Walnut Valley announces teachers of the year

Fifteen Walnut Valley Unified School District educators have been recognized by their schools as 2010-11 Teachers of the Year.
Congratulations to the representatives from the following elementary schools: Lori Stokes, fifth grade, Castle Rock; Betsy Hale, second grade, Collegewood; Diva Arellanez, fifth grade, C.J. Morris; Sandy Moritz, third grade, Evergreen; Sue Kanstul, third grade, Maple Hill; Norma Morales, first grade, Quail Summit; Kay Hoard, fourth grade, Vejar; Erin Ortiz, resource specialist, Walnut; Janet Murray, first grade, Westhoff.
Also honored were: Anna Landi, social studies, Chaparral Middle School; Shelly Yamashiro, science, South Pointe Middle School; Jonathan St. Amant, art, Suzanne Middle School; Deborah Clifford, English, Diamond Bar High School; Nicole Sevilla, English, History, science, Ron Hockwalt Academies; and Bill Bosanko, social science, Walnut High School.
They will be honored during the Salute to Teachers annual celebration of teaching scheduled for Oct. 19 at the Walnut High School Performing Arts Center.
Anna Landi has been named the 2010-11 District Teacher of the Year and is representing the district in the Los Angeles County Teacher of the Year program.


Landi teaches sixth and seventh grade social studies at Chaparral Middle School, her post for the past five years. She has taught in Walnut Valley Unified School District a total of 10 years and is excited about the opportunity to be a part of the new one-to-one technology core being offered to sixth grade students in the fall.
“Technology is advancing exponentially and the classroom must also evolve to prepare students for the challenges they will face in the global marketplace.” Landi said.
“Each day I go to work I have the opportunity to motivate and inspire young adults to believe in themselves and their abilities,” she said. “The greatest lesson I can teach my students is not found in the pages of textbook or on a work sheet; it is found in the way they will view the world and themselves.”

Walnut Valley posts impressive 96.7 percent graduation rate

For the first time, California has followed a group of students from the beginning of their freshman year through high school based on identification numbers assigned to each student.

Using data culled from the study, state education officials have calculated new dropout and graduation rates for the state, counties and school districts. Using the new data and a new formula, they say it’s the most accurate information yet collected.

Statewide, the dropout rate for the 2009-10 school year came in at 18.2 percent, while the graduation rate was 74.4 percent. Data for the 2010-11 school year is not yet available.

In Los Angeles County, the dropout rate was about two points higher, coming in at 20.3 percent. The graduation rate was 71.3 percent.

Rates across the San Gabriel Valley proved to be better than both the county and state averages. Walnut Valley Unified stands out for having a 96.7 percent graduation rate, the highest in the San Gabriel Valley.

Nearby districts like Rowland Unified had a 82.3 percent graduation rate, while Hacienda La Puente Unified posted a 76.3 graduation rate.

Read about the rates in J.D. Velasco’s story Dropout.

Education revolution begins at Telesis Academy in Rowland Unified


Telesis is the Greek concept of planning intelligently for a grand goal. It’s a process of education, planning and action to fulfill a noble enterprise.

Rowland Unified is trying just that with its new Telesis Academy for Science and Math. It wants to revolutionize public education as we know it.

Construction crews are scrambling to renovate Rincon Intermediate into the new academy. Workmen were busy laying concrete sidewalks when we visited the new academy in West Covina.

Read all about the innovative new school in Rich Irwin’s story at Telesis.

Free and reduced price meal policy released by Hacienda La Puente Unified

The Hacienda La Puente Unified School District has announced its policy for providing free and reduced price meals for children served under the National School Lunch Program and/or School Breakfast Program.

Each school and the central office have copies of the policy, which may be reviewed by any interested party.

The household size and income criteria will be used to determine eligibility for free, reduced-price or full-price meal benefits. A full explanation of income eligibility criteria is available at local schools and the district office.

Hernandez named student trustee at Mt. SAC in Walnut

Mt. San Antonio College student Bruno Hernandez was sworn in as the new student trustee for the 2011-12 academic year during the Mt. SAC Board of Trustees meeting on July 25. As student trustee, the 22-year-old Hernandez will offer the student perspective on policy issues before Mt. SAC’s governing board. He will have only an advisory vote.

A resident of La Puente, Martinez is a biology major. He has been part of the college’s Honor Program and has been active with Mt. SAC’s student government and the Accounting Club for the past year-and-a-half.

