Titan Talk

Henry M Gunn High School

May 31, 2020: Vol 3 Issue 36 - Final Edition

Backstage with the Superintendent, Monday, June 1

Please join us for "Backstage with the Superintendent" on Monday, June 1, at 5:30 p.m. through YouTube Live at https://go.pausd.org/backstage-webinar. I will share some of the survey results about reopening to start the webinar. More importantly, we will have high school seniors from both high schools share their experiences. It is a great time to honor all seniors, starting with the representatives from our schools on Monday evening.

We have a plan for a graduation car parade on Wednesday, June 3. The initial communication will come from our high schools to families. We will share the plans broadly on Monday and would invite the entire community to participate safely in holding signs and making noise for our kids.

Student Activities


  1. If you missed picking up your cap and gown (purchased or borrowed) on Tuesday, you can pick up your order on June 4th during the Senior book return day
  2. If you plan to participate in the postponed graduation ceremony but have not purchased a cap and gown, you must order by Friday, June 12th. After this date, you will not be able to order a cap and gown.
    1. Jostens has opened the website order window once again, and it will remain open until Friday, June 12th. Orders will be shipped to your home. Link to Jostens Website: https://tinyurl.com/yb4aq2ua

Palo Alto Graduation Parade

We are thrilled to announce two celebrations for our seniors from Castilleja, Gunn, Kehillah, and Palo Alto High Schools on June 3rd. We know that it has been a challenging end to their high school years. We want to honor the seniors’ hard work and the joy of finishing high school.

First off, at 5:30 pm on Wednesday, June 3rd, we will kick things off with the Senior Shout Out. (5:30 - 5:45pm). Make noise in your front yard for our graduating seniors! Sing, chant, cheer, dance, celebrate, bang pots and pans and take photos. Look for signs in front of houses to locate graduating seniors in your neighborhood.

After the Senior Shout Out, there will be a car parade for all seniors to celebrate their high school experience. For community members who would like to cheer the seniors as they and their families drive the parade route, please wear a mask and maintain social distancing guidelines while you are watching the parade.

The cars will be driving in the right-hand lane as they follow the route. Here is the link to the Google Map of the Route:


Senior Showcase and Awards Video

The Senior Showcase and Awards Video will be released late Tuesday, June 2nd, or early Wednesday, June 3. Lookout for an announcement and link on the Gunn website.

Gunn EOY Drop-off/Pick-up Process

Drop-off Dates & Times (Students will come to drop-off based on last name)

June 4th (Seniors Only) June 9th (Juniors)

8:00am- 9:00am A-Che 8:00am- 9:00am A-Cha

9:00am- 10:00am Chi-Gri 9:00am- 10:00am Che-Fa

10:00am- 11:00am Gu-Lee 10:00am- 11:00am Fe-Ja

11:00am- 12:00pm Lel-Mo 11:00am- 12:00pm Je-Ma

12:00pm- 1:00pm Mu-She 12:00pm- 1:00pm Me-Ram

1:00pm- 2:00pm Shi- Wan 1:00pm- 2:00pm Ran-Tam

2:00pm- 3:00pm Wang-Z 2:00pm- 3:00pm Tan-Z

June 8th Freshman & Sophomore Drop-off & PE Locker Clean Out

June 10th (Sophomores Make-up) June 11th (Freshman Make-up)

8:00am- 12:00pm All Students 8:00am- 12:00pm All Students

Click here for more details

Gunn Counseling

Gunn Counseling's Virtual College Workshop.

In the final installment of our Virtual College Workshop series, Gunn Counseling focuses on ways to prepare for and approach the upcoming summer break. The last few months have been taxing on us all, so first-and-foremost, take care of yourself, get some rest, and spend time doing things you enjoy! For those of you with plans to apply to colleges in the fall, there are some helpful things you may choose to begin doing over the summer months to better position yourself. We look forward to reconnecting with you all in the fall!

Click HERE to view the presentation and the rest of the series.

Progress Report 3 was posted on Tuesday, May 26. Final grades will be released after June 10th. Please check Infinite Campus for your student's latest credit status.

There are limited spots for Summer School, please confirm with your counselor if you are registered for Summer School.

Seniors: Check out the Senior Assembly Video on closing out the year for graduation.

Grades: The district has moved to credit/no credit grading for the spring quarter of 2020. All coursework for 2nd semester will be reported as Credit/No Credit on all PAUSD transcripts. Please contact your teachers on the standards for receiving credit in your particular classes.

Off-campus course update:

  • District policy remains as follows: 1) Graduation requirement courses must be taken on campus. 2) Students may take a maximum of 40 credits of elective courses off-campus throughout their high school careers. 3) Students may earn a maximum of 80 credits per year, including from courses taken on- and off-campus.

  • For spring 2020, no courses taken off-campus will be put onto the PAUSD transcript. This includes all courses taken off-campus that have received prior approval from the site counselor and administrator. If you complete an off-campus course in spring 2020, you must provide colleges with a separate transcript for the course(s).

