Payne PTSA Wildcat News: LAST Summer Edition

Wildcat PTSA News: Saturday Academy Sign-up | Serve Your City/Ward 6 Mutual Aid Back to School Bash | Reminder: Payne swag at Cafepress | Reminder: Payne Partnering with Safeway 

Happy last week of summer Wildcats!

I can’t quite believe it, it’s the last week of summer break! This time next week you’ll be checking your little (or not so little) Wildcats backpacks to make sure all their school supplies are ready to go! Here are a few items to keep in the front of your mind as we enjoy the last week of summer. 

Saturday Academy Sign-up open!

Classes are starting to fill up for the fall session of the Payne Saturday Arts Academy, but there are still plenty of amazing enrichment options for your child. Click here to register today

For Kindergarten-5th grade students: Fashion Design, Robots & More, Basketball, Drums, Guitar and Piano B for returning students are all filling up fast. The link above has more details about all of the available class options.

PK3 and PK4 students will join a 2-hour cohort. Each cohort will include a Circle Time Music Class followed by your choice of Art Club, Ballet or Theater. 

If you’ve already signed up and need to change your registration or switch classes, email Jessica at Several  classes now have waitlists, and we want to make sure we can enroll as many children as possible. 

The 10-week session starts Sept. 17. 

Serve Your City/Ward 6 Mutual Aid Back to School Bash

Serve Your City/Ward 6 Mutual Aid is holding its third annual Back to School Bash to make sure all of our DC students have the resources and support they need to thrive.  The Back to School Bash will be on Saturday, August 27, 11 am – 4 pm at Audi Field at 100 Potomac Ave., SW.  You can donate hereYou can request to receive a backpack for a student here.  

Reminder: Get your Payne t-shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, yard signs and more

Head on over to for all your wildcat swag needs. Need a Payne baseball style t-shirt? We have it! Need a Payne Hoodie? We have it! Need a Payne yard sign and car magnet? We have those too, and mugs, canvas bags, regular t-shirts, LS t-shirts, aprons and more.

Reminder: Payne Partnering with Safeway!!

Just a reminder, Payne Elementary School PTSA is partnering with Safeway Foundation and the Safeway store at 415 14th St, SE, Washington, DC to raise funds to support our school projects and supplies.

During the month of August, you can show your school spirit by making a monetary donation at this Safeway location. All funds raised by Safeway Foundation and this store will be donated to Payne Elementary School PTSA. I heard the kick off on August 2nd was super exciting! 


Aug. 29: First day of school K-5

Sep. 1: First day of school PK3/4

Sep. 9: Grandparents Day

Sep. 17: First Day of Saturday Arts Academy

Oct. 12: Walk and Roll to School Day 

Oct. 22: Payne Fall Festival

Wildcat PTSA News: Come to the PTSA Meeting | Spring Carnival | Enrichment & Saturday Arts

Hello, Payne Community. 

A virtual PTSA meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 16. Get a preview for spring activities: a June carnival, an outdoor music event and more movie nights. We’ll share a Zoom link in advance. 



Speaking of that June carnival … A volunteer team is being formed to help plan a fun and safe event. We are looking for ideas for activities, auction items, or sponsors. Please email PTSA Fundraising Chair Alison Mitchell to join the planning team or submit your ideas.



The school is asking parents to send cleaning supplies to school. Please help to purchase these supplies through this Amazon Wish List:  



The boys and girls basketball teams have been hard at work practicing since November, and are now in the middle of their season. Currently games are closed to spectators due to COVID, but make sure to give the athletes some cheers if you see them around school. Next week the boys will compete against Van Ness Elementary School, and the girls will play Drew Elementary School. 


Payne has shared a GoFundMe link for a 14-year-old former Payne student who suffered an eye injury at his school. His sibling is a current Payne student. Please consider supporting this family.



