And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ‘till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more. ~Dr Seuss
Young adults from all communities in Morgan Valley recently presented a special service award to Sherie Wright. Representing a large group of young adults attending Institute, Jeni Lake and Chelsea Jensen presented Sherie with a crystal clock as a small token of appreciation for countless years of service to the students of Morgan High School.
The “Educate to Innovate” campaign for Excellence in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education is a new initiative being funded by the federal government, private companies, foundations, and non-profit organizations. The purpose is to lift American students to the top internationally in science and math achievement over the next decade by motivating and inspiring students to excel in STEM subjects. Many states and universities have received or are about to receive large grants. Morgan Middle School CTE/Technology teacher Brian Rutherford has received multiple grants for this purpose. He has been awarded $1500.00 from the Utah Credit Union Education Foundation, $1000.00 from the Utah Education Association, $500.00 from the Carl Perkins grant that was awarded to the District Career and Technical Education Department, and several hundred dollars’ worth of product from vendors as well as a 20% discount on all future orders from TeacherGeek.
Douglas Hunt of Modern Woodmen presents Superintendent Ken Adams and Principal Wade Murdock with a $3,000 check for the Trojan Century Center. The Center is expected to be completed by the end of January. Many in the community have rallied around the project and the Morgan Education Foundation continues to receive donations from individuals, families, organizations and businesses.
We are fortunate in our community to have numerous local businesses and other supporters willing to help the district in a myriad of ways, including their financial assistance when needed. This was certainly apparent as the Morgan Education Foundation conducted fund raising activities for the Trojan Century Center. More than $500,000 was given to the Foundation for the cause and ninety-five percent of those funds came from businesses, foundations, families, and individuals with connections to the Morgan Valley!
Teachers from all over come to teach at our schools but Morgan Elementary didn’t have to look too far for the newest first grade teacher, Chelsee Brown, because she is from Morgan herself. Chelsee graduated from Morgan high and then went to Utah State University.
Morgan Elementary has had the great opportunity to receive several outstanding new teachers this year, including John Kelly. The elementary school has warmly welcomed this new special education teacher. The kids especially have quickly grown to love him. He can recall countless recesses of being mobbed and chased, but he absolutely loves it. In fact, that is one of the reasons why he loves teaching.
Last week, after reports to the administration of potential inappropriate behavior, the school administration placed a part-time employee on administrative leave, pending results of criminal investigation by the sheriff’s office. The administration then engaged an independent review by a third party to ensure that their actions were appropriate and legal.
What is happening with Special Education in Morgan School District? Federal law 94-142 Idea mandates the practice of special education. Each state dictates how they will adopt and implement educational practices. Then each district utilizes the guidelines to design programs that are mandated for individual schools, classrooms, and students. This can be tricky in both large and small districts because of size and funding, so creativity and intelligence combined makes it work! Synchronizing education between what is happening in the regular education classes, special education classes, related service providers and at home, is as crucial as a balanced diet.
Congratulations to Emma Morgan, 5th grade student at Mountain Green Elementary School, for her winning entry into the Morgan Conservation District’s “Forests For People” poster competition. Emma was awarded a cash prize, as well as a pizza party and a watershed model demonstration presented to her class. Emma put forth an amazing amount of thought and time into her project and her winning poster was a clear representation of her efforts.
Morgan High School’s Academic Decathlon team placed first at region this year!! They attended their regional meet on February 3rd and 4th at Westminster College to compete against all of the other high school AcaDec teams in the state.
Serving on the School Board is a privilege and an honor. I believe it would be beneficial to share a few things about School Board governance that may affect the way the community interacts with the Board and the Administration.
The new sixth grade teacher at Morgan Middle School this year is Mrs. Ball. Mrs. Ball attended high school in Arizona and then graduated from Northern Arizona University where she studied nursing and microbiology. Once her youngest child started kindergarten, she went back to school and received her teaching degree from Southern Utah University. Mrs. Ball taught eighth grade in Cedar City before she came to Morgan. She was given the opportunity to teach sixth grade here and she loves it. She is very glad to continue teaching middle school. Mrs. Ball very much enjoys being with her students. Her favorite thing about teaching is seeing the understanding in her students’ eyes. The satisfying feeling of helping the students learn is what she takes the most pleasure in.
Special Education at Morgan Middle School is a variety of experiences, personalities, subjects, abilities, and needs boiled into one program. Part of what makes us unique is that every day has different thrills and experiences. It is an exciting adventure!
