Principal’s Letter

Dear Zervas Families,

As the end of this year quickly approaches, we begin to plan for next year. We will soon begin the process of placing students into classes for the 2011-2012 school year. Registrations for our incoming kindergarten class continue to be low. At this point we are aware of 30 incoming students. At this time last year we had more than 60 registered students. We can’t tell which of these figures represents what we can expect in the future, which makes future space planning a little tricky. Even with a small incoming kindergarten class, we will still be very crowded next year. The school committee continues to recommend that we receive two modulars for next year. A final proposal for renovations at Day Middle School and adding modulars at the elementary level will be voted on soon, and then will go on to the Board of Alderman. We will continue to monitor the political process in the next months.

Teacher assignments for next year are also coming in to focus. We will be down one kindergarten next year but will have one more first grade than this year. Harriet Hurworth will teach first grade, moving up from her kindergarten position. Karen Joe-Yen and Julia Torres will remain at kindergarten, and Miriam Darby and Lisa McLellan will continue at first grade. We will have two second grades next year, taught by Jen Gorman and Kelly Fater. We will be saying good bye to Maggie Williamson, who has done an outstanding job as our half time second grade teacher. We are now slated to have three full third grade classes next year, taught by Alicia Arkin, Kathleen Eakin, and Sheena Lee. However, we will need to monitor enrollment at this grade. At the moment, we know that we will be losing a couple of the students in this grade, and the new lower enrollment numbers in this class may cause a reduction back to 2 ½ classes at this grade. Again, we will monitor the situation and keep you informed. Our fourth and fifth grade teams will stay the same. Sam Bergquist, Chris O’Rourke, and Judd West will be at fourth grade. Rebecca Deeks and Kate Gacicia will job share in one of the fifth grade classes, and Mike Stern and Jen Toran will also teach fifth grade.

One of the Zervas activities that gives me much pleasure in the spring is to watch the pre-kindergarteners play in the Kindergarten Soccer program on Saturdays. This program, with students from all over Newton, allows these students to meet and play on a team with other students from their home school before they get to kindergarten. Current kindergarten students also get to play on their own teams. The Kindergarten Soccer program, which is run totally by Zervas parent volunteers, also brings in a lot of money for Zervas School. Margaret Jacobi and Caterina Betancourt are the program organizers, and they put in much time each week to make it a successful and profitable program. We are very fortunate that they have agreed to continue running the program next year as well, but they can use lots and lots of help. Please consider donating your time, even if your children are past kindergarten age. The money earned by this program for Zervas is substantial, and it would great if more people could share the load.

And while we are talking about volunteer opportunities, don’t forget that Sunday, May 15 is Zervas Serves. Please come help brighten up the outside of Zervas by raking, mulching, pruning, and planting. It is fun and makes Zervas look great. And the Annual Zervas Fair, always a great time, and always in need of volunteers, is Saturday, May 21.

See you there!


Steve Griffin

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