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Weekly Post
November 18, 2013
Superintendent's Message

Our new Strategic Plan included a strategic direction to "foster a respectful and collaborative culture." Within that focus area, the plan further explained that "our staff, parents and larger community will embrace and model shared expectations."

In order to do this successfully, we have to identify those behaviors that we see as exemplifying the Portola Valley Way. The behaviors we identify as our "expectations" could be called norms, values, or even behaviors. We've decided to call them "expectations". They are a set of guideposts that should help us all work together in a positive and productive way for the betterment of PVSD. These expectations will be reinforced district-wide, and focused on in classrooms and our greater school community.


We are requesting your feedback in the shaping of the expectations. The Expectations Team has worked in recent weeks to design high level areas for our district. We'd like your feedback on:


"The Portola Valley Way:
Collaboration, Integrity, Respect"


Please respond to the expectations survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/pvsdexpectations by Tuesday, November 26th at noon. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes. We appreciate your help. We anticipate the expectations to be shared with the Governing Board on December 11th.


A special thanks to those staff members and parents who stepped forward to help design the expectations when we asked for volunteers (Julie Flynn, William Frederick, Elizabeth King-Johnson, Jenny Lebsack, Adam Albach, Karen Tate, Susan McLaughlin, and Aimee Armsby).


In an attempt to look at our communication in the district and focus on our messaging, the Superintendent and the Principal columns will begin to alternate weeks. Starting next week, the Superintendent will have a column, and the following week the Principals will have a column. We'll continue this rotation until we complete a communications analysis of the district's messaging. You'll see some new ideas popping up, and we'll communicate along the way what we feel are more effective methods of sharing information with our school community.

Lisa Marie Gonzales, Ed.D.
Portola Valley School District
In This Issue
Article Headline
Second Harvest Food Bank
PVSF and minted.com
PVSF and S.Silver
eScrip and Amazon.com
ORM Principal's Message
ORM Spring Musical
ORM Winter Concert
CMS Principal's Message
CMS Math
CMS Yearbook
CMS Panache
Reusable Bags Sale
Community Section
This Week's Calendar
Ormondale * Corte Madera * District
Mon, November 18 (B)  
Tue, November 19 (A) 
ORM Kindergarten Field Trip Shasta Produce Market 8:30am
PVSF Board Meeting 7pm, Annex
Wed, November 20 (B) 
ORM Kindergarten Field Trip Shasta Produce Market 8:30am

ORM PRIDE Assembly 11:35pm 
Thu, November 21 (A)  
 CMS 5th Graders to Chabot
Fri, November 22 (B)
   CMS 5th Graders to Chabot 
ORM 1st Grade Thanksgiving Feast 11:30am

ORM Kindergarten Friendship Soup Lunch 11:30am
Weekly Post Reminders: 
To submit an article to the Weekly Post, please send it to weeklypost@pvsd.net.  Deadline is Thursday at noon.  See the PVSD website for more information

Years Of Service Sponsored by the PV-PTO
On November 15th, the PTO hosted the Years of Service ceremony that honors teachers and staff who have celebrated 10 or 20 years with our District.  
A big thank you to Elise Gabrielson and Lisa Bair for chairing this event.  Thank you to Jennifer Youstra and Renee Courington for helping with the wonderful hospitality goodies and Tiffany Hong for helping with the beautiful flowers. Thank you to Emily Marwedel for helping with the technology set-up.  This years event was hosted at the Town Center and included presentations for the following recipients:

20 Years
Dan Flahavan

10 Years
Brigetta Brown
Kate Cox
Treena Joi Diehl
Julie Flynn
Kathy Hoskin
Jeff Mead
Daniela Senties

Honorees not in attendance were:  Denise Falzone (20 year), John Davenport, Anne Gronet and Denise Schectman (10 year).
Second Havest Food Bank Collection at ORM and CMS

Portola Valley Schools are partnering with Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties to bring hope, relief and security to our neighbors struggling with hunger.  From Monday, November 18 to Friday, November 22, our Food and Fund Drive will help the Food Bank meet more of the growing need in our community.Your support allows Second Harvest to continue to provide for the 1 in 10 people in Santa Clara and San Mateo County they're serving each month.  


Here's how to help:



Drop off non-perishable food donations in barrels located outside of Ormondale's and Corte Madera's school office.  

Please consider these most needed foods and avoid donating items packaged in glass:

 Meals in a can (stew, chili, soup)  100% Fruit Juices     Tuna/Canned Meat
 Peanut Butter                            Low Sugar Cereals   Canned Fruits and Vegetables

Visit our Online Food Drive at shfb.org/donate to donate directly to Portola Valley Schools' drive. As one of the most efficient nonprofit organizations in the nation, Second Harvest turns every $1 into 2 nutritious meals!

