A&L Bulletin 10-8-15

First PTA General Meeting

Guest Speaker: Jean Malpas, Ackerman Institute for the Family

Oct. 14, 6:00-7:30PM

The first PTA General Meeting of the 2015-2016 school year will take place on October 14 from 6-7:30 PM.   A strong and active PTA is critical to our school’s success, and, quite simply, we need you, your ideas, your voice, and your support.   Come hear about what’s ahead for our school community this year.  We will also have a guest speaker Jean Malpas, Director of the Gender and Family Project at the Ackerman Institute for the Family, speaking on gender diversity.  We look forward to seeing you on the 14th and to working with you throughout the year to make A&L the best that it can be.  See attached flyer for more info!


Childcare Information for PTA Meeting

The PTA is organizing childcare for the PTA meeting Wednesday 10/14/15 for grades K-5 at 6PM. Pizza will be provided and we will be capping childcare at 50 students. In order to make sure that we have the right amount of caregivers and that they plan age-appropriate activities, please let us know in advance if your child will be there by filling out the information in this link:  http://tinyurl.com/pvko8l8 

The childcare will be provided at a cost of $5 per student.  Drop off and pick up will be in the GYM.


Get Ready, Get Set to Show Your Love!!!!!

The I Love A&L fall fundraising drive will take off on Thursday, October 15, 2015 and run until October 30, 2015 (or until we meet our $30,000 goal for this drive).  The I Love A&L campaign is the school's single biggest fundraiser and is how the PTA raises about half of its budget to support the entire school, its teachers and OUR children.   There'll be prizes and giveaways and other fun stuff. Stay tuned for more information and get ready to give, give, give!  Don't wait to wait? Don't have to. Make your tax deductible donation now online at http://goo.gl/7UgBSr  (it looks funny but it does work!) or drop a check payable to the Arts & Letters PTA in the purple PTA mailbox in the entrance to Room 309, or mail to Arts & Letters PTA, Mailbox Room 309, 225 Adelphi Street Brooklyn, New York 11205


Licenders Update

On Friday, we conducted our annual Licenders school wide screening. This preventative screening program, now entering its third year at A&L, has been a successful preventative maintenance program for keeping this city-wide problem at bay at our school.  At the screening, 24 students were identified with lice, some in almost every grade.  At the follow-up visit 5 days later, 50% of those students still needed further treatment.  Families need to be diligent in their monitoring and treatment plans to prevent the cycle from starting over continually at school.  Licenders will do additional free screenings at their salons for A&L families, please contact them directly for assistance.  www.licenders.com  

Many thanks to our PTA for supporting this successful program financially and functionally, and to all of the parent volunteers who showed up and assisted: Dawn Babbush (organizer), Georgina Motolinia, Naomi Shrenzel, Kahlila Kramer, Nicole Tu, and April Burns.  Thanks also to the administration, staff and teachers with whom we couldn’t have done this work: Pia Micoli, Meg Crouch and Tanya Williams.  If you would like to help defray the cost of this effort with an additional donation, please add it to your donation to the I Love A&L campaign or drop a check into the PTA purple mailbox on the 3rd floor.


Upper Grade Class Parents Needed

Thanks to all those who volunteered to be Class Parents!  Looks like we’ve got a terrific team in place.  However, we are still in need of parent volunteers for the upper grades

Please contact Mary-Jane Mitchell (maryjanenyc@me.com) and Anna Azrieli (annaazrieli@gmail.com) if you would like to join the class parent body. 


Co-Vice President Needed

The PTA is still in need of someone to fill this very important position.  If you are an Upper Grade parent and are interested in running, please contact Kimtoya Williams at kimtoya@yahoo.com or Jen Becker at jenrbecker@gmail.com.  The election will take place at our first PTA meeting of the year on October 14th. 


Winter Fest Organizers Needed!

