It's difficult to know where to begin this week's letter. As a public school educator and state employee I know that I should remain professional, impartial, and unemotional. However, as a woman and public school educator, the election results have been challenging for me.

Tired, from staying up much of the night to watch results unfold, and raw with emotion, many of us remained visibly upset and depressed throughout the day last Wednesday. With little time to debrief or prepare, we know that we did not, in every moment, provide balanced viewpoints, adequately distinguish the Republican victory from ideas of hatred and intolerance, nor share the multiple perspectives from which any historical event should be viewed. We sincerely apologize if a student or family was made to feel uncomfortable or excluded during discussions about the election.

Like many others on my staff, who I am and what I do are inextricably linked. For us, concerns about racism, sexism, homophobia, hatred, and intolerance -- ideas that we have worked our entire careers to change through our work in schools -- make us fearful for our students of color, for our girls, for our Muslim and Jewish students, for our students with gay parents, for our students with disabilities, and for our families who now live in fear of deportation. The very real fears of many in our community were shared with us before school last Wednesday morning, and we felt an enormous responsibility to reassure our students that they would be safe. However, in doing so, we now know that we unfortunately alienated some of our other students and families.

It will always be our aim to ensure that all perspectives are valued equitably while also sending a clear message that intolerance, bigotry, and sexism will not be accepted in our school community. The passion that makes us effective educators also makes us sensitive to changes that we perceive could be harmful to the communities about which we so deeply care. We hope that families who disagreed with our handling of the post-election discussions can understand that as thoughtful educators, our intentions were to respect all sides. While our execution may have been imperfect, we also hope our families recognize that we deserve understanding and forgiveness for when we are also just humans.

That said, there are several more concrete lessons learned that warrant continued conversation:
  • Social Media: It has been school policy for faculty members NOT to "friend" parents on social media, however we understand that many of us have connections to many of you outside of the school. We will use this as an important lesson for our staff and we encourage parents to rethink your connections on these platforms.
  • Diversity & Inclusion: These are and will remain important values of Charlotte Lab School and we will certainly reflect on how we can continue to improve on how we value all forms of diversity and to ensure that all families and students feel included. As a staff, we will reflect on how we will handle these topics in the future, particularly as we prepare for middle school and our students' emerging identities and growing opinions. If you would like to share any specific or additional concerns for consideration during our conversations, please email me directly.

Finally, I hope that we can move forward together as a cohesive community, in support of the Lab Way in all that we do and in how we interact, to provide our children with role models for what's possible when we accept and respect each others' differences.


Please keep in touch.



Mary Moss Brown
Head of School
If you missed last week's Kids' Brains & Screens Workshop provided by Families Managing Media, be sure to check out these  Quick Tips for Balancing Family Technology/Screen Use

The CLS Chess Team participated in the 2016 Junior Open last weekend at Olympic High School in southwest Charlotte. There were 30 Lab Chess Team players representing the school. We are so proud of all of our chess kids for displaying incredible sportsmanship, GRIT, and team spirit!  

Individual medals & trophies:
  • Harrison Smith (top unrated 10&U) 
  • Koen Gutierrez (13th place 10&U) 
  • Berk Eskinazi (10th place 10&U)
  • Jake Baugh (1st place 10&U)
  • Christian Mayer (top unrated 12&U)
  • Phelps Bacon (15th place 12&U)
  • Hadley Smith (5th place 12&U)
Congratulations to everyone who attended the tournament.
TUESDAY, NOV 15 from 4:00-6:00 pm parents are invited to meet with subject-area teachers in 10 minute blocks. Sign ups will be posted in the front foyer of the school starting at 3:45 pm tomorrow.  

