22 Dec

What Inspires You?

We all find inspiration in something – often unexpectedly. Shannon Seitz, a member of the LAHS Library staff, found her inspiration recently. Unbeknownst to Shannon, her boss had received a grant from the LAPS Foundation to attend the What’s New in Young Adult Literature Conference, and he wanted Shannon to be the one to go. For Shannon it wasn’t just about selecting new books for the school’s library, rather finding ways to connect with students, supporting teachers’ curriculum, and most importantly helping students and teachers find their own sources of inspiration.

Please make your year-end gift to the LAPS Foundation today so more educators like Shannon, and their students, can find their inspiration.

Your gift of any amount is a worthwhile investment in education. Sending Shannon to the conference cost $400, but the inspiration she gained from it is priceless. Your donation will allow the LAPS Foundation to make these kinds of opportunities available to more educators like Shannon.

Click here to make your tax-deductible gift. Together we can achieve the goal of raising $32,000 for education by December 31, 2017 (we’re 83% of the way there!).

“I’m inspired by people who are passionate about what they do. At the conference, I was surrounded by people – librarians, teachers – who truly love what they do and who shared how they engage students to make them feel welcome in their libraries or inspire them to read in their classrooms.” –Shannon

“Connecting students and staff with books that interest them inspires me. It feels good, being able to make recommendations to students and staff who come in looking for something to read, and then asking what they thought when the book is returned. It opens up dialog, a relationship is built, ideas are shared. It’s one of my favorite aspects of my job.” –Shannon

Check out our What Inspires You? videos!

12 Dec

Meet Our Intern Maddie!

Maddie Ovaska
Currently a Sophomore at LAHS (Class of 2020!)
LAPS Foundation Intern

What’s a typical day like at LAHS in 2017?
Well, we start school at 7:50 am and finish at 2:35 pm. We have A and B days, with four classes each day: 1A, 2A, 3A and the same for B days. 4th period is the same class every day. That way the classes are longer – 1.5 hours each – except for 4th period which is 50 minutes. At lunch, my friends and I like to sit out on the lawn when the weather is nice, or we sit inside at the Commons area. Lunch is also a time when a lot of clubs meet. After school ends at 2:30 pm, we have Academic Time, which lasts until 3:10 pm. This is a time for us to get help from teachers or work on homework.

What’s new at LAHS since you started last year?
Last year they started Topper Freshman Academy, which is like a separate school with its own principal. The freshmen take all their classes in E-Wing except for electives. It’s a way for them to get acclimated to high school. Also new this year is that all students 7th-12th grades are issued a Chromebook for school. Last year they piloted it with the freshmen, so I was one of the ones who got to test it out. We bring them to school every day, and I personally use it a lot for my schoolwork.

In what activities do you participate?
I’m in the Cross Country, Swim, and Tennis teams. I’m also involved in a number of clubs including Student Council, Natural Helpers, and Bridges (a program where students eat lunch with students who have special needs).

What are your favorite classes this year?
I like Honors English, which is not usually my strength, but my teacher Ms. Pomeroy is really great. We have long discussions over books we read in class. I also enjoy Math with Ms. Wilson, she makes math exciting and a great environment to be in. I have my math class during 4th period, so I get to attend the class every day.

Any ideas of what you’ll do after graduating LAHS?
I’d really love to attend the University of Wisconsin and study Physical Therapy. Both of my parents attended University there along with their friends. Their children and I have become very close, we go back twice a year to visit them and visit the University of Wisconsin to watch Football, Basketball, or Hockey games. I have become interested in Physical Therapy after my father had a horrible ski crash where he shattered his leg. After seeing every aspect of hospital positions, I discovered physical therapy was my favorite place to be. I volunteer at the hospital with their program, and under my mentor I help many people recover.

20 Nov

What’s Your Wonder?

Wonder is all around us this time of year. We want to share with you the wonder that your gifts to the LAPS Foundation make possible. In this case, it’s the wonder of students like Zoey and her 5th grade friends at Chamisa. They received copies of the book Wonder, about a boy with a facial deformity and how his peers initially perceive him. Ultimately he makes new friends and accepts himself for who he is. It’s a truly inspiring story that the students are excited to experience.

Please make your year-end gift to the LAPS Foundation today so more students like Zoey, in all grades Pre K – 12th, can find their wonder.

Your donation of any amount makes a difference – $20 buys a book similar to Wonder for kids like Zoey, $100 provides online learning tools, $500 covers hardware and fixtures for a classroom refresh, and $1000 sends a teacher to a national conference or funds an artist in residence for 2 months.

Click here to make your tax-deductible donation today!

Thank you so much for considering this investment in education. Together we’re ensuring brighter futures for all LAPS students. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with your questions or ideas.

P.S. In the book Wonder, Auggie’s teacher Mr. Tushman says “The best way to measure how much you’ve grown isn’t by inches or the number of laps you can now run around the track, or even your grade point average–though those things are important, to be sure. It’s what you’ve done with your time, how you’ve chosen to spend your days and whom you’ve touched this year. That, to me, is the greatest measure of success.” In the spirit of these wise words, please make a donation to LAPS Foundation and help us reach our goal of $32,000 by December 31!

