New Principal to Greet Every Palm Crest Student

Cory Pak
Cory Pak

Members of the Palm Crest Elementary School community can expect to see a lot of Principal Cory Pak today, his first school day at the campus.
Pak, who was approved by the La Cañada Flintridge Unified School District Governing Board as principal on July 17, plans to meet every student and greet each of them.
“You won’t see me in here,” he said in a recent interview in his spacious office on campus, which at the time was mostly empty except for a desk, table and some signs left behind by previous Principal Karen Hurley, who has moved to a district-level post. “I won’t be in the office. I’ll be where the kids are almost every day. But certainly on the first day.” Continue reading “New Principal to Greet Every Palm Crest Student”

Governing Board Wants More Details on School’s Makeover

Mark Evans
Photo by Wes Woods II / OUTLOOK
Mark Evans, La Cañada Unified School District’s chief business and operations officer, discusses parking options for a Palm Crest Elementary School modernization project at a Governing Board meeting Tuesday.

Members of the La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board on Tuesday agreed on a general layout for Palm Crest Elementary School, which is set for a major modernization, but asked the district’s staff for a more detailed plan for the endeavor, due for a groundbreaking in 2021.
The board unanimously voted for more information on an option that includes two two-story buildings forming a V shape, with open space in between, and outdoor corridors. Continue reading “Governing Board Wants More Details on School’s Makeover”

LCHS Opens Wellness Center, an Oasis Amid Stress

Wellness Center
Photos by Wes Woods II / OUTLOOK
The Wellness Center at La Cañada High School will feature a “bubble wall,” a pod — which is still in the construction process — in which students can relax, and a mural.

After a summer respite, La Cañada High School students will return today to resume their studies in a setting known for high achievement and expectations — conditions that can compound stress, as do social complications young people often experience.
No wonder, then, that student Riley Trowbridge sees the Wellness Center as a real need at LCHS. Continue reading “LCHS Opens Wellness Center, an Oasis Amid Stress”

LCUSD Explores Parcel Tax Renewal

The La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board unanimously voted to approve a contract with the firm that led the successful effort to pass a 2014 parcel tax to assess the feasibility of renewing the measure.
The contract with San Francisco-based Terris Barnes Walters Boigon Heath Inc. was approved on Tuesday night at a regular governing board meeting. The consulting firm’s Charles Heath, who helped the district orchestrate the campaign for Measure LC several years ago, will again lead the effort. Continue reading “LCUSD Explores Parcel Tax Renewal”

Parents Keep Up Quest for 50-Meter Pool at LCHS

A parent group is attempting to raise money to build a 50-meter pool at La Cañada High School, despite the local school district board’s approval of a smaller, 40-meter one in April.
LCHS swimming team supporter Margaret O’Grady said in an email the group consists of about 25 parents and is growing.
“Our understanding is that a 50-meter pool for the LCHS campus is still a possibility if the right financials are in place,” O’Grady said. “This seems to be a financial issue more than a design/space issue.” Continue reading “Parents Keep Up Quest for 50-Meter Pool at LCHS”

‘Angst’ Documentary, Panel Discussion at LCHS Tackle Anxiety

Jim Cartnal, Melissa Johnson, Paul Royer and Rachel Zooi discuss anxiety as part of a small panel discussion
Photo by Wes Woods II / OUTLOOK
Jim Cartnal, Melissa Johnson, Paul Royer and Rachel Zooi discuss anxiety as part of a small panel discussion after a recent screening of the film “Angst: Raising Awareness Around Anxiety” at the La Cañada High School auditorium.

La Cañada High School senior Ashlyn Oh owns a laptop computer — but not a smartphone. Even so, she said, she experiences stress and escapism through technology just like other teenagers do.
Oh, who plans to double major in psychology and neuroscience at Williams College, is specifically interested in seeing how technology affects one’s mind and how that correlates with a rise in depression and anxiety. Continue reading “‘Angst’ Documentary, Panel Discussion at LCHS Tackle Anxiety”

Meeting to Discuss Sagebrush Transfer on June 5 Canceled; No New Date Set

La Cañada Unified School District Superintendent Wendy Sinnette said it is unclear when a meeting might take place between school district officials and the Los Angeles County Committee on School District Organization to discuss the possible transfer of the Sagebrush territory into the LCUSD. A scheduled June 5 meeting has been canceled. Continue reading “Meeting to Discuss Sagebrush Transfer on June 5 Canceled; No New Date Set”

Beloved St. Bede Principal, ‘Mr. V,’ Retires After 46 Years

St. Bede the Venerable School Principal Ralph Valente
OUTLOOK photo
St. Bede the Venerable School Principal Ralph Valente is set to retire at the end of this school year. He’s been at the school since 1973.

St. Bede the Venerable School Principal Ralph Valente, 69, started out his career in La Cañada Flintridge by sweeping floors and wiping windows.
“True story,” Valente laughed. “I like to say I started out as janitor and worked my way down.”
There’s a back story, of course, as there often is with Valente, whose much-loved, energetic charisma nourishes a reputation that precedes him in the community. But back in 1973, he’d just graduated from USC with a master’s degree in teaching during what was then one of worst recessions in modern history. He’d applied for jobs, all kinds of jobs, to no avail. Continue reading “Beloved St. Bede Principal, ‘Mr. V,’ Retires After 46 Years”