US News Ranks 3 NCC Vo-Tech High Schools Among Top 7 High Schools in Delaware
Delcastle, Howard, and St. Georges each received bronze medal designations and are listed among the top 7 high schools in Delaware, according to US News & World Report's latest ranking. The magazine recently released its 2013 Best High Schools listing, and our three schools were ranked along with Sussex Tech as the state's best schools following silver medalists Delmar (1st), Sussex Central (2nd), and Indian River (3rd). No other high schools in Delaware received medal designations.
Methodology used for the ranking included how students performed on state proficiency tests, how disadvantaged students in each school performed on state tests when compared to other students in their state, and a college readiness index tied to students taking AP and IB tests.
This excerpt is taken directly from the article:
"The magazine analyzed 21,035 public high schools in 49 states and the District of Columbia. This is the total number of public high schools that had 12th-grade enrollment and sufficient data from the 2010-2011 school year to analyze. (Nebraska was the only state that did not report enough data and therefore was not evaluated for any part of the rankings.) In total, U.S. News nationally ranked the 4,805 highest-scoring schools as gold, silver, or bronze. A high school's position in the numerical rankings, whether they were awarded a medal, or whether they were ranked at all, was dependent on how high they scored in all three steps of the rankings methodology."
There were 500 gold medal schools, 1,790 silver medal schools, and 2,515 bronze medal schools. According to the article, "A bronze medal school either does not offer any AP or IB courses, or its college readiness index was less than the median of 14.8 needed to be ranked silver."
This marks a repeat recognition for Delcastle, which earned a bronze medal in the 2012 rankings and was one of only 8 Delaware high schools to receive a medal designation.
To see the 2013 ranking:http://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/delaware/rankings
To read about the magazine's methodology, visit:
All NCC Vo-Tech High Schools Make AYP; Howard Posts Highest Gains
The Delaware Department of Education released school accountability ratings Friday, August 31, for the 2011-12 school year. All four New Castle County Vo-Tech High Schools - Delcastle, Hodgson, Howard, and St. Georges - made Adequate Yearly Progress by meeting or exceeding progress targets for percentages of students participating and meeting standards for both reading and mathematics.
Howard High School of Technology, selected as a Partnership Zone school in September 2010, made the most progress on state tests. An intensive turnaround plan was introduced in the spring of 2011 that included increased time and more individualized instruction, common planning time for teams of teachers, and leadership changes.
In 2010, when the DSTP (Delaware Student Testing Program) assessments were still used, 46% of Howard 10th grade students met state proficiency standards in reading and 42% met proficiency standards in math. In 2011, Delaware switched from the DSTP to the Delaware Comprehensive Assessment System (DCAS). On the 2011 DCAS, the percent of Howard 10th grade students who met the standard climbed to 62% in reading and 63% in math. By 2012, the percent meeting standard reached 75% in reading and 81% in math.
Within two years, Howard nearly doubled the percentage of students meeting math standards and reading scores rose by 29 percentage points.
Howard has moved into the top 30 percent of public high schools meeting state standards after being labeled as being among the lower achieving in 2010 when the school posted scores 18 percentage points lower than the state average on the reading assessment and 15 percentage points lower than the state average on the math assessment. By 2012, after implementing the Partnership Zone plan, the school's scores outpaced the state average for students meeting standards by 4 percentage points in reading (State 71% meeting/Howard 75%) and by 10 percentage points in math (State 71% meeting/Howard 81%).
Howard Principal Stanley Spoor credits the entire Howard community - students, staff, and parents - for the success.
"We are extremely proud of our DCAS results," Spoor said Friday. "Our progress is the result of the focused, hard work of our staff and students, with support from parents. We implemented a dynamic instructionalplan centered on the small learning community concept, a structure that allowed for common planning time for teachers, the teaming of students and teachers, and individualized instructional time for underperforming students. Goals for student achievement levels were established at the beginning of the year and we are very pleased that we exceeded those goals."
