Kindergarten Tours!

Painted Colorful HandsMira Vista is holding Kindergarten tours in December and January to provide interested families the opportunity to explore our campus, meet the principal and teachers, and learn more about Kindergarten at Mira Vista. Please join us!

Friday, December 12th
8:45 am in the Teacher’s Lounge

Friday, January 16th
8:45 am in the Teacher’s Lounge

No registration or RSVP is necessary to attend the tour. Questions can be sent to: tours @

Any current Kindergarten parents who would like to attend and speak about their experience are welcome. Please contact me to confirm your availability. Thanks!

November PTA Meeting Recap

If you didn’t make it to last week’s general PTA meeting, here’s what you missed:

  • Chocolate sales: We are still short about $5,000. Parents need to turn in money as soon as possible.
  • Fall Festival went very well this year. We tried a lot of new things, made it bigger. The middle school’s haunted house earned $200 to donate to a local charity. Thank you to Mr. Chilcott for kissing the pig! We are always looking for new ideas; if you have any, talk to David Almonte or email
  • Walkathon time is coming! This and the chocolate sale are our two main fundraisers; the walkathon has very little outlay and is an opportunity to raise a lot of money. We have a committee but need at least two more people on it. Email or talk to Harpal Gill if you’re interested in joining. Many volunteers will be needed on the day; date to come soon.
  • Basic needs drive: Look for a flyer in the Wednesday folder about our drive to collect toiletries and other items for a local homeless shelter.
  • Report cards will be ready before the Thanksgiving break. This is a new system with a learning curve, but ultimately it will be easier for teachers and parents.
  • More funds are becoming available from the school district; PlayWorks is an example of this and will continue at the school. Other additions: more curriculum coaches and professional development for teachers and a community outreach worker. Middle school has a chance to expand, get more electives like foreign languages, but only if enrollment increases. Let other parents know what a great middle school we have.
  • Middle school leadership council is looking for guest speakers, professionals in the public or private sector who give back to the community. If you know of anyone, let Chris Allen or Ms. Madrid know.

Next PTA meeting will be December 10, the last one before winter recess.

Have you checked the * blog lately?

New and exciting stuff is up on both the garden and STEM blogs—take a break this fine Monday morning and check out some cool photos and video.

LEGO Robotics Tournament Saturday

For the second year in a row, Mira Vista is hosting a FIRST LEGO League Robotics Tournament. Two teams from our own STEM Club will be competing against students from all over the East Bay. Stop by to support our team or help out if you can. Check the STEM blog for all details.


PTA Meeting Wednesday 11/12

It’s our November PTA meeting, with a very special presentation as part of the program: Secrets of the Mira Vista PTA! Ever wondered what our biggest fundraisers are or where our money goes? Ever wondered what, exactly, the PTA does, or how it supports events? Find out — you’ll be glad you did, because it’ll be entertaining and clear!

The PTA meeting has free, parent-run childcare and begins at 7 pm in the teacher’s lounge.

Here is the agenda:

Welcome                                                                                                                 7:00

Sign in

Reports                                                                                                                    7:00 – 7:25

  • President’s Report
  • Teacher’s report
  • Principal’s Report
  • Middle School / Student Leadership Report
  • Treasurer’s Report

Action Items                                                                                                           7:25 – 7:30

  • Approve minutes from October 2014 PTA meeting
  • Approve contract for Lisa DiPrima

Special Program                                                                                                    7:30 – 8:00

  • Secrets of the Mira Vista PTA

Adjourn                                                                                                                                8:00

Upcoming Dates

  • November 25 Minimum day
  • November 26 Certificated workday (no school)
  • November 27 – 28 Thanksgiving holiday (no school)
  • December 10 PTA Meeting 7 pm
  • December 12 Kindergarten tour 8:45 am



Chocolate Money Due!


If you haven’t yet turned in your money for our chocolate fundraiser, please do! We have a lot of outstanding funds still to be collected. All money is due in now.

Please make checks to “Mira Vista PTA.”

THANK YOU so much if you’ve already turned in your money.

Early Dismissals Next Week

cat on the office table of businessman






While you’re reminding yourself to change all the clocks that need manual setting on Sunday morning, make a note of the following dismissal times for the coming week:

  • Monday, November 3: minimum day (elementary)
  • Tuesday, November 4: NO SCHOOL (elementary)
  • Wednesday, November 5: minimum day (elementary)
  • Thursday, November 6: minimum day (elementary)
  • Friday, November 7: minimum day (elementary)

Forget your conference appointment time? Call or email your child’s teacher.

