Tag Archives: Chino Valley Unified School District

Helping Out For The Holidays

cvusdBy CVUSD

Butterfield Ranch Elementary School in Chino Hills took to heart the motto that it is “better to give than receive” during its annual Night of Giving on Dec. 14.
Students, staff and parents collected new toys for distribution by the Chino Valley Fire Department, collected items for families in need that are served by Chino Valley Unified School District’s HOPE centers, collected blankets and pet toys for homeless animals in shelters, filled a firefighter’s boot with money to help burn victims, and collected change to “change someone’s holiday.”
The students also made cards for children who are in the hospital during the holidays. The evening event also included a visit from Santa Claus and Chino Valley firefighters.

Cal Aero Preserve Academy Begins School


Minutes before the first bell of the day rings at Cal Aero, parents and students fill the courtyard just outside the school office.

Photo courtesy: CVUSD
Minutes before the first bell of the day rings at Cal Aero, parents and students fill the courtyard just outside the school office.

Chino – July 6 marked the first day of school for approximately 500 elementary students at Cal Aero Preserve Academy in Chino, as the K-8 campus began a year-round school program.

The first day went smoothly as students lined up behind teachers holding signs. A few tears were shed by younger siblings who wanted to know why their big brothers and sisters were going into classrooms.

The Cal Aero staff were assisted by several District staff members, including Mary Salcido, Director of Access & Equity; Dan Sosa, Director of Elementary Curriculum; Rosa Corona, Coordinator of Elementary Curriculum; and Denise Thompson, Administrative Secretary I, Access & Equity. Salcido brought snacks for the Cal Aero staff.

Principal Shawna Petit-Dinkins roamed the campus throughout the morning, assisting students and parents.

Three tracks of students – about three-fourths of the school’s elementary enrollment — began the 2016-2017 school year under overcast skies. A fourth track of elementary students will begin classes at the campus on Aug. 1 as one of the other tracks goes on a four-week vacation. Seventh- and eighth-graders will be on a traditional school schedule and will begin classes on Monday, Aug. 15 when other Chino Valley Unified School District students begin classes.

The year-round students will be in school approximately 12 weeks and off four weeks throughout the year. They will all get a week off during Thanksgiving and two weeks off for Winter/Christmas Break. Their spring breaks will be incorporated into their vacation dates.

In late 2014, a year-round schedule was proposed for the school to help manage growth at Cal Aero.


Chino Valley Schools Place In Solar Cup

Staff Reports

Courtesy of CVUSD A Chino High team member participates in the endurance race at this year’s Solar Cup.

Courtesy of CVUSD
A Chino High team member participates in the endurance race at this year’s Solar Cup.

Chino/Chino Hills– Last week, two Chino Valley high schools placed in this year’s Solar Cup, which is a high school competition involving solar-powered boats. The event was held May 13 to 15 at Lake Skinner in the Temecula area.

A Chino High School team placed second overall in the race, and also took first in the public service announcement category of the event. Chino Hills High also participated in the Solar Cup and took 32nd place overall.
“The Solar Cup program has students building and racing 16-foot-long solar-powered boats, learning about conservation of natural resources, electrical and mechanical engineering, problem solving, and more,” according to the Chino Valley Unified School District.
All teams are entered in the competition and sponsored by Metropolitan Water member agencies and local water utilities.
“This year, after overcoming a number of obstacles, the team from Chino High School placed second overall in the competition,” said team advisor Kevin Britten, an environmental science and chemistry teacher at Chino High in a CVUSD news release. “This was a remarkable and unexpected result based on the problems that we were having with the boat. For a period of time, there was some question as to whether we would even have an operating boat. We overcame the problems and competed quite well over the period of three days.”

Chino School Raises Funds For Foster Children

Staff Reports


Chino– Last month, Borba Elementary School students raised $1,700 to help purchase duffel bags that foster children can use to carry their belongings. The students raised the funds in just two weeks.

Foster youth are in need of the duffel bags because they are usually provided with trash bags to carry their personal items when they are placed in a foster home or agency. Borba Elementary started the fundraiser after partnering with Together We Rise, a local non-profit group that assists foster youth. “Borba students and staff members also discussed the ‘Character Counts’ trait of caring in April as part of the fundraising effort,” according to a Corona Norco Unified School District announcement.

