ForWard - April 8th, 2016

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The John Ward Elementary School PTO Newsletter

April 8, 2016 

Dear Ward Parents,

Welcome to the latest edition of the Ward Elementary School Newsletter ForWARD for the 2015-2016 school year. 

* To stop receiving this newsletter, or update your email information please use the links at the end of the newsletter.

Ward School Banner
  • April 11 - Math Morning, 8:20 to 9 am
  • April 18-22 - NO SCHOOL - Spring Recess
  • May 1 - Ward Serves Day, 9 am to 2 pm
  • May 4 - Garden Day.  Need volunteers - see below.
  • May 5 - Early Release Day
  • May 12 - Ward Spring Party! 6 pm on the playground, details below

Clothing Drive to Benefit Catie's Closet!
Clothing drive to benefit kids in need ages 4-18
April 25th thru April 29th

Catie's Closet builds "walk in closets" inside high need schools, for students in grades Pre-K through 12, so that kids have immediate access to what they need, free of charge. With this need met, students stop worrying about fitting in, and start focusing on school.  With your help, Catie's Closet can continue to grow and help kids across Massachusetts.

Please donate new and gently used clothing in:
Youth Girls and Boys Sizes 4-20
Teen Girls and Boys Sizes XS to XXL
T-Shirts, Hoodies, Pants, Gym Shorts, Shorts, Sweatpants, Jeans, Sweaters
New Socks and Underwear are also appreciated
Donation Boxes located in the lobby
MassChallenge's prestigious Diamond Award Winner for 2014

Ward Pizza Night - Thank You!
Many thanks to everyone who came to the Bertucci's Pizza Night!  We had a great turnout and were able to raise over $700! Thank you again for supporting the school, and we hope that you had as much fun as we did!  Raffle winners are: 1) Gift certificate to Learning Express = Pozen family, 2) Celtics tickets = Havemeyer family, and 3) Ride and cookies from Ms Lieberman = Pozen family. It was a good night to be a Pozen! Thank you again for making the Pizza Night a great night!

Ward Garden News
Despite Winter's best effort to derail us, we shall be preparing our garden for spring planting over the next week.  Garden Day is planned for May 4, and we're looking forward to having all the classes participating in planting our delicious summer crops. The schedule of classes will be decided shortly and parental help is always welcome on Garden Day. 
If you are planning on participating in Newton Serves at Ward on May 1, don't forget to bring your garden gloves and tools to help out. Don't forget to label your tools! 
Looking forward to a happy, productive Spring,
The Garden Team

Ward Spring Party for the Whole Family!

It's spring time at Ward School!  Bring the family and join the Ward School Community on Thursday, May 12th at 6:00 pm, outdoors at the playground and tennis courts. Complete with organized games, food and interactive DJ entertainment, this event is not to be missed.  Show off your basketball skills at the long shot challenge and compete with other families on a life size Jenga game, just to name a few.  What a great way to kick off the season! Dinner will be provided and RSVP's will be required so we can plan accordingly.

You can help!  Volunteers are needed to assist with setup, food stations, overseeing games and clean up.  

Please contact Laurie Ufland at

Additional information to follow in the coming weeks.

Save the Date for Ward Serves Day!
Sunday, May 1 from 9 am - 2 pm
Please bring your family and friends to help improve Ward during our annual Ward Serves Day!  We had a terrific turn out last year and would like to keep the momentum going -- all are welcome even if you can only serve for an hour!

This is a great and fun opportunity to do some community service together with your children and get to know other Ward families.

We need volunteers to help with:
  • painting the teacher's lounge and several offices
  • the Ward Garden
  • school landscaping, mulching and planting
  • spreading new woodchips around the playground
  • leaf raking
  • trash pick up around the school
  • and collecting and donating food for the Newton Food Pantries
We'll need volunteers to bring rakes, gardening gloves, shovels and a few wheel barrows for spreading woodchips around the playground.

If your family would like to help paint, please wear old clothes.  Please let us know if you are willing to be a Paint Project Captain!

Please email Cheryl Abramson or Lisa Gilinksky with any questions!

Ward School Family Night at Fenway Park!
Join your classmates, teachers, family and friends for a night of fun at Fenway Park on June 17 as you watch the Red Sox take on the Seattle Mariners.  The game starts at 7:10 pm.  Bleacher tickets cost $36.
The deadline to buy tickets as part of our group is April 15, 2016.  To order tickets, please fill out this form, and leave it, with your check made payable to the Ward PTO, in the box in the Ward School lobby.
If you have any questions, please contact Diana Cohen.

Library Volunteers Needed
PARENT  VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!!!   Ms. Packard, the Ward librarian, needs more parent volunteers in the library to help during library times for grades K, 1 and 2. Parents can sign up online through VolunteerSpot by clicking here.  

High School Start Times - Ongoing Discussions
New items have been posted on the High School Start Time web page including information about the faculty/staff survey and about timeline.  Please review the presentation made March 14, 2016 at School Committee, or check out the full broadcast on NewTV.  Also, the F.A.Q has been updated.  

Please visit the web page for more information.  (You can also click through right from the district's main web page!)

Upcoming School Committee Meetings 

The School Committee will meet on April 11 and 27, and May 9 and 23, at 7 pm.  All meetings take place at the Education Center, 100 Walnut St., Newtonville.  An agenda for the upcoming meetings is available here.

Please Donate to the Annual Fund
Dear Ward Families,

If you haven't yet donated to the Annual Fund, we still need your contribution.
In addition to funding classroom technology, such as ipads and computers not paid for by the Newton School Department, your donation funds wonderful Creative Arts and Science programs and much more.  Click here to view the full PTO budget if you'd like to see exactly what your contribution pays for. 
Contributions are tax-deductible.
Warm Regards,
Linda Gillespie (
Diana Cohen (

Newton Creative Arts and Sciences
APRIL 8, 2016
Newton's Creative Arts & Sciences presents an evening with this year's Concert Series performer, Crocodile River Music. Come celebrate the global music experience that students enjoyed this fall. Crocodile River Music brings the music of Mali, Brazil, Spain and Trinidad, and the instruments and dances that celebrate these cultures to Newton. Join musicians from Bamako, Mali and Boston, Massachusetts for an evening of world class entertainment in your own backyard. Complimentary wine, beer, and light fare round out what is certain to be a fabulous event for a 21+ audience.
Tickets are $35/person and go on sale February 22.
Contact Stacey Moriarty with questions:

When:   April 8, 2016, 7 to 10 PM
Where:  Newton South High School, 140 Brandeis Rd., Newton Centre, 02459

No one under 21 will be admitted.

Make Money for Ward When You Shop at Amazon
Shop at Amazon and up to 10% of your purchase goes to Ward.  Please bookmark this page and click here  every time you shop on Amazon.  A percentage of your purchase (which varies by category) will automatically go to Ward. 

Community News and Advertisements  
If you're looking for news about local educational and non-profit events, or services offered by local tutors, merchants, and other service providers, check out the Community Notes page maintained by the Newton PTO Council.  Click here to link to their website, which you can search by category.