Gunn Together Times

January 4, 2021

Greetings Titan Families,

I hope everyone enjoyed a restful and restorative winter break. School resumes on Thursday, January 7th. Please see the alternative schedule below for Thursday and Friday classes.


The Gunn staff will come together on Wednesday, January 6th (the day before your student returns) to professionally reflect, and continue to increase their repertoire of instructional strategies. The teachers I have spoken with have enthusiastically expressed their excitement at the start of the second semester. They are eager to build upon and deepen their teaching and learning relationships with students. Importantly, Gunn staff will continue to prioritize community building, this semester, recognizing the social nature of learning, and the importance of connection for teens at this time.


Thank you for your continued support for all of our teachers and staff as they work to overcome barriers and innovate. The wealth of learning that is occurring this year will most certainly inform future practice.


Warmly,

Principal Stratton

Alternative Schedules for Thursday, January 7th- Friday, January 8th

Students will resume classes this Thursday, following the alternative schedule below.


Thursday, January 7


Period 1 (9:00-10:15)

Period 2 (10:25-11:40)

Lunch (11:40-12:10)

Period 3 (12:20-1:40)

Period 4 (1:50-3:05)

Office Hrs/Tutorial (3:10-3:40)


Friday, January 8th


Period 5 (9:40-10:55)

SELF (11:05-11:40)

Lunch (11:40-12:10)

Period 6 (12:20-1:40)

Period 7 (1:50-3:05)

Office Hrs/Tutorial (3:10-3:40)

Synchronous Mondays

At this time, we will continue with our synchronous 7-period Monday schedule.

Grade Reports

First semester grades will be available on Tuesday, January 12th, and may be viewed on Infinite Campus (IC). If you have questions about any of your student's grades, please contact their teacher directly. For information about the Infinite Campus system, please visit the PAUSD help page.

PSAT/SAT Update

Due to the constantly changing health order restrictions, the administration of the PSAT at Gunn will not be occurring this school year. For those students that anticipated using this assessment to enter the National Merit Scholarship Competition, we have learned of an alternative opportunity for students to enter the NMSC.


In the past, NMSC required that the school send a letter for the student to enter. Instead of sending a letter, students may now submit their SAT scores for exams taken between August 2020 to June 2021 in lieu of the PSAT. For additional information, please review the following document: Alternate Entry to the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program


With the announcement of this new opportunity for students to use their SAT scores for the NMSC, we are looking forward to hosting the SAT for all Gunn Juniors on Tuesday, April 13, 2021. We are hopeful that by this time of the school year, we will have fewer restrictions and be able to host our Juniors on campus for this assessment. I will continue to provide additional information as it becomes available over the next few months.

Hybrid Learning Update

Information will be communicated shortly with available options and details about the status of our hybrid learning option to those families who selected to participate in the hybrid option in early December. At this juncture, we are reviewing student feedback and the preferences they communicated at a recent program design planning meeting which included staff and students from both Gunn and Paly. If you have any questions or concerns, please email me.

Superintendent's December 18th Update

BOARD TENTATIVE CALENDAR
The Board of Education calendar is tentative until posted. The second semester items will definitely evolve over time. The current calendar can be found HERE.


PAUSD WELCOMES NEW DEPUTY SUPERINTENDENT

Trent Bahadursingh
PAUSD is pleased to announce Mr. Trent Bahadursingh as the new Deputy Superintendent of Human Resources effective February 1, 2021.

Mr. Bahadursingh is currently the Deputy Superintendent for the Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District. He has served as a member of the Superintendent's executive cabinet for seven years, working closely with each department and various stakeholders throughout the organization. His responsibilities include the Superintendent’s Chief of Staff, Communications Officer, Enrollment, Educational Technology, Early Childhood Education, Childcare, Enrichment and Adult/Community Education, and is an Agency Designated Representative for labor negotiations. He has over 23 years of district office administration experience and has served as a classified, certificated, and management employee throughout his educational career.

He holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in communications from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and a Master’s degree in Education Administration from California State University, Los Angeles. He and his wife Dee Ann have three adult children.

Superintendent Don Austin stated, “Mr. Bahadursingh earns the respect of everyone he meets. He invests in others, connects with people, and is a teammate at the highest level. He defines the concept of servant leadership and has so much to offer PAUSD staff, students, and the community.”

