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Focus on Success
June 2015 Vol 6, No. 4  
 Partnering and Promoting Education
SCCOE logo
In This Issue
2015 Math Contest
ROP's Debbie Reynon, Volunteer of the Year
Boulder Creek Autistic Teen Honored
Santa Cruz County Students Win Big at Science Fairs
Volunteers of Healthy Girls Santa Cruz
ROP Student Wins PVUSD Climate Change Competition
Karen Lemon, PVUSD Educator of the Month
Art and Fashion at the Lighthouse School
ROP Student Max Bowman
Together for Kindergarten Community Forum 2015
Students Tour County Coroner's Office
Board of Education
Business Services
Educational Services 
Human Resources
SC County Schools
Student Services
Technology Services
SCCOE Annual Report

 Student Support Services Newsletter

June 2015 issue 

SCCOE Mission

The Mission of the Santa Cruz County Office of Education is

to provide quality educational leadership, programs, services, and support

to the children, school

districts, and the diverse community

that makes up Santa

Cruz County.

Santa Cruz County Board of Education 
The Santa Cruz County Board of Education is comprised of seven trustees each of whom represents a designated trustee area within the County.
Ms. Jane Royer Barr 
Mr. Jack Dilles
Ms. Sandra Nichols

Mr. Dana M. Sales
Mr. Abel Sanchez
Mr. Bruce Van Allen
Mr. George "Bud" Winslow

Santa Cruz County Office of Education
400 Encinal Street
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
(831) 466-5600
(831) 466-5607 (FAX)
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Superintendent's Message 

Although the role that County Offices of Education (COEs) play in the education of California's 6 million students has changed under Local Control and Accountability, the regional support that COEs provide to districts continues to grow. All of the programs and people highlighted in this issue illustrate the importance and power of collaboration--well beyond "local." Local in the education of our children expands to global, for technology has allowed us to share resources and ideas from not only around our state but also from around the world. And if we take a close look at what our students are saying they want from our schools, we find "engagement" at the top of their list. Students want to have experiences that are both unique and challenging, both local and global. 

County offices continue to be a bridge of support for all students to thrive and become college and career ready. The activities and people we acknowledge in this issue have harnessed and embraced the strength of a global community. We have International Science Fair winners; students taking on the challenge of global warming; a student giving a community presentation on "Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow;" a Volunteer and Educator of the Year, and much more, from empowering young women to recognizing our county's math wizards. However, the story that most resonates with me is the story of Tim Onstad, an autistic special needs student, who began his schooling with the SCCOE and will now attend California State University, Monterey Bay. The common thread of each of these programs revolves around engagement and igniting the passion within each student. And I am honored that county offices can provide that spark.

Finally I want to wish all 2015 graduates much future success.

Michael Watkins
Santa Cruz County Superintendent of Schools 

Our newsletter is sent out quarterly. If you would like more frequent updates, follow me on Twitter, or like the SCCOE on Facebook.

2015 Math Contest Award Winners


Math Contest Winners

For 48 years, students in Santa Cruz County have chosen to give up a Saturday morning in spring to, of all things, test themselves voluntarily on very difficult Math problems.

This year, on May 2nd, 366 students converged on Aptos High School for the Santa Cruz Math Contest sponsored by the Santa Cruz County Office of Education.

Read more about the 2015 Santa Cruz County Math Contest...
Debbie Reynon, Volunteer of the Year for CADAT


ROP Dental Assisting Instructor, Debbie Reynon

Debbie Reynon, ROP Dental Assisting Instructor, received two awards from the California Association of Dental Assisting Teachers (CADAT), "Recognition of Service CADAT Life Recipient Award" and for the second year, "CADAT Volunteer of the Year Award." Debbie is honored to be recognized as the first ROP President of CADAT in its 55 year history.

College-Bound Boulder Creek Autistic Teen Honored


Tim Onstad, Rebecca Cernac-Sheen, and his tutor Paul White.

San Lorenzo Valley High School senior Tim Onstad does not remember very well his earliest years, a time when he did not speak, other than to shout.

Much has changed since then for the 17-year-old Boulder Creek teenager, who has been accepted to Cal State Monterey Bay and plans to study computer science and business, beginning this fall.


