On-line Summer Institute Participant
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Name of School
Sparks High School
Name of city, state
Sparks, Nevada - we're about 3 miles east of Reno, in western Nevada -
Reno/Sparks is all a part of Washoe County and I work for the Washoe
County School District. We have 11 high schools in the district.
Number of students enrolled in school
No clue! I know that last year, the school was about 124% capacity and
still growing - we have bad overcrowding in the high schools right now.
Two new highs schools will open in another year and that should help. The
school isn't built for lots of kids - I think they're probably around
General description of school and communities served
This happens to be the high school I graduated from. It's in "old Sparks"
and lot of the old houses are now low income or apartments. It's urban
with a high at-risk population, fairly high number of hispanics, probably
some african-americans. Most of the staff has been there for years - they
get attached and don't leave. The principal is new and has recruited a
number of high energy people - most with lots of technology experience -
although the school has practically no computers for kids.
School's home page
Next year's class assignment
I'll be teaching the lowest two math classes we give math credit for in
high school - we call them Core B and Core C. The courses are intended to
provide a strong enough algebra background so that when students finish
they get an Algebra credit. But they also fulfill all the Nevada State
Math Standards, from geometry, probability, data analysis, and number as
well as algebra. As of last school year, all students must have 3 years of
math to graduate, but before that, only 2 were required. Many of our
students took only these 2 courses. At Sparks, about 70% of their
student population take these classes.
Any general bio information
I spent the last 6 years as the K-12 Math Program Coordinator for Washoe
County School District. Before that I was the Secondary Math and Computer
Coordinator for 3 years, Math and Textbook Consultant for the Nevada
Department of Education for a year, and taught high school math for 13
years before that. I've received several awards, including Presidential
Award, Nevada State Teacher of the Year, and Nevada Educator (that's the
Milken Family Foundation Award). I've served on the Editorial Panel for
the Mathematics Teacher, the Program Committee for the NCTM Annual
Conference in San Francisco, and currently on the Program Committee for
the NCTM Regional in Yakima WA. I chaired "Special Projects" for the NCTM
Regional in Reno 2 years ago (we did a Math Trail through the hotel/casino
where the conference was held) and have been appointed to a new editorial
panel for NCTM on "meeting the needs of new teachers."
Any major interest outside of education?
I have a wonderful husband and 3 sons, grades 2, 4, 6 next year. My
husband has always been my best supporter, and has even stayed home with
my boys so I could do the Program Coordinator job and work all those late
hours! I enjoy needlework when I have time and reading (mostly science