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Over 30 Mission Vista High School students participated in the Mission:Code computer programming competition.

Over thirty Mission Vista High School students participated in the Mission:Code computer programming competition.  MVHS seniors, Aaroh Mankad, Chris Martin, and Eric Ceballos organized the seven hour event where eleven different teams had the mission of designing and implementing an interactive 2D or 3D game from scratch.


Students used NetBeans or Unity as their development environment and programmed in java, java script, and C#.  Mission:Code event supervisor, Jeff Yee, was amazed by the determination and focus by the students.  Mr. Yee said, “The students had six hours from beginning to end to create their games.  I expected the students to take a couple of breaks in between, but they just kept on going.  Even when the pizza and sandwiches were delivered, they continued to code and eat at the same time.”


After the six hours of coding were done, each team presented their game.  The games were judged by Aaroh, Chris, and Eric.  The stakes for winning were high with prizes totaling $170 which were donated by the school’s Computer Game Programming Club.  First place for 2D games went to Vincent Whizen, Nuel Maravilla, and Matteus Thresher and first place for 3D games went to Spencer Nettles, Thomas Webb, and Marcus Moore.  After Mission:Code was over, Jeff Yee asked the participants if they would come back next year and there was a unanimous vote of yes.  Mission:Code far surpassed the expectations of the organizers and they were thrilled to have created an event that will only get bigger and better.  Thomas Webb said it best, “I really enjoyed the experience and had a great time.  I would definitely do it again even without the prizes.”


by Jeff Yee

Mission Vista High School

Bernie Sanders Rally at Rancho Buena Vista High School - May 22nd, 2016

The Bernie Sanders campaign people were kind enough to allow Tom Berger, Chris Tompkins and me to bring in some students as "press" to take photos and videos.  It was an opportunity of a lifetime and such a treat to be able to see our campus in a different light.


I have to say that the campaign people were extraordinarily kind, gracious, and so supportive of our students. They went above and beyond accommodating us, and in many cases gave our students the same chance to get the best views, the same as they gave CNN or Time Magazine.


I also have to say how incredibly kind the press were to me and to our students. CNN gave us a tour inside their communications van, and just about every photojournalist gave me their card and offered to visit our school. They were also all impressed with how beautiful our stadium was and what a nice school it was!


The crowd was respectful and very excited to see Bernie Sanders speak. Overall it was a tremendous experience for us all, and I'm thrilled they chose RBV to hold their rally!


Here are the photo essays that our students that attended the Bernie Sanders rally as press created. I'm extremely proud of the talent of their photography and wonderful writing, and so grateful for the special opportunity they had. Thank you thank you thank you so much Chuck, Eileen and Sandra for making this happen!!!

See Images from the Rally


by Kelly Moncure, BFA, MA

Photography Teacher

Rancho Buena Vista High School

(760) 727-7284 x72231

Life is like a camera. Focus on what’s important and capture the good times, develop from the negatives and if things don’t work out, just take another shot.


Jonathan Tarr Foundation with Martie Napier's CTE students discussing teens & distracted driving.
Jonathan Tarr Foundation Classroom Visit for Martie Napier

Industry Experts Consult RBV on Solar Project

Industry Experts consult RBV on solar project

By Robert Ahern, Architect  LEED AP


The Rancho Buena Vista (RBV) High School Pre-engineering classes got treated to presentations by industry professionals on May 3, 2016. Local installer Baker Electric Solar sent three bright employees to the high school to demonstrate and explain how they design and specify photovoltaic solar systems, which make electricity from sunlight. The Baker team included an outreach coordinator, an expert drafter/designer, and a project manager. The drafter/designer demonstrated using ‘Aurora’ software specifically designed for solar calculations, that models sunlight through various times of the year in a 3D model, and helps designers locate the optimum solar design. The project manager drew on the board and explained single line drawings and components for electrical systems.


