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February 19, 2019

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Photo of the Week

Academic Decathlon team members holding trophies
Edison High School’s Academic Decathlon team won the overall Sweepstakes trophy in the Fresno County Academic Decathlon February 2.


Video of the Week

video of the week
Faces of Fresno Unified: Patrick Marino

Dates to Know

February 27 at 6 p.m.e
Board of Education

Greetings!

Welcome to Community Zone, an e-newsletter from the Fresno Unified School District featuring news of the district and schools. Sign up to receive this newsletter every two weeks. Questions? Contact Communications@fresnounified.org.


Community News

District Celebrates Excellence in Education

Excellence in Education winners

A sell-out crowd of more than 600 gathered February 4 at the DoubleTree Hotel downtown to celebrate the 50 Excellence in Education finalists and the five winners. Winners announced were:

• Classified: Lorena Almaguer, office manager at Roosevelt High School, who recently became an assistant in School Leadership Video about Lorena Almaguer
• Certificated elementary: Kirsten Lee, Eaton Elementary School Video about Kirsten Lee
• Certificated middle school: Esmeralda Ruiz, Sequoia Middle School Video about Esmeralda Ruiz
• Certificated high school: Tamela Ryatt, Sunnyside High School Video about Tamela Ryatt
• Administrator: Pamela Taylor, Easterby Elementary School Video about Pamela Taylor

Behind the Scenes of Excellence in Education Video 

“Fresno Unified News in 60 Seconds” Video

The latest edition of “Fresno Unified News in 60 Seconds” features Rata High School’s open house, Bullard High School’s Black History month celebration, Job Shadow Days, Kratt Elementary School making Valentine’s cards as part of Smooches for Pooches.
“Fresno Unified News in 60 Seconds” Video

Middle School Athletes Take a Swing at Chukchansi Park

Baseball player sliding onto baseDistrict middle school baseball teams, including 142 coaches and players, competed in the Middle School Varsity Baseball Exhibition at Chukchansi Park on January 26. Teams played five-inning games and got to experience a major league ballpark.

Annual HotStove Event to Benefit Fresno Unified Athletics

Baseball greats Dave Stewart, Terry Pendleton and CJ Wilson will be in town as part of the annual HotStove event, a Fresno Grizzlies fundraiser on Thursday, February 21 at Warnors Theatre.  The community is invited. Tickets are on sale at Warnors.org or by calling 320-2542.  Funds raised will be donated to Fresno Unified athletics.   
Flyer on HotStove Event 

Students Learn about Various Industries through Job Shadow Day Series

Students listening to professionalFresno Unified’s Career Readiness Department hosted the third annual Job Shadow Day, expanding the event this year to a series of Job Shadow Days throughout February. Each week, students in career pathways and career technical education (CTE) programs will have the opportunity to visit a different industry sector and experience the real world of work. Students will spend three hours alongside employees to experience their day-to-day work environment and discuss requirements and opportunities within the industry sector. More than 200 students will shadow employees at 30 locations in February as the district continues to expand its CTE opportunities for all students.

Fresno Unified Scholarship Applications Available

Applications for the Fresno Unified Scholarships are available online. Through the generosity of the community and Fresno Unified employees, the scholarships have supported the college dreams of hundreds of Fresno Unified students since the scholarship program began in 2009. Last year, the district awarded scholarships to 46 students totaling $61,000. The deadline to submit applications is Friday, March 15 to the Department of College and Career Readiness.

