Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Thank YOU for your participation - ACSA Awards Anounced - 5 Winners - SOS was one of them!

The local Solano County ACSA Charter executive committee met this morning and selected the Administrators of the Year along with the Media Coverage and Partners in Education 2011 award winners.

For those not familiar “ACSA” it is the Association of California School Administrators—membership around 15,000.


Shereene Wilkerson – Central Office Administrator

Ed Santopadre – Secondary Principal

John Alongi – Secondary Co-Administrator

VPEF – Partners in Education

SOS – Outstanding Media Coverage of Public Education

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Continuing to support 2010-2011!

In an effort to continue to Support Our Schools, we have started a newsletter. Be sure to sign up for the newsletter so that you will know what is going on with our schools and with the BUDGET CRISIS!

There is a link on the top of this page, all you have to do is enter your email address and we will keep you posted.


Friday, June 18, 2010

THANK YOU from SOS! FINAL - Budget was approved ~ $8 million in cuts

Well, this is it! Since the last weekend of May, the final weekend of our SOS Fundraising Campaign there has been a whirlwind of action.....As of now we raised about $36,380, but many of the businesses have taken the last few weeks to finish up their accounting's so that they can make their donations (we hope to know the final number soon).

I know there hasn't been any posts since the last week of May (Memorial Weekend), as I am sure that you know the last weeks of school are CRAZY and with the SOS Fundraiser ending, school ending, graduations, and....well....EVERYTHING that hits all at once....this blog had to take a brief pause.

I hope to give you the FINAL number after it comes in, along with the decision on how the money will be spent. The VUSD School Board will ultimately make that decision, but I know there was a recommendation given to the School Board to disperse the money as a per student amount back to each school. It was the most fair way that we (the SOS Committee) could think of and it was a way to make sure that the money benefited EACH student.

Last night the Vacaville Unified School District OKs $8.6M in cuts, this article explains how some of the cuts are layed out. It is terribly sad to know that we had to cut 8.6 MILLION DOLLARS out of our budget for next year!! We as parents, would like to have raised the full amount for the cuts, but WE are pleased to have been able to raise the amount that we raised....THANKS TO ALL OF YOU WHO SUPPORTED OUR STUDENTS!!

We tried to make a difference and I believe we did.....not just by raising the money, but by raising awareness about the financial crisis that our EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM IS IN, and also helping our schools work as a UNITED TEAM....check out this article by the Reporter yesterday. Relationships built through this process will last well beyond the fundraiser.


Since the Fundraiser is over and there isn't any thing else to write about....I would like to take this opportunity to give a HUGE THANK YOU!!!!!! It is impossible to thank everyone who contributed to supporting our students, mostly because many of the donations are anonymous or done through texting or online, BUT please know that we are VERY GRATEFUL TO EVERYONE who supported our students. Here is a list of people who worked on the campaign, either attending the meetings and planning events or working behind the scenes running things, and businesses that supported our students, and we would like to offer them a big THANK YOU as well...

Alex Hall,Angela Higdon,Baabz Scott,Barry Rico,Brigitte Aton,Chris Strong,Christa Poe,Dave McCallum,Dawn French,Deb McGuire, VPEF,Deryl Clark,Dianna Villa,Ed Santapadre,Heidi Benson,Holly Valentine,Ivy Green,Janice Smith,Jared Austin,Jeff Adcock,Julie O’Dell,Julie Kim,Kristina McKenzie,Kristina Fisher,Krysi Marchand,Lee Majors,Louise Tyrrell,Mary Feaster,Mary Ruth Quintana,Patty Gauci,Perla Rosenberg,PJ Goodson,Randi Fien,Rebecca Duvall,Robin Mitchell,Sabrina Valdivia,Sally Bernard,Shannon Nadasdy,Shannon Nielson,Sheri Mendes,Simone Martin,Susan Benavides,Terri Simpson,Vicki Dunham, Melda Roark, Cindy Williamson

AAA, Genentech, Avon – Tracy Spears,Vista Group,Emma Close to Home,Backyard BBQ,Graphic Expressions, Ryan Bates Photography,Murrillo’s,Chevy’s,Jamba Juice,Moose Lodge, Mary’s Pizza Shack,Nugget,Ace Hardware,Vacaville City Employees Association, VPEF, Girl Scout Troop #20086 (Angela Higdon),Parkside Dental,Les Schwab, Chamber of Commerce, Food Fair

Monday, May 24, 2010

7 Days Left!! Give Now or Hold Your Peace!

There isn't much time left! THIS IS THE FINAL WEEK!!!

Today is the Backyard BBQ Fiesta Day Kick-Off BBQ! 5:30pm-8pm at the Creekwalk Plaza in Downtown Vacaville. Tickets are $10 (in advance at the Fiesta Days office) and $15 at the BBQ! Teddy with Backyard BBQ will be donating 10% of his sales to the SOS, just mention SOS!!! There will also be Live Music by 48 Straight! Come on out and have fun with us.

If you are looking for something a little more relaxed, tonight is also CHEVY'S Dinner Night! BE SURE TO TAKE THIS FLIER WITH YOU! They will not donate to SOS with out it!!!


Nugget is matching donations.
AAA will donate for you, just get a free quote or plan your vacation.

**We need you to join us in the parade! WE NEED MARCHERS!!

Picks & Pecks Editorial: Give now or hold your peace
Published by The Reporter
Posted: 05/22/2010 01:01:56 AM PDT

It's time for Vacaville residents who say they care about having a decent school system to put their money where their mouth is. Next week is the final fund-raising push for the Support Our Students campaign. It's goal is to collect $1 million for the Vacaville Unified School District, which is having to make $8 million worth of budget cuts next school year -- on top of $17 million worth of reductions it's already undergone. So far, only $30,000 has been raised, but organizers are still hopeful, since a slew of fund-raisers are being held in coming days. And remember, anyone who can't make it to one of the events can always text in a $10 donation via their cell phone by calling 25383. A pick.

Friday, May 21, 2010

10 Days Left!! Have YOU donated yet??

Last night was a BLAST! The dinner at the Moose Lodge was fun, filling and we MADE a little money as well!!! The dinner raised about $1,000!! NOT BAD for a dinner that was planned in about a week and held during one of the busiest weeks of the month!!!

It is so nice to see everyone come out and celebrate our kids. A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who came out and donated!

TODAY IS JAMBA JUICE DAY. Go to either Vacaville location and MENTION SOS...they will donate to the SOS Fundraiser for you!!

We are also marching in the Fiesta Day Parade this year!!! If you would like to march with us in the parade send us a message. We would love to have as many of our supporters join us as possible, especially the KIDS!

There are ONLY 10 days left to DONATE! If you haven't donated yet, PLEASE donate today! Our Students will thank you!

Donate On-line: www.VacavilleUSD.org
Text: SOS to 25383 to donate $10
Mail Check:
SOS/VUSD Budget Crisis Fund
751 School Street
Vacaville, CA 95688

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

SIMPLY Amazing! Rally at park was GREAT....12 Days Left!

When you plan a public event, you hope for certain things to happen. You hope people will actually show up! You hope that they will stick around.....and have FUN....You hope that people actually care about what "your message" is. WELL, yesterday, I think we accomplished ALL of that. The rally had about 150 people, old and young! We even had quite a few high school kids come out, which added to the entertainment.

We had beach balls! Have you ever given a kid a beach ball and watched them figure out a way to play with it? SO FUN TO WATCH....the little kids kick it around and toss it up (add in the little bit of wind we had yesterday and there was a ton of running around too!)....the big kids hit it up in the air and kept it from hitting the ground. It was a great icebreaker.

