Anne McInerney

Anne McInerney elected president of School Social Work Association of America (SSWAA)
Anne McInerney, supervisor in the Office of Title I Federal Programs Project REACH, has been elected president for the national organization School Social Work Association of America (SSWAA). Anne will assume the presidency in January 2015.

SSWAA empowers school social workers and promotes the profession of school social work to enhance the social and emotional growth and academic outcomes of all students. Anne brings a wealth of experience in school social work leadership, having served for many years with the Minnesota School Social Workers Association, Midwest School Social Work Council and the SSWAA Board.

Peter Brown, teacher at Highland Park Senior, leads Future Farmers of America (FFA) students in Agriculture Day
What do you get when llamas, rabbits, goats, pigs, chickens, lambs and a dog go to school? Agriculture Day at Highland Park Senior High! Congratulations go to the FFA students along with the Agriculture teacher, Peter Brown, who presented hands-on information on animal care, and products derived from animals and their habitats to students at Highland Park Senior, Middle and Elementary schools. Post-secondary schools and vendors were on hand with contests, brochures and first-hand information.

Judy Ryder, teacher at Highland Park Elementary, hosts successful Rhythm Show
Judy Ryder, physical education specialist and wellness champion at Highland Park Elementary, held the annual Rhythm Show last week for all students, staff and families. Adults who went to elementary school in the ‘60s or ‘70s may recall doing pushups and situps to the “Chicken Fat” song in gym, and this show moves that concept into the modern age. Judy has been staging this tremendously popular May event for 36 years.

Jim “Jimmy C.” Mitchell to celebrate retirement from SPPS
Join family, friends and co-workers in celebration of Jim Mitchell’s 22 years of employment with St. Paul Public Schools and Boys Totem Town/Ramsey County. Jim currently works at Humboldt.

  • What: Retirement celebration
  • Date: Saturday, June 14, 2014
  • Time:
    • 5-6 p.m.: Social hour
    • 6-7 p.m.: Special presentations
    • 7-8:30 p.m.: Social hour
  • Where: Camphor Memorial UMC, 585 Fuller Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55103
  • Attire: Jim’s work uniform (T-shirts, jeans and sneakers)
  • RSVP: To Juliet Mitchell at 651-290-0642 or juliet@eagleswingsllc.com

Students from three SPPS schools win poetry contest
Eighteen students from Adams, Linwood Monroe and Four Seasons won a poetry contest coordinated by the Community Reporter, a newspaper that serves the West Seventh neighborhood.

Themes for the poems ranged from nature to family to immigration. The poems were published in the May 2014 edition of the paper.

SPPS Students shine during second annual Hmong American Day at state capitol
Saint Paul Public School students were among the hundreds of people who celebrated the second annual Hmong American Day on May 14 at the State Capitol. During the opening ceremonies, Gov. Mark Dayton proclaimed May 14 Hmong American Day in Minnesota.

Students from Jackson Elementary School performed the song "Kaj Siab Lug" by the Kong & Shu Project. For more information and a video, visit spps.org.

Neil deGrasse Tyson talks science with SPPS students
Farnsworth Magnet and Johnson High School students had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hear world-famous astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson speak on May 8. Dr. Tyson, a strong advocate for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education, discussed the importance of math and science and his concern that the United States may fall behind other nations in these fields. Beth El Synagogue and the Saint Paul Public Schools Foundation donated tickets for forty students and staff to attend the talk.

Dr. Tyson’s lecture covered everything from common math and science errors to getting over the fact that Pluto is no longer a planet. After his talk, Dr. Tyson took the time to answer questions, sign autographs and take a picture with the Farnsworth group.

Ho-Chunk Nation helps Harding students build ciiporoke for American Indian Month
SPPS students, staff, families and community members celebrated and promoted American Indian cultures during the month of May with special events.
On Thursday, May 22, students in the American Indian Education program, Ho-Chunk Nation students and their families, along with the Saint Paul Public Schools community participated in a 5K run/walk to promote awareness of health epidemics plaguing American Indians.

