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Issue Spotlight The Fifth Annual Review of Education Media Coverage of the Great Work of Montana’s Public Schools March 2019 Montana’s Public Schools have long enjoyed a well-deserved reputation for excellence, a reputation that they earn every day of the year. One of the most visible confirmations of this reputation can be found in analyzing media coverage of the great things happening in Montana’s Public Schools each year. In our Fifth Annual Analysis of the Media Coverage of the Great Work of Montana’s Public Schools, we find strong evidence that Montana’s Public Schools continue to excel! As reflected in media coverage throughout the state over the last year, our public schools have earned a reputation for: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement Building Communities, Building Citizens 21st Century Schools, 21st Century Students Teaching as Leadership

Read this publication online at http://mt-pec.org/k12issuespotlights/2019/fifth-annual Each headline is linked to an individual news article. On the publish date of this document, each article’s links were active. Individual news sites have internal archiving procedures and that could possibly affect the accessibility to a link. Any fee to access an article is the responsibility of the reader. Items in appearing in this publication do not imply a relationship between MT-PEC members and the media outlet or necessarily reflect the policies, positions, opinions or views of the directors or staff of the MT-PEC members.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Second grade Native American Projects Mrs. Oberlander’s second grade class recently did projects on Native American Tribes throughout North America. The students were split into groups of two and each group was given a different tribe to research.

Hall Passages: New elementary English curriculum at Missoula schools focuses on phonics awareness First-graders sounded out the word “stop” as their teacher Cassie Murphy pointed to letters on the board at Chief Charlo Elementary on Friday.

School Music Programs Provide Entertainment ‘Tis the season for holiday programs, and the Chinook Schools are showcasing the musical talents developed by Mr. Levi Williams, the Music Programs Director. On December 18 beginning at 6:30 p.m., Meadowlark Elementary students enrolled in kindergarten and first and second grades performed a program called Once on a Housetop.

From listeners to composers: East Middle School music program evolves with grant The relationship between music and technology has evolved quickly over the years. The two have merged to allow vast creativity in artists. The East Middle School music program will now be able to be a part of this evolution because of the Music Technology Lab grant.

Editor recalls Bynum School program traditions Earlier this month, I was invited to speak at the Choteau LDS women’s Christmas gathering, where I was asked to share a Christmas tradition. In the spirit of the holiday season, I’m going to share my traditions story with the Acantha readers. MCT helps local children become actors Children in the Ronan School District got together to develop a production of “Blackbeard the Pirate” after only five days of rehearsal on Friday night at the K. William Harvey Elementary school. Daly Elementary School Hosts Poetry Jam The Daly Elementary fourth grade classes and some of their family members joined Daly faculty, staff and guest poet Dominic Farrenkopf in the Daly Den for the First Annual Poetry Jam Monday. More student demand creates volunteer shortage for the CAP mentorship program I ran into Julie Lisk, youth program coordinator with Thrive, at the joint Gallatin and Madison county commission meeting held at Lone Peak Cinema recently. She was desperate for volunteers, she said. Providing access, exploring options “What are you going to be when you grow up?” asked University of Montana President Seth Bodnar of Seeley-Swan High School juniors and seniors Dec. 3. While Bodnar promoted higher education at UM and Montana College answering specific questions and talking individually to each student, he also left them with three important messages that he hoped would help them wherever life takes them.

‘Usable artwork’: Missoula high school teacher helps kids craft custom skis Scot Traeder gets immense satisfaction from gliding over water, whether frozen or liquid, on something he’s built himself from scratch. He’s put his wooden canoe-building career on hiatus for now to focus on constructing homemade lightweight, high-performance skis for all terrain and conditions. Bozeman schools offer new diploma choices Starting with next year’s freshmen, Bozeman high school students will have new choices of diplomas, designed to let them pursue their own interests and career aims. LaMotte School kids like lunches by personal chef Not many schools can boast of having a personal chef. LaMotte School enjoys that distinction, offering lunches prepared by licensed personal chef Derek Ivester. Gazette opinion: Restore 2017 cuts, support K-12 schools Montana K-12 public schools had to lean more heavily on local property taxpayers in the current two-year state budget cycle because the 2017 Legislature balanced the state budget in part by cutting support for schools. ‘Niceness is Priceless’ project started by student killed in crash expands to all Helena schools This year, a kindness project that started as a Facebook page has expanded into an initiative that has taken over Helena’s school district. The fundamental tenets of Niceness is Priceless are to spread kindness, inclusiveness and an anti-bullying message throughout the schools. Sophomores Extract DNA from Bananas The sophomore students in Mrs. Schumacher’s biology class have recently been learning about macromolecules in cells and DNA. They have focused on the four main macromolecules, which are nucleic acids, proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Hour of Code This week grades K-6 are participating in the “Hour of Code”. Grades 3-6 are having fun coding a ‘Dance Party’ by going to code.org/dance. Kindergarten and first graders are coding using an app on the iPad. Second graders are learning how to code using code.org. Winter storm brings fun to school playgrounds These two third graders at Harlem Elementary enjoyed the recent snowfall when they took to the playground Monday morning. Crow elementary teachers Michael, Round Face earn accolades for school Connie Michael (back row, far left) stands with her fifth grade class Tuesday afternoon at Crow Agency Public School. On Monday, Nov. 26, she was one of 51 educators nationwide to earn the National University System-Sanford Teacher Award. Daytime astronomy Mrs. Heinert’s Laurel High School Earth Science class is seen entering the STARLAB at the LHS auditorium last Thursday. The inflatable dome was on loan from Bozeman’s Museum of the Rockies for the week. Stevensville School District expands breakfast program Stevensville School District is now serving breakfast to students in the classroom as part of the “Breakfast After the Bell” program launched by Governor Steve Bullock. Shakespeare in the Schools performs ‘Julius Caesar’ Shakespeare in the Schools performed “Julius Caesar” at high schools in Corvallis, Florence-Carlton and Hamilton this week. On Monday, CHS English educator Suzi Pliley said having the production in the school is important. Billings middle-schoolers build up recycling program The impact of recycling can be hard to see for kids. Students at Riverside Middle School found a literal way to address that problem. Students turned over a six-foot tall plus cage of plastic to a local recycling company Friday, emptying a monolith that stood near the school entrance. Caught in a pickle On Nov. 16, 2018, Baker High School Biology II students headed to their classroom and were shocked by their discovery of a grotesque crime scene upon arrival. Scattered about the room were deceased pickles.

Mrs. Weaver’s Kindergarten class talks Thanksgiving I love talking to Kindergarten kids. I wanted to talk to them about Thanksgiving. What were they thankful for? Mrs. Samantha Weaver asked them. Broadus welcomes Foreign Exchange Students Two local families are hosting foreign exchange students this year. The young men, Guille Castellanos from Spain, and Alessandro Galieni, from Italy, are both going to school at PRCDHS for the 2017-18 school year. Kindergarteners celebrate Thanksgiving with performance Led by counselor Roberta McKay and kindergarten teacher Betty Klein, Ennis’s class of kindergarteners put on a celebratory Thanksgiving performance on Monday, November 19 that touched upon several different cultures. South School Rocks! South Elementary had a fun afternoon last week doing the Only One You project for the second year in a row. This project is based off of the book “Only One You” by Linda Kranz. Building relationships over pastries Parents, children and teachers at Seeley Lake Elementary gathered before school Nov. 20 for the second Pastries for Parents. The intent of the program is to engage parents and build relationships between parents, the school and the teachers. Dirt to Décor: Great Falls High art students sculpting from construction clay The Thanksgiving season has now come to an end. That means it’s now an appropriate time to blast Christmas albums, set up Christmas lights, buy the perfect tree and collect some unique ornaments. C.M. Russell High School to bring the Falls alive with ‘The Sound of Music’ The hills are alive with the sound of music and will be for the next two weeks in Great Falls. The C.M. Russell High Performing Arts Department is kicking off its production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “The Sound of Music” Thursday, Nov. 29. Montana schools aim to teach accurate Thanksgiving, move away from stereotypical Pilgrims and Indians Kim Busch took a quick poll of her fifth-grade students at Big Sky Elementary about what jumps to mind when they think about Thanksgiving.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Career speakers crack door on real world for Billings high school students Tauna Jeffery and Kelsey Skogen work in a cutting-edge scientific environment. As nurses at Billings Clinic in the research department, they care for patients involved in clinical trials for drugs not yet on the market.

Missoula schools join nationwide celebration of after-school programs Students from eight different Missoula County Public Schools helped themselves to NASA stickers and an assortment of snacks as they gathered for an event to celebrate Missoula’s after-school programs recently.

Helena College’s dual enrollment grows by 160 students after launch of tuition-free program Helena College saw a large spike in dual enrollment of high school students during the fall 2018 semester, and the increase seems to be a direct result of the state of Montana’s One-Two-Free program.

