Laurelhurst PTA News January 24, 2016

Laurelhurst PTA News

January 24, 2016

Important Dates

  • 1/26 Thurs – 9:40am – Principal’s Monthly Chat (in library)
  • 2/2 Tues – 10:00-11:15am – School Tour
  • 2/5 FRI – 6:30-9:00pm – All School Dance (in cafeteria)
  • 2/8 & 2/9 Calef Brown (author & illustrator) visits all classes during library
  • 2/9 Tues – 2:30pm – Winter Music Concert Assembly
  • 2/15-2/16 – NO SCHOOL – President’s Day & Mid-Winter Break Day
  • 2/23 Tues – 6:30pm – PTA General Meeting (in library)
  • 2/25 Thurs – 6:00-8:00pm – Literacy Night (in cafeteria)

News from around the PTA

*****Laurelhurst Online/App Family Directory is LIVE!  Access it Now!*****
Wouldn’t it be convenient to have at-your-fingertips access to other Laurelhurst parents’ contact info?  Good news: the school Directory App is updated and available! If you were a DirectorySpot App user last year, then just log in with your same username and password, and you will see the new data.   If you’re a NEW user, you’ve been set up by us and can now download DirectorySpot for free from the App Store (iPhone users) or Google Play (Android users), or you can also access Directory data from the web.   Make sure to check out all the App features (auto dial when touch phone number or auto text when “hold” on phone number, auto map when touch address, auto email when touch email address).  NEW THIS YEAR: self-edit your own family’s data at any time during the year!  Contact Molly Black at [email protected] if you have questions or have trouble loading the App.

*****All-School Dance and Dance Competition*****

Save The Date | Friday, February 5th | 6:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Get ready to get your groove on at the annual Laurelhurst Elementary All School Dance! Great music, concessions, dance competition…
Fun for the whole family! $5/person or $20/family. Dance competition sign up forms are going home with your kids and are also located outside the office or on the school’s website under school calendar. Advance registration is required by Monday, February 1st.
Questions? Please contact Lisa Matthies at LisaLmatthies (at) gmail (dot) com.
*****Let’s Give Laurelhurst Elementary a Facelift!
Join the BEX Levy Committee*****

Laurelhurst Elementary’s population is growing and we need the building to grow too! Ann Buratto and Beth Cogan are leading a committee to help advocate for funds from an upcoming BEX Levy to be applied to a remodel and expansion of Laurelhurst Elementary School. Actually work on our building would begin years from now, but in order for it to happen, we need to petition now! If you would like to join this committee, please contact Beth Cogan at [email protected] or 206-250-9559.

*****Literacy Month is right around the corner!***** 
We are looking forward to some great activities and now is the time to do some prep work. If you would like to help with reading log calendars, bulletin boards and preparing the Swap Boxes for classrooms, please sign up at Laurelhurst Literacy Month Feb 2016.

We will be having our Book Swap/New Book Collection for Charity/Performance on Thursday February 25th. We also will wrap up the month with a “Dress as you favorite Literary Character” day on March 2 to coincide with Dr. Seuss’s birthday! There will also be fun activities in the library with Mr. Brown.
Finally please note that our library is always welcomes donations in order to add to the collection. Anyone who makes a “Book Dedication” donation between now and will receive three drawing tickets for a prize on Literacy Night. If you are interested in helping with Literacy Month, please contact Beth Cogan at [email protected] or 206-250-9559

*****Art Explorer News*****
We’re proud to support Literacy Month and excited to announce that special guest Calef Brown, author/illustrator/artist, will visit our school on February 8th & 9th and spend an hour with each grade during library time. Brown has published 11 children’s books and cites wordplay, dreams, and the rhythms of music as inspiration. His narrative story-poems use a jazzy beat and are full of engaging and nonsensical characters that kids love.

In preparation for Calef Brown’s visit, all students will be making art this week, Jan. 22-26, as they interpret a “Calef Brown poem” and create a character or image from that prose. The results should be super fun so look for our hallways to be filled with your children’s art!

Special thanks to Tom Brown for partnering on this enrichment opportunity! Books available for presale, see Mr. Brown for details. Questions: Laura Wright [email protected]  or Cecilia Villasenor [email protected].