Representatives from Bienvenidos Foster Care Agency in Montclair will be accepting the donation on Friday, May 20 at 9 a.m. The donation ceremony will take place at Borba Elementary in Chino. “Representing the school in the donation ceremony will be members of Borba’s Safe School Ambassadors, a student-run anti-bullying group,” say Corona Norco Unified School District officials.


Chino Valley National Junior Honor Society Inductees

Staff Reports

Chino Valley – Heritage Middle School announced their 2016 National Junior Honor Society inductees last week. The induction ceremony took place on April 20 at 6 p.m., where each of the recipients were honored.

The National Junior Honor Society inductees are students who have demonstrated high standards of scholarship, leadership, service, citizenship, and character.

Congratulations to the following 2016 National Junior Honor Society inductees:

  • Luis Acosta
  • Alicen Astorga
  • Camille Call
  • Madisen Cornelius
  • Magali Gomez
  • McKenna Harris
  • Jacob Hogan
  • Joelle Krogh
  • Kyra Mastin
  • Ashley McGuffey
  • Madison Morin
  • Brittany Pierce
  • Rachel Plumb
  • Emery Rock
  • Keller Rock
  • Rudy Rodriguez
  • Jessica Shuck
  • Melissa Soto
  • Emily Thompson
  • Arley Tucker
  • Keiana Vreyens
  • Abigail Watson

Chino Valley Percussion Teams Excel At World Championships

Chino Valley Unified School District

Chino Valley– Congratulations to three Chino Valley Unified School District percussion teams for their winning performances at the 2016 Winter Guard International (WGI) Percussion World Championships, held April 15 and 16 in Dayton, Ohio.

A percussion team from Ayala High bested 14 other high schools from across the nation to be named the 2016 WGI Percussion Scholastic World Champions on April 16. Ayala won first overall in the prestigious division. Ayala also took first in caption awards for music effect, visual effect, and visual. They won second in music.

Chino Hills High’s percussion team took second overall in the Scholastic World division. They also won first in music; second places in music effect and visual effect; and a third place in visual.

Ayala’s Scholastic Concert World team came in first overall in that division of five teams at the WGI Championships on April 15. Ayala also took first in music, and second in artistry.


CVUSD’s Annual Festival Of The Arts

Photo credit: CVUSD

Photo credit: CVUSD
Young artists enjoy the exhibits

Courtesy of Chino Valley Unified School District


Chino – Art work by hundreds of Chino Valley Unified School District students was on display to the community March 22 and 23 at Magnolia Junior High in Chino during the District’s annual Festival of the Arts.
Among the projects were ceramics, paintings, pencil and crayon drawings, cartoons, sculptures, and craft art.
Magnolia Junior High and Briggs Fundamental School junior high students provided music during the opening ceremony. Eagle Canyon Elementary’s Petit Advanced Band Ensemble performed two numbers during the closing ceremony. Eagle Canyon’s Drama Club also performed “The Surfer and the Shark”, a play written by retired teacher John Payne and showcasing hits of The Beach Boys.
Guests received a museum quality program that was designed by Troy Ingram, coordinator of the District’s Innovation and Creative Services department. Set against a background of rust colored leaf imprints, the program included featured photos of the works of student artists and their comments about their artistic journey. The program also included the names of schools, students and classes participating in the Festival of the Arts.
Coordinators of the event were Chris Andreas, Rosalia Arroyo, Andrea Baerga, Dan Cahill, Cindy Dawson, Kathleen Douglass, April Faucher, Rose Garcia, Mary Green, Denise Gumaer, Tricia Hernandez, Jeanne King, Eileen Kostyk, John Lee, Pam Lee, Elizabeth Lorusso, Rhonda Martello, Shirley Meredith, Zoe Pacela, Gerson Renderos, Albert Reyes, Andrea Riley, Sergio Robleto, Angela Trunske, Wendy Villegas, Kim Walker, Flory Welsh, Terry Wharton, Bob Whitmore, Anne Whyte, and Tracy Young.

Canyon Hills Junior High Robotics Club Seeking World Championship

Photo courtesy CVUSD

Photo courtesy CVUSD
State Champion Canyon Hills Robotics Club

Courtesy of Chino Valley Unified School District

CHINO HILLS– Canyon Hills Junior High School’s Robotics Team is planning to compete in the VEX World Championships in Louisville, Kentucky, April 20-23, 2016.
The competition requires students to design, build and compete with VEX EDR robots.
The first-year team has been named 2016 State Champions in VEX robot competition. They have also been named Tournament and Excellence Champions, Programming Champions, Skills Champions, received sportsmanship awards, and an innovation award.
Their advisor, Canyon Hills Junior High science teacher Isaac “Jami” Cabase, started an afterschool robotics club in fall 2014 at the school in Chino Hills.