"We are not letting up," added Spoor. "Students who choose to come to Howard need to know that their successful achievement is our core focus. We have created a reputation we intend to keep and to build upon."
John Lynch and Matt Carre Among iEducate Delaware Finalists
The Rodel Foundation of Delaware is excited to announce the 15 finalists of the iEducate Delaware™ initiative, recognizing the unsung heroes of public education statewide. Finalists represent a diverse cross section of parents, educators, community leaders, and other inspiring individuals from up and down the state who are dedicating their time, commitment, and leadership to Delaware's public schools.
Check out the nominees - some of which have projects grounded in technology. Be ready to vote on August 15 for your favorite!
2012-13 District Teacher of the Year - Donna Poore!
Congratulations to St. Georges first District Teacher of the Year, Social Studies instructor, Donna Poore. Donna came to the District in 2008 and teaches 9th, 10th, and 11th grade Global Studies, Civics/Economics, and US History. She has a Bachelor of Arts in History Education from the University of Delaware and a Master of Instruction: Teaching and Learning from Wilmington University. To quote her supervisor, "Mrs. Poore is highly motivated and is an expert in her craft. She makes learning meaningful and enjoyable... and works extremely hard to ensure that all students in her classes have the opportunity to achieve their maximum potential." Donna participates in many building committees and initiatives as well as summer curriculum work. She will represent the NCCVT School District in the state competition this fall. Please congratulate Donna and wish her well as she works to bring the 2013 State Teacher of the Year honor to the District!
Please also congratulate the 2012-13 building Teachers of the Year from Delcastle, Hodgson, and Howard:
Delcastle's Kevin Madigan has been with the District for 6 years and teaches 9th grade Physical Science. He has a Bachelors degree in Entomology and Wildlife Conservation from the University of Delaware and a Masters in Elementary Education from Wilmington University. He has been involved with the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) mentoring program, the GK-12 program, and athletic coaching. His department chair wrote of him, "The reason I would choose Kevin to be the teacher of my children is because he knows science, teaches so the kids can know it, makes it interesting so that kids want to know it, and ensures the appropriate level of understanding for a multiple of ability levels."
Hodgson's Rachael Smith came to the District in 2008 after completing her teaching certification through the Alternative Routes to Education program at the University of Delaware and teaching at the Delaware Military Academy. She has a degree in Biology and Psychology with a concentration in Neuroscience from the UD. She teaches Biology and is a coach, a class advisor, and a member of Hodgson's Instructional Leadership Team. One of her former students wrote, "I would not currently be pursuing a dual MMS/MPH graduate degree if not for the phenomenal teaching capabilities of Mrs. Smith. Her passion for the field of science is evident in her teaching and has inspired many to pursue future careers in the chemical, biological, and medical sciences."
Howard's Matt Carre has taught English for HHST for 4 years and has a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from the University of Pennsylvania. He is currently in the Masters in Reading program at the University of Delaware. Matt graduated in 2003 from Howard as the valedictorian, prom king, and all-state athlete and brings both his athletic leadership skills and instructional talents to the classroom. He is the 10th grade academy leader, an ILT member, and an athletic coach, and he has represented Howard at statewide conferences. His department chair wrote, "In the classroom, Matt is dynamic. I have observed him interact with students, inspiring them to read for enjoyment and changing their attitudes about themselves. It is common for Matt to take students who have been unsuccessful in the past and mold them into positive, self-assured learners who brag about their own accomplishments."
Dinosaur Google Drawn by Delcastle Student Wins State Contest
Delcastle's Freddy Ruiz needs your vote in a contest to select his artwork. His Google drawing, a representation of dinosaurs that loosely resemble the Google logo, was selected as Delaware's winning entry for the national Doodle4Google contest. Google Doodle winning entries from all 50 states were announced Wednesday, and voting will be open through May 10 to determine the national winner. To vote, visit: GOOGLE
Freddy is an 11th grade plumbing student at Delcastle. He entered the contest after a friend told him about it. Drawing has been his hobby for many years. He first drew the Doodle image in pencil, then used water color. Delcastle hosted an assembly Wednesday afternoon where Google representatives unveiled Freddy's artwork and presented him with his state award.
