George Watts PTA Meeting April 3rd

What:   Autism Awareness Month at Watts + Discussion on the decreasing diversity of Watts’ student body

When: Monday, April 3rd, 6:00-7:00 PM

·      Childcare and pizza dinner for school-age children provided in the gym starting at 5:30; join your fellow parents and teachers in the lobby for dinner 5:30-5:50.

Where: Media Center

Description:  Exceptional Children services staff will review activities planned for April's Autism Awareness Month and discuss EC services and mainstreaming at Watts. Plus, PTA President Elizabeth Lindquist will lead a discussion about the issue of decreasing diversity in the Watts student body and ways in which we can address it as a community.

Reunión del PTA de George Watts el Lunes 3 de abril

Qué: Mes de Concientización sobre el Autismo en Watts + Discusión sobre la diversidad decreciente del cuerpo estudiantil de Watts

Cuándo: Lunes, 3 de abril, 6: 00-7: 00 PM

· Pizza y cuidado para niños en el gimnasio a partir de las 5:30 pm.  Padres y maestros se reuniran en el vestíbulo para la cena de 5: 30 pm a 5: 50 pm.

Dónde: Media Center

Descripción: El personal de servicios de Exceptional Children revisará las actividades planeadas para el mes de concientización sobre el autismo de abril y discutirá los servicios en Watts. Además, la Presidenta de la PTA, Elizabeth Lindquist, dirigirá una discusión la disminución de la diversidad de los estudiantes de Watts y las formas en que podemos abordarlo como comunidad.


Community Book Club:

The PAAC Committee is organizing a community book club! More details are coming later, but if you want to go ahead and order the book and start reading, the title is available in English and Spanish. It is called: "Breaking Through"/ "Senderos fronterizos" by Francisco Jimenez. 

También, el libro que compartí desde el PAAC Comité comunidad club se llama "Breaking Through" / "Senderos fronterizos" por Francisco Jimenez. Proporcionaremos más detalles, pero si le gustaría empezar a leer el libro, aquí está el título.


Book Drive for Books on Break

This year our school is participating in Books on Break, an evidence-based program designed to stop summer learning loss. We will run book drives to collect books and then distribute the books to our students to read over the summer and keep forever. The Durham-based nonprofit Book Harvest is providing our school with 500 high-interest brand new books to help us get started!

Books on Break is an evidence-based program in which students select 10 books (or however many we collect) and take them home to read over the summer and keep forever. Students will visit the media center to pick out their books.

We know that it is very important for children to read books matched with their reading level. For this program, we want children to have complete freedom over the books they choose, regardless of whether the book is too easy or too difficult for them. As you know, children who choose their own books for recreational reading are more likely to read them and to feel excited about reading. That is the goal of our book giving at Books on Break!

The book drive is from March through the end of the school year.

  For questions or more information, please contact Anita Brake at or (919)560-3947


Volunteers Needed for Spring Picture Day

It is Spring Picture Day this Friday at Watts. Laura Wessell, our wonderful school photographer (and silent auction donor and carnival under-writing sponsor) needs some parents to help her organize the classes and students. She needs 3 parents per time slot (see link to Sign Up Genius below). If you can sign up for both time slots, that would be great!

http://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0b4ca4ae22a31-volunteers


Silent Auction Success--Thank You!

Thank you for supporting George Watts by participating in our 2017 Silent Auction.  The event was a great success - raising more than $12,000 for the school!   Plus, the Silent Auction Party at Luna Rotisserie and Empanadas was a great way to bring our George Watts Community of parents, teachers and other supporters together for fun night.  

At this point, all Silent Auction winners who did not check out their items on the night of the event have been notified via email.  If you didn't win this year, but participated - thank you!  Your participation added to the competition, helping us raise more money for our George Watts students and teachers.  We hope you'll participate again next year.

Special thanks again to our Sponsors - Luna Rotisserie and Empanadas, CQC Home, and Zarazua Painting.  Please take a moment to thank them for supporting our school when you see them around town!

