Education notes


■ Sayre Middle School students helped warm up Lexington with donations of hand-knitted hats, scarves, and booties. This year the recipients of the annual project were children from Kidz Konnection Daycare Center. Owner and director Margra Smith, also a Sayre parent, was on hand at Sayre Dec. 14 to pick up the donations for the 140-plus children enrolled at Kidz Konnection.

■ Stella Smith, coordinator of Fayette County Public Schools' Parent Resource Center, has received the Betty Triplett Award from the Kentucky Partnership for Families and Children. The honor goes to a professional who has demonstrated achievement in offering services, leading a program, advocating or going beyond the call of duty for children and families dealing with emotional, social or behavioral disabilities.

Smith was recognized at a Dec. 12 awards luncheon in Frankfort, where she received a plaque and a $500 check.

■ Winburn Middle School dominated the local field in the 10th annual Kentucky Colonels Sixth-Grade Academic Showcase. Lexington Traditional Magnet finished second, Edythe J. Hayes Middle came in third and Beaumont was fifth.

In the quick-recall segment, Winburn was tops, Hayes finished third, and LTMS was fourth.

The Dec. 5 showcase also included written assessments in several areas. Here are the top individual results from Fayette County Public Schools:

Language arts: Kathleen Yang, Winburn, first place; Parin Rekhaj, LTMS, second.

Math: Kathleen Yang, Winburn, first place; Angeline Hi, LTMS, second; Parin Rekhaj, LTMS, third.

Science: Angelina Shi, Winburn, first place; George Simpson, Beaumont, second; Jasmine Liu, Winburn, third.

Social studies: Angelina Shi, Winburn, first place; Eric Caudill, LTMS, second; Theodore Livas, Winburn, and Erin Christopher, Edythe J. Hayes, tied for third.

Arts & humanities: Erin Christopher, Edythe J. Hayes, first place; Stephen Perry, Winburn, second; Kyra Seevers, Beaumont, third.

■ Nearly 630 musicians from Fayette County's middle and high schools braved the spotlight for assessment Nov. 21 at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School. Playing alone or in small groups, they stood and performed, and each received written feedback and a rating of distinguished, proficient, apprentice or novice.

Seventy-four percent were deemed distinguished under the rigorous Kentucky Music Educators Association standards; not one student was ranked a novice.

The following high school students were selected to perform May 15 at the state Solo & Ensemble Festival:

From Bryan Station High School: Allie Wood, Rebecca Price and Logan Jackson.

From Henry Clay High School: Julia McCorvey and Daniel Webb.

From Lafayette High School: Jacob Yates, David Takahashi, Heeju Son, Jonathan Karp, Sarah Grindle, Emily Farrer, Amy Fan, Alex DeMoll and Geoff Britton.

From Paul Laurence Dunbar High: Mike Yang, Abbey Smiley, Emily Robbins, Ramya Matam, Prathyu Matam, Chongho Jeon and Sarah Goad.

■ About 130 robot-building students from across Central Kentucky participated in the First Lego League regional competition Dec. 5 at the University of Kentucky's Student Center.

The Denominators, Winburn Middle School's Winburn Warriors and the Athens-Chilesburg Elementary ACE Eagles will advance to the state FLL tournament Jan. 9 at Western Kentucky University's Diddle Arena.

In the regionals, each team constructed a robot using the LEGO NXT set and programmed it to complete missions on a competition mat. The teams also presented research on transportation issues to judges and explained their robot and programming in a technical presentation; the students were also judged on how well they worked together.

The following Fayette County students won awards at the competition:

Teamwork Award: Denominators (students from LTMS, Beaumont and Dixie).

Sportsmanship Award: Colorbots, Explorium and Harrison Elementary.

Team Spirit Award: ACE Eagles, Athens-Chilesburg Elementary.

Innovative Project Award: JLA Tigers, James Lane Allen Elementary.

Robot Design Quality Award: Mindstorms, Stonewall Elementary.

Robot Innovation Award: Winburn Warriors, Winburn Middle School.

Most Explosive Award: Bear Cat Techs, Bryan Station Traditional Magnet School.

Jeff Stellar Award: Robo Patriots, Veterans Park Elementary.

Rising Star Award: Arlington Eagles, Arlington Elementary.

Effort and Learning Award: RoboGeniuses, Stonewall Elementary.

Junior teams from Picadome and Arlington elementary schools also presented their research project and robots.

■ Alex Gardner, a senior at Henry Clay High School, won the League of Women Voters essay contest. This year's topic was the Electoral College. Gardner, who is in Keen Babbage's political science class, received a certificate and a $250 prize.

■ Ronald D. Eller, a professor of history at the University of Kentucky and award-winning author, recently received the Southern Political Science Association V.O. Key Award for his book Uneven Ground: Appalachia Since 1945.

The Southern Political Science Association presents the V.O. Key Award annually to an outstanding book on southern politics.

In Uneven Ground, Eller takes an analytical look at the recent transformation of Appalachian life as the region has struggled to meet the nation's expectations of progress and to maintain a suitable standard of living for its residents.

■ This fall, 34 schools across Fayette County participated in the National Parent-Teacher Association's Reflections art program. More than 200 entries were submitted through students' local PTA or PTSA. The theme of this year's competition was "Beauty is ..."