This is a great time for employees to consider supporting students through the Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund. One way of supporting the scholarships is to sign up for payroll deduction. Watch a video about this option here.
More Information about the Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund

ACSA Golf Fundraiser coming in April

ACSA logoMark the calendar for Saturday, April 27. ACSA will once again hold a golf tournament at the Riverside Golf Course to raise money for Fresno Unified scholarships. Get that foursome ready! Last year, the tournament raised more than $4,000, with a goal this year of $6,000. Come join colleagues for a great day of golf that will once again feature the famous taco truck and raffle prizes. Don’t miss out on the fun while supporting Fresno Unified students! Registration for ACSA Golf Tournament

Judges Needed for Tournament of Technology

students working on laptop Take part in the exciting 12th annual Tournament of Technology! Tournament organizers are looking for judges to review epic robot battles, video games, movies, websites, and much more! It's easy and being a "techie" is not a requirement.
Sign up now:
Be a live event judge. Come see the energy and enthusiasm on Saturday, April 6 at Hoover High School! 
Be an online judge. Review projects at your convenience from March 22-27.

Scholarships Available for Hispanic Students

AMAE logoIt’s that time of year again to encourage Hispanic students to apply for the $1,000 Association of Mexican American Educators Scholarships. Applications must be postmarked by March 22, 2019. The Día del Maestro Banquet is at 6 p.m. Friday, May 10 at the Golden Palace, 2625 W. Vassar Ave. (93705). Cost is $40 or $400 for a table of 10.
AMAE Application
AMAE Letter
AMAE Checklist


Superintendent Board Remarks from February 13, 2019

Superintendent Bob Nelson Superintendent Bob Nelson provided a brief report to the Fresno Unified Board of Education including:

• Highlighting we are four months away from graduation season, which can be a reminder for students looking to pursue a post-secondary education to be aware that Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund applications are now available. Applications can be found on the district website and are due to the Department of College and Career Readiness by March 15. Employees who would like to donate through a payroll deduction, can find more info on the district website under the COMMUNITY link.

• Nelson also shared that during the recent Fresno County Academic Decathlon, the Edison High School team took first place overall. In Division 1 Bullard Knights took third place. Design Science was recognized as the event’s most improved team, taking home the Division 3 title just ahead of Duncan Polytechnical High School, which placed second in the same division.

• Superintendent shared that last Friday the community came together to celebrate the recently completed $5.2 million renovations at Rata High School. Past Rata principals, joined by a number of board trustees, were present for the official ribbon cutting ceremony. Edison leadership students decorated the campus and Bullard cheerleaders and Tenaya leadership students served as greeters while Cooper Academy provided entertainment with folkloric dancers.

• Last, the superintendent shared that last week Fresno Unified hosted its Annual Excellence in Education awards banquet, where family, friends and fellow colleagues came together to celebrate some of the wonderful work done by Fresno Unified employees. Student board members Malak Sarama and Eduardo Casarubias joined Deputy Superintendent and CFO Ruthie Quinto and Bryan Wells from the instructional team to unveil the 2019 Excellence in Education winners.  Congratulations to Lorena Almaguer (Roosevelt High School), Classified Employee of the Year; Kirsten Lee (Eaton Elementary School), Certificated Elementary Educator of the Year; Esmeralda Ruiz (Sequoia Middle School), Certificated Middle School Educator of the Year; Tamela Ryatt (Sunnyside High School), Certificated High School Educator of the Year; and Pamela Taylor (Easterby Elementary School), Administrator of the Year. Special congratulations to Lorena, Kirsten and Pam, who are moving on to the Fresno County Educator of the Year awards later this fall. Thousands of employees in this district are doing incredible work on behalf of our 74,000 students and their efforts are making us a better district.  Here is a video highlighting some of the night’s biggest moments.

• Highlighting we are four months away from graduation season, which can be a reminder for students looking to pursue a post-secondary education to be aware that Fresno Unified Scholarship Fund applications are now available. Applications can be found on the district website and are due to the Department of College and Career Readiness by March 15. Employees who would like to donate through a payroll deduction, can find more info on the district website under the COMMUNITY link.

• Nelson also shared that during the recent Fresno County Academic Decathlon, the Edison High School team took first place overall. In Division 1 Bullard Knights took third place. Design Science was recognized as the event’s most improved team, taking home the Division 3 title just ahead of Duncan Polytechnical High School, which placed second in the same division.

