Message from the Superintendent - April 2, 2018
Dear RUSD Families,
We trust your spring is going well. The weather has certainly been beautiful. It is hard to believe we are in the last few months of the school year. If you have not already done so, please put your child’s Open House date on your calendar, as those evenings are a wonderful time to share what progress has been made over the course of the year, and celebrate the achievements of each student. We want you to join us! Each site’s Open House schedule is as follows:
Lake Forest on Thursday, May 3, at 6:00 pm
Rescue on Friday, May 4, at 5:30 pm
Pleasant Grove on Wednesday, May 9, at 6:00 pm
Green Valley on Thursday, May 10, at 6:00 pm
Lakeview on Tuesday, May 15, at 5:30 pm
Marina Village on Wednesday, May 16, at 6:00 pm
Jackson on Thursday, May 17, at 5:30 pm
State testing is also right around the corner. We ask that you do all you can to make sure your child is at school each day, rested. A healthy breakfast also helps! We also ask that you make any appointments outside the school day especially during testing, so your child does not have to make any tests up they may have missed because of absences. We want our students to show what they know and how they can use their knowledge. Our testing window is from Monday, April 16 through Friday, May 11. You can check your child’s school office for the specific testing dates for your school.
Thank you to the hundreds of students and families who attended our annual International Festival! It was a fantastic evening. We greatly appreciated the students and parents who provided booths celebrating cultures from around the world, complete with clothing, food samples, information, and other items of interest. The performances were phenomenal as well, and it was heartwarming to see people come and stay for the entire evening, enjoying the marvelous dance groups, other performances, booths, and food trucks. Students had fun filling out passport books and learning about the cultures represented. A huge thank you goes to Amy Bohren for organizing and orchestrating the entire event! Be sure to check out pictures on our district Facebook page! It was truly a spectacular event.
Our community is a tight-knit family, and when one of our family suffers loss, we all feel it. Our hearts go out to the family of Tony DeVille Sr., as he was in a car accident over the weekend and passed away. He is a much loved member of our community at large, and also much revered and loved in our school district. He has served as principal of most of our schools over his 40+ years in the district, and still was substitute teaching at 84 years of age. He has done so much for our schools, children, and staffs over the years. He had a deep passion for education and for making school and life brighter, happier, and better for everyone. He truly touched lives in a special way. Please keep his family in your thoughts and prayers as they go through this extremely difficult time.
Lastly, I want to thank our families for having such amazing children. We are extremely blessed to get to work with them and you, their families. Daily I am touched by the acts of kindness and giving our students demonstrate. Whether it is when each school participates in food drives to help those less fortunate, or students at Marina conduct a clothes drive, or students at Lakeview put together Easter baskets for a local Food Bank, or students at Jackson conduct Genius Hour projects helping non-profit organizations, or any of the other many, many instances where our students are taught to give back and serve others. It starts at home. Thank you. It reminds me of a quote taken from one of my favorite kid books, WONDER. Mr. Browne states, “So here’s the thing about glitter: once it’s out of the bottle, there’s just no way of putting it back. It’s the same with kindness. Once it pours out of your soul, there’s no way of containing it. It just continues to spread from person to person, a shining, sparkling, wonderful thing.”
Have a wonderful April, and know we are honored to serve you and your children.
Cheryl Olson, Superintendent
Message from the Superintendent - March 2018
Dear Rescue Families and Staff Members,
As spring unfolds, our schools continue getting busier and busier, preparing for state testing, completing projects, preparing for Open House, programs, music showcases, and other celebrations. We hope you can attend as many of them as possible, so you can share in the learning and joy of the educational journey of your children. Be watching your child’s school newsletters for dates and times of these important events. One exciting event is coming up THIS FRIDAY evening, the 16th, from 5:00-7:00 pm. It is our very own International Fair, held on the Pleasant Grove campus! We hope you can join us. There will be performances from around the world, five food trucks available, activities for children, and it promises to be a wonderful time for all.
I want you to know we are closely monitoring the aftermath of the horrific events that unfolded in Florida last month. Please know we are working closely with local law enforcement and community agencies to ensure our school safety plans and protocols are in place. We have already met with CHP and the Sheriff Department to have them review each site’s emergency plan and our overall emergency management system. Our two district safety officers and I attended a half day training put on by the Office of Emergency Services, and we will be bringing that training to all our site administrators as well so we are all informed and prepared for any emergency that could arise. Additionally, we have walk throughs scheduled at each site to be conducted by the Sheriff and the Fire department, to make sure our protocols and procedures are the very best they can be.
