School Site Council

  • A joint School Site Council links Yulupa and Strawberry Schools. The council is comprised of parents, classified staff members, teachers, and administrators (school principals).  Representatives serve two-year terms and positions are staggered. The Site Council meets one afternoon each month and has many responsibilities including:

    • Managing the Single Plan for Student Achievement and Local Educational Agency Plan which address all areas of the curriculum.
    • Assisting the Board of Trustees in developing the district's annual budget, as well as reviewing, analyzing, and making recommendations regarding requests for budget funding.
    • Overseeing many school-wide areas such as leadership, school effectiveness, the learning environment, special needs, emergency plans, and staff development.

    The Sonoma County Office of Education (SCOE) holds orientation for new Site Council members each fall.  Interested candidates should contact their student's school principal to complete a candidates' statement form.  A ballot for selecting representatives will appear in a newsletter if an election is necessary.

Alliance of Parents & Teachers

  • apt logo

    The Bennett Valley Alliance of Parents and Teachers (BVAPT)  is a non-profit corporation whose purpose is to enhance the education of Bennett Valley students and to build community.  All parents and teachers are automatically members of the APT.  There is no cost to join.  Members are encouraged to attend the monthly meetings announced in the district newsletters.  While only the Executive Board is the voting body, input is taken from the superintendent, principals, faculty, staff, and parents.  The APT raises funds through fundraising sales, book fairs, etc. and uses them to fund assemblies, field trips, computers, instructional materials, PE and science support, faculty allowances, and a host of other needs. 

    Be sure to sign up for e-script!

    • Go to
    • Click on #1 option: sign up
    • Select Bennett Valley Alliance Parents/Teachers ID# 137621013

    Please visit our BVAPT website to get more information and to volunteer!

    Disclaimer: By clicking on the BVAPT website link, you are leaving BVUSD's website and are going to a website that is not operated by BVUSD. We are not responsible for the content or accessibility of linked sites. If you have any questions or concerns about the content on linked websites, please contact the third party directly.

Bennett Valley Education Foundation

  • bvef music logo The Bennett Valley Education Foundation (BVEF) is a non-profit foundation that raises funds through advertising sales for the district family directory, The Bennett Valley Connection, and through its annual pledge drive to fund Art Works and Music Scores.  This program will provide multi-cultural music lessons provided by Young Imaginations,  Drama workshops for each Strawberry class, and  visual art and art history lessons provided by our Artist-in-Residence, Nancy Ricciardi.  BVEF also funds much of the cost of the Strawberry Band and Chorus.  In addition, the BVEF funds the Art Docent program, which enables parents to lead art lessons in all of the classrooms at both schools.  Be sure to look below for all the details!

    Visit our website at:

    Click Art Docent Training Videos to find the videos.

    Disclaimer: By clicking the links to BVEF or Art Docent videos you are leaving BVUSD's website and are going to a website that is not operated by BVUSD. We are not responsible for the content or accessibility of linked sites. If you have any questions or concerns about the content on linked websites, please contact the third party directly.



    Bennett Valley Education Foundation Programs 

    The Visual and Performing Arts programs funded through your tax-deductible, generous contributions to the Bennett Valley Education Foundation and other BVEF fundraising enable the Bennett Valley Union School District to provide a rich program in the arts taught by actual artists addressing the California State Visual and Performing Art Standards. For more information and exciting ways you can volunteer, please contact Brooke Burns, President at 

    Visual Art at Yulupa with Nancy Ray Ricciardi
     Nancy is a noted Sonoma County landscape painter and a 19-year member of Sonoma County Art Trails. Her work has won many awards and she shows regularly throughout the county.  Her paintings can be found in private and public collections across the United States including Kaiser Permanente, San Jose. For over 30 years, Nancy has worked as an artist-in-residence in the public school system, grades K through 8, teaching a discipline based program unique to her.  Nancy's program consists of 4 disciplines: history, criticism, aesthetics and skills. This program treats art as a subject for study rather than a purely recreational activity. Her process-based approach centers on the studies of individual artists, their philosophies, techniques and contributions. Each of the 10 sessions per class provides students with a sense of history while continuing to develop their creative skills. This course benefits students through art appreciation as well as production.  This year's program will be based on the study of the life and art of  Pablo Piccasso.    You can contact Nancy directly through her website: or at Yulupa School, (707) 542-6272.  

