Foundation News

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Culturally Relevant Literature Project

What is Culturally Relevant Literature?

Culturally relevant literature reflects the diverse group of children we have in our district - these books celebrate and represent all our students, their families, languages, traditions, and varied life experiences.

Benefits of Culturally Relevant Literature

When integrated into the classroom, culturally relevant literature provides mirrors and windows for students to broaden their cultural competency and foster a community of acceptance and empathy.

Our Goal

We aim to provide every classroom in our school district with culturally relevant literature to fuel our mission to support all students.

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Proyecto de literatura culturalmente relevante

¿Qué es la literatura culturalmente relevante?

La literatura culturalmente relevante refleja el grupo diverso de niños que tenemos en nuestro distrito; estos libros celebran y representan a todos nuestros estudiantes, sus familias, idiomas, tradiciones y variadas experiencias de vida.

Beneficios de la literatura relevante culturalmente

Cuando integrated en el aula, la literatura culturalmente relevante proporciona espejos y ventanas para que los estudiantes amplíen su competencia cultural y fomentar una comunidad de aceptación y empatía.

Nuestro objetivo

Nuestro objetivo es proporcionar a cada aula de nuestro distrito escolar literatura culturalmente relevante para impulsar nuestra misión de apoyar a todos los estudiantes.

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Back to School Campaign

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As we all head back to school with distance learning to start, we want to ensure that all of our students have what they need to be successful while at-home learning. Some of our families need basic school supplies such as a notebook, colored pencils, markers, scissors and glue sticks.

As part of our back-to-school campaign, the Education Foundation would like your support in raising funds to purchase backpacks filled with supplies for roughly 1,300 students, at a cost of approximately $25,000. In addition, we continue to strive toward each student having access to their own Chromebook for use at home. If we make enough of an impact, we can consider how to bring other learning opportunities to our kids.

Please donate to our Back-to-School campaign!


SMFCEF asks families to consider a tax-deductible donation of $250. Any donation amount will help this important effort.

School District awarded $1,298,791

Check presentation to District

Diane Shew, Colleen Sullivan, and Kim Crellin, on behalf of the entire San Mateo-Foster City Education Foundation board, presented a check to Superintendent, Dr. Joan Rosas on July 30th.

This amount represents a year-long process of fundraising and working with our grantors and district staff to identify programs of most value to our students. In 2019-2020, we were able to provide the following to our schools:

  • 32 carts of 36 Chromebooks, plus additional Chromebooks for middle school science
  • Science lab glassware, digital thermometers, vacuum pump/bell jar kits
  • 5,562 Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) books
  • 5,920 English Language Arts & Development (ELA/ELD) books
  • 1,780 robust, diverse, and relevant library books (Bayside, LEAD, North Shoreview, Parkside, and Sunnybrae)
  • New 5th grade instruments, music instruction books, and stands
  • K-5 music program
  • Athletic programs and uniforms
  • Coming in 2020-2021: Support of additional Twig science curriculum kits, student notebooks, and staff professional development for new science curriculum!

$694,000 Grant from the County of San Mateo

San Mateo County Measure K logo.

On June 25th, the County of San Mateo Board of Supervisors awarded the foundation with a $694,000 one-time grant from Measure K funds for specific technology and literacy needs in our District.

This grant benefits every student in our District and is allotted for:

  • $290,000
  • 20 Chromebook carts
  • 36 Chromebooks per cart
  • One for each of our elementary and middle schools for Next Generation Science Standard (NGSS) implementation
  • $174,000
  • 12 additional Chromebook carts for the District’s Title 1 elementary schools:
  • Fiesta Gardens
  • LEAD
  • San Mateo Park
  • Sunnybrae
  • $100,000
  • Age-appropriate science books for all 20 school libraries
  • $100,000
  • Books to supplement the District’s adoption of new English Language Arts (ELA) and English Language Development (ELD) curriculum
  • $30,000
  • 3,000+ Library books for North Shoreview, LEAD, Sunnybrae, Parkside and Bayside libraries

Special thanks to San Mateo County Supervisor Carole Groom, Diana Harlick, Peter Cazanis, Alicia Heneghan and Susie Batter for making this a reality!

$150,000 Grant for TK-8th Grade Science Education

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We are excited to share the news that Gilead Sciences, Inc. has gifted the San Mateo-Foster City Education Foundation with a $150,000 grant to support TK-8 science education in the San Mateo-Foster City School District. The District is currently adopting and implementing new science curricula for elementary and middle school grade levels. These funds will be used to provide all students access to engaging, inspiring learning experiences and resources, including technology based learning.

This grant continues Gilead Sciences’ partnership with the foundation that began in the Fall of 2018. At that time Gilead awarded the foundation two grants totaling $77,000 for use in middle school science classrooms. The funds provided chemistry lab glassware at Abbott, Bayside, Borel, Bowditch and North Shoreview Montessori as well as Chromebooks, digital thermometers and vacuum bell jars.

Photo of middle school students getting hands on teaching in Science Class.

Scientific discovery is at the core of Gilead’s mission. We are proud to partner with SMFCEF to bring quality STEM education to local students, contributing to their competence and confidence to pursue rewarding careers in science and technology.

-Joydeep Ganguly, Senior VP of Corporate Operations

We are grateful to Gilead Sciences for their recognition that strong and engaging STEM education enables students to form STEM identities and envision their future careers. This additional grant further supports the idea that STEM education is critical to our community and country’s economic growth and security, and an important path to economic mobility for our disadvantaged students.

To learn more about Gilead’s dedication to community support, click here.

Thank you, Gilead Sciences, for your continued investment in our community and our future scientists!

School District awarded $202,700

Photo of the SMFC Ed Foundation delivering a check to the School District.

Last year, we raised $202,700 in support of the San Mateo-Foster City School District through various efforts, including direct fundraising, events like Readathon & securing special grants.

  • $115,000 for Music Programs
  • $77,000 for Science Labware & Chromebooks
  • $5,000 for the Beresford Makerspace
  • $5,700 for Art-In-Action

Partnership with Playstation: Beresford Makerspace

Photo of volunteers preparing the Beresford Makerspace

With a $5,000 grant from PlayStation to make teacher Cynthia Buenavista’s Makerspace proposal a reality, volunteers from SMFCEF, Beresford and two enthusiastic groups from PlayStation came together & set up the new dedicated room for making, learning, exploring and sharing.

Logo for Playstation

This Makerspace provides the community’s youth with unparalleled opportunities to innovate, problem-solve, think critically, learn from failure, and apply the concepts of the classroom to hands-on projects.

Photo of students working in the Beresford Makerspace

SMFCEF Budget Approved: $5,000 for Teacher Grants!

As part of our 2019-2020 budget, the San Mateo-Foster City Education Foundation has allocated $5,000 for teacher grants in partnership with the San Mateo Elementary Teachers Association's (SMETA) Member Grant Program.

Photo of members of the San Mateo Elementary Teachers Association.