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Bruin Country Community Updates

Bruin Country Updates


Hello Bruin Community,


Second semester is well underway at SCHS, and we are quite busy on campus right now.  As I mentioned in previous messages, our school is undergoing a Self-Study in preparation for our upcoming WASC visitation in March.  The faculty has been working diligently to finalize that Self-Study with the help of some great student and parent volunteers.  This is also a period in the year when we are very busy both with student activities and in planning for the upcoming year.  I have a few highlights to share with you on these fronts.



On Wednesday, January 24, we will be hosting our annual AP Parent Night.  The event starts at 7:00 pm in the SCHS Theater.  This event will help students and parents to get a brief overview of AP course offerings and expectations, including news about a new and innovative AP course we will be offering next year called AP Seminar.  After this intro, we will move to the cafeteria where families can speak directly with teachers from our various AP classes.  While we encourage students to challenge themselves with one or more AP classes, we also know that one of the keys to success is deciding on the right courses and the right number of courses.  This answer will be different for each student, so individualized conversations are key.  We strongly urge students to push themselves in their areas of strength and passion, but also to be realistic in their approach by not over-committing themselves to too many courses.  AP courses can be a pathway to success in college, but only if approached thoughtfully and in a way that is appropriate for each individual student.



We are about to start the process of signing up for classes for next year.  It's important that all students find the right set of classes that challenge them appropriately and help them be both well-rounded and academically prepared for college and/or career.  All students will get to see a video about our elective offerings on January 29, and we encourage students to speak with their teachers and families about class options.  


Each grade level will have a meeting in the theater with the counselors to go over the process for signing up for classes, learn about options appropriate for the next grade, receive a copy of their personalized transcript, and get paperwork related to signing up for classes.  After these meetings, we strongly encourage parents to sit down with students and review their options.  In the few days following, the counselors will meet one-on-one with every student in that grade to sign up for classes.  For the current freshmen, this will be a paper-based system.  For the current sophomores and juniors, students will be using their Chromebooks to fill out an online form along with their counselor.  The dates for this portion are:

  • Current Freshmen - group meeting on January 23, one-on-one meetings with counselors to sign up for classes between January 31 and February 2

  • Current Sophomores - group meeting on February 6, one-on-one meetings with counselors to sign up for classes between February 7 and February 9

  • Current Juniors - group meeting on February 26, one-on-one meetings with counselors to sign up for classes between February 28 and March 2

All families will be sent a list of the courses for which students have signed up by early May.  Families can set up individual meetings with counselors to make any needed adjustments in May and Early June.



One of our biggest student events of the year, our annual Lip Sync Competition, is coming up on February 2.  Along with Homecoming and Battle of the Classes, this is one of the events that draws huge numbers of students and families.  Several hundred students will perform with their class and/or clubs in dances that are usually quite creative, often very funny, and always entertaining.  Tickets are $5 at the door, with profits going to the top three groups.



Our biggest fundraiser of the year is our Crab Feed, which will be held on Saturday, March 24, starting at 5:30 pm.  We are returning this year to the SES Hall on Lafayette.  Be on the look-out for ticket sales and buy yours early as we are likely to sell out this very fun event.  This is a great opportunity for the adults in our community to come together and have a good time.  Profits benefit a variety of student activities around our campus.



  • Monday-Friday, January 22-26 - Teen Read Week in the SCHS Library

  • Wednesday, January 24 - AP Parent Night starting in the SCHS Theater at 7:00 pm

  • Tuesday, January 30 - Blood Drive in the Small Gym from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm

  • Wednesday, January 31 - ELAC Meeting in the conference room at 6:00 pm

  • Wednesday, January 31 - MECHS Parent Presentation in the SCHS Theater at 7:00 pm

  • Friday, February 2 - Lip Sync Competition in the main gym at 7:00 pm

  • Wednesday, February 7 - School Site Council Meeting in the conference room at 5:00 pm

  • Wednesday, February 7 - Semester Awards Night in the Main Gym at 7:00 pm

  • Wednesday, February 14 - PTSA Meeting in the conference room at 6:00 pm

  • Wednesday, February 14 - Athletic Boosters Meeting in the conference room at 7:00 pm

  • Friday, February 16 - Black History Event in the theater during several class periods

  • Monday-Friday, February 19-23 - February Break (No School)


Gregory Shelby

Principal, SCHS


Hello Bruin Community,


We are heading into the final few days before our holiday break, which is a time that can be both wonderful and stressful for students, families, and teachers.  I hope all of us can manage the inherent stress associated with Dead Week and Finals Week, and I hope that all of our breaks are as relaxing and rejuvenating as possible.



