The HAT Soil Health Podcast- Pollinators and Other Beneficial Insects for…

first_img By Eric Pfeiffer – Jun 11, 2020 Previous article19 Compete for Indiana State FFA OfficeNext articleHow Indiana Worked its Way Through Recent Meat Supply Chain Challenge Eric Pfeiffer Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.On this specialty crops edition of the HAT Soil Health Podcast presented by the Conservation Cropping Systems Initiative, we discuss how watermelons, pumpkins and many other cucurbit crops rely on pollinators to move pollen from male to female flowers in order to get fruit set and ultimately yield of watermelon, pumpkins or whatever the crop.Pollinators are often honeybees or bumblebees brought in to the field for that purpose, but pollination is also done by some of the native bees that live in our fields. The insecticides and fungicides that are used to manage pest insects and diseases in the and other crops can be harmful to pollinators and other beneficial insects.Neonicotinoid insecticides in particular have received a lot of attention recently because of their widespread use. A multi-state research project on the effects of neonics in cucurbits is nearing its end and researchers from Purdue, Ohio and Michigan State have learned a lot about pollinators in cucurbit fields, how they are affected by neonics, and how growers can manage important pests like the striped cucumber beetle while minimizing harm to the pollinators and other beneficials.Other work at Purdue has identified how drift from field applications can affect pollinators that feed or live around the edges of fields. Entomologists involved with the research, Professors Elizabeth Long and Laura Ingwell, and the farm manager at the Southwest Purdue Ag Center Dennis Nowaskie will share what they have learned about protecting pollinators and other beneficials in cucurbits while keeping the crop healthy and preventing yield loss from insect pests.Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Podcast (wirepodcastshat-rss): Play in new window | Download | EmbedSubscribe: RSS Home HAT Soil Health Podcast The HAT Soil Health Podcast- Pollinators and Other Beneficial Insects for Specialty… Facebook Twitter SHARE SHARE Facebook Twitter The HAT Soil Health Podcast- Pollinators and Other Beneficial Insects for Specialty Cropslast_img read more

RebusHR Award for Best HR Strategy in Line with Business

first_img Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. This award is aimed at HR teams which can demonstrate they have achievedgenuine business partner status within their organisations. Entries should explainthe business strategy and the contribution of HR to meeting objectives. Thejudge will look at the HR team’s own strategy, how this was devised andimplemented, the involvement of senior staff and what results have so far beenachieved. Entries should explain how HR has measured the benefits and how theteam identified priorities.Category JudgeProfessor Roger Gill is a visiting professor at the University ofStrathclyde’s Graduate School of Business. He is an expert in HR management andorganisational behaviour, having researched and taught these subjects atuniversities for many years. Gill has provided management consultancy to morethan 300 organisations worldwide, and cites being a fellow of the CIPD amonghis list of achievements. [email protected] the company Nestlé UK, part of food manufacturer Nestlé SA, employs around 8,000 staffin 13 locations, and produces 230 brands, including Nescafe and KitKat The challenge To provide an employee-centred, cost efficient HR service to make the companymore competitive in recruiting, retaining and developing staff What the company did – Overall review of HR structure – Internal investigation into HR function – Restructured the HR function to align with the company’s strategy – Split HR into six specialised areas from the individual service units Benefits and achievements – Nine out of 10 recruitment offer-to-hire rate – High employee satisfaction rate – Union partnership agreed – Flexible working introduced in factories – Reduced HR costs by £1m a year – HR intranet now single source of staff information Professor Roger Gill says: “Outstanding in innovation,achievement and teamwork in its development and contribution to the business.The HR strategy of Nestlé’s new @HR function is impressively aligned with thecompany’s business strategies. It has a clear vision and mission deliveredthrough key functions with agreed service