Senator Coons guest-teaches at Howard High School for Teach for America Week
WILMINGTON, Del. -- In celebration of Teach For America (TFA) Week, Senator Chris Coons served as a guest teacher at Howard High School of Technology in Wilmington on April 5, 2012. Leading the advanced biology class normally taught by TFA science teacher Ashley Sorenson, Senator Coons spoke with juniors and seniors about the value of higher education and encouraged the students to pursue careers in science and technology. "The 21st century economy is taking root in science and technology, and if we want to make our economy stronger and our nation morecompetitive, we have to give students the skills they need to succeed in STEM fields," Senator Coons said about the experience. "It's imperative that our children have positive role models to reinforce the importance of education and encourage them to pursue higher education, and that is what young Teach ForAmerica educators do." Howard has two TFA teachers on its faculty. Since its launch in 1997, Teach For America Week has brought hundreds of distinguished guest teachers from across America into our nation's schools to inspire students to reach their highest potential.
Senator Coons leads a classroom discussion on STEM education and career potential
Governor Appoints Former County Police Officer Renee Taschner to NCC Vo-Tech Board of Education
Renee C. Taschner, a retired New Castle County Police senior sergeant, has been appointed by Gov. Jack Markell to serve a seven-year term on the New Castle County Vocational Technical School District Board of Education. Taschner took her oath of office at the school board's monthly meeting December 19.
Unlike other Delaware public school districts, vo-tech school board members are appointed by the Governor, not elected by the community. Taschner, 47, fills the seat formerly held by Ray Christian, a retired Colonial School District superintendent who died in September after an extended illness.
Taschner first entered public service as a Delaware State Police dispatcher, before graduating from the New Castle County Police Academy in 1988. She was one of only two women in that graduating class. Taschner served on the force until retiring in 2004.
A Delaware resident for over 30 years, she is a graduate of Dickinson High School and earned a degree in Criminal Justice/Police Science from Delaware Technical and Community College. She has served as treasurer and secretary of the Fraternal Order of Police, and is a member of and chaplain for the NCC Police Alumni Association.
School District Superintendent Victoria Gehrt said she and the district administration look forward to the expertise Taschner will bring to the seven-member board.
"Her wide range of experiences in the law enforcement field, as well as in public service and community outreach, will certainly add value to our Board," said Gehrt. "We look forward to her tenure with us."
"New Castle County Vo-Tech has an outstanding reputation for doing positive things for students," said Taschner. "I consider it an honor to have been selected by the Governor to serve with the other members of this well-respected board, to continue with the good work they are doing." She said she is eager to get into the four vo-tech high schools to observe instruction and learn about the programs offered to students. "I want to assure the community that we are providing students the necessary tools to be successful after graduation," she said.
Taschner and her husband, Jeff, live in the Newark area with their two children.
Renee C. Taschner
GOVERNOR SEES STUDENTS TURNING LAYOFFS INTO NEW LEASES ON LIFE
Dozens of students shared their stories with Delaware Governor Jack Markell and a group of state lawmakers as they visited Delaware Skills Center this week. Students who had been employed in the finance, insurance and retail sectors and recently lost jobs due to downsizing are actively engaged learning new skills and gaining certification in areas such as computer support, medical assistant, construction electric and HVAC. Upon completion, the Delaware Skills Center helps students secure jobs. 80% of the students who completed courses in 2011 obtained employment.
"I saw motivated men and women re-making themselves and learning new skills so they will have a job in today's market," said Governor Markell. "Delaware Skills Center is giving them the education they need to re-tool themselves in a challenging job market. They are giving themselves the chance to secure new futures for themselves and their families."
Recent course upgrades include solar thermal heating, heat pump operation and energy efficiency training in HVAC, Linux, green IT, software trouble shooting and customer service training was added to the computer support course. Medical Assistant students are practicing medical laboratory procedures and electronic medical records applications. Input from advisory committees members from business directs changes in course content and course offerings are built in response to high demand jobs identified by the business community and the Delaware Department of Labor. Courses are funded by the Delaware Workforce Investment Board and the Delaware Office of Education.