     Visual Art at Strawberry with Cory Hakola:  Cory Hakola, a noted artist, has been a BVEF board member for several years.  He has art degrees from Sonoma State in Studio Art and Art History and a teaching credential in Art.  His work instructing students in art includes residencies in the Artists in the School Projects, Art Docent and Valley of the Arts lessons and substitute teaching art throughout Sonoma County.  Cory’s approach to teaching the importance of art includes synthesizing imaginative and applicable learning experiences with relevant art history.  He helps students develop an understanding of the process of art making and respect the rigors of art studio habits required to produce art in a way that helps students build confidence to think constructively and solve problems.  In both his art and coaching, Cory recognizes a student’s individual needs and adapts his instruction accordingly to guide each child to becoming a self-directed, confident learner. The 10 sessions per class will focus on process, technique, critique and art history.  Cory will also teach lessons district-wide leading to the creation of classroom art for Valley of the Arts.  Cory can be reached or at Strawberry School at 526-4433.

     Art Docent: Parents are trained to present curriculum-integrated arts lessons to classes offering a fun, artistic and hands-on way to bring classroom studies to life.  Each class enjoys three or four lessons utilizing various media including clay, paper, paint, and numerous genres of art appropriately coordinated with grade level studies.  Contact each school office for details.

     Multicultural Music, Movement and Dance at Yulupa with Tina Rogers:  A self-taught dancer, official break-dancer at 9 and a professional DJ/mixer at 15, Tina learned the value of self-determination at an early age. A native of Sonoma County, Tina earned experience and acclaim in music, street dance and athletics during her school years. While attending UC Davis, she turned her passion for the arts, fitness and wellness into a popular example of master teaching not only to children but people of all ages. Today she is a master teacher who uses multicultural music and dance to teach the "whole child" in elementary and middle schools, throughout the Bay Area, in Davis, and the Sacramento Central Valley. In addition to her in-school teaching residences, Tina leads a Hip Hop Culture life style consisting of dance and rap battles, choreography, library performances, classes, workshops, school assemblies and conferences.   Each class will have ten sessions with Ms. Tina  Email:

    Multicultural Music, Movement and Dance at Strawberry with Tina Malone: Earnestine (Miss Tina) Malone has been dancing for 30+ years and teaching dance for over 20 years. As a child, she dreamed to follow in her uncle’s footsteps, a Broadway dancer and choreographer.  She has worked on several projects such as Cinderella for the SRJC 2001, Project Sheba Dance in 2002 at Scottish Rite Center in Berkeley and frequently as a choreographer. In 2010 she followed her dream to launch M. Studio Dance Company--a studio that brings contemporary dance culture to the youth as well as adults and inn March 2011 she formed an after school program called "KidzGroove."    At Strawberry School, Tina operates with the goal that the students will learn dance steps and moves that they can replicate, that they will learn to enjoy using dance as a means of self-expression, learn to do dance as an enjoyable way to exercise, and that they will learn something of the origins of the dances which they will learn to perform.  Throughout the 9 class sessions, a cultural connection to each grade level’s history curriculum is established.  For 6th grade, it is dances of India, Egypt, Middle East, and Greece.  For the 5th grade and 4th grade the connections are historical American folk dances and/or contemporary American dance, for example reels, clogging, jigs, Cajun or Zydeco dance, contra dance, line dance, other ethnic American dancing (Irish, English, Italian, Greek, Native American, break dancing, hip hop, jazz, and tap).  Tina may be contacted by calling Strawberry School at 526-4433.

