Discovery Channel to feature LA Schools

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By The Staff

The Discovery Channel has selected Los Alamos Schools to be featured in one of its “Profiles,” Superintendent Eugene Schmidt and Chief Financial Officer John Wolfe announced at Tuesday night’s Board of Education meeting.

“The Discovery Channel will be here Friday,” Schmidt said. “They will be doing their filming and conducting their interviews at that time.”

Schmidt said Louis Gossett Jr. (who will not be here Friday) hosts “Profiles” and the show takes a look at some of the successful public schools in the nation and what they do to prepare students for the 21st century.

“We were in an original pool of 150 and the only one from New Mexico,” Schmidt said. “The show will look at the wide array of what Los Alamos has to offer. We have science, technology, engineering and math as well as art music and drama. It all enriches the lives of Los Alamos students.”

Wolfe said the Discovery Channel contacted the school in September.

As far as the format of the show, that is still a little unclear.

Schmidt said he believed there will be a series of vignettes with some sound bites.

“I am not exactly sure how they are going to frame it,” Schmidt said.

The show is scheduled to air sometime in the fall.

More details about the Discovery Channel show will be reported in Thursday’s Los Alamos Monitor.

The Board of Education meeting, meanwhile, lasted past 10 p.m. with a full agenda.

The board recognized the Science Bowl students from the middle school and the high school. Recognized was the Los Alamos Middle School A team that was second in the regional competition. Melanie Borup, Alex Wang, Daniel Ben-Niam, Jimmy Sinnis and Willie Zhao were on that team. Team B was third in the region and Alex Swart, Caitlin Dahl, Katherine Wang and Nick Koskelo were on that team.

The high school science bowl team members included Scott Carlsten, Micha Ben-Naim, Allen Wu, Lorenzo Venneri, Martin Loncaric, Rohun Iyer, Kevin Gao, Aaron Bao, Naftali Burakovsky,  Zayne Walterscheid, Matthew Schauer, Alison Mercer-Smith, Emily TenCate and Lauren TenCate.

In other business:
• The Board did not take action on the school district tobacco policy, but Katie Bridgewater presented a review of the policy, praising it for encouraging students to seek assistance in breaking the habit. The board will invite the representatives of the county council to set up a meeting to discuss the issue of youth smoking in the community.
• The board received an update on the construction progress of the high school. Flintco representative Justin Stoverink stated that the project was on schedule. Framing was already underway inside the building and the next stage of concrete pour is planned for this weekend.  FBT Architect Sonjay Engineer assured the board that the building was being constructed according to their design.
• The board continued its discussion on the Distribution of Materials Policy 1140 Regulation. Over the last four months, the board has discussed this issue to determine the district’s role to allow access for non-school related groups wishing to distribute materials via the schools’ backpack mail system.  
• New board members Judy Bjarke-McKenzie, Kevin Honnell and David Foster will be sworn in and seated at the March 8 board meeting.
• Randy Smith from LA County Parks and Recreation presented the Aquatic Center Use Agreement that was approved.
• Schmidt said the sixth graders at Piñon Elementary School had the highest science scores in the state after taking the Standards Base Assessment test.