Join Us: BIG! Thanks Celebration April 25


Join Us: BIG! Thanks Celebration April 25

The St. Helena Public Schools Foundation &
the Parent Groups of St. Helena’s Public Schools invite you to a reception to celebrate your generous support of Give BIG! St. Helena, and to honor our dedicated and inspired public school teachers and administrators who make a difference every day to the students attending St. Helena’s public schools.

The celebration will include a presentation of the St. Helena Public Schools Foundation 2018 Teacher of the Year award, and students from the SHHS drama program performing musical selections from their recent production, Fiddler on the Roof.

Wednesday, April 25, 4-6 pm
Merryvale Vineyards, Cask Room
1000 Main Street, St. Helena

RSVP by Friday, April 20th to

Hors d’oeuvres prepared by the SHHS Culinary students;
floral arrangements created by the SHHS Floral Design students. This event is supported through the generosity of Merryvale Vineyards and Sunshine Foods Market.


Give Big! Featured in the St Helena Star

Saturday, March 24, marks the return of Give Big, the annual school fundraiser that’s becoming a St. Helena institution after only four years.

Give Big is the sort of democratized, broadly participatory fundraiser that’s mostly replaced the extravagant, exclusive wine auctions of yore. Compared with Just Imagine – the now-defunct public school fundraiser that resembled a mini-Auction Napa Valley – Give Big has a lower donation threshold, requires less organization, and gets kids more involved…

Read More

Run Big! 2018



DATE: Friday, March 30, 2018
TIME: 2 pm – 3 pm

This year, Run BIG! will kick off at RLS at 2 pm and conclude at 3 pm.  The plan for the hour is as follows:

  1. RLS students will run to St. Helena Elementary School, and then together RLS and SHES students will take a lap on Carpy Field before continuing on to St. Helena Primary School.
  2. Between 2:20 and 2:30, RLS, SHES, and SHPS students will gather on the SHPS field for another lap and then as a group, will make their way to the high school track for a BIG finish! The 400+ student body of St. Helena High School will be on hand to welcome the younger grades with music, balloons, and more as they make their way around the track for one last victory lap! Parents, teacher, administrators, and community members are invited to join in the BIG Finish celebration.
  3. Beginning at approximately 2:40 pm, SHPS and SHES students will walk back to SHPS for pick up. Buses will be there to take kids to the Boys & Girls Club and other routes as regularly planned. Parents will receive instructions on where to meet children not taking the bus. Dismissal is at 3 pm.
  4. RLS and SHHS will also be dismissed at 3 pm from SHHS. Parents, stay tuned for student pick up information.


  • Kindergarten is usually dismissed at 1:50 pm, but students are encouraged to stay for Run BIG! (this is optional).
  • More information and permission slips will be sent home by each school.
  • Parents are encouraged to volunteer before, during, and after the event – a sign up genius is coming soon.
  • Family and community members are welcome to line the route, or join us for the BIG finish.


RUN BIG! 2016 was featured in St. Helena Star.

Join Us : Sip & Support at Clif Family Winery Tasting Room September 20, 2017

Sip & Support! Join us at the Clif Family Winery Tasting Room September 20 from 4 – 7 pm.

Celebrate the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year and help kick-off Give BIG! 2018.

Bring your family, friends, and neighbors to Velo Vino for a fun and delicious evening sipping and supporting St. Helena’s public schools. Come enjoy Clif Family wines and savor delectable offerings available for purchase from the Bruschetteria Food Truck.

20% of all proceeds from the evening will be donated to Give BIG! St. Helena, a partnership of the St. Helena Public Schools Foundation and the Parent Groups of St. Helena’s Public Schools.


Help Our Students Soar!

STEP 1: Donate any amount online, or drop some cash in the Give BIG! jar at each school site office.

STEP 2: Take your photo in front of the mascot wings:

  • St. Helena Primary School: Angels
  • St. Helena Elementary School: Dragons
  • RLS: Devils
  • St. Helena High School: Saints

STEP 3: Post your photo(s) on Instagram, Facebook, or other social media to show that you have given. Use the hashtags #givebigsthelena and #sthelenawings. Ask your friends and family to give a little – or to Give BIG! Every dollar is appreciated and every dollar counts.