30 Oct

Thank you Los Alamos!

We couldn’t be happier with how this year’s Taste of Knowledge turned out. 150 people packed the sold-out event, which featured Spanish tapas and wine, folkloric and ballet dance performances, and live jazz music. By night’s end, we had raised an unbelievable $23,700 for Los Alamos Public Schools! For that, the Board and staff of the LAPS Foundation wishes to thank the many people who made the event such a success.

Special thanks goes to: Amy Hollabaugh for the beautiful flower arrangements; Favorite Brands for their help providing the wines and commentary at the event; Jill Cook for donating her time and expertise to make the live auction such a success; Laura Crucet and her entire team at Pig + Fig Café for the scrumptious tapas and impeccable wine pairings; Karen Easton of LANB for donating her time to help plan the event and coordinate with Favorite Brands and Kokoman Fine Wines & Liquor; The Ryan Finn Quartet featuring Ryan Finn on trombone, Tom Rheam on piano, David Rogers on bass, and Mike Harris on drums for the lively jazz music.

In addition, many Los Alamos Public Schools students and teachers contributed their talents to make the evening extra special. Thank you to LAHS Culinary Arts instructor Becca Jones and LAHS Pro Start culinary students for their invaluable assistance preparing the tapas; LAHS Art teacher Mary Grace and members of the LAHS Chapter of the National Art Honor’s Society, Anime and Van’s Marketing and Design Clubs LAHS students for providing much-needed help with logistics during the event; Catherine Rousculp, Sophia Jeffery and Ellie Oldem for their beautiful ballet performance excerpted from Don Quixote; LAHS student Jenna Espinoza for performing a lovely Spanish folkloric dance and eliciting audience participation; Maddie Ovaska, LAPS Foundation intern and LAHS student, for her help with planning and executing the event; and members of the LAHS Hilltalkers and Key Club for aiding with the important but less glamorous tasks of setting up and cleaning up the event.

Many local and regional businesses and individuals generously contributed monetary or in-kind donations to the event. They are Allure Salon, Bathtub Row Brewing, Bennett’s Fine Jewelry, Blue Window Bistro, Bob’s Bodacious BBQ, Buffalo Thunder Resort, CB Fox, Cottonwood on the Green, Daniel’s Café, Domino’s Pizza, Don Taylor’s Photography, El Parasol, EXIT Realty Advantage, Fuller Lodge Art Center, Fusion Multisport, Jill Cook, LA Daily Post, LAHS Olions, LAPS athletics, LA Tan and More, Los Alamos Golf Course, Nicolás Madrid, Origami, Pajarito Mountain, Papa Murphy’s, Pasta Paradiso, PEEC, Pet Pangaea, Pyramid Café, Quaking Aspen Fine Art, Reel Deal, Richard Swenson, Rose Marie Solomon, Ruby K’s, Sandia Tramway, Sirphey, Starbucks, Uli’s, Vintage Hair Co., Viola’s Restaurant, Windgate Healing Arts, YMCA and Zia Credit Union.

The fundraiser was timely as we had just a few weeks prior received 39 grant applications requesting over $60,000 from LAPS teachers. The funds allowed us to fund a number of the requests, including sending teachers to conferences, providing materials and resources for innovative projects in classrooms, and enabling teachers and administrators to form professional book groups to learn about and discuss new ideas in education.

19 Sep

Let’s Taste for Knowledge

If you have never been to one of the Foundation’s Taste of Knowledge events, you are in for a special treat this year. On October 14, 5:30-8:30pm, the Foundation will hold its Taste of Knowledge fundraiser in the romantic and nostalgic setting of the old De Colores Restaurant. The theme this year is “Experience the Food and Wine of Spain”. Pig+Fig’s Chef Laura Crucet will create scrumptious Spanish tapas, which will be paired with unique boutique Spanish wines.

True to its name, Taste of Knowledge will not only be fun and entertaining, but it will be educational as well. Representatives from Favorite Brands and Jose Pastor Selections will talk about the different wine producing regions of Spain and what wines are produced there. During the tasting, local jazz band The Ryan Finn Quartet will entertain with live music. Ryan Finn is the Los Alamos Middle School Band instructor, whose classroom benefitted from a $25,000 makeover facilitated by the LAPS Foundation in the summer of 2016.

As this is a fundraiser benefiting Los Alamos Public Schools’ teachers, staff, students and facilities, we are including elements from many  talented Los Alamos students. LAHS Culinary Arts students will prepare the food under the supervision of Chef Laura Crucet, while LAHS Art Club members will dress as Spanish waiters and help out during the event. Several DALA and LAHS dancers will perform Spanish-themed dances, and Key Club and Hilltalkers members have volunteered to help with the event, as well.

Tickets for Taste of Knowledge are $65 for general admission or $50 for LAPS employees. Admission includes tapas and wine pairings, live entertainment, and a keepsake wine glass. Tickets may be purchased online or by contacting us. Tickets are selling fast, so be sure to get yours soon!