Wise Word, 9/28/2022

Principal’s Message:

Hello Golden Owls,

One Chip Challenge and Social Media

The health of several of our students was impacted recently after they ate incredibly spicy chips while at school. These foods were brought from home and consumed on campus as a result of “social media challenges” students have seen online. These “challenges” are unhealthy and disruptive. Please speak with your children about the dangers of participating in these social media challenges and monitor their social media usage at home. We want our students to be safe and healthy, and to focus on their academics while at school. Thank you for your support.

Have You Filled A Bucket Today?

One of the best ways we can support student mental health as a school community is by routinely modeling, teaching, and practicing kindness and empathy toward others. 

For years, the book “Have You Filled A Bucket Today?” has been a valuable resource for teachers and families to help students develop an understanding of empathy, kindness, and interdependence. This year, MVWSD has purchased enough copies that ensure each classroom has access to their own copy and that each school has a version in Spanish.

As a parent, there are many ways to access mental health care for your child. If you have concerns about your child’s mental health that impacts their functioning at school, resources for support include your student’s teacher, our School Community Engagement Facilitator (SCEF), and myself. At any point you can access care through your pediatrician and/or health insurance. An additional resource for parents is Mental Health America (https://mhanational.org/)

CHAC and Social Emotional Learning 

Did you know that our students will be engaging with CHAC in order to support our students with developing skills in Social Emotional Learning? Social and Emotional Learning helps students develop self awareness, manage their emotions, achieve goals, maintain healthy relationships and make responsible decisions. Our first, third, and fifth graders began this week with a 12 lesson program that explores multiple SEL skills including listening skills, building self-esteem, decision-making skills, and social awareness.  Please see the attached CHAC newsletter for ways you can reinforce at home. (Flyer)

In Partnership, 

Principal Vern Taylor

Events Calendar




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


SSC Meeting, 5:00pm Register Here



3rd - 7th

Scholastic Book Fair


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


SSC Meeting, 5:00pm Register Here


Family Science Night, MUR - 5:30pm - 6:30pm


MVWSD Board Meeting, 6:00pm - Agenda


Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm


Hearing and Vision Testing for K, 2nd & 5th


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


Teacher Service Day - No School


Recess Day - No School


ELAC Meeting, 6:00pm


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


Superintendent Community Check-in, 3:30pm


Picture Retakes


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


Principal’s Coffee, 8:30 AM



In this Newsletter

School News:

  • Golden Ticket Winners

  • Principal’s Coffee, September 23, 2022

  • Attendance Awareness Month: September

  • Student vision and hearing screenings set for Oct. 11th

  • Upcoming October no-school days

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

  • 5th graders Science Camp - We need your help!

  • Family Science Night

  • Principal’s Virtual Office Hours

District News:

  • County MedAssist Program - Flyer

  • EZMealApp: Future benefits could include after school care!

  • MVLA Speakers Series: Friendship in the Age of Loneliness: How to Make Friends As An Adult - Flyer

  • MVEF has raised over $300k! Make your donation soon to achieve the goal of $1.2M 

PTA News:

  • PTA Association Meeting

  • Scholastic Book Fair (10/3-10/7)

  • Donation request 

  • Membership

  • Kontella

  • Spirit Wear

  • Website


Golden Ticket Winners 9/22/2022
Raul V.           RM: 1         Noelle R.      RM: 13
Tanishka T.    RM: 2         Ada A.           RM: 14
Zoey D.         RM: 4         Nico B.          RM: 15
Sofia C.         RM: 5         Daniel G.       RM: 16
David S.        RM: 6         Mr. Luis.        Office
Keshav S.      RM: 8
Ria T.             RM: 10
Sarah G.        RM: 11

School News


Principal’s Coffee, September 23, 2022

At Friday’s Principal’s Coffee, I reviewed our school's data and the progress we made from the goals set in last year's school site plan. If you were unable to attend, or want to see the data again, you can find the presentation and videos here. I would like to extend a big thank you and kudos for all the handwork our 2021-22 staff did. As you will see, we made some big gains, and we hope to continue for this school year. 

Attendance Awareness Month: September

Are Vacations / Travel Excused?
Unfortunately, family vacations or travel is not excused – even when you inform your teacher or the office. This sometimes comes as a surprise for parents. We appreciate you letting us know so that you will not receive a call from the auto-dialer asking you to verify the absence. Research shows that school attendance is a strong indicator of success. It's about students learning what they need to know, belonging to the school community, and being part of the team that is preparing them with good habits for high school. Thank you for supporting your child in being here daily. Here is a copy of the 2022-23 school year calendar.


Student vision and hearing screenings set for Oct. 11th

Each fall, MVWSD conducts hearing and vision screenings of all students in kindergarten, second, fifth and eighth-grade, as California State Law mandates. These screenings will take place on Oct. 11th for our Vargas students.


Parents will be notified in writing if children fail a screening. Parents who do not want their child screened for either vision and/or hearing should send a letter to our school indicating that their child is to be excluded, and vision and/or hearing results will need to be provided from their physician.


If you have any concerns about your child’s vision or hearing, please contact our school nurse. Questions about the screenings should be directed to the Health Services office at 650-526-3500 ext. 1050.


