News: May 8, 2009


Wednesday, May 13 8:35 AM – PTA Coffee

Wednesday, May 20, 6 – 6:30 School-wide pot-luck on the Green

Wednesday, May 20, 6:30 – 7:45 Open House

Thursday, May 21 – Classroom Placement Forms due in main office (see below)

Wednesday, May 27, 8:20 AM Farewell to Pat Hanley at Assembly

From the Desk of Lupe Garcia…

Dear Palo Verde Parents, 

Classroom Placement Process and Parent Input: Please note the information below regarding our classroom placement procedure.  If after you review the process you would like to provide us with information about your child, complete the attached form, address it to Lupe Garcia, and hand it in to Chris McGranahan in the Main Office by Thursday, May 21, 2009

Classroom Placement Procedure for 2009-2010:

There are a variety of factors that the Palo Verde staff considers when we begin the process of developing classroom groups for the following school year. These perspectives include:

  • The needs of the individual child
  • The need to create balance within each classroom
  • The need to create balance among classrooms at grade level

Using these guiding principles, considerable thought and attention go into formulating classes that will work best for all students, as well as for the individual child. 

Individual Child

  • Compatibility between the child’s working style and the classroom environment.
  • Compatibility between the child’s learning style and the teacher’s instructional style.  (Note: even in the case of teachers new to the school, their teaching style is not an unknown.  Each of our staff members will has gone through an extensive interview process and has been observed teaching in the classroom.)
  • Compatibility of the child and other children in the class.

Balanced Classroom Composition

  • Learning Needs: does each class reflect the range of learners, from independent to needing special support?  Does each class reflect the range of academic abilities?
  • Individual relationships: will the social dynamics of the class work to foster a positive learning environment?
  • Gender: is there a balance of boys and girls in the class?
  • Ethnicity: Does each class reflect the diversity of all children in that grade?
  • Parental participation: does each class have parents who are interested in and able to help with in-class activities?

Balance Among Classrooms

Finally, are all classrooms at the same grade level “balanced” and have similar compositions? This may include such variables as balancing children who tend to be more “time intensive” (both behaviorally and academically), students new to the school, students for whom English is a second language, etc.  

We take the classroom placement process seriously. We always try to put the most important educational interests of the children in the forefront, and we expect parents will trust and respect the judgement of the staff in making placement decisions.  

Parent input plays a part in this process too. Although your child’s teachers are in the best position to see your child as a learner in the school setting, you bring the unique perspective of the parents, which can be useful to the grouping process. Any information that you think is relevant please put in writing by completing the Class Grouping Form, which will help you organize the information. A copy of this form is attached. Requests for specific teachers will not be consideredPlease do not make such a request. Make sure to turn in the input form at the Main Office by Thursday, May 21, 2009.  If you feel that your child may have some special needs for next year that cannot be addressed on the parent input form, please make arrangements to see me personally before the deadline

One final thought… although this activity begins at the end of May, a number of variables and unpredictable factors, such as late registrants, the need to realign classes, potential staff changes, and so on, delay the final class grouping assignments until shortly before school begins in the fall. For this reason, and to avoid having class lists announced, only to be changed, class lists will not be posted in the school office until August 21, 2009, the Friday before school begins.  

Other items and information:

>   Palo Verde’s Open House will be on May 20, 2009.  This year we would like to invite our community to begin the evening by having a potluck “Dinner on the Green” before visiting classrooms.  This would be a great opportunity to sit with family and friends in a relaxed manner, perhaps meet new families as well, before going into the different classroom to see the wonderful student projects and displays in the classrooms.  The evening schedule is as follows:

         • 6:00 – 6:30 Pot-Luck Dinner on The Green

         • 6:30 – 7:45 Visit Classrooms

Please join us for an extremely enjoyable evening of food, followed by the classroom visits.

> Pat Hanley will retire at the end of this school year.  Join us to acknowledge Pat’s contribution to Palo Verde.  Yes, it is true!  She has been such a central figure at Palo Verde for such a long time— that it will be difficult to imagine school without her.  Please join us on May 27 at 8:20 a.m. at our school assembly where students and community will acknowledge Pat for all she has done for our students and our community.  We will forward more information in the days ahead.  Plan to be there! 

Warmest regards,

Lupe García


(Optional Form) 

Dear Parents,  

We believe that your child’s teacher possesses the necessary information and understanding concerning your child in order to make an appropriate classroom placement for the coming school year. 


