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In This Issue
Openings for 10th, 11th and 12th Grade Students
Grand Opening of Da Vinci Innovation Academy 2 Weeks Away
Da Vinci Design Makes Final Preparations for Opening at New Isis Ave. Location
Creating Strong School-Industry-Community Connections
Da Vinci Students Visit 6 West Coast Colleges in 3 Days
Da Vinci Schools In the News
Da Vinci Students Participate in Teen Media Initiative
Assembly Bill 354 Requires Whooping Cough Vaccination
Teacher Credentialing at Da Vinci Through High Tech High
Da Vinci Apparel Now On Sale

Back to School    

August 16

First Day of Classes for High School Students 


August 25-26

Da Vinci Innovation Academy Grand Opening  


Aug. 31 - Sept 2.

High School 9th Grade Overnighter Trips  


September 5

Labor Day:  No School 


Community Partners

We gratefully acknowledge the generosity of our
community partners
 and supporters.

Complete List 

Quick Links

Da Vinci Science
13500 Aviation Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA  90250
(310) 725-5800

Da Vinci Design
12501 S. Isis Ave.
Hawthorne, CA  90250
(310) 725-5800

Da Vinci Innovation Academy
13500 Aviation Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA  90250
(310) 725-5800


Matthew Wunder, Ed.D.
Executive Director

Nicole Tempel Assisi, Ed.D.
Innovation Academy

Steve Wallis
Da Vinci Science

Colleen O'Boyle
Da Vinci Design


Dear Da Vinci Families & Friends:


A Commitment to Educational Excellence   


One of the benefits of teaching and working at Da Vinci Schools is being part of a learning community that is truly committed to collaboration and excellence in teaching. We know the success of our students rests in part on the shoulders of our teachers to provide learning opportunities that challenge, support and engage all students. That is why, as a staff, we dedicate much of our time to professional development. Together, we collaborate, plan, implement, reflect, evaluate and then plan some more so that we may continually improve instruction.


Our new high school teachers receive 23 days of paid professional development (continuing teachers receive 18 days). Every high school teacher also receives 5 1/2 hours per week and a daily hour-and-a-half planning period for collaborative planning to ensure that every student who graduates from Da Vinci Schools is college-ready, career-prepared and community-minded.


Teachers at the new Da Vinci Innovation Academy will participate in about 45 days of staff development this school year focusing on personalized learning, collaborating with families, project planning, social-emotional learning, developing 21st century skills and more. Before school starts, Innovation Academy teachers are spending one week at High Tech High, a highly regarded network of project-based charter schools in San Diego.


Much of our professional development time this month is being spent identifying the essential skills (core standards) we want students to know and be able to do, and to develop a syllabus and curriculum/project plan for the school year that incorporates all project requirements as well as the California content standards. For those of you who want to learn more about project-based learning, the Buck Institute for Education has produced an excellent video, Project-Based Learning: Explained.

Our college counseling team is also engaged in professional development training this month facilitated by Dr. Esther Hugo, an adjunct professor in the graduate counseling departments at UCLA and Loyola Marymount University and Chair of the Western Association for College Admission Counseling's Inter-Association Committee. Dr. Hugo is sharing her knowledge, wisdom and expertise as we continue to build a college-going culture in which every Da Vinci student is on track for high school graduation, college enrollment and college completion.

New DV staff 2011-2012As we add new members to our community and move onto separate campuses, we greatly look forward to all the ideas and contributions our students, families, faculty, staff, board members, partners and volunteers will make to our great schools.

Welcome to a new and exciting academic year at Da Vinci Schools!

With gratitude,
Wunder signature
Matthew Wunder, Ed.D.
Executive Director 

Openings for 10th, 11th and 12th Grade Students

Summer School SunWe still have a few openings for the 2011-2012 school year for eligible 10th and 11th grade students in both Da Vinci Design and Da Vinci Science, and for eligible 12th grade students in Da Vinci Science. Classes begin on August 16, 2011. Hurry if you're interested!

Required Application Materials

    * Enrollment Waitlist Application - please download and complete the application

    * An unofficial or official transcript from each high school the student has attended

Please hand-deliver the required application materials to:

Da Vinci Schools
13500 Aviation Boulevard
Hawthorne, CA 90250
Office Hours: 8 am - 4 pm

Once we have received all required application materials, we will provide the student with an enrollment package to be completed pending the final admissions decision.

Families will be notified promptly of the final admissions decision after the waitlist application and transcript have been reviewed.

Completing an Enrollment Waitlist Application does not guarantee enrollment in Da Vinci Schools. Please do not mail the application materials.

Questions?  Please contact:

Yolanda Saldana-Bautista
(310) 331-8093

K-8 Update

Grand Opening of Da Vinci Innovation Academy 2 Weeks Away

by Nicole Tempel Assisi

Nicole TempelSummer is coming to a close, and we are incredibly excited as we get ready for the grand opening of the Da Vinci Innovation Academy on Aug. 25-26.  On Aug. 25, students enrolled in the Monday-Thursday group will begin classes. On Aug. 26, students enrolled in the Tuesday-Friday cohort will start school.