The entire student body of Mountain Green Elementary school received a special treat when local artist, Zach Winegar, carved the school mascot, an eagle, into one of the large pumpkins that have been on display at the school for the past few weeks. He carved the eagle into a 994 lb. pumpkin grown by Tyler Quigley, also of Mtn. Green.
How many times has this sentence been said, “I hate all the drama!”? More than a billion times. How many times has this sentence been said, “I am going to stop gossiping.”? Not enough. The only way to stop “drama” is to make a change from within you. You need to be able to look at yourself and say, “I am going to make that change!” We can’t just sit around and think that someone else is going to fix the problem.
Learning beyond the classroom is an essential part of a complete education. The Morgan County School District Community has an expressed dedication to this concept through our Mission Statement and imbedded within our instruction. “What does it look like?” is a common phrase educators use as we challenge ourselves and our colleagues during professional development and is also a phrase that is appropriate when planning successful educational experiences beyond the classroom. What is learning beyond the classroom and how can it be linked seamlessly to the activities and learning prepared for school?
Morgan Middle school culminated an event filled week Thursday afternoon, by hosting an assembly to reinforce the messages of the Red Ribbon Week campaign. Started in 1988, Red Ribbon Week is the nation’s oldest and largest drug prevention program which is used to teach students all across America the danger of illegal drugs.
With the dawning of a new age at the turn of the century, the beautiful Morgan valley experienced more rapid growth and change along with the rest of the nation. The changing times also changed the functioning of the American families, communities, and society as a whole.
The accreditation process is well underway at Morgan High School. As we prepare for the visiting team to arrive on March 13th and 14th, we have focused on the steps to make sure that our school is on track and ready to go. One of the first steps was to analyze our departmental effectiveness using the new guidelines provided by the state accreditation training team. Each department met and answered a series of eleven questions regarding various aspects of instruction and learning within their areas of expertise. Teachers were asked how they help one another throughout the department and school to better meet the needs of students. In reading the different responses, I am reassured by the strengths and talents of our faculty and staff. We have an amazing group of teachers who not only understand their content area, but also know and understand their students.
This year in 8th grade science we are doing a number of fun activities. We will make and erupt volcanoes, make and launch catapults and make grape smashers. The students have many chances to perform hands on experiments and labs. I believe that this enriches the learning environment.
Mrs. Breshears is the new English teacher in the Morgan School District this year. She teaches three tenth grade English classes at the high school in the mornings and two seventh grade English classes at the middle school in the afternoon. Mrs. Breshears graduated from our very own Morgan High School and went on to Weber State University afterwards. She put her degree on hold for a while to start a family but went back to school three years ago and received her bachelor’s degree from Weber State majoring in English Teaching with a Psychology Teaching minor.
The students at Mountain Green Elementary School have been getting a close up view of some very large pumpkins. The growers, Matt McConkie and Tyler Quigley, both residents of Mountain Green, brought the pumpkins to the school for display.
Morgan County Historical Society for pictures and history information.
In, looking back over the history of the Morgan County High School, one must regard its rapid development as most miraculous. In the fall of 1911, the high school began to take firm footing. The first year saw a sturdy bunch of twenty-two students and one instructor, Principal H. B, Fry, working hard against a thousand difficulties; yet never having the least idea of the great foundation they were laying. One room comprised the spacious apartments of the school in the present grade building.
We all have friends, good friends, close friends, even best friends. We have all faced losing friends, I have on several occasions. However, there are times when you lose the ones that mean the world to you.
We are fortunate to live and work in a community where there is no shortage of parental and overall community support for our schools. An example of this type of support occurs in each school through their community councils. In 1999, the Utah legislature established the School Land Trust Program and with it School Community Councils (SCC).
Last week the 2nd and 3rd grade students at Mountain Green Elementary School enjoyed a visit from some local firefighters. They taught the students some valuable lessons regarding fire safety. It was also a great experience for the students to be able to walk around the fire truck and look at all of the gear and tools used to put out fires and help those in harm’s way. A big thank you to some of Mountain Green’s finest in uniform!
Mr. Mills is our new choral director at Morgan Middle School and Morgan High School this year. At the middle school he teaches Mixed Choir and Advanced Choir and at the high school he directs Concert Choir, Millennial Choir, and Ovation!, the school’s chamber choir. Mr. Mills graduated from Cottonwood High School and went on to graduate from the University of Utah. His fun, happy personality fits right in with his students and when asked why he chose to teach choir he replied, “Because I’ll never grow up.” He loves spending time with the kids at school. Mr. Mills is a fabulous pianist and a wonderful asset to the schools’ choral program.
