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Lorna Sheridan: Education Roundup, Oct. 30

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Principal chats: Justin Mori, new Sonoma Valley High School principal, is holding monthly “Chats with the Principal” geared toward sharing information with parents of SVHS students. These fall on the first Monday of the month and will be held in the College and Career Center, rotating between morning and evening times with the intent of accommodating parent schedules. The next date is 6 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 5.

Farm fun: The Family Farm Chores event on Sun, Nov. 4 at Tolay Lake Regional Park is a lot of fun. Kids can help the Tolay staff feed and care for its farm animals. 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. All ages. Registration is required. Free. 789-9699 or parks.sonomacounty.ca.gov/Visit/Tolay-Lake-Regional-Park/.

Library: Sonoma Valley Library presents Fratello Marionettes’ Halloween Spooktacular at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 30. This is a family-friendly, fun for all ages puppet show in the tradition of classic marionette performances. Free.

Older mothers: American women are having their children later in life, but a new motherhood gap is developing. Women who live in cities are having fewer children than those who live in rural areas. “In 2007, fertility rates in rural counties were just 5 percent higher than in metro areas of all sizes; by 2017, they were 10 percent higher than in small and medium cities, and 14 percent higher than in large cities.” tinyurl.com/y7l34d56

Good news: Sonoma Valley High School was one of two Sonoma County schools selected to receive a Switch Electric Vehicle grant from the CTE Foundation (cosponsored by Sonoma Clean Power). Engineering academy teacher Tom Edwards applied for the grant and the students in his engineering, design and development class will build the vehicle. More info about the grant is at ctesonomacounty.org/2015/08/switch_electric_vehicle_program-grant/

Teen accidents: When a teen driver has teen passengers in the car and no adults, the fatality rate for all people involved in a crash goes up 51 percent, according to new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. https://tinyurl.com/yaqsayqm

Bonding not bonds: Strong relationships between teachers, parents and students at schools has more impact on improving student learning than does financial support, new research shows. Read more at www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181025103300.htm

Jewish awards: The Helen Diller Family Foundation is now accepting nominations for the 2019 Diller Teen Tikkun Olam Awards. The program recognizes 15 Jewish teens annually with $36,000 each to support an ongoing social justice project, or to further their education. Visit www.dillerteenawards.org. The deadline is Dec. 18. www.dillerteenawards.org.

Save the date: The popular Victorian Christmas Crafts Workshop will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 11, at the Vallejo Home, 363 Third St. W. Free admission for ages 12 and under (accompanied by an adult), $2 for ages 13-17, and $3 for adults. Rain or shine.

Ticket giveaway: The tickets for “Christmas at the Mission” will be available starting on Saturday, Nov. 17. The event typically sells out quickly. A suggested donation of $2.50 per ticket (limit 4). Three, 20-minute programs are offered at 5, 6 and 7 p.m. All ages.

Plaza lighting: The Plaza holiday from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Plaza is now part of a larger “Holidays on the Northern Frontier” celebration throughout the park on Saturday, Dec. 8, from 4 to 8 p.m.

Pies: It’s pie time. Teen Services Sonoma is having its annual holiday pie sale from the Lovin’ Oven. Order your choice of three 9-inch pies before Nov. 12. Pumpkin is $22, cranberry apple crumb is $22; old fashioned pecan, $25. Pick up at 17440 Sonoma Highway from 1to 6 p.m. on Nov. 20 and 21. Order by email Joelynn@teenservicessonoma.org or call 939-1452.

Thanksgiving camps: Sonoma County Children’s Museum is offering two sessions of hands-on art and science Wonder Camp on Nov 19, 20 and 21, and during winter break from Dec 26, to Jan 4. Visit www.cmosc.org for more information.

Car seat worries: Parents are urged not to use car seats as stroller seats or let a child sleep in a car seat outside of the car, because of the danger of positional asphyxia, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Use within the car seems fine, but dangers exist when a child is left to sleep in a seat for long periods of time, not at the proper angle. www.fatherly.com/news/warning-after-one-year-daughter-died-sleeping-car-seat/.

Send news, tips and comments to ourschools@sonomanews.com.