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Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014
Education news

Collective Impact in Education group explores goals (10/23/14)
On Wednesday, a small group of youth service representatives discussed goals such as supporting children in and out of school, having every child succeed academically and every student graduating high school prepared for postsecondary education. The goals and milestones were hashed out by Collective Impact in Education, a group facilitated by United Way of Southeast Missouri...
The YOUNG GUNS (10/23/14)
The annual Flickerwood Youth Rodeo is celebrating its 20th year this season, meaning it is older than many of the contestants. It's served as a place for youngsters to cut their teeth and dust up their boots in pint-sized to teenage events like calf roping, "chute doggin'," and "mutton bustin.'"...
Hooked on Science: Magnetic slime (10/23/14)
n 1/4 cup liquid starch n 1/4 cup Elmer's glue n 2 tablespoons iron oxide powder n Neodymium magnet STEP 1: Mix the liquid starch and iron oxide powder in a bowl. Add the Elmer's glue and continue to mix. STEP 2: Remove the magnetic slime from the bowl, continue to mix the slime with your hands...
Jackson resident picked to help develop new education standards (10/23/14)
The work groups created by House Bill 1490 to develop new standards for Missouri students include at one person from the Cape Girardeau area. The bill includes creating panels of educators and parents to write new performance goals to replace Common Core standards, which encompass the knowledge and skills all students should master by the end of each grade level, according to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education...
Critics: Search for education commissioner rushed (10/22/14)
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Some district-level Missouri school officials have criticized the state school board's plan to quickly hire a new education commissioner, saying the board should first gather input on the position's needs and conduct a national search for qualified candidates...
SEMO Kennett student getting ready for big trip (10/22/14)
KENNETT, Mo. -- A student at the Kennett regional campus of Southeast Missouri State University is getting ready for an adventure in the spring. Shirley Ellis is the first student at Kennett to do her student teaching abroad. She will travel to Iquique, a port city in northern Chile, on March 30...
Scott City School District adviser answers questions about bond issue (10/21/14)
Along with other issues on the Nov. 4 ballot, voters in the Scott City School District will decide whether to vote for or against a no-tax-increase bond issue. If passed, $1.75 million in bonds would be issued for the district to take care of maintenance and other building improvements and prepay previous bond issues...
Scott City school upgrades hinge on voters (10/21/14)
Voters in the Scott City School District will decide Nov. 4 whether $1.75 million should be issued to update school buildings and make them more secure. If the bond passes, the district's tax rate will remain at 49 cents per $100 of assessed valuation...
Third-party insurance administrator chosen by Cape school board (10/21/14)
The Cape Girardeau School Board on Monday approved going with a third-party administrator to implement a partially self-insured plan to offer medical coverage to its employees. Mutual Medical Plans Inc. of Peoria, Illinois, was selected as the administrator...
Chamber gives thumbs-down on Amendment 3 (10/21/14)
Along with many local school districts and organizations, the Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce has come out against Amendment 3, the proposed revision to the state Constitution that would tie teacher evaluations to student performance. The Cape Girardeau Area Chamber of Commerce is not taking a position on it, vice president Tim Arbeiter said...
Groups want say in hire of new education commissioner (10/20/14)
With all the potential changes going on in Missouri public education, Southeast Missouri superintendents -- and other such organizations around the state -- want their voices heard in the search for a new state education commissioner. At its September meeting, the State Board of Education was told by Commissioner Chris Nicastro that she was resigning, effective Dec. 31...
Mo. to vote on teacher evaluation changes (10/20/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Missouri could be the first state to enshrine the role of student performance data in teacher evaluations in its state constitution if an initiative on the Nov. 4 ballot gets enough support. The proposal would amend the Missouri Constitution to require a majority of teachers' evaluation scores be based on student performance data, which could include standardized tests. ...
Literary conference is expected to be international draw (10/20/14)
Performance and scholarship will be featured during Southeast Missouri State University's Faulkner & Hurston Conference from Thursday through Saturday. Held mainly at the University Center, the conference is expected to attract about 250 people, including presenters from all over the world, to discuss Southern writers William Faulkner and Zora Neale Hurston...
Survey to junior high students failed to follow school policy (10/19/14)
Cape Girardeau school administrators say they are taking steps to ensure district staff will follow a policy that governs student surveys, after parents raised alarm about questionable content in one recently given to junior high students. On Oct. 3, a survey from a community organization that works to prevent youth substance abuse was administered at Cape Central Junior High, which resulted in complaints from parents of inappropriate questions -- including some about sexual orientation, sexual activity, drug use and illegal activities.. ...
Scott City board joins in opposition to Amendment 3 (10/17/14)
The Scott City board of education joined several other area panels Wednesday night in passing a resolution opposing Amendment 3. The initiative on the Nov. 4 general election ballot would, among other things, tie teacher evaluations to student performance...
Chaffee school district begins projects for safe rooms, industrial arts (10/17/14)
CHAFFEE, Mo. -- Construction of two safe rooms and an industrial arts building has begun for the Chaffee R-II school district. Funded by a no-tax-increase bond issue in April, construction has been going on within the district since the end of the 2013-2014 school year...
Survey sent to junior high students prompts apology from principal (10/17/14)
The principal of Central Junior High School has apologized for a survey that recently went out to students in grades six through 12, covering everything from sexual orientation to the highest level of schooling their parents attained. The survey was sent out by EPIC, which stands for Early Prevention Impacts Communities. ...
University luncheon generates talk of life after college (10/17/14)
Ideas on how to better prepare students for postsecondary life were discussed Thursday at a College Conversations Partnership Luncheon. Hosted by the Southeast Missouri State University Academic Support Centers, which provides programs and services for underrepresented students, the meeting attracted about 50 people and was held in the Show Me Center-North Meeting Room...
Chaffee Industrial Arts is getting more room and a new work shop (10/16/14)
Chaffee Industrial Arts students are "pumped" for their new shop addition and have recently revamped their current work space. With the school's renowned robotics team, which has placed top in the state three years in a row, the Chaffee School District is constructing an addition to be used by the industrial arts program. Funding for the project came from voters passing a $2.9 million no-tax-increase bond issue in April allowing for improvements and additions at both of the district's buildings...
Perryville Homecoming events planned for Saturday (10/16/14)
Perryville High School will celebrate Homecoming this weekend. Homecoming events include a bonfire rally, which begins about 7 p.m. Friday on campus near the bus parking lot; the Homecoming parade, which will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday from Perryville City Park; and the Perryville Pirates vs. Scott City Rams football game, at 1 p.m. Saturday...
Hooked on Science: Bloody handprint (10/16/14)
Goldenrod paper Baking soda Water STEP 1: Mix one cup of baking soda with 1 cup of warm water. Dip the palm of your hand into the baking soda and water. STEP 2: Slap your hand on a piece of goldenrod paper and observe. The goldenrod paper turns bright red when slapped with the palm of your hand, which is covered with baking soda and water. ...
Jackson School Board passes resolution against Amendment 3 (10/15/14)
With the Nov. 4 general election weeks away, the Jackson School Board on Tuesday night passed a resolution opposing Amendment 3. The proposed amendment to the Missouri Constitution would, among other things, tie teacher evaluations to student performance...
Teacher home visit program in St. Louis continues (10/13/14)
ST. LOUIS -- Lisa Koester learns more about her fifth-graders sitting on their living room couches than she ever would in the classroom. On a recent afternoon, the Maplewood-Richmond Heights teacher paid a visit to one of her pupil's homes, offering her a personal parent-teacher interaction...
Career and Technology Center to be evaluated by accrediting agency (10/12/14)
Cape Girardeau's Career and Technology Center will undergo an accreditation visit in November. The school earned candidacy status about a year ago, director Rich Payne said. A team from the Atlanta-based Council on Occupational Education will evaluate the CTC from Nov. 10 through 13...
3 local seniors vie for National Merit Scholarship (10/09/14)
Three area high schools have produced National Merit Scholarship semifinalists this year. Alex Gentle of Cape Girardeau Central, Tyler Pech of Notre Dame Regional High School and Joshua Vogel of Saxony Lutheran all qualified to be semifinalists for the prestigious award after taking the PSAT and scoring in the top 1 percentile for Missouri students...
Who's neXt 10/9/14 (10/09/14)
The bands will perform classic band marches and ballads at their first concert. The Symphonic Band's repertoire will include arrangements of songs from the musical "The Music Man" as well as selections from "Ballet Parisian" by Jacques Offenbach. The Concert Band's songs for the evening will include two marches by Karl King: "Gallant Marines" and "Torch of Liberty."...
Hooked on Science: Unbreakable light bulb (10/09/14)
Dropping a light on the floor might seem dangerous, but it all depends on how it's dropped. Incandescent light bulb STEP 1: Hold the incandescent light bulb so the metal part is pointing toward the floor, let go and observe. The incandescent light bulb does not break. The reason: The metal part of the light bulb absorbs most of the force created by the impact...
Stamp collecting good for children, experts say (10/09/14)
Even avid collectors will tell you: Stamp collecting is not the flashiest of hobbies. It isn't trendy. It doesn't speed past you at the breakneck pace of a video game or offer the manic energy of a Cartoon Network television show. It rewards patience and persistence, teaching those who embrace it about everything from ancient history to modern graphic design...
Crowdfunding gives a leg up to animal projects (10/09/14)
LOS ANGELES -- A large number of small online donations can turn pet projects into big lifesavers for animals. LoveAnimals.org, a year-old crowdfunding site, is believed to be the first devoted to aiding just pets and wildlife. It has tapped into the power of online contributions, where people can give what they can, whether $5 or $500, to help a more costly project come to fruition. ...
Local not-for-profit campaigns against Amendment 3 (10/09/14)
With the help of Protect Our Local Schools, the not-for-profit group No On 3 conducted a phone bank Wednesday to gather opposition to Amendment 3, which would tie teacher evaluations to student test performance. The initiative is on the Nov. 4 general election ballot, although the group spearheading it, Teachgreat.org, is no longer campaigning for it...
Tech center works to continue offering accelerated degrees (10/08/14)
Cape Girardeau's Career and Technology Center is seeking funding to continue its degree acceleration programs. Statewide grant applications are being accepted through Nov. 15, and awards will be announced by Dec. 1. Up to three grants will be awarded from two funders to schools that qualify...
Southeast Missouri State University to hold career fair (10/08/14)
Nearly 90 area employers are registered to meet Southeast Missouri State University students of all majors at the first-ever fall 2014 Career and Internship Fair on Thursday in the Student Recreation Center-North. The event is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m...
