Scripps Ranch High School (SRHS)

Blue Ribbon Award

We are pleased to announce that Scripps Ranch High School has been named as a nationally recognized Blue Ribbon school for the secondary competition that began last fall. This announcement was made by U.S. Secretary of Education, Richard W. Riley. The Blue Ribbon schools program has been recognizing schools for the last seventeen years and spotlights some of the nation’s most successful schools each year. Schools are selected based on how they excel in all areas of academic leadership, teaching and teacher development, and school curriculum. In addition, each school must exhibit exceptional levels of community and parental involvement, high student achievement levels, and rigorous safety and discipline programs.

“These schools are fine examples of places where parents, teachers, administrators, and the community have formed partnerships to help all students learn to high standards,” Riley said. “Their hard work, dedication, and commitment should serve as a model for other communities that are deeply concerned about the education of America’s students.”

Schools selected for recognition have conducted a thorough self-evaluation involving administrators, teachers, students, parents, and community representatives in the completion of their nomination forms. This process included assessing their strengths and weaknesses and developing strategic plans for the future.

The 198 schools recognized this year represent 43 different states. SRHS was selected as one of 48 high schools from California (1 of 2 from the San Diego Unified School District) to be honored with this award. The United States Department of Education convenes the National Review Panel that evaluates the nominations. Based on the quality of the application, the most promising schools are recommended for site visits. Of the 377 schools that applied, only 198 passed the screening process which included a site visit to verify the accuracy of the information the school had provided in its nomination form and to gather any additional information that the panel had requested.

“The heart and soul of SRHS lies in its staff. Their dedication to teaching and students is obvious to anyone who visits a classroom or attends an extracurricular event.” This quote was taken from SRHS’s narrative report from their Blue Ribbon application. It exemplifies why SRHS is so deserving of this prestigious award.

Grad Night 2000

The Class of 2000 Parent Booster Organization would like to thank all the parents and community members who helped to make the Scripps Ranch High School grad night, “2000 Leagues Under the Sea,” a safe and fun evening for all of the graduates who attended. We also have many businesses to thank for their donations of cash, prizes, food, and services. We greatly appreciate the following donations which were made in addition to those that appeared in the May and June issues of the Newsletter:

  • Applebee’s;
  • Blockbuster Video, Scripps Ranch;
  • Breugger’s Bagels;
  • California Pizza Kitchen;
  • Callahan’s Pub;
  • Cappuccino Cottage;
  • Chili’s;
  • Chin’s;
  • Circuit City;
  • Collins Family Jewelers;
  • Copy Craft;
  • Costco, Carmel Mountain;
  • Debra Hershman Blindlove;
  • Diamond Boutique;
  • Diamond’s Jewelers;
  • Doubletree Golf Resort;
  • Dr. Paul Styrt;
  • Dr. Richard A. Giglio;
  • Edward’s Theaters;
  • El Pollo Loco;
  • El Torrito’s, Mira Mesa;
  • Family Fun Center;
  • Fast Frame;
  • Four Seasons Flower Shop, Poway;
  • Fuddrucker’s;
  • George and Nikki Butera;
  • Go Wireless, Scripps Ranch;
  • Gordon Biersch;
  • Hardwear Skate and Surf Shop;
  • Hungry Howies Pizza, Mira Mesa;
  • Island’s Restaurant;
  • Jamba Juice, Mira Mesa;
  • Jamba Juice;
  • K Mart;
  • Karen Muehlbauer;
  • Learning Express, Scripps Ranch;
  • Linda Savitch;
  • Linens n’ Things, Carmel Mountain;
  • Mark Crittenden Communications, Inc.;
  • McDonald’s, Scripps Poway Parkway;
  • Mimi’s Cafe, Mira Mesa;
  • Moms In Touch;
  • MotoPhoto;
  • Muir Images;
  • Old Globe Theater;
  • Old Town Trolley Tours;
  • Papa John’s Pizza;
  • Pernicano’s;
  • Perry Falk, Poway Ford;
  • Phil and Judy Gagnon;
  • Picture to Video Memories, Caresse Muir;
  • Pizza Hut;
  • Play It Again Sports;
  • Potato Place;
  • Pulse, a Technitrol Co.;
  • Quizno’s Subs;
  • Robert McCarty, Commonwealth;
  • Ron and Karen Brassfield;
  • Rubio’s Baja Grill;
  • San Diego National Bank;
  • San Diego Padres Baseball Club;
  • San Diego Theater Sports;
  • Savon Drugs;
  • Scripps Parkway Veterinary Hospital;
  • Sea World;
  • Six Flags Magic Mountain;
  • Sportmart;
  • Stir Fresh Mongolian Grill;
  • Stix Family Billiards;
  • Submarina, Mira Mesa Blvd.;
  • T-Bird Restaurant Group;
  • Target;
  • Terra Firma Landscape Co.;
  • TGI Friday’s;
  • The Old Spaghetti Factory;
  • The Original Pancake House, Poway;
  • U.S. Bank;
  • Video Vault;
  • Walmart;
  • Wavelines Surf Shop; and
  • Wherehouse, Mira Mesa Blvd.

