June 3, 2019 
Sequoia PTSA's weekly eNewsletter in partnership with the Sequoia High School Education Foundation
PTSA President's Message
A Bittersweet Goodbye 
Last September, I wrote about my upcoming "demotion" as a parent, from a full-time, on-site position to a remotely-located advisory role.  That's all too real now, as my nest will be an empty one as of this coming September.  I've been feeling sentimental about all these "lasts" over the past few weeks - last Sequoia band concert, last PTSA meeting, last youth orchestra rehearsal, last badminton match, last IB ceremony, and so forth.
It's bittersweet leaving this Place of Friends, which has been an integral part of my life over the past 6 years.  But I leave inspired, as I've had the privilege of watching and working with a remarkable group of dedicated teachers, staff members and administrators, and supported by a powerful company of volunteers who strives to make a difference in the lives of the students and families in our Sequoia community.  I hope to run into you around town or at some of those amazing Sequoia events I know I won't be able to resist returning to enjoy.
Congratulations to all our Sequoia graduates, students and parents alike.  Whether you are moving on from Sequoia or returning next year, I hope you all have a wonderful and restful summer. 
In gratitude,
Erika Pretell 
Urgent - We Need Your Help at Staff Appreciation Luncheon This Wednesday! 

This is our final opportunity to recognize our teachers and staff before summer!  The Staff Appreciation Luncheon is on Wednesday, June 5, 2019 and we still need lots of help at the event.  Sign Up to help set up or serve lunch to our dedicated team at Sequoia.  We also still need a few bite-size desserts and candy to be donated.  We would like to show our full appreciation for a fantastic school year, so let us rally to the finishing line!
Thank you for helping the PTSA deliver this much deserved luncheon; we cannot do this without your help.  Please contact Jenn DiGrande with any questions or call 650-291-0884.
Help Us Get to $600,000 for Additional College Counseling and Reduced Class Sizes in 2019-20!

Gifts to SHSEF make a difference in the lives of our 2,100 students.  We made our initial goal of $525K but am making a final appeal towards a stretch goal of $600,000 to expand our college counseling services and create smaller class sizes for our students.
Thank you to all who continue to support our mission with your donations.

Attention Seniors and Families: Get Your Alumni Association Grad Year Special Membership Offer Now 

graphic Join the Sequoia H. S. Alumni Association for the price of your grad year -- just $20.19 (instead of the usual $50).  This lifetime membership will allow you to follow your fellow grads, read about Sequoia events, get information on reunions and other activities, etc.  (The Grad Year Special ends Aug. 15, 2019 )
What a great gift idea for the graduating senior!  To obtain a 2019 Grad Year Special Membership Form, email SHSAA or call 650-592-5822 .

Last Chance to Help at Grad Week Activities - Only 17 Spots Left!

Thank you to all who have donated and signed up for the many roles that need to be filled.  We are almost there!  We need a few more fruit donations and the last few BBQ spots filled for the BBQ lunch and brunch on Thursday.  Please check out the sign-up sheet to see if you can help fill one of the remaining time slots.
Senior parents: 2019 Grad Week activities inclue:
  • BBQ lunch on Wednesday, June 5
  • Brunch on Thursday, June 6
  • Grad Night cruise on Friday, June 7

Non-Senior parents: Four chaperones needed

We have two thirds of our required chaperones for the Grad Night cruise but need four more.  Gather  your group of friends and enjoy a night out on the SF Bay (including a free midnight dinner!) from late Friday evening, June 7 through early Saturday morning.  Get an inside view of what your student will be doing on their own Grad Night.  Click on the June 7 tab for this opportunity.

Junior Families: Donate Drinks, Donuts and/or Help at 2019 Graduation Concession Booth
Thanks to all who have signed up so far.  Graduation Day is a few days away and we are still in need of a few items and a few helping hands.  We are still a little short on a few items: bottled water, Snapple, juice boxes, coffee, and cake donuts.  
All concession profits will go toward funding the Class of 2020's graduation activities, and we need your help for it to be as successful as possible!  Please sign up to donate items to this event or to help sell.
Hand Out Diplomas to Sequoia Grads on Their Big Day!

If you don't have a student graduating this year and would be willing to lend a hand to help make the ceremony on Friday, June 7, 2019 go smoothly, please sign up to hand out diplomas.  Sequoia's graduation ceremony is always a joyful and moving experience, so here's your chance for a sneak peak at what is in store for your future grad.  Thank you from Mr. Uhalde and Ms. Ignaitis!

Hand Out Diplomas 
15 volunteers needed - 9 more spots available
11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Last Week to Help Check-in End-of-Year Textbooks

We need your help with scanning-in the tidal wave of textbooks during the last week of school.  Depending on teachers' schedules, we may also need "runners" who can go to classrooms to help scan books.  Additional tasks may include sorting, boxing and/or shelving books along with whatever other Media Center tasks arise in real-time.  Thanks in advance for "going with the flow"!

Shifts will be from 8:30 - 10:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. through Friday, June 7, 2019

Refreshments will be provided to thank volunteers for supporting our successful new Media Center during the school year!

