School Programs

It won’t be long before our water supply and water quality will be in the hands of today’s students, which is why Helix seeks to introduce these topics in the schools within our service area. We want these kids to grow up to be stewards of California’s watersheds and hope that our programs start them down that path.

Grades K-6

5th Grade Treatment Plant Tours

TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED – About 2,000 fifth grade students from schools in our service area tour Helix’s R.M. Levy Water Treatment Plant each year. We sponsor the school busses, and the 9:30-11:30 a.m. tour takes students step-by-step through the treatment process and meets state standards for 5th grade water curriculum.


Water is Life Poster Contest

This isn’t just any art activity. Helix staff select winning posters from schools in our service area and send them to Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. They select 36 student posters to feature in their Water is Life Calendar each year, and over 30,000 people get a calendar. Teachers submit student posters in March.

Contest entries were due on March 13, 2020


Ms. Smarty Plants Assemblies

TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED – About 6,000 K-6 students in Helix’s service area participate in Ms. Smarty Plants’ school assemblies each year. The assemblies are interactive, tailored to the grade level and aligned with state and NGSS curriculum standards. Please note that Helix’s funds are limited and our priority is to bring Ms. Smarty Plants to as many schools as possible in our service area. This means that requests for repeat performances are not always granted.

Grades 9-12

High School Photo Contest

Water flows through everything we do. Indoors, we use water for drinking, washing, cooking and cleaning. Outdoors, we use water to fill our swimming pools, wash our cars and grow plants in our yards. Local businesses use water to produce the goods we use and foods that we eat, while our communities use water to irrigate public parks, for street cleaning and firefighting. This year’s photo contest challenges students to highlight the importance and beauty of water in our everyday lives. Read the contest guidelines for details.

Take a look at our 2020 contest winners


CSDA Video Contest

Create a one-minute video telling the public, “What’s so special about special districts,” local government agencies formed by local voters to meet specific needs, like water or sewer service. The California Special Districts Association (CSDA) is offering prizes up to $1,000. Applications and videos are due in April.

2020 Contest Information Coming Soon

College Scholarships

Helix awards the Dr. Lillian M. Childs and Robert D. Friedgen scholarships each spring to two high school seniors attending a four-year university in the fall. Each scholarship is worth $1,000. We email information to high school couselors by December and entries are due in February.

We’re announcing our 2020 recipients soon!