Dateline Masthead
Contra Costa County Office of EducationApril 2013
In this issue
Astrobiology Summer Science Experience for Teachers
2013 Contra Costa County Teacher Job Fair
Reading Recovery Certification
The Distinguished Speaker Series
Leading Edge Certification for the Administrator
Leading Edge Certification for Online and Blended Teacher
The 11th Annual Day of the Teacher Conference
Mt. Diablo Astronomical Society
The 2013 Arthur S. Marmaduke Award
Toshiba America Foundation Grants
The Synopsys Outreach Foundation's Green + 1 Challenge
The Warren W. Eukel Teacher Trust Fund
The 2013 Doug Prouty Classroom Grant Program
ING's Unsung Heroes
Fire Safety Program
Drama Workshops
The Google Science Fair
Earn It! Keep It! Save It!
Respect Other People's Time-The Choose Civility Principle for March
Quick Links
Join Our Mailing List
Welcome to Dateline!


Welcome to the April 2013 issue of Dateline. This informative newsletter is for all those in Contra Costa County who work in education. Please tell your fellow teachers and administrators, as well as your friends who would be interested in joining our mailing list (click here, or the link button at the left column).  

Professional Development / Opportunities

Astrobiology Summer Science Experience for Teachers (ASSET)

ASSET is an institute for high school teachers, that will be intense and exciting, interactive, and content rich, with presentations by leading astrobiology researchers from the SETI Institute, NASA, and the California Academy of Sciences. Scientists will share the latest in astrobiology research on the origin of life on Earth, the extreme conditions in which life exists, Mars exploration, the formation of planetary systems around Sun-like stars, and the search for life in the universe. Participants receive the entire Voyages Through Time (VTT) curriculum and complementary astrobiology materials, for use in their classrooms. VTT is a standards-based integrated high school science curriculum, delivered on CDs. Curriculum, travel, and room and board expenses are grant funded. Three graduate credits are available for a very reasonable tuition fee.

Dates and location: July 29-August 3; San Francisco State University 

For info: Contact Pamela Harman at (650) 960-4523 or visit their website

Deadline: Application deadline is April 30

2013 Contra Costa County Single Subject and Specialty* 
Teacher Job Fair

Discover a number of Contra Costa County teaching positions that will be available in the next school year. Along with the CCCOE, representatives from seven county school districts will be recruiting for open positions for Single Subject and Specialty* Teachers (*Special Education, Math, Science, Bilingual, Alternative Education). Some interviews will be held on site.

Date and location: Saturday, April 13, 9:00 a.m.-12:00 noon; Pittsburg High School (gym), Pittsburg

For info: Call (925) 942-3387 or visit the Job Fair's website

Fee: Free

Reading Recovery Certification (informational meeting)


Reading Recovery is an intensive research-based and research-supported program. The objective of Reading Recovery is to promote accelerated learning to close the achievement gap. Seventy-five percent of Reading Recovery students read at grade level after a full series of lessons. Ninety-nine percent of students who successfully complete Reading Recovery lessons don't need to be referred to special education for reading at the end of Grade 1. If you are interested in participating in Reading Recovery training during the 2013/2014 school year, please attend the upcoming informational meeting. Reading Recovery Teachers who are in training this year will be available to share their experience and answer questions regarding program rigor and application.

Date and location: April 18, 3:45-4:30 p.m.; Quail Run Elementary 


For info: Contact Moira Zacharakis at (925) 560-4006 or their website 

Fee: Free

The Distinguished Speaker Series

This Saturday seminar series provides a broad range of opportunities for professional educators to learn research-based techniques and strategies from local and national professionals. Keynote and breakout sessions cover a variety of topics and grade levels, and provide practical and purposeful tools for both general and special educators to improve teaching practice. Networking opportunities with educators from other schools and districts are another key benefit. The program meets BTSA Induction professional development requirement. Graduate academic credit or continuing education units may also be earned. 

Dates and location: April 6 and May 4, all seminars are held 8:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.; Saint Mary's College, Moraga

For info: Contact Laurie Aguirre at (925) 631-4936, or visit their website

Fee: $65 for individual sessions; Graduate academic semester units are available for a special rate of $165/unit (maximum of six units per year). 

Leading Edge Certification for the Administrator

Do you want to enhance your digital leadership skills? Are you interested

in supporting students and staff in developing 21st Century college and career readiness? Are you ready to be a transformative leader? Leading Edge Certification for the Administrator focuses on site, district, and regional leaders and is based upon the National Education Technology Standards for Administrators (NETS). 
Participants will learn how to effectively unitize technology tools, resources, and innovative solutions to advance student achievement, foster educator productivity, and extend learning opportunities for all. Upon successful completion, the certification will give schools, districts, and other prospective employers assurance that Leading Edge Certified administrators have the skills to effectively lead schools through the 21st Century and provide visionary leadership among all stakeholders of their organization. 