Also in response to the tragedy, students across the nation are organizing to share their thoughts and hopes that such an event never happens again. A few schools in our district are planning to focus attention on age-appropriate activities that revolve around friendship and kindness. We have some students who will make new friends, say hello to people they don’t normally hang around with, write messages of kindness on posters around the campus, conduct friendship activities, take a friendship pledge, and some will write how they can personally show kindness to others, and then tie those sentiments to trees with ribbon around the school. We are so proud of our students for taking initiative to do what they can to foster friendship and kindness for all.
I know all of us, as parents, are doing our best to foster kindness in our children and provide nurturing, healthy environments at home. Here are a few ideas to inspire us this month.
- Spend time playing board games with our kids.
- Spend dinnertime talking.
- Drop everything we are doing when our kids get home from school to TALK to them.
- Try making dinner without having the TV on, or the phone close by, or the tablet tuned to something.
- Use any ‘car time’ to talk to our kids
- Have our kids do chores: Responsibilities increase self-worth.To develop high self-esteem a person needs a purpose.A key component to high self-esteem relies on how we view ourselves regarding contribution.In other words, in the child development process, chores are a big role in a kid’s self-esteem.
- Be sure our kids are getting enough sleep.
- Keep less junk food in the house.
- Take away electronics some of the time and tell our kids to GO PLAY!
- We shouldn’t rescue our kids all the time!Ugh… I was never good at this one.Let them experience natural consequences for their choices….
- Talk to our kids about why they need to come to us if something is wrong.
- Limit our online distractions when our kids are home.Not only will it help our kids, but it will help us too!
Ideas above are from the periodical Modern Family
Thank you for entrusting your children to us. We love working with them and consider it an honor. Don’t forget spring break is right around the corner. Spring break is March 26-April 2. School will resume on Tuesday, April 3.
Cheryl Olson, Superintendent
Message from the Superintendent - February 16, 2018
Dear Rescue Families and Staff Members,
As we reflect on the tragic event that occurred in Florida this week, I want to assure you we understand you entrust your precious children to us, not only to educate them, but to keep them safe. We take that responsibility very seriously and share in our collective passion for our children’s safety.
Our hearts go out to the families who have experienced this senseless tragedy, and I would like to take a moment to share that safety of our children is our number one priority. As a district, we continue to communicate and collaborate closely with law enforcement and every available resource to equip our schools, staffs, and students with practice drills, appropriate responses, and what to do in the case of an emergency. Preparation, communication, and practice are critical components of our emergency preparedness. We will continue reviewing our emergency procedures with staff and students, following recommended protocol set forth by law enforcement and county agencies. We will also utilize, as appropriate, materials from agencies such as the American Psychological Association and the Sandy Hook Promise’s KNOW THE SIGNS guide, to help further educate our children about safety.
We appreciate your diligence, and please know safety is something we think about nonstop. Our site safety plans are reviewed and updated annually through their site council committees. We encourage you to reach out to your school with any concerns or ideas. Participating in your school’s site council is a great way to have a voice in school safety procedures.
As always, I am available for any questions or concerns. We are grateful to be partners with you to provide a safe, secure environment in which our children can learn and thrive.
Our priority is student safety.
Cheryl Olson, Superintendent
Message from the Superintendent - January 4, 2018
Dear RUSD Families, Teachers, and Staff Members,
We want to take an opportunity to wish each and every one of you a very Happy New Year! It is hard to believe it is already 2018. Time is flying onward. We trust you had a wonderful holiday season with family and friends and are ready to greet 2018 with fresh enthusiasm and joy.
We had a very busy December, with all the schools providing incredible holiday programs for all to enjoy. It was so special to see and hear our students perform for families, friends, and schools. We got to experience everything from band performances, choirs, musicals, recitations of poetry, dancing, art, and drama. Our students are talented for sure, and our parents and teachers work hard to bring these abilities out in our kids.
