Lietz HSC February Newsletter


Darkness cannot drive out darkness;
Only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate;
Only love can do that.
– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dear Lietz families,

The past year has been full of experiences that most of us could never have imagined. We are living through a global pandemic; most of our children have not stepped foot on their school campus for nearly a year. We have witnessed political division, racial injustice, and wildfires that turned our blue sky orange. For so many unimaginable reasons, this past year has kept us home. If we reflect on the silver lining, I hope that this time has gifted you and your families with memories that will outweigh the struggles. I hope that your children continue to learn that compassion and care for one another, for our country and our world, is the driving spirit that will help us overcome and make things better for all in the days and years to come.

Our Lietz community has surely been gifted by the commitment and care of our teachers and staff, who – on a daily basis – pave an uncharted path for our children to learn and connect. This month, we recognize and celebrate our amazing second team, Katherine Barbin, Annemarie Guido, Anna Livermore, Katie Spencer (2/3), and Kristen Wilson. Thank you to each of them for carving out extra time to help us get to know you better!

USD Superintendent Denise Coleman recently announced that our district intends to align with the Governor’s Safe Schools for All plan and reopen to our youngest students, TK through second grade, on February 22, while continuing to offer distance learning to those who choose that option. I know that many of us are struggling with this decision. Whatever you decide is best for your child and your family, I hope that we can move forward with respect, support, and cooperation. To stay informed, please join the USD Board of Trustees meeting on Monday, February 8 at 6pm. Lietz Principal Sandy Lopez holds weekly office hours on Zoom on Thursdays at noon, which offers time for our Lietz community to gather information and ask questions.

I opened this letter with one of my favorite quotes from Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. This month, as we celebrate Black History Month, I hope that we all find time to learn and reflect on the experience, struggles, contributions, and achievements of African Americans. Project Cornerstone has created a list of resources to foster important conversations with our children around racial tension and injustice. 

Our next HSC General Meeting will be held on Wednesday, February 24 at 7pm. We have just four meetings left this school year, and so much to be done! Please join us and see how you can get involved. Even if you are not able to volunteer additional time, we truly appreciate your voice and your feedback…and it is simply nice to see your faces, even if it has to be on Zoom.

Until then, please take care of yourself and one another.

Wishing you light and love,



A Staff Appreciation Initiative

One of the things that many of our children miss most about being at school is our teachers. They are missing their visits to past years’ teachers and we are all looking forward to the day that they can sit in their classroom, getting to know their current teacher beyond the screen of their chromebooks. We asked our teachers to share a bit about themselves – some of their favorite things, what they love and, maybe find challenging, about teaching, how they like to spend their free time, where they like to shop for themselves – helping to build the connection between home and school. This month, we are so excited to introduce our Second Grade team!

Kelli Martines | Staff Appreciation Lead   


Tell us a little about yourself….

I feel so honored to be teaching at the amazing school that I gained my passion for learning from as a student. Lietz holds a very special place in my heart. I love being a part of this community and district. I am very passionate about utilizing innovation, creativity, and a growth mindset in the classroom. This is my 6th year teaching 2nd Grade.

I am so proud of the strength and resilience our students and families have demonstrated as we’ve navigated the challenges of online learning together. I can’t wait for the day that I get to be back in my wonderful classroom enjoying the numerous small moments connecting with my students.

What would we find you doing on your ideal weekend?

When I’m not teaching, I love to go to the beach, ride my bike, go surfing, or get cozy and read a book. I truly enjoy working with kids and cannot believe how fortunate I am to be able to share my passion for learning with amazing kiddos every day!

Where are your favorite places to shop?

Favorite places to shop: Amazon, Nordstrom Rack and Trader Joes


Tell us a little about yourself… My name is Annemarie Guido and this is my second year teaching. I’ve been extremely lucky to start my teaching career here at Lietz. I’ve learned from the best staff and taught the best students. I taught 1st grade last year and am teaching 2nd grade this year.

I’ve been so blessed to be able to have some of my students from last year for a second time! My greatest joy as a teacher has been connecting with my students and their families. This has been particularity amazing during online learning— our ability to create meaningful relationships through the screen has brought me so much happiness and encouragement.

What would we find you doing on your ideal weekend?

On the weekends, you can likely find me on a hike or spending time with my family. Family is everything!



Tell us a little about yourself…

This is my 2nd year teaching 2nd grade at Lietz. I was a student at Lietz many years ago, and it was always my dream to return to the wonderful Lietz community. I LOVE being a teacher! My greatest joy as a teacher is seeing children embrace a growth mindset and tackle challenges with the belief that they can learn anything they put their minds to.

I love celebrating their growth and watching their excitement for learning. The greatest challenge this year is missing my students, friends, and community. I miss being in the classroom so much and can’t wait to return.

What would we find you doing on your ideal weekend?

My ideal weekend would be spent camping or spending time in the mountains with my family, reading a good book, and relaxing.

Where are your favorite places to shop?

Favorite places to shop: Amazon and Target


Tell us a little about yourself…

I adore my family, especially my spunky daughter and happy son. As a teacher, my greatest joy is getting to know the students and having fun with them. Children are silly, smart, and resilient. They have taught me so many life lessons so far in my career.

What would we find you doing on your ideal weekend?

My ideal weekend is morning snuggles with the family, spending time outdoors together, working in my garden, and ending the day eating a delicious meal with my husband.