Reflections program district winners for 2009-2010 are:


Primary: William Maclain Cromwell, Rosa Parks, first place; Annika Sial, Cassidy, second; Karson Caswell, Stonewall, third.

Intermediate: Virginia Smith, Clays Mill, first place; Annie Griffith, second, Meadowthorpe; Bailey Watkins, Yates, third.

Middle: Shannon Calkins, Morton, first place; Athena Kern, Winburn, second; Ryan Springer, Tates Creek Middle, third.

Senior: Arunita Kar, Paul Laurence Dunbar, first place; Marylynne Anderson-Cooper, Bryan Station High, second; Shatila Zamen, Lafayette, third.

Film Production.

Primary: Daniel Callahan, first place, Veterans Park; Alec Bond, Cassidy, second; Karson Caswell, Stonewall, third.

Intermediate: Dasia Woods, first place, Julius Marks; Ariontaye Benton-Jones, Sandersville, second; Kayla Wall, Meadowthorpe, third.

Middle: Chinni Suryadevara, Morton, first place; Joshua Phillips, Tates Creek Middle, second; Lydia Sarver, Leestown, third.

Musical Composition.

Primary: Nate Meade, Rosa Parks, first place; Addison Jane Hollingshead, Maxwell, second; Parker Hodge, Millcreek, third.

Intermediate: Annalisa Casar, Clays Mill, first place; Donte Tichenor, Sandersville, second.

Middle: Tanner Duke, Winburn, first place.

Senior: J. Clay Gonzalez, Lafayette, first place.

Dance Choreography.

Intermediate: Mary Mason, Rosa Parks, first place; Elora Mukhopadhyay, Stonewall, second; Christina Allston, Sandersville, third.

Middle: Presli Neal, Tates Creek Middle, first place; Molly Felty, LTMS, second.

Senior: Shawntez Taylor, Bryan Station High, first place.


Primary: Ronnie Morris, Picadome, first place; Jackson Gonzales, Liberty, second; Kolton Perkins, Sandersville, third.

Intermediate: Maxwell Schneider, Glendover, first place; Will Feese, Cassidy, second.

Middle: Abigail Watkins, LTMS, first place; Mary Helen Pepper, Beaumont, second; Claire Roberts, Morton, third.

Senior: Charlotte Eckmann, Tates Creek High, first place; Marylynne Anderson-Cooper, Bryan Station High, second; Arlene Wang, Paul Laurence Dunbar, third.

Special Education: Creighton Noal, Athens-Chilesburg, first place.

Visual Arts.

Primary: William Ding, Rosa Parks, first place; Elizabeth Solie, Stonewall, second; Anya Hartman, Athens-Chilesburg, third.

Intermediate: Billy Pence, Sandersville, first place; Eleanor Liu, Meadowthorpe, second; Kate Joseph, Athens-Chilesburg, third.

Middle: Tanya Warren, Beaumont, first place; McKayla Pennington, LTMS, second; Kyla Kepcha, Tates Creek Middle, third.

Senior: Tori Jenkins, Bryan Station High, first place; Olivia Hall, Lafayette, second; Ron Martin, Lafayette, third.

■ Carol E. Jordan, director of the University of Kentucky Center for Research on Violence Against Women, recently received the 2009 Jack Runyon Community Service Award for her community, state and legislative efforts in the area of domestic violence. The award was given by the Kentucky Psychological Association at the 2009 annual convention held in Lexington.


■ Fayette County Public Schools has been awarded a $99,995 grant for the 2020 Music project from the W. Paul and Lucille Caudill Little Foundation.

The funds, which will be distributed over two years, will provide for weekly music and voice lessons and instruments for at least 100 students who might not otherwise have an opportunity for private instruction.

The public schools will partner with the non-profit Central Music Academy for the lessons. Academy instructors — many of whom are university music students — will also act as mentors and role models for the students.

The University of Kentucky Woman's Club has awarded fellowships to several UK graduate students. The club's scholarships and fellowships are given in connection with the money raised for their university endowment and matched by the Research Challenge Trust Fund (Bucks for Brains) through the UK Graduate School. They are always given to support non-traditional students.

This year, in addition to the club's usual fellowships, they awarded a special Centennial Fellowship to Ann Niren, who is getting her doctorate in music.

The other recipients are Susan Hedgecock, nursing; Niki Munk, gerontology; Christina Wright, educational policy studies and evaluation; and Gini Kidwell, business administration.

The goal of the UK Woman's Club has been to give scholarships and fellowships to women over 25 years of age.

■ Three Lexington doctoral students at the University of Kentucky have received academic fellowships to pursue higher education.

Heather Chacon is the recipient of a University of Kentucky Association of Emeriti Faculty Fellowship. The $1,500 fellowship will be used by Chacon to support doctoral studies in English in the UK College of Arts and Sciences.

Sonya Munk is the recipient of a $2,000 University of Kentucky Woman's Club Endowed Fellowship. The fellowship will be used by Munk to support doctoral studies in gerontology in the UK College of Public Health.

Virginie Kidwell is also the recipient of a $2,000 University of Kentucky Woman's Club Endowed Fellowship. The fellowship will be used by Kidwell to support doctoral studies in business administration in the UK Gatton College of Business and Economics.