Business Partner of the Month
It is our pleasure and honor to recognize our Business Partner of the Month for June 2012, Keith Weathers and Weathers Music Store.
On June 30, Weathers Music Store will be closing its doors for the final time. For the past 30 plus years Keith Weathers has been at the helm of the store his father began in the 1950s.
During that time Keith has been a special friend to the music program of the Salem-Keizer Public Schools. He not only has supplied and repaired the musical equipments that have sustained thousands of our student musicians, but he has served as a tremendous resource to our music teachers, helping them learn about new instruments and state-of-the-art equipment.
He has also sponsored a variety of guest artists that have inspired students and teachers alike. He has always been one that our staff and students could go to for advice, knowing that he would find the answer if he didn’t already know it, and that the advice he would give would always be trustworthy.
Over the years, Keith has proven himself to be a man of integrity whose life’s work has been to improve the quality of life in our community through music, and his partnership with the Salem-Keizer Schools has been invaluable.
We wish Keith the very best and give him our heartfelt thanks as he retires.
Super Volunteers Doug Getzfrid and Patti Lee
We are recognizing two volunteers for Volunteer of the Month for June, Doug Getzfrid and Patti Lee.
Doug Getzfrid was nominated by Judson Middle School teacher Keith Andersen and Principal Lara Tiffin. Doug spends all day in the Industrial Education shop at Judson Middle School at least four days a week. He even stays after school if a project is started that needs finishing.
Doug helps with repairs, and broken blades, and anything else that is needed to keep the shop functioning and the machines running. He helps the teacher fix things for which the teacher cannot get parts, even getting his friends involved in the repairs.
Doug loves helping kids and it shows. Doug helps students solve problems and encourages them to continue when they want to give up on a project. Judson staff feel very lucky to have had Doug helping out in their school.
Patti Lee was nominated by Debbie Davenport, office manager at Clear Lake Elementary.
When Debbie was contacted about recognizing a volunteer, she said, “Yes, and she is currently out front cleaning the flower bed.“ Debbie went on to say that Patti has done this for many years, and part of what makes her special is the extra care and pride she takes with her planting and maintaining of the Clear Lake flower bed.
Patti is an instrumental part of Clear Lake's Jumping Stars program. Jumping Stars is a performing jump rope team. They practice twice a week and perform at local high school and college sports games, and in parades.
Clear Lake staff feel that Patti’s dedication to Clear Lake is remarkable.
Doug and Patti, thank you for your support and dedication to the students of Salem-Keizer Schools.
District Music Champions
The State Music Championships were held at Oregon State University in May. This competition brings the total of first place awards in the championships received by our schools to 73 since the state music contests started in 1987.
Full Symphony Orchestra Championships
- First place full symphony: South Salem High School, co-directed by Brandon Correa and Travis Freshner
- Second place full symphony: West Salem High School Orchestra, directed by Todd Zimbelman
- First place band: West Salem High School, directed by Todd Zimbelman
- Third place band : South Salem High School, directed by Travis Freshner
String Orchestra Championships
- Second place string orchestra: West Salem High School, directed by Daryl Silberman
- Fifth place string orchestra: McKay High School, directed by Jim Charnholm
We give special recognition to the McKay High School Orchestra. This is the first time McKay has placed in competition since the state competitions started. McKay has really come a long way!
The 2012 OSAA State High School Choir Championships were held in May.
- First place choir: Sprague High School, directed by Dr. David Brown
- Second place choir: McNary High School Concert Choir, directed by Jim Taylor
- Third place choir: South Salem High School Choir, directed by Carol Stenson
In the Best of the Northwest Choir Competition
- First place choir: Judson Middle School
- Second place choir: Crossler Middle School
- Third place choir: Whiteaker Middle School
- Fourth place choir: Straub Middle School
In the high school division, Sprague High School placed second in Best of the Northwest Choir competition.
We also recognize Tiffany Gaither who was recently named the Oregon Symphony of Salem’s Teacher of the Year. Tiffany is the elementary music specialist at Schirle Elementary. Her award includes $1,000 for her classroom.
We are very proud of our excellent music teachers and talented students and applaud them for their outstanding performances at the state finals. They all exemplify the best characteristics of self-discipline, mutual respect, and the humanistic values that result from a significant music education.
West Salem High School Team Infinity
The West Salem High School Titan team, “Infinity,” was among four winners of the Pete Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge and honored at the 2012 Innovation Summit held in March at the NASA-Ames Research Center. The teams have been competing since fall 2011 to develop innovative products that tackle some of the world’s most pressing issues in the areas of aerospace exploration, clean energy, and health and nutrition.
The Infinity team members are Grace Hannon, Madison Jones, Meera Petroff and Elliott Lownsbery. Their coach is Michael Lampert and their mentor was David Fuller of NASA.
The team was recognized under the Aerospace Exploration category for its “Infinity Suit,” which utilizes a newly developed fabric constructed of phase-changing crystals to provide a better alternative to liquid cooling and ventilation garments used in astronaut spacesuits.