Where are your favorite places to shop?

I love shopping at Nordstrom, TjMaxx, and Amazon.


Tell us a little about yourself…

This is my 19th year teaching! I have been so blessed to work all 19 years at Lietz in 2nd grade! My husband is a teacher too. He teaches math and science at Union Middle School. We have two wonderful daughters, Makayla (17) and Taylor (13). I absolutely love teaching 2nd grade! It is so rewarding to see my students grow and blossom. By the end of second grade, they are all independent big kids!  They are inquisitive, independent thinkers, and problem solvers! I also love how they make me smile and laugh every day!

What would we find you doing on your ideal weekend?

My ideal weekend would be hanging out on a beach in Santa Cruz, hiking in Lassen National Park, or stand-up paddleboarding on Lake Almanor.

Where are your favorite places to shop?

Since I love the outdoors, I love to shop at REI or Bass Pro.

This month grades 1-5 read “When Sophie Gets Angry- Really, Really Angry” by Molly Bang. This book is a classic and focuses on strategies to regulate anger. During the pandemic we are all feeling a bit more frustrated and noticing shorter  uses, so the timing of this reading couldn’t be better. Our readers taught the students how to recognize their anger, validate it for themselves and calm themselves down. Strategies to try at home include deep breathing, removing themselves from the situation to go relax and talking to a trusted adult. To keep the lesson going at home, parents and caregivers can practice belly breathing with their children when they are NOT upset, so that they can master the skill and use it when they are upset. Anger is a normal emotion and it is important to recognize our anger cannot hurt anyone, only our actions can.

Children in kindergarten listened to the story “Cool Down and Work Through Anger,” by Cheri G Meiners. This book helps children recognize feelings of anger, express them, and build skills for coping in helpful ways. Students learned specific tools to use to work through their feelings of frustration and anger helping them to cool down and work through these emotions. When your child has big feelings, such as anger or rage, it is important to validate these feelings and help your child to express them in a healthy way. Using a picture chart of feelings or a calm down corner where your child can go when they are upset are just a few ways to help your child learn how to recognize, understand and gain control of their emotions. 

For more emotional management strategies, please visit:

Project Cornerstone consists of an amazing group of dedicated volunteers from the Lietz Community. We enter the classrooms to teach socio-emotional skills to the students through a carefully crafted curriculum. If you are interested in joining our team, our next meeting is March 1 at 7pm via Zoom. We are looking for more volunteers for grades 3 and 5.

For more information, please contact Sarah Rizvi at

Thanks to our amazing team of docents, Art Vistas is ready to head into the second half of this year’s lessons. Coordinating with our teachers has enabled us to enjoy many wonderful Zoom lessons with students. We’re so gratified to see that our Lietz Lions remain enthusiastic participants online, whether learning new art concepts during print lessons or sharing the new projects they have created! Classes should be ready to start Set D by the beginning of February.
Looking for a fun option to celebrate special occasions online? Check out the Zoom painting party option at Art Vistas for Good! All proceeds support the Art Vistas program in the Union School District. Find the paint party and work from community artists at:
Rebekah Frederickson (K-1)
Caitlin Samenfeld-Specht (2-3)
Priya Vartak (4-5)


Happy February Lions!
It’s the month of LOVE! Show love for our school with Box Tops labels. 
Each unexpired label submitted equals $0.10 for our Lietz.
Just clip OR scan them.
We HEART Lietz!

SoYun Kim | Box Tops for Education Lead

Chef’s Night Out

Chef Vectors by Vecteezy

We are delighted to present two upcoming. Chef’s Night (Day) Out!

Erik’s DeliCafe (Branham Square)

Feb 25, Thursday, Time to be updated here as well as notified via email

4611 Almaden Expressway
San Jose California 95118
United States


Mountain Mike’s Pizza (Los Gatos)

March 10, Wednesday, 11am – 9pm

14080 Blossom Hill Road 

408-212-7800 11am-9pm
20% Goes to Lietz HSC

(Not applicable for online orders)



Jessica Steed | Chef’s Night Out Lead





We have partnered with Farm Fresh To You, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) produce and artisanal farm products delivery service. You can subscribe and receive fresh, organic produce conveniently delivered right to your home or office while earning 10% for Lietz HSC! Please use code “LIETZHSC”. If you an existing member you can add the code to your account. New members can add it when they purchase the subscription.

Mathieu Olivari | Lead, Farm Fresh to You


Volunteering opportunities

Current Volunteer Sign-up Sheets

No sheets currently available at this time.

Please login to view and edit your volunteer sign ups.


Are you thinking of starting a new program that would benefit the Lietz community? If so, please head to our website to complete and submit a simple Program Proposal Form.

We will work with you to make it a reality!


If your company is giving you money to give it to your favorite organization, please consider giving it to HSC either for General Donation or for Staff Appreciation. Or if you are planning to donate money, please check if your company matches the contribution. Please visit the Donate! page for making donation


February 24, Wednesday, 7pm, HSC General Meeting

March 1, Monday, 7pm, Project Cornerstone 

To find all the HSC events, go to the Events page here. To have always up-to-date HSC events directly on your phone, tablet or computer, just Subscribe to the calendar feed.


Contact US

Please use this link to find information to contact your HSC board. Please note that now HSC newsletter is only delivered digitally on the HSC website.