_ The 2011 Queen Anne Elementary Explorer Fund Drive is off and running! Thanks to our first group of donors and their generosity and quick response, we have raised $6800 (14% of our goal) in the first week. We are still $43,200 away from reaching our goal by December 15, so please return your donation right away - our goal is 100% participation from our parent community, in whatever amount you are comfortable giving. We need your help now!
Keep in mind that all donations are 100% tax deductible and may be eligible for company matching. If you would like to designate either 2011 or 2012 tax years for your deduction, just make a notation on your form and date your check accordingly. Thanks in advance for your support and generosity.
Questions? Contact Natalie Carlson (Carlson_natalie@earthlink.net) and/or Holley Ring (firstname.lastname@example.org)
How do we grow a more caring, peaceful, and civil society? By creating better citizens -- citizens who recognize the needs of others as equal to their own -- through empathy. With studies reporting a decline in empathy, Mary Gordon, founder/president of Roots of Empathy, a citizen-sector organization that harnesses the power of the parent-infant-attachment relationship to build empathy in elementary schoolchildren, presents this social and emotional learning program that reduces aggression and bullying and increases social and emotional understanding. Dr. Stuart Shanker, distinguished research professor of philosophy and psychology at York University in Toronto, provides the scientific context for self-regulation, and how Roots of Empathy contributes to its development. Presented by Roots of Empathy. Mary Gordon and Stuart Shanker: Science, Self-Regulation and Citizenry
Town Hall Seattle, November 29, 2011, 7-8:30 p.m. Admission is free; use promo code: Empathy. Click HERE for tickets.
_Kids Create is offering an after-school holiday art session - Come create colorful bird houses and sculpt ornaments out of clay!
When: Mondays, 12/5 & 12/12
Time: 3:40 - 4:45
Who: K - 5
Where: Room W109
How much: $45
The kids create web page & online registration is open at http://www.kidscreate.org/schools/QAE.html
http://www.kidscreate.org/schools/QAE_registration.html, You may pay online or drop a check off at the office by Wed Nov. 30th.
__ QAE Cafe opened to rave reviews and a record-breaking number of students completed and returned their Winter Squash Handouts. Okay, there are actually no records to break yet... but we did receive OVER 70(!) returned handouts by Friday---and I know for a fact that many more families and students sampled pumpkins or squash during Winter Squash week. There were also ELEVEN recipes contributed, giving us a great head-start to our first annual QAE Cafe Family Cookbook (if you have an additional pumpkin or winter squash recipe that you'd like us to include, please send it to email@example.com).
Also, we are proud to announce that the winning class-- the class with the highest number of completed and returned "Winter Squash Handouts" ---was Mrs. Meck's first grade class room!!! They've won a yummy Smoothie Tasting Party!! Great job to those first graders-- and their families.
Congratulations to everyone who participated in any way in our very first QAE Cafe, especially to the kids for being such adventurous eaters and eating pumpkin soup (and those crazy-good pumpkin bars) at the QAE Cafe lunch. Please visit our QAE Garden web page for more info, including photos (password is tomato) and recipes. http://qaegarden.weebly.com/
_The QAE PTSA is participating in the Amazon Associates Program. As an associate, the PTSA will earn referral fees from sales generated through the links on our website. Referral fees vary from 4% to 8.5% of the purchase price, depending on monthly sales volume. Payments from Amazon Associates will go directly to the PTSA fundraising account.
HOW IT WORKS
Bookmark http://qae-astore.weebly.com/ - remember to always begin your Amazon Associates shopping at http://qae-astore.weebly.com/
Shop as you normally would and the QAE PTSA will earn up to 8.5% in referral fees from every purchase!
Don't forget to help boost our sales if you shop on BLACK FRIDAY :)
For questions, please contact Cari Lui.
Want to avoid the malls this holiday season? Why don't you shop at the eScrip Online Mall where over 1,000 stores support the QAE PTSA! CLICK HERE to sign up.
Gov. Gregoire released her budget on November 21 and K-12 takes another hit, this time to both levy equalization and school days. Over the past three years, the state has reduced spending by $10.5 billion, and the biggest piece of that – 26 percent, or $2.7 billion – has been to K-12.