The School Solar Design Project was spearheaded by Architect Robert Ahern, who teaches Architecture and Engineering at RBV. He met a curriculum writer at a Project-Based Learning (PBL) conference, and they worked together on brainstorming curriculum. She connected Ahern with Liz Fitzpatrick at SEI, who in turn also brought in ‘Junior Achievement’ to assist with the project.  “I had this idea for a solar project at the school, to do more real-world engineering, and then ‘SEI’ had curriculum for EXACTLY that project!  It was a great time saver, and nice to have some blueprints for lesson plans and content. “ said instructor Ahern. “An industry visit is also a great way for students to learn about what working in the ‘real world’ is like, and learn from the pros.“


The solar industry is a big market for computer drafting, a skill highlighted in the RBV engineering pathway. Solar designers use drawing software to make presentation drawings, and show how the panels will look on a building, so owners can decide if they want to do it. The solar companies also prepare plans for building permit submittals on CAD software. The price of solar power keeps coming down, and is cost competitive with other power sources such as nuclear, and without the pollution of gas, coal and oil.  Some people get “political” about the issue, but the “payback” is in single digit years, and from then on energy bills are free. Ahern hopes that “the students will make some awesome designs, and hopefully we can secure financing to make the project a reality!” It’s not rocket science, but does involve the sun.


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Vista CTE Photography Students Win Big At Regional Art Competition

Vista CTE Photography Students Win Big At Regional Art Competition


Vista CTE Photography students were the top prize winners at the Carlsbad Oceanside Art League's (COAL) Annual High School Fine Art & Photography Show. The show went from April 3rd through April 17th at the OPT Underground Gallery, located at Oceanside Photo and Telescope in Oceanside.  The show featured 275 entries from students from the Army & Navy Academy, El Camino, Carlsbad, Mission Vista, Oceanside, Rancho Buena Vista and Vista.  Judged by Lou Kasza and Phyllis Swanson, over $1000 in awards were presented to students at a reception on April 3.


Rayanna King of Rancho Buena Vista High School won first place for photography with her "Rainy Day at Rancho" photograph.  Her photograph is a moody composition of the school's walkway during the evening, and strikes a melancholic chord to everyone who sees it. Other top prize winners include Rancho's Gerardo Zuniga with a McDowell Memorial Award, Vista High School's Ethan Lewellyn with the Patron Award, Daniel De La Torre with an Honorable Mention, and Mission Vista's student Lauren Spears with an honorable mention.


Students that participated included:


From Rancho Buena Vista, Kelly Moncure teacher:

Jasmine Campos 

​Aidan Dean

Conner Drinkward

Christian Enriquez

Rayanna King

Zach Kleppe

Sierra Matthews

Yesenia Mora

Naomi Pazmino

Paulo Perez

Juan Rivera 

Gerardo Zuniga


From Vista High School, Laura Olden teacher:

Ethan Lewellen

Daniel De La Torre

Viviana Ilic-Flores

Kiana Teixeira

Hector Santiago

Carol Arciga

Mayra Alvarado

Breanna Johnson

Alex Bobadilla

Christian Rodriguez


From Mission Vista High School, William Salley teacher

Sarah Dinse

Ava Walker

Sierra Conrad

Jerry Addison

Fiderly Garcia

Sydney Goss

Lauren Spears



Attached: Gerardo with his winning piece also at the show and Rayanna King with her work "Rainy Day at Rancho".

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Culinary Arts Students Battle in Cooking Competition

The 2016 San Diego County CTE MasterChefs Competition features students from 10 local high schoolsBy Monica Garske

Teams of culinary arts students from 10 high schools across San Diego County went whole hog Tuesday as they battled it out in a cooking competition.


The 2016 San Diego County CTE MasterChefs Competition went down at Orange Glen High School in Escondido, with teams showcasing their culinary talents by whipping up two identical entrées that included five components: protein, starch, vegetable, sauce and an edible garnish.


This year’s selected protein was pork, and the students had to cook on two burners in just one hour, organizers said. This marked the third year San Diego County high schools have participated in this competition.


Organizers said teams from the following high schools got in on the action: Escondido; Fallbrook; Mission Hills; Orange Glen; San Dieguito Academy; San Pasqual Academy; San Pasqual High School; Santana; Southwest; Vista.


