Dear parents and VCS community,

The health and safety of our students and community are of utmost importance to all of us at Valley Christian Schools. We continue to monitor the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation and the guidelines set by the Santa Clara County Office of Education (SCCOE) and the Santa Clara County Public Health Department (SCCPHD).

The March 31, 2020, SCCPHD order requires almost everyone to Shelter in Place through May 3, 2020. We anticipate another extension of that order. On April 7, 2020, County Superintendents of six Bay Area counties, including Santa Clara County, announced the expansion of campus closures through the end of the 2019 – 2020 school year for all public schools.

Governor Newsom recently announced six indicators the state would use to measure when the lockdown ends. Governor Newsom added, “Large public gatherings” will likely remain forbidden through the summer and further indicated schools may reopen with staggered schedules to reduce student contact next fall.

In my March 25 update, I announced, “If the pandemic subsides sooner than expected [May 3] and community restrictions to gather loosen, we will bring students back to campus as soon as possible.” Given the Governor’s six indicators, and that the SCCPHD will likely extend the Shelter in Place order well beyond May 3, VCS will not return to our campuses before the end of this semester on May 30. Our principals and directors will communicate with parents and students regarding semester finals, assessments, events, summer school, and other needed information. At home, online education will continue indefinitely until local and state authorities permit a return to on-campus attendance, hopefully by next fall.
On April 4, as we approached Easter, Troy Gunter, Director of the Conservatory, surprised me with our high school Jazz vocal ensemble’s remote recording of “Smile.” I experienced a sense of awe as I listened. Their beautiful harmony put a smile on my face as I anticipated Easter and the power of Christ’s resurrection. For me, it’s an unimaginable feat when vocalists create such beautiful harmony in the same room. But to harmonize so beautifully while recording individually in their homes seems miraculous to me.

Click on the image below to view video.
To represent VCJH, Principal Brian Clemons, suggested our parents may be encouraged to view eighth grade twins, Kaitlyn and Jacob, give an encouraging message for their Venture Church congregation while facing COVID-19.

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Elementary Vice-Principal, Lauren Maslyar, sent this video message to students and parents:
“As we enter another week of distance learning, we continue to grieve away from our students. We miss their sweet faces, their loving hearts, and witnessing all their victories. We love you and are continuing to pray for your spiritual and physical well-being. Until we can be together again, please enjoy as a family these heartfelt, three-word messages from our VCES teachers and staff.” 

Click on the image below to view video.
The following is a report from men’s basketball coach, Mark DeLuca, about the generous donations of our VCS community in support of our COVID-19 battling nurses. Coach DeLuca wrote, “In 31 years in education, I have never, as a basketball coach, experienced a more rewarding and yet challenging fundraising effort. Our VCS #boxoutcovid19 PPE drive was an incredible testimony to God’s authority, power, as well as the overall generosity of our entire school community.

During the last 12 days, we received the following PPE donations from our VCS community:
  • 13,000 masks - Our community donated or acquired these items at a time when hospitals, states, and some countries were looking everywhere to buy these items.                                
  • 13,000 gloves - One COVID-19 floor nurse at Kaiser-San Jose said they (her shift) were down to their last two boxes of surgical gloves the day before we dropped off 2,000 gloves.                                   
  • 400 Face Shields - Multiple nurses from San Jose hospitals repeatedly called to inquire if we could find them face shields. Other than masks, face shields are the hardest item to acquire these days for health care providers.”
I want to thank our entire VCS Community for all of your support for our front-line nurses. This video is a thank you from Nurse John Stratton, a VCS parent on the COVID-19 front line at Kaiser, San Jose, with a message of thanks from the nurses who received our thousands of donated shields, masks, and gloves.

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While writing this update, I received the great news that the Jacksonville Jaguars selected VCHS alum, Collin Johnson, in this year’s NFL draft. A 2016 graduate, Collin is the son of Johnnie and Julie Johnson. Collin, we are so proud of you and can’t wait until the football games begin!
Watch the draft call from the coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars to Collin last Saturday.

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As we approached Easter this year, many, including our VCS prayer intercessors, began praying for the power of Jesus’s resurrection to heal our land from the ravages of COVID-19. You can be confident that we are also praying for God’s protection of every VCS family. 

May the Lord bless you, keep you, and make His face shine upon you,
Clifford E. Daugherty, EdD