Weekly Notes from Head of Upper School, 10/16

Dear Upper School Families,

The school year is well underway, and the end of Quarter 1 is fast approaching. Please make sure to check your student’s progress through MyBackpack and contact advisors with any questions regarding grades. Your students are working incredibly hard and the advisors and teachers are happy to help out with any questions, concerns, or challenges. Thank you to all the families who attended the Student-Led Conferences this past Wednesday. We had a great turnout, and it was an important time to go over achievements and student progress.

GLAAD National Spirit Day 2019
This is an opportunity to speak out against LGBTQ bullying and stand with LGBTQ youth, who disproportionately face bullying and harassment because of their identities. This Thursday, October 17th, the Palm Valley GSA urges those who wish to participate in Middle and Upper School to GO PURPLE! Students must wear uniform bottoms and adhere to the PVS Dress Code for the shirts.

Family Coffee with Dr. McLachlan
Do you have questions about Palm Valley Upper School? The Upper School Coffee with Dr. McLachlan will take place on Thursday, October 17th, from 7:45-8:15am.

Annual Fund
Each year, the Palm Valley School community contributes to the education of our Firebirds. There is always a 100% participation from members of the Board of Trustees and from PVS staff members showing their Firebird pride. This annual fund is important to our students and families at Palm Valley. Please remember to submit your contribution or gift in kind. Click on the link

Vistamar School Multicultural College Fair
Please let your student’s advisor know if you are planning on attending this college fair on Sunday, October 20th. Currently, there are only a few interested students. This college fair is a great opportunity, so even if the school field trip is cancelled due to low interest, I would certainly recommend students making the trip to El Segundo with their families. There is no charge for the college fair, and there are over 100 higher education schools participating.

SCAREFEST 2019
A popular tradition for upper school students is the Upper School ScareFest, which will take place on October 25th and October 26th. This fun-filled event is an all-nighter. Look for more news coming shortly.

Palm Valley and the Annual Palm Desert Golf Cart Parade
We welcome students and families to participate in the 55th Annual Palm Desert Golf Cart Parade with PVS! The parade and festival takes place on Sunday, Oct. 27th and PVS will be participating in the parade again. Thanks to Boy Scout Troop #707 and Mr. Kroe, we will be creating a themed golf cart and large photo frames for crowd engagement and Palm Valley brand awareness. We encourage all students to participate in the parade by walking with our group or supporting from the sidelines. The more walkers we have, the more impact we make! The theme this year is Let the Good Times Roll, so any 50s and 60 style costumes are encouraged (men can wear a plain white t-shirt, rolled up jeans and ray bans and women can wear poodle skirts etc.). Meet at the Bank of America at 10:30am if you plan on walking in the parade. Email Abby Sturgeon at asturgeon@pvs.org for more information!

Attendance
Continue to email Ms. Sholander, your student’s advisor, and myself if your student is absent, or going to be absent. Attending school on a regular basis is directly connected to high levels of student achievement. Emergencies, illness, and other events do come up, and we want to be supportive. Letting us know when your student is gone also allows for teachers to be prepared to help them make up for any missed activities.

Sports
Upper School students interested in playing sports, see Coach Zinman. Sign-ups are available.

Spirit Store
The Palm Valley Spirit Store is open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2:00-3:30pm. It is a great place to find all the Palm Valley gear you need to show your Firebird pride, as well as purchase gently used uniforms.

MyBackpack
All parents/guardians should have a MyBackpack WebID and be able to login and see MyDocuments. Forms to complete will be shown as "New.” Once they are completed they will be submitted to Administrative Assistants for approval. Any questions or concerns may be directed to Mr. Kisling at gkisling@pvs.org

Upcoming Dates:
10/16 PSAT testing session for 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students
10/17 - Great California ShakeOut Earthquake Drill
10/17 - GLAAD National Spirit Day
10/20 - College Fair Field Trip Grades 8-11
10/23 - Admissions Open House, 5 - 7pm
10/27 Golf Cart Parade
10/28 - 11/1 - Spirit Week (10/28, PJ Day - 10/29, Twin Day - 10/30, Fan Day - 10/31,
Halloween - 11/1, Red Out)

Dr. Kurt McLachlan
Head of Upper School