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Valencia Elementary

Pajaro Valley Unified School District

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    have a great summer! See you back on August 14th!

    As summer approaches and you are looking for ways to motivate your students to read over the summer break. Please feel free to share with them the Summer Reading Program at Bookshop Santa Cruz. This program not only motivates your student to read over the summer but they can also help win books for your school library. Bookshop Santa Cruz donates books to the school with the highest rate of participation.

    This year we are so excited to announce that students who complete the reading receive, a $5 gift card from Bookshop, a slice of pizza from Pizza My Heart, a scoop of ice-cream from Penny Ice-Creamery, a prize from the Warriors, and new this year 5 free rides from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

    Attached are quarter sheet flyers as well as posters you can print or attach to electronic communication to share with your communities. You can also visit this website here to learn more and print the bookmarks for the program.

    Trout Gulch - Road Closure - 5/22

    Official Press Release 

    County of Santa Cruz Department of Public Works has announced one lane of Trout Gulch Road at PM 2.74, located approximately half a mile north of Valencia School Road intersection, will be closed on Wednesday, May 22, 2019, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Expect up to 15-minute delays. This lane closure is necessary for geotechnical drilling operations for storm damage repairs. Questions may be directed to Amber Myer at (831) 454-2344. For up-to-date information on County maintained roads in Santa Cruz County, please visit

    We are pleased to share that Valencia Elementary School is participating in the Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s Healthy Schools Program!

    The Healthy Schools Program is an evidence-based initiative that supports our efforts to implement healthier policies and practices.  Research shows a strong link between a young person’s practice of healthy habits, including a good diet and regular physical activity, and an improvement in their overall life outcomes.  Research also shows that schools can be places for motivating students to lead healthy lifestyles, and staff can be role models for showing students how to adopt and maintain healthy behaviors.

    In addition, we have noticed that when kids are physically active, they perform better academically, have better attendance, and their behavior improves. By participating in this program, our school is creating a healthier generation where students, teachers, and other staff members eat better and move more.

    So what does this mean for the Valencia Community?

    “Oh the times, they are a’changin” ~ Bob Dylan

    • We will no longer use food as rewards for student achievement.

    • We will no longer withhold physical activity/recess as a consequence for misbehavior or lack of work completion. (Students exhibiting unsafe/unkind playground behavior may have restrictions on their recess activities and freedom to interact with other students.)

    • Students will be encouraged to MOVE MORE and SIT/STAND LESS during recess periods.  Valencia was recently awarded grant money from Kaiser Permanente for the purposes of purchasing more recess equipment for students to use, hopefully resulting in more active kiddos during the recess blocks.

    • All homeroom teachers participated in a Physical Education professional development class in mid-January and are excited to change up PE lessons and instructional strategies based on what was shared.  We hope to improve on the amount of time students are active during PE blocks as well as during recess periods; moving away from activities and games where students stand waiting for a turn to play. So...our learners should expect to be asked to MOVE MORE during PE lessons as well!

    • We will no longer allow food-based treats for individual student birthday celebrations.  Kiddos may bring in pencils, bookmarks, bouncy balls, bubbles, etc. to share with their classmates on their birthday, but cupcakes and other sweet treats are no longer allowed.  If the teacher wants to hold a monthly class birthday celebration (one day per month to celebrate all birthdays in that month - with limited sweet treats), that will be permitted.

    • Classes are allowed ONE special classroom celebration or party per month.  That could be a class birthday celebration, as noted above, a class behavior-related celebratory party (i.e. We filled our marble jar earning marbles for our stellar behavior choices!), or a holiday-related party (i.e. Valentine’s Day; Halloween).  Limited sweet or unhealthy foods will be allowed at these once per month celebrations, but healthy snack and drink choices must also be provided for students wishing to stay away from the less healthful foods.

    • We are aware that the food choices offered in the school cafeteria for breakfast and lunch are not always the most healthy items.  Our Food Services Department has made shifts/changes in regards to menu planning over the last year or so that signify that they are moving in a positive, more healthful direction.  We are excited to see forward progress! Rest assured, our site Safety, Health, and Wellness Team will continue to advocate for healthier cafeteria food items for our students.

    We appreciate your support as we promote these changes across campus this school year.  Help us build excitement amongst students and staff by modeling eagerness to embrace the change yourself!  We have attached a list of some healthy drink and food items that are approved for classroom and school-wide activities should you be invited to send in items for a class celebration. The list also includes non-food treat/reward ideas.

    _Treats_ for School Celebrations That Align with Nutrition Goals (2).pdf 


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