Education briefs: New head for Mid-Pen High, Congressional App Challenge opens and more – | Almanac Online |

Karen E. Eshoo joined Mid-Pen High School in Menlo Park on July 1 as its interim head of school for the 2021-22 school year.

Eshoo, daughter of Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto, replaces Phil Gutierrez. Gutierrez decided to step down from the school’s top leadership role in March. He said in a blog post that his departure was spurred by his desire to work at a school in his “immediate community,” along with other “family-related factors.”

Eshoo has served as a head of school for the last 10 years, according to a blog post she wrote. She most recently headed King School in Stamford, Connecticut, and before that, Vistamar School in El Segundo, California.

“Mid-Pen has a long history of truly putting its students’ needs at the center,” Eshoo said in a statement. “I look forward so much to being part of this small and mighty community of committed trustees, colleagues, families, and friends of the school who faithfully and joyfully continue to bring that mission to life.”

The school, which launched its search for a permanent head of school in June, is preparing for its full return to in-person learning this fall. Eshoo is setting up meetings with community members often in small groups to hear their perspectives on the school’s strengths and areas for future growth.

Eshoo has been in the education profession for 30 years, first in the classroom as a teacher and later in school leadership roles.

Locally, she previously served as the assistant head of school at Lick-Wilmerding High School in San Francisco, and held various leadership positions at Sacred Heart Schools in Atherton, including as principal of the middle school at St. Joseph’s School, according to The Almanac’s archives.

Eshoo, a Sacred Heart Prep alumna, said she is excited to join a school she has known since she was a teenager.

“I have friends who attended Mid-Pen in the 1980s most importantly my partner, Campbell Barbee,” she said.

She received her bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of San Diego, a master’s degree in education and history from Stanford University, and her doctorate in education from University of California at Berkeley.

Rep. Anna Eshoo has announced the launch of the seventh annual Congressional App Challenge for the 18th Congressional District.

The House of Representatives began the contest in 2013 to promote innovation and engagement in STEM education fields.

“Since its creation in 2013, the Congressional App Challenge has been an extraordinary opportunity for students to think creatively and create innovative solutions to problems in our community. Last year we had many creative entries addressing needs during the pandemic and the pressing matters in our community, and I look forward to seeing what students will design this year. I encourage all students, regardless of their level of coding expertise, to use technology to build creative solutions to address the myriad of challenges we face today,” Eshoo said.

Science, technology, engineering, and math are foundational for innovation, and the Congressional App Challenge encourages students bolsters interest in STEM, and motivates students to pursue higher education and jobs in those fields, she said.

The challenge is open to all middle school and high school students who live in or are eligible to attend a public school located in the district. Students entering the competition must create a video explaining their app and what they learned through the competition process.

An appointed panel of academics, entrepreneurs, technology executives and other experts will judge the submitted apps. Winning apps will be displayed in the U.S. Capitol.

Apply here by Nov. 1.

Woodland School in Portola Valley is hiring a preschool teacher, according to the private school’s LinkedIn page. The position pays between $22 to $25 an hour.

Apply here.

The Sequoia High School Alumni Association is hosting its 14th annual picnic on Saturday, Aug. 21, from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the Sequoia High School campus located at 1201 Brewster Ave. in Redwood City. This year’s theme is “Celebrate Sequoia: Remember the Past … Look to the Future.”

Alumni, their family and friends, past and current teachers, staff and administrators, students and their parents, school-affiliated groups and the general public are invited. San Carlos High School alumni are also welcome to attend. Funds raised benefit the Sequoia High School Alumni Association, which in turn helps support the students and the school with grants, scholarships and funding for programs and projects benefiting the school.

This year there will be barbecue catered by Bianchini’s Catering, tours of the campus and the renovated library/media center, a performance by Sequoia cheerleaders, and more. “Golden Grads” — those celebrating their 50th anniversary of graduating from Sequoia — will be honored.

Reservations are required. Tickets are $40 for adults and $25 for children under 12. A limited number of tickets will be available at the door for $45. Tickets are on sale until Aug. 18.

Go here to buy tickets or make a check payable to SHSAA and mail to: “Celebrate Sequoia,” c/o Marian Wydo, 833 Clinton St., Redwood City, CA 94061. If an alumnus, note your graduation year and spouse’s name, and, if an alumna, note your maiden name. For more information, call 650-592-5822 or e-mail [email protected]