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November 2016
Dear Families,

The Live Oak School District is excited to announce a partnership with both the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership and the Santa Cruz Warriors. This partnership will set up a Scholars Program to reward students with perfect attendance. All TK-8th grade students with perfect attendance attending Del Mar, Green Acres, Live Oak, or Shoreline Middle School will have their name entered into a drawing for two Warrior tickets to a home game during the 2016-17 season. The drawings will happen throughout the season, so students will have multiple chances to win.

Every Day Counts!

Students who miss class, miss out on learning. Except in the case of illness, many school absences can be avoided with a little extra effort. Help your child learn, build lasting friendships, and develop the skills and attitudes needed to become a good citizen and valuable member of community.

Get your child to school on time, every day and make sure homework assignments are complete.
Give your child enough time to get ready for school in the morning. Try preparing lunches, packing school bags and laying out clothing the night before.
Extended vacations, long weekends and frequent doctor appointments scheduled during school hours will cause your child to fall behind in class.
Being in school every day raises your child's ability to score well on important tests throughout the year.
Follow the proper school guidelines for reporting excused absences in a timely manner.
Approximately 90% of our school district general purpose revenue is derived from student attendance. Each day your student is absent means fewer resources will be available for your child's classroom.
When your student attends for ANY part of the day, he or she is marked present for the entire day, which means more resources for your school and more learning opportunities.
Allow your child to stay home only when he or she has a contagious illness, has a fever, or is too sick to attend.
Make sure your child exercises, eats a balanced diet, and gets plenty of sleep. This will help him or her to be mentally and physically ready to learn, while strengthening their immune system.


Tamra Taylor Ed.D.

Welcome Back 2016 / 17
Dear Families,

Welcome to the 2016-17 school year in the Live Oak School District. I hope the summer vacation brought you time to relax and enjoy family and friends. Live Oak is a child-centered district. Parents, teachers and support staff consistently work together in our Live Oak schools to ensure that students receive the best services possible. In that light, we continue to be grateful for the community’s renewal of our parcel tax with 79% approval. Thank you again to all District staff, Home and School Clubs, labor groups, and community members who contributed through campaign donations, precinct walking, phone banks, and working at farmer’s market tables. The parcel tax renewal means that programming such as art, music, life lab, and after school services will be secure for another 12 years. The high percentage of voters approving the parcel renewal is a victory for our students.

We are a community-oriented school district as evidenced by a large number of parents who show up annually to give the District input into our Three Year Strategic Plan. The plan, a blueprint for how we plan to actualize our hopes and dreams for the children, covers a wide breadth of aspiration. We have many reasons to be proud of our progress thus far -- we encourage the public to visit our schools and see the great things that are happening at each of them. I want to highlight a few key areas we are specifically addressing that relate to student well-being and academic success.

· A strong rigorous academic curriculum that encourages students to think deeply, to collaborate with their peers, and to apply their learning to real world situations.

· A research-based academic intervention program that monitors student academic performance in reading and provides instructional supports to students who are not at grade level.

· This year we will continue using “Playworks” recess curriculum. This program involves training all yard duty supervisors and recess coaches in strategies to increase student engagement in safe inclusive activities during recess. Our playgrounds are safe and welcoming places where students can play, thrive and contribute. Our goal is that every child takes this positive experience back to the classroom and back to their communities.

· A Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports program (PBIS) that is a proactive approach to establishing the behavioral supports and social culture needed for all students in a school to achieve social, emotional and academic success. Attention is focused on creating and sustaining primary (school-wide), secondary (classroom), and tertiary (individual) systems of support that improve lifestyle results (personal, health, social, family, work, recreation) for all youth. All of our schools have bullying prevention programs that include site restorative justice through the use of Solution Teams.

· Mental health counselors at each site who address the psychological needs of our students. These counselors provide services to students on both an individual and group basis.

Again, welcome back and thank you for entrusting us with your child’s education. Please feel free to call my office (475-6333 x202) or email me ( at any time if you have questions or suggestions.


Tamra Taylor Ed.D.


April 2017

about 1 year ago

Dear LOSD Families,

I am writing to you today to share some important information. Last week's national election has left many in our community feeling uncertain about future policies and practices that may impact their families. I am attaching a letter from Sheriff Jim Hart explaining the policy of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff Department regarding immigration. Attached also, is a flyer announcing a Community Immigration Forum in Watsonville that will be held this Sunday. In addition, district staff are working in collaboration with Santa Cruz City School District to organize a panel of experts on immigration for early December. More information about that event will be coming home soon.

