Saturday, September 24, 2011

Lamp of Learning Academic Awards Program

The Lamp of Learning Academic Awards Program was implemented by the Board of Education in the Fall of 1985 to honor and reward students in grades 6-12 who have demonstrated exemplary achievement in the classroom.  

Awards are earned based on the work of the entire school year.  Seniors receive their award in the Spring prior to graduation; students at other grade levels receive their awards in the Fall of the following academic year (i.e., an award earned in the 8th grade is given out in the Fall of the 9th grade, etc.)  

Last Spring, 275 awards were given to students in the senior class of 2011. This Fall, 1731 students will be receiving their achievement awards on the dates indicated below:

September 27 - Oakview M.S. 223 students
October 5 -  High School 9th 317 students
October 5 -  High School 10th: 237 students
October 6 -  Waldon M.S. 241students
October 19 - High School 11th 221 students
October 19 - High School 12th 258 students
November 10 - Scripps M.S. 234 students

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Lake Orion Representatives Oppose Open Enrollment

Ms. Ginopolis,

Senator Marleau always appreciates hearing from constituents and the issue of mandated out of district enrollment in Senate Bill 624 is no exception. I believe it to be pertinent that you understand the Senator’s position to this bill is to strongly oppose it. Lake Orion Schools continue to set the bar for educational achievement and community involvement as demonstrated by the responses generated from this proposed bill. Mandating out of district enrollment does not solve the issue of substandard schools in other communities and would have a significant negative impact on districts such as Lake Orion.

Please continue to direct parents and educators in your district to contact our office if they have any specific questions regarding the ongoing effort of education reform in Michigan. Information is the best resource we have.

I will try to have the Senator follow up personally when his schedule allows.

Thank you and have a wonderful day,

Ryan Burtka
Legislative Director
Senator Jim Marleau
Serving North Oakland
Good morning Marion,

Hope all is well. I just wanted to reach out to you in regards to SB 624, the School of Choice legislation.

Please be assured that I am against SB 624 and have been advocating our concerns to my colleagues in the House. School of Choice is a decision that should be left for school districts to decide on their own accord. I agree with all five points that you identified in your e-mail from last week to district residents.

Personally, I do not see this legislation passing out of the Senate, let alone the House. From what I am hearing from colleagues is much of the same concerns that you and I both have. Also, currently, SB 618-624 are all tie-barred together, meaning if one bill fails, all of the others fail as well. Although they can "un-tie" the package of bills, with the current set up I believe as a whole this package will fail.

Once again, please be assured that I will continue to advocate for Lake Orion schools, as well as the rest of my district, and push that SB 624 is stopped.


Bradford C. Jacobsen
State Representative, 46th District

office: 517-373-1798
fax: 517-373-8574

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Lake Orion Board passes resolution opposing mandated open enrollment

At the September 14 meeting, the LO Board passed a resolution opposing mandated open enrollment. Senate Bill 624 is a very fast-moving legislation that will MANDATE that all school districts in the state must accept nonresident students if the district determines it has capacity.  If this legislation is passed, Section 105 of Senate Bill 624 will have a great impact on our schools. 

Specifically, the impact on our schools is as follows:

  1. If a nonresident student comes to our schools from a district that has a lesser foundation allowance, Lake Orion can only collect the lower amount from the state to educate that student. This means that the dollars we spend on our own students will be diminished so that we can educate nonresident students.
  2.  Lake Orion students who apply to a school that has space, but is not in their attendance area, will not have first priority to attend.
  3. Lake Orion students who apply to the district's Focus Schools will not have first priority to attend.
  4. Nonresidents will not be responsible for contributing to the repayment of any school debt but will realize, for free, the advantages for which you are paying. 
  5. And, most important, local control and decisions that affect our own children will be taken out of our hands by this mandated legislation. 
Please contact our legislators to voice your opinion about this: 

Senate Education Committee:
Phil Pavlov
Coleman Young II 

Lake Orion Legislators
Governor Rick Snyder

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Lake Orion Community Schools program top in the state

LANSING, MI – Nine school districts across Michigan are starting the school year off with a celebration of success. The Michigan Association of School Boards (MASB) announced the recipients of the 2011 Michigan’s Best Award. While schools face many challenges, the Michigan’s Best Award is an example of the quality education taking place in Michigan schools each day.

Stadium Drive Elementary School of the Arts, Lake Orion Community Schools, has been selected as a recipient of the 2011 Michigan’s Best Award for its Ancient Greek Theatre One-Act Festival program. Lake Orion will presented with its award Oct. 29 at an awards ceremony. 

Lake Orion’s winning program earned the honor in the Creative and Media Arts category for its innovativeness and impact on student achievement. 

“We’re being challenged at the state and local level to develop innovative approaches to education,” said Kathy Hayes, MASB executive director. “These districts have a proven record of success and should be thought of as models for other districts across the state.”

The Ancient Greek Theatre program at Lake Orion Community Schools is a student-written, produced and directed one-act festival. Each fourth grade class produces six one-act plays consisting of both comedies and tragedies. These one-acts are created based on knowledge gained from classroom study of ancient Greek theatre and myths. These lessons occur in both theatre class and language arts studies. The students apply this knowledge to create their own spin on ancient festivals, which requires collaboration and creativity. The program is presented to the school and the community, giving students the opportunity to practice the valuable life lesson of presenting in front of groups. As a result of these performances, Stadium Drive Elementary School of the Arts has developed students who are confident, creative problem solvers that score high on national and state tests.

Programs are judged by an independent panel of experts in each area, based on uniqueness, the critical need served and evidence of impact on student achievement. More than 150 entries were received from districts across the upper and lower peninsulas. Each winner receives a trophy for display at the school and $1,500 to sustain their efforts. These programs won round-two judging and represent the top honor in each of nine categories of MASB’s Education Excellence program.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

SB 624 Introduced today - Mandatory Schools of Choice

As predicted, today Senator Pavlov (R) introduced SB 624.  Section 105 of the bill revises the language about schools of choice (open enrollment) and will have an impact on Lake Orion Schools in the following manner:

  1. Language changes from "district shall determine whether or not it WILL accept....  to "district shall determine whether or not it HAS CAPACITY TO accept.  In other words, if there's room, we have to determine how many spots are available and accept out-of-resident students.
  2. Prior language restricted open enrollment to within an ISD. That language has been crossed out so that non-resident students must be accepted from ANY ISD,  meaning beyond Oakland County.
  3. The word SHALL replaces the word MAY throughout the entire section 105.
  4. The per-pupil allocation is the lower of original or chosen district.  In other words, if the non-resident student comes from a district that has a lower per-pupil allocation, we would receive that amount rather than the per-pupil allocation we receive for Lake Orion students.

As I indicated in a previous Blog posting (see below) mandatory open enrollment flies in the face of local control/local decision making.

Please take the time to voice your opinion to our legislators.
Phil Pavlov
Jim Marleau
Brad Jacobsen
Rick Snyder

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

First day of school...

The first day back to school is always very exciting.  As I traveled around the district, I took a few pictures to share...
New security entrance and attendance area at LO High School

Freshmen students arrive at their lockers to see a greeting from upperclassmen

Stadium Drive Elementary Staff greet students on playground