Your support helps connect hungry children, families, and seniors to nutritious food in the neighborhoods where they live, learn, work, and play. 

Thank you for your active participation!

PVSF Partners with minted.com
Order paper goods from minted.com to earn cash back to PVSF!


The Portola Valley Schools Foundation is proud to announce a new partnership with minted.com, the online design store specializing in holiday photo cards.  This is an easy way to do great things for our schools!


Where do you come in?

When you're getting ready to order your next batch of beautiful paper goods start at our storefront, www.pvschoolsfoundation.minted.com. With each sale from our storefront, the PVSF earns 10% cashback.


What about after the Holidays?

We know the holidays are going to rush by us all again, so Minted will be keeping the storefront open year-round. Use this offer for anything: Birthday Cards, Barbecue Invites, and you'll also be donating to our schools.


We're excited, and we hope you are too.  Check out our Minted Storefront here www.pvschoolsfoundation.minted.com to see all the possibilities!

PVSF Partnership with Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry

Patronize Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry and support our schools!





The PVSF has partnered with Special Patron to the District, Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry, to benefit our schools. There are two ways you can participate:


  • Make your jewelry purchases at Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry and 10% of the purchase price will be donated back to the Foundation.
  • Sell your precious metals, diamonds, colored gemstones and watches to Stephen Silver and 10% of the total sale will be donated back to the Foundation.


You private appointment will be at the Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry Salon: 2055 Woodside Road, Suite 200, Redwood City, CA 94061   650-325-9500


For additional information, please contact Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry at 650-325-9500 or info@shsilver.com.

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

Dear Families,


At Ormondale we focus on one life skill each month. A few ways that we teach to the life skills are through teacher led lessons, counselor led lessons, appropriate literature and PRIDE assemblies. Thank you to Mr. Patterson for providing some valuable information on our life skill for November, gratitude.


As the holiday season quickly approaches, we at Ormondale are focusing on the life skill gratitude. Being thankful and appreciative towards people and things can have a positive impact on our children. Scientific research has shown that when we have a gracious and thankful attitude our overall sense of wellbeing increases. A UC Davis study revealed that participants who kept a weekly gratitude journal felt better about their lives, were more optimistic about the future, and had reported fewer health problems. Here are some suggestions that you can use to help foster a gracious attitude in your child.  


1. Keep a gratitude journal-Encourage your child to take note of the things they should be thankful for. Give them the option to either draw a picture or write a few sentences about things they appreciate in their life.  


2. Visual reminders (post-it's) It takes practice to keep thinking about all that we have. Hang up post-its around the house on refrigerators and mirrors or put them in lunches. Let your child know that you love them and are proud of them. Reminders will help us focus on what's important.


3. Encourage your child to write thank you notes. A handwritten thank you note allows your child to reflect on what they have and why they have it. It only takes a few minutes but makes a big difference.  


A wise person once said, "Feeling gratitude and not expressing is like wrapping a present and not giving it." Show your child the impact that having gratitude can have on their life. Below is a list of books that highlight gratitude:


The Pilgrims' First Thanksgiving

By Ann McGovern


Thanks a Million

By Nikki Grimes


The Giving Tree

By Shel Silverstein


Whatever Wanda Wanted

By Jude Wisdom


The Secret of Saying Thanks

By Douglas Wood


Mr. Patterson



If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please contact me at kkeegan@pvsd.net or 650-851-1777.




Kevin F. Keegan

Spring Musical at Ormondale
The students of Ormondale are planning to present a Spring Musical (in the tradition of HONK!, DEAR EDWINA, YOU'RE A GOOD MAN CHARLIE BROWN, AND THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH) on May 21, 2014.  We are in need of a Stage Manager and Stage Director to work with Mr. White, the Musical Director. Plans are to produce THE ADVENTURES OF FLAT STANLEY, giving every student at Ormondale an opportunity to participate. The Spring Musical is a great end of the year activity for the Ormondale Community.  Please contact Mr. White, if you are interested in serving in this capacity.
Ormondale Winter Concert 
The Ormondale Winter Concert will be December 18, 2013 at 8:30 AM in the Ormondale MUR.  Please come and support our students.
The program will be draw from the following:


"My Dredyl"  Grossman-Goldfarb

"Suzy Snowflake"  Tepper-Bennett

"We Wish You A Merry Christmas"  Traditional

"Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"  Marks

"Must Be Santa"  Moore-Fredericks

Sing Along :   "Jingle Bells"  


