Issue No. 4
November 2014
HHSF Needs You!

Dear Hillsdale Community,


Together we are making a difference at Hillsdale High School.  Now in its seventh year the Hillsdale Foundation (HHSF) continues to work with parents and alumni to fund the Small Learning Community model that Hillsdale families have come to expect, extol and support.  The Board is proud to uphold the  mission to serve each and every student by ensuring that SLCs are sustained.


Already this year we are off to a great start.  Out of an overall fundraising goal of $310,000 we have raised $203,000  and we're confident, with your help, we will achieve our goal.  Though raising money to fund SLCs is our primary purpose, our goals of awareness and communication have also improved.  We have two dynamically redesigned websites, one for HHSF and the other for the Alumni Association, which showcase the Foundation and Alumni Association and allow donors to easily make online donations.  Please visit the websites at and


Last year, HHSF and the school's Booster organizations  strategized to create a fiscal umbrella under the auspices of HHSF. The Hillsdale Sustainability Board debuted in August with eager participation from Booster leaders, faculty, administration and HHSF board members.  The result will be a greater sense of community and teamwork in communication, fundraising and fiscal responsibility.


As we move into the holiday season please know the difference you make is very much appreciated by the staff, the faculty and most important, the students.  On behalf of them and the Foundation Board THANK YOU!



Mary Ellison and Brett Dyer 

HHSF Board co-Presidents 

Funding Focus:  

School Safety Advocate


Your contributions support the crucial position of School Safety Advocate.  Jessica Houlton explains what she does and why the position is invaluable to our high school.


As the Hillsdale School Safety Advocate (SSA), I provide on-campus crisis intervention and assessment, case management, mediation and mental health support to improve students' socio-emotional well-being. I am also the coordinator of the Wellness Center and run process and support groups for students, as well as a restorative alternative to suspension. I work with the staff to identify youth in need of emotional support, conduct mental health and safety assessments, and make referrals for services on-campus and in the community depending on the needs of each individual. I am a Marriage and Family Therapist Intern and hold a Master's in Counseling Psychology.


The School Safety Advocate program is primarily about violence prevention, though it has expanded to become even more than that. My primary role is to make sure students feel emotionally and physically safe. Additionally, as a trained therapist, I offer a place for students to come to feel heard and understood, deal with life pressures, learn coping skills and strategies to address real-life challenges. Students come to the SSA office for a variety of reasons, ranging from minor difficulties to crises. I work with students who struggle with issues such as anxiety, stress, depression, self-esteem, substance abuse, family communication,

impulse control, emotional regulation, and peer conflict/bullying. Some students are self-referred while others are referred by a concerned peer, parent, or school staff member. I frequently work with parents as well to alert them of safety concerns, inform them of resources, or to coordinate care at school and at home. Because my primary role involves safety and I need to be available to the entire school, I assess students and refer out for ongoing care.


The feedback I have received is that having an SSA is invaluable-for students, teachers, and parents. Students tell me it feels good to vent, to feel heard, and get connected with services that can help them. Teachers have more time to teach because they can send a student to the counseling center to address deeper emotional issues they can't address during class. It is common for parents to be shut out from their teen, not able to reach them or know how they are really feeling. Sometimes teens will speak to adults that are not their parents about what they are going through. I have found teens respond well to the environment of trust, safety, non-judgment and caring that our counseling center provides. Parents have reported feeling more at ease knowing their teen is being supported by a team of adults at school who pay attention and know what is going on. Overall, I thoroughly enjoy my job because of the personal connection I have with the students. 

Hillsdale HS Alumni Association . . .

The Hillsdale High School Alumni Association (HHSAA) has reorganized as a committee under the 501 (c)3 umbrella of the HHSF, and has recently launched its new website.  Visit us at


The HHSAA is currently accepting reservations for the annual Olde Knights' Luncheon (OKL), which is open to all former Hillsdale faculty and staff, and alumni who graduated 25 or more years ago.  Now in its 19th year, the luncheon hosts more than 400 alumni for this unique reunion.Click here to find out more.


In conjunction with the OKL, Hillsdale alumni have generously donated to projects identified by Hillsdale High School and to three memorial funds honoring Keith Gordon, Rich Mazzoncini, and Homer Zugelder.  Beginning this year, to honor the legacy of Keith Gordon, Hillsdale teacher and a founder of the OKL, all donated proceeds will be designated to the Keith Gordon Memorial Fund.  These funds will be dedicated to the same purposes as previous OKL donations and are being encouraged by an anonymous matching alumni donation of $10,000.


This spring the HHSAA will collaborate with the school to launch the Hillsdale High School Hall of Fame.  The first annual event will be held on April 11th. Save the date, and watch the HHSAA web site for additional information.


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Please pardon us if we have reached your family in error and you no longer have students at Hillsdale.  
In This Issue
Fundraising Goal This Year . . . HHSF is counting on your support to get there!
So far this school year, $163,000 has been donated by Hillsdale families, $6,800 has been in corporate gifts and $33,200 has been donated by alumni and community members!
Company Match  



Double your donation dollars! 


Thank you to all Hillsdale Families who have pursued Employee Company Matches. Last year,  company matches represented an additional $25,000. Let's work to exceed that this year.  If you need any assistance in completing your match request please contact


Corporate Matches to Date   





Gilead Sciences

Home Depot





TE Connectivity

TPG Global
Visa Inc.  



To Our Donors . . 

Thank you
We are grateful for your contributions.  Incentive letters have been mailed.  Look for an e-invitation to a special Donor thank you event in December!
Holiday Gifts that Last


Thank a special teacher or staff member, celebrate your child's performance or athletic accomplishments and support HHS!  Give a Tribute Gift by purchasing a
Theater Seat Plaque or
football field Walkway Brick in his/her honor.  

Look for in-house performance specials during the December concert series.  Gridiron Gifts are great too!   Recipients will receive a special certificate to notify them that a gift has been purchased.

All Tribute Gift purchases support our school. Please see the "Tribute Gifts" tab on our home page for more information.
Easy Ways to Support HHSF
Register or update your cards with escrip and shop the mall for all your Holiday Shopping.

Do your Holiday Shopping through Amazon and its program Amazon Smile! 0.5% of your AmazonSmile purchases will go to HHSF. Click here to start shopping!


2014-15 HHSF Board

Ramona Barrantes
Chris Canter
Brett Dyer
Mary Ellison
Jeff Gilbert
Ron Halili
Lucy Lee
Don Leydig
Jane Mason
Doriel Nishioka
TinaMarie Romo
Lisa Tsuruoka
Todd Zucker
Ardythe Andrews, Executive Director
Hillsdale High School Foundation
63 Bovet Rd. Suite 218, San Mateo, CA 94402

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