Hello, Payne parents, teachers, staff and supporters.
The year’s first PTSA meeting is 6-7 p.m. Tuesday in the auditorium. Your support and participation is an essential part of Payne’s success. Join us for pizza and meet PTSA leaders and fellow parents to share your questions, concerns and ideas. Child care will be provided.
A bake sale will precede the meeting, at 5:30 p.m. If you’d like to donate baked goods sign up here.
And if you haven’t joined yet, you can sign up here to be a PTSA member.
SOMETHING TO CLUCK ABOUT
Payne is close to enrolling a few feathered friends this year. New science teacher Mr. Doug Creef is seeking a permit to bring 2-6 adult chickens to roost, and he has support from Principal Byrd. Chickens are not unheard of at D.C. schools and are so popular that the Office of the State Superintendent of Education already has extensive guidance on how to make it happen.
“Egg-laying female hens are allowed in the District and are a great way to engage students in the school garden, especially in urban environments like the District of Columbia where many students are disengaged with details pertaining to the food system,” the superintendent’s office said. You can read more here.
A few fun facts:
- The school would have no roosters, which is good news because they tend to be louder and meaner.
- There would be no chicks and no threat of future chicks (see the first bullet point). The program allows for full-grown, egg-laying hens.
- Students aren’t allowed to eat the eggs in school, but they could be allowed to cook with them. Eggs also could be made available to share with families.
Mr. Creef cautions the plan is tentative, but some parents already have offered to help manage the coop, which would be on school grounds, not inside the school.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED. One-hour shifts are still available to volunteer at the Scholastic Book Fair during the week of Sept. 23. It’s a fun and easy gig, and a portion of sales will be used to buy books for Payne classrooms. Click here for the sign up sheet.
SECOND GRADE SWITCH
New this year, the second grade is departmentalized like third through fifth grades.That means students spend half of their day with Ms. Perry learning math and science and the other half with Ms. Hubbard learning English language arts and social studies. Students are assigned to one homeroom, where they spend their morning, then they switch midday.
“Departmentalization allows teachers to focus on two subjects at a time,” Byrd told the PTSA. “Ms. Hubbard is teaching ELA and social studies, while Ms. Perry teachers math and science. Teachers hone their craft and become experts in their content areas. This makes for stronger instruction.”
Byrd said she expects second graders to become better at each subject as a result of the change. So far this year, they are off to a promising start, she said.
If you handle drop-offs or pick-ups, you’ve probably seen Dr. Crumb, Payne’s physical education teacher and resident grandmaster in Taekwondo, keeping the front of the school clear of cars. That’s so buses have plenty of space out front.
You can still park on C Street, where new signs specifically designate a “School Parking Zone” from 7-9 a.m. and 3-6:30 p.m. That said, stay out of the area marked by cones and look out for Dr. Crumb directing traffic. Payne has stressed that C St. is for drop-offs only. If you intend to go inside the school, please park on along 14th or 15th. Finally, the school is warning parents to stay out of the parking lot. Unapproved vehicles could be ticketed or towed.
Sept. 10: PTSA Meeting, 6-7 p.m.
Sept. 13: 8 a.m., Fifth Grade Potluck
Sept. 24-26: Book Fair is open
Sept. 25: 5 p.m. Literacy Night
Sept. 25: 4:30 p.m., Fourth Grade Potluck
Oct. 2: Walk to School Day
Oct. 8: PTSA Meeting, 6-7 p.m.
Oct. 11-14: No school
Oct. 26: Fall Festival, stay tuned for more details and how you can help!