On May 16, the district's Indian Education and American Indian Studies Program welcomed the Ho-Chunk Nation's Heritage Preservation Department to Harding Senior High School for an instruction and demonstration of building a traditional ciiporoke (wigwam). The structure was built in Harding's courtyard. Jackie Bird, an American Indian storyteller, dancer and musician; also performed in the school's auditorium. Later, traditional Ho-Chunk and Ojibwe foods were served for dinner.

SPPS students and teachers talk youth jobs with U.S. labor secretary, other leaders
U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez met with Saint Paul city leaders and educators May 16 to highlight a national movement designed to better prepare youth for the workforce.

SPPS and Saint Paul College college are partnering to use a $3.7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Youth CareerConnect. The initiative encourages America's school districts, institutions of higher education, the workforce investment system, and their partners to integrate rigorous educational standards with work experiences and skills in ways that enhance instruction and deliver real-world learning opportunities for students, according to the labor department.

During a roundtable, Perez talked with Walker, Carlita Heard, a junior from Central High School, and William Toney, a freshman from Como Park High School and Kristine Somerville, a teacher at Como. Dr. Darlene Fry, director of the Office of College and Career Readiness at SPPS, moderated the roundtable discussion.

For more information and photos, visit spps.org.

Central makes history with school's first state badminton championship
The Central High School girls badminton team made history Tuesday after upsetting both Johnson and Harding to capture the school’s first state championship.

Central has three state finals appearances, but this is the first time they took home the championship. Learn more at spps.org.

Murray students are top scorers in Music in the Parks Performance Competition
Murray Middle School Concert Band placed 1st in the Music in the Parks Performance Competition in St. Louis, MO last weekend. The Murray Orchestra also took 2nd place in the same competition.

A special congratulations goes to Maggie Lerien, a student who received the Outstanding Soloist Award.

Nokomis South students win Outstanding School Patrol award
Congratulations to Nokomis Montessori South campus for being selected for the Winterhalter Award for Outstanding School Patrol. Amy Barnes and Colleen Veilleux, staff members at the school, served as School Patrol Leaders this year. Student leaders include Sam Gray, Phuameng Leepalao, Lily LeRoux, Hunter Moua, Max Muench, Collin Nguyen, Tochi Onuegbu, See Thao, Alysia Vruno, Devon Xiong, Marie Yang and Andrew Vang.

Marvelous indeed: Volunteers donate more than 12,000 mittens and hats to SPPS students
Leave it to the Marvelous Mitten Makers: They couldn’t just settle for a recognition brunch. Busy-bees that these volunteer knitters are, they turned their annual breakfast into a yarn swap.

There was certainly cause for celebration: The group—at more than 170 strong—was celebrating its collective work of donating more than 12,500 items to Saint Paul Public School students for the winter of 2013-14.

The group has a storied history of more than 30 years with Saint Paul Public Schools, first started by Betty Svenson, Gail Phelps Calhoun and a team of 18 volunteers. Their goal: provide a pipeline for volunteers to knit, crochet, sew and make winter sweaters and mittens for SPPS students in need.

And the group continues to recruit volunteers—everyone from community residents to retirees at senior centers. Anyone interested in donating to the group can contact Judy at judybonnevier@yahoo.com, or by calling 651-739-5203.

To read the full story and see pictures, visit spps.org.

Riverview's mexican folk dancers perform for Mexican consulate at Spanish-language book giveaway
Mexican folk dancers from Riverview West Side School of Excellence performed May 20 during a ceremony to thank the Consulate of Mexico in Saint Paul for giving Saint Paul Public Schools textbooks in Spanish.

The Mexican textbook collection will be placed in school libraries for students and families. The purpose of the books is to ensure that Spanish language books are used as supportive education material for Spanish-speaking students, to strengthen the identity of children and young adults of Mexican origin or citizenship living in the United States, and to contribute to the teaching of Spanish as a second language.

Learn more at spps.org.