Education notes: June 29

A team from Bryan Station High School was among three "best in state" award winners at the 2011 Student Technology Leadership Program state championships.

Sophomores Ethan Doll, Oscar Maldonado and Minh Tran and their Microsoft MultiLanguage Office project will represent Kentucky at the International Society for Technology in Education's summer conference in Philadelphia. It's the first time a group from Fayette County Public Schools has been invited to the ISTE event.

Three elementary schools earned "best in region" STLP state honors: Clays Mill (Movin' and Groovin' at Clays Mill by Madeline Cantrell, Haley Haggan, Dallyn Newsome, Ashton Pugh and Ben Stone), Julius Marks (Media Mania by Angelica Malkowski, Laura Mendenhall and Alena Woodson) and Maxwell (Que Pasa en Maxwell? by Lauren Graf, McKenna Helfenberger, Julia Peoples and Erin Zearfoss). Also, Ashland Elementary received "gold" status for its outstanding STLP program.

Two Fayette County instructors received special awards based on their time, talent and dedication to STLP. Julie Gaskin, a district technology resource teacher, earned the STLP Ambassador award; and Debbie Kiser, a library media specialist at Julius Marks Elementary, picked up the STLP Champion award.

More than 3,500 students from across the state participated in the sixth annual STLP event May 13 in Lexington. Projects were judged on educational value and value to the entire school and community. High-quality products in animation, digital citizenship, art, music, video and writing were presented. Students also competed in such categories as programming, Web design, video production, networking, computer repair and video game design.

The following Fayette County Public School students also received awards at the STLP 2011 state championships:

First-place winners:

Bryan Station High School, designing for gaming, Defender Game Design, Eric Ebner and Nick Graczyk. Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, proven learning quick tech recall, Xing Ma. Winburn Middle School, Racing to the Future, Sergio Quezada. Julius Marks Elementary, animation video, Sarah Kosieniak. Julius Marks Elementary, digital art/manipulated photo, Josh Baker. Liberty Elementary, proven learning quick tech recall, Reagan Smith. Northern Elementary School, RCX robo-extreme challenge, Northern Knights (Alex Clark, Ashley James, Fabian Martinez and Rene Salgado)

Second-place honors:

Lexington Traditional Middle School, RCX robo-extreme challenge, LTMS Blackcats (Lydia Duncan, Cassidy Kemplin, Regan Prater and Zach Mink, plus Austin Whitson of Bryan Station Middle School). Tates Creek Middle School, digital art/original art, Claire Seebold. Winburn Middle School, Web site design, Stephen Perry. Dixie Elementary, digital writing/technical writing, Zach Jordan. Julius Marks Elementary, digital citizenship, Kendall Hyatt. Julius Marks Elementary, digital feature video, Angelica Malkowski and Skylar Scott. Liberty Elementary, proven learning quick tech recall, Dakota List. Liberty Elementary School, bench challenge, Dakota List and Reagan Smith. Liberty Elementary, Minds On, Dakota List and Reagan Smith.

Ryan Williamson, a 2011 graduate of Lexington Christian Academy, has received a Bright Futures college scholarship awarded by the Kimberly-Clark Foundation. Ryan is the son of Gordon and Carrie Williamson of Lexington.

Established in 1993, the Bright Futures Scholarship Program awards college scholarships to children of Kimberly-Clark employees in the United States and Canada. Each scholarship is worth up to $20,000 ($5,000 a year for up to four years) for full-time students studying at accredited colleges and universities.

The foundation received 272 applications this year. The 68 recipients were chosen based on academic achievement, leadership and involvement in extracurricular activities.

■ A research publication by Charles Fox, an entomology professor at the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, has been named the best paper in the past two years in the Royal Entomology Society's Physiological Entomology journal published in London, England. The award was chosen by the journal's editors.

Fox's research on the cowpea weevil, a significant pest in tropical areas and in stored legumes, looked at the mating rate, lifespan, physical health and number of offspring produced by the beetle.

Suzanna Mitchell, a graduate of Dunbar High School and the University of Kentucky with a degree in psychology, has received a two-year Yale Fellowship in developmental social neuroscience to work on social cognition research in infants at risk for autism at the Yale Child Study Center.

Mitchell interviewed with Yale in April and was offered a job as a research assistant in a neuroscience lab at Yale and will head to Connecticut at the end of the summer.

■ Bluegrass Orthodontics in Lexington has started a Partners in Education program to provide funding to local schools. Teachers may use they money for supplies.

For every new child or adult who starts full orthodontic treatment at Bluegrass Orthodontics, $100 will be donated to the school of the patient's choice. Monday will be dispersed to local schools every two months and will include the name of the patient who selected that school to receive the donation The office has set of goal of $25,000 to be donated through August. For more information, call (859) 268-1190 or go to

■ The following awards were presented to students and faculty at the 155th commencement exercises of Sayre School on May 28. The 65 graduates will attend 40 colleges and universities in 21 states and Canada. Collectively, the class was offered more than $6 million in college-sponsored, four-year merit scholarships.

Valedictorian: Hayley Cunningham of Midway, daughter of Mark Cunningham and Katherine Dixon. Co-salutatorians: Gabriel Ambruso, son of Monica and Paul Ambruso, and Claire Simon, daughter of Kathryn C. Simon and the late F. Kevin Simon. Headmaster's Medal, C.V. Whitney Cup and Optima Award: Cabot Haggin, son of Elizabeth and Louis Haggin IV. Abby Sayre Cup: Ann Eason, daughter of Cindy and Daryl Eason, and Bea Cameron, daughter of John Cameron and the late Julie Cameron. Blue-Gold Awards: Griffin Miller, son of Cathy and Tom Miller; Madison Moynihan, daughter of Ashton Moynihan and John Moynihan; and Griffin Patterson, son of Jane and Bill Patterson.

Faculty awards were presented to Upper School English teacher George Bebensee, Upper School art teacher Elizabeth Foley and Middle School math teacher Kim Blackey.

Tom Isaacs, who retired after 40 years of teaching, also was honored.

■ Bluegrass Community and Technical College programs that develop literacy and promote dual credit enrollment will get a boost in funding thanks to grants from United Way of the Bluegrass.

A total of $44,000 will be distributed to BCTC Operation Read and to the Easing Transitions into Postsecondary Education program. The grants will fund one year of the BCTC programs, but the grants may be distributed for two additional years if the programs make satisfactory progress and funding is available. The funds were granted to community programs that build income, education or health in the community.

The BCTC Foundation is a non-profit organization that raises and manages money for scholarships, program support and campus development to support the mission of BCTC.