My Student in Need program supports students in the Butte area and across the state Kindergarten girl, age 5, in need of a new winter coat and winter boots. Sixth-grade boy in need of jeans and tennis shoes. Fourth-grade girl, age 10, with special needs in need of shirts, pants, a coat, underwear, and socks. These are just a few of the many students who have been assisted in the Butte and Anaconda communities through an anonymous electronic referral program known as My Student in Need.

Hall Passages: Students play, climb to design new Lowell Elementary playground Third-graders from Lowell Elementary School laughed and yelled as they pushed each other in swings, lay back in a spinning saucer and hung from a webbed tower at Fort Missoula Bella Vista playground during a field trip on Monday. KINDER CAFE AT PLAINS SCHOOL FEATURES FUN 1950S THEME Katie Hillerman’s kindergarten classroom at Plains School was transformed into a 1950s-style diner called Mrs. Hillerman’s Kinder Cafe last Friday, and it was a very “fun day” for all of her students, and their teacher. Relationships key to healing from trauma Traumatic events like the Rice Ridge fire affect everyone differently. According to licensed, clinical social worker Stacy York, a person’s response and feelings are what make it traumatic. SHS recognizes National Rural Healthcare Day, local professionals Learning from local profesionals in the field of healthcare is very beneficial for the students in the Medical Preparation class at Shelby High School. Students enrolled in this class are interested in the healthcare field, but possibly are not sure which field to pursue. Hall Passages: Drop-in lessons help Arlee students learn to respect differences, each other Sixth-grade students sat quietly and waited for their school counselor, Kelsey Tritz, to begin a lesson on respect at Arlee Junior High School recently.

Bozeman children can sign up for a free book each month Bozeman best-selling author Mark Sullivan has pledged $15,000 toward a charity that plans to mail free books every month to hundreds of local preschool children, to ensure more kids learn a love of books and the reading skills crucial to success in life. Corvallis Receives AdvancEd Accreditation Corvallis School District received approval from the AdvancED Standards for Quality Schools accreditation process that included district-wide evaluations, stakeholder surveys, facilities evaluations and an onsite visit. Montana schools ready their wish list for 2019 Legislature More money for special education kids, for 4-yearold preschool children, for career training, for school buildings, for 19-year-olds, and for low-income, at-risk students. Hall Passages: Missoula schools join nationwide celebration of after-school programs Students from eight different Missoula County Public Schools helped themselves to NASA stickers and an assortment of snacks as they gathered for an event to celebrate Missoula’s after-school programs recently. Kindergarten learns piano On Oct. 3, the kindergarten started learning how to play the piano in the Piano Lab with Mrs. Wagnon. They learned where a few of the keys are, as well as fingering on the piano. This way they can start practicing their own piano skills.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Montana Apple Crunch Time On Oct. 24, at 2 p.m., the Plevna students along with many other schools around the state enjoyed another Apple Crunch, a program that celebrates National Food Day as well as National Farm to School Month. Fourth grade scrambled eggs Mrs. Isaacs and her fourth grade class had an egg drop Oct. 26, followed by a second drop on Oct. 28, as part of their science studies. Fifth and sixth grade maps of Plevna The fifth and sixth grade classes, along with the help of Mrs. Spencer, have been learning about the five themes of geography. These themes are Movement, Region, Human Interaction, Environmental Interaction, Location, and Place, better known by the acronym MR HELP. The Reason We have Red Ribbon Week Red Ribbon week is celebrated nationally normally between October 23-31. This year both the high school and the grade school will be focusing on the purpose of Red Ribbon Week which is to encourage student to make a commitment to live safe and drug-free lives. Playground equipment project popular at elementary school Sherry Lagunas has spent 11 years on the Parkview Elementary School Parent Council. When she started, the group voted to add playground equipment. Helmville students learn about fire fighting during Fire Prevention Week Helmville school students had the chance to get up close and personal with the Helmville Volunteer fire department’s equipment Friday Oct. 12 as part of Fire Prevention month. East Helena a sea of red championing drug prevention for Red Ribbon Week East Helena students and community members parade through town Wednesday for the annual Red Ribbon Week parade. Red Ribbon Week is an alcohol, tobacco, and other drug and violence prevention awareness campaign. Two Butte preschool programs receive extra support through federal development grant On a recent Wednesday morning, Shantel Broadhead’s preschool classroom bustled with hands-on, play-based learning.

Bozeman students learning social and emotional skills Kids can’t learn if they’re upset about bullying on the playground, parents divorcing or similar problems. That’s why the Bozeman School District has adopted an array of programs to teach children social and emotional skills. RESTORATIVE JUSTICE PILOT AIMS TO HELP YOUTH For the past two years, a Kalispell collective of public school, restorative justice, law enforcement and juvenile probation representatives have been contributing their areas of expertise to come up with a comprehensive approach to behavior and discipline of at-risk youth. French students visit their Helena counterparts through exchange After several Helena High School students visited France last spring, their French counterparts are now paying them a visit. Growing number of English learners in Bozeman schools Bozeman schools have a small but growing number of students who arrive here speaking one of 60 different languages, from Spanish to Ukrainian, and who need to learn English to succeed in class. Students to study houses before they’re burned A couple of houses across the street from Huntley Project Schools will become a temporary learning lab before the property becomes a parking lot. WHITEFISH STUDENTS USE MULDOWN PROJECT AS OUTDOOR CLASSROOM The construction of a new Muldown Elementary School building is serving as a teaching moment for students both young and old. New Flagship program offers academic, emotional support for students On Wednesday, Oct. 10, a group of about 20 students gathered after the bell rang at Hawthorne Elementary to learn what their after-school activities entailed. Montana Receiving Half A Million To Support School Safety Montana is getting half-a-million dollars from a new federal grant to train teachers and students on school safety, following the mass shooting earlier this year at a high school in Parkland, Florida.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning NASA: Montana Educator Brings Mars Lesson Close to Home This year, Montana took a leap toward bringing the Next Generation Science Standards to the state’s K-12 teachers by kicking off its first state science teachers conference. This pilot meeting brought together more than 100 of the state’s top educators, who shared best practices with the teaching community. Free college applications available this week Seniors at 150 Montana high schools can send an application to any Montana campus of their choosing without paying a fee this week, eliminating a potential stumbling block for low-income students. High school seniors can apply to Montana colleges free this week Seniors at 150 Montana high schools can send an application to any Montana campus of their choosing without paying a fee this week, eliminating a potential stumbling block for low-income students. Young and old come together to break ground on Daly School project Under a steady drizzle, the 16 chosen students from Daly Elementary patiently leaned on their golden shovels as they awaited the signal Tuesday afternoon. First things first: Breakfast starts the day in Butte School District classrooms In a third grade class at West Elementary School, every day starts the same: with breakfast. Students munch on cereal and sip on milk as they complete their morning writing activities. HANDS-ON LEARNING As the school year kicked off, so did a unique internship in the valley. Providence St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Polson welcomed its fourth class of Polson High School students several weeks ago. Fort Belknap students learn traditional smudging, sweetgrass braiding during Native American week Lots of schools in Montana will celebrate Native American day this Friday. A few schools with predominately Indian student bodies will even take the day off. Hall Passages: Morning Moves gets kids active before school Holding a coffee thermos with one hand and a jump rope in the other, Clara Meinershagen watched over two students at Franklin Elementary as one skipped and the other helped twirl the rope.

School-based clinics improve health, attendance At least once and as many as three times a day, Paris Gibson Education Center Principal Drew Uecker or one of his staff members hop in the school van to take a student to see a doctor. Dodson, Harlem and Hays-Lodge Pole schools join in Native American Week This year, Hays-Lodge Pole, Harlem and Dodson school districts are combining their Native American Week activities and expanding the week’s worth of events this year, Hays-Lodge Pole Superintendent John Bach Jr. said Thursday. Havre Middle School students look through ‘Purple Glasses’ Havre Middle School students Wednesday worked on an exercise to teach them the importance of understanding what other people have gone through. Students pick their own veggies in after-school Garden Club program Cucumbers, zucchini, tomatoes, tomatillos, carrots and green beans are just some of the vegetables grown in the garden at Lowell Elementary School. Glasgow Middle School Students Learn All About Health In its inaugural year, Glasgow Middle School students participated in a health fair on Sept. 5, where they learned about various health topics such as mental health, healthy eating, immunizations, positive body image and underage drinking. Home visits designed to help Butte kids transition to kindergarten A 5-year-old boy hugged his cat on the front porch of his home Thursday morning, peering past his parents in search of a visitor. Soon enough, the person he’d been waiting for walked down his driveway to meet him for the first time. Pioneer Spirit, is alive and well at Big Sandy High School Pioneer Spirit shows up! It was a fun week visiting kids who know what it means to have the Pioneer Spirit supporting them. Irle School 4th Graders Receive Free School Supplies In a generous show of support for the community’s future, Gloria and Paul Ashenbrener, who own the local McDonald’s restaurant, reached out to the Irle School Parent-Teacher Organization in an effort to assist the group in supporting the teachers and students of Irle School.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Freshmen take to the halls of Butte High School Butte High School’s class of 2022 wandered the halls with schedules in hands and wide eyes as they participated in freshmen orientation on Tuesday afternoon at the local public school. Early Kindergarten program targets at-risk students Missoula County Public Schools is currently taking applications for a new Early Kindergarten program at Jefferson Center, which will help targeted students become better prepared for kindergarten. Hall Passages: Osprey nest becomes outdoor classroom Armed with clipboards and binoculars, sixth-grade students from Sussex School walked around a nest by Ogren Park waiting to spot osprey. Students seek to become active in clubs New freshmen at Sidney High School. took a step regarding their involvement at school when they attended the club fair on Wednesday. Bozeman schools see results teaching kids social-emotional skills Teaching Bozeman school kids skills to cope with social and emotional problems is showing positive results, school leaders say, and it could even make schools safer. FLATHEAD HIGH SCHOOL UPPERCLASSMEN, FRESHMEN PAIR UP FOR MENTORING PROGRAM Incoming freshmen at Flathead High School will start the year knowing at least one student who has been in their shoes before. More than 100 students will be paired up with freshmen as part of a new peer mentoring program for the 2018-19 school year. Tour looks back on 100 years of schooling in the Swan Valley In 1918, Swan Valley residents built three one-room schoolhouses to accommodate their growing families and the influx of new pioneers. On Aug. 4, 100 years later, the Upper Swan Valley Historical Society invited residents and visitors to tour the valley and see what became of those and subsequent early school buildings. Some were destroyed, some repurposed and some are part of the valleys continuing education story.