Then the 50/50 raffle started. Melda in her sandwich sign and her tag-a-longs, weaved her way in and out of the crowd asking for donations. Not really expecting much, but giving people a chance to walk away with half of whatever was raised. The teenagers were excited to find out that they had a chance to win $50 once the pot had reached $100. As the pot went up the excitement rose, until finally reaching $237! What a simple way for people to be involved in the fundraising we are doing.

There were great speakers that helped show the power of what we are doing. It is nice when you are "just a parent" trying to make a difference and you get to see your efforts become noticed by people like the MAYOR!

I can't wait until our next event on Thursday Night! It is going to be so much fun and it will give us a chance to come together with another group of people and share the importance of what the SOS is trying to do. Just in case you are asking yourself "what is happening on Thursday" here are the details:

Thursday Night
Moose Lodge Dinner
$20 / ticket and ($13 of that will be donated to SOS!)
Contact: Alex Hall 483-6487
There will be a spaghetti dinner, raffle prizes, music, good company and a GREAT cause. Oh yea, there will also be drinks available too!

SO, come out and join us! It will be a great time.

Here is a GREAT article written by Ryan Chalk with the Reporter - SOS rallies for schools in Vacaville - The Reporter

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Come Rally With Us! SAY NO MORE CUTS...13 Days Left!

Rain or shine, WE will be uniting today to RALLY around our students and Say "NO" More Cuts! Wear your SOS shirt and join us at Andrews Park at 5:30pm and bring the whole family! There will be guest speakers, entertainment and music!

This is a great time to come out and ask questions, make donations and meet some of the dedicated and passionate members of the SOS Committee!

This is also our opportunity to show that it is NOT OK to take any more money away from our students!

I hope to see you there!

Monday, May 17, 2010

14 DAYS Left! PLEASE help!!

This is it, the final days of our fundraising campaign! If you haven't already donated PLEASE donate today. Even if you donated last month and have the ability to donate again, PLEASE do so.

If you don't have the money to donate, you can CALL AAA and get a FREE quote and they will donate for you, just mention SOS.

If you plan on eating out this week, take a look at the local businesses that are willing to donate a portion of their proceeds to the SOS Campaign. Mary's Pizza Shack, Murrillo's, Chevy's, Backyard BBQ, and the DINNER NIGHT at the Moose Lodge. All you really have to do is print out one of the fliers and take it with you. THEY WILL DO THE REST!

Tomorrow is the RALLY and SOCIAL Media Blitz! It is going to be a fun day. The BLITZ is being done by the VUSD Students and all of our friends on Facebook and Twitter. It’s all about the kids! The student leaders at Vacaville High School are asking everyone to pick an event being held this week that they would like to attend and have them invite as many of their friends as they can via their choice of social media.....texting, fb, twitter, myspace, a phone call or even an actual written note. If they want to join our Facebook vusd sos fan page they will be able to share the message with a click. It's that easy! The RALLY will be from 5:30-7pm at Andrews Park and we hope to have a ton of people there!!! WEAR YOUR SOS SHIRT AND JOIN US! BRING THE KIDS!

TO PRINT YOUR FLIERS GO HERE The fliers are in the middle of the page!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Social Media Blitz for the S.O.S. on May 18th

VUSD High School Students Plan a Social Media Blitz for the S.O.S. on May 18th

It’s all about the kids! The student leaders at Vacaville High School are asking everyone to pick an event (from the attached flyer) that they would like to attend and have them invite as many of their friends as they can via their choice of social media.....texting, fb, twitter, myspace, a phone call or even an actual written note. If they want to join our Facebook vusd sos fan page they will be able to share the message with a click. It's that easy!

VHS Principal, Ed Santapadre, responded with the following;

“I met with our Student Council group today and they were pretty excited about it. I think they’ll take the events and facebook them everywhere. I gave them compliments that we were too old to get it out there correctly.”

Like it or Not, social media is here to stay and as frustrating as it may be for teachers and administrators, its how we decide to respond that could make a difference on how the technology is used by students in the future. “Teaching By Example” is the tagline and is a core value for the VUSD. Cell phones are not allowed during class time, however students are allowed access during breaks and will do so on one day next week, please call Vaca High School (707)453-6011 or PJ Goodson 707-451-6422 x303 or go to www.VacavilleUSD.org for more information.

About S.O.S. (Support Or Students); a grassroots campaign developed and designed to bring awareness to the extreme crisis the Vacaville School District budget is in. Consisting of all of the schools PTA’s, PTO’s, PTC’s, school administrators, VPEF, community leaders, parents, residents of Vacaville, and the marketing expertise and support of Vacaville’s Landmark Image, S.O.S. has become one of the City’s leading awareness/fundraising campaigns. To see different ways to donate to S.O.S. visit the districts website at www.vacavilleusd.org.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

UPDATED May Events!!!! 18 Days Left....

BUSY Week Next Week!! There are SO many great ways to help Support Our Students next week. Check out ALL of the events we have planned for you....

YOU can make a difference!!

ONE Person Can Make a Difference...

By Dove of Oneness. Excerpt from her Dove Report of January 17, 2004.

Hello Dear Friends and White Knights,


As inspiration for all of us to realize that EACH of us can do things to help improve our world, I’m sharing stories that prove ONE PERSON can make important differences. I’ve read that the current history books given to students have purposely been revised to talk about “movements” but leave out the names of the individual people whose actions began the “movements”. For example, Gandhi made peaceful protest and peaceful civil disobedience a valuable process of peaceful change. Susan B. Anthony rose to the challenge as a famous leader of the battle to obtain women’s right to vote in the U.S. The Illuminati owners of text book publishers do not want students to realize that important improvements can begin with ONE PERSON; this is why the text books have been rewritten to discuss movements and not individuals.


Each of us has within us the ability to make an important difference! If you doubt you can do it, just read the story HERE and remember that one librarian led the charge to defeat a powerful and wrong-thinking media conglomerate.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed individuals can change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." ~Margaret Mead

Monday, May 10, 2010


Sat. May 15 – Cultural Diversity Fair at Cultural Center.
Contact: PJ Goodson 451-6422 x303 Deb McGuire

Mon. May 17
– Mary Pizza Shack - Dinner 5:30 til closing. Put on by Vacaville City Employees Association
Contact: David Jacobson 449-5183

Tues. May 18 – SOS Rally at Andrews Park, 5:30 to 7 p.m.
Contact: John Aycock 453-6100 Alex Hall 483-6407

Tues. May 18 – Kickoff Nugget Matching Donation
Contact: Lee Majors 455-1534

Wed. May 19 – Murillos Dine-out
Contact: Angela Higdon 333-3341

Thur. May 20 – Moose Lodge Dinner @ 5pm Social Hour, Dinner at 6pm
Contact: Alex Hall 483-6407

May 21st - Jamba Juice donates 10% of Proceeds from both VV locations
Contact: Brigitte Aton 631-3350

Sat. May 29 – Fiesta Days Parade
Contact: Angela Higdon 333-3341

OnGoing Events:….Must mention SOS campaign

AAA – Call or visit to get a quote donates $5.00 each, any agent 451-7127
Genentech – Employee Giving Station for Employees - Matching Funds
Avon - Tracy Speers is Donating 80% of profit www.youravon.com/tspeers
Vista Group – Connie Rose – Stab in Grab BBQ tool - (707)448-0173
Emma Close to Home Magazine – 707-447-6677- 50% donation for each subscription
Backyard BBQ – Teddy Rojas 707-685-7403 – 10% of proceeds on May 24th for Fiesta Day Kickoff & any event held before May 31st. Must mention SOS.

Friday, May 7, 2010

24 Days Left! Help Keep Our Dreams Alive!

Donate Today and Support Our Students!

