May 2009

From the Superintendent

Happy May Day!

As we begin the month of May we certainly find ourselves in an “interesting” period of time. The combination of a possible pandemic, the conclusion of a local parcel tax election, and the continuing uncertainty about the state budget has generated some anxiety as we also work to complete the school year in a productive way for all of our students.

The H1N1 (swine) flu emerged as a major focus for staff and parents over the last few days. The good news is that, so far we have not had a confirmed case in our schools and also, that the threat of this illness has forced us to revisit all of emergency procedures related to external and internal communication. All schools have communication systems in place to inform parents, and the district office will continue to update parents and media about the status of the virus in our school district. I personally suspect that should the H1N1 virus continue to spread we may face some confirmed cases, but we feel confident that we can respond effectively and quickly communicate information as directed by the County Department of Health.

After what seems like a very long time I am pleased that we will soon know the results of the Measure C election. Regardless of the result, this ballot measure has generated significant conversation about the role that public education plays in the community. I am very appreciative of the hundreds of community members and staff members, as well as those elected leaders who chose to spend time on this important measure. This election has created an excellent opportunity for parents and community members to reflect on what the district has accomplished during the period of the expiring parcel tax, and what challenges and opportunities await us in the years ahead.

What will undoubtedly be frustrating to many is that even after we know the results of Measure C, the Board of Education will most likely not be able to take immediate budget action because so much uncertainly still exists with the state budget. The state of California has already announced that it has an 8 billion dollar deficit, and we are told that it could double depending on the outcome of the May 19th ballot measures.  Given this information, the Board most likely will not be able to take any action until after May 19th.

Despite these "interesting" times, our staff continues to provide high quality education and support for the students we are honored to serve.

Thank you for reading and for your continuing support of our schools. Have a good month of May.

 

Sincerely,

 

Steven Enoch
Superintendent of Schools

 

 

Swine Flu precautions

The school district continues to carefully monitor the swine flu situation. As of this writing, there are no confirmed cases of the H1N1 (swine) flu virus at any of our schools. Please visit the district's website at www.srvusd.net for more information and updates. We will continue to keep our community informed if and when information changes. Also, for more information regarding precautions, visit the following:

 

Community Bike Rodeo - Admission is Free; Bring Your Bike!

Wednesday, May 13th
4:00-7:00 PM
Iron Horse Middle School
12701 Alcosta Blvd., San Ramon

  • BMX and Skateboarding Demonstrations
  • Obstacle Course provided by the San Ramon and Danville Police
  • Bike Helmet Safety Check
  • Bike Inspection and Safety Check
  • Learn How to Repair a Flat Tire
  • Bike Crime Prevention
  • Learn the Rules of the Road for Bike Riders
  • Basic First Aid Demonstrations
  • Food by Blue Sage Catering
  • Skateboard Inspections courtesy of Skate Works
  • PRIZES and DRAWINGS FOR ALL AGES
  • PRIZES FOR CLASSROOM WITH LARGEST ATTENDANCE
  • RAFFLE FOR HELMETS AND TWO BIKES!

Sponsored by: The San Ramon Valley Unified School District, City of San Ramon, Town of Danville, Streetsmarts, Boy Scouts of American, Dublin Cyclery and Valley Spokesman.

For more information - 925-973-2700 or www.SanRamon.ca.gov

 

3 SRVUSD Teams Advance to Top "Odyssey" Competition

One elementary and two high school teams to participate in Odyssey of the Mind World Finals.


Three teams from schools in the San Ramon Valley Unified School District qualified to compete in the “Odyssey of the Mind” World Tournament May 27-30 at Iowa State University.  They earned that honor by placing in the top two teams in their problems and divisions at the California State Odyssey of the Mind Tournament, held April 4 in Brentwood.   Over two hundred teams performed at the state tournament, including thirteen San Ramon Valley teams that advanced from the San Francisco Bay Regional Tournament March 28. 

Rancho Romero Elementary School's Kyle Bartley, Connor Pollak, Jaime Chandler, Jillian Freeborn, Nick Rango and Sean Thomas created a humorous performance about a mythical creature that acted like a real mammal or bird and learned lessons.  The creature was taught two lessons by a Creature Teacher and "accidently" learned a behavior by observing others.  Parents Wendy Thomas and Judy Bartley coached the Rancho Romero team.

Both teams representing San Ramon Valley High School qualified for the OM World Tournament.   Andrew Raymond, Nathan Polanco, Trevor Okamoto, Emily Neary and Natalie Fong (who attends Monte Vista High School) designed and built a vehicle that traveled to four locations, changing appearance with each travel.  One time, the single vehicle had to appear as a group of vehicles.  Cheri Raymond and Donna Okamoto were the parent advisors for this team.

Ariana Weckstein, Mark Warwick, Rachel Mazer, Panayiota Kuvatakis, from SRVHS, with Jack Schramm and Jake Neustadt from Monte Vista, created and presented an original performance about the Greek hero, Heracles (better known as the Roman god, Hercules).  The performance included one of Heracles’ 12 labors and a team-created the thirteenth labor lost in history.  Karen Denevi served as the adult coach for this team.

Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college. Team members apply their creativity to solve problems that range from building mechanical devices to presenting their own interpretation of literary classics. They then bring their solutions to competition on the local, state, and World level. Thousands of teams from throughout the U.S. and from about 25 other countries participate in the program.

  • National website:  www.odysseyofthemind.com
  • S. F. Bay Region:  www.sfbayodysseyofthemind.org.

"Visions" High School Art Show

Featuring Student Sculptures, Drawings and Paintings from District High Schools.

When: May 5-29

Where: Museum of the San Ramon Valley, 250 Railroad Ave., Danville

Opening Reception: Tuesday, May 5th, 5-8PM

Museum Hours: Tuesday-Friday, 1-4PM, Saturday, 10AM-1PM (Closed Sunday/Monday)

 

Parent Education Corner

Go Green! (article from EPIC Healthy Choices newsletter)

Most of us are aware that energy use all around us needs to become more efficient…our cars need to be more fuel efficient, our homes also need to use energy and fuel more efficiently.  There is, however, one machine that deserves more attention than it is getting. That machine is YOU, your body, and yes, it needs the most efficient forms of fuel to power the brain, the skin, the heart, the muscles, the bones, the blood and so on…

Unfortunately, many Americans feed their bodies with very inefficient fuel (in other words unhealthy foods). Examples of unhealthy food include many  processed foods, everything from most breakfast cereals to beverages sold as ”sports drinks” laden with high-fructose corn syrup and sugar.  In his book “The World’s Healthiest Foods,” author George Mateljan points out that the United States is a prime example of a nation whose diet depends on nutrient-depleted foods. In our fast-food nation, this eating pattern is referred to by its ironic acronym  S.A.D., which stands for Standard American Diet. The health effects of the Standard American Diet are revealed most clearly in today’s almost epidemic statistics of childhood obesity and Type ll diabetes.  At least 30% of US children are overweight, having more than doubled in the last 25 years. Corresponding with this trend, childhood diabetes has increased 10-fold in the last 25 years. (Olshanky, et al., New England Journal of Medicine, 2005)

To access the entire article, click here.

Important Dates

  • June 7-10: Final Exam Week
  • June 8: Board of Education Meeting, 7PM, SRVUSD Education Center
  • June 10: Last Day of School (Minimum Day)
  • June 11: High School Graduation/Teacher Work Day
  • June 18: First Day of Summer School (check district website)
  • June 29: Board of Education Meeting, 7PM, SRVUSD Education Center
  • August 23: First Day of School for 2010-11
  • For more information, visit www.srvusd.net