Laurel’s summer school program aims to keep struggling elementary students on track As Tim McKinney led his students through a version of “The Tortoise and the Hare” in July, he paused during reading to make sure his students were understanding what they read - that the tortoise’s take-no-breaks approach paid off. In a state troubled by suicide, teens learn mental health skills Retired Browning, Montana, educator Larry Woolf spent 11 years as a teacher and 15 as a guidance counselor in public schools on the Blackfeet Reservation. He has seen, again and again, the devastating pain of teenage suicide. “Working in the schools, I’d gone to enough funerals for kids,” he said in an interview this spring. Butte public school district’s Rockies program receives more federal funding Butte School District No. 1 has received renewed federal funding for elementary after-school and summer enrichment programs this year. Billings school project aimed at giving elementary students a level playing field - or at least playground Not every kid at Rose Park Elementary can use the playground. The equipment, surrounded by a lipped concrete perimeter and tiny pebbles that shift like sand, is off limits to students with certain physical disabilities. Connecting Colors and Community: Seeley Lake Addresses Student Resilience Strings, anchors, balloons, the colors of the rainbow: To hear students and teachers talk about the Kaleidoscope Connect program’s lessons sounds like listening to attendees of a New Age carnival. Teenagers get involved in suicide prevention Lane Johnson, 17, dribbled a basketball down a concrete court in his hometown with the skill of a state champion and easily dropped the ball through the hoop. GLACIER HIGH PILOT PROGRAM FOCUSES ON ATRISK STUDENTS Twenty Glacier High School sophomores will begin the climb toward graduation and young adulthood through a new pilot program, called Ascent, funded through a two-year Montana Academy Foundation grant totaling $139,004.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Engaging Students Through Experiential Learning Sidney’s MBI keeps local students on the right track Central Elementary School Principal Sara Romo spoke recently at a Kiwanis meeting about the MBI [Montana Behavioral Initiative] program that is being implemented at all Sidney schools. ‘You just have to work harder’: First-generation college student to study at rigorous university While doing research on her senior project in government at Capital High School, Delaney Knudson found statistics on the prevalence of suicide among Native Americans students that made her wonder if she was more likely to attempt suicide than go to college. ‘I finally felt seen,’ Paris graduate thrived at nontraditional school All eyes were on Jade Castle as she walked across the graduation stage at Paris Gibson Education Center. Her story came full circle when she accepted her diploma. They persisted: Bozeman celebrates HiSET students’ success Inga Evans choked back tears Wednesday night recalling the rough road she’d traveled to earn the chance for a better future for herself and her two kids. ‘Freedom!’ Obi robot gives student with cerebral palsy independence During a recent lunch period at Paxson Elementary School, a group of third-graders gathered around a table to eat, opening their lunchboxes from home, or setting down their cafeteria trays. One student brought something different: a device that looked like it came from a Star Wars movie. Hall Passages: School gardens offer hands-on learning experiences Kindergarten students crowded around a garden bed at Rattlesnake Elementary School on Monday as they anxiously awaited their turn to grab a pinch of carrot seeds and sprinkle them into the garden. Magic bus a hit at Bozeman High’s Sixties Museum Bozeman High School students went all out Monday to bring the Swinging ‘60s to life, dressing up as famous figures, singing 50-year-old hit songs and painting an entire yellow school bus as a replica of Ken Kesey’s psychedelic bus.

Billings elementary school social aimed at fostering school pride, bringing families together The playground at Broadwater Elementary has rarely been as crowded as it was Thursday night. Kids scurried around, of course. But their parents represented a significantly different crowd from normal. Hall passages: Hawthorne student reporters tell their school’s stories Using an iPad for filming and recording, Hawthorne Elementary’s student reporters roam their school, finding and telling the important stories happening in their hallways. Irving School celebrates ‘unity through diversity’ at International Day Adorned in traditional clothing ranging from Nepal to Peru, Irving School students filled the Sacagawea Middle School gym Thursday with songs and dances from all around the globe. Fourth and fifth-graders across Flathead Reservation get hands-on learning at River Honoring Around a bend on Moiese Valley Road, 22 tepees were set up Tuesday along the Flathead River. Had there been no cars or yellow school buses, one may have thought it was a traditional Native American camp. Third Grade is Money Savvy The 2018 3rd grade class just completed the Money Savvy Kids program sponsored by National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors MT-North. Meadowlark fifth graders present American History through Wax Museum Thirty-five fifth graders from Meadowlark Elementary hosted their annual wax museum.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement Students learn and experience much at convention The students who went on the trip to the FFA National Convention in Indianapolis got the opportunity not only to attend the event and expo with its various seminars and workshops, they also got to learn a tremendous amount about horses.

Ravalli County sends unique delegation to Model United Nations Ravalli County was represented by a unique delegation at the 53rd Annual Montana Model United Nations high school conference at the University of Montana, Nov. 19-20.

Froid student earns nomination to Air Force Academy Froid High School senior Mackenzie Dethman has been nominated to attend the U.S. Air Force Academy by U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont. “I was excited,” Dethman said of the news that she was nominated by Tester.

Awards given and attendance lauded during Havre school board meeting Two high school students were presented with an award at the beginning of the Havre Public School Board of Trustees meeting Tuesday night in Havre Middle School’s Assembly Room.

Frenchtown High School honored for Advanced Placement class achievement Frenchtown School District is one of 373 school districts in the United States and Canada being honored for its advanced placement class program with the annual AP District Honor Roll award from the College Board. Simms High School News: National Honors Society Food Drive And Blood Drive Since it is the Season of Giving, we want to give back, and we need your help! The Simms Chapter of National Honor Society will be hosting a food this December. DCC introduces program to help homeless students go to college Representatives from Dawson Community College met with community members to formally introduce the Dawson Promise program to the public. The program was originally announced in October of this year. Dawson Promise is an initiative started by DCC personnel which will provide aid to unaccompanied youth, be they homeless or aging out of the foster care system. Scientist and teacher bring STEM to classroom Collaboration between a junior high science teacher and a clinical laboratory scientist at Central Montana Medical Center is bringing learning to life through a microscope. Ronan High School senior class visit CSKT A first year Ronan High School teacher took his government class to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribal Council to meet the council members face-to-face and hear firsthand how the CSKT tribal council operates.

Montana State University experiment launches into space with help from Butte High grad On Dec. 5, a rocket launched from NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center in Florida and began its long journey to the International Space Station that orbits the globe. Butte Education Foundation releases fall grant winners The Butte Education Foundation recently announced its fall “Great Ideas Grant Program” recipients. About 10 years ago, the education foundation 501(c) (3) began the grant program, designed to help teachers and schools implement innovative projects that are outside of their normal funding capacities. Fast talk at Bozeman High: Speech tourney attracts hundreds of students Bozeman High School was filled with poker-faced teenagers wearing black suits, black blazers and stylish black dresses with high heels Friday evening when more than 700 students from all over Montana gathered to compete in the 2018 Hawkers Invitational Speech and Debate Tournament. Student wins national honors in essay contest St. Jude Thaddeus School honored two of their students Thursday morning for winning divisional and national awards through the American Legion Auxiliary. TFHS students bring awareness to inequality Two Thompson Falls students saw a problem and decided to do something about it. Junior Brooke Bowlin and senior Trinity Godfrey addressed the Thompson Falls School Board on Monday about some “serious issues we’ve been seeing at Thompson Falls High School.”


