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National Play Therapy Week

National Play Therapy Week starts Feb. 2. Licensed mental health professionals throughout the country are taking part in Play Therapy of Week.

According to the Association for Play Therapy, Play is our first language. The APT said that, just as adults use words to communicate, children use play to express thoughts and feelings that might otherwise remain hidden. 

APT adds that thousands of licensed mental health professionals within and outside of the United States use play therapeutically to help their clients, especially children, to describe and manage their behaviors and mental health problems.

Many professionals using Play Therapy are identified by credentials that they obtain through specific Play Therapy training and supervised experience beyond their general licensure requirements and enable them to publicly advertise their Play Therapy expertise.

 

New art show celebrates the trees

Middleton's Hubbard Art Center will be hosting a new art show celebrating trees.

"A Celebration of Trees" will have  variety of tree themed art in various kinds of media.

The show runs from Nov 29 through December 1.  It's open on Friday from 4 to 9 p.m., Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, noon to 7 p.m.

Admission is free. Local artists are welcome to enter pieces, but they must be tree themed.

Middleton construction co. gets $20M county project

Middleton construction co. gets $20M county project

Middleton-based Miron Construction will build the pavilions that will create 290,000 square feet of multi-use space on the footprint of the Alliant Energy Center’s existing barns, according to a news release from ane County Executive Joe Parisi’s office.

Dane County will replace the Alliant Energy Center’s barns with multi-use pavilions in a $24 million project set to begin early next year.

Parisi said Tuesday that the county will award a Middleton construction company a nearly $20.7 million contract to build the pavilions. 

The project is pending funding approval from the Wisconsin State Building Commission and the Dane County Board of Supervisors.

Demolition of the barns is expected to begin next year, with the project’s estimated completion in time for the 2014 World Dairy Expo.

Middleton teachers argue for new contract, more pay

Middleton teachers argue for new contract, more pay

As the Supreme Court reviews the constitutionality of Act 10, teachers in the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District requested the opportunity to bargain for the next school year and current salaries.

The Middleton Education Association made one request to open negotiations with district officials in September and another request in October.

"We believe the recent Circuit Court ruling or the ruling Judge Colas made last year still allows us to bargain a complete or full master contract for the 2014-2015 school year. We also believe they are able to provide more of an increase," Chris Bauman, MEA president, said.

The Board of Education voted unanimously to delay any talks.

Watch the report:

Open house scheduled on $1.1M brick replacement project

Leaders on a city project to replace bricks in downtown Middleton will host an open house next week.

The city of Middleton said anyone interested in learning more about the nearly $1.1 million brick terrace and crosswalks project can stop by city hall on Oct. 29 from 4 to 6 p.m.

According to the city, staff determined in July that the project should be moved from late fall 2013 to early spring 2014 for more time to coordinate details.

For example, the city said it needed to investigate uniform sidewalk widths and determine street light wiring locations. The extra time could also allow for lower bids with more competition between crews at the beginning of construction season, the city said on its website.

Middleton City Hall is at 7426 Hubbard Ave.

DPI announces school-funding numbers

DPI announces school-funding numbers

The Department of Public Instruction released school-funding numbers Tuesday, and 183 districts will see an increase in state aid. Another 239 districts, including the Madison Metropolitan School District, will see a decrease in state aid.

Total aid given to districts has increased by a total of $47.9 million from the last school year bringing the total school funding budget to $4.342 billion, according to a release.

Funding for Madison will drop 14.5 percent compared to last year. The district will get $49.9 million from the state, which is about $9 million less than last year.

Forum to highlight discussion on 'shadow' schools, education budgets

Forum to highlight discussion on 'shadow' schools, education budgets

Two local volunteer groups plan to sponsor a public conversation with area leaders on education next week.

Wisconsin State Senators Kathleen Vinehout, D-Alma, and Dale Schultz, R-Richland Center, are among area leaders participating in "How Many Kids Left Behind? An Interactive Community Conversation on the Future of Our Public Schools" at the Middleton Performing Arts Center, 2100 Bristol St., on Sept. 5.

The forum, which begins at 7 p.m., is free and open to the public.

At the 90-minute event, panelists will discuss topics including the state of the education budget, the “shadow” school system (including vouchers and charter schools), and the needs of rural districts.