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 Dec 20, 2021

Parents and Students:

Thank you all for your continued support and hard work. This has been a rocky year, and we have faced a number of obstacles. So many students showed grit and determination as they powered their way through the end of the semester. I am so proud of you!

I hope you are starting to wind down and can take time to rest and relax this break. We all need to recharge and enjoy the holidays with family and friends. 

We will see you back Jan 3rd.

Just a few things:
1. We are very excited that Annika Mills will be returning to tutor online and that Mary Moore and Alisa Sas will be joining the CJLC team. I am still working on transitioning Kim's students and will be contacting you individually. Thanks for your patience through this process.

2. Winter sports changes-- if you need to change your schedule because of a sports change, please email us at your earliest convenience. Sometimes we can do a direct swap, and other times things are a little more complicated. We will do our best to accommodate your change.

3. Winter Monday holidays: We will be closed for Martin Luther King Jr Day 1/17 and for the presidents' holidays 2/14 and 2/21. The schedule is pretty tight right now but we will do what we can to see you another day those weeks. 

We hope you have a wonderful holiday season. May the new year be filled with peace and joy. 



Dec 2, 2021

Parents and Students:

I know this has been a rough time and finals are looming,

I just added some sessions for this Sunday, Dec 5th.

You can join the session by logging into Teachworks, choosing me as the tutor, and "show open sessions." Anything that says open you can join. Full sessions are already full.

You can also email us at

We will do our best to help you get through this.







Parents and Students:

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We are so blessed to have you in our lives. We are thankful for you every day.

Just a few things this month:

1. If you want an additional session for finals or for a research paper, please let us know ASAP. The schedule is very full, but we will do our best to fit you in.

2. Some sad news: Kim will be leaving CJLC at the end of December. It has been seven wonderful years, and we will miss her terribly. No one can replace Kim. We will transition her Compass students to Beth, and we will reassign her other students as we go. Change can be hard, but we will do our best to make the transition as smooth as possible. 

3. We will be closed Dec 17-Jan 2nd for winter break. We will return Monday, Jan 3rd.

Let's finish this semester strong!


Nov 1st, 2021

Parents and Students:

We are all very grateful for the rain, even when it is a storm. I hope you can stay inside this weekend with some comfort foods and hot chocolate. If you need to be outside to work or take care of animals, please stay safe. They have issued flash flood warnings for Saturday and Sunday. 

Just a few things:

1. We will be closed the entire week Nov 22-26th for Thanksgiving. I hope you enjoy the holiday with family and friends.

2. We will also be closed Nov 11th for Veterans Day. 

3. Seniors: the CSU applications are open, and the UC applications open Nov 1st. Don't wait until the last minute to submit. Check the due dates for private colleges on their websites and in the Common App. If  you need a letter of recommendation, please ask your teacher ASAP. Be prepared and think ahead.

4. I will be out Tuesday, Nov 2nd for a carpal tunnel procedure. I plan to be back the next day. If you would like to set up a session that week, just let us know. The schedule is really tight, but I will do my best.

5. Next week, students are welcome to wear their costumes to tutoring. While in session, we will ask them to set aside gloves, teeth, and so on so we can work. Please be safe this Halloween. 

I am very grateful for all of you. The last few weeks have been an emotional roller coaster: school has picked up pace, there have been two bomb threats, multiple episodes of bullying, conflicts in relationships. Through it all, you have stayed honest and open. You have worked through anger, betrayal, and shock, and you have come through stronger.  The world can be an uncertain place, yet each day we pick ourselves up and move forward. Thank you for your flexibility and willingness to try. You inspire us. Thank you for being you.


Oct. 1st, 2021

Parents and Students:

The brisk mornings and cool evenings are telling us that fall is here. The first grading period is done, and the pace is picking up. 

Just a few announcements:

1. Seniors-- the CSU application opens Oct 1st and the UC application opens Nov 1st. Check the Common App and each college's website for the deadlines at private schools. I suggest writing 5-7 personal statements to be used in applications and for scholarships.  My schedule is getting full, so please let me know if you want help with the essays. I will do my best to work you into the schedule.

