Season's Greetings,

While engaging in acts of kindness and showing compassion is a year-round endeavor, the holidays are an especially good time to show appreciation and help others. During this season of giving, we are highlighting the variety of ways our students express thanks, make a difference in the lives of others, and give back to their community. This holiday edition of our e-newsletter gives you an inside peek at some of their efforts. As you will see, altruism is alive and well in each of our schools.
On behalf of the Cypress School District and the Board of Trustees, we wish you and your family peace and joy this holiday season!

Anne Silavs, Superintendent
Arnold Students Express Gratitude to U.S. Veterans
In addition to supporting Toys for Tots in December, students at A.E. Arnold Elementary School honored their U.S. military family members in November and acknowledged all those, both past and present, who have served in the Armed Forces. During the school's annual Veterans Day assembly, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Girl Scouts presented the colors while the band from Lexington Junior High School played the national anthem. PTA provided a flag for every student, and parent Jeremy Cisneros explained to the student body the reasons for celebrating Veterans Day and honoring those who have sacrificed on our behalf. In recognition of their service, the first grade class declared all of our veterans Super Heroes of the Month!
A Season of Service at King
The Student Advisory Committee at Clara J. King Elementary School chose to support a local food bank this holiday season. The student body was charged with collecting nonperishable boxes of macaroni and cheese to be included in holiday food baskets for distribution throughout the community. Their intention was to collect an average of one box per student enrolled at school - a goal of 540 boxes. Well, when those King Cougars put their minds to something, they are unstoppable! Students collected nearly 600 boxes and, in the process, discovered how rewarding it can be to serve others. As one student advisor who organized the activity summed it up, "Every box we collected is going to someone in need. It feels great to know that we're helping people!"
Landell Leopards Supporting Others in Orange County and Beyond
The Student Council at Margaret Landell Elementary School helped organize a number of schoolwide service projects this year. These projects included raising money for victims of Hurricane Harvey, sending over 375 pounds of Halloween Candy to U.S. troops overseas, and collecting over 1,700 pounds of food to donate to the OC Food Bank for holiday meals. While the Landell student body participates in many service projects annually, Student Council is always looking for new opportunities to serve the community, which is how a toy drive came to be part of the school's holiday activities this year. Having spent two Christmases in the Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) when she was younger, the school's Student Council President worked with the other officers to launch this new campaign. The outpouring of support from the Landell community was impressive, and students were very excited by the number of new toys they were able to send to CHOC this year. Students hope in some small way they were able to lift spirits and bring smiles to the children and families at CHOC. 
Luther Students Demonstrate HOPE!
Students at Steve Luther Elementary School recently held a food drive to benefit H.O.P.E., Helping Other People Everyday. This local organization assists families in need by providing food, clothing, infant supplies, and small household goods. Luther students helped fill holiday baskets by gathering nonperishable food items, such as canned meat and dry cereal.  In just four short days, Luther students successfully collected nine full boxes of food. Under the leadership of Student Council officers Julianne Rosas and Mikayla Luu, Luther Lions exemplified this month's character trait by "sharing" with those less fortunate than themselves. We are very proud of our students for their compassion and commitment to supporting others in our local community. 
Morris Mustangs Making an IMPACT
IMPACT is a philanthropic club at Juliet Morris Elementary School. The club is comprised of upper-grade students whose mission is to help others, and that is exactly what they've been doing! This fall IMPACT worked with Heartfelt Cardiac Projects, a nonprofit organization, to promote youth screening and help prevent sudden cardiac arrest. During the holiday season, IMPACT sponsored a schoolwide food drive to support needy families and collected new socks to give to local homeless shelters and other charitable organizations. On so many levels, Morris Mustangs are making a difference in people's lives.
Vessels Bulldogs Remember Others this Holiday Season
Each year, the students, families, and staff at Frank Vessels Elementary School participate in a fall philanthropic project, and this year was no exception. Vessels partnered with two nonprofit organizations and collected new socks and hot cocoa mixes to provide warmth this holiday season to those in need. The items were donated to H.O.P.E., which distributes holiday food baskets, and to a local veterans' organization, which provides warm, clean socks for homeless veterans and their families. Representatives from both organizations accepted the donations and expressed appreciation to the school community for its support during the monthly flag ceremony. These projects are a tangible reminder of the good that can come from a concerted effort to help others. Go Bulldogs!
Candi Kern   .  Sandra Lee   .  Donna McDougall   .  Brian Nakamura   .  Lydia Sondhi, Ph.D.