Adult Vocational School Highlights Success in Helping the Unemployed
District Meal Benefits Available Throughout School Year
The New Castle County Vo-Tech School District offers free or reduced-price meals to any student who qualifies. To apply for these benefits, a Meal Benefit Form must be completed. Forms are available online, in the Guidance Office, or from the school cafeteria manager. Forms should be completed and then returned to Guidance or the Cafeteria. You will be notified by mail with the results. You may apply at any time during the school year should your income change or should you become unemployed. Please remember in this changing, stressful economy, that these meal benefits are available through our school district. Thank you.
High School News!
iPads in Use at Howard High School Classrooms
Howard High School of Technology is the first public high school in Delaware to issue iPads to students for use as an educational tool to enhance instruction with the goal of improving student achievement. More than 800 iPads were distributed to students in early November. Students use the tablets in school and at home to complete assignments, research, and engage in network communication.
Delcastle Culinary Arts Team Wins Farmer and Chef Contest 3rd Consecutive Year!
The Delcastle Cooks and Bakers Culinary Arts team scored a three-peat win Thursday night, September 20th, at the 5th annual The Farmer and The Chef fundraiser event benefitting the March of Dimes. The event pairs local farmers with local chefs who create tasting samples for all attendees, using products provided by the farm. Attendees then vote on their favorite dishes. The event was held at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington.
The cook-off had nearly 40 chefs representing such notable establishments as the Hotel DuPont, the Chelsea Tavern, Krazy Kats, Union City Grille, Caffe Gelato, Ole Tapas, and the University & Whist Club among others. Delcastle Cooks and Bakers took top honors once again!
1st Place: Delcastle Technical High School Cooks & Bakers, Chef Jim Berman and Chef Michael Mullen, paired with Kalmar Farm and Magee Farms, and Dawson's Seafood/Virginia Marine Products Board
2nd Place: Woodside Farm Creamery with Chef Jim Mitchell
3rd Place: Sanford School Chef Mike Galvin, paired with Fifer Orchards
Hodgson Grad on Cast of Survivor
2008 Hodgson graduate and former Miss Delaware USA Katie Hanson appears on this season of the CBS reality television series "Survivor." Katie, 22, a student at the University of Delaware, is competing in the Philippines along with 17 other cast members for the sole survivor prize. The show airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m.
Hodgson's Environmental Tech Students Featured in National Pilot for Green Education
Environmental Landscape Technology students, under the direction of instructor Justin Benz, helped pilot curriculum along with a handful of other schools across the country this past year, regarding water conservation initiatives. Featured on the Green Education Foundation's website, Hodgson students participated in the water unit component of a new Green Building Course.
According to the article, During the unit on water, students at Paul M. Hodgson Vocational Technical High School in Newark, DE conducted audits of their school building to make real recommendations to improve water efficiency. This group of students was inspired and challenged by what they learned about water conservation. According to their Environmental Landscape Technology Instructor, Justin Benz, "The students really engaged with the units in the Green Building Course, particularly when completing the audits. The course provided a great balance of quantitative and qualitative learning strategies, all the while remaining very visually engaging and interesting. The materials and technology were easy to access and implement, and I enjoyed using the PDF viewer to display them in the class, so much better than the traditional overhead."