Oxford Prep Charter Denied

Photo courtesy of Oxford Preparatory Academy OPA supporters

Photo courtesy of Oxford Preparatory Academy
OPA supporters

By Carol Heyen

The Chino Valley Unified School District school board voted March 17 to deny Oxford Preparatory Academy’s 5-year charter renewal, much to the dismay of over 1,500 school staff and supporters who attended the district meeting held at Don Lugo High.

Oxford Prep, or OPA, a charter school located in Chino, presently has a charter that runs through June 30, 2017.  OPA submitted a renewal charter school petition to the CVUSD on January 25, 2016, which would be for a 5-year term running from July 1, 2017-June 30, 2022.

The renewal charter, according to the school district, was denied because it has several flaws.  In a 77-page report, CVUSD stated that OPA is “demonstrably unlikely to successfully implement the program set forth in the OPA-Chino charter renewal petition.” The district also said that the petition failed to address eight of the 15 elements required by state law governing charter schools.

Superintendent Wayne Joseph, who was one of the original supporters of OPA’s charter in 2010, spoke at the meeting.  Superintendent Joseph said, “… it is really with a heavy heart that I come to you tonight, board members, and ask you to approve my recommendation to deny OPA’s current charter petition. Simply put, the petition OPA submitted on Jan. 25 of this year, unlike the other two petitions that were approved, is seriously flawed.”

CVUSD states that the charter petition is “not consistent with sound educational practice.”

One of the failures of the petition, according to the district, is that the OPA budget presents an unrealistic financial and operational plan for the proposed OPA charter school.  The school board said that they “cannot carry out its statutory fiscal oversight responsibility without the ability to review and audit all of OPA’s finances” the way the charter is now written.

The district’s concerns include OPA’s lack of sufficiently projecting enrollment or estimating Independent Study students, cash flow and reserve discrepancies, and timing of revenue. It also notes that OPA has not satisfied the California law that all students be admitted who wish to attend the school.  OPA’s enrollment runs in a lottery system, but children with siblings already attending the school, or parents who are OPA staff or founding members are exempt from the lottery and get first priority.

OPA is very popular with students and parents in the Chino Valley.  Test scores at the school have consistently been in the high 900s, and it has been named a California Distinguished School.

OPA’s supporters are vowing to keep fighting.  OPA Principal Sue Roche’s husband Terry told the crowd, “For eight years, I’ve heard from Mr. Joseph, from Mr. Na how great OPA is,” referring to Superintendent Joseph and board member James Na. “For eight years, every evaluation they gave us — every evaluation they gave us — financially, academically, was the best in California!”

Oxford Prep administrator Jared McLeod said that OPA will “…move on with our legal rights to prove this district wrong and prove what is legally right, which is that this is our school, for five more years!”


Facilities Master Plan Meetings Scheduled

Courtesy of CVUSD


CHINO VALLEY- The third round of CVUSD’s Facilities Master Plan meetings is underway.  Improving schools in the Chino Valley is a long-term investment for our community. Equipping our schools with the latest technology, heightening awareness of school facility safety and incorporating interactive learning environments into existing schools to maintain academic excellence were themes that resounded in group meetings hosted by Superintendent Wayne Joseph at all 35 schools during the fall months. The meetings are part of the Facilities Master Plan (FMP) update process that has been underway since early 2015.

Most of our schools were built decades ago, with some built in the 1950’s, and they need basic health and safety improvements. The Facilities Master Plan will allow the district to identify long-term facility needs based on demographics, facility assessment, and the district’s educational goals and then develop strategies to address these needs in a comprehensive manner. The FMP process will conclude with the production of a document that will outline facility needs into the foreseeable future for all of the district’s existing schools and district support sites. The last FMP was completed in 2009.

Per current state guidelines, a school is eligible for a complete modernization when it reaches 25-years-old. The state traditionally provides a portion of the funds for the modernization, however there are two requirements that school districts must meet to obtain those funds. The district must provide their own matching funds and they must have the Division of the State Architect (DSA) approved final plans to qualify for the state funds. The process to obtain the funds is very competitive, as districts throughout the state are all hoping to tap into the funds. In fact, those funds have been totally expended over the past six years, due to the state’s economic downturn, which makes competition fiercer than in previous years.

