PFC President's Message

PFC President's Fall Message September 4, 2019

posted Sep 4, 2019, 10:47 AM by PFC President

Dear Walnut Acres Families, 
I hope you and your children are off to a good start with the new school year at Walnut Acres Elementary! One thing you will discover while you are here with us is that our PFC - a community of parents and faculty- makes WAE a very special place. 

The PFC in a Nutshell

Volunteers: Over 50 Walnut Acres parents volunteer to lead our committees. Thanks to the many volunteers who help them behind the scenes! 

Fundraisers: The PFC needs to raise over $397,000 this year to bridge the gap between public funding and what our children need to succeed. We will host fundraising events with a purpose, like the Read-A-Thon, to encourage reading, or the Walk-A-Thon, to teach good sportsmanship. Our Gala Auction and Buy-In Parties allow YOU to have fun and raise money for your children. And we have our mighty Jaguar Fund, which raises over half (55%) of our funding for the year. If you haven't had a chance yet, DONATE today.

Staff Funding: Over 80% of the funds we raise this year will go directly to paycurrent staff salaries. Positions include Instructional Aides (TK-3), Science Aids, Reading Intervention, Math Intervention, Site Techs, Performing Arts and Vocal Music, to name a few. 

Instructional Support: We also support Walnut Acres with over $25,000 in additional funds for curriculum and training, and support for each individual classroom

Fun Activities: Our funds and volunteers also bring you community activities like Ice Cream Social, Art Show, STEM & Science Fair, Walk & Roll to school days, International Festival, and Youth Theatre, to name just a few. And let's not forget the programs that directly support our school community,  like after school enrichment classes, emergency procedures, drive-thru staffing, teacher appreciation, yearbook and spirit wear. 

How Can You Get Involved? 
Who does all of this? Why, we do! As a parent at Walnut Acres, you are a member of the PFC. Come find out more at one of our PFC meetings. Sign up to volunteer at our events, donate items to the Auction, help with Art Awareness. Every little bit counts! 

I'm looking forward to seeing you at our first community event, Walnut Acre's Ice Cream Social, this Friday, 6-8pm. For the scoop, and to sign up to help out, go to:Ice Cream Social

Brooke Giddings
PFC President 

Walnut Acres PFC - By the Numbers March 2019

posted Mar 26, 2019, 12:26 PM by PFC President

Hello Parents,

It's hard to believe, but we have entered the last school trimester and are on the down hill slide to the end of the school year! I want to take this opportunity to shout a huge THANK YOU to all of you who have supported our PFC fundraising and activities throughout the year.  We have had amazing success with our fundraisers and I thought you might be interested to see how we've done so far. 

For those of you who have never taken a long look at our PFC Budget and our fundraising goals, you might be interested to know that we are committed to raising nearly $400,000 each year.  The majority of these funds go toward amazing PEOPLE and the TOOLS we need to support them: our incredible Reading and Math Intervention Specialists, Classroom Instructional Aides, Science Aides, Site Technicians for our Co-Lab and many of the Co-Lab tools such as laptops, iPads, robots, and 3D printing. Additional funds are used to support the Science Lab and Science Fair, Art Awareness and Art Show, Vocal Music and annual Grade Level performances, Crossing Guards, Online Subscriptions such as iReady and Reflex Math, and some of our annual activities such as the Ice Cream Social, International Fair, and Open House festivities. 

Did you know the PFC paid for all these things?! Now that you know how your generous donations are spent, here's a look at what we've raised so far this year. We still have one more major fundraiser, the 3rd Annual Walk-a-Thon on Friday, April 19th, which will round out a very successful 2018-19 school year of fundraising!  

Jaguar Fund: $180,000 on track for $190,000 (goal is $195,000)

Corporate Matching: $25,000 (goal is $26,000)

Auction:  $138,000 (goal was $95,000)  Beyond Amazing!!!

