This is an excerpt of On Assignment, education writer Theresa Harrington's blog on Contra Costa County schools. Read more and post comments at IBABuzz.com/onassignment. Follow her at Twitter.com/tunedtotheresa or Facebook.com/TheresaHarringtonBANG.

April 4

As the end of the school year nears, Eagle Scout candidates throughout the county may be ramping up efforts to complete their projects and many students are getting ready to perform in plays or other productions.

Here are announcements about an Eagle Scout project at Foothill Middle School in Walnut Creek and the "Legally Blonde" musical at Ygnacio Valley High in Concord.

Eagle Scout Project

A Northgate High School senior is seeking donations for his Eagle Scout project to refurbish instrumental music stands at Foothill MS in Walnut Creek. Here is his statement asking for community support:

"I'm Matthew Assily, a senior at Northgate High School. I have been involved in instrumental music in the Mount Diablo Unified School District since fourth grade, and am heavily involved in the music program at Northgate.

I am also a Life Scout in Boy Scout Troop 494. For my Eagle Scout project, I am refurbishing the music stands at Foothill Middle School, which includes painting them and stenciling 'FMS' onto them for ease of use in the future. In order to carry out this refurbishment, I need to raise funds for tools and supplies.

If you are so inclined, I am looking for voluntary donations of between $5 and $10 to go toward the paint and the safety equipment required for the project. Donations can be sent to Matthew Assily, c/o John Assily, 3240 Stone Valley Road West, Alamo, CA 94507 and checks can be made out to Matthew Assily. I will send you a receipt for your donation. Any funds raised beyond the required money for the project will be given to the Foothill Middle School Instrumental Music program.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at mjassily@aol.com. Thank you so much for your contribution and for supporting instrumental music in the Mount Diablo Unified School District!"

Assily plays saxophone in the Northgate High School Wind Ensemble and Jazz Band I, which recently placed first at the prestigious Next Generation Jazz Festival in Monterey, earning the opportunity to perform in September at the Monterey Jazz Festival. The group will also perform May 12 at Yoshi's in Oakland.

Legally Blonde

Ygnacio Valley High invites the community to come to its production of "Legally Blonde" this weekend and next weekend. Kelly Cooper, the school's performing arts chairwoman and dance director, is trying to get the word out about a show she says shouldn't be missed.

"This is our most ambitious musical to date, with a ton of music, a huge 38-person cast, 8-person backstage crew, and literally 116 costume changes," she wrote in an e-mail. "Parents and students have worked over the weekends to build outstanding sets (our wings are exploding!) and we have put together a cast and a musical we are proud to present to you and to the community."

The show opened Friday and Saturday at Ygnacio Valley High, 755 Oak Grove Road in Concord. It will continue at 7:30 p.m. April 11 and at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. April 12.

"'Legally Blonde' is based on the movie of the same name, but a ton of hilarious scenes and great songs that will get stuck in your head for days (trust me on that one)," Cooper wrote. "A musical without an audience is a tragedy (pun intended) and WE NEED YOU! "

Tickets for the evening show are $8 for students and $12 for adults, while tickets for the matinee show are $5 and $8.

"Come support this completely self funded-program and (see) these VERY talented and supremely dedicated students shine," Cooper says.

Here's a list of some of the key roles played by student stars, along with their grade levels:

Elle Woods: McKenna Duncan (11)

Warner Huntington III: Matt Boer (12)

Emmett Forrest: Devin Rader (12)

Vivienne Kensington: Rory Tank (12)

Brooke Wyndham: Danielle Tortolani (12)

Serena: Kayla Samuels

Pilar: Rhyndyl Sardina

Margot: Maddie King

Paulette: Aaliyah Minor

Let us know what you think of the show!