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Spotlight Story Archive

September 2018

Attention All Pumas, Sea Dragons and Pelicans, PCS Turns 20 This Year; There Will Be Celebration and Cake!

The 2018-19 school year marks PCS’s 20th birthday; the class of 2019 will be PCS’s 20th graduating class. The School’s first quarters were in a church on High Street. After a few years there, the School moved to the Swift Street Campus, former home of Natural Bridges Elementary School. In 2015, PCS – with the help of the Pacific Collegiate Foundation – was able to move to a new, permanent school building.
The first public charter school in the U.S. was started in Minnesota in 1991. PCS wasn’t far behind; it was started by local educators who dreamed of a school that would deliver college preparation to all interested students, free of tuition and other fees. PCS’s founders applied to operate as a public charter school, first with the Santa Cruz City Schools (they were denied twice) and then with the County Office of Education, who approved and holds PCS’s charter.
To celebrate turning 20, PCS will be hosting a 20th Birthday Big Weekend Event in 2019 – Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, May 24, 25, and 26 (Memorial Day weekend). Plans for the three-day event include:
1.   Alumni talks and Alumni Reception
2.   A 20th Anniversary Choral Concert directed by Alice Hughes featuring PCS composers
3.   Hosted brunches
4.   Street carnival with hands-on fun activities
5.   Jazz bands
6.   Art contest & art installation
7.   Time capsule
8.   Guest speakers
9.   Overnight camping
10. Games tournament
Watch for other special mini celebrations along the way – in addition to all the other cool things PCS does every year.
Wondering about those pumas, sea dragons and pelicans? Here’s an official PCS trivia question: which TWO animals have served as PCS mascots – pumas, sea dragons or pelicans? The answer is pumas and pelicans. Pelicans were the first and in 2001 PCS students voted to adopt the puma, instead of the sea dragon, as their new official mascot. Go Pumas!
Celebrate & Participate!  Check the school calendar for all 2018-19 events & activities. Interested in helping plan the festivities? Email