• Superintendent shared that last Friday the community came together to celebrate the recently completed $5.2 million renovations at Rata High School. Past Rata principals, joined by a number of board trustees, were present for the official ribbon cutting ceremony. Edison leadership students decorated the campus and Bullard cheerleaders and Tenaya leadership students served as greeters while Cooper Academy provided entertainment with folkloric dancers.

• Last, the superintendent shared that last week Fresno Unified hosted its Annual Excellence in Education awards banquet, where family, friends and fellow colleagues came together to celebrate some of the wonderful work done by Fresno Unified employees. Student board members Malak Sarama and Eduardo Casarubias joined Deputy Superintendent and CFO Ruthie Quinto and Bryan Wells from the instructional team to unveil the 2019 Excellence in Education winners.  Congratulations to Lorena Almaguer (Roosevelt High School), Classified Employee of the Year; Kirsten Lee (Eaton Elementary School), Certificated Elementary Educator of the Year; Esmeralda Ruiz (Sequoia Middle School), Certificated Middle School Educator of the Year; Tamela Ryatt (Sunnyside High School), Certificated High School Educator of the Year; and Pamela Taylor (Easterby Elementary School), Administrator of the Year. Special congratulations to Lorena, Kirsten and Pam, who are moving on to the Fresno County Educator of the Year awards later this fall. Thousands of employees in this district are doing incredible work on behalf of our 74,000 students and their efforts are making us a better district.  Here is a video highlighting some of the night’s biggest moments.

View Full Board Meeting Recap


School Buzz

Rata Holds Open House

Ribbon cutting ceremony at RATA

Rata High School, which serves students with developmental disabilities, held an open house on February 8 to celebrate its renovated campus that is easier to get around and features remodeled classrooms and improved facilities. The school serves grades 9-12 and adults up to age 22, many of whom are medically fragile. For more than a year, Rata students attended classes at McLane High School. The $5.2 million project included remodeling the existing building; adding two fully equipped nurse stations; providing new conference, laundry and support spaces; extending and widening the outdoor walking track; installing new concrete walks for access to the play courts and exercise apparatus; modifying the bus loading/unloading areas; adding a shade structure; and improving fencing and gates for access security. Every classroom now has a fully accessible restroom and all doors were widened and automated to accommodate wheelchairs and other accessibility equipment.
Rata Open House Video 

Kratt Creates Valentines to Raise Money for Shelter

Students holding Valentine cardsKratt Elementary School students showed their love for animals by creating Valentine’s Day cards for dogs at the Fresno Humane Animal Services as part of its Smooches 4 Pooches fundraising drive. Second grade teacher Kristin Weatherson delivered the cards to the shelter. If students included $1 in the card, a donor matched it with $20. In addition, a local dentist contributed $1 for every Valentine given.

Roosevelt Ecology Club Earns Youth Garden Grant

Students picking up trash Roosevelt High School’s Ecology Club was selected as one of the top five winners of the 2019 Youth Garden Grant through the KidsGardening organization. The grant, obtained by science teacher and Ecology Club adviser Reid Gromis, reflects the exceptional work students are doing to enhance the lives of youth. The grant package will help support the work students are doing on campus. 

Bullard Promotes Black History Month

African-American student at podium Organized by the Black Student Union, Bullard High School held a Black History Month program on February 13, featuring speakers Angelina Barfield from the Fresno County Superintendent’s Office and Fresno Unified Superintendent Bob Nelson, as well as student presenters. College information was also available.


Employer of Choice

Roosevelt Soccer Coach Honored

Joel Munoz holds plaqueThe district honored longtime Roosevelt High School boys varsity soccer coach Joel Munoz at the team’s final home game on February 6. Munoz, the coach since 1994, is retiring from coaching at the end of the season after a stellar 25-year tenure that included six Valley/Central Section titles (2001, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2013) and two state CIF playoff bids. His record, not including the current season, is 341 wins, 192 losses and 74 ties.


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