2. Steve will not be here this week. We have rescheduled those of you that we can, and Steve will be back 10/5. 

3. When the seasons change, our immune system also changes. If you are having allergies or signs of a cold, please do not come in. It can be very difficult to know whether you have a stuffy nose or Covid. We work with students under age 12 who cannot get the vaccine, so it is best to err on the side of caution. We will do our best to reschedule your session or change to Zoom. If you let us know by 6:00 PM the day before the session, we can also credit the session toward the next invoice. 

4. If you have a credit from Phil, Tena, or Steve's absence  or from an excused session, you can always see your balance due in the upper right hand side of your account page in Teachworks. We have to manually allocate the credits to your invoice, but the credits will show in your account page. Let us know if you have any questions or have problems accessing the website.

In a final note, I would like to say a few words on bullying. Last week, five different students went though different forms of bullying. I hope this is not a sign of things to come. Our community and our families have been through a lot and it feels like stress is causing flare-ups, conflicts, and altercations between kids, between adults, and between families. I believe there is reason to hope. One teenager refused to get into a battle of insults, and another teenage refused to get into a physical fight. They are making choices for peace and taking the high road. We can all remind ourselves to step back, take a deep breath, and decide how we want to respond to conflict. I encourage all of us to have conversations about how to respect ourselves and others, not giving into bullies and not becoming bullies ourselves. Having strategies to deal with conflict can keep conflict from escalating. As always, we take each day and each moment one step at a time. I have faith that we can make it though.


August 8, 2021

Parents and Students:

I hope this finds you well. There has been a lot going on the last few days. We are coming up to the start of school with worries about the Delta variant, the Dixie fire, and the uncertainties ahead. As ever, we will stand with you and support you as we move forward.

1. Sonoma County health mandate C19-25 went into effect August 2nd. It calls for wearing masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status. We ask that all students, parents, and staff wear masks  or face-coverings while in the office. You can read more about the mandate here. If you do not have a mask, we have disposable masks for you.

2. We have continued all our Covid protocols and will continue them for the foreseeable future. We are staggering start times and ask that families do not wait inside the office. We sanitize the desks between each session and limit the sharing of supplies, calculators, computers, etc. We ask that each student bring in pencils, erasers, crayons, etc for personal use. We have hand sanitizer and air purifiers in each room. We want everyone to be safe: students, families, and staff. If you have any questions about our procedures, please call or email us. 

3. We are hoping that schools will have in-person instruction, but if that changes, we will adapt and continue the best we can. We can't control the future, but we can do our best to make informed choices and respond accordingly.

4. Returning to full-day, in-person school is going to be a huge adjustment. There are bound to be bumps in the road as we get used to being around people again. Let's do our best to be kind to ourselves and to each other through this transition. 

As always, we believe in you. There will be days that feel awful and days that feel great. We are all doing the best we can with what we have. In these uncertain times, it can be hard to find peace of mind. We feel pressure emotionally, mentally, academically, physically, socially, and spiritually. I hope that we can find self-compassion and practice mindfulness to help us through. We are walking forward, doing the best we can, and finding strength to make our way. 







June 17, 2021

We are all very excited about the county and state changes.  We are continuing to sanitize desks and surfaces between students and will be using air purifiers and other precautions as we move forward.


The tutors will continue to wear masks in accordance with CAL-OSHA requirements. Students and parents who have been vaccinated are welcome to make their own decision about wearing masks. We will support you and recognize that every person has different views about safety. We do, however, ask that students who have not been vaccinated continue to wear masks. This is in accordance with county, state, and CDC guidelines for schools and educational settings.


We ask everyone to continue monitoring for Covid symptoms, temperatures higher than 100, and other risk factors. As the restrictions are easing, we need to  maintain a safe environment for everyone. If you have any questions about this or any of our policies, please email or call us.  

Looking onward and upward,


June 11, 2021


Parents and Students:

We made it!!!  This was a tough year, but we made it through. I am proud of you all.

