Portland Public Schools
Portland, Oregon

leaf logoMaplewood School

Teaching and Challenging the Whole Child

7452 SW 52nd Ave. | Portland, OR 97219
Phone: (503) 916-6308 | Fax: (503) 916-2654

Maplewood Principal's News

September 29, 2014

Dear Maplewood Families,

We are almost done with the traditional “Back-to-School” events. It was wonderful to see so many parents attend our Back to School Night. We are fortunate to have involved parents and families who are committed to collaborating with us to provide education for the children in our community. As I visited classrooms I saw parents, teachers and students engaged in sharing examples of student work and great discussions about the instruction and learning in our classes. I met many parents last Tuesday evening and heard positive comments about the transition back to school. I look forward to another great week as we move into October!

Parents as Partners - Speaking of collaboration, now that we have made it through September and are settling into our year, we are looking forward to a productive partnership with you to ensure our children can achieve their highest potential. We recognize that in order to be successful in school, our children need support from both the home and school. We know a strong partnership with you will make a great difference in your child’s education. As partners, we share the responsibility for our children’s success and want you to know that we will do our very best to carry out our responsibilities. We ask that you guide and support your child’s learning by ensuring that he/she:

1) Attends school daily and arrives on time, ready for the day’s learning experience

2) Completes all homework assignments given by teachers

3) Reads daily to develop a love for reading and to improve literacy skills

4) Shares school experiences with you so that you are aware of his/her school life

5) Informs you if he/she needs additional support in any area or subject

6) Knows that you expect him/her to succeed in school and go on to college

Apple Tasting - This week on October 3rd, our students will participate in an Apple Tasting activity.  Bri Hillard is from Food Front Co-op, she came out last year and did apple tasting with the students.  It was such a success that she is returning this year. Students will vote for their favorite apple and teachers will use this activity to integrate instruction in a variety of ways.  For example, some classes are learning about Johnny Appleseed, other classes are learning about graphing and will be using the data collected to practice graphing.  Ask your child about this activity.

School Carnival - Is coming soon!  Mark your calendars for October 10th. There is no school that day as it is the statewide in-service day.  Come join the fun from 6:00-8:00 p.m. in the Maplewood Gym.  Pre-ordered tickets may be picked up at “Will Call” starting at 5:30 p.m.; it will be set up next to the ticket sales table in the main hallway.

Volunteers - There are many volunteer opportunities at Maplewood. It would be great to have a growing parent presence in the school environment so if you can volunteer, please do so.  We could particularly use extra hands and eyes during lunch and recess time.  What works well is if volunteers are able to commit to the same day each week in the lunchroom.  This provides us consistency. Contact Diane Smith at maplewoodvolcoord@gmail.com

Lunch Concerns - I have heard from some of you concerns about students having enough time to eat their lunch and get out to recess.  Please know that we have adults who are monitoring the K-1 lunches and assisting children with opening containers and finishing their meals.  We are doing the same with our 2nd and 3rd graders, although they are more independent.

We have students spend the last 5 minutes not talking-just eating before we excuse them to line up to go outside.  We are also checking as much as possible to ensure that students have eaten a good part of their lunch. 

A couple of things I am doing are timing how long it is taking students to get through the hot lunch line and I have also spoken with a couple of teachers about the morning routine with students arriving having breakfast and the time between snack and lunch.  Some students have reported that they had a big snack and are not hungry at lunch.  Our teachers have started staggering their arrival to lunch so that students are not standing in line for hot lunch.  That has been helpful.

I know some of you have been in to help at lunch or to eat with your child.  If you have any ideas to improve our lunch system we are open to hearing them, understanding that our time is limited.  If we increase the time for eating, students will have less time for recess.

Morning Bells - We have two morning bells.  The first bell rings at 7:50 am.  Students should be in their classroom before the second “tardy” bell rings at 8:00 am.  Instruction and special classes such as PE and Music start promptly at 8:00 am. 

Fall is here………..and so is the rain!  Please have your children dress appropriately for the weather. Rain jackets, with hoods and shoes that are waterproof or intended for the wet days.

Conferences and Halloween - As you know PPS School Board has moved conferences up to the last week of October.  In the past they were scheduled during the week of Thanksgiving.  Due to this change we will not have students on Wednesday, Oct. 29th, Thurs. Oct. 30th and Fri. Oct. 31st.  At our Staff meeting last Tuesday we discussed the conflict of conferences and Halloween.  Due to the fact that we are already losing three days that week, we decided to pass on the Halloween tradition this year.  We will renew our costume parade next October, (2015), as conferences will not interfere with Halloween next year.

Lost and Found - Our Lost and Found is filling up.  If you are in the building, please take a moment to stop by and check for any of your child’s missing items.  As we approach Parent Teacher Conferences, we will put the Lost and Found items on display in the main hall.  That will be a time that you can also look for any missing items.  Any remaining clothing, etc. will be donated to the PTA Clothing Closet after October 31st.

Reminders from Nutrition Services - Families are reminded to send lunch money to pre-pay for meals or send a lunch from home unless students qualified for free meals in the 2013-14 school year. Students are permitted to carry-over prior year eligibility through October 13, 2014, but families must re-apply each school year to continue to receive free or reduced price meals and fee reductions for other programs.  You can apply online at www.pps.net/departments/nutrition.  Families are encouraged to use MyLunchMoney.com for convenient online meal payments.

Picture Day is on Thursday, October 9th - We are having Dorian as our photographer back again this year to take photos of your children.  Be sure to check your child’s backpack this week for a Picture Packet Order Form/Envelope.  Students should have completed order forms ready on picture day. 

Upcoming events/dates: 

Oct 09:     Picture Day!

Oct 09:     Int’l Walk/Bike to School Day

Oct 10: Statewide Inservice – NO SCHOOL

Oct 10: Carnival!

Oct 15:      2 Hour Late Opening

Oct 29/30: Parent/Teacher Conferences


Nov 02: Daylight Saving Time Ends

TAG Summer Info

Is your child designated as TAG (Talented and Gifted)?  

If so, you may be interested in Southern Oregon Universities pre-college / summer youth programs.  

To learn more, please visit their web site at;


Or you can call their office at 541-552-6452.

Information About Maplewood School

Kindergarten Information - Information about PPS Kindergarten Programs, Fee for Service, and ideas for preparing your child for Kindergarten are available at their site.


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