Thank you to our students at Buckingham Charter School for making this video!

Donate Here
TEXT SOS to 253383
Mail a Check to:
SOS/VUSD Budget Crisis Fund
751 School Street
Vacaville, CA 95688

YOU can make a difference!
I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do. ~Edward Everett Hale

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Let the Countdown BEGIN! 25 Days Left....


This is it! We are quickly approaching the end of our fundraising campaign, as well as deciding OUR fate!

We started this campaign, right around March 4th with "Stand Up For Students", to see if we could raise 1 million dollars (of the expected 8-12 million dollar cuts) with a deadline of May 31st! Our end is quickly approaching and NOW is the TIME to make a difference.

In just about 2 months we have done SO MUCH to help our kids, BUT we aren't finished yet! THIS IS IT, WE NEED YOUR HELP so we can say that WE HAVE DONE ALL WE CAN DO!

When I think about all that we have done, in such a short period of time, it makes me proud!

Think about what has been done in 2 short months:

We quickly joined forces and launched this S.O.S. campaign, we started to educate people of our local budget crisis, that are a result of STATE CUTS. We launched a "Donate Now" website that allowed people to donate on-line. Then we launched a TEXT Message campaign, which we are the first school district to do so in the NATION. We have spoken to local businesses that support us and have offered alternative ways to donate, through services and products that most people use in their everyday life. We have set up booths at local functions. We have marched together (teachers, students, parents, friends), to show our support of each other. We have rallied at the capitol, to say "NO" more cuts. We have held dinner nights, rummage sales and raffles.


The month of MAY is going to be exciting! We have so much to do and we are excited to get EVERYONE involved. Here is a preview of some of the things to come:

May 8th Stampin' Up! Stamp Camp
May 15th participation in the Cultural Diversity Fair at the Cultural Center
May 18th the Andrews Park Rally for SOS
May 19th Murrillos Restaurant dinner night
May 20th Moose Lodge Dinner fund raiser for SOS,
May 29th Fiesta Days Parade

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Monday, May 3, 2010

Friday, April 30, 2010

Vista Group Supports Our Students!!

Another business SUPPORTER!! Vista Group will be at Loop the Lagoon where they will join forces with S.O.S. and share a booth. They will be selling the Stab n Grab BBQ tool (great for fathers day) for $20.00 and donating all the profit $10.00 to SOS.

Come on out Saturday, May 01, 2010 @ 8:30 AM local time

Lagoon Valley Regional Park
Pena Adobe Road at Rivera Road

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Come and join VPEF at LOOP THE LAGOON!

DateSaturday, May 01, 2010 @ 8:30 AM local time
Lagoon Valley Regional Park
Pena Adobe Road at Rivera Road

Events & Start Times
8:30 am - 5K Run/Walk. Loop around the lagoon. USATF certification CA09001RS

8:45 am - 10K Run/Walk. Double loop course around the lagoon.

8:45 am - Tower Challenge. All terrain course with a 730' gain/descent. Suggested for ages 13+.

9:00 am - 2 Mile Walk. Untimed, loop course along the shoreline of the lagoon.

10:30 am - 1/2 Mile Kid's Fun Run: Ages 9-12

10:45 am - 1/2 Mile Kid's Fun Run: Ages 8 & Under
Both Kid's Fun Runs are timed.

Trail Run Series Event
The Tower Challenge 10K is the 1st of 3 races in the 2010 Fleet Feet Trail Run Series. Earn points and be eligible for prizes for participation in the this event, The Lynch Canyon Trail Run near Vallejo, June 5, 2010 and the Lagoon Valley Trail Run on September 25, 2010. Visit www.fleetfeetvacaville.com/trail-run-series for more details.

Packet Pick Up
Entrants may register and pick up race packets (bibs/t-shirts) at Fleet Feet Sports,354 Merchant Street in Vacaville on Friday, April 30th, from 12-6 pm. Race packets may also be picked up on race morning at the race site starting at 7:00 a.m.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Everyone's Future is At Stake!

Tomorrow is SOS Thursday!!! AND a very important day for another reason....The SOS Supporters have decided to join in the action on a STATE level. We have written our legislators, marched on March 4th "Stand Up For Students, we have stood side by side with our Community here in Vacaville and now we are going to make our voices heard at the RALLY ON THE CAPITOL. It is taking place ON S.O.S. Thursday and WE WILL BE THERE, wearing our shirts standing side by side and informing people about what we are doing here in VACAVILLE. We need "the powers that be" to know that is is NOT OK to take any more money away from our children. We understand that there is a financial crisis, but it should not be carried on the backs of our children. Our children are the foundations upon which EVERYTHING else is built. We need the legislators to stop taking money away from education.

Give our children a voice and JOIN US in the RALLY.


RALLY ON THE CAPITOL: Walk with PTA to the Capitol steps and let our legislators know it is time to stop balancing the budget on the backs of our children. This is a chance to stretch your legs and do something and fun and easy that helps the kids. The rally will take place on Thursday, April 29 at 2:00-3:30 PM.

Monday, April 26, 2010

COME JOIN US, as we march on the State Capitol!! Email us if you want to join us on the bus, or feel free to drive yourself!! Let's show them what we are made of here in VACAVILLE!!!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Vacaville Reporter - Vacaville has funds coming in!

Vacaville United School District's Support Our Students campaign has funds coming in
By Ryan Chalk / The Reporter
Posted: 04/22/2010 01:03:26 AM PDT

Forced to deal with California's budget crisis, school districts across the state have had to come up with creative solutions to maintain programs and keep class sizes small.

In the last month or so, Vacaville Unified School District has identified itself as a leader in finding innovative methods to raise money for schools. As education funding in the state has reached crisis mode, the district has responded with its Support Our Students campaign. Through the work of dedicated parents, teachers, school officials and concerned community members and local businesses, the much needed funds are coming in.

The fundraising campaign grabbed headlines earlier this month when it debuted a mobile texting feature. By using a mobile device such as a cell phone, anyone can donate to the campaign by texting SOS to 25383 and make a $10 donation.

The SOS committee is made up of Parent Teacher Association/Organization members representing each school in the district along with district staff and concerned community members. The goal is to raise $1 million through an intense grassroots campaign that has a deadline of May 31.

The urgency stems from an estimated $8 million cut the district could face for the 2010-11 school year. This comes after the district has been forced to make roughly $17 million in cuts over the past few years due to state budget shortfalls.

Nearly $30,000 has been raised so far through various fundraising activities.

Last weekend, Orchard, Callison and Padan elementary schools held rummage sales which brought in several thousand dollars. Hemlock parents also raised $670 in raffle ticket sales at the Home and Garden Show over the weekend. Pacific Ace Hardware in Vacaville donated a decorative iron bicycle to the school for the raffle.

The list of fundraising events continues to grow.

Callison Elementary is hosting a "Stampin' Up!" stamp camp from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on May 8 in the multipurpose room. Those who register by April 30 can make 20 different projects for $20 and 50 percent of the fee will go to SOS. Contact M. Amber Geehan at 320-0558, or e-mail craftinowl@me.com for details.

Nugget Market in Vacaville has also partnered with the SOS campaign and through April 30, shoppers can make a tax deductible donation at the checkstand. Donation amount will appear at the bottom of the receipt.

The AAA branch at 555 Mason St., in Vacaville has also partnered with the campaign. AAA will make a donation whenever a customer mentions the Vacaville Unified School District or SOS. They will donate $5 for those who come in for an insurance quote, $10 for a policy, $20 for multiple policies (auto and homeowners), and $20 for a life insurance policy. For more information, call AAA at 451-7127.