Congratulations to everyone-- and especially to the graduates. This year was a testament to your flexibility, resilience, and strength.

I hope this summer you can rest, relax, and recharge. Let your mind wander, read something different, find a new hobby. There is so much out there to learn and to do. 

CJLC's summer session starts Monday, June 14th. We will be here all summer. I will send out the information for fall signups in mid/late July. For now, just breathe and take stock of all the good things that came this year. 

If you graduated, moved out of the area, or would simply like to clean up your inbox, let us know. We can take you off the email list or make your account inactive, depending on your preference.

Thank you as always for being you. You have been the bright stars in a difficult night. We are coming to a new day, and I wish you all the happiness and joy of rediscovering our world.

Happy Summer,
Christie & the CJLC Team



May 28, 2021

Parents and Students:

The end of school is almost here! We are all ready to put this year behind us and move on.

Just a few things today:

1. We will be closed Memorial Day, Monday, May 31st. Enjoy the long weekend with family and friends.

2. Thank you to everyone who has already signed up for summer session. We added some more morning hours with Heidi, so if you would like to change your afternoon time to a morning, just let us know.

3. We will begin the summer session June 14th. We are taking a week off to rest and prepare. Then we will jump in with both feet.

4. The summer reading program at the library begins June 1st. There are some great book lists, virtual museum trips, and much more. Check it out.

5. Many colleges have virtual tours. Summer is a great time to research colleges and degrees. Make a goal and set aside time each week to research a program. There are many paths to success, and I hope you will find the right fit for you.

As always-- but particularly this year-- we appreciate you and care for you. We hope this summer can be a time of rest and rejuvenation. 

Thank you from all of us, 






April 25, 2021

Parents and Families:

We are in the home stretch! Just a few weeks until the end of the school year. It has been a challenging year on multiple fronts, but we have persevered and are ready for the finish line.

Just a few notes:

1. This invoice will include the first week of June. If you do not need a session that week, please let us know ASAP so we can open the session for a student who needs to prepare for finals. 

2. We will be closed Monday, May 31st for Memorial Day.

3. Thank you for your patience as we ironed out the summer schedule. We will start sign ups Tuesday, 5/11 at 11:00 AM. Please email with your top three preferences. Include the tutor's name, day of the week, time, and whether you want shared/private in-person/online. Summer will begin June 14th. 

Christie will work Tuesdays and Thursdays 10, 11, 12 noon, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30, and 4:30. Christie will do in person and online

Heidi will work Mon, Tues, Wed, and Thurs 1:30, 2:30, and 3:30. Heidi will work in person and online. *She may add mornings depending on demand.

Phil will work Mondays and Wednesdays 11, 12 noon, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30 and 4:30 starting in July. He will be available online only.

Kim will start later in the summer TBD.

It is perfectly fine to take a break and start back in July, August, or the beginning of the school year. We want you to enjoy the summer and be ready for school to start in person. We can give you some recommendations for a summer workbook or other academic worktext.

Think about participating in the summer reading program at the library. It is a great way to keep motivated and reading. They have a new graphic novel section and audio books, too. They even have activities like a virtual tour of the Smithsonian Natural History Museum.

Learning happens in all kinds of ways. Academics are just one piece of the puzzle. Set a goal this summer to learn something new. You can draw, garden, cook, bike, run, knit, paint, anything. Learn phrases in a foreign language or learn how to play an instrument. Learning a new skill or improving a technique helps you grow. Try new things--  you may have a fun afternoon or find a new lifelong hobby.

As always, we appreciate you and are proud of you. Thank you for being you.


March 22, 2021

Parents and Students:

After the rain of last week, it was great to have some sunshine this weekend. I hope you had a chance to be outside and have some fun.

Just a few things:

1. With K-6 students going back to hybrid school April 12th and the 7-12th students on April 19, the next few weeks are going to have lots of changes. Please keep us in the loop about your AM/PM cohort. We will be doing our best to pivot with you while combining hours the best we can for our tutors. Change is hard, and we have to juggle all our responsibilities. Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding. 

