Activities During the Christmas Break

During the Christmas break most of our students were able to go on a home visit, those that stayed behind had several activities to keep them busy.  Some of them included Minute to Win it Games, crafts, projects, going to movies, bowling, ginger bread houses and sporting activities. We returned to school last Monday to our “regular” routine.

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West Ridge Academy Devotional Speaker-Steven Allison Jan 11th

Steven J. Allison – Biographical Information

Steven J. Allison attended San Diego State University where he graduated with a degree in Speech Communication. He married Penny Gorin who he’d known since Kindergarten. She also graduated from SDSU. After graduation they moved with their two sons to West Jordan, Utah to teach.  Steve taught Seminary for 20 years, including 6 years at West Ridge Academy. Penny taught Math at West Ridge. During that time they had numerous weekend home visits with West Ridge students. They also had 22 boys live with them as foster sons on day program, five of them for an extended time.

Steve had completed Masters and Doctorate Degrees in Education from BYU and then transferred to the Institute of Religion, SLCC South City Campus, where he served as the director for 10 years. He then transferred to the Institute of Religion at the University of Utah where he retired from the Seminaries and Institutes of Religion. Since then Steve started his own business in Instructional Design creating training materials for dōTerra, Toyota, Exxon Mobil, and others. He has also written curriculum for several universities. He teaches college classes at SLCC, Argosy University and Neumont University. He writes fiction and hopes to publish a novel soon. Penny and he enjoy riding their Polaris ATV’s all over the Utah mountains and deserts. They are the parents of 8 children and 12-14 grandchildren.

West Ridge Academy Christmas Party

We had a wonderful staff/student Christmas party.  We ate a great luncheon from “Famous Daves Barbeque” and then entertainment by the girls, who sang some Christmas songs. Santa made his appearance and brought treats for all of the kids.

Our holiday break starts on Monday Dec 22nd- Jan 5th.   Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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Gametime is Changed for Tomorrow Nights Game

The boys basketball game tomorrow night (Dec 19th)will played at 6:00, there will just be one game because West Desert does not have a JV team.

Police Dog Training on West Ridge Academy Campus

A couple of times a year the Utah State troopers come here to use our campus to train their K9 dogs.  We had a group of officers here training their dogs in our homes, the gym, and outside on the campus grounds.  So if you saw lots of cop cars that is why.

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Miller Award Movie

The purpose of the Miller Award for Excellence is sponsored by the Miller group and is to help students set specific goals, promote desired behaviors and obtain corresponding rewards. The student’s progress and achievement will determine reward eligibility through a treatment team review.  They will get different rewards according to what phase they are in. For those completing phase 1 we took them to see “Big Hero 6” along with popcorn, drinks and candy.

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West Ridge Academy Devotional Speaker 12/14-Ty Foster

Ty Foster is an authority on motivation and inspiring others. Ty’s father was killed while serving in the United States Navy when he was five years of age. He had to grow up in an impossible situation. Surrounded by gangs and violence, he became successful despite the odds. It is this that has fueled his passion for inspiring change and human achievement. He is a loving husband, speaker, entrepreneur and father.

Since then, he has created a successful health and wellness company, and his keynote speeches have empowered thousands of people across the nation to live their dreams.

Mike Ruoho-West Ridge Academy

Today West Ridge honored Mike Ruoho who has been with WRA for 27 years.  Thank you for your service and dedication to the youth throughout all these years. Many lives have been touched and impacted by this great man.  We will miss him dearly, and wish him the best as he pursues his new journey.


Shawn Bradley and Family Honored at West Ridge Academy Game

Last night we honored Shawn Bradley and his family at our basketball game.  We unveiled our new refinished court named “Bradley Court” after their family.  For many years now the Bradley’s have been very generous and involved with West Ridge Academy.  Shawn has worked in the school, was the Pres of our Board and has made a difference in many lives. Thanks Bradleys!IMG_2954 IMG_2964 IMG_2979 IMG_2984

West Ridge Academy Debate Team


We went to our first debate tournament ever over the weekend.  It was a different experience for all of the students and a great learning experience for all of us.  It took a bit for them to settle down and to adjust to the way debate works, but they eventually settled down and were able to do well.

At the end of the day, when the dust had settled, we were able to bring home some hardware.  We took 1st place for all 1A schools in the tournaments.  Jake N took 4th place in poetry interpretation AND 5th place in national extemporaneous speaking.  Becca T took 6th place in student congress.  Not bad for their first tournament!  The rest of the students didn’t bring home any trophies, however, they worked hard and did a good job in their individual meets.

All in all it was a good meet for us.  We overcame adversity, learned the systems and, most importantly, had fun.

On a different note, in the future, we will be in need of volunteer judges.  If you know anyone or have the time yourself to go to one of our tournaments with us in order to judge, please let me know.  Tournaments run on volunteer judges.  Schools that don’t bring their share are given a financial penalty.  We were ok this tournament.  But if you or someone you know could come and help us, we’d really appreciate that.  The ballots are idiot proof so if you are worried that you don’t know the first thing about debate, don’t worry about it.


Steve Porter