A Letter from the Park School PTA President

Dear San Mateo Park Neighborhood Residents,

As the newly elected PTA president, I would like to welcome you to join the San Mateo Park Elementary School community and invite you to help our organization advocate for the children of Park School.  With a new PTA Executive Board and a new principal, this will be a year of transition; and with great enthusiasm, I challenge you to become members of the Park School PTA as we seize the opportunity to build strong relationships and bring positive change to Park School.

The PTA is an organization committed to making a difference in the education, health, and safety of all children.  We partner with parents, guardians, teachers, staff, neighbors, and community members on many levels to bring fun and educational programs, events, services, and opportunities to our children to enrich their academic experience.  With your support, we can make San Mateo Park School academically challenging and nurturing for the children.  Your contribution, whether Time, Talent, or Treasure makes a difference.

Becoming a PTA member does not obligate you to donate Time, Talent, or Treasure (although your contributions will be greatly accepted).  PTA membership gives you an opportunity to get connected, speak up, watch yourself grow, give back, and effectively engage all for the benefit of the children (membership application here).  To learn more about why you should join the PTA, please read this PTA purpose flyer.

The overall purpose of PTA is to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children.  The Park School PTA is running its Pledge For Park Campaign to raise $65,000 to help fund books, field trips, assemblies, and enrichment for the children of San Mateo Park Elementary School.  So far, we have only raised about $4,200.  In order to achieve our goal, we need your help.

All donations are tax-deductible and can be made through www.PledgeForPark.com. Checks made payable to Park School PTA may be mailed to 161 Clark Drive, San Mateo, CA 94402.

San Mateo Park School PTA is a 501(c)(3) charity.  Online donors will automatically receive an email receipt with our non-profit tax I.D.  We will mail a receipt to all sponsors who donate via check.

Thank you in advance for your generosity.  Please feel free to contact me with any questions.


Yvonne DiMatteo

San Mateo Park School PTA President, 2016-2017

(650) 787-6778 cell


Proud mother of Claire (2nd grade), Lincoln (kindergarten), and Autumn (preschool)

New Street Trees improve San Mateo Neighborhoods

The city’s annual street tree planting program improves San Mateo’s quality of life and contributes to the greening of our community.

Tree lined streets improve quality of life and create healthier communities.

Urban trees provide fresh air, cooling shade, increased property values, and many other social and environmental benefits. San Mateo’s urban forest consists of over 22,000 trees in city parks and along neighborhood streets. This year, San Mateo’s Parks and Recreation Department will plant an additional 600 street trees along city streets, increasing San Mateo’s tree population by 2.7%.

“Tree planting is an investment in San Mateo’s quality of life, as trees are the only public infrastructure that increases in value over time,” says City Arborist, Matthew Fried. “This year, we were able to plant trees in areas previously covered by pavement. In total 3,200 square feet of concrete was removed and replaced with young trees. This is a stunning transformation for several San Mateo neighborhoods.”

San Mateo’s planting spree began last November and will continue through the end of April. The majority of the trees planted are in the Central, North Central, and Hayward Park Neighborhoods. The most common species of new street trees include 97 Chinese Pistache, 77 Frontier Elm, 49 Emerald Sunshine Elm, 53 Ginkgo (the fruitless variety!), 29 London Plane, and 27 Tupelo trees.

Benefits of Planting Street Trees

The diversity of San Mateo’s urban forest creates a unique landscape and provides many benefits throughout our community. The tree canopy is a natural air conditioner. It shades asphalt and other man-made materials, cools the air and assists in reducing erosion. Planting young trees ensures that the urban forest has a constant cycle of new growth as mature trees eventually succumb to disease, drought, or old age.

Tree lined streets in Downtown San Mateo create a pleasant walking environment.

Community members were actively involved in the tree planting and assisted in identifying areas where trees would provide the greatest impact. One resident, living along the 100 block of 15th Avenue, has worked for several years to transform his street, which was almost entirely paved. In this area, concrete was removed and in its place, 30 trees were planted. The result is a neighborhood that is more walkable, safer, and aesthetically appealing.

“A tree lined street is something that I have envisioned for several years,” says Dominick De Bellis, property owner and community organizer along 15th Avenue. “Collaborating with City Arborist, Matthew Fried helped to realize this vision. Over the course of several months, we developed a plan to plant trees along my block. The city’s street tree program is an incredible benefit to the San Mateo community.”

Funding and Caring for the Investment of Street Trees

San Mateo’s Parks and Recreation Department manages the street tree planting program. Trees are planted annually with funding provided through development fees. Trees are an investment in the community. During the warmer months, the city will water trees periodically to ensure survival. The community though is encouraged to participate in the care of the trees and is invited to help with the watering. Watering instructions are posted on each new tree, and a door hanger with additional care information is left at the time of planting.

For more information about the city’s street tree services and additional resources to care for trees, please visit the city’s website.

From San Mateo City Insider.

Updates from the City

Public Works Street Repair
Warren Road Paving
Warren Road will soon get re-paved, including curb and gutter repair.  Existing paving will be taken down to the roadbed and rebuilt.  Protective measures for the street trees will be in place.  Public Works’ current best estimate is that concrete repairs to curbs and gutters will occur from mid-June to early July, and repaving from mid-July to August.  “No Parking” signs will be posted two days prior to any construction, and the expected duration of the work in those areas will be noted on these signs.    

