The state of Kansas has recognized 32 educators for outstanding performance during their first year of teaching, including several from Johnson County schools.
Winners of the Kansas Horizon Award include:
▪ Sarah Broddle, Monticello Trails Middle School, and Katie Omo, Prairie Ridge Elementary School, in the De Soto School District.
▪ Christopher Hagedorn, Spring Hill High School.
▪ Melissa Kinzer, Chisholm Trail Middle School in the Olathe School District.
▪ Alexandria Mackenzie, Apache Innovative School in the Shawnee Mission School District.
▪ Michael Richards, Oxford Middle School, and Michaela Shandy, Blue River Elementary School, in the Blue Valley School District.
Kansas school districts are allowed to nominate one elementary and one secondary teacher for the honor. To be eligible, teachers must have completed their first year in the classroom.
Teachers compete in four regions that correspond to the state’s congressional districts. Four elementary and four secondary classroom teachers may be selected from each region.
Job fair next week for veterans
Veterans from throughout the Kansas City area, along with those transitioning out of the military, are invited to a job fair on Jan. 24 at American Legion Post 153.
Fifty local employers will be represented at the fair, which will run from 1 to 5 p.m. at the post, 410 E. Dennis Ave. in Olathe.
To register, go online to gokcjobs.com.
Spring Hill asks for input on fiber idea
Spring Hill is exploring whether to bring high-speed internet fiber to the city and wants to hear from businesses and residents before its Broadband Task Force makes a recommendation in mid-February.
Two online surveys have been developed to gather information on the current internet situation and what future needs might be in Spring Hill.
The seven-member Task Force, formed in January 2017, has been working with CTC Technology and Energy, which was hired by the city to conduct a fiber feasibility study on whether some kind of broadband utility is feasible or desirable.
The firm already has analyzed three options and provided cost estimates. CTC will make a final presentation at 7 p.m. on Jan. 23 at the community center, 613 S. Race St.
The task force will meet for discussion Feb. 1 and present its recommendation at a City Council work session on Feb. 15.
To take the survey, go to www.springhillks.com, click on the broadband announcement and scroll down to the survey links. More detailed information about the initiative is posted on the website, too.
Sunday nature programs are affordable for families
The Ernie Miller Nature Center in Olathe has announced its family-friendly Sunday Nature Programs for February.
Presentations begin at 2 p.m., last about 45 minutes and cost $3 per person, payable at the center, which is located at 909 N. Kansas 7 in Olathe. Children under 2 are admitted free.
▪ Feb. 4: “Animal Clues,” dealing with tracks and other traces that animals leave behind.
▪ Feb. 11: “Laura’s Memories,” focusing on Laura Ingalls Wilder and her classic “Little House” books.
▪ Feb. 18: “I Heart Spiders,” with live ones up close.
▪ Feb. 25: “Wildlife Who’s Who,” where kids can meet an amphibian, reptile, bird and mammal and learn about similarities and differences.
Fifth-grade students at Olathe’s Briarwood Elementary School recently applied their artistic skills to five city snow plows.
Art teacher Tabbatha Householder was approached by a Briarwood parent who works for the city and offered the experience to the fifth-graders.
“The paintings were done with acrylic paints and a clear-coat sealer, so we hope this will preserve the paintings for the entire winter season, even if they are plowing,” Householder said.
Snow Ball on Jan. 20 benefits Catholic Charities
Nearly 2,000 people are expected Jan. 20 at the 44th annual Snow Ball, which began years ago as a potluck dinner and benefits the Catholic Charities Foundation of Northeast Kansas.
The event, at the Overland Park Convention Center, will begin with cocktails at 6 p.m., followed by a formal dinner. The Lost Wax band will provide music until midnight for dancing.
Mike and Susan Gangel of Leawood will receive special recognition for their support of Catholic Charities.
Snow Ball, which raises 50 percent of all private donations to Catholic Charities, supports the organization’s seven emergency assistance centers, eight food pantries and an array of other services that include adoption, hospice care and in-home assistance to older adults.
Individual tickets are $300. Register at catholiccharitiessnowball.org or by calling 913-433-2046.
Registration starts soon for summer camps
The year has just begun, but registration starts Jan. 29 for the roughly 60 summer-camp offerings that the Johnson County Park & Recreation District has planned for young children ages 3 to 18.
Full- and partial-day programs will be available.
By the end of the day on Jan. 22, a digital version of the 2018 Summer Camp Guide will be posted at www.jcprd.com.
Printed copies will be available the week of Jan. 29 at Johnson County libraries and all park system facilities.
Online registration begins at 6 a.m. on Jan. 29 with in-person registration beginning at 8:30 a.m. in Building D at Antioch Park, at 6501 Antioch Road in Merriam.
Compiled by Elaine Adams, Special to The Olathe News