While we have been able to make repairs and upgrades to some of our schools, additional health and safety and other facility improvements are still needed.  The four tenets of the Master Plan are:

  • To build something that does not currently exist to address education needs;
  • Renovate/Repair existing facilities;
  • Complete improvements to the grounds such as play fields, black top surfaces or drop off and pick up routes;
  • Improve technology and update furniture.

Plan to join the conversation and provide important input on the priorities for our schools!

Meetings have already been conducted with school principals, and then again with the school’s instructional/support staff, and now it is the community’s turn.

Find your school and the meeting date and time on the list below.

Upcoming meetings in March:
• March 2 – Canyon Hills Jr. High at 9:30 a.m.
• March 3 – Walnut Elementaryat 8:30 a.m.
• March 9 – Eagle Canyon Elementaryat 8:30 a.m.
• March 9 – Adult School at 10:30 a.m.
• March 10 – Butterfield Ranch Elementaryat 9:00 a.m.
• March 14 – Anna Borba Elementaryat 8:30 a.m.
• March 14 – Don Lugo High Schoolat 3:00 p.m.
• March 16 – Rolling Ridge Elementaryat 10:30 a.m.
• March 16 – Rhodes Elementary at 6:30 p.m.
• March 17 – Dickey Elementaryat 8:15 a.m.
• March 17 – Briggs Fundamentalat noon

Meetings will also be taking place in April and May:

  • April 4 – Chino High School Library at 6:00 p.m.
    • April 5 – Hidden Trials Elementaryat 9:00 a.m.
    • April 6 – Cortez Elementaryat 6:00 p.m.
    • April 7 – Ramona Junior High  at 9:00 a.m.
    • April 8 – Townsend Junior High at 2:30 p.m.
    • April 12 – Country Springs Elementaryat 8:30 a.m.
    • April 12 – Chino Hills High School at 5:00 p.m.
    • April 13 – Litel Elementary at 9:00 a.m.
    • April 14 – Wickman Elementaryat 12:30 p.m.
    • April 14 – Dickson Elementaryat 3:30 p.m.
    • April 15 – Marshall at 8:50 a.m.
    • April 18 – Glenmeade Elementary at 8:30 a.m.
    • April 20 – Magnolia Jr. Highat 10:00 a.m.
    • April 21 – Liberty Elementaryat 9:00 a.m.
    • April 25 – Cattle Elementary at 2:30 p.m.
    • April 26 – Ayala High School MPR at 2:30 p.m.
    • April 28 – Woodcrest Jr. Highat 9:00 a.m.
    • April 28 – Cal Aero Academy at 12:30 p.m.
    • April 29 – Oak Ridge Elementaryat 9:00 a.m.
    • May 9 – Chaparral Elementaryat 8:30 a.m.
    • May 11 – Newman Elementaryat 8:45 a.m.
    • May 17 – Buena Vista High School at 9:00 a.m.

CHH Places in Top Five of County Academic Decathlon

Photo Courtesy of CVUSD

Photo Courtesy of CVUSD
Members of the Chino Hills Academic Decathlon team with County Superintendent of Schools Ted Alejandre (center).

Courtesy of CVUSD

CHINO HILLS-Chino Hills High’s Academic Decathlon team was among the top five teams in the San Bernardino County Academic Decathlon held in late January and early February in the San Bernardino and Redlands area.

The event featured 39 teams representing 21 high schools, competing in 10 subject areas. Each team included a mix of students with A, B and C grade point averages.

Chaffey High School was the top winner of the academic challenge for the fifth straight time.
Others in the top five were Redlands High, Rancho Cucamonga High, and Redlands East Valley High.

Chino High Wrestler CIF Champion

Photo courtesy: CVUSD Chino High Wrestler Erika Aguila

Photo courtesy: CVUSD
Chino High Wrestler Erika Aguila

Courtesy of CVUSD

Congratulations to Chino High School wrestler Erika Aguila, the 2016 CIF Central Division 150lb Wrestling Champion!

Chino High School wrestler Erika Aguila, is advancing to the CIF State Championship on February 26 and 27. She is the first Chino wrestler to qualify for State since 1998.

