Poetry Out Loud School Registration Deadline Extended

 

BISMARCK,
ND (Amy Schmidt)- Poetry Out Loud is a national poetry recitation
program conducted by The National Endowment for the Arts, the Poetry
Foundation, and state arts agencies in all fifty states.

Poetry
Out Loud (POL) builds on the recent resurgence of poetry as an oral
art form, as demonstrated by the slam poetry movement among our
youth.  By incorporating memorization and performance in the
classroom, POL sets the stage for students to deepen their
understanding of figurative language, word relationships and the
nuances within word meanings.  In addition, students learn about
great poetry, explore their literary heritage and gain confidence in
public speaking skills.

Starting
at the classroom level, teachers use free POL multimedia curriculum
materials – a Teachers’ Guide, posters, and comprehensive
website, all aligned to national standards – to augment their
regular poetry curriculum with poetry recitation and a
classroom-level competition.  Winners from the classroom
competition advance to school, state and the National POL
Competition. 

All
schools wishing to participate in the POL program must officially
register through North Dakota Council on the Arts. POL Teacher
Resource materials will be mailed to all participating teachers.
School registration has been extended to October 15, 2017.

For
more information see www.ndpol.com/program-details.html.

Registration
form can be found at
http://www.ndpol.com/2017-18-registration-form.html.

To
support teachers in this effort, North Dakota Council on the Arts
(NDCA) offers non-matching grant funds for poet visits to schools
registered in the POL Program.  See Poets
in Schools Grant
 for more information.

NDCA
is pleased to announce the 2018 Poetry Out Loud (POL) Competition has
been scheduled for Monday, February 26, 2018 and will take place at
the North Dakota State Heritage Center. All Poetry Out Loud State
Finals events are free and open to the public. For more information
contact Rebecca Engelman at (701) 328-7593, or via e-mail at
rengelman@nd.gov.

Residents Urged to Take Precautions in Smoky Conditions

 

BISMARCK,
N.D. (Melissa Miller) – The North Dakota Department of Health
(NDDoH) urges residents, especially those with respiratory
conditions, to consider limiting prolonged outdoor activities while
smoky conditions remain across the region.

Wildfires
in western Montana are sending smoke across North Dakota and other
parts of the United States. Particulate matter climbed overnight to
elevated levels across North Dakota, with the highest levels found in
the western and central portions of the state. Particulate matter
consists of extremely small particles of ashes and soot found in the
air.

 
(Bismarck public schools kept students indoors on Wednesday during recess because of the conditions. The National Weather Service out of Bismarck said some relief will come with rain that is predicted for later in the week. – ed.)

Particulate
matter can be irritating to the respiratory system, especially for
those who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or
conditions such as asthma and allergies. The NDDoH advises people
with respiratory conditions, the elderly and young children to limit
prolonged outdoor exposure. People reacting to smoke to the extent
that it is affecting breathing should seek immediate help from a
medical provider.

For
up-to-date information on the region’s current air quality and tips
on respiratory protection during a smoke event, visit
http://www.ndhealth.gov/AQ/Wildfire.aspx.

For
more information, contact Chuck Hyatt, North Dakota Department of
Health, at 701.328. 5188.

University of Jamestown Again Ranked High in Annual Survey

 

JAMESTOWN,
ND: (Dallas Rosin) – The University of Jamestown has again received
the highest ranking of all North Dakota institutions in any category
of U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Colleges 2018” edition,
released Sept. 12. For the eleventh consecutive year, the University
is ranked in the top tier of Best Regional Colleges.

President
Robert S. Badal commented on this new ranking, saying, “The
University of Jamestown is happy to be recognized as an educational
leader in North Dakota. The top ND ranking reflects our focus on
student success.”

U.S.
News and World Report’s “Best Colleges” is the most recognized
and popular of all college rankings. The report evaluates colleges
and universities annually by assessing criteria such as peer
assessment, graduation rate, student/faculty ratios, class size,
alumni giving, and student testing scores. Categories are Regional
Colleges, Regional Universities, National Universities, and National
Liberal Arts Colleges.

Established
in 1883, the University of Jamestown is a private, liberal arts
university granting Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science and Science
in Nursing degrees, as well as Master’s Degrees in Education and
Leadership, and a Fargo-based Doctor of Physical Therapy degree. The
University of Jamestown offers more than 40 areas of study,
integrating the liberal arts with sound professional programs. With
the Jamestown Journey to Success, emphasis is placed not only on
preparing students academically in their chosen areas of study, but
also on preparing them through a student-centered experience.

AG: 248K North Dakotans Affected by Equifax Hack

 

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) —
North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem says more than 248,000
of the state’s residents may have had their personal information
exposed in a nationwide data breach of credit reporting company
Equifax.

