Fungo, McDermott Earn Rose Harrington Honors

Rose Harrington Award recipient Lisa Fungo is flanked by Wendy Sinnette, La Cañada Unified School District superintendent, and Chad Heath, La Cañada Flintridge Educational Foundation Endowment trustee.

Lisa Fungo and Brian McDermott recently were named the 2017-18 Rose Harrington Educators of the Year, an honor that was established in 2002 by a bequest to the LCFEF Endowment Fund from the estate of Rose Harrington, local resident and teacher.
Fungo is a 6th-grade teacher at La Cañada Elementary and McDermott is a math teacher at La Cañada High School.
Continue reading “Fungo, McDermott Earn Rose Harrington Honors”

LCUSD Task Force Tackles Student Safety, Traffic, Wellness

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
Superintendent Wendy Sinnette addresses the newly formed community task force at its first meeting last week on Thursday, May 24. The task force was created to help the La Cañada Unified School District improve its safety, security and student wellness policies.

The especially sobering thing about discussing safety, security and student well-being is how deep those conversations go, La Cañada Unified School District Superintendent Wendy Sinnette said last week during the first meeting of the district’s task force to address those topics.
“Everything’s connected,” she said. “And as soon as you talk about one thing, it makes you think of another. The work will never be done, but it’s really empowering to have such wonderful people here committed to doing the work.”
Twenty-three members of the community — including parents, students, administrators, teachers and staff members — joined district administrators and Governing Board members in the district’s meeting room on Thursday, May 24. They signed up for subcommittees and got an overview of what they’re expected to accomplish in the next year. Continue reading “LCUSD Task Force Tackles Student Safety, Traffic, Wellness”

LCHS Sports Medicine Students Earn National Acclaim

Members of La Cañada High School’s national sports medicine team include (front row, from left) Trevor Lee, Paris Papac, Solenn Matuska, Sophia Vaze, Rajvi Kumar, Emily Truong and Melody Wu. Back: Nathan Boulanger, Samuel Seo, James Yim, Brandon Buck, Matthew Bromley, Noah Hirshon, Sophia Barber and Allison Mueller.

La Cañada High School sports medicine student Allison Mueller claimed first place in the National Sports Medicine Competition, and the LCHS Sports Medicine team emerged as champions of the Jaybird and Mais division at the American Academic Competition Institute National High School Sports Medicine Competition. Among all school divisions nationwide, LCHS placed fourth.
More than 3,500 sports medicine students representing more than 300 high schools in California, Michigan, Nevada, Texas, Virginia, Florida and Washington participated. The focus topic for this year’s competition was the knee, though the examination consisted of 300 questions on subjects such as first aid, CPR, emergency procedures, kinesiology and physiology.
A group of 15 LCHS sports medicine students were selected to compete in the seventh annual national competition based on scores in a regional competition held in April at Cal State Northridge.
Those 15 students took a national examination online in mid-May, and five members of the LCHS team scored in the top 10 in their division, qualifying for the practical examination, which occurred at St. Francis High School and conducted via Skype.
On June 1, Mueller emerged from the practical with the top score in the Jaybird and Mais division, which includes medium-sized schools with between 1,000 and 1,999 students.
“The competition was especially grueling this year as the online test was scheduled for the day after AP exams and the practical was held the day after LCHS final exams,” wrote sports medicine coach Kim Crosby in an email. “The students were juggling a lot. Despite this, there was a great energy among the five girls who qualified for the practical exam as they practiced their hands-on skills prior to their tests.”
Students in the top 25 in the division are awarded “All American” status, including LCHS’s Mueller; Paris Papac and Sophia Barber (who tied for fourth place); Solenn Matuska (ninth); Emily Truong (11th) and Sonia Vaze (21st.)

LCUSD Seeks to Improve Messaging to Community

Jamie Lewsadder, La Cañada Unified School District’s chief technology officer, said she learned recently that a relative’s school in Porterville was locked down when a LCUSD intern told her. He’d seen it on Twitter before Lewsadder or any of her family members learned of the situation, she said.
“So I really experienced that panic first-hand,” she said during Tuesday’s Governing Board meeting, at which she introduced a first draft of board policy revisions to improve LCUSD’s communication plan.
“We need to create a plan that allows us to have fast and reliable communication,” Lewsadder said. “News travels so fast; we have to be prepared for it.” Continue reading “LCUSD Seeks to Improve Messaging to Community”

LCHS Class of 2018 Is College Bound

Brent Kuszyk

By Brent Kuszyk
Special to The Outlook

One of the true highlights of serving on the LCUSD Governing Board is having the privilege of distributing diplomas to our graduating seniors each spring at graduation. Their sense of optimism and excitement is contagious.
The future looks very bright for our class of 2018 graduating seniors. This year our students will be disseminating around the country to 33 states as well as to South Korea and the United Kingdom. Of the 322 who reported matriculating to a college 202 (63%) will be attending institutions in the state of California. The second most popular destination is the state of Washington with 13 students headed to our northern neighbor. Among the students who will be attending two-year schools, Pasadena City College is the most common destination with 60 students. Continue reading “LCHS Class of 2018 Is College Bound”

Bear Necessitates Removal From Yard

Photo courtesy Lisa Eich
A 3-year-old female black bear navigated a short wall in a yard on Daleridge Road last week before he was tranquilized and returned to Angeles National Forest.

Summer vacation got off to a wild start last week for Randall Bradley, who returned from his last-day-of-11th-grade celebration to find a crowd of people — including local law enforcement — on his family’s street.
They mentioned that a black bear had been spotted in the neighborhood of Daleridge Road and Burgoyne Lane, so Bradley went to go check for it in his family’s backyard.
“He came back and said the bear was there,” his mother, Trisha Stites, wrote in an email. “I really did not believe him at first. I thought he was joking with me.”
She went to see for herself and, yes, there was the bear, just “poking around” in the yard. Continue reading “Bear Necessitates Removal From Yard”

PCR Math Whizzes Earn Perfect Scores

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
Palm Crest Elementary’s Blake Chang, Neal Frankenberg and Thomas Sorensen all scored a perfect 25 on this year’s Math Olympiad for Elementary and Middle Schools testing.

A trio of math virtuosos at Palm Crest Elementary School recently pulled off a mind-boggling feat: They all achieved a perfect score of 25 on this year’s Math Olympiad for Elementary and Middle Schools testing, for which they will be recognized with the Lenchner Medal, the award named after the late founder of the program.
Of 90,000 4th-, 5th- and 6th-grade students who participated internationally in 2016-17, only 155 earned perfect scores, “a highly improbable 0.2%,” as parent Sugi Sorensen put it.
This year, PCR 6th-graders Blake Chang, Neal Frankenberg and Thomas Sorensen all did it — and then downplayed their accomplishment, which was achieved over the course of five individual five-question tests taken over the span of five months. Continue reading “PCR Math Whizzes Earn Perfect Scores”

LCUSD Ready for Phase I of Facilities Improvements

At a special meeting last Friday, the La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board discussed Measure LCF projects and oversight as district administrators gear up to begin implementing the Facilities Master Plan.
Discussion touched mostly on cash flow and priority-setting for nearly $30 million that will initially become available from the $149 million bond passed by voters last year. Continue reading “LCUSD Ready for Phase I of Facilities Improvements”