Tue01272015

Schools

MVLA revisits prospect of ninth-grade PE exemptions

MVLA revisits prospect of ninth-grade PE exemptions


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District Board of Trustees is scheduled to vote on a proposal to exempt ninth-grade student-athletes from taking PE. Students take part in a physical education class at Mount...

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Community

Midnight Express offers late-night rides from SF

Midnight Express offers late-night rides from SF


From Midnight Express Instagram
A group of millennial-aged Santas celebrating a night on the town prepare for a safe ride from San Francisco to their South Bay homes, courtesy of Cory Althoff’s new Midnight Express shuttle.

It’s no understatemen...

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Comment

More open than ever: Editorial

One of the Los Altos City Council’s objectives for 2015 is implementing an open-government policy. The title of the policy may be somewhat misleading, because it’s not as if the city has had a closed-government policy. But the new proposal goes beyon...

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Business

Cassidy Turley, DTZ plan to combine

Cassidy Turley, DTZ plan to combine


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Cassidy Turley, which has offices at 339 S. San Antonio Road, is combining with DTZ following its recent acquisition.

Commercial real estate services companies DTZ and Cassidy Turley have joined forces to operate as a sin...

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Books

Gawande's

Gawande's "Being Mortal" proves an important book on aging


Books about death and dying are usually not on my list of “must reads.”

I couldn’t resist, however, the best-selling “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” (Metropolitan Books, 2014) by Atul Gawande.

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People

JUDY HOFFMANN

JUDY HOFFMANN

Judy Hoffmann passed away unexpectedly October 17, 2014 in New York City. It was only fitting Judy would be traveling and enjoying special adventures in so many different places until the very end.

Judy has lived since 1969 in Los Altos with her h...

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Travel

Cuban photographer slated to appear at Foothill

Cuban photographer slated to appear at Foothill


Courtesy of Raúl Cañibano
Cuban photographer Raúl Cañibano is set to appear at Foothill College tonight. His work – including the image “Series: Guajira’s Land, Viñales, 2007,” right – is on display at the KCI Gallery t...

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Stepping Out

TheatreWorks launches '2 Pianos' in Mtn. View

TheatreWorks launches '2 Pianos' in Mtn. View


Suellen Fitzsimmons/Special to the Town Crier
Christopher Tocco stars in TheatreWorks’ “2 Pianos 4 Hands,” which opened last week.

TheatreWorks’ production of “2 Pianos 4 Hands” is scheduled to run through Feb. 15 at the Mountain View Center fo...

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Spiritual Life

Start something great by ringing in the new year with prayer

There is a tradition, which I’m told originates in the Midwest, that calls for people to pray in the new year. A few years ago, I was invited to a friend’s house and a number of people stayed up until midnight (approximately two hours pa...

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Magazine

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years


Courtesy of Christopher Stark
Homes on the St. Francis High School Women’s Club’s Christmas at Our House Holiday Home Tour showcase a variety of architectural styles.

The days grow short on sunshine but long on nostalgia as the holidays approach...

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Downtown College Prep schools encourage, empower students



Downtown College Prep students spend four 45-minute periods a week preparing college applications, with support from teachers and staff. Traci Newell/ Town Crier

For teachers and students alike, Downtown College Prep schools are a family, and family members don’t let each other down.

“The teachers are committed to helping you out,” said Mario Rodriguez, a member of the 78-student senior class at Downtown College Prep in San Jose. “They give you a sense of comfort and make school feel like home. Here, you actually know your teachers and they spend time with you, and that is something I really value and cherish.”

Downtown College Prep schools are charter schools in the San Jose Unified and Alum Rock school districts. The singular mission for students, most the first in their families to apply to college, is be accepted to and enroll at a four-year university, a graduation requirement.

Last week at Downtown College Prep in San Jose, Rodriguez and his classmates celebrated the completion of the UC and CSU college admissions process.

“It was really stressful, but it was really worth it,” said senior Audrey Aguilar. “I felt like sometimes I was thinking, ‘I don’t know if I can do it. I don’t know if I’m good enough.’ But I just had to get over that fear.”

One of the aspects that makes Downtown College Prep unique is that students spend four 45-minute periods a week preparing college applications, with support from teachers and staff.

Jeff Dagan, senior English teacher, said he has a chart in his room tracking his students’ progress in meeting deadlines for college admissions.

“It’s amazing how many of our students go to college,” he said. “This little rule of having the graduation requirement of being accepted into a four-year university really works to get them going right from the beginning. Making it a structural piece and requirement is the key to why we are so successful.”

Downtown College Prep believes that all students, regardless of academic achievement, could and should be prepared for college success. Five hundred graduates later, the school continues to build transformational learning communities where students become pioneers in their families and communities.

Downtown College Prep is committed to college success. The school’s “To and Through” college completion model ensures that graduates and their families are supported in the pursuit of a college degree. With a focus on students who are historically underserved by traditional public schools, Downtown College Prep families are largely low-income Latino families with limited education.

Next year, Downtown College Prep will add 550 seats in its Alum Rock and San Jose schools. Alum Rock currently serves sixth- through ninth-graders but is growing to eventually continue through 12th grade. Next year, the San Jose school will add a sixth-grade program, which will connect to the current ninth- through 12th-grade program.

The Town Crier Holiday Fund’s contribution supports Downtown College Prep programs in San Jose and Alum Rock.

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