As we look forward to the New Year, I would like to remind you of our Superintendent Coffee Chats. This is just another avenue of communication. I would love the opportunity to get to know you better and share the direction of the district, as well as hear from you! This year we are alternating their location to the various sites, but you can attend one or all of them when it fits into your schedule! The next chats are on the following Thursdays for the remainder of this school year:
January 11, beginning at 9:15 a.m. hosted by Green Valley in their library
February 8, beginning at 9:15 a.m. hosted by Lakeview in their conference room
March 8, beginning at 9:15 a.m. hosted by the District Office in the Board Room
April 12, beginning at 9:15 a.m. hosted by Marina Village in their library
May 10, beginning at 9:15 a.m. hosted by Pleasant Grove in their large conference room
I would also like to take the opportunity to share 20 Tips for a Positive New Year from author Jon Gordon. I think these tips are perfect for ourselves individually, for our workplace, and for our families. Read them and share them!
- STAY POSITIVE: You can listen to cynics and doubters and believe that success is impossible, or you can trust that with faith and an optimistic attitude, all things are possible.
- TAKE A DAILY “THANK YOU WALK” You can’t be stressed and thankful at the same time. Feel blessed and you won’t be as stressed!
- EAT HEALTHIER FOODS that grow on trees and plants and less foods manufactured in plants.
- TALK TO YOURSELF instead of listening to yourself, instead of listening to your complaints, fears and doubts, talk to yourself with words of truth and encouragement.
- NO ENERGY VAMPIRES ALLOWED Post a sign that says “No Energy Vampires Allowed.” Gandhi said, “I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet!”
- BE A POSITIVE TEAM MEMBER – Being positive doesn’t just make you better, it makes everyone around you better!
- DON’T CHASE SUCCESS – Decide to make a difference and success will find YOU!
- GET MORE SLEEP – you can’t replace sleep with a double latte!
- DON’T WASTE YOUR ENERGY – Don’t waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control.
- LOVE, SERVE, and CARE – You don’t have to be great to serve, but you have to serve to be great. Look for opportunities to Love, Serve, and Care.
- REMEMBER YOUR WHY – Live your purpose. Remember WHY you do what you do. We don’t get burned out because of what we do. We get burned out because we forget why we do it.
- LOVE THE PROCESS – Remember there is no such thing as an overnight success. Love the process and you will love what the process produces.
- HAVE TRUST – Trust that everything happens for a reason and expect good things to come out of challenging experiences.
- NO COMPLAINING RULE – Implement the No Complaining Rule. If you are complaining, you are not leading.
- READ MORE – Read more books than you did in 2017.
- DON’T SEEK HAPPINESS – Instead live with love, passion, and purpose, and happiness will find you.
- FOCUS ON “GET TO” – Focus on “Get To” vs. “Have To”. Each day focus on what you get to do, not what you have to do. Life is a gift and not an obligation.
- GET BACK UP – The next time you “fail” remember that it is not meant to define you. It is meant to REFINE you.
- SMILE and LAUGH MORE – They are natural anti-depressants. A good belly laugh a day is good for the soul!
- ENJOY THE RIDE – you only have one ride through life, so make the most of it!
Thank you again for allowing us the distinct honor and privilege of working with you and your precious children and young people. We look forward to 2018 and taking your children as far as possible on their educational journey.
Here’s to a GREAT 2018!
Message from the Superintendent - November 3, 2017
Parent Letter Re: Video - November 1, 2017
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Message from the Superintendent - October 2, 2017
Dear RUSD Families,
Fall is definitely in the air! The school events put on by parent clubs and school sites have been wonderful ways to usher in fall and get us all engaged and excited about the school year. This is SUCH a wonderful district. We are excited about what is going on.
Many of our students are involved in cross country and the final meet is coming up. We will be sure to cheer on our students on October 11. We are proud of our kids. Middle School sports are underway as well, with our boys and girls volleyball teams doing extremely well! GOOOOO Mustangs and Pumas!
We had our first set of community coffee chats this past month. We will hold two of them each month. We will hold them at different locations and at different times to hopefully be convenient for parents and community members who would like to participate. We invite anyone interested in hearing more about what is going on in the district, or interested in asking questions, or just getting to know one another better. The October through December dates/times for the coffee chats are as follows:
October: Thursday, October 19 at Lake Forest School, Room F9 at 9:15 am and at the District Office Board room on the same day at 5:30 pm
November: Tuesday, November 7 at Rescue School, Room D2 at 9:15 am, and at the District Office Board room on the same day at 5:30 pm
December: Thursday, December 14 at Jackson School in the library at 9:15 am, and at the District Office Board room on the same day at 5:30 pm.