Upcoming October no-school days

Friday, October 14 is a recess day (no school for students and staff). Thursday, October 13 is a staff development day, which means no school for students and no work for 10-month classified staff. Oct 13 is a staff development/work day for teachers, school secretaries and 12-month classified staff.


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.

5th grade Science camp- We need your help!

Science camp is a very fun and educational experience for our 5th graders. It’s a week to learn not only about science, but also to learn independence, responsibility, leadership, friendship and so much more.  Our students are excited to go to science camp, but we know that this can be stressful for some parents both emotionally and financially.  Please help us to make sure that all of  our students have what they need to have a great time at science camp.  If you can, please donate any of the following items. Items can be new or used (clean and ready to be used). Drop off your donation in the office


Sleeping bags

Warm blankets

Sets of twin sheets

Warm jackets size 10-12 or 14

Medium suitcase/duffle bag to carry the clothes


If you have any question or if your 5th grader needs any of these items, please contact Ms. Bea at [email protected]


(Repeat) Family Science Night

We are currently planning a Science Night for Thursday, October 6th from 5:30-6:30 pm. Students and families that attend will receive and build a Kiwi Kit together. Alternatively, if you are not able to attend or if you do not feel comfortable attending an in-person event, your child will receive a Kiwi kit, and we will send video instructions facilitated by our STEAM teachers, Mrs. Bisbee and Mrs. Butchko.

Please complete the survey by September 28, 2022 and select either the Science Night for your family OR at home option.

(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

County MedAssist Program - Flyer

The MedAssist Program aims to improve health outcomes and medication adherence for select individuals who reside in Santa Clara County. Qualified patients will receive financial assistance in the form of a grant designed to off-set high out-of-pocket expenses for life-saving medications such as anti-diabetics, asthma inhalers, and/or epinephrine auto-injectors. For more information and application, visit medassist.sccgov.org/.

EZMealApp: Future benefits could include after school care!

Even though all public school meals are currently free in California, applying for free- or reduced-price lunch status by October 1 means potentially more district funding and other benefits for your family. In 2022-23, families who qualify will also be offered free after school childcare and summer programs when they become available. Go to http://secure.ezmealapp.com now to see if you qualify for free- or reduced-price lunch status, and to apply!

MVLA Speakers Series: Friendship in the Age of Loneliness: How to Make Friends As An Adult - Flyer 

Thursday, October 6, 2022 - 7:00 - 9:00pm | MVHS Spartan Theater ⧫ 3535 Truman Avenue

We are lonelier than ever. Two-thirds of Americans are lonely and the average person hasn't made a new friend in the last five years. In the wake of the pandemic, it’s more clear than ever that our friendships are vital to our health and happiness. But why can it feel so difficult to keep those bonds alive as an adult—especially as parents? Why do we spend only four percent of our time with friends?  Join us as Adam Smiley Poswolsky, workplace belonging keynote speaker, and author of the recent book, Friendship in the Age of Loneliness, proposes a new solution for the mounting pressures of modern life: focus on your friendships.  In this talk, Smiley will share practical habits and playful reminders on how to create meaningful connections, make new friends, be a Minister for Loneliness in your community, prioritize real-world experiences, and deepen your relationships at work and outside of work. With warmth and inspiration, Smiley reminds us that nurturing old and new friendships is a ritual, a necessity, and one of the most worthwhile things we can do in adult life.

Audience:  Grade TK -  12 parents, caretakers, teachers, and counselors Register here for this free event

MVEF has raised over $300k! Make your donation soon to achieve the goal of $1.2M 

Thanks to the generosity of new donors, repeat donors, corporate matching, and grants, MVEF has already raised over 25% of this year’s $1.2M funding goal. Thank you to all who have donated so far! It’s a fast start on a big climb: MVWSD will begin planning for next year’s budget during the winter trimester. When MVEF is on pace to meet or exceed the funding goal early in the school year, it gives confidence that we can continue funding the current priorities and potentially add new priorities to next year’s budget.

To become an MVEF donor or renew your gift for the current school year, click here.  A recurring monthly donation of $100 per month (made in September) will contribute $1000 towards the current year’s goal! Gifts of any amount are important to help us meet our goal. Each school site has a big green sign in the parking area – keep your eye out for the new goal markers that indicate our progress towards funding art, music, environmental science, athletics, clubs, and smaller class sizes now and in the future!   


PTA News


PTA Association Meeting

Our first PTA Association Meeting of the year is on Wednesday, September 28th at 7pm on Zoom. At this meeting we will present our programs, events, fundraisers for the year and pass our budget. All parents, guardians and teachers are welcome to attend. 

Zoom link (Registration)



Scholastic Book Fair (10/3-10/7)

The Scholastic Book Fair is coming next week, October 3 - 7! The fair will be open in the MUR M-F after school, Tuesday morning at drop off and Thursday evening during science night. Get ready to empower your reader with book choice. Start exploring together: https://bookfairs.scholastic.com/bf/javargas #ScholasticBookFairs


Donation request 

We are looking for an ipad (version 12 or up) or android tablet (version 7 or up) to use at events for gear and concession sales and membership and Konstella sign ups. If anyone has an old tablet they would be willing to donate please contact [email protected]



Please join our PTA. The cost is $10 a year. No strings attached! Being a member allows you to fully participate in our meetings, and helps our PTA to plan our budget and programs!



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]

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