Blow to basic education: We were told to expect more cuts, but the manner of one in particular is troubling. Not only would the governor’s proposal take another $329 million from students, it would require redefining basic education to cut the number of school days. For $99 million in savings the state would set a precedent that basic education is what the state opts to fund – not what students need to graduate ready for college and career, and not what the state previously committed to. It undoes the “magic” of basic education funding reform and pushes us further from our goal to add instructional time in middle and high school.
It might also leave school districts right back where they were this summer -- having to reopen contracts. The proposal calls for cutting four days and cutting the corresponding salary allocations but keeping instructional time. How districts would do that is unclear and the governor’s office could not clarify during a budget briefing. Contracts typically define the number of hours in an instructional day as well as planning time. Districts with more resources may opt to absorb the 2.2 percent salary cut; others may be able to trim professional development days; still others may have to ask staff to work longer days for less money. And in all cases where days are trimmed, students won’t have access to campus services like food programs and libraries.
So the “equitable cut” really isn’t, and our least fortunate may again be hardest hit. (See press release, below.)
Cut to LEA: The governor’s plan to reduce levy equalization strives to protect those least able to tap local funding. Levy equalization is tax relief for property-poor districts. Along with local levies, it funds core services, including instructional time beyond five-hour days. Under the governor’s plan, the districts are grouped into four tiers. Districts with the lowest property values and highest local levy rates would receive the smallest cut (10 percent). Districts with local levy rates closest to the statewide average would lose program eligibility; these districts take a hit, but they are better able to offset the reduction by increasing their local levy.
Other reductions to K-12 include cuts to national board certification bonuses; a change in the state attendance policy; reductions in staffing at small high schools; reduction in administration; and elimination or reduction of various small grants and projects, a handful of which include Readiness to Learn, BEST teacher mentoring, PASS drop-out prevention, College Readiness and IT Academy. (Details:Governor’s budget and revenue options)
Apple Health OK in this plan: One area of relief in the governor’s announcement was that Apple Health for Kids was taken off her list of recommended cuts. Apple Health is an essential source of affordable, comprehensive coverage for all children. Thousands of families who have lost employer-based coverage have turned to Apple Health for Kids so that common childhood illnesses don’t develop into chronic and costly health problems. We asked the governor to prioritize it.
The half-cent buy back. As required, the governor presented a plan to balance the budget with existing revenue. She also listed options to increase revenue and “buy back” some of the cuts. The biggest is a referendum that would ask voters to temporarily raise the sales tax by half a cent. It would raise $411 million for K-12 and higher education; $42 million for long-term care needs; and $41 million for public safety. She also identifies $59 million in revenue options that the legislature can pass with a simple majority vote, and $282 million in revenue options the legislature can pass with a two-thirds vote.
A balanced approach: We have not endorsed any specific option, but we agree new revenue is necessary. Unfortunately, there seems to be a mindset about spreading the pain equitably. The state’s obligation is to identify essential needs and fund them. We will be engaged partners in making that happen.
·Local levies continue to pick up core educational costs. This reliance is inequitable, unstable and likely illegal. The state must continue its plan to put more money into basic education. Expanding the program of basic education to finally pay for a six-hour day would stabilize funding and ensure all children have the opportunity to graduate college or career ready.
·Children must also be fed, housed and protected from domestic violence. Targeted investments in early learning, K-12 reforms, juvenile justice and school nutrition not only keep other costs in check, they help all children reach their potential.
·Amply funding education for all children is the state’s PARAMOUNT duty. Court decisions have defined that to mean neither fiscal crisis nor financial burden relieves the state of its legal duty to fund its Program of Basic Education. Once it is defined, it must be funded. We cannot support cutting basic education to pay for other critical services. And we cannot sanction redefining it to give children less this year and in years to come.
Washington State PTA supports tax policies that are fair and equitable and that provide stable, adequate revenues for public education and programs that benefit youth.
On Nov. 28, the legislature will convene a special session. We will ask members to carefully review the consequences of each cut and to vet all revenue options. Rep. Ross Hunter, chairman of House Ways and Means and a one of the orginal Basic Education Funding Task Force members, has an idea about stabilizing levies and growing a tax base for basic education (read about it here). Other legislators may also step forward with proposals.
We want to hear them. We believe in making every child’s potential a reality. Protecting and investing in children is the moral thing to do and it just makes sense. They depend on us, and our future depends on them. TAKE ACTION
- Ramona Hattendorf, Washington State PTA government relations coordinator, www.wastatepta.org/advocacy;firstname.lastname@example.org
_To All PTA Members - Information from Seattle Public Schools Free Thanksgiving Meal for Families on the Free and Reduced Lunch Program
Local NBA stars Brandon Roy, Jamal Crawford, Will Conroy, Isaiah Thomas and Spencer Hawes team up with Councilmember Bruce Harrell and Mayor Mike McGinn to give away 2,000 Thanksgiving dinners to families on the free and reduced lunch program.