We need some enthusiastic and engaged volunteers to make this year’s A&L Winter Fest on December12th the best and most fun ever!   This is a fantastic opportunity to get involved in a project that both helps build school spirit and makes money for the school! If you’re interested or to find out more, please contact Justine Fasciano jfasciano@yahoo.com or Carla Licavoli carlalicavoli@gmail.com


A&L Book Sale/School Fundraiser

Oct 16, 2:30PM-5:00PM

A&L PTA will be holding a big Book Sale on Oct. 16, as a fundraiser for the school.  The Book Sale will feature new and used books for adults and kids of all ages.   There will also be coffee generously donated by Bittersweet for (adult) book buyers!  For more information contact Rebecca Paley rebeccapaley@gmail.com 


Class Picture Day

Oct 29

Class Picture Day is October 29th! We use a wonderful company called Stomping Ground Photo. If you are interested in volunteering contact Carrie Larrier bklyncarrie@yahoo.com


School Closings for October

Mon 10/12: Columbus Day

Fri 10/23: A&L Professional Development Day 


Holiday Shopping?  Support A&L For Free!   

As holiday shopping season approaches, a quick reminder to click through the link below (and please bookmark it) whenever you buy ANYTHING on Amazon!   We get a substantial donation (up to 15%) and you pay nothing extra.  


Also, don’t forget to go to Target’s website and connect your Redcard to A&L so we get cash back from those purchases as well!  Go to tinyurl.com/AandLTarget and assign SCHOOL ID #147057 to your card.  Every time you shop, you get an instant 5% discount, free shipping, and A&L gets some cash


A&L Receives GROW NYC Grant!

Thanks to the efforts of Tresa Elguera (mom to Elian (3rd) and Aaron (K)), Arts and Letters has received a grant from GROW NYC to assist us in implementing school wide recycling and composting. The first meeting between the consultant, the maintenance personnel and administration has already happened. Look for changes around the school and opportunities for your children to become involved!


Dismissal Updates/Changes

Thank you for filling out the "student information form" with the dismissal information for your students.  If you are making lasting changes to those plans for dismissal, please email Ms. Micoli with any changes at pmicoli@artsandlettersbklyn.org.  If you are making a last minute (or one time) change to your student's afterschool plans, please make sure you contact Dawn Babbush (afterschool coordinator) at dawn babbush@yahoo.com and cc Ms. Micoli at pmicoli@artsandlettersbklyn. This information is vital to our ability to ensure that all students have safely transitioned to the correct afterschool locations. Thanks for your cooperation.


Lost And Found

The lost and found will be in the main office, (Room 304) this year.  We will do our best to bring all items that are left in the schoolyard to this lost and found each day.  Please try to label all lunchboxes and jackets, so that it is easier to identify and recover (NOTE:  See Mabel’s Labels info below!).  Because space is limited, at the end of each marking period, we will send an email reminder for a last chance to check the lost and found, then we will donate items that have not been claimed. Thanks for your help and support with this.


Box Tops 4 Education


We raise money through the Box Tops 4 Education program. Box Tops are located on a wide range of products (not just cereal!), such as Ziploc brand containers and bags, Hanes socks and underwear, Betty Crocker baking products, Scott paper goods, Hefty trash bags, Progresso, Cascadian Farms, Pillsbury products, and so much more. It's a super easy way to earn free money toward A&L's fundraising goals.  Please drop them off in the main office with Ms. Williams.  For more info go to http://www.artsandlettersbklyn.org/fundraising#boxtops

In addition, signing up for the Box Tops 4 Education newsletter will grant you access to loads of chances to get bonus Box Tops for the school. If you have a few minutes, it's a great opportunity to increase the amount of money we raise through this program. You can sign up here (type in "arts & letters" to find our school): https://www.boxtops4education.com/consumer-registration?RegAction=HeaderSignUp

There are two deadlines during the year, so please clip the coupons all year long and then bring them in. Each Box Top earns 10 cents for the school--if everyone contributes, that adds up quickly. It's a super easy way to earn free money toward A&L's fundraising goals.



