Scripps Ranch High School (SRHS)

Principal’s Message

Happy holidays, Falcon families! We have so much to be thankful for here at Scripps Ranch High School (SRHS). Over the past month our staff, students, and community members have come together to support our efforts for a garden near the new 900 building, the implementation of our very first “Falcon Day,” and more College and Career events for all students to attend. SRHS is a great place to be because everyone comes together to make things happen!

Speaking of new events, we will host a special day for Marshall Middle School (MMS) 8th graders on Monday, Dec. 17. MMS students will visit our campus from 10 am to noon to learn all about what it means to be a Falcon. Our counselors will give out course selection information, SRHS students will lead “SRHS 101” sessions, and an Advanced Placement (AP)/Elective Fair will take place in the Quad. We are very excited to welcome the 8th graders to our campus and want them to learn all about becoming a Falcon!

Then, the next day, Tuesday, Dec. 18, we will host our “Falcon Night” for incoming 8th grade families. There will be three different breakout sessions for parents to learn about matriculation from middle school, pathways offered at SRHS, and campus tours. The evening festivities begin at 5 pm in the gym. We hope to see you there!

For all the latest information, be sure to visit our website at Also, we are now on Instagram and Twitter! Follow @srhsfalconpride for updates on school events.

Just a reminder that school will be closed from Monday, Dec. 24, through Friday, Jan. 4. If you have a school-related issue or emergency, please contact School Police. We wish everyone a restful and relaxing holiday season and look forward to having students back on campus on Monday, Jan. 7.

Go Falcons!

Nicole DeWitt, SRHS Principal

Thurgood Marshall Middle School (MMS)

Principal’s Message

Dear Scripps Ranch Families and Community Members,

This upcoming month at Thurgood Marshall Middle School (MMS) has many student performances. I would like to extend an invitation to you to attend our Winter Band, Orchestra, and Choir concerts to see our students’ artistic talents. Our students have worked diligently to master their performances. Please check our website for dates and times of the events.

I want to thank all families and community members who donated, and continue to donate, to MMS. Your contributions support our instructional program and have purchased:

  • Classroom materials such as books, magazines, and journals
  • Classroom library resources
  • Computer equipment
  • Software programs
  • Essential supplies and materials
  • Art supplies
  • Medical supplies

This past October our final school budget was realized for the 2018–2019 school year. As you know, staffing allocations are based upon total school enrollment. We were projected to have 1,510 students at MMS this year. Unfortunately, our current enrollment is 1,491.

The unexpected decline resulted in a loss of .6 of a teaching position. In other words, we had to readjust our course offerings to accommodate this staffing loss. The following factors drove our readjustment of course offerings:

  • We limited the number of students impacted by schedule changes
  • We limited the number of staff members impacted
  • We honored the instructional supports we have put in place
  • We identified classes with low enrollment
  • We honored class-size limits

The result led to:

  • One staff member volunteering to reduce their position by .2
  • Dissolution of two art classes—Advanced Art and Art 7/8—with low enrollment, a .4 reduction

These decisions were very difficult. I shared this information with the affected students and parents as soon as it was certain this was the course of action.

Although two art classes were dissolved we still have a strong art program, with six art classes. As we move forward, we will continue to provide a wide variety of electives for students, which will include the visual and performing arts, technology, community service, and foreign language.

On behalf of MMS I wish you and your family a restful winter vacation! We look forward to continue working with our students and families on Monday, Jan. 7.

Michelle Irwin, MMS Principal

MMS Calendar

  • Wednesday, Dec. 5—School Site Council/Site Governance Team meetings, 5 pm, MMS Community Room; Four-Year Planning Conference, 6 pm, Multipurpose Room
  • Wednesday–Thursday, Dec. 12–13 —Band/Orchestra Concerts, 7 pm
  • Friday, Dec. 14—ASB Dance
  • Wednesday–Thursday, Dec. 19–20 —Choir Concert, 6 pm
  • Monday, Dec. 24, through Friday, Jan. 4—Winter break, no school
  • Monday, Jan. 7—School resumes, happy New Year!

SRHS Falcon Day

This year 8th grade students will get the opportunity to be a Falcon for the day on Monday, Dec. 17. Students will be bussed to SRHS from Marshall, chaperoned by their teachers and counselors. Students will tour campus, participate in matriculation activities with the high school counselors, and learn all about the exciting opportunities SRHS has to offer!

