ECHS's Eagle Express

August 10, 2020

Our Eagle Express Newsletter will go out every week in August and then it will be monthly


8/11-8/24 Collection of last spring textbooks

8/25 Distribution Day 9am- Noon and 1pm-3:30

8/17 First day of Ventura College

8/18 First day - VUSD

9/7 Labor Day - No School

Textbook Collection - Returning ECHS Students

IMPORTANT - Returning students, please stop by the ECHS front off from 8/10 - 8/24 between the hours of 10am - 4pm to return any textbooks, novels, and materials from last spring

*Face masks/coverings and social distancing will be required

Master Contract Meetings Have Started

Teachers are in the process of contacting families to schedule a parent/student Master Contract meeting via zoom. At this meeting you will have the opportunity to meet your teacher, pick your classes, give your teacher your Ventura College class schedule and arrange your weekly meeting. If you do not hear from your teacher by August 17th please contact the office at 805-289-7955 *0

Enrollment Paperwork

Enrollment packets will be mailed out to families beginning today, August 11. Please complete the packet and return to ECHS on the Distribution/Collection day 8/25 9am- Noon and 1pm-3:30

**If you did not receive a packet in the mail, please bring a parent with you on distribution day, extra packets will be available**

Distribution/Collection Day, August 25

An on campus event to:

  • Return textbooks and materials from last school year
  • Collect new Textbooks and curriculum
  • Collect a Chromebook computer if needed

Times 9am-Noon and 1pm-3:30


Only students who return their completed enrollment packets will be allowed to receive computers and textbooks on this day.

Face masks/coverings and social distancing will be required

Ventura College Important Information

Classes begin August 17, make sure you know when your class(es) starts, you do not want to miss your first instruction day. Log in to your myvcccd account to see your class schedule. Please print or take a picture of your schedule to provide to your El Camino teacher.

Need to know how to navigate myvcccd, click on Student Tutorials link below.

If you have not registered for classes, please email Margie Harper at

Please watch this presentation to help prepare you for your meeting with Ms. Harper.

Wellness Care and Emotional Support

Dear ECHS Students and Families,

With social distancing and online schooling as our new normal, students, parents, and school staff alike are experiencing unique stressors. In step with VUSD’s #progressnotperfection policy, El Camino staff promise to value progress over perfection and provide grace and patience to students and families as everyone’s still learning new ways to “do school.” We hope you’ll do the same for us! At ECHS our goal for student outcomes remains the same as it’s always been: to encourage our students to become self-directed achievers, effective communicators, perceptive thinkers, and involved global citizens. El Camino’s Counseling Department is dedicated to ensuring that all students have equitable opportunities for social-emotional growth alongside their academic development and college-career exploration. Throughout the year, we will provide resources to support the well-being of our students and families. For now check out and follow the UNICEF and the CDC basic guidelines for mental wellness. Also click here for a brief introduction to our brand new Eagles’ Nest Virtual Wellness Room, a virtual space designed to help students, families, and staff to destress and refocus. We encourage you to visit often! Special acknowledgement goes to Autumn Esparza, stellar School Counselor at Learn4Life, who shared her Virtual Calming Room with us to make into our own Eagles’ Nest.


Margie Harper


ECHS Leadership

Students and families of students who are already enrolled in Leadership class for the 2020-2021 school year, please visit the following link for an important newsletter with details about beginning our class on Friday August 14th:

For new students or those interested in learning more about ECHS Leadership: Students enrolled in our ECHS Leadership class serve the school and others, make friends, and grow as leaders. Although the application window for the first semester of Leadership class for the 2020-2021 school year has already closed, please contact Ms. Fergus ( if you are interested in learning more about applying for second semester or in the future. You can also learn more by perusing the application on the Leadership page of the ECHS website:

ECHS Leadership Mission:

We RISE UP to create meaningful stories for ECHS students to:

Respect Others & Our Diversity; Include Others; Serve Others;

Empower & Inspire Others In Unity & Positivity

  • While VUSD remains fully-distanced, ECHS Leadership class will meet virtually every Friday morning from 10:30am - 12:15pm. When we return to in-person learning, ECHS Leadership class will return to meeting every Friday from 9:45-11:45am in room 1. Applying to be in Leadership is voluntary, but attendance at Friday meetings is required (and necessary!); students who miss three class meetings will be asked to choose another elective class for the semester.

  • Students may earn 5 credits of applied art each semester (80 hours of classwork and service are required - including attendance at Friday morning classes, completing online work, contributing to school events, and performing community service).

  • Students must maintain Renaissance standing academically in order to be in Leadership.

  • Students plan events, create projects, learn new skills, & build friendships.

  • This is a good way for students to add essential 21st century career skills to their resumes for college, scholarships & job applications.

  • Traditionally, the Leadership class works on planning school activities such as:

    • Open House

    • Quad Days & Fun Nights

    • Fundraisers

    • Prom & Renaissance Events

    • Staff Appreciation Week

    • Senior Luncheon & Graduation

Note: a mandatory two hour virtual Leadership Academy will be held prior to the start of school on Friday August 14, 2020 from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm via Zoom.

CAPS Media

ECTV 20 -21

Teaching Digital Broadcast Media at this juncture in our history is both exciting and daunting. We’re looking at changes coming at us so fast, we are starting to become numbed by a real sea change in our culture and media o. And the role of media is in serious flux. Much that we thought we knew about media is changing. Is it just a blip and it will all change back? I think that’s doubtful. To be learning about media now is in many ways creating a new media form. The students taking this course now will be part of that change and may be the guiding light of that change. At the very least they will be looking at it with trained eyes. I’ve loved teaching this class. Although we’re looking at a difficult year in teaching, I’m excited to be part of it.

