E-Newsletter from PH Education Commission
  1. Common Core Night for Parents
  2. Career Night at CPHS
  3. Volunteers needed for PHE Science Fair
  4. Community Awards Nominations Sought
  5. Parents and Teens Substance Abuse


  • Greetings from the Pleasant Hill Education Commission! We serve as an advisory body to the Pleasant Hill City Council and act as a liaison between the City and the Mount Diablo Unified School District. Our role also involves communicating education-related news and information.

  • Our next Education Commission meeting is this
    Wednesday, January 22, 2014 at 7 p.m. in the large community room at City Hall.
    Education Commission Members (with school assignment listed under each name)

    Kelly St. Germain, Chair

    Pleasant Hill Middle School

    Joann Jacobs, Vice-Chair

    College Park High School

    Linda Waters

    Gregory Gardens Elementary

    Jennifer Andersen

    Hidden Valley Elementary

    Mary Gray

    Pleasant Hill Elementary

    Leanne Hamaji

    Fair Oaks & Strandwood Elementary

    Emily Richards

    Horizon and Prospect Schools

    Tracy Ervin-Lowery

    Sequoia Middle School

    Jennifer Ortega

    Valley View Middle School

    Matt Rinn

    Valhalla Elementary

    Chris Winder

    Sequoia Elementary 



    Our meetings are open to the public and we welcome you to join us. 


    Pleasant Hill Education Commission
    Pleasant Hill Education Commission


    Common Core Night for Parents of K-5th Graders   

    New Common Core State Standards are being implemented around the country in an effort to provide more robust and relevant lessons, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our students will ultimately need for success in college and careers.


    Find out what Common Core really looks like in the classroom. The Pleasant Hill Education Commission is hosting an interactive Common Core parent education night on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 6:30-8 p.m. at the Pleasant Hill Library.


    Teachers will share Common Core-aligned mini-lessons in language arts, math, science, and social studies. Parents will have an opportunity to take home materials to support Common Core learning at home.  


    Come experience the exciting changes happening in education, talk to teachers and administrators and get your questions answered. Refreshments will be provided.


    There are also many resources available on the MDUSD website here :


    Click here to learn about Common Core

    Click here to learn about Smarter Balanced testing

    Common Core Night Flyer with details


    Engineering Career Night at CPHS a Hit


    Dozens of high school students turned out Nov. 20 to learn all about careers in engineering, manufacturing, architecture and construction at a special career night event hosted by the Pleasant Hill Education Initiative.


    A panel of six esteemed professionals in these various industries discussed their career paths and what lead them to their current positions.


    Pleasant Hill-native Emily Bonato, an architect at the Dahlin Group, said she originally wanted to be a German teacher. "Two years into it I realized, maybe not." The job had gotten so specialized and her former German teacher said she was now required to teacher two other languages. "I had always been interested in architecture as well, so I decided to make the switch." Emily now designs custom homes.


    Peter Sosnowski, of Webcor Builders, said his father recommended that Peter look into civil engineering. As an engineer, "you leave that footprint on the city, you can point it out to your grandchildren and say, 'I built that building,'" he said. Peter also described the intense considerations that must be taken into account when designing a building to withstand earthquakes.


    Other panelists included Carol Choi, a bridge engineer for T.Y.Lin International, who worked on the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge; Kevin Van Buskirk, a business representative for Sheet Metal Workers Union Local 104; Mario Moreno, the lead engineer for the City of Pleasant Hill; and Ivan Elizondo, an engineer at Dow Chemical.


    The recording of this event is available online here.



    Volunteers needed for PH Elementary Science Fair


    Pleasant Hill Elementary is holding their annual science fair on Thursday, January 30, 2014.


    There is a need for volunteers to watch the rooms where the students' projects are being displayed for an hour at a time from 5-8pm. The volunteer makes sure that no one leaves a mess or damages anything.


    There is also a need for volunteers who can talk with students about their projects. No science background is required. A list of questions to ask can be provided (in case you have a hard time thinking of any), and you can request to be with a specific age group, if desired.


    Having people in the community volunteer at this event allows parents to enjoy the entire experience with their children. In addition to students and their projects, there is a hands-on science center happening in the multi-purpose room throughout the event that is always entertaining.


    If you are interested in signing up to help, please click on this link. Once you sign up, you will receive a confirmation as a reminder.



    Nominations Sought for the 43rd Annual Community Awards Night


    The City of Pleasant Hill is seeking nominations for outstanding individuals who have made significant contribution to our community. The categories are - Citizen of the Year, Business Person of the Year,  Teen of the Year, Educator of the Year, Community Plus Award and the Green Award.


    If you would like nominate someone, please complete this nomination form and submit it by Jan. 27.


    The awards ceremony and dinner will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 18 at the brand new Pleasant Hill Community Center. The event is open to the public and tickets are being sold through the Chamber of Commerce for $45 per person. If you'd like to purchase them online, please click here. Otherwise you may contact Chamber CEO Ann Luke at (925) 687-0700 or ann@pleasanthillchamber.com.


    Resources for Parents Dealing with Teen Substance Abuse


    Teen substance abuse is a frightening and sometimes overwhelming issue for parents. In response to a request for information about support services in our community, we've pulled together the following:


    Mt. Diablo USD offers free workshops at the Loma Vista Adult Center one Saturday (9:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m.) per month.  Class topics include the physiology of drug and alcohol use, laws, consequences, and family communication and relationships.  Parents and teens attend together.  Upcoming workshop dates are 1/25/14 and 2/22/14.  Spanish interpretation service is available at the workshop on 2/22/14.  For more information or to register, please contact the Parent Education Office at (925) 685-7340 x 6720 or http://mdae-mdusd-ca.schoolloop.com.


    If parents are concerned that their child may already be abusing drugs and is in need of treatment, they may contact Contra Costa County's Prevention and Youth Treatment Services by calling (800) 856-1652 or 211 or visiting their website at http://cchealth.org/aod/prevention.php. Contra Costa County provides free prevention resources and treatment services based on a sliding fee scale.  


    For more tips about how to talk to children and teens about drug use, parents may want to visit www.samhsa.gov . This website includes a lot of helpful information and most publications can be ordered or downloaded for free.