SRHS Falcon Parent Night

Prospective parents for 2019–2020, come hear all about SRHS from students, teachers, counselors, and administrators. Get all your questions answered at this informative meeting scheduled for:

  • Tuesday, Dec. 18, 5–7 pm
  • Scripps Ranch High School

Homework Zone

Students may come by to get homework help from one of our MMS teachers on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2:25 to 3:25 pm in our Homework Zone. It is located in Room B204 with Mrs. Ingles on Tuesdays, and in Room B206 with Mr. Wright on Thursdays. All are welcome!

Service Projects Needed

In order to find our place in the world and to understand how each person can make the world a better place, 7th graders in Ms. Converse-Rath’s social studies classes are out to “Change the World.” We are interested in projects that can make a difference in our community, state, country, or world. If you need volunteers just one time or on an ongoing basis, please contact Cheryl Converse-Rath at [email protected]

Instrumental Music Program

The MMS Instrumental Music program invites everyone to the annual Winter Concerts! The Winter Band Concert is on Wednesday, Dec. 12, and the Winter Orchestra Concert is on Thursday, Dec. 13. Both begin at 7 pm in the Michelle Irwin Theater for the Performing Arts.

Each concert will feature holiday music! Admission is free, but bring some cash to purchase concessions in support of the program. We hope to see you there!

Dingeman Elementary

From Our Principal

Dear Dingeman Families and Community,

Our Dingeman Tigers are taking the lead at school and in our community. At our Tiger Rally in November, students led our Tigers to show their thanks and appreciation for our veterans. Scripps Ranch Cub Scout Pack 616 helped us honor our namesake, Colonel Robert Dingeman (pictured at right). Thank you, Bob and all veterans, for your service to our country and community!

Our newly elected Student Council launched a writing campaign with a goal to write “thank yous” to hundreds of veterans. The Green Team is working to reduce trash at lunch with Trashless Tuesdays, and recycling with pick up at the end of the day. Students also are collecting food for our local food bank. In addition, every day playground games leaders and our Safety Patrol lead others to maintain a positive and safe school environment.

Our last day before Winter Break is Friday, Dec. 21, which will be a minimum day with a 12:20 pm dismissal. School resumes on Monday, Jan. 7. Have a wonderful break!

Maria Montgomery, Dingeman Principal

Thank You, Donors and Volunteers!

It’s hard to believe we are nearing the end of 2018, but the school year has been busy with Art Corps, STEAM, Family Science Nights, and much more. These enrichment programs are only possible through the funding support of the Family Faculty Connection (FFC) and parent volunteers. We would like to extend a warm thank you to our generous Dingeman families and friends who participated in this year’s Pledge Drive. Without your support, we would not be able to offer our children these stimulating programs in and out of the classroom.

As the holidays get closer, we all get busier, but let’s not forget to give back to the community. This month we will hold a Community Food Drive and encourage all students and community members to bring in non-perishable foods to help those in need. The Food Drive ends on Wednesday, Dec. 19. All of the food collected will be donated to the San Diego Food Bank.

In December there are several opportunities for Dingeman families to enjoy time with one another. Here are some dates for holiday fun!

  • Thursday, Dec. 6—3rd Grade Family Science Night
  • Monday, Dec. 10—Scholastic Book Fair starts
  • Thursday, Dec. 13—Family Dinner Night and Holiday Book Fair at Dingeman

Have a wonderful winter break!

Nilesh Patel, FFC President

Karen Holt

A Night of Musical Magic

Fourth and 5th graders from Mr. Saguil’s and Ms. Morioka’s seminar classes will present a performance of Night at the Wax Museum, a story of what happens to wax statues after the lights go out. The musical is filled with catchy songs, crazy antics, and historical figures that magically come alive and interact with the unfortunate students who volunteer at Cultully Museum.

King Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn, Blackbeard, Cleopatra, Pancho Villa, and Calamity Jane are just a few of the famous people who come alive to dance and sing. “This year, it’s a mix of history and fun,” said 5th grader Sargini Sudarsan, who plays Ivy Sweet in the play. “You learn about history in an indirect way.”

The community is invited! Join us on Wednesday, Dec. 19, at 7 pm in the Dingeman Multipurpose Room. It’s free and donations are welcome. Visit for more details.

