District Nurses Educate Parents About Measles Virus

The measles virus has gained a lot of interest recently due to the public health crisis in the Pacific Northwest and the increase in cases worldwide. There are no cases of measles in the community, but “because Park City has so many who travel on a regular basis, we want to offer some reminders about the virus,” said Suzanne Tanner, district nurse coordinator.

Measles are common in other parts of the world, including countries in Europe, Asia, the Pacific Islands, and Africa. Unvaccinated people who become infected in other countries often bring measles into the United States. The public is reminded that if they travel to areas that have seen an outbreak, please be observant of signs and symptoms of disease. It is important to isolate the ill person, wear a mask and notify your health care provider and school nurse.

According to the Center for Disease Control “measles spread when a person infected with the measles virus breathes, coughs, or sneezes. It is very contagious. You can catch measles just by being in a room where a person with measles has been, up to two hours after that person is gone. And you can catch measles from an infected person even before they have a
measles rash.”

District nurses offer the following reminders:

  • Symptoms begin with a fever, runny nose, red, watery eyes, and a cough. Three to five days after symptoms begin, a tell tale red rash breaks out on the head/face spreading down the body. 
  • Transmission is highly contagious spreading through the air from an infected person to another through coughing and sneezing.  Droplets can remain in the air for up to two hours.
  • At-risk individuals include infants, people with weakened immunity and unvaccinated individuals.  The measles vaccine is 97 percent effective in protecting against the disease, however children do not receive this vaccine until age one. 

Tanner said the best way to prevent measles is to immunize. Contact Summit County Health Department for more information, 435-333-1500, or visit the CDC’s website.

Community Invited to Add Their Voices at Open Houses

Park City School District and its master planning consultants will present a progress report to the community during open houses scheduled Feb. 27 and 28. The community will get to weigh in on recommendations from educators and working groups on issues like grade realignment, class and school size, and school location.

“We are anxious to learn how community members believe these issues best support learning and academic excellence,” said Christine Richman with GSBS Consultants. “We invite the public to add their voices to this important conversation about the the future of education in Park City.”

The Feb. 27 Open House will be from 5-7 p.m. at Park City High School, and the Feb. 28 Open House will be from 6-8 p.m. at Ecker Hill Middle School.

The Steering Committee has been meeting since September. Educators have been participating in monthly Learning Leaders Forums since December and providing insight on educational visioning, key spaces for learning, and spatial concepts.

An education master plan is being created and will guide educational program development, facility investments, and ultimately student success. “The plan will focus on how students today best learn, and how the environment and teaching methods can best support academic success and excellence,” said Superintendent Jill Gildea.

The consultants will also be conducting listening tours at all PCSD schools in the coming weeks in an effort to “capture all opinions and ideas regarding individual school issues, needs, and desires,” said Richman.

It is anticipated the Board of Education will be presented the education master plan options and recommendations in April.

New State Assessments Coming This Spring

Assessments play an important role in preparing students for the future. Beginning in April, students in grades 3-8 throughout Utah will take the new RISE standards assessment test. RISE, which replaces SAGE, will offer a baseline for student learning, while ensuring that student growth and proficiency reflect what a student knows and can do.

Students in grades 9 and 10 will participate in the Utah Aspire Plus, a high school assessment that provide a predictive score for their college readiness assessment (ACT).

Andrew Frink, technology and assessment director for the district, encourages students and parents to seriously consider participating in the tests. “Our opt-out rates have typically been too high to feel confident about the data we have received at a school-wide level,” Frink said. “The state has contracted these two assessments for 10 years and that will give us stability as we move forward.”

The tests provide students with feedback on how they are doing, and it allows teachers to see if their instruction matches the state standards, Frink said. “Additionally, it provides us with a good look at how we are doing as a system.”

About RISE (Readiness, Improvement, Success, Empowerment)

Students in grades 3-8 will take RISE assessments in ELA and Math (grades 3-8), Science (grades 4-8), and Writing (grades 5 and 8). The assessment is a multistage computer adaptive criterion referenced assessment system.

Benefits of RISE:

– A new interface that allows full navigation – backward, forward, review and revise.

– New and enhanced reports (for students, teachers and administration).

– Writing portion of the tests will now only be for grades 5 and 8.

– Test questions are aligned to Utah core standards, utilizing questions developed over the past five years by Utah teachers.

– Provides teachers tools to inform their instruction and increase student achievement.

