ForWard - May 13th, 2016

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The John Ward Elementary School PTO Newsletter

May 13, 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
  • May 25 - Annual Spring Art Show.  Details coming soon!
  • June 7 - 9 am to noon - Color Day 
  • June 7 - PTO End of the Year Party
  • June 23 -  Last Day of School - SCHOOL ENDS AT NOON

Annual Spring Art Show
Mark your calendar!  May 25th is the ANNUAL SPRING ART SHOW!
Watch for details soon.

Now Accepting Parent Volunteers for Color Day!
Tuesday, June 7 - 9 am to noon
If you're interested, please email Dawn Davis at to reserve your spot to participate this year's Color Day.
One of the most treasured school traditions at Ward! Your children look forward to this fabulous day all year --  a  celebration of sports, good natured competition, and the end of the school year!  So, be an important part of your child's memory of their Color Day by being a part of the fun on Tuesday, June 7th.  Due to the popularity of this event, PRIORITY WILL BE GIVEN TO THOSE MOMS OR DADS WHO CAN VOLUNTEER FOR THE WHOLE MORNING. Please send requests to participate with your availability to
Feel free to bring along your camera! This is going to be the best one yet!!

Thanks to the Ward Spring Party Organizers!
Thanks to everyone who came out for the Ward School Spring Party Tonight!

And a very special thank you to Laurie Ufland for organizing such a great event and to all the volunteers who helped make it a success!

From the Nurse's Desk - 
Preventing Youth Substance Abuse
Think of a teenager's brain like a new car. It has a fantastic gas pedal. But the brakes haven't been installed yet.
The brain isn't fully developed until around age 25 - specifically the part that manages logical reasoning and impulse control.
In high emotion, high peer pressure situations like a party where people are drinking alcohol or using drugs, the "gas pedal" can easily overwhelm the developing brakes, resulting in less than thoughtful decision making.
Help your child make thoughtful decisions by talking through scenarios in advance.
Make clear rules and stick to them. Consider rewards for following the rules.
They are listening, even if they don't let you know. Talks can be short, but make it clear to your children what you expect from them.
Be prepared to answer questions about your smoking, drinking or medicine use. You do not have to give information you're not comfortable sharing. Try to stay focused on them. Some ways to answer might be, "We're talking about you, and I want to help you be safe," or "Everybody makes mistakes. I want to keep you from making a bad choice."
Keep your home safe by removing or locking up prescription drugs, tobacco and alcohol products.
More tips, facts and resource links are available at
Some information adapted for all ages from "Talking to your middle school-aged child about alcohol, tobacco and other drugs."

PTO End of the Year Party
Save the date of June 7 for an end of the year party to celebrate all of the people who have volunteered their time to the PTO and to Ward School this year.  More details will be coming soon.  Please contact Diana Cohen with any questions.

Upcoming School Committee Meeting 

The School Committee will meet on Monday, May 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.

High School Start Time Working Group 
Just before the School Committee meeting on May 23rd, at 6:00 p.m., the High School Start Time Working Group will hold a general information session to update the community on the status of its work. The presentation will include a brief review of relevant sleep science data, data from the surveys and case studies completed this year, and the opportunity for members of the community to ask questions, raise concerns and provide feedback directly to district leaders engaged in this discussion.

We look forward to your attendance and ask you to encourage others to attend as well. For additional information, please visit the high school start time section of the NPS website at:

Time for Honor Thy Teacher
Please consider making a gift to Newton Schools Foundation's Honor Thy Teacher Program in honor of our child's teacher(s), classroom aides, specialists, and school staff.
Honor Thy Teacher is a great way to say "Thank You" to the wonderful men and women who motivate, educate and inspire our kids to be the best they can be.When you recognize teachers and staff through Honor Thy Teacher, you'll also be supporting the Newton Public Schools.
NSF celebrates teachers and staff by:
  • Notifying honorees of your gift
  • Sharing honoree names with the Superintendent and Principals
  • Listing all honored teachers and staff in a full-page display in the Newton TAB
Suggested donation is $25 per teacher/staff member, which will help NSF fund innovative and creative programs throughout Newton's schools. You can donate on line by visiting the NSF web site or by check made out to "Newton Schools Foundation", P.O Box 590020, Newton, MA 02459. Be sure to include the name(s) and school(s) of those you wish to honor. Elementary school parents may complete the flyer that went home in your child's backpack.
Questions? Call 617-559-6120 or email
Tell Newton's teachers, "We appreciate you!"

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.