Forest Park News
Forest Park News
From Principal Lisa Newlyn
August 28, 2015
Welcome back! We had a fabulous first week of school. Two short days, perfect way to get our feet wet to the new school year. Our school is not yet complete. We welcome our Kinders on their first day, Tuesday, September 1st.
Yesterday you got a ton of information in the Welcome Back Packet. Thanks for taking a look through it all. We are particular about it's contents because we want you to pay attention to what's important. In particular, please make sure the Orange Sheet comes back ASAP.
You'll also see a letter from me that goes into some detail about routines and important school-wide information. In that I've explained our new request for school supplies. That $100 is paying for $50 in typical school supplies, $38 for classroom consumables, parties and field trips, and $12 goes towards annual web subscriptions to Typing Agent and IXL. Bring your check back to school in the yellow envelope, payable to Forest Park Elementary. Thanks!
I'd like to take a moment and introduce new staff to Forest Park. We are fortunate to have a full complement of experienced and highly qualified people working together again this year. First, as you know Beth Gardner is taking on a new role as Technology Teacher. We also have a number of new staff. Dr. Aaron Martini is our new 1st grade teacher, coming to us from West Hollywood, CA where he taught for 20 years. I'd also like to welcome Dr. Bob Price who is our Music teacher. He comes to us from Woodmere Elementary in PPS. He's has a broad level of experience in our district and a new twist to music instruction here. Heather Whitney joins us as School Counselor and comes to us with 12 years experience in New York Public Schools. This list would not be complete without letting you know we have a dynamic duo in the library. Joining Ms. Kerrigan is Dena Chaffin. Ms. Chaffin spent many years working as a Library Assistant at Arleta K-8 in Portland before pursuing her Media Specialist License. Please join me in welcoming them to our FPE Community!
I want to take a moment and let you all know that our current 2nd and 3rd grade classes have very high enrollment. Since the start of school yesterday there have been fluxations and some students are still on vacation. However, we are hovering around 33 in each of the 2nd grade classes and 36 in each of the 3rd grade classes. Class size is something which I take seriously, and so does Portland Public Schools. I am actively working with my Senior Director, Lisa McCall, in order to find a remedy.
Many of you have already emailed me letting me know your concerns over class size. Thank you! As a parent, I realize the anxiety you feel in having your child in a class so large. From a school-wide perspective I want all our parents to know that I am aware and active in finding solutions to these kinds of problems.
You should know, this is not a Foundation issue. This is a PPS issue. Our FPE Foundation raised a great deal of money which I put to good use. There was no way to know last Spring that our class sizes would be so high. We are beyond Spring projections.
What can you do? For now, mark your calendars for Thursday, September 3rd, and Monday September 14th. These are the two days PPS takes live body enrollment counts. Please make sure to have your child in school and on time those two days! And, please continue to email me. Next week I'll send out a separate message to 2nd and 3rd grade parents which will include other actions steps we can take together.
Thank you for working with us as we launch the year! Please look for first day pix on FaceBook and Twitter. We had a great first "week"!!