Our staff, parents and students have already accomplished a great deal in preparation of opening our new school. We held over 12 information meetings and met over 1,000 parents and students; we interviewed more than 500 teachers and saw many of them teach sample lessons; we painted rooms, built lofts and did a lot of gardening and clean up; and on August 1st our staff came together to start our staff professional development to prepare for the arrival of 220 incredible 5-14 year olds, who will now be part of the Da Vinci family.

While what we have done is impressive, what lies ahead is even more exciting. We can't wait to embark on this wonderful journey together. Welcome to your new school! 

The Da Vinci Innovation Academy will officially open its doors on August 25, 2011, offering families a new approach to K-8 education that combines school-site instruction with home-based learning.

To learn more, please visit the Innovation Academy web page, friend us on Facebook, or email us at ia@davincischools.org.
Da Vinci Design Update
Da Vinci Design Makes Final Preparations for Opening at New Isis Ave. Location
New Design schoolAs we begin Da Vinci Design's third year, we look to the upcoming school year as a time of change as we move to our new site located at 12501 S. Isis Ave. in the Del Aire community. The facilities and administration teams have worked all summer to ensure that the campus is ready for our August 16th start date. We are extremely fortunate to have the support from the Del Aire neighborhood and our back door neighbors, the Imperial School.

We are happy to report that we have hired a talented group of teachers for the upcoming school year, have our stellar veteran teachers returning, and have added two new college counselors to our College Guidance program. In addition, Maureen Moran joins us as Assistant Principal from Da Vinci Science where she taught Humanities.

The RavenWe are proud to announce that in the ninth grade Humanities classes, students will take English 9 & Composition instead of World Cultures. We feel it is imperative that students receive a solid foundation in writing as it is employed in all their classes both in high school and beyond.  In our tenth and eleventh grade classes, subjects will be split per content. For example, students will have one teacher for math, another for science and so on.

Additionally, we are excited to offer a wide range of design-based seminars such as web programming, mural painting, game design, toy making, product & industrial design to name just a few. Coupled with the design-based seminars, we will offer academic-based seminars such as SAT prep, academic support, Early College classes, and Project Lead the Way Engineering classes. Please note that Early College classes are not available to ninth graders and tenth/eleventh graders will need to have a minimum of a 2.5 GPA to enroll.
Design painting
Da Vinci Design is dedicated to partnering with our neighbors for the benefit of everyone in the community. We invite you to join with us as we create an environment conducive to learning and a high quality life for all.

For more information, please contact Principal Colleen O'Boyle at coboyle@davincischools.org.

Da Vinci Science Update
Creating Strong School-Industry-Community Connections
Flight SimulatorDa Vinci Science is gearing up for a fantastic first semester full of exciting new seminar classes that promote strong school-industry-community connections. Some of our new seminar classes include: Flight School (Ground School and Flight Simulator taught by a private pilot), Robotics, Aerospace Engineering, Science Industry Competitions & Connections, Rocketry, and Product Marketing & Development. We are also offering SAT Prep, Art Studio, Yearbook, Drama, Leadership, Physical Fitness, Tech Team, Speech & Debate, Financial Literacy, Marathon Club and much, much more. We can't wait to get started!


Da Vinci Students Visit 6 West Coast Colleges in 3 days

West Coast College TourA group of nine 10th and 11th grade Da Vinci students recently went on a tour of West Coast Colleges, a trip that was co-sponsored by District Tours and Da Vinci Schools. The students visited six colleges in three days, including UC Santa Barbara, CSU San Luis Obispo, Santa Clara University, Stanford University, UC Davis (above) and UC Berkeley. Students went on walking tours, met with admissions representatives, and attended college application and financial aid workshops. It was a fantastic opportunity to see the campuses up close and to begin the process to find the college that is the best fit.

"The West Coast College Tour was a fun and informative experience that made me realize that all colleges are different.  I learned that the Personal Statement is one of the most important sections of the application because it makes you unique to all the other students applying.  Although I liked all the colleges we visited, one of my personal favorites was UC Davis because of its Veterinarian School/Program because of my interest in becoming a vet," said Gerald Cook '13, a Da Vinci Science student.


Da Vinci Schools In the News 

Don't miss the latest articles showcasing our schools, including a feature profile of Chet Pipkin, Da Vinci's Board President and Founder and Chairman of Belkin International.

Daily Breeze logo
"South Bay's Chet Pipkin may be the most famous tech mogul to come from Hawthorne"
Daily Breeze | August 7, 2011

IDSA logo

"Design is to doing as learning is to thinking"  

Industrial Designers Society of America 

Summer 2011


Student Spotlight
Da Vinci Students Participate in Innovative Teen Media Initiative

Da Vinci Design students Danielle, Miyko and Domonique are participating in an innovative summer program sponsored by Teen Media Initiative (TMI), a social enterprise of Inside Out Community Arts in Venice, CA. The teens meet two Fridays and two Saturdays each month to learn how to use social media (such as Facebook and LinkedIn) responsibly, how to create websites and blogs, how to solve email glitches, do photo and video uploading and archiving, how to protect computers from viruses and identity theft, and much more. Once the students complete their training, they are eligible to apply for $12.50/hour jobs with TMI offering tech support to technology-challenged adults and small businesses.

