Fairmeadow Elementary School eNews

Where Learning is a Team Sport!
August 22, 2016 
Fairmeadow News
Welcome to Fairmeadow Elementary's eNews -- the best way to stay informed about all things Fairmeadow. Our eNews will come to your inbox every Monday so be sure to have a look!
Principal's Message

Dear Fairmeadow Community,
Every one of our Fairmeadow students brought their unique passions, their limitless spirit, their contagious energy, and their boundless curiosity with them to school last Tuesday, launching what promises to be an exceptional year of learning for all of us at Fairmeadow.  Each educator at our school holds sky-high expectations for the potential in each one of our students, and I can hardly wait to watch our flock of Firebirds soar beyond those expectations this year.
The first days of school always include the setting of daily rituals, routines, and rules, but as I walked through classrooms last week I witnessed far more than the basics. I observed skilled teachers building the foundations of classroom community through a variety of inclusive and well-planned learning activities. For example, I observed kindergarteners partnering in creative play and building, first graders sharing poetry and dancing, second graders deeply engaged in a morning meeting, third graders doing a design challenge, fourth graders silently assembling a class-created puzzle, and fifth graders co-composing a class compact. These experiences are a small sample of the many engaging exercises teachers led students through to set the stage for a productive year. Our classrooms abound with positive interactions, opportunities to inquire, and authentic learning experiences. Imagine what the weeks ahead will hold!
Come join us to find out more about what this year will hold for your child at Back to School Night, next Tuesday, August 30th. The kindergarten, first, and second grade presentations will run from 6-7 pm in classrooms, with the third, fourth, and fifth grade presentations running from 7-8 pm. Back to School Night is a wonderful opportunity to learn about your child's teacher, the instructional program and curricular approach for the school year, fun and engaging activities on and off school grounds, and volunteer opportunities. I look forward to seeing you all there.
Fairmeadow families may have noticed new gates securing three entrances to our school campus during school hours. We installed these gates this summer to ensure a safe learning and play environment for our students, and to encourage entry to our school through the front corridor by the main office during school hours. While we understand that walking to the main office corridor on East Meadow may present an inconvenient detour for those of you volunteering during school hours, it is a necessary step to ensure that all visitors to our campus have signed in to the office, and a precaution to limit access to our campus from the outside. Thank you for your flexibility with this important and necessary change.
Speaking of safety, if you drive your child to school, please be sure to follow our drop off guidelines in the front parking. When you arrive, please pull up as far as you can in the right side drop-off lane. Remain in your vehicle while your child exits the vehicle through the right side door only. Please do not drop off your child in the left hand lane, as crossing the parking lot can be incredibly dangerous in the minutes before school. If time allows, the best option is to park in the Mitchell Park parking lot and take the short walk through the park to campus.
Starting this Wednesday, Fairmeadow will be providing a free breakfast snack for any interested student at the start of the school day. Breakfast snacks will be available from 8:10-8:25 am each morning in front of the main office. This is a wonderful opportunity to make sure that all students are well-fed and ready for a new day!

What will the next week hold for your student at Fairmeadow? Let's work together to make it the best it can be! I look forward to seeing you at Fairmeadow soon.

Grant Althouse
Pizza Thursdays
Students have the option of ordering pizza for lunch on Thursdays, which is a very popular lunch item for our children. Teachers take the lunch count for Thursday's pizza day on Wednesday morning, t o allow a full day for accurate ordering by the school district. If students do not order lunch  on Wednesday , they will still have the option of ordering another food item for  Thursday  lunch, just not pizza. Thank you for planning accordingly.
That's right - you don't need to purchase school supplies!
Help support Fairmeadow's PTA with the
one-check form which pays for the per-student cost of classroom supplies, recess equipment, technology, media, special programs, and community events. Your contribution also funds noon sports, teacher grants, and special assemblies. Please hand in the one-check form (PTA drawer in the office), or pay online at  tinyurl.com/onecheckform
Rock the Walkathon!
Get your walking shoes ready, Firebirds!

When:  Sunday, Sept. 25, 2016, 11am-3pm
What: The Walkathon is a fun family event. Walk with friends, teachers, and Mr. Althouse!

There will be t-shirts, face painting, tattoos, a bake sale, food trucks, and so much more!

Don't forget!   All parents can sign up for or bid on faculty events or parties for kids during the Walkathon.

