December 14, 2018
SVUSD Offering
Full Day Kindergarten in 2019-2020

The Saddleback Valley Unified School District (SVUSD) is excited to announce that Full Day Kindergarten will be offered at all SVUSD elementary school sites beginning in the 2019-2020 school year. In addition to our current rigorous kindergarten program, Full Day Kindergarten increases time for research based instruction on both developmental and social skills. SVUSD Superintendent, Dr. Crystal Turner, shares, “Trying to fit in all that needs to be taught, both academically and developmentally in only half a day of instruction is difficult. Full Day Kindergarten offers teachers more time to meet student needs and has been an ongoing request from our parent community. We appreciate the collaboration with our teachers and value the partnership between SVUSD and the Saddleback Valley Educators Association that allowed for the creation of this opportunity for all kindergarten students in the 2019-2020 school year!” The offering of Full Day Kindergarten is the latest example of how the Saddleback Valley Unified School District continues to fulfill its mission of “SV Innovates”, focusing on intentional lesson design and engaging strategies, supported through innovative practices. Please contact your individual school site for additional details.
Glen Yermo Elementary
Awarded Prestigious Golden Bell
Congratulations to Glen Yermo Elementary School for winning the prestigious California School Board Association (CSBA) Golden Bell! CSBA promotes excellence in education and school board governance by recognizing outstanding programs and practices of school boards throughout California. In 2018, 240 entries in 20 different categories were received. Experts from school districts and county offices of education across the state comprised the 17-member judging panel, and after site visits to verify effective implementation, selected 50 Golden Bell award winners. Glen Yermo Elementary School was one of the Golden Bell Award winners in the category, “Closing the Achievement Gap with LCAP Implementation” for their  Circle of Growth , a focused energy approach to school culture and change.

Glen Yermo’s Circle of Growth program began with a data team process focused on academics, however, when combined with a Whole Child approach, the staff was able to move from the vision of educating the whole child to sustainable, collaborative action resulting in student success. Glenn Yermo has found that nothing moves a school culture and its students forward more rapidly, more passionately, more successfully than coming together with talent, teamwork, drive, and the agreement of why… which for Glen Yermo is the whole child, keeping students at the heart of everything.  
Trabuco Hills High School Unifies the Arts

Unified Arts is a new inclusive club at THHS this year where students with and without special needs, work together in drama, performing arts, theater, music, and art. The first inclusive project this year was a Unified Performance of A Christmas Carol . Students helped with lights, music, songs, dancing, set production, costumes, hair and makeup, props, stage direction, etc.

There are over 40 students in Unified Arts this year! You will see Unified students working together on stage, singing, acting, dancing, changing sets, and behind the scenes.
The cast and crew of THHS Unified Arts
in A Christmas Carol on 12/6/18
Lobos Compete at AppJam+
Congratulations to all our Los Alisos LOBO AppJam+ students, pictured above, for competing at the AppJam+ Showcase at UCI on December 5th. Team 'Civil Coders' won 3rd place and received Kindle Fires!
Dreams for Schools is an organization established to inspire, create and educate students to be STEM literate with hard and soft skills needed to become the critical thinkers, creative leaders and technologists of tomorrow. AppJam+ is the main initiative of Dreams for Schools. On December 5, students from Los Alisos' AppJam+ after school program concluded their session with a showcase finale at UCI. The 24 participating students worked on building their game apps for 10 weeks. With the help of UCI mentors, they devoted a total of 40 hours to creating their apps. Students used their coding skills to collaborate in groups of four to build their creative, fun, game apps, along with a display poster. At the conclusion of the 10 weeks, the students competed against other schools to communicate and demonstrate how their apps work. One Los Alisos team received third place for best overall app and were rewarded with Kindle Fires! It was a great evening for students and parents.

Melinda Heights Supports
Toys For Tots at Camp Pendleton
The Marine Corps was incredibly grateful, and honored Melinda Heights with a "Red Letter," a unique formal thank-you for their support of the men and women stationed at, and deployed from, Camp Pendleton.