Live Auction Fund-A-Need for 21st Century Classroom Furniture: $31,000

Readathon: $32,500 (goal was $30,000)

Walkathon:  Goal is $24,000  - Help us Reach It! 

Book Fair: $3,300 (goal was $2,000)

Walnut Acres Wednesdays (Dine and Donate events): $500

Other fundraisers that our students supported directly and went straight to specific community causes:

Pennies for Paradise:  $1200 sent to Butte County Schools Fire Relief Fund  in response to the devastating fires in Paradise, California. 

Fifth Grade Girl Scout Troop "Water Bottle Wars": $1600.  The troop conducted a contest amongst the classrooms and ultimately collected enough money (mostly coins!) to purchase a water bottle filling station for Walnut Acres and another for a sister school, Ygnacio Valley Elementary.

Once again, THANK YOU to all of you for your generosity!  Walnut Acres is a pretty incredible place, but we wouldn't be able to do many of these things that make it so special without your donations of money and time!  To that end, we are currently placing parents in new PFC roles for the 2019-20 school year, and we hope you can join the team.  Take a look at the various roles that we are filling now. Is there one that speaks especially to YOU?! It's more fun to make great things happen when we are working with smart and interesting people like you. Want to join us?!

Have a wonderful and relaxing Spring Break!

Jill Ridlehoover

PFC President 2018-19 

November 2018 President's Message

posted Mar 19, 2019, 4:49 PM by PFC President   [ updated Mar 19, 2019, 4:50 PM ]

Happy Holidays and Seasons Greetings!

Here we are, coming back from our Thanksgiving Break and running headlong into the Holiday Season and I am reflecting on how incredibly grateful I am to be part of this amazing PFC community. The first trimester of this school year has been both challenging and highly successful, and I want to thank the students, teachers, administrators, and YOU, the parents, for making a difference every day. 

I am so appreciative of the many parents who have taken the lead in so many different roles - from taking the time to be a Room Parent to leading an Art Awareness session to helping out in the classrooms during our recent "Smoky" days to organizing our important community events and fundraisers - our parents are doing an amazing job of making things happen. Thank you! It is our goal to provide something that appeals to and inspires each person, so that you and your children will feel included in and proud to be a part of our community. 

Thank you, too, for your amazing support of our fundraisers. Without your generosity, we would be unable to make so many of our great programs happen. With an annual goal of raising nearly $400,000, we want to make sure you feel good about the contributions you make by offering fundraisers that appeal to students and parents. To that end, I want to invite you to participate in the PFC-led (or funded) activities and fundraisers that are happening during this holiday season.

#Jaguar Fund: As today is #GivingTuesday, it seems like a good time to remind you that our largest fundraiser, the Jaguar Fund, is open year round for donations. If you have not had a chance to contribute for this school year, you might consider making a donation today. Many of you took advantage of the new Recurring Payment option that we offered this year for the first time - thank you! That option is still available on the Jaguar Fund Donations page on Konstella. And, since we are learning the end of the year, this is also a great time to ensure that you have submitted any Corporate Matchrequests to your employer.

The GREAT Walnut Acres READ(athon): This is the final week of our annual Readathon, where our students read to earn money for their school. This Friday, November 30, is the final day of the Readathon and we will celebrate with a Pajama Party and Pennies for Paradise. The Readathon is one of our largest annual fundraisers ($30,000 goal!) so please remember to share your student's 99Pledges link with family and friends who might like to help support our wonderful Walnut Acres programs. If you can't find your link, you can go the main Readathon page, and search for your student there. Cash and checks (made out to Walnut Acres PFC) are welcome and appreciated also! Those may be turned in with the kids' envelopes on December 3.