levels and performance measures, andit has the unqualified endorsement of the chairman of the company.” The teamNo. in HR team 5 in steering group; 165 in HR team, including OHStaff responsible for 8,000Roger Cordier HR director of Nestle UKDennise Corfield Head of HR servicesDavid Harvey HR director of Nestle UK’s food and beverage unit Jean Gentry HR director of confessionary businessNigel Holt HR rewards and policy managerAdrian Hillier HR process development project managerFionna Alcorn Head of recruitmentTelford & Wrekin CouncilFlexible managementAbout the company The authority was formed in 1998 from Shropshire and Wrekin Council. Itemploys around 5,000 staff (including a teaching workforce) serving 154,000residents The challenge To introduce flexible management into the council What the company did – New employment conditions to support extended opening hours – Introduced flexible working including home and term-time working andflexi-time system – Outsourcing environmental maintenance while protecting conditions – HR restructure to have a representative working in each department – Updated HR information on intranet – Set up supply teachers agency for primary schools Benefits and achievements – Managerial survey shows high level of satisfaction and strategicinvolvement – Average sickness absence reduced by four days – A 50 per cent reduction in workplace accidents – Increased diversity with 40 per cent of top three management tiers nowwomen and 80 per cent female staff Professor Roger Gill says: “Telford & Wrekin Council setsthe standard in its HR strategy that most other councils probably only aspireto. Demonstrating outstanding innovation and achievement, HR strategy isclosely aligned with council priorities. It is also based on an excellentenvironmental analysis, shaped in collaboration with top management andconsultation with staff, and supported by a clear business plan.” The teamNo. in team 5 in project; 60 in HR, including training Staff responsible for 5,000Robert Cragg Head of personnel anddevelopmentJohn Harris Personnel managerMarie Whitefoot Learning and development managerJo Revell Health and safety managerMark Freathy Personnel manager for education and cultureSteve Newell Principle personnel officerSue Croughan Personnel officerClaire Hyde Senior personnel assistantBritish WaterwaysPeople Strategy teamAbout the company British Waterways is a public corporation that manages more than 2,000 milesof canals and navigable rivers. It employs more than 2,200 staff, includingarchitects, environmentalists and civil engineers, based at more than 50locations along the 200 year-old network. The challenge To improve the productivity and revenue of a company that evolved fromproviding maintenance to driving urban regeneration What the company did – Introduced performance management process – Performance appraisals and training and development initiatives – Management development programme – Harmonised employees terms and conditions Benefits and achievements – Doubled turnover of the business to more than £200m a year in five years – Productivity per employee increased by 178 per cent in five years – Staff turnover reduced to 8 per cent – Improvements in job satisfaction, loyalty and motivation – Reduction in absenteeism Professor Roger Gill says: “British Waterways’ HR strategy (knownas its ‘People Strategy’) shows outstanding innovation, achievement andcontribution to the business as a corporate champion in these areas. PeopleStrategy clearly supports the pursuit of the vision for its culture, and it hasreceived strong endorsements from senior executives in the company as well asstaff.” The teamNo. in team 4; 20 in HR, including pensions and payrollStaff responsible for 2,200Vince Morgan Personnel directorSally Charman Personnel manager (south)Andrew Johnson Personnel manager (north)Ken Adams Training and development managerThe sponsorRebusHR is one of the UK’s leading HR outsourcing firms providing strategicHR, payroll and employee information systems. It has been dedicated to helpingHR professionals  manage their functionto deliver bottom line business benefits for more than 30 years. RebusHR canoffer in-house systems, managed services, application hosting, personnelservices, ASP and outsourcing solutions for firms of all sizes. Comments are closed. RebusHR Award for Best HR Strategy in Line with BusinessOn 8 Oct 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

Long Island’s Opt Out Movement Has Made The Grade—Now What?