Ellen Browning Scripps Elementary

From Our Principal

Dear EBS Families and Community Members,

The holidays are a time to give to those who most need our help. We had many activities in this season of giving that allowed our students and families the opportunity to show their caring generosity. We donated about 100 costumes, leftover from our Costume Boutique, to an elementary school in a neighborhood that has more need. The costumes were donated just in time for Halloween. One immigrant student had never celebrated Halloween before and the costume from EBS was his first ever!

We also collected Halloween candy for the troops. Scripps Pediatric Dentistry sponsored our candy buy back by donating $1 per pound to EBS. We collected 20 large boxes! The troops will be happy to get a special treat and our parents are happy to get that candy out of the house!

We also held a Food Drive for the San Diego Food Bank. Thank you to all our families for donating food from their pantry to those in need. Last but not least, we donated all of our unclaimed “Lost and Found” items to our sister school in a low-income neighborhood. Thank you to our parent volunteers who made all these acts of kindness and generosity possible.

The SRCA Newsletter highlights EBS this month! Check out pages 28 and 29 to find out more about our amazing and award-winning school. Happy holidays!

Liz Sloan, EBS Principal

Exciting Events

Happy holidays from the EBS Academic Fundraising Partnership (AFP)! We look forward to our choir performing with Barry Manilow at his Christmas concert at Viejas Arena on Thursday, Dec. 13.

There were a lot of exciting events at EBS recently, which would not have been possible without our amazing volunteers.

  • Fall Festival—thank you to Leyla Leatherwood, Reena Dayal, and Neesha Desai
  • Book Fair—thank you to Sujata Ramchandran and Melissa Perkins
  • First Annual Penguin Holiday Shop—thank you to Nina Jacobs, Nina Salinas, and Gail Faber
  • Half-Day Teacher Conference Camp—thank you to Dave Perkins and Gail Faber
  • The second session of After-School Enrichment Classes was a huge success with 360 kids—thank you to Dave Perkins and Gail Faber
  • Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive—thank you to Andrea Fodera

Enjoy the winter break, Penguins!

Gail Faber, EBS AFP President

Jerabek Elementary

From Our Principal

It has been an exciting first couple of months at Jerabek! The staff, students, parents, and community members have made me feel so welcome. Thank you! Check out the picture above to see how the Jerabek staff celebrated Halloween!

In November many of our 4th graders turned into forensic scientists at the 4th Grade Science Night. They investigated the mystery of who removed items from our school. It was a good turnout of students and parents.

We also hosted our 5th Grade Family Math Night. The Jerabek team is so grateful to our Family Faculty Organization (FFO) that funds our evening enrichment programs.

Recently, I had the honor to participate in the writing celebrations with two of our 3rd grade classes. It was inspiring to see the students’ writing progress thus far.

After Thanksgiving break, our entire student body started weekly rotations in the STEM Lab/Maker Space rooms. Thanks to parents Terra Norine, Robyn Ise, Kelly Melancon, and staff members who have been huge supporters of the process. We are thankful for your dedication of time and resources that are greatly appreciated.

Have a wonderful winter break! See you back at school on Monday, Jan. 7!

Angelia (Niecy) Watkins, Jerabek Principal

We Couldn’t Do It Without You!

In this season of giving and gratitude we are thankful for our generous volunteers and donors. FFO secretary and STEM co-chair, Robyn Ise, has worked for more than a year to create the new STEM lab. Her employer, TargetCW, was so inspired by her work that they made a very generous $36,000 donation to support the STEM lab. We send a huge thank you to the CEO of TargetCW! We’re thankful for your support of our school and our new learning space.

This past month the FFO funded two Family Art Nights, where adults and children create memories and artwork that will last a lifetime. An Art Corps workshop volunteer led each project and participants took home their masterpieces.

In December we will hold a Used Book Sale at the school library. This is a great opportunity to clear out your bookshelf to make room for new books!

Kristy Reeser

Miramar Ranch Elementary

Spotlight on the 3rd Grade

Our 3rd grade Hawks have had a blast through experiential learning. All MRE 3rd grade classes traveled back in time when they took a field trip to the Poway Park Rendezvous. Students learned a great deal about the early history of California and the United States when they observed butter churning demonstrations, did a bit of gold panning, rode the speeder train around the park, and visited the Poway Heritage Museum. It was hard to tell if students were more fascinated by the old-time school room or by the “ancient” rotary dial telephone that was on exhibit!

