January 13, 2016
Dear Loma and CT Families,
Thoughts From Tuesday Night
It is no secret that I am a basketball fan; college over the NBA. This season though, I am a huge fan of the 6th Grade Girls team at CT English. All our basketball teams face an incredible challenge to practice without a gym. We have no “home games” this season, no home court advantage. I am so impressed when I see the teams out on the blacktop, working hard, building the fundamentals. Now that the rains have begun and light is scarce in the afternoons, I see the three teams taking turns out on the court with the sunset often backlighting the coaches and team running their drills. I alternate between the tug of sadness that our gym is silent and finding inspiration from the kids and their mentors taking it in stride and pulling out a season with style and confidence.
This year’s 6th grade team epitomizes a part of what is so special about mountain kids and our mountain schools. It’s a small team and a young team. Only one player on the team has ever even played basketball before - and she got recruited from Loma’s 5th grade to “play up.” This team is all heart! Skills are under development. For me, it doesn’t get any better than that! Here is a group of kids who were willing to try something new and risk losing in public. They wanted to play, to have fun, to be with friends, to learn, and to represent their school. If not them, then who? Isn’t that part of what middle school should be about? It’s not all about winning, about being “the best,” about becoming champions - we’ve won those and they are great, don’t get me wrong. But seeing the kids proud of their improvement, bonding as a team, laughing and learning, that is the foundation of what school sports should embody.
I am so proud of their courage, their delight, and their can-do attitude. It’s contagious. Everyone is cheering for them! The 7th and 8th grade teams are encouraging and supportive. The parents, coaches, teachers, and the players themselves can see their improvement. They are so happy when they score. Small victories have a large impact. Our schools are fueled by small victories and big hearts. It’s part of what is so special about our middle school experience. Where else in Santa Clara County can a kid who has never played basketball “make” the team? Where else can they be a “starter” and learn the fundamentals on the run? Our competitors cut more students from their rosters than we even have go out for a sport. Our small schools should not be underestimated. CT teams often become the envy, and at times irritatingly successful teams, within the West Valley Athletic League. Our 7th and 8th grade teams are competitive with “the bigs” like Fisher, Union, and Dartmouth. Our 6th grade team may not win a lot of games this season, but they will earn the respect of many for their courage, hard work, and camaraderie. I am so proud of them for representing CT values and “the CT way.” Go Cheetahs!
Please Join Us
The Los Gatos Saratoga Union High School District Superintendent, Bob Mistele, will be joining us on campus Thursday, January 14th, at 4:00 PM in classroom #11 on the CT English campus. Mr. Mistele will introduce Los Gatos High School’s new principal, Kristi Grasty and present information about the renewal of the district’s parcel tax. The initial parcel tax was approved by voters in 2011 and is due to expire. It has been critical to reducing class sizes and hiring top quality teachers. Ms. Grasty has been a long time resident of Los Gatos; her children attend local schools; and she taught at LGHS prior to being named as the new Principal. Ms. Grasty will speak to her vision for the future of Los Gatos High School and the opportunities the staff is developing for your children. Both Mr. Mistele and Mrs. Grasty are allies of our schools and look forward to answering your questions. Parents of ALL children are encouraged to join us.
Save the Date – March 23rd
We are delighted to announce that best selling author, Julie Lythcott-Haims will be speaking at Loma/CT English on March 23rd. Julie is a dynamic speaker who articulately addresses many of the challenges we face as parents in her recent book How to Raise an Adult. As a parent and educator, I found her book personally compelling in its honesty and hopeful in its practicality. Please plan to join us on March 23rd. More details will be coming in the New Year.
You can visit her website at www.howtoraiseanadult.com to view a trailer on her book as well as background and biographical information.
From the site: In How to Raise an Adult, Julie Lythcott-Haims draws on research, on conversations with admissions officers, educators, and employers, and on her own insights as a mother and as a student dean to highlight the ways in which over parenting harms children, their stressed-out parents, and society at large. While empathizing with the parental hopes and, especially, fears that lead to over helping, Lythcott-Haims offers practical alternative strategies that underline the importance of allowing children to make their own mistakes and develop the resilience, resourcefulness, and inner determination necessary for success.
Relevant to parents of toddlers as well as of twentysomethings - and of special value to parents of teens - this book is a rallying cry for those who wish to ensure that the next generation can take charge of their own lives with competence and confidence.