Would You Like to Host a Foreign Exchange Student in Fall?
~ Education and cultural exchanges create prospects and open new horizons.

German exchange students and their hosts during their week at Sequoia last fall.

In 2009, Sequoia High School and Kopernikus School in Freigericht, Germany, agreed on a German-American partnership for students of both countries following ten prior German-American encounters.  This fall, a group of motivated German students and their two teachers from Kopernikus School will be visiting the Bay Area once again.  While their first week will mostly include seeing the famous sights in and around the Bay Area, the second week is focused on attending pre-arranged visits with a variety of companies and organizations on the SF Peninsula, while living with Sequoia's host families ( September 29th to October 7th).  These German students range in age between 16 and 17 years and are carefully screened by the German school staff.  They are interviewed, and must submit a teacher recommendation to be awarded a spot on the program.

The main objective of the partnership is the integration of students into the everyday life of host families in order to provide a coherent intercultural experience for each of them.  We are looking for Sequoia High School students and their families who will give these European high school students a true cultural experience that only a home-stay can provide.  Hosting and being hosted is an enriching opportunity for both the student and the family!

The first step toward becoming a host family is to email German teacher Thorsten Weitzel for more information.

Mark Your Calendars
Freshman Ice Cream Social on August 12, 2019

Welcome to all our 2019-20 incoming students and families.  The PTSA would like to invite all incoming families for an informal meet and greet on Monday, August 12, 2019.  Please join us on the front lawn of the school between 5:30 - 7:00 p.m.

Whether this is your first time at Sequoia, a returning family, or a current one, this ice cream social is a wonderful opportunity to meet other Sequoia families and catch up with each other before the start of the new school year.

We look forward to seeing many new and familiar faces on August 12, 2019!
Sequoia's 13th Annual Alumni Picnic is on August 17, 2019

Be sure to save the date for the 13th Annual Sequoia High School Alumni Association's "Celebrate Sequoia" picnic, catered by Emergency BBQ. The event will be held on Saturday, August 17, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on the beautiful Sequoia campus.

Activities include: campus tours, Sequoia Choir, and cheer performances; a Purple Patriot award recognition for Sequoia parent volunteer Lisa Hane and aquatic program volunteers Dave Knochenhauer, Larry and Jeff Rice, all individuals who have significantly benefited Sequoia High School; a vintage car display.

All Sequoians are welcome (alumni, students, parents, staff, PTSA, Boosters, Education Foundation, and community members).  Tickets are $35 per person.  A limited number of
tickets will be available at the door at $40 per person.  Reservations are due by August 14
and may be made online, by calling (650) 592-5822, or by e-mail.
Sequoia Highlights
Congratulations to All 290 IB Seniors! 
IB students walked the stage to accept special graduation stoles for their participation in the program.

Two hundred and ninety Sequoia seniors challenged themselves with one or more IB classes during their tenure at Sequoia, and 58 students will earn the full International Baccalaureate Diploma.  Last Thursday evening, they were all celebrated by their friends, families, and teachers.  Every student walked across the Carrington stage, announced their post-graduation plans, then received special graduation stoles, a sweet remembrance, and handshakes from Sequoia dignitaries.  Students returned to the stage to thank the many teachers who inspired and pushed them along the way.  IB English and TOK teacher Justine Rutigliano spoke on taking the lessons of lifelong learning out into the world, and four IB students pronounced why "We Are IB."  Two students earned the Creativity, Action, and Service Scholarships for doing and thinking, and seven students earned Marlyn Bussey IB Scholarships for exemplifying the IB spirit.  Diego De Nault and Ximena Sanchez Martinez earned distinguished scholarships from the California Association of World Schools. 

Thanks to the many people who helped make the night a success.  IB Coordinator Lisa McCahon served as emcee for the night and the Powell Foundation funded the stoles.  Culinary students prepared a delicious spread of reception foods, while Leadership students greeted, and Photography students documented the night.  Katie Hansen and Serena Stephens produced the artwork.  Lastly, we couldn't have done it without the dedicated group of parent volunteers who made the night possible: Glenn Bugos, Kelly Bugos, Dianne Stephens, Grace Schultz, Jayne Sungail, Linda Burt, Nancy Bender, Jasmin Peccei, Jenn Bulka, and Dana De Nault.

In This Issue

June 3 - 6  
Final Exams 
Wednesday, June 5 
4:00 - 9:00 p.m.
HCA Senior Awards Night, 
Thursday, June 6  
Last Day of School 
Friday, June 7
10:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Graduation Ceremony 

Friday, June 7
8:00 p.m. - past midnight 
Grad Night,
Hornblower Cruises, SF  
Monday & Tuesday,  
June 10 & 11 
12:00 - 1:00 p.m. 
College Boot Camp, Rm. 128 

Quick Links
Last Few Days to Buy Your Grad Cruise Tickets 
Visit the PTSA store
  to purchase your Grad Night Cruise tickets today!   
Find out all about grad activities here
Sequoia Sentinel
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 Parent Education

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Happy Summer!  SUHSD Parent Education Series will resume in Fall 2019.