Math News

All students who were taking geometry and honors geometry this year and will be taking intermediate algebra in the fall were given an algebra review packet. The math department has put this packet together to improve the success rate of our students in intermediate algebra. We expect that the packet will be completed during the summer and students will be tested on the material during the first week of school in the fall. Any one who does not have a packet can pick one up in the counseling office at SRHS.

ASB Members 2000-2001

The following students were elected or appointed to positions to help guide SRHS,

as ASB officers:

  • Ed White, President;
  • Giselle Wellman, Vice President; and
  • Linda Phouthavone, Secretary;

as ASB commissioners:

  • Billy Nason, Publicity;
  • Joanna Ritchie, Spirit;
  • Keiz Anderson, Clubs and Organizations;
  • Amanda Vaus, Outreach Ambassador;
  • Monica Manuel, Academics;
  • Chris Lancaster, Athletics;
  • Sarah Haddow, Finance;
  • Kristen Galace, Race and Human Relations;
  • Natalie Ferreira, Elections; and
  • Justin Gonzales, Environment;

as class officers:

  • Mae Opiniano, Senior Class President;
  • Wileen Mirafuente, Senior Class Vice President;
  • Marlou Lindquist, Senior Class Secretary and Treasurer;
  • Salena Tobias, Junior Class President;
  • Hieu Nguyen, Junior Class Vice- President;
  • Lisa Mckeon, Junior Class Secretary and Treasurer;
  • Elizabeth Dindial, Sophomore Class President;
  • Lauren Sachdeva, Sophomore Class Vice President; and
  • Terry Roberts, Sophomore Class Secretary and Treasurer; and

as appointed positions:

  • Blake Bolton, Advisor’s Assistant;
  • Jessica Bramlet, ASB Historian;
  • Matt Carney, Assistant Commissioner of Spirit;
  • Emily Vaus, Assistant Commissioner of Spirit;
  • Michelle McAllister, Assistant Commissioner of Spirit;
  • Sarah Nanigian, Technology Coordinator and Student Store Manager;
  • Nivi Gill, ASB Publicist;
  • Tracy Pizarro, ASB Publicist; and
  • Ross Nelson, Substance Abuse Prevention Commissioner.

Marshall Middle School

Young America Cup 2000

Thurgood Marshall Middle School 7th graders recently participated in an exciting and innovative program entitled “Science Through the Young America Cup.” This program is a hands-on, applied science program that teaches students about concepts such as density, buoyancy, hydrodynamics, engineering and design principles, physiology, geography, discipline, and teamwork–all done through the study of sailing.

The entire America Cup 2000 Challenge is to collaboratively work in a team of two to three students to:

  1. Design, construct, test, and race a 16-inch monohull, wind-powered vessel on a down-wind course in a 12-foot-long water test tank.
  2. Create a portfolio documenting the work.
  3. Deliver a ten-minute oral presentation.
  4. Prepare an aesthetic component and display.

