Principal’s Letter

November 4, 2013

Dear Zervas Families,

This past weekend I attended the annual Destination Dinner; a PTO fundraiser and wonderful tradition which brings the community together to share delicious dinners hosted by various Zervas families. It was a nice opportunity to spend time outside of school getting to know one another better. My husband and I had a wonderful time, talking with familiar faces and meeting new folks as well. It was great to see several new Kindergarten families attend this event. Many thanks to all the folks who worked on behalf of the community to make the evening so special.

5th Grade Student Council
One of our new traditions that we have started this year is the creation of a 5th Grade Student Council. The goal of this council is to foster leadership skills in our fifth graders while also bringing various projects and activities to the school to build our larger school community. The Council is open to all 5th graders, is voluntary and meets with me twice a month during Friday lunch and recess times.

All students who would like to serve do so, divided into 5 councils that meet for two-month terms. Each council focuses on a different aspect of our Zervas High 5: Choose Kind, Think First, Be Flexible, Work Hard and Aim High. We have just concluded our first Student Council which met during September and October and focused on Choose Kind. Here are some of the activities that this Council took on:
• Creating posters for the hallways showing what Choose Kind means at our school
• Deciding upon and organizing a community service project (Donations to support the Alliance for Animals in Boston)
• Running the October Z-Town Meeting

The students did a wonderful job! The months of November and December bring a new group of 5th graders to our Student Council. I am eager to see what activities they come up with!

Response to Intervention (RtI)
Some of you may be wondering what RtI is and what this looks like at our school. Through our Literacy and Math departments, we are able to provide students with additional small group focused instruction several times a week during the school day. Based on intermittent grade level benchmark assessments, students who are identified as needing an extra dose of reading or math instruction can receive this targeted support from our intervention aides; Ms. Keehn, Ms. Pollenz, Ms. Itzkowitz and Ms.  Evans. Our Literacy Specialist, Anne Bauer, and our Math Coach, Bhavna Vaswani, oversee this program and work in conjunction with the classroom teachers to determine next steps in supporting the literacy and math development of children that would benefit from the extra instruction. These interventions are provided to the students in addition to the classroom teacher’s instruction so that the students are not missing any formal instruction while working with the interventionist. Your child’s classroom teacher will let you know if your child is going to receive the additional classroom support instruction. Please feel free to contact your child’s teacher, Anne Bauer or Bhavna Vaswani with any questions about this program.

School Council
Our School Council held its first meeting on October 9, 2013 where we determined our schedule for the year and identified some topics from our School Improvement Plan that we would like to focus on this year. These meetings are open meetings and anyone from the community is welcome to attend. Our meeting dates for the 2013-2014 school year are:

  • November 20, 2013
  • January 6, 2014
  • February 11, 2014
  • March 25, 2014
  • April 16, 2014
  • May 21, 2014

All meetings will be 6:30-8:00 pm and are held in the School Library.

Wishing you and your family a wonderful November.
Sincerely, Diana