To keep up with fundraising events or to make a donation, log on to www.vacavilleusd.org or www.vusdsos.blogspot .com. To mail a donation, send to: SOS/VUSD Budget Crisis Fund, 751 School St., Vacaville, CA 95688.

An instructional video on how to text donations to the SOS fund is also included on the VUSD Web site.

The next meeting of the VUSD/SOS committee is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Friday inside the Country High School conference room, 100 McClellan St., Vacaville.

Vacaville School District SOS Campaign

6 Benefits of Giving

Today is SOS Thursday and a great day to share our message about SOS. Be sure to wear your shirts and tell atleast 10 people about what we are accomplishing in our little town!

I am always looking for a good message to share with everyone and today I found this FANTASTIC article written by Carla McNeil. It is based on 6 Benifits of Giving. Do you know 6 reasons why it is good to give? You can read ALL of Carla's Article HERE. But here is the important part I want to share!


6 Benefits of Giving
By:Carla McNeil

We need to ensure a future generation of givers, it is never too early for families and society to cultivate children's generous and charitable impulses.

Benefits of Giving:

1. Put it on your resume - it can be very beneficial to indicate any charity work or giving that you do in your life because it will give your future employer a better picture of who you are. Being a generous, giving person are traits that many employers are looking for.

2. Improve your health - research done on the "Helpers High" indicates that it can improve our immune system, assist us to live longer and act as an antidote to chronic pain and even insomnia.

3. Develop relationships - when you get out and become involved in a local charity or organization you meet other people who are of like mind. This can create new friendships in your life which are beneficial in many ways.

Life is not about you, but what you can do with your life.

4. Have fun - I will always remember the fun I have had being involved in the United Way campaigns or dog-walking for our local SPCA. Building the team, participating in the activities and assisting other in realizing the benefits of giving are very powerful.

5. Develop new skills - no matter what type of activities you choose, whether it be helping out at your local food bank, soup kitchen or SPCA, chances are that new skills are there for you to learn.

6. Reduce your stress - release of endorphins, more commonly known as the "feel good' chemicals that help combat stress.

We don't judge; giving is giving, and the people to whom you donate will always be appreciative, regardless of your motives. More good news: you don't just have to donate money - you can donate food, clothes, pet supplies, blood, or time.


Giving is giving! Please GIVE today and either TEXT SOS to 25383 or go to the link at the top of this blog or mail a check to the Vacaville Unified School District SOS CRISIS FUND! You will make a difference for 13,611 children.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Successfull Weekend! We raised almost $3000!!!

This weekend was a pretty great example of how easy it is to pull off a simple event or a "bigger" not so simple event.

On Friday, Hemlock Elementary School, approached the SOS committee with an idea to host a raffle at the Home and Garden Show. The H&G Show actually started on FRIDAY, so there wasn't a whole lot of time to prepare. They pitched their idea, received a donation for a rot-iron bike from Ace Hardware (LOVE THAT STORE) and then went to work. They connected with Emma Close to Home and set up the raffle and helped to spread the SOS message. After the H&G Show was over, they had raised $670!! The whole amount was donated to SOS! That is pretty amazing when you think about how simple and quick the whole thing was pulled together!

What a little more planning can do...

Callison Elementary School decided a couple of weeks ago that they wanted to host a Rummage Sale. They created a flier asking for donations and volunteers. On Friday their plans kicked into action. They had a truck driving around town picking up items for the sale, they had people dropping off truck loads of stuff and even a moving truck show up with a ton of stuff for the event. Volunteers showed up to help price things and to help layout the items. On Saturday, the Rummage Sale started and continued until Sunday. The event was amazing! They had furniture that didn't even last past the first few hours! On Sunday, when the totals were calculated they raised $2,205!!

Over all this weekend was FANTASTIC! We raised almost $3,000!!!!


Brigitte Aton left a little message on our Facebook Page - "The bookends of achieving our goals are decisions & discipline. Decisions help us start. Discipline helps us finish." Way to go team SOS. Lets keep our eyes on the goal!

Friday, April 16, 2010


This weekend local schools host RUMMAGE SALES!

9:00AM - 2:00PM - Saturday & Sunday

Enjoy the beautiful weather this weekend and come on out to our local schools, where over 30 families have pulled together and are hosting Rummage Sales. If you like yard sales, you will LOVE RUMMAGE SALES.

Callison Elementary SchoolJean Callison Elementary School
6261 Vanden Road
Vacaville, CA 95687-7294

Orchard Elementary School
805 North Orchard Avenue
Vacaville, CA 95688-2138

Padan Elementary School
200 Padan School Road
Vacaville, CA 95687-5444

Thursday, April 15, 2010

AAA Support Our Students!!

AAA Supports Our Students!! They are helping to raise money for Vacaville, all you have to do is get a FREE insurance quote! For every person who comes into AAA in Vacaville, and mentions Vacaville Unified School District or SOS, and receives a quote for Auto, Homeowner's, Renter's, or Life Insurance or purchases a Travel Package, AAA Donate to SOS the following:

Quote: $5
Policy Obtained: $10
Multiple Policies (auto & Home): $20
Life Insurance Policy: $20
Travel Package in the Full Service Travel Department: $10

So, plan your summer trips now and support our students all at the same time!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Vacaville is NOT on 'Watch List'

Jack O'Connell - State Superintendent

It is amazing to me how often the question "why is the SOS raising money?" or "what is the money going to go for?" comes up! AS IT VERY WELL SHOULD...but the reason I am AMAZED is due to how many people do not know what is going on or even, that we are in a FINANCIAL CRISIS. After being dumped into the deep, dark, financial hole that we are all in, I have grown to understand the need to raise money for our school district. It isn't for ONE particular reason, but more for the WHOLE BIG PICTURE! Everyday I watch the news and see the updates about other school districts and the cost cutting measures they are taking. IT IS SO DEPRESSING! One school is cutting the sports program, another is cutting teachers, MANY school districts are closing schools....the list of cuts is disheartening.

When I was trying to compare how well our school district is weathering the storm, I found out something quite IMPRESSIVE! No matter how you feel about the powers that be, you can not help be proud of our status as a district within the State of California.

Below is a very interesting read that will hopefully make you proud to be part of our VACAVILLE Community.

SO, IF you are wondering why you should get involved, why you should invest in our school district, If your donation will make a difference, whether or not we are really in a FINANCIAL CRISIS....the answer is YES, BECAUSE IT IS UP TO US TO MAINTAIN OUR SCHOOL DISTRICT AS IT IS. If EVERYONE joins in this effort we will succeed in keeping VACAVILLE solid and secure.

Facing deep cuts, more schools make fiscal 'watch list'
April 2, 2010 | Corey G. Johnson
The number of California school districts in financial trouble is on the rise.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell has announced that 126 districts were on the state's fiscal "watch list" - a whooping 17 percent increase from last June.


WE are NOT on this list, but from Solano County, the following districts are:
Travis Unified
Vallejo City Unified
Dixon Unified

See the complete Watch List here!


This is also a very interesting read. here

"Massive state budget cuts are crippling our public school system's ability to operate," O'Connell said. "Public education in California received $17 billion less in state funding than anticipated over the last two budget years. School districts already have made draconian cuts to programs and services, eliminated summer school, increased class sizes, and cut art, music, libraries, school nurses, and sports. The Governor has proposed cutting another $2.4 billion this year. Districts now are forced to lay off even more teachers and make deep cuts to educational programs to address projected budget shortfalls or face possible bankruptcy and state receivership. In the first interim status report of the 2009-10 fiscal year, 126 local educational agencies are now on the watch list, which is up an alarming 17 percent from the 108 school districts on the watch list we reported last June.