First Grade

"Joyous Chanukah"  Hebrew Folk Song

"Jingle Bell Rock"  Beal-Boothe

"Santa Claus Is Coming To Town"  Coots

"Marshmallow World"  De Rose

"Frosty the Snowman"  Nelson-Rollins

Sing Along:  "O Hanukah" 


Second Grade

"Chanukah Is Here"  Eisenstein-Prensky

"Ner Li"  Tarbuth

"It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas"  Wilson

"Winter Wonderland"  Bernard

"Silver Bells"  Livingston-Evans

"Mele Kalikimaka"  Anderson

Sing Along:  "Deck the Halls" 


Third Grade

"Chanukah Games" Berman

"Hanuka, Hanuka" Jagoda

"Let It Snow, Let It Snow" Styne

"White Christmas" Berlin

"Rockin'Around the Christmas Tree"  Marks

"The Christmas Song"  Torme

Sing Along: "Auld Lang Syne"  

Corte Madera Home
CMS Principal's Message

Conference Week Follow Up and....


Thank you to all of our staff, parents and students for their participation in our conference weeks. School-home partnership is critical for the success of our students so please let your student's teachers know if you have any questions or concerns about growth and progress during the remainder of the school year.


Also, just a quick bit of information for 4th and 5th grade parents. We have a new common core standards based report card that will be rolled out in January. Teachers and administration spent about one year creating this new report card that will communicate student progress in relation to the common core standards. I look forward to sharing more specific information with you later in the fall.


Reminder: 8th Grade Trip to Washington, DC from June 1st - 6th, 2014 is a Go!


Specific information about the 8th grade field trip to Washington, DC was sent home with students and emailed to parents a couple of weeks ago. Payment forms are past due so please make sure to return your student's interest form to the front office (even if they are not going on the trip) so we can have accurate numbers for planning. Feel free to contact Mr. Corritone, Susan Strehlow, Angie Schillace or Dave Kastanis with any questions.


Michael Corritone


CMS Math Opportunities

Dear Parents:


The CMS Math Department wanted to let you know about some of the upcoming opportunities available for your students inside and outside of the classroom.


Math Competitions:

All middle school students will be participating in either the American Mathematics Competition 8 (November 19th) or the Continental Math League Competition (5 days between November and March). This will be part of their regular math class. 


Julia Robinson Math Festival

November 23, 2013

9:00 am- Noon

San Mateo County Office of Education


CMS students have participated in this math festival over the last four or five years and have really enjoyed themselves! The festival introduces children to the beauty of mathematics by providing interesting, inspiring, engaging, and though provoking problems. The festival is named after the late Julia Robinson, a Math Professor from UC Berkeley who is best known for her solution to Hilbert's 10th problem.

To Register: http://juliarobinsonmathfestival.org/register.php.  This program is not part of the regular math class, so students interested should register themselves. 


Hour of Code

Some of our students will be participating in an hour of code campaign next month. The initiative is to introduce children of all ages to computer programing during Computer Science education week, 9 - 15 December. For more information: http://code.org/hourofcode  This will be part of their regular math class. 



The CMS Math Dept.

Don't Forget Your Yearbook!
Still haven't ordered your 2013-2014 CMS Yearbook? Time is running out, so don't miss the chance to capture all the great moments of this school year.

Yearbooks are only $50 and a great reminder of your student's formative years at CMS. Students and parents will enjoy looking back on all the different events and activities of their year, the fun messages from peers, and seeing how much everyone has grown!

Orders must be received no later than December 13th, so reserve your copy today! Forms are available in the CMS front office. If you have any questions, please contact Tim Sato (tsato@pvsd.net).
Panache at the PV Farmers' Market
November 21 @ 3:45 pm - Panache 7 & 8 Sing at the Farmers' Market

On Thursday, November 21st at 3:45 p.m., Corte Madera's 7th and 8th graders - the Panache 7 & 8 - will sing at the Portola Valley Farmers' Market led by teacher, Juliet Green. The Farmers' Market will also be hosting a Holiday Food Drive. Bring your donations to the market between 2:00 and 5:00 pm on November 21st. Donations will be delivered by town volunteers to Innvision Shelter Network: Haven Family House in Menlo Park. For more info, please visit:  http://portolavalley.net/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=5917
Reusable Bags to Support 4/5 Learning Service Project
Ready to do some guilt-free shopping for a great cause? We need your help! Mixed Bag Designs is helping CMS 4th and 5th grade classes with our Service Learning Project -- to support four street children in Afghanistan via Trust In Education.