Stenehjem’s office
said Tuesday that Equifax provided the number of North Dakotans who
are potentially exposed to the data breach. The information includes
Social Security numbers, birthdates, addresses and possibly driver’s
license and credit card information.

Atlanta-based Equifax
says 143 million Americans had their information exposed.

Equifax has a website,
www.equifaxsecurity2017.com, where people can check if their
information may have been stolen.

Stenehjem says people
should also file a fraud alert on their credit reports. Information
on how to file a fraud alert can be found on the attorney general’s
website, at https://attorneygeneral.nd.gov/.

Drought Disaster Loans Proposed for ND Ranchers

 

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) —
The state-owned Bank of North Dakota may be making low-interest
disaster loans available to ranchers dealing with drought.

Agriculture
Commissioner Doug Goehring estimates that North Dakota cattle
ranchers have sold off about 100,000 animals in recent months due to
drought.

The loan program is
aimed at helping ranchers rebuild breeding stock and to pay for feed
to sustain herd levels.

Goehring, Gov. Doug
Burgum and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem make up the Industrial
Commission, which oversees the bank. The commission will meet
Wednesday to approve guidelines for the loan program.

The latest U.S.
Drought Monitor map shows 66 percent of North Dakota in some stage of
drought. Twenty-one percent of the state is in extreme or exceptional
drought.

Jamestown’s Tomlin-Rohr is Finalist for ND Teacher of the Year

JAMESTOWN,
ND (Dale Wetzel)
State Superintendent Kirsten Baesler on Monday announced that
Jamestown teacher Heather Tomlin-Rohr had been chosen as a finalist
for the 2018 North Dakota Teacher of the Year Award.

Tomlin-Rohr
teaches kindergarten at Louis L’Amour Elementary School in
Jamestown. She is a native of Jamestown and alumna of the University
of Jamestown, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary
education in the spring of 2002. She began teaching kindergarten at
Louis L’Amour that fall.

Baesler
visited Louis L’Amour on Monday to inform Tomlin-Rohr that she had
been selected as one of five finalists for the 2018 award. The
superintendent is visiting each finalist in his or her classroom to
call attention to their achievement and to celebrate teaching
excellence in North Dakota’s public schools. Baesler and Gov. Doug
Burgum will honor the person chosen as Teacher of the Year on Sept.
28.

Tomlin-Rohr
said that as a child and young adult, her grandmother, who was
herself a teacher, had influenced her to consider going into the
profession. Her grandmother’s stories of her days in the classroom
“was very much like listening to someone read an episode of Little
House on the Prairie,” Tomlin-Rohr said.

She
called public education “one of the most noble institutions in
America” and said her philosophy of education was to focus on each
student and help each one to realize his or her potential.

Nearly
every day I spend in the classroom, I find myself reaffirming the
fact that every student I serve deserves the very best that I can
offer,” she said.

Tomlin-Rohr
was also a Teacher of the Year finalist in 2016, when the honor was
won by Amy Neal, a kindergarten teacher at Lewis & Clark
Elementary School in Minot. Last year’s winner was Nancy Dauwen, a
mathematics teacher at Sheyenne High School in West Fargo.

Robert
Lech, Jamestown’s superintendent of schools, said Tomlin-Rohr is
“respected across the district for her commitment to the
profession.”

Due
to her commitment, each child in her classroom is loved and provided
every opportunity to achieve at his or her maximum capacity,” Lech
said.

Road Closure in Jamestown

 JAMESTOWN – The Jamestown City Engineer’s Office announce mid-morning that effective today, Monday, September 11, the College Hill Street will be closed.Due to the annual street maintenance project, 3rd Street NE (College Hill) between 9th Avenu…

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JAMESTOWN,
N.D. (Pam Musland) – The “Sky’s the Limit” at the fifth
annual WILD (Women in Leadership Development) Conference slated for
Jamestown on Sept. 13-14 at the North Dakota Farmers Union (NDFU)
Conference Center. Women will find inspiration from
nationally-recognized speakers and encouragement to eliminate the
words “I can’t” and “there are limits” from their
vocabulary.
 

“The
goal of the conference is to encourage women to be active and
passionate about getting involved in their communities and in
leadership roles,” said Chelsey Jacobson, NDFU conference leader.

Lauren
Leader-Chivee, a writer, researcher and thought leader on diversity
and women’s issues in the workplace and in between, is one of two
keynote speakers. She was named by Fortune
magazine as one of the “50 Most Influential Women on Twitter,”
and currently serves on the prestigious Council on Foreign Relations.
She is the author of Crossing
the Thinnest Line
.