The City is conducting public forums to identify traffic issues of concern to citizens . Public Works staff are working on prioritizing, scheduling, and communicating implementation.

Poplar/101 Interchange
SMPNA elected in 2011 to support the option to construct a median on E. Poplar Avenue from Amphlett Blvd through the Idaho Street intersection. The project includes a left turn pocket lane for cars exiting 101-S to turn left onto southbound Amphlett.  Vehicles on Amphlett will not be able to travel north/south.  This project should make the intersection much safer.  Construction is scheduled to begin in June and be completed in October.  A separate project to evaluate the Peninsula Interchange, including Poplar Ave., will begin the environmental phase this summer.

San Mateo Railroad Bridges Replacement
Caltrain, in cooperation with the City, has replaced three seismically unsound rail bridges (at Tilton, Monte Diablo and Santa Inez), with the Poplar rail bridge finishing up at press time. Streets within these construction zones will be repaved. The project is expected to be complete by October 2016.

San Mateo Drive Sustainable Design
The City's San Mateo Drive Sustainable Street Project extends along No. San Mateo Drive, from Baldwin Ave. to Peninsula Ave., and addresses pedestrian and bicyclist safety improvements and green infrastructure. Expect 1.0 mile of ‘road diet’ – reduction to one travel lane in each direction by converting the existing two northbound lanes and two southbound lanes to one in each direction with a center turn lane - installed/improved bicycle lanes, curb extensions, pedestrian countdown signal heads and new pedestrian-scaled lighting at major intersections. Green Streets features will also be installed to improve storm water quality. Construction is expected to begin Spring 2017.

Safety - from SMPD


This important message from Lieutenant Ryan Monaghan with the SMPD was recently posted on Nextdoor.com.  It addresses concerns about the recent spate of car robberies in our neighborhood:

I wanted to take a moment to address concerns regarding the recent crime trend in your neighborhood, let you know what San Mateo Police Department is doing and how we can work together to prevent crime in your neighborhood.

Your safety and quality of life our very important to us at the police department. We work hard to make sure we address the needs of all the neighborhoods in our City.Despite being among the busiest police departments in San Mateo County in terms of calls for service, we pride ourselves in our ability to address crime trends and quality of life concerns because of the strong neighborhood safety partnerships we have throughout the City in the form of such programs such as Neighborhood Watch.

San Mateo Police Department is investigating the recent crimes that occurred in you neighborhood using every available and applicable investigative tool. We are also coordinating with other law enforcement agencies as part of the investigative process.

We have increased marked patrols in your neighborhood, especially during the late night and early morning hours as these are the time frames in which many of the crimes reportedly occurred.

Please be an extra set of eyes for your police department as we cannot be in all places at all times as much as we may want. If you see someone or something that is suspicious for your neighborhood, report to us. You all know your neighborhood better than anyone else and therefore are experts on what and who belong there.

Please file a report with SMPD if you are the victim of a crime. Even if you think it’s inconsequential or nothing was taken, your police department wants and needs to know. There is specific data that is collected during the reporting of such incidents that help us solve and prevent crime. We have been very successful in stopping crime trends by using the intelligence data we collect from crime reports filed by our citizens.

San Mateo Police
Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergency: 650-523-7753

NextDoor.com is NOT a substitute for filing police report. If the crime has no suspect information (Example: items taken from an unlocked car in which no one saw the suspect nor were they captured by video surveillance), it can be conveniently reported online by going to the below link:


NextDoor.com is a great tool for neighbors to communicate safety and crime trend information to each other, but it doesn’t share any of the message with the police department. We DON’T see any of the information unless it is specifically forwarded to us.

Please remember to remove ALL valuables, especially portable electronic devices, from your vehicles and always lock all the doors. Try to park your vehicles in well lit areas of your property or the street. Well lit areas are one easy way to deter a lot of crime. It also makes it easier for police officers patrolling your neighborhood in the nighttime to see ares where criminals might be hiding.

Make sure to keep the windows and doors to you home closed and locked when you are not home. Especially any doors and windows not easily visible from the street. When out of town, do not make it obvious no one is home by leaving lights on during the day, allowing mail and papers to pile up and be careful about posting information on social media about being away from home.

Your safety is our top priority and we are doing everything we can to ensure it.

Traffic Calming

On Thursday, March 19th, 2015, past president, Dave Pearson and current president Virginia McIsaac attended the SMHUA meeting at Beresford community center.  The primary agenda topic that was discussed with San Mateo City neighborhood representatives was increased traffic due to job growth.  Some neighborhoods are being inundated with traffic trying to shortcut the back up of traffic on Highways 92 and 101.  With significant job growth and Bay Meadows housing development, we anticipate that the traffic will increase dramatically and there was much discussion on how to mitigate this problem.  A few neighboring cities (Menlo Park and Palo Alto) have enacted a solution called Traffic Calming.  For some of our neighborhoods this can potentially be incorporated to alleviate their particular problems.  We feel in San Mateo Park that we have only a few trouble areas, speeding down Poplar Avenue being one example.  We will however, support the other neighborhoods who are dealing with Google and Visa buses cutting through their streets to avoid traffic.  As always, your Board is open to hearing any of your concerns in this matter.  To learn more about traffic calming, visit www.trafficcalming.org.