Thank you again for your support,

Susan Novak & Adam Dickinson
George Watts PTA Fundraising Co-Chairs


Weekly reminders: Thursday, March 23rd: 

1. Tonight's PAAC meeting has been cancelled. Instead, interested parents are urged to attend/advocate at the Board of Education meeting. Contact Jovonia Lewis (wattspaac@yahoogroups.com) if you can make it. [Sign up for public comment begins at 5:30p. Meeting starts at 6:30p. Location: 511 Cleveland Street--Fuller Administration Building]

2. T-shirt orders are due tomorrow. Here's the order form: http://www.georgewattspta.org/s/tshirtorderform2017_final.docx

3. The Silent Auction is this Sunday, March 26th, 6:30-10pm, at Luna Rotisserie & Empanadas. Line up your sitters and please plan to attend. You'll get free drinks if you RSVP here: www.auctionforwatts.brownpapertickets.com.  The auction features amazing deals on local food, goods and services. Check it out online here: www.auctionforwatts.org. Online bidding ends Saturday at 6p.

**Remember: This year, on some items such as gift certificates to restaurants, if the highest bid is at or over its face value at the close of online bidding (Sat, March 25, 6pm EST), the item will be awarded to the highest online bidder and NOT be available in the live Silent Auction Party. So get your bids in now.

4. Morale Monday is this coming Monday, March 27th. Drop off food at carpool 7:30-7:45 or in teacher workroom

5. Also Monday, March 27th:  Community meeting about current immigration concerns.  George Watts media center;  5:30-7:00pm; Child care/snacks provided. Learn what the school is already doing to respond to this crisis; Share your thoughts on ways the school community can provide support to families; Connect with other families to share information and resources.

6. Safe Touch programming begins next week: Here are links to more information about the curricula used: http://ocrcc.org/services/programs/ http://ocrcc.org/services/programs/safetouch-curriculum/If you have any questions or would like more information about this program, please contact our school counselor Ms. Parfitt (melissa.parfitt@dpsnc.net) or Alexis Kralic at the Orange County Rape Crisis Center (919-968-4647 or alexis@ocrcc.org).

7. Save the date for the next PTA meeting: Monday, April 3rd at 5:30p. There have been some agenda tweaks. Look for a flier to go home in folders next week with more information.

8. And finally: Special thanks to coding wizard Dan Bock for fixing some issues on the PTA website. You can now find the school calendar embedded here:  http://www.georgewattspta.org/calendar/ And it ought to work on your mobile device too. Thanks Dan!


Line up your Babysitters for the Silent Auction!

Please join us at the Watts PTA Silent Auction Party...

¡Únase a nosotros para la Fiesta de la Subasta Silenciosa del PTA de Watts!

  • Domingo, 26 del marzo 2017, 6:30-10pm, Luna Rotisserie & Empanadas
  • Invitamos a todos los miembros de la comunidad de George Watts, los maestros, administración y facultad. Adultos solamente, por favor.
  • RSVP en www.auctionforwatts.brownpapertickets.com para reservar dos boletos de bebida complementarios.
  • Like, Sigue y Invite a Otros a la página de la Subasta Silenciosa en Facebook en www.facebook.com/auctionforwatts
  • Para hacer una donación o ser un voluntario envía un correo electrónico a novak.susan@gmail.com
  • Evento cortesía de Luna, CQC Home and Zarazua Painting

Creek Week Cleanup on Saturday, March 18th

This year, our school will be participating in the City of Durham's CREEK WEEK. As many of you know, our upper elementary students have been using the creek as an outdoor classroom to explore the importance of citizen science, normal people using hard science to serve the environment. As an ongoing part of our partnership, George Watts has adopted a section of the creek near Pearl Mill. 

On Saturday, March 18th, we will have a school-wide clean up opportunity. Supplies for clean up are being donated by the City of Durham's "Keep Durham Beautiful" program. We will start where Dacian Avenue meets the Ellerbe Creek trail and clean from 9:30 to 12:00. Immediately following we will have a picnic lunch on the school playground.

Saturday March 18th

9:30-12:00

Ellerbe Creek Trail at Dacian Ave. 

Thank you to Brandon White, Upper Elementary Teacher for organizing this!


Show your Watts pride: New t-shirts are here!

Click here to preview the new t-shirt designs and colors. Order forms will go home in folders this week (or download one here). Please turn your orders in no later than Friday, March 22nd. 


Help needed for the playground Fossil Dig

We are working to complete the playground's next feature, a Pirate-themed Fossil Dig Area.  We could really use some volunteers for these upcoming workdays.

