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Category Archives: Education Watch

Lancaster County Homeowners May Pay Octorara Area School District $312 More in 2018-19 School Year

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Key Points:

Presented By: Jeffery Curtis at the work session

As of May total revenues were $53,393,594

Spending was $54,954,887

Resulting in a $1.56M deficit

Potential tax increases may result in Chester County where median homestead property homeowners in the Octorara Area School District may pay an additional $56 per year, and $312  in Lancaster County. “That’s just a guess” Curtis states.

For more, tune in to the meeting here:


SoLanco High School Graduation This Friday at 7 p.m To be broadcast on YouTube

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High School - Mule WEB

By: Keith Kaufman, Director of Community Relations for Solanco School District


The bleachers at the Solanco High School football field will be filled with jubilant family, friends and supportive community members Friday evening to celebrate as seniors in the Class of 2018 receive their diplomas. The graduation ceremony will be broadcast on Solanco YouTube Friday evening beginning at 7 p.m.

Here is a list of the seniors in the Solanco Class of 2018.

Distinguished Speaker David Lehman, Solanco Class of 1964, will speak to graduating seniors about how vision, persistence and hard work are key ingredients to success in life.  “Go out and work hard, stick with it, and always think positively about the future of the world, your country, your family, and especially yourself.” Lehman is a recent inductee into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, and he is a leader in the oil and gas exploration industry.

Class valedictorian Sophie Plechner, salutatorian Abigail Nelson, and class president Tori Delp will also address their graduating classmates.


Congratulations and best of luck to the Solanco Class of 2018!

Top 10 NASA iTech Energy Cycle Finalists Announced

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The NASA iTech Energy competition has selected the top 10 finalists to present their game-changing technologies at a forum next month in New York. The 2018 NASA iTech Cycle II Energy is a collaborative effort between NASA and the U.S. Department (DOE) of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) to find and foster innovative solutions for critical energy challenges on Earth and in space.
The 10 finalists were selected by a multi-disciplinary team of experts from NASA and ARPA E. The finalists will present June 13 and 14 at the NASA iTech Energy Forum, hosted by Citi Global at its headquarters in New York City. Representatives from NASA, DOE, other government agencies, industry, potential investors and others from across the United States will listen in as the finalists for NASA iTech share their innovative ideas.
“I look forward to seeing these 10 finalists present their ideas at the upcoming iTech forum in New York”, said Kira Blackwell, NASA iTech program executive in the Space Technology Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “This is a unique opportunity to present their technologies at an event convening two federal agencies and hosted by a global private sector bank seeking solutions to common energy challenges.”
The competition invited applicants to submit their concepts for: Fuel Cells and Regenerative Fuel Cells, High-energy-density Batteries and Supercapacitors, Solar Power Systems, Small Fission Power Systems, Innovative Power Management and Distribution and X-Factor Energy. The final category included entries that may not fit within a specific energy focus area but clearly demonstrate the potential to fill a critical need for NASA and humans on Earth.
The top three teams selected at the forum will be recognized during a nonmonetary awards ceremony on June 14 and will be available for interviews. Media interested in covering the forum should contact Gina Anderson at by June 8 to register.
The top 10 NASA iTech Energy Cycle finalists are (in alphabetical order):
·AsterTech, LLC, Beavercreek, OH
3D Additive Manufacturing of High Efficiency and Light-Weight Solar Cells for In-Space Applications
·ATEIOS, San Diego, CA
Printed Batteries for Ubiquitous & Conformal Electronics
·Atomos, Denver, CO
Splitting the Atom to Connect the Planets: A Commercial Nuclear Power System for Space Operations
·Environment and Energy Benefit Co., West Sacramento, CA
BBB: X Factor Liquid Fuel
·iFeather, Boulder, CO
In-situ Fabrication of Extraterrestrial Aerogels for Transparency, Heat, and Energy Regulation (iFEATHER) for Habitat, Aeronautic and Space Vessel, and Space Suit Applications
·The Pennsylvania State University – Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University Park, PA
Lightweight Monolithic Microcell CPV for Space
·Stanford University – Department of Electrical Engineering, Stanford, CA
Two C: Transportation Electrification through Ubiquitous Wireless Charging
·University of Michigan and Unified Solar Collaboration, Ann Arbor, MI
Photovoltaic Cell-Level Power Balancing Using Intrinsic Energy Storage for High-Efficiency, High-Reliability Solar Power
·V-Glass, Pewaukee, WI
Vacuum Glass for R-10 Windows
·WBGlobalSemi, Inc., Lakewood Ranch,
Commercializing High Power Silicon Carbide (SiC) Bipolar Junction Transistors (BJTs) and Power Modules for Power Management and Distributed Power Applications
NASA iTech is an initiative by the NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate and managed by the National Institute of Aerospace in Hampton, Virginia.
To watch the teams present their ideas live on June 13 (9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EDT) and June 14 (9:10 a.m. – noon), visit:
For information about the NASA iTech initiative, visit:
For information about NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, visit:

Poll Shows Strong Support for More Education Aid

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Andrea Sears

HARRISBURG, Pa. – Pennsylvanians from both sides of the political aisle support full funding of public education, according to a new poll.

The poll, conducted for the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center by the polling firm TargetSmart, found that almost six in ten respondents favor making full funding of K-through-12 public education a top legislative priority.

According to Ben Lazarus, director of research and analytics at TargetSmart, that includes 76 percent of liberal Democrats.

“The numbers remain well above majority when we look at independents, moderate Republicans and even conservative Republicans, 57 percent of whom want the state Legislature to prioritize improving the public schools,” says Lazarus.

The poll found that 56 percent of all respondents feel the state invests too little money in public education, compared with just 12 percent who think the state spends too much.

Mark DiRocco, head of the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators, says the poll results show a growing public awareness that even with recent increases, state public school subsidies are not keeping up with growing costs.

“Consequently you have several school districts around the state who continue not to replace personnel when they resign or when they retire, continue to cut back on programs for kids that are much needed, whether they be reading programs or math programs” says DiRocco.

He adds that one-third of districts responding to an annual survey report they have cut staff, programs or both for the last seven years in a row.

Rich Askey, vice president of the Pennsylvania State Education Association, points out that Governor Tom Wolf and the state Legislature have restored much of the billion dollars cut from education funding eight years ago.

“Our next priority is to keep increasing funding for our public schools so that they can start investing in new programs, new resources, and we can add new technologies,” says Akey. “We just need to keep it up.”

The education-funding poll is part of a campaign called “We the People” that the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center and other organizations will be launching later this month.