August 8, 2011

News from Alfonso – 8/8

Greetings friends,
Summer camp has concluded under the excellent leadership of Lauren Hostetler, and it was another excellent year. Congratulations Lauren, assistant Lara, and the whole summer school staff.

Meanwhile Frank, Eros, and visiting experts are hard at work getting ready for the start of the year. There will be a lot of cleaning, painting, repairing and moving to do in the next few weeks as well as mounting of bulletin boards and space saving wall cabinets for many of the classrooms. This summer Frank and Eros also completed the new sandbox on the upper playground and we await a load of sand to fill it along with a new load of bark chips for the playground (don’t worry they are fibar, the most environmentally appropriate ones available).

I am sure many of you are waiting to hear about teacher assignments. We should have all teachers assigned to classes by next Monday and will share those. As for student placements, teachers return August 29th for inquiry week- professional development and planning. At that time they will check our student lists for classrooms and then we can share them with you.

Speaking of classes, as you recall, English teachers will be traveling to different classrooms this year, a fact about which they are on balance pleased because they will be able to teach in homerooms which are larger and much quieter than their former spaces next to the library. Students in each grade will still be grouped according to their reading levels and mixed together from the various language tracks.

Let me also reiterate that we will have staggered start and end times this year in case you have missed that point in previous communications. Grades 1-5 will now start learning at 8:00 (so they should be in the classroom not before 7:45 and not after 7:55) while grades Prek, Lowk and K will continue to start at the previous time of 8:15 (so they should be in the classroom not before 8:00 and not after 8:10). The waiting room will still be open for everyone at 7:30 (music room for Stearns Hall students; the gym in Hilltop for students from the modulars and Hilltop Bldg in the morning; and of course in the monthly assigned room for Arthur Street PreK students. I would ask that you use waiting rooms before and after school for absolute necessity only. They are becoming crowded.

On Tuesday, September 6, Prek, Low K and Kinder families will be able to visit classrooms between 9 and 11 am. On the first day of school, Wednesday, September 7, we expect that as usual families and teachers will all be catching up and chatting. We would ask that Grade 1-5 parents make an effort to go in, perhaps on the early side, in order to have time to connect with teacher and friends. Correspondingly, we encourage Prek, LowK and K families to arrive a bit later if they can on that day, even as late as 8:25. This way everyone can find a parking space and still have some time to chat. If your schedule is driven by work, then of course do as you need to.

Take care and keep enjoying summer,
Dr. Alfonso Orsini, Head of School,, 503-226-2496 x122