Educating the Whole Child
Richard Durborow
Richard Durborow
Principal, Piru Elementary School

Piru Elementary is an extraordinary school where children come to learn and grow, a place that challenges and nurtures young scholars, and a place that awakens a thirst for knowledge and understanding. Each student receives a high level of individual attention through classes taught by knowledgeable, experienced, and caring teachers.
Our primary goal is not only to promote scholarship, but to give each student the kind of life-learning experiences that will forever shape their world view. After all, these students represent our future!
Literacy Coach Makes a Difference
The last two years we set school-wide goals that included working with a literacy coach. That’s right. We have a coach who goes into all our classrooms and helps model best instructional practices for our teaching staff. She focuses attention on the reading needs of all our students and then helps build a program that ensures student success. And guess what? Her expertise and hard work is paying off in big ways. Student learning has improved. Test scores are up. Because literacy coaches are a powerful way to improve student learning they are now being used throughout Ventura County. Thank you Susan Jolley for being our literacy coach and for all you do for us!
Lesson One Teaches Self-Control and More
Clearly, many of today’s young people are feeling isolated, out-of-control, and full of rage. Instead of doing well in school they drop out. These students need to feel connected and learn skills so their anger doesn’t lead to destruction of self and others.
Last year the staff at Piru Elementary recognized this problem and adopted a program designed to help students cope with stress and take control of their actions. This year we continue using the innovative, violence prevention program called Lesson One-The ABC’s of Life. Students at Piru start each day reading the Pledge for Success and talking about self-control and respect for diversity. As students internalize self-control our teachers spend more time teaching and students spend more time learning. Later this year our staff and students will be trained on new Lesson One skills including self-confidence and responsibility. Thanks Jon Oliver for teaching us how to improve our lives!
Aerobic Exercise Improves Student Learning
Piru students begin each morning experiencing the joy of running and making the powerful connection between aerobic exercise and the increased capacity of the brain to learn. Recent brain-activation studies show that children who are aerobically fit allocate more cognitive resources to a task and do so for longer periods of time. In other words, aerobic exercise improves student learning. In fact, aerobic exercise supercharges your mental circuits and sharpens your overall thinking, lifts your mood, and boosts your memory.
Want to boost your mental abilities? Just put on your running shoes and join us Friday mornings for a run around the school. It may just be the healthiest thing you do all week!
Happy Holidays from Piru Elementary School.