Orion Gazette

April 12-April 16

School Calendar


Apr 14 Materials pick up for students in Distance Learning and Library book distribution

Apr 15 School Site Council at 4:30pm

Apr 15 Starship PTO at 7:30pm

Future Dates

May 7 No School

May 31 Memorial Day No School

June 10 Last Day of School

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Principal's Message

The first two days of the school exceeded my expectations and hopes for a joyful return to school after more than one year. It has been a delight getting to know the kindergarten students for the first time and connecting with our returning students this first week.

One aspect I have always loved about my role as a principal is the opportunity to work with the students and adults. I have missed seeing your children but I have also missed working with my colleagues every day and talking to the parents. I think the adults on site are just as excited and grateful to be together again as the children.

I look forward to experiencing this with you this final trimester of the year.

Orion Parent Handbook

On-site optional student COVID19 testing for students begins April 19.

Parents must first register their child at:

Next, return the signed consent form:

  • English - consent form Spanish -
  • Grades 3-5 will test during the school day under the supervision of an adult
  • Grades k-2 drop-in COVID19 testing MONDAYS only with parent/guardian at the MUB on Ave del Ora during the following times: 8:45-10:00 OR 1:00-2:30 pm. We cannot accept drop-in during another other time due to limited staffing

Allies Agains Racism -Tune in on during the Wednesday assemblies this month

The Orion community cares about the well-being of each and every member of our community and is committed to diversity, inclusion, and equity. We call upon everyone to support anti-racism and stand in solidarity with our Asian-American community.

Last Wednesday students learned a common language and tools to identify racism and started the conversation about what it means to be an Ally Against Racism.

We learned about labels and how people label each other by physical characteristics.

We supply students with the tools they need to grow in healthy ways. Soul Shoppe has developed a program that gives kids (and grown-ups) the self-awareness and social skills to navigate complex issues like racism with more confidence and consideration. We continue our partnership with Soul Shoppe is an online program “Allies Against Racism,” which is a powerful way for schools and families to both begin and deepen their conversations around racism.

Starting on April 7, students will engage in interactive lessons. On April 14, our assembly is specifically dedicated to addressing Anti-Asian Racism with a live facilitator. Check out a preview of the content:


School Site Council

Thursday, April 15th, 4:30-6pm

This is an online event.

All are welcome to attend and listen to the school site council each month. The purpose of the School Site Council is to review, modify, and evaluate the annual Single Plan for Student Achievement.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 885 0436 9800
Passcode: orion1
One tap mobile
+16699006833,,88504369800#,,,,*644051# US (San Jose)

Agenda 4.15 Orion School Site Council

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Starship Update

PTO Special Listening Sessions: Courageous Conversations

Before break, we hosted a Courageous Conversation on Anti-Asian racism. Racism is a prevalent and continually traumatic experience for communities of color within our society and within our school. It is our duty to show up to participate in creating ways of interacting that are not hurtful, as difficult as it is sometimes to sit with the discomfort of difficult topics, and hear other’s truth’s that are difficult to hear. The start to healing and moving forward with safe spaces is to make room to hear each other's stories, which every group on campus has.

The next series of conversations are on the topic of the school merger, which was difficult and painful for all. Every community on campus will have an opportunity to share their perspective and their story. The goal of these courageous conversations are to move us in a positive direction to help us take action in creating a productive place for our children to learn.

You are invited to attend the following special listening sessions.

7-8pm Topic: What has been your experience with the schools merging?

Tuesday, April 20 -- From the perspective of the Mandarin Immersion Program families

Tuesday, May 4 -- From the perspective of the original Orion School families

Tuesday, May 18 -- From the perspective of the original John Gill School families (English program)

Tuesday, June 1 -- From the perspective of the current teachers and staffMulticultural Evening: Kenyan Cooking Class and Baobab juice tasting April 17th: 5-7pm Sign up today! https://www.givesignup.org/TicketEvent/ExploreKenyanCuisineCultureMusic

Josephine Rukaria, will introduce you to Kenyan cuisine, giving you step-by-step instructions to make a complete meal from scratch! In this interactive experience from her home in Kenya, Josephine will share links to music from Kenya and share stories and facts about her country, as she teaches you how to prepare authentic and delicious dishes, using techniques from her family's own recipes. The cooking class will close with a delicious juice tasting with Terrange Juices.

