After 35 years in education and serving the Delano Joint Union High School District since 2006, Dr. Terri Nuckols has decided to retire, effective Nov. 1, 2018. The school board of trustees was expected to accept her resignation at its Nov. 13 meeting.

Nuckols began her work in education as a substitute teacher in the Porterville Unified School District and was eventually hired as an English instructor at Monache High School.

In July 2006, she came to Delano as the learning director at Cesar E. Chavez High School. In 2009, she was named principal at Delano High School and became the director of the Delano Adult School in July 2012.

Nuckols was named Delano Joint Union High School District superintendent in November 2015. Under her leadership, the district has continued to thrive and its schools have consistently ranked within the top schools in both Kern and Tulare counties.

Under the guidance of Nuckols, the district has been committed to providing college and career opportunities for students.

There has been a significant increase in college partner relationships as the district has overhauled its CTE pathway classes to better align with its college partners.

Nuckols’ vision and leadership has helped to make this change while creating seamless transitions for students. She was instrumental in collaborating with Bakersfield College to begin the new Industrial Automation Pathway at Robert F. Kennedy High School.

In addition, Nuckols has been instrumental in moving the district’s dual enrollment program forward, providing students with the opportunity to earn valuable college credits while attending classes on their high school campuses.

Nuckols says while she will miss the day-to-day contact with staff and students, she is looking forward to spending time with her children and grandchildren as well as her mother.

In a letter to staff, Nuckols stated, “My years in this district have been the best of my career and it’s because of the dedicated and talented staff that serve this community … I know that DJUHSD will continue to thrive and our students will continue to excel in academic achievement and extracurricular activities.”

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Applications to enter Delano’s annual Christmas parade the evening of Tuesday, Dec. 4, are now available at the Chamber of Commerce office.

Parade chairperson for the chamber is Delilah Mascarinas.

Theme for the parade is “Christmas Around the World.”

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A Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting is planned Thursday, Dec. 13, at 5:30 p.m. at the new De Vino Event Center at 1427 South Lexington St.

The facility, which has a capacity of 500 guests, is available for banquets, social events, “anything,” declared Nieves Carrera, event coordinator, who may be reached at 661-725-2271 or 661-706-3646. She asked that vendors or others attending bring their business cards for her future reference.

She reported she has spoken with the staff representative from Delano High School in regard to De Vino being the site for the May 18 Delano High School prom.

Carrera said she believed that a local site would be most appealing to students and especially their parents and would make it possible for more youth to attend the prom which in the past has taken place in Visalia.

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Families with children who could be furnished Christmas gifts through Delano’s Toys for Tots distribution Dec. 15 at the Memorial Park exhibit building are requested to complete as soon as possible this month a sign-up form that will be forwarded to Delano Community Connections Center at 1842 Norwalk St.

Even though the Tiny Tots programs seems far off, the form must be returned as soon as possible to the Chamber of Commerce office.

Businesses, organizations, and individuals wishing to donate items or cash to the Toys for Tots program are also asked to check at the chamber on the drive which is sponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve of Kern County. Alex Grijalva, of Delano, is the local coordinator for the collection and distribution, the latter to take place from 9 to 11 a.m. at the exhibit building on Dec. 15.

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My condolences to the family of Kathleen Zimmerman. She was a daughter of the late Sterling and Helen Cole, a family active in Delano for several decades.

She is survived by her husband, Cecil, and their children. Cecil for many years taught welding for the North Kern Regional Center in a building on the Delano High campus.

For many years I believe Cecil Zimmerman’s family farmed in the Ductor area. He has always been a very down-to-earth fellow who passed along the welding skill to hundreds of students who took advantage of his instruction.

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Rachelle Reames, adviser to Delano High’s Future Farmers of American, said of student entries in the Delano Junior Livestock Show, “These amazing individuals proved to us their hard work and long hours of education to their animals at the recent Delano show. Students had their animals for at least five months and worked tirelessly in caring for their animals to make them the best market animals possible. Throughout this time students learned responsibility for others, time and money management -- all the while maintaining a social life, good grades and spending quality time with friends and family.”

In the swine show area, in the light weight class 1, Kareli Ayon placed third and Jasmin Garcia fourth. In light weight class 2, Yvette Espino was fourth and Armando Fernandez sixth. Sergio Lozano was first in the middle weight class.

In the heavy weight class 1, Jasmine Contreras placed first, Emily Villegas second and Amanda Cabrera fifth. Ethan Carrillo was third in heavy weight class 2.

In the sheep show team area, in the light weight class Sara Lopez was second and John Selsor was third. In the heavy weight class, Alexus Ferrel placed third.

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Rebecca Garcia is the drum major for Delano High School band. Knowing the bands from the three public highs schools had competed at the “Howl” event at Ridgeview High School one Saturday, I was able to gain some information from her.

Delano High’s band placed second in Class A and Robert F. Kennedy High third in the same class.

The Cesar E. Chavez High School band was first in the 3A division.

The “Howl” was the first of three fall band competitions for the three bands.

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Delano High’s varsity volleyball girls defeated Rosamond in the first round of the Division V section volleyball playoffs.

In the second round the Lady Tigers traveled as No. 7 seed to No. 2 seed Frazier Mountain to meet the Falcons who earned a 25-16, 25-23, 25-16 win over DHS. The Lady Tigers led 10-7 in the first game and 18-15 in the second but both times could not hold on to the lead.

Finding the Frazier Mountain campus was a task in itself. Inside the Falcon gym it was a surprise to see a 12-girl roster so much into the sport of volleyball until I inspected the gym wall and the school’s banners for championship teams.

One banner was filled with volleyball championships and a second banner was already in use. Starting in 1998, the school has won league titles in the sport every year but two and in 2014-15 Frazier Mountain was the division champion in volleyball, a proud legacy for the school in that particular sport with obviously dedicated and talented girls.

It won’t happen this year because FM was derailed in the next round by Selma High School.

Gary Girard is a longtime resident of Delano. He can be reached at 661-725-8803.

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