Education Roundup: Host families recognized |

Education Roundup: Host families recognized

Two South Lake Tahoe families have received the President’s Volunteer Service Award for active participation in student exchange programs.

Mark and Stacy Romagnolo, who hosted Aneta Krizova from the Czech Republic and Mireia Feliu Maimone from Spain, and Annette Lilly, who hosted Sara Luoni from Italy and Quentin Rossier from Switzerland, were both recognized by the Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers the award.

The exchange students and families are part of the Program for Academic Exchange. All four students go to South Tahoe High School.

PAX is a high school exchange program built on the concept that we can best learn about a different culture by living as a member of a family in that country. Participants take part in everyday family, holidays, traditions and events of their family.

Host families provide a bed, a quiet place to study and an extra seat at the table.

“The hard part is saying good-bye to your new ‘son’ or ‘daughter’ at the end of the year,” said Sally Thiele, the community coordinator of PAX in South Lake Tahoe.

For more information on hosting a foreign exchange student, contact Thiele at 540-541-4195 or

School district continues to prepare for cuts

Lake Tahoe Unified School District is continuing to ready themselves for state cuts to school transportation and, possibly, per student funding.

“What we’re doing is preparing for reductions this year and next year,” said superintendent Jim Tarwater.

The district is working with the South Tahoe Educators’ Association to encourage staff members who qualify for retirement to retire. Rather than lay staff off, the district will not fill the positions of the retired teachers in order to save money.

The district is moving three high school teachers to the elementary schools and will eliminate three positions at the middle school. If teachers retire on their own, the school district will not have to lay off any positions to achieve the $2.4 million in savings they’re looking for, Tarwater said.

Even if older teachers retire and newer teachers are hired the district can save between $35,000 and $40,000 on each position, Tarwater added.

The money will be used for transportation or savings, which secures the district against potential cuts in the future. If voters do not pass Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax increases in November, schools could see a $370 cut to per student funding.

Snowsports week kicks off at college

Lake Tahoe Community College and Sierra-at-Tahoe Ski Resort are once again hosting an annual snowsports week.

Discounted lift tickets to the ski resort are being offered for $35. They can be purchased from 7/11 on Kingsbury Grade, all Powder House locations, Tahoe Sports Ltd., George’s Ski and Board, the Ski Renter, Rainbow Mountain Sports, Super 8 Motel, the Bijou CVS Pharmacy, Barton Foundation, Raley’s at the “Y”, the CVS Pharmacy at the “Y,” Lira’s Market, Tahoe Paradise Chevron, and Sunrise Ski and Snowboard and used until Feb. 16.

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