Update: Shiprock High School got third place in the 4A State Chess Championship. Also, Newcomb High School and Career Prep High School got third place in 1A to 3A State Chess Championship. Congratulations!
For the first time, all Central Schools high schools will be present to represent the district at the NMAA State Team Chess Tournament taking place today and tomorrow in Albuquerque. A group of 29 students and staff left for the tournament earlier today, ready for the mind sport.
Dr. Joseph Chee says that the most rewarding aspect of his profession is learning from his students. Last week, the New Mexico Public Education Department distinguished his dedication and named Dr. Chee as Indian Educator of the Year during their Spring Government-to-Government Summit in Española.
Dr. Chee, a Navajo language teacher at Career Prep High School, said that receiving the award was really rewarding, especially since he feels that he isn’t just teaching, he’s sharing his life experiences with students, and learning from them.
Shiprock High School senior Melanie Secody has signed a letter of intent to play with the Northern New Mexico Eagles. Mandy Montoya, Associate Head Coach for Northern New Mexico College Women’s Basketball was joined by Secody’s mother, Melissa Atcitty, along with students and family members during a signing ceremony at the high school.
Secody says she started playing basketball when she was four years old.
“I knew I was good at basketball. It is a sport that both my parents played. It helps me with stress and I decided to keep going with it,” said Secody.
The Central Consolidated School District hosted a community conversation on computer science this week with the leadership of the Navajo Nation, Teach for America New Mexico and Cultivating Coders. The conversation, which also included Shiprock High School students and staff, provided an update on last summer’s exciting coding boot camp, as well as a discussion on economic development in New Mexico.
A unique opportunity became available to nine Shiprock High School students last summer: an intensive coding boot camp, conducted by Cultivating Coders, an Albuquerque-based technology company that delivers condensed web-development classes.
Kirtland Central High School was celebrating more than student excellence during last week’s 120th Day Count Assembly. The school rewarded student quality by presenting certificates, but it didn’t stop there, it also made sure their hard work was noticed beyond the classroom and celebrated by their peers. And their peers responded with loud noise.
The Math Department selected students who improved their technical writing and challenged themselves, working until problems were solved: Colton Warner (9th grade), Crimson West (10th grade), Jaben Haws (11th grade), and Zachary Burrell (12th grade).
UPDATE: Team Russell won the Skyhawk Remix Game, 37 to 34 (Team rosters below). Also, the audience voted for Hanna Begay and Kaden Nelson as their most valuable players. Great celebration!
Newcomb High School will hold a celebration game between the Newcomb Lady Skyhawks and the Newcomb Skyhawks to congratulate their basketball teams on making the state tournament. The Honorary Officials for the Skyhawk Remix Game are Ben Tensay, CCSD Athletic Director - Head Official, and Videna Silvers - Newcomb Substitute Teacher - Official. The event will include audience voting on the MVP of the Game. During halftime of the game, the state wrestling qualifiers will be honored: match 1, Jawaun Charles vs Tyler Howe, match 2, Shaundale Davis vs Sheridan Staley. Admission is free.
Not only was there a great crowd and perfect weather, there was plenty of local pride. The streets were lined with signs, ribbons, confetti, and the flash of smart phones. Everywhere you looked, people cheered.
That was the scene today during the Parade of Champions, an event organized by the Central Consolidated School District (CCSD) to honor this year's competing scholars and athletes, and their success in local and state competitions.
The floats represented many events, ranging from science fairs to state basketball tournaments.
The Central Consolidated School 2017 District Science Fair was actually three science fairs held over three days: The Elementary Science Fair was Feb. 7; the Middle School Science Fair was Feb. 9; and the High School Science Fair was Feb. 13. All three science fairs were held at the District’s Phil Thomas Performing Arts Center in Shiprock.
Students, parents, and teachers proved education is a family affair during a parent night Feb. 21, 2017 at Mesa Elementary School in Shiprock. It was a chance for the students to show parents their finalized school science fair projects on display.
“We had about 40 projects, an increase. And the projects are quality,” said Jeff Hammons, the enrichment teacher at Mesa Elementary. “The kids can actually direct a project where they steer it to where they want it to go, and they really take ownership of it. And they can see a completed project. The kids take pride.”
The importance of a school science fair in education was well known to parent Ned Begay who was there to see his son Nevaughn’s project, which took 1st place for physical science in his grade.
“Working on projects and learning how to go through different steps to learn how things work, I think that’s something all of my kids have learned: In order for them to really find out how a science project can work they have to do the research behind it, and put the work and effort into it.”
The new Central Consolidated School District logo is simplistic yet also complex.
Its overlaying messages of educational partnerships with the Navajo Nation (the Shiprock), New Mexico (the Zia symbol), and the U.S. Department of Education (the blue ring)—combined with an eagle in flight and a report card symbolizing student success through hard work—add up to a complex design on a very small canvas. The district is a public school system under the state of New Mexico.
The new CCSD logo was designed and drawn by Shiprock High School senior Malachi Lee, who used colored pencils under tight guidelines: The design had to be recognizable when the logo appeared as small as an inch in diameter.
A little boy showed up alone in the doorway of the new $20 million Judy Nelson Elementary School. He had tears in his eyes, was scared, and barely spoke. He was one of the last students to arrive. It was Jan. 3, 2017—the first day in the new school.
Judy Nelson—standing in the school’s doorway—had greeted students as they arrived. On the wall behind her was a bronze plaque with the name of the school—her name—on it. It was 8 a.m. and most of the school’s 595 students were now in their new classrooms.