The students were evaluated by a panel of experts in areas including safety, sanitation, cooking procedures and their finished product. Judges on that panel included some big names in the local culinary scene, including AmyDiBiase, executive chef and general manager at Tidal/Paradise Point Resort & Spa, Ron Oliver, Chef de Cuisine at The Marine Room and Travis Watson, executive chef at the Rancho Bernardo Inn.


In the past, Fallbrook High School and Vista High School have won the competition. History repeated itself Tuesday, with Vista High School once again taking home the first place victory. Second place went to Escondido High School, and third place to Santana High School.

Vista High’s dish wins bake-off contest - By Pat Maio | 4:31 p.m. Feb. 23, 2016 | Updated, 4:32 p.m.

ESCONDIDO — Vista High School senior Tate Miller meticulously trimmed fat and skin from a slab of pork on Tuesday, getting ready to cut it into glazed pork medallions — the filet mignon of pork.


That attention to detail paid off for Miller and his fellow seniors Tavo Updike and Mari Gebauer. For the second consecutive year, the Vista High culinary team won the 2016 San Diego County CTE MasterChefs Competition.


“It feels good to win a second year in a row,” said Updike, who also helped cook last year’s plate, which featured pork tenderloins dressed with a creamy sauce featuring shallots, cider and mustard and garnished with caramelized pears.


Read more here

VHS Sports Medicine - San Diego Chargers


Allissa Cole, CTE Sports Medicine teacher from Vista High School took a field trip with her students to meet the Chargers head trainer, James Collins. Students toured the Charger's Park facility, the Charger's meeting room, the locker room for the players, the equipment room and lastly the practice field. James Collins gave the class an overview of how a typical day is for the team during season and off season.


Students were able to ask several questions about what an athletic trainer’s job is like. Mr. Collins answered such questions as; “How did he get to the NFL? What was the worst injury seen throughout his career? What's the hardest part of the job?” Mr. Collins informed the students that his job requires a lot of time on and off season and that it’s not for everybody. By asking these questions the students were able to grasp a better understanding of what this career entails. The students had a great experience by getting a closer look into the life of a Professional Athletic Trainer. 

CTE Teachers’ Favorites Online Resources!

Please click this link to download the best Business/Finance and Marketing resources for teachers.

Created by the California Business Education Leadership Project


Resources for Financial Literacy, Money Management, Etc.: Money Management International. 

When the amount you spend is more than the amount you earn, a simple way to find financial balance is to decrease your spending. Unfortunately, spending less is not always an option. Fortunately, making more money is not nearly as hard as it sounds. With a little planning, earning more can certainly be within your reach. 

High School Financial Planning Program

HSFPP offers a full suite of FREE instructional resources to use in existing courses or workshop settings where teens interact with an instructor.  The components for the program include:

  • Six student guide booklets
  • Teacher lesson plans and PowerPoint presentations
  • Activities, handouts and performance-based assessments
  • Online student practice quizzes, polls and more


This is an excellent site, sponsored by Visa, which provides:  free materials and resources on personal finance, credit and debit, savings and spending, and curriculum for 9-12 grade students.



Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

This site is designed to make it easier for students to understand economics, personal finance, and the role of the Federal Reserve.  College Planner – allows students to evaluate which career or education path they should pursue after high school.  Plus, the tool helps develop personal finance skills to make that plan a reality.  Students can also potential return on a college degree and how long it will take to break even on higher education expenses… plus much, much more!

Next Gen Personal Finance offers a free online curriculum of 65+ complete lessons and 100+ standalone activities you can access from anywhere.   You can find free resources on Careers, Investing, Insurance, Credit Scores, Types of Credit, Checking, and Savings.

Teaching the Critical Skills That Life and Work Demand

EverFi brings cutting-edge digital learning on critical skills to the communities and people you care about.   Their unique model brings private sector leaders, forward-leaning foundations and non-profits into the education innovation movement.

By participating in the H&R Block Budget Challenge, students will learn and practice many real-world money management skills: Paying bills, managing expenses, saving money, investing in retirement and more.  The three skill areas taught are:  Balancing current and future cash needs, paying bills on time and on budget, and resourcefulness, understanding and practical application of financial concepts.

