Cougar Pride!

It’s a beautiful day every day at Cajon Valley Middle School. Our certificated and classified staff work tirelessly everyday in support of students and their personal and academic growth. Teachers and staff are collaborating with each other and working with students to create learning environments and activities that are meaningful and engaging. Teachers and staff are working to support each other in integrating both traditional instructional practices with the support of technology. CVMS is an amazing school because of the staff and students who come to school everyday with a collaborative, positive spirit.

Cougar Pride!
Gregory Calvert, Principal
Cajon Valley Middle School

Hour of Code Contest and Code School Update

We will be announcing the winning school, classes, and individuals
from the 1st Annual Cajon Valley Hour of Code Contest next week. With
participation from all CVUSD schools, eleven with 100% participation,
and over 12,560 total participants, we are looking forward to
celebrating this accomplishment by awarding a select number of prizes.
Students interested in further developing coding skills can now
experience computer science classes and events at the “Code Campus” at
Emerald Middle School. The first “Hour of Code” Saturday will take
place on February 7– which will kickoff free and low-cost ongoing
classes, events, and camps. Feedback on the Code Campus has been very
positive. Regarding the Winter Camp held in January, parent
testimonials included things like: “When I asked my boys if there were
any suggestions for improvements, I got a strong ‘no way, it was
perfect!!’” and “This organization runs a fantastic camp…I would
highly recommend!” Check out the events schedule at, and stay tuned for an announcement featuring
the Hour of Code Contest winners soon.

Andrew Svehaug, CEO
Code to the Future

Hillsdale Music Dept News

All State Honor Band

Our very own Evan Johnsen (trumpet) has been selected to the All-State Honor Band. He is one of 8 students of all San Diego County Selected. He will be going to Fresno CA to rehearse with the top 100 musiciand from the state and perform at the Saroyen Theater. Their concert will be the final performance of a 3 day Music Conference. Other performing groups include The Canadian Brass, UCLA Wind Ensemble, Fresno State Orchestra, High School and Middle School All-state Band, Orchestra, and Jazz Bands. College’s from all over the United states will be recruiting from this event as well.

Feb 19-23rd – to see complete list of students and conference details.

Disneyland with Advanced Orchestra

The Advanced Orchestra had a great performance on Jan 23rd. There were many groups performing from all over San Diego and Los Angeles on that day. While we were waiting for our performance a very famous (in the band director world) director named Richard Meyer was there performing with his middle school orchestra. I had to meet him. It just happened to be that our Advanced Orchestra was playing one of his songs called “Night Shift”. Once he heard that he decided to come back and see our orchestra. One of my long terms goals has become a reality. To commission a piece of music where students get to give input into a subject or idea and we will submit it to a composer like Richard Meyer. Well after he heard our orchestra he is very interested. What a great opportunity. Can you imagine if the piece gets published and is performed worldwide with Hillsdale and CVUSD accredited.

Stuart Caldwell, Hillsdale Music Department
Hillsdale Middle School

Lexington Elementary Takes 10-Day Gratitude Challenge

The 4th and 5th graders at Lexington Elementary have taken the 10 Day Gratitude Challenge. The students are writing in a Gratitude Journal and wearing wrist bands so they can reflect on what they have. We all learned that being thankful brings happiness. And, when we are happy, we show more kindness.

One student shared that his gratitude wrist band actually brought him good luck because he had such a great day when he wore it. When he was asked why he thought it brought him good luck, he looked a little puzzled. One of the counselors explained that he was having a great day because he was looking for it! He had a huge smile on his face as he walked to class.

Check out the Lexington Counseling Center Website and join us in the challenge!

Tami Johnson MA, PPS, School Counselor

Lexington Elementary School

Crest Elementary School Celebrates our School Visit from Dr. Miyashiro and Tamara Otero!

Thursday, January 22, 2015 was a day of celebration for Crest Elementary School students and staff. We had the opportunity to impress our distinguished visitors- Dr. Miyashiro, our Superintendent, and School Board member, Tamera Otero. Our visitors observed our students from TK to 5th grade using the Chromebooks in their classrooms for ST Math and research for a science project on Whales. In addition, Tamera and David enjoyed reading the students’ writing posted in the classroom and engaging with our students in their learning. This golden opportunity allowed us to shine and celebrate the hard work and commitment to excellence shared by our teachers, students, and staff. As principal of Crest, I am especially proud of our teachers and staff who make a difference everyday in the classroom. Lastly, the entire Crest School Community would like to thank our District Office, Purchasing and Warehouse Departments, Information Technology Department, and Maintenance Department for making it possible for all children at Crest Elementary School to have access to the new Chromebooks and Nexus Tablets that were delivered over the Winter Vacation!