Anyone can support us - all they have to do is shop online at www.mixedbagdesigns.com and use our ID#250566 and 40% of the purchase price will be donated to Trust In Education!  Help us keep our four sponsored Afghani students off the street and in school for another year.

Mixed Bag Designs has tons of products for everyone in the family including reusable grocery bags, travel totes, shopping bags and more! With the recent county wide ban on plastic bags, this is the perfect time to get stylish bags for holiday gifts AND some for your self too.


Go to the www.mixedbagdesigns.com and start shopping! Every purchase helps us! Forward this email on to your friends and family too, we need all the help we can get and the more the merrier!


Want to have a full color catalog delivered to you? Email Renee Courington and we will drop one off.


Thank you!  


4th and 5th grade Students of Ms. Fox/Ms. Rhodes/Ms. Gronet

Community Calendar and Events
Help Support the Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA
From November 18th-26th, the second grade High Fives are collecting the following gently-used items for the animals at the Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA:
  • Clean towels and blankets
  • Tennis, golf and ping-pong balls
  • Large shoe boxes
  • Heavy plastic toy keys and shower curtain rings
  • Newspapers and empty tissue boxes
Please leave any donations in the box in front of Ormondale starting November 18th.
For more information, please contact Heather Prelle at heather.prelle@gmail.com.
Christmas Holiday Youth Basketball Camp 

5th Annual Christmas Holiday Youth Basketball Camp

Hosted By Coach David Moseley & Coach Mal Thurston of

Woodside Priory School


Camp Runs Saturday December 21st - Tuesday December 24th


RSVP your child(ren) w/ email addressed to Register@FutureStarsHoop.com

Email should include: Name, Age, & Gender of child(ren)


Dates : December 21st - 24th, 2013

Time : 9:00am - 3:00pm (December 24th: 9:00am - 12 noon)

Ages: 6 - 13


Woodside Priory School

302 Portola Road

Portola Valley, Ca 94028


Pizza, drinks and snacks available for purchase at our snack bar OR you can bring your own lunch.


Please Contact us with Questions or for More Information: Info@FutureStarsHoop.com


!! Just $275 for 21 hours of fun and expert instruction!!

*Discount available for siblings and/or referrals*

Bulldog Youth Flag Football Comes to Ormondale!
1st, 2nd, 3rd grades co-ed

Thursdays: 3:00pm to 4:00pm

No scores! No Stats! JUST FUN!


Winter Session:

Jan 9th-March 7th 2014

10 classes $250 (includes team shirt!)

Kids will be mixed and placed in age appropriate groups.


Register here:


Kindergarten Basketball Clinics
ABA offers kindergarten basketball clinics for boys and girls. Due to the increased interest, the league is going to offer two sessions with each clinic having a limit of 10 players.  


All kinder clinics meet at the day of clinic (Tuesday or Thursday)
 3:15 to 4:00pm
Location: Ormondale Gym
Coach: Johnny Trudelle and assistant


Tuesday Session #1To register, please click here.
 Tuesdays, January 7th through February 11th, 2014

Thursday Session #1To register, please click here.
 Thursdays, January 9th through February 13th, 2014

Tuesday Session #2To register, please click here.
 Tuesdays, February 24th  through April  1st,, 2014

Thursday Session #2To register, please click here.
 Thursdays, February 26th  through April  3rd , 2014

Registration Deadline is November 30th, 2013


To register, please go here: http://www.ababasketball.sites.teamsnap.com/

ABA Basketball Registration 

The Alpine Basketball Association (ABA) a recreational league for boys and girls grades 1-5 opens online registration at www.ababasketball.sites.teamsnap.com. All children in grades 1-5 who are residents of and/or go to school in Portola Valley or Woodside are eligible. Games are on Sat and will begin in January and be completed by the end of March.  The registration will be complete once payment has been received. Those interested in playing should complete the registration process and return a check by mail to the Alpine Basketball Association at the address on the registration site and form or to labeled boxes in the school offices before Nov. 30, 2013.


A copy of the form is attached for those who prefer not to use the online registration process.

Twas the Night Before Christmas - with ORM and CMS Dancers

Presented by Dancers Repertory Theatre and Menlo Park Academy of Dance- a "charming alternative to the Nutcracker."  


Performances at Woodside Performing Arts Center on Saturday December 7 (4 pm), Sunday December 8 (1 pm and 4 pm) Saturday, December 14, (1 pm and 4 pm), and Sunday, December 15 (1 pm and 4 pm). Tickets available at www.twasthenight.org or by calling 650-323-5292.  