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement Laurel student who lost her arm to cancer doesn’t let disease keep her from her passions Casey Burrows is hard to pigeonhole. Her passions are many, and each seem strong enough to anchor the Laurel High School senior’s identity. KALISPELL SCHOOLS ZERO IN ON RAISING MATH SCORES Kalispell Public Schools are focused on increasing math achievement among elementary students within the next three to five years by putting in place a strategic plan, starting with professional development. Billings middle-schoolers build up recycling program The impact of recycling can be hard to see for kids. Students at Riverside Middle School found a literal way to address that problem. Science Olympiad earns second place in Small School and 11th over all in Bozeman The Big Sandy High School and Junior High Science Olympiad teams competed in Bozeman this last week at their state competition. The high school team finished second in the small schools division and 11th overall. Chinook’s Kourtney Hanson named a Coca-Cola Scholar Semifinalist Chosen for Next Level in Prestigious Scholarship Program Kourtney Hanson, a student at Chinook High School, has been named a Semifinalist for the 2019 class of the Coca-Cola Scholars Program. Libby student vocalist to perform at Carnegie Hall They don’t call it the Big Apple for nothing. New York City, with an estimated population of ten million residents is know for many things. Malta grad pens 9th book telling tale on the prairie BilliJo Doll has finished her latest book, My eMpTy Life, her ninth, and says that the book is in honor of the women of Eastern Montana. RLHS Green team reaches finals in STEM Contest Kate Belinda is a force of nature to the students of Red Lodge High School (RLHS). She teaches environmental science, advanced biology and chemistry. She is the Green Team (Environmental Club) advisor and strives to instill awareness and confidence in her students.

SHS recognizes National Rural Healthcare Day, local professionals Learning from local professionals in the field of healthcare is very beneficial for the students in the Medical Preparation class at Shelby High School. Students enrolled in this class are interested in the healthcare field, but possibly are not sure which field to pursue. Mansch On Montana: Jimmy McAlister’s success puts Paris Gibson Education Center in spotlight When Jimmy McAlister was a young freshman at Great Falls High, he violated the most important rule that’s required of students. He didn’t show up very much. Montana universities hope to attract more students by helping high schoolers with the ACT Montana university system leaders hope to persuade more high school graduates they can succeed in college. The Montana Board of Regents says its Resident Student Access Initiative seeks to improve student scores on the ACT by offering free PreACT tests to high school sophomores. Student of the month: Ryan Tomich meets the challenge of dyslexia When you meet Ryan Tomich, you would never guess that this bright, articulate and successful eighth-grader faces each day with the personal challenge of living with dyslexia. Dyslexia is a learning disorder that impacts how the brain processes letters and words. Hinsdale Sophomore Brings Home Bronze from National FFA Members of the Hinsdale FFA Chapter had a trip of their lifetime participating in the 91st National FFA Convention and Expo held in Indianapolis, Ind., Oct. 25 through Oct. 28. Sophomore Danika Soper also represented the Chapter by competing in the National Creed Speaking Career Development, where she competed with members from other chapters throughout the country. LES After School Program engages, entertains, and educates The goal of the Libby After School Program is not just to help kids with school work, but to provide a safe and caring environment. They teach children to embrace learning while providing enriching educational activities for expanding their knowledge.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement Billings high-schooler who can ‘outwork everybody’ learns to live with diabetes Skylar Zimmerman had to learn how to tweak her recipe for success. Some of the ingredients are packed away in a small cooler she carries on her hip to help her manage Type 1 diabetes. But more important is her grit, hard work, and adaptivity. Governor recognizes outstanding student leaders Governor Steve Bullock today recognized high school students for their commitment to academic excellence and leadership development at the Jobs for Montana’s Graduates 25th annual LEAD Conference. UnMASC Your Inner Leader 2018 State Student Council Convention On Sunday all student council students and advisors arrived at Laurel High School, prepared for the busy and fun filled days ahead. Turner High School hold National Honor Society Induction Ceremony The Turner Honor Society held an induction for incoming Honor Society Inductees this past week. Three new members, Brooke Reed, Shyan Krass, and Brandy Calvert, were inducted and joined into the chapter by the six other members and their advisor, Mrs. Shelly Harmon. These students should be commended for their achievements. Sugarbeeter Shout Out As we wrap up the first quarter at Chinook Public Schools I would like to share several academic adventures our staff has started to embark on Robotics, Coding and Stem Curriculum: At both buildings we are have a strong integration of Science, Technology and Math programs in our classrooms. At the elementary level the gifted and talented program has worked on coding and robotics the last several years. Great Falls students use personal struggles to create play, documentary Donning a red cap and gown, Luke Palmer earned raucous applause last spring as he shared his story of struggles before success and his dreams of becoming a reporter and writer. RURAL STUDENTS AIM TO HELP RESTORE CARIBBEAN’S CORAL REEF Swan River School is diving deeper into 3-D printing with a project aimed at restoring the coral reef in the Caribbean Sea.

Report: More Montana kids were prepared for kindergarten with public preschool A Montana public preschool pilot program helped get more students ready to begin kindergarten, especially those who often begin school at a disadvantage, according to a new state report. CHS Career Exploration Corvallis American Legion connected Corvallis High School students with business professionals to explore career options and paths on Wednesday. Over 200 students learned about career fields, how to get in and why hard work makes a difference. Columbus student finds strength after family tragedy As a child, relatives called Kolton Gladney “little man.” The nickname - or at least the first part - no longer fits the Columbus High School senior. Capital High’s Ethan Davidson achieves rare perfect score on ACT Ethan Davidson, a 17-year-old Capital High School senior, achieved a perfect score of 36 on the ACT college admissions exam. Davidson, son of Erika and James Fehr, joined the few who earn this score. Montana elementary school receives National Blue Ribbon recognition Even though Belgrade doesn’t crack the top 10 largest cities in Montana, Heck-Quaw Elementary caught the attention of the highest office in the country. Breaking news: Time magazine picks Bozeman girl as kid reporter Bozeman eighth-grader Ruby West was pretty happy when she learned that she’d won a national competition to be a kid reporter this school year for Time for Kids magazine. Florence-Carlton High School ranked seventh in Montana Florence-Carlton High School has been rated as the seventh best high school in the state by U.S. News and World Report. High marks The results are in, and for the second year in a row, Lone Peak High School came in first for ACT scores in the state of Montana, with 17 test takers averaging a 23.18. In 2015-16 LPHS came in third.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement Laurel NASA–HUNCH student projects to appear in Netflix movie The Utility Outlet Panel former Laurel NASA–HUNCH students Matt Smarsch and Matt Wallila built 10 years ago has been used to train NASA astronauts and will appear in an upcoming Netflix movie. Arlee’s Warrior Movement brings message of hope to Big Sky Native American Heritage event Friends and families fixed their attention on a projector screen in the gymnasium of Big Sky High School Wednesday night as a video in which the Arlee boys basketball team, the Warriors, dedicated their state championship to people struggling with suicide. Arlee Warriors, University of Montana events celebrate Native American heritage The Arlee boy’s basketball team, the Warriors, will be visiting Big Sky High School on Wednesday to share their message of hope, talk about suicide prevention and celebrate Native American heritage. Bozeman first-graders given prize-winning book Hawthorne School children hugged brand new books to their small chests Friday morning, the day that the Bozeman Schools Foundation handed out free copies of a prize-winning book to every first-grader in town. FORMER KALISPELL MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENT FINALIST IN NATIONAL SCIENCE COMPETITION Kalispell student Alexandra Houseworth’s science project “The Renewable Rotating Charger,” has earned her a chance to win a trip to Washington D.C. to present on the national stage. Saco Graduate Makes Medical Breakthrough for Alzheimer’s “Promise me, when you grow up, you’ll use your brain instead of your back,” a mother tells her daughter as they tiredly dig out a flooded ditch on the family farm. That daughter, Miranda (Yeska) Orr, followed her mother Carolyn’s advice, and is now a VA research health scientist at the South Texas Veterans Health Care System, faculty member of the Sam and Ann Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies, faculty member with the Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer’s & Neurodegenerative Disease and instructor of pharmacology at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas.