Maria Kehoe, Principal
Crest Elementary School

Madison Elementary Meets (MDA) Muscular Dystrophy Association

Teacher Margaret Donohue, SECA Cindy Komp, and parents Elvira and Marcos Trujeque organized an informative presentation by the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) for Madison’s K-2 students. The students learned about individual differences and respecting others with different strengths and weaknesses than their own. The presenter shared a cartoon video that explained muscular dystrophy, and then she led teachers and children in a physical model of how messages travel from the brain to the skeletal muscles both in healthy bodies and in people with muscular dystrophy. All of this education will go a long way toward building empathy for a classmate who has muscular dystrophy and respecting people with all types of challenges.

Christine Sphar, Principal
Madison Elementary School

Anza All-Stars… Creating the Future

Anza has made a school-wide commitment to teaching blended learning during math each day. Teachers are individualizing instruction and providing immediate feedback towards student learning goals. Students at all grade levels are using Google Classroom to enrich the learning experience in both ELA and math.

Anza has been implementing a focus on robotics and engineering. The program has grown significantly over the year with students creating algorithms through code to move their own robots.

With the expansion of their school garden partnerships have been made both with parents and community members. Second graders are developing a historical garden by planting seed handed down from George Washington’s personal garden. As they get their hands in the dirt they will be learning about the importance of gardening and agriculture from the time of the pilgrims to current day.

Anza continues to look to the future in order to come up with creative ideas to engage students and deepen the instructional experience.

Cindy Knight, Principal
Anza Elementary School

Los Coches Creek Winter Arts Program

Los Coches Creek’s honors English students wowed audiences on Friday, at the Winter Arts Program, with their imaginative biographical interpretations of a series of portraits by famed master, John Singer Sargent. Students in grades 6-8 worked in collaborative pairs, using goggle docs and internet resources to craft highly dramatic biographies, taking cues from Mr. Singer’s strikingly vivid depictions of the late 19th, and early 20th century, elite. The event, coordinated and M.C.’d by Mr. Bill Roemmich, and sponsored by the LCC PTA, was attended by parents, teachers, students, school board members and our Superintendent, Dr. David Miyashiro, all of whom enjoyed a delicious continental breakfast.

Dana Stevenson, Principal
Los Coches Creek Middle School

First Year Teacher @ Crest Finds Gold For Students… You can too!

Annie Pearson, first year teacher at Crest Elementary School, shared how she utilized “Crowdfunding” to equip her classroom with an impressive array of resources… We were impressed by the learning we observed, but equally impressed by her entrepreneurial leadership. Thank you Annie for sharing this resource with our colleagues across Cajon Valley! See pictures and details below…

“ is an online charity that makes it easy for anyone to help students in need. Public school teachers from every corner of America post classroom project requests on our site, and you can give any amount to the project that most inspires you.

When a project reaches its funding goal, we ship the materials to the school. You’ll get photos of the project taking place, a letter from the teacher, and insight into how every dollar was spent. Give over $50 and you’ll also receive hand-written thank-yous from the students” (www.
As a new teacher, Donors Choose has helped me supply materials for my classroom that I could not have provided otherwise. I’ve been very lucky to have my first two projects fully funded within a month of posting on the website! Our first project was called “Let’s Get Rockin’ with a new Listening Center” where we received an organization box, over 50 books on CD, and a new CD player. Our second project allowed my students to get in touch with their organization skills with the project, “Organization is Key”. We now have individual chair pockets, pencil tubs, paper tubs, and drawers to help keep our classroom organized. This project was flash-funded by OshKosh B’Gosh in full right before the end 2014! I’ve been very fortunate to been given generous donations from family, friends, parents, and the community around Crest Elementary school to fund these two projects and in less than a week into our 3rd project, we have raised over $200 thanks to the matching promotions that Donors Choose gives to each teacher. My fellow teachers at Crest have also been successful in funding 5 projects this year. Donors Choose is an amazing website that every teacher should look into!

Thank You,

Annie Pearson
2nd Grade Teacher
Crest Elementary School
M.Ed. — Math, Science, and Technology Education
M.Ed. — Curriculum and Instruction
University of San Diego