We had some exciting news this week, as State test scores were made public across the state. Our district ranked in the top 5 regional school districts as having the highest percentage of students meeting both English standards AND math standards. We thank every teacher and every staff member for all they do to meet student needs. We appreciate our students who work hard and take school seriously. We also are grateful to parents for the support you give your children, as you partner with us in the education of your children. We will continue working diligently to make sure our students continue to show growth!
Four of our schools are hosting groups of students from our Sister Schools in China last month and this month! About 80 Chinese students and teachers total visited Jackson, Lake Forest, Lakeview, and Marina Village. It has been a time of rich opportunity for our students to get to know students from across the ocean, from a different culture and system of education! The really special thing - friendship, kindness, and love are all a universal language! The students are having so much fun together, and the families hosting the children are enjoying the opportunity as well. We are hoping to reciprocate and send some of our students and teachers to our Sister Schools in China this spring. More information will come later on that.
Our All Day Kindergarten program has been in operation for two weeks! I am so proud of our hard-working teachers and the kindergarten students for making it successful. In visiting the classrooms across the district, one of the main things I heard was how hungry the kiddos got by 2:00! They have been re-arranging snack time and working on the schedule to make it beneficial for our students. A positive comment was teachers feel like they have so much more time to get lessons and projects accomplished, so it is not as rushed for the students. The students, of course, are just excited that they have one more recess in the afternoon! All in all, it has been a good start, and again, I thank our teachers for all they have done to prepare for this change.
Another exciting piece of news is we are utilizing STEMscopes for science this year to help us transition to the use of Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). We are very enthused about this program because it is built on a digital platform, but enhanced by print, with kits that are hands-on, full of inquiry-based investigations, and is research-based and connects the three dimensions of NGSS: Disciplinary Core Ideas, Science and Engineering Practices, and Crosscutting Connections. All K-5 teachers are able to use STEMscopes, and 6-8 science teachers have it available as well.
I would also like to take this opportunity to let our community know we now have a complete Cabinet. We have hired and welcomed Ms. Candice Harris as our Human Resources Director. She comes to us highly recommended and with extensive experience from Santa Clara and we are thrilled to have her on board. We have also hired and welcomed our new Assistant Superintendent of Business Services, Mr. Sean Martin. He comes to us from Pollock Pines, and has a long history of serving in this area with great expertise. I know I speak accurately for Candice, Sean, and myself, being new to Rescue; we are happy to be here, and we are excited to witness firsthand the family atmosphere and dedication to the schools and district. We look forward to serving with you and for your benefit.
Lastly, I would like to invite you to let me know how we can better serve you and communicate with you. I welcome your thoughts, suggestions, and ideas. We truly desire to partner effectively with you as families in the education of your precious children. We have incredible, dedicated teachers and staffs who love your children and want them to succeed. With that, we do want to hear from you as to how we might better work with you. You may email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call at 530 677-4810.
Thank you and have a fabulous October.
Message from the Superintendent - August 15, 2017
What a great start to the year we have had! I was very thrilled to visit each site last week and witness firsthand happy students, parents, and staffs. We are off and running! We want you to know that we are here to support your families and provide a top quality educational program for your children. We want to suggest you become actively involved in your child’s school however you can, whether by volunteering, being part of the Parent Club, chaperoning field trips, providing things for the class, or just by being supportive of the classrooms and school!
I would like to let you know of a monthly opportunity for you to meet me for coffee the second Thursday of each month, from either 9:00-10:00 am or 5:30-6:30 pm. I would love the chance to meet with anyone able to come! This is one other avenue for chatting and communication! The first ones will be Thursday, September 14, in the Rescue School District Board Room. I’d love to see you. I am going to set up different locations for these coffee chats, to try to make it as convenient as possible for you, but for the first one, we will meet at the District Office Board room. If it works for your schedule to attend in the morning, I’d love to see you at 9 am. If evening is better, come to the 5:30 pm chat! I hope to see you.