CalCPA offers a free, fully interactive financial literacy program for students in grades 8-12. The program is designed to be relevant and engaging for students and covers six topics: money management, borrowing, earning power, investing, financial services and insurance. The presentations are flexible and can stand alone or be ongoing. CalCPA provides Instructor Materials and Student Guides in partnership with the National Endowment for Financial Education. Materials are available in hard copy and digital formats.

A great site with a wide variety of resources including popular tools and topics such as:  free credit report, free credit score, cost of living calculator, retirement planning, mortgage rates, CD rates, social security, debit cards and a savings calculator…. Just to mention a few!


MoneySKILL is a FREE online reality based personal finance course aimed at the millions of high school and college students who graduate each year without a basic understanding of money management fundamentals. The course is designed to be used as all or part of a grade for courses in economics, math, social studies or where personal finance are taught. Students experience the interactive curriculum as both written text and audio narration. The 36-module curriculum, with pre- and post -tests, covers the content areas of income, expenses, assets, liabilities and risk management. A life simulation module asks students to project their own financial life expectancies in areas such as employment, housing, transportation, education, marriage, family and retirement.



The Council for Economic Education

The Council for Economic Education


EconEdLink is the leading source of online economic & personal finance lessons & resources for educators, students, and afterschool providers.

  • Over 427 lessons to choose from
  • Categorized by age group and subject
  • All of the lessons are Internet-based and free to everyone.

Take Charge Today - A program and curriculum with a decision-based approach to personal finance. Formerly Family Economics & Financial Education, Take Charge Today provides a consistent framework for thinking through financial choices in order to improve well-being.


This is an award winning program designed BY teachers, FOR teachers! 

Site requires registration, but resources are all FREE of charge!

Connect classes to the real world with Life Scenarios.

One of the hardest parts about teaching is connecting the classroom to the real world. Printed Life Scenarios booklets provide a seamless connection between your classroom and your students’ actual financial decisions. The booklets include situations like paying for concert tickets, dealing with an overdraft, and even just paying for gas.



Resources for Career Exploration and Planning:


This site includes Information on California high school and community college courses, career options, and financial assistance. It will help students make decisions about the right courses to take in high school and community college so that they have the opportunity to turn that passion into a great job and a great future.

Find many different types of financial aid available year round at California Community Colleges that directly connect you with events in your area where you can get free professional assistance completing financial aid forms.


California Career Zone is a new way to explore exciting jobs and occupations that the Golden State has to offer and to learn about what career path interests you.

Build a Future with O*Net Online

O*NET OnLine has detailed descriptions of the world of work for use by job seekers, workforce development and HR professionals, students, researchers, and more!

The Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor is the principal Federal agency responsible for measuring labor market activity, working conditions, and price changes in the economy. Its mission is to collect, analyze, and disseminate essential economic information to support public and private decision-making. As an independent statistical agency, BLS serves its diverse user communities by providing products and services that are objective, timely, accurate, and relevant.  The Bureau of Labor Statistics will meet the information needs of a rapidly changing U.S. and global economy by continuously improving its products and services, investing in its work force, and modernizing its business processes.



And don’t forget about and 

Both of these sites provide great resources to help match the education needed to land a job in a selected career field.

Monster Network – Financial Aide, Scholarships, Resumes, Job Search, Career Advice

Whether you are thinking about a new job, new career, a new city of a new direction, Monster help you explore the possibilities and find the opportunities that are right for YOU.



Resources for Teaching Marketing and Entrepreneurship

Solid entrepreneurship curriculum is fun. Creating your own curriculum is not. Log in to share and use world-class, best-practice curriculum from great entrepreneurship instructors. Together, we can build launch pads for our students. This website has been developed by the Small Business Sector of the Doing What MATTERS for Jobs and the Economy framework out of the California Community Colleges to be the entrepreneur curriculum resource where best practices and teaching tools are uploaded and shared by and for educators in California and across the country.