The Technology and Engineering Education program at Morgan Middle School introduces students to the technical skills needed to be successful in the technology or engineering career of his or her choice and with the skills to function in a technological society.
The Morgan High School and Middle School choirs came together to present their annual fall concert called “How can I keep from singing” conducted by Mr. Michael Mills, with his own piano teacher Suzanne Gibbs accompanying some of the music groups.
Middle School art teacher Steve Carrigan went to Japan a few years back for an art convention. He there met a Japanese artist who was looking for international art to share with her students. It was there that inspired Carrigan to have his students submit their art work to Japan, drawing themes that the Japanese artists would send to him.
Steven Gudmundson is Morgan High’s new woods teacher. His curriculum encompasses all drafting, woodworking and construction classes. He graduated from Westwood High School in Austin Texas in 1996, and then went on to graduate from BYU. He came to Morgan because of a job opportunity, and is enjoying his time here. Mr. Gudmundson enjoys furniture design and is excited for the opportunity to teach this to his students.
Have you ever felt like that you are incapable of doing something? As if you aren’t strong enough or others will think less of you if you can’t do it? I can relate. Doubting yourself is second-guessing yourself, which will bring you down. I used to think that a lot of things were out of my reach or were out of my league.
Creative FACS is a good and fun way to spend an hour once a week every week at Morgan Middle School. Also not to mention the delicious snack or craft. Every week after school whether you come Tuesday or Wednesday we get to do something like make a recipe or make something to take home.
October has been selected as National School Principals Month. The primary purpose for this designation is to recognize and honor the outstanding work of public school principals. In Morgan we have the privilege of having six outstanding leaders directing our schools. These individuals each portray unique leadership skills that when combined add enormous strength to the quality of our schools and the academic climate within those schools.
Support Morgan High School winning $10,000 vote for McKenna Zentner. Oct. 10-Oct. 17. Morgan High School portion will air on Monday Oct. 10 at 9 p.m. on KSL. Vote at www.werutah.com Click on R U Talented. Click on small dot next to McKenna Zentner name and click submit.
On Tuesday, Oct. 4, the third grade class of Mountain Green Elementary School performed new songs, accompanied by peppy music and contagious actions. The energetic program lasted about 30 minutes and included the songs “We are Amazing”, “Secret Mission”, “Direction Dance”, “What can You Do in 3 Minutes?”, “Smile”, “Stronger” and “How Big Are Your Dreams?” Another song performed is entitled “The Great Big Beautiful World.” The students were engaged in their performance, and their energy spread to the audience.
Morgan Elementary held its first ever Grandparent’s Day. Grandparents from all over came to enjoy lunch, have their pictures taken and just spend time with their grandchildren. If you were to walk into the lunch room during this time, you would see nothing but smiles from ear to ear! It was an enjoyable day for everyone. Thanks “Grandparents” for spending the day with us!
In the State of Utah voters are able to select fellow citizens to positions on local district school boards through non-partisan elections. This system allows many decisions regarding public education to be determined on a local level. These representatives add real meaning to the term “Grass Roots”.
Stephanie Simister is the newest Math teacher at Morgan High School. Stephanie grew up nearby and attended North Summit High School. Growing up, she was inspired by her teachers and gained a life-long love of learning. This deeply ingrained principle is an important part of her teaching philosophy as she tries to instill the same philosophy in the students she teaches. After student teaching here in Morgan, she taught at Bountiful High for one year before returning to teach in Morgan. Remembering the high caliber of students and faculty here at Morgan High School, she was very impressed and wanted to return to Morgan. Stephanie and her family reside in Henefer, where she is busy chasing her three children (ages 15, 13, and 9) to their different activities. When she is not teaching she enjoys being with her kids, football games and reading science fiction or “not too gooey” romance novels.
The mission statement of the Common Core is as follows: The Common Core State Standards provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them. The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers. With American students fully prepared for the future, our communities will be best positioned to compete successfully in the global economy.
Chris Deitsch is in the business of teaching high school students business. He is teaching classes ranging from Computer Technology, to Business Communication. Mr. Deitsch’s favorite class he took during his own days in High School was Sports Marketing, and he is excited to be offering this class to students 3rd trimester. Mr. Deitsch graduated from Clearfield High School in 2006, and from Weber State University in 2011. The best way to get on Mr. Deitsch’s good side is to work hard and show others respect. On the other hand, not paying attention or being disrespectful, and lack of effort are Mr. Deitsch’s least favorite traits.