"I urge the Governor to reconsider the cuts proposed for public schools, and I also continue to call on the Governor and the Legislature to approve SCA 6 so that local communities can have more control over the financial destiny of their school districts."

Monday, April 12, 2010

Calling ALL Local Businesses!!

This has been an amazing journey! Our little school district has managed to overcome some pretty big obstacles and create a path that will allow us to do something remarkable. Thanks to ALL of you, we are on our way to securing a better future for our students.


It is time to step it up a notch!! We need to start talking to our local businesses! Our businesses know the importance of a good education equally as much as US parents do.

On March 11, 2010, a school district in Oklahoma received 3.4million dollars, from local businesses, to help their public schools.

“The importance of building exceptional public schools cannot be understated. As a CEO recruiting professional talent to Enid, I frequently see the significance of a strong school system in attracting and retaining talented people for our community."

I believe our little community, here in Vacaville, can do the same. We have some of the greatest businesses around. Our businesses have supported our students in the past, it is time again. Let's pull together and rally their support!

I would like to leave you with this thought:

"The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers."

Friday, April 9, 2010

PTO Mentions Vacaville SOS Campaign!!!

This was posted by PTO Today on their Facebook page.

Fighting School Budget Cuts with Creativity

Megan Fox, American Idol, texting donations. Wow, parent groups certainly are finding original ways to combat extreme budget cuts! With the level of cuts we are seeing recently, the standard school fundraisers aren’t enough. Have to hand it to these school communities — instead of just bemoaning the cuts, they are banding together to make things happen. With creativity and flair to boot. Check out these programs:

An elementary school in Laurel Canyon, California enlisted the help of Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green to create a video about the proposed education cuts from the state budget. Someone on that PTA understands the meaning of “viral” for sure!

A troubled school district in Michigan has gone to impressive lengths to educate their community about budget cuts and offer ways people can help. The most compelling way is a raffle that is giving away 4 tickets to the American Idol Finale — including hotel and airfare. Sweet!

Most would agree that in many areas, cuts to school budgets have reached crisis proportions. Vacaville Unified school district in California took note of the texting fundraising methods used for recent crises, like the Haiti earthquake, and was the first school to use this method. Kudos to these folks for their resourcefulness.

We wish these parent groups the best of luck. How is your PTO or PTA fighting budget cuts? Would love to hear about your programs.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

SOS Thursday!!!

Today is SOS Thursday, be sure to wear your shirts and share the message to Support Our Students!

The TEXT Message Signs are popping up around town, take a picture of your sign and share it with us on Facebook! We would love to see how your are supporting our students.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Californians KNOW: Cuts to education are NOT the answer!

Whether your school has a PTA, PTO, PTC or any other group of dedicated people fighting for our children, you will agree that it is NOT OK to cut any more funds from our children's schools.

I received a letter from the State PTA, Legislative Action Alert, dated April 7, 2010. It was something that I also thought you all would like to read. It has some GREAT links and sample letters. The purpose of the article was to help Californian's stand together and let our legislators know that ongoing cuts to education and critical children and family services are NOT the solution to the budget crisis taht we want to see.

Here is the article, follow this link for forms. I hope you will join me in writing our Governor and Legislators, the letters are in both English and Spanish.

Californians know: Cuts to education are not the answer!

Are you taking action to speak up for California's more than 9 million children? A California Field Poll, released on March 24, shows that an overwhelming 79 percent of Californians oppose budget cuts to public schools. Similarly, those surveyed also strongly opposed cuts to health care programs, higher education, mental health programs, child care and public assistance for low income families.

We must let our legislators know that ongoing cuts to education and critical children and family services are not the solution to the budget crisis that we, as their constituents, want to see. For more information on how the Governor's proposed budget cuts would affect your school district or county, go to the California Budget Project (CBP) analyses at www.cbp.org.

Send a letter to the Governor and your legislators today to let them know that public education and critical children's services must be protected from further budget cuts. Use one of the sample letters below or write your own letter drawing on your personal views and experiences.

* Letter to Governor (state & local impact) from parents (English) (en español)

* Letter to Governor (state impact only) from parents (English) (en español)

* Letter to legislator (state & local impact) from parents (English)

* Letter to legislator (state impact only) from parents (English)

Another way to take action is to volunteer to help your PTA unit, council or district to organize a letter writing campaign. Here are some ideas to help you get started.

Letter campaign ideas

Thank you for all you do to speak up for California's 9 million children!

Let us know how you and your fellow PTA members are taking action, send your stories and photos to legislation@capta.org and communications@capta.org.

It will take ALL of us!!

As I was catching up on my reading (I feel like I am always playing catch up!) I saw the article that Ernest Kimme wrote on Tuesday, April 6th, 2010. IT WAS GREAT! I think it is one that should be featured here as well. Follow this link to find out more:


Kimme: School funds: Do the math
By Ernest Kimme
Posted: 04/06/2010 02:02:15 AM PDT

My apologies in advance: There are a lot of numbers in this column.

It is not that, as a former math teacher, I feel the need to torture people. It is that, when we are talking about raising money for our schools, a little math has to creep in somewhere.

First, the elephant in the room: $8 million.

That is the amount the Vacaville Unified School District is guessing that we will have to cut from the budget. If everything in Sacramento went right, and bi-partisan fairy princesses dusted the Legislature, we might have to cut only half of that.

The problem is that our school district has already done a lot of cutting. Just a couple of years ago, our district had a budget approaching $100 million. At $80 million today, we are past the fat and down to muscle and bone: whole programs will have to go. Elementary music. School libraries. After-school sports.

Or we might raise revenue. In Vacaville, a bunch of dedicated parents found a new way to raise money for our district.

You should be seeing the signs around town soon. On your cell phone, text the letters "SOS" to 25383, and you will be donating $10 to the Vacaville School District. The charge shows up on the phone bill. Easy and convenient!

So let's run some numbers. There are about 13,000 students in Vacaville schools. To keep it simple, let's say there are 10,000 families with students in schools, that every family calls 25383 and donates $10. That would total $100,000.

Remember, we are planning on cutting $8 million from our budget.

Did you notice all the emphasis on "our" school district and "our" budget? That's because it is "our" problem. Even those who do not have students in school benefit from good schools. At the very least, a good education will keep people out of expensive jails. But the biggest benefit is that education creates better jobs and a better economy. A rising tide raises all ships, that sort of thing.

There are approximately 30,000 households in Vacaville. If every household called 25383 five times, our school district would get approximately $1.5 million in donations.

The lesson is clear: Everybody needs to be involved, and once is not enough. Talk to your neighbors and co-workers. We are not going to prevent all of the cuts, but we can save some programs.

And if you don't like texting, visit www.vusdsos.blogspot.com. There you will be able to donate any amount you want.

And if you hate computers and texting, the Vacaville Public Education Foundation (3442 Browns Valley Parkway, Vacaville 95688) will be happy to take a check.

The numbers don't lie; everybody will have to be involved to make a difference.

- - -

The author is a Vacaville resident and member of The Reporter editorial board. E-mail: egk3@mac.com.

Monday, April 5, 2010

TEXT Message Signs Will Canvas Vacaville!

Today is the day!!! The text message signs will start to canvas Vacaville!! Look for them everywhere & PLEASE donate.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Think about this....."shameless"

shame·less (shmls)adj.
1. Feeling no shame; impervious to disgrace.
2. Marked by a lack of shame: a shameless lie.


The other day we posted the following statement on our Facebook:

think about this.....We have had 1000 people look at our blog, IF each one of those people donated $10 think about how much money we would have? If each of those people got 10 family members to donate $10 too....hmmmmm....well the possiblilities are impressive. TEXT SOS to 25383 and make a difference!

Which sparked a comment stated as "shameless".....

