Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sun Safety
Suicide Toolkit
Full-Day K
Principal’s Cookbook
Civil War Lessons

Did you know that there are more cases of skin cancer each year than cases of breast, colon, lung, and prostate cancers combined! That adds up to more than one million Americans getting skin cancer annually.

To help reduce the rising rates of skin cancer, the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated the Friday before Memorial Day – May 27, 2011 – as Don't Fry Day. The Council's goal is to encourage sun safety awareness by reminding everyone to protect their skin while enjoying the outdoors on Don't Fry Day and every day.

The Council provides many free resources to help educators recognize Don’t Fry Day in their classrooms and throughout their schools. Visit the Don’t Fry Day website to learn more about how schools across the U.S. can recognize this special day. Don’t miss the Don’t Fry Day Resources for schools, which include

As many communities closely examine school budgets for possible cost savings, some are considering cutting all-day kindergarten programs back to half days. A new report from the Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children illustrates the connection between full-day kindergarten enrollment and later success in elementary school. School districts that provide full-day kindergarten see improved performance on standardized assessments, the report notes. For example, Pennsylvania school districts with full-day kindergarten saw third-grade math proficiency scores rise nearly twice as much as districts with part-day programs when compared to overall district performance three years prior.

First-grade teacher Katie Richter, of the Baldwin-Whitehall School District in Allegheny County, has witnessed the difference in reading skills between full- and part-day kindergarten students. “My experience is the full-day K students are better readers in first grade than the part-day students were,” she said. Students who come from full-day kindergarten can jump into lessons at the start of a new school year without having to spend prolonged time on letter names and sounds, she added.


After a Suicide: A Toolkit for Schools

A new free resource, After a Suicide: A Toolkit for Schools, is available to help schools cope in the aftermath of a suicide. The guide was created by the Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) and the American Foundation for Suicide Preventions (AFSP), two of the nation’s leading organizations devoted to suicide prevention. Developed by a team of national experts, including clinicians and crisis response professionals, the online toolkit draws on scientific research and best practices.

“Suicide can leave a school struggling with tremendous uncertainty about what to do next,” said Joanne Harpel, AFSP’s senior director for public affairs and postvention. “We also know that schools worry about the possibility of further suicides. This toolkit will answer frequently asked questions and help put school personnel at ease.”

“Our toolkit also advises schools to treat all student deaths in the same manner, and not to inadvertently romanticize suicide,” added Peggy West of Education Development Center, Inc., a senior advisor for SPRC. “This is especially important as school communities consider how to handle events such as memorial services and graduation, and student activities such as the yearbook.”

Free Civil War Lessons

As we recognize the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War, the Civil War Trust recently unveiled free lesson plans that explore the causes of the Civil War as well as its impact on the political, economic, military, and cultural life of the times. Separate sets of nine standards-based lessons were developed by teachers for students in elementary, middle, and high school grades.

The Principal’s Cookbook

The Principal’s Cookbook has arrived! The Cookbook is filled with more than 100 recipes for you to try out at upcoming end-of-year staff events or at this summer’s school/family cookouts or picnics. Click to order your copy.

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