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Weekly Post
September 30, 2013
Superintendent's Message

I have to say...this is an amazing time to lead in public education. We continue the transition to the Information Age. As a state, we are implementing the new Common Core State Standards, which raises the level of student expectations, many of which compel significant changes in teaching and learning.


The new Smarter Balanced assessments will be field tested this spring (we hope we are a pilot) and it is still unclear whether the Governor will sign the bill discontinuing the California Standards Test. We also have an entirely new funding and accountability system called "Local Control Funding Formula." We've learned that this won't mean much in new funds to PVSD, but will assist other districts statewide whose funding base is much lower than ours. Our work is challenging, but it's a privilege for us to work with your students.


Did you make your pledge to the Portola Valley Schools Foundation yet? I did! I know my donation will help us unlock that $100,000 pledge. Don't delay, pledge now!


A preview of this week's Governing Board meeting:

  • Appointment of Jonathan Barth as our new Chief Business Officer
  • Final discussion and approval of the Strategic Plan
  • Special Education presentation by Julie Flynn, our extraordinary Student Services Coordinator

I'm looking forward to the Book Fair at Ormondale on Tuesday night. I'll be a guest reader with the latest (and one of my favorites) - Molly Lu Melon. Hope to see you and your children there. Make sure to introduce yourself to me or I'll pick out way too many books as holiday gifts for my daughters!

Lisa Marie Gonzales, Ed.D.
Portola Valley School District
Donate by 10/10/2013 to Unlock the 100,000 Grant


Be on the lookout for your PVSF Annual Campaign brochure!  They were mailed to all Portola Valley School District families last week. 


A generous family is donating $100,000 to the Portola Valley Schools Foundation if we collect $800,000 in donations and pledges by Donation Day.  We can do it, but need your help!  Please help us unlock this $100,000 grant by giving or pledging by Donation Day, October 10th!   The Annual Campaign is the largest source of funding for the Foundation and helps the Foundation contribute more than 10% of the District's budget annually.  Please help us make a difference today!  For more information, visit us at www.pvschoolsfoundation.org.
In This Issue
Help Unlock $100,000
TB Testing
School Photos
Safe Routes to School
Turkey Trot
eScrip and Amazon.com
ORM Principal's Message
ORM Spirit Wear
ORM Language
Book Fair is Coming
CMS Principal's Message
SART Pastels
Community Section
This Week's Calendar
Ormondale * Corte Madera * District
Mon, September 30 (A) 
 TB Testing at Ormondale
7:30 - 10 am
Tue, October 1 (B) 
ORM Parent-Teacher Conferences

ORM Book Fair

ORM Family Night at the Oasis
5:30 pm (Book Fair)
Wed, October 2 (A) 
ORM Parent-Teacher Conferences

ORM Book Fair

School Board Meeting
CMS, Room 102, 6 pm
Thu, October 3 (B)  
TB Test Reading
Ormondale 7:30 - 9 am
ORM Parent-Teacher Conferences
ORM Book Fair  
CMS Picture Day
Fri, October 4 (A)
ORM Parent-Teacher Conferences
ORM Book Fair
Weekly Post Reminders: 
To submit an article to the Weekly Post, please send it to [email protected].  Deadline is Thursday at noon.  See the PVSD website for more information

TB Testing - TODAY
All Ormondale and Corte Madera volunteers must have a negative TB test result from within the last 4 years on file in the office.  You may bring the result from your doctor's office, or you can get tested at Ormondale, on Monday, September 30th.  Tests will be given between 7:30 am and 10:00 am Parents will need to return briefly to Ormondale, on Thursday October 3rd between 7:30 am and 9:00 am to have the test read.  The cost of the test is $20, check or cash.  For returning parents, you may check with the office if you are not sure if your results are current. If you have any questions, please contact Susan McLaughlin.