The "Thanks-Give-N-Go Turkey Give-Away" takes place on Tuesday, November 22 from 5-8 pm at the Rainier Community Center located at 4600 38th Avenue South, Seattle WA. All families who are on the free and reduced lunch program can receive a free Thanksgiving meal.
To sign up, go in person to one of Seattle Parks and Recreation's community centers listed below to reserve for a free Thanksgiving dinner by Monday, November 21st:
Rainier: 4600 38th Avenue South
Van Asselt: 2820 S Myrtle St
Garfield: 2323 East Cherry St
Yesler: 917 E Yesler Way
Miller: 330 19th Ave E
South Park: 8319 8th Ave S
Delridge: 4501 Delridge Way SW
High Point: 6920 34th Ave SW
Jefferson: 3801 Beacon Ave S
Ballard: 6020 28th Ave NW
Bitter Lake: 13035 Linden Ave N
Furlough Day at Seattle Public Schools on January 24: Early Dismissal for Students
School will be dismissed three hours early at all Seattle Public Schools on Tuesday, January 24 because teachers and other staff represented by the Seattle Education Association will be taking a half-day of furlough time.
This loss of instructional time is a result of a difficult budget situation at Seattle Public Schools. Both the District and the SEA, the teachers' union, agree that furlough days are the best way to minimize the impact to our students and prioritize classroom funding.
Students who receive bus transportation will receive rides home on January 24 three hours early, after lunch.
Please note: The January 24 date is not on the District wall calendar. We are notifying families now to ensure you have time to plan. Additional furlough days will be held when school is not in session and will not directly impact school days for students and families.
Winter Weather: How to Find Out if Your School is Delayed or Cancelled
When we are expecting snow or inclement weather, a Seattle Public Schools central office team continually monitors conditions across the district. That includes having staff drive some of the streets that are typically more treacherous in snow and ice.
After consulting with other agencies, a decision is made about whether to delay school by two hours or if a closure is necessary. That decision is typically made by 5:30am.
You can learn if there is a school delay or closure through:
· Local TV and radio stations
· The District website at www.seattleschools.org
· An automated phone call sent to you
· The Public Schools Emergency Communications System at www.SchoolReport.org
Staff and families will receive one of the following four messages:
1. Seattle Public Schools: Schools open on time - buses operating on snow routes. No door-to-door service. No Preschool or Head Start.
2. Seattle Public Schools: Two hours late - buses operating on snow routes. No door-to-door service. No Preschool or Head Start.
3. Seattle Public Schools: Two hours late - buses operating on regular routes. No door-to-door service. No Preschool or Head Start.
4. Seattle Public Schools: Schools closed.
Transportation: "Snow route" means that buses only run on roads that are maintained by the City that receive snow removal. Students who ride buses will receive notice of snow routes in the U.S. mail the week of November 21.
Please note: During winter weather conditions, safety is our top priority. Our buses may run up to an hour late in the afternoon during slick weather conditions. Please make sure students are dressed warmly.
1) The first Parent Education Class is this Thursday - http://www.queenanneelementary.com/1/post/2011/11/first-parent-education-class-on-thurs-1117.html for more details
2) Picture re-take day is this Friday - http://www.queenanneelementary.com/1/post/2011/11/need-a-new-school-picture.html for more details
3) There is *NO SCHOOL* next week. All Seattle Public Elementary Schools are closed for parent-teacher conferences
Please be aware that there is NO SCHOOL for Queen Anne Elementary students next week. School is closed Monday thru Friday next week, 11/21 thru 11/25 (all week!). There WILL be parent-teacher conferences held Mon - Wed, however.
Please refer to Principal Elliott's post on this yesterday - http://principal.queenanneelementary.com/1/post/2011/11/parentstudentteacher-conferences.html
Please check your child’s orange folder today for an important purple envelope. In it you will find information about the 2011 Queen Anne Elementary Explorer Fund Drive. Proceeds will go directly towards enhancing the educational experience at Queen Anne Elementary. Our goal is 100% participation from our parent community. We need your help now.