HP Learning Initiative for Entrepreneurs (HP LIFE) is a global program that trains students, entrepreneurs, and small business owners to apply IT and business skills, so you can establish and grow a business, build successful companies and create jobs. Our face-to-face trainings, tools and e-Learning program address educational needs, improve and strengthen skills and enable you to move forward.


As an alternative to long case studies, this site consists of over 250 short activities and discussion exercises. They are ideally suited to topics that only require a 10-30 minute (on average, some activities run longer) exercise addressing a distinctive concept, rather than a detailed, all-encompassing case study.  All the activities and discussion exercises are provided free for marketing lecturers to use in their classes.  The material is designed to: 1) be easy to use; 2) reduce prep time; 3) add variety to lessons, and 4) appeal to different learning styles.


Offering more experiential learning opportunities, this online, interactive video case program, puts students in the middle of dynamic marketing strategy decision-making with real marketers. Nine cases focus on up-to-the-minute issues in the music, automotive, and soft drink industries. Within Marketer's Showdown cases, students will be able to analyze the marketing problem, choose a proposed solution, and then watch their proposal debated by marketing professionals. After the debate, students have the opportunity to change their plan or stick to their guns, then see the outcome of their decisions. As in real marketing situations, not every good marketing decision leads to a good outcome!


Various Resources for just plain, good teaching!

Learn almost anything for free!

With a library of over 4,300 videos on everything from arithmetic to physics, finance, and history and hundreds of skills to practice, we are on a mission to help you learn what you want, when you want, at your own pace.  We are a donor-supported not-for-profit and would not be possible without the generous support of users everywhere.  In particular, we would like to thank our major supporters for their strong support of our mission.

Career & College Ready Starts Here!  Visit this site (and create a login) to find over 3,000 lesson plans that are aligned to CTE standards, common care and NGSS, CTE integrated projects, project-based learning projects and 50+ CTE model course outlines!  Educators will also find professional curriculum development tools and community groups!

Support K-12 teachers, staff, and students with on-demand learning and 21st century skills development.

Learn how our valued K-12 clients benefit from high-quality instruction covering software, creative, and business skills that can be immediately put to use in the classroom and beyond. Discover how education leaders supplement curricula, promote college and career readiness, support classroom technologies, and drive student mastery and success.

Students LOVE  Teachers create a FUN interactive game, survey, quiz on ANY topic of ANY length.  Students respond using an electronic device – pull out those phones and let them use ‘em for EDUCATION.  Your students will love you for this one! is a free, core academic web site that delivers rich multimedia content—videos, animations, and simulations—on general education subject to middle-school and high-school teachers and college professors, and their students, free of charge.   Teachers project Hippo Campus content during classroom learning and assign it for computer labs and homework.  Students use the site in the evenings for study and exam prep.  Users do not need to register or log in to use the site.

Google Apps for ePortfolios

Using Google Apps is a free and easy way to create an online ePortfolio.  There are a lot of resources available on the web to help you get started with Google Apps.

Welcome to Flashcard Machine – a free service for creating web-based study flashcards that can be shared with others.  With over 84.4 million flash cards created to-date, Flashcard Machine is your premier online study tool.

  • Students – create flash cards to study for your next exam.  Share them with your classmates and friends.
  • Teachers—create flash cards for your students.  Build customized pages for each of your classes to better organize your cards.


Wordle is an app for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes. The images you create with Wordle are yours to use however you like. You can print them out, or save them to the Wordle gallery to share with your friends.



CIA - Jessica Dobrin 309x206 2014 Culinary Student - Plunkett

Former VHS Culinary Student Jessica Dobrin is a 2014 International Gold and Silver Plate Society Stipend Recipient

Future of Foodservice Student Spotlight: Jessica Dobrin

Posted by IFMA February 01, 2016

CTE Being Recognized at the National Level!

recognitionPresident Obama recently amended the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program by adding a new component -- recognition for excellence among students in career and technical education.  An Executive Order creating this third component was signed in late June by the President at the White House.  The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established by President Lyndon Johnson in 1964.  More than 7,000 outstanding high school seniors have been recognized.  And in 2016 the awards will include 20 first-time U. S. Presidential Scholars in Career and Technical Education (CTE).  This is a great testament to the validity of our programs!  Good news for all of us! - CA Business Education Leadership Project - Molly Anderson