McCaskill touts campus safety in SEMO visit (10/07/14)
Being the mother of two daughters and one of the few women lawyers in the Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney's Office, U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill wants to make sure students on college campuses are safe from sexual assault. McCaskill, D-Missouri, visited Southeast Missouri State University on Monday to talk about ways of combating sexual violence. ...
Higher ed partnership gets new identity (10/07/14)
The Cape Girardeau Partnership for Higher Education now will be known as Cape College Center, following the adoption of its new moniker by the partnership's advisory board Monday. Housed in the Career and Technology Center in Cape Girardeau, the center is made up of Southeast Missouri State University, Three Rivers College and Mineral Area College...
Districts work with teacher groups (10/06/14)
Under increasing pressure to spark better student performance, constant demands on their time and an amendment on the Nov. 4 general election ballot that could strip them of tenure, teachers have a voice of sorts through their teacher organizations...
Notre Dame seniors lead in Activity Week fundraising (10/06/14)
Pride and competitive spirit propelled students at Notre Dame Regional High School to raise more than $271,242 for the school budget during its recent Activity Week. Held Sept. 19 through 27, activities included service projects, selling dinners, raffles, magazine subscriptions, merchandise and car washes. It involved students, staff, parents and the community...
University drills down on online courses to ensure quality (10/02/14)
By fall 2017, Southeast Missouri State University wants to have all its online courses peer reviewed to ensure continued quality. Associate dean of Online Learning Allen Gathman said he expects students to do better in courses that have gone through the review process using Quality Matters standards. Instructional development staff use Quality Matters to help faculty facilitate student success online...
SEMO accommodates growing enrollment (09/30/14)
Having topped 12,000 students this fall, Southeast Missouri State University has enough classroom space to accommodate its growth, but might need renovations in the future. Angela Meyer, director of facilities management, said the university's Space Utilization Committee has discussed classroom space, but isn't ready to recommend any changes to the board of regents -- yet. Provost Bill Eddleman added the university doesn't "have any absolute shortage problems in terms of space."...
Provost explains how class sizes are determined (09/30/14)
Southeast Missouri State University provost Bill Eddleman talked to the Southeast Missourian about class sizes, what determines where classes are held and ease of signing up for needed classes, among other items. Q: How do you determine where classes are held?...
St. Louis students protest principal's departure (09/28/14)
ST. LOUIS -- Some St. Louis high school students say they are being shortchanged of a quality education amid high teacher turnover and a popular principal's resignation. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported more than 100 Vashon High students protested outside the school Friday morning. Students described substitute teachers who play movies in class and tests where "C" grades are given just for showing up...
State treasurer emphasizes higher education during school visit (09/28/14)
It's not every day the state treasurer swings by to offer investment advice. Cape Girardeau Central Middle School students gathered Friday morning to listen to Missouri Treasurer Clint Zweifel speak about the importance of investing in the future. While it's important to make monetary investments, no matter how modest, Zweifel told students it was equally important they invest in themselves by working hard in school...
Regional spelling bee open for registration (09/26/14)
Registration is open for schools that wish to participate in the sixth annual Southeast Missouri Regional Spelling Bee, set for Feb. 28 at Three Rivers College in Poplar Bluff. Participating schools must complete their registration by Oct. 15 and complete a schoolwide spelling bee before Feb. 6. Students must not be older than age 14 on or before Aug. 31 and cannot have passed beyond the eighth grade on or before Feb. 1...
Central teachers prepare for pep rally (09/25/14)
Cape Central High School counselor Nita Dubose practices a dance routine Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 with other faculty members for Friday's pep assembly during homecoming week.
Cape school board votes to oppose Amendment 3 (09/24/14)
At its meeting Tuesday, the Cape Girardeau School Board unanimously approved a resolution opposing Amendment 3, a proposed change to the state constitution that would tie teacher evaluations to student performance. Teachgreat.org, the group that spearheaded the amendment, has stopped campaigning for it, but the initiative remains on the Nov. 4 general election ballot...
Tension marks Missouri education goals rewrite (09/23/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- An effort to rewrite Missouri's educational standards got off to a tense and sometimes confrontational start Monday as parents and educators opposed to the Common Core guidelines clashed with those reluctant to ditch them...
Sex education board sparks debate at SEMO residence hall (09/23/14)
An educational board about sex at a Southeast Missouri State University residence hall has led to discussions on sex education among students and the hall's staff. The board, called "What What? In the Butt: How to have a safe, wibbly-wobbly time," talks candidly about how to use condoms and dispels sexual myths while also using "Doctor Who" memes. It's on the third floor of Merick Hall...
School districts attempt to thwart Amendment 3 proposal (09/23/14)
Along with the state and local organizations rallying against Amendment 3 -- a proposed change to the Missouri Constitution that would tie teacher evaluations to student performance -- local school districts are issuing opposing resolutions. The Cape Girardeau School Board has a resolution opposing it scheduled for a vote at today's 6 p.m. meeting at 301 N. Clark Ave. A closed meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m...
School funding goal of Missouri Lottery Commission (09/21/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Members of the recently revamped Missouri Lottery Commission said Friday they want to make sure agency is run like a business, efficiently pumping out the maximum funding for education. The commission meeting came a day after Gov. Jay Nixon replaced four of the five members, though they still need Senate confirmation next year, and released a report questioning the agency's contracts, prizes and advertising expenses...
Lawsuit filed against officials over Common Core standards (09/21/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- An unsuccessful gubernatorial candidate is among the plaintiffs suing Missouri officials to stop the state from making payments to a multistate consortium that has been developing tests tied to the new Common Core education standards...
Scott City district to receive $96,000 (09/18/14)
Chairs for the new performing arts theater/Federal Emergency Management Safe Room, a budget revision and a report of additional funds released by Gov. Jay Nixon were highlighted at the Scott City School Board meeting Wednesday. Superintendent Diann Ulmer said the district is due to receive an additional $96,000 after Nixon's release of $143 million of previously frozen education funding for local school districts and higher education institutions. ...
Nixon touts education during junior high visit (09/19/14)
In a speech to Central Junior High School students, Gov. Jay Nixon praised the school for its strong academic performance and said he hoped to see the state continue to work with schools to promote success and prepare students for college and the workforce...
Students learn about world by studying current events (09/18/14)
With news speeding past everyone -- including students -- high school current-events teachers try to help students keep it in perspective by giving them tools to process the information and form their own opinions. The courses go under various names and fall under various categories, such as social studies, sociology or philosophy, but the purpose is to have a healthy debate on topics of the day from national and international news to happenings closer to home...
Who's neXt 9/18/14 (09/18/14)
Events On Show Me Day, potential students interested in Southeast can visit the campus and see the academic programs and services offered. "Students can find out about Southeast's admission process, meet with faculty from our academic departments, and interact with current Southeast students," director of admissions Lenell Hahn said in a news release...
Hooked on Science: Toothbrush robot (09/18/14)
Build a robot with a few items from around the house. 7.5VDC micro super high-speed motor Toothbrush Double-sided foam tape Wire cutters Button/coin-cell battery Electric tape STEP 1: Using wire cutters, have an adult remove the handle from the toothbrush...
EPIC seeks proposals from secondary schools (09/17/14)
EPIC, or Early Prevention Impacts Community, is recognizing outstanding examples of substance abuse prevention efforts by area secondary schools. EPIC schools for 2014-2015 will be selected based on: n Having written policies and procedures related to alcohol, tobacco and other drug use...
Southeast highlighted in Best Colleges list (09/17/14)
Southeast Missouri State University has been recognized among the best regional universities in the Midwest in the 2015 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings. Southeast consistently has been ranked by the publication since 1993. The U.S. News rankings are based on graduation and retention rates, assessment of excellence, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, graduation rate performance and alumni giving...
St. Louis schools not likely to allow guns (09/16/14)
ST. LOUIS -- Many superintendents in the St. Louis area say they don't want guns in their schools despite a new state law allowing designated staff to carry them. Last week, the state Legislature overrode Gov. Jay Nixon's veto of the bill that gives school districts the ability to appoint "school safety officers," the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. The chosen teachers and administrators can undergo training, and then carry the concealed weapons on school property...
Reimbursements for A+ program might be reduced beginning in January (09/16/14)
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Education officials are notifying Missouri community colleges that the state might reduce reimbursements for the A+ scholarship program, which gives high school graduates who meet certain criteria money for two years of classes at community colleges...
Mo. education commissioner to resign at end of year (09/16/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Missouri education commissioner Chris Nicastro announced Monday she will resign at the end of this year, concluding a five-year tenure marked by repeated criticism as the state adopted new school accreditation standards and dealt with struggling districts...
Two area Catholic schools recognized for excellence (09/16/14)
Two area Catholic schools -- Notre Dame Regional High School in Cape Girardeau and St. Vincent de Paul High School in Perryville, Missouri -- have been recognized by the Cardinal Newman Society as 2014 Schools of Excellence. This is the 10th time Notre Dame has received the honor and the first time since 2010 for St. Vincent, which doesn't apply regularly. Awards are given every two years, according to the society...
Two private schools benefit from opting out of federal lunch program (09/15/14)
Meals are a bit tastier this year at two local parochial schools that have opted out of federal funding for lunch. Notre Dame Regional and Saxony Lutheran high schools have made agreements with local restaurants to provide meals. Both have seen an increase in the number of students and faculty served. They continue to provide lunch to lower-income students, but are covering the cost themselves...
Cape school district insurance likely to be chosen by November (09/15/14)
Health insurance options recently were discussed during a Cape Girardeau School Board work session and probably will be brought back for action before winter break, assistant superintendent for administrative services Neil Glass said. The district has a Jan. 1 renewal date on its current coverage...
Jackson students work together to get to know each other (09/11/14)
As a way of helping students get to know each other, Jackson Middle School this week held its annual team-building exercises for its sixth-grade students to help them get to know and trust each other. "We do team-building with just our sixth-graders and one of the reasons that we do this is because, in the Jackson School District, this is the first time all students come together in one building," principal Janelle Pope said. ...
Who's neXt 9/11/14 (09/11/14)
Local students participate in Culver-Stockton's Extreme Dome Makeover 2014 More than 550 Culver-Stockton College students, faculty and staff participated in the sixth annual Extreme Dome Makeover on Aug. 23, volunteering their services to fix up 16 sites in Canton, Missouri...
Hooked on Science: Wacky bananas (09/11/14)
Just because two objects look like they are different sizes, doesn't mean they are. STEP 1: Make sure the bananas are exactly the same size. Hold one of the bananas above the other, lining up the two left edges, and observe. STEP 2: Switch the pieces and observe...