  • This Friday, March 10th at 2:15 PM - 4 PM: We will clear the dig area , lay out the border sections,  and mark location for post holes. We will also complete preparation of the benches and other fossil dig equipment. 
  • This Saturday, March 11 at 2:30PM - 5:30 PM" We will dig the post holes (using a rented post hole digger), install the benches and other equipment, & install the borders.

Any help would be appreciated.  We will have water and snacks for volunteers

Let Jeff Porter know if you can lend a hand (jeffreymichaelporter (at) gmail.com) or just come!  Any amount of time you can give is greatly appreciated.


Composting comes to George Watts!

Last month, George Watts began offering composting in the cafeteria at lunchtime. Through a generous grant from DPS along with some PTA funding, Watts now enables both lunch buyers and bringers to compost food that they won't eat. The cafeteria now has composting, recycling and trash (landfill) bins. 

All food scraps and napkins can be placed in the compost bin, which is then collected and processed (composted) to create a beneficial soil amendment that we plan to use in our school gardens.

The practice of composting is quite compatible with the Montessori value of respecting the planet, as it prevents this food from going to a landfill where it creates greenhouse gas emissions. 

We owe Mrs. Carinder and her students a huge thank you for helping establish composting at Watts. Before implementation, these 4th and 5th graders visited all the Watts classrooms to discuss composting. And since the service started in mid-February, these students have ensured a smooth adoption by standing next to the composting bins during lunch.

Finally, composting is something families can also do at home. As some of you know, this can happen via your own outside composting bin, an inside worm bin (which kids love!), or a paid service like Tilthy Rich (bike-based) or Food FWD (who collects from Watts).    

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email Jonathan Bloom, PTA Edible Gardens Chair at jbloom76 (at) yahoo.com


Please join us as we celebrate Black History Month

Monday, February 27, 2017, 5:30 – 7 PM, in the gym

  • Stunning student displays & presentations
  • Steel drum performance by Mickey Mills from Trinidad
  • Catered food from Jamaica Jamaica provided by PTA

If possible, please bring your favorite soul food dish to the potluck dinner at 5:30 PM (Examples: biscuits, collard greens, fried catfish, grits, red beans, macaroni and cheese, sweet potatoes, corn, and okra and tomatoes.)

For more information about Black History Month, please visit: www.africanamericanhistorymonth.gov

Celebración del Mes de la Historia Afroamericana

Lunes, el 27 de febrero de 2017, 5:30 – 7 de la noche, En el gimnasio de la escuela George Watts

  • Exhibiciones y presentaciónes hermosas de estudiantes
  • Actuación de tambor metálico de Trinidad por Mickey Mills
  • Comida del restaurante Jamaica Jamaica proporcionada por PTA

Le invitamos a traer un plato de comida del Sur de E.E.U.U. para compartir a las 5:30 de la noche (Ejemplos: panecillos, berzas, bagre frito, semola de maiz, frijoles rojos, macarrones con queso, camotes, maiz, okra y tomates.)

Para más información sobre el Mes de la Historia Afroamericana, visite: www.africanamericanhistorymonth.gov


Morale Monday: February 27th

Teacher-Staff Breakfast & Lunch Buffet

Drop off food at carpool 7:30-7:45 or in teacher workroom

On one Monday each month, the PTA sponsors a morale-boosting meal for all teachers and staff. We invite families to contribute an item for the meal in recognition of our teachers’ hard work, professionalism, care, and energy that they bring to their jobs to benefit our children every day.  

What to send? Fruit, baked goods, casseroles, salads, veggies, main dishes. Notes, cards, and pictures from students are encouraged, too. Label your dishes/utensils with your name and child’s teacher, so we can return them to you. 

THANK YOU!

Questions? Allison Smith, PTA Family Involvement Chair, awalshsmith@gmail.com

************ 

Lunes de Agradecimiento: el 27 de febrero

Damos el desayuno/almuerzo para los Maestros

Entregue los platos en la línea de coche 7:30-7:45 o en el taller de maestros

Nosotros - las familias - ofrecemos esta comida en agradecimiento por el trabajo duro, la profesionalidad, el cuidado, y la energía de los maestros, que apoyan a nuestros hijos todos los días.

