Rowland thanks community for its generousity

Photo courtesy of Rowland Unified

Photo courtesy of Rowland Unified

The Rowland Unified School District would like to thank the community for participating in the annual Adopt and Shop program organized by the Family Resource Center.

On Dec. 13, there were gleeful smiles of joy as more than 100 families and 300 children in need across the Rowland Unified School District were given gifts to open thanks to the generosity of others.

Rowland students and Rotary build holiday baskets

Photo by Gina Ward, courtesy of Rowland Unified

Photo by Gina Ward, courtesy of Rowland Unified

Last Saturday more than 200 students and members from the Walnut Valley Rotary gathered at Alvarado Intermediate to assemble holiday baskets for families in need in the Rowland Unified School District.

Students from Interact clubs at Rowland High School, Walnut High School, ASB students from Nogales and Santana High Schools, along with college students involved with Rotary from Cal Poly Pomona and Mt. SAC gathered at 7 a.m. to assemble the 11,567 cans of food and 250 turkeys that were donated.

There were 320 holiday baskets assembled that families from across the Rowland Unified School District received.

Nogales High students learn about Holocaust

US History teacher Devon Darrow talks to students at Nogales High School.

US History teacher Devon Darrow talks to students at Nogales High School.

By Richard Irwin, Staff Writer

Nogales High students are especially thankful for friends, family and freedom this Thanksgiving. The Rowland Unified students have been studying the Holocaust this week.

Last week, 150 history students toured the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles. Then, they gathered in the gym for a live Skype with a Holocaust survivor.

“I want my students to learn history from firsthand accounts and experiences. These people bring history alive, having actually lived through historic events,” explained teacher Devon Butcher.

Butcher is an enthusiastic instructor of world and U.S. history. At Cal State Fullerton, Butcher discussed how to teach students about the Holocaust after the last survivors had died.

“The fear we discussed was when this generation is gone and can’t tell their stories, how do we go forward as educators and teach this?” Butcher asked. “How can we teach this horrific event in history without firsthand accounts?”

So the Nogales teacher took his students to the Museum of Tolerance. The museum helps students understand the Holocaust as well as prejudice and discrimination in the world today.

“We watch people get bullied every day and don’t do a thing about it,” Butcher said.

Every visitor gets a different passport with the story of a child affected by the Holocaust. The passport is updated during the tour, revealing the child’s fate at the end.

“I thought it was a very sad situation, because no matter what the age the children were, they killed them,” said 15-year-old sophomore Paola Aldana.

Read more in Rich Irwin’s story HOLOCAUST.

Nogales Noble Regiment wins state championship

By Rowland Unified

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The Nogales High School Noble Regiment took state championships this weekend — second year in a row, even when they moved up a division this year to 4A — beating 19 bands!

Band Director Brad Pollock and students will gather at lunch time tomorrow at 12:15 p.m. outside the gym to celebrate their victory

“Out of 20 bands, the nobles won general effect, visual, color guard and the gold medal. What an amazing experience and memory for our seniors and for our entire organization,” Pollock said. “I can’t say anything else but wow!! No words can express the emotions. I was  more than proud of our kids, staff, parents, and we love our regiment family. Go nobles!!” Pollock said.

Shelyn students build machines in Rowland Heights

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The room was packed as GATE 4th-6th grade students at Shelyn Elementary presented their projects to classmates that they built at home that demonstrated their learning about “simple machines” and physics.

Led by educator Pam Hessom, students learned about building and designing projects by watching videos from Bill Nye and researched video of Rube Goldberg machines (She invites everyone to check out the video at www.wimp.com/gomachine !)

After studying the many types of simple machines, students designed and built projects selected from different kits that were funded with grant money from the FOR US Foundation and The Shirley Kaufman Grant.

“The idea was to promote to our students to be creative as they can. Even though they are simple machines, they are not so simple – everything from catapults, roller coasters and windmills were presented and on display and we were all so very proud and impressed with their efforts,” said Shelyn Principal Sarah Opatkiewicz.