*****Classic Books 2016 is coming!*****

Classic books is a great after school enrichment program for 3-5th graders to promote reading.

The program takes place Wednesday after school on: Feb 3rd, Feb 17th, March 2nd and March 16th, from 3:45-4:45.  All kids will be picked up at 4:45 or be brought to Laser after school.
The locations are:  3rd Graders: Mr. Anderson’s room #10, 4th Graders: Mrs. Halprin’s room #14, and 5th Graders: Mr. Howard’s room #13.

The only cost is the book, and many can be found in the school or public libraries.  If you can’t find the book in the library and need a scholarship, please email Deanna at [email protected]

Each grade has different books:

3rd Grade:
Feb 3rd            The Hundred Dresses, by Eleanor Estes
Feb 17th           Charlotte’s Web, by E.B. White
March 2nd        The One and Only Ivan, by Katherine Applegate
March 16th       My Side of the Mountain, by Jean Craighead George

3rd graders are just starting out with Classic Books, and if 4 books seem like a lot, pick one or two that sound interesting and come to only those days.

4th Grade:
Feb 3rd             Little house on the Prairie, by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Feb 17th           The Willoughbys, by Lois Lowry
March 2nd        The Silver Donkey, by Sonya Harnett
March 16th       The View from Saturday, by E.L. Konigsburg

The goal for 4th graders is at least 2, but hopefully 3 or 4 of the books!

5th Grade:
Feb 3rd             The Westing Game, by Ellen Taskin
Feb 17th           A wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle
March 2nd        The Call of the Wild, by Jack London
March 16th      Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli

5th graders will hopefully finish all 4 books!

Volunteers to lead discussions are needed for all grade levels. Please email Deanna Irwin-Sires at [email protected] if you can help lead book club discussions or have any other questions, thank you!!

Please note that there will be no sheets going home for parents to sign, we are only signing up via email this year! Include your mobile number, child’s grade, dates they will attend, any food allergies and if they will be going to Laser after Book Club.  If your child is in 3rd or 4th grade, email Deanna at [email protected].   If you have a 5th grader email Julie Willms at [email protected]

******Backpack Brigade – Donations Needed Every Week!******
Collection bins are located in the front main entrance and food will be collected daily.

The canned food that needed is very specific. Please make sure items are individual servings, “pop tops” or easy to open, and microwaveable.

“Main” meals, such as: mac and cheese cups, soup, stew,
beefaroni, ravioli, tuna fish packs
Breakfasts, such as: instant oatmeal or individual cereal cups
Snacks, such as: granola bars, fruit cups, fruit snacks, raisins, chips, crackers
Drinks, such as: shelf-stable milk, 100% fruit juice

Financial donations also accepted. Please make checks out to “Backpack Brigade” and note “Laurelhurst backpacks” on your gift. Envelope located in the office. Backpack Brigade is a 501 (c) (3) organization UBI 603 500 406, Tax ID: 47-4086877

If you are in need and would like to sign-up for the program, please contact Cheryl Manor, School Counselor, at [email protected] (All requests are confidential.)

For information, or if you’d like to help volunteer, please contact Karina Kunins, [email protected]

Support the Auction!

The procurement deadline is near.
We need your support!

The deadline for donations for the Laurelhurst PTA Auction is fast approaching!

Now is the time to donate. Host a party with friends or donate tickets to a sporting event or cultural center. Have a nice bottle of wine? Donate to our special wine package. Services and gift cards are also appreciated.

Consider a cash donation. The money will be used to purchase items to complete gift packages. Procurement forms were sent home in kid mail last week or you can DONATE HERE. Just enter ‘cash donation’ under the item name on the form.

Don’f forget! The PTA Auction raises over 70% of the PTA’s operating budget which flows directly to the students at Laurelhurst Elementary in the form of tutors, programs and supplies. We need your support!

News from LASER

*****Laurelhurst Elementary Enrichment Classes (LEECS)*****
Registration forms are available for after school classes in the front hall by the LEECS information board, as well as in the LASER portable. Registration starts Monday, January 4th.  To register for a class, please complete both pages of the registration form and turn it in along with payment (checks or cash only) to LASER or the Laurelhurst School Office. Sign-up is on first-come, first-serve basis and you will receive a confirmation email once your registration has been processed!

