Thursday, April 22, 2010

McKinley Middle school students' award-winning documentary to air on CSPAN

Three students at McKinley Middle Charter School in Racine will be interviewed live on Tuesday, April 27 on CSPAN's national morning call-in program, Washington Journal.

Madison Richards, Samantha Knoll and Lauren Nixon will discuss their winning documentary, "I've Got Power," which will air prior to Washington Journal at 6:50 a.m. on Tuesday. (Watch the documentary above.)

The McKinley students won $5,000 in the national StudentCam competition for their video about nuclear energy.

StudentCam, now in its sixth year, invited all students in grades 6-12 to produce a five-to-eight minute documentary focusing on one of our country’s strengths or a challenge the country is facing. Students overwhelmingly focused on challenges facing America, with health care and the economy as the top two issues addressed.

All winning videos are available to view at

The annual competition is sponsored by C-SPAN Classroom and the documentaries were judged by a panel of C-SPAN representatives. The documentaries were evaluated based on the thoughtful examination of the competition’s theme, quality of expression, adherence to the time limit, inclusion of varying sides of the documentary’s topic, and incorporation of C-SPAN programming.

This year's StudentCam competition generated a record number of entries. Nearly 2,000 students from 45 states and the District of Columbia submitted 1,003 entries, an 8% increase over StudentCam 2009.

C-SPAN awarded a total of 75 student prizes and 11 faculty advisor prizes totaling $50,000, including: a grand prize winner, two first prize winners, eight second prize winners, 16 third prize winners, and 48 honorable mentions in both middle and high school categories.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Racine's North Beach a finalist for national award

The city is in the running for a national award honoring work done to breath life back into North Beach. Here's a press release announcing the project is one of 15 finalists for the recognition:

The City of Racine is a finalist for the 2010 U.S. Conference of Mayors/Waste Management City Livability Award.
The purpose of the award is to improve the quality of life in their cities. The North Beach Restoration project is one of 15 finalists out of 200 applications.
North Beach has become a focal point for Racine and Southeastern, WI. Average weekday bather density at North Beach has increased from 126 in 2005 to 641 in 2008 with weekend beach visits exceeding 5,000 per day.
Other than providing a direct outlet for recreational water sports and sunbathers, the restoration of North Beach has also resulted in the attraction of venues such as the EVP Pro-Beach Volleyball Tour, the Spirit of Racine Triathlon which this summer becomes the Ironman 70.3 Racine Triathlon, and the annual Fourth of July Fireworks display which attracts upwards of 30,000 individuals
The players from the EVP association have voted Racine the Host City of the Year four consecutive years. This year the World Series of Water Cross Jet Ski races will be added to that venue in June.
The North Beach Oasis has become a well-known spot for musical entertainment on some weeknights and on weekends in the summer. The beach is also host to several “end of year” celebration events for local schools as well as being a living class room during the academic year.
In 2010 North Beach will become fully handicapped accessible, directly to the water’s edge, to allow mobility challenged individuals to fully participate in the beach experience.
Winners of the award will be announced by May 22.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Wadewitz teacher Heather Eisenman recognized for her dedication to students

Milwaukee TV station WTMJ-4 named a Wadewitz Elementary School special education teacher its "Top Grade Teacher" of the month in April. 

Heather Eisenman received the recognition after her friend, Tim Smith, sent in a nomination to the TV station. She's the only Racine education to receive the award in the past two years.

Here's the essay Tim wrote about Heather:
Mrs. Heather Eisenman is an amazing teacher. As a teacher of cognitively disabled students, she adapts the curriculum of FIVE DIFFERENT grade levels for her ONE classroom to best meet the needs of her students. Never one to complain, she greets her students cheerfully each morning, nurtures them with praise and "high fives" during the day and sends them home feeling accepted and loved despite their differences. Mrs. Eisenman is a true advocate for her students, not only as a teacher, but also as a Board member for the Autism Society of SE Wisconsin. She is a resource for teachers and parents when they need information on special education issues or community resources. If she does not know the answer, she will find it for you. Mrs. Eisenman is a teacher who cares for each and every one of her students as if they were her own biological children. Hugs are genuine and in abundance in her classroom. Her students love her and respond to her teaching style. The last several years, Mrs. Eisenman has implemented a program called "Lettuce Make you a Salad." Her students take orders from school staff members for home made salads. Students learn communication skills, math skills and food preparation. Proceeds from this program allow her students to go on field trips and fund activities throughout the year.--Spend ONE day with Heather Eisenman at Wadewitz School in Racine and you will agree that she is TRULY a "Top Grade Teacher." The students and staff of our school are blessed to know her.

Gateway AITP students take first, second place at nationals

Gateway Technical College student Jenny Counter (Kenosha) brought home first place while Jordan Mahoney (Genoa City) took second at the 15th Annual Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP) National Collegiate Conference in St. Louis.

Counter took first place in the Student Banner Competition while Mahoney took second in the Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals (ICCP) Exam Competition.

Mahoney and Joseph Bergles (Union Grove) were awarded ICCP Associate Computing Professionals certifications.

A total of 27 Gateway students traveled to the March 31 competition, competing against their peers from two-year and four-year colleges from across the country. A total of 69 colleges were represented at the event.

Computer professionals from across the nation help judge these events, and are able to share their expertise with students. Competitions such as these prepare students for their career and give them experience that gives them an edge over other job-seekers as they enter the workforce.