Rowland Unified readies holiday boutique on Dec. 4

The community is invited to shop at Rowland Unified’s annual holiday boutique on Dec. 4 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the board room at the district offices on Nogales Street.

Don’t forget if you want to order the popular Tamales, complete order form before Nov. 25 for pick-up at the boutique on Dec. 4.

Some of the many hand-made items you will find at the Boutique are: holiday decorations, country and Victorian gifts, jewelry, doll items, purses, hair items, hats, duct tape crafts, Tupperware, books, knitted and crocheted items, sports novelty items, candied apples, pottery and tamales!

Tables Still Left for Vendors!  

 

Nasouf named principal at Nogales High School

Yousef Nasouf is the new principal at Nogales High School. He comes from the Anaheim Union High School District, where he was Principal for Orangeview Junior High School since 2011.

Before that , he was an Assistant Principal of Curriculum and Instruction for Cypress High School/Kennedy High School where he also coordinated the IB program.

Nasouf taught eight years at La Mirada High School and was a Basketball Coach at Santa Ana College, Mayfair High School and La Mirada High.

 He holds a Bachelor of Arts in History from UCLA, and a Masters of Arts in Education from Cal State University, Dominquez Hills.

Rowland Unified raises money for holiday baskets

For the past 44 years, Rowland employees celebrate the holidays by supporting the HOLIDAY BASKET PROGRAM which helps nearly 250 RUSD families in need.

This donation is carried out through the joint efforts of the students of Nogales, Rowland and Santana High School’s Interact Clubs, ASB, employees of RUSD, members of the Walnut Valley Rotary Club, and other community volunteers.

Superintendent Dr. Julie Mitchell encourages every employee to support this worthwhile program by donating at least $2. *

Please make checks payable to HOLIDAY BASKETS. You may make your voluntary contribution directly to your immediate supervisor now until Friday, December 5.

All proceeds will be collected by Rita Garcia, Executive Secretary, Administrative Services in the District Office. (Letters with additional information were sent to all sites).

Canned Goods are being collected at school sites for the baskets now untilWednesday, December 10.

 

Red Ribbon Week icon visits Yorbita Elementary in La Puente

Yorbita Elementary Principal Sylvia Cadena looks to the sky at the balloons with Red Ribbon Week icon Mika Camarena.

Yorbita Elementary Principal Sylvia Cadena looks to the sky at the balloons with Red Ribbon Week icon Mika Camarena.

By Rowland Unified

Students from Yorbita Elementary in La Puente released more than 100 red balloons today with student pledges to be “drug free” in celebration of Red Ribbon Week.

Each year thousands of schools across the U.S. celebrate “Red Ribbon Week” October 23- 31 to promote drug abuse prevention in honor of DEA Special Agent “Kiki” Camarena.

His death sparked a grass roots campaign to reduce the demand for drugs and encourage healthy, violence-free lifestyles. Yorbita Elementary was honored to have the wife of “Kiki” Camarena, “Mika” Camarena, who is president of the Camarena Foundation lead the balloon release today.

 Holding her red balloon, she read to the students her pledge: “My commitment is to continue my work with Red Ribbon until my last breath.” The balloons filled the sky as students cheered.

Students whoop it up at Industry Hills Pro Rodeo

More than 4,000 school children will experience a rodeo at the Industry Hills Charity Pro Rodeo this Friday from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Local school district dignitaries will take part in the festivities, including Rowland’s new Superintendent Julie Mitchell and Board Member Cary Chen will be on hand along with representatives from the Hacienda La Puente Unified School District.

Students will come from Baldwin, Bassett (all schools), HLPUSD (seven schools), Montebello (2 schools), Mountain View (3 schools – 260 kids), Rowland Unified (Yorbita and Villacorta), Walnut Valley (4 schools going), Del Haven, private schools, St. Martha, St. Joseph, homeschooling groups and special needs groups.