The winning teams were selected by an elite panel of judges consisting of industry experts, leading entrepreneurs, government officials and world renowned scientists. There was also a public voting component.
Team Infinity received a Next Step Grant of $5,000 to continue product development and a one-year affiliate membership to Sigma Xi, an international, multidisciplinary research society whose programs and activities promote the health of the scientific enterprise and honor scientific achievement.
As coach, Michael Lampert received a $500 stipend from the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Foundation for his dedication to innovation education.
Independent Living Community Transition Program
Each spring during National Volunteer Week, Marion County recognizes volunteers for service during the previous year.
The Independent Living Community Transition Program was recognized with the Youth Volunteer Award, which honors the volunteer accomplishments of those 24 years old and younger, who volunteer in county programs and departments. Students are Zackary Hesketh, Cody Smith, Eric Moore, Estee Richard, Josh Ross, Brieann Green, Rosario Mejia Moreno and Jennifer Young.
The award was intended to highlight an individual’s contribution, but this year the selection committee felt this group of young people most worthy of the award.
Led by teacher Carolyn Vasta and district staff, Karla Canida and Teresa Harriman, the Independent Living Program youth spent time at the Marion County Dog Shelter working with adoptable dogs. As a group, these young people worked with the dogs by taking them outside, playing with them and teaching them good behavior. They worked hard to socialize the dogs for new families.
The employees at the Marion County Dog Shelter expressed the pride and inspiration they felt, watching this group of young individuals as they shared their enthusiasm for volunteering.
Oregon Elementary School Principal of the Year
Lizi Aguilar-Nelson has been named the Oregon Elementary School Principal of the Year by the Oregon Association of Elementary School Administrators and the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators (COSA). She will be honored at the annual COSA Conference in Seaside this month. This award automatically places her in the running for the National Elementary School Principal of the Year Award from the National Association of Elementary School Principals.
Lizi has served as principal of Richmond Elementary School since 2007. In her time at Richmond she has helped bring them up to the top Title 1 school in Salem. The achievement gap has narrowed and in some cases even reversed.
Under Aguilar-Nelson’s leadership parent involvement has increased as well as the parent expectations of the students. She has successfully reached out to all family types and backgrounds in the Richmond community.
Lizi was nominated by a strong group of parent supporters. In their nomination letter it states, “Due to the efforts of Lizi, and the environment and support that she has brought, today our children are successful in school and enthusiastic about their educational future.”
Oregon Middle School Coach of the Year
Whiteaker Middle School PE Teacher, Volleyball and Track Coach, Scott Coburn, received the Oregon Middle School Coach of the Year award. The award was presented by the Oregon Athletic Coaches Association at their awards banquet held on May 26th at Autzen Stadium in Eugene.
Scott has coached volleyball and track at Whiteaker Middle School for the past 20 years. He was nominated for the award by Whiteaker Assistant Principal Denny McCarthy.
In his nomination Denny wrote that he found Scott to have a strong work ethic, a drive to excel, a genuine personality, and a compassion for student athletes. All of which have contributed to Scott’s success as an educator and coach. Scott truly believes in the value of physical education and athletics.
In his closing statement on the recommendation, Denny wrote that he believes Scott to represent the finest coaching, teaching, and leadership qualities worthy of the award.
The OACA Executive Director and Board concurred with Denny’s statements by choosing Scott for the award. This is the second time Scott has been selected as the Oregon Middle School Coach of the Year.
Oregon 2012 Outstanding Earth Science Teacher
Marie Carver, Jane Goodall Enviromental Middle School teacher, was awarded the Oregon 2012 Outstanding Earth Science Teacher by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers. The awards are given for exceptional contribution to the stimulation of interest in the Earth Sciences at the pre-college level.
The award will be presented to Marie at the 2012 National Association of Geoscience Teachers Conference to be held in Spokane on June 22-26.
The award includes $500 for classroom materials and $500 in travel funds to a future Geological Society of America Conference.
Thank you for your dedication to the students in our district and community.
Oregon Council of Teachers of Mathematics Area Recognition Award
Lesli Ficker has been awarded the Oregon Council of Teachers of Mathematics Area Recognition Award for her leadership and service in the mathematics education community. The OCTM recognizes those who have made exceptional efforts above and beyond what was asked of them to ensure that all Oregon students have the opportunity to learn significant mathematics.
In the nomination form submitted, Lesli is described as a forward-thinking and talented educator, especially in the area of mathematics. As an elementary math specialist she has put in countless hours creating resources for elementary teachers. Her work has helped hundreds of teachers in Salem-Keizer and countless others districts who seek out her expertise. Lesli is a lifelong learner who is constantly questioning, researching and adding to her personal knowledge about teaching mathematics.
Lesli’s diligence and genuine interest in stimulating and fostering interest in the learning of mathematics makes her very deserving of this award.