A Light-hearted Look at a Serious Topic
We know that student safety is always our top priority. The reminders about driving rules around school buses work some of the time. This video made it into the top vote getters for this year’s Edutopia best clips “5 Minute Film Festival.” The curators noted, "Getting your kids up in the morning and ready for school can be stressful. What's more, every year, many students are injured when exiting or entering school buses, because drivers try to go around the school buses. One mom took this into her own hands and created this video to remind you: when you see a bus, don't move!” Our fantastic Transportation guru, Patty Smrt, has endorsed this message! Click here to watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ezxPqoatu4&feature=youtu.be&list=PL10g2YT_ln2gTPD9YEaYwqaR9BbyONDaU
Mrs. Carino’s Top Ten Sights:
1. Four kindergarten girls sitting in the middle of their elaborately constructed Lego city.
2. Blue sky just in time for school to begin this morning;
3. Mrs. Lyon walking into class with a camping tent under her arm to be used; for the earned student privilege of reading in a tent in class;
4. Beautiful blue and white snowflake decor in Mrs. Dufort’s classroom;
5. Paper whites poking through the soil and showing off pretty white blossoms;
6. Loma students practicing at lunch for the upcoming Loma talent show;
7. Mrs. Riccomini supervising the talent show noontime practices while eating her bowl of soup;
8. All the amazing teachers at CT keeping the beat going;
9. Middle school students exercising in the “portable gym”;
10. The smile on Mrs. Edwards face.
Important Info for Eighth Grade Families!!
Los Gatos High School mailed home enrollment information this week. If your 8th grade student is going to LGHS next fall and you have not received a packet by end of next week it means your residency packet was not complete! Please call the LGHS registrar Terri Dewing at 408-354-2730 ext. 231.
LGHS will be on campus at 8:20 the morning of Feb. 5 to enroll students into their freshman classes for next fall. Please have your student bring their yellow course request forms to school on Friday 2/5/16
Don't forget to check the incoming Freshman Events Calendar from LGHS for important events happening this month at LGHS!
All eighth graders will come home tomorrow with a permission slip to LGHS to view elective choices prior to deciding which elective to sign up for. The date of the field trip is Monday 1/25/16 in the am. Permission slips are due next Friday 1/22/16
Parents if your student is going on the Washington DC trip the final payment is due this week to World Strides.
Important 8th grade info from LGHS
Attention all 8th graders and 8th grade parents! Come out to learn about the many electives at Los Gatos High School at the LGHS Electives Faire! Mark your calendars for January 26th from 5:15 - 6:45 pm in the Los Gatos High School Library for this great event!
Elective teachers will be hosting presentations in their classroom throughout the night, and students will be present to show you around our campus. Clubs, peer-to-peer groups, and other extracurricular activities that LGHS has to offer will also be present!
In addition, LGHS apparel and t-shirts will be sold, along with sandwiches catered from LG Meats. Please see attached flyer and order form for sandwiches.
LGHS Parent Visitation Day is scheduled for January 29, 2016
Parents of eighth-graders who will attend Los Gatos High School this fall can tour the school on Jan 29, with tours scheduled for 8:15, 8:45 and 10:15 am and 12:30 pm
Guides will be in the school's main hall 15 minutes before each tour. Access to the main hall is through the doors on the left side of the high school's main building at 20 High School Court
In addition to seeing the school's facilities, parents will be able to observe some classes in session.
Please call Shari Williams @ 408.206-2369 with any questions.
Wild Times @ CTE
Early Release EVERY Wednesday @ 1:30 pm
1/14/16 Meet LGHS new Principal, Kristi Grasty 4pm in Rm 11 @ CT
1/15/15 CT HSC Mtg. 8:30 rm 7
1/15/16 End of Quarter 2 grading period
1/18/16 NO SCHOOL- Martin Luther King Holiday
1/19/16 NO SCHOOL-Staff Development Day
1/22/16 CT Fun Night at Sharks Ice, SJ 7pm (more info soon)
1/25/16 8th grade field trip to LGHS 8:30-12:00
1/26/16 Incoming Freshman Elective Faire at LGHS 6pm LGHS Library
(see flyer attached)
1/26/16 Eighth Grade Student & Parent Welcome Night 7pm LGHS Large Gym
1/27/16 Freshman Couse Pathways Info. Session 3:30 LGHS Theater
1/28/16 New Tech Info. Night 7pm LGHS Theater
1/29/16 Parents Visitation Day at LGHS 8:15am main hallway
All other items, which were scheduled, are TBD because of community center/gym bld.