The El Camino High School (ECTV) program has won 5 national awards and numerous western states regional awards from The Alliance for Community Media.*

This is one of the award-winning shows. Although interviewing someone in this close proximity is unsafe at this time, the way the show is put together is basically how our shows will be put together.

ECTV - Ventura Deputy Mayor, Sofia Rubalcava

We’ll be using a zoom interview using zoom for the face-to-face communiation and professional cameras recording the actual interview. The files will be uploaded then downloaded to be edited. At present it’s planned editing programs at home to make this possible.

We will mirror and adapt what the TV industry is doing right now.

We may have labs at CAPS Media for the students. CAPS Media is closed and will be closed through the first semester but potentially not closed to students.

The class is a built around practical work that would be done at a TV and radio station. Real world experience. Several students who have taken the course have been freelancing while they are attending Universities.

Students will be learning by doing. They will learn how to work professional cameras, audio, lighting, the language of film/television, content, research, writing scripts, editing, color correction, visual symbolism, interviewing skills, working in an online writers’ room and really much more.

The student can decides what they want to learn and when. All the while producing regular scheduled shows.

As our world is cocooning, this class is about reaching out safely and professionally communicating. Then turning that communication into a show.

I’ve worked in Community Television over twenty years.

If you have any questions please contact me – Phil Taggart

Talk to your teacher if you are interested in applying for this course.

Previous participation is not a guarantee that a student will be accepted in the program:

*The Alliance for Community Media is a national organization that advocates, promotes and preserves the right to media training, production, distribution, civic engagement and education in support of diverse community voices. The organization is headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Food and Nutrition

Due to the COVID outbreak, Food and Nutrition Services was able to provide meals to any child that came to our nutrition distribution days no matter if they qualified for free or reduced lunch or if they were a student of VUSD. That current waiver ends this summer unless USDA provides an extension. If we do not receive the extension, then we will provide free and reduced price lunches to those that qualify and will look at options for families to purchase meals during the Fall semester. Please apply now for free and reduced meals for the 2020-21 school year at: You will receive notification by email or letter in regards to your qualification for free and reduced meals. We will be in touch with more information on this as soon as possible.

New Staff - Welcome TO ECHS

Teacher, Ms. Kelly

I began my career in education in the Ventura Unified School District where I have served as a teacher in kindergarten through 8th grade as well as a Teacher on Special Assignment supporting instruction for English Language Arts and English Learners. As an educator, I am passionate about meeting my students where they are, creating learning opportunities that mirror the diversity of our community, and providing equitable opportunities for all students to succeed.

I have been blessed with three beautiful children. They are really cool, individualistic, and caring people and I am very proud of each of them. Other than my family and profession, I love to run and walk at the beach, read, and travel.

I consider it an honor and privilege to join the ECHS staff. I am a life-long learner and I look forward to learning alongside my colleagues and students. I am committed to doing everything possible to help each student at ECHS achieve their personal best.

-Photo:Glacier hiking, Vatnajökull, Iceland.

Teacher, Mrs. Gaeta

Hello, my name is Rosalyn Gaeta and I’m eagerly awaiting starting the new school year at El Camino High School. Originally from Santa Barbara, I’m happy to now call Ventura home where I live with my husband, two kids, and our dog. After earning my bachelor’s degree in Global Studies and Middle Eastern History from UCSB, I completed my teaching credential at CSU Channel Islands. I’ve been teaching 6th grade Language Arts and Social Studies at DATA for the last seven years so I am looking forward to “graduating” on to high school. I prefer tea over coffee, chocolate over anything else, and if I could have any superpower I’d want to be fluent in every language (including animal languages).

Counselor - Mr. Jordan

Greetings El Camino High School! I am excited and grateful to begin this school year as a new counselor at El Camino High School. This will be my 5th year working in VUSD, after serving at the elementary school level the first 2 years, and then across all of our middle school sites the last 2 years. In addition to providing academic counseling, I am also a counselor within VUSD's Student Assistance Program (SAP), to provide additional support around students' social, emotional, and mental health needs, and to bridge families to additional resources in the community. I am native to Ventura, and graduated from Saint Bonaventure in 1995. I completed my Bachelor's in Psychology at UCSB and Master's in Counseling from Azusa Pacific University, and I am a registered Associate Clinical Counselor in the State of CA. I've worked as a counselor in every county on the central coast, from LA County up to Monterey, plus some summers in Texas in New York. I've also taught Psychology at the high school level at the International School of Panama and helped direct their Model UN program. While living in Panama, I met and married my wife, who would become the mother of our 3 children, the oldest of whom is now starting 2nd grade. I love to garden and plant things that give me food! My wife and I have maintained a small tropical fruit orchard in Panama for the last 17 years. My passion for horticulture was ignited by my father and grandfather who have careers in the industry, and in no small part, from Ag classes that I took at Ventura College when I was still a high school student. I'm thrilled to be working at a school where we can explore our interests and passions in a very special way. Who knows where things will lead? I look forward to helping you on the journey!

Useful Links

Class of 2021

Welcome to your Senior year! We are so excited for you and look forward to celebrating all your accomplishments at the end of the year. We have received some inquires regarding Senior pictures. El Camino does not require that you get them however we do like a nice picture for the slideshow for graduation. I know many parents like to have Senior pictures for keepsakes. If you would like a recommendation, Cornerstone and Monarch Photography are both wonderful to work with. Have a great start to your Senior year!


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