Principal's Message


October 27, 2017

Greetings Inspire Families and Community:

There is much to share with you all! 

Table of Contents

A/B calendar update

Despite many eyes and many revisions, we somehow managed to publish our school calendar with a glaring error. The last day of school is June 7, 2018. Finals will be June 4, 5, and 6th, June 7th will be our annual Day on the Purple. All four days of the last week of school are minimum days with 12:12 dismissals. The corrected calendar is attached.

Inspire Seniors Recognized for Their Participation in Chico’s Book in Common

All Inspire seniors have been reading this year’s Chico book in common, “A Deadly Wandering” by Matt Richtel, Pulitzer Prize winning reporter for the New York Times.  On Tuesday, several of them attended his presentation at Chico State.  Mr. Richtel then presented at Laxson Auditorium to a large crowd. 

In her opening remarks,  CSU, Chico professor Kate McCarthy spoke to the critical relevance of this book, the true story of a young man who caused the deaths of two rocket scientists in Utah because he was texting and driving.  She applauded Inspire for their participation and invited other high schools to join in future “book in common” reads.  

Danielle Alexich asked the seniors to write essays in response to the many important themes of this book.  I have read it, and the compelling story, combined with research of our relationship to phones and the related brain science, makes a profound impact on the decisions we make about our use of smart phones.

I want to thank Danielle Alexich for the vision she had to bring this into her curriculum – it is a challenging read, relevant to our times and asks our students to think deeply about the danger of texting and driving.  I also want to thank our seniors for taking on this challenge and providing thoughtful insights in response to the book. 

Thanks to the Inspire Foundation, Our Sponsors, Volunteers and Participants for “Run to Inspire!”

After months of preparation, over 100 runners participated last Sunday in the “Run to Inspire.”  We had 25 parent volunteers, 27 musical performers, 21 dancers and 14 student volunteers.

Danielle Reynold’s advisory won the advisory challenge with 59% participation and will be awarded the $500.  Congratulations!

Thanks also to Jana Gosselin for all her coordination and organization and to Martha Mendoza for her tremendous help the day of the race.

Thanks to all our sponsors!!!  We are deeply grateful for your support.

All Around Air

Robert B. Anderson

Chico Party Rentals

Dragon Graphics

Hearth and Stone Bakery

Hero CMO


Interwest Insurance Services, LLC

Jamie Moore

Lundberg Farms

Northern California National Bank

Plaza Realtors

Scotty’s Landing

The Eclectics

The Upper River Blues Society

Congratulations to the Cast and Crew of “James and the Giant Peach!”

The planning and vision for this production started in the summer of 2017.  A group of passionate and committed students met together to begin planning this production.  As is true for all of Inspire’s major performing arts productions, students do most of the work from production, to costume design, to lighting design, and stage management.  When the show opens, students run the show backstage.

We were all reminded of the tremendous talent and energy of the cast of “James and the Giant Peach.” That combined with the skillful teaching, direction and coaching of Jarrah Myles, Jim White, MaryLou Lim and Jamie Witt contributed to a delightful performance. 

The cast and crew also performed for over 800 elementary students who were bused to the Center For the Arts on Friday for two shows at 9:30 am and 12:30 pm.  Parkview Elementary teacher Pete Pemboke sent this note:

Your Inspire students absolutely rocked James and the Giant Peach today.  It was such a pleasure to see such a fantastic production from our local high school students.  

I had a chance to tell several of them as much, but do, on behalf of the 4th and 5th grade at Parkview Elementary, let your cast and crew know that we all thought your show was fantastic!

Thanks so much for sharing it with our elementary kids.  It was great. 

Thanks to all of you who supported the show.  Now mark your calendars for “42nd Street” opening on Friday, February 23, 2018!!!

What Are Advisory Classes Up To?

Beginning with this newsletter, this will be a regular item, so you will acquire a better idea of the kinds of activities that occur in advisories.   We’ll update junior and senior advisories in the next newsletter.

Freshmen advisory has been full of get-to-know you games and activities, and they are now rotating through a series of lessons on using their tech tools for organization, academics, and professional purposes.

Sophomores are shining light on the “Self-Awareness” Spotlight by taking personal inventories on personality and learning styles and discussing such topics as communication in relationships and integrity.

Counseling Update

The Inspire counselors have met with every senior in the past six weeks to check in, make sure they’re on track for graduation, and talk about future plans and any support they may need. Now they have moved on to juniors. This is a hands on way of making contact with students and supporting their academic and emotional needs.

Attendance Policy recap

  • Students are allowed only ONE non-medical tardy per semester. This is a tardy where parents are allowed to clear the tardy and the student does not have to serve a detention.
  • All medical/legal tardies require a note from the doctor or court appointee to be excused.
  • Otherwise, 1 tardy = 1 detention
  • 8 tardies (even with detention served) = 1 Saturday school

S-Club Rocks Inspire

Inspire is lucky to have the only official high school Soroptimist Club in Chico, known on campus as S-Club. S-Club kicked off the school year with an “Inspire Rocks” campaign where club members hand painted rocks with positive or friendly messages and placed them around campus. Found rocks could either be shared, kept or re-placed on campus.

