Monthly Archives: March 2009

Meet Dr. Stephen Subers, Paxon Hollow Middle School

Dr. Stephen Subers recounts his path to the principalship of a suburban middle school.


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Meet Chris Dormer, Principal, Upper Darby High School

Meet Chris, the new Principal at UDHS, a large and very diverse suburban Philadelphia school district and hear about his path to the Principalship!

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Filed under Assistant Principal, Curriculum and Instruction, School Leadership, State Testing, Students and Student Achievement, Tales from the Principal's Office, Uncategorized

More than $25,000-worth of Orchard software and a Lenovo ThinkCentre Listen to a Life Contest

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PA School District Consolidation news

Let’s us know your thoughts on this subject!

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New SNAP Academy Changing Teens’ Lives at Pottsgrove High School

Pottstown, PA – Pottsgrove High School has developed a student-centered, hybrid leadership class for credit that applies the High Tech, High Touch paradigm, employing current technologies (blogs, wikis, imovies, websites, etc.), when applicable, to enhance the value of our message – encouraging students to lead a healthy, drug and alcohol-free lifestyle. The newly formed SNAP Academy consists of 40 students all representing the diversity of social groups within the school community, while its parallel, an on-line elective, also anticipates 40 members.

The course curriculum, developed by Thom Stecher and Associates, has been modified to meet the self-assessed needs of students in the high school. Lessons are designed to educate students on topics such as healthy relationships, mental and physical health and substance abuse and to provide students with resources to share with peers who may need assistance. The students’ commitment to serving their community is evidenced through the implementation of the following programs: mediation, mentoring, programming and activities, and technology. The mission “statement”, devised by the student members, adopts the acronym RESPECT, wherein each letter represents topics of concern to our students at Pottsgrove High School.

Further information about our program as well as student-created resources on healthy, drug and alcohol-free living can be found on the developing SNAP Academy website at

Contacts: Christopher L. Shaffer and Krista L. Rundell

Office: 610.326.5015

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Fish may be brain food for teenage boys

By Amy Norton

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – Teenage boys who regularly eat fish may be doing their brains some good, a new study suggests.

Swedish researchers found that among nearly 5,000 15-year-old boys they surveyed, those who ate fish more than once per week tended to score higher on intelligence tests three years later.

The findings, published in the journal Acta Pediatrica, add to evidence that fish may indeed be brain food.

Researchers believe that the omega-3 fats found in fish — particularly oily fish like salmon, mackerel and, to a lesser extent, albacore tuna — are important to early brain development and to maintaining healthy brain function throughout life.

Past studies have found, for instance, that children whose mothers who ate fish regularly during pregnancy tend to have higher intelligence scores than their peers, and older fish-eaters have been shown to have a lower risk of cognitive impairment.

The new study appears to be the first large-scale one to look at the effects of fish on teenagers’ intelligence, lead researcher Dr. Maria Aberg, of Goteborg University, told Reuters Health.

This is important, she explained, because the late-teens are a critical period for the brain “plasticity” that underlies intelligence and emotional and social behavior. Plasticity refers to the brain’s ability to reorganize the connections among cells in response to normal experience, like learning a new skill, or to injury.

The findings are based on data from 4,792 male adolescents who completed detailed questionnaires on diet and lifestyle when they were 15 years old, then underwent standard intelligence tests when they were 18.

On average, Aberg’s team found, those who ate fish more than once per week scored higher than those who ate fish less than weekly. This remained true when the researchers accounted for several other factors that influence both children’s diets and their intelligence scores — like parents’ education levels and the family’s socioeconomic status.

“These findings are significant,” Aberg said, “because the study was carried out between the ages of 15 and 18, when educational achievements can help to shape the rest of a young man’s life.”

It’s too soon to make specific diet recommendations for teenagers, according to the researcher. “But for the time being,” she said, “it appears that including fish in a diet can make a valuable contribution to cognitive performance in male teenagers.”

SOURCE: Acta Pediatrica, March 2009.

© Thomson Reuters 2009 All rights reserved

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A new study shows college students achieve more through podcasts rather than lectures.

This article may have some impact for teachers at the secondary level, as well!  Find out more at:

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