$50K in Scholarships Available for Class of 2016

Courtesy of CVUSD

CHINO– Tim Adams, of School Portraits by Adams Photography, provided the Board of Education with the largest check to date of proceeds from the “Hit the Greens for Scholarships” Golf Tournament held every November. Adams has been hosting the tournament for the district for six years. This year’s check in the amount of $31,329.29, added to funds available from previous years, enables the district to distribute $50,000 to students, the largest amount since the tournament began. To date, more than $145,000 has been given to 116 seniors.

“The opportunity to assist students as they choose to continue their education is something that we consider a privilege,” said Tim Adams of School Portraits.

The scholarships will be awarded to high school seniors at each of the following schools: Ayala, Buena Vista, Chino, Chino Hills, and Don Lugo. The application period has begun and will continue through Feb. 29.
Seniors at each of those schools may apply for one of the following:
• Spirit of Chino Valley Unified
Awarded to a student who has volunteered at school or in the community, has embodied school spirit by serving in a student leadership role, has participated in school activities that promote good citizenship, and has an outstanding attendance record.

• President’s Award
Awarded to a student in need of financial assistance to continue their education.

• Superintendent’s Award
Awarded to a student who has embraced academic rigor and excelled by earning an overall grade point average of 3.8 or higher.
The application is available on the District website (
www.chino.k12.ca.us) with a cover letter and checklist for submission.

National Signing Day in the Chino Valley

Courtesy of Facebook Emily Nguyen signs her letter of intent to Finlandia University in Michigan.

Courtesy of Facebook
Emily Nguyen signs her letter of intent to Finlandia University in Michigan.

By Carol Heyen

Chino Valley – Chino Valley Unified had more than two dozen seniors sign with universities on February 3 and 4, as part of National Signing Week.

The annual event allows America’s most talented high school senior student-athletes their first opportunity to sign a binding letter of intent to a NCAA school.  The event has become well-known as major colleges such as USC, Michigan, Alabama, Ole Miss and others sign their football recruits during this time.   The letter of intent restricts a recruit to signing with only one school in the NCAA.   National Signing Day is typically on the first Wednesday in February, according to Sports Illustrated.

Football is the big topic when talking about National Signing Week, but other sports are included as well.  Chino Valley Unified had several recruits sign this year in different sports such as softball, water polo, baseball, gymnastics and soccer.

Chino Hills High School’s Emily Nguyen, who will be majoring in Criminal Justice at Finlandia University in Michigan, said this week that while she will miss her family and friends in Chino Hills, she is excited for the change of scenery and the adventure that college holds.   “Signing day was one of the biggest days of my life; it meant that I knew I was going to do what I love while learning at the same time.”  She also said that Signing Day was especially sentimental because she got to sign with her best friend, Emily Luna, who will be attending Wilmington University in the fall.  The duo started playing together on a 8U Chino Hills Girls Softball team, and have been friends since.

Congratulations to all CVUSD student-athletes!

CVUSD Seniors Perform Community Service

Photos courtesy of CVUSD Caitlyn Broad surrounded by Navy sailors and the goodie bags she made them

Photos courtesy of CVUSD
Caitlyn Broad surrounded by Navy sailors and the goodie bags she made them

Courtesy of CVUSD

As part of a literary unit on heroism, 12th grade students from across the Chino Valley Unified School District devoted several volunteer hours in community service over the winter break. Projects varied from volunteering at food banks and homeless shelters to cleaning up trails and parking lots across the city. Students were asked to “pitch” a proposal to a panel of their peers and suggest projects that would be classified as heroic. As part of a culminating experience which emphasizes effective oral communication, students prepared and delivered five-minute speeches sharing their experiences and addressing major societal issues.

Caitlin Broad, an Ayala High senior, traveled to the Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach with 40 goodie bags she prepared as thank you gifts for active duty sailors. Caitlin’s experience was especially meaningful to her as she was escorted by her father and grandfather, who are both Navy veterans.

Another Ayala senior, Diane Eckstrom, relieved her relatives in the daily care of her 94-year-old grandmother and delivered a speech on the need for loving elder care.

Priceless Pets, a pet adoption and care facility in Chino Hills, was a favorite organization of the volunteers, who exercised and cared for the animals. Ayala senior Terrance Seki walked dogs for Priceless Pets as part of his volunteer experience.

Ayala High senior Jake Sears, who cleaned up litter at Chino Hills State Park, told his classmates, “It shouldn’t be that difficult to clean up after yourself.”