That got me thinking. I am ASHAMED of the following:

1. I am ashamed that our government does not hold education in a higher regard.
2. I am ashamed that our STATE is taking $313/student away from our school district. (And that is just the start, they haven't finished the budget yet)
3. I am ashamed that more people do not think this is their problem.
4. I am ashamed that we have to tell our kids that they might not have music, sports, GATE, school buildings...etc.
5. I am ashamed that this problem has become so big that there aren't many options or solutions.
6. I am ashamed that our Kindergarten classes next year will be 30 or more kids per class.
7. I am ashamed that our teachers are faced with the burden of picking up the slack where our budget leaves off.

....well you get my point...I am ASHAMED of quite a bit....BUT

I AM NOT ASHAMED of the the follow:

I am not ashamed of being part of the solution to this monumental problem. I am not ashamed to ask those around me to help out our children. I infact, feel it is my responsibility to do all that I can to help. I know that some people will not be able to help monitarily, but I also know that there are plenty of people that can help. Asking people to donate $10 does not SHAME me, asking them to ask 10 family members or friends, does not SHAME me. Sitting back and doing NOTHING would make me feel shameful.

SO....am I shameless....YES!

World Wide Autism Awareness Day - 4/2

I know most of the stuff that we post on here is about our SOS Fundraising campaign, and WITHOUT taking anything away from that, but in support of ALL the children in our community I thought it would be appropriate to share this.

I am a mother of a special needs child and although she does not have Autism we have MANY friends that do have Autism. In honor of these young people I thought I would take a minute and share that today is World Wide Autism Awareness Day! For more information please go here.

Autism affects 1 in 166 children and blue is the color people are wearing on this day to celebrate World Autism Awareness Day.


Local News Station Reports on Text Message Campaign

Channel 13 News Reported on the launch of OUR Text Message Fundraising Campaign.


The Vacaville Unified School District is the first in the country to use technology that lets parents send cash to their kid's school with their cell phone

You can donate by just writing a check, using a credit card or even giving over the Internet, now the Vacaville Unified School District is adding text to the list of possible ways to donate.

"I have seen many teachers that everybody loves and knows go because of budget cuts, and I'm very sorry about that and I wish we could have them back," said Patrick Anton, a student.

Vacaville Unified School District has already cut $17 million from its budget the past two years, that's why school leaders and parents had to get clever, throwing out the life preserver they call SOS = Support Our Students.

"I'm a part of this because we are creating a solution rather than running around complaining and throwing our hands up," said Rebecca Duvall, a mother of a student. "This is a solution to a very big problem."

Parents, children, and teachers hope people will text the slogan "SOS" to 25383. It sends a $10 donation to the district charged to your phone bill.

"If you can type, you can do texting," said a student.

It's so simple that children can donate.

This type of technology has been used to help out in recent disasters like Haiti. This time, some say the crisis is in the classroom. Parents and students hope to take the cash crisis out of the classroom with the touch of a button.

"But the texting, I think, is what's really going to inspire people and excite people, and I think that will bring in lots of new revenue that we haven't been able to tap before," said Vacaville Unified School District Superintendent John Aycock.

While Vacaville schools are still the only ones using text donations, some districts as far away as Chicago are now considering similar fundraising methods.

The district launched the SOS program this week, but, they'll only find out once a month how much cash is coming in.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

SNEAK PEEK!!! sshhhhhhh....Please tell EVERYONE!

If you are like me, you have been on Spring Break and away from the world....but last night I was able to check my email and found some amazing information that I just couldn't wait to share!

First, I just posted the information about The Nugget Grocery Store Supporting Our Students....The ease of doing to your grocery shopping and being able to donate as you check out is fantastic. You can donate as much as you want, $10, $20, $100.


On Monday, April 5th, our Text Messaging campaign rolls out! Look for 1500 lawn signs around town, posters, the BIG TOYOTA sign, AND well anywhere else we can put the texting information....


for all of our friends that follow this blog, follow us on Facebook or Twitter....we are going to unveil it to you TODAY!!!

TODAY you can donate via TEXT!!

Please try it yourself so you can see how it works.

Text SOS to 25383

IF you have never done it before put in the "To" field 25383 and then below put only "SOS" (without the" ")then send.

Nugget Grocery Store Supports OUR Students!!!

TODAY we begin the Nugget Market Fundraising Program. This program will run at least through the end of April. If funds are still being contributed steadily at the end of April we will have the opportunity to continue through the end of May. For those of you that haven't been to our local Nugget Market, it is located on the Browns Valley Parkway, just one block North of Interstate 80.

Please spread the word to your friends, neighbors, coworkers, and family members to look for the S.O.S. logo on signs at the checkout counters. Those signs will let people know how they can contribute when they checkout.

The fun part is how easy it is to contribute. All anyone needs to do is let their checker know how much they wish to donate to S.O.S. and that amount will be added to their bill. They can then pay their bill in whatever fashion (scrip, cash,credit card etc.) they choose. Their receipt will show the amount of the contribution for charitable donation/tax deduction purposes.

I personally want to thank Lee Majors for initiating this effort! Kate Stille and Jennifer Dowden at Nuggets Corporate office for everything they have done. Without Kate's enthusiastic support and Jennifer's follow-up on this project it never would have gotten off the ground in time.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Importance of MUSIC in education.

With the current budget crisis, one of the proposed cuts involves our MUSIC programs. Can you believe that? Music is a corner stone to education, in my opinion, and should be held in high regard. Actually, music plays a HUGE role in what we now consider the only thing important (math, reading and science). In my quest to provide relevant proof on the importance of music in education I found this fantastic article. I thought I would pass it along, you can find the article HERE. Below is what the article states.


Many people underestimate music education in the schools today, as well as the teachers are trained in music. However, music education is extremely important, and so are the teachers.

In college, music education is one of the largest, most dense programs. Teachers have to learn general education materials, psychology, and technique. They must learn to play every instrument, they must learn music history, they must learn music theory, they must learn composition, they must learn instrument repair and teaching methodologies, they must learn conducting, they must learn about all the repertoire that's out there, and so much more.

Music students, therefore, learn an awful lot. They learn a lot of music history along the way. This includes "modes," which were used in churches back in Medieval times, during the development of music. They are still used today in jazz and modern band/orchestra/movie score compositions. Students learn about the historical events that were taking place when the music they play was written. They learn what the music was typically used for (was it sung? was it an opera? dancing music? for royal families or poorer ones?). So much of our culture is absorbed in music and has been for centuries.

Music also helps with math and science. Students learn to count, keep a steady rhythm, and how to multiply and divide (to figure out how long each note is). They even learn a little bit of algebra (the "dot" on the note is exactly half the value of that note. Students need to be able to figure out how much the "dot" equals in each case). Students also use science to help them discover what sounds good together and what doesn't. As they learn, they use prior knowledge to figure out what else might sound good together, which can lead to composing. Students also need science to understand something called the "overtone series," which Pythagoras came up with back around Medieval times. This theory is how music is produced by vibration and why.

Students learn a lot about languages. Many choral songs are written in other languages, including ancient ones. Students must learn to translate these works to understand what they are singing about. Some songs are famous literary poems or short works set to music; so students are exposed to that. Also, the markings in music (how fast, how loud, what style) are typically written in Italian. Students learn to understand a little bit of Italian in order to interpret the markings in their music.

Students learn an incredible amount of coordination through music -- it isn't unlike being an athlete. Students must use fine and gross motor skills in order to play an instrument. Singers and wind players must learn breath control and be in good shape to play.

Students learn about art. Some very famous pieces were written about important pieces of art, and students learn about the artists, pieces, and styles as they're playing the music.