¿Qué traer? El jugo, la fruta, los arroces, las carnes, los guisos, o su comida favorita. Las notas, las tarjetas, y las imágenes de los estudiantes, también.  IMPORTANTE: Etiquetar sus platos / utensilios con su nombre y el maestro de su hijo, así que los podemos volver a Ud.

¡GRACIAS!

Preguntas? Allison Smith, PTA Participación de Familias, awalshsmith@gmail.com


Parents: Tell us about your Black Genius!

What: An interactive workshop hosted by the nonprofit group Village of Wisdom and sponsored by the PTA's Parents of African-American Children (PAAC) committee

When: Thursday, Feb. 23rd, 6 – 7:30 pm. Dinner and childcare for school-age children provided beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Where: George Watts Montessori Magnet School Media Center, 700 Watts Street, Durham

Why:  Village of Wisdom helps families explore the unique joys and challenges of raising Black children in today's society, where our children can celebrate #blackgirlmagic and #blackgenius. Come create your child's Black Genius Profile to share with his/her teachers. 

RSVP: Space is limited. Please RSVP by February 16th towattspaac@yahoo.com. Families from E.K. Powe and Club Boulevard Elementary will also be invited.

All families are welcome!

Qué: El taller interactivo "Black Genius" organizado por el grupo sin fines de lucro Village of Wisdom. 

Cuándo: Jueves, 23 de febrero, 6 - 7:30 pm. Cena y cuidado de niños en edad escolar a partir de las 5:30 p.m.

 Dónde: Biblioteca de George Watts Montessori Magnet School. 700 Watts Street, Durham

Qué: Village of Wisdom ayuda a las familias a explorar las alegrías y desafíos únicos de criar a los niños negros en la sociedad actual, donde nuestros hijos pueden celebrar #blackgirlmagic y #blackgenius. Ven a crear el Perfil de Genio Negro de tu hijo para compartirlo con sus maestros.

Reservar antes del 16 de febrero, dado que el espacio es limitado: wattspaac@yahoo.com.  Las familias de los colegios E.K. Powe y la Escuela   Primaria Club Boulevard fueron invitados.  Todas las familias son bienvenidas.


An Overview of the Individualized Education Program (IEP) and Functional Behavioral Assessments (FBAs): Enhancing Understandings for Parents and Caregivers

Date: February 22, 2017

Time: 6:00-7:30 p.m.

Location: Media Center, Watts Montessori Elementary School, 700 Watts Street, Durham NC

Please Join Us for a Presentation by: 

Dr. Kristin Bell, DPS EC Executive Director &

Krista Saunders, EC Director of Special Programs and Behavior Support 

There will also be time for a Q & A session with our presenters.

Childcare available for school-aged children (one-on-one care not available).

Please contact Shelagh Kenney at shelagh.kenney@gmail.com or (919) 599-0163 if you have any questions.

Programa: Vista general del programa de educación individualizada (IEP,  por sus siglas en inglés)  y de las evaluaciones de los comportamientos funcionales

Fecha: 22 de febrero de 2017

Hora: 6:00-7:30 p.m.

Lugar: Biblioteca de la escuela elemental de George Watts, 700 Watts Street, Durham NC

Por favor, únase a nosotros para una presentación por:

 Dr. Kristin Bell, Directora Ejecutiva de programa de Niños Excepcionales&

Krista Saunders,  Directora de programa de Niños Excepcionales, Apoyo al Comportamiento y otros programas especiales

Habrá una sesión de preguntas y respuestas para aclarar dudas a cargo de los presentadores.

Se presentara servicios de Intérprete durante el evento y cuido para niños será disponible.

Por favor, póngase en contacto con Shelagh Kenney a shelagh.kenney@gmail.com o al (919) 599-0163 si tuviera alguna pregunta.


PTA Meeting - Pre-K Fees Information

Monday, December 12th from 6:00 - 7:00 PM

Interested parents and neighbors are invited to a presentation on the new Pre-K sliding scale fee on Monday, Dec. 12th at 6p. Join DPS and school board leaders to learn how the scale will be implemented, provide feedback and hear about plans to expand Pre-K access in Durham Public Schools. If you would like to submit questions in advance, please email George Watts PTA President, Elizabeth Lindquist at lizlindq@aol.com.