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Early this month, Betty Rosa, New York State’s new education chancellor, was on Long Island to visit Medford Elementary School, where she met with students, teachers and staff. Children in the dual language kindergarten program easily conversed with her in both English and Spanish.As the highest ranking member of the state’s Board of Regents and the state’s education czar, the teachers and the superintendent regarded Rosa with respect. After all, she is the boss, with a capital B. But the kids took to her with the natural curiosity and comfort of childhood that essentially said, “She’s one of us.” She spoke their language. Literally.The friendly scene was in stark contrast to the heated battle pitting the governor, the teachers unions and grassroots public school advocacy groups against one another. The struggle came to a head during this spring’s testing season, culminating in a giant win for Long Island Opt-Out, a parent-led group that organized an historic number of test-refusals this year with almost 100,000 students—more than half of the student population in Nassau and Suffolk counties—opting out of state tests. Their message has been effective: No more Common Core. Despite incremental fixes promised by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his so-called “Common Core Task Force,” they are still demanding concrete changes.Yet, it remains to be seen how this evolving protest movement will improve or replace the current education agenda.According to local public education advocates, the answer is multi-tiered. It includes elections: first at the state level and then at the local school board in an effort to tackle education policy from all sides. The goal is a shift away from schools’ increasing test-prep focus almost exclusively on math and reading skills—eschewing the arts and play-based learning—to a comprehensive curriculum that addresses what some advocates call the “whole child.”“I think we need to emphasize the issue of high-stakes testing,” Rosa told the Press at a lunch in the school’s conference room with staff and other attendees. “I think we have to get back to what really matters, which is teaching and learning—deep learning—and our kids’ excitement to really become those deep learners. We have to change the narrative back to focus on teaching and learning, and less on one Kodak moment to capture all of that work. Believe me, parents know that those children are assessed constantly. The issue is having multiple ways to measure achievement.”Rosa had spoken out against high-stakes testing at a press conference in March after the Board of Regents had selected her to the leadership post. She said that if she were not a board member herself and her children were elementary-school aged, she would opt them out of taking New York’s Common Core tests. On May 3, at the elementary school in Patchogue, she told the Press that she doesn’t believe the state should have the right to withhold funds from school districts with significant numbers of students who had refused to take state tests in April.“Parents legally have a choice,” she said. “Given that choice, you cannot then legally punish school districts and schools for decisions that parents have made. So my goal is to make sure that we get to a better place where we don’t even have to have these discussions because it gets back to teaching and learning.”Dr. Betty Rosa, New York State’s new education chancellor, visiting with Long Island elementary school students in early May. (Jaime Franchi/Long Island Press)But no sweeping changes can be made to a school’s education policy without the support of the local district’s board of education. Perhaps no one understands this better than Jeanette Deutermann, founder of Long Island Opt-Out Info, the popular Facebook page with more than 24,000 members that transformed into a robust-and powerful advocacy group. Deutermann told the Press that the election of nearly 100 Opt-Out members to local school boards, coupled with a new Regents chancellor, means that the tide is turning.“The bottom line is that some of these big wins could mean huge, sweeping changes for some districts,” she told the Press. “Education is shifting in New York. It’s up to parents to elect the right board of education that’s moving with this philosophical shift of how we want to educate our children. It all goes back to something that Dr. Joe Rella [superintendent of Comsewogue schools] said: ‘You get the Board of Ed you deserve.’“Parents are taking that seriously,” Deutermann continued. “This shift in philosophy is happening fast. We can’t wait 10 years if we want our children to experience this change.”A key part of Long Island Opt Out’s strategy for the last two years has been to promote local supporters to their individual district’s school boards. So far, Long Island Opt Out has helped elect 94 candidates; 34 out of 57 this year, including local advocates Anthony Griffin and Sara Wottawa, who were elected on May 17 to their respective school boards.“We have to change the narrative back to focus on teaching and learning, and less on one Kodak moment to capture all of that work.”Griffin, an English teacher in Central Islip and co-founder of Lace to the Top, an advocacy group that promoted bright green laces to signify that “children are more than test scores,” was an LIOO-backed candidate who won a seat on the South Country school board. He’s hoping to influence his children’s public education experience from the local level.