Panther Tracks
February 25, 2019
JLS News
Important Dates:
February 28 - JLS Choir Performing at Stanford BB
March 4 - Parent Visitation Day
March 5 - PTA Executive Board Meeting
March 7 - Latte Cart
March 8 - Student Store Open | End of Third Quarter
March 11 - No School
March 13 - 6th Grade Band Concert
March 14 - Connections Coffee | Orchestra Concert
Lost and Found
Lost and Found items will be out on tables by the front office this week (February 25-March 1). There are many jackets, shoes, PE clothes, etc. Please encourage your student to check for any missing items. At the end of the week all remaining items will be taken to a charitable organization.
Author Visit
Soman Chainani is coming to JLS! The author of The School for Good and Evil will visit Monday, March 18th. If you are interested in purchasing the newest book in the series, A Crystal of Time, or one of the earlier volumes, fill out this form and bring it to the library as soon as possible. Or order it online from Books Inc. Soman Chainani joins Books Inc. and JLS Middle School in celebration of the fifth installment in his New York Times-bestselling School for Good and Evil series, A Crystal of Time. (Ages 8+)
Save the Date: Tuesday, April 30th
Parent Education Event: Julie Lythcott-Haims - How to Raise and Adult
Mark your calendars for author and Palo Alto parent Julie Lythcott-Haims who will be speaking at JLS on Tuesday, April 30th at 7 pm in the cafétorium for a parent education event based on her New York Times Bestselling book How to Raise and Adult. From her website: "In How to Raise an Adult, Julie Lythcott-Haims draws on research, on conversations with admissions officers, educators, and employers, and on her own insights as a mother and as a student dean to highlight the ways in which overparenting harms children, their stressed-out parents, and society at large. While empathizing with the parental hopes and, especially, fears that lead to overhelping, Lythcott-Haims offers practical alternative strategies that underline the importance of allowing children to make their own mistakes and develop the resilience, resourcefulness, and inner determination necessary for success. Relevant to parents of toddlers as well as of twentysomethings - and of special value to parents of teens-this book is a rallying cry for those who wish to ensure that the next generation can take charge of their own lives with competence and confidence."

Hope you can join us! Julie’s message is powerful and a wonderful reminder that our children grow from multiple opportunities for small failures and independence.
Middle School Parent Ed Event: “Sources of Strength”
Monday, March 25, 7-8:30 pm, JLS Cafetorium
Gunn’s Sources of Strength team will be hosting an event focused on how parents, educators, and students can work together at home and in our schools to prevent the epidemics of bullying and suicide. Research has shown we can do this by creating a preventative culture in our community—one that fosters an epidemic of Hope, Help, and Strength. The evening will provide an overview of the Sources of Strength program and give attendees an opportunity to learn more about a few specific aspects of the Sources of Strength wheel. Student and staff leaders will talk about ways to spread positive messages throughout the community. Key to the success of the Sources of Strength program is developing awareness and a shared vocabulary at home and in our community so that families can support the work we are doing in our schools.
Important Advocacy Information
JLS Families, please note important information from the Palo Alto Council of PTA’s (PTAC) regarding the Stanford General Use Permit (GUP). More information can be found in this flyer.
Scroll down to the “PTAC News" section for follow-up information on PTAC’s Special Meeting on February 6 and the related petition.
Read, learn, advocate.
Parent Visitation Day
Monday, March 4
Parents are welcome to visit classrooms and see all aspects of the school. We ask that you follow these guidelines:
  • First come to the office to sign in, get a name tag, map, bell schedule and teaching schedule.
  • Please do not let your visit interrupt the teaching and learning process.
  • Please do not talk to the teacher, students, or other parents in the classroom (unless the teacher invites you to do so).
  • When you have finished your visit, please return to the office to sign out.
Signups Coming Soon for JLS Service Day!
2019 JLS Service Day, Wednesday, March 20, 1:30-5 pm (adult chaperones), 1:45-5 pm (student volunteers)
We hope you'll join us for a fun afternoon of service and giving back to our community! The JLS PTA and YCS (Youth Community Service) have organized 16 service projects for student and adult volunteers to choose from. Some projects take place at JLS and others at nearby off-campus locations. Sign-ups will be open for 1 week (February 20th to February 26th). Please look for an email from the principal on February 20th to begin to sign up and students will receive notices on Schoology on February 20th also. If you would like to be a parent chaperone, please contact Christine Hodson.
Commuters' Corner
It's a good idea to give bikes a little extra love in the winter months and make sure your basic components are working properly. A regular ABC Quick Check will do the trick to find small problems before they turn into big problems.