Please note, parents that have had the BCG vaccine should NOT have this type of TB testing done, they will test positive for tuberculosis.  BCG vaccinated parents will need to provide a note from their physician stating that they are tuberculin free before they can volunteer. 
School Photos Coming Soon!
Please mark your calendars...

Photo Day will take place all in one day at each school....in addition to class photos, all individual photos of your child will be taken outside in a natural setting! You will have 5-8 individual poses to choose from and may order as many poses as you'd like. In addition, Color, Black & White and Sepia tone will be available.  PLUS, you will be able to place your order online and your photos will be shipped directly to your home!

PLEASE NOTE: When your child's 
photos are available for ordering, you will receive an email from iClickSmiles ([email protected]) with special ordering instructions.
Questions? Please contact a Photo Day Parent Coordinator:
Corte Madera - Elise Gabrielson at [email protected]
Ormondale - Sarah Byrne at [email protected]
Safe Routes to School
International Bike/Walk to School
The first International Bike/Walk to School event was launched in 1997 in the US, Canada, and Great Britain. In 2012, International Bike/Walk to School had grown to 40 countries with over 40 million participants. Let's continue to do our part to join this worldwide effort!

Ormondale International Bike/Walk Event - Wednesday, October 9th
Corte Madera International Bike/Walk Event - Friday, October 11th

Remember: treats and stickers for all Ormondale participants, and treats and spirit points for all Corte Madera participants.

Golden Sneaker Program for K-3 and 4-5
Students bike, scooter, walk, or ride the bus to school for two weeks - every day!
Begins Monday October 7th for all K-3 and 4-5 classes.  Record daily participation with homeroom teachers. Prizes for all students who participate every day. Prizes for the winning classroom in each grade. Be the class with the most participation over the two week period!
8th Annual Turkey Trot is Coming
1K and 5K Run/Walk
Saturday, November 16th, 8-11 am
Running Turkey

It's time to start training and preparing your athletes for the big race! This year's Turkey Trot will be held on Saturday, November 16th. Kids love this event! Parents and siblings can run too. The Turkey Trot is a family event for our community that promotes health and introduces children to athletic competition in a friendly spirit.


Every year, four students (one from each grade K-3) have their artwork featured on the annual Turkey Trot T-shirt.  Students will be bringing home a form for the Turkey Trot Artwork Contest in their homework packages.  Winning artists will also receive a $25 gift certificate to Kepler's Books in Menlo Park. Please submit artwork to the Turkey Trot box in the Ormondale school office by Tuesday, October 15th. (Note: Children may also submit their artwork on a 8 1/2 x 11 piece of white paper.  Please include their name, grade and teacher's name on the back).


Kari Rust is heading up our lunchtime training program. This will begin the week 

of October 14th and will be held on Tuesdays and Fridays during recess.  Kari will have the children train by running laps around the playground field. Children will record their laps on cards to track their progress.


Stay tuned for instructions on how to register for this event.  Contact Karen Urbanek ([email protected]) or Aimee Armsby ([email protected]) with event questions or Kari Rust ([email protected]) with lunchtime training questions.

eScrip and Amazon.com Shopping Program
Each year the Portola Valley Schools Foundation pays for classroom supplies for every student in the district using funds raised through the eScrip and Amazon.com programs.  All you need to do to help is to go to www.escrip.com and register your credit cards and Safeway Club Card (if you have one).  Please make sure to direct donations to the Portola Valley Schools Foundation.  
Your direct purchases at Amazon.com also support our programs, teachers, and children.  You simply go through the  pvschoolsfoundation.org link to Amazon, sign in with your own account, and shop!  Portola Valley Schools Foundation will receive a minimum of 4% of every purchase made through this method and, aside from the extra click, you should see no difference in your shopping experience.

