Connections: A Newsletter from the Somerville Public Schools – November 21, 2014

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Reminder: Thanksgiving Recess begins Wednesday, November 26 at noon (half day for all students).
All schools and district offices will be closed on Thursday and Friday, November 27 & 28.

News & Notes

Somerville Launches New Early Childhood Website
Somerville families – and families looking to make Somerville their home – now have a new resource at their fingertips with the recent launch of SomervilleHub.org, a website produced by the Somerville Early Education Steering Committee to help connect local families with young children to the full range of information and resources they need to raise healthy, active children from birth to age 8. Read the full press release to learn more about this great new resource.

Somerville’s ‘Hour of Code’ is Only 2 Weeks Away!
More than 2,500 students from Somerville will join millions of kids across the world for the largest learning event in history! Somerville’s ‘Hour of Code’ will give students the opportunity to learn the basics of computer science. The event takes place in schools throughout the District from December 8-12 during Computer Science Education Week, and will be led by Somerville Public Schools’ library/media teachers and supported by dozens of volunteers (parents, community members, professionals, and technology partners). Join us. Register to be a volunteer for this event at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1h8pXTV-TofBxnZEDw0L_Y5V9oVRDiAZldt5Jska9v5Q/viewform. Learn more about the ‘Hour of Code’ at http://hourofcode.com/us.

Centennial Auditorium at Somerville High School Grand Reopening Celebration
The Centennial Auditorium at Somerville High School officially reopened during a Grand Reopening Celebration held on Monday, November 17. The Auditorium had been closed for extensive repairs since October 2012 after sustaining severe damage during Superstorm Sandy.

The restored facility maintained its historic character including the original wood floors, and added modern amenities such as state-of-the-art technology. The Somerville High School Chorus, Orchestra and Drumline provided entertainment during the evening celebration. Read more about this stunning community gathering place at http://somerville.wickedlocal.com/article/20141119/NEWS/141116170.

Coming Up December 10: “Learning About the Somerville Public Schools” Event
Families interested in learning more about our great schools are invited to join us on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 from 6:30 to 8:00pm at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street). Join us for an overview of our schools, and a chance to meet staff members and current Somerville Public Schools parents/guardians. The workshop will include an overview of curriculum and day-to-day life in classrooms throughout the city, with a focus on Kindergarten to inform prospective families. Educators and current parents will be available for questions. Be part of this informative and enjoyable gathering. Questions? Contact the Somerville Family Learning Collaborative at (617) 625-6600, ext. 6966 or sflc@k21.somerville.ma.us.

Early Childhood Fair – Family Literacy Celebration Highlights
Nearly 400 children and adults enjoyed the excitement of the 2014 Early Childhood Fair – Family Literacy Celebration this past Saturday at the Arthur D. Healey School Gymnasium. Families came out to learn about a wide range of resources available in the area to Somerville families with young children, enjoy hands-on activities, meet Curious George, and connect with friends and community agencies. Every family was able to take home a children’s book and other resources. Thanks to the many community partners who helped make this annual event an outstanding success!

Internet Essentials – Affordable Internet Service
Families who have at least one child eligible to participate in the National School Lunch Program may qualify for Internet Essentials, affordable home Internet service for just $9.95 per month (plus tax). There are no price increases, no activation fees or equipment rental fees for participating families. Additionally, participating families can buy a low-cost laptop or desktop computer for just $149.99 (plus tax) and receive free Internet training — online, in print and in person.

The following two options are available for families interested in applying for Internet Essentials:
· Online at https://apply.internetessentials.com/# (https://aplicar.internetbasico.com/# for Spanish).
· Over the phone by calling 1-855-8-INTERNET or 1-855-SOLO-995 for Spanish.

Superintendent Finalists to Be Announced on Monday, November 24th
Names of the finalists for Somerville’s next Superintendent of Schools will be announced by the Somerville School Committee on Monday evening, November 24th, 6:30pm at the Board of Aldermen’s Chambers, Somerville City Hall.

Each finalist will be invited to Somerville – one each on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, December 2nd, 3rd, and 4th – for an entire day of touring the District, meeting with staff, meeting with the public, and a formal interview with the full School Committee. The exact schedules are being finalized, but each candidate’s interview with the School Committee will be in the evening of their visit to Somerville, at City Hall.

After the visits, the School Committee will be seeking the public’s opinion on the candidates. Members of the community will be able to register comments online, on paper, by calling School Committee members, or at one of the many neighborhood meetings to be held by School Committee members after the interviews.

Information about the finalists will be posted following the announcement on Monday evening, on the School Department’s website here: Somerville Superintendent Search. This Somerville Superintendent Search Brochure articulates the School Committee’s ambitions for the new Superintendent.

