Wise Word, 10/19/2022

Principal’s Message:

Hello Golden Owls,


October is Safety Month in MVWSD. In the event of an emergency, it’s possible that circumstances are not safe enough for us to release students as we typically do at the end of the school day. In an emergency, parents should not rush to school, but instead wait for updates from email, on mvwsd.org, social media and text/phone calls. So we know all students are accounted for, our schools will release students systematically to authorized adults when it’s safe. Please review our parent-student reunification procedures here. In the event of an actual emergency situation, PARENTS should:

  • Stay calm and cooperative for the protection of all students and staff on site.

  • Report to the Sign-Out Area (Main Front Gate near office).

  • HAVE YOUR ID READY. Safety first. We want to reunite you with your child as quickly and efficiently as possible.

  • Stand in the appropriate line according to the first letter of the student’s last name.

  • Complete and sign the student release form.

  • Receive a ticket or card. NO TICKET, NO STUDENT.

  • Move to the Student Reunion Area (near the library).

  • A staff member with the corresponding ticket will be sent to the Reunion Area to bring your child to you.

  • BE PATIENT. Staff will bring children to the waiting area to meet their parents. Give the staff the matching ticket.

  • Parents and children should leave campus immediately. The campus will not be secure to enter after a disaster. Students should not expect to collect their backpacks or belongings.

  • Allow emergency responders to do their job.

Additional considerations:

  • DO NOT try to enter through the gates near the field.  Do not park in the parking lot. These areas are designated for emergency vehicles and first responders.

  • DO NOT send a neighbor, friend or relative not listed on your child’s emergency card to pick them up in your place. Can’t recall who’s on the list? Plan ahead – Email the school secretary, so we can verify and update at any time – [email protected]  

  • DO NOT remove your child from school grounds without signing a student release form. Why? We want to be absolutely sure that children are safely reunited with their families. 

  • DO NOT call the school or district office. ALL staff and students will have evacuated the building and no one will be able to answer your call. 

  • Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.  In addition to sending text messages, we will also utilize social media to send emergency updates.

Next week, we will have both our Earthquake drill and our practice of what to do in the case of a dangerous intruder. Students in grades K-5 will view the dangerous intruder video and discuss it on 10/24. Earthquake drill will be on 10/27. The Mountain View Police may be practicing alongside us during the drills. Please do not be concerned if you see police vehicles on campus during the week of Oct. 24.

You can help us by reassuring your child that drills are our way of practicing for an emergency. These things may never happen, but if they do, we’re better protected and are more able to help ourselves and others. 

In Partnership, 

Principal Vern Taylor

Events Calendar



Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here


Mountain View Fire Station Field Trip


MVWSD Board Meeting, 6:00pm - Agenda Here


Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm - Register Here


Picture Retakes


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here


Earthquake Drill


Principal’s Coffee, 8:30 AM Register Here


After School Halloween Parade, 2:45pm



1st - 4th

Walden West Science Camp


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here


End of Trimester - Minimum Day: Dismissal at 11:55am


Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm - Register Here


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here


Parent U Extension - Effective Parent/Teacher Communication - 6:00pm - Register Here


Veteran’s Day Holiday - No School


United Against Hate Week


ELAC Meeting, 6:00pm


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here


PTA - Fall Carnival, 3:30pm - 5:30pm


Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm - Register Here

21st - 25th

Thanksgiving Recess Break - No School


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here



5th - 9th

Parent Teacher Conferences


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here


Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm -


Principal’s Office Hours, 4:00 PM Register Here

22nd - Jan. 9th 2023

Holiday Break - No School


In this Newsletter

School News:

  • Winter Clothes Donations

  • Happy Diwali (Shubh Diwali)!

  • Picture Retakes - Wednesday Oct. 26th

  • Parent University: Effective Parent/Teacher Communication

  • Lost & Found

  • After school Halloween Parade 10/31 @2:45pm

  • Principal’s Virtual Office Hours

District News:

  • Health and Wellness: Parenting Tip

  • Board meeting: Oct. 20

  • MTC seeks volunteers to mentor and tutor local students! 

  • Superintendent's Community Check In on Friday, Oct. 21

  • Survey: Help MVWSD and the City make walking and biking to school safer for our students.