Want to help with the Walkathon?  Contact Nirmala Patni at  nspatni@gmail.com

Join us! Together we strengthen our schools!
PiE has launched its 2016-2017 fundraising campaign. We ask to you to join us as our kids need the support of the whole community.  PiE funds go to every Palo Alto district school and give each principal the funding needed to staff many programs that make a difference for the students and families at each school location. From our classroom aides, to teachers for STEAM-focused electives, music and art, to caring counselors and mentors, PiE-funded staff make a positive impact on our kids every day.  Between now and September 6, you can double your impact via the $500,000 Back-To-School Challenge Grant which matches every dollar donated to PiE. Please donate today!  Click here to donate online.
A Public Forum for Candidates for the PAUSD School Board
Thu, Sep 22, 7-9 pm, 25 Churchill Ave., Palo Alto
Be educated! The Palo Alto PTA Council and League of Women Voters have organized an opportunity for you to meet the the candidates for the PAUSD Board of Education. The Board of Education is the K-12 policy-making body for academic standards, curriculum, instructional materials, assessments, and accountability. Thank you to the League of Women Voters of Palo Alto for sponsoring this forum that encourages informed and active participation in government. The League and PTAC neither supports nor opposes candidates. The Candidates Forum is organized to provide equal and non-preferential opportunities for each candidate for Palo Alto Unified School Board to make short prepared statements and to answer questions written by audience members on cards provided at the event. Volunteers help make the event run smoothly.
The entire Forum will be videotaped by Midpeninsula studios and broadcast later on community TV channels. All other recordings, visual and audio, are prohibited.

Community  News
Palo Alto 311
One way you can help walking and bicycling students be safe and visible on the way to school is to report problems via the Palo Alto 311 app or website. Using this powerful tool will help the City eliminate safety issues, and you can track your issue as it is addressed by staff. Please report visibility issues like overgrown trees or vegetation at corners as these items are especially important for students walking and biking to school.
Items you can report include:
  • Broken sidewalks
  • Sidewalks with overgrown vegetation/weeds or other visibility problems
  • Tree care requests (for trees not on private property)
  • Tree or limb down obstructing the right-of-way
  • Debris in bike lanes and/or roadways
  • Potholes in bike lanes and/or roadways
  • Streetlight and traffic signal problems
  • Large amount of non-local traffic on a local street
  • Traffic congestion or traffic safety concern
  • Unsafe driving behavior or speeding (non emergency)
  • Traffic signs down/bent/not visible
  • Missing manhole/utility cover
You can also request:
  • Improvements to school bicycle or walking route
  • Improvements to Palo Alto Shuttle
  • New bicycle rack or bicycle parking in the public right-of-way (ROW)
  • New traffic signals or retiming of existing signals
  • New curb paint or new parking signs
  • New traffic signs and/or pavement markings
You can also report items to saferoutes@cityofpaloalto.org, but Safe Routes staff will enter your item into Palo Alto 311, so it will be faster if you can use the app or website.
El Camino Youth Symphony
The El Camino Youth Symphony is inviting young, motivated musicians with at least one year of private lessons to audition for our preparatory orchestras! ECYS offers after-school music programs for all levels of ability, from our Chamber Players Orchestra for students just beginning their musical journey to the Senior Symphony, where players challenge themselves with professional-level repertoire. The orchestra program begins in the fall and runs through the spring, and groups meet weekly for rehearsal. Contact loribingham@ecys.org to learn about setting up an audition. Visit http://www.ecys.org for more information.
Trail Closure/Tree Removal Along San Francisquito Creek
A s part of the San Francisquito Creek flood control project, the Bay/San Francisquito Creek trail that runs from Geng and Embarcadero Road to the Friendship Bridge (through the Baylands Athletic Center, along the Golf Course) will soon be closed. The flood control project is scheduled to begin September 1, but the trail may be closed as early as mid-August. On the Palo Alto side of the creek, the trail is expected to be closed for the entire two-year duration of the project. Signs are being posted along the trail in advance to warn users about the upcoming closure and tree removals that are required for the construction project. There is a brief summary about this project in a  notice  mailed to properties around the area. More Resources:
eNews Publication Guidelines
Previous editions of eNews can be found at the  eNews archive page.
Fairmeadow eNews Publication Guidelines:
  • Fairmeadow eNews is a publication of the Fairmeadow PTA. It is sent out each Monday morning, with special editions sent out as required.
  • If you want to publish an announcement relevant to Fairmeadow, send an email to fairmeadow.enews@gmail.comInclude the following information: title, date, time, and location of the event, a brief description, and contact information. Items submitted by Sunday 2 pm will appear in the Monday Edition.
  • Announcements relevant to other schools in the PAUSD district can be sent to enews@paloaltopta.org
  • Our PTA has a noncommercial policy, which states that we do not associate with any commercial activities of other organizations including, but not limited to, the promotion of their goods and services. Only submissions from nonprofit organizations will be considered for placement in the eNews.
  • Announcements will generally be published in two consecutive issues. To have further announcements made after that, please submit your announcement again.
If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact Christy Moision, Fairmeadow's eNews editor, at fairmeadow.enews@gmail.com.

In This Issue
Important Dates
Aug 30 Back to School Night
Sep 2 Picture Day
Sep 5 Labor Day (No School)
Sep 7
New Family Coffee
General PTA Meeting
Sep 9 Principal's Coffee
Quick Links

Fairmeadow Elementary School | 650-856-0845 | fairmeadow.enews@gmail.com | http://www.fairmeadow.pausd.org/
500 East Meadow Drive
Palo Alto, CA 94306