Ormondale Home
Ormondale Principal's Message: Kevin's Corner

Dear Families,


Thank you for an amazing turnout at our Nature Science Investigation Day and our Telescope Celebration.  Both events were exciting and engaging for our students, staff and families.  This week we will begin our Parent-Teacher Conferences.  The conferences are a great way to address the individual needs of your child, set goals and get ready for a successful year!  In honor of Parent-Teacher Conference Week, Mr. Tod Patterson, our school counselor, has written a little parenting corner for the Weekly Post.  I practiced all three over the weekend with my children.  Sometimes, in this busy life, a reminder like this is just what we need!


Parenting Corner

It's easier to increase positive behavior than to decrease negative behavior.  Sometimes motivating children can be challenging at best.  I have found a few helpful ways to do this.

  1. Positive Strokes--When we see our children doing a desired behavior it's important to let them know.  For example, "I like how you finished your homework when you got home."  Children are likely to repeat that desired behavior again when they receive positive praise.  It also motivates them to want to work harder.  Just think about how you feel when your boss compliments your work. 
  2. "I love you" statements--In this busy world, we sometimes forget to stop and let our children know how much we love them.  "I love you" statements might sound corny, but they really have a positive impact on children.  When children know they are loved they have a tendency to make better choices.  
  3. Positive Consequences--A positive consequence happens after a child completes a desired behavior.  For example, your child wants to ride his or her bike and you want their room cleaned up. You can say,  "As soon as you clean your room, you can ride your bike."

These simple techniques can create a powerful change in your child.  Throughout the year, we will provide additional tips and information that can help serve you as a parent.


Foreign Language @ Ormondale           

Through the start of the year, we have had the opportunity to review foreign language at Ormondale.  It is something that we will continue to do in the coming months and years as we thoroughly review our world language across the  Portola Valley School District.  In order to fill the need for a foreign language at Ormondale, ABC Language will be able to offer Spanish and Mandarin in an after-school fee-based class.  Please see the information in this Weekly Post about how to sign up. 


Book Fair

We have a very exciting Book Fair from September 30th to October 4th.  We encourage you to purchase great books for your children, while you support the Ormondale Library. Our first ever Family Night at the Oasis on Tuesday, October 1st from 5:00 to 7:00 pm will give all families a chance to eat and shop!


If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please contact me at [email protected] or 650-851-1777.




Kevin F. Keegan     

Ormondale Spirit Wear for Sale!


ABC Language at Ormondale
Dear Ormondale Parents,

ABC Language will be available again as an after-school opportunity at Ormondale. Spanish and Mandarin Chinese language programs will be offered.

CONTENT: Conversational language skills taught through games, play, music and interactive conversation.
SCHEDULE CHOICES:  Mondays, Tuesdays, or Thursdays from 3-4pm
START/END DATES:  Start date week of Oct 21st, 2013, and ending the week of June 9th, 2014
GRADES/LEVELS: K-3, total beginner Level I, and mid-beginner Level II (those who studied last school year or who have a background in the language)
TEACHING METHODS: ABC Languages is a multi-method school with teachers who  draw from a variety linguistic approaches. ABC teachers need to have a minimum of 2 years teaching experience before they interview with ABC. They then hire teachers literate in a multi-method approach for teaching to "multiple intelligences". ABC tends to favor teachers who like to use a "communicative approach" to teaching, who use "Total Physical Response", and who maintain a "student centered classroom". That is to just name a few of the approaches ABC favors. What this all means is the teacher will be speaking mostly in the target language, the focus will be on attaining real-life practical skills. Fun also is an important component to capture and maintain your child's interest in learning.
HOW TO ENROLL YOUR CHILD:  Click on this link below and fill in your and your child's information: http://www.abclanguagesf.com/peninsula/portolavalley.htm
QUESTIONS?:  Please contact ABC Languages at [email protected]  or 650-204-7908
The Scholastic Book Fair is Here!!


Ormondale's MUR has been transformed into a "reading oasis" full of exciting titles for kids of all ages.  Adults will find the latest best sellers, cookbooks, and sections dedicated to "The Common Core" and specific lexile levels.  Remember that this event is the sole fundraising source for our library - so while you stock your bookshelf at home you are ensuring our students have the latest and greatest titles at school too!!

