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November 22, 2021

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Photo of the Week

Photo of the week
Agriscience students at Sunnyside High School

Video of the Week

Video of the Week
Free Basketball Camp for Students in Homeless Situations Video

Dates to Know

December 8
Board Meeting workshop (see website for time)
Board of Education

December 1
Transfer Deadline


Welcome to Community Zone, an e-newsletter from the Fresno Unified School District featuring news of the district and schools. Sign up to receive this newsletter every two weeks. Questions? Contact

Community News

District’s Digital Newspaper for November Available

The November edition of Building Futures, the district’s digital newspaper, is available, featuring the State of Education, features on students and staff, sports photos and a message from Superintendent Bob Nelson.
November Building Futures

District Distributes Books from Scholastic to over 50,000 Students

Superintendent reading to students Over 50,000 students will receive books and literacy resources as part of the “Promote Reading at Home” initiative that include a special event on November 19 at Ewing Elementary School. Students in pre-school through eighth grade will each receive a pack of five grade-level appropriate books from Scholastic to help foster social emotional development. The pack will come with a student literacy skills journal and a “Family Guide to Literacy” to help parents support reading at home. The books will be available in English and Spanish. The book distribution is part of the district’s commitment to help create home libraries, with the board of education approving $1.4 million toward the initiative. The first book distribution took place over the summer.

Leaders Featured in Podcast

FUSD podcast

Hear what Fresno Unified leaders have to say in the Fresno Unified School District Family Leads podcast.
Listen to FUSD Podcasts on Apple Podcasts
Listen to FUSD Podcasts on Spotify

Superintendent Board Remarks from November 17, 2021

Superintendent Bob Nelson
• Superintendent recognized November as California Runaway and Homeless Youth Awareness Month and shared his gratitude to our Department of Prevention and Intervention teams who provide support for our youth in transition.

• Superintendent also recognized November as Sikh Heritage Month. The California Legislature proclaimed November 2021 as Sikh Heritage Month. Our Sikh and Punjabi community have made incredible contributions locally, statewide and nationally. Superintendent encouraged all to take some time this month to learn more and to celebrate our Sikh community.

• Superintendent thanked all staff who joined for our second virtual staff town hall yesterday afternoon. Superintendent and team were able to answer some common questions from staff regarding the most up to date COVID-19 protocols, substitute recruitment efforts and progress, and much more. Staff should have received the recording and presentation via email from Communications this afternoon.

• Superintendent shared the district’s joint statement with Fresno Teachers Association from Monday. “Fresno Unified and the Fresno Teachers Association continue to discuss ways in which to address teacher concerns around planning and preparation time. We announced on Monday the first agreed-upon method meant to provide flexibility. Beginning this past Monday, all scheduled PL/PLC meetings for the remainder of the first semester are at the discretion of the educators on site, without expectation of mandated meeting hours. We recognize that this pandemic version of education has been a challenge for all involved and that supporting our classrooms is our first priority. We look forward to continued collaboration in support of teaching and learning.”

• Superintendent shared that himself and members of the Executive Cabinet had the opportunity to tour Juan Felipe Herrera Elementary yesterday. Superintendent shared his gratitude to Principal Naranjo and to the Facilities team for a wonderful tour. Superintendent shared that our teams have learned much over the years and he is proud to see a lot of things at Herrera that are great for our elementary school students and for our local communities. Things such as; a designated music room, including rehearsal and recording areas, private office spaces for social workers, psychologists and nursing staff, maker spaces, designated preschool spaces with appropriately sized fixtures, a larger soccer field and snack bar for community games, and a school health clinic facility to be staffed by a community health partner. Superintendent reminded the board that they will have an invite soon to tour very soon. Superintendent shared his gratitude to Fresnans for their support of bonds to help build great facilities and programs for Fresno Unified kids and thanked the Board Trustees and the facilities team for bringing this campus to reality.

• Superintendent shared the invitation with board trustees to join tomorrow’s grand opening of Fresno High’s new CTE building. The facility houses a state-of-the-art Video Production studio, HVAC and Construction spaces and a Presentation Space / Career Center that will be utilized by school, district and community partners.

• Superintendent congratulated Trustee Islas for being selected as a 2021 Hero for the Central Valley Health Policy Institute in the College of Health and Human Services at Fresno State.

• Superintendent shared a video highlighting the recent basketball camp for our youth in honor of National Homeless Youth Awareness Month. The video can be seen at this link.

View Full Board Meeting Recap

School Buzz

Bullard TALENT Teacher is Educator of the Week

Kelly Lee and students

Kelly Lee, a fifth-grade teacher at Bullard TALENT K-8 School, was named Educator of the Week by KSEE 24.
Teacher of the Week Segment

Juan Felipe Herrera Elementary School Launches Web Site

Herrera rendering

The web site for Juan Felipe Herrera Elementary School has launched and can be found at The site is a great resource to learn more about Fresno Unified's newest school, which will open in August. Herrera Elementary will be unique because it will focus on STEAM, where teachers will use science, technology, engineering and the arts as they teach mathematics and English language arts. 

Fresno High Celebrates New Career Technical Education Building

CTE Building ribbon cutting

Fresno High School held a grand opening for its new career technical education building on November 18, with students providing tours. The new building will bring all CTE classes together in one state-of-the-art space. The building reimagines CTE at Fresno High from its former location in a decommissioned auto shop built in 1951. The project is funded by Measure X, the $225 million bond passed by voters in 2016, and a state CTE facilities grant. Students will begin attending classes in the new building in December.

The building is the new home of Warrior Entertainment, a video production career pathway, featuring a recording studio, sound studio and stage. The new building also provides space for the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) program, construction shops and yards, and a presentation center.

Speakers at the grand opening event were Superintendent Bob Nelson, Principal Linda Laettner, CTE coordinator Keisha Shabazz, Industrial Manufacturing and Technology Sub-Committee chairperson Sarah Pedelty and Mayor Jerry Dyer. Members of the board of education also attended.

Roosevelt Hosts Mayor Dyer for Breakfast with Blue

Student talking to officer Roosevelt High School held its annual Breakfast with Blue on November 18, where students in the Public Service Pathway connected with industry partners during round table discussions and learned from vehicle and technology demonstrations by public service agencies. The event featured representatives from the Fresno Police Department, Fresno County Sheriff’s Department, Fresno Fire Department, American Ambulance, Department of Corrections and the military. Mayor Jerry Dyer, the former police chief, will address the group as well. Superintendent Bob Nelson and members of the Fresno Unified Board of Education also attended.

Edison, Bullard Student Athletes Sign Letters of Intent

Athletes signing

Edison High School’s Elijah Moultrie signed a letter of intent to play baseball for the Spartans of San Jose State during a ceremony at the campus on November 10. At Bullard High School, an event also on November 10 highlighted three student athlete signings: Sarah Moite, softball, CSU San Bernardino; Chase Weiner, soccer, Santa Clara University; and Joey Cruz, wrestling, University of Oklahoma.

Duncan Honors Veterans Day

Veterans day parade in front of Ed Center In honor of Veterans Day, Duncan Polytechnical High School’s award-winning Air Force Junior ROTC cadets conducted a presentation of the flag in front of Easterby Elementary School on November 10. The cadets led the students in the Pledge of Allegiance. The cadets also marched in the Veterans Day Parade.
Video of JROTC Ceremony at Easterby for Veterans Day

Sunnyside Wins Tennis Championship

Sunnyside tennis champs

Sunnyside and Roosevelt high schools battled it out November 9 for the Division 5 girls tennis section championship, with Sunnyside pulling out the win. Congrats, Wildcats and Rough Riders!

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