OWL Students March College Applications to the Post Office
Students from the Open World Learning (OWL) Community School participated in a national effort as they marched to the local post office on Dec. 11 to send out their applications to colleges across the country. The 25 seniors marched to the local post office to drop their college applications in the mail while being cheered on by fellow students, teachers, family members, and community leaders.

"For the past six years, OWL has had a 100 percent college acceptance rate for our graduating seniors. We wanted to find a way to celebrate our 12th grade students' accomplishments while inspiring our younger students to follow in their footsteps," said Tim Leone-Getten, OWL Program Coordinator. The OWL graduation rate last year was 94.5 percent -- the highest among public and charter schools in the cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

SPPS, Allina and Free Bikes 4 Kidz give away more than 300 bicycles
SPPS, Allina Health and Free Bikes 4 Kidz teamed up to give away nearly 350 bicycles on Dec. 5 at Hazel Park Preparatory Academy. Pre-registered students from several schools were fitted with bike helmets and then allowed to pick out their size-appropriate bicycle at the Allina-sponsored event.

A number of faces lit up when students were able to select what was for many their first bike, said Carol Grady, SPPS Health Improvement Program Coordinator. The bicycles were donated during Allina’s bike collection in October, then cleaned and refurbished by Free Bikes 4 Kidz.

Hazel Park Principal Dr. Delores Henderson and her crew were an enthusiastic team and the school’s Wellness Champion, Daria Caldwell, did an amazing job reaching out to families and helping organize the event, Grady said. Johnson Senior High School JROTC students and Highland Park Senior High School National Honor Society students eagerly pitched in and played a large part in making the day a success. A big thank you to Allina, Free Bikes 4 Kidz and all the SPPS staff who helped coordinate the event.

SPPS Student Advisory Team featured last week in ‘I Am SPPS’
The “I Am SPPS” campaign shares photos and quotes from SPPS students, staff, families and supporters. The campaign can be found on Facebook, Twitter and spps.org/iamspps. Last week “I Am SPPS” featured several Student Advisory Team members, including:

  • Marcelus, student at Harding Senior High
  • Skyler, student at Harding Senior High
  • Serena, student at Central High School

OWL Teacher Speaks With Teacher of the Year Radio
Open World Learning Community (OWL) teacher Megan Olivia Hall recently was interviewed by Teacher of the Year Radio on "Three Ways Teachers Can Celebrate the Holidays with Cultural Sensitivity." Hall, who teaches science, was the 2013 Minnesota Teacher of the Year.