Delcastle Ranked Among Top 8 High Schools in Delaware by US News & World Report
The annual U.S. News & World Report Magazine released its Best High Schools ranking on Monday, and Delcastle was listed as a bronze medalist! Methodology used for the ranking included how students performed on state proficiency tests, how disadvantaged students in each school performed on state tests when compared to other students in their state, and a college readiness index tied to students taking AP and IB tests. Only eight Delaware high schools made the ranking - Charter School of Wilmington, Cab Calloway School of the Arts, Woodbridge High School, Delcastle Technical High School, Indian River High School, Milford Senior High School, Sussex Central Senior High School, and Sussex Tech
Taken directly from the article: "The magazine analyzed 21,776 public high schools in 49 states and the District of Columbia. This is the total number of public high schools that had 12th-grade enrollment and sufficient data, primarily from the 2009-2010 school year, to analyze. (Nebraska was the only state that did not report enough data and therefore was not evaluated for any part of the rankings.) In total, U.S. News nationally ranked the 4,877 highest-scoring schools as gold, silver, or bronze. A high school's position in the numerical rankings, whether they were awarded a medal, or whether they were ranked at all, was dependent on how high they scored in all three steps of the rankings methodology." There were 500 gold medal schools, 2008 silver medal schools, and 2869 bronze medal schools. "A bronze medal school either does not offer any AP or IB courses, or its college readiness index was less than the median of 16.3 needed to be ranked silver."
St. Georges Biotechnology Program Featured as STEM Initiative
The Biotechnology career program at St. Georges Technical High School is featured as a primary example of Delaware's S.T.E.M. (Science Technology Engineering Math) educational initiative. See the 5-minute video on the Content Delaware digital reporting website at:
Eight Delcastle Culinary Arts Students Win Presidential Award
Eight Delaware students have been awarded the President's Volunteer Service Award. All are from Delcastle Technical High School. The President's Service Award is issued by the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation on behalf of the President of the United States to recognize the best in the American spirit. All award winners have worked to improve their communities through volunteer service.
Award recipients will be sponsored by Lowe's to attend the 2012 SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in Kansas City, Mo. The winning students are Jenifer Ceja, Christina Dale, Alexa Dunkle, Jaymar Harrison, Gena Marra, Beatriz Rosales, Amber Snipes, and Aziza Taylor.
Hodgson Environmental Landscape Tech Students Create Garden for Hospital
Hodgson students' project produced raised garden beds and access pathways for residents at Emily P. Bissell Hospital. See the story by visiting the News Journal link:
Hodgson Technical High School students (from left) Stacy Kline, 16, Ron Killen, 18, and Deanna Evans, 17, lay gravel around the base of one of the raised garden beds at Emily Bissell Hospital.
Delcastle Electrical Trades Takes Classroom to the Roof
A new solar energy system installed on the roof above the commercial industrial electrical trades lab at Delcastle was dedicated Wednesday morning by school district officials and industry partners who donated the equipment. The event was covered by the News Journal, Channel 6, and WDEL. A feature story is expected to be published within the next few days in the News Journal, but video of the event is available at:
Howard High School of Technology students Julianna Beltz (left) and Aunyaie Parker hand off desserts as they serve residents of Luther Towers in Wilmington at the sixth annual Sweetheart Ball. / The News Journal/WILLIAM BRETZGER
Delcastle Biology Teacher Visits Local Elementary Schools
Read about Delcastle biology teacher Brian Gross's visits with some interesting pals to area elementary classrooms.
At Howard camp, students explore potential career paths
Every summer, middle schoolers fill the classrooms of Howard High School of Technology to explore future careers. The campers spend four half days in their chosen areas and seem to have a common complaint: "It's just not long enough." For more information click on Career Camp.
Cosmetology students at Howard's Summer Camp
Hodgson's Art Club Creates Mural
Hodgson's Art Club spent several Saturdays at the Delaware City Arts Center designing and painting a mural for their Between Fences exhibit. The exhibit, located at 60 Clinton Street, officially opened March 21st and will run through May 1st.
The Between Fences Exhibit is part of Museum on Main Street, a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and the Delaware Humanities Forum. The Art Club mural featured several images depicting Delaware City's unique flavor...the Fire Hall, Crabby Dick's restaurant, the park benches, a Fort Delaware soldier, the Edwin Reybold house, etc.
The mural served as a backdrop for the exhibit, which explores the importance of fences in defining American history. The Arts Center will host several lectures and events to further explore the Between Fences theme in the coming weeks.