CSF Club Offers Service to Inspire

This letter was submitted to faculty by student Heritage Mgbam, Vice President of CSF.

Hello teachers 

My name is Heritage Mgbam, and I am Vice President for CSF this year. One of our volunteering projects we would like to do this year is Service To Inspire, where we help clean and attend to the needs of the teachers. Things we could do include cleaning desks, organizing paperwork, and cleaning your classrooms.

 We are hoping to do this for a duration of two weeks, October 16th-20th and December 4th-8th during lunch and after school.

Please let Mrs. Travers know if you’re interested!  Thank you.

We commend CSF students for making positive contributions to our school community!

CSU Chico Professor Tours Inspire

Professor of Education Erin Whitney toured Inspire a couple of weeks ago.  I spent a little over an hour with her, taking her into a variety of classrooms.  Her words say a great deal about the rich education at Inspire.  She says:

Dear Eric and Inspire teachers,

Thank you so much for welcoming me into your classrooms yesterday. I loved seeing your Socratic seminar, the student's alternate titles, your Resource program, and art, dance and musical theater classes. I was very impressed by the ways the students were interacting with one another, and the high levels of engagement in your classrooms. Being relatively new to Chico, I am getting a sense of the different schools in the area, and could tell that Inspire is a very special place.

Upcoming Events

Auditions for 42nd Street and Our Town!

Both spring theater productions, 42nd Street and Our Town, will be holding auditions during the week of October 30th. Audition packets are available in the office that list specifics for students wishing to audition as performers, orchestra members, design or technical crew positions.

Spirit Week - October 30 - November 3

Daily themes as follows:

  • Monday Pink Day
  • TuesdayCostume Day (only half masks / face paint, no weapons, must be school appropriate)
  • WednesdayOnesie Day
  • ThursdayCandy Day
  • FridayFall Colors Day

Campus Tour

Monday, 11/6

3:30 pm


Foundation Meeting

Monday, 11/6

6:00 pm


Fall Music Concert

Wednesday, 11/8

7:00 pm

Center for the Arts

Grading Period #2 Ends

Thursday, 11/9

Veteran’s Day Holiday

Friday, 11/10

No School

Inspire Board Meeting

Monday, 11/13

7:00 pm


Thanksgiving Break

11/20 - 11/24

No School

We value our partnership with all of you, and we like to hear your suggestions, concerns, and ideas to help us continue to build a rich educational environment for our students. 

With gratitude,

Eric Nilsson, Principal and Jana Gosselin, Office Administrator



Inspire Community:   

I am returning to the community email “wagon.”  Like many, I took a spring break, and now feel rejuvenated as we approach the finish line for the 2015-2016 school year.  We have had a number of great events over the last two weeks, and will have other wonderful opportunities coming--starting tomorrow!  I have included a listing of items, so you can choose which is of the greatest interest to you.  But before you pick and choose, I would remind you that we are going into an incredibly busy season.  We want to be sure that all our students end the year with strength both academically and emotionally.  Please let us know if your students begin to struggle so that we can support them and help insure their success this year.

  1. Spring Standout
  2. Dance Chico! Spotlight Performances
  3. Peru and Spain/France
  4. Course Selection
  6. Butte College Art Showcase
  7. Graduation Try-outs
  8. Foundation Meeting and LCAP Review
  9. Foundation Raffle
  10. Spring Event Calendar
  11. This Week at Inspire
  12. Thought for the Week


1. Spring Standout

On Thursday, we had our Spring Standout.Students from our VAPA classes, put on a spectacular show for the entire school.There were great performances from choir, dance classes, CI Dance team, Jazz Ensemble, vocal groups, pop bands and more!There is not space enough to list all the students who participated—but that is just a sign of how deep the talent at Inspire runs.I am always impressed with the quality of performance and professional demeanor of our students.They are a step above.Kudos also goes out to our ASB Leadership for their organization, set up, clean up, and all around hard work.We had booths selling goods and goodies, and others sharing information and support.It is wonderful to be on a campus where groups like GSA, the “S” Club and Interact—as well as others, are dedicated to serving those in need.It shows that our students have hearts as great as their skills.

2. Dance Chico! Spotlight Performances

Thursday was also a wonderful day for Inspire at the Laxson Auditorium.The annual Dance Chico! Performances were inundated with Inspire stars.Inspire presented two numbers, and CI Dance presented one more, but that was not the end of our involvement.We had students throughout the productions showcasing some phenomenal dancing skills, from ballet, to lyrical to hip hop—they all lit up the stage.I might be a bit partial, but I think our numbers were the best.Our students capped the evening with a joint production along with CSUC and Rosedale Elementary.It was a fantastic evening for all!