Dates and location: June 20-August 18 (includes two day-long face-to-face meetings and 45-60 hours online training); meetings will be held at the CCCOE

For info: Contact Eileen C. Walters at (925) 942-3435, or visit the program's website

Fee: $800, includes course, as well as portfolio review and certification

Leading Edge Certification for Online and Blended Teacher

Are you interested in teaching online, but unsure where to start, or are you already teaching online and want to enhance your skills? The Leading Edge Alliance, county offices of education, a group of nonprofits, universities and governmental bodies have developed a certification program for K-12 teachers. The certification is a national program to prepare instructional leaders for online learning. Content includes building community, moderating discussions, supporting diverse learners, and implementing frequent formative assessments.

Dates: June 6-August 11 (includes  45-60 hours online training)

For info: Contact Eileen C. Walters at (925) 942-3435, or visit the program's website

Fee: $450, includes course, as well as portfolio review and certification

Upcoming Events / Field Trips

The 11th Annual Day of the Teacher Conference

This one-day event is designed for anyone (including current HS students) interested in pursuing a career in teaching. We'll explore many opportunities open for future teachers through a series of workshops and interactive sessions. Presenters include California State University East Bay faculty, staff, and experienced K-12 teachers. Attendees will be able to access workshops and workshop materials, as well as take in the Education Fair. Lunch will be provided.   

Date and location: April 27, 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; CSU East Bay, Concord

For info: Annie Chandler at (925) 602-6700; to register, visit

Fee: $20, $15 for HS students (This event usually sells out)  

Mt. Diablo Astronomical Society

The Mt. Diablo Astronomical Society will gladly organize an astronomy night for your school, youth group, or community organization.  The organization's members volunteer their time and their telescopes to bring the universe to you.  They also provide knowledgeable speakers and activities on various astronomy topics, either in a classroom or in a meeting setting.

Fee: Free

For info: Contact Mt. Diablo Astronomical Society by email or visit their website

Grants / Scholarships
The 2013 Arthur S. Marmaduke Award

The California Student Aid Commission is seeking nominations for the 2013 Arthur S. Marmaduke Award. This $1,500 annual award goes to one outstanding California high school counselor who demonstrates exemplary skills in helping students fulfill their dreams of going to college. The candidate must be nominated by his or her school principal (or designee)

For info: Contact Cheryl Lenz a 916-464-8955 or visit the award's Web page

Deadline: April 19 
Toshiba America Foundation Grants

The Toshiba America Foundation is currently accepting applications from teachers who are passionate about making science and mathematics more engaging for their students.  Do you teach grades 6-12 science or math?  Do you have a wish list of instructional equipment that will make learning more exciting for your students?  If the answer is yes to these questions, Toshiba America Foundation would like to hear from you. Grades 6-12 applications for $5,000 or less are accepted on a rolling basis, throughout the calendar year. Grant requests of more than $5,000 are reviewed twice a year. 

For info: Contact (212) 596-0620 or email, or visit their website

Deadlines: Applications for grants of more than $5,000 are due August 1st and February 1st each year.

The Synopsys Outreach Foundation's Green + 1 Challenge

Do you have an idea for a class recycling project? Do you want to teach your students how to compost? Could you save your school money with a plan to save energy? Or do you have a new idea about a way to help protect the environment? The non-profit Synopsys Outreach Foundation is awarding 10 grants to California K-8 teachers in the amount of $2,000 each to help them undertake class or school-wide projects intended to have a positive and measurable impact on the environment. 

For info: Visit their website for details

Deadline: April 16 

The Warren W. Eukel Teacher Trust Fund

The Warren W. Eukel Teacher Trust Fund annually distributes three separate $10,000 grants to outstanding teachers. The Trust will select nominees who exhibit extraordinary commitment of personal time and energy on behalf of their students. Teachers can self-nominate, or be nominated by an administrator, colleague, or student. The award may be used in any manner the recipient wishes.

For info: Contact Peggy Toovey at (925) 945-0200 or visit their website

Deadline: April 30

The 2013 Doug Prouty Classroom Grant Program

East Bay Computer Using Educators (EBCUE)  is proud to announce the 2013 Doug Prouty Classroom Grant Program. Doug Prouty was an active member of EBCUE, CUE, and a believer that technology could be a source of motivation, excitement, and engagement in the classroom. In that spirit, the Doug Prouty Classroom Grant Program seeks to fund K-12 classroom teachers who want to implement creative, innovative, and student-centered uses of technology that support student achievement in the core curriculum-English/language arts, math, history/social science, and science. The grant seeks to fund specific, curriculum-based activities/projects that a classroom teacher wishes to implement in his/her classroom. To receive a $1,500 grant, you must be an EBCUE member. 

For info: To learn more about this grant opportunity, visit their website

Deadline: April 12 

ING's Unsung Heroes

The ING Unsung Heroes honors excellence in education by selecting 100 K-12 educators to receive $2,000 to help fund their innovative classroom projects. Of these 100 finalists, 3 will be chosen to receive an additional $5,000, $10,000, and $25,000.