Participants in mural: Shakena Corbett, Taylor Murphy, Anna Henry, Kevin McCarthy, Michael Stumpf, Jillian Ousey, Kelly Boyle, Erin Foraker, Bryana Hahn, Gloria Hahn (advisor), and Rolinda Roper (advisor).
Hodgson's Art Club Members and the mural they created for the Between Fences exhibit
Delcastle Students Bake Cookies For Police Officers
"Bake the Night Away" was an overnight effort by Delcastle's culinary arts students designed to make 500 dozen cookies for hundreds of police officers statewide. The 6,000 cookies were contributed to "Cookies for Cops," an annual program sponsored by Mothers Against Drunk Driving as a holiday thank you to police for trying to keep impaired drivers off the highways.
Delcastle Graphic Arts Wins Poster Contest
Congratulations to Delcastle Graphic Arts students who were winners in the Delaware Department of Natural Resources Conservation Youth Poster Design Contest, New Castle County division. Emily Hunter won 1st Place; Tiffany Noel, 2nd place; and Ammon Hutt, 3rd place. The students were recognized in an assembly on December 16 and received certificates and cash awards. Emily's poster can be viewed at the DNREC web site by clicking on More Info.
Hodgson's Chef Gerry Treese Wins Ice Sculpting Award
Temperatures hovering below 30 degrees with a wind chill that made it feel like 17, made for ideal ice-sculpting weather for three carvers on Saturday morning, January 31st on the Boardwalk outside the Atlantic Sands Hotel.
Chef Gerry Treese, a culinary teacher at Hodgson Vocational School, started with a 300 lb. block of ice and transformed it into an airplane in just a couple of hours.
To read more about the contest, click on more info.
Hodgson's Dental Assisting Clinic Provides Free Dental Care
As part of a special arrangement between Brader Elementary School and the New Castle County Vocational Technical School District, Hodgson's Dental Assisting students learn workplace skills while under-insured children receive free dental care.
"Dollar Wi$e" Campaign Kicked Off at Howard's Academy of Finance and Business
Students from Howard's Academy of Finance and Business and their instructors, Mr. Matt Kane and Tim Johnson, hosted the kickoff of Howard's participation in Wilmington's "Dollar Wi$e" Campaign last week. Wilmington Mayor James M. Baker, the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League (MWUL), the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and Citigroup announced Wilmington's participation in this national program - a collaborative effort created by the U.S. Conference of Mayors to help citizens achieve better financial security through a series of free financial literacy training classes. The campaign targets Wilmington residents of all income levels and urges citizens to be financially literate and save for the future. The free financial literacy classes will be co-hosted by MWUL and the Delaware Money School.
You can watch our students in the WPVI-TV piece by clicking on the link:
Howard Pioneers Structural Steel Detailing Program
Howard started a structural steel detailing program four years ago and is one of the only schools in the country -- if not the only one -- with such a program. Other schools might have a detailing class, but not a three-year program like the one at Howard High, said Patrick Mulhern, who teaches the trade at the school.
Instructor Pat Mulhern works with a student in class.
Howard Cosmetology Students Featured in Sunday News Journal Article
If you thought the only connection between hair and furniture would involve the action of a vacuum cleaner, think again. Howard cosmetology students are working with a famous designer, incorporating their braided creations into furniture.
Hodgson Students Learn How to Install Solar Panels
GLASGOW, DEL. - May 29, 2008 (WPVI, By Laura Wilson) -- Students at Hodgson Vo-Tech High School will have one up on other newcomers in the electrical trade industry.
Thanks to a company that specializes in renewable industry, and a $10,000 grant from the Delaware Department of Energy, these kids installed solar panels to a portion of their own school. The students learned about solar energy by reading books supplied by the General Electric company, and by doing their own Internet research. "I think we're the first people in the nation to install that in a high school. To me, it's kind of a great experience," said junior Brian Ksiazek.
As for why this project is so important, junior Steve Lebischak said "we're going to run out of fossil fuels sooner or later and we're going to need some way to power America."