  • The View Teen Center - Flyer

  • Parent University: Social Emotional Learning at School and Home

  • City of MV: Monster Bash & Bike Circus - Flyer 

  • My Digital TAT2 Webinar: Supporting Young People's Digital Health and Well-Being - Flyer

  • Donations of any amount help MVEF enrich education for every MVWSD student

PTA News:

  • Membership Drive 10/3-10/28

  • Invitation to Vargas Math Club for 4th and 5th Grade

  • Fall Festival 11/17, 3:30-5:30pm

  • Kontella

  • Spirit Wear

  • Website


School News


Winter Clothes Donations

It's finally time to get the warm clothes out of the closet!  If you find items that are too small for your kids, or you just don't want them anymore, please bring them to the Vargas office and we will find them a good home.  Baby and adult clothes are also needed.


Clean and gently used clothes only, please.  Nothing with stains or permanent damage.   We will donate these items to families in need in our community.  We will be collecting donations until Friday, November 4, 2022.  Thank you!


Happy Diwali (Shubh Diwali)!

Diwali (dih-WAH-Lee), the Hindu festival of lights, is celebrated worldwide by over 800 million people! It signifies the victory of light (good) over darkness (evil). Diwali also marks the Hindu New Year.

(new Edit) Diwali (dih-WAH-Lee), festival of lights, is celebrated worldwide by over 800 million people!  Diwali is a festival that Sikhs, Hindu's, Jain's and some Buddhists celebrate for different reasons. For more information about how each religion celebrates, please check here.

One of our parents, Harshal Varangaonkar, wanted to share information to help educate others about how Hindus celebrate. For Hindus, Diwali signifies the victory of light (good) over darkness (evil). Diwali also marks the Hindu New Year.

Diwali occurs on the lunar calendar and is a five-day festival in October or November. The main celebration occurs on the third day (the day of the new moon) which is on November 4th this year.

Many homes and businesses in India offer prayers to Goddess Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth and prosperity. During the festival, we clean our house and wear new clothes to begin the year fresh. Friends and family get together to celebrate and exchange gifts, delicious food and dessert.

Homes are decorated with rangolis and diyas outside to invite Lakshmi into their house for prosperity. Diyas are oil lamps made from clay with a cotton wick dipped in oil. Rangoli is an art form used to create beautiful patterns using colored powder, rice, flour or flower petals.

Fun Fact: Lakshmi has an owl named Uluka, that she uses as a mode of transportation.


Again, thank you Harshal for sharing information. One wonderful thing about our Vargas community is that we have such a diverse community. I am constantly learning about different cultural practices and celebrations.  If there is a cultural practice, celebration, or fact that you would like to share with the greater Vargas community, please feel free to email us at [email protected], and we will try to include it in our newsletter.

Picture Retakes - Wednesday Oct. 26th - Flyer

If your child was absent for our regular picture day last month, he/she can take his/her picture on Wednesday, October 26th; please let your child and teacher know they need to take a picture.

Additionally, if you did not like your child's first picture your child can retake their picture. Please let your child's teacher know.

Parent University: Effective Parent/Teacher Communication

As part of our plan to support our students both inside and outside the classroom, we will be holding a series of Parent University Extension courses to supplement MVWSD’s existing Parent University program.  Our first planned event will be on Effective Parent/Teacher Communication.

Registration Link: November 10, 2022 at 6:00PM   

Please join us for a thorough discussion on effective communication between home and school and tips on how to have a successful parent-teacher conference. Vern Taylor, principal from Jose Antonio Vargas Elementary School, will provide helpful feedback on how to approach difficult topics when talking to your child’s teacher or office staff, and on how to prepare for our parent/teacher conferences. Parents will also learn how to navigate the PowerSchool parent portal and how to read and understand the iReady report and the school report cards.

(Repeat) Lost & Found

Our Lost and Found Rack is seeing nice sweaters, water bottles, lunch boxes that miss their owner. If items are not claimed by the end of this month 10/31 they will be donated. 


Our Lost and Found Rack can be found in the following places:

  • Morning: during drop-off - Located by the main gate (in between the main office and MUR)

  • Afternoon: 

    • Kinder Pick-up - Located in the blacktop

    • Upper grades: Located by the main office

(Repeat) After school Halloween Parade 10/31 @2:45pm

This year, we will be hosting a Halloween parade after school. For those wishing to participate, we will be meeting on the blacktop after dismissal.  For those who have students in Right at School and YMCA, they will also be able to join.  Can’t wait to see OWL of you!


Please note: Our school does not have any school-wide event that asks students to wear costumes during the day of 10/31; however, if students want to wear costumes for the day of Halloween, they can. We are asking, as is standard, not to wear masks or overly gruesome or violent attire. We are also asking that students not bring any accessories that would distract from regular classroom instruction.

