Panther Tracks
April 22, 2019
JLS News
Important Dates:
April 24 - Spring Walk and Roll to School Day | Earth Day Lunch Rally
April 25-27 - Drama Production
April 26 - Student Store Open
April 29 - May 3 - Staff Appreciation Week
April 30 - Nightmare on Puberty Street Assemblies | Parent Ed: Speaker Julie Lythcott-Haims
May 1 - 8th Grade "Getting to High School" Bike Safety Assembly
May 2 - Latte Cart
May 3 - Cinco de Mayo Staff Appreciation Lunch
May 4 - May Fete Parade
JLS Staff Appreciation Week: April 29 to May 3
JLS PTA is planning for Staff Appreciation Week and needs help with servers, set up, clean up, some food donations, grocery runs, food pick ups, etc. Interested in helping out? Please sign up here.
Cinco de Mayo Staff Appreciation Lunch
Friday, May 3 (part of staff appreciation week)
JLS PTA is currently planning its final staff appreciation luncheon of the year and needs help with servers, set up and clean up. Interested in helping out? Please sign up here.
JLS Drama Production
Friday, April 25 through Sunday, April 27
Come follow along with Milo as he encounters a variety of whimsical and nonsensical characters such the Mathemagician, the Humbug, and King Azaz on his journey through the land of Wisdom. The JLS performance of Norman Juster's adored classic "The Phantom Tollbooth” runs April 25-27 in the JLS Cafe. Show times: Thursday, April 25th at 7pm, Friday, April 26th at 7:30 pm, and Saturday, April 27th at 7:30 pm. Tickets will be sold at the door: $3/students, $5/adults.
“Getting to High School” Assembly and Pop Up Bike Fair
On Wednesday, May 1 during WIP, all eighth graders will participate in a "Getting to High School" bike safety assembly. During lunch time there will also be a Pop Up Bike Fair -- open to all grades -- featuring a bike stunt rider, bike spin art, and bike blenders for smoothie making.

During the bike fair, eighth graders are encouraged to visit our route planning tables to help them map their way to high school via bicycling, walking or transit (shuttles/VTA).

Parent volunteers are needed for various activities. Please sign up here . Questions? Email Christy Moision or Anjani Sarma .
Earth Day Activities
To commemorate Earth Day with the community on Wednesday, April 24, the Green Team Student Club has planned the following activities:
  • Walk & Roll to School Day, a semi-annual event encouraging students to take an earth-friendly mode of transportation to school such as walking, biking, skateboarding, riding the bus, or carpooling. Walk & Roll participants will earn a sticker that they can trade in at the lunchtime Earth Day Rally later that day for entry into our raffle.
  • “Living Green” Art Competition. Drop off entries in the Library on Monday, April 22 or Tuesday, April 23. For more information, please view the flyer
  • Earth Day Lunch Rally. Join us in the amphitheater at lunch to ride our bike-powered blender to make your own smoothie, watch our student/staff bicycle relay race, view the art competition entries, and more. 
We hope you’ll celebrate Earth Day with us!
Family Talk: Adolescence Workshop
Wednesday, May 8, 6:30-8 pm, Greene Middle School, Multi-Purpose Room, 750 N California Ave
This workshop is designed to promote healthy communication within families that lasts a lifetime. Health Connected’s parent-child communication expert, Vanessa Kellam, will guide families through discussions about brain development, strong emotions, values, sexting, sexuality, sexual behavior, and consent. In a relaxed setting, families will learn, laugh, and share, making a potentially sensitive subject more comfortable. Families of all structures – parents, grandparents, co-parenting individuals, and trusted adults – are welcome. Family Talk is a discussion-based workshop recommended for 7th and 8th grade children and their families; however, adults may bring children younger or older, depending on their maturity level. There is no fee for this event. Space is limited to 60 families. Translation is available in Spanish and Mandarin. Childcare is available for school-age children between 5-13 years old not participating. For questions contact PAUSD Health Services. More information and registration online.
Help Wanted: JLS eNews Co-Editor for 2019-2020
JLS is looking for a volunteer familiar with Constant Contact who is willing to share editor responsibilities of the weekly JLS PTA eNews for next year. If you are interested, please contact VP Communications, Anjani Sarma.
Parent Education Event: Julie Lythcott-Haims -  How to Raise an 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.
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.
Commuters' Corner
With Spring Walk and Roll to School Day coming up this week, now is a great time to learn about the history of Safe Routes to School in Palo Alto, one of the most successful programs in the country. Find out how the partnership between the PTA, PAUSD, and the City of Palo Alto increased the number of students walking and biking to school from 22% in 2000 to 48% in 2018. Watch this four-minute Safe Routes to School history video for the whole inspiring story!
Each Friday! Superintendent's Weekly Board Update
Read Dr. Don Austin's Weekly Board Update, published new each Friday on the District website.