*****LEECS: One on One Basketball After School Hoops *****
Thursdays (Feb. 4 – April 7)
One on One Director Stu Michie will be leading the Winter session of After School Hoops at Laurelhurst.  We will focus on the individual fundamental skills as well as basic team strategies of basketball.  This class will be a great opportunity for those just starting to play on teams to improve ball-handling, passing, shooting technique and court awareness.
Contact Coach Stu Michie with any questions:  [email protected] / 206-715-3443
Follow the link below to sign up via Laser!

*****Parents Night Out*****
Parents’ Night Out- Friday, February 12th, Parent Night Out at Bryant!  $25 per child, $15 per sibling. 6pm-11pm. Theme: “Will you be my valentine?” Breakfast for dinner (waffles, fruit and more), Despicable Me 2 for a movie, group games, Valentine’s Day crafts for the art project, and a snack!  Transportation is available on the LASER minibus.
Sign up online:
Email Robby at [email protected] for more information.

News from the Teachers & Administration

*****Pants & Shirts Needed!*****
The office is in need of changes of clothes for medium to larger sized kids, both boys and girls. Also, when they are borrowed, we appreciate it when they are laundered and returned to the office as soon as possible. If you have outgrown pants that you would be willing to donate to our spare clothes supply, we would appreciate it. The most helpful clothing is that with elastic waist so it fits a variety of shapes and sizes. Leggings and athletic pants are preferred. Donations can be dropped in the office. Thanks!

*****School Tour Scheduled for Prospective Parents*****
We have scheduled the following dates for parents to visit, tour our school and have a Q & A session afterward. It is not just for parents of incoming 2016-17 kindergarteners, it covers all grades. If you have friends and neighbors that might be interested, please tell them about our tours. No reservations necessary. Adults only, please.
Feb 2 (Tuesday), 10:00 -11:15 am  – Library

*****Donate Your “Gently Used” Books to Laurelhurst*****
Laurelhurst Teachers would like to expand their student libraries.  Are you looking for a place to donate books your children have outgrown?  We are looking for high quality books that have been “gently used” to supplement leveled libraries.  Also, Sound Partners still needs sets of Bob Books.  If your children are finished with them, consider giving them to us!

Please NO preK books.  Also, we do not need Captain Underpants, scary books, or generally inappropriate books.  Please do send early elementary or chapter books. If you want to send them, please bring them in a bag, or box, to Reading Teacher Ellen Reid’s room 12.5 (near the elevator, upstairs) who will level and distribute them.  Thanks!Questions?  Call or email Ellen Reid 206-252-5420 or [email protected]

Middle School Open Houses

Eckstein Incoming 6th Grade Information Night

Date: Thursday, February 4, 2016
Time: 6pm-8pm
Who: Incoming 6th graders and their parents/guardians
What:  This is a wonderful opportunity for all students headed to Eckstein in the fall of 2016 to hear from our leadership, meet students and staff, tour the building, and learn about our enrichment programs!  Representatives from our music programs, athletics, Special Education services, electives, and core classes will be available for your questions. We will start in the auditorium and then families will have an opportunity to tour the school, learn about our programs, purchase Eckstein gear, and even test out how to unlock a lock! We look forward to meeting you!
Questions or need an interpreter?  Please contact [email protected]

Jane Addams Middle School (JAMS) Open House
Thursday, February 11th from 6:30pm-8:05pm
All prospective students and families are welcome to come and learn more about the JAMS community! We will gather in the auditorium for a brief introduction about the school from Principal Montgomery and then families and students will have opportunity to learn more about our programs. You will be able to see classrooms, look at our curriculum, and ask questions.
JAMS Vision: Every student achieving, everyone accountable, everyone growing and learning – all the time.
JAMS Mission: Jane Addams Middle School is a student-centered, collaborative team actively engaging students, families, and educators in a middle school experience dedicated to academic, social, and emotional growth for all.
Schedule for the Evening: 
6:30-6:45pm Welcome and Overview – Auditorium (Program will start on time, school doors will be open at 6:10pm)
6:50-7:05pm Session 1
7:10-7:25pm Session 2
7:30-7:45pm Session 3
7:50-8:05pm Session 4
Sessions (Select four) 
Language Arts ~ Social Studies ~ Math ~ Music ~ Counseling/Advisory/Library ~ Science ~ Special Education ~ PTSA, YMCA, Meadowbrook/Athletics ~ World Language ~ Visual Arts
Computer Science ~ Physical Education
More Information (Check these pages weekly for updates!)