(Repeat) Principal’s Virtual Office Hours

I will again be hosting Principal Office Hours virtually on Wednesdays from 4pm -5pm. Feel free to drop in if you have any questions or if you just want to chat. For office hours, there is no formal agenda, it is a time for you to stop in to say hello, and for us to get to know each other better! I look forward to meeting you!


Register in advance for this meeting.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. 


District News

Health and Wellness: Parenting Tip

As we settle into our back-to-school routine as best as possible, we might be experiencing some challenges at home with unwanted or undesired behaviors.  Our partners from Palo Alto University, Dr. Alayna Park and Dr. Eduardo Bunge, have provided us with some great information to support our parents as the school year progresses. Here is a great tip from our partners at Palo Alto University to promote desired behavior at home: 

Modeling refers to teaching by example. Your child will learn by observing your actions and the actions of others. To model desired behaviors:

For example, you could model being kind to others by greeting your neighbors or offering to help other family members around the home. Make sure to keep praising the behaviors that you want to see (“Great job helping your sibling with their homework”).

This tip came directly from the free, online Everyday Parenting program created by parenting expert, Dr. Kazdin.

To learn more parenting tips click here

Board meeting: Oct. 20

The Board of Trustees will meet on Thursday, Oct. 20 at 6 p.m. 

Some of the meeting topics include:
* Equitable Access to Choice Schools Policy Update

* Significant Disproportionality and CCEIS

* Update on Funding Options

For meeting details and agenda, please click here: https://www.mvwsd.org/trustees.

MTC seeks volunteers to mentor and tutor local students! 

Do you enjoy working with kids?  Would you like to make a difference in the life of a student in our community?  

Mentor Tutor Connection (MTC) is looking for volunteers to support elementary or middle school students. Some tutors work with their students remotely, others volunteer in classrooms or after-school. Tutors help with basic skills including reading, writing, math, and more. Additionally, tutors provide a consistent caring adult in a young person’s academic journey. The role of the tutor is to be an academic helper who demonstrates a love of learning. 

Additionally, MTC is seeking volunteers for a new program. Reading Fellows volunteers meet with individual students for 1/2 hour, 4 mornings each week, for a six week period. The program follows a specific phonic-based structured curriculum. It is incredible to see the difference you can make with this intensive framework!

Join us at our Volunteer Information Session to learn more.  There is no obligation to sign up as a volunteer.  You’re welcome to attend this session and see if this is the right volunteer job for you!  Invite a friend!

Date:                Thursday, October 20th

Time:                7:00 – 8:30 pm

Location:           Online via Zoom (URL provided upon registration)

Register:            REGISTER ONLINE

Questions:        [email protected]

Information:     MentorTutorConnection.org 

Mentors must be at least 22 years old; Tutors must be High School graduates.

If you are interested in learning more about the program but cannot attend the information session, please contact Laura Hill at [email protected] for information on how to proceed.

Superintendent's Community Check In on Friday, Oct. 21

Please join us for our Community Check-In with Dr. Ayindé Rudolph on Friday, Oct. 21 at 3:30 p.m. Bring your questions. Spanish interpretation will be provided. Click here to register: http://mvw.sd/CC1021.

Survey: Help MVWSD and the City make walking and biking to school safer for our students.

The Mountain View Safe Routes to School Program is working to improve safety and encourage healthier, more active lifestyles.

Your feedback is important! This survey and your responses will help us make walking and biking to school safer for our students. Go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MVSRTS2022 to complete the survey by Oct. 31. 

The View Teen Center - Flyer

The View Teen Center is a free facility in Mountain View (263 Escuela Ave) for all Mountain View and Los Altos 6th - 12th grade students. The center is open Monday through Friday: 3:30 - 7 p.m. and Saturday: 1 - 6 p.m, and features a game room, makerspace, kitchen, computer/study room, outdoor area, and much more! See attached flyer for details about upcoming events and programs or visit their webpage for more information.

Parent University: Social Emotional Learning at School and Home

Date and Time: 10/26/22 5:30pm  Registration Link: https://mvw.sd/pu102622

Having challenges guiding your students with their emotions, feelings and behavior at home? Don’t miss the opportunity to learn from Karin Jinbo, district Director of Health and Wellness, and Brian White, the Health and Wellness Coordinator. The panelists will be sharing about our district-wide goals for student Social Emotional Learning, along with strategies and resources that you can apply at home that support your student’s social and emotional growth. We hope to see you there! 

To submit questions prior to the event, go to mvw.sd/questions. We will do our best to address your question during the session.