– Helps answer two questions: “how good is the school?” and “is the school improving?”

Learn more about RISE here.

About Utah Aspire Plus

Frink said the Aspire Plus test ties to the ACT which is “great practice for our high school students. We have a very high rate of students taking the ACT and this test in 9th and 10th grade will prepare them for the ACT.”

Utah Aspire Plus, which will be given toward the end of the school year, is a custom assessment that aligns to Utah Core Standards. Students will be tested in English, Reading, Math, and Science.

Learn more about Utah Aspire Plus here.

PC Bands Presents Annual Sweetheart Gala Feb. 8

Tickets are still available for the PC Bands’ annual Sweetheart Gala planned for Friday, Feb. 8. The gala is an adult dinner and dance party featuring live music by the award-winning Park City High School Varsity Jazz Ensemble.

The dinner/dance is from 6-11 p.m. at St. Mary’s Church Grand Hall, 1505 White Pine Canyon Road. Premium seats (next to the door floor) are $70 per person, and standard seats are $60 per person.

The Sweetheart Gala begins with a catered three-course dinner and cash bar, following by live Big Band music by the Varsity Jazz Ensemble directed by Chris Taylor. The evening also features an online silent auction.

The event is sponsored by the Park City Education Foundation and all proceeds go to the PC Bands and their continued efforts to bring world-class music education to the students of Park City High School. 

Tickets can be purchase online here.

2019 Mr. Miner Pageant set for Valentine’s Day

Park City High School’s annual Mr. Miner Pageant is set for Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14, at 7 p.m. at the Eccles Center. This year’s mock pageant will follow the theme of “Men of Romance.”

The young men compete is several categories including character modeling, talent, GQ modeling and response to an interview question. This year’s contestants are Ben Agnew, Isaac Foote, Charlie Lowsma, Cris Mora, Liam Occon, Carl Prior, Judd Ricks, Christian Stockwell, and Marco Zanetti.

“The Mr. Miner Pageant is known for being a funny, light-hearted event,” says Ashley Mott, Dance Company director. “This year’s theme is ‘Men of Romance,’ because it’s being held on Valentine’s Day.”

This year’s talent portion will include singing, playing live music, and dancing. The pageant is judged by Park City High faculty and administrators, as well as community volunteers.

The pageant is organized and coordinated by Dance Company, Dance Company 2, and the stage crew class.

Audience members will have the opportunity to buy ballots, for $1 a piece, and cast them in the lobby to vote for their favorite contestant.

Tickets are $10 if purchased in advance (from a dance company member or Mr. Miner candidate), or $12 at the door. The Mr. Miner Pageant is the primary fundraiser for Park City High’s dance program.

Girls Swim Team Wins Another Region XI Championship

Park City High Swim Team Co-Ed
The PCHS Girls Swim Team won a consecutive Region XI Championship this weekend.

Park City High has added another regional championship to its list of accomplishments. The Girls Swim Team won the 2019 Region XI Swimming Championship for a consecutive year and the Boys Swim Team finished second.

The Miners hosted the meet his past weekend at the Park City Aquatic Center and competed against Juan Diego, Bonneville, Ben Lomond, Ogden, Tooele and Stansbury High Schools.

“Park City had a great swim meet with many swimmers posting their season best times and locking in crucial places/times to qualify for state,” said Head Coach Mike Werner. “Individual swimmers that placed first and second earned automatic invitations to the 4A state championships.”

The Miners will compete Feb. 8-9 at the 2019 Utah 4A HS State Championships at Brigham Young University.

Board Meeting Summary | Jan. 22, 2019

Board Member Appointed

The Board of Education appointed Wendy Crossland to fill the District 3 vacancy left by Petra Butler. Crossland is a middle school humanities teacher and Advancement Associate for Community Outreach for the Park City Day School. She will take the Oath of Office on Feb. 26. See full press release here.

Superintendent Report

Superintendent Jill Gildea expressed appreciation to board members for attending the Utah School Boards Association meetings in December and the USBA state conference earlier this month. She also recognized the board for receiving USBA’s designation as a Master Board.

Park City High ELA Program Proposal

Park City High Principal Roger Arbabi and faculty members presented an English Language Arts program that rearranges course offerings instead of creating new ones. Beginning next year, once sophomore students have completed a semester of the required Sophomore Academy, they will have the option of taking semester ELA classes of their choice. This program will maximize student choice and allow students to choose the classes that are of interested to them. ELA classes will fall into three categories: Academic Literacy, Literacy of Citizenship, and Literacy of Enrichment. The State Office of Education has reviewed the program and commended the high school for its plan.

