February 20, 2017

Sequoia PTSA's weekly eNewsletter in partnership with the Sequoia High School Education Foundation
Principal's Message
There's a small mound of grass outside of the south entrance to the newly completed A-wing.  Its dimensions are approximately 17'x17' and it gets nice exposure throughout the day.  Last week at lunch, a group of students enjoyed a break from the rain with an impromptu picnic.  "What is this mound for, Mr. Priest?" they asked.  I gestured back toward them and told them it seemed to me they had discovered it.

View of the new A-wing from the "Picnic Pad."  Photo by English teacher Emily DeVoe.

The new classroom wing has been open for learning for the past month, new home to English classes previously in adjacent modular classes and two science classes previously sharing classrooms in the main building.  Students are starting to discover its charms as an alternative setting for lunch/brunch, and foot traffic patterns have shifted significantly during passing periods between classes.

The new wing is also a temporary home to our Band, Orchestra, and Choir classes as the performing arts wing undergoes a massive (and long-overdue) renovation and upgrade.  Four of the classrooms in the A-Wing were built with retractable walls to expand into two large rooms which turned out to be a perfect solution for our transitional housing needs of our student musicians.

We were initially concerned about how the thundering timpani and a hot brass section would disrupt neighboring classes, but the new rooms are virtually sound proof.  I was surprised a few weeks ago when I visited the class to speak with Ms. Woodman about the noise and learned, only when I opened the door, the band was in full swing. The A-wing is well-built.

Measure A projects such as the A-Wing and the new performing arts wing (scheduled for completion in Spring 2018) are already changing the dynamic of our campus.  We doubled the number of student parking spots.  We also doubled the electrical capacity of the campus.  We have a new Culinary Arts classroom, the flexible learning space in Room 128, and the majestic re-imagining of the Tea Garden.  

Through our focus on collaborative spaces bridging the indoor and outdoor beauty of our campus (present from the beginning in the work of our Measure A committee),  Sequoia's Unaliyi now cuts a strong swath from El Camino to Elwood.

Have a great week!

Math Class Projects Tool
In the Fall Mini-Grants Program, math teacher Laura Luttrell was awarded a grant to purchase a paper cutter to help with class projects.  Ms. Luttrell writes:

"The Algebra 2/Trig team makes a lot of materials for hands-on lessons, which requires lots of cutting/laminating, etc.  This helps us ensure we can re-use the materials year to year.  The paper cutter has already been extremely useful, as we only had one in the copy room for the whole school.  The paper cutter makes creating materials much quicker and accessible."  

PTSA Mini-Grants are funded by the Sequoia High School Education Foundation

SUHSD Sequitur
Have you read the February issue of the Sequoia Union High School District's newsletter?  View the February Sequitur here.

The SHSEF 2016-17 Campaign Is Still Underway
The suggested donation is $1,000 per student, but ALL donations help us reach our goals.

Thank You to all those who have donated! 
We couldn't do it without you!

What programs are important to you?   Campus visits?   
Technology in the classroom?  
Reduced class sizes?   Let us know!

As part of our strategic planning process, we would like your input.  Please  click here  to take our Community Survey.

Only 2 Weeks Before the Sequoia Crab Feed!
Time is running out, purchase your tickets today!    Join us at the Crab Dinner & Auction on Saturday, March 4th at Redwood City's American Legion Hall. All proceeds benefit the Sequoia sports program and provide essential equipment, transportation, uniforms, and more for our student athletes!

Aside from the delicious all-you-can-eat crab dinner including pasta with homemade sauce, salad, bread and dessert, plus free beer and wine while supplies last, there are tons of incredible auction items available!  This year we are offering a cozy cabin in Bear Valley close to a lake, a West Shore Tahoe cabin and tickets to all your favorite sporting events like the San Francisco 49ers, Giants and Club Level Warrior tickets to name a few.

Join in the fun and support Sequoia sports at:

"Tartuffe" This Weekend
Sequoia High School's winter comedy, Jean Baptiste Moliere's "Tartuffe," performs in Carrington Hall on February 24 & 25 at 7 PM and February 26 at 3 PM . The Sunday Matinee is the drama program's annual scholarship performance, with all proceeds going towards scholarships for SHS theater students.  Tickets are available at .  

