The Pajaronian welcomes letters. Letters and columns may be dropped off or mailed to the Pajaronian, 21 Brennan St., Suite 18, Watsonville, CA 95076.

Letters and columns may also be sent via email to [email protected].

Letters should be less than 400 words, and columns are no more than 800 words.

All letters and columns must be signed and have an address and phone number for confirmation purposes. We reserve the right to edit and condense all submissions.


A thank you for sixth grade teachers and Cabrillo CAP

To the Editor,

A special thank you to the sixth grade teachers and principals at EA Hall, Lakeview, Shoreline, Mission Hill, Rolling Hills, Pajaro and Branciforte middle schools for selecting talented, low-income students in their classrooms to be part of the successful Cabrillo Advancement Program (CAP). This program would not work without the close cooperation between the sixth grade teachers and administrators in middle schools, Harbor, Santa Cruz, Soquel, Pajaro Valley and Watsonville high schools, and Cabrillo College and Cabrillo Foundation.

Each year the sixth grade teachers select those students they deem able to eventually attend and be successful in college. The young people are then awarded a $3,000 scholarship at Cabrillo College upon graduation from high school six years later. Once selected the sixth grade students and families are given tutoring help, counseling services, Saturday academies, parent education and each summer an opportunity to attend a week-long institute on Cabrillo’s campus. 

The success rate of this outstanding program is extremely high.

On Tuesday, March 5, the annual CAP awards ceremony was held before a packed Cabrillo Crocker Theater. Students that had been in the program for six years were given their awards in front of the new class of sixth grade students. What a wonderful example for the sixth-graders and their parents. 

As a former sixth grade teacher at EA Hall in Watsonville, my fellow sixth grade teachers and I used to speculate on who in our classes might need a little extra support to succeed. Years later as superintendent of the Pajaro School District I shared this information with John Peterson, Cabrillo College president. John said, “We should have a program set up to help sixth grade teachers pick students to eventually attend Cabrillo College.” To his credit and thanks to many generous donors, the Cabrillo Advancement Program began at EA Hall School in 1991.

James S. Baker

Retired Superintendent of Pajaro Valley USD


‘Kick Butts Day’ thinking about tobacco use

To the Editor,

Wednesday, March 20 is the 23rd Annual Kick Butts Day. What is Kick Butts Day? For some folks, it’s the day they have set as their “Quit Day,” the day they decide to kick tobacco out of their lives. For others, it is the day they start to think about kicking tobacco. Or maybe it’s the day they speak to a loved one, or their downstairs neighbor, about kicking butts. For still others, it’s the day they speak up about the literal “butts” that litter our communities.

Whatever “Kick Butts Day” means to you, take a minute to think about the impact of tobacco use on you, on your children, on your health, on your wallet, on your community, or on your planet. Write a letter, make a call, like a post, kick a “butt.”

Gina Gallino Cole

Tobacco Policy Analyst

Pajaro Valley Prevention and Student Assistance, Inc.

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