PBS' 'Shelter Me' puts at-risk pets in limelight (09/11/14)
LOS ANGELES -- Any animal can end up at a public shelter, but most of them won't stay long. There, millions of dogs and cats face euthanasia, driving one filmmaker to turn his camera into a lifesaver. Workers at several of the shelters, where no animal is turned away, say pets have a champion in Steven Latham, who directs and produces a PBS series called "Shelter Me," featuring animals that are running out of time. ...
Crafts: A fresh take on piñatas (09/11/14)
As summer eases into the school year -- and into a new season of birthdays, class parties and holiday gatherings -- now's a good time to make a few eye-catching piñatas. Unlike store-bought piñatas, which are generally made of cardboard and can be difficult to break, papier-mache piñatas are the real thing...
Group will continue to oppose teacher-evaluation amendment (09/11/14)
With a proposed amendment to the Missouri Constitution tying teacher evaluations to student test performance remaining on the Nov. 4 ballot, a local not-for-profit group, No On 3, is moving forward with plans to defeat it. Teachgreat.org, the group leading Amendment 3, issued a statement Tuesday saying it had decided not to continue advocating for the initiative. One of the group's supporters is retired financial executive Rex Sinquefield of St. Louis...
Success by 6 seeks reading volunteers (09/10/14)
Tuesday's Success By 6 Leadership Team meeting at the United Way of Southeast Missouri focused on the need for reading volunteers and a variety of scheduled events. This year, Read to Succeed is pairing volunteers with kindergarten students to help them acquire basic reading skills...
Group abandons support of teacher-evaluation amendment (09/10/14)
The group Teachgreat.org has decided not to continue advocating for an amendment to the state Constitution that would tie teacher evaluations to student performance. However, Stephanie Fleming, deputy director of communications for the Secretary of State's Office, said Amendment 3 will remain on the Nov. 4 election ballot...
Local school lunches skew more healthful (09/09/14)
What schoolchildren eat and drink not only helps determine their health and success in school, but it also influences their long-term well-being. So it's no mystery why the topic gets the attention of everyone from Congress to schools and parents. Supervisors at the Cape Girardeau, Jackson and Scott City school districts say the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 wrought some changes for the better, taking sodas and candy out of vending machines and putting healthier menus in cafeterias...
Southeast Missouri State president Dobbins to retire in 2015 (09/09/14)
Dr. Kenneth Dobbins, who has been president of Southeast Missouri State University since 1999, announced his retirement effective June 30, 2015, during his State of the University Address Monday. Dobbins has guided the institution through milestones in enrollment, academic partnerships, programs and construction. ...
St. Charles County district says transfer students need court order (09/08/14)
ST. LOUIS -- A St. Charles County school district is requiring transfer students from the troubled Normandy system to get individual court orders before they can return. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported the Francis Howell district expects up to 350 students from Normandy after a judge ruled that school districts must continue to abide by a state law that allows children to leave unaccredited districts for higher performing ones...
Jackson test scores follow state trends (09/08/14)
The Jackson School District's state test results follow state trends, showing declines in areas such as English language arts, but upticks in algebra and geometry. Last month, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released statewide Missouri Assessment Program results showing proficiency rates in English, math and science fell. ...
Celebrating Kent with Twain (09/07/14)
FRED LYNCH ~ flynch@semissourian.com Henry Sweets, a Mark Twain expert and executive director of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal, Missouri, shares the scene of Tom Sawyer and whitewashing the fence to first-graders from Jefferson Elementary School Friday, Sept. ...
Most Scott City school district scores sink below state average (09/07/14)
Except for social studies, Scott City schools scored lower than the state average in English language arts, math and science this year. However, there were bright spots in language arts at Scott City middle and high schools, and math scores soared for eighth-graders...
Group opposes teacher evaluations on state constitution (09/07/14)
A group of local residents has formed a not-for-profit group called NOT -- or No On 3, in opposition to Amendment 3 -- against a proposed change to the Missouri Constitution dealing with teacher evaluations. NOT treasurer David Larson said 11 people from Cape Girardeau County attended the group's last meeting, and others from outside the area are interested as well. ...
Scores at Blanchard, Central Middle schools improve (09/04/14)
Missouri Assessment Program test scores for the Cape Girardeau School District were a mixed bag this year, with campuses such as Blanchard Elementary and Central Middle School showing improvement in certain subjects and others such as Alma Schrader showing drops...
Local teen runs Yu-Gi-Oh! club, prepares for tournament (09/04/14)
Reese Villagrana first got hooked on the game Yu-Gi-Oh! at age 6 through the animé cartoon of the same name. Now 16, he runs his own Yu-Gi-Oh! Club once a month at the Cape Girardeau Public Library. Players must have a deck of 40 to 60 cards. The object is to make your opponent run out of cards, or reduce their life points from 8,000 to zero...
Who's neXt 9/4/14 (09/04/14)
-- From staff reports Submitted photo The Knights of Columbus Ladies Auxiliary presented scholarships to Notre Dame Regional High School graduates Teresa Mier, left, and Alex Wikel, right, shown here with Susie Rafferty, president of Knights of Columbus Ladies' Auxiliary....
Pediatricians' Rx for schools: Later start times (09/04/14)
CHICAGO -- Pediatricians have a new prescription for schools: later start times for teens. Delaying the start of the school day until at least 8:30 a.m. would help curb their lack of sleep, which has been linked with poor health, bad grades, car crashes and other problems, the American Academy of Pediatrics says in a new policy...
Children's brains reorganize when they are learning math skills (09/04/14)
WASHINGTON -- Sometime in elementary school, you quit counting your fingers and just know the answer. Now scientists have put youngsters into brain scanners to find out why, and watched how the brain reorganizes itself as kids learn math. The take-home advice: Drilling children on simple addition and multiplication may pay off...
Hooked on Science: Pizza box solar oven (09/04/14)
Use the sun and a few materials from around the house to help you cook your next meal. STEP 1: Using the ruler, draw a 1-inch border around the top of the pizza box. Cut along three of the lines, leaving the line along the back of the box uncut....
Mark Twain expert to headline Kent anniversary events (09/03/14)
Henry Sweets, a Mark Twain expert and executive director of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal, Missouri, will kick off a series of celebrations marking the 75th anniversary of Kent Library at Southeast Missouri State University. "Is Mark Twain Relevant Today?" is Sweets' topic for a 7 p.m. presentation Thursday at Sadie's Place in Kent Library. Open to the public, it is sponsored by the library in partnership with the Missouri Humanities Council. Refreshments will be served...
Schools asked to register for model bridge competition by Sept. 9 (09/04/14)
SIKESTON, Mo. -- The Missouri Department of Transportation is sponsoring its 11th annual bridge building competition for high school juniors and seniors in the Southeast District. Schools must register by Tuesday. The competition challenges students to design and construct the most efficient model bridge using limited materials...
Southeast students, alumni affected by Ferguson events (09/02/14)
A number of Southeast Missouri State University students have been affected by events in Ferguson, Missouri, in recent weeks. On Aug. 9, 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson, a six-year veteran of the Ferguson Police Department. People took to the streets to protest Brown's death, and the story made national news...
Cape Girardeau schools see big jump in annual scores (08/31/14)
Annual performance reports for local school districts show a huge increase for Cape Girardeau and a nice jump for Perry County District 32. "We recognize that while we are celebrating our APR and the significant increase ... like every school we have work to do, especially right now in academic achievement," said Sherry Copeland, Cape assistant superintendent for academic services. "That is always our main focus, to make sure our students perform at the highest level possible."...
Youths get animals ready for SEMO District Fair (08/28/14)
Kids throughout Southeast Missouri are getting their livestock in trim for the SEMO District Fair, set for Sept. 6 through 13 at the fairgrounds at Arena Park in Cape Girardeau. Entry clerk Patty Turner said about 100 youngsters from a 23-county area are expected to show their animals. Gabe Ruehling of Perryville, Missouri, and twins Andrew and Nathan Aufdenberg of Gordonville are among them...
Central Junior High cheerleaders attend NCA camp (08/28/14)
The Central Junior High School cheerleaders attended National Cheerleaders Association Cheer Camp from July 21 to 24. Bringing home several awards, the cheerleaders were awarded two red and two blue ribbons for cheers and chant performances, a bid to the NCA national competition, a certificate for safe stunting, the only certificate for technical excellence in tumbling, spirit stick, NCA Top Team trophy and all 19 cheerleaders were nominated for NCA All-American cheerleader...
Dogs can get blues when kids head back to school (08/28/14)
LOS ANGELES -- Young people aren't the only ones who get back-to-school blues. Pooches used to months of constant playtime can get upset when their best buddies disappear with the dog days of summer. Many dogs whine and wait eagerly at the front door but eventually adjust to the absence of their young owners when they are in class. But millions of dogs can feel abandoned, sad and unable to cope -- and they look for ways to lash out...
Hooked on Science: Garden in a sandwich bag (08/28/14)
Observe the life cycle of seeds by starting them off in a sandwich bag. STEP 1: Add enough water to the paper towel so it is damp. STEP 2: Fold the paper towel so it fits inside of the zip-top sandwich bag. STEP 3: Place the paper towel inside the sandwich bag....
Water main break closes Southeast until Tuesday (08/27/14)
Less than a week into the new year at Southeast Missouri State University, both of its campuses were shut down by a water main break Wednesday. The event prompted cancellation of classes and office closures on the main and River campuses until Tuesday...
Steve Schaffner taking over as Southeast Missouri Music Academy director (08/27/14)
After 19 years as director of the Southeast Missouri Music Academy, Rebecca Fulgham is stepping down Friday. Along with being director, Fulgham is a piano teacher, which she will continue to do from home when she leaves. She has 15 students and said she hopes to increase that number...
Enrollment inches up at SEMO (08/27/14)
Southeast Missouri State University on Tuesday marked two consecutive decades of steady enrollment growth with a total student count of 11,580 -- up 2 percent from this time last year. Enrollment is expected to continue growing through the fourth-week census, when the figure is expected to top last year's record enrollment of 11,917 students, officials said in a news release. Southeast's fall 2014 semester began Monday...
Jackson board approves tax rate for 2014-2015 (08/26/14)
Following a hearing Monday evening, the Jackson School Board unanimously approved a tax rate of $3.80 per $100 of assessed valuation for the 2014-2015 school year. The rate is unchanged from last year. Wade Bartels, associate superintendent of finance/business operations, said there were no public comments. Board members Brent Wills and Alaina Hinze were not present, Bartels said...
