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June 18, 2018

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Photo of the Week

Hoover High School graduates celebrate on June 5.

Video of the Week

Video of the week
Highlights of 2018 graduations

Dates to Know

August 8 at 6 p.m.
Board of Education

August 13
First Day of 2018-19 Academic Year


Welcome to Community Zone, an e-newsletter from the Fresno Unified School District featuring news of the district and schools. Sign up to receive this newsletter every two weeks. Questions? Contact

Community News

Spring Sports Highlights for High School

The district had a highly successful spring sports season for its high school teams and student-athletes. Read more about the highlights below.
Spring Sports Highlights

District High School Pools Open for Swim Lessons and Swimming

The district is partnering with the city of Fresno to offer swim lessons and recreational and lap swimming at high school pools. Pools are open at Bullard (weekend lap swimming only), Edison, Fresno, Hoover, McLane and Sunnyside high schools. Bullard, Fresno, Hoover and Sunnyside pools are hosting swim lessons. Check the schedule below for hours. The list also includes city pools open for swimming. Swimming is free on the weekends and $1 for children and $2 for adults during the week.
Information on High School Pool Hours
Information on Swim Lessons at High School Pools

District Students Win Maya Cinemas Scholarships

Several Fresno Unified students won Maya Cinemas Make a Difference Scholarships and were honored at a ceremony June 13 at Maya Cinemas. The students are Mehikpreet Sidhu and Jackson Yebisu, Sunnyside High School; Citlaly Zamora, McLane High School; and Esmeralda Cabrera-Rojas and Icelyn Yepez, Edison High School.

Superintendent Board Remarks from June 13, 2018

Superintendent Bob Nelson provided a brief report to the Fresno Unified Board of Education including:

• Encouraging our board, as well as district staff, to take advantage of the summer to relax, rejuvenate and spend time with family and friends.  The new school year will be here before you know it so enjoy and relax this summer break.

• Summer school started this week for more than 14,000 students.  There are two sessions available until July 12.  Summer school graduation will be in the newly named Audra McDonald Theater at Roosevelt High School.  Our students will be taking advantage of intervention programs in reading, literacy, English language development and special education.  There are also enrichment classes in career technical education and Hmong heritage, the FRESH program is offering academics and athletics activities and there are also accelerated courses for potential GATE students. There’s also a brand new credit recovery course at Fresno High called Geometry in Construction.  Dr. Nelson thanked all summer school administrators and staff who are supporting our summer learners.

• There will also be plenty of modernization and new construction taking place over the summer. From renovations, painting and irrigation improvements, to launching construction of our solar installation project, our maintenance and operations team will be busy.  Modernization continues at Rata and the new heavy truck facility is under construction at Duncan Polytechnical High School. Slater and Figarden elementary schools are seeing work start for new buildings and Tenaya Middle and Kratt Elementary will get new irrigation systems.  Ten elementary schools will also get a fresh coat of paint.

• Six of our high schools will be open for the summer as part of the district’s Blue and Green Space program in partnership with the City of Fresno. The sites will provide supervised open swim and/or swim lessons and weekend outdoor activities.  The district is also opening more than 50 school sites to serve free meals to children ages one to 18.  Dr. Nelson thanked the board for their support in ensuring students have a safe place to play, swim and enjoy a nutritious meal over summer break.

• Recognizing our 2018 graduates and those countless adults who helped them reach that stage, college and career ready.  As a district, we celebrated at 15 different graduation ceremonies, each full of excitement and emotion not just for what the ceremony represented in the moment but for what this group of young people will accomplish down the road.  We saw this past year how active our students have been in the community and we look forward to hearing the many success stories that come from this year’s cohort of graduates.  Dr. Nelson then played a quick video highlighting this year’s graduation season.

• Recognizing two students who had remarkable school years.

   - Jorge Gonzales Cortes, a Linked Learning pathway student in the Academy of Finance & Entrepreneurship at McLane High School placed second in the Regional Young Entrepreneurs Academy back in March. He then won $725 for his business plan for Brilliant Lounge Party Rentals while at the Young Entrepreneurs Academy – Saunders Scholars Competition.

   - Cindy Carrillo-Quezada, a Linked Learning student in the Educational Careers Academy pathway at McLane High School, was honored with the Seal of Distinction for the Linked Learning Pathways and awarded a $1,000 scholarship from Linked Learning Alliance.    Cindy will be working as a paraprofessional for the Teacher Academy Summer Internship Program for the district and plans to attend Fresno State in the fall with hopes of eventually becoming a high school counselor.

View Full Board Meeting Recap

School Buzz

Starr Plant Coordinator Honored

Brian Moore, plant coordinator at Starr Elementary School, retired in May after 35 years of service. The school and families recognized Brian June 5 in a ceremony, and the school will place a plaque in the cafeteria in his honor. Brian has “given his heart and soul to our school and our community and touched many lives,” Principal Charlie Reynolds said. Brian served the school and students in many ways, including with “Brian's Crew," a group of students who would work alongside him and make new friends.

Eight is Enough

The eight Tsutsui siblings – either current Fresno High School students or alumni – recently surprised teacher Richard Ochs with a visit. He is the one Fresno High teacher they have all had. Martha, Krista, Sarah, Laura, Julia and Hannah are alumni, Takashi graduated June 4 and Wilma will be a senior.

McLane ArtVenture Academy Opens Exhibit Exploring Foster Care

McLane High School students from the ArtVenture Academy tackled issues of foster care during the second semester of the past school year, producing a deeply personal exhibit that opened to the community during ArtHop June 7 at the M Street Arts Complex. The show, “HomeWork: Foster Love. Foster Hope. Foster Home," will be up through June by appointment. To view, contact or The exhibit includes portraits based on students’ foster care journeys. Trash bag sculptures containing important personal artifacts recreated as art pieces accompany the portraits. The exhibit also includes an 8-foot-by-8-foot collage map of Fresno that shows the various moves of foster care students. During the past school year, 858 Fresno Unified students were in foster care, from infants through the adult special education program.

At the show, students announced an $800 donation to the Chrysalis House, Inc., a non-profit adoption agency. Students raised the money through the sale of their art at a gala May 18 at the River Center.

Employer of Choice

Teachers Recognized for Certification

Teachers were recognized May 31 for earning National Board Certification. The teachers who earned the certification are Yi Cha, Alice McClintock, Janet Hatch, Janna Kam, Luz Todd, Megan Bremer and Mahkefa Brown.

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