Thunderbird News

September 2023

What's Happening This Week:

Good evening Thunderbird families!

I hope it has been a successful start to school for everyone! Thank you for your patience in getting our monthly newsletter out. One of my goals this year is to increase communication out to parents. This will be in the form of short Friday updates/reminders and a monthly newsletter with more extensive information.

We are also in the process of updating our NEW school website where we will have information on upcoming events, pictures from past events, calendars and contact information for staff.

For those who are new to our school, let me officially welcome you and say we are glad you are here! While this is my first year as the Principal of Onaga, it is my 7th year at ONES - first as a teacher and then 2 years as the Assistant Principal prior to taking on this role as Principal. In total, this is my 22nd year with Morongo Unified School District. I started in the District as an Instruction assistant before moving into teacher, and since have taught 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 6th grades as well as being an MTSS teacher. I am excited for this new school year and the many possibilities it holds!

As we continue through our school year, we look forward to involving our families and community. Thank you to those who were able to attend the first PTO meeting yesterday. PTO is a great way to be involved in school activities throughout the year. Don't forget to complete a volunteer packet if you would like to assist with activities and classrooms during the school year.

Another great way to get involved in the decision making process of our school is through our School Site Council (SSC). By California Ed code each school is required to have a school site council that consist of both teachers and parents. Working together, the council reviews school policy and plans as well as budgetary decisions. The SSC meets once a month, currently on the last Tuesday of the month at 3:30. All member of the SSC are voted in.

We also have an English Learners advisory Council (ELAC) that, similar to SSC, meets once a month to discuss the needs of our English Learners. In the past, it was decided to combine ELAC with SSC, which will be an option this year as well.

If you are interested in nominating yourself for either councils, please email me by Wednesday, 9/20, at with your first and last name, your student's name and that you are interested in being nominated as a member of the SSC or ELAC.

Around Campus

Fruit program

This year Onaga, along with several other schools, is participating in the implementation of the California Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. The goal is to provide an opportunity to expand children's awareness and exposure to various fruits and vegetables, grown and harvested in the Coachella Valley. Students have the option of choosing a fruit or vegetable during their morning recesses.
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Onaga, along with all the other site in Morongo Unified School District, participate in PBIS - Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports. PBIS allows us to offer a a variety of interventions for students to best address their needs while also utilizing data to make whole-school decision. We also provide positive reinforces for students for showing appropriate behaviors, which you may see in our blue Totem tickets and the various prizes students may earn such as Principal for the Day, extra recess, and much more.

Based on our data, our school was awarded a Gold PBIS award for last year! This recognition is based on the observations in classroom and around campus as well as various data points, including discipline and attendance.

We look forward to continuing to work to have a positive, productive and supportive school this year!

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✏️ Assignments

Tech agreements

Students will also be bringing home a student tech agreement. Please review and send back signed. This outlines the expectations for students for using district provided technology, such as laptops.


Help your child Succeed in School - Build the Habit of Good Attendance

Student attendance is a top priority for our school. While there are always certain times that student should stay home (fever, contagious, etc.) it is important for students to come to school all day, every day.

We will be offering a variety of incentives for students for attendance, including pizza with the principal for monthly perfect attendance, weekly plinko board for prizes for those with weekly perfect attendance (see below for some of our first week's prize winners) and much more!

When students must be out, please call or email the office to let them know. Phone calls will be made from the office to clear absences as well as letters being sent home for excessive absences and tardies.

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🗓 Important Dates

Saturday School

Saturday, Oct. 7th, 8am

Onaga Elementary School

Upcoming Dates

9/20 - Early Release Wednesday

9/26 - School Site Council. 3:30 in the library

9/29 - Last Friday of the month: Parents/guardians may drop lunch off for their child(ren)

10/3 - Fall picture day

Saturday School Schedule for the Year

If you would like your child to attend Saturday School please notify the office by Noon on Wednesday prior. We will also send out a reminder on Monday of that week. Below is a pdf with the scheduled Saturday schools for the year along with the themes.


Our PTO has their first meeting and are working on planning events during the year. Dates for upcoming meetings will be sent out soon!

PTO currently has a Onaga PTO Facebook page and Instagram page. They can be contacted directly at