Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Parents can help at Friday's celebration

The administration and P.T.O. would be grateful for parent volunteers to help with the Hispanic Heritage Day performances on Friday. Parents are needed starting at 9 a.m. to set up for the event, which begins at noon; you may help for as long as you can. Parents may also bring food or drink to share after the event—ideally a Hispanic dish. Starting at 11:45, parents can help usher and otherwise make sure students are where they are supposed to be.

To help, please contact Ms. Hernandez (the Spanish teacher) at school, or P.T.O. hospitality coordinator Maria McGrath at 718-783-2268 or mariaw AT brooklynmcgrath.net.

Students in Pre-K, K, 1st grade and some of 2nd grade will perform (singing and dancing, primarily). To know what time your child will perform, look for an email from parent coordinator Charmaine Derrell-Jacob with the event program. -Kirby Pulver and Christine Scanlon

Online payment for lunch?

Not yet. At tonight's P.T.O. meeting, Ms. D'Avilar was alerted to the existence of mylunchmoney.com, an online-payment system used at P.S. 321 in Park Slope. She pledged to consider it.

For the time being, here's how lunch money works at P.S. 9: Students may bring cash or a check in an envelope with their name, their teacher's name and their class number. The child gives that to the teacher in the morning. The teacher will then give collected funds to a school aide, who will assign the money to the student's name. Students may pay daily, weekly or monthly. For the time being, students may not "bank" meals in advance, drawing on their account only on those days they want to opt to buy.

Parents should receive a receipt for lunch money the day following payment. -Kirby Pulver

Today's flood—will the chancellor help?

Hours after the lower-floor classrooms of P.S. 9 were flooded with inches of water, Ms. D'Avilar spoke about the situation at tonight's P.T.O. meeting. Flooding has been a problem since she arrived at the school 7 years ago, she said, but called today's deluge the worst that she has seen here. Water came into every door of the school's courtyard, she said. Also:

•Flooding is caused partly by wrongly installed pipes that send water toward the school instead of away from it. These faulty pipes are both under Underhill Ave. and in the playground.

•A cleanup crew tonight is cleaning, disinfecting and testing the air in the affected classrooms. Principal D'Avilar will receive a report Wednesday morning around 6:30 a.m., and decide on next steps, including where to locate classes for the day. She will send out an email blast to parents about the situation in the a.m. after reviewing the report. Parents will also be able to read the report in the main office, the principal said.

•The new playground plans did not include fixing the faulty-pipes problem. Principal D'Avilar believes that news coverage and the thousands of dollars worth of damage has caught Chancellor Klein's attention. She interprets the quick arrival of the cleanup crew as a positive sign, and has indications that the DOE will pay for the replacement of rugs and tiles (but probably not books). Has the flood made enough of an impression that the School Construction Authority will revise the playground plans? And will the Chancellor protect the school's budget from bearing the costs of the flood? Not clear at the moment. -Kirby Pulver and Christine Scanlon

Monday, October 11, 2010

Calling all PS 9 Parents: PTO meeting Tuesday night

6:30 PM in the PS9 Teacher Lounge (Enter on Underhill Ave)

The PS9 Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) -- formerly known as the PS9 PTA --
invites and encourages all PS9 parents to attend its monthly meeting tomorrow,
Tuesday, October 12 at 6:30 pm. Please note that CHILD CARE WILL BE PROVIDED!

Come hear about the wide range of initiatives and events planned for the fall --
and learn how you and your family can participate in the strengthening of our
school community. We want to hear your voices, answer your questions, and
engage your support.

Why should you attend? This is your chance to:

-- Hear directly from Principal D'Avilar
-- Learn about upcoming PS9 events and how to help out
-- Get involved in your child's education (e.g., Family Reading and Math
Buddies, Class Parents)
-- Find out how to support PS9's fundraising initiatives
-- Meet other PS9 parents and families

We need your help to make PS9 events and fundraisers successful -- there are
opportunities to volunteer at all levels; if you have an hour to give, or a
special skill to contribute, please let us know!

UPCOMING EVENTS (volunteers needed for all):
* Hispanic Heritage Festival (Friday, Oct 15th)
* Open House Tour (Friday, Oct 15th)
* Silent Auction (Friday, Oct 22nd)
* Character Parade (Friday, Oct 29th)
* Fall Candy Sale
* Election Day Bake Sale (Tuesday, Nov 2nd)
* Picture Day (Monday, Nov 8th and Mon, Nov 15th)

Please note that parents are welcome to stay for the PTO Fundraising
Subcommittee Meeting immediately following the PTO meeting.

We hope to see you tomorrow night. Remember -- child care will be provided!