Music education also brings higher thinking to our children. It allows them to think about complex patterns (where does my part fit into the whole? How can I make my part sound better? What are some tiny adjustments I can make to adjust tone or intonation? How does this music and these different parts fit together?). It almost leads to a philosophical environment. Students have to be absolutely aware of what every other musician does at every time. In that way, it fosters cooperation, as well. No musician is independent of the whole, and yet each musician is a part of that whole, with a unique part and sound.

Students tend to foster close relationships with other musicians and with their music teachers. They tend to have a higher aptitude and sometimes capability for learning. Music teachers, because they don't worry so much about "state standards" or tests, can focus on what's really important: learning about music.

As one can see, music is very important in our lives. It is frequently underestimated and thought of as "easy" or "play time," but it's not that at all. Students frequently appear to be having fun while they are making music because music IS fun (though not easy). Music can portray any mood, and it takes a special, interested person in order to make it good. Music is very important to education.

Written by Catherine Hillard - © 2002 Pagewise

Friday, March 19, 2010

Shirts were EVERYWHERE! Local Newspaper Story!

Yesterday was S.O.S. Thursday and shirts were everwhere! I saw more shirts being worn yesterday than any other day (except the MARCH!!) It was so nice to have that bond with people that I didn't even know.

Did you read the paper this morning? The Vacaville Reporter ran a story about our SOS Fundraising Campaign!! They even mentioned Callison's Rummage Sale on April 17 & 18, the baked goods kitchen offer made by Teresa Stout, the director of Child Nutrition, the commercials that Buckingham Charter High School is finishing up and all of the other Social Media avenues we have taken.

People are starting to take notice, now we just need to help remind people that we NEED donations! EVERY dollar counts and PLEASE don't wait until we lose the programs we love before you decide to donate.

If you aren't sure that you will make a difference - PLEASE read the previous post CAN YOUR $10 MAKE A DIFFERENCE!


Thursday, March 18, 2010

S.O.S. Committee Members

Since I missed the last couple of days, I thought I would make up some ground this morning :)

Someone asked the question "who are the SOS Committee Members?" and "which schools are represented as being part of the SOS?" Well, here is your answer. EVERY school has representation and here are the main contact people for each school:

Sally Bernard - Markham
Ivy Green - Padan
Angela Higdon - Orchard
Baabz Scott - Cooper
Bobbie Ryder - Jepson
Brigitte Aton - Vaca Pena
Christa Poe - Hemlock
Dawn French - Markham Spice
Janice Smith - Fairmont
Julie O'Dell - Alamo
Patti Gauci - Sierra Vista
Lee Majors - Browns Valley
Perla Rosenberg - Buckingham Charter School
Rebecca Duvall - Callison
Chris Strong - Will C Wood
Marcy Gregg - Vaca High

Along with the parents listed above, we also have had the following people attend/attending our meetings:

Alex Hall
P.J. Goodson
Dave McCallum
Whit Witman
Mary Kay Sogge
John Aycock
Mariko Yamada - Assemblymember, 8th District
Senator Lois Wolk (representative)

As you can see, this committee is made up of a WIDE RANGE of people. We are the only school district finding a solution to this mess. BUT, based on what others are seeing....they are trying to figure out how to get something started in their own districts. WE ARE LEADING THE WAY!!

Today is S.O.S. Thursday!!

Well, I suppose I should start this post out by giving everyone an apology! This week has gotten away from me and I haven't posted anything since MONDAY. Sorry!


S.O.S. Thursday!!! If you have an SOS shirt please remember to wear it. Thursday is a day that we try to spread the word about our SOS Fundraising Campaign. I would like to challenge EVERYONE to share something about the SOS with 10 people. They can be 10 friends, strangers, family or, well, ANYONE! If EVERYONE that reads this post shared the info with 10 people, the results could be AMAZING.

I had an interesting conversation on Tuesday, about the budget crisis here in Vacaville, and believe it or not, this person DID NOT EVEN KNOW that there was a problem. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT? So, share....share all of the information with those around you. We can not solve the problem, if people are not aware that there is one.


Monday, March 15, 2010

Find out about the BUDGET CRISIS TONIGHT!!

To anyone interested, tonight Cooper Elementary School Principal and PTO, are hosting a Parent Forum for the ongoing Budget Crisis. This is a meeting designed to share the current Budget information and answer questions. If you aren't sure what the budget crisis is, or if you are not sure how bad it is come on out.

As well as going over the budget crisis, they will be sharing information about the Support Our Students Committee. This is a perfect time for everyone to ask their questions and get involved.


The meeting will be at the following:

Cooper Elementary School
750 Christine Drive
Vacaville, CA 95687-4163

MP Room

Contact Barbara Scott for more information baabzscott@aol.com

THANK YOU Cooper Elementary School for your support! I hope that every parent will come out tonight and find out how serious this problem really is!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Thank You! Can Your $10 make a difference?

We have started to receive donations and I wanted to personally say THANK YOU to everyone! THANK YOU to all the people in Vacaville and those of you that aren't in Vacaville that see the importance of public education.

I had an interesting conversation with someone yesterday and thought it was worth mentioning here in the blog this morning. I was spreading the word about SOS yesterday and I ran into a mom that I know. I told here we were raising money for the kids in our school district. She said she couldn't really help, because she only had about $10 to give. She didn't think that was enough to help. I was so shocked to think that she didn't see that her $10 would help our kids out.

I came home and ran a few numbers and thought I would share them with you. If you don't think YOUR $10 could help check this out!

The population of Vacaville, as of 2008, is 92,919. If every person in Vacaville gave $1.00 we would have $92,919. That is almost $100,000. If those same people gave $10.00 we would have $929,190! That is almost the WHOLE amount we are trying to raise $1,000,000. AMAZING. Can your $10 help, YES!!!

The total number of students in our school district is 13,611. If each student were sponsored for $10, we would have $136, 110! That can definitely make a difference, but if those same students were sponsored for $74 we would have $1,007,214. WOW, that is above and beyond our GOAL!

It really doesn't take much to help, all we are really asking is to help with any amount that you can! $1 or $10, please understand that YOU can be helping our children.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

SOS Thursday!!! Donate HERE!

Today is S.O.S. Thursday! If you will notice there is a new DONATION link at the top of the blog. PLEASE consider donating. If you aren't convinced that our childrens education is in jepordy, please read below. If you believe in education and believe that WE, the community of VACAVILLE, can make a difference in OUR childrens' education then please GIVE ANYTHING you can. We are trying to do something different than any other place in the country. WE ARE ATTEMPTING TO BE SELF-RELIANT!

Yesterday, during dinner, my family was discussing a news story that my husband heard on KGO. "Kansas City board OK's plan to close nearly half of schools" . I thought he was wrong, there is NO WAY that our country thinks it is OK to punish the children of our nation in this SERIOUS FASHION. This is a problem happening everywhere. I decided to research the story and found out it is TRUE. CNN reported that Kansas City school board approved the plan to cose 28 of their 61 schools. They literally will have 6yr olds and 8 yr olds going to school with 12th graders. Is that scary or what?

Last Wednesday,the New York Times reported that, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican in his last year of office, said the layoffs and reductions in courses carried out by some schools in the state were “terrible.” The bottom line, he said, was that “they need much more money.”

Last week many of you received a little literature about what the budget cuts here is SOLANO COUNTY and VACAVILLE look like for our kids. Here is a higlight:

Solano County is getting $96.4 MILLION in reductions between 2009-2011, affecting 67,203 students! CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT?

