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Category: Schools

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Getting High Tech Up to Speed

Getting High Tech Up to Speed

The school district’s new tech director vouched for the necessity of spending $900,000 over the next year to get the district up to speed with the high-tech direction public education is rapidly taking. “Speed is our biggest issue,” Mike Morrison, who was hired in February as the district’s chief technology director, told school board members […]

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Young Actor Scores Another Role

Young Actor Scores Another Role

Makenna Pitz was honored with a certificate of recognition by the Rotary Club as the Laguna Beach High School student of the month for March in the performing arts department. She will also receive a scholarship at the Honors Convocation to be held in June. Makenna performed in the high school’s spring musical. She plans […]

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Taking a Lesson in New Math Standards

Taking a Lesson in New Math Standards

Many students fall off the math train when the tracks switch between algebra and geometry.  If algebra doesn’t make sense, it’s hard to make the leap, much less go on to calculus, say experts in math education who spoke at a special school district board meeting Monday about new state standards for teaching math. Understanding […]

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Summer School Schedule Set

Summer School Schedule Set

Summer School will be offered weekdays in grades 1-8 beginning June 23 to July 18 at Top of the World Elementary. Classes begin at 8 a.m. and end at 12:15 p.m. They include remediation courses and English language support, both for students entering grades 1 – 5 For students in grades 6-8, courses available include […]

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Orchestrating Cultural Exchanges Near and Far

Orchestrating Cultural Exchanges Near and Far

Laguna Beach High School’s French teacher Odile Dewar instills Francophile culture in her classroom by tapping resources wherever she finds them. While attending a meeting of French speakers in San Diego last fall, Dewar overheard hotel employees speaking French and befriended Haitian-born Jean Coriolan, who became a liaison for a classroom project. Dewar directed her […]

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Bell Rings for Kindergarten Students

Bell Rings for Kindergarten Students

Registration and orientation sessions are scheduled this spring for parents of prospective kindergarten students, who will be 5 before Sept. 1 To be eligible for Transitional kindergarten, students must turn 5 between Sept. 2 and Dec. 2. At El Morro Elementary, parent orientation is Tuesday, April 1 at 6:30 p.m. and Thursday, May 15 at […]

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Thurston’s Fundraiser Sets ‘Out on the Town’

Thurston’s Fundraiser Sets ‘Out on the Town’

The public is invited to join Thurston Middle School parents for an entertaining night of dining and dancing downtown while supporting Thurston’s PTA. The Wednesday, April 9, event that begins at 6:15 p.m. includes two 45-minute stops followed by everyone coming together at Nirvana for the remainder of the night. Tickets are $70 each and […]

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Parents Receive a Pep Talk

Parents Receive a Pep Talk

By Kate Rogers, Special to the Independent Award-winning speaker and therapist Liz Jorgensen urged parents of teens to revive the collaborative and collective parenting environment that began when their children were young when they shared tips and strategies. This open, supportive environment is missing during the teen years when the stakes are so much higher, […]

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Schools’ Facilities Director Retires

Schools’ Facilities Director Retires

Ted Doughty, director of facilities for Laguna Beach schools for the past two years, will retire, effective June 30, the district announced Monday. Doughty’s retirement reflects continuing turnover among the district’s top ranks, which have included recent departures by the assistant superintendent and  directors of technology and human resources. Doughty has worked for 40 years […]

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Special Ed Goes Common Core

Special Ed Goes Common Core

In this class, acting out is encouraged. With its emphasis on less is more, the new Common Core state-mandated academic standards still require teachers to cover certain subjects, but at a less hectic pace. The focus is depth rather than breadth of subject to engender greater understanding of one idea instead of the scattershot approach […]

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Survey Asks Students About Their Lives

Survey Asks Students About Their Lives

In the coming weeks, public school students in grades 5, 7, 9 and 11 will be asked to anonymously take a revised California Healthy Kids Survey, which measures school climate and other factors. As part of a revision, staff working with students in grades 5 through 12 will be surveyed and parents of students taking […]

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Dance Sows Seeds for Schools

Dance Sows Seeds for Schools

  Three hundred guests attended Schoolpower’s 29th annual dinner dance, which netted over $225,000 for Laguna Beach schools. The crowd raised paddles and pledged over $140,000 for this year’s Fund-a-Need initiative, “Xtremely iNteractive,” which requested Apple iPads, Apple TVs and Google Chromebooks to create high-tech, interactive classrooms. “It’s been really exciting to integrate technology into […]

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Class Notes

Class Notes

LBHS Alum Curates Art Show Laguna Beach High School graduate Chloe Cunningham and seven fellow students at Pennsylvania’s Dickinson College co-curated an art exhibition, “Letters & Lines” which opened Feb. 21. The exhibit is the capstone experience for Cunningham, an art and art history major and daughter of Gary Cunningham of Lake Isabella, and Leslie […]

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Demystifying Changes in State Testing

Demystifying Changes in State Testing

Parents are invited to a workshop Tuesday, March 18, on the state’s Common Core, which will be held at the high school’s library from 6 to 7:30 p.m. This spring, public school students are participating in a field test of the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP), which replaces the Standardized Testing and […]

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Donors Fund Technology for Artistic Pursuits

Donors Fund Technology for Artistic Pursuits

Laguna Beach High School art students are creating distinctive mixed media art using a laser purchased by donors. “They are truly inspired; this has made teaching fun again,” said graphic art and design teacher Kerry Pellow, adding that students are keen to apply the tool to ceramics, art, computer art, production art and production design. […]