The West Way News From Your Neighborhood School September 2014 Volume 2 Issue 1

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1 The West Way News From Your Neighborhood School September 2014 Volume 2 Issue 1 Principal s Corner Greetings friends and families of West School, and welcome back! I am thrilled to be opening the doors on the first day of school: Wednesday, August 27th, beginning my second year at West! As with any transition in life, the beginning of the school year is met with mixed emotions: excitement to see old friends and new teachers, curiosity about the new year, and probably some feelings of sadness about the ending of summer. Rest assured that everyone at West is happy to be back, welcoming the school year with enthusiasm and passion for growing and learning! We are life long learners at West, focused in our quest for knowledge and continuous self improvement. I welcome you to join us in this endeavor, as we embark upon the most important journey of all: creating a stimulating, challenging, and nurturing learning environment for your child. I would like to thank parents and members of our community for attending the Ice Cream Social on August 20th! I am so grateful for the outpouring of support from the West community, and PTA members. As this is my second year serving as the principal at West, I am excited to continue our programs that enhance the educational experience for your child, including: The monthly publication of The West Way newsletter. Professional Learning Communities, at all grade levels. Response to Intervention program to assist students at West Elementary. Reading to students throughout the school year. Having lunch with students on Thursdays throughout the school year. Plymouth High School tutoring program. George the chair is back and ready to welcome students to West School! Fourth and fifth graders delivering our morning announcements. Continuing our partnership and collaboration with West School PTA. I would also like to thank our PTA for their strong support of West, including fundraisers, hosting our ice cream social, and for our school enrichment programs. Please see pages 3 and 4 which feature our newly hired members of the West staff for West Elementary School truly is a special place for all of us, and I m proud to be serving as your principal. I am excited to be working with staff and students for the school year, and I thank you for your support. I hope to see you soon! Mr. Williams Important Phone Numbers West School West Fax Mr. Williams Mrs. Crociati Mrs. Kane Stephanie Luis

2 Meet Our New West School Nurse, Mrs. Shore I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself. My name is Marisa Shore (Nurse Marisa) and I am the new West Elementary School Nurse. I am thrilled to be part of the West Elementary family. I have been a Registered Nurse for 10 years. I earned my nursing degree from Quincy College and my bachelors in nursing from Curry College. My nursing experience over the past 10 years includes cardiac care, hospice, rehabilitation and camp nursing. I have worked as a per diem and long term substitute nurse for the Plymouth Public Schools for 6 years. It was during this time I found my true passion in school nursing. When I am not at West Elementary, I am busy being a mom to my three children ages 7, 10 and 12. Some of my favorite things to do are spending time with my family and animals, yoga, reading and going to the beach. Please be assured I will provide your child with the same compassion and care I would give my own children. I look forward to meeting you and your children at various school functions or for special concerns please feel free to contact me at school. Emergency Cards Please remember to complete and return your child s emergency card information immediately to his or her classroom teacher. It is crucially important that we have accurate contact information on file for each and every one of our students at West! When Visiting West Visitors are always welcome at West School! Please remember to always sign in with our security receptionists in the front lobby, and wear a visitor s badge when inside the building. You MUST have your license with you to gain access to the building, and you must enter and exit the building through the front lobby. The safety and security of our students is our highest priority! West Way Page 2 Upcoming Important Dates Please mark your calendars for these important upcoming events at the West: August 26th: Teachers return, Plymouth Public Schools First Day of School: August 27th, Grades 1-5 Kindergarten Orientation: September 2nd. Kindergarten First Day of School: Wednesday, September 3rd. September 15th: Open House, Grades K, 1, 2 6:30 7:45 PM September 17th: Open House, Grades 3,4,5, 6:30 7:45 PM September 24th: Early Dismissal, 1:00 (Professional Development for teachers) Snacks and Wellness at West With the prevalence of nut allergies within the West population, and with childhood obesity at alarmingly high levels, parents are discouraged from bringing high sugar content snacks for classrooms (cup cakes, cookies, etc.) There are many other ways to positively celebrate our children s birthdays or conduct holiday celebrations: enjoying healthy snacks, purchasing inexpensive classroom supplies, having a read-a-thon, enjoying a special movie screening, going for a class walk or having extended recess, having a board game party, or celebrating the arts together as a class. We are following the new state mandated nutritional guidelines. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated!

