The Parent & Teacher Organization for Louise Van Meter Elementary, Los Gatos, CA

A Letter from HSC President

A Letter from HSC President

Dear Van Meter Families,

The Van Meter Elementary School Home & School Club (H&SC) Board would like to welcome all of you to our school! We are a group of parents volunteering our time because we are passionate about supporting academic, as well as student enrichment, programs in our school community. With your support, we can make this a magical year for all Van Meter children.

Your H&SC supports the education of our children through volunteering, fundraising and communication. The H&SC supports academic excellence by funding innovative teaching tools and programs at the different grade levels, as well as all of the technology you see in the classrooms – iPads in kindergarten through second grade and Chromebooks for the older classes. Furthermore, the H&SC funds and supports enrichment programs like Project Cornerstone, LEGO engineering, Math Olympiad, the Yearbook and our annual Bulldog Players Musical Production. The salaries of the school nurse, PE teachers and librarian are funded by the H&SC.

Community building is also an essential mission of the organization. Every year, the H&SC hosts events such as Family Picnic & Movie Night, Bulldog Stampede, Fun and Field Day, and The Wag, the parent fundraising social, to promote our school community. The H&SC cannot make all of this happen without your support.

We urge you to help make these and other H&SC programs come alive through various donation and volunteer opportunities – both one time events, as well as ongoing commitments. Please consider continuing this rich tradition of participation at Van Meter in whatever capacity you are able.
Sushma Hegde & Nicole Morley
Van Meter H&SC Co-Presidents

Back To School Video 2015

Willow Street Gives Back

Don’t Forget To Download & Take This Flyer With You



Willow Street Wood Fired Pizza and Main Street Burgers “Giving Back Fundraising Program” for local organizations welcomes the participation of friends, family and supporters of:


When: WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11, 2015



Upon presentation of this flyer to your server on the above date and location only, Willow Street Wood Fired Pizza will donate 20% and Main Street

Burgers will donate 15% of your TakeOut or DineIn food and beverage purchases to your organization all day – LUNCH AND DINNER



Cornerstone Update

Project Cornerstone

2014 ushered in Van Meter’s 9th year as a Project Cornerstone “ABC Readers” School. Funded generously by Van Meter HSC, Project Cornerstone:
–  within the school has grown to over 80 parents/guardians reading and teaching character-building lessons to our valued students every month,
– provides weekly contribution to the bulldog beat via Cornerstone Corner, and Mondayschool-wide PA announcements, 
– creates comprehensive PowerPoint-based training tools for volunteers to efficiently prepare and deliver consistent lesson messages and activities,
– communicates bi-directionally with teachers to maximize classroom
– hosts industry-renowned speakers/authors to reinforce asset- building messages.
As we build assets within, Van Meter delivers out to the community with parent/student projects. This season of giving, 60 blankets will be sent to Santa Clara County Foster Infants, that are assembled in Cornerstone Classrooms.  

FunZone comes to Van Meter

Recently, Van Meter launched its Cornerstone extension lunchtime program – FunZone. FunZone offers every student a place where they can feel valued, known and welcomed. Staffed by parent volunteers, the program offers board games, Legos, craft centers, sidewalk chalk and bubbles. Our parent-led drum session and recent cultural arts and crafts fair featuring Rangoli chalk patterns and and poster art were enormously popular and enriching. HSC’s generosity in funding these programs is appreciated. Let’s carry the programs forward by volunteering as a lunchtime “FunVisor.”

Contact for more information on ABC Readers.





This August, Van Meter launched its FunZone program during lunchtime recess.  FunZone is a Cornerstone extension program, staffed by volunteers who set up unstructured games and activities in an area of the playground during lunchtime.  The goal of the FunZone is to offer every student a place where they can feel valued, known and welcomed.

Each Monday, and now Fridays, we are visited by over 75 students between noon and 12:55.  The shaded area of the blacktop is where the children play with legos, make rainbow loom chains, contort themselves in games Twister  and blow bubbles.  Our goal is to have zero children feel lonely on our playground.  Recently we’ve also held our first Drum Zone, an all percussion parent lead activity and celebrated Diwali with Rangoli coloring and elaborate and beautiful chalk patterns on the blacktop.