Farmigo is an online Farmer's Market where you can shop for fresh, delicious food — vegetables, fruit, meat, seafood, eggs, dairy, breads, and more — while raising money for Arts & Letters.  Ten percent of every order donated to the school! Place your order by midnight on Sunday; then pick it up at school between 3 and 4 pm on Wednesdays.   Go to http://www.artsandlettersbklyn.org/fundraising#farmigo to sign up.


Mabel’s Labels

Never lose your kid’s clothing or lunch containers again! Raise money for A&L by purchasing labels for clothing and other products on the Mabel’s Labels site.  For every purchase, A&L gets 20%, but only through the end of October.   See attached flyer for more information!


PTA Google Group Emails Missing?

Do you feel like you’re not receiving every email sent to the PTA Google Group?  We’re sending fewer than 5 per week so we suggest changing your settings to receive each email as it comes out:

  1. 1.    Go to https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/uaaalpa
  2. 2.    Click the My Settings button in the upper right-hand corner (The person with a gear on her shoulder)
  3. 3.    Click “Membership and email settings”
  4. 4.    Set your “Email delivery preference” to “Notify me for every new message”
  5. 5.    Click Save


School Lunch Forms

Every family is federally mandated to fill out the National School Food Programs Application.  In addition to determining lunch qualifications for our children, the application is also used to regulate the amount of State funding Arts & Letters receives for supplies such as books, classroom furniture and other resources.  If you feel you are not eligible for free or reduced-price meals, then check the box next to the statement, “I do not qualify for free or reduced-price meals” at the top of the form and return it to school to help ensure adequate funding for our school. 

As an added incentive, the class that returns 100% of their lunch forms and blue cards first will receive a pizza party in their classroom.


Free Movie Screening of He Named Me Malala

There is a free movie screening of He Named Me Malala on October 10th at AMC Loews Lincoln Square at 10:00 am for middle grades/high school students and their parents. Check out the link below for registration and additional information about this documentary featuring the experience of Malala, a young girl fighting for educational rights for girls in Taliban controlled northwest Pakistan.



Brooklyn Library Extends Its Hours

The Brooklyn Library now has expanded hours of service.  Each branch will now be open six days a week!  Check the library’s website for exact hours.  


A&L School Year Calendar

In addition to the important dates listed in this bulletin, there are many more exciting and important events planned for the school year.  Don’t want to miss an important date?  You won’t have to if you subscribe to the online calendar by going to www.artsandlettersbklyn.org/calendar/ and following the instructions. 


In the meantime, please be sure to note the following dates that school will be closed or closing early during the 2015-16 school year:


Mon 10/12: Columbus Day (School Closed)

Fri 10/23: A&L Professional Development Day (School Closed)

Tues 11/3: Election Day (School Closed)

Wed 11/11: Veterans Day (School Closed)

Thurs 11/19: Student Led Conferences (Early Dismissal)

Thurs 11/26-Fri 11/27: Thanksgiving Break (School Closed)

Fri 12/4: A&L Professional Development Day (Early Dismissal)

Thur 12/24-Fri 1/1: Winter Recess (School Closed)

Mon 1/18: MLK Day (School Closed)

Fri 1/29: Roundtables (Early Dismissal for Lower Grades)

Mon 2/8: Lunar New Year (School Closed)

Mon 2/15-Fri 2/19: Mid-Winter Break (School Closed)

Thurs 3/17: Student Led Conferences (Early Dismissal)

Fri 3/25: Good Friday (School Closed)

Mon 4/25-Fri 4/29: Spring Break (School Closed)

Thurs 4/5: A&L Professional Development Day (School Closed)

Mon 5/30: Memorial Day (School Closed)

Thurs 6/9: Chancellor's Day (School Closed)

Tues 6/14: DOE Clerical Day (School Closed)

Fri 6/17: Roundtables (Early Dismissal for Lower Grades)


Have questions about this Bulletin or information for the next one?  Contact Jonathan at jonathanbines@gmail.com