What’s Happening

Wednesday, November 26: Freshmen College Experience Panel
Former Somerville High School (SHS) students return to SHS to discuss their “first year experience” after graduating from high school, whether at a four-year college, community college, or in the workplace. Current SHS students will meet in the Auditorium to hear from panelists and have an opportunity to ask questions of the panel.

Thursday, November 27: Highlanders Football vs. Cambridge Rindge & Latin
The Somerville High School Varsity Highlander Football team takes on Cambridge Rindge and Latin in this annual Thanksgiving game. Kickoff is 10:00 a.m. at Dilboy Stadium (110 Alewife Brook Parkway). Game tickets are on sale for $5 in advance in the athletic office, SHS Room 180; $7 at the gate. Bundle up and start your Thanksgiving weekend by cheering the Highlanders on to a victory.

Saturday, November 29: SHS Craft Fair Sponsored by Track PAC
The Somerville High School Track PAC invites you to stop by for a day of gift shopping at the Somerville High School Atrium/Field House during their annual Craft Fair. 9:00am to 3:00pm on Saturday, November 29th.

Happening Now: Next Wave/Full Circle Holiday Wreath Fundraiser
Next Wave/Full Circle is selling beautiful 14” balsam wreaths with red velvet bows for only $15 apiece. All money raised through this annual fundraising event goes directly to fund student activities, field trips, and incentives for Next Wave’s and Full Circle’s reward system. Contact Agnes Gallant (agallant@k12.somerville.ma.us) to place your order, or if you have any questions about this fundraiser. Make checks payable to “Next Wave/Full Circle” and send c/o Agnes Gallant at Next Wave/Full Circle, 8 Bonair Street, Somerville MA 02145.

Ongoing: Adult Evening School Registration
It’s never too late to learn something new. For a list of current Adult Evening School course offerings and to register, visit http://register.asapconnected.com/Default.aspx?org=3830. Classes meet at Somerville High School (81 Highland Ave.). Questions? Call Evening School Principal Sophia Carafotes at (617) 628-2594. Enjoy Zumba, Yoga, Sewing, English as a Second Language, Introduction to Computers, and much more!

This week in the schools:
Visit your child’s school website, http://www.somerville.k12.ma.us/schools, and click on the “calendar of events” link at the top of the page for a complete list of all the activities happening at school this month.
Monday, November 24, 11:00am-1:00pm: A Tale of Two Apples Farm to School taste test event at the Kennedy School Cafeteria (5 Cherry Street)
Tuesday, November 25, 2:45-4:15pm: Brown School Council Meeting (201 Willow Avenue)
Tuesday, November 25, 6:00-7:30pm: ESCS School Parent/Guardian Conferences (50 Cross Street)
Wednesday, November 26: Freshmen College Experience Panel, Somerville High School Library (81 Highland Ave.)
Wednesday, November 26: WSNS 7th vs. 8th Grade Turkey Bowl (177 Powderhouse Blvd.)
Wednesday, November 26: Half Day for All Students
Thursday, November 27, 10:00am: Highlander Football vs. Cambridge Rindge and Latin, at Dilboy Stadium
Thursday and Friday, November 27 and 28: THANKSGIVING RECESS – All Schools and Offices Closed
Saturday, November 29, 9:00am-3:00pm: SHS Crafts Fair Sponsored by Track PAC, Somerville High School Atrium/Field House (81 Highland Avenue)
Monday, December 1, 11:00am-1:00pm: A Tale of Two Apples Farm to School taste test event at the Capuano Early Childhood Center (150 Glen Street)
Tuesday, December 2, 6:00-7:30pm: Brown School Parent/Guardian Conferences (201 Willow Avenue)
Wednesday, December 3, 6:00-7:30pm: Capuano Early Childhood Center Parent/Guardian Conferences (150 Glen Street)
Thursday, December 4, 8:15-9:15am: ESCS PTA Principal Roundtable at the East Somerville Community School Afterschool Room 165 (50 Cross Street)
Thursday, December 4, 6:00-7:30pm: West Somerville Neighborhood School Parent/Guardian Conferences (177 Powderhouse Blvd.)
Thursday, December 4, 6:00-7:00pm: ESCS PTA Principal Roundtable at the East Somerville Community School Afterschool Room 165 (50 Cross Street)
Friday, December 5, 6:00-8:00pm: PTA Business Meeting and Family Craft Night at the Brown School (201 Willow Avenue). Business meeting and pizza from 6:00-6:30pm; Craft Night from 6:30-8:00pm.
Friday, December 5, 6:00-9:00pm: WSNS Craft and Vendor Night at the West Somerville Neighborhood School (177 Powderhouse Blvd.)