2. Spring break is just around the corner! CJLC will be closed 3/29-4/2. We will be open the second week of spring break. I know many students have missing assignments, so we can use this time to catch up or to get ahead. If you would prefer to cancel that second week, please let us know soon so we can adjust your invoice and open the session for another student. The deadline to cancel without charge is 6 PM the day before the session.

3. For all our juniors: the CSU colleges just announced that they will not use SAT or ACT scores for fall 2022 admission. You can read more about it here

4. Later in April, we will send information about our summer tutoring. We are still working out details. 

I hope we all have a good spring break. This has been an unusual year on all fronts, and we are all feeling some spring fever. Ride your bike, hike a trail, run in a park, or sit under a tree. Draw, read, sleep, bake, and play. Do what will help you recharge and reconnect.










February 18, 2021

Parents and Students:

I hope you are continuing to be safe and well. I am sorry that is has been a while since I posted anything. The last few months have been a whirlwind, and we are all hanging in there.

There has been a lot of stories in the news lately about when schools will reopen. As you know, this is a complex issue. We know we want the kids back in class, but we also want everyone to be safe and stay healthy. We know the vaccine roll-out will take time, and we will keep monitoring the situation. You can also search the SCOE website for more information. 

CJLC will conitnue to do the majority of the tutoring sessions online, with some limited in-person sessions. We ask all families to abide by the CDC protocols and safety information. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us. 

In the meantime, keep working hard. I know our patience is wearing thin, and it can be difficult to be positive and to have hope. Now more than ever we need to find faith in ourselves. We can do this. Every day, show up and give the best that you have. Small things can be inspiring. Be compassionate to yourself when you have a bad day, then start again. You are stronger than you think. Take courage. I believe in you.




August 2, 2020



Parents and Students:

We still have one more week of summer, then we change to the fall schedule August 10th. I am going to send the August invoices in just a moment. 

Thank you to everyone who has signed up for fall. Like so many other aspects of shelter in place, this sign-up was unlike anything we had ever done. The online sessions mean that each tutor can only work with only one student at a time, and none of us were prepared for how quickly those spots filled up. I hope that we were able to make things work for you. We have waiting lists set up and will keep you posted. We will be uploading the schedule tomorrow and hope you can find a day and time that work for you, even if it was not your top preference.

Please take a moment to log into your Teachworks account and update your contact and student information. Your user name is this email, and if you forgot your password, just follow the prompts at 

If you have not already set up a schedule for fall, please email or call us. We can set up a recurring schedule for you. Please note: if you have not received a confirmation email from me, I did not receive your email and you are not scheduled for fall.

To join an open session, log into your Teachworks account and go to the calendar page. In the bottom right corner, you can search by tutor and click "show open sessions." You will see full and open sessions. Simply click onto the open session, and add your student. 

To join the math classes, you can join any single session or email us to add you as a recurring session. 

If you have any questions, contact us and we can walk you through it.

We know starting the school year remotely is going to be difficult. We will be here to support you and help you through it. We will keep taking this journey step by step and adapt as we move forward.

Be strong. You can do this!




May 7, 2020

Parents and Students,

We are very proud of how everyone has risen to the challenge of remote learning. Keep up the good work! We are almost at the end of the school year!

This summer will be a little bit different than our usual summer program. The Shelter In Place restrictions are easing, yet we are going to take this slowly. The majority of our sessions will be online, but Heidi and Christie will be available for in-person sessions on a limited basis.

Take a few minutes to connect with Christie about your summer plans. We have a lot of curriculum here to share, and we can also order workbooks. If you are taking an online class, check to see if your materials are included or if you need a special textbook.

The Algebra Review, High School Composition, and Financial Literacy seminars can be scheduled in shared sessions, but for safety reasons we will not be doing larger groups. 

The summer sign ups will begin Tuesday, May 19th at 11:00 AM. Please email your preference for tutor, day, and time to Be sure to include an alternate just in case. As always, sign-ups are first come, first served with no early birds. I will confirm your schedule via email.