  • Courses taken in summer 2020 will appear on the PAUSD transcript with the letter grade earned and applied to the 80 maximum credits per year to be taken in the 2020-21 school year.

Counselors and teachers will be available through email to answer questions and concerns during normal school hours. Please contact your counselor or teacher through Schoology or direct email. Counselors will not be checking phone messages regularly.

College and Career

A Naviance e-mail went out to seniors on Thursday….there is so much in flux still so I covered that. When I do the data and find I do not know where you are going next year, you will get either an e-mail or call to be sure we have data to share with the rising seniors. Naviance is where we list the college seniors plan to attend. Even if you gap a year, your plan to attend a given college is what we would like to know. Many of the rising seniors may need to make contact with you to see how the college year is going. Be sure you have your e-mail address in Naviance as that is where Mr. Lang looks too.

A Naviance e-mail will go out next week to Juniors and parents to do a final update and give suggestions. Please use StriveScan to find out about colleges this summer and widen the scope of your search…we simply do not know who will be functioning well and who will have severe cuts to quality.

Attention all parents! We will not have the ability to send call slips next year so we need you to UPDATE the following two items in INFINITE CAMPUS: the cell phone number of the Gunn student and the personal e-mail of that student. This will allow us to set appointments are contact the student during the school day. The district office said this must be done by the parent, not us.

Do listen to the superintendents Monday messages, or events run by the school board to stay current with plans for reopening the school.

The Wellness Center:

Wellness Center

Throughout the month, the Wellness Center has been celebrating Mental Health Month by hosting various activities and providing different resources for students to promote their psychological well being. We have had our students participate in a "Self-Care Bingo" contest in which we asked students to complete a bingo board filled with self-care activities. Then, they were to email the wellness center with proof they completed the tasks through picture submissions that would be entered into a raffle for a self-care gift basket! We chose two winners and those baskets will be distributed this week! We also hosted a virtual scavenger hunt on Wellness Wednesday during our last virtual spirit week of the year. Students solved riddles then sent pictures to Wellness as they discovered the answers. In the end, we had three winners who managed to correctly solve all 10 riddles! For the rest of the month, students will be sent practical tools this last week that were created by Mental Health America for Mental Health Month. These tools will support students in managing stress, managing their time wisely, evaluating toxic influences in their life, and teach them how to reach out to friends in need; providing them with appropriate language and resources to help support their loved ones experiencing difficult times.

Coming Soon

The Children's Health Council is hosting two helpful webinars and a parent support group this week! Check out their calendar of events here to learn how to support your child and their education during these unprecedented times.

Mindful Minute

This new era of learning, parenting, shopping, working, and all the other things we have had to shift paradigms for, has really brought forth to our attention the need for self- compassion. We have all had to experience intense transitions these last couple months that have brought stress and frustration into our homes. The Wellness Center wanted to remind you that it's okay to be nice to yourselves and be more mindful of all the things you are doing right and all the small gains and wins you can have throughout the day. We are all doing the best we can, and that is ENOUGH.

Take a couple minutes to read through this article on being able to accept a compliment from yourself, and why that kind of self-care should be a priority.

SELF (Social Emotional Learning and Functionality)

Have a Nice Summer and see you next semester.

Gunndance Film Festival

The Gunn Film Club recently wrapped up our annual Gunndance Film Festival. This year the festival was open to all Gunn students, with a majority of the films created during the school shutdown. You can watch all the student films here:


Thank you for supporting the media arts and encouraging creativity and storytelling with our students.

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AAR Projects and Digital Portfolio Presentations

Check out the Advanced Authentic Research (AAR) Program's Digital Portfolios & Projects from this year.

The Advanced Authentic Research (AAR) Program is designed for students with interest, passion, curiosity, and perseverance to investigate an authentic topic of their choosing. Students are paired with mentors in the particular field of research who will support and facilitate each students' work in their own laboratories, offices, and other settings

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Foothill College TECH CORE Summer Institute

Interested in computer science but haven’t had the opportunity to explore?

Worried about being prepared for college and want to get a head start with math and study skills?

The TechCore Summer Institute (TeCSI) is a free three-week online program offered by Foothill College’s Science Learning Institute. TeCSI is open to graduating seniors and equivalency earners exploring the field of computer science for the first time. No prior experience and skills necessary. Tutoring and counseling will be provided to ensure your success in the program. If you have already taken computer science classes, taken AP calculus, or participated in STEM programs extensively, then this program may not be for you.

You will take college courses for credit, engage in activities to explore careers in computer science, and prepare for a successful transition to Foothill College, or any other college or university. Course materials will be provided, including laptops and Wi-Fi hotspots on loan, all at no cost to you.


  • The program will run from Monday, August 10th, through Friday, August 28th from 10am - 4pm. Fridays will be from 10am - 12pm.
  • Deadline to sign up is Monday, June 15, 2020 at 11:59pm.


