Our super social worker, Cherelle Washington, shared that some McK families are experiencing difficulty paying for transportation to run essential errands (including, in one case, getting to a COVID-19 testing site). She's asked if the PTA could set up a fund where we could help defray the cost of taxis, Ubers, etc. for families who need to make these kinds of trips. She will dispense the funding--I am just the money collector. If you'd like to contribute, please Venmo @Mary-Kadera or PayPal me at email@example.com. We'll keep this open through next Tuesday.
As you probably know, the School Board's approved budget for FY21 cuts the funding for elementary schools' Exemplary Projects by half. We'd definitely like to preserve as many aspects of our Kaleidoscope arts integration initiative as possible, including our wonderful partnership with ETC. In order to do that and offer two plays next year, we're going to have to ask families whose students are involved in the two ETC productions to pay a participation fee of $30/student per play. Scholarships will be available.
The Cooperative for a Hunger Free Arlington (CHFA) has an opportunity to expand free meals that Bayou Bakery is providing. They offer a plant-base meal of rice and beans, fruit, and greens up to 5 days a week. Their funder, Real Food for Kids, now has a truck that could deliver the meals to the Westover area. CHFA is investigating possible sites in Westover to serve as the distribution/pick-up location.
CHFA reached out to explore if the McKinley and/or Swanson PTAs could staff this location. The details are still getting ironed out, but if you’d be interested in helping, please email Mary.
While you’ve got time at home to think, please consider volunteering for one of these activity leads for next school year. Lots of training and appreciation provided!
Enrichment Activities for Students:
Above and beyond the instructional activities, if your child is looking for other ways to create, explore, and interact with others, here are some things to consider:
PTA Lending Program:
It may well be that your kids are getting tired of the books, games, outdoor toys, etc. that you have at your house. If you're interested in borrowing these types of things from other McK families--and lending out yours--we're organizing a Lending Program. You can access a set of spreadsheets HERE to see what's available to borrow and to add items you'd be willing to lend. Details about how to pick up or drop off will be left to you and the other family to arrange.
Support for Families in Need:
We will be keeping in close contact with Cherelle Washington, our McK social worker, to learn about any McK family needs that we can help with. Countywide, you're encouraged to consider one of the following:
2021 Elementary Boundary Process:
Colin shared that APS has formed a committee to get started working on the school moves for Key, ATS, and McKinley. This committee includes staff from various departments at APS as well as the principals of each affected school. Colin shared that the group will be developing a work plan and timeline in early May; this and other information will be posted on the Engage website in the coming weeks. It's my understanding that Colin (and the Engage site) will be our main conduit for information and engagement.
Thank You to everyone who contributed cash and gift cards to McKinley families in need. Together we raised more than $3,600!
If you find that your family is experiencing financial hardship because of the closures in our area, please know that you can reach out to our school social worker, Cherelle Washington, at firstname.lastname@example.org and get confidential assistance. She can point you to some good community resources.
Auction Update: Our indefatigable Auction Committee has wisely but regretfully concluded that we need to table the auction entirely until next fall. We recognize that families may have economic hardships now and that our collective priority needs to be the well-being of the community. Look for the fall game plan later this spring.
Parents have asked: what does social distancing mean, and how can I protect my family? Here are some reminders.
As the weather continues to improve, outdoor gatherings of fewer than 10 are viewed as appropriate at the moment, but social distancing techniques must still be practiced. Teens are included in this group, and activities like bike riding and hiking/walking are viewed as better alternatives to gathering in groups.
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Submit your Box Tops to support the McKinley PTA!
The classroom with the most Box Tops in the fall and spring will be rewarded with a special activity!
Donated to AFAC through the Food Bus
Gifted to McKinley staff for training, supplies, field trips and more
Purchased at the Book Fair, including 60 for the McKinley library
Offered to students, from robotics and coding to yoga, cooking, and more
Traded in for carnival games, activities, and food at the Fun Fair
Participated in the arts thru Reflections and the Educational Theater Co.