Teen TechiesTeen Media Initiative employs Teen Media Techies to help individuals and businesses get up to speed with their online and telecommunication needs. The Techies also learn through hands-on experience about financial literacy, customer service, leadership, business and philanthropy. If hired by TMI, the students are encouraged to show that they've deposited $3/hour in a savings account and set aside $.50/hour for charitable causes and projects.

For more information about Teen Media Initiative, please visit www.teenmediainitiative.org.

TMI is made possible by the generous support of The Boeing Company.

Assembly Bill 354 Requires Whooping Cough Vaccination
Students entering 7th through 12th grades for the 2011-2012 school year are required to receive the Tdap booster shot against pertussis (whooping cough) as a result of the passage of Assembly Bill 354. Da Vinci Schools are requiring that families provide a photocopy of the vaccination proof. If you have not already submitted proof of the vaccination, please contact:


Yolanda Saldana-Bautista

Teacher Credentialing at Da Vinci Through High Tech High
HTH logoDa Vinci Schools are proud to announce that the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing has approved Da Vinci Schools through partner school High Tech High to certify teachers in the Single Subject content areas of Mathematics, Science, English, History/Social Science, Spanish, Mandarin, and Art; Multiple Subjects (K-8); and Special Education (Mild/Moderate Preliminary) through its District Intern Program. The goal of the program is to prepare teachers to work in an environment that integrates technical and academic education while creating a sense of community engagement and responsibility. This program situates teacher training in sites where candidates can experience a 21st century context for teaching and learning. The program provides direct, on-the-job training to recent graduates of post-secondary institutions, as well as to mid-career individuals in transition.

The Da Vinci/HTH District Intern Program is accredited by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing and provides the equivalent of a 120-hour pre-service program and 600 hours of training and practice over two academic years. To be considered for the program, applicants must be employed as the teacher of record (at least 50% of the year). Candidates are charged a fee of $2,500 dollars per year (for 2 years) to attend the program.  


Currently, there are four Da Vinci teachers enrolled in the credentialing program.  


Admission to the Da Vinci/HTH District Intern Program for 2011-2012 is now closed.  


To learn more about the Teacher Credentialing Program at Da Vinci Schools, please contact Nicole Tempel Assisi at nassisi@davincischools.org.   


Da Vinci Apparel Now On Sale for All Students in Grades K-12
Da Vinci PoloDa Vinci polos and sweatshirts are on sale in a rainbow of colors, styles & sizes for all students in grades K-12. We are also offering dress shirts and NEW organic selections in adult sizes.

Orders must be placed by August 1 to guarantee delivery before school starts.

All products are being offered through U-Name It, a local vendor in the El Segundo area.

Shipping is included on all orders placed on or before August 1.  After August 1, shipping is $6.50 per order.  

Da Vinci High Schools Dress Code
As part of the new dress code at Da Vinci Schools, all high school students are required to wear a polo shirt (any color or pattern, with or without the Da Vinci logo) or a dress shirt with tie. (Flannel shirts do not qualify as dress shirts.) Other shirts may not be worn over the polo or dress shirts. Hoodies and sweatshirts must be Da Vinci wear or college gear.

* Pants: Must be khakis, slacks, or jeans with no frays, patches, or holes. No tights or leggings.
* Shorts/Skirts: Must be 2 inches from the knee or longer. No frayed or cut off shorts or skirts, no athletic wear, and no miniskirts with or without leggings/stockings/tights permitted.
* Shoes: Must be close-toed. No sandals or flip-flops allowed.

Da Vinci Innovation Academy Dress Code
* Shirts: Need to be polo shirt (any color or pattern, with or without the Da Vinci logo)
* Skirts and shorts: Must be 2 inches above the knee or longer and not be cut-off/frayed
* Sweater: May be worn over, but not in place of, the polo (we recommend writing your child's name on all outerwear)
* Shoes: Must be close-toed and have a back (for safety reasons no sandals or flip-flops are allowed)

To order online, please visit the the official Da Vinci Store at www.davincistore.org. Fill out a secure online order form and use a Visa or MasterCard to complete your transaction.

Due to the large volume of orders, we strongly urge you to place your order online.  This will make the entire process run more smoothly.  Thank you so much for your support!!!!

Click here to view our online catalog and to start shopping!!!

Or download and complete a printable Da Vinci Apparel Order Form. Mail Apparel Order Form and payment directly to:

U-Name It
630 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Suite 5A
El Segundo, CA  90245 (across from Sizzler)
Tel: (310) 322-1797
fax: (310) 322-1796

HOURS:  M-F, 9 am - 5 pm.

A sizing kit is available at U-Name It.

Questions?  Please contact

Lee Jossel
U-Name It

Yolanda Saldana-Bautista