Dear Hawthorne Parent Community,
Welcome to Hawthorne! Or welcome back to Hawthorne! And an extra big Hello and Welcome to new JK parents!
By now you will have seen and heard about some of the new protocols put in place by the school to keep our children as safe as possible while still comfortable and happy. We dearly hope that the weeks went well for you and your children.
This year will be different in terms of the parent council as well. Our usual activities, like pizza day, enrichment activities, fundraisers etc. are not possible at this time. And in an enormous switch for our school, parents are not allowed in the school building at this time. While it is sad to see everything so limited, the primary goal of school during a pandemic is to see our children safe, socializing (safely), and learning something. This year, it is enough to see the joy and stability that our kids are getting from a routine that involves leaving the house and engaging with peers.
And for those of you who have chosen to go online this year, we want to support you and stay connected as much as possible. We are creating a ‘class’ of virtual learners for parent council communications and have started an FB group for Hawthorne remote learners.
There is a lot for us to do! Here are our plans are for the year:
Right now, the biggest initiative is in outdoor education. Our goal is to support the teachers in their endeavours and to help facilitate as much outdoor time as possible. We are following the leads of the teachers and the needs will keep evolving as the weather changes. As of this week, we have supplied the teachers with five rolling white boards for exterior use, are working on setting up handwashing stations, and have supplied piles of yoga mats being used for sit spots for the children. We need a volunteer to set up the handwashing stations – contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help.
We are continuing with our Hawthorne Visioning project this year. Last year, this committee worked on outlining an Arts and Environment Based Curriculum for our school to adopt. We would like to continue this work this fall. Join us to have a say in the future of Hawthorne. Email email@example.com to indicate your interest.
This year, keeping our community coherent and vital is a priority. We want to ensure that our online members feel part of Hawthorne, that we work to keep our community together, and that we continue to work in partnership with Essex. Let us know if you have any brilliant COVID-safe ideas. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to be the ‘class’ rep for the remote learning group.
We are not doing any fundraising at this time, and we are not collecting any enrichment fees either. We still have money left over from last year and are financially fine for now, but as the seasons progress and we need more supplies to keep the kids outside, we may be coming to you with a direct, pay-what-you-can request. We will only do so when we have a better sense of our needs.
Parent Council Meetings
The parent council is a group of parents, teachers, and admin whose purpose is to enhance student experience and to foster the broader school community.
This year’s first parent council will be virtual. We do not have a date solidified yet, but it will be in the middle of October. Please join us! This is your chance to get as much information about the school year as possible. Harry and Rachel will be there to give reports and answer questions, and so will we.
We will have spots on the parent council available and will be voting for the council. Every September we need to vote on a new parent council. We are accepting nominations up until October 9. You can join parent council as named position or a member-at-large and be in the know. Send an email to email@example.com to express interest or for more info. More information on nominations to come.
We don’t know what our volunteering needs will be exactly this year, but we will need a roster of people available to be called upon when needs arise. We will send out a sign up sheet around the first parent council meeting and ask that you consider putting yourself onto it to stay involved and help keep our school running smoothly.
Because parents are not allowed in the schools at this time, communications from parent council are more important than ever. We are working on creating new class lists (this task is surprisingly complicated this year), and will continue to give you updates from the trustee, the board, the principal, from us. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about being a class rep.
* Please help us create new class email lists so you can continue to receive these updates
Please complete the forms by Friday October 9, 2020. They will only take a couple minutes to complete.
We look forward to seeing you virtually at the first parent council meeting. Please contact us if you have any questions or want to volunteer for anything.
Jackie Wylde and Tereza Macel
Parent Council Co-Chairs