Elk Grove Unified School District
Excellence by Design
 EGUSD News and NotesAugust 20, 2012 
In This Issue
Common Core State Standards
New College & Career Website
TJMS teacher visits Indonesia
19th Annual ChildSpree
Helpful Links
Internet Safety Tips
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TIP:Look into safeguarding programs or options your online service provider might offer. These may include monitoring or filtering capabilities.

Two EGUSD elementary schools receive federal Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program grants




Two Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD) elementary schools - John Reith and Union House - have been selected as recipients of federal Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) grants.  Reith will receive $38,094.  Union House will receive $49,815.


The FFVP grant, which requires a nutrition education component, allows EGUSD Food & Nutrition Services (FNS) to tie the snack into the Harvest of the Month (HOTM) program at both Reith and Union House.  The HOTM program provides a fresh fruit or vegetable sample and nutrition education on selected produce items ten months a year.  The FFVP grant will also allow FNS to provide students the opportunity to continue to enjoy the designated HOTM produce for the entire month by providing it as a snack at no cost to the students.  


Both schools will be provided with a colorful Harvest Cart.  The cart will contain the featured fruit or vegetable snack of the month and will be placed in an accessible location for all students.  The cart will also provide additional nutrition education on the featured produce.  


The FFVP grant is designed to provide students continued access to fresh fruits and vegetables during the school day.  The program will provide free fresh fruit or vegetable snacks during one recess a day, three days a week.  The program is a supplement to school breakfast and lunch programs.  


To be eligible for the grant, elementary schools must participate in the National School Lunch Program and have 50 percent or more of their students eligible for free or reduced-price meals.  Applicants are funded based on the percentage of students eligible for free or reduced price meals, with priority given to the highest percentage.  Schools who receive a FFVP grant must provide a free fresh fruit or vegetable snack during the school day at least three times per week for all enrolled students.  Grant recipients are encouraged to form partnerships with the fruit and vegetable industry and groups that promote children's health to support their efforts.


Click here for more information about the FFVP grants.


EGUSD pilots new portal website for parents and guardians


The Elk Grove Unified School District (EGUSD) has launched a new secure EGUSD Portal website that will allow parents and guardians the option to receive their student's official academic progress reports and report cards electronically. Parents and guardians will also be able to securely update and change opt-out elections, such as directory information, posting of student photos, as well as movies and videos.


Additional features and reports are planned for the portal in the near future that will provide parents and guardians with the opportunity to view other academic information about their student rather than receive printed reports through the U.S. mail.


For the 2012-2013 school year, EGUSD is piloting the program at the following secondary schools:


Middle Schools

Katherine L. Albiani, Harriet Eddy, Edward Harris, Jr., Toby Johnson, Joseph Kerr, Elizabeth Pinkerton, T.R. Smedberg


High Schools

Elk Grove, Florin, Franklin, Laguna Creek, Pleasant Grove, Sheldon, Valley


Alternative Schools

Elk Grove Charter School, Las Flores High School, Rio Cazadero High School


By the first week of September 2012, the following schools will also be using the EGUSD Portal: James Rutter Middle School, Cosumnes Oaks High School, Monterey Trail High School, Calvine High School and William Daylor High School.


Click here to learn more about the EGUSD Portal.



No Excuses - Go to School Attendance Campaign returns in September 2012


The No Excuses - Go to School Attendance Campaign will return for the the 2012-2013 school year in September!  Stay tuned for more information about the campaign in the next edition of eguNews - this year, a new program just for kindergarteners will be introduced!
Welcome to eguNews, an EGUSD email newsletter published every two weeks.  If you have questions about eguNews, you can email communication@egusd.net or call (916) 686-7732.

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Common Core State Standards comes to EGUSD   


This year, EGUSD elementary teachers will begin teaching students a new curriculum based on California's Common Core State Standards (CCSS). These are new academic content standards that address English Language Arts (ELA) and mathematics, with ELA standards including literacy standards for science and history/social sciences.


These new standards will provide greater learning opportunities for EGUSD students. Standards define the concepts and skills that every child will learn. EGUSD will phase in these new standards from kindergarten through 12th grade over a two year period, starting this year with math in grades K-2 and English Language Arts in grades 3-6. Teachers have been trained and are prepared to teach this new curriculum.


The standards stem from a nationwide initiative to set a clear and consistent progression of learning across all states. In 2010, the California State Board of Education adopted these standards with some additions unique to California. These kindergarten through 12th grade standards provide a progression of knowledge and skills that prepare students to graduate from high school and be ready for college and careers. The standards are research-based and internationally benchmarked.


Parents may notice the effects of the Common Core State Standards.   One example is that, over time, students will be able to read, comprehend and analyze more sophisticated text. A teacher may encourage a child to choose books that are written at a more challenging level. Also, parents may notice more frequent writing assignments. This includes more writing within core subjects of science and history/social science. In mathematics, parents may see their students making drawings or models to illustrate or demonstrate their solutions to problems. While the learning of math facts (for instance, "times tables") is still important, students will spend more time working through a solution to a "real-life" problem rather than repeatedly practicing the same type of problem. (A "real-life" problem might involve designing alternative shapes for a rabbit pen enclosure if given a limited amount of fencing.)