Summer Opportunity: IB World Student Conference
If your student is going to take an IB class next year, check out this awesome summer opportunity:

IB offers a conference for students focused on a theme called the IB World Student Conference (IBWSC). Students from around the world come together to explore the topic, hear from guest speakers, develop international understanding, create action plans and build leadership skills. This year's conference options are:

University of Rochester, July 30th-August 5th: 
Theme: "Defining and defying boundaries: Many real-world issues such as digital privacy, human migration, the exclusive nature of political participation or the viral spread of disease prove that boundaries defy easy definition. Students will hear from experts and collaborate with IB peers to take an interdisciplinary approach to addressing the notion of boundaries in their own communities, specifically as pertains to negotiating boundary conflicts."

King's College London, UK, August 6 - August 12: Theme: "Well-being in a healthy world: personal responsibility and global health: Students will have the opportunity to engage in an intellectually vibrant learning environment with fellow IB students from around the world as they explore and discuss how our individual actions define ourselves, affect our mind and body and impact the health of people across the globe, with a focus on how we can work together to improve the well-being of the world's most vulnerable people."

Eligibility: Any student who will be enrolled in an IB class during the 2017-18 school year is eligible for the 2017 IBWSCs. Current 10th and 11th graders.
Student Registration Fee: The early-bird registration fee is $875 until March 1st. After that, the regular registration fee is $975. On June 1st the late registration fee is $1075. The fee covers housing on campus, food, transportation from the local airport on arrival day and back to the airport on departure day, and all conference programs and related activities. It does not cover travel cost to the conference.
Parents/Guardians Interested In Attending: IB allows parents to attend as an observer. The registration fee for adult observers is $400. This covers all conference meals, transportation to and from the airport and all conference programs and related activities. It does not include accommodations.


SCHOLARSHIPS ARE AVAILABLE FOR LOW INCOME STUDENTS: See Ms McCahon. Scholarship application due by March 1st.

For Seniors: Grad Night Tickets 
Grad Night tickets are on sale now for $65 -- the price will be going up at the end of February!  Right now, your student can secure his or her spot with their classmates for a night to remember onboard a Hornblower Yacht, cruising around the SF Bay.  Included with the ticket price is transportation to and from the event, a buffet dinner onboard, fun games, a DJ and dancing, photo booth and more.  

Click here to purchase a ticket for your student today. Donations for Grad Week are also welcome and appreciated.

In This Issue
Mon, Feb. 20-Tue, Feb. 21
President's Holiday - No school

Wednesday, Feb. 22
Traditional Monday schedule

Feb. 24 & 25 at 7 PM, 
Feb. 26 at 3 PM
Winter Play - Tartuffe , Carrington Hall ( tickets here )

Mon, Feb. 27
Collab Day

Saturday, March 4
6 PM - Booster Club Crab Feed, American Legion Hall

Tuesday, March 7 
 7 PM - PTSA Meeting with Reflections artists reception, MPR

Thursday, March 16
7 PM - Open House and IB Senior Art Show

Friday, March 17
Minimum Day

7 PM - Talent Show, Carrington Hall

Deadline to apply for Middle College

Friday, March 31
Cesar Chavez Day observed - No school
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Community News

Latina Youth Leadership Conference
Saturday, March 4th, 9 AM-3:30 PM, Stanford University

Calling all Latina high school and middle school students: Please join us for the Latina Youth Leadership Conference (LYLC) at Stanford University on Saturday, March 4, 2017 from 9-3:30 PM. LYLC provides a safe, fun and educational environment where young Latina leaders can learn and grow. The conference will provide the opportunity for young women to interact with others from their community. Participants will have the opportunity to learn about issues affecting teens and to discover solutions that will empower them to succeed. 

The conference is completely FREE for all middle school and high school students and is meant to provide Latinas the opportunity to discuss issues affecting women, to establish academic goals, and to learn more about pathways to college. Lunch will be provided! 

If you know any students who would benefit from the conference, please invite them to attend! Additional information and the link to register can be found at   For more information, please contact Karen Camacho: