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Education & Schools

Three Southern Nevada Students Named Presidential Scholars


The 49th class of U.S. Presidential Scholars have been announced, and they include three students from southern Nevada.

The 141 students represent some of the best and brightest from around the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

The 2013 Presidential Scholars for southern Nevada are Caolinn Y. Mejza, Las Vegas Academy of International Studies, Performing & Visual Arts, Sharon T. Fang, Clark High School, Justin M. Joseph, Valley High School.

The awards are not just given for academic excellence but also for community service, leadership and a demonstrated commitment to high ideals.

The three students from southern Nevada were selected from the more than 3,000 candidates who qualified for the 2013 awards because of their scores on the SAT and ACT exams. A commission then reviewed applications and selected the scholars.

The program was founded in 1964 and since it was created has honored more than 6,000 students.

Martin, Academy Students Win RTC Art Contest

Martin, Academy Students Win RTC Art Contest


Rudy Amaya of Roy Martin Middle School and Jessica Judd of Las Vegas Academy earned top honors in the RTC’s Earth Day art contest.

The annual contest, sponsored by the RTC and Vector Media, invited local students in grades six through 12 to create artwork that celebrates Earth Day and the RTC’s sustainability initiative, “quicker, cleaner, greener.”

More than 300 students from 17 schools across the valley participated in this year’s contest. The artwork of the two winners will be displayed on the outside of RTC transit vehicles and will travel valley streets for up to a year.   

Runners-up were also recognized with certificates of achievement. They included:

Kids Get Lesson in Healthy Eating from Local Chef

Kids Get Lesson in Healthy Eating from Local Chef


A local nonprofit along with a local chef brought the message of healthy eating directly to kids in a demonstration at a southern Nevada school Thursday.

Create A Change Now brought Chef Shane Stuart to McWilliams Elementary School to show kids about healthy eating and teach them how to make a fresh garden smoothie.

The effort goes beyond just Thursday's event. Create A Change Now also helped plant a garden at the school to show the students where fresh food comes from and how to use it.

The chef took the ingredients for the smoothie from the garden planted by the children.

"We are hoping to effect our rates of childhood obesity. In the state of Nevada, we are 11th in the nation and it is time for us to start caring about our next generation," Create A Change Now founder Candace Maddin said.

Dinosaurs to Touch, Ride on Display at Cashman Center

Dinosaurs to Touch, Ride on Display at Cashman Center


Kids will get a chance to get close up to some of the fierce creatures that once roamed the earth.

The Discover the Dinosaurs exhibit opens its doors this weekend at Cashman Center. The exhibit features 60 animatronic and museum-quality dinosaur replicas.

"It is a concept of an attraction plus a museum. We are priding ourselves on being educational and informative plus also having activities for kids to do," show manager Steven Rosholt said.

The display is not just to look at, kids will also get a chance to get up close and actually touch some of the replicas. Kids will even get a chance to ride the biggest, fiercest dinosaur in the Jurassic Period, the Tyrannosaurus Rex.  

"It is a lot of work that we have to put in to move them around, but once the show comes and you see the kids faces light up. It just makes all the work worth it," Rosholt said.

Robots Take Over Cashman Center for Competition

Some of the best and brightest students from around the country are in Las Vegas this weekend for the FIRST Robotics Competition Southwest Regionals.

More than 47 high school teams from seven states and seven countries will be competing against each other at Cashman Center.

The students have spent the past six weeks creating robots that can toss disks into a goal and then climb a pyramid. During the competition, the robots must try to score as many disks into the goals as possible in two minutes and 15 seconds.

Disks that hit higher goals score more points. Robots which can then climb the pyramids at the end of the match get bonus points.

The winners of this weekend's competition move on to the national championships set for later this month in St. Louis, Missouri.

The whole idea behind the competition is to get kids interested in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, classes.  

Six Schools Benefit from New Reading Centers

Six Schools Benefit from New Reading Centers


The Clark County School District is touting the success of a new program designed to improve student reading skills and educator effectiveness.

The Reading Skills Development Centers are a partnership between CCSD and UNLV and have been set up in six elementary schools. The centers focus on students kindergarten through third grade.

Tutors, coaching and master-reading teachers are all used in the centers to help students improve their reading skills.

Students from Camberio, Long, Manch, Martinez, Peterson and Williams elementary schools are benefitting from the program.

Those schools were chosen because they have a high number of English language learners, and low reading scores. However, the principals and staff were committed to increasing reading skills and improving instruction techniques.


Hyde Park Students Win Regional Science Bowl

Hyde Park Students Win Regional Science Bowl

Students from Hyde Park Middle School are now eligible to compete in the 23rd annual National  School Science Bowl, after winning the Nevada Regional Middle School Science Bowl this past weekend.

Hyde Park students competed against 30 other teams from across the state. They had to compete in a fast-paced Jeopardy-style game, solving technical problems and answering questions in all branches of science and math.

The students will be awarded an all-expense paid trip to the National Finals set for April 25 through 29.

The competition was created in 1991 by the Department of Energy as a way to encourage students to be leaders in science, technology, engineering and math. More than 200,000 students have participated in the science bowl during its 22 year history.