“Changes in public education happen because of people,” Griffin told the Press in an email. “Some people want change to increase profits. Some want change to impose a belief. I want change to help students. As a board member in a student-centered district, I have an amazing opportunity to manifest those changes.”Griffin is “thrilled to have the opportunity to bring what I have learned to my district’s board. Local control doesn’t exist without locally involved people.”Wottawa is an outspoken parent in the Sachem School District. She joins two other LI Opt Out-endorsed board of education members who were elected last year to serve on the nine-member board.“I’m hoping the three of us can work together to enforce change in the district,” Wottawa told the Press. “I would like to see Sachem take a more holistic approach in educating our children. I would like to see us move towards educating the whole child in Sachem. Most importantly, I would like to propel a unity in the Sachem community. Without the support of the majority of the community, positive change is nearly impossible.”Though she’s in the minority on the school board, Wottawa is upbeat.“Once we have more vocal public education supporters on our local school boards across the state,” she said, “I think we will see more positive changes.”The special April 19 election of Assemb. Todd Kaminsky (D-Long Beach) to the State Senate to replace disgraced former GOP Senate majority leader Dean Skelos is seen as a key step in a populist-driven shift in the state’s education agenda, according to Diane Ravitch, a research professor of education at New York University and a former assistant Secretary of Education in Washington, D.C. under President George H.W. Bush. During the Clinton administration she was appointed to the National Assessment Governing Board, which oversees the federal testing program.“Kaminsky’s victory is a victory for the leaders of the Long Island opt-out movement, who strongly supported his candidacy and the legislation he proposed as a member of the Assembly,” wrote Ravitch on her popular blog. “Kaminsky wants to decouple test scores from teacher evaluation, which would reduce the absurd pressure to raise test scores and the time lost by the arts and other subjects. Parents want their children to have a well-rounded education, not a test-prep curriculum.”Kaminsky drew wide support from New York public school advocates after he sponsored three bills in the Assembly in February that would repeal several components of Cuomo’s Education Transformation Act. The bill would decouple teacher evaluations from test results, create an alternative pathway for graduation for students who do not wish to take or are unable to pass Regents examinations and repeal a provision that allows the state to place struggling or failing schools into receivership. Kaminsky’s recent election—although he’ll have to run again in November—allowed him to introduce his Assembly bills in the State Senate, where they have been referred to the education committee, which has until the middle of June, when the current legislative session ends, to determine their fate.Kaminsky’s win at the polls came after public education advocates were buoyed by the Board of Regents’ 15-0 election of Rosa as Chancellor to replace Meryl Tisch, who was seen as a proponent of the high stakes testing.Putting the emphasis back on teaching and learning may seem like a broad idea for education reform, yet Rosa cites her long history that includes her role as superintendent of a New York City community school as a key to her goals moving forward. It is that particular background that motivates her to embrace the vision of Michael Hynes, superintendent of Patchogue-Medford schools.In direct opposition to Common Core, Hynes, has spearheaded a five-year “Whole Child” program, which he said can “save education” and be the “answer to Albany.” He presented it to the board of education on May 16.Rosa said she agrees with the approach.“I think it’s fabulous,” she told the Press. “Looking at the whole child, you’re looking at all of the needs of the child. I just compliment him and support him.”She also supported Cuomo’s recent emphasis on community schools.“I think many community schools have served as models that show that services are needed, that certain children come to school with certain needs and particularly children who come from disadvantaged homes where they cannot afford so many services,” Rosa said, adding that Hynes understands what’s needed. “I think that he realizes that we have to serve the whole child, not just the academic part. I think that’s extremely important. You have to have healthy children—children who enjoy being in school in terms of attendance. It’s just important for kids to have exposure to the arts and have other ways to develop their talents.”The genesis of Hynes’ plan came from his opinion that the U.S. Department of Education and the New York State Department of Education have “for far too long been about two things: 1. test scores. 2. higher test scores,” he told the Press in an email. “Public education has been forced to move away from educating the ‘whole child’ due to the Regents Reform Agenda, NCLB [No Child Left Behind], and this crazy notion that our 15 year olds must score higher than other 15 year olds around the world or America is doomed. The funny thing is nobody talks about the test the 15 year old takes…yet many place great importance on the results.”Hynes’ focus on the whole child comes as a result of his background in psychology and as a former elementary teacher in Bellport. He bases it on the simple concept that kids can have fun and learn in school simultaneously.“They can play and utilize highly developed divergent thinking skills at the same time,” Hynes said. “We need to teach our children how to socially and emotionally excel. On the flip side, we also need to teach them how to recalibrate when they are having difficulty with something.