Sharing the Good News and Good Work of Students and Staff

May 2017 Edition

Home stretch, PUSD! Only a few more days left of school. As the school year winds down, events ramp up. I'm happy to share some of what's been going on around the District for the month of May. Congrats, graduates at all levels! Have a great summer. I can't wait to hear about what you did over summer break. I will be producing a June newsletter to include all the year-end festivities. Submissions are always welcome: cpaik@powayusd.com.


Christine Paik, Director of Communications

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Message from Superintendent

Hello TeamPUSD!

The month of May holds many celebrations, including employee appreciation weeks. Let’s see… there’s School Principal’s Day, School Bus Drivers Day, Teacher Appreciation Week, School Nurse and Health Professionals Day, School Nutrition Employee Week, Classified School Employee Week, Volunteer Appreciation... just to name a few.

I just wanted to take a moment to say THANK YOU.

Thank you for your hard work and dedication: those early mornings, late nights, weekends; for putting our kids first, for taking pride in the work that you do, for persevering through obstacles and challenges.

As our school year draws to a close, the tremendous effort that each and every member of #TeamPUSD has put forth is evident in the success of our students.

Let's make that final push in these last weeks, and end 2016-17 even stronger than we started.

Marian Kim-Phelps, Ed.D.

Student, School, and Staff Achievements

Science Olympiad at Nationals

Oak Valley's Science Olympiad team, the first San Diego County team to make it to nationals in 20 years, placed 16th in the nation at the May 20th competition. Read more about the team's journey here.

Quiz Bowl

Oak Valley, Design39Campus, Black Mountain, and Mesa Verde Middle Schools all had teams that earned a spot at the National Academic Quiz Tournaments’ Middle School National Championship! Out of 160 teams competing, Mesa Verde got 21st place, Black Mountain got 33rd, Design39 got 49th, and Oak Valley got 107th. You can read the article here.

National Merit Scholarship Winners

The following eight PUSD students are National Merit Scholarship winners. They were selected among 15,000 national finalists based on essays, extracurricular achievements, awards, and leadership positions. They must also have outstanding SAT scores and academic records. The news release, which includes all the winners in San Diego County, can be viewed here.

Lillian Bu (Del Norte High School)

Kaumron K. Eidgahy (Del Norte High School)

Brian Sanyu Huo (Del Norte High School)

Katie H. Lam (Del Norte High School)

Albert J. Lee (Del Norte High School)

Hyunjae Lee (Del Norte High School)

Zoe R. Li (Mount Carmel High)

April L. Xie (Del Norte High School)

CIF Scholar-Athlete of the Year

Erica Barrett has been named the 2017 CIF State Girls Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Erica is a three-sport athlete at Westview in basketball, cross country and track, serving as captain of the cross country and track teams as a junior and senior. Read more here.

Robotics World Championship

Poway High School’s FIRST Robotics Students competed at the International World Championship in Houston, TX. Poway High’s Team Spyder 1622 made it all the way to the semifinal matches, almost winning their Division. This is the second time that Team Spyder has been in the Division Semifinals at the World Championships. You can watch a match here.

Gold Ribbon Schools

Del Norte High School, Mt. Carmel High School, Oak Valley Middle School, and Rancho Bernardo High School received the California Department of Education’s Gold Ribbon Award from State Superintendent Tom Torlakson at a ceremony in Costa Mesa earlier this month. Read more about the award here.

Foot Locker National Award

This is something you wouldn't mind being called into the Principal's office for! RBHS senior and star pole vaulter Ryan Winters was surprised with Foot Locker's national award for student athletes. Watch the video here.

Don Diego Scholarship

Poway High's Katherine Golden is one of the recipients of the Don Diego Scholarship, one of only a few winners in San Diego County. Kate is described as "one of the most motivated and dedicated FFA students ever." She has already earned her CA Golden State FFA degree and won the Southern Region Winning Proficiency in Viticulture award (2nd in CA!). Kate helps local wineries maintain their vines and become Certified Sustainable.