Last week, we were able to deploy chromebooks to nearly every sophomore and junior at SCHS.  It was wonderful seeing the faces of students who were excited about receiving the devices, and it was clear that students were taking the responsibilities associated with having a chromebook seriously.  Distribution went quite smoothly, and thanks for this goes to too many people to name.  From our site, I want to especially thank vice principal Terry Flora, teacher tech liaison Christina Mehl, and all of our history teachers, as these are the SCHS folks who were most hands-on during this process.  As SCHS is the first school in our district to have this type of large-scale distribution, we expect that a few unexpected issues are likely to arise, and we are ready to address those issues.  For now, we are enjoying seeing students using the chromebooks in the classrooms, the hallways, and all around the campus, and we are excited about what this will mean for innovative curriculum throughout the school.


Starting this week, we have a service available at lunch called our Genius Squad.  This is a group of tech-savvy students who, under the guidance of a teacher, can help students who are having any difficulties with their chromebooks.  Whether there is something seriously wrong with a device or a student just has a quick how-to question, students should come see the Genius Squad for help.  If a device cannot be fixed quickly, we will swap it out for another device so that students aren't left without a working chromebook.  The Genius Squad is available at lunchtime on Monday through Thursday in the Chromebook Center (the room by the library where all students picked up their Chromebooks).



Our girls soccer team has a unique opportunity to play this Saturday at Avaya Stadium.  Last year, we were the CCS Division I champions, and we will be facing the CCS Division II Champions from Presentation High School.  The game is at 2:15pm, and it is free.  The public entrance will be through the BMW gate located near the parking lot, not the main entrance near Coleman Avenue.  I encourage you to come out and see what should be a terrific game in this memorable venue. Go Bruins!



We are in Dead Week, which is a time of reduced activities as students prepare for their finals.  Next week is Finals Weeks, and the schedule is as follows:

Monday, 12/18 Tuesday, 12/19 Wednesday, 12/20 Thursday, 12/21 Friday, 12/22




Period 1 Final


Period 2 Final




Period 7 Final


Period 3 Final


Period 4 Final


Period 5 Final


Period 6 Final


No School

All finals are two hours long, and students are not allowed to take any finals early.  While the type of studying needed will vary from class to class, parents should talk with their students and look for communication from teachers via schoolloop about what the expectations are for each of these finals.



  • Wednesday, 12/13 - Winter Concert (Jazz & Choir) in theater at 7pm
  • Friday, 12/15 - Winter Concert (Orchestra & Symphonic) in theater at 7pm
  • Saturday, 12/16 - Girls Soccer plays Presentation HS at Avaya Stadium at 2:15pm
  • Tuesday-Thursday, 12/19-21 - Finals Schedule
  • Wednesday, 12/20 - PTSA Meeting in Conference Room at 6pm
  • Tuesday, 1/9 - Start of Second Semester
  • Wednesday, 1/10 - School Site Council Meeting in Conference Room at 5pm
  • Saturday, 1/13 - Winter Ball 
  • Monday, 1/15 - No School - MLK Day
  • Wednesday, 1/17 - PTSA Meeting in Conference Room at 6pm
  • Wednesday, 1/17 - Freshman Parent Night in the theater at 7pm
  • Monday-Friday, 1/22-26 - Teen Read Week
  • Wednesday, 1/24 - AP Parent Night starting in the theater at 7pm
  • Tuesday, 1/30 - Blood Drive in the small gym
  • Wednesday, 1/31 - ELAC Meeting in the Conference Room at 3:15pm
  • Friday, 2/2 - Lip Sync Competition in the Main Gym at 7pm


Gregory Shelby


Santa Clara High School


Hello Bruin Community,


I have some good news to share with as well as potential favors to ask of those who are interested. 



