Click to read our December parent newsletter!
Click to read our December parent newsletter!

 "My idea of Christmas, whether old-fashioned or modern, is very simple: loving others. Come to think of it, why do we have to wait for Christmas to do that?"

Bob Hope

As Semester 1 comes to a close and we all look forward to a well-deserved break, there are just a few more things to keep in mind.Please read this issue carefully for information about our Finals, Toy Drive, and other important events.
NEW: This year, we are splitting our December and January newsletters into two separate issues. There is so much to try and keep track of in December alone that some of the pertinent information for January becomes muddled. So, keep an eye out for a January newsletter published by January 5.

From Dr. Heather Alumbaugh, Vice President for Academic Life

Dear Parents, Students, and Friends of De La Salle,
I did not read Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography until I was a doctoral student in English, and I remember with crystal clarity the day I read it for the following reason: Franklin began the Library Company of Philadelphia in 1731, and he believed that a cornerstone of a healthy democracy is public access to libraries. Until that moment, I had never considered the role of libraries in the creation of the United States. As a lifelong bibliophile, I was absolutely charmed by the idea that the public circulation of books was so wedded to the founding of American democracy. It was with equal delight that I discovered, upon my first year at De La Salle, just how central our own Library is to the functioning of the school. Our three librarians, Ms. Elaine Seed, Mr. Timothy Chu, and Mrs. Brooke Heskett, have many commonalities: They all have an MLS degree (Masters of Library and Information Science), love reading, and create a library as an information hub that makes so much of our academic lives possible. They work daily to bring to life a vision that Benjamin Franklin shared—that access to reliable information, in multiple forms, is a necessity for the creation of ethical citizens. To that end, they offer not only their expertise, but also creative technological solutions and programming.
For instance, they noticed that DLS did not have a “hub” that allowed students to interact with one another technologically as they created group presentations. After research and through their own design, the librarians asked our technology team to build a handful of what they call “Collaboration Hubs,” presentation technology that enables students to work mutually in groups on a single, large screen.

From Mark DeMarco, President

Dear Parents and Guardians,
One of the many benefits of working at an academic institution is being in a learning environment – not just for students but for adults, as well. Recently, Dr. Alumbaugh shared an article with me “Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?” from The Atlantic magazine. Jean Twenge, the author of the article, posits the thesis: “More comfortable online than partying, post-Millennials are safer, physically, than adolescents have ever been. But they’re on the brink of a mental-health crisis.” I have listed the link to the entire article below. However, if you don’t have time to read it – here are some important points:
  • Smartphones, coupled with social media, have caused an earthquake of a magnitude that we’ve not seen in a very long time, if ever. These devices are making teens seriously unhappy.
  • Teens who spend more-than-average time on screen activities are more likely to be unhappy.
  • If you were to give advice for a happy adolescence – it would be straightforward: Put down the phone, turn off the laptop, and do something – anything – that does not involve a screen.
Wait! How can this be with a device that was supposed to make daily life a little easier for us? 
We strongly encourage our students to plan ahead with their studying and to come well-rested on the day of each final.
As always, tutoring will be available in the Learning Center
NEW: The Learning Center will have a Finals Prep Date on Sunday, December 17 from 1-6 p.m. for students who need intependent study or drop-in tutoring help.
Applications for the 2018-19 school year are due December 1! 
(Current students do not need to reapply.)

Follow this link to go to our main Freshman Application page for a complete rundown of the application checklist and materials needed. Click on "Apply Online: Start Here" to be taken to the application portal like you see above.
Please make sure to complete your full application - including birth certificate and immunization records, and baptismal records (for Catholic applicants) - by December 1. Email for any questions you may have.