Students also visited encampments hosted by local volunteer reenactors who shared stories of cowboys and vaqueros, buffalo soldiers, medicine shows, and the Civil War. Sitting in the big teepee and learning about the relationship between our country’s early mountain men and the Native Americans was especially enlightening!

More recently it was science time for our 3rd graders as they participated in the much anticipated 3rd Grade Science Night. Students and parents experimented with a wide variety of disciplines including ecology, biology, chemistry, physics, and magnetism. Students explored how to create clouds, pull iron out of our cereal, and, of course, made the ever-popular baking soda volcano.

Our amazing new science teachers, Ms. Cox and Ms. Cook, have done a wonderful job this year and the kids could not be happier to have them on their team. Many thanks to them for their hard work, and we look forward to what comes next!

If you have a younger Hawk in TK through 2nd grade, keep your eyes open for your night of experimentation. December is 2nd grade, January is 1st grader, and TK/K get their chance in February.

December Calendar

The Family Faculty Association (FFA) has some fun events planned for this month. Be sure to visit for updates.

  • Monday, Dec. 3–Friday, Dec. 7—Food Drive
  • Thursday, Dec. 6—Restaurant Night, 5–9 pm, Flippin’ Pizza, 10006 Scripps Ranch Boulevard, Suite 102
  • Wednesday, Dec. 12—2nd Grade Family Science Night, 6:30 pm, MRE Multipurpose Room
  • Monday, Dec. 24–Friday, Jan. 4—Winter break, no school
  • Monday, Jan. 7—Winter break ends, back to school

Happy holidays, Scripps Ranch!

Catherine Melis

Innovations Academy

Managing Stress

At Innovations Academy we realize that students must be able to manage their emotions and stress in order to focus on academics. Therefore, we practice mindfulness twice a day in every classroom, which has been scientifically proven to change the brain in a way that supports emotional regulation.

Our school was featured in Forbes magazine on Oct. 26 in an article titled Destress The Classroom: Bringing Mindfulness To Students And Teachers. In the article 4th grade teacher Tori Dahlberg talks about using an app called Calm to teach students about mindfulness. Tori said Innovations implemented mindfulness as part of the social and emotional curriculum about four years ago and staff has noticed that kids are better able to focus, control emotions, and be flexible.

Join Us!

Come learn more about our school and join us for our student performances of The Jungle Book on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday, Dec. 6, 7 or 8, at 6 pm, or enjoy a matinee on Saturday, Dec. 8, at 2 pm.

Also, you are invited to our Exhibition Night on Thursday, Dec. 20, from 5 to 7:30 pm. This is when our students proudly display their projects. For more information about Innovations Academy, visit

St. Gregory the Great Catholic School

The Great Quarter Race

This is the fourth year that St. Gregory the Great Catholic School has partnered with Cross Catholic Outreach in a mission to feed the hungry. We embrace a special service project every year called “The Great Quarter Race.” Students in kindergarten through 8th grade are encouraged to earn quarters throughout the month by doing extra chores at home and encouraging others to donate their pocket change to this cause.

Then our school community focuses on giving rather than receiving. The students assemble by grade level on the promenade outside the library and line their quarters up on the concrete (above). Older students partner with their younger “buddies” and help place and count the quarters. This year our students surpassed last year’s total by 1,000 quarters, raising 7,527 quarters! Each quarter provides a nutrient-packed vitameal for a hungry child.

Students in 3rd grade (below) continued their four-year win streak with a total of 1,510 vitameals. It is our honor and privilege to partner with Cross Catholic Outreach as we continue our mission to be the hands, feet, and heart of Jesus to our brothers and sisters around the world.

Chabad Hebrew Academy

A Winning Team

Chabad Hebrew Academy’s (CHA) football team (above) had a fantastic undefeated season, finishing with 27-0 victory in the last game against another middle school. “The team’s talent, intelligence, and selflessness makes coaching the team a pleasure,” said Coach Greg. “I am very proud to have our only female running back in the entire league, Merav Green, who has done an excellent job. I am so proud to be CHA’s coach.”

The learn more about CHA’s vibrant preschool–8th grade community, please visit