Hour of Code: During the week of December 3 - 7, Walnut Acres is participating in the annual Computer Science Education Week  Hour of Code, where each student is given an opportunity to write computer code that is appropriate for their grade level. While our students are fortunate to participate in computer learning throughout the entire school year, the Hour of Code event is something special - and parents are invited to help! If you would like to spend an hour with your child's class as they navigate a fun coding activity, please sign up on the Konstella sign up for your child's classroom.

Toy and Clothing Drive: As is our annual tradition, we will be holding our Toy and Clothing Drive from December 3 - 7.  Gently used clothes and toys may be delivered to the collection boxes that will be available in front of the office. The toys and clothes that we collect are donated to another elementary school in our district, Shore Acres, for them to distribute to their families during their annual Holiday Shopping Day. 

PFC Holiday Party: Last but certainly not least, please come join your fellow PFC parents (that's all of you!) for a little holiday cheer and a chance to catch up with your busy friends. Tuesday Night, December 4 at 7:00 pm at the home of Catalina Franklin - 803 Spring Drive. If you can bring a treat, sign up here!  

Thank you again, to everyone who makes our PFC such a bright and successful team. I hope your holiday season is filled with hope, peace, and gratitude!


Jill Ridlehoover

PFC President 2018-19

November 2017 President's Message

posted Dec 19, 2017, 3:06 PM by Vice President Communications   [ updated Jan 7, 2018, 8:36 AM by PFC President ]

Holiday Greetings and #GivingTuesday

Can you believe we are at the end of our first trimester, and running headlong into parent/teacher conferences the busy holiday season?  I am so thankful for the generous spirit of our parents who have made some really fabulous things happen at our school this year. Our reading and math specialists are hard at work helping our students gain confidence and improve their skills. Our Co-Lab and Science teachers have been busy leading all of our kids through hand-on experiments and robot-building. And, our chorus and music instructors are teaching the fine arts of performance and music appreciation.

In addition to PFC supported instruction, our parents have also created some incredibly memorable events for the kids. Did your child tell you about the Ninja Obstacle Course that our parents built and then encouraged all the students to try? The course was part of our American Ninja Reader Read-a-thon which is wrapping up this week. I encourage you to continue to support our Walnut Acres students as they impress us with their Ninja Reading skills! The Read-a-thon ends on Thursday, and we have an ambitious goal to raise nearly $30,000. You and your family and friends still have time to donate directly to your student's personal fundraising page by going to 99Pledges. Donations are tax deductible (a form for your tax records will be sent to your email when you donate thru 99Pledges). And, don't forget to submit your donation for a company match from your employer.

In the spirit of #GivingTuesday, I would also like to remind you about the Walnut Acres PFC Jaguar Fund. The Jaguar Fund is the Parent Faculty Club’s primary source of funds to bridge the gap between public funding and the true cost of our children’s education at Walnut Acres. It is the biggest fundraiser at Walnut Acres, bringing in 60% of revenue the PFC uses to pay for things like teachers’ aides, curriculum development, art supplies, science labs, reading specialists, computer instruction and more. 100% of your donations go towards supporting the children of Walnut Acres. Whether you can add to your previous generous donation, give for the first time this school year, or ask the HR department at your company to match your donation, your support will impact our children in many ways. We are well on our way but need your help for us to reach our annual fundraising goal for this important cause. Just go to Jaguar Fund to contribute today! 

Also in the Spirit of Giving, each year our parents generously support our December Toy and Clothing Drive. Now is the time to gather your gently used toys and clothing (get the kids involved, too!) to donate to another MDUSD elementary school, Shore Acres in Bay Point. Shore Acres so greatly appreciates our donations which they distribute to their families during an Open House event at their school. We will be collecting clean clothing and toys (with all their pieces and parts) next week: December 4 - 8. If possible, please sort your items and bag or box toys and clothing into separate containers. And please, donate only items that are in clean and working condition. You can drop them off outside the school office beginning Monday morning. If you would like to help deliver the items to Shore Acres on Friday, December 8 after school, please sign up here on Konstella. My kids have helped with this the last 3 years and it really seems to have a huge impact on them. It's a great opportunity to get your kids involved in the spirit of holiday sharing, too.