SCHS has been working to put together a more comprehensive after-school tutoring schedule, and, as of today, that tutoring schedule is up and running.  Starting today (Monday, October 30th), we will offer free tutoring to all SCHS students in a variety of subjects in math, English, science, history, and world language (Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Trigonometry, AP Statistics, ASL,  Earth Science, Biology, Chemistry, English 9-12, World History, US History, Civics, and Economics) on various days Monday - Thursday.  We strongly encourage all students to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity.  Please see the attached schedule.  This schedule will be a living document and will change occasionally as our diagnosed needs and available resources change.  A page within our website will be up within the next few days that will have the current schedule so that parents and students can refer to it at any time.



As I mentioned in a previous message, we are going through an accreditation procress this year.  The Western Association of Schools & Colleges (WASC) is the group that determines the validity of our school's academic work, or, to put it more simply, whether our diploma counts as a diploma.  All schools go through this process on at least a six year cycle, and we are in that cycle right now.  This is a process that can be quite helpful to schools who embrace it as a learning opportunity.  One of the key elements of this process is the Self Study, which is a comprehensive look at what we do as a school to educate our students, and it's important that we include teacher, parent, and student voices in this process.  Our teachers have started a process of looking at pieces of the school, and I'd like to invite interested parents and students to join us.  The commitment for this would be two one-hour meetings at 8:00 am on Wednesday mornings in which we would review data and provide input on what it says about the school's progress.  The dates of these meetings are November 8 and January 17.  If you are interested in joining our faculty for this process, please reply to this email and let me know that you are interested.



On Wednesday, November 8, we will be hosting an Open House for families of current 8th graders.  While this is not applicable to many current SCHS families, we ask you to encourage your friends and neighbors with 8th grade students to come check us out.  The event starts at 6:30 pm in the SCHS Theater.  Thanks in advance.



Gregory Shelby

Principal, SCHS


Hello Bruin Community,


I have some great news to share.


The District Office just approved the deployment schedule for a 1:1 student Chromebook program, and SCHS will begin distributing Chromebooks to our students this December.  These Chromebooks will be checked out for student use similar to the way students check out textbooks, and students will be taking their assigned Chromebook with them to class and home.  This will enable teachers to teach and students to learn in innovative and increasingly collaborative ways.  


At SCHS, the first group to receive these Chromebooks will be our sophomores and juniors.  The plan is to have full implementation (Chromebooks at all grade levels) next year.  For the duration of this school year, our freshmen and senior students will have access in many classes to Chromebooks, but it will be limited to in-class work.


All sophomores and juniors will be receiving their Chromebooks through their history classes.  Prior to the distribution date, their history teachers will lead them through a couple of small trainings on how to properly use and care for their new devices.  At the end of these lessons, students will take a short quiz to demonstrate that they understand the basic guidelines around use of and care for Chromebooks.


We also want to make sure that parents and families are aware of the responsibilities that come with the students having a Chromebook.  To support parents who want to learn more, SCHS will be hosting two parent info sessions that can help parents understand this new technology and have questions answered.  These two events have the same content, so we invite you to come to the one that fits your schedule better.  The events are both on Wednesday, November 29, 2017, in the SCHS Theater.  The first will be held at 8:30-9:30 am, and the second will be held at 7:00-8:00 pm.  All parents will be asked to sign a “Mobile Device Use Agreement” prior to distribution of Chromebooks.  Signing this form and having students receive a Chromebook is optional, but it is strongly encouraged as it will help students educationally.


These Chromebooks were selected in part because of their reliability and ease of use.  That being said, we know that issues will occasionally arise.  We will be providing tech support for students on Monday through Thursday at lunchtime in the Chromebook Center (located near the Library).