5:50p Drop off school-age children in the gym for childcare (pizza will be served to children)

6:00p Special presentation on the new Pre-K sliding scale in the Media Center for parents and neighbors

The following leaders have committed to attend:

  • DPS Area Superintendent John McCain
  • DPS Deputy Superintendent for Academics Stacey Wilson-Norman
  • DPS Magnet Specialist Mary Griffith
  • Board of Education member Steve Unruhe

Noche para Conocer la Escuela / Reunión del PTA Sobre las Tarifas de Pre-K:

Lunes, 12 de Diciembre 6:00 -7:00pm

¡Por favor reserve la fecha para esta noche especial!

A las 6:00pm, padres y vecinos interesados están invitados a una presentación de la nueva escala móvil de tarifas para el Pre-K.  Únase al DPS (Escuelas Públicas de Durham) y los líderes del consejo escolar para enterarse de la manera en cual se va implementar la escala móvil, ofrecer comentarios y aprender acerca los planes para expandir acceso a Pre-K en DPS.  Si le gustaría enviar preguntas con anticipación, por favor mande un correo electrónico al Presidente del PTA de George Watts, Elizabeth Lindquist alizlindq@aol.com.

5:50 Dejar los niños de edad escolar en el gimnasio para que los cuiden (van a servir pizza a los niños)

6:00 Presentación sobre la nueva escala móvil para el Pre-K en la biblioteca para los padres y vecinos

Siguen los líderes que se han comprometido asistir:

  • Superintendente de area de DPS John McCain
  • Superintendente Adjunto de Académicos de DPS Stacey Wilson-Norman
  • Especialista “Magnet” de DPS Mary Griffith
  • Miembro de los Líderes del Consejo Escolar Steve Unruhe

PTA Meeting - Focus on Achievement Disparities with Guest Speaker

Monday, November 14th from 6:00 - 7:00 PM

George Watts PTA & PAAC Host the November 14th PTA Meeting: “Eliminating Disparities in Our Education System”

  • Please join our Parents of African American Children (PAAC) committee with special guest, 2014-15 North Carolina Teacher of the Year James Ford. Mr. Ford is currently working with the Public School Forum of North Carolina to address opportunity gaps and achievement disparities in schools across the state. Mr. Ford will join PAAC in leading an open, transparent discussion about race, curriculum, data, being well-rounded, and how we can make a lasting change together. Please join us to explore some of the reasons why we have a gap and what we can do about it.
  • Drop your school-aged children in the gym for pizza and child care starting at 5:30, then join other parents in the lobby to eat before the meeting begins at 6pm in the Media Center.

On November 14, Mr. Ford will provide a national context for our situation here at Watts, present examples of schools that have turned around their opportunity gaps, and lead Watts’ parents and teachers in an open discussion of how we can make a lasting change together. Please join the PTA at our November 14 meeting and begin OUR work to create an equitable education environment that will benefit ALL children at George Watts Montessori School.

 

Eliminando Las Desigualdades en el Sistema Educativo

En el 2015, el Departamento de Educación de los Estados Unidos (USDOE) designo a la Escuela George Watts como una “Escuela Enfoque” debido a la desigualdad en los puntajes obtenidos en la pruebas entre los diferentes grupos raciales y entre otros sub-grupos, tales como los niños con necesidades especiales.  (Los padres fueron notificados por carta en agosto 2016.) “Las Escuelas Enfoque son identificadas cuando se descubre una gran diferencia en los niveles de desempeño entre subgrupos con alto desempeño y aquellos subgrupos con un desempeño mucho inferior…durante 3 años.”

Por favor únase a la PTA y al Comité de Padres de Niños Afroamericanos (PAAC) durante nuestra reunión el 14 de noviembre donde tendremos a James Ford, Maestro del Año de Carolina del Norte 2014-2015, como invitado especial.  El Sr. Ford actualmente está trabajando con el Foro de Escuelas Públicas de Carolina del Norte para solventar la brecha en oportunidades y las disparidades en desempeño en nuestras escuelas a lo largo del estado.  Esperamos que padres de niños de todos los grupos raciales se puedan unir a esta conversación.

Por favor acompañe a la Asociación de Padres y Maestros (PTA) durante nuestra reunión el 14 de nov. Y así poder comenzar NUESTRA labor de crear un ambiente educativo equitativo que beneficie a TODOS los niños de la Escuela George Watts Montessori.