A Message from the Principal

by Lucia Sullivan on 06/19/2019

Dear Canyon Community,

It has been a wonderful year. Thank you so much to all the staff and parents who worked so hard to support the kids.

The Board voted to approve the LCAP and the proposed budget at their June 18th meeting. We bid farewell to Art Peterson who taught 6th grade math this spring and helped out with supervising 678 snack and lunch and we say goodbye to Steven Day. We will be welcoming Alix Feinsod in 678. All other staff is projected to remain constant.

At the last Board meeting the Earth Guardians presented a climate resolution. The resolution spurred almost an hour of discussion and made me think about several things. Chief among them was the notion of transportation. One of our on-going struggles is attendance. This impacts our funding and causes financial stress. Improving attendance increases our funding. As the Board was discussing climate action, I was thinking of the carbon footprint of all the inter-district families driving into Canyon. It got me thinking that if we could set up a bus system we might be able to:
Get more people to school on time (thus improving our ADA, increasing our funding and improving academic outcomes)
Reduce our carbon footprint
Make the school more accessible to families who are unable to drive here every morning
Make the lives of parents easier
Do we have anyone in our community who has the skills to help investigate the feasibility of a bus? It would be amazing if we could see where people live on a map and figure out if we could have one or two bus stops and pick up lots of kids? This would have to be parent funded (think of the money you would save on gas and brakes:). Let me know if this something you’d be interested in. And if you think you have the urban planning know-how to help make this happen, please reach out right away!

The conversation the Board had regarding climate action made me think that we need to have a symposium solely focused on climate action. Is there anyone who would be interested in helping to plan, organize and facilitate this event with Rena, the kids in the Earth Guardians Crew, me and Board members? Please let me know so we can get this on the calendar.

We have two parent volunteer summer work days. The first is Sunday, July 7th. The “must-do” tasks on this day are first getting the stage thrust taken down and then getting all the furniture out of the classrooms so the floors can be cleaned and waxed. The next work day is Saturday, July 27th. On the second work day the furniture is cleaned and replaced in rooms. If we get lots of helpers there are many other projects that can be done on this day as well. Please let me know if you plan to come to the first work day. This will help me know which projects we can expect to complete. It will also help CATSS know how much food to provide. The new 678 teacher would like a bit of help cleaning and organizing that room as well. Please let me know if you’d like to help with that.

Middle school enrollment continues to be an inflection point. Please help us out by recruiting kids who may be interested in our middle school program. We currently have availability in 7th and 8th grades. Please direct interested parents to email me directly as I will be on email all summer and eager to answer questions and talk to prospective families.

Raphaelle Steinzig participated in School Site Council this year and together we reviewed and analyzed the parent survey feedback. Thank you for taking the time to respond so thoughtfully. Things that came across clearly as hopes, wishes, wants:
1. Dogs on campus MUST be leashed. Some kids are afraid. If you bring your dog to school please leash it and pick up after it:)
2. Spanish has been a great success and is universally appreciated. Next year we will have more!
3. People love music. Some wanted more (like instrumental lessons as part of the school day). Unfortunately we do not have the resources for an in-school instrumental music program at this time.
4. There was a suggestion of getting a counseling intern so that we had more staff available to address the emotional needs of students in the school day. We do have a school psychologist. Her name is Kara. She works for the county and comes to school as needed to serve students who receive counseling as part of an Individual Education Plan (IEP) or to do psychological testing as part of the IEP referral process. I spoke with Ali Guida Smith and she said she would explore options for a Counseling intern. Thank you Ali!
5. Parents want the lunch calendar posted on the website. We do that now. Look under the tab that says LUNCH.
6. Parents want an accurate google calendar of school events posted on the website. We want this too!
7. Parents appreciate the weekly newsletters from homeroom teachers AND would like more communication from other teaching staff.
8. Parents continue to want more opportunities for afterschool enrichment. In the past we have had a parent volunteer work on this with Camille. Is anyone interested in doing this next year?
9. Parents in grades that have chrome books want to limit computer use to designated academic tasks and reduce freeplay on computers.

We will work to address these wishes. Have a wonderful summer!

Summer Calendar:
Sunday, July 7th Parent Work day
Tuesday, July 9th @ 7 PM Board Meeting
Saturday, July 27th Parent Work day
Tuesday, August 13th @ 7 PM Board Meeting
Sunday, August 25th Welcome Breakfast
Wednesday, August 28th First day of school (ends at 1:35!)