One important note is that the use of the Chromebooks will be monitored to make sure students are using their devices in safe ways.  The district has contracted with a reputable monitoring service called Securly, and student internet searches will be monitored through their system.  More information about this will be shared at the parent event as well as in the student trainings.


What is required before students can receive a Chromebook:

  1. “Mobile Device Use Agreement” signed by parent/guardian

  2. Student Chromebook Use Quiz successfully completed by student


SCHS timeline for distribution:

  • 11/20/17-11/30/17 - Student trainings in history classes (exact dates determined by teacher)

  • 11/29/17 - Parent Info Sessions in the SCHS Theater at 8:30 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.

  • 12/4/17-12/5/17 - Chromebooks Distributed to Sophomores

  • 12/6/17-12/7/17 - Chromebooks Distributed to Juniors


This is an exciting time for teaching and learning at SCHS, and I can’t wait to see what our students are able to achieve with access to this new tool.



Gregory Shelby - Principal

Terry Flora - Vice Principal of Attendance, Technology, & Discipline

Christina Mehl - Teacher Tech Liaison


Hello Bruin Community,


I have two important updates for you.


HAWK Beacon Installation on Benton & Moraga:


As many of you know, the City of Santa Clara is installing new HAWK Beacons around the city, and one of them will be going in at the intersection in front of SCHS.  This will be a major improvement for student safety, and it should help with traffic flow as well.  We have finally received notification of the timeline, and construction work should be starting within the next week or so.  The city anticipates finishing the project by mid November.  There will be some traffic delays during the construction, but I think we can all agree that these will be worth it.


The way HAWK Beacons work blends the benefits of a full lighted crosswalk with the convenience of turning off during non-peak times.  If you haven't experienced one yet, I encourage you to check out this video made to explain how HAWK Beacons work.


The HAWK Beacons are off most of the time, allowing through traffic to travel unimpeded.  At these times, there will be a symbol indicating to pedestrians not to walk.  When a pedestrian triggers the system, it will begin by going through flashing yellow, solid yellow, solid red, and flashing red lights before returning to it's normal off position.  Rules for all these lights are exactly the same as other times lights are used.  rWhen the light turns red, pedestrians will be allowed to cross similar to a normal lighted crosswalk.  


We recognize that there will be a learning curve with this new system, and we encourage everyone to be patient, look carefully, and keep student safety at the heart of what we all do.



PSAT Test on October 11:


SCHS will be hosting a PSAT test on October 11.  Because of the major benefits of taking this test in terms of college preparedness, our district is paying for any  sophomores who sign up to take the test for free.  Juniors are also welcome to sign up at a cost of $16.   So far, over 400 students have signed up to take the test.  We have a limited number left, and we will continue to allow students to sign up until either we run out of tests or Friday, October 6 (whichever comes first).  If your student wants to sign up, sophomores can do so by going to the counseling office, and juniors can do so by visiting our bookkeeper.


The test starts at 7:30 am and lasts until about lunchtime.  Students will miss 3rd period that day.  Students who take the test will automatically be excused from 3rd period.  For students that ride the bus, an additional morning bus run will happen on October 11.  All students who are taking the test should arrive by 7:15 with their photo ID and pencils.


For students who are not taking the test, this is a normal school day and these students will follow the standard Wednesday bell schedule.



Gregory Shelby

Principal, SCHS


Hello Bruin Community,


We are in the ever-busy fall, when it seems like the only thing that can match our full schedule is our energetic student body.  We've had a quite success Club Fair to help students engage with their peers in meaningful ways, and we have recently passed the halfway point of the first quarter.  We have several upcoming events that I want to highlight for you.


Senior Parent Meeting:

On Wednesday at 7:00 pm in our SCHS Theater, we invite all parents of senior students to a meeting hosted by our counseling department.  The agenda will focus on how to best support your senior students as they go through this important year and prepare for college/career.  We will also be highlighting many of the memorable events that make senior year so special.  We will be hosting similar parent nights for the other classes on upcoming dates.  Junior parents will meet on October 4, sophomores on November 1, and freshmen on January 17.