    Second and Third Grade Introduction to Music Appreciation and Choral Music by Marla Tusa: Strawberry chorus teacher, Marla Tusa will be teaching all Yulupa second and third graders an introduction to music appreciation, and choral music.  During the course of this eight-week session, Yulupa students will be offered a music appreciation class with a focus on choral singing.  Each week they will learn about vocal technique and methods as they sing a variety of repertoire.  Elements of music students will be taught include: pitch, dynamics, timbre, articulation, notation, tempo and rhythm.   The goal of this class is to introduce choral singing and to give each student the opportunity to be a part of a large choir performance in the spring.   Contact:  Yulupa School 542-6272 for details.

    Performance Programs:

    Strawberry Band and Chorus:  The Bennett Valley Education Foundation helps to support the following performance programs—first year band, advanced band, percussion, and the chorus program entitled the Strawberry Glee-gles. 

    First-Year Band Program:  The first-year band program is taught by professional musician, Jim Passarell.   The class is designed to teach students to read music, play their instrument, and play in concert with other musicians in both concert performances and in as a marching band in the Rose Parade.    Mr. Passarell plays virtually every instrument you can think of!  First year band students practice one day per week at 7:05 AM with their sectional (woodwinds, brass, and drums).  They also practice with the entire band in an expanded schedule beginning the end of November.  The practice schedule will be announced at the beginning of the school year and updated regularly.  The first year band plays at all of the concerts and performances listed below.

    Advanced band program:  The advanced band allows Eagles Band performers to soar with their music and orchestration!  Advanced band is taught by Mr. Passarell and generally practices Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 7:05 AM in room 6.  There is an enhanced practice schedule in the weeks leading up to the performances.

    Percussion:  Noted percussionist, Patrick O’Connell teaches the percussion/drum program which is a specialty for our district.  Students learn to read music, they learn rhythm, proper technique, and to play with other musicians.  Mr. O’Connell has performed for three US presidents!  Advanced drummers meet at 7:15 AM—the specific schedule will be announced at the beginning of the school year.  The drummers are included in the band for all the band concerts and events.

    Strawberry Glee-Gles: Ms. Marla Tusa is our choral music, Glee-gles teacher!   Marla Tusa grew up in rural Canada where she developed a love of choral music at a young age.  She has a Bachelor of Music from Brandon University where she majored in voice and a Bachelor of Education from Vancouver Island University.  Mrs. Tusa has over 10 years of classroom music experience, 20 years of private piano and voice lesson experience and has directed youth and adult choirs, ensembles, musical theater productions, rock bands and concert bands.   Marla taught music at Merryhill School (K-8) in Santa Rosa from 2000-2004.  She and her husband spent 10 years living on Vancouver Island where she sang with The Island Consort, directed music and choir at Brechin United Church and taught K-10 music and French at Aspengrove School. Marla has recently moved back to Santa Rosa with her husband and two young boys.  She leads after school music enrichment programs at SRFACS, directs the Training and Intermediate Choirs with the Santa Rosa Children’s Chorus and directs the choir at Strawberry Elementary School.  Marla sings alto and second soprano with the Sonoma County Chamber Singers.  The Glee-gles practice Monday after school, immediately following the reduced Monday schedule. There is an enhanced practice schedule before performances.

    2017-18 Key Events and Performances for First Year, Advanced, Percussion, and Glee-Gles (Dress Code for Performances:  Black pants, shorts or skirts; white band shirt or other white shirt or band/chorus tee-shirts):

    December 21:  Winter Concert at 5:30. 

    April 19:  Spring Concert.  Performers arrive at 5:30.  The concert begins at 6:00.

    April 20:  School Assembly 8:35 AM

    May 17:  Yulupa Open House—meet at Yulupa at 5:00; performance at 5:30

    May 19:  Rose Parade:  Meet at Veterans’ building at 9:30 AM; Parade 10:00 AM

    May 24:  Strawberry Open House—meet at Strawberry at 4:30; performance at 5:10

    May 31:  Sixth Grade Promotion—meet at Slater gym at 5:00; promotion begins at 5:30


    Mr. Passarell Contact Information: 

    Mr. O’Connell Contact Information:

    Marla Tusa Contact Information: