Orion Gazette

April 16-April 23

School Calendar


April 20 7:00pm Courageous Conversations PTO sponsored special listening session Zoom

April 23. 9-10:30am Mandarin Immersion Advisory via zoom

April 28 at 8:15am-8:50am Principal Coffee

Future Dates

May 7 No School

May 31 Memorial Day No School

June 10 Last Day of School

COVID19 Testing Information

Orion Parent Handbook

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

  • April 19th & 20th
  • **April 26th & 27th
  • May 10th & 11th
  • May 24th & 25th
  • June 7th & 8th

Parents must first register their child at:

Next, return the signed consent form at drop off Monday if you have not yet done it.

  • 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

Mandarin Immersion Advisory

Friday, April 23rd, 9-10:15am

This is an online event.

Please join us for a Mandarin Literacy Presentation by Principal Katherine Rivera, Instructional Coach Winnie Wong, and special Guest Ms. Pearl You from https://www.youbilingualedu.com/

The purpose of the MI Advisory Committee is to provide input in the strengthening of the MI program in the following areas:

  • Provide input to develop cultural community-building events that make MI unique

  • ​Provide input to develop a vision for the development of the program

  • Recruitment of students for future classes

Join Zoom Meeting https://rcsdk8-net.zoom.us/j/81197271401?pwd=NHJoUStJdHBuc29BWXVtU25FYkJ5Zz09 Meeting ID: 811 9727 1401 Passcode: orion1

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.

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 staff

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/94588732118?pwd=OERBak5rVGpZZ3FJbk1UdWQ4cFhJUT09 Meeting ID: 945 8873 2118 Passcode: 045829Multicultural Evening: Kenyan Cooking Class and Baobab juice tasting April 17th: Thank you to everyone who signed up for this fantastic class. We raised $2,000 and we are all looking forward to a great evening this weekend.

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! 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 2 exciting projects came home with students. A canvas print project and ugali cooking project. Please pick up your materials if you haven’t done so.

Canvas pattern project


Next week’s assembly will include a presentation about Dr. Wangari Mathai. Dr Wangarĩ Muta Maathai was a Kenyan social, environmental, and political activist and the first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize for her monumental efforts in starting the Green Belt Movement.

PTO Budget and Fundraising

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 results were reviewed at last week’s PTO meeting and a proposal for next year will be shared soon.

Budget Presentation

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


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

Past Multicultural 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