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A Press Democrat Blog

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Daily education news and conversation

Matt Dunkle named incoming principal at El Molino

El Molino High School vice principal Matt Dunkle has been named principal of the Forestville school beginning July 1. Dunkle replaces Doria Trombetta, the Lions’ longtime leader who announced her retirement in January. Dunkle has been vice principal at El Molino since 2011 before which he was an independent education consultant, according to West Sonoma County Superintendent Keller McDonald. Dunkle was a teacher at Rancho Cotate High School in 2008-09. He earned both his Bachelor’s degree in English and Master’s… Read More »

Montgomery’s Sackett takes top prize at Poetry Out Loud

[imagebrowser id=40] Montgomery High School’s Kaitlyn Sackett took home the top prize in the county’s Poetry Out Loud contest Sunday, earning a spot in the state contest next month. Sackett will represent Sonoma County at the state competition in Sacramento March 23 and 24. Rancho Cotate’s Veronica Spalding, a senior, took second place and El Molino junior Gillian Barrios came in third. Contestants in yesterday’s event at the Glaser Center in Santa Rosa came from Analy, Cloverdale, Creekside, El Molino,… Read More »

The Ranch’s Steffen named new principal at Tech High

Bob Steffen has been named principal at Cotati-Rohnert Park’s Technology High School on the Sonoma State University campus. The selection is expected to be ratified at the Cotati-Rohnert Park School Board’s Feb. 11 regular meeting. The meeting will be held at 6 p.m. the Mountain Shadows Education Center, 7165 Burton Ave. in Rohnert Park. Steffen has been principal at Rancho Cotate High School for the past six years. Prior to holding that post, Steffen was principal at Eureka high School.… Read More »

Rancho business students making their pitch for trade fair

UPDATE: Aaron Hooyboer’s name was misspelled in the original post. It has been corrected below: Dennis Magatelli’s virtual enterprise class at Rancho Cotate High School is raising funds for their annual trip to a trade fair in Oakland next March. The class, which is part economics, part small business skills, part marketing, draws a cross section of students at Rancho Cotate, according to Magatelli. Students apply for leadership positions in the class and are selected by a guest professional who… Read More »

Santa Rosa’s concussion testing under way

Sonoma County’s largest school district has started doing baseline concussion testing for its student athletes, Santa Rosa City Schools board president Bill Carle said at Wednesday night’s school board meeting. More than 300 athletes were given the computer-based test last week, he said. The goal remains to test every student athlete, according to Carle. The district’s efforts to create a concussion awareness program had earlier hit a snag when a partnership with Sonoma State University to provide certified athletic trainers… Read More »

Rancho’s first blood drive of year nets 201 pints

Rancho Cotate High School students hosted a blood drive on Sept. 13 and as a result 59 units – about 201 pints — of blood were collected, according to cougar senior Hayley Dougan. In all, 108 people in the Rancho community donated. Students at Rancho have scheduled a follow-up blood drive on Nov. 16 along with a canned food drive that will kick off Nov. 13.  

Local high school students nab water PSA prizes

Four Sonoma County high school students are being honored for their awarding winning public service videos extolling the virtues of drinking tap water rather than bottled water. Sponsored by the Sonoma County Water Agency, the annual contest invites high school students to create videos based on certain water-conscious themes. This year’s theme was “Rethink your drink, take it from the tap!” The top prize went to Kendra Goff of Analy High School. Goff, whose instructor is Ann Humphrey, will receive… Read More »

UPDATED: Rancho Cotate students pull in 13k lbs. in food drive

UPDATE: The folks at Rancho have submitted some new photos of the canned food drive. Check them out. _____ Rancho Cotate High School pulled in 13,000 pounds of food in support of Neighbors Organized Against Hunger, according to Jessica Holman, the school’s ASB advisor. “I don’t know of any other school that cares about their community as much as Rancho does,” she said. Students pulled in thousands of pounds of food over a three week span just prior to the… Read More »

PHS Class of ’71 tonight! When’s yours?

Reunion season is upon us. As I did last year, I’ll try to post and repost calls for classmates as often as practicable throughout the spring or summer. So if you and your Sonoma County classmates are having a reunion this summer, shoot me an email with the details and event website if possible and I’ll add it to the rolling list. Please note that many of these events are multiple day affairs so please check their websites for more… Read More »

Seven recent grads earn scholarships

Seven recent graduates of Sonoma County high schools were among those awarded scholarships from the California Druidic Order last month. The $1,000 awards were given to students who are committed to furthering their education. The 2011 winners are:             Allison Bailey, Novato High School, Novato, CA             Stephanie Black, Middletown Christian High School, Middletown, CA             Tyler Cook, Healdsburg High School, Healdsburg, CA             Erika Eide, San Marin High School, Novato, CA             Colin Gallagher, Petaluma High School, Petaluma, CA… Read More »