Vista Views

October 17, 2018

Principal's Message


Alta Vista will be joining over 9 million people in California and nearly 21 million worldwide who will be practicing earthquake preparedness on Thursday. At 10:18, an announcement will let students and staff know that we are participating in an earthquake drill. Students will be instructed to "Drop, Cover, and Hold On". The drill will be conducted without alarms to allow teachers to use this as an learning moment. I encourage you to discuss earthquake safety at home and develop a family plan in the event of emergency.

Here are some resources that you might find interesting, informative, and even fun: - USGS website with information and activities for students of all ages. - A FEMA booklet that is intended for classroom use, but provides excellent suggestions for preparing for the next quake. - An American Red Cross website that includes links to help you assemble an emergency preparedness kit and develop an home evacuation plan.

As the experts tell us, it's not a matter of if, but when, an earthquake will strike the Bay Area. By planning now, we can be sure that we are prepared at home, at school, and at work.

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DROP where you are, onto your hands and knees. This position protects you from being knocked down and also allows you to stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby.

COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand • If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it • If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall • Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs

HOLD ON until the shaking stops. • Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts • No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands.


Congratulations to Leighton O. for walking the most laps for the girls during the 2018-2019 Monster Dash, with 80 laps! Congratulations to Ayoub Y. and Milan S. who walked the most laps for the boys AND broke the Alta Vista Walk-a-Thon overall record of most laps ever walked, with 111 laps! Wow!

Thank you, Kassie Gray for chairing the 2018-2019 Monster Dash and to the entire Walk-a-thon committee and all of the volunteers, who made the event a huge success.

Currently we are at 90% of our goal of raising $60,000. The event may be over, but you may still submit donations and earn prizes for your student, until 3pm on October 29th. Fifth Graders may raise the $325 (plus $40 registration fee) they need for Science Camp by collecting tax-deductible donations by 3 pm October 29th.

Register and Donate Here:

Why Fundraise?

The Walk-a-Thon is a SUPER fun family event and Alta Vista Home & School Club’s (AVHSC) biggest fundraiser of the year! The profits from your donations and pledges go DIRECTLY back to the students by providing enrichment programs for our students that supplement the school’s core curriculum, such as Art Vistas, Clay, Chorus, Drama, Music, Cornerstone, PE, organized lunchtime activities, assemblies, field trips – and more! Your donations also help sponsor fun family events throughout the year, including Back-to-School Movie Night, Multicultural Night, and Fantasy Faire.

We are only able to do all of this because of the participation and support from our parents, students, and community. THANK YOU!

The Walk-a-Thon Committee


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More and more of our online student programs are using Sign in with Google instead of usernames and passwords. This is very easy and convenient when the students are at school on their Chromebooks but at home it can create challenges. Here are tips for logging in at home:

  • Use the Chrome browser

  • Sign in to Chrome with the student's school Google account

    • Click the box in the top, right corner of the Chrome window or click the People menu then Add Person

  • Now the student should be able to use the Sign in with Google function like at school. There will also be access to the homepage (Symbaloo) and bookmarks that are used at school.


On Sunday, Mrs. Yates will be working with our Alta Vista Girl Scout Troop to kick-off our new Garden Club. From 3:30 to 5:00, they will be cleaning up and preparing the area so that it's ready for our new Garden Club on Tuesday. We would love to have some additional help, so bring your enthusiasm (and tools, if you have them) to the Alta Vista garden on Sunday!


The California Department of Education has declared this as Digital Citizenship Week. Union School District has partnered with Common Sense Media to provide a scope and sequence of lessons across each grade level. The topics range from conducting safe internet searches to showing respect online. Common Sense Media also has some valuable resources to continue the conversation at home. Visit to learn more about online privacy, cyberbullying, learning with tech and more.


Join us on Tuesday, October 23rd from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Golfland! What better way to spend Family Night (no homework night) than mini golfing with your family and friends! 50% of the fees for all rounds of golf purchased by Alta Vista families and friends will be donated back to the school. Save the date and keep a lookout for more details!


As you begin planning and purchasing Halloween costumes, please keep the following guidelines in mind:

  • No weapons or excessive gore are allowed.
  • Masks may only be worn during the parade and cannot interfere with a student's vision.
  • Costumes must be appropriate for school - free from offensive images and language.
  • Students should be able to fully participate in the rest of the school day, this includes having shoes that are safe for outdoor play. Bulky costumes may need to be removed if it interferes with classroom learning.
  • Please contact your child's teacher or the office with any questions.


Is there an aspiring chef at your house? Students can showcase their skills and creativity by participating in the upcoming Future Chefs culinary competition with Cambrian, Los Gatos, Saratoga and Union School Districts. The first step is to submit an entry form with your favorite Fiesta Fit - Healthy Mexican recipe by January 18 to be in the running to compete in a live competition at Union Middle School on March 12, 2019. Students can check in the cafeteria or ask the office for entry forms and more details.


Looking for extracurricular activities for your child? Information about organizations offering after school activities can be found under "Activities" on the the Alta Vista website. Click here to visit the page.



Union School District is hosting parent sessions lead by Table Talk Math author John Stevens. These sessions will provide ideas and strategies for initiating authentic, math-based conversations with your child to spark their curiosity and see how math connects to the world around them. All three of the sessions will cover the same topics and are open to all Union School District parents. We hope you can join us!

  • Morning Session: October 23rd, 10:00-11:00 am
    Union Middle School - Library
    2130 Los Gatos Almaden Road
    To register go to:
  • Afternoon Session: October 23rd, 1:00-2:00 am
    Union Middle School - Library
    2130 Los Gatos Almaden Road
    To register go to:
  • Evening Session: October 23rd, 5:00-6:00 pm
    Dartmouth Middle School - Library
    5575 Dartmouth Drive
    To register go to:


USD has partnered with the Santa Clara County Office of Education to offer a series of Parent Project Jr. workshops. Topics include Encouraging Positive Choices, Structuring for Success, and more. Classes begin on October 24th and space is limited. Click on the PDF at the bottom of the Vista Views for more information and a registration form.

Become a Substitute Teacher

Are you interested in making a difference in the lives of students? Then substitute teaching may be the right job for you! Union School District is seeking kind and compassionate people to join our team of substitute teachers. As a substitute, you can set your own schedule, gain valuable classroom experience, and enjoy a great source of supplemental income. If you would like to learn more about becoming a substitute teacher, please contact Lenette Solis at the District Office ( or 408-377-8010).

Moments @ Alta Vista

Coming Events

10/18 - Picture Make Up Day (TOMORROW)

10/18 - GREAT SHAKE OUT @ 10:18 A.M.

10/19 - Staff Development Day (No School)


10/23 - Alta Vista Family Night @ Golfland (NO HOMEWORK)


10/31 - HALLOWEEN PARADE @ 10:00 AM

11/5 - PARENT/TEACHER CONFERENCES BEGIN (DISMISSAL @ 1:15 - 1st through 5th Grades)