Science Through the Young America Cup was born out of the 1995 American’s Cup yacht competition when the sailing team, PACT95, developed a curriculum to engage students in learning science through the fun and exciting medium of sailing. I was a pilot teacher for that program, and the culminating project was for students to apply their knowledge of hydrodynamics, and actually design, build, and race a sailboat model from the concepts learned throughout the unit.

This past year, the computer literacy standards were integrated into the curriculum. Some technology-centered requirements of the students included:

  1. Creating and entering the boat velocity data into a database.
  2. Researching information about a country on the Internet.
  3. Creating word-processed and computer graphics items.
  4. Creating a Hyperstudio slide show presentation with computer-drawn images, scanned images, animation, and sound.

During the past five years, PACT95’s successor, PACT2000, has sponsored a San Diego County competition in which my students have successfully completed. By winning these western regionals, my students and I were flown to Maine to compete in the finals in 1998. Last year, Marshall students swept the San Diego competition and our four winners were flows to the national finals in Newport, Rhode Island.

This year, due to the unfortunate defeat and break-up of PACT2000 in the America’s Cup yacht campaign, a national finals will not be held. Fortunately, San Diego’s Institute of Marine Science assumed sponsorship of the western regional Young America Cup 2000, and held a county-wide competition in April. The parent’s involvement and rallying support enabled Marshall Middle School to continue the winning tradition.

The Greek Goddesses (Jennifer and Natalie Maches, and Lisa Burgard) finished first overall. Coeur de France (Kelli Curtis, Dani Huffman, and Nicole Serhan) placed second, and the Italian Wolves (Graham Nicastro, Boris Patlis, and Bryan Casey) finished third. The other competitors who also worked hard and represented Marshall very well included the Down Unders (Alex Griebel, Neil Dutta, and Yama Sekander) and Team France (Greg Golko, Joe Deignan, and Matt Wimmer). Coeur de France won the fastest boat component of the competition, which included beating the fasted high school boat in the competition finals. Congratulations to everyone!

All participants worked very hard on this project and the school is very proud of their efforts. Stephen Doyle, Homestead Sheet Metal, the Carmel Mountain Costco, and Marshall’s parents and staff all contributed time and financial resources to make this possible. We are grateful to all the involved parties for helping to enhance scientific literacy and “real-life” skills in our students.

If anyone has any questions regarding this program, please contact me at 549-8849, extension 1254, or via email at [[email protected]].

Brian Finley, Science 7 Teacher

Elementary Schools

Dingeman Elementary School

A few months back, the first-grade students of Linda Sandell’s class at Dingeman Elementary brought activity kits to the patients at Children’s Hospital as a class project. The activity packets included a workbook which had a special page contributed by each child. Some were favorites used again and again, and others were individually made.

Along with the workbook were crayons, markers, a pencil, Wikki Stix, mazes, puzzles, card, reading books, and stickers, and other items designed to bring joy to the children in the hospital. The items were generously donated by the manufacturers, the children, and their parents. The children took great delight and care in choosing the items for each of the 50 activity kits. It was an opportunity in the gift of giving.

Ann Wiener

Jerabek Elementary School

It may be July, but things are still going strong at Jerabek! In June, we held our annual open house, which started with a delicious spaghetti dinner served by the Kiwanis Club. The students proudly showed their parents all that they had accomplished during the year, then headed over to the Book Fair to pick up some books for summer reading.

Following what is sure to be a great 4th of July celebration in Scripps Ranch, Jerabek will hold their first Art Corps art show on Wednesday, July 5, from 5 to 8 pm. Artwork created throughout the year will be on display, including one piece of art from every student at Jerabek. With our student population hovering at 1,100 students, it’s sure to be an amazing sight!

The FFO also is sponsoring an ice cream social during the art show to add to the festivities. We will have an Adopt-A-Book table at the Art Fair so that attendees can purchase art books for students to use to complement the art program.

Art Corps could not have succeeded without the dedication of the parent volunteers. A breakfast will be held on Thursday, July 13, to recognize and thank those volunteers. We also thank Nokia Corporation for their support of the Jerabek Art Corp program. They have donated 1,300 T-shirts in celebration of our first art show. The shirts will be distributed to each student, teacher, and volunteer at Jerabek. Thank you Nokia and Delsee Altman for this generous donation.

