Dateline Masthead
Contra Costa County Office of EducationMarch 2013
In this issue
9th Annual Young Children's Issues Forum
Contra Costa County Single Subject and Specialty Teacher Job Fair
Digital Citizenship Webinar Series
The Distinguished Speaker Series
Alcohol, Tobacco & Other Drugs & the Adolescent Brain
Leading Edge Certification for the Administrator
Leading Edge Certification for Online and Blended Teacher
Supervisor Glover's Annual Contra Costa County Youth Summit
Art IS Education Month 2013
Contra Costa Science and Engineering Fair (volunteer judges needed)
Contra Costa County Science & Engineering Fair Open House
The Synopsys Outreach Foundation's Green + 1 Challenge
The Warren W. Eukel Teacher Trust Fund
The 2013 Doug Prouty Classroom Grant Program
The Google Science Fair
Fourth Annual First Amendment Cartoon Contest
Fifth Grade Story Contest
Law Day Art Contest
Earn It! Keep It! Save It!
Be Inclusive-The Choose Civility Principle for March
Quick Links
Join Our Mailing List
Welcome to Dateline!


Welcome to the March 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

9th Annual Young Children's Issues Forum

This year's theme: Speak Out for Children: Educate and Advocate. The purpose of this annual presentation is to provide a forum for discussion among legislators, local officials, and the community regarding current children's issues.

Date and location: March 23, 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.; Willow Pass Community Center, Concord

For info: Contact Ruth Fernandez at (925) 942-3413 or review the event's website

Fee: Free, but please register via

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

Digital Citizenship Webinar Series

A webinar series, produced in partnership by the CCCOE, AT&T, and Region IV CTAP, will cover the issues surrounding digital citizenship. These presentations are directed to school-district or school-site administrators, teacher leaders, and technology managers. The one-hour sessions are presented by nationally recognized guest speakers, representing such services as NetSmartz and Common Sense Media. Each webinar will leave time for questions from the participants.

Dates: March 20, 4:00-6:00 a.m. (Using Digital Portfolios to Enhance ELA with STEM) and March 21, 10:00-11:00 p.m. (Parenting in the Digital Age: Messages and Resources to Share with your Parents)

For info: For this two upcoming programs and more, visit 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). 

Alcohol, Tobacco & Other Drugs & the Adolescent Brain

This training will cover a number of topics including the effects of alcohol and other drugs on the adolescent brain (with the focus on tobacco and marijuana); the power of dopamine; and drug education/intervention strategies for reaching today's youth.  

Date and location: March 8, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.; CCCOE in Pleasant Hill

For info: Contact Emily Justice at (925) 942-5328, or visit the CCCOE Tobacco Use Prevention Education (TUPE) Program's Web page

Fee: $22.09, participants can register via Eventbrite; coffee, water, and lunch will be served.

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: Course 1: March 25-June 9 (includes 45-60 hours online training)

Course 2: 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

Supervisor Glover's Annual Contra Costa County Youth Summit

Each year, the Youth Summit unites sixth- through twelfth-grade youth with local dignitaries, youth mentors, and community leaders for a day of career preparedness, self-awareness, and entertainment. The annual event is a community effort to build healthy attributes such as self-esteem, honesty, and integrity. Their goal is to assist our students in constructing the foundation they need to succeed by equipping them with assets that will enhance their personal and social standards. The interactive workshops provided at the Summit will increase life skills, assist with career development, and provide a venue for healthy and appropriate activities that reduce the risk of undesirable behavior.

Date and Location: March 16, 8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.; Los Medanos College, Pittsburg

For info: Contact (925) 335-8200 or visit their website
Fee: Free  
Art IS Education Month 2013

This annual, month-long showcase each March during National Arts Education Month is an opportunity for you to share what your students are learning in and through the arts with your community. The goal of the 2013 theme Every Child is Creative: Together We Create Our World is to inspire and share student visions of how the arts help us make positive change for ourselves, our communities and our world. Share what you are doing in the classroom during March! We will help you promote and share your students' creativity. Events include the whole range of the creative process from sharing works in progress to culminating exhibits and performances. Go to the Creative Impact calendar to post your event and also find out what is happening during Art IS Education month!