Keep in mind that all donations are 100% tax deductible and may be eligible for company matching. If you would like to designate either 2011 or 2012 tax years for your deduction, just make a notation on your form and date your check appropriately. Donations can also be made via PayPal.
Thanks in advance for your support and generosity!
Natalie Carlson (Carlson_natalie@earthlink.net) and Holley Ring (email@example.com).
Let Your Voice Be Heard - Opportunities to Give Your Input on the Permanent Superintendent of Seattle Public Schools
The Seattle School Board will decide this winter whether to conduct a national search for a Superintendent or whether to appoint Interim Superintendent Dr. Susan Enfield. Before the School Board decides, they will seek input on the traits that members of the public would like to see in a Superintendent. The School Board has partnered with the Seattle Council PTSA to help gather this information from Seattle Public School families. As a part of this we are hosting three community meetings in November where families can share their thoughts with members of the School Board. There will also be a survey seeking the same input available in mid-November.
Families of all students in Seattle Public Schools are encouraged to attend and share their comments in these free and welcoming community meetings hosted by the Seattle Council PTSA.
Monday, November 14, at Roosevelt High School, 7:00-8:30pm
Tuesday, November 15, at Denny International Middle School, 7:00-8:30pm
Thursday, November 17, at South Shore K-8, 7:00-8:30pm
Childcare and light snacks will be available starting at 6:30pm at all locations. For interpretation services please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (206)364-7430.
November is kick off month for the QAE Cafe, and this week at Monday Morning Meeting our Kindergarten classes will proudly present.....WINTER SQUASH (with a focus on pumpkins)! As part of our QAE Cafe program, a different produce item will be sponsored each month by one of our grade levels. The produce will always be something that's seasonal and can be grown locally.
Class Sponsorship of a produce item includes: Presentation at Monday Morning Meeting to the whole school; serving a food item made from the sponsored produce at Friday school lunches; and distributing a take-home handout to all students.
All students will be asked to complete the handout and sample the produce item in type of dish during the week-- with parents signing off on the handout.
Also, if you or your family has a favorite dish made from the produce item-- this month, from any winter squash-- please send it in to us! We're compiling a QAE Families Cookbook this year and would love to include your recipe. You can attach it to the handout that our child returns to school or email it to Elizabeth Kruse at email@example.com.
For more information on the QAE Cafe, please go to the Garden Web Page and click on Events: http://qaegarden.weebly.com/index.html
Calling all Queen Anne Elementary Parents: Learning is Not Just For Kids!
Our much-anticipated first PTSA-sponsored parent education event for the year is coming up on Thursday, November 17. It will be an evening of great advice, lively interaction, connecting with other QAE parents, and delicious refreshments.
"Supporting Your Child's Social-Emotional Learning", Presented by Sarah L. Palmer, MA, LMHCA
As parents we want the best for our children. We want them to be happy, respected, respectful, independent, and loved. We want our children to be successful, do well in school, and not get hurt. Yet many of us discover that these goals are harder to achieve than we imagined.
The foundation to our children’s emotional and social health begins with a strong and secure attachment to us--their parents or primary caregivers. Within the context of this connected relationship we can directly affect our children’s ability to handle disappointment, loss, frustration, challenges at school, and hurt feelings. In this talk we will explore the building blocks of resilience and look at how we as parents help our children cope with adversity and learn from mistakes and failure.
Date: Thursday, November 17
Time: Talk and Q&A: 7:00pm – 8:30pm (refreshments and mingling will begin at 6:30 and resume after the presentation)
Place: Queen Anne Elementary Library
Who: All Queen Anne Elementary parents and staff
RSVP: If you plan to attend, please email firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday 11/16
**Sorry, childcare will not be provided for this event**
About Sarah L. Palmer, MA, LMHCA: In her psychotherapy practice Sarah works with individuals of all ages and families as well as providing parent education. She has additional training and education in infant and child development and attachment theory.
Picture re-takes are first thing in the morning on Friday, November 18th. You will need to return your first picture packet to qualify for free re-takes. If you missed picture day earlier in the year, this is your opportunity to have a picture taken. Re-take envelopes are available in the office if you need one. Say "Cheese!"
Welcome to the Rocket Reader blog! The PTSA's collection of news & information relevant to QAE Families. This is also shared weekly in the Rocket Reader e-newsletter. Use the form below to sign up!
The Rocket Reader newsletter is sent weekly by the PTSA.