Read the Santa Cruz Sentinel article about Tim Onstad...
Santa Cruz County Students Win Big at Both ISEF and CA State Science Fair


Natalie Gallagher and Connor Lydon

With the generous support of Seagate Technology, the Santa Cruz County Science & Engineering Fair provides the opportunity for the top High School project in our County to compete at the annual International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF).

Read more about the 2015 Science Fair results...
Meet the Dedicated Volunteers of Healthy Girls Santa Cruz


Volunteers for Healthy Girls Santa Cruz

Each week, teen girls at high schools throughout Santa Cruz County meet in a "girls group" at their school, where they have the chance to discuss anything from mental illness to everyday adolescent crises, and everything in between. This safe and welcoming space is made possible by Healthy Girls Santa Cruz, a program of the Santa Cruz County Office of Education's Department of Student Support Services. Healthy Girls Santa Cruz is implemented entirely by hardworking and dedicated volunteers who facilitate the weekly girls groups at various Santa Cruz County schools.

Read more about the HGSC Volunteers...
ROP Student Wins PVUSD Climate Change Presentation Competition


Marcus Solbes-Moran and other students, holding awards.

ROP Video Production student, Marcus Solbes-Moran earned 1st place in the Pajaro Valley Unified School District (PVUSD) Climate Change Presentation Competition for his video submission. Marcus is a student of Jenny Angelacos, ROP Video Production instructor at Aptos High School. The competition encouraged short, creative presentations conveying the seriousness of climate change while leaving viewers hopeful about solving the crisis.

See more about the competition...
Karen Lemon, PVUSD Educator of the Month


Karen Lemon displays her Educator of the Month Award.

On April 15, 2015, at a Pajaro Valley Unified School District (PVUSD) Board Meeting, Karen Lemon, ROP Photography Instructor at Renaissance High School, was awarded the PVUSD Educator of the Month Award. Signed by Dorma Baker, PVUSD Superintendent, RHS Principal Andrew Singleton and Jacob Young from the award's sponsoring business, Jacob Young Financial, the award stated "You are recognized by your Colleagues for having gone the extra mile to improve and enrich the educational experience of your students."

Read about the PVUSD Educator of the Month...
Art and Fashion at the Lighthouse School


Lighthouse School fashion show

The Lighthouse School is a program that the Santa Cruz County Office of Education's Special Education Department has been proud to administer for the past 3 years. The school staff work diligently to create a safe and supportive learning environment for students who have had intensive emotional and behavioral problems. This program has been very successful and the students have made excellent progress.

Museum of Discovery Event Features ROP Student Designer, Max Bowman


ROP student Max Bowman

On Thursday evening, March 26, ROP Graphic Design student Max Bowman spoke to a crowded room at the Museum of Discovery. Event Santa Cruz was hosting a talk entitled "Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow" and Max was chosen to speak because of his outstanding accomplishments as a young designer. Max is a second year design student in the Regional Occupational Program (ROP) Graphic Design class at Aptos High taught by Jenny Angelacos.

Read the article about Max Bowman...
Together for Kindergarten Community Forum 2015


Kids running in gym.

Teaching Early Math: Exciting, Hands-On and Engaged Learning

These 4 year-olds are learning to enjoy math as they run circles, jump squares and fly like an airplane. They are learning about their place in the room and the space around them. They measure, count, build, do puzzles, see relationships, and cook. When taught joyfully, the concepts will lay the foundation for future math learning.

Read more about the 2015 Community Forum...
ROP Medical Program Students Tour County Coroner's Office: Local Detectives Take Time to Share their Work with Students


ROP Medical Technologies class at the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Coroner's Office

In March, the ROP Medical Technologies class visited the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Coroner's Office. Detectives Nick Baldridge and Mike Pruger presented various aspects of forensic medicine, enabling the students to realize connections between their ROP class and their high school science and mathematics studies. Detective Baldridge volunteered his off-duty time to give the students a tour of the facility and to help them learn about careers in the forensic sciences.


The Santa Cruz County Office of Education publishes news to the community several times a year, highlighting programs that support student achievement.