Additional Admissions and Financial Aid Information:

Sat., Jan. 20, 2018 Entrance Exam
The Entrance Exam will be on Saturday, January 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Students are asked to arrive before 9:00 a.m. but not before 8:30 a.m.
Please bring two (2) #2 pencils. Calculators are NOT allowed.
Additional Due Dates:
Friday, February 2 - Grades, recommendations, and 7th & 8th grade standardized test scores. (See website for details and forms.)
Financial Aid Workshops:
Sat., Jan. 27 - 9-11 a.m.
Wed., Jan. 31 - 6-7:30 p.m. 
Financial Aid Applications need to be date-stamped and submitted by Monday, February 12. Applications will be available online in January 2018.

College Counseling 

  • SAT/ACT Test Dates for Juniors and Seniors

Important Notes for Seniors
  • Financial Aid
  • SAT & ACT
  • Applications
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Scholarships
Important Notes for Juniors
  • Junior Parents' College Planning Night - Wednesday, Jan. 31 @ 7 p.m.
  • PSAT & PACT Scores
  • Small Group College Planning Meetings
Juniors ('19) and Sophomores (20)
  • East Coast College Trip (through Education First Tours)

Campus Life 

December is here and Christmas is near!  Our Toy Drive continues through the upcoming final exams. We are providing Christmas gifts to a variety of charities including Holiday Helpers Warehouse in Martinez, the Bay Area Crisis Nursey, Oakland Catholic Worker, the Monument Crisis Center and Running with Love charity. Freshman have ages 0-3 , sophomores 4-7, Juniors 8-10 and seniors 11-13.  Only new, unwrapped toys please. Give the gift of Christmas by lighting up the eyes of a child in need.

Food offerings for the Monument Crisis Center

Campus Ministry 

We thank Thee for food and remember the hungry.
We thank Thee for health and remember the sick.
We thank Thee for friends and remember the friendless.
We thank Thee for freedom and remember the enslaved.
May these remembrances stir us to service.
That Thy gifts to us may be used for others. Amen.
Don't miss out on these Campus Ministry programs!
The last Junior Retreat of the year will be January 19.
Kairos 113 (2/20-23) and Kairos 114 (3/13-16) still have openings but are filling up fast!
Parent/Son Retreat (Feb. 3-4) is open to all grade levels; moms or dads are welcome to join their sons on this special retreat.
VEN A VER IMMERSION applications (available in the Campus Ministry Office) are due January 19 for both the San Diego (3/19-24) and the Los Angeles (4/16-21) programs.
The Sophomore Immersion Program (S.I.P.) will begin in February.
Financial assistance is available for all retreats.Email Nadine Ghammache with questions or requests.

Student Support Services

Juniors (PSAT) and Sophomores (pre-ACT) will both receive the scores of their tests on Wednesday, January 17. Parents should check with their students to see the results.
Both the PACT and PSAT were paid for by tuition. Every DLS Sophomore and Junior is automatically registered to take these tests. Sophomores and Juniors received an orientation regarding these tests back in September.

Audtions for Spring Play start next week!

On December 4-6 after 7th period, students are encouraged to audition for the spring musical, Little Shop of Horrors!
Performances will be April 26, 27, 28, & May 3, 4, 5. Times will be announced as we get closer to the dates.

Crab Feed - Adult Volunteers and Student Servers still needed!

We are in need of several adult volunteers for the Crab Feed. Shifts are available on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Whether you are able to help set up, or you want to be here during the event itself, or if you can help clean up....we have lots of opportunities! Follow this link for the Sign Up list for our adult volunteer opportunities (must be over 21 to sign up for these shifts).
We also still need a few more student volunteers. Here is the link for them - they need to sign up for one of the training sessions on either January 16, 17, or 18. Here is the link for student servers.

Business Office 

Tuition payments: As a reminder, tuition payments are due on the 1st of each month and considered late after the 10th of that month.  If you have questions relating to your tuition obligation, call Ms. Kathy Resch in the Business Office at 925-288-8122 or email her at
All tuition must be current prior to semester finals.
Financial Aid Applications for the 2018-19 school year will be available online through our website after January 1, 2018. Financial Aid Applications for 2018-19 will be due February 12, 2018. Families who are currently receiving financial aid must reapply each school year.