Vista Teachers Touch Down In The Real World

By Editor  /  August 10, 2015


Ray Huard …. Vista High School teacher David West couldn’t believe what happened to him during a two-day stint at KPBS-TV. Within minutes of walking in the front door, he was off and running on a reporting assignment with news anchor Dwayne Brown and cameraman Christopher Maue. “Immediately, I’m immersed, like, let’s grab some gear, this camera, a tripod and we shot off to get this news story,” said West, who teaches photography, website design, videography, TV film and digital media. “Instantly, I’m dropped into the story, talking with the news anchor, who’s going to pitch it or do the story that night,” West said. “He’s actually walking me through how to do the story in the middle of doing the story. I was stunned.”

West was one of 11 Career Technical Education teachers in the Vista Unified School District who spent two days this summer on “externships” working in businesses related to the courses they teach. Career Technical Education (CTE) is a series of courses that combine academic learning with technical and occupational skills that prepare high school students to go straight into the workplace or continue their education.

At Vista Unified, CTE courses include subjects such as computer gaming, robotics, architectural design, photography, video broadcasting, auto technology, agriculture and culinary arts. The courses are taught by people with on-the-job experience who worked in the industries they teach about. “They’re teaching a certain industry-related course,” said James Hayes, who coordinated the externship program for Vista Unified. “The problem is, if they’ve been outside of an industry for a while, the world changes. Things change,” Hayes said.   The idea behind the externships is “to really give the teachers more real-world, current, updated experience,” Hayes said. “This is the best way to do it, to really immerse them into local businesses.”

farmers10Chef-Kim-instructs-student-Chef-ThaliaFor Chef Kim Plunkett, who teaches culinary arts at Vista High School, that meant working in the kitchen at Park Hyatt Aviara under the guidance of Executive Chef Pierre Albaladejo. “I chose that place because they are a five-star resort. I wanted to know how the best of the best work on a daily basis,” Plunkett said. “It made sense to go there to learn skills to take back to the classroom, to make sure I’m teaching the kids is what’s actually being done in the industry.” Among other things, Plunkett said she made sandwiches for high tea, made fruit tarts with the pastry chef, helped plate desserts for a wedding party of 150,  plated more than 550 salads for two banquets and, worked on the hot food line preparing chicken to be served. “It was high-adrenaline, high-stress perfection,” Plunkett said. “That was kind of getting thrown into the fire. It was a natural high.” The experience reinvigorated her love of the culinary arts. “All of them acted like they just loved having me there,” Plunkett said. “They loved showing off their experience, showing off what they do.”

Dadre Rudolph, who teaches robotics at Rancho Buena Vista High School, said her time with Hunter Industries gave her invaluable insight into the complexities of automating a manufacturing process using robotic machines. The company manufactures a wide range of irrigation products, according to its website.  “I’ve got lots of lessons to take back to the kids from it,” Rudolph said. “I’ve never seen those kinds of automation in person. I’ve see the robots on TV making cars and things like that. Being exposed to that process and how they put it all together to make automation work is new to me.” Best of all, Rudolph said she’s been invited to bring her students on a field trip to Hunter Industries and company officials said they’d skype with her students. “I’m definitely going to take them up on that,” Rudolph said.

Graphic design teacher David Feldstein said that his time with Hunter Industries marketing team left him “a little overwhelmed.” Feldstein said the company’s manager of creative development, Dina Newcomb, arranged for him to meet with all the members of her staff along with other marketing managers. “Everyone was totally open about discussing their activities and how they interconnect with others throughout the company,” Feldstein said. “Great ideas emerged with every discussion, helping me form a real world glimpse that I am trying to apply to my teaching.” Feldstein said he’s already preparing lessons based on what he learned.

