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Erin Albanese

Erin Albanese
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Erin Albanese has worked as a journalist in the Grand Rapids area since 2000. A graduate of Central Michigan University, she has written for The Grand Rapids Press, Advance Newspapers and On-the-Town Magazine. She has been covering the many exciting facets of K-12 public education for School News Network since 2013. Read Erin's full bio

Marching Forward with Winning Band Director

“There’s our tempo, arms are up, one, two, ready and...”  said Jonathan Schnicke, as the Kent City middle school band began its melody. Schnicke recently took his spot behind the podium of the middle school and high school bands...

Volunteers Challenge Students to Give of Themselves

When Comstock Park High School senior Justin Terveen helped deliver Christmas gifts to a local family in need last year, he saw the children were wrapped in blankets to keep warm because of insufficient heating. “It was a huge...

Diverse Dishes – Food Service Staff Learn Creative Ways to Mix Up Menus

Getting students excited about what’s on their lunch trays takes a mix of the right ingredients. Plus, it requires tapping into youthful curiosity, said Mo Shamali, child nutrition director for Kentwood and Kelloggsville public schools. “Kids are savvy,” he said, while...

Byron Center Considering Next Steps to Address Growth

As work crews finish the last projects funded through the $23 million bond issue approved by voters in 2011, administrators are already looking forward to future district needs. Steady enrollment growth will lead to the need for even more space,...

The Power of the Pen to Make a Difference

Wyoming Junior High School student Caitlyn Bulthuis’s persuasive speech about the nonprofit organization 20 Liters will have an impact on the lives of people more than 7,500 miles away. Giovanni Diaz’s speech is helping share a powerful anti-bullying message students...

iPads Proving Their Value at Schools

As Brown Elementary School kindergartner Christian Moomey got ready to record himself reading a story on an iPad, Principal Barb Johnson watched.  “It takes a little bit to load,” he told her. “Oh, here we go! Record,” he said,...

Community Members, Schools Stepping Up to Address Need in Comstock Park

The Giving Closet is stocked with winter coats, boots, clothes and more, ready to make the winter months easier for struggling families in the Comstock Park area. The donation closet, located in the Comstock Park Public Schools Administration Building, is...

EGR Coins Recognize Kindness, Keep Memory of Kabookie Alive

East Grand Rapids High School Principal Jenny Fee saw the spirit of Jimmy Gerken in Olivia Kallil, so she acknowledged Olivia’s kindness by giving her a golden coin. It was emblazoned with the smiling face of Gerken,  the man...

Leading With Care

For one day each December, students in the Crossroads Alternative High School leadership class work in assembly-line format, packing hundreds of items into care bags for people in the community. It’s a culmination of months of work getting donations...

Guest Column on Wyoming Bond Vote

I’m sitting here teary-eyed thinking about the Nov. 5 rejection of Wyoming Public School’s two bond proposals to fund security, high school improvements and a fine arts center. I am wondering why this obvious disconnect between the school and...

Third-Graders’ Cardboard Arcade Inspired by 9-Year-Old Entrepreneur

Inspired by a 9-year-old boy from California, West Elementary School third-grade students put their imaginations to the test creating an arcade made of cardboard, complete with all the bells and whistles. From an arcade basketball game to a rocket ship...

Broadway Bound

Tips from a Tony Award-nominated Broadway producer and a choreographer helped set the stage for Macy Krupiczewicz to pull deep from within herself in singing, “Good Morning, Baltimore” from the musical “Hairspray.” Rich Affannato, co-producer and director of the musical...

State Farm’s $100,000 Grant to Fund Kelloggsville, Godfrey Lee Service-Learning Agriculture Programs

When Kelloggsville Middle School teacher Marcia Cisler recently considered projects made possible through service-learning grant money, she talked about students gardening, growing hydroponic vegetables and recycling. As she faces the end of the grant money allocated to the district...

Kent County Students to Share Message on Diversity

The bottom line is: “You’re human,” said Willianna Paulino, a junior at Grand Rapids University Prep Academy. Willianna played a Monopoly-style game that challenged students at Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance’s recent Calling All Colors Conference to consider life from different...

Her electrifying style

Abby Bolen stands alone in a small room, the vibrantly painted viper violin positioned on her shoulder, her bow moving fast and intense. She plays a song that sounds like rock and roll with a Celtic flair. Abby, 16, plays...

EGR Pioneers Support Be Nice through Hearts of Gold game

“Be Nice,” may not be the typical message coming from the stands as football players head to the field to face off against a rival school. But it was Oct. 25 for the East Grand Rapids Pioneers as they battled...
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Superintendent Association committee zeros in on equity to improve gaps in education

A seven-member committee of local educators is working to address disparities in education that exist along along racial and socioeconomic lines. The group meets monthly with the goal of building awareness and working toward change...

News hounds on the prowl for Bulldog Growl

Fifth- and sixth-grade reporters are interviewing students and teachers on various topics to publish their monthly newsletter...

A compass to college

When it comes to going to college, there’s a lot to know even for the most savvy families. And for Hispanic families without much experience in American education, knowing where to start can be daunting...
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