Back to School Nights, First Football Game Highlight Busy Week

This is a busy and exciting week across the Denair Unified School District, with Back to School Nights planned at two campuses and the first high school football game of the season Friday night at home.

The events begin Tuesday with Back to School Night at Denair Elementary Charter Academy from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Parents are invited to come to their child’s classroom to meet teachers and hear presentations that begin at 5 p.m. and 5:40 p.m.

On Wednesday, it will be Denair Middle School’s turn from 5:30 to 7:10 p.m. Principal Amanda Silva will welcome parents and introduce staff beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the Coyote Center, followed by classroom visits.

Denair Charter Academy – which features independent study for high school students and home school for grades K-8 – doesn’t hold a traditional Back to School Night. Instead, Principal Breanne Aguiar and her staff invite parents and students to attend a Fall Family Night on Sept. 24 from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Denair High School also passes on Back to School Night, but there is plenty happening on campus. Clubs and fall sports are getting into full swing. None are more popular than football, which kicks off its 10-game season Friday at Jack Lytton Stadium against Millennium of Tracy.

Denair’s varsity team is coming off a magical season that saw it win the state Division VII championship. Its game begins at 7:30 p.m., following the JV contest at 5:30 p.m.

Fans are reminded that Fifth Quarter postgame festivities follow the varsity game. They will be at the Pizza Factory from 9 to 11 p.m. The Fifth Quarter is a partnership between the high school and the Church of the Nazarene

Meeting Tonight for Those Interested in DUSD Board Vacancy

Submitted by Denair Unified School District:

Community members interested in filling a vacancy on the Denair Unified School District board are encouraged to attend a meeting tonight to learn more about the position.

The question-and-answer session begins at 7 p.m. at the district office. Community members who live within the district’s boundaries and are registered are eligible to apply.

Applications are available at the district’s office and also can be downloaded off the district’s website. Applications will be accepted Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. until Aug. 19.

The vacancy was created when longtime board member John Plett resigned Aug. 9, citing a need “to focus on my health.”

The remaining four trustees decided they will appoint Plett’s replacement rather than hold a costly special election. His term ends in November 2020.

On Aug. 29, Trustees Kathi Dunham-Filson, Regina Gomes, Ray Prock Jr. and Crystal Sousa will hold a special board meeting at 7 p.m. to interview all the applicants. After discussion, trustees will vote that night to choose Plett’s successor. The new trustee will be sworn it at the Sept. 12 board meeting.

Those with questions about the process should call Daisy Swearingen, executive assistant to superintendent and board, at (209) 632-7514, ext. 1202.

New Teacher Profile: Colette Rocha

This is one in a series of Q&A’s with teachers new to Denair Unified in 2019-20

Family: I am married. My husband and I have two girls in junior high school.

School: Denair Charter Academy

Subject taught: Science

Experience and education: I am a local girl, graduating from Stanislaus State. I have a multiple subject credential with a science supplemental. I have been in education in a variety of capacities for more than 15 years.   

What attracted you to Denair? I was attracted to Denair by the opportunity to teach science across grade levels from kindergarten through high school. 

What most inspires you about teaching? I am most inspired in education when students give their testimonies of how teachers have impacted their lives, not only in the classroom, but also in steps to success in life.

What is a challenge you look forward to tackling this year? This year the challenge I am looking forward to tackling is making science come alive, in and out of the classroom. 

Continue reading “New Teacher Profile: Colette Rocha” »

New Teacher Profile: Karina Servin

This is one in a series of Q&A’s with teachers new to Denair Unified in 2019-20

Family: Parents, two brothers  and fiance. 

School: Denair Elementary Charter Academy      

Subject taught: Spanish

Experience and education:  I am a first-year teacher. I received my bachelor’s degree and teaching credential from CSU Stanislaus. I have a BA in communication studies and Spanish and a single subject teaching credential in Spanish. 

What attracted you to Denair? I have lived in small towns in California my entire life. First Davenport, then Delhi (all places that start with a D). Denair feels a lot like home and I like the idea of teaching in such a close-knit community where everyone is friendly and knows each other. 

Why most inspires you about teaching? What inspires me most is watching students grow throughout the school year. I also want to be a role model for my students to show them that they can be successful. Growing up, I struggled in school due to learning English as a second language. Thanks to all the wonderful teachers I had all throughout school, I was still able to succeed. I hope to be an aid to the success of my students in the same manner that my teachers have done for me in the past. 

What is a challenge you look forward to tackling this year? A challenge I look forward to tackling this year is a reduction in technology use. I want to make it a personal goal to not use any electronics 30 minutes before bed and the first 30 minutes I’m awake in the morning. 

What is your favorite teaching tool or activity? My favorite teaching tools are songs. They are fun and they help students learn whatever concept we are learning. Plus, you can dance and sing along.    

Continue reading “New Teacher Profile: Karina Servin” »

New Teacher Profile: Gavin Souza

This is one in a series of Q&A’s with teachers new to Denair Unified in 2019-20

School:  Denair Middle School

Subject taught: Sixth grade

Experience and education:  In 2014, I was a elementary PE teacher, while also subbing. I was also an intervention teacher for two years at Little Lake City School District in Norwalk, Calif. Last year, I was a sixth-grade elementary school teacher in Waterford. I graduated from Turlock High School, went to Stan State for 2½ years and then transferred to Long Beach State, where I graduated in 2013.  I then went and got my teaching credential and master’s at National University.

What attracted you to Denair? I already knew a few people in the district since I grew up in Turlock. What got me noticing the district more was when I was at sixth-grade camp, and my district got paired with Denair and I got to work with some of the staff. They were awesome, friendly and a real joy to work with.

Why most inspires you about teaching? I enjoy making an impact on students. I remember when I was a student and how much I appreciated a teacher who made learning fun, but taught me life lessons along the way that I could use after my time with that teacher. I like being on the other end of that spectrum now and making that same impact to students.

What is a challenge you look forward to tackling this year? The big challenge I am looking forward to is that this is my first year being in a middle school setting, rather than being in the elementary setting. I am also teaching a new elective that is new to the district — robotics and model design — which should be interesting and fun for me and the students.

What is your favorite teaching tool or activity?  I think the best is yet to come for this question. I get to teach robotics to the students, so I am sure that will be my new favorite activity.

What do you want your students to remember? I want my students to remember how awesome their first year of middle school was and how much they enjoyed their elective class.

How can parents support what you do? The goal with parents is to have a team effort and keep standards high both outside and inside the classroom. Making sure parents understand what is happening inside the classroom and feeling open to emailing me and keeping an open communication line.

What would surprise people about your job?  Every day is different and keeps things fresh. Building relationships with students and teaching them new crafts always has self-gratification within it. I think most people laugh when they find out I am a teacher because when I was in school I struggled at times, and now I am a teacher.What do you do for fun? I love being around sports. Anything that could be competitive, I am all for. I also enjoy going to the movies and reading.