Rene Brumfield, who teaches Virtual Enterprise classes at Mission Vista High School, said one of the things that impressed him in his time at DJO Global was how people had to scramble to meet deadlines and be flexible. DJO makes medical devices and provides services to health care professionals, according to its website. Brumfield said he was gratified by how open company officials were in discussing their work. “I was actually invited to attend planning meetings,” Brumfield said. “They were dealing with their real problems. One of them was inventory, how do they prevent a backlog of inventory.” He also was surprised by the legal and regulatory hurdles a company can face. “That was very enlightening for me to hear that, what they have to go through to get a product out there,” Brumfield said.

This year, the externships were a pilot program, but they proved so successful that Vista Unified CTE Coordinator Susie Johnson said she plans to expand the program in the 2015-16 school year. Rather than limiting the program to summer vacation, Johnson said she plans to give teachers more flexibility so they can arrange externships on weekends or during breaks during the school year.

- See more at:

The Benefits of Internships at Small Companies = Win Win!

Leonard Williams 08/10/2015

Internships and apprenticeships have many benefits for the students participating.  These opportunities extend the learning opportunities of the students.  Edgar Dale's Cone of Learning indicates that direct purposeful experiences leads to a higher learning retention.  Students in the workplace with older mentors not only learn and hone their skills, they also learn the "secrets" of completing a job on time and with precision.  Through this opportunity, students experience success and realize self worth. 

Students begin establishing a work history in these programs.  Many are retained after graduation from high school with the company assisting with college tuition. 

The best place for the students is in smaller companies that support the larger industries in the area.  These companies are usually privately owned.  Since these companies are usually family owned the facility could be considered their second home.  Which one must remember when placing students.  Do not place students in these companies that you would not invite into your own home.  These folks are not there to rehabilitate students with criminal histories or a history of truancy. 

Smaller companies allow the students to work in many areas on many different projects .  Usually they are not running low skill assembly lines. The learning, through work based learning, requires the student to learn to think and plan.

- See more at:

Rancho Buena Vista HS Robotics Program Awarded Grant

Dadre Rudolph, CTE Robotics teacher at Rancho Buena Vista High School was awarded a grant from The Institute for Teaching in the amount of $19,999.  This grant will be used to enhance the robotics programs at the high school.  Many thanks to the Institute for Teaching for selecting Ms. Rudolph's programs and to Ms. Rudolph for going above and beyond in serving her students!

Vista Teachers Brush up on Their Technical Fields with Experts
Published: 6/15/15
Posted by: Donna Tlachac - Sys Admin
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VISTA — Career and technical education teachers in Vista Unified School District are getting tuneups this summer on the trades they teach.  It’s not unlike what more than 120 students in the district do when they head off to summer internships. Roughly 10 specialized career teachers at Vista High School began three-day “externships” at local businesses this week to learn more about the latest trends in the hospitality, media and agriculture industries.

They’ll job shadow some local businesses including the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort in Carlsbad, KPBS television station in San Diego, and Solutions Farms in Vista,

“I know it’s important for all teachers to stay in touch with industry,” said Susie Johnson, coordinator of career and technical education for Vista Unified. “If we can do the same for teachers like we do students, it brings the whole picture together.” This is the first year that the district has tried externships, said Johnson. She’s in her first year on the job in Vista and is taking a page from other Southern California districts where she’s worked.

On Friday, Kim Plunkett, Vista High’s culinary arts teacher, began working with Pierre Albaladejo, executive chef of Park Hyatt Aviara.

“This is the first time that I’ve done this as well — I’m not sure what to expect,” Albaladejo said.

He said he planned to share with Plunkett his hake fish with green sauce recipe, a favorite from his French homeland. “It’s very good,” he said.

Albaladejo runs two four-diamond restaurants — the Argyle Steakhouse and Vivace — at the five-diamond Hyatt resort.

“I want to learn and stay current on my skills so my students will be to do what I’ve done,” said Plunkett, who on Saturday will aid the resort in food preparation for a big catering party. “In the classroom, you have to get out and see what is in the real world and tweak the curriculum to prepare the kids for the field you teach,” she said.