And, to THANK YOU for all you do for our school, the PFC would love for you to join us at our Annual PFC Holiday Party. Tuesday, December 5 at 7 pm at Elise Lewis' home at 2538 Casa Grande Court. I would really love share an evening out with all of you as it is a rare event that we have a chance to simply relax and enjoy eachother's company. I hope to see you there and get a chance to raise a glass to our many wonderful parents! Sign up here to bring a treat.

Thank you again, to everyone who makes our PFC so successful. I hope the holiday season is full of positive and memorable events for everyone!


Jill Ridlehoover

PFC President 2017-18

PFC President's Message - September 22, 2017

posted Sep 30, 2017, 3:14 PM by Vice President Communications

Happy First Day of Fall, Ya'll!

Here we are, at the end of our 4th week of school and the first day of Fall. Your Parent Faculty Club has been busy kicking off the school year and getting ready for many events and activities. I am so impressed with the many parents who have taken the lead in so many different roles - from figuring out how to be an incredible Room Parent to learning how to lead an Art Awareness session to organizing our important fund raisers. Our parents are doing an amazing job of making things happen. Thank you! It is our goal to provide something that appeals to and inspires each person, so you and your children will feel included in and proud to be a part of our community. 

Now that parents are getting settled into the groove of the fall schedule, I’ve had several of you stop me to ask how you can help out at school. There are many ways you can help, from a few hours helping with Picture Day or at Lunch Patrol or helping with Kindergarten stations, to coordinating some of our larger events. Whether you have a few spare hours or even more, there’s always something you can do to contribute to our incredible Walnut Acres Community. Here is a list of options, complete with links so you can easily sign up now…

Daily School Community Needs:

Picture Day Helpers: Next week, Monday and Tuesday, Sept 25 and 26. We need a few more parents to help the photographers at Picture Days. From 8:00 am - noon, you will collect students from the classrooms and then keep them in order and on task while they wait to be photographed. If you help for 3 hours or more, you will get $35 off your photo order. Picture Day Sign Up.

Drive Thru Greeter: Each month, a different grade is responsible for helping at the Drive Thru from 7:40 - 8:00 am.  Click on the links below to sign up for a few days during your month(s):

September - 5th Grade

October - 4th Grade

November - 3rd Grade

December - 2nd Grade

January - 1st Grade

Lunch Patrol: Lunch Patrol/First Aid volunteers are needed Monday thru Friday (except Wednesdays) from 11:20 am -1 pm. During the shifts, every volunteer will help keep children safe in the lunchroom and on the playground.  One of the volunteers will also be asked to help with the First Aid cart.  We ask that each family volunteer for Lunch Duty a minimum of 3 times per school year. For those new to Lunch Patrol/First Aid, click on the sign up link for more information. Lunch Patrol Sign Up.

Rainy Day Helpers: When rainy days (or extra HOT days) come, we depend on parents to help supervise students in the classrooms during lunchtime. This list is for parents who cannot commit to a specific day, but would like to be notified on any day that Lunch Helpers are needed. The office will send a message when parents are needed on a particular day and you can come help if you are available. Rainy Day Sign Up.

Community Service Activities:

Community Service Day: Come support Walnut Creek Community Service Day by helping out at our school on Saturday, October 14, from 9:00 am - noon. All participants must sign up on the City of Walnut Creek's Community Service Day website which includes all the project details and required registration information. This year's Walnut Acres projects are Updating the Landscaping in the Kindergarten/1st Grade classroom area and Repainting the Map and Checkerboard on the Blacktop. If you have landscaping or painting expertise and are available to be a team lead, please contact Courtney at

Toy and Clothing Drive:  each year in December, we hold a Toy and Clothing Drive to collect gently used toys and clothing to donate to another MDUSD elementary school, Shore Acres in Bay Point. If you are cleaning out clothes and toys, please put them aside so you can pass them to other local kids in December.

