Letter from Claire - August 29

Dear Families,

Summer is a time to relax, reflect, reenergize and to have lots of fun. As the end of August approaches, I always pause and think about our extraordinary environment where families, students and staff are a team. It is a place where we work together to guarantee that our students have all the opportunities to be a happy learner. MSC is one of the few schools, where there is a robust arts program, strong partnerships and a state of the art hydroponic greenhouse. This past year our auditorium received a sound upgrade.  In July, we received $60,000 from City Council capital discretionary funds from Helen Rosenthal’s office to replace and update the lights in the auditorium.

My summer has been busy with planning for the fall, attending meetings and having time to think about the peaks and valleys from this past year. The school is so quiet and I miss the positive energy from students and staff bustling through the hallways.  One of the highlights was traveling to Malta, Gozo and Comino. According to the New York Times, Malta and Gozo are #3 as places to visit in 2016, and I agree. Swimming and snorkeling in the baby blue water was wonderful.  As was basking in the Mediterranean’s breathtaking beaches, and visiting megalithic temples and the capital, Valetta (which celebrated its 450th anniversary). It is a hidden gem, worth visiting.

NEWS: At our SLT (School Leadership Team) meeting in June we discussed how important it is to stay true to our progressive model. Half-day Friday was an example of that commitment. To harness it back, we are instituting the first Friday of every month as Field Trip Friday! NYC is a learning lab where students can explore hands on learning as a community of learners. Class parents can help plan with teachers and families, please sign up to chaperone!

MARK YOUR CALENDAR
All are invited to our Back to School potluck for staff and families on Wednesday September 7th at 4:00pm in the big yard.  This is a wonderful opportunity for students to get to know everyone and to build excitement about our return to school.  Please come as a family.

As one school year ends and another begins, there are always staff members who extend a leave, retire or move on to new and exciting places.  We wish Brian, Darlene, Jeff, and Meredith, all the best as they embark on the next phase of their educational journey.

We are also excited to welcome new staff members to our MSC family: Michelle Tyndall, 4th grade, Wyatt Knaster, 7th/8th Math, and Sharifa Bacchus, 7th/8th Science.

We are happy to have Simira Freeman as our new Assistant Principal. As a member of our community for the past seven years, she will be able to transition to the new role seamlessly. Prior to working as a school psychologist, she was an early childhood pre-school, nursery, kindergarten and 3rd grade teacher. Simira holds a Masters in Education, New York State School Building Leader certification and is a Nationally Certified School Psychologist. She is also currently concluding her doctorate.

Below is some helpful information for the opening of school on September 8th:

Class-Placement Letters
Your child’s class-placement letter and class list will be sent out today.  If your plans have changed over the summer and your child will not be returning to MSC in September, please notify Tatiana immediately. You may reach her at Thoover2@schools.nyc.gov<mailto:Thoover2@schools.nyc.gov>.

School Day 2016-2017
Our school day begins at 8:32am and ends at 2:55pm every day.

Lunch:  K &1 students eat in the classroom. 2nd-8th students eat lunch in the cafeteria. 7th and 8th grade students have the privilege to eat off campus.

Dismissal Remains the same as last year: K students will be picked in the auditorium since they have recess every day until 2:55, 1st and 2nd students will be picked in the classroom. 3rd -5th students will be picked up in the basement gym.   Students are picked up by a family member, babysitter, or after school personnel as stated on their emergency and dismissal forms.

Important Dates:
September 8th: (Half Day for Kindergarten students only)
September 8th: First Full Day for All Students
September 12th: No school- Eid Al Adha
September 20th: Chat with Claire @ 8:45 in auditorium
September 21st: Curriculum Night for K-5 @ 6:00 in student classroom
September 22nd: Curriculum Night for 6-8 @ 6:00 in student classroom

Attached is an updated family handbook. Please take the time to read through. There are some new additions and it is always important to remind ourselves of MSC policies.

During the 2016-2017 school year, we will continue to have 4 marking periods with a final mark for the year using STARS (Student Transcript and Academic Recording System) as our progress report. For K-5 we will continue to use the 1-4 performance levels and for 6-8 55%-100%.

NYC Schools account allows families access 24 hours a day to their child’s secure data at
http://schools.nyc.gov/RulesPolicies/StudentRecords/NYCSchools Any questions on how to create an account, please reach out to Maxine, our parent coordinator, at MWitherspoon2@schools.nyc.gov

Special welcome to new MSC families! We look forward to you being a part our community.  If you are inspired in volunteering or have questions about our school community, please send an email to Lisa and Brad, our PTA presidents, at msc.copres@gmail.com<mailto:msc.copres@gmail.com>

Medical Accommodations
If your child needs any type accommodations during the school day, we must have an Authorization Form on file.  If your child is in need of any of the following services, please go to http://schools.nyc.gov/Offices/Health/SchoolHealthForms/default.htm and download the appropriate form. Complete the form and give to our school nurse -- in the nurse’s office on the first floor.

Immunization:  We have been informed by the DOE and the NYS Department of Health, that there are new immunization requirements for all students, grade K-12.  The details are on our website.  Please check with your doctor/clinic to ensure that your child/children have all required vaccines.

Enjoy the rest of summer. Hopefully all of you have enjoyed summer, taking time to relax, and spend time as a family. Don’t forget to encourage your child/children to read, read, and read some more!!

We are so excited to see you all on September 8th.  Here’s to another extraordinary year at MSC.

Best,
Claire

Attachment: Family Handbook 2016-17