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view from the top : Numerous trails of Mount Naomi lead through some of the most spectacular alpine scenery found in the intermountain west./ Photo by Melissa Kamis
Today's word on journalism

Tuesday, September 7, 2004

"The First Amendment gives everyone -- including nuts -- free speech,
but free speech has a purpose: that the people may judge for themselves
and bury the nuts with indignation. We fail our founding fathers if we
let blowhards rage on talk radio, in little magazines and in nasty
books without delivering counterattacks.

   -- Barron's, Aug. 9, 2004 (Thanks to alert WORDster John Mollwitz)

Providence school bell rings 700 kids into class every day

By Julie Oliver

March 22, 2004 | PROVIDENCE -- The city is filled each school morning at 8:55 by the ringing of the elementary school's 100-year-old bell that signifies the beginning of a new day of learning.

The hand-rung bell that starts each school day is just one of the many interesting daily rituals that go on behind the brown brick walls of the elementary school.

"I have a character-education morning message about how we treat each other and how we want to be treated that I do every morning -- the message always ends with same thing, which is: have a great day or don't, the choice is yours," said Principal Greg Larsen with a smile.

Larsen grew up in Hyrum and this is his fifth year as principal of Providence Elementary School. Larsen has worked 28 years in education. He taught middle school for 13 years and since 1989 has been working in middle school-level administration.

The elementary school educates students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

"Right now we have just over 700 students," said Larsen. "It is the largest elementary school in the Cache County School District.

"We are really packed with 700. We are bonding for a new school in May and if it passes they'll build a school in East Hyrum." Currently, there are 200 students from East Hyrum enrolled and if the bond passes those students will attend for one or two more years and then be transferred to the new school.

Although many students crowd the cafeteria and playground each day that does not inhibit students' learning because plenty of staff members and volunteers assist their needs. Many opportunities exist for students, such as the school-wide program called the Utah Reads program, which works with students individually.

"That is a program that we use university students who are on work study in a program called America Reads. We have four of them currently working here tutoring students," said Larsen.

Another opportunity for students is the Boys and Girls Club after-school program. This is a fee-based opportunity for students and it is a place for students to work on academics, play games, and participate in a variety of other activities.

Along with the 27 full-time teachers and well staffed school programs there are also many volunteers that keep the school running, such as the PTA, Parent Teacher Association. The PTA consists of about 50 women volunteering their time.

"The PTA is involved every day, or nearly every day," said Larsen. The PTA assisted in the recently completed Science Fair and the successful read-a-thon.

"We just finished the read-a-thon and made $2,400 to $2,500 for the computer lab," said Larsen.

"We have a good group of students -- I'm really fortunate to have the job that I have. It's really great work," said Larsen.

Larsen graduated from Sky View High School. He went on to earn an undergraduate and master's degree from Utah State University and another master's from Brigham Young University.



Copyright 1997-2004 Utah State University Department of Journalism & Communication, Logan UT 84322, (435) 797-1000
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