With the end of the school year comes graduation. Over 150 fifth graders are looking forward to the promotion party, that will be held on Friday, July 14, at 3 pm at Jerabek. The promotion ceremony is scheduled for Friday, July 21. We have an outstanding class of graduates who we are sure will do well as they head on into the world of middle school.

It’s been another great year at Jerabek. We want to thank Dianne Bramwell for her outstanding year of leadership as the president of the FFO. Karen Sloan takes over as president for the coming year and has great plans to ensure another year of success. Watch out for children on bicycles and skateboards, wear your sunscreen, and enjoy a fun summer with your families!

Miramar Ranch Elementary

“Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive, But to be young was very heaven!”

The romantic words that English poet William Wordsworth used to describe the first day of the French Revolution can also be used to describe the last day of the school year at Miramar Ranch Elementary (MRE).

Oh, to have been an MRE Hawk on the morning of Wednesday, June 14, when the final buzzer rang to signal the start of school that day. Each child bubbled with the bittersweet excitement that comes with having completed one journey, and knowing that they were on the verge of starting another.

Pure and unfettered exuberance was palpable as the school children sat at the desks that they will never call their own again, chatted with classmates who were dispersing in the summer wind, and paid final attention to teachers who would forever be fondly remembered.

By the time the final buzzer rang at the end of the day, desks were cleaned out, pictures and maps were taken off classroom walls, books and supplies were packed away, and the empty halls echoed with fading laughter and the spectral images of the hundreds of precious, young students that had passed through them for the last nine months.

Summer is formally and gloriously here and the heavenly feel of the last hours of school has melded into the paradise called vacation that’s being savored by the students, teachers, staff, and parents.

Certainly MRE could not have been the wonderful place it was without the help of dozens of parent volunteers, but especially the officers of the Family Faculty Association. These parents dedicated their time and talents to ensure that the students were able to benefit from as many programs, activities, services, and resources as possible.

The outgoing FFA officers were President Janet Dray, President-elect Jim Hester; Treasurer Mark Hawblitzel, Assistant Treasurer Teri Bertic, Ways and Means Officer Sandra Davis, Recording Secretary Becca Schult, and Corresponding Secretary Sarah Troja.

Incoming FFA officers for next school year are President Jim Hester, President-elect Ken Gillette, Treasurer Mark Hawbitzel, Recording Secretary Becca Schult, Corresponding Secretary Joni Bair, and Ways and Means Officer Pat Hinck.

Other changes at MRE include bidding fond farewells to third-grade teachers Valerie Green McElroy and Suzanne Hester and to first-grade teacher Laurel Freeman, who is retiring after 35 years of teaching, 11 of which were at Miramar Ranch.

And some last-minute catch-up that you’ll be interested in knowing about MRE. The school was awarded $350 from University Town Center’s Earning-4-Learning Program. Music teachers Thomas Alforque and Steve Luchs conducted concert assemblies with the band and orchestra, respectively, giving parents and other students a chance to hear how terrific our budding musicians sound. In May, the band and orchestra also performed, along with other local elementary and middle schools, at Scripps Ranch High School. And we especially thank Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza for honoring our teachers with a free luncheon for Day of the Teacher in late May.

So, like the French Revolution, the 1999-2000 school year is forever a part of history–but with a lot less bloodshed and a much happier ending of course. And when school starts again next September, our children again will find themselves part of that tiny bit of heaven known as Miramar Ranch Elementary School.

Mitch Mitchell

Other Schools

Miramar College

This past spring, Miramar College was pleased to honored its 2000 Distinguished Alumni, Jan Dehesh and Peter Davis, and gave special recognition to Michelle Coble, who was selected to the prestigious USA Today’s All USA two-year college academic team.