Cape board gets update on laptops, approves district tax rate (08/26/14)
The Cape Girardeau School Board approved the district tax rate for 2014-2015 and got a technology update at a special meeting Monday. The board unanimously approved a tax rate of $4.1567 per $100 of assessed valuation. The total tax rate is unchanged from last year. A tax rate hearing was last week...
Future teachers equipped with iPads at Southeast (08/25/14)
Southeast Missouri State University freshman education majors picked up iPad Air devices on Friday as part of the College of Education's new EDvolution program, aimed at preparing future teachers for technology in the classroom. The freshmen were the first batch of students to get their iPad Airs, with sophomores, juniors and seniors to follow...
Central High School teacher wins choral directors award (08/25/14)
Jordan Cox, director of vocal music at Central High School, has earned the 2014 Outstanding District Director award from the Missouri Choral Directors Association. He was nominated by his peers. This is Cox's fifth year teaching and his third at Central. He previously was at Jackson High School, his alma mater...
Jackson teacher recognized for technical savvy (08/25/14)
Jackson High School industrial technology teacher Andy Stover recently received the Southeast High School Technology and Engineering Teacher of the Year Award. Few knew about it until the July school board meeting, where assistant principal Travis Wilson announced it...
Southeast Missouri State unveils star-studded speaker lineup (08/24/14)
This year's University Speakers Series, presented by Southeast Missouri State University, will feature everyone from New York City's top firefighter to legendary Cardinals shortstop Ozzie Smith and famous broadcaster Anderson Cooper. Tickets go on sale Monday...
Area marching bands prepare for upcoming season (08/21/14)
Despite what some may think, marching band can be difficult at times -- learning how to march in time, how many steps to take and hauling some of the larger instruments around, to name a few. But for most kids, it's an experience that offers everything from the exhilaration of competition to a family atmosphere...
Who's neXt 8/21/14 (08/21/14)
Contest Car crashes continue to cause more teen deaths than cancer, homicide and suicide combined. U.S. and Canadian high school administrators must register their school online. The general public can then vote for their favorite school once a day every day from Oct. 15 to 24...
Hooked on Science: Balloon in a bottle (08/21/14)
Have you ever tried to blow up a balloon inside a bottle? It's easy if you use science. STEP 1: Insert a balloon into one of the empty water bottles and pull the neck of the balloon over the outside of the bottle. STEP 2: Place your mouth over the opening of the bottle and attempt to inflate the balloon...
Perry County fifth graders perform science challenge (08/21/14)
Submitted photo from Perry County Middle School Teacher Amy Figge helps student Katelyn Roberts as she makes a series of cuts in a piece of paper. ...
Scott City School District bond issue to appear on Nov. ballot (08/21/14)
Scott City School Board members approved placing a $1.75 million no-tax increase bond issue on the Nov. 4 ballot during their meeting Wednesday evening. If voters approve, bond proceeds would go toward constructing and renovating the entrances of the existing school buildings to enhance security, renovate the cafeteria area and complete a few roof repairs, superintendent Diann Ulmer said in an email...
Altenburg School District to build a new gym (08/20/14)
ALTENBURG, Mo. -- The Altenburg School District plans to have a new gymnasium by the 2015-2016 school year. Superintendent Bleu Deckerd said in an email to the Southeast Missourian that the 9,000-square-foot building will house a middle-school-sized regulation gym, an art/music classroom, office space, kitchen, restrooms and storage...
Cape school district's tax rate to remain unchanged (08/21/14)
The Cape Girardeau School District's proposed total tax rate for 2014-2015 will remain at $4.1567 per $100 of assessed valuation, board members heard during a tax rate hearing Wednesday. Residents may speak at the hearing, but no one from the public attended. Tax rates are set to produce revenue from property taxes, required for the 2014-2015 budget...
Students from Ferguson, Florissant allowed early move-in at university (08/20/14)
A Monday letter from Southeast Missouri State University President Dr. Kenneth W. Dobbins was emailed to students who live in the Ferguson and Florissant areas of St. Louis, saying an early move-in date is available for anyone who needs it. The letter states that any students from these areas were allowed to move in at Southeast starting today at 1 p.m., with dining services beginning for all students later Tuesday evening...
Pump primed to welcome university students (08/19/14)
Southeast Missouri State University's move-in week officially kicks off Thursday with a multitude of festivities to welcome students. Classes start Monday. "It's exciting; it's a lot, but it's always exciting," said Katie Krodinger, assistant director of admissions for new student programs...
Trade schools offer quicker route to gainful employment (08/18/14)
From business to medical and salon training, trade schools in Cape Girardeau attract students who want to earn a degree quickly, so they can enter the workforce and start creating better lives for themselves and their families. That's the case with Becky Collier, Torrie Stepp, Tammy Arnzen and Katie Alsup. Collier and Stepp are pursuing their medical specialist degrees at Metro Business College, while Arnzen and Alsup are studying cosmetology at Renaissance Beauty Academy...
Central cheerleaders use summer to prepare for fall (08/14/14)
For Central High School's cheerleading squad, this summer meant more than just hanging out. It was a time to brush up their skills, compete at camp and rack up some awards. Patty Wamble, varsity cheerleading coach, said 20 varsity cheerleaders and 13 freshmen participated in the National Cheerleaders Association Cheerleading Camp at Southeast Missouri State University in July. She said it was probably one of the most successful they've ever participated in...
Who's neXt 8/14/14 (08/14/14)
Scholarships The Saint Francis Healthcare Scholarship Program was created in 1980 and is funded by Saint Francis Foundation and the Saint Francis Auxiliary. The program provides scholarships to college students to encourage participation in health-care careers. ...
Hooked on Science: Hair gel color mixing (08/14/14)
Make your own rainbow of hair gels using just food coloring and a few things from around the house. STEP 1: Fill each of the squeeze bottles half of the way with clear hair gel. STEP 2: Using the food coloring, add a different color to each squeeze bottle. Fill the rest of the squeeze bottles with clear hair gel, screw on the tops and vigorously shake each bottle...
State test scores show declines in key subject areas (08/13/14)
Statewide test results released Tuesday by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education show average proficiency rates in English, math and science have fallen. DESE couldn't pinpoint why the scores declined, but said it could be because of new curriculum standards, bad weather resulting in reduced instruction time and a "refreshed" Missouri Assessment Program test form. A total of 842,440 students took the exam statewide...
Jackson School Board schedules tax rate hearing, OKs bus routes (08/13/14)
The Jackson School Board on Tuesday set 7 p.m. Aug. 25 for its tax rate hearing at the board office, 614 E. Adams St. The current tax rate is $3.80 per $100 of assessed valuation, and Wade Bartels, associate superintendent finance/business operations, said he anticipates the total rate will remain the same. The 2014-2015 budget projects total revenue of $45,779,234...
Cape School Board changes name of alternative school (08/13/14)
The Cape Girardeau Public Schools board Tuesday unanimously approved changing the name of the Alternative Education Center to Central Academy. Superintendent Jim Welker said the school had been working for some time to change its name and image. A past article in the Southeast Missourian indicates a name change failed in 2008...
Gaining tenure at university long process (08/12/14)
Earning tenure at the university level can be a lengthy, involved process. But, ultimately, it's worth the effort, professors say. Earning tenure takes roughly five years. It is an agreement under which faculty appointments are continued until retirement. But tenured faculty still can be terminated for adequate cause, financial exigency or a change in a university program...
BackPacks for Friday program looking for help (08/12/14)
Cape Girardeau's BackPacks for Friday program, which provides food for students to take home on weekends, is in need of financial support, according to a news release from the Southeast Missouri Food Bank. It costs $320 to provide a child with a backpack for a year...
Springfield schools offering some off-campus classes (08/12/14)
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Today, 50 Springfield students will start eighth grade in a hospital. Forty fifth-graders will go to class in a science museum. They'll be part of two new Springfield School District programs starting this year outside of traditional school buildings. The Health Science Academy will be at Mercy Hospital, while the Academy of Exploration -- with a science, technology, engineering and math focus -- will be housed at the Discovery Center of Springfield...
Front and center: Amendment 3 pushes teacher tenure into the spotlight (08/12/14)
Tenure in Missouri public schools recently has come under pressure with a proposed amendment to the state Constitution that would, among other things, require teachers to be evaluated by a standards-based performance system. The item stipulates that each local school district must receive state approval to continue receiving state and local funding...
Southeast selected as new NEA Academy partner (08/12/14)
Southeast Missouri State University has been selected as a new partner of the NEA Academy, an alliance that will allow members of the National Education Association to enroll in Southeast's online graduate education courses at a discounted fee. Southeast was chosen after NEA conducted a national search and a lengthy review process for new higher education partners, according to a news release...
White students to no longer be majority at American schools (08/11/14)
KENNETT SQUARE, Pa. -- The cheerful sign outside Jane Cornell's summer school classroom in Pennsylvania's wealthiest county reads "Welcome" and "Bienvenidos" in polished handwriting. Inside, giggling grade-schoolers who mostly come from homes where Spanish is the primary language worked on storytelling with a tale about a crocodile going to the dentist. This poster and classroom at the Mary D. Lang Kindergarten Center are a subtle representation of America's changing school demographics...
Schools, law enforcement team up to keep kids safe (08/10/14)
As parents prepare to send youngsters back to class, school districts are working with law enforcement agencies to ensure teachers are prepared for worst-case scenarios. Officials say teachers in Cape Girardeau, Jackson and Perryville, Missouri, all have undergone active-shooter training to increase their students' chances of survival if someone comes into a classroom with gun in hand and murder in mind...
Jackson High School recognized nationally (08/08/14)
Jackson High School is among a handful nationwide to receive the High Schools That Work Gold Achievement Award. To become one of the 11 schools to earn the award this year, at least 50 percent of its students had to earn the award based on their performance on the 2014 High Schools That Work Assessment. Winning schools also met the Adequate Yearly Progress criteria of the federal No Child Left Behind Act or had a graduation rate of at least 85 percent...
New program director with Read to Succeed begins school year (08/08/14)
United Way of Southeast Missouri's Read to Succeed program is about to begin the school year with a new program director. Charla Myers, who has worked in the early childhood and early intervention fields since 1996, just came on board Monday. Still, she already is searching for about 200 volunteers for five Cape Girardeau elementary schools...
Sidewalks meant to pave a safer way for students to schools (08/07/14)
Some Cape Girardeau students will be heading back to class this year on new sidewalks. Weeks before schools were set to open for the first day, contractors completed construction for the city on sidewalks near four schools. The work was made possible by funds granted to the city by the Safe Routes to School program...