The National Parent Teacher Association (PTA) has posted resource guides by grade level to help parents better understand what the implementation of these standards will mean for their student. To view these resources, visit http://www.pta.org/4446.htm. Parents are also encouraged to visit EGUSD's CCSS website at http://blogs.egusd.net/ccss/ 

New college and career website debuts for students and parents   




Are you a student trying to determine the path to take to college and a career? Are you a parent looking to help your student but don't know where to begin?


Look no further - your dreams have been answered! The Elk Grove Unified School District has launched a new college and career website for students and parents that's full of tips and guidelines to help students along the path of selecting a college to attend and/or a career. The new website was designed as a part of a larger effort to encourage students to enter college or careers.


The website features six sections to help students chart the course to a successful future: college prep, testing, college choices, the application, financing and career planning.

  • College Prep: This section covers information on graduation requirements, A-G UC/CSU courses, year-by-year planning guides, EGUSD career centers, student NCAA-eligibility athletes, calculating your GPA and college planning resources.
  • Testing: Those looking for more information on tests will find information about the California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE), Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT), SAT, ACT and advanced placement (AP) and honors courses here.
  • College Choices: This page explains types of schools, college and universities, CSU/UC admissions, types of degrees, college fairs/visits and how to select a school.
  • The Application: Writing the perfect application becomes much easier after visiting the application page where students will learn more about the essay, letters of recommendation and interviews.
  • Financing: Information on scholarships, financial aid and other resources can be found on the financing page.
  • Career Planning: This section explains more about EGUSD career academies and pathways, regional occupation programs (ROP), post-secondary alternatives, resumes and interviewing techniques.

Students and parents looking for more help with planning for college and careers can contact a counselor at their high school campus.   


 TJMS teacher visits Indonesia through global classrooms program



Can you imagine traveling to a foreign country, sharing educational strategies with different cultures and learning more about teaching abroad?


That's exactly what Arlis Groves, a social science teacher at Toby Johnson Middle School, did this summer. She spent two weeks on the island of Java in Indonesia through the IREX Teachers for Global Classrooms Program.


The IREX Teachers for Global Classrooms Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, provides funds for qualified and motivated U.S. teachers to travel to one of six countries to exchange information about educational systems, teaching strategies and ways to globalize their classrooms. Participating teachers analyze a variety of articles, videos and lectures, and have an opportunity to author a community global education resource guide as part of a capstone project.


"The goal is to be able to infuse a global perspective into the core curriculum and to affect global engagement in school communities," Groves said. "Beyond content knowledge, the skills and competencies gained by students in globalized classrooms helps them succeed in the world they will navigate as adults."


Before departing on the trip, teachers in the IREX program participated in an eight-week online course of study to prepare for their trips overseas. Groves then spent the first three days of her trip in Jakarta, where teachers in the program were introduced to the culture, history and educational systems in Indonesia. From here, Groves flew to Mojokerto where she and another teacher in her cohort taught cultural lessons, observed Indonesian teachers and interacted with students. They also conducted an English teaching strategies workshop. After teaching in Mojokerto, all teachers in the cohort reassembled in Jakarta to debrief their experiences and plan ways to implement what they learned in their own classrooms.


Middle and high school teachers who are U.S. citizens and desire to globalize teaching and learning in their classrooms may apply for the program. Teachers from a variety of subject areas can and have applied for the program, including mathematics, science, social science, government, English/language arts, technology, ESL and AVID. Next year, Staci Wallace-Ussery, an AVID and health teacher at Johnson, hopes to visit the Ukraine through the global classrooms program. Click here for more information about the IREX Teachers for Global Classrooms Program.



Over $25,000 donated to 19th Annual ChildSpree





Thanks to a host of generous donors from throughout the community, the 19th Annual ChildSpree - held on July 28 - was once again a rousing success. A total of $25,825 in monetary and in-kind donations were contributed to the Elk Grove Unified School District's (EGUSD) Healthy Start Family Centers' ChildSpree this year.


Donations were received from the following donors this year: Kohl's, Soroptimist International of Rio Cosumnes, UC Davis Medical Center, Lions Vision Service Plan, Elk Grove Lions Club, Girl Scouts, California Highway Patrol, Elk Grove Police Department, Safe Kids Coalition, Great Clips of Laguna.


A total of 102 EGUSD students in need in grades K-5 were treated to a back-to-school shopping spree at Kohl's. Students participating in the ChildSpree program were identified through Project ACT, Foster Youth and Healthy Start Family Centers at David Reese and Prairie elementary schools.


Participating students were each given $110 to spend at Kohl's and also enjoyed a 10 percent discount. The day included a pancake breakfast, free haircuts for students, backpacks filled with school supplies, free booster seats and fire alarm batteries to families participating in this event, free bicycle helmets for students and free oral dental supplies.