Last week, Melinda Heights held its annual Toy Drive. Each day, families dropped off toys at the front of the school, filling boxes upon boxes with goodies for all ages. 

On Sunday, December 9, Marines and Sailors from five different Regiments from Camp Pendleton were invited to "shop" for their children!  As part of a huge holiday party on base, children from military families played and did crafts as their parents chose a toy for each of their children.
Hour of Code 2018
As part of Computer Science Education week (December 3 - 7), promoted “Hour of Code”, intended to support teachers in every class to do at least one hour of a coding activity with their students. In SVUSD, the EdTech department started promoting this event in November, purchasing books that could be used as prize give-aways for teachers who shared that they were doing an activity. EdTech set up a Padlet board for teachers to submit their lesson ideas and for inspiration, to see what their colleagues were doing. By Friday, 12/7, there were 142 entries on the Padlet, from nearly 100 different SVUSD teachers, representing all grade levels from TK through high school.
Secondary Schools Joint
Leadership Conference
On December 10, 2018 Laguna Hills High School hosted the 3rd Annual SVUSD Intermediate Leadership Conference. ASB students from El Toro, Laguna Hills, Mission Viejo and Trabuco Hills high schools served as mentors and ran workshops with the intermediate school students. Subjects ranged from discovering leadership styles, campus recognition, spirit week, pep rallies,and community service.
Portola Hills Elementary Opens
Outdoor Learning Center

Portola Hills Elementary has opened their brand new Outdoor Learning Center (OLC). Each grade level will share a planting bed where they will learn about how a plant grows from a seed to mature plant. Students will then harvest the vegetables and eat what they have grown. 
School Psychologist,
Gabriela Eisenberg, Honored
At the December 13 Board Meeting, School Psychologist, Gabriela Eisenberg, was recognized as the recipient of the California Association of School Psychologists (CASP) Nadine Lambert Outstanding School Psychologist of the Year Award. This prestigious award officially recognizes the work of outstanding school psychologists who have demonstrated exemplary service to students, teachers, administrators, parents, community agencies, and the profession. Congratulations, Gabriela!
New SVUSD School Board
Members Sworn In
On Thursday, December 13, 2018, two newly elected SVUSD School Board Members were sworn into office. The two new members are Greg Kunath and Barbara Schulman, who were both joined by family members and friends for the momentous occasion. Welcome, Greg and Barbara!
Secondary School Choice Window
Open January 7 - February 14, 2019

The Secondary (incoming 7th-12th grade) School Choice application window will open January 7, 2019. This process is for SVUSD residents who want to transfer their student in the 2019-2020 school year to another school within SVUSD. You can apply online beginning January 7, 2019. Deadline to apply is February 4, 2019.

Please visit our website for details and FAQ's.

*Elementary School Choice window will be open March 3, 2019
SVUSD Employment Opportunities
SVUSD has an array of employment opportunities available throughout the year. The positions represent openings across the district and various divisions. All SVUSD openings can be accessed through the following EdJoin link, which is updated regularly:
Dec. 24 - Jan. 4
Jan. 7 - Feb. 14
Jan. 21
Jan. 28
Feb. 2
Winter Recess
Secondary School Choice Window
NO SCHOOL - Observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day
NO SCHOOL - District Staff Development
3rd Annual STEAM EXPO, Laguna Hills High School
Dr. Crystal Turner

Board of Trustees
Suzie R. Swartz
Vice President
Dr. Edward Wong
Amanda Morrell
Greg Kunath
Barbara Schulman
Student Board Member
Jacob Walker
               Board of Education Meeting Dates
The Saddleback Valley Unified School District Board of Trustees encourages community members to attend and participate in its business meetings whenever possible.
Closed session board business is typically conducted at 5:00 p.m. followed by open session business typically beginning at 6:00 p.m. Meetings are held in the SVUSD Education Center Board Room located at 25631 Peter A. Hartman Way, Mission Viejo.