3 West Way Page 3 Meet The New West Staff! Lisa Halperin Hi, I'm Lisa Halperin and this is my first year working at West. My undergraduate degree is in Business Administration; Management from the University of Hartford. I worked for 25 years in various sales and management positions and over the years had frequently contemplated becoming a teacher. After a layoff in 2010, I made the decision to change my career to teaching. I went back to school to pursue a Master's Degree in Moderate Special Education at Curry College. In 2011, I began working at Plymouth South Elementary School as a Special Needs Paraprofessional, while I continued with my classes at Curry. I love working with children and wish I had made the change years ago. For those of you who don't know me, my twin children, Abby and Adam Halperin are in the fourth grade at West. I am very happy to be part of the West family and look forward to a great school year! Marie McGrath After working in the Telecommunications Industry in various business office capacities, I felt especially drawn to teaching while working as a Corporate Instructor. I decided to transition my interest in education to work as a paraprofessional and very much enjoyed working with freshman students at PNHS. I have a B.S. degree; I am married with 2 grown children (Kara 23 and Chris 21), and we have a yellow lab named Moseley. Volunteering as a Girl Scout Leader, CCD Instructor, Youth Lacrosse Coach and Special Olympics has been a big part of my life. Watching the Red Sox, Patriots and Bruins has been a family affair, as well as skiing, bicycling and beaching it. I am very excited and look forward to work with Elementary students at West this year! Ami Thompson My name is Ami Thompson and I am thrilled to be a part of the West School family. I am a lifelong resident of Plymouth. In fact, I had the honor of attending West for my elementary years! I live with my husband of twelve years and my very precious Yorkie puppy Paisley. I am a diehard Red Sox fan (yes even this season!). In the winter, I cheer on the Bruins. I am a Disney fanatic. I can always be found wearing at least one piece of Disney jewelry. For the past eight years, I have been a special needs paraprofessional at PCIS. I am a graduate of Eastern Nazarene College with a BA in English and minor in Communications. During my time at PCIS, I earned my teaching degree in Moderate Special Needs.

4 West Way Page 4 Welcome New West Staff! Katelyn Savage I am very excited to be joining the community at West Elementary, where I will be teaching Grade 5 this year. I graduated from Bridgewater State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education and a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. I have taught grades 2 and 5 at Silver Lake Regional School District. My classroom is a safe and engaging learning environment, in which students feel comfortable sharing ideas, asking questions, and challenging themselves. One of the subjects that I am most passionate about teaching is writing. I particularly enjoy creative writing because it gives students the freedom to write about their personal interests and to grow as individuals over the course of the school year. Outside of teaching, I enjoy spending time with family, friends, and my dog Huey. I love the outdoors and going for bike rides and long walks with Huey. This summer I have spent many days at the beach and at my family s summer cottage here in Plymouth. I am looking forward to a great year here at West. Christine Hoffer I received my degree from Stockbridge School of Agriculture/ U Mass Amherst and went on to earn my Director1/Preschool Lead Teacher certification. My teaching career includes 18 years as a lead Teacher in a preschool, 6 years as a Special Needs Paraprofessional and 8 years teaching a cultural enrichment summer program for students K-7. A life long resident of Plymouth, I raised 2 sons and have 4 grandchildren under the age of 6. I love teaching and my passion is to provide my students with strategies that will help them to become successful and independent. I am excited and look forward to working with the students, parents and staff at West Elementary Lauryn Hamilton Hi, my name is Lauryn Hamilton and I am very excited to be joining the West School community, as a moderate special needs teacher. I earned my Bachelor s Degrees in Special Education and Psychology from Westfield State College, and my Master s Degree in Education from American International College. I have worked at Nathaniel Morton Elementary School as a special needs teacher and more recently, at Hedge Elementary School as a Title 1 teacher. I am originally from Plymouth, and now live in Kingston with my husband and my two daughters, Addy and Maeve. I love spending time with my family, cooking, gardening, reading and going to the beach. I am very excited to start the school year and thrilled to be a part of West Elementary School!

5 West Way Page 5 Meet the New West Staff (Continued) Joliane Boucher I'm thrilled to be returning for my 15th year teaching within the Plymouth Public Schools! I have had the pleasure of teaching elementary students in both grades 4 and 5, and middle school technology grade 6. I'm excited to coach my colleagues on ways to infuse technology into core curriculum as well as instruct students in media technology skills. Last year, I was the recipient of the STEP Foundation s Creative Teacher Award. I earned my Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education from Purdue University in 1997 and my Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instructional Technology from Framingham State University in I hold professional teaching licenses in Elementary Education 1-6 and Instructional Technology K-12. I am very excited to join the West Elementary School community! West Student Safety: Absences, Buses, Drop Off, and Dismissal Procedures Student safety is of the utmost importance at West School. It is very important that everyone parents, staff and students cooperate and work together to ensure a safe drop off and dismissal. No cars will be allowed to park inside the front circle from 8:30 9:15 AM and from 3:00 3:45 PM. The yellow buses will drop off and pick up on the front entrance of the building; school vans will be staggered to drop off at the front entrance of the building. Van pick up is done in the main parking lot at the end of the day. Parent drop off begins at 8:50 (when our doors open), and parent pick up is in the gym at 3:25. Please do not leave your child unattended outside in the morning. Any changes in your child s transportation must be put in writing. The note must have the following information in order for the request to happen: child s name, child s teacher, date and alternate bus number and destination, parent s first and last name, parent s cell phone number. This should only be used for child care services changes in bus transportation should not be used for play date purposes. For gym or lobby dismissals the following information must be included in your child s note: child s name, child s teacher, the name of dismissing adult (please have a current ID available with you), child s parents first and last name, parent s phone number. Any changes in your child s normal daily transportation or pick up routine must be in writing via note sent into school or prior to 3:00. Phone calls will not be accepted. s can be sent to or If you know your child is going to be absent, a call should be made to the school prior to 9:30 AM each day when the child is going to be absent due to illness, or late due to a medical or family situation.

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