A two-term member of the Canyons Board of Education who is known for her thoroughness and thoughtfulness has been elected President of the Utah School Boards Association. 

Nancy Tingey, who on Jan. 3, 2017 took the Oath of Office for another four years on the Canyons Board of Education, on Friday, Jan. 6, 2017, assumed helm of the organization that advocates for public schools, schoolchildren and teachers. 

As an elected member of CSD’s seven-person governing panel, Tingey, the representative of District 3, doesn’t shy away from rolling up her sleeves and working with various constituencies to tackle difficult tasks and challenges.  

Upon accepting her new role, Tingey said she would focus on “strengthening the important role of USBA in providing resources and support for the members of the USBA, as well as building bridges and trust by working with education policy-makers at the state level and within our respective communities.”

“Together,” she told members of the USBA at the organization’s annual conference at the Little America Hotel in Salt Lake City, “let us move forward in promoting excellence in Utah public education through collaboration and local governance.”

The USBA represents all 41 Utah school districts and the Utah State Board of Education. Members are dedicated to ensuring that every child has access to the education needed to become contributing, productive members of society.
We all breathe the same air, and we all share in the responsibility to safeguard it from the harmful pollutants emitted by our homes, businesses and vehicles. “That’s what we mean when we say, ‘It’s my air, your air, our air,’” said Dawn Monson of Breathe Utah at an educational assembly at Altara Elementary.

The assembly was organized as part of an Idle-Free Awareness Week sponsored by the school to empower Altara students to make healthy choices, whether that means combining car trips to conserve gas, or walking and biking to school instead of driving, or reducing unnecessary idling. idlingsign.jpg

Canyons is the first school district in Utah to go idle-free at all of its school campuses — an idea that originated with Altara parent Cindy Boyer who was frustrated at seeing exhaust billowing into the air at her children’s school parking lot. Under an initiative approved by the Board of Education, no-idling signs donated by the non-profit Utah Clean Cities were installed at each of CSD’s 43 schools. On Earth Day 2016, campaign launch celebrations were held at several schools where students handed out no-idling pamphlets and window clings encouraging drivers to voluntarily turn “their keys and be idle-free.”

Now, nine months later, Altara is challenging everyone in the school community to examine their driving habits and consider how, with small changes, they might make a difference. Altara students participated in an art contest and wrote clean air essays. Pinwheels representing their clean air dreams were displayed on the lawn outside the school. And at Thursday’s assembly, students presented “thank you” letters to Board of Education members Amber Shill and Steve Wrigley and Superintendent Dr. Jim Briscoe, expressing their gratitude for the District’s idle-free stance.

Utah Clean Cities Northern Coordinator Tammie Cooper also recognized CSD for paving the way for other districts to follow. 

The vast majority of CSD patrons — more than 80 percent — already power down their engines when parked outside schools, according to a Salt Lake County Health Department survey performed at three CSD schools prior to the district becoming a no idle zone. “We’re doing really well,” said Altara Principal Nicole Svee-Magann. Of the 538 vehicles observed dropping off and picking up students at the three schools, just 19 percent (101) idled for longer than two minutes — the time-limit set by the county’s no-idling ordinance. Their mean idling time was three minutes, ranging from a low of 3 minutes to a high of 35 minutes (one vehicle).

While not a full-blown scientific study, the survey is an approximation of idling outside schools. The obvious presence of observers may have affected the behavior of drivers. In addition, the study was done on a temperate day when drivers wouldn’t necessarily be compelled to leave vehicles running to keep warm or cool. Recent upgrades to CSD’s school parking lots, which were undertaken to improve traffic-flow, may also have positively affected idling rates.

But if no idling is the goal, these data suggest it’s well within reach, said Magann at Thursday’s assembly, which was covered by FOX13, KSL and the Deseret News.

