February 4, 2019  

Sequoia PTSA's weekly eNewsletter in partnership with the Sequoia High School Education Foundation
TopPTSA President's Message
Individual + Involvement = Community + Common Good 
texture-graphic-community.jpg It's February, the month of love, so I'm going to write about something I love: Community.  It's important to me to feel part of a larger whole, so even when a group is too large for me to know all the individuals, I know we're working in trust for the common good.  My high school was more cliquish than community, so I intentionally chose a tiny college to attend.  When my children reached school-age, we signed them up to attend a small parent-participation elementary school, where community was a priority.
When it came time to send them to Sequoia for high school - I'll let you in on a secret - I didn't feel the love in the beginning.  I felt overwhelmed by the size of the student body, teachers and staff.  I didn't know where to turn with my questions and was mystified about how to know in advance when meetings were scheduled. 
But things soon got better after I signed up to receive the Sentinel and the daily announcements.  More than that, I got involved.  A friend encouraged me to help out in the Career and College Office once a week and eventually, I agreed to manage the IB and AP proctor sign-ups at the end of the year.  I started to know teachers, staff, and parents in a more personal way, and soon I didn't feel lost at all. 
Sequoia leadership is also making a difference by providing better programs to help new families adjust, including 8th grade tours and information programs, and a more comprehensive program for new families on the first day of school in the fall.   Do you have other suggestions for ways we can help build community and help new families feel at home at Sequoia?  I'd love to hear from you so please contact me
Speaking of community, please join us at our February PTSA general meeting tomorrow evening,
February 5, at 7:00 p.m. in the MUR.  Our featured guest speaker will be Officer David Stahler, Sequoia's School Resource Officer (our own police representative).
My best regards,
Erika Pretell
Volunteer Opportunities
You're Invited! Get Active with the PTSA for the 2019-20 School Year 
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At our February PTSA meeting this Tuesday, February 5, we will elect the nominating committee who will work to identify people to serve on the 2019-2020 PTSA board (election will be held in April and the term begins July 1, 2019).
If you are interested in taking on an exciting and rewarding volunteer role next year, or working to identify our next generation of leaders, please contact Meredith Park.
Juniors: Last Basketball Concession Fund-raiser is Friday, February 8 
Our last fund-raiser running the basketball concession booth will be on Friday, February 8.  Thank you to all who have contributed items as well as hours.  Almost all the open slots have been filled but we are still seeking a few food items, so please take a peek and consider a donation!  If you have any questions, contact  Brett Gardner.  
Still Time to Join the Mini-Grants Committee
Would you like to be on the front row to some of Sequoia's innovative educational efforts?  Consider joining our team to help with the mini-grant selection process.  If you have a few hours to review applications and meet with the committee, we would love to have you on board.  No experience is necessary, and there will be seasoned committee members assisting along the way.  This is a great opportunity for new as well as returning Sequoia parents to learn about the great projects percolating in our school!   
Our Spring meeting will be held on Wednesday, February 6 at 7:00 p.m.
Contact our Mini-Grants committee chairs, Marlena Griffin or DeeDee Clark if interested. 
Mark Your Calendars
District-wide Technology Survey - Please Participate!
logo Sequoia Union High School District recently formed a committee of all stakeholders to update and revamp our District's Technology Master Plan. The goal is to create a comprehensive, sustainable, and measurable technology plan that will meet the growing needs of all students, teachers and families.  A critical part of this process is gathering data from all parents and guardians through an online survey.  You should have received an email a few weeks ago with a link to take the survey.  Please complete it no later than this Friday, February 8.  And please remind your kids to complete the student survey, which will also provide important information.  Should you have any questions, please contact Robert Fishtrom, Director of Technology.  
Tickets Now On Sale for March 23, 2019 Crab Feed at Hiller Aviation
Don't miss out on your chance for the hottest ticket in town.   This event is even better than the Hamilton show in SF and you want to know why?  Because all proceeds will benefit Sequoia Athletics. 
  • Saturday, March 23, 2019 at Hiller Aviation Museum, San Carlos. 
  • We are still looking for volunteers to fill open positions.  Click on this link to sign up.
  • Lastly, do you have any gift cards or items that you want to donate for the Live and Silent Auction?  Please reach out to Crab Feed chairpersons, Adam Kurland, Karyn Kurland or Luisa Pauga, if you have any questions.