Upcoming Somerville Family Learning Collaborative Workshops and Events
Find a complete list of SFLC events and workshops, and register for upcoming workshops at http://www.somerville.k12.ma.us/families/workshops.
Wednesday, December 3, 6:30-8:00pm: How Do Toys and Media Affect Young Children? at the Cummings School building, 42 Prescott Street. Register at (617) 629-5476 or at http://www.somerville.k12.ma.us/families, by 12/2/2014.
Monday, December 8, 6:30pm: Special Education Basic Rights Workshop at the Kennedy School Library (5 Cherry Street). Presented by the Federation for Children with Special Needs. Sponsored by the Somerville Special Education Parent Advisory Committee. For more information, contact Debby Higgins, Special Education Parent Coordinator at dhiggins@k12.somerville.ma.us.
Wednesday, December 10, 6:30-8:00pm: Learning About the Somerville Public Schools, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross Street). An overview of curriculum and day-to-day life in classrooms throughout the city, with a focus on Kindergarten to inform prospective families. Educators and current parents will be available for questions.

Upcoming School Committee Meetings
Find the complete School Committee schedule, agendas and meeting minutes (as approved) online at http://www.somerville.k12.ma.us/school_committee.
Monday, November 24, 6:30pm: School Committee Meeting for Personnel – Superintendent of Schools Search, Announcement of Finalists. Board of Aldermen’s Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Monday, December 1, 6:00-7:00pm: Rules Management Subcommittee Meeting at the 3rd Floor Conference Room, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Monday, December 1, 7:00pm: School Committee Meeting at the Board of Aldermen’s Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Tuesday, December 2, 7:00pm: School Committee Meeting for Personnel – Superintendent Search at the Board of Aldermen’s Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Wednesday, December 3, 7:00pm: School Committee Meeting for Personnel – Superintendent Search at the Board of Aldermen’s Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)
Thursday, December 4, 7:00pm: School Committee Meeting for Personnel – Superintendent Search at the Board of Aldermen’s Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Avenue)

Community News & Events
ONGOING: Adult Evening School Registration. It’s never too late to learn something new! For a list of current Adult Evening School course offerings and to register, visit http://register.asapconnected.com/Default.aspx?org=3830. Classes meet at Somerville High School (81 Highland Ave.). Questions? Call Evening School Principal Sophia Carafotes at (617) 628-2594. Enjoy Zumba, Yoga, Sewing, a world language, intro to Computers, and more!
Thursday, December 4: Astronomy for Everyone: The Size & Scale of the Universe. The Somerville Public Library invites you to Star Tour 2014 on December 4th, 7:00-8:30pm at the Central Library branch (79 Highland Avenue). Join Kevin Manning, astronomer, author, and former NASA consultant, for a spectacular indoor presentation, “Astronomy for Everyone: Size & Scale of the Universe.” Weather permitting, participants will also have a chance to view celestial objects in the night sky through a powerful telescope. Click here for more information.
Thursday, December 11: Middle School Student Publishing Workshop. Kid! multimedia magazine presents a second publishing workshop for middle school writers. The Middle School Student Publishing Workshop will be held December 11, 2014 from 6-8pm at the Somerville Public Library (Central Library) on Highland Avenue. Bring copies of your work. To submit your writing, bring both hard copy and a thumb drive with your work in an e-file for download. If you are unable to do both, then bring one or the other. Talented illustration artists are welcome as well – please bring copies of your work to submit, or samples of your work if you are interested in an illustration assignment. Check out Kid! at http://www.12zine.com.
Sharewood Project – A Free Healthcare Organization. The Sharewood Project offers free healthcare services to individuals and families in need of accessible health care. Services include clinical, case management, laboratory, and other care. More information is available under “Health Resources” at http://www.somerville.k12.ma.us/nursing.
SYSL Now Registering for Spring Season
Somerville Youth Soccer League (SYSL) is accepting player registrations for their Spring 2015 Soccer Season. Register at: https://www.sportsmanager.us/PublicLinks/OnlineRegistration.asp?Org=319.

Looking Ahead
A look at some of the events/activities in the Somerville Public Schools that are taking place in the coming weeks.
Monday, December 8: Basic Rights Workshop, presented by Special Education PAC
Tuesday, December 9: Brown School Winter Concert
Wednesday, December 10: Half Day Wednesday for pre-K to Grade 8 students
Wednesday, December 10: SHS Financial Aid Night
Wednesday, December 10: Learning About the Somerville Public Schools
Thursday, December 11: All-City Middle School Concert
Friday, December 12: ESCS Winter Concert

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Have something to share with the community? Send information to: connections@k12.somerville.ma.us to share your event.
Include date, time and name of event, along with any additional pertinent information.

Susana Hernandez Morgan
Coordinator of Grant Writing & Information
Somerville Public Schools
42 Cross Street
Somerville, MA 02145
617.629.5221
Internal office extension: 6013
http://www.somerville.k12.ma.us
@SvilleSchools

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