Oklahoma City Public Schools Thursday announced the selection of Brenda Cassellius as deputy superintendent.
Cassellius will lead planning, development, assessment, and improvement of instruction and educational programs, according to an OKCPS press release.
Cassellius comes to OKCPS from Memphis, Tenn., where she serves as the middle school academic superintendent for 22,000 students.
She has 17 years of educational experience and earned her bachelors of arts degree from the University of Minnesota and her masters of arts in secondary education from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn. She is an Ed.D candidate for leadership and policy at the University of Memphis and is part of the 2007 Broad Superintendents Academy Fellowship.
While serving in her current position, Cassellius organized and led a district-wide Blue Ribbon Behavior Initiative, as well as the reconstitution of seven schools. She also made significant progress in increasing reading and math scores across the district, according to the release.
Cassellius is a member of the National Middle School Association, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, a forum member on the National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform, and a board member for the Tennessee Association for Middle Schools.
Other accomplishments include the Harvard Public Education Leadership Program; the Minnesota Superintendent Endorsement; received the Distinguished African-American Woman Educator Award; and recognition as an Assistant Principal of the Year nominee from Minneapolis Public Schools.
Cassellius will assume duties on July 2.
The Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics has announced the names of 71 students from across Oklahoma selected to begin classes in August.
Thirty-three girls and 38 boys have been selected to become the school’s 18th graduating class, in 2009. The group represents 28 counties and 53 high schools.
OSSM is a public, residential school for junior and senior high school students with exceptional ability in science and mathematics. Approximately 250 students from across the state applied to OSSM in March. The selection committee invited 125 students to Oklahoma City to participate in the interview portion of the application process.
“The Board of Trustees and I are very impressed with the scholastic and personal accomplishments of these students,” OSSM President Edna Manning said in a press release. “This year’s applicants are a focused group of young people who hold high aspirations.”
While at OSSM, students will participate in a rigorous academic program. In addition to high level courses in the sciences and mathematics, the curriculum includes computer science, humanities, the arts and physical education.
In their two years at OSSM, students must complete nine semesters of science; four semesters of mathematics, English, social science, physical education and foreign language; two semesters of fine arts and one semester of computer science. Each science class features a weekly three-hour lab. Students must also complete 60 hours of campus and community service.
To see the list, click here.
Everybody was somebody Monday night.
The Oklahoma City Public Schools Board of Education had an extensive list of honorees at its regular meeting. Those recognized included:
Beverly Story, principal of Wilson Elementary School, for receiving the Oklahoma Association of Elementary School Principals Principal of Excellence for 2007
Willis Alexander, a learning disabilities teacher at John Marshall High School, for receiving the TRIO Achiever Award, which recognizes civic, community and educational accomplishments prior participants have made beyond receiving their bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma, Project Threshold
Kortney Haynes, founder of the Shidler Sunshine Fund, for raising $47,000 for Shidler Elementary School. The school was able to purchase a large playground toy, library books, PE equipment, computers, printers and resurface blacktop on the playground
Great Expectation Model Classrooms at Adams Elementary, Dunbar Elementary, Mark Twain Elementary, Nichols Hills Elementary, Thelma R. Parks Elementary, Sequoyah Elementary, Stonegate Elementary, Van Buren Elementary
Britton Elementary School for meeting the state Department of Education’s Reading Sufficiency Act benchmark goal for 2006
Eisenhower Elementary School for meeting state Department of Education’s Reading Sufficiency Act benchmark goal for 2006
Six Title I schools for receiving Academic Achievement Awards
John Thompson, a teacher at John Marshall, for his participation in the Fulbright Teacher Exchange Program.
More than 40 students who participated in Oklahoma State Special Olympic Games
Classen School of Advanced Studies for being named one of Newsweek Magazine’s Top 100 Schools
Buchanan Elementary student Amber Gibson for winning the grand prize — a bicycle — for the “Be Smart — Don’t Start!” story board contest from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma
Douglass High School student Kenneth Kimbrough for selection to the Oklahoma Youth Philharmonic sponsored by the Guy Frasier Academy for Performing Arts.
Douglass students Glenn King and Marquincy Williams for placing in the Artfest 2007 centennial poster contest
Douglass girls track team for winning the 2007 Class 4A championship
Douglass track team member Samantha Hallman for winning four individual state titles and a state record in the 300 meter hurdles at the state meet
Northeast Academy student Lindsay Davis for being identified by Duke University’s Talent Search Program based on her scores on math and science state exams
Northeast Academy students Alleah Adkins, Jake Burdine and Jalen Gunter for meeting Oklahoma State Regents sub score minimums of 19 in the Duke talent search
Northeast Academy girls tennis team for winning the Academic Achievement Award from the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association
Northeast Academy boys tennis team for earning the Distinguished Academic plaque from the secondary schools athletics association
Jay Hoppe and Ben Rossavik, students at Classen School of Advanced Studies, for winning national champion in global marketing team at the Business Professionals of American National Leadership Conference in New York City
Also, the district will dispose of obsolete and surplus items at a June 23 auction.
Items include kitchen equipment, computers and peripherals and shop equipment. Also included are school buses dating to 1976.
“These items are no longer of value to the district due to functional obsolescence, usefulness or simple wear-and-tear,” Senior Facilities Officer Terry Wolfe said in a press release.
The auction will be at the District Service Center, 2500 NE 30th in Oklahoma City. For a schedule and additional information, call (405) 587-0224.
Sometimes it seems like only bad news comes out of public schools and test scores. That’s not the case.
At a recent state Board of Education meeting, six Oklahoma City Title I schools received money for exceeding Adequate Yearly Progress benchmarks by exceeding the Academic Performance Index un two or more years in mathematics, reading or exceptional student performance.
The recognition is part of the Title I Academic Achievement Awards under No Child Left Behind.
The awards honor high-poverty schools that have made significant improvements in reading and mathematics during the last three years, according to a state Department of Education press release.
For 2007, 19 Oklahoma schools earned the award, garnering approximately $429,000 in federal funds. Award amounts are based on enrollment.
“We are grateful to be able to reward schools that have gone the extra mile in helping all students be successful in reading and math, which are the focus areas of the federal Title I program and the building blocks of a quality education,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Sandy Garrett said in the release.
The number of schools honored varies from year to year, depending primarily on the amount of federal funding allocated.
“Every winning Oklahoma school this year has a student poverty rate of 76 percent or greater,” Garrett said. “Poverty continues to pose significant challenges for Oklahoma families and for their schools. So these funds will be put to good use as our winning schools intensify their efforts to serve the students of our state who are most in need.”
The OKCPS schools are:
Columbus Enterprise Elementary
Exceptional student performance
To see all the Oklahoma schools recognized and their awards, click here.
Congratulations on the good work. Given the looks on principals and superintendents’ faces upon receiving the checks, I think the money is much appreciated.