If you have any questions, please call the main office at 206-252-4500.

News from the District

*****Advanced Learning Update*****
The Advanced Learning office will notify families (who referred a child by the Oct. 8 deadline) via email about a child’s eligibility as scores are received and processed, late January through February. Families who haven’t received an eligibility email by Feb. 29 should contact Advanced Learning at [email protected] with the subject line “Eligibility Letter.
Enrollment: Families who would like their child to participate in Advanced Learning programs or services in a school other than the attendance-area school should enroll the child during Open Enrollment,Feb. 17 to March 1. Families should submit a School Choice Form during this window even if they have NOT received eligibility results by this time.
Ineligible Students and Appeals: Families who wish to appeal must provide all appeals documents no later than THREE WEEKS from the date of the eligibility email. (We have tightened the appeals window in order to accommodate budget and staffing timelines.)
Eligible Students and Enrollment
o   Highly Capable-eligible students: HC services are guaranteed, either at the attendance-area school or through self-contained classes in the pathway Highly Capable Cohort school. To join the cohort, families should submit a School Choice form during Open Enrollment.
o   Advanced Learning-eligible students: Students may receive advanced work at the attendance-area school or through self-contained or cluster-grouped Spectrum classes, available at designated sites on a space-available basis. Families may submit a School Choice form during Open Enrollment, but a seat is not guaranteed.
K-8 testing continues at least through January, but all families who referred by the Oct. 8 deadline should have received a testing appointment date by now. Those who have not should email [email protected] with the subject line “Winter Testing.”

For details about all of these issues, please see our Advanced Learning Enrollment page and our Advanced Learning Appeals pageStephen Martin, Advanced Learning Supervisor
Phone: 252-0882

*****Have you ever wondered how school funding, staffing and budgets are determined, but never knew who to ask?*****
The Seattle Public Schools finance team is excited to present an evening dedicated to understanding the school budget process on January 25, 2016. Mark your calendar now for this fun and informative evening event!

Understanding the School Budget
You are invited to attend on January 25, 2016, from 6 until 8 p.m., in the Auditorium of the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence at 2445 3rd Ave S.
They’ll share helpful information such as:

  • When the 2016-17 school planning dates occur
  • An overview of the budgeting process
  • How funding is determined and schools are staffed, including understanding information around class sizes and the process for parent involvement

News from the Community

*****Northeast Seattle Little League Registration is Open!*****
Spring is just around the corner so it’s time for kids to gear up for baseball, softball, and tee ball with Northeast Seattle Little League (NESLL)! For kids 5-6 years old, NESLL’s tee ball program is a great way to introduce the game. NESLL’s softball program is a great way to get young girls involved in athletics and be a part of championship teams. NESLL’s baseball program is for boys and girls ages 6-13 and a great opportunity to learn about teamwork and the fundamentals of the game. For parents, there are plenty of volunteer opportunities within the league and with your child’s team. Please go to to start the registration process. For baseball and tee ball questions contact [email protected]. For softball questions contact Scott Rossick at [email protected] or check out

*****Sign-Up Now For Spring Frizzly Bears Ultimate Frisbee*****
Ultimate Frisbee Team for 3rd-5th graders forming with practices twice a week at Laurelhurst Park starting early March. Weekly week-end games held at various parks in Seattle. Approximate cost $40.  Sign-up deadline is January 25th. Contact[email protected].

Do You Have News to Share?

Submissions for the next PTA newsletter due Friday at Noon. Email submissions to [email protected]

PTA Newsletter Team

Mindy Iwen, Gayle Christensen, Judy Findley, Karina Kunins, & Nella Synge.

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Send questions and comments to [email protected]com.