“This is where more play in schools comes into play (no pun intended), more recess, yoga, mindfulness, meditation, etc…” he continued. “I believe by focusing on social, emotional and academics for our children…we will be able to harvest the talents they never knew existed.”This idea is in stark opposition to the EngageNY curriculum that the State Department of Education has been pushing to coincide with the Common Core standards. New York’s curriculum is taught from firmly established modules that give teachers little room to waver from. Because the high-stakes tests are based upon this strict curriculum—and because teacher evaluation had been directly tied to the test results—the idea of learning through play had been replaced with a high-pressure classroom atmosphere that Hynes said benefits neither the educator nor the student.On a cold rainy Tuesday in early May, kindergarten children at Medford Elementary joyfully showed off their Spanish skills in a counting song to Rosa’s obvious delight. The dual language program facilitates fluency in Spanish at a young age.“My goal is make sure our children have the resources and the opportunities to have access to quality education,” she said. “By that, I mean we need the resources, which means the money, obviously. Opportunities, like in this dual language program, these kids get an opportunity to learn two languages. And access is making sure that children who sometimes don’t have the finances get to places where those opportunities are.”Rosa surveyed the room filled with enthusiastic five- and six-year-olds and said, “We have to fight for these children within the public schools.”last_img read more

Freshman takes quick route to starting job

first_imgGREG SCHMITZ/Herald photoSome football players wait years for their chance to come in and make a difference. For some, the process is gradual, but for others, like Badgers freshman wide receiver Kyle Jefferson, it can be both abrupt and surprising. “For me, I have to look at it like I’m the next man in,” the 6’5″ Ohio native said. Being “the next man in” in his situation, however, is a little different than a normal drill or substitution.When senior wide out Paul Hubbard, one of the last year’s most important gameday performers, went down in the second half of the UNLV game Saturday, Jefferson was tapped to come in and fill the hole left by the starter.Hubbard tied for the team lead last season in touchdown receptions (5) and finished second in catches (38) and yards per catch (16.5). His exceptional play in the Capital One Bowl versus Arkansas was one of the biggest reasons the Badgers came home from Orlando with a win.Sensing the difficulty of the situation the freshman has been placed in, Hubbard has made sure that Jefferson knows that he and the rest of the offense are behind him.”[Hubbard] told me that I need to just stay focused, take things one at a time, breathe some deep breaths, and when you get your opportunity in the game, just run fast, and if you can make a play, make the play,” Jefferson said.Hubbard’s reassurances were echoed in the huddle as well. “When [Jefferson] came in, everybody looked at him and said, ‘Alright, we’re going to help you out; you can do this,'” senior receiver Luke Swan said. “Kyle has worked really hard so far this year. He’s got good ball skills and can run real well, so I think he has a really good possibility to come in and have a lot of success for us.”As if he didn’t have enough support behind him here at Wisconsin, Jefferson has also been in contact with former Ohio State Buckeye standout Ted Ginn Jr. since he arrived on campus. Jefferson and Ginn, now a member of the Miami Dolphins, played together at Glenville High School in Cleveland, Ohio. “(Ginn) was like a big brother to me,” Jefferson said. “Playing with him and seeing where he is now and knowing that I came from where he did has helped me out a lot as a player.”Although Jefferson hasn’t talked to Ginn since his ascension to the top of the Badger depth chart, the receiver plans on calling him soon, if only just for “ten minutes of advice” from the longtime friend, who has often told him that the most important thing a player can do is to “go out and perform to your best ability, no matter what.”Lucky for UW coach DelVaughn Alexander and the Badgers, Jefferson has been blessed with plenty of physical abilities that will allow him to do just that. “Kyle got here even before I did this summer doing workouts. When he came back for the start of camp, he was very focused and confident about the things that he could bring to the table as a receiver,” Alexander said.With his tremendous height and sprinter speed, Jefferson needs only game experience to transform himself into the downfield threat he has the potential to be. In terms of his arrival to the top of the wide receiver pecking order, it couldn’t have come at a better time on the schedule. With major conference foes such as Ohio State and Michigan looming in the last three weeks of the season, the offense will not only have time to work with and further develop the wide receiver, but also wait for the return of Hubbard, who has been pegged to miss anywhere from six to eight weeks of the season.Giving Jefferson his chance to develop certainly is the silver lining in the whole Hubbard situation in the eyes of Alexander. “For right now, Kyle needs to approach Citadel on this weekend like it is a Michigan or an Ohio State. … We want his best game to come Saturday,” Alexander said.”But if his best game doesn’t come on then, whether it be because of less production or too many mistakes, we want to have the same person that he always is — the person that, week in and week out, is going to grow more as a player every day he goes out on the field.”If all goes well on Saturday, who knows? Maybe Ten Ginn Jr. will be the one calling Jefferson for ten minutes of advice next week.last_img read more