Principal's Update

December 2, 2020

Dear Families,

After a gloriously boring Thanksgiving break with my family at home, I returned to school this week excited to welcome back our students. It has been wonderful greeting children at the gates each morning, peeking through the door of classrooms, and watching entire cohorts play together during recess and lunch. I've managed to pop in to more Full Distance classes, and have enjoyed the new ways that teachers are engaging their students in fun activities. How I love this time of year!

In every newsletter I have sent out, I have asked for families to keep their children safe and follow specific measures and precautions. You have all done a remarkable job with following these directions.

Palo Verde teachers and staff continue to seek your partnership in something else: your child's academic learning. No matter the Learning Program Model, our children are spending more time at home and being asked to access things with less time with the teacher. If you haven't already, we ask that you start the following immediately:

  • Read, read, read. Set a timer to help your child build their reading stamina outside of school.
  • Talk with your child about what they have read. What did they learn? What was surprising? How is what they read deepening their thinking? How did the character change? What was the theme of the story?
  • Write, write, write. A journal, a letter...anything interesting enough to get your child to him/her to pick up a pencil is a great set in the right direction.
  • Have your child spend 20 minutes on Lexia. Lexia is a researched-based program developed to support children in growing specific reading skills to get them to grade-level benchmarks when accompanied by strong classroom reading instruction Children only need to spend 20 minutes each day on Lexia. In this case, more is not better.
  • And Dreambox. Similarly, Dreambox is a researched-based program aligned to our adopted math curriculum, Bridges Mathematics. After a short pre-assessment, students are prescribed activities designed to give practice in standards-based mathematical areas. The more students interact with the program, the more data the program can collect to deliver targeted reinforcement.

With another break around the corner, I hope you will find ways to build these items in to your family schedule. We know that when the message from school gets reinforced from home, children are in a much better position to thrive. Your child's teacher is your biggest partner in this work, but know that I am here to serve as a resource as well.


Annora Lee


Quarantine and Public Health 411

A 14-day mandatory quarantine is required for people who traveled after November 29, 2020.

All absences related to quarantine after travel will be excused. Please email your child’s teacher and the school office at if your child will be home for quarantine.

Please click to review the Bay Area Public Health Officer’s Guidelines for a general preventative guide to stay say during the holiday season:

FREE COVID TEST Appointments

You can get tested regardless of whether you do or do not have insurance and regardless of whichever health plan you have:

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: If you have any questions about if you should enroll your child, please send an email to

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.

Counselor's Corner

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Webinar/Live Q&A - Mental Health & Learning: Living in Uncertain Times

    • Dec 1 or Dec 8, 6:30-8PM

    • Still stressed about "back to school?" Worried how your kids are handling the stress and anxiety of adjusting to the ever-changing "new normal?" Join us on December 1 or December 8 at an interactive session for PAUSD elementary school parents and staff where you can listen to experts from Children’s Health Council and get your questions answered. Click here for more information or to register today.

Easy Resources for Families

Throughout December, we will share ideas for self-care and ways to support each other during this hectic time. We hope you’ll remember that it’s okay to NOT be okay! These are really strange times, and the holidays may make things feel even more stressful.

Saving our Sanity is a great place to start! This weekly support group is for parents who are stretched thin with the extra pressures during this holiday season. SOS takes a peaceful and insightful stroll through the landmines of everyday conversations in these challenging and uncertain times.

We also created a list of holiday ideas for you and your family! Get information on local holiday drive-through displays, online story times, craft ideas, movies, and more!