Ayala students Jacob Axton and Calista Ho worked at a local food bank.

Most of the students involved in the program said they did not believe their efforts should be labeled heroic but rather just the actions of responsible citizens.

The curriculum unit writers included this project as part of the District’s implementation of Common Core State Standards to create real world experiences to develop 21st century skills. Teachers were impressed with their students’ passion towards the less fortunate and their appeals to their classmates to do the little things to show care for their community.

Life After Lugo

Photo courtesy: CVUSD Brianna Smith Gunn (right), a 2008 Don Lugo High graduate, talks to Don Lugo seniors about her experience in the Army.

Photo courtesy: CVUSD
Brianna Smith Gunn (right), a 2008 Don Lugo High graduate, talks to Don Lugo seniors about her experience in the Army.

Courtesy of Chino Valley Unified

CHINO– Looking like she was addressing her police officers in a shift briefing, Chino Police Chief Karen Comstock told Don Lugo students that success is theirs if they just have the right mindset. Chief Comstock was among more than a dozen Don Lugo High graduates who spoke to seniors, juniors and sophomores on January 7 about going to college during the annual “Life After Lugo.”

Don Lugo counselors founded the event seven years ago “because they felt that giving students as much information about college as possible would ensure greater success,” said teacher Sophie Yu. She took over coordination of the event three years ago, when original coordinator Kathie Spaun transferred to Chino Hills High. This year, Ms. Yu increased the number of sessions a senior could take from two to three. “All presenters are Lugo grads and my goal is to have more career pathways,” Ms. Yu said.

“Commit yourself to a process of learning,” Chief Comstock said as she walked back and forth among students in the Don Lugo multipurpose room. “Even if you don’t want to go into college after high school, get into a learning environment…Success is all in your futures, if you want it,” she said “…You are from Chino; you’re from Don Lugo. We believe in you.”

Following introductions and the chief’s keynote speech, other Don Lugo High alumni spoke to small groups of students on a variety of college-related topics in different classrooms. Among the subjects discussed were campus life, military experience, engineering, networking, picking the right school, commuting versus dorms, studying abroad, personal finance, the AVID college preparation program, the Dream Act, and time management.

Brianna Smith Gunn, a 2008 Don Lugo graduate, said she managed a hotel for a while before going to college, and then joined the Army 4 ½ years ago. Although she is only 5-foot-3, she worked in corrections for the military at Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp in Cuba, where war criminals and other high profile prisoners are detained. She said at least three of the approximately 30 students in the class she was addressing would go into the military, based on statistics kept on military service. She told the students that many soldiers have lost their lives to ensure the freedoms of Americans.

Don Lugo graduate Albert Perez, who said he was the first in his family to attend college, talked about how three-dimensional printing is used in the bio-medical engineering field he is studying. He passed around two of the items he has made with a 3-D printer: a Batman symbol, and the words “#1 Mom” with a heart symbol behind it. He also talked about the fun he had exploring a new city while attending college.

Graduate Elizabeth Cho said her parents are immigrants who didn’t go to college, so they had a hard time helping her when issues came up about her college experience. She told the Don Lugo students there are resources and people on college campuses that can help new students adjust. She also talked about overcoming the “imposter syndrome” in which students don’t feel like they belong at their college or that they are not “good enough” to be at the school. She said it was a culture shock for her to be attending prestigious Wellesley College in Massachusetts because of the more affluent students who attend that school, the long distance from her home in California, and the colder weather there. “You grow a lot,” she said of attending a college away from home. She concluded her comments by showing a video of students who have experienced culture shock in college. Among those shown were students who were the first in their families to attend college.

Other Don Lugo graduates who spoke included Megan Johnston, Janette Armenta, Joseph Green, Nick Flores, Jacqueline Dana Valera, Samantha Ochoa, Kendell Langrell, Randall Brakob, and Frankie Torres. A luncheon was held following the event, with muffins, cookies, and water provided by Ms. Yu’s brother-in-law.

Students Beat the Odds

Photo courtesy of Chino Valley USD

Photo courtesy of Chino Valley USD

Courtesy of Chino Valley Unified

Chino Valley – A foster youth who had to overcome much adversity is the first Buena Vista Continuation High student qualified to go straight to a four-year college from the high school, according to Principal Rigoberto Vasquez.

