Sat11222014

Schools

Scientists bring experiments into MV classrooms


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
During a Science is Learning geology lesson, Theuerkauf Elementary School students learn about igneous rocks by observing how sugar changes form when heated.

Hundreds of local elementary students perform experiments with scientists each month in their own classrooms, with help from Science is Elementary, a nonprofit organization that aims to improve science education.

“Science education should not be something that we only give people who can pay,” said Tzipor Ulman, Ph.D., founder and executive director of Science is Elementary. “Science is part of our everyday life, so it needs to be part of our everyday education.”

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Savvy students organize Tech Team at Santa Rita


ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Santa Rita School Tech Team member Kirsten Peterson, in blue, helps a student during the Lunch Lab. The Tech Team helps run the Lunch Lab, a program popular with students.

A group of technologically literate students banded together at Santa Rita School this year to help teachers and students troubleshoot computer problems.

At the beginning of the school year, three sixth-graders approached the school’s technology specialist, Diane Hutchinson, with the idea of forming a group to help resolve technological problems at school – and the Tech Team was born.

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Local high school rock band raises funds to record album


Courtesy of Jason Guesman
37th Parallel, which includes local students Brad Guesman, left, and Eric Dyer, is raising money to record its first album.

What began as four junior high students getting together to play music for fun has transformed into a high school rock band that has performed many live shows, including an appearance at Live 105’s BFD concert at Shoreline Amphitheatre.

Los Altos High junior Brad Guesman and Mountain View High juniors AJ Pelayo, Philip Chang and Eric Dyer formed 37th Parallel and are trying to drum up support for their first album. Working through a Kickstarter campaign, they are two-thirds of the way to reaching the $12,000 needed to record an album.

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Mountain View High School hosts STEM week activities


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Google X employee Adam Woodworth, above, from left, works with Mountain View High students Grace Pelella and Karina F-H on a STEM Week activity.

The quad at Mountain View High School buzzed with activity last week as students sampled a host of hands-on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) activities.

The activities highlighted the school’s annual STEM Week, which featured scientists, mathematicians and technologists from local companies and universities sharing their personal and professional experiences with students.

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MVHS grad runs SAT program for students in need


Courtesy of MVLA Community Scholars
Mountain View High School graduate Viet Nguyen, back row, left, offered a free SAT prep course over the summer for students.

Two Mountain View High School graduates piloted a free SAT preparation course, ASPIRE, over the summer break.

Viet Nguyen and Olivia Hawkins developed the course, which supported eight students as they prepared for their fall SAT exams, scheduled Nov. 8 and Dec. 6.

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St. Francis High president plans to retire at end of school year


St. Francis High School President Kevin Makley plans to retire at the end of the school year after nearly 30 years of service.

Makley joined the faculty at St. Francis as director of guidance and counseling in 1985. He subsequently served as director of admissions, director of development, vice principal and vice president before being named president in 1997.

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New CHAC program helps at-risk students stay in school

The Mountain View-based Community Health Awareness Council (CHAC) recently launched a new effort to identify students most at risk of dropping out and provide them with services and support to help them stay in school.

The School First program, championed by Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian during the county’s budget process earlier this year, targets three local schools with higher-than-average dropout risk factors: Mariano Castro Elementary and Crittenden Middle in Mountain View and Alta Vista High, the continuation school serving the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District.

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