Bicyclists riding at night without lights are nearly invisible to other road users. Please make sure your student has a front white light and a red rear light if they ride in the evening, early morning, or in the rain. Ensure that your student can see and be seen.
Each Friday! Superintendent's Weekly Board Update
Read Dr. Don Austin's Weekly Board Update, published new each Friday on the District website.
Parent Ed Night: Learn the Basic ABCs About LGBTQ+ Youth 
Wednesday, March 13, 7 pm, Fletcher Middle School Café
This Parent Ed event is organized by the Fletcher Middle School PTA and staff, and is open/relevant to anyone, not just Fletcher families. Our event will be about understanding gender identities, sexual orientation, how to support LGBTQ+ youth in our community, and more. Open to all families with the purpose of supporting youth so we can be an inclusive and  welcoming community. Translation (Spanish and Mandarin) available if requested 3 days in advance. Please email to request. Special guests include Miriam Stevenson (PAUSD’s Director of Student Services), Valerie Royaltey-Quandt (Greene Middle School Principal), Melissa Howell (Fletcher Middle School Principal), Diana Hernandez and Ryan Fouts (Project Outlet Education Coordinator and Program Director), Shounak Dharap (PAUSD Board of Education member), Sally G. (former PAUSD parent), and Julian G. (former PAUSD student). Also available: City and school library resource tables and great prizes! Have a question you’d like addressed?  Fill out this anonymous form by Monday, March 11th.
PTAC - Advocate For Our Children NOW - Fully Mitigate
Stanford General Use Permit
Calls to Action:
  1. Attend March 14 Rally to Protect our Schools, Palo Alto City Hall, 5:30 pm;
  2. Message the County and Stanford to Protect our Schools;
  3. Write Letters to the Editor;
  4. School PTSA letters;
  5. Attend February 28 hearing in San Jose.
On Wednesday, February 13th, Joe Simitian spoke at the General Association Meeting. He applauded the community's response to voice our concerns for mitigation. If you haven’t done so yet, now is the time to message the County and Stanford, on the Click My Cause Two-Tap App (select Palo Alto PTA Council) or sign our online petition. He encourages us to attend the upcoming 3/14 Town Hall on the Stanford GUP and write to newspapers/media so that non-school families know about Stanford's gigantic proposed building impact. School impact may not be squarely considered by the Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR), however, the Development Agreement (DA) currently being negotiated may contemplate additional conditions to mitigate impact to our schools, including per student funding, neighborhood school construction (Quarry Road), Safe Routes to School (SRTS), and after school childcare. A copy of the Final EIR is at local libraries or online. Many schools are beginning their own letter writing campaign. To learn more or volunteer, please email: For resource materials, visit the PTAC website.
PTAC - Teacher Housing Project - Supervisor Joe Simitian 
At the Wednesday, General Association Meeting, Supervisor Joe Simitian spoke on the Teacher Housing Project to help build affordable teacher housing near California Ave/Caltrain Station. Five local school districts, including PAUSD, are being asked to contribute funds to help power the project's funding. PAUSD Board of Education has held a meeting on this. County land has already been secured. Additional funding is being negotiated. Please help spread the word and send comments to PAUSD Board of Education and the County of Santa Clara if you are supportive of our schools, our children, and our teachers. We are the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) and "T" for Teachers is in our middle name. Contact:
Call to Action: Please Sign the Petition 
Palo Alto PTA Council urges you to take action. Parents, Teachers, Staff, PAUSD Students, Palo Alto Neighbors, and Colleagues, too! Please sign the online petition to speak up and voice your concerns. The message is simple: Stanford to safeguard our children's education with full mitigation. PAUSD students who come with no tax dollars for their education in a public school is just not right. Full mitigation will safeguard our children’s education now and for future generations of school children. Please Sign the Petition.
Summer Camps Info Now Available on PTAC Website
Looking for a summer camp in your neighborhood or at one of our Palo Alto Unified school sites? Now you can find it at the PTAC website. Camp providers listed on this page host activities/summer camps at PAUSD Schools, and pay rental fees to our district. These rental fees help to defray the cost of running our schools while providing local opportunities for our kids. PTA Council does not endorse one camp over another. This service is offered to give parents an easy way to find out what is being offered and where. Please contact the PTAC Webmaster to recommend updates to this information. There is no charge to providers to be listed.