Portola Valley's own young dancers: Catie B., Kiana C., Ilaria F., Tess G., Danielle G., Vivienne G., Lola P., Anna S., Cleo S., & Brisa V. Come, cheer them on and join in the holiday cheer at the same time!

Shakespeare's Macbeth at Woodside Priory School

Shakespeare's MACBETH comes alive in a thrilling, engaging, unique way in this exciting production.  


Styled as an homage to the greatest Science Fiction movies and TV shows of all time, Shakespeare's brilliant language is there in its entirety, but set in a far future where the fate of the Galaxy hinges on the play's outcome. 


Light-swords, aliens, futuristic robots and starships make Shakespeare's greatest tragedy accessible to many new audience members, while a strong focus on the characters, language and the driving heart of the play make real one of the darkest and most epic tales ever to grace the stage.


Do not miss this exciting production of Shakespeare's MACBETH. Appropriate for all ages.


Tickets are $5 for Students/$15 for Adults and can be purchased at the Door or online at http://priory.ticketleap.com/macbeth/  

November 21st-23rd @ 7:00 pm

November 24th @ 2:00 pm 

Woodside Priory School - Rothrock Performance Hall, 302 Portola Road, Portola Valley

Ballet America's Nutcracker December 6 and 8

Come see the Bay Area's most family-friendly Nutcracker performance at the historic Fox Theater in Redwood City on Friday, December 6th at 7:00pm and Sunday, December 8th at 2:00pm. Ballet America 's show has it all: professional dancers, alongside 100 local performers, including Corte Madera's very own Philip M. and graduate Anna K., and PV resident and high school senior, Chloe M. Tickets range in price from $18-$39 and are available via the website: www.balletamerica.org. Get your tickets early before they sell out. See you at the ballet! 

PVTC New Original Work: Persephone
PVTC presents a new original work
Persephone: an enchanting new play with music
Opens Thurs., Nov. 7 and runs through Sat., Nov. 23
Evening performances are at 7:30 P.M. 
Matinee performances are at 2:00 P.M.
Special premium ticket available Sat., Nov. 9 that includes dinner and wine at Parkside Grille
This delightful play is inspired by the ancient Greek myth and tells its story through theatre, dance, poetry, and puppetry, as well as new music that includes jazz, bluegrass and hip hop. Love, loss, and reconciliation are the main themes as Persephone struggles to resolve being caught between two worlds. The circle of her life not only includes the seasons of the year but also the seasons of her own flowering.
Ticket information: www.pvtc-ca.org 
 or 650-851-8282 ext.105
Suitable for adults and students in Grade 4 and up 
Portola Valley Theatre Conservatory
945 Portola Rd.
Portola Valley CA 94028
SmartFit Kids at Menlo Swim and Sport
Acclaimed for coaching excellence, Menlo Swim and Sport's SmartFit Kids is an after-school homework and tutoring program that provides academic coaching and homework oversight for students from 1st - 5th grades. Open Monday - Thursday, 3:30-5:30pm. Visit our website for more details http://www.menloswim.com/menlo/camp_menlo/smartfitkids.html 
Menlo Mavericks Swim and Water Polo Team 
Now accepting new members for this year-round Menlo Park swim and water polo team! USA Swimming certified swim team for youth age 5-18, plus Water Polo for boys and girls, 14 and under. Practices at Burgess and Belle Haven Pools.  www.menlomavericks.com 
Reading Volunteers Needed for East Palto Alto 3rd Graders - 1 Hour per Week
All Students Matter needs parent volunteers for a structured reading program called Reading Scholars at Brentwood Academy in East Palo Alto (behind Home Depot). Volunteers help 3rd graders who are reading below grade level. For one hour a week you will meet with the same child and read books together. We will provide the training, supplies and coordinate the time. You'll see specific changes in your student's reading over time and enjoy getting to know an enthusiastic and motivated student. Have questions or want to sign up?  Contact Jeanette Kennedy or Carolyn BlatmanTo learn more about our volunteer group, visit www.allstudentsmatter.org.
Golden State Warriors Basketball Camp During Winter Break
The Golden State Warriors will be conducting a basketball camp in Los Altos Hills this Winter.  A four-day session at Foothill College for boys and girls, ages 7-15, will be conducted December 30 - January 3 (No camp on New Year's Day). 
In addition to high quality instruction, all campers receive a reversible Warriors jersey, headband, player evaluation, certificate, two (2) tickets to a Golden State Warriors 2013-2014 home game and more! For more information, please call (510) 986-5310 or go to warriors.com/camps.  Online registration is available. For flyer and registration form, click here.