The fair will be open before, during, and after school this whole week.  In addition we have two special events planned, so mark your calendars!!
TUESDAY, 10/1 FROM 5-7 pm -- Family Night at Ormondale's Reading Oasis!  No need to make dinner - bring your picnic blankets and purchase dinner and dessert from two amazing food trucks: Cheese Gone Wild and Angel heart Cakes!  Eat, shop the book fair, and enjoy special story times with Mr. Keegan and Dr. Gonzales!
FRIDAY, 10/4 FROM 7:30-8:15 am Dad's Breakfast at the Fair!  Dads (or moms), bring your kids to school early, grab a bite to eat and hit the book fair for one last shopping spree before it closes.  This annual event is always popular with the kids so make sure you put this in your calendar now!
Questions?  Email book fair co-chairs Julie Dyson ([email protected]) or Sarah Byrne ([email protected]).
Mon Sept 30 - Fair open 7:45 am - 4:00 pm
Tues Oct 1 - Fair open 7:45 am - 1:00 pm,  Family Fun at the Oasis.  Food trucks and story time, 5:00 pm  - 7:00 pm
Wed Oct 2 - Fair open 7:45 am -1:00 pm
Thurs Oct 3 - Fair open 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
Fri Oct 4 - Dad's breakfast 7:30 am - 8:15 am, Fair open 7:30 am-12:30 pm

Corte Madera Home
CMS Principal: Michael's Message 

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Expanding to 4th and 5th Grades

Recently, our BYOD program kicked off in grades 6-8 and we are now prepared to open it up to the 4th and 5th grades as well. 4th and 5th grade parents will receive information this week about the BYOD program including use agreement information, minimum specifications for devices and FAQ's. BYOD has been a successful program for those students who have wished to participate. Please know it is an optional program for any student who wishes to participate.


Michael Corritone


SART Pastels on the Quad Fundraiser

Sunday October 20th, 10:00 to 4:00 pm


Donors and volunteer artists will use chalk pastels to draw on the concrete retaining wall in the 6-8 CMS picnic area. Donors can draw their own square or they may choose to allow a volunteer artist to draw.  Any artist may participate, regardless of donation, in the spirit of community. The art will beautify campus until the rains wash it away. Wildlife themed drawings will done in chalk pastels directly on the concrete. 


Suggested Donations:

$100 for a  1 x 1 meter square

$50  for a half meter square

$25 for a quarter meter square




The purpose of this fundraiser is to provide an enriching Science & Art program (SART).

Investments in SART cover animal related expenses as well biological, environmental, engineering, and art projects. The club provides time to continue the work being done during classes as well as begin new projects.



Community Calendar and Events
Portola Valley Library Program

In honor of National Bullying Prevention Month, the Parents Place will be presenting a workshop on Monday, October 7 @ 7 PM on Digital Middle School Kids: Understanding the Connected Culture of Tweens and TeensThis workshop is for parents, and describes how youth use social networks, online games and other forms of digital media, and how parents can ensure their kids are using media responsibly and safely. 


The Portola Valley Library is located at 765 Portola Rd at Town Center.  You can contact us at 650.851.0560 or [email protected].  Like us on Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/portolavalleylibrary

Join 4H!

Our club is about helping young people discover their potential and grow into competent, contributing, and caring citizens. Learn-by-doing activities in raising animals, cooking, archery and more; help kids enhance their leadership abilities and develop a wide range of life skills.  Come to our New Family Open House on Thursday, October 10 at 6:30pm at Messiah Lutheran Church, 1835 Valota St. (at Woodside Road) in Redwood City.  Contact Kathie  Holmes at 650 299-1541. 