K.C. schools get provisional accreditation (08/07/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- State education officials granted provisional accreditation Wednesday to Kansas City schools, citing improvements in standardized test scores but concerns that many students still aren't performing at high levels. The unanimous vote Wednesday by the State Board of Education means the Kansas City School District no longer will be labeled as unaccredited when classes start next week. ...
State board redefines troubled Normandy School District's status (08/07/14)
ST. LOUIS -- A troubled St. Louis County school district that lost its state accreditation has partially regained that status in an apparent legal maneuver involving a lawsuit over Missouri school transfer rules. Missouri officials disbanded the unaccredited Normandy system in July and replaced it with a newly-named entity under state oversight...
Jackson teen advances to national rodeo competition (08/07/14)
In just five years of rodeoing, Erin Mantz has made rapid progress -- going from local events around Jackson to the National High School Finals Rodeo in July. The 17-year-old, who will be a senior at Jackson High School this year, is the daughter of Jim and Chris Mantz. Although they aren't a horse family, Erin always had an affinity for the animals and had wanted one since she was a little kid, her mother said...
Cape school district to hold clothing exchange (08/07/14)
Clothing for a Cape Girardeau School District clothing exchange may be dropped off from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Friday at the Alma Schrader gymnasium. The sale is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Friday. Pick up for items not sold is 8 p.m. Friday at the end of the sale...
Perry County schools get new caller options (08/07/14)
The Perry County School District's phone menu and procedure have changed. People who call the district no longer have to dial an "8" before entering the three-digit extension number for the person they're trying to reach. All extensions may be dialed directly. ...
Proposed teacher evaluation system draws opponents (08/07/14)
Local educators and school board members are voicing opposition to a proposed state constitutional amendment that would tie teacher evaluations to student performance. The initiative, known as Amendment 3, has been certified by the Secretary of State's office and is set to be on the Nov. 4 ballot...
Perryville Elementary gets new road (08/07/14)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- A new road has been constructed on the Perry County School District campus to ease traffic and safety concerns along Schindler Road, which runs in front of Perryville Elementary School. On a typical school morning, traffic can be backed up for a quarter-mile or more in both directions as parents wait to drop off their children, according to a news release. The project cost $165,000 and Bauman Construction earned the bid...
Who's neXt 8/7/14 (08/07/14)
Perkins Ashley Bailey, magna cum laude with a bachelor of science with a major in criminal justice: corrections option. Sedgewickville Lynda Jones, cum laude with a bachelor of science in education with a major in agricultural education...
Hooked on Science: Turkey baster pingpong ball launcher (08/07/14)
Did you think turkey basters could only be used on Thanksgiving Day to flavor the turkey? Think again. STEP 1: Remove the plastic piece of the turkey baster from the rubber piece of the baster. STEP 2: Place a pingpong ball into the open part of the rubber piece of the baster, squeeze and observe...
In Todd Parr's world, it's OK to make mistakes (08/07/14)
NEW YORK -- In Todd Parr's world, it's OK to wear your undies on your head, spill your milk or eat mac and cheese in the bathtub. Most of all, it's OK to be yourself. Inclusion and acceptance are Parr's mainstays in more than 30 quirky picture books for young kids, including "It's Okay to Make Mistakes," out this month from Little, Brown and Co...
Tech conference to attract educators from around region (08/05/14)
More than 100 educators from Southeast Missouri will gather today in Cape Girardeau to share and learn new ideas about using technology in the classroom. The Southeast Educational Technology Conference, sponsored by the Southeast Regional Professional Development Center on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University, will feature guest speakers, breakout sessions and opportunities for teachers to share lesson plans using technologies that have been successful in their classrooms...
Poplar Bluff football player collapses during exercise drill (08/05/14)
POPLAR BLUFF, Mo. -- A Poplar Bluff High School sophomore is in stable condition after collapsing during Monday's football practice. Superintendent Chris Hon said the student was running a drill in the first half-hour of practice when coaches noticed him starting to stumble. Officials were not releasing the young man's name at press time...
Cape school board OKs new policies on dress code, absences (08/01/14)
The Cape Girardeau School Board approved proposed changes to the dress code during its meeting Thursday night. New provisions allow crew-neck T-shirts in any solid color to be worn in addition to collared shirts and turtlenecks already permitted. A separate provision added gray slacks to the range of solid-color bottoms that may be worn in the classroom...
Organizations, parents gear up for back to school (08/01/14)
It's almost time for area students to begin a new school year, so efforts are under way to make sure they're equipped and ready to learn. Wal-Mart stores around Missouri, including those in Cape Girardeau, Jackson and Perryville, are hosting "Stuff the Bus" events in which shoppers can donate district-specific school supplies for underprivileged children...
Valedictorian: Kacie Hampton, 18 (07/31/14)
Leopold High School valedictorian Birthday: Jan. 31, 1996 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau Future plans: I will be attending Southeast Missouri State University starting this fall to get my bachelor's degree in exceptional child education...
Who's neXt 7/31/14 (07/31/14)
* Jerrod Lynn, a 2014 graduate of Thomas W. Kelly High School, is the recipient of the MFA Foundation Scholarship, Scott County Farm Bureau Scholarship and Arkansas State University Mable Symons Woodside Memorial Scholarship. He is the son of Gary and Cindy Lynn. He plans to attend Arkansas State University in Jonesboro majoring in mechanical engineering.
Teens love taking selfies on vacation; adults, not so much (07/31/14)
NEW YORK -- Jacquie Whitt's trip to the Galapagos with a group of teenagers was memorable not just for the scenery and wildlife, but also for the way the kids preserved their memories. It was, said Whitt, a "selfie fest." For this generation, "digital devices are now part of the interpretive experience," said Whitt, co-founder of Adios Adventure Travel...
Cape Eagle Scout earns national award (07/31/14)
Reed Dickson of Cape Girardeau is one of only 86 Boy Scouts nationwide to be awarded the National Certificate of Merit. The award was given "in recognition of performance of a significant act of service," said Jim Caldwell, Scoutmaster of Troop 222...
Hooked on Science: Mystery pipe (07/31/14)
Different types of pipes have different effects on magnets. STEP 1: Hold the PVC pipe vertically, drop the circular neodymium magnet down the pipe and observe. STEP 2: Hold the copper pipe vertically, drop the circular Neodymium magnet down the pipe and observe...
Dress code a likely topic during school board meeting (07/30/14)
When the Cape Girardeau School Board meets Thursday, its agenda likely will involve revisions to the dress code. Board member Phil Moore said it is easier to enforce solid-color polo shirts, black, tan or navy pants, skirts or shorts, and allows teachers to focus more on instruction...
Wes Payne: Three Rivers College strong, moving forward (07/29/14)
POPLAR BLUFF, Mo. -- Reinforced concrete walls seem to have sprung up overnight just outside the window of the president's office at Three Rivers College. But they're not the only changes taking shape. Dr. Wes Payne is leading a new, sweeping change brought about when former president Devin Stephenson left suddenly in June...
Administrators move up at Southeast Missouri State (07/29/14)
Bruce Skinner and Kendra Skinner -- no relation -- will be filling new roles this year at Southeast Missouri State University. Formerly assistant vice president for student success and director of residence life, Bruce Skinner is now assistant vice president for student success and auxiliary services. Kendra Skinner, who was associate director of residence life, has taken on the director's spot...
Valedictorian: Ryan Foltz, 18 (07/24/14)
Meadow Heights co-valedictorian Birthday: May 30, 1996 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau Future plans: To attend Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla. Extracurricular activities: Ran cross country, played basketball, in FFA and BETA Club...
Valedictorian: Ashlee Long, 18 (07/24/14)
Meadow Heights co-valedictorian Birthday: Dec. 13, 1995 Birthplace: Yuma, Arizona Future plans: Going to attend Southeast Missouri State University in the fall and pursue a degree in actuarial sciences. Extracurricular activities: Played softball since third grade and continue to play on coed teams, drum majorette, cheer captain, BETA Club reporter, volleyball, Pep Club, Smokebusters, student council treasurer and was class treasurer...
Who's neXt 7/24/14 (07/24/14)
Graduates Cape Girardeau Deborah Allen, bachelor of science with a major in human environmental studies: dietetics option; Lucas Auer, bachelor of general studies with a major in general studies; Phillip Babich, cum laude with a bachelor of general studies with a major in general studies; Alex Bader, bachelor of science in business administration with a major in marketing: marketing management option; Paige Bagot, bachelor of science with a major in psychology; Gideon Barr, magna cum laude with a bachelor of science with a major in psychology; Keith Bass, bachelor of science in nursing with a major in nursing; Zachary Bays, bachelor of science in business administration with a major in finance; Lauren Bethel, cum laude with a bachelor of science with a major in biology: microbiology, cellular and molecular biology, and biotechnology option; Jason Billmeyer, bachelor of science in business administration with a major in marketing: marketing management option; Leslie Birk, cum laude with a bachelor of science with a major in communication disorders; Bryan Birks, bachelor of science with a major in mass communication: television and film option; Katie Blattel of Cape Girardeau graduated with a bachelor of science with a major in medical technology; Christopher Berry, bachelor of science with a major in technology management: construction management/design option;. ...
Hooked on Science: Double ball drop challenge (07/24/14)
Basketball Pingpong ball STEP 1: Hold the basketball and pingpong ball at the same height. STEP 2: Release the balls at the same time and observe. Which ball hits the floor first? Both the basketball and the pingpong ball hit the floor at the same time. ...
University press gets grant to print updated Civil War history (07/23/14)
The Missouri Humanities Council has awarded a $2,500 grant to Southeast Missouri State University Press to support the printing of "Thunder in Arcadia Valley: The Battle of Pilot Knob," available at the end of September...
Tech Academy gets teachers up to speed on laptop devices (07/23/14)
Teachers of grades five through 12 are meeting this week for a Tech Academy on the convertible laptops that will be given to Central Junior High School students this fall. "Each day is targeted toward one of our focus strategies or tools, and then the afternoon gives them that work session to begin putting that content and those strategies into place," said instructional technology specialist Ron Farrow, who had a group of 18 gathered Monday...
University to introduce more health-related academic programs (07/22/14)
In an effort to meet regional demand -- and provide local hospitals and medical practices with more of the personnel they need -- Southeast Missouri State University will introduce a variety of new health-related academic programs in spring 2015, once they are approved by the state's Coordinating Board for Higher Education...
