Letter from Claire - Sep 26

September 26, 2016


Dear Families,

Thank you for attending curriculum night. The Responsive Classroom approach, with a Morning Meeting format, sets a positive tone for the evening. It’s a first-hand experience of something your children do every day at school, and we hope that it helped you to feel welcomed and included.


Thank you also to all who came to September Chat with Claire! It was very well attended with 80 or more families.  Simira Freeman, Kerry Powers, new to our administrative team, were introduced, as was Maxine, our Parent Coordinator, and PTA Co-Presidents Brad & Lisa.


If you have a question about what’s going on in the school and how to get involved, (bake sales, auction, coat drive, food drive, etc.) please ask the PTA.  If you have a question about forms, admissions, how to find your child’s scores, or a concern about your child’s classroom: Maxine, our Parent Coordinator, is the first point of contact. If you have a special education question, questions about IEP’S, 504 forms, and allergies, Simira is the point person. If you have any questions regarding testing and curriculum, Kerry is the point person.


Our building has been scheduled for exterior work, and the work will finally start in December.  After a meeting with school construction, we were given the details of the being completed: Masonry, Roofing, Bulkhead, Remove and are-install condenser units, HVAC units, and Hood ventilators. All construction will take place outside of the building, after school hours.  Though more specifics will be coming soon, we expect that the building will close everyday at 6pm with a few exceptions (parent teacher conferences, and special school events).  When construction starts, both playgrounds will be closed in order to ensure the safety of our students, staff and community.



On Thursday afternoon, a water related issue surfaced in our building. Water described as being blue in color was found in classroom sinks in rooms 315, 517 and 706 as well as drinking fountains on the 6th and 7th floors of the building.


The Department of Education (DOE) takes concerns about the safety of water in our schools very seriously and have taken the necessary steps to address the situation and ensure that the water at the Joan of Arc Campus is safe for students and staff to drink (Our building was tested for lead on April 5, 2016 and all tests were negative).


As standard protocol and out of an abundance of caution, all sources of drinking water at the Joan of Arc Campus have been taken out of service and are being tested. We will share test results once they are final. In the interim, the DOE is providing bottled water for drinking for students and staff.   In case there is a delay in water delivery, please send two water bottles with your child.  Please remind children that they should not drink water from any of the sinks in the bathrooms. We will continue to keep you informed about this matter.


Due to personal reasons, Marisol, one of our School Guidance Counselors, has decided to take a leave. We are actively looking for a replacement and expect to fill the position very soon. 

Great News!!  We received a $170,000 grant from Gale Brewer’s office to continue the upgrade of our auditorium. We were able to upgrade the sound system last year, and will focus on stage lights. 

From the Classroom

I visited Stephen's 7th grade Advisory. Students were practicing meditation for Meditative Monday. They are learning how to control their body by being in the moment. Students are also increasing their level of connectedness through quiet and silence during connections (a practice for students to speak freely).


We hosted an inspiring event with New York Road Runners Youth Wheelchair Racing clinic with Paralympic champion Tatyana McFadden this past Tuesday.

Read the article and watch the video http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/olympics/rio-2016/2016/09/20/paralympic-champion-tatyana-mcfadden-gives-back/90752186/



Our first Field Trip Friday is approaching quickly (October 7th). Please volunteer to be a chaperone.