"Halloween Heroes" Costume Drive - Helping Homeless Families

The Portola Valley Cub Scouts and Brownies are joining together to help make Halloween fun for local families in need.  We'll be collecting new and gently-used costumes in all sizes during the week of September 30th.  The scouts will collect costumes for donation to the InnVision Shelter Network (IVSN).  Please dig through your closets and old boxes to support your community by donating a costume.  If you prefer to donate cash, we will purchase costumes to make sure we have a wide range of sizes.  Donations will be collected at Ormonale drop off this Wednesday through Friday (October 2-4) and at Corte Madera drop off on Thursday and Friday (October 3-4).  Also look for collection boxes at the Ormondale Book Fair.  For more information, please contact Rich Zamboldi at [email protected] or Kristi Travers at [email protected]. 

Woodside Pumpkin Festival

Sunday October 20th and  Saturday & Sunday October 26th & 27th


The 1st Annual Woodside Pumpkin Festival guarantees fun for the whole family. Come and pick your pumpkins and enjoy the activities at the Mounted Patrol on Kings Mountain Road in Woodside. There will be a large selection of pumpkins to choose from starting at $5 and activities for the kids. Explore the Haunted House, the Petting Zoo, the Bouncy House and ride the Ponies and the Mechanical Bull.  The Pumpkin Festival Contest results for children ages 5-14 will be announced on Sunday October 20th. Please see the attachment for the contest rules. A portion of the proceeds will benefit local schools and horse organizations. Proudly hosted by the Mounted Patrol of San Mateo County located at 521 Kings Mountain Road in Woodside. See you there!

Day of the Horse at Woodside

On Saturday, October 12th, Woodside will hold its 9th annual Day of the Horse at Town Hall from 10:00 am -2:30 pm.  Ride the stage coach, learn about horses, riding programs and how you can get back into the saddle!  Pony rides, petting zoo, horseshoe decorating, carrot cake social, and lots more!  Admission and activities are free.  For more info, visit www.whoa94062.org.

Toddler Caterpillar Class at Carillon Preschool

Carillon preschool and Christ Church are thrilled to announce the formation of a new toddler caterpillar class for ages 1.5-2.9 mos. This class will meet on Friday mornings from 9-10:50 am and is headed by Mindy Lieberman, a dynamic toddler and parent educator who has many years of experiences teaching similar classes. Mindy and Assistant teacher Janette look forward to welcoming you and your child to spend Friday mornings together in our Parish Hall. Parents or caregivers and children will explore art, indoor and outdoor activities, manipulatives, music and story time. There will be an informal discussion for parents or caregivers once the children become ready for separation.


If you would like to enroll please contact Director Kay Erikson no later than October 1st. Space is limited. Please Don't hesitate to call or email if you have any questions.

Kay Erikson
Director Carillon Preschool
(650) 529-1335

Redwood National Junior Basketball Sign-ups Are Open

Redwood National Junior Basketball (NJB) Sign-ups Are Open - Sign up your son or daughter now.


NJB Winter Basketball registration is now open at  www.redwoodnjb.org.  Our focus is on skills-based instruction, personal growth, and positive competition for kids from 1st through 8th grades in MP, Atherton, PV, Woodside, or EPA.  The season runs from November through February. Deadline for early registration with reduced fees is 9/27!

Camp Menlo Holiday Camps
Add a little zip to your school holidays with fun Camp Menlo Swim and Tennis camps! Starting October 14, these one-day camps offered through the end of December offer 45-minute group swim lessons, plus fun land games and crafts. Register today, space is limited! http://www.menloswim.com/menlo/camp_menlo/holiday_camps.html  
Menlo Tennis Academy
Come join the fun on the courts at Burgess Park with Menlo Swim and Sports' Tennis Academy, a beginning program for kids age 6-10 based on the dynamic US Tennis Association 10/Under program, designed to build a foundation of essential skills important to the development of youth tennis players. Novice and advanced novice levels available; lessons Monday and Wednesday afternoons. More information www.menlotennisacademy.com.