  • Fill out the program form now (https://bit.ly/2020TechCoreSummerApp). In addition, you will be directed to apply as a student at Foothill College (directions provided in the form).
  • RSVP here (https://bit.ly/TCSI2020InfoRSVP) for two online information sessions to be held on
    • Wednesday, 6/3/20 from 3 - 4pm
    • Tuesday, 6/9/20 from 5 – 6pm
    • You need to RSVP to get the Zoom link.

Find out more details about the program at www.foothill.edu/sli/techcore.

If you have questions, please contact SLI@foothill.edu.

SJSU's Academic Preparation Department Hosts a Series of Workshops for Juniors, Seniors, and Parents interested in CSU admission.

In light of many recent COVID-19 updates, SJSU's Academic Preparation Department will hold a series of workshops over the next four weeks for high school juniors, seniors (admitted CSU students), parents, and educators. During these sessions, we will unpack many important updates with multiple audiences, including yesterday's announcement from the Chancellor's Office that the CSU plans to move a majority of its instruction for the Fall online.

All the following presentations can be accessed through the following Zoom Link. Also linked on each date.

Senior/CSU admitted student presentations:

During these senior sessions we will answer the following questions:

  • I’ve heard that the CSU will be virtual in the Fall. What does that mean for me? What will my experience look like?
  • What does CSU tuition actually pay for and what resources will I have access to in the Fall?
  • What if I was accepted to an impacted or very competitive CSU program/campus? How easy will it be if I decide not to attend but try to be readmitted to the same program later?
    What if I decide to transfer to the CSU? What are the pros and cons of that path way?
  • What about housing on the SJSU campus?

Junior Presentations:

During these sessions, we will discuss
  • Waiver of the SAT/ACT requirement
  • How different will the CSU admission process look for me?

Parent sessions:

During these sessions, we will discuss:

  • Concerns from the CSU that given the lost instruction this year, current juniors may have a more difficult time adjusting to the academic rigor of college.
  • Parents can help by encouraging their students to think beyond grades and to focus on the importance of learning the information itself.

Other important COVID-19 related updates:

Many educators have asked whether the CSU would waive ACT/SAT admissions requirements in light of the current circumstances. The short answer is yes.

The CSU will temporarily suspend the use of ACT/SAT examinations in determining admission eligibility for all CSU campuses for the 2021-2022 academic year. This temporary change applies only for fall 2021, winter 2022, and spring 2022 admission cycles.

CSU eligibility:
First-time freshmen must meet the following eligibility requirements: be a high school graduate or equivalent; complete the 15-unit comprehensive “a-g” pattern of college preparatory courses, and earn a qualifying “a-g” grade point average (GPA) as described below:

  • California residents and graduates of California high schools will be eligible for admission by earning a 2.50 or greater “a-g” GPA.
  • Non-California residents may be eligible for admission to the CSU by earning a 3.00 or greater “a-g” GPA along with other supplemental factors utilized by the individual campus, including those outlined by impacted campuses and programs.

Impacted campuses and programs:

  • Campuses and programs designated as impacted may utilize higher “a-g” GPA thresholds for applicants, as well as supplemental criteria in making admission decisions. However, in no case will standardized test scores be utilized in making admissions decisions for applicants during the 2021-2022 academic year.
  • As a fully impacted campus, SJSU has not yet made a decision on its own impaction criteria.

Students with GPAs of 2.0 - 2.49 may be admitted on the basis of supplemental information collected in Cal State Apply (additional a-g courses, extracurricular activities, work experience, participation in educational support programs such as MESA, Upward Bound, Puente, etc.). Each CSU will develop its own supplemental criteria for students in the 2.0 - 2.49 GPA range.

Exclusive Collegewise Webinar Series for Gunn Families

Hello Gunn Parents and Students:

As part of our comprehensive approach to taking care of our families during a time when we don’t get to see our students at our high school campuses, we have contracted with Collegewise to provide a series of online seminars to our Gunn HS community about many of the impacts all of this is having on college admissions.

What is being offered? Collegewise will be offering 5 webinars between now and June 11. 3 of the five webinars are exclusively for our Gunn families and the remaining two will be offered districtwide. The 3 exclusive webinars are:

  • State of the Admissions Nation due to COVID
  • Highly Selective Admissions
  • Changes to the UC/CSU Admissions Policies

The other two district-wide webinars are STEM’s Many Branches: College Planning for Students Considering Majors in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics and Character Counts: How Character Plays a Powerful Role in Selective College Admissions.

As you can see, we’ve tried to cover a lot of relevant ground, and we are highly confident in the skills and knowledge base of the various presenters.

Who may attend? Any Gunn HS parent or student from grades 9-11.

How much does it cost? It’s free - but you do have to register in order to participate.

How do I register? Just use this link and sign up for as many of the webinars as you wish:


We’re very excited about this as we are one of only 9 high schools in the state who get to offer this program. We hope you choose to take advantage of it.


Here are some Frequently Asked Questions for parents on the school closures.

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.

Palo Alto Partners in Education

Thank you to all that have supported Partners in Education (PiE). The donations to PiE continue to support many programs at Gunn, including our