Like many community college alumni, Jan Dehesh attended Miramar College for many years, taking a class or two each semester before she achieved her associate degree. Finally, after ten years, with an associate in science degree in hand, she transferred to UCSD and completed her bachelor’s degree in business in 1997. A Mira Mesa resident at the time and mother of two, Jan discovered Miramar through its “Jet There” program, which offers short-term general education classes at NAS (now MCAS) Miramar. The small classes, evening schedule, students of similar age and goals, great instructors like Dr. Dorothy Simpson, and rigorous curriculum provided an excellent foundation for transfer, according to Jan.

Setting and achieving goals are at the core of Jan’s success. Her rise within Qualcomm, from secretary to supervisor, to manager, to director, to her current post as Vice President of Information Technology, correlates to educational achievements. Always looking to the next level, Jan’s goals now include achieving a master’s degree and doctorate and becoming a chief information officer. She is a highly sought-out public speaker on women’s issues, the importance of networking, and the need to recruit women into math and science technical career fields.

Peter Davis moves in the fast lane! A graduate of the Miramar College Aviation Maintenance Technology program, Peter moved on to San Diego State University and the University of Phoenix. As Associate Dean for Advanced Transportation Technology at Miramar College, Peter helped the college to incorporate alternative fuel and advanced transportation concepts into existing transportation technology programs and instituted outreach efforts for those programs.

Peter has built successful college and industry partnerships that have helped develop the college’s reputation as a world-class Advanced Transportation Studies Center. Participation with the San Diego Coalition of Clean Cities, the Board of Binational Air Quality Alliance, the Regional Transportation Technology Alliance, and involvement with the development of the electric vehicle programs through California have made an impact that have been felt across the State.

Peter also has authored innovative curriculum materials for community colleges, high school, and junior high school audiences. Such outstanding accomplishments have earned Peter the “Faculty of the Year” award from California Community Colleges Economic Development.

United States International University (USIU)

Avenue of Nations Driveway

Sometime in the next few months, you will see a new street sign as you drive on Pomerado Road. Fortunately, it will not signify a new intersection. Rather, “Avenue of Nations” will appear at the existing intersection of Pomerado Road and Willow Creek Road, indicating the new name of the entrance road to the USIU campus. There is a regulation requiring that all private driveways that intersect with public roads at signalized intersections be named.

Accordingly, based on input from the University community, USIU’s Board of Trustees acted to name the entrance road to campus, “Avenue of Nations.” We have received word from the City of San Diego that the name has been approved and assigned to the private driveway, and that a street sign will be manufactured and installed in approximately 90 days. This will be a welcome addition to the entrance of the USIU campus and will further distinguish the unique nature of the University.

USIU Announces On-line MA

USIU announced the introduction of an online Master of Arts in Education degree, with a concentration in technology and learning. With support–in the form of an $88,000 grant–from, the degree program is designed to provide a rich sequence of learning experiences in which graduates gain the requisite knowledge and skills to serve effectively as educational leaders and practitioners. is an application service provider that enables educational institutions to offer an Internet-based environment for online campuses, enhance classroom-based teaching, and full distance programs. The USIU grant is part of the company’s initiative to provide greater access to quality degree programs over the Internet.

“Delivering the M.A. in Education degree over the Internet will allow USIU to reach a far wider student audience,” notes USIU’s President Hays.

200 in Commencement

Nearly 200 graduates participated in USIU’s commencement ceremony on the campus lawn. Graduates from 37 countries earned bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in a variety of subject areas.

USIU Alumnus of the Year and former San Diego mayoral candidate Peter Q. Davis was the commencement speaker. His selection continues a USIU tradition of inviting a distinguished alumnus address graduating students. He is a 1963 graduate of California Western University-the name under USIU was founded.

Also during the commencement ceremony, USIU awarded honorary doctoral degrees to Davis and Richard C. Hawk, in recognition of their support of and contributions to the university.

USIU President Garry D. Hays noted, “Peter Davis is one of the university’s most outstanding graduates and his leadership and vision are significant assets to our community. Richard Hawk and HRS Education Services, Inc. have been major supporters of USIU since 1993. The development and improvement of the university since that time would not have been possible without Richard Hawk.”

Anita J. Gomes