DACA Information Night:

Our district strives to support all of our students and families.  For families and friends of Dreamers affected by the news about DACA, the district is hosting an information night so that people can get the most up-to-date and accurate understanding of what is going on with DACA and how. the district will be responding.  This meeting will be hosted at Scott Lane Elementary (1925 Scott Lane Blvd) on Wednesday, 9/20/17, at 6:30 pm.  Interpreters and child care will be provided.  A flyer about this event is attached.



One of the highlights of the year is upon us.  This week is our Homecoming Week.  Four important notes for families to know about include:


1) There is an alternate schedule for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.  If you haven't seen the schedule yet, this schedule is listed on schoolloop.

    • Wednesday: Per 1 - 10:00-10:54 / Per 3 - 11:00-12:00 / Lunch - 12:00-12:35 / Per 5 - 12:41-1:35 / Per 7 - 1:41-2:35

    • Thursday: Use the Mon/Tue/Fri Schedule (not the normal Thursday block schedule)

    • Friday: Per 2 - 8:26-9:20 / HC Rally - 9:30-10:21 / Per 4 - 10:31-11:30 / Lunch - 11:30-12:05 / Per 6 - 12:11-1:052

2) On Thursday Night, we will be hosting Homecoming parade float building in our quad from 3:00 pm to 10:00 pm.  The floats for our Homecoming Parade reflect the ingenuity of our students and are among the best high school floats I've ever seen.  This float building night is often as memorable as the Homecoming events themselves.  Parents are welcome to stay.  There will be a limited number of students who will be allowed to stay past 10:00 pm, and those students have to permission slips that are given by the SBO and signed by parents.  If you don't sign a slip, you should know that your student will be leaving campus no later than 10:00 pm.

3) Our Homecoming Parade starts at 1:30 pm on Friday.  We leave from the front of the school, heading toward Pomeroy Elementary.  We use El Sobrante to cross Kiely, weaving our way over to Central Park Elementary before returning to SCHS.  Passing the two elementary schools and seeing the delight on the young faces is definitely a highlight of the parade.  Typically, over 400 students (sometimes  participate in the parade, and these students all get free admission to the game that night.

4) Our actual Homecoming Ceremony follows the Frosh/Soph football game on Friday.  This typically puts us at around 6:15 or 6:30.  The varsity Homecoming game versus Gunn HS will start at 7:15 pm.  We invite all families to come out and join this festive event.


Parent Education Night:

On Wednesday, September 27 at 7:00 pm, our Wellness Center will be hosting a Parent Education Night on Teen Stress & Anxiety.  Find out more by visiting:


As always, I encourage parents who are on Facebook to sign up for the SCHS PTSA Facebook page.  More importantly, I encourage you to stay active in your teenager's life, communicating with them, their teachers, and others about what is going on academically, socially, and emotionally with your student.



Gregory Shelby


Santa Clara High School

3000 Benton Street

Santa Clara, CA 95051

(408) 423-2601


Excellence - Equity - Compassion - Connectedness


Hello Bruin Community,


The school year is off to a solid start, and we have much to celebrate.  Due to the efforts of our counseling department, the overwhelming majority of students have had their schedules finalized.  Our teachers are welcoming students into classes.  As I observe the campus, I see smiles in the quad and engagement in the classrooms.


Our annual Back to School Night is coming up.  Attached to this email is a copy of the letter that is on the way to each of your houses.  Back to School Night will be held on the evening of Wednesday, September 6.  At this event, in addition to 10 minute sessions with each of your student's teachers, you'll be introduced to the SCHS admin team and leaders from important groups including the PTSA, Athletic Boosters, and Music Boosters.  There will also be representatives from several programs of interest such as SVCTE and our Workability program.


The basic timing of the evening is as follows:

  • Orientation Meeting for all parents in the gym from 6:30 to 7:00 pm
  • Classroom visits, 10 minutes for each period, with 5 minutes between periods, from 7:10 to 8:50 pm
  • PTSA Silent Auction in the main gym from 6:00 to 9:00 pm


Gregory Shelby

Principal, SCHS