3. Trips Abroad

Over spring break we had several students who traveled internationally with Inspire staff.  One group headed to Peru for some eco-adventures and climbing experiences Machu Picchu. The other group headed to Spain and France.  All students had an enriching experience—and all made it home safely.  I want to say thank you to the staff members, Antonio Isern, Beth Reid, and Lee Holcomb (as well as the parent chaperones) who made these opportunities possible for our students.  It always expands our understanding and increases our humanity when we travel the world and begin to see how others work and play.  It is vital that we raise students who understand how to be global citizens and these activities help develop those sensitivities. 


4. Course Selection

We have now officially begun course selection for the 2016-2017 school year.How time flies!Our fearless staff stayed late on both Tuesday and Wednesday night to sign up our incoming Freshmen students.There were many wonderful parents and students on campus, and next year’s crop of students is shaping up to be as fantastic as those we already have..I know that our upper classmen will serve as examples and mentors to these new members of the Inspire Family.

Our counseling and office staff is also circulating through the 9th, 10th and 11th grade classes to sign up our present students for next year.Be sure to talk to your students and help them make the best choices in classes.

Upcoming Events

5. Imagineer Day

We have a number of students who will be teaching TOMORROW for the CSU, Chico Chapter of the Society of Women Engineers’ Imagineer Day.150 children will be given the opportunity to delve into experiments and projects in Engineering, and many of our students will lead the way.The event will take place on the CSU campus.Come by and see the extraordinary work of our Inspire Science and Engineering students.


6. Butte College Art Showcase

Tomorrow will also see art projects in Chico.Butte College is having their Art Showcase in the Chico Mall. I’m sure there will be Inspire Alumni involved.In addition, there will ceramic, art, wire working, and weaving demonstrations.There will also be a variety of hands-on art activities.You can find out more specific times at:


7. Graduation Try-Outs

One of the outstanding elements of the Inspire Graduation is the student performances.Applications for the Graduation Try-outs are now available, and try-out times are coming up fast.If you have a student who would like to participate in graduation, make sure he/she is working on the application and is ready to audition.Being able to participate in the program would make the ceremony even more memorable.For more information you can read the applications or contact Jarrah Myles at


8. Foundation Meeting and LCAP

We will be having one of our last Foundation Meetings for the year.We will be discussing mini-grants, graduation, scholarships and Teacher Appreciation Day (May 3rd).In addition, I will be presenting the last of our Local Control Accountability Program (LCAP) goals.These are the goals that define our work for next year, and I would love to have your feedback.Please come and help support our school, our students and our parents.The meeting will be on Monday, April 4th at 6:00 in the main office.


9. Foundation Raffle

We are excited to announce the return of the Inspire Foundation Raffle. The Foundation plans on selling tickets at Annie Get Your Gun, so you can pick up your tickets at that time!  Listen for more information about how to buy tickets or help the school by selling tickets.  Tickets will be $20.00 each.  Families can earn a free ticket by selling 5 tickets, or supporters can buy 6 tickets for $100.  

The raffle will have three prizes: 

Grand Prize: A two-day Disneyland trip for four people

2nd Prize: Dodgers Vs. Giants game box tickets for four plus parking

3rd Prize:  A free Bicycle


10. Spring Events
Our April and May events are now right around the corner.  (I was able to watch dance practice—and it is going to be fantastic.) As you know, Inspire sets the standard for student performances.  This year will be no exception.  Here is a list of what you can expect in the spring:





Film Festival

April 13


William’s Theater

Musical Theater Showcase & Dessert

April 23

5:30 & 8:00

First Christian Church

Incendio Release Party

April 28


1078 Gallery

Theatre Showcase

May 3


IC23 or William’s Theater

Spring Vocal Music Concert

May 6


First Baptist Church

Dodgeball Tournament

May 7


Chico Junior High

Instrumental Music Concert

May 11




May 14


Chico Events Center

Awards  Night

May 16



Choreography and Dance Showcase

May 21

2:00 & 7:00


Inspire Art Gallery

May 21

4:00 & 7:00


Inspire Graduation

June 1


Laxson Hall


11. This Week At Inspire  :


















6:00 Foundation 3:15 Health Exams (IC15)

*Staff Meeting

12:15 AIM             12:20 Art Club       1:01 Men's Choir   3:00 Art Club

Physical Fitness Test

12:20 GSA Club

 Saturday School


Next Week At Inspire  :



















3:30 Campus Tour 7:00 Inspire Board Meeting

*AFL for teachers

6:00 FILM FESTIVAL—Williams Theater 12:15 AIM             12:20 Art Club         1:01 Men's Choir   3:00 Art Club

Physical Fitness Test

12:20 International Club

 Saturday School


  • Thought for the Week

Often, students think of adolescence as a time where they express their individuality and find themselves; however, it is often the case that adolescents actually lose themselves in “group think”—in their desire to fit in.  While at Inspire, we definitely have less of this borg mentality—there are still times when our students feel that their voice is diminished and they are not as free to be themselves as they were before. 

For a good conversation with your teens: try sharing the following article:

“Logic will take you from A to B.  Imagination will take you everywhere.”  –Albert Einstein

Thank you for giving us great kids to teach.


Jerry Crosby

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