Please note the following teachers are unable to attend Conference Walk In Night due to scheduling conflicts; however, you should feel free to reach out to them directly if you still have questions about how your child is doing in specific subjects.
  • Elizabeth Benitez
  • Mary Ashley Davino 
  • Shannon Fersner
  • Dave Hartzell
  • Kendra Johnson
  • Luis Morales
  • Ricky Singh
  • Colby Snyder (available from 4-5:00 pm)
Finally, Second Quarter Curriculum Guides can be found on our website under Parent Resources. Quest guides are still being finalized and will be available next week.
Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful, and at Charlotte Lab School, we have much to be thankful for! Please consider helping the Staff Appreciation Committee express our gratitude by baking a pie for our wonderful staff members to share with their families this Thanksgiving. We'll take care of boxing and delivering pies to staff. Sign up to bake a pie here.

Pies must be delivered to the school by Tuesday, November 22 by 10:00 am. We will have a drop off station near the student entrance, as well as in the carpool line that morning.

Teachers, administration, bus drivers and UNCC neighbors were offered a choice of chocolate chess pie, pecan pie, or pumpkin pie. Please bake the flavor listed with their name. We will provide recipes upon sign up in case you do not have one. Thank you for your help!
All families should now have access to the Lab school directory. An access email for all families has been sent giving access to use the directory in full. If you did not receive an access email or need a password reset, please email Nola McClure.
Volunteers are needed to help set up, sell, and breakdown the used uniform tables at the  December 6th General PTSO assembly meeting. A few hands are also needed to help sell Spirit Wear at the Holiday Movie & Market on  December 10.  Use this Sign-Up genius link let us know you can help. Thank you for supporting the Lab School!  
We are nearing the end of our first Enrichment trimester, and the students are ready to share what they have learned before they rotate to their next enrichment area. Parents are invited for a sharing session during regular class periods. Each session will be 20-30 minutes long. Note that Children's Theatre Showcases will be held at UNCC Center City (across the street) in room 602. Music Showcases will be held at Lab. As always, we have a limited number of parking passes, so please find a metered spot on the street if you can.

Tuesday, Nov 15
  • Castro: 11:10 am
  • Luft: 12:15 pm
  • Smith: 1:50 pm
Monday, Nov 21
  • Hollands: 11:10 am
  • Berry: 12:15 pm
  • Byrum: 1:50 pm
 Tuesday, Nov 22
  • Carter: 11:10 am
  • Scott: 12:15 pm
  • Dreyer: 1:50 pm
Parents of students taking Art this trimester are invited to enjoy the wonderful displays of student art work throughout the school. And, don't forget that the Art by Me deadline for ordering is tonight! Order forms were sent home in your child's green folder.
Our LOVE AND LOGICĀ® PARENTING WORKSHOP starts tomorrow, however there is still time to sign up. Come hear about tools to help make parenting a whole lot easier. Lab parents who have participated in the past have raved about the seminar!
Dates: Four sessions: Nov 15, 29 & Dec 6, 13.
Time: 9:30-11:00 am
Location: UNCC Center City (right across the street) Room 805.
Cost: $110.  You can sign up  here .

MINDFUL PARENTING WORKSHOP with Jennifer Hawthorne, PsyD. The workshop focuses on p ractical tools for being more in the moment, building compassion for yourself as a person and parent, replacing reactivity with choice, and finding more joy.
Date: December 8
Time: 8:15-9:45 am OR 5:00-6:30 pm
Location: Charlotte Lab School
Cost: $40 per person (sliding scale available)
Mark your calendars for our first Annual Charlotte Lab School Movie and Holiday Market. The event will take place on Saturday, December 10 from 3:00-5:00 pm at UNCC City Center (across the street from the Lab School)

The PTSO will be sponsoring a Movie Drop-off Event for kids beginning at 3:00 pm. And, for a little extra fun, the PTSO will also be setting up a marketplace for Lab families and friends to buy and sell products. Finally, we will wrap up the event with some caroling and hot chocolate.