Bus Driver Appreciation Breakfast
Thursday, May 2, 8 am, Bus Dispatch Office
Each year, the Palo Alto CAC honors the bus drivers who play a vital role in transporting students to and from school. Breakfast will be served to the bus drivers at their office. If you want to show your support for the dedication and kindness demonstrated daily by your child’s bus driver, please send a thank you note with your message to If you would like to donate a breakfast item or gift card/money, please let us know as well. Please send your messages by Sunday, April 28th. Sponsored by the Palo Alto CAC.
Climate-Friendly School Food: Healthy Planet, Healthy Kids with Friends of the Earth
Tuesday, April 30, 12-1 pm, Haymarket Theater, Palo Alto High School, 50 Embarcadero Rd
Please join the League of Women Voters and PAUSD, and learn how healthy school lunches benefit our children as well as the planet. Find out about nutritious lunch programs that have been adopted by other California school districts, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Oakland. Please RSVP. Kari Hamerschlag is the Deputy Director of Food & Agriculture at Friends of the Earth. Kari leads the organization's climate-friendly food service initiative to support local farmers and ranchers to shift consumption towards healthier and more sustainable food. Kari worked as a senior analyst with the Environmental Working Group where she works on US farm bill. 
Palo Alto World Music Day Musicians and Volunteers Wanted 
Sunday, June 16, 3-7:30 pm, University Avenue (closed to traffic)
The City of Palo Alto has declared Sunday, June 16 as World Music Day. Now for the eleventh year professional and amateur musical groups will perform a wide variety of musical genres: jazz, pop, rock, classical, world music, choral and more. Free and open to the public. Interested in also performing?  Click here for information or email info@pamusicday.orgSign up to Volunteer! Sponsored by: Stanford Federal Credit Union, Palo Alto Recreation Foundation, the City of Palo Alto, the Palo Alto Weekly, Palo Alto Online, the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce, the Palo Alto Downtown Business and Professional Association, Live SV, and News for Chinese.
Youth Art Show at the Palo Alto Art Center 
April 27 - May 19, Palo Alto Art Center, 1313 Newell Rd
Reception: Wednesday May 1, 4:30-7 pm with marks at 5:30 pm
The extensive imagination and talent of PAUSD art students will be on display for the public at the Palo Alto Art Center later this week. Exhibit includes work from students in grades K-12. PiE funds art programs in PAUSD. 
Mandarin Parent Workshops - Inter-cultural Dialogue  
Thursdays through May 16, 6:30-8:30 pm, Greene Middle School Library
Wellness & Support Services Dept. and Asian Americans for Community Involvement (AACI) are offering a ten-week parenting workshop series, “Inter-Cultural Dialogue,” in Mandarin. An AACI Therapist facilitates the research-based workshops designed to help families navigate the generational and cultural differences in their families.
April 25 – Review and practice listening, empathy, and build connection
May 2 – Parenting skills in practice
May 9 – Parents managing their stress and emotions
May 16 – Revision, celebration, and completion
Spaces are still available. For more information or to save your place, please RSVP on Eventbrite.
PTAC Honorary Service Awards 
Thursday, April 25, 4-6 pm, Palo Alto Art Center, 1313 Newell Rd 
You're Invited!! This is our amazing and fun Spring social event to honor our volunteers and to network. Come meet other PTA members, district admins, and school board members. Lots of food, student art, and celebrating amazing work! We're looking for official photographers and Twitter/social media connectors. This event is free to attend, so please come! Email your RSVP to HSA Committee.
Update on GUP: Milestone Reached - Stanford University Agrees To Mitigate Impact to Local Public Schools 
At Tuesday's Special Board of Education meeting, the Board of Education Members, Superintendent Dr. Don Austin, and Stanford Representative, Ms. Jean McCown discussed an agreement to mitigate Stanford’s build out impact to PAUSD. During public comment, current PTA Council President and immediate past Council President read a statement expressing PTA’s gratitude to both parties.  You can watch the Dr. Austin’s presentation here and read the PAUSD-Stanford Agreement here.