Mr. Bahadursingh is excited to join the District. He said, “PAUSD has always had a reputation of academic excellence and innovation. It is an honor to be joining a state and nationally recognized district. I’m looking forward to working with the staff, parents, and community to serve all students in the District.”

Superintendent's December 4th Update

ELEMENTARY HYBRID / PAUSD+ / TARGETED SPECIAL EDUATION PROGRAMS
The rapid evolution of information can be confusing for everyone. I have tried to highlight responses to common questions:

  • The new order DOES NOT close school or programs already open.
  • PAUSD elementary schools will remain open and will continue to follow all guidelines from the Santa Clara County Public Health Department.
  • Recreational and non-essential travel is discouraged and students traveling more than 150 miles from the Santa Clara County boundaries are expected to self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • Hybrid model families quarantining should contact their school site regarding their academic program.
  • Staff members are also strongly discouraged from recreational travel.
  • The Public Health Department has stated that schools are encouraged to stay open. As such, teachers in our county are not prohibited from returning to work from travel.
  • Again, the order strongly discourages non-essential travel for everyone, including school district staff.
  • PAUSD COVID cases are logged HERE and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) will not be provided.
  • PAUSD will continue to follow stringent notification protocols according to Public Health Department guidelines.
  • PAUSD has experienced no spread of COVID between staff or students.

SECONDARY SCHOOLS REOPENING REALITIES
As of today, December 4, Santa Clara County remains in the Purple Tier. Despite extraordinary preparation efforts, it is now clear that our secondary schools will be prohibited from opening for hybrid instruction. We do not see a viable path for high schools to reopen for hybrid instruction in the second semester. Internally, we are exploring options to create a limited return at the middle school level with a target of March. All plans depend on public health conditions and evolving regulations.

Each of our secondary schools have been asked to begin brainstorming ways to return students to campus when allowed. While hybrid classes at the high school level may be off the table, we still see value in providing opportunities for eager students to return to campus for supports and fun activities. Programs already open may remain open and can expand with some restrictions. We are cultivating a “grass roots” approach to design options for our students at the site level. Our sites will communicate with students who had selected the hybrid option to let them know it is not possible under our current conditions.

CALIFORNIA STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION SUMMARY OF STAY-AT-HOME ORDER
The message (below) was sent from the California State Board of Education. It is consistent with our local guidance from the Santa Clara County Office of Education (SCCOE).

Dear K-12 Education Stakeholders:

In response to questions we have been receiving regarding the Regional Stay-At-Home Order announced by Governor Newsom this afternoon, we are writing to highlight that the guidance related to K-12 schools remain in effect and unchanged.

As set forth in Section 2(e) of the Order, when it takes effect in a Region, schools that have previously reopened for in-person instruction may remain open, and schools may continue to bring students back for in-person instruction under the Elementary School Waiver Process or Cohorting Guidance.

Schools are still required to follow the Schools Guidance issued by CDPH which outlines requirements for safe conditions, testing, and tracing. Schools may be required to close if certain percentages of staff and students are diagnosed with COVID-19. All existing guidance applicable to schools can be found on the CDPH website.

Please visit the FAQs that continue to be updated for more information.

Thank you, and stay safe.

Brooks Allen
Executive Director
California State Board of Education
Brooks.Allen@cde.ca.gov

Recording of College Counseling Event

Here's the recording of the "New to Colleges in the US" event with Linda Kirsch, Gunn College Counselor, for those who couldn't attend: https://youtu.be/j-9pskGECOc

RECORDING OF Sophomore Parent Network Event with Cynthia Klein

We had an informative Sophomore Parent Network meeting, on Oct. 28, about communicating effectively with our teens. Anyone can access the recording here (Access Passcode: @6NSsBg7) and the meeting handout here.

Affective Factors that Impact Learning

The PAUSD website, Supporting Learning at Home, includes resources that explore the connections between emotions and readiness to learn. Parents and teachers intrinsically know the importance of addressing emotions in order to set the stage for learning. When students feel known and appreciated, they can learn more effectively. This module explores this connection and suggests ways of addressing distance and hybrid learning challenges such as using conversation starters and parent-teacher partnerships. Check out the “Affective Factors that Impact Learning” to learn more.

