Supts eNews - Nov. 17, 2023


In this edition ...

  • Creating outdoor greening and learning spaces
  • Preschool and Transitional Kindergarten: Planning for the future
  • MVWSD works to update English Language Arts Curriculum for 2024-25
  • Translation for MVWSD meetings
  • High Fives
  • Thanksgiving break

Creating outdoor greening and learning spaces

outdoor learningMVWSD is creating spaces at each school that will provide shade, plants and outdoor areas for learning and play. Parents, staff and the community have the opportunity to share their ideas about these spaces. MVWSD believes that the development of Outdoor Greening and Learning Spaces plays a pivotal role in ensuring that our schools are equipped with sustainable, green spaces that promote holistic learning experiences. It’s also a key effort in MVWSD’s goal of becoming a greener, more environmentally-conscious district.

The initiative began in 2022 at Jose Antonio Vargas Elementary as an effort to replace trees that had been removed. The Board of Trustees soon recognized that there were greater needs at this campus, and across the District. The Board passed the Climate Change and Green Schoolyard Board Resolution (05-012623) in February 2023 that specified a Greening Index that establishes an increase of green space to meet minimum standards of 30% green space per campus. MVWSD has engaged consultant Carducci to prepare concept‐level landscape plans for each school site.

By developing and assigning “green scores,” the community, District and Board of Trustees can effectively assess the value of improvements that could be included in an outdoor area, by identifying potential recreation elements and areas that require enhancement or development. These metrics encompass six key objectives: Physical Comfort, Mental Well-Being, Exploration And Discovery, Outdoor Learning, Operations and Sustainability, Student Safety and Experience. To view the Nov. 16 presentation to the Board of Trustees, please click here.

Come to a meeting to share your ideas about your school campus.
* Bubb, Amy Imai, & Graham - Tuesday, Nov. 28 @ 5-6pm on Zoom (link here)
* Castro, Mistral, & Landels - Wednesday, Nov. 29 @ 5-6pm on Zoom (link here)
* Monta Loma, Theuerkauf, Stevenson & Crittenden - Thursday, Nov. 30 @ 5-6pm on Zoom (link here)

(Plans for greening pilot school Vargas Elementary are underway)

Spanish interpretation is provided. To learn more:


Preschool and Transitional Kindergarten: Planning for the future

This year, MVWSD expanded its free transitional kindergarten (TK) program to eight classrooms at five schools. TK is an optional pre-kindergarten program for students who turn five within a certain range in the school year. In the 2024–25 school year, children who turn five between September 2 and June 2 are eligible for TK. In the following year, almost all four-year-olds (by September 1) are eligible for TK.

MVWSD’s preschool program serves three- and four-year olds, and, depending on the child’s age, parents have the option of enrolling in either transitional kindergarten or preschool. As the District prepares to expand TK to an estimated 11 classrooms for the 2024-25 school year, it’s faced with decisions that impact finances, facilities, staffing and programs. TK and Preschool programs are essentially competing for the same funding, facilities and staffing, and - in some cases - the same students.

The Board discussed the future of these early childhood programs at its Nov. 16 meeting, and confirmed its support of MVWSD preschool. To view the presentation, click here.


MVWSD works to update English Language Arts Curriculum for 2024-25

readersAs part of our district’s focus on literacy, MVWSD has begun looking at new curriculums for students grade K-5 in our English Language Arts (ELA) program. In recent decades, more research on children’s cognitive processes, language development, and reading acquisition has shown that curriculum built from the Science of Reading helps to ensure children develop strong foundational reading skills, enabling them to become proficient readers.

The work of MVWSD’s methodical process for researching new curriculums is done by the Adoption Committee, composed of educators and parents. This committee researches, reviews, and tries out the ELA curriculum that follows the Science of Reading.

At the Nov. 2 Board of Trustees meeting, staff reported on the committee’s review and the process for selecting curriculum for piloting. To view the presentation, click here. In January, teachers in 11 classrooms will begin 6-week pilots for two curriculums for K-5 - Amplify Core Knowledge Language Arts (CKLA) and McGraw Hill Wonders. Selected preschool/ transitional kindergarten classrooms will also pilot two integrated curriculums specific to early learners - Creative Curriculum from Teaching Strategies and Three Cheers for Pre-K from Savvas.

The committee will present the results of the pilots and recommendations for curriculum to the Board in Spring 2024. For more information about English Language Arts, please see the Literacy webpage.

Translation for MVWSD meetings

closed captionsRemote participants in the Board of Trustees meetings can now use Zoom caption interpretation to read what is being said in real time in the language of the participant’s choosing. Translated captions are offered in addition to the spoken interpretation in Spanish available in the Spanish language channel during the Zoom meeting. For directions on how to read what is being said (captions) in the language of your choice, please click here.


High Fives

Honors Choirs: Several Graham Middle School students were accepted into honor choirs. Congratulations on your hard work and dedication! CMEA Bay Section Honor Choir: Blythe, Lucy, Devan, and Osinachi. Western Division Honor Choir: Gloria, Osinachi, and Ojas. All State Honor Choir: Ojas, Julia, Gloria, and Juliet.

United against hate weekUnited Against Hate Week: MVWSD celebrated United Against Hate Week at school sites this week. Schools held events and classroom activities to promote their site’s theme for the week, such as in-class exercises to build empathy and signing the ADL’s No Place for Hate Pledge.



Mistral shoesReach SV at Mistral: Reach SV partnered with Mistral Elementary at their Walkathon to provide 298 donated, brand-new shoes for children and adults. We appreciate their support of our community!



Military Family Appreciation Assembly: military assemblyMonta Loma invited their military families last week for a school assembly. The school learned about each branch of our military and the sacrifices our military and military families make to serve, protect, and defend our nation. We thank our military families for their service.


Thanksgiving break
thanksgiving breakWe have so many blessings to count! Due to the Thanksgiving holiday, there is no school and offices are closed Nov. 20-24. School will resume on Monday, Nov. 27. Have a safe and restful Thanksgiving

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