Community Events:

Walk and Roll to School Day, Wednesday, October 4th is Walnut Acres first Walk & Roll to School Day of the new school year. We will be celebrating National Walk to School Day that day, along with Foothill Middle School. And, for this event, we will be celebrating the completion of the Safe Routes to Schools construction around Walnut Acres and Foothill schools, much of which was accomplished by parents like you voicing their concerns and working with the City of Walnut Creek to make much needed improvements in our walking and biking school routes. If you would like to help with this event, please sign up! Walk and Roll Sign Up.

Community Events that Need Leaders:

Carnival:  As many of you are aware, we are not currently planning to hold our annual Fall Carnival this year. We were unable to find a team to coordinate the carnival, HOWEVER, if there are some parents out there who really want to to make a Fall Community Event happen this year, we do still have Sunday, October 22 open! One idea that has been discussed is a variation on the carnival that includes a Bike Rodeo and a Climbing Wall (we have the contacts for you), as well as a small assortment of some of our other carnival favorites (but without the traditional carney games and bevy of prizes). If leading this type of event appeals to you, and you are available to make it happen in on a short timeline (just 4 weeks!), let us know!  Contact Anna at Wednesday, September 27.

Book Fair: The Book Fair is also off the calendar this year, as we do not have someone to lead it.  But, when the people from Scholastic heard that we needed help, they generously offered to staff the Book Fair for us. They will do all the set up and selling, we just need one parent to be a liaison between Scholastic and the school. This would include coordinating the use of the MUR with our chorus and band instructors, requesting a permit from the district, and making sure the custodial team is prepared for the delivery and removal of the Book Fair items. You would NOT need to be at the book fair every day, nor will you have to recruit a large group of volunteers. If you are this parent and are ready to make the Book Fair happen, please contact Anna by Wednesday, September 27.  The tentative Book Fair dates are November 6 - 9, right before the Readathon which begins on November 13.

Greater Community Conversation Series:

MDUSD invites you to join Dr. Nellie Meyer, MDUSD Superintendent, for a public discussion centered on important topics relevant to Walnut Creek schools. The Community Conversation Series brings together area residents so they can connect with MDUSD leadership and share their insights related to district successes and challenges. Wednesday, September 27 at 6:00 pm on the Walnut Acres MUR.


Thank you again, to everyone who makes our PFC so successful. This year promises to be full of fun and memorable events for everyone!


Jill Ridlehoover

PFC President 2017-18

May 2017 PFC President's Message

posted Sep 13, 2017, 6:04 PM by Vice President Communications

Dear Walnut Acres Families,

My term officially ends this Tuesday, and I am so honored to have had the opportunity to serve as your PFC President these last 2 years.  Over that time, we've built community, brought in new parent leaders, coordinated with our district, and exceeded our fundraising goals.

The Academy Awards last Thursday were a wonderful culminating event, as it was a celebration of teachers, employees, parents and volunteer organizations throughout our district.  Our CUYT drama groups from Walnut Acres and Foothill both performed too!  Here's a photo of our fabulous nominees from Walnut Acres:  


Jane Erdiakoff, Sha Clark, and Megan Zeitler (as well as Chrissie Cattalini, Lauren Lux, and Doug Grebe not pictured here) were all nominated for various teacher award categories, and our wonderful "Mrs. E" was even nominated in TWO categories: Most Inspirational and Lifetime Achievement"!  

Megan Zeitler won for Outstanding Community Involvement for her work at Walnut Acres that she has done while simultaneously volunteering to run a reading program for struggling students at 10 other MDUSD schools.  

Consuelo Sanchez and Amanda Smith were both nominated for Outstanding Classified Employee, and we were so pleased to celebrate their deep commitment and warm relationships with students and families at our school!