Martinez helped establish the college’s chapter of Rotaract, the Rotary International youth program. After he graduates from Mt. SAC, he plans to transfer to UCLA as a biology major and eventually go to medical school.

Rowland Unified offers free shots for whooping cough

The Rowland Unified School District is offering free Tdap shots to its students from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 8-11 at the Children’s Health Clinic, 17800 E. Renault St.

Due to a new state law, all students entering or advancing to seventh- to 12th-grades must have a Tdap (whooping cough) shot before they start school.

Parents must bring their child’s immunization record to get the shot, then provide written proof of the Tdap shot to their child’s school.

For more information, call the clinic at 626-964-4798.</p>

Sprite wants to refurbish school rec areas

School started today for some students in Los Angeles as well as the Inland Valley. Others are already dreading the end of summer vacation. Sprite wants to help students swing back into the school year with new recreation areas.

The Sprite Spark Parks Project for
Schools program gives schools across the country a chance to liven up areas on their campuses where students can play all year long.

Sprite is making a multi-year commitment to build and
restore places where teens, families and communities can be active. Sprite will put
more than $2 million into building or revamping a minimum of 150 outdoor
spaces throughout the country in 2011. These spaces include
neighborhood parks, basketball courts, playgrounds and athletic fields.

and community members can give their favorite school a chance to win
one of 25 grants worth $25,000 by entering My Coke Rewards codes found
on specially-marked Sprite packaging.

Codes can be submitted at www.mycokerewards.com/sprite
through Sept. 30, giving people across the U.S. the
opportunity to play a major role in ensuring that their schools have
fun, clean and safe places to play. 

Sprite Spark Parks Project for Schools supports local communities and
breathes new life into the recreation spaces that are so important to
teens,” said Michael Mathews, Vice President, Sparkling Non-Colas,
Coca-Cola North America. “We saw an ongoing need for outdoor spaces at
schools. Sprite is adding a spark back into school playgrounds and
athletic fields by building places where youth can get active and stay
refreshed with their friends.”

last year’s program, three schools each won a $25,000 playground
renovation from Sprite after parents and community members rallied to
donate points. Another 20 schools were awarded $5,000 to be used towards
athletic equipment for each school.

kicks-off the national sweepstakes this month by revamping seven K-12
schools across America in need of an outdoor play space with a $25,000
playground or athletic field donation. 

 About My Coke Rewards for Schools

K-12 schools (public and private) located within the 50 United States
and the District of Columbia are eligible to take part in the My Coke
Rewards for Schools program. A full list of eligible schools can be
found at mycokerewards.com/schools. Schools must be registered in the
program to redeem points for rewards.

Community members are urged to
contact their local school’s principal or a faculty staff member if
their school is not registered. Members of the community
are encouraged to register for My Coke Rewards and donate their points
to their local schools to enable schools to get new equipment without
tapping into their own budgets.

 About My Coke Rewards

more than 14 million registered members, www.mycokerewards.com is one
of the top consumer packaged goods loyalty website and the number one
beverage Web site in the U.S.

Shanghai students visit Walnut Valley Unified

The Walnut Valley Unified School District hosted 27 fifth- and sixth-grade students from Shanghai, China, in July.

The children spent three days learning American culture and English with Lily Chang, a teacher at Evergreen Elementary School in Diamond Bar. The classes were held at the District Education Center.


The group and their chaperones are in the United States for 16 days visiting New York, Washington D.C., Boston, Philadelphia and the Grand Canyon.

Rowland Health Clinic offers free Tdap shots next week

Rowland Unified Children’s Health Clinic will open for an extended time to
provide free Tdap shots to Rowland
Unified School students only on Monday, August 8, through Thursday, August 11.
The clinic hours will be from 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. The office will be closed for
lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The Children’s Clinic is located next door
to Northam Elementary at 17800 E.
Renault Street in La Puente. The number is (626)964-4798. Under the new law, all students entering the seventh to twelfth grades must have a Tdap (whooping cough) shot before they start school.

must bring their child’s immunization record to get the shot, then
provide written proof of the Tdap
shot to their child’s school.

Rowland Unified parents
may send proof of the Tdap shot the
following ways throughout the summer: by e-mail to tdap@rowland.k12.ca.us; or
drop off, mail or fax to: Pupil Services
at 1928 S. Nogales St., Rowland
Heights CA 91748.

The fax # is (626) 964-6450. Pupil Services phone number is (626)935-8203. More
information about the Tdap shot can
be found at ShotsForSchool.org or at Rowland
Unified’s website Tdap page