STEP 4: Fly over to the other St. Helena public schools to take photos with each unique set of mascot wings! (You must sign in as a guest at the front office during school hours.) Repeat steps 1 – 3.

Where does your money go?

Field trips, library acquisitions, fine art programs, special education, STEM learning, movie nights, visits by authors & academics, drama productions, play structures, and so much more!


A BIG! thank you to:

  • Kerri Beeker, SHPS & SHES parent who came up with wing concept after seeing wings in Mexico & LA – and realizing all four St. Helena Public School mascots have wings.
  • Kendra Kelperis, RLS art teacher who allowed us to use her classroom to make the wings, and who painted the RLS Devil wings
  • Julie Rayner, who painted the wing backdrops and helped with logistics
  • Vanessa von Hessert, who made the wing platforms and painted the SHPS Angel and SHES Dragon wings, and took photos of Primary School students
  • Anna Chouteau – SHPS parent and our make-the-wings-happen person!
  • Silvia Seyve,  SHHS art teacher who worked with high school students to paint the Saints wings
  • Gillian Casey, SHPS parent who helped the day we took all the photos
  • Central Valley for donating the plywood
  • Steve’s Hardware for discounting the paint
  • The SHUSD operations team for mounting the wings

And thank you to our principals for all the support:

  • St. Helena Primary School –  Tamara Sanguinetti
  • St. Helena Elementary School – Tanya Pearson
  • Robert Louis Stevenson Middle School – Karin Cox
  • St. Helena High School – Benjamin Scinto

Look for more photos on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and follow along with hashtags #givebigsthelena and #sthelenawings.

Featured in the St. Helena Star: GIVE BIG helps St. Helena students

Note: The following article was published in the St. Helena Star on March 16, 2017 and can be found online here.


As educators, we believe in enriching the experiences of our students outside of the typical classroom setting. The GIVE BIG campaign, managed by the St. Helena Public Schools Foundation and the St. Helena parent groups each school year, raises funds that allow teachers to do just that. The funding we have received over the years has helped engage students in several ways. For science class, students have had the opportunity to attend the Exploratorium in San Francisco; in history class, students have traveled to the Legion of Honor as well as listened to three in-class presentations by an historian.

One of the highlights in sixth grade is our annual science field trip. For the past two years, our trips to the Exploratorium have been fun, engaging, and educational. Sixth graders have explored, tinkered, asked questions, and discovered scientific concepts from the many hands-on exhibits at the museum. Students have experienced the joy of learning and discovering due to the funding provided by GIVE BIG. Thank you!

Our trips to the Legion of Honor have been truly amazing. All sixth-graders get to become artists, art historians and museum curators. While at the museum, our students work in groups led by incredible docents. Students are able to present to each other actual ancient artifacts they have organized into a mini exhibit. After an art lesson, students use charcoal and other materials to imitate paintings of European masters. Our students also participate in the curricular process called Cycle of Inquiry, created by the art historians at the Legion of Honor. Many parents have commented that the trip to the Legion of Honor is one of the best field trips they have ever attended.

The GIVE BIG campaign funds also bring lively experiences directly into the classroom. For the last four years, Mr. Lonny Johnson, owner of Ancient Artifacts, has been captivating all of our students with his incredible storytelling presence and genuine artifacts that are thousands of years old. Students really enjoy holding Egyptian surgical tools as Mr. Johnson regales them with descriptive details of removing the brains of wealthy Egyptians and pharaohs during the embalming process of mummification.

During the presentation on ancient Rome, students are smiling and laughing as they practice Roman Legion battle strategies. During the presentation on ancient Greece, Mr. Johnson retells the famous Battle of Thermopylae so well that students sit at the edge of their seats wondering how 300 Spartans were able to fight off hundreds of thousands of Persian soldiers. Both the Legion of Honor and the Ancient Artifacts program has become a staple of our learning community. It’s been great to see the engagement and excitement in students’ eyes as they enjoy these wonderful moments of learning.

These hands-on educational experiences — the Exploratorium, the Legion of Honor, and Ancient Artifacts — are only possible because of the extra funding provided by the GIVE BIG fundraising drive. Thank you again to all the people who work tirelessly to invest in our students!

Editor’s Note: The Robert Louis Stevenson sixth-grade team is made up of Rob Grace, Erin Kurtz, Margie Scherer and Ngu Pham.