Riverside School PTA Newsletter

Friday, September 25th, 2020


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Townwide Fall Cleanup
Greenwich Green & Clean, in partnership with Skip the Straw Greenwich, will host the 2020 Fall Cleanup & International Coastal Cleanup Day!  The event will take place at Greenwich Point Park in Old Greenwich on Saturday, September 26th from 11:00 am-3:00 pm.  This year the event will take place both "in-person" and "virtually" (photo submission).  For in-person participation, 

Eden Farms Autumn Decor
Buy all of your decorative fall needs from Eden Farms by clicking here.  You can order pumpkins, carving kits, mums, and scarecrow kits.  A percentage of the proceeds go to Old Greenwich School.  All orders placed through this link will be available for pick-up on October 10th at the Old Greenwich School.  If you prefer to go in person to Eden Farms (947 Stillwater Road, Stamford, CT), mention that you are there on behalf of the Old Greenwich School Pumpkin Patch to make sure that proceeds are forwarded on.

This fall, the YMCA has developed new programs and services to keep our community engaged and active as we navigate through this ever-changing climate. Many of the YMCA's programs are offered on various days of the week and weekend, and classes are limited in size allowing our instructors to focus on each participant and maintain social distancing guidelines. You can find more information in the

Neighbor to Neighbor Food Donation Drive Every Thursday at St. Paul's. Food donations for Neighbor to Neighbor are being accepted at St. Paul's Riverside every Thursday from 10-11:30am. The need right now is particularly high. Items of greatest need are proteins such as beans, peanut butter and canned tuna, but all non-perishables are gladly accepted and appreciated. Just drive up, pop open your trunk and St. Paul's will get your donations to N2N.

Check out the Community Calendar 
PTA Highlights
Dear Riverside Parents,

Happy Fall and TGIF, everyone! And what a great Friday it is... it's our first Spirit Day of the school year, Red Hawk Day, and we had a special visit from our favorite Red Hawk this morning at drop off. Whether you're learning via the RLS or on campus, send your school spirit photos to RiversideReel@gmail.com for a chance to be featured on our website! The School Spirit Days for the rest of the 2020 calendar year are:
  • October 30 - Halloween Spirit Day
  • November 20 - Grateful for Riverside Spirit Day
  • December 18 - Holiday Spirit Day
Now that everyone has begun to settle into the school year, we've received questions about whether our usual lineup of events is taking place this year. We are still trying to figure out what we can do safely, but we do know that certain events are on:
  • Community Service - Our first community service event will be a Fall Food Drive all next week for local food pantries.
  • Fall Fundraiser - We're laser-focusing our efforts on our true heroes, our teachers, who will be the theme of our fundraiser this year. See below for more information on how you can volunteer!
  • Boo Bash - We are so pleased to announce that Boo Bash, Friday, October 30, will be a drive-in movie this year! Save the date and look for more details coming your way soon. We need volunteers for this event, too!
We continue to work with all our volunteer committees to reimagine our tried-and-true programming in new and safe ways. Some will work and some won't. We thank everyone for their patience and grace through all the unknowns, particularly how (or even if) safety restrictions and guidelines will evolve over the course of the school year. If you have any ideas about how we can continue to support and create meaningful value for our community, please let us know!

In order to fund all our outstanding programs, both new and old, we rely on 100% participation in our annual membership drive to join the PTA. If you have not yet done so, we hope you will consider joining and helping us reach our goal! And, please don't forget to check and update your directory information for the PTA-sponsored Riverside School Directory. You can access this from our PTA website at RIVPTA.org.
  • NO SCHOOL this Monday, September 28
  • Open House Night will be held virtually on Wednesday, October 7 (please note the date change)
Have a great weekend,
Heeyoon Slater & Carey Bisbee
PTA Co-Presidents
 PTA News
Riverside School is excited to hold a Fall Food Drive Tuesday, September 29th - Friday, October 2nd. All unopened and unexpired donations will be allocated to local food pantries at Inspirica and Neighbor to Neighbor. Both charities are in desperate need during these unprecedented times. Visit the Community Service page at RIVPTA.org for a list of most-needed items.