Lacrosse to be Sanctioned UHSAA Sport

Boys and girls lacrosse will become a sanctioned sport next school year by the Utah High Activities Association. Athletic Director Jamie Sheetz estimates it will cost $105,000 to start the program started at Park City High (i.e., coaching stipends, equipment, officiating, travel, etc.). Lacrosse, which will be a Spring sport, will play 16 games with four playoff games.

PCEF Teacher Grants Report

The Park City Education Foundation awarded 31 grants to classroom teachers this year totaling $89,614. Grant requests included general themes of dual-language immersion, special education, Makerspaces, and capital expenditures, including flexible seating. The board expressed appreciation to donors and the Park City Education Foundation.

2019-20 Calendar Approved

The board approved the 2019-20 calendar. Classes begin two days earlier on Aug. 20, and end on June 2. The calendar includes one fewer day for Fall Recess, the semester ending prior to Winter Recess, and a full two-week Winter Recess. The district will plan the 2020-21 and 2021-22 calendars by the end of the school year. Moving forward the board will adopt calendars three years at a time.

Policies for Posting

– Policy 2005: Board of Education Power and Duties

– Policy 2015: Advisory Committees

– Policy 2025: Electronic Board Meetings

– Policy 2030: Board Policy Development

– Policy 2045: Board Member Compensation

– Policy 7061: Shared Leave

New Board Member Appointed for District 3

Wendy Crossland
Wendy Crossland

The Park City School District Board of Education has appointed Wendy Crossland as the new board member for District 3. She replaces Petra Butler who stepped down Dec. 31.

Crossland is a middle school humanities teacher at the Park City Day School and also serves as Advancement Associate for Community Outreach at the school. Proficient in Spanish, she lived in Bogotá, Colombia, for seven years where she taught English and social studies. Crossland is also co-founder and co-race director of TedDriven, an organization that raises money for cancer research.

She holds bachelor and a masters degrees, and earned a juris doctorate at Seattle University School of Law.

“It is such an honor to join the Park City School District Board,” says Crossland. “I look forward to supporting Dr. [Jill] Gildea and working with this dedicated Board committed to ensuring that all students receive a safe, equitable and inspired learning opportunity in Park City School District. I am excited and grateful to have the chance to work really hard on behalf of the critical and important mission of the district.”

Crossland will take the Oath of Office during the next Board of Education meeting on Feb. 26.



PCSD Selected for Utah’s First Cohort in Personalized, Digital Learning

Park City School District has been selected to participate in the state’s first cohort for Leadership in Personalized and Digital Learning (LPDL).

The cohort offers a team of district leaders an opportunity for job-embedded professional learning to prepare the LEA for personalized learning. District leaders will participate in the program that features face-to-face opportunities to work with trained facilitators and other state leaders from the Utah Education Network and the Utah State Board of Education.

“This is a perfect fit for our district,” said Traci Evans, interim Associate Superintendent for Teaching and Learning. “It is exciting to be on the forefront of personalized, computer-based education.

Nine districts and three charter schools are part of the first cohort. The first meeting is Jan. 14 in Salt Lake City.

The purpose of the cohort is to build a deeper understanding of personalized learning, to assist participating districts in creating their Digital Teaching and Learning Plan, and to learn about new collection tools to drive decisions for personalized learning.

‘Informance’ to Highlight Park City High’s DC2

Dance Company 2Park City High’s Dance Company II  (DC2) will present its annual “Informance,” an informal and informative performance that features their work of the past several months. Two shows are set for Jan. 15, at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m., in the Eccles Center’s Black Box Theater.

This year’s Informance presents the six universal human emotions through dance: happiness, sadness, fear, contempt, surprise, and anger. The 19 dancers will present 10 pieces, all embodying one of these six emotions.

“DC2 has worked together to create, choreograph, and perform their Informance in order to share their knowledge and love of the art with friends, family, peers, and the community,” says Ashley Mott, DC2 and Dance Company director.

Mott said each student has been assigned a specific responsibility, from choreographing the dances, marketing the performance, creating videos to accompany their pieces, and establishing the show order.

“The dancers have worked tirelessly both inside and outside the classroom, finding time for a major production to their busy schedules,” she said.

There is no charge for the performance but donations will be accepted to help support the dance program.