City of MV: Monster Bash & Bike Circus - Flyer 

On Saturday, October 29, 2022, Mountain View’s Rengstorff Park will transform into a ghoulish good time for all ages with the return of MONSTER BASH. From 10 a.m. - 2 p.m., community members are encouraged to don their favorite costumes and enjoy a fall festival loaded with a twisty maze, spooky games, enchanting performances, stilt walkers, inflatables, creepy, crawly, ooey gooey zone, Dia de Muertos exhibit and more. This year the event will also feature a Bike Circus with a fun bike safety training for children, as well as free bike repairs valued at more than $100 - to be provided on a first-come first-served basis.

This event is free and open to the public. Limited parking is available at the Mountain View Community Center and Senior Center. Walking or biking to the event is encouraged.

My Digital TAT2 Webinar: Supporting Young People's Digital Health and Well-Being - Flyer

Parents are invited to attend a webinar with My Digital TAT2 about supporting your student’s digital health on Thursday, November 3rd from 6:00 - 7:15 PM. Learn about what young people are doing online and how they are affected, and strategies for how to support responsible, mindful, and healthy use of the internet, social media, and gaming. Hosted by Landels Elementary, but all are welcome. Click here to register.

Donations of any amount help MVEF enrich education for every MVWSD student

MVWSD has one of the most socioeconomically diverse student bodies in the Bay Area. Donations to MVEF ensure that all students can experience art, music, hands-on science, athletics, and more – regardless of their family’s financial status. Donations of any amount are meaningful in accomplishing this mission: they demonstrate our commitment to providing the important enrichment that benefits all MVWSD students. MVEF Phonathon season is approaching. Save us a call by donating today! To learn more about the various ways you can contribute to MVEF, or to make your donation now, click here


PTA News


Membership Drive 10/3-10/28 

We have extended our membership drive until the end of the month. Classes that reach 75% membership level will receive a popsicle party! Check Totem to verify your membership is up to date, or send an email and we can verify your membership.


Support your students’ classrooms and school community by joining the Vargas PTA.  Our membership drive will run through the end of October.  Memberships cost $11 and help pay for community engagement events, after school classes, assemblies, author visits, field trips, teacher reimbursements for classroom enrichment, Ms. Bea’s scholarship program, and teacher appreciation.  This year we hope to raise $150 per student through membership and donations in order to make all these wonderful programs and events possible for your students to enjoy.  Classrooms that reach 75% membership participation will get a popsicle party and 2 people who register through October 28th will be entered in a raffle to win a $10 voucher for spirit wear.  Thank you for supporting your school!


Please join and make a contribution: https://jointotem.com/ca/mountain-view/jose-antonio-vargas-pta

For questions on membership or donations check out our Membership FAQ’s.


For PTA membership fee sponsorship please contact Mr. Taylor or Ms. Beatriz Claas.


Invitation to Vargas Math Club for 4th and 5th Grade

We happily invite your 4/5 grade student to join Vargas Math Club. If they enjoy math, problem solving, and puzzles, they’ll love the club! We will be competing on Mathematical Olympiads for Elementary and Middle Schools (MOEMS). To know more about this competition, click here.


We meet after school until 4:00 on Tuesdays, beginning October 25 in Classroom TBD. Math Club can accept only 24 students who must be able to attend nearly all meetings. If your child is excited to join, please complete the registration form  no later than Thursday, October 20th.


We are asking for a suggested donation of $20 to cover expenses related to the club (for example: materials and pizza party at the end).


Fall Festival 11/17, 3:30-5:30pm

Save the date! PTA will be hosting a fall festival for all families on Thursday, November 17th. Stay tuned for more details and volunteer opportunities to be posted on Konstella.



Konstella is our main communication tool. The PTA will post information about meetings, events and volunteer opportunities. You will also be able to communicate with other families from your child's classroom.

Use this link to register: https://www.konstella.com/cd/XGJHYL

To Join a Classroom

Web:  Click your name at the top left corner.  Click “Your Children” to add/modify your children.

Mobile App:  Click the Settings icon at the top left corner.  Click “Your Children”. Membership

Spirit Wear 

Mondays are spirit days at JA Vargas, wear green and show your school spirit. Check out our selection of green spirit wear. Place your order online and pick it up on designated days at the office.



Find links to membership, Konstella, gear shop and volunteer opportunities on our website.


Shannon Lundin, and the Executive Board 

[email protected]

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2024 SchoolMessenger Corporation. All rights reserved.