Former TPS Superintendent Has Died

Former TPS Superintendent Dr. Robert McFrazier passed away last week.  Dr. McFrazier served as a teacher and principal as well.  Below is a link with information about Dr. McFrazier as well as funeral and visitation information.

Westar Donates All-Electric Truck to TPS

 Westar Energy has gifted Topeka Public Schools with an electric truck valued at over $100,000. Westar Senior Vice President Jerl Banning was on hand to present the vehicle to the TPS Board of Education and district administrators on November 19, and spoke about the importance of the gift.
“Fully electric vehicles will save the district money while also giving students an opportunity to learn about electric vehicles. At Westar, ten percent of our vehicles are operated by an electric battery, so we know something about them, and we’re happy to let students of Topeka Public Schools
learn about them for their futures,” Banning said.
In addition to the electric truck, Westar also donated a charging station, located at Quinton Heights Education Center.
Westar Energy has partnered with Topeka Public Schools since 2010 and provides numerous educational opportunities for our students and staff, including curriculum development, academic pathways, job shadowing, internships, scholarships and hands-on learning opportunities, among many others.
Thank you, Westar Energy, for your very generous donation to Topeka Public Schools!

Walk Around the Capitol

Several hundred people showed up November 16 to Walk Around the Capitol, to show their support for public education.  The event kicked-off American Education Week, November 16-20.  Topeka Public School staff, students, parents, retired educators and educators from other Shawnee County school districts, walked on the sidewalk around the Capitol.  Some carried signs promoting the importance of public education.

Walk Around Capitol

As part of American Education Week, November 16-20, everyone is invited to join us for a Walk Around the Capitol on Monday, November 16, from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.  We will walk on the sidewalk around the Capitol to celebrate public education in Kansas.  Topeka Public Schools' staff, students and parents will join in on the walk.  Retired educators are invited to bring a lawn chair and set up along the sidewalk with a sign about how many years they were in public education.  Members of the Topeka community are invited to join us as well as we celebrate public education in Kansas.

Lonna Latimer -Above & Beyond Winner

                                                       Above & Beyond Winner

It can be a difficult situation when a mother moves a thousand miles to a strange city and her son is about to enter kindergarten.  That’s what happened to one mother who praised State Street Elementary School kindergarten teacher Lonna Latimer for making the transition easier.  The mother has to work long hours which means less time with her kids.  She said Mrs. Latimer sends home papers every single day on what the kids did.  She says, “I don’t feel I’m missing out on anything.”  Mrs. Latimer is always smiling and always has positive words of encouragement for her son.  “She’s like a second mom to my son.  He wants to be at school with Mrs. Latimer,” said the mother.

State Street Principal Sarah Sharp says Mrs. Latimer is very deserving of receiving the Above & Beyond Award.  “She is an outstanding kindergarten teacher who is always hungry to learn and to do what’s best for her students.  She goes above and beyond to see that State Street is a safe, positive working environment for staff, students and parents.”

Lonna Latimer loves State Street.  It is where she attended school when growing up in the Oakland area of Topeka.  She has been a kindergarten teacher for 32 years, 20 of those years at State Street.  “I feel like it’s where I belong and where I can make the most impact on students.”

If you know of someone who goes Above & Beyond to serve the students and staff of Topeka Public Schools, nominate them for the A&B Award.  You will find the nomination form by going to the bottom of the district website to staff site, then to work information/forms for staff/district programs.  There you will find the TPS Above & Beyond nomination form.

TPS Foundation Awards "Day Off"

Congratulations to THS teacher Lisa Spurlock! She was the lucky winner of a free day off for her support of the Topeka Public Schools Foundation.

Each year, TPS Superintendent Dr. Julie Ford awards one lucky employee an extra day of leave in support of the Foundation. Spurlock was surprised in her classroom by TPSF Executive Director Pamela Johnson Betts, TPS Associate Superintendent Tammy Austin and KNEA President Stephanie Harsin.

Spurlock, a first year teacher in the district, made a monetary pledge and payroll deduction to support the TPS Foundation. She said the money should be used "where most needed." Ms. Johnson Betts commended her for stepping up to support Topeka Public Schools and for all that she does for our students. "I am humbly grateful for this gift. Thank you, Foundation, for all you do for teachers," Spurlock said.

Congrats again, Ms. Spurlock, and enjoy your day off!

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