Other ‘Healthy School’s Steps at Altara

  • Altara Elementary is one of a handful of so-called “walking schools” within the Canyons District, which means its students aren’t bused, because they all live within 1.5 miles of the school. To help make walking the easy choice, Altara encourages students to use the Utah Department of Transportation’s “Walking School Bus” app where they can log their walking miles to enter a prize drawing.
  • Altara is the first CSD school to adopt the Utah Department of Health’s School Flag Program, which alerts parents to current air quality conditions so they can make informed decisions to safeguard their children’s health.
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Thursday, 12 January 2017 18:17

Flipping School Lunch: ‘Play Before Eat’

Anyone who follows education has probably heard of flipping the classroom, a model that entails having students watch video lectures at home so that they can use classroom time for discussion or group projects. But Canyon View Elementary is taking things a step further and flipping school lunch — joining a small, but growing number of schools across the country that are sending kids off to the playground before inviting them inside to gulp down a carton of milk with their PB&J.

At Canyon View, the practice has cut food waste in half, because kids work up an appetite and no longer feel rushed to get outside and play, said Principal BJ Weller. “We’ve found it very beneficial to our students. We’re seeing fewer health complaints. They have more energy and seem more focused and willing to learn.”

Research also has shown that students attending schools with “reverse lunch” schedules make healthier food choices. One study found a 54 percent increase in the consumption of fruit and vegetables.
All around Canyons District are familiar faces, especially on the Canyons Board of Education. On Tuesday, Jan. 3, at a special Oath of Office ceremony and reception, well-known education advocates Nancy Tingey, Chad Iverson and Mont Millerberg were sworn into office for four-year terms on Canyons’ governing body.

Tingey, who represents District 3, and Iverson, the Board member for District 7, won re-election after serving for four years.  Millerberg, who served on the inaugural Canyons Board of Education from 2008 to 2012, returns to the represent District 1.15800179_10153940860311580_5795022078091866798_o.jpg

They took their oaths of office in ceremonies conducted by Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen. Drill team dancers from Hillcrest High, the reigning 4A state champs, performed the flag ceremony, and Scott Taylor, managing editor of the Deseret News, was asked to do a special address about the importance of public service. 

It’s been said that “with great power, comes great responsibility,” and nowhere is that more evident than with public schools, which have a profound influence on children and our collective future, Taylor said. 

Remarking on how his own 32-year career can be traced back to early educational experiences, he thanked Board members for their willingness to serve. He also said many of the tenets of journalism, such as the imperative to be transparent, can be applied to public service. He urged the Board members to strive to explain not just the who, what and where of policy and budgeting decisions, but also the why and how.

In their first remarks, the trio of newly sworn-in members thanked their family and friends for their care and support. They also pledged to serve the patrons of Canyons with integrity and fidelity. 

“I want to thank the people of Draper for continuing to put their trust in me. It’s truly an honor to serve,” said Iverson, whose district covers schools in the Draper area. He added that he aims to work with other Board members to increase teacher morale, address enrollment imbalances, and boost student achievement on such a15800534_10153940859776580_3807687661020407362_o.jpgssessments as the ACT, among other issues.

Millerberg told the audience at the ceremony and reception in the Board Chambers of the Canyons Administration Building-East, 9361 S. 300 East, that “it’s really, really good to be back on the Canyons Board of Education. "

“It’s been said that the best government is the government that is closest to the people,” he said, “and you honestly don’t get much closer to the people than you do working in the public school system.”

Tingey, who 15896190_10153940859771580_3236991302878019068_o.jpgserves as the Board’s 2nd Vice President, said that “serving on the school board is not so much about giving speeches — but more about rolling up our sleeves and working together to tackle the tasks and challenges that we will face.”
Canyons District is accepting new-student applications for available spots in the preschool programs at Altara, Butler, Jordan Valley, Quail Hollow and Willow Springs elementary schools. 

In addition to serving students needing special education services free of cost, schools with space for tuition-paying students have morning and afternoon sessions.

Morning sessions are 8:20-10:50 a.m. Afternoon sessions are 11:30-2 p.m. Students can enroll in a two- or four-days-a-week program. Cost is $70 for two days a week; and $140 for four days a week.

Availability for the program in the coming academic year is based on a first-come, first-served basis. Acceptance letters will be mailed the first week of April. Students who are not accepted are placed on a waiting list and parents will be notified when space is available.

The enrollment window for the Title I school preschools doesn’t open until March 1. There is no fee associated with the Title I programs, which are held four days a week. Students must live within the boundaries of the schools to attend the programs.

Questions?  Call the CSD Early Childhood Department at 801-826-5112.
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