#271 News & Notes

2019-20 School Year

Coeur d'Alene Public Schools — February 21, 2020

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Are our schools meeting your needs? Take the parent engagement survey

Parents, we want to hear from you! Schools across the state are participating in an annual parent engagement survey. This gives you the chance to share your input and help us measure how well our schools are meeting your needs.


The survey only takes a few minutes, and your responses are anonymous. But they will be critical in helping us identify opportunities to maximize satisfaction, engagement and communication. This is one easy step to help improve your child's school.


If you have students in more than one school in our district, you may retake the survey for each school.


Make your voice heard! Take the parent survey now by following this link. You have until March 31 to respond.

Join us for a free showing of 'screenagers next chapter' on Feb. 26

Many of you watched the award-winning documentary "Screenagers" with your kids. Now the long-anticipated sequel, about helping young people thrive in our screen and stress-filled world, is coming to town for a free showing.


We invite you to join the Coeur d'Alene Public Schools Technology Department for this special screening of the documentary "Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER: Uncovering Skills for Stress Resilience." The screening will be Wednesday, Feb. 26, at 6:30 PM at Hayden Discount Cinema.


Filmmaker and physician Dr. Delaney Ruston takes the conversation around screens and teens to the next level as she examines the science behind teen’s emotional challenges, the interplay of social media, and what can be done in our schools and homes to help them build crucial skills to navigate stress, anxiety, and depression in our digital age.


This film is recommended for ages 10 and up. A short discussion will follow the film. You may watch a preview of "Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER" here.


NEXT UP - Like: Social Media and Cell Phones and Students will be shown for free on March 19 at 6:30 PM at Hayden Discount Cinemas.

What is the State of our District? Find out on March 4

The 8th annual State of the District will be March 4 at 5:30 PM at the Innovation Collective, located at Lakeside Avenue and Fifth Street. Parents, students, educators and other community members are welcome to attend.


State of the District is hosted by the Coeur d’Alene Education Partnership in partnership with Coeur d’Alene Public Schools. NW Specialty Hospital is the sponsor.


This year's theme is “Growing Into the Future as a Community United, Inclusive, and Equitable." As part of that, we will:

  • Celebrate students who have performed extraordinary acts of kindness
  • Hear an update from Superintendent Steven Cook about the school zone boundary review, and how the District is addressing gaps highlighted in last year’s curriculum audit
  • Hear students and staff share their experiences with campus safety, social and emotional well-being, and the new Portrait of a Graduate.
  • Listen to a panel discuss future district growth through the lens of equity and accessibility.


Coeur d’Alene Education Partnership is an independent nonprofit, working to inform the community about developments in education.


The event will kick off with a 30-minute social. The program begins at 6.

We're hiring! Our teacher career fair is March 7

Certified educators interested in joining our team are invited to meet our school administrators on Saturday, March 7, from 9 AM to 12 PM at Coeur d'Alene High School.


Our community and our district are growing quickly, and we typically fill 40 to 50 teaching positions each year. Now is the time to take a look at the opportunities we will have for the 2020-21 school year. We will start offering positions as early as this spring.


In addition, full-time, part-time and substitute classified positions are available year-round.


Job candidates may apply in advance or learn more at cdaschools.org/careerfair.

Another important survey: School start times

The Coeur d'Alene Public Schools School Start Times Ad Hoc Committee is gathering information and feedback from stakeholders on the potential impacts of a later school start time for middle school and high school students, and a possible earlier start time for elementary students.


We invite you to take the survey now by following this link. This survey will be available until 12 noon on Friday, March 6.


A later start time would allow teens to get more sleep before school. During puberty, biological changes occur to the amount and timing of a hormone associated with sleep called Melatonin. This change causes adolescents to naturally fall asleep up to 2 hours later and wake up later. A 2017 survey found that 67% of teens were getting less than 7 hours of sleep a night. A lack of sleep is associated with many different issues, including lack of concentration, mental health issues and depression, traffic accidents and more.


Learn more by visiting our School Start Times web page.

