Education is an intricate combination of all types of learning styles. Students and staff presented several programs at the Snowline Joint Unified School District (SJUSD) School Board Meeting Tuesday. To reach a student’s capabilities a variety of techniques are offered through the district’s Career Pathway Program. These programs give the students actual hands-on experiences to prepare them for the work force. The students stated that they were excited to see that their high school education included a career avenue. The Career Pathway is promoted through Career Technical Education (CTE). Serrano and Chaparral High Schools have included such curriculum in Medical Pathways, Culinary Arts and Construction Pathways. The Military Career Pathway, which would establish a Cadet Corps on the Serrano Campus, is up-coming. At present the Military Career Pathway Program is being developed through Serrano’s Military Club as an after school program. In the Construction Pathway students apply their skills of mathematics, reading schematics, equipment use and techniques, focus on safety and the development of leadership and teamwork. Competitions will be held at Victor Valley College where schools have been given the task of building a doghouse. Chaparral High School has been very competitive this year against six other schools even though students were in training less than a semester. Recently, four students competed in a Culinary Arts completion where they tied for second place. This competition will be an annual activity. In Medical Pathways students learn how to take vitals, do heart monitoring, assist in the blood drive, shadow professional Registered Nurses, learn proper communication with patients, learn how to cope with waiting room chaos, how to do urinalysis, how to do paperwork and insurance processing and learn the procedures in becoming an Emergency Medical Technician. Students also take classes on Introduction to Health Careers and Health Terminology. Last year Serrano won the humanitarian award for their blood drive. This year the Career Pathway Classes have exceeded their goal of 800 participants with a total of 830. The Military Club is a first step toward getting Cadet Corps on the Serrano Campus. At present it is an after school program meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Started by student Commander Matt McHenry, the club has increased from ten students to fifty-five. The second step was to have a teacher advisor. Mr. Anthony Bravo has accepted. The third step is the actual implementation of the Cadet Corps on the Serrano Campus. Students who participate in the program commented they have learned leadership, integrity, respect, group responsibility, reliability, and physical and mental strength. The Cadet Corps program is under the National Guard. Under such a program, many student leaders rise up. Students in all the programs talked about the benefits that Career Pathways will have in their future career goals. The students mentioned not only the benefits of skills learned but also the importance of developing teamwork and leadership skills. Superintendent Ryan Holman and the School Board gave special thanks to out going member, Ann Bashaw. She was credited not only for her 14 years of service (2002-2016) but also highly praised for her love of family, generosity, public service to SJUSD and her high sense of humility. “She was always about caring for kids,” said Holman. Inductees to the Board of Trustees were Richard C. Upshaw and, incumbent, David Nilsen. Upshaw, a former Snowline District student, has been on the SWAT and Narcotics Squad Board for the Sheriff’s Department, a teacher, and, currently, Principal of Columbia Middle School. Incumbent David Nilsen has been on the board for many terms. The board members gave their appreciation to Upshaw for his multi-service community work and to Nilsen for his decades of continuous service to the Snowline District. Assistant Superintendent Karen Winkler reported on the district’s financial status presenting the First Interim Financial Report. Her presentation included the Unduplicated Budget Adoption for 2017-2018, Retiree Incentives for 2016-2017, Lottery Allocation and Special Education money from the State of California. She voiced the need for caution in deficit spending. Superintendent Holman stated the benefits to senior class members who are credit deficient. Their enrollment in Adult Education Classes along with their regular academic classes at the high school level helps them in credit recovery, employment, achieving a GED, and getting into the military. Holman addressed the “Dual Enrollment Program” for college bond students reporting that it allows students to gain credit for college classes while still in high school, and does not interfere with Advanced Placement Classes. In many cases the two programs complement each other and many students enroll in both. Student Board Member from Serrano, Matt McHenry commented on the success of the Holiday Performing Arts Program and luncheon presented to the community’s senior citizens. *I was there. The function was great! Good job, students! McHenry also mentioned Serrano’s upcoming Holiday Rally, and the plan for a Military Potluck to connect students with recruiters. Board Member Nilsen stated the importance of the Career Pathways Program and the upcoming Cadet Corps. “Funding these programs should be a necessary object of the Board of Trustees,” he said. *Author’s personal comment
