SEEING GREEN: Pittsburg High's colors may be orange and black, but green is definitely playing a big role on campus.
For the second year, the school has embraced its Green Challenge, supported once again by the city and Mt. Diablo Recycling.
Teacher Erick Valenzuela said the program began in early October with a rally and spirit day. "We continue to make improvements," he said.
Each class has prepared its own green pledge, green pride rally cry and decorated recycling cart.
Essentially, each of the four grades compete through May to gather the most recyclables.
This year, each club or class was asked to make a video promoting the "ReThink" and "Take only what you need" themes.
Prizes are $500 for first place, $350 for second, and $250 for third. Judging results will be announced in the next few weeks, and the winners may get their video creations broadcast on a local channel.
There have been many positives since fall, but Valenzuela said one of the highlights has been the overall participation of students.
"It was very small the first year with few students who actually knew what was going on. This year, more students are familiar and it's gaining momentum," he said.
Valenzuela said slight improvements to the program have helped.
However, he says, "The real challenges are somewhat cemented in the way we think. It's a difficult mindset to change when everything appears plentiful and our waste is not evident."
Still plenty of cleanup and awareness has popped up at Pittsburg High, and now involved parties are gearing up for the grand finale -- the fashion show, which features couture made of recycled materials.
For more information, call 925-473-2390.
BLAST FROM THE PAST: Turner Elementary recently hosted a special visitor when Clyde Turner, the grandson of John B. Turner for whom the Antioch school was named in 1967, visited the campus.
The Turner relative toured the Delta Fair Boulevard campus and visited with the students, staff and several retired and former staff members. Also in attendance were Joy Motts, school board president, and Superintendent Don Gill. Incidentally, Motts' mother was on the school board when this school opened in the late '60s.
The school welcomed their special visitor with a luncheon, where he told stories about his grandfather.
Principal Sue Ten Eyck said former teacher Carolyn Dinelli, known as the Turner historian, shared "quite a bit of information about when the school first opened." One of the school's original teachers, she retired in 2004.
Turner is the one who initiated the school visit, and is interested in helping the school and its students.
"During the visit, he asked for our ideas on what we felt it would take to bring our students to greatness," Ten Eyck said.
Turner is still mulling over what he can do to lend a substantial monetary hand to the school, but knows he wants to "provide for our students and help them to achieve success academically and socially," she said.
CLOTHES CALL: The Delta Education Group will host a clothing drive from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 26. The collection of used clothes is to help raise money to support the Deer Valley Academy of the Performing Arts. California Clothing Recyclers pays by the pound for the clothing, so the group is looking for plenty of donations.
The collection will be held at Deer Valley High School, 4700 Lone Tree Way in Antioch. A variety of items can be donated, including any clothing, shoes, purses, table linens, bath and bed linens and stuffed animals. Organizers request those donating place the clothes in a large plastic tied bag.
If you have school news to share, contact Trine Gallegos at firstname.lastname@example.org. Note: Trine also does community outreach for Antioch High.