For info: Visit their website

Contra Costa Science and Engineering Fair 
(volunteer judges needed)

Judges are needed to ensure the 400+ science fair projects, expected to be submitted by middle and high school students this year, have an opportunity to be reviewed by our valued community members, including business and industry, at the Contra Costa County 2013 Science and Engineering Fair. Judges' commitment of eight hours is critical to the process which includes morning review of poster boards and afternoon interviews with students. Along with the orientation and judging, breakfast and lunch will be provided.

Date and location: March 22, 7:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.; Los Medanos College, Pittsburg  

For info: Visit their website
Contra Costa County Science & Engineering Fair Open House

The 2013 Contra Costa County Science & Engineering Fair welcomes all to attend and view numerous projects submitted this year by county middle- and high-school students. Attendees can observe the presentations and experiments up close, as well as talk to the students who entered them.

Date and location: March 17; 10:30-11:30 a.m.; Los Medanos College, (Science Building), Pittsburg

For info: Contact Liz Ritchie at (925) 684-4995 or visit the Science & Engineering Fair's website

Fee: Free

Grants / Scholarships
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 

Resources / Contests

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 

Fourth Annual First Amendment Cartoon Contest
Join the Judiciary of California and Constitutional Rights Foundation in celebrating the Bill of Rights with the Fourth Annual First Amendment Cartoon Contest.  The contest is open to K-12 students nationwide.  Six winners will each receive a $50 gift certificate.  In addition, up to five entries will receive honorable mentions.  Winners and honorable mentions will be announced on Law Day, May 1, 2013.

For info: Visit their website and/or download the contest flyer 

Deadline: March 15 

Fifth Grade Story Contest 
The Berkeley Branch of the California Writers Club will once again sponsor the 27th Annual Fifth Grade Story Contest. Current fifth-grade students attending schools in Contra Costa or Alameda counties are eligible to compete for a number of cash prizes. 

For info: Contact the Berkeley Branch of the California Writers Club via email or visit their website

Deadlines: March 15

Fee: $1 per submission, only one submission per student 

Law Day Art Contest
This annual contest provides a wonderful opportunity for students, grades 9-12, to learn about our legal system and justice, while getting creative and winning prizes. Students are allowed to submit an art piece, which may be represented in two-dimensions to be entered in the Law Day Art Contest. Students are encouraged to use their creativity and create art pieces in any medium desired (including, but not limited to, drawings, paintings, films, photographs, graphic novels, comics, etc.). This year's theme is Realizing the Dream: Equality for All.
For info: Contact Leslie Need or visit their website

Deadline: April 1 is a website that has plenty ideas about plants and gardens, teacher resources, and grant opportunities.  
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

Be Inclusive - The Choose Civility Principle for March

"It takes a variety of people to challenge us, encourage us, promote us, and most of all, help us achieve a broader dimension of ourselves."

 --Glenn Van Ekeren


"One of our strongest yearnings is to be accepted by others. We love being welcomed by individuals, and we delight in the feeling of belonging to a group... Being inclusive means applying the principle of respect for persons to all persons. When it comes time to show respect and consideration to others, we do not pick and choose."


Most of us can remember times growing up when we were excluded by others - not being chosen for a particular team, not being invited to a party, being selectively ignored in a conversation, or sitting down at a table in the cafeteria only to have others get up and leave. Exclusion hurts. We should be careful never to engage in self-serving, unfair, and mean-spirited strategies of exclusion.


Unfortunately there are still cliques in our adult lives, both at work and among our friends and acquaintances. It's often easier to spend our time with others who are just like us instead of reaching out to those who are new or different.


Dr. Forni encourages us to be inclusive, and he provides a number of suggestions:

  • Evaluate your own habits and likes/dislikes with others and pick one or two to change.
  • If you are in a small group conversation, do your best to include everyone in the group and pick topics that can be enjoyed by everyone.
  • If you are the leader of a team, make sure that all team members have input.
  • If you are in charge of a social event, include one or two new people.
  • Show an interest in other cultures and get to know people from backgrounds different from your own.
  • If you speak another language, make sure to translate what is being said for those in the group who do not understand it.
  • If you are making plans with another person, be sure to include others in the group or make your arrangements privately.

Action step: Our lives are enriched when we include others who are different from ourselves. Who could you reach out to get to know today?


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


About CCCOE's Monthly Focus

Choosing Civility, by 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