All of these activities are made possible by the generosity of Van Meter parents.  We have a donation box in the front office and parents have already donated dozens of packages of rainbow loom bands, markers, pipe cleaners, paper, chalk, etc.  We are also exceedingly lucky to have committed parents dedicate an hour a week to serve as FunVisors.  These dedicated parents are making a tremendous difference in the lives of children at Van Meter.

If you would like to see first-hand the FunZone at Van Meter, please email:  You are welcome to come out any Monday or Friday at noon. We are always looking for more FunVisors and would love to meet Principal Raucher’s request that we staff FunZones 4 days a week

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Book Fair – Kirby Larson


Join us on Monday, 11/3 to meet Kirby Larson, author of Hattie Big Sky, The Friendship Doll, and Second Grade Pig Pals, just to name a few titles. She’ll give a brief talk and will autograph books from 6:30 -7:30 in the MPR. Feel free to Contact us.

2014 Pumpkin Patch


2014 Pumpkin Patch

Spooktacular Fall Festival Friday October 24th 5:30pm – 8:30pm

Always a fun family favorite, Pumpkin Patch is a whole school Halloween event with games, prizes, rides, Monsters’ Ball dance party, cake walk, food, and a petting zoo! Order tickets & food now.

Bring water bottles! We are going GREEN! We will not be selling bottled water or soda at the event. We will have ample water stations to refill a water bottle.

Volunteer! Make it happen! This event is not only fun to attend, it is fun to organize and help out. It would not be possible without YOU, the parents. Meet new friends and other parents!

Sponsors & Raffle Donations Needed! You can help by sponsoring the event, underwriting an activity or donating to the raffle!

Family Picnic & Movie Night


Any questions contact 

Fill out my online form.

When: Friday, September 12th, 2014

The event starts at 5:30pm until the movie is over


What: Family Picnic and Movie Night Presents



Where: Van Meter Field

Don’t forget your blanket or chair for the movie

Food Trucks Will Be Available

Click the links to check out these great food choices

Melts My HeartMogo BBQSoulneseScoops



Welcome Back

Dear Van Meter Community,

My name is Elif Starr and I am the 2014-2015 Home and School Club President. Along with our entire Board, I want to welcome all of our returning families and new families, both kindergarten and new to our community, to Van Meter. We are a close knit school and you all play a vital role in our success.

We will be kicking off the school year with a Family Picnic and Movie night on September 12 at 5:30PM! We will be combining two Van Meter traditions into one fun, family friendly event with food trucks, socializing and a movie. Hope to see you all there!

We have many high hopes for the coming year and some changes, too. We welcome our new principal, Rick Rauscher, into the fold. Our Board has some new faces this year and with that some fresh new ideas as well. I feel honored to work with such a dedicated and talented set of Board members that work tirelessly to support all of our children.

This year we want to stress that we need your help – we believe that EVERY DOLLAR COUNTS, and so does EVERY MINUTE YOU SHARE YOURSELF with us. We all want the very best for our children and the only way to achieve that is by actively participating. Historically, our participation rates have been under 20%. It is our goal to have at least 80% of you participating, similar to many of the other schools in our area.

In today’s world reading, writing and math are not enough – each child needs and deserves an enriched educational experience that addresses all aspects of their development. Due to continued reduced state funding and shortfalls from our property taxes, we are one of the lowest funded districts in all of Santa Clara county. Our school CANNOT provide an enriched experience without your support and involvement.

There are two primary ways you can be a part of the solution: fundraising and active volunteering. This year we are simplifying the donation process. You can make your Fall donation, purchase Buzz Books and pre-order Yearbooks in one easy form and payment. I encourage you to attend our Home and School Club meetings – there is no better way to make an impact and have a say in what we implement. All of our volunteer opportunities are listed on our website – they range from committee chairs to once a month lunch helpers. But, the possibilities don’t end there. Each of you has a special talent or expertise that, when shared, enriches our school and allows each and every child to thrive.

Check out our Home and School Club website – we have made some changes to improve your experience. You have access to our school calendar – which you can sync to your own calendar, the Bulldog store with an all new line up of Spirit Wear, meet our new Board members and see a detailed list of the programs we fund and support.
It’s going to be an amazing year!