Purchase Your Crab Feed Ticket(s) Here  



Seniors: Save $15 B efore the 15th!
The last semester of senior year is here; have you bought a Grad Night ticket yet?  Tickets are on sale at our PTSA webstore for $70, but the price will increase to $85 on Friday, February 15.  So now is the perfect time to buy!
What is Grad Night?  It's a midnight San Francisco Bay cruise aboard the Hornblower departing the evening of Friday, June 7th and returning early Saturday morning.  The cruise includes dinner, DJ, dancing, casino games, photo booth, and more.  It's a fun event that is well-attended every year and provides a last opportunity for the Class of 2019 to celebrate together.  The ticket price includes transportation to and from San Francisco, and all activities onboard.
More information about PTSA Grad Activities can be found  here . 
Ya está aquí el último semestre de los estudiantes del grado 12. ¿Han adquirido ya las entradas para el evento "La gran noche"? Los boletos se encuentran ya a la venta en el negocio virtual de nuestro PTSA. El precio de cada boleto es $70 por persona. Pero el precio se incrementará a $85 el viernes 15 de febrero. ¡Ahora es el momento perfecto para comprar las entradas!
Que es la Fiesta Noche de Graduación? Es una celebración en un crucero alrededor de la bahía de San Francisco en el Yate Hornblower, saliendo por la noche viernes junio 7 y volviendo el sábado en la mañana temprano. El crucero incluye una cena especial, DJ, baile, juegos de casino, fotos y mucho más. Es un evento divertido y popular-la última oportunidad para que su hijo/a celebre junto con sus compañeros del grado 12.
Para obtener más información sobre las actividades del PTSA para la graduación, por favor haga clic aqui.
Register for Sequoia Dream Club's 7th Annual Conference
Dream Club's annual student conference for undocumented students and their peers will be on March 2, 2019.  Check out this flier for more information.  Please share with anyone who might be interested, especially those who work with youth and might be willing to bring a group to the conference.
A light breakfast and lunch will be provided at the event.  A free t-shirt will be given to those who register by February 14!
Awards, Grants and Scholarships
Another Shout-Out to Local Youth of the Year Winner Ximena Sanchez 
Once again, we are proud to bring attention to the accomplishments of Sequoia Senior Ximena Sanchez.  Her story was recently highlighted in the San Mateo Daily Journal and we wish her the best as she faces candidates from other parts of California in the next part of the competition. 
Last Week at Sequoia...
Media Center Cultivates a Whirlwind of Activity 
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A glimpse of the newly remodeled Media Center.
media center
Author/Playwright Gary Soto and Sequoia Media Specialist Betsy Snow at the Sequoia performance of his play, The Afterlife. 
In the middle of our moving process, we took a break today to remember why a thriving Sequoia Media Center is important.  Theater, books, art, and storytelling are all at the core of what we do!
Last week, the San Francisco Youth Theatre performed Gary Soto's play, The Afterlife, to over 500 Sequoia students in Carrington Hall.  Gary Soto himself was in attendance, as were the youth services librarians from Redwood City Public Library.
On Friday, January 25th, members of Sequoia's Book Club (students and teachers) attended a special event at the Redwood City Public Library to meet author Meg Medina and had their copies of the Book Club's current selection, "Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass" signed by the author.
It was a very literary week indeed!
Sequoia Book Club students and teachers surrounding Author Meg Medina.
In This Issue


Tuesday, February 5
7:00 p.m.
PTSA/ELAC Meeting,

Thursday, February 7
6:30 - 9:00 p.m.
Senior College Fair Night,

Saturday, February 9
9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Mock ACT,
Room 250

Wednesday, February 13
6:30 p.m.
Middle College Info Meeting,
Birch Room, SUHSD Office

February 18 - 22
Mid-Winter Break
No School

Thursday, February 21
6:30 p.m.
Middle College Info Meeting,
Birch Room, SUHSD Office

Quick Links
Help From Stanford Tutors and Assistants  on Campus  
Does your student need support in math or college related applications?  Help is available for FREE! 