Now and Next summit: A wealth of info for high school students

High school students will have access to a large number of college, career and other post-graduation opportunities at our NOW AND NEXT SUMMIT on Monday, March 16, from 5 to 7 PM, at Lake City High School in the commons.


The event also includes workshops on:

  • Financial awareness
  • Career exploration
  • Healthy relationships
  • Mindfulness
  • Kootenai Technical Education Campus
  • Advanced Opportunities (middle school focused)


Now and Next Summit is intended to provide resources and information for students and families to consider during high school and beyond. It's open to all high school students throughout North Idaho.


Participating organizations include North Idaho College, University of Idaho, Lewis-Clark State College, Boise State University, Idaho State University, College of Idaho, Northwest Nazarene University and Brigham Young University - Idaho. Others include Eastern Washington University, Whitworth University, Gonzaga University, Washington State University and Grand Canyon University.


Also participating will be the Marine Corps, Navy, Army, Air Force and Idaho Army National Guard, North Idaho College Workforce Training Center, STCU, Toni & Guy Hairdressing Academy, Vocational Rehab, Project SEARCH, Bloom Educational Coaching, Safe Passage, Indian Education Resources and Scholarships, and Kootenai Health Volunteer Services.


Questions? Contact Adriana DelGizzi at adelgizzi@cdaschools.org

Career and Technical Education and Transfer Program Roadshow

Four days after the Now and Next Summit, another big event will take place to help our students with their career exploration: The Career and Technical Education and Transfer Program Roadshow will be Friday, March 20, from 8 AM to 2 PM in the Lake City High School gymnasium.


The focus is on:

  • Manufacturing and trades (aerospace, automobile trades, carpentry and construction, computer aided design, machining and more)
  • Healthcare professions (nursing, physical therapist assistants, medical assistants, pharmacy technology, radiography technology and more)
  • Business administration and management (accounting, information technology, culinary arts, cybersecurity, graphic design, web design, hospitality, outdoor recreation and more)


North Idaho College will showcase program offerings in a hands-on way and invite industry partners who hire graduates of those programs. It's open to all local high schools (contact Adriana DelGizzi at adelgizzi@cdaschools.org if you would like to bring your students).

Counselor Spotlight: Heather Heidt, Atlas elementary School

Heather Heidt is an elementary school counselor at Atlas Elementary School in Hayden. She serves 600 students in kindergarten through fifth grade. This is her sixth year as the Atlas school counselor.


Previously, Heather worked in developmental disabilities with the Infant Toddler Program. She started her career in early childhood education with Head Start.


Heather has a bachelor’s degree in social work from Lewis-Clark State College and a master’s in social work from Eastern Washington University. She loves to spend time outdoors and enjoys reading, cooking, yoga and running.


THE ROLE OF SCHOOL COUNSELOR has changed from when she was a young student. “Today there is much more emphasis on prevention and mental health of younger students. We work hard to understand why a student is behaving the way they are so that we can provide the right kind of intervention and support,” she says.


In elementary school, counselors have a unique opportunity to identify and intervene at an essential time in a child’s development, Heather explains.


“Our goal is to help students achieve on academic and social-emotional levels. We know that relationships matter, so we work on building connections and empathy between students and with caring adults.”


She said she loves making connection to all students in the school, not just those who need individual and small group services.


“Through being visible and reaching every student, all students are exposed to social-emotional concepts that I bring to the classroom,” Heather says. “It’s rewarding when students learn to manage small and medium-sized problems and give feedback that they have used strategies I have taught them.”


She adds, “When they come to me for additional help, I feel honored and proud of them. It’s amazing to watch kids grow in so many ways over the years they are in elementary school!”


GREAT ADVICE FOR PARENTS AND STUDENTS - “Find time to talk with one another and spend quality time connecting. I encourage students and parents to unplug and interact with each other face to face more often. We all enjoy our devices and the conveniences they provide. Most kids, however, need adults to model and provide structure so they can learn the skills to manage their screen time.”


As students are getting cell phones younger and younger, it is so crucial to start them with tight boundaries for their safety and mental health, Heather advises.


She also notes, “When parents talk to their children about how they feel about the big and small changes in their lives, this encourages and models for students that it’s okay to talk about hard things and teaches them problem-solving skills.