Heidi In -person or Online  M,T, W, Th  9, 10, 11, 12:45, 1:45

Phil Online only  M, T, W, Th  11:15, 12:15, 1:15, 3:00, 4:00, 5:00

Julianne  Online only  M, T, W, Th  1:30, 2:30, 3:30, 4:30, 5:30, 6:30, 7:30

Steve  Online only  T, Th  3:15, 4:15, 5:15

Christie  In-person or Online  M. T, W, Th  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7


      Summer schedule will begin Monday, June 8.  

Let is know if you have any questions. We are excited to bring back our *normal* life, one bit at a time.



April 29, 2020


The last few weeks have been challenging, and we are very grateful for your support and flexibility. The remote sessions are settling into a routine, and we can start thinking about the future.

Just a few thoughts today:

1. The remote learning has brought extra stress into all our lives. While this may seem strange coming from an educator, right now students' emotional health is more important than academics. If your student is struggling to understand a concept, we encourage you to take breaks, change to a different subject, or set the assignment off to the side. There will be multiple opportunities to learn fractions, integers, or whatever is causing the frustration. There is a time for self-discipline and learning perseverance; however, right now is not the ideal time. Kids and adults are all working hard to cope emotionally with all the changes, so added stress will only have a detrimental effect on the learning process. We can revisit the topic later when things calm down.

2. If you have a regular online session with Christie, your Zoom ID and password are listed in Teachworks. For the most part, you have the same ID and password for your sessions week to week. If you add a session or change your time, it will be a different ID and password. We will call, text, or email you the ID and password right before the start of your lesson.

3. Many colleges and universities have said that they will not require SAT or ACT scores for Fall 2020 applications. When you have time, please check the policy at the universities to which you plan to apply. Remember: you are shooting for 2 reach, 3 moderate, and 2 safe schools. Don't go overboard. Make sure you would be happy to attend each of the schools on your list. This summer, we can meet to talk about personal statements.

4. We are still working out the details for our summer program. What we know so far is that we will be doing a blend of in-person and online sessions. We know that remote learning has been very difficult for many students, so we will be offering a limited number of in-person sessions. Per the governor's policies, CJLC will be allowed to have 12 students or fewer in the office. To limit the number of people in the lobby at one time,  we will be staggering the start times for each tutor. We ask that family not wait in the lobby during the student's session. We are complying with county and state policies, and a copy or the social distancing protocol has been posted at the front of Ste B (the downstairs office). We hope to give you all the details for the summer program soon.

5. If your student needs to take a credit recovery class over the summer, please contact your guidance counselor to find out which programs are accepted at your school. We can talk about pros/cons for each platform and how to find the best fit for your needs. CJLC can support most platforms. 

In closing, I would like to take a moment to talk about some good news. We are facing a lot of challenges, but we are also experiencing victories. Recently a student or students:
+ learned to ride a bike without training wheels
+ checked out a ebook from the public library for the first time
+ finished a research project independently
+ retook an Essential Standards test and passed with flying colors
+ earned a B in a SRJC math class
There are good things happening. Students are learning to cook, reading books, finding new hobbies, and growing gardens. Sometimes our quietest victories have the most value. I hope that you can find victories in your life, even in the midst of all this hardship.

April 3, 2020

Hi Everyone:

I hope you had a successful week of remote learning with your classes and your tutoring sessions. This is a learning process, and we are refining the sessions as we go. Many of you have been asking me about group lessons, so starting this week, here is the schedule:

Casa Math 1- Wed at 6:30
Casa Math 2- Wed at 7:30               PHS Math 1--Wed at 2:30
Casa Math 3- Mon at 7:30               PHS Math 2- Mon at 2:30

A couple of things to know:
1. You do not need to sign up for every week. You can come when you need help or come for the whole series. Right click the session to join.
2. The cost is $35 per session.
3. The first 30 minutes will be a lesson, then we will open it up for questions and extra practice problems for the last 30 minutes. You will be muted for the first half and can raise your hand in the second half. 
4.  You are welcome to record the session to rewatch and study.
5. Please be prepared to screen shot the whiteboard and take notes. We will be doing practice problems from your homework and Essential Standards.
6. If there is a particular topic you want to cover, email at least two hours before the session, and I will try to fit it in. 
7. If you have a friend or classmate who would like to join, please spread the word.