Our Walnut Acres PFC was also nominated, as Outstanding Volunteer Organization, and Jill Ridlehoover, Hanna Svensson Grant, and I attended on behalf of our team.


I hope you all can attend our PFC meeting this Tuesday night, where I will pass the gavel over to Jill Ridlehoover and her new PFC team, who are already planning great things for the coming year.  Jill is a natural for the President's role, as she has personally volunteered in so many different ways at our school over the past 4 years.  It is so clear that our community has the passion and drive to come together for students here at Walnut Acres and beyond.  

Have a Happy Mothers Day Weekend, and thank you to each and every one of you who contribute your time, talents, and funds to our community public schools!


Cherise Khaund

PFC President 2015-17

March 23, 2017

posted Mar 23, 2017, 12:01 PM by Vice President Communications

Hi Walnut Acres Parents,

Thank you to those of you who came to our PFC meeting on Tuesday night, and for celebrating our wonderful auction success!  We are in great shape for meeting our fundraising goals for the remainder of the school year.  

We are now focused on finding the incredible volunteers who are going to help us have a successful year -  next year.  There are some vital positions open that we need to fill soon, before we finalize our 2017-18 budget.  

  • Treasurer (or Financial Secretary)
  • Online Auction (Lead, Parent Buy-In Coordinator) - plus LIVE auction can happen if a full team comes together
  • Carnival

The Deadline to fill these important roles is Tuesday, April 11th!  Since these roles are linked to our budget, if they remain unfulfilled, we will need to discuss budget cuts at our April PFC Meeting.  See the full list of nominations and open positions here.  All nominees will be voted in at our May PFC meeting, along with the budget for the 2017-18 school year.  

Attached is a rough draft budget that was handed out at the March PFC Meeting. This will give you an idea of how much funding we must cut for any unfilled position, as we cannot budget for any Fundraisers with open positions. (Note that Carnival and Auction have line items under both Income and Expenses.)

If you are interested or have ideas of who may be perfect for these roles, please talk to a current Executive Committee member or contact me directly at

More details about the key positions can be found at the end of this message.

Thank you all for everything you do for our school. Your commitment is what makes our community such a wonderful place for our kids to grow up!  

In gratitude,

Cherise Khaund

PFC President 2015-17


In order for the PFC to continue funding vital services like our Reading Specialist, Teachers' Aides, Science Lab, Performing Arts, Technology, and more, we need to know how much money we will be able to raise next year.  In order to raise those funds, we need leaders and/or teams of leaders to take on some of our most vital fundraisers...  

Do you have financial and/or business experience that you'd like to share? There are three financial positions on the PFC Executive Committee - Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and Financial Secretary. Right now,  two of those positions are filled.  However, one of those volunteers is willing to take on either Treasurer or Financial Secretary, depending on what YOU would like to do.  If you like strategic planning and creating budgets, Treasurer is your job.  But, if you'd prefer to collect the money from our fundraising events, post it to the proper ledgers, and deposit it in the bank, then Financial Secretary is for you. The Treasurer needs to represent the financial team at monthly PFC Executive and General Meetings, whereas the Financial Secretary should attend, but availability for meetings is not a deal-breaker! Neither role requires a CPA. 

Either one is available - which do you prefer?


Did you like the Online Auction this year?  Did you miss the Live Auction? If you love the time-honored tradition that is the Walnut Acres Auction, we need you! Whether it is live or online-only, the WA Auction is most do-able if there is a small army of parents taking on the many different jobs. Some of the primary roles are filled (Donations Co-Leads, Kids Buy-In Party Coordinator, and Teacher Treats Coordinator) but two key positions, Auction Lead(s) and Parent Buy-In Party Coordinator,are still open.  The Auction Lead(s) oversee the overall Auction planning and execution.  The Parent Buy-In Party Coordinator will work with several different groups of parents who offer to host parties at their homes or other locations, such as the Annual Wine Walk or the Halloween Bash.  