Montana Removes Fee for High School Dual Enrollment Program Montana high school students will be able to take dual enrollment courses for two college credits for free. The Billings Gazette reports Gov. Steve Bullock and Commissioner of Higher Education Clay Christian announced the decision Thursday, removing the $50.50 per college credit fee charged to high school students. New tuition-free program brings 99 high schoolers to Carroll College this semester Helena High School senior Grace Lawlor won’t have to wait until she graduates to see if Carroll College’s anthrozoology program is a good fit for her, because she’s already enrolled in it. Montana offers high school students two free college-level classes High school students in Bozeman and around Montana can now start earning college credits for free. The Montana University System is offering high school students their first two dual-enrollment classes – which earn credit toward both high school graduation and state college degrees – at no cost. Montana high school students can take two college credit courses for free, officials announce Montana students at any high school will be able to take two college credit courses through their high school for free, Montana officials announced Thursday. CHS senior Brendan Edwards completed the Western Aerospace Scholars Program CHS rising senior Brendan Edwards recently spent a week completing the residency component of the Western Aerospace Scholars program. The program, sponsored by NASA and the Seattle-based Museum of Flight, was founded in 2006. Laurel tries to give 5th-graders a leg up when they start middle school. Here’s how. Locker combinations are definitely easier than the limb-twisting, straw-toting challenge that Laurel Middle School students took on Friday. Billings high school grad takes an unheard-of 12 AP tests - and passes 10 Jared Gibbs is a sample size of one. The recent Skyview High graduate took on a rarely approached workload this year, completing 12 Advanced Placement tests - exams where students can earn college credits.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement CHARLO STUDENTS WIN SKILLSUSA TITLE Students from Charlo High School won one of the nation’s highest awards at the 2018 SkillsUSA Championships, held in Louisville, Kent., on June 27-28. More than 6,300 students from every state in the nation competed at the national showcase of career and technical education. The SkillsUSA Championships is the largest skill competition in the world. Scientists and students test osprey for signs of metal reclamation Mom was really not happy.Mom, in this case, was a female osprey who flew around a gaggle of scientists and children south of Warm Springs Ponds. They were holding Mom’s osprey chicks captive. Hope Gasvoda, will attend Summit at John Hopkins University Hope Gasvoda, daughter of Peter Gasvoda of Big Sandy, and Marla Olson of Havre, will be attending a Medicine and Health Care Summit at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD July 27-August 4. She was nominated by her shop teacher Brianna Bernhardt to attend the prestigious conference and was accepted.

The world as her textbook One of Grace Scrafford’s defining times during high school was when she spent a semester in South America. ‘Life past cancer’: West High senior beats tumor three times on path to graduation Arianna Cole is used to being the “tumor girl.” She get recognized at banks and grocery stores from people who have seen fundraising materials for her medical expenses. Knudsen embodies leadership, work ethic The 2018 graduating class of Columbia Falls High School will take with it a student whose influence, according to his coach and other school faculty, helped pave the way for the track team’s distance runners. Bigfork senior sets her sights on the stage It’s not glitz or star power that makes Olivia Martel speed up when she talks about theater. “Some people are like, ‘Oh, Broadway, I’m going to be a star!’” she says with a flourish. “But you’ve got to know how to work, too.”

Qualified high school students can now take Carroll College classes tuition-free Qualified Helena-area high school students can now take up to two Carroll College classes per semester tuition-free.

Flathead grad taking Kalispell virtues to New York City At first glance, it would seem that something extraordinary molded Noah Love into the man he is today. He insists, however, that he is a product of the same local institutions that many Kalispell students benefit from.

Camp Imagination keeps students’ skills sharp, gets boost from grants School may be out, but the classrooms at Missoula County Public Schools’ Jefferson Center were busy Friday morning.

‘My biggest regret is not coming here sooner’: Graduate found a home at PAL At the Project for Alternative Learning, senior Karyssa Gilleland found a tight-knit community and was able to complete her high school requirements and a few college classes before her graduation ceremony on Friday.

Big Sandy students among 2018 Montana scholarship winners This spring, two Big Sandy students were among the recipients of Montana FFA Foundation’s awarding of more than $60,000 in scholarships and grants to FFA members and local FFA chapters throughout the state. A voice with a purpose The stage is where Zach Ade thrives. “My biggest passion is public speaking, by far,” Ade told the Pilot. “I’ve always loved acting, and I realized how much power comes with words and how much power comes with a voice.”

Bozeman High celebrates biggest graduating class in its history Bozeman High School cheered for its seniors for the last time on Thursday, saying farewell to the record 475 students in the Class of 2018 who will graduate Sunday. Will Gilmore is West Point-bound ENNIS - Will Gilmore has earned some time off. He just graduated from Ennis High School, the class president and co-valedictorian with a 4.0 GPA, Honor Society member, having filled his extracurricular hours with athletics and community service.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Accessing Opportunity Through Student Achievement Class of 2018 offered over $260,000 in scholarships The Cut Bank High School Class of 2018 received their long-awaited diplomas on Sunday, May 27 and were offered $269,530 in scholarship awards.

Two Helena High graduates receive presidential praise Emma Sihler and Devin Seyler, two seniors at Helena High School, are graduating with one of the most prestigious honors a high school student can receive.

SHS Seniors awarded over $70,000 in scholarships The Shelby High School 2018 graduating class received many types of financial aid from the Shelby community in order to pursue their education in college. Thirty-one students received more than $71,000 from over 32 local scholarship programs.

Seeley-Swan graduates encouraged to create their own definition of success SEELEY LAKE - Twenty-eight students from Seeley-Swan High School celebrated and reflected on their high school careers during the school’s graduation ceremony on Sunday.

Glacier High commencement celebrates gratitude, hard work Saturday was the culmination of four years of hard work for the nearly 300 students who walked out of Glacier High School as members of its 10th graduating class.

Montana’s dual enrollment classes growing fast Montana was slow to offer teenagers the chance to take “dual enrollment” classes that give credit toward both high school graduation and state college degrees, but now it’s catching up fast.

Capital graduate seeks engineering degree to help others Andrew Bugni, a senior at Capital High School, is studying mechanical engineering at Montana State University this fall because it’s the best way he knows how to help people.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Building Communities, Building Citizens Christmas Miracle: Anonymous donor gives $60K for new marching band uniforms Concert goers at the Belgrade High School auditorium witnessed a Christmas miracle Tuesday night. They saw the unveiling of the new uniform that the school’s marching band will wear, thanks to an anonymous donation of about $60,000. The miracle lies in the fact that junior band member Sydney Eastwood even had a uniform to model at the end of BHS’ annual winter band concert. BHS grad tells her tale of struggle, joy and acceptance to students About 4-1/2 years ago, Taylor Woolman harbored dreams and hopes similar to current Belgrade High School students, although her prep accomplishments put her on a Panther pedestal. Then her life veered off in a direction she never could have imagined. Elementary students give Christmas Food Baskets After spending a month of asking about individual Christmas memories, it became very obvious that most of our memories are around food while sitting with family celebrating and laughing. So, the Christmas Food Baskets are more than just supplying a meal to families needing a little extra help. Chinook High School Student Council gets active in the community The Chinook High School Student Council has become very active and is looking for ways to make an impact within their school as well as their community. SUPERIOR FOURTH-GRADERS GET GOOD EXPERIENCE ABOUT ‘GIVING BACK’ With cash in hand, Superior school fourth-graders went to local stores for their annual shopping trip for families in need. Mrs. Crabb’s class works to raise funds each year to purchase the gifts that are then donated to the Women in Timber Superior group. Great Falls 3rd grader wants to thank mystery benefactor after kind deed When Mattilyn Beedy, 8, lost her school backpack, the mistake might have meant her family had to replace it and the two library books inside. Instead, a yet-unknown, kind-hearted Great Falls person found the backpack at the bus stop and noticed the fraying, the missing zipper and the way it was worn so thin it was nearly transparent in places. Local Schools doing their part to ensure everyone can have a Happy Holiday Christmas is nearly upon us and the thought of spending time with family and friends warms us all. Some families find themselves in a position that has them feeling like they won’t be able to experience that joy themselves.