“We focus a lot on emotional regulation school-wide to normalize the language of emotions and healthy coping skills as something everyone needs.”

High schools to host parent nights

Lake City High School and Coeur d'Alene High School will host information nights on February 27 for parents of 8th grade students (incoming freshmen). Please plan to attend for your currently zoned school.


LCHS: Open to parents and students. Learn about clubs and activities, and meet athletic coaches and advisers, 5:15-6 PM in the Commons; information presentation 6-7 PM in the gymnasium.


CHS: Parent information night, 6 PM. Course selection process will be reviewed. (Freshmen orientation will be held May 12 at 6 PM. will include staff and student presentations, clubs and activities information.)

Middle school student joins superintendent cook for podcasts

In his weekly podcast, Superintendent Steven Cook recently interviewed Luke Sharon, an 8th grader at Lakes Middle School. They discussed topics such as our Portrait of a Graduate, school safety and school curriculum. It's great to hear the student perspective on some of the bigger topics we are addressing in our schools.


Today was Dr. Cook's turn in the hot seat as Luke (also a podcaster) took a turn asking the questions. You can listen to their conversation here. Luke asks about school start times, high school block schedules, and new school boundaries.


Listen to new episodes of our weekly The Sup is On podcast featuring Superintendent Cook at noon every Friday.

be a book buddy and help young students with reading

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Project search fundraiser

A meal at MOD Pizza next month will help raise funds for Project SEARCH, our high school transition program for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.


RSVP for the deal here and MOD will donate 20 percent of the meal's cost back to Project SEARCH. Through this employment training program for young people with disabilities, student interns gain job skills during a 9-month training program and then gain employment in our community.

271 in the news: Borah STEM Club

High school mentors are volunteering their time to engage with younger students in a new STEM Club at Borah Elementary School.


"It’s cool to see them cooperate, and the whole trial and error thing, how they see the problem and they work together to solve it," Coeur d'Alene High School junior Lexie Hildreth said. "They’re so smart for their age."


Read more here in The Coeur d'Alene Press.

Lake City spring play begins March 5

Troupe De Wolfe productions presents "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" about a 15-year-old amateur detective and mathematical genius probing the mystery of the death of a neighbor's dog.


"Curious Incident," best for ages 12 and up, will run March 5-7 and March 12-14 in the Lake City Auditorium. Curtain up at 7 PM. Directed by Sandra Seaton.


Tickets are available at the LCHS front office or at the box office before each show. Information: sseaton@cdaschoosl.org

CHS spring musical begins April 23

Coeur d'Alene High School Theatre presents "Mary Poppins: The Broadway Musical" April 23-25 and April 29-May 2 in the CHS Auditorium.


Tickets are on sale now at www.chstheater.org.

Mark your calendar

  • February 26 - "Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER," 6:30 PM, Hayden Discount Cinema, FREE.
  • February 27 - Parent/student night for incoming freshmen, 5:15 PM, Lake City High School
  • February 27 - Parent night for incoming freshmen, 6 PM, Coeur d'Alene High School
  • March 2 - Monthly School Board Meeting, 5 PM, Midtown Meeting Center
  • March 4 - State of the District, 5:30 PM, Innovation Collective
  • March 6 - No School Grades K-5
  • March 6 - Last day to take School Start Times survey (by 12 noon)
  • March 7 - Teacher Career Fair, 9 AM to 12 PM, Coeur d'Alene High School
  • March 16 - Now and Next Summit, 5-7 PM, Lake City High School
  • March 18 - Special School Board Meeting on School Zone Boundaries, 5 PM, Midtown Meeting Center
  • March 20 - Career and Technical Education and Transfer Program Roadshow, 8 AM-2 PM, Lake City High School
  • March 27 - Spring Break begins
  • March 31 - Last day to take Parent Engagement Survey
  • April 6 - Back to School
  • April 6 - Monthly School Board Meeting, 5 PM, Midtown Meeting Center
  • April 14 - SAT test day for Grade 11 (No School Grades 9, 10, 12)