In addition, if the Auction Team decides to hold a Live Auction, they will have the opportunity to plan the event from the ground up - from theme/logo and decorations, to menu and music, to hiring an auctioneer and securing a location, etc.  Luckily, the past Auction planners have taken excellent notes and some are still available on campus to offer guidance, support and lessons learned. But, we cannot commit our PFC budget to a Live Auction without a fully staffed team.

Are you ready to gather your group of friends and tackle next year's Auction?


Do you LOVE the Carnival?  We would hate for our kids miss out on our annual Fall Carnival, but we need a team of parents to make it happen. You and a few of your trusted friends can team up to take on the carnival.  You wouldn't be planning from scratch - some of the leaders of past carnivals are available to share their expertise and have made lots of notes including a timeline, vendors, a budget, and jobs that need to be filled on the day of the carnival. This is a great event for a team that is willing and able to do a lot of work during the first few months of the school year. But once it's over, it's over! The tentative date of the 2017 Carnival is Sunday, October 22.

January 2017 - Happy New Year!

posted Feb 8, 2017, 9:40 AM by Vice President Communications   [ updated Feb 8, 2017, 9:42 AM ]

Dear Walnut Acres parents,
Time sure flies.  My 2nd and final year as your PFC President is already halfway over! It has been such a joy to build community here with so many of you...
We want to make sure that all our wonderful PFC fundraisers and activities are in good hands to continue successfully next year, and so now is the time to tell us what YOU are interested in. 
Please take a minute right now to click through this short survey:, to help us match your interests and skills with the ideal role for 2017-18. This doesn't commit you to a role, it just gives us a starting point for conversations, so click on anything that you may consider.  You can nominate others for positions there too!  
Our Nominating Committee will meet soon, and the more voices at that table we have, the more representation we'll get on our PFC across grade levels.  Just check YES on the survey to join the Nominating Committee, or let me know, and we'll set a meeting date during the school day or in the evening based on the group's availability.
We're attempting a transparent nominations process this year online, so click here to see the status of all positions.  Thank you to those who have already accepted nominations for leadership roles!  This list shows who is continuing in a role, who has been nominated so far, and which roles are completely open.  More than one person can be nominated for any role, and we'll add names as we receive them.
Your volunteerism is what creates more opportunities for our kids here at Walnut Acres, and it's a fun way to get to know other parents, too. There are even roles that can work for the schedule of those who work full-time.  Please respond ASAP to our interest survey.
Thank you for all that you do to make Walnut Acres a warm and welcoming community!

Cherise Khaund
PFC President 2015-17

Nov 2016 - Thankful for Community Building

posted Nov 28, 2016, 12:45 PM by PFC President

Dear Walnut Acres Families,

As we enter the winter holiday season, I have been reflecting on how much community means to us.  From creating connections within your child's classroom, to organizing schoolwide events like Readathon and Buy-In Parties, to sharing with a school across our district in Bay Point, each of you make such a difference in our community.  I am so thankful to be among you!

Here are some wonderful opportunities for you to connect with our community now:

  • Read-a-thonReturn envelopes to students' classrooms by this Wednesday, Nov 30th.
  • Hour of Code:   December 5 - 9th, volunteer during your child's grade level hour.
  • PFC Holiday Party: December 6th, 7-9:30pm - celebrate with us!
  • Toy & Clothing Drive: December 5 - 9th - volunteer on site and/or driving items to Shore Acres Elementary.
  • MDUSD HOPE - sponsor homeless/foster families for the holiday - let's finish the list!

And, YOU can be a part of building community right here at Walnut Acres for the coming school year.  We need a Nominations Chair (or two), to lead a committee to help recruit and place PFC Board positions for next year.  With members from each grade level, the committee helps to match parent interests and talents with each of the open Board positions.  They meet in January-March, with a goal of filling all positions by the end of March.  Please let me know if you may be interested in joining the Nominations committee.  It's a great way to discover and connect the talents of our parents to the roles they can play in leading our next PFC team.