Also, there will be no school Monday, November 10, and Tuesday, November 11.

Enjoy the time off!

Time Stream

Fall Festival Thank yous!

chilcottpg_vA very big and warm thank you to all the Mira Vista teachers, parents, staff, and students who graciously gave time, effort, and donations for this year’s Fall Festival.

Despite the weather, it was a HUGE success! And it could not have happened without the hard work of everyone involved!

A special shout out to the following teachers:

  • Mr. Moreno, the band instructor
  • Mrs. Keller and Mrs. Cruger-Hansen, who did face painting
  • Mrs. Zittel, who ran the arts and craft booth
  • Mr. Lackey and Ms. Rossi, who ran the apple cider press
  • Ms. Madrid, Ms. Spafford, Mr. Lucas, Ms. McLachlan, Ms. Hoy, Mrs. Wong, Ms. King, and all other teachers who showed up

A special shout out to parents!

You know who you are! We have a very dedicated group of parent volunteers who helped set up, brought shades, sandbags, and weights, set up sound, ran booths, sold tickets and t-shirts, donated equipment, solicited prizes, helped clean up, put things away, and the list goes on!

By the way, you do not have to be part of the PTA (although we would love for you to join, if you haven’t already) or have a volunteer badge to help out at the Fall Fest! You can pitch in for any job, however great or small, and even enlist other family members! As seamless as it may have appeared, Fall Fest is a major event that takes lots of planning, coordinating, and, most important, volunteers. It is an event for the surrounding community as well as an opportunity for prospective families to visit the school. If you enjoyed this event as much as we did and want this type of format again next year, please pitch in! The larger format means more work, and if we do not have the volunteers for it, it won’t happen.

A special shout out to students!

You also know who you are! In addition to helping with some of the above, you are starting early on a path of community involvement and achievement that will sustain you for a lifetime!

A final special shout out to our own very dear Principal Chilcott, who was such a great sport about kissing the pig. Finally, thank you to Ms. Norma for helping everyone collect their prizes.

We really couldn’t have done it without you all!

Thank you to Albany Bowl, Andrea Burnett PR, Ashkenaz, Balanced Bodywork. Barlago, Blue and Gold Fleet, Boreal Mountain Resort @ Tahoe, Cal Performances, California Academy of Sciences, Canyon Swim School, Children’s Creativity Museum, Contra Costa Community Theater, Gathering Tribes, Grocery Outlet, Jewels Cheer Gym, Kristina Nail Spa, Lawrence Hall of Science, Legion of Honor Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, Little Louie’s Restaurant, Mel-o-dee Bar & Karaoke, Mountain Mike’s, Mr. Farmer Man, Oakland Zoo, Pastime ACE Hardware, Pier 39, Raley’s, Richmond Fire Department, Robin Reynolds Piano and Cello, Scandia Family Center, Seasons, Sky High Sports, Starbucks, Scott Taniguchi, Taqueria La Estrella, The Art Lounge, Up and Under Pub, Officer Vallerga from the K-9 Unit, Winchester Mystery House, Wooleys Hair Salon, Yogurtland, Zumba with Stacey Jennings


Lights! Camera! Donate!

Ms. Spafford’s first-grade class is raising funds for equipment to create, edit, and show movies. The link is here.

Donate now and enter the promo code SPARK to double your gift. (This offer expires November 3, so don’t procrastinate.) Tell your extended family! If your employer has a matching program, let your HR representative know.

You may remember that Ms. Spafford is not only Mira Vista’s Tech Teacher Leader, but she is one of the very talented people who brought you this:

With a new camera and a MacBook, her first-graders will rule the world! Or at least document it. Go make a donation.

While you’re there and feeling generous, show Mrs. Janora and Mrs. Schnur a little love too.

Minimum Days and Things That Say Boo!

Halloween and parent–teacher conferences are coming! That means your schedule is about to get a little complicated for the next two weeks, but don’t panic! Check the cheat sheet below, add the pertinent dates into your calendar, and all will be well.

  • Monday, October 27: Report card marking (minimum day, middle school)
  • Thursday and Friday, October 30–31: Parent-Teacher Conferences (minimum days, elementary)
  • Friday, October 31: Elementary Parade 11:20 and Middle School Dance 1 pm
  • Monday, November 3: Parent-Teacher Conferences (minimum day, elementary)
  • Tuesday, November 4: Parent-Teacher Conferences (no school, elementary)
  • Wednesday through Friday, November 5–7: Parent-Teacher Conferences (minimum days, elementary) 

If you haven’t already signed up for a conference time with your child’s teacher, call or email today.