Sara Benner, an agricultural sciences teacher and adviser to the National FFA Organization club on campus, is helping out next week at Solutions Farms, an aquaponics operation run by a nonprofit that works with homeless families. Half of the agricultural enterprise’s output is sold to Vista schools.

Aquaponics combines aquaculture — in this case, raising tilapia, a freshwater fish — with hydroponics, where leafy vegetables are grown without soil.

The gist is that the nutrient-rich water is pumped out of fish tanks and supplied to the plants. The plants take what they need from the water, and in doing so, cleanse it. Then it’s pumped back into the fish tanks. The cycle repeats again and again.

“I hope to learn about the different facets of managing a commercial aquaponics farm,” said Benner. She has angled to get one built at Vista High over the past four years but hasn’t been successful due to budget constraints.

Demand in the school’s agricultural program is growing, Benner said. It had 132 enrolled students in the 2014-2015 school year but expects 180 next year. The program had an additional 50 students who were turned away for lack of space, Benner said.

Dave West, a multimedia career teacher at Vista High, plans to go out on assignments with KPBS news videographers, work in the control room where film editing takes place, and work on a documentary-style production.

“I’m going into it blind,” West said. “I want to keep it relevant and fun and take it back to the classroom.”

Mike Jeffs, a KPBS production services manager, said West will be kept busy over his job-shadowing assignment. “He’s going to get a lot out of it without much work on our part.” (760) 529-4929 Twitter: UTschools

New SDCOE Model for Participants 2016

Dear Program Participants,


Recently, the San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE) has made significant changes to the Clear Designated Subjects Credential Program. You are receiving this notification because you have had a Preliminary Designated Subjects Credential issued to you within the last five years. All changes will be in effect on July 1, 2016, and will remain in effect for the foreseeable future.


Program updates are as follows:

  1. All Coursework as of July 1, 2016, will now be conducted through the SDCOE’s online platforms.
  2. SDCOE Coursework Enrollment will begin online June 1, 2016. Registration and Payment for SDCOE Coursework will be online through either VISA or MASTERCARD.
  3. SDCOE Courses will begin on July 11, 2016.
  4. All completed UCSD coursework, as of June 30, 2016, will count towards Coursework completion for your Clear Credential.
  5. UCSD coursework will sunset on June 30, 2016, and afterwards, will not be an option for Program Participants.
  6. All Program Participants who have a Preliminary Credential (including transfers) issued before June 1, 2016, will be grandfathered into the UCSD pricing model:
    1. Orientation: $30.00
    2. Foundations: $400.00
    3. CTE, Single Subject, Supervision & Coordination or Adult Ed Emphasis: $600.00
    4. Portfolio: $300.00
    5. CTE Core: $525.00
    6. Health Education: $275.00
    7. U.S. Constitution: $175.00
  7. Any Preliminary Credential issued from May 1st on will no longer have to pay the $107.00 fee to SDCOE for processing.
  8. The CTC fee of $100.00 still applies to any credential processed through our office.
  9. The new pricing model for Program Participants who have been issued a Preliminary Credential (including transfers) on or after June 1, 2016:
    1. Early Program Orientation: $250.00
    2. Foundations: $700.00
    3. CTE, Single Subject, Supervision & Coordination or Adult Ed Emphasis: $850.00
    4. Portfolio: $500.00
    5. CTE or Adult Ed Core: $700
    6. Health Education: $275.00
    7. U.S. Constitution: $175.00
  10. Units for SDCOE coursework will be offered through Brandman University at an additional cost
  11. SDCOE Coursework will continue to be in a fully online format
  12. Participants will no longer have to complete the CTEOnline Early Orientation course.
  13. Participants will have to be enrolled in the SDCOE Early Program Orientation course within the first 30 days of employment.

Your Employing Agency has been notified of these changes, and will serve as a point of contact for any questions you may have. You will be receiving a separate letter from us, detailing your coursework completion thus far, and instructions on how to register for any further SDCOE online Coursework. If you do not receive that letter before June 1, 2016 please contact our office.


We look forward to serving you through our new program. If you have any questions, please contact us at:


Thank you,


Carol Tomeo

Coordinator, Designated Subjects

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