Now that the election is over, it is our job to restate our core values as a school system-demonstrating that we respect and care for every person in our community. While each of us has political preferences and feelings about the outcome of last week's election it is important we ground ourselves in our shared values. I want to assure you that our district policies protect the rights of all students regardless of race, religion, gender, or documentation status and we will continue to work tirelessly to ensure the climate on our campuses reflect those policies. Our commitment is for our schools to be safe and affirming places for all students and their families. The diversity of our community and the cultures, languages, and religions that make up our school district continues to be one of our greatest strengths.

Our schools are a resource for families. Counselors and teachers have assisted students with concerns they have over the election and will continue to do so when the need arises. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me. We are here to serve your families.


Tamra Taylor
Superintendent Live Oak School District

Sheriff's Letter
English / Spanish

Community Immigration Forum Flyer
English / Spanish

June 2017

about 1 year ago

Today the Live Oak School Community lost our beloved Bytheal Ratliff. Bytheal wore many hats in our District. He was the campus supervisor, the athletic director and a coach for the after school sports program at Shoreline Middle School. He took a personal interest in students and his mentoring made a huge difference in their lives.  

In his role as District Security Manager, Bytheal established close working relationships with our principals and with law enforcement. His collaborative spirit forged a highly connected approach to school safety. He had an intuitive ability to sense potential problems and he used this ability to proactively prevent issues from escalating.

Words cannot adequately express our sorrow, nor do they adequately express our gratitude for having had the privilege of working alongside this extraordinary man.

In 2012, the Santa Cruz Sentinel ran the story below about Bytheal and all his contributions to his community. We all felt immense pride when this article appeared. He was simply the best.

A candlelight vigil will be held at the Shoreline amphitheater on Friday, June 2, at 8:00 PM. If you would like to help, a donation account has been set up to support his family:

Tamra Taylor, Ed.D

Live Oak Superintendent 

September 2017

about 1 year ago

LOSD Families,

The Live Oak School District is pleased to welcome new and returning students and families to the 2017-18 school year. We hope you and your family had a wonderful and restful summer break.

As we begin this school year together, I call on students and staff alike to continue our work teaching students the growth mindset.  When students are using a growth mindset they believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work. Students will learn that brains and talent are just a starting point. This perspective requires that we view mistakes as learning opportunities. The long-term outcome of approaching learning this way is a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for accomplishment throughout life. We have parent and staff workshops planned to support the development of growth mindset.

Learning is our goal as we continue to build on our strong foundation of effective instruction in every classroom. We have in place systems of support – both academic and social/emotional – that will allow us to continue improving student learning and achievement. These efforts together enhance positive school culture across the district. I am excited about the renewed and growing energy occurring districtwide.

This summer, we continued to develop leadership capacity at all levels. Teachers and staff participated in various professional development opportunities throughout June and July, including the S4C Math Institute, the FOSS science training, and our Back-to-School Google Classroom Kickoff, to name a few. We will continue in-depth teacher professional development through instructional coach support in grade level/content specific lesson study.

Our students live in a world of complexity. We are committed to preparing them for this by teaching them to think, collaborate, and create. Teachers jointly plan lessons that increase student engagement by taking the focus off teacher-led lectures and instead, put it on student-led conversations and collaborative projects. We also prepare our students for the 21st century workplace by increasing their access to technology. Our 1:1, 8th grade Chromebook initiative at Shoreline will be expanded this school year to include 6th and 7th graders. All of our elementary schools have technology access for students.

To learn about our strategic vision, please visit our website and refer to our LCAP document. We are excited to begin this school year, and we are ready to engage your student in deep and meaningful learning. Our committed team of teachers, staff, and administrators have an incredible year planned. My Cabinet team and I will be visiting school sites regularly throughout the school year. We look forward to making a personal connection with you and your student, and partnering with families and the community to ensure every school and every student succeeds.

If I can be of help to your family during the school year, please do not hesitate to contact my office at 831-475-6333 or, by email:


Respectfully yours,

Tamra Taylor, Ed.D.

Superintendent, Live Oak School District