The Pursuit of Excellence

Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better.

~Pat Riley, NBA Coach

Scripps Ranch High School has focused on the pursuit of excellence since it opened in 1993. This year we celebrate its 20th anniversary, and it’s clear the school has reached a tremendous level of success: the incredible Academic Performance Index (API) score of 900—rare for a high school—and numerous awards.

However, as Pat Riley says in his quote above, they always strive to do even better. After 20 years, the school is finally getting air conditioning in the spring. Students and staff have to survive only one more “hot season” in classrooms that reach dangerous levels of heat.

Special thanks goes to Lee Dulgeroff, the school district’s head of facilities, who has supported the community’s longtime efforts to protect students. While I’d like to say Lee is a friend to Scripps Ranch—he is!—it’s more accurate to say Lee puts all children first. Thanks, Lee!

One more thing about the high school, the entire community is invited to the Homecoming football game on Friday, Sept. 20. More details on the game and what else is being planned at SRHS are on page 15. Go Falcons!

As I’m sure you know, school starts in just days. There are many events at all the schools in the first weeks, so read the Schools section starting on page 27.

It’s not too late to submit your suggestions for possible capital improvement projects for Scripps Ranch. Page 21 has the information. These projects just add to our community’s pursuit of excellence.

Just a heads up…start gathering items you want to get rid of as we plan our Fall Clean-Up Day. Also, there will be free document shredding and a free e-waste event—get rid of unwanted electronics— at SRHS. Details are on page 17.

Do you have an unwanted backpack laying around? If so a Scripps Ranch Girl Scout troop needs it to use for Blessings in a Backpack, a charity that gives food to school children on weekends. Check out page 45. Our young people start early in their pursuit of excellence!

Our Spotlight on Scripps Ranch focuses on a teen who has pursued excellence in the area of dance for years. And she’s achieved it, including roles on screen! Meet Sarina Jassy on page 37.

I hate goodbyes, and this month I have to say farewell to someone who has given so much time to this community for decades. Bob Cavanagh started as a volunteer when his kids were in elementary school. They are now college graduates. His most recent role was the vice president of communications for the Scripps Ranch Civic Association. Bob and his wife moved to New York in August.

Bob always sees the best in people, and is truly one of the kindest, hardest working people you will ever meet. He is a past Scripps Ranch Citizen of the Year, and before he left he was honored with proclamations from both the city and the county. Check out page 5. Bob, while you’re leaving for now, you’ll always be part of the Scripps Ranch family, and maybe you’ll return someday. Thank you for your constant pursuit of excellence and all you’ve given this community.

One of my favorite places to visit is Grace’s Book Nook, our library’s used bookstore. In addition to incredible bargains, the Book Nook also has amazing volunteers. I want to give a shout out—and a thank you—to volunteer Nancy Shea. During a visit, we had a casual chat about a book my son had to read for school.

The next time I visited the Book Nook, —weeks later—Nancy told me she found the book my son had to read and held it, even though I hadn’t asked her to, but eventually had to release it. Then, unbeknownst to me, Nancy went to see if another copy of the book had come in, and it had! Thank you, Nancy, for your pursuit of excellence as you go above and beyond as a volunteer.

Gloria Tran, Editor