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My Town: Search for Kent ISD's next superintendent down to two

My Town: Search for Kent ISD's next superintendent down to two

KENT COUNTY, Mich.—The search for Kent Intermediate School District’s next superintendent is down to two people.

After the first round of interviews this week, the Kent ISD School board whittled down the pool of four finalists to two- Ron Caniff, superintendent of Grandville Public Schools; and Tom Martin, superintendent of West Ottawa Public Schools.  Superintendents Dr. Curtis Finch of the Mecosta-Osceola ISD and Dr. Sara Magana Shubel of East Grand Rapids Public Schools were not selected for second round interviews.

Caniff and Martin will be interviewed a second time Tuesday, March 31.  The person selected for the job will replace Kevin Konarska, who is retiring on June 30, after nine years of leading Kent ISD.

Down to four: Where the search for Kent ISD’s next superintendent stands

Down to four: Where the search for Kent ISD’s next superintendent stands

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Leaders of the Kent Intermediate School District are narrowing their search for the ISD’s next superintendent.

Board members will begin interviewing the four finalists this week.  The candidates include Ron Caniff, superintendent of Grandville Public Schools; Dr. Curtis Finch, superintendent of the Mecosta-Osceola ISD; Tom Martin, superintendent of West Ottawa Public Schools; and Dr. Sara Magana Schubel, superintendent of East Grand Rapids Public Schools.

Finch will be first up for questioning.  His interview will take place at 6 p.m. on Monday.  Shubel and Caniff will be interviewed Wednesday, starting at 6 p.m.; Martin will answer the Board’s questions on Thursday.  The second round of interviews will take place Tuesday, March 31.

State lawmaker on reading to local students: 'I cherish the opportunity'

State lawmaker on reading to local students: 'I cherish the opportunity'

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State Rep. Chris Afendoulis will be stopping by several local elementary schools and reading to area students in observance of March is Reading Month.

Rep. Afendoulis, R-Grand Rapids Township, emphasizes that reading is fundamental to a child’s long-term success.

“I’m excited to meet with students and to help them foster a love for reading,” Rep. Afendoulis said. “One of the great things about being a dad was reading to my children. I cherish the opportunity to visit classrooms and help promote a love for reading.”

My Town: No school, no problem! Four tips to keep your student learning over the holidays

My Town: No school, no problem!  Four tips to keep your student learning over the holidays

During the winter break from school, many students will pack away their books and turn their attention away from learning. 

To help ensure your students are still learning, statewide virtual learning school, Michigan Connections Academy, is sharing activities you can do as a family to keep your young students busy and their brains active over the break.

1.       Practice math while baking holiday cookies. Students struggle with fractions and always want to know when they will “use math in real life.” The perfect time to practice fractions is while you are baking cookies. Two-thirds of a cup plus 1/3 of a cup equals one whole cup, which your child will see as you work on making those cookies, helping develop a real life connection to what they are learning in school.

My Town: Schools awarded funding to take students to art hot spots

My Town: Schools awarded funding to take students to art hot spots

KENT COUNTY, Mich.—Thousands of students interested in Michigan’s cultural hot spots will now have a set of wheels to get there.

Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs this week announced the recipients of its latest round of grants for its Arts & Culture Trek grant program.  The organization is awarding $60,000 to 161 schools across the state, to pay for field trip transportation.  Each grant is worth up to $500 and must be used between Jan. 5, 2015 and March 29, 2015.

"A record-breaking number of Michigan K-12 teachers applied for an Arts & Culture Trek Grant this year, and the vast majority of recipients were awarded the full amount they requested," said Marianne Dorais, Executive Director of Michigan Youth Arts. "From Detroit to Kalamazoo to Flint to Marquette, this program will serve thousands of students from 42 counties across the state."

My Town Northview: School superintendent retires after 40 years in education

My Town Northview: School superintendent retires after 40 years in education

NORTHVIEW, Mich.—The Northview Board of Education is preparing to begin its search for a new superintendent.

Tuesday, Superintendent Mike Paskewicz announced he would retire July 1, 2015.  Paskewicz has led the district for five years.  Before that, he worked in the Grand Rapids Public Schools for 21 years and as superintendent in Ogden, Utah; Lake Zurich, Illinois; and Adams 12 Five Star Schools in Colorado.

"The Northview Public Schools community was blessed the last five years to have Mike Paskewicz as its superintendent. Dr. Paskewicz cares deeply about the students of the district, the staff, and the people the system serves. He successfully developed a context in which our students learn and out of which they find success for life. In the Northview way, Mike Paskewicz prepared everyone he touched for ‘life's next steps,’” stated Board President Dr. Tim Detwiler.

My Town: Assumption BVM students collect 150+ toys for families in need

My Town: Assumption BVM students collect 150+ toys for families in need

BELMONT, Mich. -- WZZM 13 is celebrating the end to yet another successful Toys for Tots School Spirit Challenge, thanks to an army of students scattered across West Michigan.

More than 40 schools participated in this year's drive, collecting more than 11,000 toys. Assumption BVM in Belmont collected 150 or more toys.

For additional toy totals and videos, visit the WZZM 13 Toys for Tots page.