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A Press Democrat Blog

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Daily education news and conversation

Petaluma names new curriculum director

Mila Kell has been named the new director of curriculum and instruction at Petaluma City Schools. Kell has spent the last 22 years in Chicago Public Schools, most recently as the program manager for the Office of Language and Cultural Education where she developed curriculum guides for English learners among other duties. She also served as a citywide math facilitator. Kell spent 11 years as a teacher in Chicago and 10 years teaching in Kiev, Ukraine. Kell earned her Ph.D.… Read More »

Hansell named new principal at Mary Collins at Cherry Valley

Fran Hansell has been hired as the new principal at Mary Collins at Cherry Valley Charter School in Petaluma. Hansell, who will leave her post as principal at Riebli Charter School at the end of the school year, will begin with Petaluma City Schools July 1, according to Petaluma district officials. Her pay will be $99,000 annually. Hansell earned a bachelor’s degree from Worcester College of Higher Education in the United Kingdom, a master’s of arts degree in human behavior… Read More »

Stevenson is new principal at Carpe Diem, Sonoma Mountain schools

Greg Stevenson is the new principal at Carpe Diem and Sonoma Mountain high schools in Petaluma. Stevenson had previously served as principal of Crossroads School, a 7th-9th grade community day program. Stevenson has served as an industrial arts teacher at Kenilworth Junior High, where he served as department chairman. He is also a woodworker, craftsman and former firefighter in Yosemite, according to the district. Stevenson was credited by district officials for collaborating with the Sheriff’s Department, district attorney, child protective… Read More »

Sheila Garvey takes over today at McNear

Sheila Garvey has been named principal at McNear Elementary School in Petaluma, according to officials with the Petaluma City Schools district. Garvey begins her new post today. Last year Garvey was an administrative intern at Mary Collins at Cherry Valley, a kindergarten through eighth grade campus. Prior to that, she spent a year teaching at Grant Elementary School. Before Grant, she spent eight years in the Old Adobe School District in Petaluma. She has also spent nearly a decade as… Read More »

Rusty Sims named principal at San Antonio, Valley Oaks

Rusty Sims has been named principal of San Antonio High School and Valley Oaks School. He will start July 1. Current principal Lyn Moreno is retiring. For the past six years, Sims has served as principal at Carpe Diem and Sonoma Mountain high schools. Prior to that he taught English at a junior high in Las Vegas and multiple subjects at schools throughout the Petaluma district: Petaluma High School, Petaluma Junior High, Carpe Diem and Casa Grande High School. Sims… Read More »

Petaluma names Chad Carvey principal at Mary Collins

Petaluma City Schools has named Chad Carvey principal of Mary Collins at Cherry Valley Charter School. Carvey will replace Kathleen Larsen who is interim principal. Carvey comes from Brisbane School District in the peninsula where he is principal at Panorama Elementary School. He earned his bachelor’s degree in history from Stanislaus State University and his single and multiple subject credentials at Bethany College in California. He earned a master’s degree in educational administration and administrative services credential at Cal Poly.… Read More »

It’s back to school time!

UPDATE: The link is now active down below. _____ The biggest day of the 2012 back to school calendar is Wednesday, Aug. 22 when about 22,900 students return to the classroom. That day marks the first day of school for Petaluma, West Sonoma County High Schools, Old Adobe, Piner-Olivet among others. The second-biggest comeback date is Monday, Aug. 20 when Santa Rosa, Sonoma County’s largest school district, opens for business. Also kicking off the year that Monday are Bellevue, Bennett… Read More »

A look at first day of school dates across the county

 Trying to keep track of start dates for all of Sonoma County’s 40 school districts? Here is an attempt to help:  Aug. 15: Geyserville Unified, Sonoma Valley Unified, Wright  Aug. 16: Alexander Valley, Healdsburg, West Side Union, Windsor  Aug. 20: Santa Rosa City Schools, Bellevue, Bennett Valley, Mark West, Twin Hills, Wilmar  Aug. 21: Cotati-Rohnert Park, Sebastopol  Aug. 22: Cinnabar, Dunham, Gravenstein, Guerneville, Horicon, Kashia, Kenwood, Liberty, Oak Grove, Old Adobe, Petaluma City Schools, Piner-Olivet, Rincon Valley, Roseland, Two Rock,… Read More »

McKinley to launch gifted, talented magnet program

McKinley Elementary School in Petaluma is slated to open a new gifted and talented magnet program for the upcoming school year, according to Petaluma City Schools officials. The district is currently accepting enrollment for fourth graders only, with plans for expanding the program to include fifth graders in 2013-14 and sixth graders in 2014-15. Enrollment for the inaugural fourth grade class, set to open in August, is 17. Enrollment will filled on a first come, first served basis, according to… Read More »

Petaluma forging ahead with Transitional Kindergarten

With the state wavering in its commitment to the Transitional Kindergarten program, some districts are putting any plans for implementing the program on ice while others are forging ahead. Among those going forward is Petaluma City Schools which is now enrolling students in its Kinder Prep program for so called “Young Fives” who will turn five in September, October, November and December of 2012. Those students will then be eligible to enter traditional kindergarten for the 2013-14 school year. Petaluma… Read More »