Spartan Store

Online shopping is available at
Monday:          7:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. 
Tuesday:         7:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. 
Wednesday:    8:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. 
Thursday:        7:30 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. 
Friday:             7:30 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.
Holiday Hours: We will have normal hours through Wednesday, December 20.
Christmas Shoppers: Spread some cheer by giving your loved ones Christmas gifts from the DLS Bookstore! Stop by soon for the best selection - we quickly sell out of popular items such as pajama pants, sweatshirts, blankets, and hats.
Online Shopping: Visit our Spartan Online Store 24/7!  We update our website DAILY with all of our new Spartan swag. Avoid those long lines at the post office and have us send all of your online gifts. Place your online orders early for the best selection and arrival before Christmas! 
#GivingTuesday 2017 - Thank You! (video)
We are excited to share that De La Salle received the BEST response to our Giving Tuesday efforts yet! Over $48,000 in gifts were received from 237 members of our community. On behalf of everyone here at De La Salle, we are extremely thankful...especially our students!
Make Your Annual Fund Gift and Take Advantage of Valuable Tax Benefits in 2017!

As we approach the end of the calendar year, it is a great time to make a financial gift to De La Salle and receive tax benefits for 2017. You may also receive significant tax benefits through your gift of stock, securities or other real property based on the fair market value at the time of the gift. Contact your financial advisor to learn more about the benefits of making a gift of stock or a financial contribution. Contact Karla Wiese (925) 288-8195 for personal assistance in facilitating your gift.
If you happened to make a pledge, don’t forget to make a pledge payment today so that you receive your charitable deduction for 2017!
Make your gift online today! Cick here to be directed to our online giving form. If you haven’t yet had a chance to make your gift this year, you can make your gift online through our secure server until midnight December 31 to have your gift acknowledged in 2017 for your tax purposes.

Alumni Relations

Alumni Team Reunions:
Friday, December 22 - Tennis Match & Reunion
Wednesday, January 10 - Wrestling Pre-Match Social & Senior Night
Other Alumni Events:
For more information and to participate in these events, please contact Director of Alumni Relations, Lloyd Schine ’94, 925-288-8171 or or visit
De La Salle High School - Events

Change the way you shop. Help the DLS Brotherhood in the process!

Thank you to all the families who have taken the time to register for P3 (eScrip, ScripSense and Amazon Smile).
A change in the way you shop will lead toward donations to the Brotherhood Fund. Our partners will give a percentage of your purchase back to DLS. Whether you need a gift card, a special treat, or that pumpkin spiced latte, shop through our partners first.
If haven't registered for ScripSense, a fabulous service that offers gift cards and online shopping, please email Shannon Danser at
To view our full offerings, visit

Did you know?

De La Salle wrote many meditations on the saints. Here is a part of his meditation on Saint Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, Patron Saint of Children, whom we of course all know as Santa Claus. This quote comes from De La Salle's meditation on December 6, which is St. Nicholas's feast day. 

"The love that Saint Nicholas had for the poor was surprising, for it led him to explore all possible ways to provide for their needs. This love led him in person, secretly during the night and on three separate occasions, to bring what was needed to provide a dowry for three young girls, whose father was ready to force them to become prostitutes because he did not have the means to get them married. This same charity led the saint to free a young man, captured by the Saracens, who was serving the king at table and invoked the saint on his feast, begging him to grant him this favor.
"Because you are under the obligation to instruct the children of the poor, you must, consequently, cultivate a very special tenderness for them and procure their spiritual welfare as far as you will be able, considering them as members of Jesus Christ and his well-beloved. The faith that must inspire you ought to make you honor Jesus Christ in their person and prefer them to the wealthiest children on earth, because they are the living images of Jesus Christ, our divine Master. By the care you have for them, show how truly dear they are to you, and ask Saint Nicholas, their patron, to obtain for you from God some share in his love for the poor, especially a great zeal to procure purity for them, a virtue that is so difficult to preserve in an age as corrupt."
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