Letter from Claire - March 6

March 6, 2017


Dear Families,

It is 2017 NYC school survey time. We really need all of you to take the survey. Our school, our voice!  Surveys will be distributed soon.  A big thank you to our Survey Committee of parent volunteers!! 

•    Your participation is important as the feedback provided is used to improve our school.

•    Time commitment: 5 minutes, tops!

•    Surveys should be completed and submitted by parent/teacher conference - March 8th/9th (K-5) and March 15/16 (grades 6-8).

•    There are 3 ways to complete the survey: online, by dropping in the mail or at school drop off.

•    There's one survey per family - the survey will go to the classroom of your oldest child.

•    Please use blue or black ink or pencil.

•    Once completed, please put a check next to your name on the list posted on the door of

    your classroom.


Thank you to Kindergarten families who attended Chat with Claire part 2.

Recess Update - MSCMoves Committee working together with me to design new guidelines for recess, which will be sent to all families.

- Emphasis on 2 parent volunteers per yard and purpose to monitor and help (rather than socialize or hang out our with parents' own child).

- Safety guidelines outlined for children (avoid unsafe play).

- Conflict: Parents' role is not to discipline or redirect but rather alert staff /encourage kids to get help from staff.

- Parents not allowed to take kids to bathroom or nurse: this is a liability issue. Staff takes kids inside and comes right back to yard. 


Questions / Comments from parents:

Q: When will this be implemented by staff?

A: Right away. Staff alerted before break, reminded yesterday.  Marisa confirmed that staff already implementing as of yesterday's recess. 


Q: Gate Update?

A: Yes! Administration has spoken to school construction dept. about creating a separate inner gate at mouth of recess yard. Waiting for approval. 


Q: Bathroom?

A: Teachers have been spoken to about making sure kids go before recess.  Teachers also know their kids. We have to trust teachers to make the right call.


Q: Can sign-in be at Security desk? Parents concerned about time and extra trip to office.

A: No. Sign-up will be online.  For safety reasons, parents who volunteer must sign-in in main office and where they will get a volunteer vest to wear. Once a parent coordinator is in place, he/she will help with sign-in. As of now, sign in with whomever is covering office. 


Q: Related to sign-up: Parent still don't know how to sign up online in advance. Is this a class parent issue? How do we get the word out?

A: Justine to blast sign-up link to all families. Class parents can include weekly call for recess volunteers to make sure we have coverage for all recess periods. We will add link to website as well. Moves committee will monitor the sign-up list: as we see where we don't have coverage, we can send out calls for volunteers through class parents.  Good to have a group of consistent dedicated volunteers, who know that staff and work well with them. 


Book Baggies: Book Room working closely with K teachers to find out what their needs are and fill them. Book Baggies should already be going home.  Make sure kids are taking 4 books per week and returning books. 


Gym, once a week, has started for kindergarteners.


Please remember that, the drop off time is a time to read with your child, see what your child is working on, and engaging with your child.  If you need to speak to teacher directly, please set up a time to meet. Morning time is very busy and the teachers are focusing on transitioning students to their day.


From the Classroom

6th grade had a wonderful time at Frost Valley. Thank you to Amy B, Alaina and Nicole for organizing and planning the trip. Thank you Alaina, Amy B, Veronica and Drew for chaperoning.

I visited 8th graders in Stephanie D’s class Poetry Madness where students are analyzing, and annotating poems for the top spot. Students compared Sick, by Shel Silverstein verse  to Do Not Go Gentle by Dylan Thomas.  While responding, students referenced poetry techniques sheet by comparing symbolism, rhyme scheme, imagery and paradox.  



I also visited Kristin’s 4th graders publishing celebrations of their colonial times posters, videos and models.


They shared their pop up books on one scene based on the read aloud: Number the Stars in collaboration with our Lincoln center unit on The Book Binder.





We have spoken to school construction authority and they have shared with that the reason for the delay in the elevator repair is because they are modernizing them. 


Theatrical lighting was installed in the auditorium. We now have more than double lights. The new lights are wonderful and will be used for the musical, town hall, and all other events in the auditorium.


Science fair update - Save the date May 25th! We will have an evening session from 5-7 PM.  Please stay tuned for emails with science fair information packs.  We are still looking for volunteers.  If you'd like to volunteer please email the science fair committee:  mscsciencefair@gmail.com