Contactless donations can be made throughout the day with bins on a table by the front of the school. Each day between 2:30-3pm, trunks of vehicles can be loaded with the donations and PTA volunteers will easily unload without having to be in close proximity to passengers. What a great way to start off the school year by giving back to our community!
Save the date for Fitness Week at Riverside from October 5th-9th.  In addition to encouraging daily activity for the chance to win prizes and extra recess, this year's Fitness Week coincides with National Walk to School Day on Wednesday, October 7th.  We hope your family will participate by walking, biking, or scooting to school together!
While this year's fundraiser won't be our traditional evening parent/faculty gathering, we are still planning a fantastic, community-focused auction to support our beloved Riverside!  More details to come soon.  In the meantime, if you would like to help with rounding up auction items, or have any ideas you would like to share, please reach out to Megan Sullivan or Greer Williams.
Come one, come all, to the greatest Boo Bash of all!  Step right up, and be thrilled by the greatest, most incredible drive-in movie on Earth!  Boo Bash 2020 is on Friday, October 30th, 6:30pm at the Hyatt Regency.  Tickets on sale October 9th at 9:00 am on RIVPTA.ORG.  Volunteers needed this year more than ever, so come clown around with us!  Stay tuned for a volunteer sign-up and ticket purchase link.
Please go RIVPTA.ORG  and follow the steps provided to update your information, including your child(ren)'s new teacher, for the Online Family Directory.  Once your info is up-to-date, be sure to join the PTA
 to gain unlimited access to the directory.  The PTA relies on the generosity of our families via our annual Membership Drive. Funds raised go towards student enrichment programs, classroom and building needs, as well as teacher support.  If you have moved or have new phone or email information, please let the school office know as well!
Please note that Class Parents will be using contact information provided via the directory to communicate to parents this year.
And thank you to everyone who has contributed a donation to join the PTA so far - this is an important fundraiser to help us get up and running for the year.
The Early Morning Program at Riverside School provides a fun, familiar place for kids to go before school starts from 7:15-8:30. You may enroll your child for a semester or pay by the day on an as-needed basis.  Visit the Early Morning Program page on RIVPTA.ORG for more information and to enroll your child.  We are only accepting online registrations and payments this year.
We are using School Dismissal Manager again this year. It is 
an excellent online tool that will notify the school when anything needs to be changed in your child's dismissal plan for a particular day. Please create a login to manage your child(ren)'s attendance and dismissal information (please refer to the email sent from the school on Wednesday, Sept 9th with more details). If you used School Dismissal Manager last year, you can log in with your existing credentials.
Green Committee
Back to school means back to packing lunches! Waste Free Greenwich has some tips and info for a "Back to School: Packing a Waste Free Lunch"

Packing a waste free lunch with reusable containers has many surprising benefits over single-use disposables:
  • Safe! Based on the best available science and guidelines from health experts, reusable wares can be used safely by employing basic hygiene and sanitation.
  • Healthier! Choosing reusables reduces exposure to chemicals of concern found in disposable products, like PFAS and styrene, that have negative health effects.
  • Saves Money! Packing a reusable lunch and snack instead of disposables can save families over $400 per student annually.
  • Better for the Earth! Life cycle analyses show that reusables have significantly less environmental impacts than single-use disposables, including energy use and air pollution.
  • Cuts Waste! Every year the average student tosses 67 pounds of packaging and 39 pounds of uneaten food. Lunch in reusable containers could save over 58 million pounds of trash in Connecticut that we pay to haul and burn.
Some tips to turn a wasteful packed lunch into a zero waste meal:
  • Buy snacks in bulk and sort them into reusable bags and containers for less waste and expense than individually prepackaged snacks
  • Choose reusable lunch boxes, sacks or containers over single-use bags, foil or plastic baggies
  • Drink water and other nutritious beverages from a BPA-free reusable bottle instead of single-use plastic bottles, cans, juice boxes and pouches
  • Pack a reusable napkin and utensils
Ask your children to bring home uneaten food, so quantities and selections can be adjusted as needed.
The native plant gardens behind the school are full of flowers and pollinators. See if you can find a monarch caterpillar on the milkweed. There were two on Tuesday! Our vegetable garden is absolutely overflowing with tomatoes.  And If you look closely, you may be able to spot some wacky yellow cucumbers and some carrots. We will be following up with families who signed up at the virtual volunteer fair to share details about fall garden care.
From the Office
  • School lunch is FREE for ALL students until December 31st.
  • The NEW districtwide elementary school open house date (including Riverside School) is Wednesday, October 7th, 2020.  It will be a virtual open house for parents using Google Meet (video streaming) with your child's primary teacher (classroom or ALP) plus opportunities to connect with specials teachers and specialists as well.  We haven't set the time schedule exactly yet but we will share the specific times with you by next week. You will also receive Google Meet links from your child's main academic teacher and others when we get close to the actual date with the times to log in and hear from the teachers that evening. 
  • When dropping off anything in the bin outside please LABEL everything with your child's name and teacher.
  • Parents must use School Dismissal Manager when their child will be absent or late for any reason and also if their child will be leaving early. Since parents are not allowed in the building at this time, entering an early dismissal in SDM will take the place of signing them out.
 Remote Learning School News
If your family has opted for remote learning, please consider joining the Greenwich Remote School informal Facebook group (created by parent volunteers) for conversation, collaboration, connection and communication a
District News 
Board of Education meetings are easier to attend now that they take place over Zoom--stay informed! Here is a list of 2020-2021 academic year Greenwich Board of Education meetings. Information on how to access the meetings can be found on the GPS Accessing Virtual BOE Meetings page. All meetings start at 7:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted.
  • Saturday, October 3, 2020 (Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, October 22, 2020
  • Thursday, November 5, 2020 (Budget)
  • Wednesday, November 18, 2020
  • Thursday, December 3, 2020 (Budget)
  • Thursday, December 17, 2020
  • Thursday, January 21, 2021
  • Thursday, February 18, 2021
  • Thursday, March 25, 2021
  • Thursday, April 8, 2021 (Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, April, 22, 2021
  • Thursday, May 13, 2021(Retreat, no public comment)
  • Thursday, May 20, 2021
  • Thursday, June 3, 2021
  • Thursday, June 17, 2021
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If you have any questions or comments, feel free to email us at riversideschoolpta@gmail.com.

Heeyoon Slater and Carey Bisbee
Co-Presidents Riverside School PTA

 Office: 203-637-1440   -   www.greenwichschools.org/rs