For info: Visit ING's website

Deadline: April 30

Resources / Contests

Fire Safety Programs

The Contra Costa Fire Protection District is offering a number of in-class or auditorium  programs for schools in Antioch, Pittsburg, Bay Point, Concord, Clayton, Pleasant Hill, Martinez, Walnut Creek, Lafayette, San Pablo, El Sobrante, and North Richmond.  There are presentations for pre-school to high school students, as well as PTA meetings.

For info: Contact the CCFPD at (925) 941-3327 or review the programs on their website

Fee: Free

Drama Workshops
The Berkeley Repertory Theatre has developed a wide range of free and low-cost outreach classes to Bay Area schools that cover multiple California content standards through hands-on, dynamic workshops. Whether bringing dramatic text to life or developing students' original work, their professional teaching artists help students to expand their creative potential by challenging them to explore complex ideas and universal themes in literature and life. Using theatre arts techniques that encourage teamwork and ensemble-building, students will gain self confidence and understand not only the importance of human connection, but the joy of dynamic engagement with their creativity.

For info: Contact the outreach department at (510) 647-2972 or visit the program's website

Fee: First hour free, sliding scale of $55-$60 per hour, for additional hours 

The Google Science Fair
The Google Science Fair is a global competition that any student, aged 13-18, from around the world is eligible to enter. Students can enter as individuals or as teams of up to three, submission will be made online. Participants sign up for the Science Fair with their Google account. Then they'll carry out a test or experiment on their chosen subject, entering all the information on their project site. After the first round of judging, we'll announce 90 regional finalists, whose work will then be reviewed even more closely by a panel of judges. The top 15 students will be invited to our finalist event at Google headquarters in Mountain View, CA, where they'll present their work to a panel of scientists, tech innovators, and Nobel Laureates.

For info: To sign up for fun and free resource kits for your classroom or school, visit their website

Deadline: April 30

Fee: Free 

Earn It! Keep It! Save It!
Across the Bay Area at more than 200 free tax sites, trained volunteer tax preparers help individuals and families claim their maximum benefit and refund. We partner with hundreds of community organizations and other free tax preparation providers such as Tax-Aid and AARP Tax-Aide to process over 64,000 tax returns each year. We provide low to moderate income households with free, quality tax return preparation and access to asset building or income support resources such as public benefits, low or no cost bank accounts or financial education. We also ensure eligible taxpayers claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) which can amount to as much as $5,891 per family. 

For info: Dial 2-1-1 or visit their website

Fee: Free  

Choose Civility

Respect Other People's Time - The Choose Civility Principle for April

Civility Principle for April - RESPECT OTHER PEOPLE'S TIME


"Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time; for that's the stuff life is made of."


--Benjamin Franklin


Ever planned to meet a friend at 10:00, only to have the friend show up at 10:20 without even an apology for arriving late? Time is a precious commodity, and we need to treat other people's time as valuable as our own.


Here are a few ideas from Dr. Forni on respecting other people's time:

  • Be punctual. Punctuality is nonnegotiable. Arriving on time is a basic rule of considerate behavior.
  • If you are going to be more than five minutes late, call.
  • Cancel plans only in case of emergency. Canceling on short notice is rude.
  • When you call someone on the phone, check to make sure it is a good time for the other person to talk. If not, suggest another more convenient time for both.
  • Keep both phone and in person conversations short. We are all busy people, and others appreciate brevity.
  • Be fully present for the person you are with. Minimize interruptions, and don't take cell phone calls or text. Only an emergency justifies such behavior.
  • Wait your turn in line. Demanding immediate attention is uncivil and ineffective.
  • Answer emails and return phone calls. Don't waste others' time by having to contact you a second or third time to get a response.
  • Meet deadlines and turn things in early or on time.
  • Always give others the amount of time that they can rightfully expect from you.

Action step:  Resolve to respect other people's time, valuing it as you do your own.


Excerpt from P.M. Forni's book, Choosing Civility.


About CCCOE's Monthly Focus

Choosing Civilityby Dr. P.M. Forni, lists twenty-five rules of considerate conduct. Over this school year, the CCCOE will consider ten of these principles. For additional information about our Choose Civility initiative, please visit our website.


Published by the Contra Costa County Office of Education Communications Office
77 Santa Barbara Road, Pleasant Hill, California 94523
Joseph A. Ovick, Ed.D., Superintendent of Schools
Editor: Peggy Marshburn; Writer/Layout: Jonathan Lance, (925) 942-3429;
Diane Morrell, Designer; June Stephens, Web Developer 
Dateline is distributed during the school year to all public schools in the county by the Communications Office. Information must be received by the first of the preceding month. Publication does not signify the Contra Costa County Office of Education endorses the event or program mentioned.


Jonathan Lance