Groff Exhibit

These are some examples of PUSD students' artwork that will be on display as part of the prestigious 2017 Groff Exhibition: A Juried Exhibition of the Finest High School Art in San Diego County. The exhibit runs from May 27 - June 20, 2017 in the City Gallery at San Diego City College located in downtown San Diego.

Special Education Awards

At the annual Excellence in Special Education Awards, recipients were recognized for going above and beyond to make a significant contribution to the lives of students served by the PUSD Special Education Department. They were nominated by students, parents, and guardians. Congratulations and thank you for your dedication to our kids! The full list of recipients can be found here.

Character & Ethics Film Festival

At the Character and Ethics Film Festival on May 3rd, nominees walked the red carpet, were interviewed by the "paparazzi" (Titan Ambassadors), and were introduced by emcee School Board VP TJ Zane at the Poway Center for Performing Arts. Congratulations to all the winners:


1st Place: Sunset Hills; 2nd Place: Garden Road; 3rd Place: Creekside

Middle School

1st Place: Design39Campus; 2nd Place: Meadowbrook; 3rd Place Meadowbrook

High School

1st Place: Mt. Carmel; 2nd Place: Rancho Bernardo; 3rd Place: Rancho Bernardo

Read more about the finalists here.

Excellence in Education: Poway Band & Orchestra Festival

The latest “Excellence in Education” video focuses on Poway Band & Orchestra Festival. This video series is created by "Studio 701," a new internship created by Career, Technical, and Adult Education (CTAE) and the Communications Department for Advanced Digital Media students. We are recruiting interns for the 2017-18 school year. Contact Christine Paik at cpaik@powayusd.com if you know a high school student who wants to apply.
Poway Unified "Excellence in Education:" Poway Band & Orchestra Festival

Fun Photo Gallery

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Staff Appreciation Events

Wow! This sign (above) from Westwood Elementary sums it up perfectly. Fantastic job by our PTAs hosting staff appreciation events at our schools! These are a few photos shared with us from different sites.

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Graduation Schedule

Congratulations graduates! Here is the PUSD High School Graduation Schedule:

Abraxas Tuesday, June 20, 2017 (6:00 p.m. @ Abraxas Quad)

Del NorteThursday, June 8 (3:00 p.m. @ Nighthawk Stadium)

Mt. CarmelThursday, June 8 (5:45 p.m. @ Sundevil Stadium)

PowayThursday, June 8 (5:30 p.m. @ Titan Stadium)

Rancho BernardoThursday, June 8 (5:30 p.m. @RBHS Stadium)

WestviewThursday, June 8 (3:00 p.m. @ Westview Wolverine Stadium)

For the complete schedule, including middle school promotions, click here.

Foreign Language in Elementary School

Hurry! Space is limited. Parents with children TK - 5th interested in attending the Mandarin Foreign Language in Elementary School Program at Adobe Bluffs should fill out the Intradistrict Transfer Application for the 2017-2018 School Year. All students at ABES enjoy two weekly session of Mandarin language and Chinese cultural lessons in addition to existing elementary school curriculum.

Youth Enrichment Programs for Summer 2017

Registration is now open for PUSD's Youth Enrichment Programs for the summer. From art and foreign language to computer science and theater, there's something for everyone. Click for the catalogue of classes. All classes will be held at Mt. Carmel High School, unless otherwise noted.

Notice: Board Meeting Date Changes

This is the revised schedule for PUSD Board meetings for the remainder of 2017:

  • Thursday, June 29

  • Thursday, July 13

  • Thursday, August 10

  • Thursday, September 14

  • Thursday, October 12

  • Thursday, November 9

  • Thursday, December 14

Poway Unified School District

The Poway Unified School District is located in northern San Diego County, California. PUSD operates 25 elementary schools (K-5), one elementary & middle school combination (TK-8th), six middle schools (6-8), one continuation high school, five comprehensive high schools (9-12), and one adult school. 24 schools are located in the city of San Diego; 11 schools in the city of Poway; and 3 in the County of San Diego. The District serves approximately 36,000 students and is the third largest school district in the county.