THOMPSON FALLS STUDENTS HOLD ‘PEACEFUL PROTEST’ OF BULLYING Students in Thompson Falls exercised their First Amendment right of freedom of assembly last week when they organized a “peaceful protest” to raise awareness of bullying and harassment issues. Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation, mine donate sweatshirts Kennedy Elementary School fifth-graders received free sweatshirts, courtesy of both the Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation and Montana Resources. The duo donated 546 sweatshirts to fifth-grade students in Butte, Anaconda and Whitehall. This is the fourth year the Washington Foundation has organized the charity event. Hannah’s Hope Fund purchases much-needed furniture for Victor school library At the Victor School Library, there’s a little nook called Hannah’s Reading Corner where students gather to read, study or sometimes just hang out. Local school wins statewide competition to receive $1,000 prize Highland Park Early Primary School will receive $1,000 for its display of school spirit in Tilleman Motor Co.’s School Shout Out competition. Middle school student is gathering warmth for homeless Gathering articles of warmth for homeless folks was a good idea that grew bigger for a Hamilton Middle School student. Morgan Bisel, 11, is collecting hats, scarves, gloves and blankets for homeless people. Kindergarten community helpers November 1, Mrs. Bidwell’s kindergarten class took on the persona of what they wanted to be when they grew up. Each student had the opportunity to dress up and present their career of choice. National Honor Society food drive National Honor Society member Jessica Paul along with adviser, Mrs. Phelps, began a food drive for Thanksgiving on Nov. 1 and continued it through Nov. 16. They asked students to bring in canned goods for donation. REGIS SCHOOL BOARD ONE OF TWO RECOGNIZED STATEWIDE The St. Regis School Board was recognized as one of two School Boards of the Year in Montana for its efforts in policies, facilities, and programs at St. Regis. School Superintendent Joe Steele, who nominated the board for the award, said he has been impressed with the school board’s vision, and those past board members who initiated their vision.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Building Communities, Building Citizens Students, volunteers organize Thanksgiving baskets For all of its goodhearted intentions, the Thanksgiving holiday is one that tends to be fraught with distraction. Between meal planning, complicated family dynamics and an insane push from the commercial industry to start shopping for early gifts, it can be easy to lose sight of the simpler design of the season. Business Goes to School: Two worlds collide for the betterment of education in Great Falls Great Falls Public Schools got down to business earlier this week. Or rather, the business community got down to GFPS as part of the district’s first-ever Business Goes to School event. Hall Passages: Potomac Elementary puts $750,000 literacy grant to use Eighth-graders at Potomac Elementary School in Bonner recently pulled out their new MacBook laptops and story maps as they began writing personal narratives about a significant event in their lives. Montana state trust lands revenue, which funds K-12 education, ends 5-year slide Revenue generated by Montana state trust lands rose for the first time in five years, but still remains below five-year and well below 10-year averages. Trust lands are managed by the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation mainly for the benefit of K-12 schools. CRUCIAL GRANT KEEPS BIGFORK AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM GOING Bigfork ACES recently got a boost with a $30,000 grant from the Laura Grace Barrett Living Arts Foundation Fund, which will make an impact in securing the future of the after-school program after a longtime federal grant was not renewed in June. Central School construction hits milestone Monday afternoon marked a significant milestone on the construction of the new Central School Building. Students, educators, and community members gathered at the construction site on North Warren Street to witness the “topping out” ceremony. EVERGREEN READY TO EMBRACE TRAILS FOR SAFETY, REGIONAL BENEFITS A key vision for the role trails can play in Evergreen focuses on children getting to school unscathed in a town with a dearth of sidewalks and scarcity of bike and pedestrian paths. CMR student-ambassadors fight depression, suicide Between activities, academics and just being high school seniors, Bailey Schimerowski and Gabrielle Pope keep busy every day.

Turkey Brigade: Victor kindergarteners learn that it’s better to give than receive Surrounded by wagons filled with frozen turkeys, the two kindergarteners seemed satisfied with that bit of bravado as they prepared to join this year’s version of Victor Elementary School’s turkey brigade. Florence-Carlton Jazz Band presents 12th annual Jazz Coffee House The Florence-Carlton High School Jazz Band will present their 12th Annual Jazz Coffee House at the Zootown Brew coffee shop in Missoula on Friday, Nov. 16. Belgrade Schools go all out for veterans The entire Belgrade School District along with family and friends attended the annual Belgrade High School Veterans Day service on Monday. High school receives funds from Pattern Development to buy welding, weight equipment Sweet Grass County High School has received a donation of $10,000 from Pattern Development to buy new welding and weight room equipment for use by its students. Keeping Kolemen close A total of $2,593 was raised for Columbus Elementary School 5th-grader Kolemen Gairrett at the school’s recent basket raffle fundraiser. Lincoln School honors volunteers for efforts over past two years An assembly at Lincoln School provided the administration with a perfect time to honor Gwyn and Scott Jensen for their volunteer work at the school for the last two years. NTCHS seniors prepare for the future with help from community members Nothing prepares you better for life out in the real world than the opportunity to practice before you get there. Mrs. Chelsea Taylor, the English teacher at North Toole County High School, works to provide such opportunities for her students whenever she can. Whitehall Schools honor Veterans The program included a 100th year celebration of Armistice Day in 1918 by Whitehall fifth graders. Belgrade 2nd graders chip in, but food bank short on turkeys Second-graders prowled the aisles of Town & Country Foods on Tuesday morning, delighted to find canned yams, applesauce, boxes of stuffing and canned pumpkin to fill shopping carts for the Gallatin Valley Food Bank, so that needy families can enjoy Thanksgiving dinner. Lincoln kids find support for skate park When Lincoln Schools English teacher Philip Reed heard two of his students discussing Pearl Jam drummer Jeff Ament’s skatepark project last year, he encouraged them to write into the foundation, nominating Lincoln for a park.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Building Communities, Building Citizens Fort Belknap Tribal Programs Share “Trunk-or-Treat” event with Harlem Elementary Harlem Elementary was the most enviable location in the county as Ft. Belknap Tribal programs put together an unforgettable “Trunk-or-Treat” Halloween celebration. Tribal flag raised at Dayton Elementary School For the first time at Dayton Elementary School, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribal flag waves at its entrance. “We’re proud and honored to have the tribal flag hanging at our school,” Principal and Superintendent Dr. Darlene Hartman said. “This is good for all of our students. A bright future In the Fall of 2017, the superintendent of Ekalaka Public Schools asked for an energy audit of the new elementary building and the high school. Helena High woodworking class builds benches for YMCA’s Camp Child Over the last few weeks, the Helena High School woodworking class has been building benches for YMCA’s Camp Child. Florence voters pass $16 million bond Florence-Carlton School District voters passed a nearly $16 million bond to renovate and expand the facility Tuesday. Ready Readers exceeds $750 goal thanks to community & alumni This project will provide five new books for every student in kindergarten through second grade! This was a huge success because of all of our wonderful community members and alumni who contributed. Butte-Silver Bow Health Department hires part-time CONNECT program coordinator The Butte CONNECT program is a web-based referral system that directly links families in the community to various medical and mental health services, including those that can prevent suicide. The Butte School District No. 1 is also working closely with the health department to implement the community-wide program. MTSBA backs Bozeman schools’ idea for safety tax After the tragic Florida school shooting in February that killed 17 students and staff, dozens of worried Bozeman parents packed a school meeting to ask local officials what more they need to ensure students’ safety. First graders raising funds to cure cancer After learning in social studies about the impact six-year-old Jane Addams had on the poor, Seeley Lake Elementary first graders decided they wanted to help people too. With their teacher Sheila Devin’s assistance, the first graders sewed potholders from recycled materials which will be sold to raise money to cure childhood cancer.

CMR, GFH football players come together to build High School House For five days this week – and every week for the rest of the school year – C.M. Russell center William Harr and Great Falls High offensive tackle Daunte Janikula are working sideby-side building a house. Fire Safety On Oct. 11, Fire Chief Kalyn Bohle, Kay Webb, and Larry Dahl introduced the K-5 students to fire safety. The firefighters worked with the students to let them know that many of the firefighters are everyday people, often times, people they know. Heck-Quaw earns accolades Staff members and students Belgrade’s Heck-Quaw Elementary School found out earlier this month that their school has joined elite company as one of the top-performing learning places in the land. Schools, Police work together for safety Students, teachers and staff in Belgrade schools began seeing police officers walking the halls this fall, but there’s no pattern for when or where the men and women in blue will show up. That’s deliberately random. Arlee School District receives grant to fund mental health support, school safety Arlee School District will receive about $150,000 to increase mental health resources for students and establish a crisis intervention team through the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s STOP School Violence Threat Assessment and Technology Reporting Program grant. Advocates seek plan for homeless kids when high school splits How can kids do homework if they don’t have a home? That question was posed to Bozeman School Board trustees this week when they heard a report about school and community efforts to help homeless students. United Way pairs students, mentors to increase graduation and career success As early as kindergarten, Taylor Jackson knew he wanted to learn how buildings are made. Montana getting $500K for mental health support in schools Montana will get about $500,000 to bolster mental health programs and teacher training from a new federal program approved after the Parkland, Florida, school shooting. FLATHEAD SPECIAL EDUCATION COOPERATIVE UPDATES PRESCHOOL PROGRAM FOR STUDENTS IN RURAL AREAS This is a year of new beginnings for the Flathead Special Education Cooperative. This year, the cooperative got a new director, Cheryl Russell, and, for the first time, is housing a special education preschool program at its administration building located on a cul-de-sac at 15 Meridian Court in Kalispell.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Building Communities, Building Citizens United Way career fair prepares eighth-graders for success On Oct. 25, 800 local middle school students will get a flavor for future careers and an opportunity to try their skills at a job interviews during United Way’s annual 8th Grade Career Fair. Help support School Readiness Program The Hammond and Hawks Home Schools are running a fundraiser through Schwan’s to help cover the cost of the School Readiness Program, which offers preschool aged kids the opportunity to be in a classroom once a week. Two more Bozeman schools getting solar panels, student advocate named a hero More Bozeman schools are going solar, and the girl who got the ball rolling at her middle school has just been named a “young hero.” The Bozeman School District opened bids last week for installing 50-kilowatt, rooftop solar systems at Hyalite and Meadowlark elementary schools and the bids were favorable, Todd Swinehart, facilities director, said Wednesday. Two Eagle River School students start year with fresh looks Baseball caps and beanie hats have become a staple part of Justice Bourdon’s look. The junior at Two Eagle River School said it’s been difficult complying with the school’s “no hat” policy since classes started three weeks ago. “I haven’t had a haircut since last year’s prom,” he said. “I usually just throw on a hat and no one notices.” DELIVERING a SOBER MESSAGE It was a horrible scene Monday at the northern edge of the Sweet Grass County High School parking lot. Two wrecked vehicles, a bloody boy who appeared to be deceased. Southwest Montana groups get $250,000 in grants to combat youth substance abuse Since late last year, Beaverhead County has lost the local Office of Public Assistance, the local Western Montana Mental Health Center, the local job service office and its local Medicaid and Medicare office. Washington Middle School adds positive mural Last summer all of the fluorescent lights at Washington Middle School were replaced with new LED lights. The replacements were part of a pilot program to hopefully save money for the school district. ALBERTON STUDENT HONORING VETERANS WITH MEMORIAL Every year, seniors at Alberton High School are assigned to do a “Senior Project” with the criteria that it has a community service component to it. However, junior Jordan Taapken asked if he could start his project early because of its magnitude.