Ms. Nelson was never a teacher, but she carries the same message of unconditional love, compassion, and caring for students. She began that message in 1967 when she was hired as secretary of Grace B. Wilson Elementary School in Kirtland—a position she kept for 50 school years before retiring in June 2016.
That message continued Jan. 3, 2017—when she greeted students on their first day of class in the new school that the community, staff, and students named after her.
The Central Consolidated School District Maintenance Department worker was playing the guitar while singing a variety of Christmas songs on the CCSD float during the Dec. 9, 2016 Shiprock Parade of Lights, which began at 6 p.m. at the Shiprock Chapter parking lot after it was dark.
The temperature was around the freezing mark. Arnold couldn’t cover his ears—a musician has to be able to hear his music as he plays.
Proving one is never too old to be a kid at Christmas, the Maintenance Department put together an “I’ll be Home for Christmas” float depicting a reindeer pulling Santa’s sled. Maintenance workers and their families on the float waved and tossed candy to children standing on the sidewalk with their parents.
Jeremiah Powless watched his 5-year-old son cover a gingerbread house with icing and then with candy. The gingerbread house was actually graham crackers stuck to a tiny milk carton with marshmallow cream.
It turns out that education can be good for the stomach—as well for the intellect and parent-child bonding.
The Kirtland Early Childhood Center father took time off of work December 13, 2016 to be with his son. Parents, guardians, and children filled the KECC cafeteria working on their Christmas projects.
“I’m a working professional. But I think it’s very important to make time for your children,” Powless said. “These are the type of activities they’re going to remember. So it’s really important to my wife and I—we both work—that one of us always show up.”
The songs and lights of the Christmas season can be a magical time for both children and adults, filling us with memories of Christmas past and with new memories.
Schools throughout the Central Consolidated School District held holiday music programs for two weeks in December at the District’s Phil Thomas Performing Arts Center in Shiprock, the Brooks/Isham Performing Arts Center in Kirtland, and at the schools themselves.
Tse’ Bit Ai’ Middle School featured its Jazz Band students, Intermediate Band, and Advanced Band in a Dec. 5, 2016 Winter Concert at the Phil Thomas Performing Arts Center. It followed up with its Beginning Band students performing Dec. 8 in the same location.
“What I liked best about the performance was all of us being together to show the community what we could do, where our talents are in school, and how music is important to education,” said Jacob Harvey, an 8th grader in the Advanced Band at Tse’ Bit Ai’ Middle School in Shiprock.
We are excited to have a brand new, state-of-the-art learning facility for our students!
As part of our efforts to help students and parents become familiar with the new surroundings, we will be hosting a “New School Orientation Reception” for students, parents and community on Wednesday, December 14, 2016. The new school will be open from 4 to 7 p.m. to allow interested individuals to do a walkthrough of the building.
We will use the time to also thank the architects, builders and construction companies who worked tirelessly to complete the building for our children. We hope that you will take some time out of your busy schedules to visit the new school.
Our work to get our students prepared to occupy their new school will also include a “Dry Run Day” on Thursday, December 15, 2016. This day will require parents and buses to drop-off and pick-up students at the new school. We have attached a map of the new school traffic pattern for you to follow when dropping off and picking up your students on that day.
It will be a brighter Christmas morning for many San Juan County children thanks to Shiprock High Marine Corps Jr. ROTC cadets collecting new toys for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots in San Juan County, New Mexico.
“This is kids helping kids. A lot of these toys are going to go to the indigent families in the area,” said Jason Crawford, a Marine Corps veteran and the Toys for Tots coordinator in San Juan County. “A lot of the layoffs that have happened this year, people being unemployed. It’s hard times around there because of our gas field.”
The cadets—for the third Saturday—will be collecting new toys Dec. 10, 2016 at both Farmington Wal-Marts, Kmart, Big Lots, Sam’s Club, and Sportsman’s Warehouse. Twenty-five Shiprock High cadets also collected toys and monetary donations Nov. 26 and Dec. 3 at those locations.
Army Ranger Staff Sgt. Quentin Mason, an Ojo Amarillo Elementary School parent and a veteran who served three tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan, sat with other parents in the bleachers during the school’s annual Veterans Day ceremony, held Nov. 11, 2016, in the gymnasium.
More than 500 students from kindergarten through the fifth grade—the entire school—performed a variety of songs following the posting of the Colors by the Upper Fruitland Veterans Association Color Guard.
The National Anthem was sung by a student in Navajo and English. Students also sang God Bless America, You’re a Grand Old Flag, and Yankee Doodle.
“The beginning when the Flag came in, seeing the Colors, and the kids singing got emotional for me. I’m usually not emotional. I don’t know why,” Mason said. “I always teach my kids about that, being a veteran, to respect it.”
Trees, Gym, and Music Room—Saved from Ruth N. Bond Elementary—Are Now Part of the New Judy Nelson Elementary School
A tree that stood in front of Ruth N. Bond Elementary now stands in front of the new Judy Nelson Elementary School.
The tree never moved—just the schools.
The tree, boxed in by a chain-link fence for protection from being run over by earth movers, survived the demolition of Ruth N. Bond Elementary in the fall of 2015 and the construction of Judy Nelson Elementary in 2016 on its footprint.
The gymnasium and music room were also kept, as well as large mature trees across from the front of the gym and on the playgrounds in the back of the school.