If you would like to provide insights into your child’s academic and social needs, please respond to the following questions.  Please remember NOT to name a specific teacher. This is not the intended purpose of this form.  Return the completed input form to the Principal by Thursday, May 21, 2009. 

– – – – – – – – – – – –  

Student Name__________________________________ 

Current Teacher ________________________________

(If new Kindergarten registration, leave blank) 

Grade level in 2009-2010__________________ 

  • 1. What do you feel is really important in creating a positive and productive learning environment for your child? 
  • 2. In your opinion, what are your child’s strengths? Areas of difficulty?  
  • 3. How do you think your child best demonstrates understanding and knowledge? (e.g. by writing, through oral discussion, via projects, through arts, etc.)  
  • 4. To what kind of feedback does your child respond best?  
  • 5. What do you feel is the most important variable for your child when determining class placement?  (e.g. being with a close friend, a match between teaching style and learning style, etc.)  
  • 6.  In your opinion, is there anything else we should know about your child that would help us make this placement decision?  

From the PTA President

School Year Coming to a Close – FAST! With only five more weeks of school left, the end of the year is coming fast! Here are two key events happening in May:


PTA Coffee (May 13th)

The PTA will have another Wednesday morning coffee on May 13th. We also will be posting our slate of Executive Officers. We are still looking for Executive Vice President, VP of Fundraising, VP Social Events, Parliamentarian and VP of Communication. Pop by the coffee table if you would like to find out more about these and other open PTA positions. Or contact Kim Amsbaugh, PTA president, for more information.


Open House (May 20th)

Palo Verde’s Open House will take place on May 20th from 6:30 – 7:45 pm. This is a great opportunity to visit your child’s classroom as well as poke into other grades to get a sense of what’s in store for next year. We invite all Palo Verde families to bring a picnic dinner

to eat on the grass from 6-6:30 pm. Classrooms will then be opened from 6:30 – 7:45.


I hope everyone enjoys these last few weeks of school.

Kim Amsbaugh

PTA President


International Fair a Great Success!

Plenty of students, parents and family members took a trip around the world last Sunday as part of the Palo Verde International Fair. A huge thank you needs to go to Brinda Govindan, who without her dedication and work the Fair would never had taken place. Also, thank you to all the volunteers, parents, family members and staff, who helped put such a terrific Fair together. Taiwan, Russian, Thailand, Isreal, Mexico, India, Italy, Brazil and Indonesia. Each booth was decorated with classroom art work, food and activities that reflected each country’s culture and history. We also had two fashion shows, which entertained the crowd with traditional clothing from countries around the world. If anyone is interested in helping organize the Fair next year, please let Kim Amsbaugh know. This year’s Fair was Brinda’s last as her son is graduating from Palo Verde this year.


Thank you to all of the volunteers who made this year’s International Fair a big success:

Booth Leaders: Pak Panitchpakdi, Queenie Huang, Rituparna Das, Rosie Kasim, Laila Craveiro, Heather Schultz, Michal Yaron, Amalia Cardenas, Priya Chari


Volunteers: Fidelia Wang, Mala Nayak, Jasmine Kuen, Stanley Chow, Candace Kuen, Sheena Chin, Matt Wang, Maria Daehler, Bhaskar Ghosh, Priya Junnarkar, Deepika Thukral, Padmini Krishnan, Krishna Varia, Archana Devi, Jai Sharma, Sudha Bala, Kala Lansberg, Nirada Vijay, Uma Sonak, Dipti Joshi, Bina Shah, Shubha Ranga, Pradipta Ghosh, Sampath Srinivas, Vishnu Srinivas, Vidur Thukral, Nikhil Ghosh, Luxwin Bala, Rashmi Sharma, Soenkyung Lee, Rani Muhdie, Andy Maas, Mike Frankel, Eli Frankel, Max Frankel, Enzo Santos, Tatiana Cardoso, Daniel Rabello, Bia Rabello, Ken Schultz, Colin Schultz, Aaron Schultz, Beatrix Willow, Alison Cormack, Louise Valente, Michael Loran, Ira Livneh, Michal Braude, Olga Gary, Irena Smith, Maria Zajac, Cheryl Lamin, Amalia Cardenas, Alma Landa, Janet Rose, Kim Amsbaugh, Heather Brownlee, Diane Jakubowski, Evelyn Guernsey, Aditi Periyannan, Theivanai Palaniappan, Gaby Boscacci, Kelly Berschauer


Fashion Show Participants:

Samantha Guernsey, Audrey Jakubowski, Antonia Boscacci, Brianna Boscacci, Claire Berschauer, Reetu Joshi, Anushka Shah, Manav Shah, Mia Gualdoni, A.J. Gualdoni, Tanvi Raman, Diya Thukral, Neha Joshi, Rohin Ghosh, Harini Desikan, Sarika Lansberg, Aishah Maas, Amirah Maas, Hamzah Maas, Samantha Ratanavipupong, Hanlong Fan, Yuenjo Fan, Yonhao Fan


Thanks to Moises Aguilar, Chris McGranahan and Lupe Garcia

for their enthusiastic and tireless support of the fair.