If there is sufficient interest, we may also continue the series over the summer to cover material that would have been taught these last two months of class. 

We want to support you every way we can. If you have any questions, please email the front desk at or me at



March 29, 2020

Hi Everyone,

I hope you are keeping safe and healthy.

We have been busy getting ready to take all the sessions online. Just as a reminder, all the recurring shared sessions in Teachworks have been cancelled, and you need to contact us to set up a new schedule. You can request a session in Teachworks or email with the day, time, and tutor you would like to schedule. 

In preparation for remote sessions please make sure to:

1. Download Hangouts and Zoom for your device. When possible we will do a combination of Hangouts and Zoom to share screens, use the whiteboard, and interact effectively. *Remember to mute your speaker on one app to avoid feedback

2. Fill in your student's email and cell phone number in Teachworks. We will call or text you the Zoom meeting ID and password at the beginning of your session. 

3. Find a quiet place to have your session. The microphones pick up a lot of ambient noise. Turn off notifications for as many of your other apps as possible. 

4. If your homework is in Google Classroom, you can share screens with your tutor. Alternately, make a copy of the document, then share the copy with your tutor. If you try to share documents in classroom, you will need to get permission from your teacher.

Just as a recap, because we cannot do shared sessions right now, we are allowing students to make appointments for 20 min-90 min. *The shorter sessions are particularly good for the younger students. The sessions will be prorated for $50/hr for sessions with staff and $75/hr for sessions with Christie. If it is easier for you to pay monthly, than please do so. Otherwise, we will email invoices every week to allow for changes and cancellations during this pandemic.

As always we wish all of you well and hope that you are finding your way through this uncertain time. 



March 25, 2020


I hope you are staying safe and healthy. We appreciate your patience as we have been finding ways forward with our new reality.

Petaluma City Schools just announced that they will honor the shelter in place order through May 1st. Therefore, I have cancelled all April in-person sessions.

We are using a combination of Google Docs, Hangouts, and Zoom to tutor students remotely. At this time, we are not able to do any shared sessions. The remote sessions are working well, but we cannot monitor students like we do in person. This means that we have some changes in place for the next month.

1. Students can request one time sessions through Teachworks or email for a recurring session.

2. The cost for the online sessions is $50 with staff and $75 with Christie. This is a break from our private session rates. 

3. You can schedule sessions for a partial hour. The shortest session is 20 minutes.

4. We will email invoices every Friday to accommodate changes in the schedule. I want the billing to be as straight-forward as possible while allowing for this historic upheaval. Please pay your invoice within 7 days.

5. Schools are still working out their schedules. Some tutors may be able to work earlier in the day. We will continue to have the majority of our sessions in the evening.

6. While I want to be as flexibile as I can, my tutors are using their own Internet to make tutoring possible. We have all seen how the Internet has slowed, has interruptions, and  has intermittent dropped packets. Connection issues are not the fault of the tutors or their ISP. They are side effects from the massive surge in usage across every community in the United States.

7. If you are interested in a group webinar for the junior high or high school math, please let us know. We are still working out how we can do this efficiently and affordably. 

As so many have said, we are in an unprecedented crisis. We will continue to adjust and refine our remote sessions to best help all our families. We want to support you through the changes and keep you on track with your goals.

If you need to stop tutoring for any reason, just let us know. These are tough times and we all need to weather the storm. You are welcome to return in a few weeks, for summer, or next year. We appreciate you and wish you well.

These challenges are asking for us to be stronger than we have ever been before. Sometimes you don't know how strong you can be. You just keep taking one day at a time, one task at a time. It is when we look back that we realize that we were strong. May you be as strong as I know you can be.

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