News: June 9, 2009

Dear Parents,

The end of the year is quite exciting and HECTIC.  Everyone (kids and adults) is looking forward to the end of the school year excitedly, but at times too emotional. With all of this energy, it is important to make sure you keep your dog at home when DROPPING-OFF or PICKING-UP your child.— MINIMALLY, if you have to have your dog with you, stay by the SIDEWALK, where you can say “Bye” or “Hello” to your child.


Unfortunately, we had a biting incident recently that we do not want to repeat.

PLEASE KEEP YOUR DOG/S OFF CAMPUS.  Thank you for your cooperation and help with this matter


Lupe Garcia


News: May 29, 2009


Wednesday, June 3, 7:45 AM, Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast
Wednesday, June 3, 1:30 PM, 1:30 PM, Bike Registration
Thursday, June 4, 8:30 AM, 4th & 5th Grade Music Concert
Wednesday, June 10, 3:30 PM, Site Council Meeting
Thursday, June 11, 9:00 AM, 5th Grade Promotion
Thursday, June 11, Last Day of School — MINIMUM Day, 1:25 PM dismissal for ALL students

Bicycle Registration

On June 3rd from 1:30-2:30 Palo Verde students and families can get their bikes licensed and registered with the Palo Alto Police Department.  In case your bike gets lost or stolen this is a good way to increase the chances of getting it back.

All you need to bring is your bike and it’s FREE!

Music Concert

The Palo Verde Fourth and Fifth Grades invite you to attend their End-of-Year Concert on Thursday  June 4  at  8:45 AM.  Please come and enjoy the music by our school Band, Orchestra, Beginning Strings, and General Music classes.

5th Grade Promotion

This is a reminder that 5th grade promotion will be held on Thursday, June 11 at 9:00 a.m. in the blacktop where we hold our school-wide assemblies every week.  More information is to follow– but make sure to reserve the date and time for a most important event in the life of the 5th graders and their families.

Stanford EPGY Program for 2009-2010 School Year (Staring 06/01/2009)

The Stanford Educational Program for Gifted Youth (EPGY) is a web based math and language arts tutorial program.  Developed with the gifted student in mind, Stanford has found that EPGY is valuable FOR ALL LEVEL OF STUDENT.  EPGY starts at the K-2 level and continues with course offerings through secondary school, including AP and college level, thus providing a runway that parallels potential academic trajectory in school.  See:

EPGY is being offered to ALL STUDENTS as a parent-supported, extracurricular opportunity, in conjunction with Palo Verde PTA or PAUSD. It is not part of curriculum and is purely optional at the discretion of parents as to whether it would be useful for their children.  Neither Stanford nor the EPGY program is endorsed or sponsored by Palo Verde PTA, but we wanted to take advantage of the benefits of participating as a school community – substantial cost discounts and a “no test-in” policy, which helps provide access to this unique program for all.

Cost will be $135 PER SCHOOL YEAR. On your own, the cost would be around $165 PER MONTH.    This is for access to what EPGY calls its “elementary level” program, including math from the K-2 level ending at Pre-algebra (grade 7), and English covering the 3rd-6th grade level.  Access to secondary school curriculum must be done on an individual basis.  Existing EPGY families can take advantage of the new pricing.

Children progress at their own paces through the program.  Courses are arranged in six different learning strands.  The student cycles through the strands and is moved forward in each strand independent of their performance in other strands, giving the student the opportunity to fully master each concept.

To register go the EPGY District Open Enrollment page at Fill out the registration form and select “Palo Alto” for the district then write or type in “Palo Verde”.  It takes ten days or less to get accounts up and running.

To ask questions or indicate interest in EPGY for the Fall please call Pak Panitchpakdi, Palo Verde EPGY Coordinator, at 650-424-6409 or cell 650-269-0508 or send email to pakpanitchpakdi (at) hotmail dot com. Please include the following information in your email when you express interest: Your child’s or children’s names and grades, parent/guardian names and your phone number/e-mail. Please visit our Yahoo Group To subscribe to the our Yahoo Group:

Community News

Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra’s ‘Sinfonia’ Season Final Concert
Sunday, June 7, 3PM, Dinkelspiel Auditorium, Stanford
The season’s final concert of Sinfonia Ensemble, PACO’s second-highest level, conducted by PACO Music Director Benjamin Simon, will feature five winners of PACO’s annual concerto competition.  Five extremely talented young musicians will perform a wide range of solo works:  Sarasate Navarra for two violins, Vitali Chaconne, Kreisler Praeludium and Allegro, and the Saint-Saens Cello Concerto No. 1.  Also on the program will be Franz Josef Haydn’s delightful Symphony No. 102 in B-flat major.  Tickets are $10 adults, $8 seniors, $5 students.
Info: 856-3848,

Books Inc.’s Picture Book Pals welcomes Judy Sierra
Saturday, June 20, 11AM, Books Inc., Town & Country Village, Palo Alto
Store favorite, Judy Sierra will join their regular Picture Book Pals storytime to read from her latest picture book, The Sleepy Little Alphabet: A Bedtime Story from Alphabet Town, a book for youngsters who are learning their ABCs..
Info: 321-0600,

Relay for Life to Benefit the American Cancer Society
Saturday, August 15, 10AM to Sunday,  August 16, 10AM, Palo Alto High Track
Palo Alto is hosting its 4th annual “Relay for Life” to benefit the American Cancer Society. As in previous years, participants will have at least one team member walking the track for 24 hours to symbolize that the battle against cancer never stops. The event is a chance for all members of the community to come together to fight back against cancer, and support the American Cancer Society in its mission to provide education, patient services and conduct research to find a cure for cancer.  On the day of the event, there will be live music, food, and games for kids, along with information about cancer prevention. The teams will set up camp at Paly High, lending a festive atmosphere to the whole event.  Members of the community are encouraged to come out and support the relayers as they take their laps.
For more information on how to get involved, please go to or contact Lucy Lu at (at) gmail dot com

Excel Swim School

Group and Private Swim Lessons for ages 4 and up.  Palo Alto High School Aquatic Center, Sessions Run June 15-July 31.  Excel Swim School is managed by Danny Dye, the head Boys and Girls Swimming Coach at Palo Alto High School; the teachers for Excel are members of the Palo Alto High School Swim Team.
Info: or Coach Dye, 861-1093, dyedanny (at) hotmail dot com

Community Kiosk

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














Blue Jeans Drive by Girl Scouts

Got Jeans?  – Blue Jeans Drive though May 11th.
Fifth Grade Girl Scout Troop 60688 is conducting a blue jeans drive to

benefit the Ecumenical Hunger Program. We will decorate the jeans for girls

with jewels to give them new life. Jeans for boys, teens, and adults will be

donated as is. Please bring your unwanted jeans to the collection box in the

school office by Monday, May 11th.
We are accepting all jeans in new or good condition. No rips, stains, or

holes please. We especially need jeans for boys and teens. Any questions?


News: April 21, 2009

Celebrate Earth Day!

Walk, Bike, Bus, Carpool to School

Wednesday April 22, 2009 at Palo Verde

Cancel school commute car trips and use alternative modes of transportation like walking, bicycling, riding the bus, or carpooling more often.  Invite friends to share your commute.

For more information about safe, sustainable school commutes, click here.