Full circle: Former Alta Vista High student joins staff

Alba Garza” width=
Zoe Morgan/Town Crier
Alba Garza, left, talks with Alta Vista High junior Mishell Alarcon. Garza is a social worker at the school and an Alta Vista graduate herself.

Alta Vista High School Principal Bill Pierce always dreamed of hiring a former student. Last year that dream came to fruition when Pierce hired Alba Garza, who graduated from Alta Vista in 2003, to be a social worker at the school. 

Local students named National Merit semifinalists

The 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program named more than 50 local students semifinalists in the annual scholarship competition.

This year’s program recognizes the top scorers on the 2018 PSAT. More than 1.5 million juniors from approximately 21,000 high schools took the test, which served as an initial screen of program entrants. The pool of semifinalists includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. 

Schools Briefs: Science nonprofit joins national group, e-waste drop off, moon festival

Local science program joins national network

Science is Elementary, a nonprofit group founded by Los Altos resident Tzipor Ulman, is joining a nationwide education network, aiming to combat the shortage of STEM teachers.

100Kin10, a national organization working to train 100,000 new science, technology, engineering and math teachers by 2021, announced Sept. 5 that Science is Elementary would join 40 other new partners this year.

Student Voices: LAHS students raise money for victims of domestic violence

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Courtesy of Shay Adams
Beth Williams, from left, Next Door Solutions director of development, receives support from Los Altos High’s Medical Outreach Volunteers for Everyone club vice president Abhishek Subandh, president Shay Adams and treasurer Richard Zhao.

Domestic violence exists all over the world, but I was shocked to hear that in the United States, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner – more than 12 million women and men over the course of a year.

People are often surprised to hear that domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women – more common than car accidents, muggings and rapes combined. These sobering statistics are from the National Domestic Violence Hotline. There is a societal cost as well, because domestic violence victims often miss work while recovering.

Homeless community college student parking bill put on hold

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Town Crier File Photo
State Assemblyman Marc Berman is delaying a bill that would require community colleges to let homeless students sleep in their cars in campus parking lots. A parking lot at the rear of Foothill College, above, has been used in the past by at least one homeless student as a place to park his car and sleep.

The future of State Assemblyman Marc Berman’s homeless student parking bill is uncertain. Last week, Berman announced that he is postponing his bill requiring community colleges to allow homeless students to sleep in their cars on campus.

The State Senate Appropriations Committee passed the bill Aug. 30 with amendments that Berman said make the bill “incredibly weak” and stigmatize homeless students.

A new era at St. Francis: President, three other administrators join the school

Jason Curtis” width=
Zoe Morgan/Town Crier
Jason Curtis speaks with junior Andrew Wilson last week on the St. Francis High School quad.

As students returned to class this fall at St. Francis, the school was also welcoming a group of new administrators to the Mountain View campus.

The Catholic high school has a new president, dean of students, executive director of institutional advancement and chief financial officer.


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