Price coming down for low-income students at UMKC (07/21/14)
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The University of Missouri-Kansas City finally has some good news for its lowest-income students. Its net price is coming down. Net price is the cost of attendance -- tuition, books, housing, food, transportation and personal expenses -- minus the scholarships and grants a student qualifies for from the federal government and the university. It's the amount students and their families are expected to borrow or pay out of pocket...
Hiring for school bus drivers continues in Perry County (07/20/14)
Efforts to hire bus drivers for Perry County District 32 continue, although recent open houses have gone well. In the fall, the district will begin a lease agreement with Midwest Bus Sales, based in Tonganoxie, Kansas, that could save an estimated $600,000 to $700,000, superintendent Scott Ireland has said...
Missouri A+ scholarship program to be expanded (07/17/14)
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- The Missouri Department of Higher Education is planning to expand a state scholarship program to some students who entered the United States without legal permission before they were 16 years old, the department's attorney said...
Perryville schools still looking for bus drivers (07/17/14)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- Bus drivers are still needed in the Perry County School District when classes resume Aug. 14, so a hiring open house is scheduled for 5:30 to 7 p.m. today at the Perryville Career Center. Kate Martin, Perry County School District 32 communications director, said the district needs nine or 10 drivers. ...
Valedictorian: Emily Davis, 18 (07/17/14)
Zalma High School valedictorian Birthday: April 27, 1996 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau, Missouri Future plans: To attend Mineral Area College on softball and choral scholarships, and major in elementary education in hopes of one day becoming a kindergarten teacher and a softball coach...
Valedictorian: Jaret Kluender, 18 (07/17/14)
Perryville High School valedictorian Birthday: April 5, 1996 Birthplace: Perryville, Missouri Future plans: Attend Kansas State University, major in agronomy, return to the family farm and become a certified crop adviser. Extracurricular activities: Scholar Bowl, soccer, National Honor Society, Future Business Leaders of America, PSI (Postponing Sexual Involvement), New Student Ambassador Program, Friends of Rachel, concert choir, chamber choir and youth group at First Baptist Church in Perryville. ...
Who's neXt 7/17/14 (07/17/14)
Scholarships -- From staff reports...
Tips can help make family trips with teens more fun (07/17/14)
NEW YORK -- Family travel falls into three distinct phases. First, there's the exhausting period of travel with crying babies who need diapers, bottles, strollers, car seats and naps. Then come the golden years, when kids can handle long rides and long walks, when they actually think scavenger hunts are fun, and when they bask in their family's love and attention...
Hooked on Science: Toilet paper tube light bulb (07/17/14)
Create a light bulb by using a few materials from around the house. STEP 1: Use the electrical tape to secure all of the "D" batteries together in a series. STEP 2: Use the electrical tape to secure the alligator clips to the sides of the toilet paper roll...
Scott City board reviews bids for safe room furnishings (07/17/14)
Scott City School Board members Wednesday reviewed bids for a sound system, seating and curtains for the district's performing arts theater/Federal Emergency Management Agency safe room. The board asked superintendent Diann Ulmer to enter negotiations with the Bulte Co. of St. Louis on the seating. Ulmer said the district is looking at about 300 seats, but that could vary based on the size...
Jackson School Board approves food policy revisions (07/16/14)
The Jackson Board of Education approved several policy revisions during its meeting Tuesday, including two regarding food-rule revisions resulting from the federal Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 that drew opposition from board member Paul Stoner...
Governor endorses new school standards (07/15/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- A lawmaker-led effort challenging national education standards that evolved into a softer approach to revise Missouri's student achievement goals has won the last-minute backing of Gov. Jay Nixon. The Democratic governor on Monday signed legislation that tasks groups of parents and educators with writing new standards to replace Common Core. ...
Mo. gov. vetoes legislation on armed teachers (07/15/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon vetoed legislation Monday that would have allowed specially trained teachers to carry concealed guns, asserting that the move could jeopardize student safety in public schools. The veto by the Democratic governor sets up a potential showdown with the Republican-led Legislature, which could override Nixon if it gets a two-thirds vote of both chambers during a September session...
Saxony Lutheran High School to add agriculture curriculum (07/15/14)
In a move that could attract more students to Saxony Lutheran High School, the campus will offer an agriculture science curriculum this fall. Principal Mark Ruark said the school draws from Cape Girardeau and Perry counties...
Discrepancies in sex-crime data explained by SEMO DPS (07/14/14)
Editor's note: This is the first in an occasional series looking at sexual violence on college campuses and the way crimes are reported. As national attention focuses on sexual violence among college students, differences in data reporting requirements and procedures can make it difficult to determine the extent of the problem, even when it is reported...
Cape school board mulls building new junior high (07/11/14)
During a planning session Thursday, members of the Cape Girardeau School Board discussed the need for renovations at Central Junior High School. They also asked assistant superintendent for administrative services Neil Glass to explore the possibility of a new building, because they weren't sure how structurally sound the current one at 205 Caruthers Ave. is. Board vice president Jeff Glenn even referred to the junior high as an "eyesore."...
Universities' handling of sexual violence denounced (07/10/14)
A U.S. Senate subcommittee report released Wednesday blasts colleges and universities across the country for what U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., calls a "disturbing" failure to follow sound practices in their handling of sexual violence on campus...
Area schools looking for qualified teachers, other workers (07/10/14)
From teachers to coaches to food service workers to bus drivers, public and private schools are still advertising for help even as their August start date draws nearer. The first day of school is Aug. 14. Cape Girardeau School District communications director Dana Saverino said six positions are open right now, and seven that applications are being taken for, such as bus monitor, custodian and substitute teacher...
Valedictorian: Mackenzie Chapman, 18 (07/10/14)
Birth date: Feb. 17, 1996 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau Future plans: I plan to attend Murray State and major in either forensic chemistry or international business. Extracurricular activities: Pep Club for three years, having been voted Chaffee High School Spirit Leader for one year; Team Spirit for four years; Smokebusters for four years; Family, Career and Community Leaders of America for two years; and Varsity Club for four years. ...
Valedictorian: Aimee Lathum, 18 (07/10/14)
Birth date: Jan. 26, 1996 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau Future plans: To attend Southeast Missouri State University in Sikeston, Missouri, using my A+ program, then attend the Southeast Hospital College of Nursing to earn my RN. Hopefully, get married to the man of my dreams, move out into the country and start a family...
Who's neXt 7/10/14 (07/10/14)
Cape Girardeau: Kristen Begley, Anna Bowles, Jonathon Clements, Abby Crites, Matthew Davis, Kathryn Garner, Samuel Gerlach, Abby Hartmann, Eric Hayes, Kurt Heischmidt, Bob Howard, Kaci Howard, Laurel Kasten, Ryan Ladd, Liam Maher, Emily Majoros, Daniel Neff, Kenrick Niedbalski, Sarah Nussbaum, Kristen Oberlohr, Regan Obermann, Olivia Roth, Kristyn Sanders, Rebecca Schneider, Kathy Scienski, Kaylyn Sneathen, Sushil Sobti, Russell Sprengel, Samuel Stahly, Kayla Thompson, Katherine Walton and Ryan Watts.. ...
Hooked on Science: Homemade ice cream (07/10/14)
It's summer, which means it's hot, which means ice cream. Try your hand at making it at home. 1/2 cup of half and half 1 tablespoon sugar 1/4 teaspoon vanilla 1 zip-top sandwich bag 1 gallon zip-top bag 3 cups of crushed ice 1/3 cup rock salt...
University piloting welcome program for foreign students (07/08/14)
To help international students better adjust to life in the United States -- and to Southeast Missouri State University and Cape Girardeau -- the university's office of International Education and Services this summer is piloting a program called Families Across Borders...
Three Rivers students, faculty anticipate new Sikeston campus (07/03/14)
SIKESTON, Mo. -- While Three Rivers College has seen a change in leadership and budget numbers in recent days, no change is anticipated for the institution's Eastern Campus in Sikeston. TRC officials say budget withholdings for higher education by Missouri Gov. ...
Notre Dame students get lessons on civil rights during Montgomery mission trip (07/03/14)
Notre Dame Regional High School's mission trip to Montgomery, Alabama, held an added bonus for the 15 participants -- a chance to meet the Rev. Bernice King, youngest daughter of Coretta Scott King and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. During the June 16-through-21 trip, the group of seven students and eight adults worked with Resurrection Catholic Missions in Montgomery to do outreach work for the parish's grade school, cleaning apartments for elderly residents in the community, doing some painting and delivering Meals on Wheels, among other tasks.. ...
Another district says no to Normandy transfers (07/01/14)
ST. LOUIS -- A third suburban St. Louis County school district says it will no longer accept transfer students from the Normandy system now that a state law has changed that struggling district's accreditation status. The Ferguson-Florissant School Board said it voted unanimously to uphold a district policy prohibiting nonresident students from enrolling in the district. The vote follows similar decisions in University City and the Francis Howell system in St. Charles County...
Perryville busing system almost in place (07/01/14)
Sarah Orf and Melissa Hemmann have hit the ground running in the just-formed Perry County School District transportation department -- made up of the two women and bus drivers. Starting this fall, the district will begin a lease agreement with Midwest Bus Sales, based in Tonganoxie, Kansas, that could save the district an estimated $600,000 to $700,000, superintendent Scott Ireland has said...
Group hopes to revive Mo. school (06/30/14)
TARKIO, Mo. -- More than two decades after bankruptcy forced a northwest Missouri college to close its doors, the school's alumni association continues to work to bring education back to the 60-acre campus. The Tarkio College Alumni Association is hoping to start a two-year, degree-granting college at the Atchison County campus two hours north of Kansas City -- an effort that started in 1994, two years after the four-year, liberal arts college founded in 1883 was forced to close...
Regents tour soon-to-be-completed River Campus expansion (06/27/14)
Members of the Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents got a sneak peek Thursday at the River Campus expansion as it nears completion. Tours were conducted by Facilities Management staff as part of the regents' meeting. Construction costs for the 93,500-square-foot expansion, which will include 184 total beds, are budgeted at $23,284,000. ...
Education community holds breath on funding (06/26/14)
The sweeping financial move by Gov. Jay Nixon on Tuesday has left local school districts watching and waiting to see if the expected increase in their funding will come through. Scott Holste, the governor's press secretary, said the amount withheld from the foundation formula and higher education represents the increased amount the entities would receive for fiscal year 2015...
Harassment claims by Sikeston teachers remain unfounded (06/26/14)
SIKESTON, Mo. -- Claims by two Sikeston School District teachers that they were harassed and discriminated against for their anti-Common Core beliefs remain unfounded following a review of the case by a federal district judge...