Registration for the 2021-2022 school year opens on January 4, 2021

Families with children who are not currently enrolled with PAUSD, and want to enroll a child to attend a PAUSD school starting in August 2021, must follow all the instructions at the PAUSD Enrollment web site starting on January 4: www.pausd.org/Enrollment. If you have any questions about if you should enroll your child, please send an email to RegistrationServices@pausd.org.
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Supporting Learning at Home

Educational Tech. Platforms and Tools

Understanding the multiple tools students use for distance learning can be challenging. The resources provided on the PAUSD website, Supporting Learning at Home on the Educational Technology: Platforms and Toolspage, are intended to give parents and guardians an introduction to the most important learning tools in PAUSD including Infinite Campus, Schoology, Zoom, Clever, and Seesaw (PK-3rd grade). Every day students should begin school by logging on to Rapid Identity, PAUSD’s single sign-on portal, at id.pausd.org. Parents and guardians should also access all PAUSD tools and apps from id.pausd.org as well. For technology questions or support please submit help tickets through Let’s Talk from the PAUSD website: https://www.pausd.org/school-life/participate/lets-talk.

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Athletics Upate

Those of us who were student-athletes in high school know how important athletics can be for one's overall well-being and academic success. We deeply hope that conditions will eventually allow us to re-open our sport's programs, and encourage all families to support students in finding alternative outlets.

Updates:

  • No Gunn athletic programs are currently conditioning.
  • All contact sports have been shut down until further notice.
  • Our gyms and weight rooms are currently shut down.
  • We are awaiting communication from the California Interscholastic Federation and the Central Coast Section regarding possible start dates for all sports.
  • Currently, there is still a stay at home order in place in our county. If our status changes, we will communicate the plan moving forward.

Upcoming Events

Thursday, January 14

Next Principal's Coffee--9:00 am


Friday, January 15

Last day to add a class for credit (current students only)


Monday, January 18

Martin Luther King Jr. Day - NO SCHOOL


Wednesday, January 27

8th Grade Parents' Information Night - 6:30 - 8:00 pm

Support for Gunn Families

If you are experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19, please let your Gunn student's counselor know. If you are struggling to pay for college application fees or other college-related costs, please contact Linda Kirsch at lkirsch@pausd.org and Leighton Lang at llang@pausd.org. This is a very challenging time for some Gunn families, and the PTSA would like you to know that our community is here for you! We are all in this together and together we will make it through.

Quick Links

Quick Links

Gunn High School Website

Gunn PTSA Website

Gunn Student Activities

Gunn Oracle Current Edition

PAUSD ID Portal


Parent Networks

| 12th Grade Class | 2021pncoordinator@gunnpta.org

Nisha Datta, Julie Dubrouillet & Laura Wingard

| 11th Grade Class | 2022pncoordinator@gunnpta.org

Claire Kirner, Leena Gill, & Gunjan Gupta

| 10th Grade Class | 2023pncoordinator@gunnpta.org

An nie Bedichek, Lili Nova-Roessig, & Mana Uchino

| 9th grade Class | 2024pncoordinator@gunnpta.org

Elizabeth Lam, Naomi Wang, & Michelle Chen

| Special Ed/Inclusion Rep | specialed@gunnpta.org

Momo Yanagihara & Yael Uziyel Navel

Palo Alto Partners in Education

Partners in Education (PiE): PiE raises money from parents and the community to provide all Palo Alto Unified School District students an educational experience beyond what is possible with public funding. The 2020-2021 fundraising campaign has begun. See here what PiE funds for Gunn.

PTSA

The Gunn PTSA supports Gunn high school in many ways such as teacher grants, student activities, fundraising, and organizing volunteers. Please visit the Gunn PTSA website for more information.

Gunn Foundation

Support Gunn Students via the Gunn Foundation

Since 1968, the Gunn Foundation has been granting need-based scholarships to college-bound seniors in the Gunn community. Scholarships fund essential expenses— deposits, textbooks, fees, and college costs that are often unmet by aid packages. Especially now with the impact of COVID, Gunn Foundation scholarships can make a huge difference in the future of a Gunn student.

Look for the Gunn Foundation on Step 4 of the online back-to-school packet or visit our website (gunnfound.org) and consider making a donation to support a Gunn student. Your support, at any level, will truly make a difference.