Steven Beadle, 17, of Chino, has been accepted at Cal State, Stanislaus, and has also applied to Cal Poly Pomona, Cal State Dominguez Hills, and Cal State Fullerton. Another Buena Vista student, Destiny Miguel,  also recently qualified to go to a four-year college. She and Steven were honored by the Chino Valley Unified School District Board of Education at its Jan. 7 meeting.

This month, Steven will take a Spanish class at Chaffey College’s Chino campus while still enrolled at Buena Vista. Steven plans to major in sociology or criminal justice at a four-year college and pursue a career as a police officer in Texas or Colorado. “I’m very passionate about public safety,” he said. “I’d like to help on the streets.”

He practices Krav Maga, a self-defense system developed for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), that consists of a combination of techniques from aikido, judo, boxing, and wrestling, along with realistic fight training. He also recently took a ride-along with a Chino Police officer to get an idea what it would be like to work in law enforcement. Steven said he is driven to succeed because, as a foster child for the last three years, he has seen a lot of youth in that system fail. “I don’t want to be one of those,” he said. “They don’t take advantage of what they are given to help them.” He also said he’s learned to stay away from drugs, which he believes is often a downfall for youth in foster care.

Steven was behind on his coursework when he transferred to Buena Vista 18 months ago. He was a sophomore with only 158 credits towards the 225 needed to graduate. He is now at 206 credits. Although he is expected to soon have enough credits to graduate from high school, he plans to stay in school until June to make sure he has all the A-G credits required for the California State University system. Principal Vasquez said he believes Steven is the first BV student to qualify for a four-year college because courses taught at the school were not approved as college preparatory until a couple of years ago, when former counselor Anna Fierro-Purcell “took it upon herself to have all of our courses submitted and approved.” Fierro-Purcell is now an assistant principal at Chino Hills High. “As a result, Steven’s courses taken at Buena Vista are accepted now by Cal State and University of California universities,” Mr. Vasquez said. “Steven is the first, and we have an additional two students who may be accepted by late February or early March. Steven turned in his college application very early.”

Chino Valley Students Treated to Shopping Spree

Photo courtesy: CVUSD A Walmart employee checks out a student and his chaperones.

Photo courtesy: CVUSD
A Walmart employee checks out a student and his chaperones.

Courtesy of CVUSD

Chino – Smiles, grins and laughter came easy for 100 Chino Valley Unified School District students and their parents as they were treated to a police escort, a shopping spree, visit with Santa, crafts and snacks during the annual Make A Child Smile event on Dec.15 at Walmart in Chino.
The students, selected by their schools for the field trip, pressed their noses against the glass of school bus windows as Chino Police motorcycle officers whizzed by, stopping traffic as the caravan of buses was led to the store by two Chino Valley fire engines.
The students were greeted at the store by dozens of waving Walmart employees, Chino Valley Independent Fire District firefighters, Chino Police officers, San Bernardino County Sheriff’s deputies, Highway Patrol officers, Cal Fire officials, other first responders from various departments around the Chino Valley, and Chino Valley Unified School District employees. Santa was among the first to shake the students’ hands as they disembarked.
“We’re like celebrities!” one child yelled as he arrived at the store.
Each child, accompanied by a parent or volunteer, was paired with first responders or community volunteers and a Walmart employee and allowed to shop for $150 in items. Gift cards for the purchases were provided by Chino Valley Fire Foundation. Some students chose large gifts like bicycles. Others picked out clothes, shoes and small toys. Some students said they were shopping for holiday presents for their entire family.
Nearly a dozen volunteers, including members of the Chino Hills 55+ Club, bagged up the items so they’d be safe for the bus trip back to the schools.
The students were also treated to snacks inside a tent, crafts, two areas of man-made snow, and a formal photo with Santa courtesy of School Portraits by Adams Photography in Chino.
The event is hosted by Chino Valley Fire Foundation.

Photo courtesy: CVUSD A student and her family member have their photo taken with Santa, a Chino Police officer, and a Walmart employee at the annual Make A Child Smile event at Walmart in Chino.

Photo courtesy: CVUSD
A student and her family member have their photo taken with Santa, a Chino Police officer, and a Walmart employee at the annual Make A Child Smile event at Walmart in Chino.

Talking To Children About Violence

Tips for Parents and Teachers

Courtesy of CVUSD


Chino Valley – The horrific event in San Bernardino and recent threats at Los Angeles County Unified School District are tragic reminders that elected officials, law enforcement, schools, and parents must ensure it is doing all that it can to prevent violence in the community, at schools and the workplace.