Volunteers unload donated school supplies for Helena students in need On Saturday, volunteers in Helena unloaded the backpacks, pencils, binders and other school supplies collected through the Stuff the Bus project, which provides the items to students in need. Gardiner High student with genetic disorder honored as ‘hero’ A Gardiner High School student has been named the Montana Children’s Miracle Network Hero of 2018 by Shodair Children’s Hospital. Teenagers get involved in suicide prevention Lane Johnson, 17, dribbled a basketball down a concrete court in his hometown with the skill of a state champion and easily dropped the ball through the hoop. His skill developed after hours of practice and years of playing the game, and in that time, he never thought he would become a role model, but he welcomed the title. THE MONTANA GAP: HOW A MONTANA SCHOOL IS COMBATING BULLYING AND SUICIDE When Seppa Francis was six years old, her father suffered a traumatic brain injury from a motorcycle accident. Francis and her younger brother blamed themselves for years and Francis’s anger grew. Along with the emotional stress, the family experienced significant financial loss after the accident. Polio survivor gets moving with help from former Montana high school robotics club member As a child, Grayce Holzheimer had polio, which causes her to lose mobility as she ages. Holzheimer is an active person who enjoys spending time outside but was beginning to have difficulty pedaling her recumbent tricycle. Teens involved in suicide prevention Lane Johnson, 17, dribbled a basketball down a concrete court in his hometown with the skill of a state champion and easily dropped the ball through the hoop. His skill developed after hours of practice and years of playing the game, and in that time, he never thought he would become a role model, but he welcomed the title. Davidson family donates $1.8 million to upgrade Great Falls High auditorium The Davidson family has been a long-time supporter of the Great Falls Public Schools system and that support continued in a big way on Monday. Board trustees approve $35 million bond resolution The Butte School District Board of Trustees Monday unanimously passed a $35 million bond resolution for the upcoming November election. Larry and Maureen Driscoll retire from Butte School District after 29 years After 29 years of working with the Butte School District, the city’s education power couple has decided to retire.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Building Communities, Building Citizens Kalispell School District Receives $19,750 Grant for Summer Meals Program On June 27, Gov. Steve Bullock and First Lady Lisa Bullock announced that 14 organizations in Montana with summer meals programs would receive $72,710 in private grant funding through a partnership with Montana No Kid Hungry. Havre students fight burdocks in Beaver Creek Havre elementary students were once again in Beaver Creek Park Monday helping control a major problem-weed. Valier third graders learn how to save Staff Members Connie Sutherland and Becca Irwin from Independence Bank recently visited Mr. Cartwright’s third grade class at Valier Elementary School to give a presentation entitled “Teach Children to Save.”

Greenfield Elementary School Donates 765 Pounds Of Food To Fairfield Food Pantry April 16-20 was Montana Hunger Awareness Week and Greenfield Elementary School helped raise awareness for Hungry kids in Montana by participating in the state Reservation school gets a new building for art classes, Crow culture program The arts and Crow Studies programs at Wyola Public School just got a boost in the form of a bright blue modular outbuilding.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: 21st Centruy Schools for 21st Century Students BSHS Senior Awarded Grant to Study Snow Pollution Tyler Schwarzbach, a senior at Big Sandy High School has been awarded a grant from the Dr. David W. Baker Memorial Student-Science Foundation to study Glyphosate concentrations in snowfall. Santa signs to deaf and hard-of-hearing students at Jefferson Elementary School Santa travels around the world to deliver toys to girls and boys, so it should come as no surprise that he’s fluent in every language, including American Sign Language. Santa paid a special visit to Jefferson Elementary School’s preschool class for deaf and hard-of-hearing students on Friday to make sure that each child had a chance to share their Christmas wishes with the man in the big red suit. State distributes $1.1 million in restored educational grant funding The Montana Office of Public Instruction distributed $1.1 million of restored grant funding to schools throughout the state on Friday. Samsung recognizes Corvallis High School for inspiring change in the community Corvallis High School is one of five schools in Montana selected for inspiring change in their local communities through science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education. Glacier Electric donates Chromebooks Glacier Electric Cooperative (GEC) Board of Trustees approved the donation of seven Chromebooks for the “Aap-aapait-sii-tapi Pok-aik-si” (White Weasel Children) class at Browning Elementary School. Mrs. Tailfeather’s class of 23 is much different from other classrooms at the elementary school. Students study media literacy Is there one truth or variations on truth? With all the tech savvy of the younger generations, it may seem like kids have become the media experts. But there is a big difference between being informed on current social, cultural, educational and political issues and using social media for fun. It may or not involve social media these days since there are endless opportunities to interact with sites claiming facts. More beautiful skies and cleaner water: Lewistown, Simms students tackle solutions to real-world problems in Samsung science contest In middle school, Mackenzie and Madison Wiegand set a goal for themselves and their science fair project: Cure cancer. They scaled that back. Sort of. Now they’re seniors and working on a filtration system to inexpensively and efficiently clean water around the world. Gianforte visits Bozeman school to promote coding lessons Coding computers might sound daunting to a lot of adults, but to the fourth-graders at Bozeman’s Emily Dickinson School, it’s a cool way to learn while having fun

Malta educators making the most of technology Malta Middle School Science Teacher Robert Twiggs rolled in a large screen and laptop computer at last week’s Malta School Board meeting and rolled out how technology at the schools is allowing himself and other educators to move into the future of educating the youth. Capital High seniors win Gianforte’s congressional app challenge Capital High School seniors Kyler Nelson and Andrew Stroop won the 2018 congressional app challenge, U.S. Rep. Greg Gianforte announced. Stevensville School District Ramps up Technology The Stevensville School District has been quietly developing technology infrastructure throughout the District for the past three years. In that time, the District has moved from radio relay internet access to fiber optic connectivity and has increased the available bandwidth available for instruction from 100 MB to 1 GB. Classroom technologies can make learning easier Technology is changing the face of education. Check out the newest ways teachers are modernizing their lesson plans in order to make learning easier and more fun. New website, app will open school dialogue Be on the lookout! Exciting times are ahead for Glendive Public Schools. I am thrilled about the future direction of our schools. While we have experienced some frustrating issues in the past, I am confident our District and community are prepared to meet these challenges and develop positive solutions to promote innovative teaching and learning for our amazing students. Bozeman students score high on Montana tests, ACT Bozeman elementary and middle-school students had the highest average score in math and the second highest in English on Montana’s latest standardized tests, when compared to students in the state’s other largest school districts. Saturday Live helps pay for laptops, playgrounds and books in Billings schools Volunteers from schools across Billings will staff school carnival booths Saturday at Pioneer Park, working the 26th annual Saturday Live. Helena Public Schools to offer real-time bus tracking app Technological advances coming in October will make it easier for parents to keep track of school buses in Helena. At the end of October, parents should be able to download software on their phones that will allow them to see in real-time when their child’s bus will arrive.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: 21st Centruy Schools for 21st Century Students Students explore health careers during MedStart Camp school and seniors from Montana High school juniors and seniors from across Montana participated in the Billings MedStart Camp, July 8–12. his five-day camp encourages students to pursue their interest in a variety of healthcare careers, learn about college life and realize they can pursue higher education. Bozeman schools make progress in STEM goals, struggle with early reading Bozeman’s public schools are having success in expanding STEM lessons for elementary kids and in creating more career opportunities for high school students, but are struggling to raise critical reading skills for the youngest students. MSU camp exposes middle-schoolers to STEM fields and life at college Trysten Hannon dips a cotton swab into a paper cup filled with salty water then methodically touches the swab to different points on her tongue. She carefully considers each point until she hits the spot where the taste is the strongest. Students learn mapping through augmented reality Even high school students enjoy playing in a sandbox. In the back of Glacier High School earth science teacher Jaret Stump’s classroom is a sandbox taken to another level through augmented reality.

