Current Wednesday Packet Letter

  • Wednesday, October 9, 2019

    Dear families,


    Questions on what the bond proposal on the November 5th ballot will mean for Ann Arbor Open? Review the enhancements coming to each school within the first six years here. Informational meetings will be held next week on Monday, October 7th at Clague, King and Eberwhite, and on Friday, October 11th at A2 STEAM and the Ann Arbor Energy Commission meeting. There will also be a presentation at ANN ARBOR OPEN on October 17th at 7pm. More information including a video of the presentation and a schedule of additional meetings is available at bond.

    Building Healthy Schools Messages*

    Halloween is a lot of fun and doesn’t need to have candy as the focus. Our school aspires to offer healthier, great tasting snack options at celebrations this year. If you are sending in food or drinks for a party, consider sending 100% fruit juice OR bringing refillable bottles for water instead of sugary beverages like “juice drinks.” Fruit is always a favorite since it is naturally sweet and can be eaten (often) by hand. For Halloween, choose orange fruits or veggies like orange slices or baby carrots with a yogurt dip. We aren’t striving for perfection, but it is important for us all to pay closer attention to the nutritional quality of foods and beverages which are served in classrooms and have healthy choices. Your help and support by providing healthier options for Halloween (or other holiday celebrations) in your child’s classroom is key to creating a healthy school environment.

    *This year we received a Building Healthy Schools Grant. Look for Healthy School related messages throughout the year. (Full disclosure: One of the sponsors is the United Dairy Industry.)


    JOIN Healthy Kids Club! 

    Part of our Building Healthy Communities grant includes funding for an after school program. I am pleased to announce that Sid Levitt-Phillips (A2O Teaching Assistant and parent) will sponsor the club.

    The Healthy Kids Club will meet weekly on Tuesdays after school from 3:30-4:30. Club participants will engage in physical activities and mindfulness. Healthy snacks will be provided.  

    If you are interested in signing up your child, please see the attached flyer and permission slip. (If your child will be going to Rec & Ed childcare after the club, please add Rec & Ed staff to the bottom of the slip.)

    Students will meet in the Orchestra Room on the lower level. At 4:30, students will either be taken to Rec & Child Care OR to the POOL LOBBY for pick up by a designated adult. The first meeting will be Tuesday, October 8.

    Planning ahead for Halloween Costumes at School

    At Ann Arbor Open, it is a tradition that children whose families observe Halloween may wear costumes to school. (In Ann Arbor Open fashion, some kids will elect to wear costumes throughout the month and beyond. ) Please observe these guidelines if you choose to send your child with a costume this month.

    All costumes (parent, staff, and student) should be 

    • Rated G - nothing too scary, gory, creepy, or sexy - we have kindergartners!
    • Weaponless - not even flimsy plastic ones. Just leave the light sabers, bows & arrows, and other weapons - real or fantasy - at home.
    • Absent of face masks or other face covering that obscures identity. We need to be able to see student faces. Face paint or make up is okay.
    • Culturally sensitive. Dressing up with hair, hairstyles, clothing or makeup that depicts another's culture should be avoided. It is also good to avoid any costumes that mock body types, socio economic status, or religion. 

    Here are some examples of costumes that could be considered insensitive:

    At home, please remind students that some families do not observe Halloween at school or at home for a variety of reasons. Bringing or wearing a costume is voluntary. 


    Do you like to swim?  Are you free in the mornings?  We are able to train you to be a lifeguard for our morning swim classes.  Please contact Chris Curtis if you might be interested.


    We are using a new program in math this year. “The curriculum focuses on developing in students a deep understanding of math concepts, proficiency with key skills, and the ability to solve new and complex problems. Learning activities tap into the intelligence and strengths all students have by presenting mathematically powerful material alive with language, pictures, and movement.”

    Wondering how to support your mathematician at home?  Please take a look at the Family Guide included in this packet.


    After School Tutoring

    826michigan offers completely free homework support in all academic subjects for students aged 8 to 18. After school tutoring is available on Mondays and Tuesdays from 4 to 6 PM inside Liberty Street Robot Supply & Repair.

    Black Parent and Student Support Group

    The District-wide Black Parent and Student Support Group (DWBPSSG) is a group that supports students and parents in the Ann Arbor African American community.  Visitors to monthly meetings can talk about issues and concerns they have individually or at their schools. This is a safe and supportive place to share concerns surrounding education, such as: curriculum, equity, academic achievement, and discipline. Thursday, October  24th at 7:00 PM at Pathways to Success Academic Campus. Food is served at all meetings, and children are welcome. 

    Early Release Day 10/23/19 Reminder: Afternoon Child Care Not Available on Early Release Days (October 23rd). Students should be picked up immediately following dismissal. Families should make alternative arrangements for afternoon care. Please see bell schedules for early release times.

    Bus Tracker

    The Ann Arbor Public Schools is excited to share news with those students and parents that utilize district-provided bus service. Our school bus partner, Durham School Services has provided an application, Bus Tracker, that allows parents and guardians to view the location of their child(ren)’s bus in real time with relationship to their assigned bus stop. This application is available through a web browser or the app stores. Bus Tracker enables parents and guardians to view multiple stops on an assigned route, including the scheduled arrival time for each stop. The service is free of charge to parents/guardians and provided at no additional cost to the school districts serviced by Durham School Services. Use of the application is voluntary.

    For more information, to sign-up and create your secure login, or to use the application on your smartphone or web browser, please go to: 

    If you have any questions regarding the Bus Tracker application, please contact Tim VanDongen at (734) 994-2330 ext 54118. For technical support, please contact


    Please remember that dismissal time is 3:22. All students should be picked up by a designated adult or at an adult led, school sponsored activity. Students should not be at school unsupervised (in common areas) while waiting for siblings, nor should they be left unsupervised at school awaiting a city sponsored swim class. We understand that sometimes people are late to pick up due to unforeseen circumstances. But for the safety of all our children, simply waiting in the library or in other common areas should not be part of an afterschool plan. We are happy to help problem solve with any families who are struggling with end of day of pick up issues. Please contact Karen or Chris.


    Diversity Equity and Inclusion

    UM has several events this month (October) related to the topics of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Some events are live streamed and/or uploaded for later viewing. To see what is coming up this month or to see available resoures, clink the link about or cut and paste: