Distinction which recognizes board members who have accumulated a minimum of 208 education credits and completed the 100-level courses, as well as four 200-level courses. MASB’s 200-level classes address capital planning for school districts, superintendent selection, community relations, school law, reporting organizational performance, and more.
“Our communities are fortunate to have school board members who make every effort to become experts in their roles so they may offer effective guidance to the local districts,” said Clare-Gladwin RESD Superintendent Sheryl Presler. “Their actions clearly illustrate their dedication to their responsibilities as school board members and their commitment to our students.”  
###

Don Hannah (left), current treasurer for Clare-Gladwin RESD’s Board of Education, receives the 2012-2013 Forrest Sogge Memorial Board Member of the Year Award for his 26 years of service to local school districts, including Harrison Community Schools and Clare-Gladwin RESD. Sheryl Presler, superintendent of the RESD, presented him with the honor.


Clare-Gladwin RESD Board of Education President Barbara Richards (left) accepts the Level One Certification, Award of Merit, and Award of Distinction from Ruth Coppens (right), president-elect of the MASB Board of Directors.
Barb Russell of MASB’s Board of Directors (left) presents Harrison Community Schools Board of Education President Marie Roth (right) with the Level One Certification, Award of Merit, and Award of Distinction.
 Harrison Community Schools Board of Education Secretary Therese Haley (left) accepts the  Level One Certification and Award of Merit from MASB’s Barb Russell and Eric Griggs. 


Connie Cauchi (left), vice-president of the Harrison Community Schools Board of Education, smiles after receiving the Level One Certification and Award of Merit from Ruth Coppens, the president-elect of MASB’s Board of Directors.


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Hot off the press! The latest issue of the Clare-Gladwin Close Up is now available

Clare-Gladwin RESD's semiannual community newsletter, The Clare-Gladwin Close Up, will be delivered to homes in Clare and Gladwin counties this Friday!  In the meantime, be among the first to view the publication online.

Click here to download the PDF or here to read the publication like a virtual magazine!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Clare-Gladwin S.P.A.R.K.S. grant not renewed; seven sites to close this summer



UPDATE: For those interested in expressing feedback to legislators about the funding available for 21st Century Community Learning Centers, click below to contact Sen. Carl Levin and/or Rep. Dave Camp.

The Clare-Gladwin RESD S.P.A.R.K.S. program will be forced to close seven of its 13 sites after the grants that provide the program’s funding were not renewed for the 2013-2014 school year. As a result, the program’s after-school and summer-school opportunities will no longer be available to students at Beaverton Primary School, Beaverton Middle School, Farwell High School, Gladwin Elementary School, Gladwin Intermediate School, Gladwin Junior High School, and Gladwin High School following the conclusion of their summer sessions this June. Additionally, eight full-time RESD employees and approximately 70 contracted part-time employees will be laid off.

“Over the last ten years, SPARKS has produced measurable student success thanks to the work of our dedicated staff, the partnerships formed with the local districts, and the support of the families in our community,” said S.P.A.R.K.S. Director Joe Trommater. “It is with great sadness to see some of that come to end.”

As one of the largest and longest-running 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) in Michigan, S.P.A.R.K.S. (Students Participating in Academics and Recreation for Knowledge and Success) offers students in Beaverton, Farwell, Gladwin, and Harrison school districts homework help, tutoring, and activities that enhance the regular school day curriculum and focus on the development of character and leadership. S.P.A.R.K.S. also provides high school students with free high school credit recovery through their after-school Learning Centers.

Each site of the Clare-Gladwin S.P.A.R.K.S. program is made possible by 21st CCLC grants, which must be reapplied for every five years. According to Trommater, this year’s grant score was actually higher than the score they received last year when they were awarded funding. However, due to the recent sequestration, the federal government had $4 million less than they've had in the past to allot to this year’s renewal sites. Additionally, a revised grant scoring system gave preference to applicants named as Priority Schools; Michigan public schools identified in the bottom 5 percent of the statewide Top to Bottom ranking. “These factors made the competition just that much tighter,” he said.

The grants would have brought $1 million per year for the next five years to the S.P.A.R.K.S. program.
“We are proud of our proven track record of helping students in real and meaningful ways and we are committed to pursuing other grant opportunities in the future,” said Trommater, who plans to reapply for the 21st CCLC grants next year in hopes of bringing the programs back. “Ultimately, it’s about the students succeeding and we will continue to do all that we can to provide more for our kids.”

On average, 46 credits are recovered at each participating high school annually through the Learning Centers. In one district last year, 28 percent of the seniors graduated on time because of program. Additionally, research has shown that students who participate in S.P.A.R.K.S. for one or more years miss fewer days of school and have higher grade point averages. Of the sites that are ending, 1,361 students have taken part in the program.

Clare-Gladwin RESD Superintendent Sheryl Presler said the loss of funding will have a profound effect on the community as well.  “The impact of S.P.A.R.K.S. on the local communities extends far beyond the school doors. Supplies and materials have been purchased from local merchants, and transportation has been provided by either the County Transit systems or the local school district busses.  Field trips to local establishments have taken place, and local teens and community members have had the opportunity to earn income through part-time S.P.A.R.K.S. employment,” she said. “The RESD is saddened not only by the diminished opportunities for students but also by the negative impact that not having the S.P.A.R.K.S. programs will have on our communities.”

The six remaining S.P.A.R.K.S. sites are currently served by other 21st CCLC grants previously awarded to Clare-Gladwin RESD. These sites include, Beaverton High School, Farwell Elementary School, Farwell Middle School, Harrison Middle School, Harrison High School, and Harrison Larson/Hillside Elementary School.