Rednek Robotics win championship The Rednek Robotics team 724 from the Sun River Valley Robotics program with students from Fairfield and the Sun River Valley won the FIRST FTC World Robotics Championship in Houston, Texas, on April 21 after four days of intense competition. Students apply lessons during STEAM night at Linderman Elementary Linderman Elementary was filled with excitement during STEAM night, held on Thursday, April 26. Lt. Governor Cooney comes to RLHS for Green Award On Thursday, Lt. Governor Mike Cooney came to Red Lodge High School (RLHS) to present the school with the 20172018 SMART (Saving Money and Resources Today) Schools Challenge Award. Lt. gov. awards HHS class for recycling projects Montana’s lieutenant governor was at Havre High School Monday to reward a class for its work in environmentalism. Laurel students talk with astronaut live in space LAUREL- Laurel Public schools connected with mission control at the International Space Station in Houston Tuesday during their first annual Space Day


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Teaching as Leadership West Valley student wins ‘Yes I Can Award’ Mrs. Spencer is Awarded – Funding the Future Grant Mrs. Spencer recently won Continental Resources – Funding the Future Grant for $5,000. There were over 200 applications this year, and they awarded 47 grants. Veteran teacher always provides fun, entertaining music program Each year for the holidays, teacher Synneva Meldahl at West Side Elementary School puts together a new, fun and adorable Christmas program. Teacher education grants available through Stone Child Stone Child College has a new grant opportunity available for Native Americans seeking a bachelor’s degree in education, on campus at Stone Child College, or a Master of Education in curriculum and instruction-special education on-line through the University of Montana. The Brumwell’s have enjoyed living and teaching in Big Sandy for 40 years Larry and Chris Brumwell have been teachers in our schools since the fall of 1978. That’s 40 years of teaching. Darby School District food director receives Health Hero Award Darby School District’s food service director has been selected as a Health Hero in the Eat Right Montana and Montana Action for Healthy Kids 2018 Health Hero Award Program. Ovando teacher receives KECI Gold Star Teaching Award Ovando teacher Andrea Tougas received the KECI Gold Star Teaching Award this past September. Tougas is thankful to the Ovando School and the community for allowing her to do what she loves to do in such a wonderful place. Bringing a big heart to Bozeman schools Some people get pretty lax as they near retirement, but not Nancy Brady. Hard-working and cheerful, she’s getting everything organized before she leaves. Bozeman’s Watson named Montana school superintendent of the year Rob Watson is going to need a bigger mantel for all his awards. Watson, 48, who has led Bozeman’s public schools since 2012, has just been named by his peers on the Montana Association of School Superintendents as Montana’s school superintendent of the year. Surprise event honors Helena educators: ‘Great schools are everyone’s business’ The Helena Education Foundation surprised seven educators Tuesday as “Let’s Talk About Great Teachers” honorees. BCC’s TCTC program makes earning a teaching degree easier for local students Education truly makes a difference in our society, as Blackfeet people and society as a whole. Our unique worldview is valid and important. This couldn’t be more evident than in the lives of local teacher candidates at Blackfeet Community College.

Baker’s Linda Rost named 2019 Montana Teacher of the Year finalist Throughout her time teaching in Ekalaka and Baker, Rost has had the opportunity to impact the lives of many and introduce countless students to research through the establishment of science fairs, her science research classes, and community involvement. Bonner teacher awarded Montana Teacher of the Year Students cheered and stomped their feet on gymnasium bleachers as Dylan Huisken, a sixth- through eighth-grade social studies teacher at Bonner School, accepted Montana’s 2019 Teacher of the Year award on Thursday. Havre teacher turns author, publishes two children’s books A first-grade teacher at Havre’s Highland Park Early Primary School is taking steps to achieve her dream as a writer. Bozeman High’s longtime bookkeeper going out on top For 29 years, one of the sunniest smiles at Bozeman High School has belonged to Dana Johnson. Now, Johnson, the school’s administrative assistant in charge of finance, is getting ready to retire at the end of this month. Welcome to Big Sandy: Jill Barta Connecting with Her Students Every teacher has their challenges starting a new year, but Jill Barta isn’t like most single grade teachers. She is our new K-12 Special Education Teacher and she has every grade with the students coming and going from her classroom. Community welcomes new school superintendent with open house Superintendent of Schools “Chad” Johnson works at his computer Tuesday afternoon during an open house in the Hardin District Office. Johnson, an experienced facilitator, is looking forward to bridging his accomplishments with his new role. Teacher Fuses Passion For Art, Math, Computers Columbia Falls Junior High School art teacher Dave Ritter categorizes himself as untraditional. Just as Ritter describes his favorite art medium watercolor as very versatile, so is his approach to life. Dani Norling New 5th Grade Teacher at F. E. Miley Elementary Dani Norling is a Montana girl from Helena and this is her first teaching job, but she loves Big Sandy. “I loved the first week. It went by so fast. It was awesome.” Dani teaches the 5th grade and has 11 students. TROY SCHOOLS LIBRARIAN RECOGNIZED FOR INSPIRING READERS When fellow educator Denikka Miller asked Troy Public Schools Librarian Kay Randall to set aside a day this summer, Randall had no idea what Miller had in store. Cleverly retires after 32 years in Shelby Schools’ classrooms The new school year is upon us, but after more than three decades of teaching Shelby students, teacher, Kathy Cleverly, won’t be returning to the classroom with them this year.


Montana’s Public Schools are where: Teaching as Leadership Daly Elementary teacher named Montana finalist for national math and science award A Daly Elementary School teacher has been selected as a Montana finalist for the 2018 Presidential Science and Math Teaching Award (PAEMST), the nation’s highest honor for K-12 math and science teachers. Baker native returns to teach The Baker Public School System will be adding a new member to their teaching team, Kari (Pankratz) Strandbakke. Plevna signs a new Art Teacher The Plevna community is welcoming teachers from around the country this year. This week, Plevna Public Schools signed a new art teacher, Paige Boyer of Billings, MT. Boyer has a Master’s in Education but she spent most of her career doing social work.

Sidney Teacher Heads to Washington for C-SPAN’s 2018 Educators’ Conference Sidney High School teacher, Brad Faulhaber, will attend one of two C-SPAN Educators’ Conferences for an immersive experience with C-SPAN’s educational resources. Faulhaber, a social studies teacher, is one of 30 educators from across the nation selected to attend the high school conference July 26-27. Nieskens named national finalist A Whitehall administrator is one of three finalists for the 2019 National Principal of the Year. Called to Teach At her West Valley home on July 9, Janelle Ruby traced her finger along the raised dots of braille cells. Ruby, 35, is in the midst of the challenging task of learning braille.

Meet Layne Taylor, Big Sandy School’s New Shop Teacher I met him in the high school shop as he was trying to clean and reorganize it. I noticed he was wearing a CHS hat and thought immediately this guy will fit in. It’s exciting to welcome new people to the town of Big Sandy, especially when they are excited to be here.

Unsung hero: Jones honored for work with special education kids Sara Jones is one of Bozeman’s unsung heroes. For 27 years she has worked with children in special education as a teacher and administrator, first in her native Texas and since 1996 in Montana.

Roy teacher wins national award Roy, Montana, population just over 100 people and fewer than 40 K-12 students, recently gained celebrity status, thanks to a teacher.

Chinook High Schools Doug Hayes ends 33-year teaching and coaching career Doug Hayes said his good-byes to Chinook School system colleagues at a retirement gathering at the end of school in May, then left immediately to lead a group to Washington, DC.

Whitehall principal named one of three finalists for national Principal of the Year award When Whitehall’s Hannah Nieskens learned she’d been selected as one of three finalists for the prestigious National Principal of the Year award from the National Association of Secondary School Principals, she says she was “really surprised.” Crow Agency teacher chosen as finalist for Presidential award A fifth grade teacher at Crow Agency Elementary School has been selected as a finalist for one of the U.S. government’s highest education-related honors, the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching. As one of four K-12 teachers in the running for a Presidential award statewide, Connie Michael will travel to Helena on Aug. 8 for the presentation. SKC Receives Grant for Early Childhood Education, Native Teacher Development Salish Kootenai College of the Flathead Indian Reservation is one of five tribal colleges nationwide to receive a grant from a newly established program that promotes early-childhood education in the STEM fields while seeking to increase the prevalence of Native American teachers and encourage cultural awareness.

From a two-room school house to the White House, Divide teacher Judy Boyle defies stereotypes From a two-room schoolhouse to the White House, Divide School teacher Judy Boyle has taken a route untrammeled. Inspiring our students: Bozeman teacher wins national STEM award A Bozeman teacher has earned the nation’s highest honor for teachers of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Father and son look back on serving as principal at the same West End elementary school Poly Drive Elementary has changed a bit through the years. When Clayton Croff was principal from 1968 to 1982, the school at one point held 535 students - 35 per classroom in sixth grade.


MASBO

MEA-MFT

Montana Association of School Business Officials

SAM

MQEC

School Administrators of Montana

MTSBA

Montana School Board Association

Montana Quality Education Coalition

We are uni ted by our shar ed inter ests i n the best inter ests of students.

Learn more at mt-pec.org

MREA

Montana Rural Education Association

Profile for Montana School Boards Association

2019 - Fifth Annual Review of Education Media Coverage of the Great Work of Montana's Public Schools  

2019 - Fifth Annual Review of Education Media Coverage of the Great Work of Montana's Public Schools