Weekly roundup: Capistrano student plans to make waves with beach clean-up campaign, and more

San Juan Hills High School student Ryan Hickman is kicking off a five-week beach clean-up campaign starting April 20. (Courtesy of Ryan's Recycling Company)
San Juan Hills High School student Ryan Hickman is kicking off a five-week beach cleanup campaign starting April 20. (Courtesy of Ryan’s Recycling Company)

At just 14 years old, San Juan Hills High School student Ryan Hickman has dedicated much of his free time to recycling and collecting roughly 2 million bottles and cans from beaches, lakes and rivers with the help of volunteers.

Just ahead of Earth Day on April 22, the Orange County Register reported that Ryan is set to launch a five-week campaign to remove trash from five beaches starting this Saturday.

The Capistrano Unified School District freshman plans to focus his efforts on cleaning beaches along the Southern California coast and Mexico with stops in Huntington Beach and San Clemente. The first cleanup will take place at Dockweiler Beach in Playa Del Rey, where the 14-year-old will be joined by volunteers and teen influencers.

Through the campaign, Ryan hopes to promote his recycling education nonprofit, Project3R, while creating a ripple of change toward greater care for the ocean and its inhabitants.

“The trash ends up in the ocean, and animals are eating it,” Ryan told the Register. “Picking up a piece of trash may save a turtle’s life.”

Those who want to get involved in Ryan’s beach clean-up campaign can learn more about his efforts at Ryan’s Recycling Company website.

Here are the other stories we’ve been following this week:

  • Dr. Carolee Ogata, Huntington Beach Union High School District’s deputy superintendent of human resources, is set to take on a new role as its new superintendent pending board approval on May 14.
  • California has extended the deadline for its Free Application for Federal Student Aid form, known as FAFSA, to May 2 due to unexpected delays in the application process.
Hope View Elementary School students perform their original song, "Stop and Think" in a video produced by OCDE's Media Services.
Hope View Elementary School students perform their original song, “Stop and Think” in a video produced by OCDE’s Media Services.
  • The Central Orange County Career Technical Education Partnership recently hosted its inaugural CTEp Partner Celebration, showcasing its collaborative CTE programs with local school districts and shedding a spotlight on students’ real-world career opportunities.
  • In the coming school year, the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District is expected to open a tuition-free sports program for students from third through 12th grade. It’s called the Universal Sports Institute.
  • Orange County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Al Mijares has been out on medical leave since August to deal with health issues but has told staff that he hopes to be cleared by a physician to resume his responsibilities later this year.
  • The Orange Unified School District board is looking to fill two empty trustee seats through provisional appointments following its recall election last month, according to the OC Register.
  • On Wednesday, the Senate Education Committee passed a bill that would remove one of the final assessments required for potential teachers to earn a credential in California.
  • In a new series called “Life on Rosecrans,” Spectrum News made its first stop in Fullerton to highlight elementary school district programs that aim to address learning loss among students from pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.

This is the part where we encourage you to keep up with local education news stories by bookmarking the OCDE Newsroomsubscribing for emailed updates and following us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.