Joco 913

A look at closures on Presidents Day

President’s Day closures

The Olathe Community Center and Olathe Public Library will be open for regular business hours on Presidents Day on Feb. 18, but city offices and the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop & Farm will be closed. Trash and recycling collection will remain on schedule.

Parent-teacher conferences won’t be rescheduled.

The Olathe School District has decided not to reschedule parent-teacher conferences that were canceled because of winter weather.

“We recognize the need to avoid further disruption of instructional time and maintain the calendar for our students and families,” the district said in a news release.

The district encouraged parents to monitor their child’s progress through information sent home and on ParentVUE and to call the teacher or principal with any concerns.

Spelling bee is now Feb. 16

The Olathe District Spelling Bee has been rescheduled for Feb. 16 at Indian Trail Middle School, 1440 E. 151st St. Registration will begin at 8:15 a.m., and the bee starts at 9 a.m. Schools were closed because of bad weather on the original date, Feb. 7.

Gardner Edgerton names Teachers of the Year

The Gardner Edgerton School District has chosen its elementary and secondary Teachers of the Year:

Mandi Hodo, the reading specialist at Nike Elementary School for the last two years, is the elementary honoree.

A 12-year school district employee, Hodo previously taught fifth grade at Wheatridge Middle School and first and second grade at Nike. She has served on several school and district leadership teams and has been a cooperating teacher with MidAmerica Nazarene and Baker universities.

Recognized at the secondary level is Sarah VanDeBerghe, communications teacher at Pioneer Ridge Middle School for the last six years. For three years before that, she taught fifth grade at Pioneer Ridge.

To promote acceptance for all students, VanDeBerghe has led building-wide efforts such as “Walk the Track for Autism” in 2017 and “Step Up for Down Syndrome” in 2018. She also is district trainer for nonviolent crisis intervention.

Film looks at multiracial baby boom

The Olathe Human Relations Commission will screen the documentary “How Jack Became Black” from 2 to 4:30 p.m. Feb. 17 at the Olathe Downtown Library, 201 E. Park St.

The film explores the multiracial baby boom through the eyes of filmmaker Eli Steele, who is the father of third generation mixed-race children. A conversation will follow on bridging racial divides. No registration is required.

Students honored for computer savvy

The National Center for Women & Information Technology and two other organizations have recognized two Olathe students for their prowess and aspirations in computing and technology.

Riley Delancy, a senior at Olathe East High School, received an Honorable Mention award, and Emily Hemsath, a senior at Olathe Northwest High School, is a Rising Star recipient.

In addition to National Center for Women & Information Technology, the awards are sponsored by NetApp of Wichita and Northwest Missouri State University.

Want to paint rocks?

A family-friendly rock painting and trading meetup will take place from 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 16 at the Olathe Public Library Teen Commons, 16160 W. 135 St.

Rocks and supplies will be provided, but those attending can bring a special rock to paint, trade or donate.

Seminar addresses finances for special-needs families

Parents of special-needs students are invited to a free seminar where they can learn about creating financial security for their child.

The meeting, sponsored by Olathe Public Schools Special Services Site Council, begins at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 21 in the Instructional Resource Center, 14090 Black Bob Road.

Kacy Seitz and Debbie Niemann, financial advisers with Northwestern Mutual, will address topics such as creating a special-needs plan and protecting benefits and services. Each presenter has a child with special needs, and their specialty is helping families prepare for two generations of financial security.

No RSVP is required, but sign language and Spanish interpreters can be requested by calling Sally Boyd at 913-780-8170 at least three days before the seminar.

Focus: African-American literature

A two-part event next week in Olathe will allow attendees to share poetry, literary excerpts and original works by African-American authors.

It’s part of the National African-American Read-In, which is billed as the country’s first event dedicated to diversity in literature.

The local Read-In will take place from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Feb. 18 at the Olathe Downtown Library, 201 E. Park St., and from 4 to 6:30 p.m.Feb. 21 at MidAmerica Nazarene University’s Mabee Learning Commons, 2030 E. College Way.