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Pinon Hills Chamber of Commmerce congratulates Sandy Young (secong from left) from Chamber President, Lori Weston, and board members Bill Davison and RJ Goodman. Photo by Michael Palecki
Pinon Hills Chamber Year End Meeting
By Michael Palecki
The Pinon Hills Chamber of Commerce (Chamber) hosted their end of the year dinner meeting on December 13 at Casa Ortega Restaurant. Prior to a general membership vote approving changes of two By-laws, Chamber President Lori Weston announced a holiday gift to Phelan Gas customers in need. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of a lifetime Chamber membership to Realtor Sandy Young. Starting the evening’s business, Weston displayed one of the $100.00 holiday gift cards that ten Phelan Gas customers in need will receive along with $50.00 donated by the Chamber, and matched by Phelan Gas, for each. “It’s a way to share the warmth in our community,” remarked Weston. The general membership approved a By-law change to Article II Membership Section 2, which will allow the Chamber Board to increase annual dues whenever necessary. Likewise, a change in Article VI Meetings Section 1 allowing the use of technology such as video conferencing, webinars or speaker phones to increase membership attendance at monthly meetings for maximum participation, was approved. Weston delivered an historical review of Pinon Hills and the adjacent North Slope foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, prior to the incorporation of the Chamber on March 12, 1948. After that, Certificates of Recognition were awarded to RJ Goodman, Bill Bailey, Sandy Young, Carmen Scherubel, Carolyn McNamara, Bill Davison and Randy Sampias, for being chairpersons of various Chamber events conducted during 2016. Continuing with awards, Nancy Cosgrove, Sandy Young and Ed Greany were given Certificates of Appreciation, as members of the Nominating Committee, for preparing the slate of officers and board members elected for 2017 at the November meeting. Savoring the best in community service for the last awards, Pinon Hills Realtor and longtime Chamber member Sandy Young was awarded a plaque for her tireless efforts as Chamber Secretary since 2012. Then, Chamber President Lori Weston and Vice President Bill Davison presented Young with a Lifetime Membership plaque. Chamber officers to be installed on Tuesday January 17, 2017 are: President Lori Weston, Vice President Bill Davison, Secretary Carolyn McNamara and Treasurer Jane Rowan. Board members to be installed that evening at Casa Ortega are: Nancy Cosgrove, Bill Bailey, Carmen Scherubel, RJ Goodman and Randy Sampias. Additionally, Lee Hanson will serve as Membership Chair. Plan now to attend the Chamber Installation Dinner on January 17 at 6:30 in Pinon Hills, “Where the desert meets the mountains”-coined by Sandy Young. For reservations, call Lori Weston at (760) 680-9472.
Veterans Memorial Committee thanks scouts
By Terri Hill
Earlier this month, members of the Veterans Memorial Committee voted to donate $100 to Boy Scout Troop 351. Scouts play a key support role in activities held at the Veterans Memorial Park, handling the presentation, salute to, and retirement of the American Flag. At the Memorial Day and Veterans Day ceremonies this year, the scouts also performed formal ceremonies properly refolding memorial flags for two veterans whose families requested the honors, and were then presented with the flags. The committee also made a donation to the Wrightwood Community United Methodist Church. Members of the congregation deliver, set up, and return the chairs, which the church loans to the park for the two major ceremonies every year. The Veterans Committee was formed in 2007, when a group of veterans who met weekly for breakfast had discussed the possibility of a memorial in Wrightwood. They raised funds for the actual monument, and the County purchased two adjacent parcels in the village, which would serve as a public park, and a display location for the monument. On May 23, 2009 the memorial was unveiled at the first annual Memorial Day recognition and ceremony in the village. Carl “Smitty” Smith has stepped down as the committee’s chairperson, due in part to health issues. He and the committee encourage interested parties to consider joining the Veterans Committee, who are, “Seeking new members to help develop future events that bring forth the common goal of honoring those who understand that freedom is not free.”