Vacaville Unified School District, 13,166 students, is getting $24.5 MILLION in budget rectuions between 2009-2011. THAT IS 1/4 of our budget, in the last two, years getting CUT. There will be MORE certificated layoffs, even with a retirement incentive program including 65 retiring teachers. The layoffs of classified employees is pending. The proposed cuts for 2010-2011 include:
*Class size reduction eliminated for grades K-3
*Increased class sizes in grades 4-12
*Close two elementary schools
*Cuts to athletics, music & art.

This is a tragedy, BUT, YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

The Support Our Students Committee, has decided to take a stand, and we hope that you will stand with us. We are trying to raise as much money as possible, so that we can try to "preserve the integrity of OUR schools". We know we can't solve the whole problem, but if we can raise some money, ANY amount of money, it can help our little town of VACAVILLE make a difference in the lives of 13,166 children.

If you would like to help us in our efforts, PLEASE push the donation button at the top of this blog. It is a tax write off, it will help our children and you will be joining in OUR effort to be SELF-RELIANT. OUR CHILDREN DESERVE IT!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Tomorrow is SOS THURSDAY!

Tomorrow is S.O.S. Thursday! Remember to wear your shirt to help raise awareness to the SOS Fundraising efforts! If you are a friend, family or business and you would like to contribute to the fund mail a check to:

SOS/VUSD Budget Crisis Fund
751 School Street
Vacaville, CA 95688


If you would like to have someone come by and pick up a check email me at vusd.sos@gmail.com.

We will feature any businesses here in our blog to give thanks for your support!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

VPEF supports S.O.S & Gave DONATION!!

VPEF, Vacaville Public Education Foundation, is supporting the S.O.S. Fundraising Campaign! They have even given a $1,000 donation to help kick of the campaign.


The Vacaville Public Education Foundation was formed in 2003 by a determined group of parents, community leaders, elected officials, senior citizens, and businessmen and women. They came together to address the crisis in public education funding that grips California every year and is most severe when the sales taxes and capital gains taxes fall.

The Vacaville Public Education Foundation is a very successful organization that has significantly contributed to the success of the Vacaville Unified School District. The Vacaville Public Education Foundation provides opportunities for students and teachers to engage in learning experiences that otherwise would not be funded by the school district. In addition to the much-appreciated money they raise and commit to the kids of Vacaville, they really boost the morale of all teachers and principals by the hard work, dedication and love shown to our teachers and students each year. When our teachers and kids know others care about them and are willing to work so hard on their behalf, it injects motivation and energy into our schools. I am so grateful and thankful for all the good work they do that benefits everyone in the city of Vacaville.

In their tenure, they have raised and allocated over $1.8 million for the children of our schools. The money has been used for specific programs in the following general areas: academics, athletics, music, library, health and safety, counseling and the GATE program. They have received over a thousand testimonials from parents, teachers and students about how these grants have made a direct, positive impact on students of the Vacaville Unified School District.

If you would like to know more about VPEF please visit www.vpef.org.

THANK YOU VPEF for your support!

Saturday, March 6, 2010


NEWS FLASH!!! Calling all BLOGGERS....we are looking for 5 guest bloogers to join forces and help get out information about what is going on in the community in support of the SOS Fundraising! If you would like to join the team, send me an email vusd.sos@gmail.com.

Friday, March 5, 2010

S.O.S Committee Is....

In the last couple of days there have been some very important questions emailed over and I would like to take this time to answer them.

Yesterday, a nice Cooper mom, asked the questions that are on everyone's mind...

"Attended the rally this afternoon, great idea, but wish more parents and staff would have participated. My son attends Cooper, we support the PTO, do the fundraisers, donate to the class on top of the basic taxes that are suppose to help the schools. Now we are being asked to give more, however I can't seem to find any detailed information on WHO will be controlling the funds raised by this SOS program, HOW it will be decided as to WHERE the funds are distributed, IF there will be an OPEN accounting for all the funds collected and spent. If the information is out there, I would sincerely appreciate being told where to find it. Raising money to help the schools is a great thing, but as I am my child's advocate I have to wonder if the money raised from each school's "extended" family, if you will, will go back into that school. It may be selfish, but at times such as this I think every parent needs to be concerned primarily with how the cuts and efforts made to circumvent them will affect their child and their school. Will this money help save teacher's jobs? If so which teachers? Is it known what programs at what schools are the districts top choices to keep if at all possible? Thank you for your time, I look forward to your reply." ~ Celtic Indian

Thank you for asking the hard questions! I agree with being selfish, I feel the SAME way.

There is a VERY big problem in our school district, actually our WHOLE STATE is having a problem funding our public education. THIS IS A CRISIS. I saw a flier sent out yesterday and it really drove home how big this problem really is. It said "Solano County Schools have been cut $96.4 Million Dollars affecting 67,203 students", it went on to say that VACAVILLE has "$24.5 million dollars in cuts from 2009-2011". That is 1/4 of Vacaville's budget has been taken away in the last two years. THAT IS ASTONISHING! This is a VERY BIG PROBLEM which is why we are calling it a crisis.

I am a parent in this school district and most of the people on the SOS Committee are also. We joined forces and asked if we could help come up with a solution to the problem. THIS IS OUR ONLY SOLUTION. We are going to raise money. This blog was designed to help keep our community in the loop on both our efforts and how much money we are raising. This is NOT an official website for the Vacaville Unified School District, www.vacavilleusd.org. We do not get to decide how the money is going to be spent. We do not get to decide where the money will be spent. Part of the reason this is such a hard issue is because my wish list, because I am a parent of an elementary student, is going to be different than the wish list of a middle school parent or a high school parent. We have elected officials that have a job to do and we need to hold them accountable. I can say this though ANY money raised will go to our school district and will be used to help relieve, hopefully, at least SOME of the cuts. We are trying to be part of the SOLUTION.

It is expected that we will CUT 4-12 million dollars out of our budget next year because the STATE will not be giving us the money. This is not a poor management issue. This is a CUT. Here is the link, http://www.vusd.solanocoe.k12.ca.us/projects/10/Budget%20Information/PowerPoint%20Presentation%2061809%20Budget%20Adoption.pdf, if you would like to see the school districts list of proposed cuts

In the matter of trust, I agree! The trust is not there for most of the people I come into contact with, BUT if you have something that you think is important WRITE LETTERS and SEND EMAILS to the people that we have elected and hold them accountable. TELL them what you want and MAKE them aware of what is important to US as a community. I can tell you that I have seen this work first hand.

PLEASE write our elected officials and tell them what is on your mind!


Solano County Office of Education:
County Superintendent of Schools Dee Alarcon, Dalarcon@solanocoe.net.
Board of Education:
President Mayrene Bates, MBates@solanocoe.net
Vice President John Galvan, JGalvan@solanocoe.net
Trustees Doug Ford, DFord@solanocoe.net;
Ray Silva, RSilva@solanocoe.net;
Larry Asera, LAsera@solanocoe.net.
Maria Kennedy, MKennedy@solanocoe.net
Rozzana Verder-Aliga, RVerder-Aliga@solanocoe.net.

For board, call 399-4402. Main office: 5100 Business Center Drive, Fairfield, 94534; 399-4400; fax: 863-4175; Web site: www.solanocoe.net.
Vacaville Board of Education:
President Michael Kitzes, michael@kitzesfamily.com
Vice President Larry Mazzuca, LMazzuca@cityofnapa.org
Clerk Katherine Brannon, Katherin.Brannon@sbcglobal.net
Trustees Bill Hausler, seniorrab@aol.com
Theresa Buck, terinutt@aol.com
Mary Kay Sogge, MaryKaySogge@mac.com
Jay Yerkes, jyerkes@pacbell.net

District office: 751 School St., Vacaville, 95688; 453-6100, fax: 453-6999; Web site: www.vacavilleusd.org.