PTAC Executive Board Elect 2019-2020 
Congratulations! PTA Council is proud to announce the new 2019-2020 Executive Board Members while also expressing a deep gratitude to all the volunteers serving on the current 2018-2019 Executive Board. If you are interested in becoming a PTA volunteer, please email the PTAC Executive Vice President. The 2019-2020 Slate:
President - Jade Chao
Executive Vice President - Christina Schmidt
Historian - Shweta ​Choudhry
Secretary - Lili Nova-Roessig
Co-Treasurer - Claire Zhang, Kerrie Chen
Auditor - Divya Singh
VP Advocacy - OPEN
VP Communications - Gabrielle Conway
VP Community Outreach - Adriana Flores
Co-VP Education - Sara Woodham, Elizabeth May
VP Health & Wellness - Dave Shen
VP Parent Ed - Diana Peng
Parliamentarian - Rika Yamamoto
PTAC Advocacy Needs You To Act Now for Special Education Students 
Please support California Legislature’s Bill (AB 428) to increase funding for special education. Questions? Email: or Christine Baker. The Statewide Special Education Task Force report found: (1) "special education is underfunded," (2) "special education local plan area base rates ... are not equitable throughout the state,” and (3) the growth in funding for special education does not reflect the actual growth in enrollment of special education pupils." PTAC’s Click-My-Cause App enables you - busy moms and dads - to voice your support with just two taps on your iPhones:
  • Tap 1: open alert
  • Tap 2: send message
Here’s how: Download the Click My Cause app (in the App Store, select Palo Alto PTA Council, tap “allow” to allow notifications), or  update the app on their iPhones to most recent version (if you have the app from last year).
PTAC - The Promise a.k.a Strategic Plan 
At our March 2019 PTA Council General Association Meeting, the association heard about The Promise and voiced a desire to get more clarity around the following four points regarding the Promise:
  • what are the changes from the previous PAUSD strategic plan;
  • what are the changes for the current draft of The Promise;
  • what are the metrics to measure the outcome of The Promise; and
  • what action items will result.
Please visit to read all about The Promise. You are encouraged to directly communicate to Superintendent Dr. Don Austin (via email or Let’s Talk) and also communicate with the PAUSD Board of Education. The Board of Education will be voting on its adoption at an upcoming Board Meeting.
PTAC Advocacy to Protect Our Children’s Heath – Vaping 
High on our priority list for next year is the troubling issue of vaping in our middle and high schools. We have sponsored speakers events and worked with our school district. You can visit our website for more. If you have a vaping story to share, please write to PTAC Heath and Wellness. Please remove any personal identifiers or sensitive information, but include as much detail as possible. 
PTA Council Invites You to the 97th Annual May Fete Parade & 125th Palo Alto Birthday Celebrations
Saturday, May 4, 10 am (Parade start time), Downtown Palo Alto
Each year our students and staff, as well as neighbors, are invited to participate in the City of Palo Alto 2019 May Fete Parade. This is our small, hometown parade right here in the heart of Silicon Valley. Many PAUSD students participate in the parade by way of the bands, amazing music programs, club projects that funded by PiE and PTA. Downtown University Avenue is closed that day and the nearby streets and parking lots are transformed with schools' kids, floats, marching bands, electric model cars, etc. New this year is the celebration of the 125th Birthday of City of Palo Alto. Happy Birthday! Don’t miss it. Carpool and bike.
Community News
Raíces de Mexico Annual Recital 
Saturday, May 4, 5- 7 pm, McKinley Institute of Technology, 400 Duane St, Redwood City
Founded in 1980, in East Palo Alto, Raíces de México aims to promote cultural diversity through dance, music, and art and community engagement by means of workshops and performances. More information is available on the website. Tickets for the May 4th recital are $10.
Paly Science and Engineering Summer Camp
The Palo Alto High School's Science Olympiad team sixth annual Science and Engineering Summer Camp for middle schoolers is now registering. Our regional championship-winning Science Olympiad team will run lab demonstrations and hands-on activities including crime scene analysis, dissections, engineering projects, and more!  We are offering two sessions July 8th to June 12th: a morning session (9 am to 12 pm) and an afternoon session (1:30 pm to 4:30 pm) each day at Paly. This camp is for any rising 7th through 9th graders interested in learning more about science! Up to 30 students per session. For more info and to register your child, visit our website. Questions? Email
It’s Time for a Date Night! The Night of the Robots - Gunn Robotics
Friday, May 10, 5:30-8:30 pm, Gunn Robotics Lab, Room L-5780, Arastradero Rd
The award-winning Gunn Robotics Team (GRT) is proud to collaborate with BrainVyne - LEGO® & Money Camps + Birthday Parties, to offer a fun-tastic evening for your pre-school to middle school children. Kids will build BrainVyne’s highly rated LEGO® Zoom creation and will then have a chance to tour GRT’s robotics lab and play with GRT's award winning robots, from National Competitions. Have a delightful date night while your kids enjoy pizza between building and playing with robots. A portion of the proceeds from this event will help GRT buy robotics components and supplies.  Reserve a spot now!
How to Become a Preschool Educator
Thursday, May 2, 10 am - 12 pm, Congregation Beth Am, 26790 Arastradero Rd, Los Altos Hills
This event, sponsored by the Community Equity Collaborative and Equal Start from Beth Am, is designed to give individuals interested in early learning careers an opportunity to hear what it's like to be a preschool educator or director from experienced professionals. At the last such event in Menlo Park, folks came with graduate degrees in education and psychology who were interested in switching fields but uncertain how to actually explore ECE careers. Questions? Email Dayna Chung.
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.