Starship PTO will have packaged ingredients available for pick-up or delivery on Wed. 4/14. Ingredient Sign up has been extended to Thursday 4/16. However, if you do not need ingredients or drinks, tickets will be available through the day of the event!.

Get your tickets! https://www.givesignup.org/TicketEvent/ExploreKenyanCuisineCultureMusic

Multicultural Activities:

Check out the beautiful Maasai Mara and elephant chalk mural on the wall under the MUB created by Redwood City’s legendary Chalk Granny this weekend! Please do not touch the mural as chalk is delicate and we’d like the mural to last until the end of our multicultural study this year. We hope these walls can be used for all our special events (Author-Illustrator, Lunar New Year, etc.) in the future. Enjoy!

This week we have 2 exciting projects coming home with students. A canvas print project and ugali cooking project. Materials distribution will be Wednesday, April 14th.

Past projects and Assemblies:

Cheza Nami Assembly

Egg Carton Mancala Game Instructions: https://youtu.be/tsWbDdbkfxA

YouTube How to Play Mancala: https://youtu.be/-A-djjimCcM

Please remind your students to complete their sunset banner, Maasai necklace and landscape project!

Maasai Mara Banner Flag: https://youtu.be/1F01h74ovJw

Maasai Paper Plate Necklace: https://youtu.be/D4AJ1mELOew

Kenya Landscape project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KPn6xuGAmjg

Tour of Kenya Presentation

PTO meeting This Thursday April 15th 7:30pm

Paypal Link for Donations: https://www.paypal.com/us/fundraiser/charity/2207235

The PTO is planning school-wide program goals for the 2021-2022 school year. Thank you for filling out last week's funding survey. The community has provided input and this will be shared at the next PTO meeting this Thursday on April 15th.

All parents are encouraged to attend. Please remember that all parents, teachers, and staff are members of Starship, and we need to hear everyone's voice.

We will vote to approve next year’s budget at the May PTO meeting.

4.15 Agenda


Join Zoom Meeting


Meeting ID: 981 3137 6573

Passcode: 757527

One tap mobile

+16699009128,,98131376573#,,,,*757527# US (San Jose)

+13462487799,,98131376573#,,,,*757527# US (Houston)

Dial by your location

+1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)

Meeting ID: 981 3137 6573

Passcode: 757527

Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/adnQ7XfpWa

LIBRARY: Next Pick up is April 14th!

K/1 Book request form: Please sign up here and Librarian Cristina will pack some books for your student.


Bibliocarro request: If you would like books delivered please sign up here


Any questions or issues relating to BiblioCarro, please email Krissie Rice at krissie.h.rice@gmail.com.


What did you do this month? The yearbook will be comprised of pictures we send Renee of this unforgettable year. School at home is still school. Send us pictures of you and your kids and pod did this month! yearbook@orionschool.org

Week 3 2021- Familias Unidas Virtual Classes

Familias Unidas

Our families continue to inspire us and each other! We continue to have high attendance and engagement during our workshops. Even after a full year of zoom meetings parents are still excited to connect as they are receiving valuable and actionable information regarding available resources. Families recognized the district's effort to make a safe return for all the students. Parents have shared how happy their children felt to be in their school environment. We are so proud as they continue to support their families as best they can and continue to thrive during this ever-changing time.

This week our families continued to work with a growth mindset and worked on number sense, the foundation of math by using everyday objects. Students develop number sense when they connect whole numbers and fractions with their own real-life experiences.

The families' dedication and hard work can be seen in this week's video.

We are so thankful for your continued support of Familias Unidas!

Familias Unidas Team

Free 1:1 Tutoring Opportunity via Zoom for Orion Students

Free one-on-one tutoring for elementary and middle school students via Zoom! SmashHigh is a non-profit dedicated to instilling a passion for learning within students. Our tutors are all qualified high schoolers from your local community! Sign up here. in English and Spanish: here

Flyers are attached below.