We need your help to make this event a success. Here's how:
  1. VENDORS: Come and set up a table at our Holiday Market. We ask that all vendors to donate 10-25% of their purchases to the school and provide an item for the Silent Auction or Raffle. Please reserve your table now.
  2. VOLUNTEERS: We need volunteers to help arrange the event, run the event, and watch the children during the movie. If you are can help please let us know. There are plenty of opportunities for busy parents with a limited amount of time.
  3. SILENT AUCTION/RAFFLE ITEM: If you have items or know someone who does, please connect us with vendors who can donate  raffle or silent auction items.
  4. SPONSORS: If you want to sponsor the hot chocolate, candy canes, snacks, or other items we welcome your support. We will recognize all of our sponsors in our enewsletter and onsite signage.
Please email VP of Fundraising Kess Clark if you are able to help with any of the activities above or would like to be involved. More information will follow.
Classes ending soon:
  • Intramural Soccer - ended 11/4
  • Soccer Shots - last session 11/16
  • Thursday Art - last class 12/1
  • GOTR - last practice 12/3
  • First Semester of After School ends 1/13/17
Remember: No school or after school on 11/23, 11/24, or 11/25.
After school care ends at 5:45 each day.  You are considered late if you pick up after 5:45 pm.  This quarter, we will begin assessing monetary fine of $1 per minute you are late.  
2nd semester news:  The brochure is coming soon, opening registration in December and closing registration before winter break.  Please email  for more information.
Tue, Nov 15, 2016 Love & Logic Workshop Begins 9:30 AM
Tue, Nov 15, 2016 Walk In Conference Night 4:00 PM
Wed, Nov 23, 2016 Teacher Workday- NO CLASSES
Thu, Nov 24, 2016 Thanksgiving - HOLIDAY
Fri, Nov 25, 2016 Thanksgiving - HOLIDAY
Mon, Nov 28, 2016 First Day of Trimester 2 Enrichment & PE Classes
Thu, Dec 1, 2016 Sock & Glove Drive
Tue, Dec 6, 2016 Middle School Info Session (Current Families Only) 7:00 PM
Tue, Dec 6, 2016 PTSO General Meeting 6:00 PM
Thu, Dec 8, 2016 Mindful Pareting Seminar 8:15 AM or 5:00 PM
Sat, Dec 10, 2016 Movie & Holiday Market 3:00 PM
We are still looking for volunteer tutors. If you are interested, c ontact PTSO Tutoring Committee Chair Trish Moffatt at or (434)660-8860.
Gloves & Socks (and Coats) Drive will begin on   December 1 .
This year, tickets for the Hornets game will be held at Will Call under the Family's last name. Please bring an ID with you to claim your tickets. Questions? Contact Leslie Mueller at
Don't forget to fill out your 2017/18  Application for Admissions Preference for any SIBLING  of a student currently enrolled at Charlotte Lab School or any child of a current Charlotte Lab School employee or Board member. More information can be found in our   Enrollment & Admissions Policy

All Applications must be submitted by 11:59 pm on Wednesday December 21, 2016 to be eligible for the admissions preference.
Loving our Lunch Volunteers! If you can help any day from 10:45 am-12:45 pm, your child(ren) will eat free that dayIf your child eats lunch at school, we hope you will consider volunteering regularly for this job. Sign up here.

Join Yoga in the Park every Thursday at 8:15 am & 9:30 am in First Ward Park. (We are working with UNCC to have an indoor space when the weather doesn't cooperate.) For more info or to RSVP please email Sue Hawes at .

We still need fun photos of all our students for the yearbook! Please upload your photos from Lab School events to the app ReplayIt. You can download the app from the app store on your smart phone. We are also looking for volunteers for the Y earbook Committee--specifically 3rd and 4th grade. These people will be in charge of collecting information about their grades throughout the year. If you are interested please email Zoe Balsamo at .

Sign up for text reminders using Remind 101. By subscribing to the Whole School AND your child's grade level, you will receive up-to-date text reminders of need-to-know information. Simply text the correct code to 810-10. Standard text rates do apply.
  • Whole School - @Fk2c2
  • Kindergarten - @2a34d
  • 1st Grade - @8g9ccd
  • 2nd Grade - @48h447
  • 3rd Grade - @hea66
  • 4th Grade - @43gf3d
  • 5th Grade - @4dha6


Charlotte Lab School
301 E. 9th Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

General Info: 704-464-3830


Teaching and Learning for the Next Generation