Joining our growing list of community partners are the fine folks at Whole Foods Market. As part of their nutrition education program, Whole Foods representatives Christina and Jamie gave a series of presentations to our students about how to make healthy food choices. The emphasis was on staying away from processed foods and looking for food in its natural state. The students were excited to sample a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables and even partook in a delicious smoothie made with kale. Though there is still much work to be done, our families are making strides towards choosing foods that are healthy and delicious!
Beechwood was fortunate to have been chosen to participate in the Stanford Law School Day of Service this past Saturday. With smiles on their faces, six dedicated Stanford law students rolled up their sleeves and helped Beechwood teachers complete many grueling and time-consuming tasks, such as highlighting scripts for Mrs. Getter and cutting out laminated flash cards for Ms. Gallagher, to name a few. Thanks to these volunteers, Beechwood teachers can now spend more quality time with their students and less time icing their cramped hands!
Beechwood is working hard to take advantage of all that technology can offer in the way of educating students from traditionally under-served populations. Our community partners have been instrumental in providing donations of equipment and funds to purchase needed machines. Our latest donation arrived in the form of two iPads for our Academic Support Department to use when working with small pull-out groups. Thank you to the local law firm of Latham and Watkins for their generous donation that made these tools available to our neediest students. Closing the Achievement Gap? There's an app for that!
After a stress filled fall, our Holiday program reminded our entire community that Beechwood is first and foremost a place where children come and feel good about themselves. The pictures here are evidence that in spite of our challenges, the spirit of our school remains in tact. Congratulations to our Music Director, Mrs. Getter and all the people who helped her create this amazing show. Thanks also to all the kids who sang and danced and reminded us that the Holiday Season is a joyful time. Click on an image to see the full version.
It has been two months since a fire on our campus brought about great challenges for our entire community. As you will see from these photos of our annual Thanksgiving celebration, we are recovering quite nicely. The faces of the kids, parents and staff tell a simple story: In spite of an unfortunate turn of events, Beechwood School remains a joyful place to learn and grow.
On February 20th, students in 2nd, 3rd and 4th grades at Beechwood performed Project:Peace at Eastside College Preparatory School in East Palo Alto. The play was directed by Emilee Getter, Beechwood School's music teacher and touched on themes of tolerance, bullying and accepting our differences. The Palo Alto Daily News featured a great quote from Ms. Getter: "Just because they are kids doesn’t mean they can’t change the world." See the Palo Alto Daily News feature online, and more pictures >
On Monday, January 28th, five eighth grade students (Yareli Hernandez, Aniel Solis, Miguel Angulo, Bianca Vargas, and Jessica Moreno) had the unique experience of enjoying an evening with Supreme Court Justice Sotomayor. They joined an audience at the Fox Theater, in Redwood City, where they had the opportunity to listen to an interview with "Sonia from the Bronx", as she likes to be named. Her story was a motivating one of adversity and triumph, which continues with her voice joining eighth on the country's highest court.
The highlight of the evening was each of the students receiving a personalized copy of her book, and having the opportunity to speak with her, on stage. Our thanks go to the Foundation for a College Education which made this opportunity possible. See coverage in the Palo Alto Weekly >
An early morning fire at Beechwood destroyed the building that housed the school's administrative offices as well as the third grade classroom. Classes have been canceled for Thursday and Friday with hopes that students can return to school on Monday, September 17th. The Back-to-School Picnic scheduled for Saturday September 15th has also been canceled. Several local media sources have reported on the fire and many people have been generous with offers for assistance as Beechwood recovers from the tragedy. Those interested in providing immediate financial assistance can contribute online, or contact the California Family Foundation.
Help Beechwood School recover from the fire by donating to the California Family Foundation online now.
Kathy Connolly, Beechwood's Graduate Coordinator, has been chosen by the County of San Mateo as the recipient of the 2012 Dorothy Boyajin Honored Teacher Award. She received her award on January 16th, which was the Martin Luther King Holiday. Mrs. Connolly was selected because the nearly 20 years of work that she has done families of East Palo Alto and eastern Menlo Park, truly embodies the values exemplified by Dr. King. He believed that racial equality could only be achieved if children from all races had equal access to quality education. As a 6th grade teacher and now in her current position, Mrs. Connolly has been dedicated to this worthy cause. She has played a major part in countless positive outcomes for the students of Beechwood School.
The ceremony took place at the San Mateo Caltrain Station as part of the San Mateo County Martin Luther King Day celebration. Read Mrs. Connolly's speech >