Education Matters: Good causes aplenty

Editor's Note: Numerous instances of plagiarism have been discovered in Dan Kimber’s “Education Matters” column, which ran in the News- Press from September 2003 to September 2011. In those columns where plagiarism has been found, a For the Record specifying the details will be appended to the piece.

This week I'm passing along a few upcoming events that should be of interest to quite a few of you. Each one invites your participation, so read on.

A former Hoover grad, Bill Collins, is staging a multi-class Hoover High School reunion called Groovapalooza. Officially the event is for any Hoover alumni (teachers and students) from the 1970s. It will be held at Memorial Park in La Cañada from 3 to 9 p.m. on Oct. 9.

There will be food, soft drinks and live music. Most everything with the exception of parking costs are being donated. A $20-per-person donation is requested to cover costs, and to make a donation to the Arts and Music Department at Hoover High School. Many who will be participating in Groovapalooza have gone on to careers that involve arts and entertainment and would like to show their appreciation for their old alma mater.

Tickets are payable in advance and must be purchased by Tuesday, or if you're bringing your own food, a $10 donation is requested at the door.

Send checks (and make payable) to: Bill Collins, 1546 Glenmont Drive, Glendale, CA 91207

This is a great two-for-one deal with attendees connecting with old friends and all contributing to a very worthy cause. There's always a fear that cutbacks in school spending will, as it often has in the past, fall heaviest on the arts.

Some of us in the education business believe that should be the last, and not the first, place to cut funding. Be that as it may, many of the programs in our schools that used to be publicly supported are now relying upon community and volunteer efforts, fundraisers etc. just to buy basic supplies.

And speaking of connecting with old friends, Crescenta Valley is celebrating its 50th year as a high school, and all are welcome to come to an open house at the school from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday. Former principals, teachers and lots of fellow classmates will be in attendance.

Tables will be set up for each decade with displays, food booths, a pictorial history of the school and various performances for everyone's entertainment.

Being a former Falcon myself, I'm looking forward to this. For those of you who are of similar vintage, I imagine there will be a number of us old timers hanging out at the 60s table. I'm hoping to bump into some old friends and am looking forward to seeing our good old school.

It's gone through a major face lift, but in looking at the front of the school it's also managed to preserve some of its classical lines.

And finally, my good friend and former colleague Kari Vargas is running the Relay for Life, which is a community event sponsored by the American Cancer Society. It was started at Hoover six years ago by a student named Nairi Hartooni, who lost her uncle to cancer. It operates on the concept that cancer never sleeps, so for 24 hours, neither do the participants.

Students are organized into teams, and one member from each team is walking a track (this year at Scholl Canyon baseball field) at all times. There are usually about 10 members at a time walking.

In the first year, there were about 20 kids participating, and they raised about $500. The second year, the American Cancer Society Youth Club was started, and there were about 50 kids who raised $1,500.

In the third year there were 250 kids who raised a record $14,500. There have been more than 200 kids who participate every year since. In the past six years, the grand total raised for cancer research is $40,000.

This year, more than 300 kids signed up, and they have already raised $10,000, with almost 100 kids still left to turn in their money. The goal of each participant is to raise at least $35, and most go beyond that.

This year, there is a critical need for extra adult help to manage all of these kids. This notice is obviously last minute, since the relay is being held Saturday, but if any of you reading this can donate even a few hours of your time for this purely good cause, here are the particulars:

Scholl Canyon Baseball Field, 3800 Glenoaks Blvd. Glendale, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday. Contact: karivargas73@gmail.com.

DAN KIMBER is a former teacher in the Glendale Unified School District, where he taught for more than 30 years. He may be reached at DKimb8@sbcglobal.net.

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