Foothill Adventist Elementary School
1991 Landess Ave, Milpitas, CA 95035-7071 • 408-263-2568


FH News Archive
Whew! What a trip!
Patricia Carpio
Thursday, May 10, 2012
The 7th and 8th grades spent an action-packed, fun-filled week in Washington, DC. From the time they touched down on the east coast to the time they boarded the plane for home, their moments were spent touring various monuments, memorials, and historic sites in Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Washington, DC.

Some of the highlights from the trip included a visit to the Capitol Building, exploring three of the Smithsonian museums, and touring the Gettysburg battlefield. Some of the sights were awe-inspiring—the Lincoln Memorial, for example—and some inspired contemplation—the Holocaust Museum, for example. They were able to climb the Old Post Office Tower, which is the second highest place in Washington, DC, and were particularly excited about witnessing President Obama’s motorcade.

The students were also blessed to have Anne O’Dea, who just so happens to be from the Bay Area herself and must be the fastest walker in the United States, as an amazing tour guide for the trip. She helped make history come to life by presenting facts and trivia in a fun and memorable manner.

The students were equally blessed to have Howard Barrett as their driver. Howard, a Vietnam veteran who was wounded in combat, won over the hearts of the students and chaperones with his endearing attitude.

Praise the Lord, they all made it safe and sound from this once-in-a-lifetime experience. If you get a chance, ask a 7th or 8th grade student about their favorite Washington, DC, adventure. I’m sure they’ll have lots to say!

Foothill's Select Choir Placed 2nd in World Strides Heritage Music Festival
Princess Leong
Friday, March 30, 2012

Foothill’s Select Choir was placed second in the Silver Medal category at the World Strides Heritgage Music Festival held at Disneyland on March 30, 2012.
In August of 2011, fifteen students from Foothill Adventist Elementary in Milpitas spent a weekend of their summer vacation rehearsing choir music. Why would they do such a thing? Because they were inspired by their music teacher to do something bigger than they could have expected of themselves. These 6th-8th graders had auditioned for their school’s select choir with the goal in mind that in the spring of 2012, they would enter a choir festival hosted by Disneyland.
The ensuing months required hours of rehearsal to grow a repertoire, not just for the festival, but for various performances through out the year in which most of the members had lead roles. They learned their parts, honed their sound, and learned to listen to each other... all under the watchful and meticulous care of their director, Ramona Rivera. Several performance opportunities ministering around the Bay Area churches built confidence and a close-knit team amongst the kids, playing a huge factor leading into the festival which occurred on March 30, 2012.
The festival was through the World Strides Heritage Performance program. This program offers the highest quality performance opportunities to middle and high-school aged choirs and other musical groups in renowned venues, both domestically and internationally. Through this field of adjudication, the entering schools learn how their music program ranks against National Educational Standards. Foothill’s select choir entered in the Junior Chamber Choir category. They performed 3 numbers in front of 3 adjudicators who evaluated their performance. Of her sentiments during their performance, Shefali Jeypaul, alto, shares, “I felt...'big'. I felt important in our school. I felt that I must be a pretty good singer since I was accepted to be in our select choir. I wasn’t too nervous. Honestly, it feels like family when I sing with our choir now.” At the conclusion of their three songs, one of the adjudicators came forward and personally spoke to the students giving his feedback on what he particularly liked about their performance. He then gave them valuable suggestions and techniques on how to improve. The three evaluations were then provided in writing to Ms. Rivera which reflected their candid evaluation of praises and suggestions, providing valuable tools and affirmation to Foothill School’s music program.
Foothill placed 2nd in the Silver Medal category. This choir of fifteen 6th-8th grade boys and girls from a total student body of 106 competed against 50 other musical groups with more than 3 times the size of their choir, and five times the student body size and resources to draw from. “I feel proud of our performance,” Shefali beams. “I think we did well considering that we were one of the smallest and youngest choirs and knowing we made it so 'far'.” Tsegenet Awoke, alto, is happy with how they scored “... because I knew that everyone in our choir sang their hearts out.”
Foothill’s 4-part harmony pleased the adjudicators. They commented that rarely do junior high choir directors venture to ask their students to tackle such harmonies because of their fear of failure. Ms. Rivera’s belief that students of this age can do big things was evident to the adjudicators. This belief has empowered these students to strive for and achieve higher goals and to live out the promise that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!”(Phil. 4:13)
Each student has come away from this opportunity with lessons learned and memories to cherish. Valerie Barraza, alto, shares “I learned that you need to always believe in yourself.” Michele Leong, soprano, adds, “I became more confident in my singing through this experience. It was good to see all our hard work pay off.” “Just being together with everyone...,” is soprano Leanne Ellacer’s cherished memory. “Working hard in choir brought us together.”
“I really wanted them (the kids) to have the experience,” reflects Ms. Rivera. “It's easy to stay in our comfort zone, but in doing so we miss opportunities to learn from one another and witness.  Music ministry is powerful.  After introducing myself to the adjudicators, one read our school title and exclaimed "Oh! I love Seventh-Day Adventists! They make great music."  Every moment became a chance to open dialogue and represent the love of Christ. How wonderful to be a part of it all."
Foothill Falcons 3rd in Silicon Valley Athletic League
Lenny Leonie
March 20, 2012

For the second time in as many years, the Foothill Falcons have shown the Silicon Valley Athletic League (SVAL) why it doesn’t matter who you are or how big your school is. Through hard work and team oriented play, they have taken 3rd for the second year in a row. And they did so in spectacular fashion.
It was almost comical to watch the rag-tag team of undersized Falcons walk into the beautiful gyms of schools much bigger than theirs. There were games in which the teams we were playing started five boys taller than our tallest player. Rather than be intimidated, however, the Foothill Falcons set the league on fire. The superior passing, shooting and composure of the smaller boys showed the SVAL why size doesn’t matter. Despite being the favorite for league champions, an unfortunate loss to fellow Adventist school Miramonte in the playoffs took us out of the running for the championship. When all was said and done, we had more wins on our record than any other team in the league. It wasn’t, however, the boys spectacular talent that had people talking. 
After every single game we played, I had parents from other schools congratulating me not only on the way the Falcons handled the ball, but the way they carried themselves. In true Christian fashion, the boys were as courteous in victory as they were in defeat. And what courtesy it was! I consider myself privileged to have coached this outstanding group of young men for I have learned far more from them than they have from me. Their grace on the basketball court, not only with each other but with the opposing team, has taught me more about life than they could ever know. 
For this small, talented group of basketball players, it will not be their superior level of play that will define their season. Instead it will be something far more important. Indeed it is their beautiful teamwork, kindness, compassion and sportsmanship that will be remembered long after the season is over. Whether we take first next year or don’t win a single game, I wouldn’t trade my Falcons for any other team in the world except perhaps the Chicago Bulls.

Coach Lenny