North
Dakotan Rebecca Undem will also share the speaker spotlight. She aims
to inspire women to live BIG (Bold, Inspired, Growth-Oriented) lives
and view all the detours as an opportunity to grow and evolve. She’ll
share relatable excerpts from her book, How
Mommy Got Her Groove Back
,
which encourages people to take a step back and focus on the
important things in life.

The
conference begins with the popular Ladies’ Night on Wednesday,
Sept. 13. Participants can shop at a variety of vendor booths, enjoy
appetizers and wine, and learn some self-defense techniques taught by
the North Dakota Safety Council.

Along
with keynote speakers on Thursday, Sept. 14, a panel of North Dakota
women in agriculture and leadership positions will be sharing their
inspiring stories.

Conference
sponsors include NDFU, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota, and
Farmers Union Insurance.

Cost
of the two-day event is $99 and open to the public. Attendees must be
NDFU members ($30 membership required). However, that cost is easily
recouped from savings in products, services and grocery store
discounts through NDFU’s Member Benefits Plus program.

To
register, go to www.ndfu.org/wild.
For more information, follow the conference at
www.facebook.com/ndfuwild
or contact Chelsey Jacobson at cjacobson@ndfu.org
or 701-952-0131

Farmers Union Fly-In to Focus on Next Farm Bill

 
JAMESTOWN,
N.D.(Pam Musland) – Nearly 50 North Dakotans will be on Capitol
Hill in Washington, D.C., next week to focus attention on the 2018
farm bill. They will join family farmers and ranchers from across the
country as participants in National Farmers Union’s Legislative
Fly-in, Sept. 10-13.

North
Dakota Farmers Union (NDFU) President Mark Watne said the poor farm
economy, drought and need for a stronger safety net will be
emphasized, as well as rising health care costs and the need to
expand ethanol production.

We’re
struggling in farm country,” Watne said. “Low commodity prices
and rising input costs continue to impact our bottom lines. There are
a lot of economic factors out of our control, too, everything from
currency fluctuations to global trade uncertainty to corporate ag
consolidations.”

Watne
said he will be hand-delivering comments to North Dakota’s
congressional delegation that were gathered at farm bill listening
sessions held across the state in July. “We felt it important to
capture the thoughts of people most affected by the farm bill –
family farmers, ranchers and rural citizens,” he said.

Producers
want a safety net without holes. They want the federal crop insurance
program strengthened and farm programs that work, especially during
low commodity price cycles,” he said. Price support levels need to
be reevaluated in a new farm bill, he emphasized, so farm programs
serve their purpose of stabilizing farm income.

Farmers
Union members will also be meeting with USDA officials and members of
the House and Senate Ag Committees in their three-day lobbying
effort.

State Offering Guidance on Syringe Exchanges

 

BISMARCK,
N.D. (Jennifer Skjod) – The North Dakota Department of Health
(NDDoH) has released a guide for new syringe exchange programs
(SEPs).

The passage of Senate Bill 2320 allows local health units,
cities and other groups in areas at risk for HIV and viral hepatitis
infections to apply for program approval. In communities where people
inject drugs and share needles, these programs can provide sterile
equipment, education and recommendations that will help to reduce the
risk of disease transmission. SEPs are another tool that can be used
to reduce the public health impact an increasing opioid epidemic. The
NDDoH testimony on benefits of SEPs can be viewed online at
http://ndhealth.gov/Testimony/docs/144.pdf.  

Syringe
exchange programs have been in existence in the United States for
decades and have been shown to decrease the possibility of disease in
people who inject drugs,” said Lindsey VanderBusch, HIV Program
manager. “SEPs can be a way for people who inject drugs to get help
for their addiction, and they are a safe place to dispose of used
needles.”

Those
interested in starting a SEP should discuss it with people in their
community to develop a plan. 

Talking
about having syringe exchange programs in communities can be
controversial,” said VanderBusch, “However, having the discussion
about whether or not SEPs are needed, will help communities find out
if there are issues related to injection drug use that need
attention.”

The
Department of Human Services is also in support of communities
looking into whether SEPs are right for their area.  “Syringe
exchange programs provide an important opportunity to engage
individuals in discussion about their readiness to make positive
changes in their lives,” says Pamela Sagness, director of the
Department of Human Services’ Behavioral Health Division. “If
someone identifies they would like to stop using substances, the
programs will have trained staff available to connect  the
individual to treatment or recovery support services.”

To
find the guidance, visit www.ndhealth.gov/hiv/sep

For
questions, contact the ND HIV Prevention Program at 701.328.2378 or
by emailing disease @nd.gov.