*Special thanks* to Nik Pascal, owner of the Crepes Cafe in Menlo Park, who generously donated ALL of the crepes enjoyed at the fair. Nik and Jeremy even stayed “overtime” to ensure that everyone got to enjoy delicious free crepes.  His kindness and generosity to our school community is greatly appreciated, and is an inspiring example to all of us.

–Brinda Govindan


Crepes Cafe Gives (and gives and gives…) to Palo Verde

If you were at the International Fair on Sunday, chances were you enjoyed a crepe from Crepes Cafe in Menlo Park. From the Fair’s beginning to beyond its end, Crepes Cafe was making crepe after crepe after crepe for all those in attendance…for free! The crepes were

delicious and were enjoyed by everyone! Please show them our appreciation and gratitide for donating not only their food but their time by dining at their restuarant. Crepes Cafe is located at 1195 Merrill St. in Menlo Park, which is one block north of Santa Cruz Ave. on the corner of Oak Grove Ave. and Merrill St. across from the Cal Train parking.  


Palo Verde Kids Club


Contracts for Palo Verde Kids Club for the 2009-2010 school year are available starting Monday May 4th and will last until May 15th.  This is the time for new Kinder families and current PACCC families to register their child/ren for child care for next school year.  A deposit, which is 1/2 month’s tuition, is required with a completed contract. 

On Monday, May 18th, registration will be open to all. We offer child care from 11:45 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. daily and are open most school/district holidays.  For more information please visit PACCC for the monthly tuition fee schedule.  You are welcome to call and set up a tour and pick up a contract. Call Kari or Raqiyyah at 650-852-9475.  We are open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily.

Facebook for Parents – What You Need to Know

Tuesday May 12    7 – 8.30 At Spangenburg at Gunn     FREE


This is recommended for parents of 5th graders who will soon be in middle school.


This is an exciting opportunity to hear the condensed version of Fogg & Phillips’ hugely popular Facebook for Parents class at Stanford.  You will hear the latest research, learn to use Facebook efficiently and be able to help your kids reach their full potential in their online world.


It is not realistic to tell your preteens and teens not to use social networking sites, but rather to be ahead of the game and be able to guide them to use the site safely and responsibly.


RSVP/more info


Carpooling and rsvp recommended to give the organisers a heads up on numbers to expect.


Garland Community Meeting

The Palo Alto Unified School District will hold a Garland Community meeting to present schematic design plans and elevations for Garland Elementary and listen to community input.  The Garland Community meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., on Wednesday, May 13, 2009 at the Jordan Middle School Library. (750 N. California Avenue.)

Classic Math School

We would like to invite parents and students to our Open House which will be held on May 19th, Tuesday, at 7:00 pm in JLS Middle School (480 I. Meadow Dr., Palo Alto)  Room 730.


This is a great opportunity to meet with our teachers, learn more about Classic Math School overall teaching principles and ideas as well as School-Year-Round programs. Your questions will be answered, your students will be offered a free Placement Test, mandatory for students in grades 4 and above, but recommended for all students. Light refreshment will be served.


The Open House Night is also the time, when we expect you to complete your enrollment process to secure your child’s space in the Summer Math Camp. Please be advised that we do not accept credit cards, only checks or cash. We are looking forward to meeting you and your child on May 19th!

City of Palo Alto Summer 2009 Camps and Aquatics

The City of Palo Alto offers over 100 different types of summer camps and aquatics activities for your children to Enjoy!  The high quality camps are affordable and fun. Camps include arts, sciences, dance, theatre arts, nature, aquatics, therapeutics, recreation and sports as well as specialized camps for middle school students.  Pre and post care if offered for many of the camp sessions.  For a complete listing of all available summer camps and aquatics programs, please visit our website or call the Lucie Stern customer service staff at 463-4900 for more information.


Community Kiosk














Leave a Reply