According to the National Association of School Psychologists, these acts of violence can frighten and confuse children. They look to adults for information and guidance on how to react. Parents and school personnel can help children feel safe by establishing a sense of normalcy and security and talking with them about their fears, the association said.

They offer the following tips for Parents and Teachers:

  1. Reassure children that they are safe. Emphasize that schools are very safe. Validate their feelings. Explain that all feelings are okay when a tragedy occurs. Let children talk about their feelings, help put them into perspective, and assist them in expressing these feelings appropriately.
  2. Make time to talk. Let their questions be your guide as to how much information to provide. Be patient. Children and youth do not always talk about their feelings readily. Watch for clues that they may want to talk, such as hovering around while you do the dishes or yard work. Some children prefer writing, playing music, or doing an art project as an outlet. Young children may need concrete activities (such as drawing, looking at picture books, or imaginative play) to help them identify and express their feelings.
  3. Keep your explanations developmentally appropriate.
  • Early elementary school children need brief, simple information that should be balanced with reassurances that their school and homes are safe and that adults are there to protect them. Give simple examples of school safety like reminding children about exterior doors being locked, child monitoring efforts on the playground, and emergency drills practiced during the school day.
  • Upper elementary and early middle school children will be more vocal in asking questions about whether they truly are safe and what is being done at their school. They may need assistance separating reality from fantasy. Discuss efforts of school and community leaders to provide safe schools.
  • Upper middle school and high school students will have strong and varying opinions about the causes of violence in schools and society. They will share concrete suggestions about how to make school safer and how to prevent tragedies in society. Emphasize the role that students have in maintaining safe schools by following school safety guidelines (e.g. not providing building access to strangers, reporting strangers on campus, reporting threats to the school safety made by students or community members, etc.), communicating any personal safety concerns to school administrators, and accessing support for emotional needs.
  1. Review safety procedures. This should include procedures and safeguards at school and at home. Help children identify at least one adult at school and in the community to whom they go if they feel threatened or at risk.

Chino: Pups In Training at Don Lugo High

Photo Courtesy: CVUSD Don Lugo High School students take time out of puppy rearing for a holiday photo.

Photo Courtesy: CVUSD
Don Lugo High School students take time out of puppy rearing for a holiday photo.

Courtesy of CVUSD

Chino– Don Lugo High Future Farmers of America students are raising five puppies for the Guide Dogs for the Blind organization.

The new pups – Zedrick, Zee, Waldorf, Baloo, and Frito – will be trained in basic obedience and socialization until they are about 14 to 17 months old. Then they will be returned to Guide Dogs for the Blind for further training.

Training the dogs will be Don Lugo FFA students Abigayle Monroe, Stephen Ryan, Sarah Aispuro, Emily Sevilla, and Viviana Jara. Don Lugo FFA member Lizette DePaz is the school’s Puppy Raising Campus Volunteer.

Last fall, Don Lugo agriculture teacher Ashley Doyle said she would like her students to raise puppies for the Guide Dogs for the Blind program.

“These little ones will be spending their first few weeks down in the Agriculture science lab,” Principal Kimberly Cabrera said of the young canines.

Don Lugo students Melissa Legg and Brianna Cabrera, Principal Cabrera’s daughter, are finishing their training of pups Quest and Quinn for the program. As individual trainers, Melissa and Brianna received their pups in January.

Don Lugo teacher Audrey Rohrer, who has trained several Guide Dog puppies and included them in her classes for socialization, is currently training puppy Paddington.

“They will have the puppies 24/7 for about 14 months,” said Ron Chrisman of Guide Dogs for the Blind. “During that time students, in addition to providing housing and obedience training, will teach the pups how to behave appropriately in public. When the pups are 14 to 17 months old, they are recalled to our San Rafael, California or Boring, Oregon campus to begin formal harness training. Our professional trainers will teach the dogs how to guide a blind or sight impaired person. Our job as Raisers is to prepare the pup to receive that training. When the dog successfully completes training, it is matched with his or her future partner. The Puppy Raiser is invited to attend a graduation ceremony where they meet their pup’s blind partner, and officially present the new guide dog.”

Chrisman said the dogs are placed all over the United States and Canada, and sometimes internationally. He also said guide dogs are placed at no cost to their sight impaired partners.

For more information on the program, visit http://www.guidedogs.com.