Community News
Bullet Journaling for Teens 
Saturdays, March 9 & 23, April 6 & 20, 3:00-4:30 pm, Mitchell Park’s Teen Center
This free bullet journaling workshop provides a space where students can cultivate creativity and organizational skills while de-stressing from academics. Bullet journaling is an activity that includes artistic elements as well as writing and planning through making lists, calendars, and trackers. Through participating in this activity, students will get their own journal to keep and learn different bullet journaling skills each class. Teens are free to join during any class, and preferably will attend multiple classes. All materials are free. This workshop is funded by Palo Alto Think Fund. No registration is required. If you have any further questions, please email :
Palo Alto Humane Society (PAHS) Story Writing Competition for Grades 7 & 8
Submission deadline: March 23
PAHS invites students in grades 7 & 8 to become Ambassadors of Compassion, by writing a fiction or nonfiction story on the theme of animals and people helping each other. The winning author will receive a monetary prize of $500 and four tickets to visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The winning story will be illustrated by a professional artist and published by the PAHS. It will join the PAHS library of stories about animals and kindness and will be a highlight of the 2019 Creating Compassionate Communities campaign. Click here for competition guidelines and submission form.
Summer Camp and Activity Fair  
Wednesday, March 6, 5:30-7:00 pm, Ohlone Elementary School MP Room
Come try fun hands-on activities and discover amazing summer camps hosted by the Ohlone PTA. Free! Kids are welcome, free pizza for the first 100 people, and enter to win giveaways, prizes, and a free week of summer camp! Register early for a chance to win a week of free camp!  RSVP online.
6th Annual Racing Hearts 5k/10k
Sunday, March 24, 9 am, City Hall, Downtown Palo Alto
Join the Racing Hearts and the City of Palo Alto Police and Fire Departments to celebrate active living for heart disease and community AEDs. Revenue from this event is going towards placing life saving heart defibrillators AEDs into the East Palo Alto patrol cars (they have none right now.)  Register online for the 6th Annual Racing Hearts 5k/10k. Please join us to celebrate active living for heart disease and community AEDs! 
Tics Research Study at Stanford 
The Early Life Stress and Pediatric Anxiety Program at Stanford is recruiting children and adolescents, both with and without a history of tics, for a research study exploring brain function. Youth between the ages of 9-17 who are right-handed and English-speaking may be eligible to participate. A tic disorder diagnosis is not necessary to participate. Participation involves two initial and two follow-up appointments that each last about 2 hours and include self-reports and behavioral tasks, as well as brain imaging with fNIRS (functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy). fNIRS is a safe, non-invasive technique that uses infrared light to examine brain function. In addition, children with a history of tics will receive 8 weekly sessions of behavior therapy with a tic disorder specialist. All participants will receive access to ongoing updates about study outcomes and payment of $120 for involvement. Sessions are available both during the academic year and over the summer. For more information, or to enroll in the study, email or We encourage you to reach out if you're interested, as space is filling up. For general information about participant rights, contact 1-866-680-2906.
Real Food for Thought
Wednesday, March 6, 7-8:30 pm, Media Arts Center at Palo Alto High School
PTA Council of Palo Alto hosts this event. Has your family thought about eating more ‘real food’? Is our local community in line with your thinking? Our speaker, Dr. Lustig, will reveal how and why Americans are eating more processed foods with added sugar and fewer ‘real foods’ like vegetables, whole grains, lentils, nuts, seeds and fruits. Robert H. Lustig, M.D., M.S.L. is the Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology and Member of the Institute for Health Policy Studies at UCSF.  RSVP online.
Paly Theatre Presents Guys & Dolls
March 8, 9, 15, 16 at 7:30 pm, March 14 at 4:30 pm, and March 17 at 2 pm, Palo Alto High School 
Roll the dice and hop on over to the Paly theatre! You'll see it all in the Tony award winning quintessential musical, Guys & Dolls. This hilarious, high stakes adventure has a multifaceted mission and romance galore as we dance the night away through Times Square and Havana.  Tickets available now online. Tickets are $15 adults, $10 students/seniors.
Special Saints and Sinners Benefit
Saturday, March 16, 5:30 pm, Palo Alto High School Performing Arts Center
You're invited to join us at the Guys & Dolls Supper Club and Music Revue Benefit. Feast on New York deli delights, while members of the Guys & Dolls cast entertain you with song and dance numbers. Your ticket to this special event includes supper, entertainment and the best seats in the house for a rollicking great performance of Guys & Dolls. Tickets for this memorable benefit - including reserved VIP seats for the 7:30 pm performance - are $45 for adults, and $35 for children 12-and-under.
Quick Links
eNews Publication Guidelines
JLS eNews is a publication of the JLS PTA. Previous editions and Publication Guidelines can be found at the JLS PTA website. If you have any questions or would like to make a submission, please contact Christy Moision, JLS's eNews editor.