Injured woman rescued in Wrightwood
By Terri Hill
On Monday, December 19 at 5:15 p.m., San Bernardino County Fire received notification of a woman calling for help from a hillside on the north side of the 1900 block of Highway 2 in Wrightwood. Fire personnel responded and with the sheriffs, accessed the woman’s location. Originally unable to locate the woman, first responders saw her tumble down the side of the hill, and were able to reach her. The unidentified woman was not speaking, and did not give rescuers any details about her identity or circumstances. According to County Fire Public Information Officer, Eric Sherwin, personnel on the ground determined that due to her injuries, a hoist rescue would be most efficient, and safest for the victim. Air Rescue 7, carrying personnel from County Fire and Sheriff, performed the hoist rescue, and transported the patient to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center. Authorities are attempting to identify the woman, possibly in her late 30s/early 40s, who was not dressed for a hike in cold temperatures. It is still unclear whether she is a Wrightwood resident, or a visitor.
Robbery suspect captured in Phelan
By Terri Hill
Monday, December 19th, Sheriff units and helicopters swarmed a Phelan residence at Johnson and Del Rosa, where a robbery suspect had hidden during a pursuit.
According to statements from the family, the 26-year old resident was home with his 6-year old son when he witnessed a stranger jump his fence and enter his yard. The man came to the door and asked for a drink of water. Suspicious of the man, the homeowner shut the door and called 911. Before he completed his call, sheriff deputies, guns drawn, and helicopters were already surrounding the mobile home.
The suspect tried to hide under the mobile home. Deputies came to the door and safely escorted the father, son, and pet dog across the street. Deputies on scene informed the resident that the man was a suspect in an armed robbery and had led authorities in pursuit to Phelan. The suspect had abandoned his car and fled on foot to the residence.
When the suspect got too cold under the mobile home, he came out and was arrested without further incident.
San Bernardino County Sheriff has not released official comments on the incident.
Santa visits the Tri-Community
By Terri Hill
During Santa’s busiest time of the year, he came through Phelan and Wrightwood to visit children and hand out a candy cane or two. On Saturday, Santa traveled through Phelan in a horse-drawn carriage, on his way to the 4th Annual Santa Pheeds Phelan event at J&T’s T-Bird. Along with visits with children, Santa accepted food donations and unwrapped toys for distribution to Tri-Community residents in need. Vendors sold holiday crafts and children enjoyed balloons, face painting, and karaoke caroling. Charlie Johnson reported on Facebook, the Phelan Chamber of Commerce assisted Santa in gifting 174 children with toys, including 74 bikes, Saturday. “What a great feeling, to help these neighbors,” Johnson wrote. Santa’s busy day ended in Wrightwood, with a tour of the residential streets in the evening. Accompanied by five San Bernardino County Sheriff units, Santa made his way through town, stopping to visit eager children along the way. Santa's journey begins at SB County Fire Station 14, as he makes the rounds at designated stops throughout the community. John and Cindy Aziz arrange the schedule and lead the route for the entourage. Well before the date, families are invited to request a visit from the jolly old elf. Volunteers from County Search and Rescue and the Sheriff department decorated their patrol units with lights and garlands for the excursion. As the motorcade cruised up and down the mountain streets, flashing lights and wailing sirens alerted residents to Santa’s approach. Christmas carols emanating from Santa’s patrol unit could be heard during brief pauses between siren blasts. Molly Leiker, Wrightwood’s local patrol Deputy Sheriff, drove in the parade for her first time. “This is awesome,” she enthused, “I love Wrightwood!” A highlight for all involved each year, is the visit by a Redlands family when Santa returns to the fire station after the tour. For the past five years, the Townsend family has come to Wrightwood and waited for Santa’s return from his rounds. The children come bearing letters to Santa, and carrots for his reindeer. They are as much of part of the tradition as Santa himself.
Serving Wrightwood, Phelan, Pinon HIlls and West Cajon Valley Since 1961