In partnership,
Your PS9 PTO
Be sure to check out the revived PS9 PTO Blog: http://www.ps9pta.blogspot.com/
Get PS9 News Online: http://www.ps9brooklyn.org/
PS. If you are unable to attend but would like to help, please contact ps9pto AT gmail.com, or one of the following committee heads:
Communications Karen Fein Karen.Fein AT gmail.com
Fundraising Fiona Noyes Fionat2 AT hotmail.com
Carol Sheldrake-Hernandez
Carolsheldrake AT gmail.com
Hospitality Maria McGrath (718-783-2268) mariaw AT brooklynmcgrath.net
Lunchroom Tara Rullo tararullo AT mac.com
Library Kiki Dennis kiki AT kikidennis.com
Wellness Jen Chapin jen AT jenchapin.com
Grant Writing Ivana Espinet ivanaespinet AT yahoo.com
The Phone Tree committee is still being organized. For now, please contact: Faye Rimalovski, fayerimalovski AT optonline.net.

Thursday, October 7, 2010


10/5/2010: Grade 5 Parent Meeting 5:30pm

10/5/2010: Curriculum Night 6-8pm

10/6/2010: PTO Candy Sale Kick-Off Assembly 12:30pm

10/4/2010: Silent Auction On-line Bidding Begins

10/8/2010: Family Reading & Math Buddies Opening Meeting 8:45am

10/8/2010: Silent Auction Ticket Pre-Sale Ends

10/11/2010: Columbus Day Observed - School Closed

10/12/2010: PTO & Title I Meeting 6:30pm

10/12/2010: Gifted & Talented Application Begins

10/13/2010: Silent Auction Scooter & Helmet Lottery Drawing

10/14/2010: District 13 Middle School Fair @ MS 113 300 Adelphi Street

10/15/2010: Early Childhood Open House 9:00am

10/15/2010: Hispanic Heritage Celebration

10/18/2010: School Leadership Team Meeting 4:00pm

10/21/2010: Class Parent Meeting 9am

10/21/2010: Safety Meeting 9:30am

10/22/2010: Silent Auction at Prospect Park's Picnic House 6pm

10/26/2010: Special Needs Parent Orientation 9am

10/29/2010: Literacy Parade and Harvest Festival

10/29/2010: Candy Sale Monies Due


Please enjoy the full interview of Ms. Johnston by pre-k student Genevieve Snyder. Look for more interviews and grade level highlights in upcoming issues of the PTO newsletter, YOUR 9 NEWS.

Genevieve: Are you excited about your birthday?

Ms. Johnston: Yes, my birthday is in July, and I usually have a swimming party.

Genevieve: Are you a queen?

Ms. Johnston: No, I’m a teacher!

Genevieve: What are you going to be for Halloween?

Ms. Johnston: Well, last year I was Stellaluna. I haven’t made up my mind yet for this year. But can I tell you about what I usually do for Halloween? I fly home to Minnesota, where all the houses are so far apart that you can’t walk from house to house to trick or treat. So we hook up a wagon to a tractor, and we put hay in the wagon, and we sit on the wagon and we pull up the wagon to each house to go trick or treating!

Genevieve: Do you have a princess costume?

Ms. Johnston: No.

Genevieve: Do you have an Ariel costume?

Ms. Johnston: No, but my 5-year old niece just got one.

Genevieve: Do you like to jump rope?

Ms. Johnston: Yes, if it’s outside. I love to do anything outside. I like doing things like climbing trees, going on hikes, sledding, and having snowball fights.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The P.T.O. Starts Blogging Again

The P.S. 9 P.T.O. communications committee is resuming blogging. As P.S. 9 is a dynamic community with a growing student population, watch for a few posts a week. This will include news about events, parent volunteer opportunities, teaching and learning at P.S. 9., fundraising, and general school information.

If you have questions or suggestions, or would like to help the P.T.O. communications committee, please contact us at tararullo AT mac.com.

Art classes, 2010-2011

Last night, Ms. D'Avilar also mentioned this year's plan for art teaching: Studio in a School will work with Grades K-2 and Grade 5. Guggenheim Museum's educators will instruct our 3rd and 4th graders. The front hallway can fill up with a fresh round of beautiful student creations!

We will update this post once we find out when the classes will start, how frequently they will occur, and how parents might help.
-Kirby Pulver and Matt Fleischer-Black

Ms. D'Avilar's 3 goals for 2010-2011

Principal D'Avilar spoke last night in the auditorium during the scheduled Curriculum Night. She highlighted her three goals for the year:

1. Continuation of the school-wide enrichment program.
2. Staffing and opening the library by the middle of November 2010.
3. To increase parent involvement by 100 percent.

What parents can do to meet these goals:

1. ENRICHMENT: The administration will soon send out a link and ID for a website that offers a Renzulli assessment of each student's interests and learning style. (Want a sense? Look here.) You may also volunteer to help with Friday enrichment classes. To learn more about the enrichment program, read the bulletin board in the hallway to the right of the main office.
2. LIBRARY: Volunteer for the PTO's library committee.
(Send email to: kiki AT kikidennis.org)
3. INVOLVEMENT: Get involved, of course!
-Kirby Pulver