Also, please give a warm welcome to our new VP of Communications, Jill Ridlehoover!  Jill was voted in at our last PFC meeting, to replace Kristin Shopp who recently moved to London.  Jill has stellar experience and skills for this role, as she already writes our eNews, is a room parent, and is running our Read-a-thon.  Thank you so much, Jill, for contributing your time and talents!

Parent-Teacher conferences Dec 5-16th are a crucial way to connect with your child's teacher, so please remember to sign up.  The short days of school during those last few weeks are designed to create the space and time for teachers to meet with each of us parents, to ensure a strong partnership together in the education of our kids.

Finally, I look forward to celebrating our accomplishments with all of you at our PFC Holiday Party.  May your families enjoy this holiday giving season, spreading love and community near and far.


Cherise Khaund

PFC President 2015-17

p.s. shopping for Cyber-Monday Click here for our PFC Amazon link that gives a % back to Walnut Acres!

August 2016

posted Aug 5, 2016, 11:47 AM by Vice President Communications

Greetings Walnut Acres families! 
I want to welcome you to the Walnut Acres Parent Faculty Committee (PFC).  As a parent of a child at Walnut Acres, you are automatically considered a member of the PFC.  The Walnut Acres PFC is dedicated to supporting the relationship between faculty, staff, and parents through fundraising, community activities, enrichment programs and communication.
The new school year is fast approaching and our volunteers have been busy planning for the 2016-17 school year!  I invite all of you to attend our first PFC meeting of the school year onAugust 16th at 7 pm in the Walnut Acres MUR.   This is a great place for questions, suggestions, and comments to be addressed as our wonderful principal Dr. Dowd always attends.  
Our New Parent Orientation begins at 6pm right before, enabling new parents to stay for the PFC meeting as well.
Don't miss Jaguar Day on August 18th, 3-7pm! There you can get your child’s class assignment, purchase spirit wear and yearbooks, pick up pre-ordered school supplies, sign up to volunteer, and donate to our Jaguar Fund.
We are proud to continue to acknowledge in our published Donor List those families who contribute any amount to the Jaguar Fund, the Walnut Acres education fund. 100% of the Jaguar Fund donations pay for teacher aides, computers, music, art supplies, reading specialist and more.
On Friday, August 19th we hold a new student orientation for grades 1-5.  Bring a brown bag lunch to enjoy while meeting students from your grade who will show you around!
And finally, on the first day of school August 22nd, parents are invited to our Back to School Coffee by the picnic tables after dropping your kids off.
Here's some more key information to get you ready for school:
  • Communication via Konstella - Konstella is our online parent directory, where we also list all announcements, events and signups all in one convenient place.  I highly recommend using their free mobile app!    Most people have been invited to Konstella, but please be sure to add Directory details (don't forget your spouse and other caregivers) and you can add your child's classroom when you find out on Jaguar Day.  (our enews summary messages will be sent this way from now on, so there's no longer a separate list to sign up for) .   Questions?  Contact Adam at
  • For returning parents, you'll notice some new things this year:
    • There will be no Live Auction "gala" event.  We will still have our Online Auction, focused on Buy-in Parties and Teacher Treats.   Look for party signups at Carnival!
    • Our Jaguar Fund ask will be $650 per student.  This is a voluntary contribution, and remember that there's no need to carve out $ in your budget for a Live Auction event this year.  
    • Readathon and Book Fair will be held in the fall, just in time for holiday shopping.
    • We are adding Walkathon in spring 2017!  Thanks to Tracy Pajer and Brooke Giddings for leading the way for this new fundraiser that will focus on exercise and healthy lifestyles.
Thank you and enjoy the last few weeks of summer vacation!
Cherise Khaund
PFC President 2015-17

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