3:50 - 5:10 p.m.

Room 222. (Pre-Algebra through Algebra 2)  



3:45 - 5:45 p.m.

Room 216 (Pre-Algebra through PreCalc)

3:45 - 5:00 p.m.
Room 115 (C&C Center)
Join the PTSA  Anytime!  
Visit the
  to purchase your 2018-19 PTSA membership today, and contribute to Sequoia's Unaliyi spirit and programs!
Sequoia Sentinel 
Our readers enjoy hearing about activities, events, and accomplishments of our Sequoia students, staff and community.  If you have articles to submit to the Sentinel (including photos and links), please email the article/blurb by the Thursday before publication.  See the following Guidelines for news submissions.  
Find past issues of the Sentinel at   
En Español
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 Parent Education

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Parent Ed
Lynn O'Shaughnessy
Lynn O'Shaughnessy, College Financial Expert, author of The College Solution
Winning Strategies for Finding the Right School at the Right Price
Wednesday, February 27, 2019, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.
Sequoia High School, Carrington Hall

Lynn O'Shaughnessy is a nationally recognized college expert, higher-education journalist, speaker and educator.  Her No. 1 goal is to help parents with teenagers become smart college shoppers as they search for schools.   

Sequoia Parent Education Series events are sponsored by SHSEF, Sequoia Healthcare District, and Sequoia Union High School District.
Alternate date of the same lecture sponsored by WHS PTSA, Sequoia Healthcare District, and Sequoia Union High School District as part of the Woodside Parent Education Series:
Tuesday, February 26, 2019, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.
Woodside High School, Multi-Use Room (MUR)
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Ana Homayoun 
Ana Homayoun, founder of Green Ivy Consulting, and author of The Myth of the Perfect Girl
Understanding the Culture of Perfectionism: Helping Teens Overcome a Fear of Failure and of Never Being Good Enough
Tuesday, March 5, 2019, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.
Carlmont Performing Arts Center (PAC)
With compassion and humor, author Ana Homayoun describes why so many teens - particularly in high-achievement areas like Silicon Valley - struggle with a fear of never being good enough.  She will discuss practical strategies to help teens find their own personal fulfillment, purpose, and wellness. 
Carlmont Parent Education Series events are sponsored by Carlmont PTSA, Sequoia Healthcare District, and Sequoia Union High School District.
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Parents, students, educators, and community members welcome!  Free admission and light refreshments.  Spanish interpretation will be available.
Questions?  Contact Charlene Margot, M.A., Director of The Parent Education Series .
 Community News

Calling All Female Students Interested in Exploring STEM Topics

Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) is a conference on March 16, 2019 for 6 th through 12 th grade young women curious about career opportunities in math, science, and technology.  STEM careers are fun, exciting, and rewarding, and so is EYH!  Conference participants conduct lab experiments, wire high-tech network systems, examine microscopic creatures, and design their own computer software.  Expanding Your Horizons has been held at Skyline College annually since 1980, with more than 35,000 young women attending. 

Expanding Your Horizons at Skyline College has received National and State recognition. Math and science were chosen as a conference focus to help break down sex-stereotyping regarding the success of females in traditionally male-dominated careers and to provide role models and encouragement for the young women attending EYH.

Want more information and registration details?  CLICK HERE!

Classroom Reading Volunteer Opportunities at Kennedy and McKinley Middle Schools in Redwood City

logosOne hour a week is all it takes to make a difference for these kids!

You can become an important, trusted adult in these kids' lives when you make this commitment to tutor them throughout the remainder of the school year.  Training is provided and you can also shadow with one of our current volunteers before you decide.

Learn more at Los Ayudantes or contact our director, Jenni Farrell.