Kennett lunch program cut short for summer (06/26/14)
Each year's Summer Food Program is important in feeding breakfast and lunch to many children who might otherwise go hungry when the school year ends. However, problems within the system are making it difficult for the group to continue doing its job, said director Mary Winston. On Tuesday, Winston met with State Rep. Kent Hampton in the Kennett High School cafeteria to talk about the issue...
Valedictorian: Mikaela Blissett, 18 (06/26/14)
Birth date: Dec. 30, 1995 Birthplace: Southeast Hospital, Cape Girardeau Future plans: To attend Christian Brothers University in Memphis, Tennessee, play basketball and get a master's in sports management. Extracurricular/volunteer activities/clubs: Basketball; Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA); Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA); yearbook staff; cadet teaching; Beta Club; student council; and history club...
Valedictorian: Aaron Smith, 18 (06/26/14)
Birthday: March 3, 1996 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau Future plans: Go to Three Rivers College and become a registered nurse Extracurricular activities: Baseball, basketball, BETA Club, like to hunt, hang out with friends Dream job: Registered nurse...
Who's neXt 6/26/14 (06/26/14)
In order to be eligible for the Academic Achievement Awards, a student must be enrolled full-time, have a 4.0 grade-point average for the semester and at least a 3.5 cumulative GPA. Each student was nominated by his high school based on his leadership, citizenship, academics and character. Established in 1938, Missouri Boys State is a youth leadership and citizenship training program for high school juniors...
Hooked on Science: Huff 'n' puff water bottle (06/26/14)
Blowing a piece of paper seems like it would be easy, but the air itself can work against you. Small-neck bottle Piece of paper STEP 1: Tear off a small piece of paper and crumple it into a wad. STEP 2: Place the bottle on its side. STEP 3: Put the crumpled piece of paper loosely into the neck of the bottle. Make sure the wad of paper is close to the opening...
Three kid-friendly crafts for the Fourth of July (06/26/14)
The Fourth of July typically is the first holiday during children' summer vacation. And by now, they're bored. Here are three simple crafts that can involve them in preparations for the holiday's fireworks and picnics. Not only do you keep them busy, but you get decorations to reuse year after year...
President of Three Rivers College resigns (06/26/14)
POPLAR BLUFF, Mo. -- The president of Three Rivers College stepped down Wednesday in a move that shocked trustees. Dr. Devin Stephenson made the announcement at the monthly board of trustees meeting, saying only that he wished to "pursue alternative opportunities related to higher education."...
Schools do repairs, construction while students are gone (06/25/14)
With most buildings empty or sparsely populated, it's prime time for school districts to work on upkeep or even new construction. The River Campus expansion is moving toward completion at Southeast Missouri State University; Jackson continues building East Elementary School at 455 N. Lacey St., and Cape Girardeau Public Schools is tending to its 10 campuses...
Cape district budget up more than $2.7M from last year (06/24/14)
Cape Girardeau School Board members Monday approved a $53,353,071 budget for the 2014-2015 fiscal year, up from the $50,634,341 budget for 2013-2014. The 2014-2015 plan features an average 2.5-percent across-the-board increase for district employees. The district has 638 employees, 409 of whom are teachers, assistant superintendent of administrative services Neil Glass has said...
Board: Cape Girardeau Partnership for Higher Education needs better name (06/24/14)
Members of the Cape Girardeau Partnership for Higher Education advisory board on Monday encouraged the presidents of the entity's three institutions to meet in the next 60 days and find a more marketable name. Housed in the Career and Technology Center in Cape Girardeau, the partnership is made up of Southeast Missouri State University, Three Rivers Community College and Mineral Area College...
Tax holiday set for early August (06/24/14)
Cape Girardeau County again will participate in the annual Missouri Sales Tax Holiday from Aug. 1 through Aug. 3. During those days, the county's 1 percent sales tax will be waived on purchases of back-to-school items such as computers, clothing and school supplies. State statutes list specific items that fall under the tax exemption...
SEMO's Faulkner Center to host conference in October (06/23/14)
Scholars from around the world soon will flock to Cape Girardeau for a conference about authors William Faulkner and Zora Neale Hurston. The conference, to be hosted in October by the Center for Faulkner Studies at Southeast Missouri State University, is held every other year, said Christopher Rieger, the center's director. This fifth edition is set for Oct. 23 through 25, mainly at the University Center. People from 15 to 20 states and four or five foreign countries usually attend, he said...
Summer school offers learning, fun (06/19/14)
Dalton Smith didn't have to attend summer school, but said the prospect of creating art drew him in. Students, teachers and administrators in Scott City, Jackson and Cape Girardeau say subjects such as art, Spanish, keyboarding and courses with a sports emphasis are attracting students to what sometimes had been perceived as drudgery...
Scott City School Board aims for November bond vote (06/19/14)
The Scott City School Board on Wednesday night voted to aim for a November bond election and approved a budget for the next fiscal year that schedules $8,870,000 in revenue and $9.6 million in expenditures, including a performing arts theater/Federal Emergency Management Agency safe room...
Alma Schrader programs win two character awards (06/20/14)
Two programs at Alma Schrader Elementary School -- Tigers Across the Ages and Courtyard Crashers -- have gained notice from Character Education Partnership as Promising Practices.
Valedictorian: Audrey Hunt, 18 (06/19/14)
Birthday: May 24, 1996 Birthplace: Jefferson City, Missouri Future plans: Attend University of Missouri and major in statistics Extracurricular activities: Softball, volleyball, marching band, Pep Club, FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America), Student Council, FTA (Future Teachers of America), National Honor Society, Science Club; basketball bookkeeper; class president; class secretary; Math Field Day (medaled every year); Missouri Department of Transportation bridge building competitor -- where participants have to build a model bridge that will hold a certain mount of weight. ...
Valedictorian: Abby Ritter, 18 (06/19/14)
Birthday: Jan. 21, 1996 Birthplace: Springfield, Missouri Future plans: Studying biochemistry and molecular biology with a minor in creative writing at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. She then plans to work for Doctors Without Borders. Extracurricular activities: Lots of theater; she's working on "A Midsummer Night's Dream" right now, which opens Friday; was captain of the varsity scholar bowl team and was on the all-state team this year. She also takes a hapkido class that she loves...
Who's neXt 6/19/14 (06/19/14)
Dean's lists To be named to the dean's list, students must meet high academic standards established by Culver-Stockton, earning between 3.5 and 3.99 GPA while enrolled in at least 12 credit hours. Dean's list honors are accorded Carthage students who achieve a 3.5 grade-point average while carrying at least 14 credit hours during a semester...
Hooked on Science: Trash bag hot-air balloon (06/19/14)
Make a hot-air balloon with some materials from around the house. 30-gallon clear trash bag Four-slice toaster Large tub STEP 1: Place the toaster into the large tub. STEP 2: Turn the toaster settings to the highest. STEP 3: Push down each lever until the levers lock...
Kid-sized bike share? Giving it a spin in Paris (06/19/14)
PARIS -- Not every 6-year-old can tackle the distractions of bike riding along the Seine, which on weekends and sunny days in Paris can include thousands of other cyclists, Rollerbladers and oblivious tourists with cameras. It's enough to give a parent palpitations...
Books for parents, kids, teens on LGBTQ experience (06/19/14)
NEW YORK -- June is Pride Month. Here are some book suggestions for parents, kids and teens on the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning gender experience. And these: ------ Follow Leanne Italie on Twitter at http://twitter.com/litalie...
Elementary school to switch from ringing bells to musical interludes (06/18/14)
Now that she's tried music instead of bells at the start of her summer school mornings, Scott City Elementary School principal Courtney Kern isn't going back. She plans to start using music next year in place of beginning bells. "It's not a nice way to start the day," Kern said, referring to the bell's ringing sound. "Kids know by the end of the song ... they have to be in their classroom. You'll see kids in their seat dancing. It puts a smile on the kids' faces."...
Ground broken on Scott City FEMA shelter, theater space (06/17/14)
If it's true that good things come to those who wait, the Scott City School District did just that, breaking ground Monday on a performing arts theater/Federal Emergency Management Agency safe room four years in the making. The cost of the project is $2.1 million. ...
Normandy School District seeks restraining order in transfer fight (06/16/14)
ST. LOUIS -- A troubled St. Louis-area school district is seeking a temporary restraining order against the Missouri Education Department, which won't let it pay its legal fees in a fight over the state's student transfer law. A motion filed Friday in St. ...
Home-schooling parents rally against Common Core (06/16/14)
WASHINGTON -- Home-schooling mom Jenni White gave some of the loudest cheers when Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin signed legislation to repeal the Common Core education standards. White, president of Restore Oklahoma Public Education, helped organize rallies, robocalls and letters to legislators encouraging the repeal. "You name it. We had to do it," White said. "We just had to do it out of a shoestring budget out of our own accounts."...
Three Rivers College could sever Cape partnership, president says (06/15/14)
While Three Rivers centers in the Southeast Missouri towns of Kennett, Dexter and Sikeston continue to thrive, the college's president said enrollment in Cape Girardeau is "anemic."
Teacher evaluation initiative positioned for November ballot (06/13/14)
A ballot initiative on teacher evaluation systems is making its way to the Nov. 4 general election ballot as an amendment to the Missouri Constitution. Meanwhile, the president of the Cape Girardeau Community Teachers Association said the measure puts more pressure on an occupation that's already stressful...
How's sleep-away camp going? Check the photos (06/12/14)
NEW YORK -- Not long ago, parents who sent children to sleep-away camp might wait days or even weeks for a letter. And they'd be lucky if their kids' scribbled notes home said anything beyond "Send candy!" or "I'm homesick." But now, many camps post photos and even videos online daily so parents can see what kids are doing -- everything from cabin life to campfires to canoeing. ...
Valedictorian: Grayson Miles, 18 (06/12/14)
Birthday: March 23, 1996 Birthplace: St. Louis Future plans: Attend the University of Mississippi and major in banking and finance Extracurricular activities: Cheerleading, volleyball, Beta Club, FBLA, History Club, Pep Club, baseball scorekeeper, senior buddies...
Valedictorian: Vikas Rudrappa, 18 (06/12/14)
Birthday: March 12, 1996 Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland Future plans: I am attending the University of Oklahoma for chemical engineering Extracurricular activities: Cross country, tennis, piano, orchestra Dream job: Biomedical engineer or cardiologist Mentor: Steve Schaffner...
Cape Girardeau School Board approves employee pay increase (06/12/14)
The Cape Girardeau School Board approved an average 2.5-percent across-the-board pay increase for its employees during a special meeting Wednesday night. Approval of salary schedules -- for everyone from administrators to custodians and stipends for those who take on extra duties -- is a prelude to consideration of the budget, which is expected to be on the board's June 23 agenda...
