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.


Schools Briefs

Foothill College hosts Solar Eclipse Party

Foothill College and the Peninsula Astronomy Society have scheduled a Solar Eclipse Party 2-4:30 p.m. Thursday at the college’s observatory, 12345 S. El Monte Road, Los Altos Hills.

In addition to viewing the eclipse on the 16-inch computer-controlled Schmidt-Cassegrain reflector and hydrogen-alpha solar telescopes in the Foothill observatory, Peninsula Astronomy Society volunteers will make a variety of small telescopes for attendees to view the eclipse and will explain the eclipse and answer questions. In the Bay Area, the sun will be approximately 40 percent covered during the eclipse. The best time to view the eclipse is 3-3:30 p.m.


Three Los Altos schools earn National Blue Ribbon designation

Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Bullis Charter School students wear their school spirit clothing to greet their mascot Oct. 3 in celebration of being named a National Blue Ribbon School.

Blach Intermediate, Egan Junior High and Bullis Charter schools earned National Blue Ribbon Schools honors last week.

The three Los Altos schools were among 24 California schools recognized by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan for their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups.


Santa Rita hosts Witches' Delight

Courtesy of Sandra Brenner
Paige and Kayla Flaig take a spin at Witches’ Delight.

Santa Rita School’s Witches’ Delight returns to Los Altos for its 54th haunting 3-8 p.m. Oct. 24 at the school, 700 Los Altos Ave.

The annual event includes carnival rides, games for all ages, a cakewalk, cookie decorating and a costume contest. Churros, cotton candy and popcorn will be available for purchase. The Santa Rita BBQers will prepare dinner.


MVHS student shares his love of photography

Courtesy of
Zachary Dembner included this photo, titled “When You Least Expect It,” in his recent exhibition at Red Rock Coffee Co.

Serious photography is new to me, but my interest stems back to my early childhood. I remember my dad always taking photos and letting me play around with some of our family cameras. A little more than a year ago, I started taking photography more seriously and found myself incredibly taken by the art form.


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.


LASD introduces extended-day kindergarten program

Ellie van Houtte/Town Crier
Santa Rita School kindergarten teacher Kiwi Capriles, left, engages her students in small-group instruction last week.

Local kindergartners recently had their school day lengthened as a part of the Los Altos School District’s extended-day kindergarten program rollout.

For the first four weeks of the school year, kindergarteners attended half days of instruction and then took the leap to extended days Sept. 15, adding two hours and 15 minutes to each day.


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