Jackson School Board approves budget for 2014-2015 school year (06/11/14)
The Jackson School Board approved a 2014-2015 budget Tuesday night that included revenue of $45,779,234 and 2.5 percent increases for certified teachers, up from the 2 percent that was awarded last year. "... We also use that as a guide for the rest of our [salary] schedules," associate superintendent for finance and business operations Dr. Wade Bartels said...
Bill could benefit Missourians with college debt (06/11/14)
A bill introduced last week in the U.S. Senate could benefit more than half the Missourians trying to pay off federal student loans, according to figures released Tuesday by the White House. About 909,000 Missourians owe more than $23 million in student loans, the report by the Domestic Policy Council and the Council of Economic Advisers states...
Judge strikes down California teacher tenure (06/11/14)
The landmark decision could influence the gathering debate over teacher tenure across the country.
New literacy program offered in Springfield (06/10/14)
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Springfield summer school students working to make up academic ground are being encouraged to see themselves as "big news." It's an approach the Springfield School District is piloting this year to boost the literacy skills -- and self-esteem -- of students whose reading and writing skills are one or more years below grade level...
Official: Regular summer meals important for school readiness (06/06/14)
When school's out, students across the region and nationwide may not have access to regular meals, so school and community-based programs often fill a much needed void, said Kevin Concannon, undersecretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services in the U.S. Department of Agriculture...
Professionals share success stories with teens at conference (06/05/14)
Coming of age in the late 1960s and early '70s in Detroit, Morris Jenkins, now dean of the College of Health and Human Services at Southeast Missouri State University, saw a lot of social upheaval with the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X...
Valedictorian: Danielle Childers, 18 (06/05/14)
Birthday: Dec. 11, 1995 Birthplace: Columbia, Missouri Future plans: I plan to attend SEMO where I will major in biomedical sciences. After graduating with a bachelor's degree, I will then attend medical school where I will study to become a dermatologist...
Valedictorian: Sam Lowes, 18 (06/05/14)
Jackson High School Birthday: Dec. 10, 1995 Birthplace: Cape Girardeau Parents: David and Susan Lowes Future plans: To attend Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, to major in medicine. He hopes to go into medicine, but is not sure which area yet...
Who's neXt 6/5/14 (06/05/14)
Cape Girardeau Jaclyn L. Bisgard Aldredge, Samantha D. Alexander, Deborah L. Allen, Marie K. Ansberry, Daniel S. Atwood, Taylor C. Babich, Rachel E. Bagot, Kaemen A. Bailey, Robert R. ...
John Green talks Hollywood, teen whispering (06/05/14)
NEW YORK -- When "The Fault in Our Stars" landed on bookshelves more than two years ago, John Green's enthusiasm was nonexistent for a screen version of his story featuring teens with cancer. "I had had some Hollywood experiences before that weren't great and I felt like Hollywood would struggle to make a movie where the female romantic lead has nasal cannula tubes in her nose for the entire movie," he said...
Hooked on Science: Microwave light bulb (06/05/14)
Light up a bulb without plugging it in. Incandescent light bulb Microwave Water Microwave-safe container CAUTION. THIS EXPERIMENT SHOULD ONLY BE PERFORMED BY AN ADULT. STEP 1: Fill the microwave-safe container one-fourth of the way with water...
Convertible laptop devices gain traction in area schools (06/04/14)
A half-year into the Cape Girardeau school district's initiative to introduce convertible laptop computers into its learning culture, teachers and students are adjusting well, said instructional technology coordinator Ron Farrow. In January, about 1,200 ASUS Transformer laptops were delivered to Central High School students and teachers. IPad pilot programs also were implemented at all five elementary schools, plus third-grade students at Franklin Elementary used ASUS books this year...
Three Rivers president becomes MCCA Council chairman (06/04/14)
Devin Stephenson, president of Three Rivers College, has been chosen as chairman of the Missouri Community College Association's Presidents/Chancellors Council for 2014-2015. The chairman leads the council and supports MCCA's mission of community college advocacy, a news release said...
Education bills await governor's approval (06/03/14)
Education bills passed by the Missouri Legislature but not yet signed by Gov. Jay Nixon touch on Common Core, accountability standards for college and career readiness and preschool opportunities. Many districts around the state have fully implemented Common Core standards for language arts and math, with testing set to begin next school year. But if Gov. Jay Nixon signs it, House Bill 1490, sponsored by Rep. Kurt Bahr, R-O'Fallon, could change things...
Perryville chamber of commerce executive director to leave position (05/29/14)
Melissa Hemmann, executive director of the Perryville Area Chamber of Commerce, will leave her position in June. Hemmann was hired as assistant transportation director for the Perry County School District and had worked for the chamber for more than nine years...
Jackson teen works toward Eagle Scout with project for children's home (05/29/14)
Aiming for an Eagle Scout designation, Austin Birk of Jackson is spearheading a canned food drive and food storage improvements for Hope Children's Home, a not-for-profit children's home that provides emergency shelter for foster children in the Cape Girardeau and surrounding counties...
Kids, parents embracing walking school bus (05/29/14)
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- As a group of children walked home together from school in Providence, they held hands and played the "I Spy" guessing game. When they reached a busy intersection, an adult accompanying them prodded, "What's the rule?" "Behind the line!" they said in unison, as they stepped back from the edge of the curb and waited for the walk signal...
Who's neXt 5/29/14 (05/29/14)
Scholarships Graduates Advance Ashton E. Anderson, Ethan T. Barr, Hannah M. Barr, Tyler R. Bowman, Sara L. Mace, Kayla L. McCabe, Tyler D. Middleton, Miranda D. Nixon, Richard L. Nixon and Lindsey R. Sullinger Altenburg Arielle M. Bohnert...
Hooked on Science: Soda can shake up (05/29/14)
Shake a can of soda and it will explode out of the can, right? Not so fast. Can of regular soda STEP 1: Excite the carbon dioxide gas bubbles inside the can of soda by rapidly shaking the can. STEP 2: Tap the side of the can several times. STEP 3: Open the can of soda and observe...
Perryville School District moving to fewer school days (05/27/14)
The school year will be shorter, but the days will be 15 minutes longer in the Perry County School District next year. And rather than 174 days, as was scheduled this year, there will be 169 during the 2014-2015 school year, superintendent Scott Ireland said...
Jackson students participate in statewide bus safety film shoot (05/23/14)
Barney the School Bus robot and students from the Jackson School District and Orchard Drive Elementary School were in the spotlight Friday when the Center for Education Safety of Jefferson City, Missouri, filmed a skit about bus safety for districts statewide.
'Don't freak out': Students look forward to, offer advice about entering high school, college (05/22/14)
This time of year is a transition period for students -- whether it's getting ready to switch grades or heading into high school or college. Jennifer Owens, a counselor with Community Counseling Center who also has her own practice, sees adolescents and college students. Owens said students in any grade are facing a lot of anxiety and pressure to be the best. They're also learning things in earlier grades than they were years ago...
'Eating from the Garden' (05/22/14)
LAURA SIMON ~ lsimon@semissourian.com Kennedy Mitchell, center, waters sweet potato plants that she and her classmates, Emma Sandlin, left, and Chase McWilson planted in the raised garden outside South Elementary in Jackson. ...
Scott City to break ground on safe room in June (05/22/14)
A groundbreaking ceremony for Scott City's long-awaited performing arts theater/Federal Emergency Management Agency safe room will be at 10:30 a.m. June 16, the school board decided Wednesday. The cost of the project is $2.1 million, funded through a FEMA grant with a 25-percent district match. ...
Colleges seek to improve remedial programs (05/22/14)
BALTIMORE -- The odds have long been stacked against students like those in Edward Ennels' remedial math classes at Baltimore City Community College. Only about a quarter of students nationally who take developmental -- or remedial -- classes ever graduate...
Hooked on Science: Tea-bag rocket (05/22/14)
You can make a tea bag fly through the air with a few materials found around the house. Tea bag Scissors Grill lighter STEP 1: Using the scissors, remove the staple and string from the tea bag. STEP 2: Open the tea bag and remove the tea leaves...
Scott City School Board to discuss $2M safe room project (05/21/14)
Plans for a groundbreaking ceremony for a performing arts theater/Federal Emergency Management Agency safe room will be discussed during the Scott City School District's board meeting today. The meeting is scheduled for 6:30 to 7 p.m. because of the baseball district tournament in Charleston, Missouri...
High school principal recognized for winning state FBLA award (05/20/14)
Central High School principal Mike Cowan was recognized by the Cape Girardeau School Board on Monday for winning the state FBLA Administrator of the Year award. This is the first time Cowan has won the award, which was presented at the 2014 Missouri FBLA Leadership Conference, held April 13 through 15 in Columbia, Missouri. FBLA stands for Future Business Leaders of America...
Programs aim to keep children learning during summer vacation (05/19/14)
With school winding down, it's likely the last thing children are thinking about is more learning. But attending a summer camp, going to the library, taking part in the variety of recreational programs in the Cape Girardeau area, and even taking a trip with family can all be a chance to continue gaining knowledge -- and have some fun...
Bioreactor could eliminate some farm byproduct runoff (05/16/14)
In an effort to decrease nitrate-nitrogen levels in waterways, Southeast Missouri State University's David M. Barton Agriculture Research Center in Gordonville has set up a bioreactor -- an underground chamber designed to remove nutrients from farm fields fitted with subsurface drainage systems...
Missouri lawmakers pass measure that would ditch Common Core (05/16/14)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Missouri lawmakers finalized legislation Thursday that would charge groups of parents and educators with writing new student achievement benchmarks, potentially paving the way for the state to ditch national education goals...
Attorney: Teachers' harassment claims unfounded (05/15/14)
SIKESTON, Mo. -- Claims by two Sikeston School District teachers they were harassed and discriminated against for their anti-Common Core beliefs were deemed unfounded by a third-party investigator. Findings of the investigation, which was conducted by Michelle Basi, a lawyer at Tueth, Keeney, Cooper, Mohan and Jackstadt of St. Louis, were presented during Tuesday's regular monthly meeting of the Sikeston School Board...
Local student enjoys challenges of classical guitar (05/15/14)
Ben Jackson is on his way to a serious course of study in classical guitar this fall at The Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. Jackson, 18, began teaching himself to play the instrument at age 6, then started taking lessons at 11 through Southeast Missouri Music Academy, a not-for-profit organization offering comprehensive music instruction to the Cape Girardeau community and surrounding areas...