It’s been great to see all of the interest for the Payne Saturday Arts Academy. Classes still are available for every age group. The spring session starts Saturday, Feb. 5. It’s not too late to sign up: 

  • Piano is the Academy’s most popular instrument, and only 3 beginner piano spots are left for Kindergarten-2nd grades.
  • Dance Institute of Washington’s ballet has lots of availability for 3rd-5th grades.
  • Only ONE spot is left for PK3/PK4!
  • Tiny violins are so cute. Violin 1 has room for Kindergarten-5th grades.
  • Guitar 1: Spots are available for 1st-5th grades, and the teacher plans to teach them rock and pop songs the kids will recognize. 
  • There’s lots of room for basketball for Kindergarten-5th grades.
  • Piano 2, Violin 2 and Robots 2 spots are available for kids who completed Level 1 in the fall.
  • We are seeing movement on the waitlist, so reach out to Jessica Coomes ( if you’d like to be added to waitlists for classes that are currently full.

Tuition waivers are available for Payne families. Join us!



After school enrichment programming is well underway for grades PK3-2nd. The full schedule is attached to this email. This eight-week session is running Mondays through Thursdays. PK3, PK4 and Kindergarten have tumbling and yoga; first grade has dance and yoga; and second grade has drama and dance.  Each grade has programming that differs from the fall session. Enrichment coordinator Kate Abend says we had hoped to have drama for additional grades but were unable to secure instructors; other grades may have drama in the spring.  

Thanks to all parents who have made the recommended afterschool enrichment tuition payment of $300 per child, which covers all programming for the entire year (about $6 per class). We were grateful to receive several additional tuition payments prior to winter break. If you intend to pay tuition but have not yet done so, please remit payment at or drop a check in the PTSA box at the front desk. Include the notation “PK3-2nd Grade Enrichment” on your payment. Partial tuition payments also are welcome. All Payne After School students will continue to participate in enrichment programming regardless of ability to pay. 

Questions about afterschool enrichment? Email Kate Abend



Feb. 5: Payne Saturday Arts Academy starts
Feb. 16: 6 p.m., PTSA virtual meeting

Feb. 21-25: No school

Feb. 24: Daniel A. Payne’s Birthday

Wildcat PTSA News: First Meeting is Tuesday | Fall Enrichment | Covid Stats

Hello, Wildcats.

A reminder that the first PTSA meeting of the year is 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 28. It will be in person but outside, near the big kid playground. All members of the Payne community are welcome to attend. Kids can play on the playground while the adults tackle agenda items that include: this year’s events, volunteer opportunities and the upcoming officers’ election.



Payne Mom and volunteer after school enrichment coordinator Kate Abend shares the following message:

Enrichment programming for all of our PK3 through 2nd grade after school students will begin Thursday, Sept. 30. The fall session will include soccer for PK3 through 2nd Grade, dance for PK3 through Kindergarten, and tumbling for first and second grades. PK3 and PK4 have enrichment on Mondays and Wednesdays and Kindergarten through second grade have enrichment on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Students will be grouped with their regular after school class, and the activities will occur onsite at Payne from 4-5:35 p.m. All students will participate regardless of ability to pay. Please see attached for information on recommended tuition, a waiver form, and a schedule showing class days and times for each grade. We are still working to develop plans for the winter and spring enrichment sessions.

To learn about additional clubs and enrichment programming for third through fifth grade students, visit



Principal Byrd provided an update on Covid testing and cases at the school in a Sept. 23 virtual meeting with parents and caregivers. Here are a few notes from the meeting:

  • Since the school year started, testing of asymptomatic students has found one positive result for Covid.
  • Overall, there have been 8 positive cases so far this school year. One of those cases occurred this week.
  • In most of these positive cases, the school became aware after a child, already at home for feeling sick, tested positive. 
  • Principal Byrd was unaware of a student who quarantined due to close contact and later tested positive for Covid. 
  • Virtual school will be offered if at least 25 percent of the class is quarantined. All children in quarantine will be provided homework packets and excused from school. 



The PTSA is launching periodic “office hours” outside of the Pretzel Bakery. The first is today, Friday, Sept. 24, from 8:20-9:20 a.m. If you miss us today, the next one will be scheduled soon. This is an opportunity to meet, discuss ideas, ask questions and, of course, eat pretzels and drink coffee. Editor’s note: Sweet pretzel is the best. Change my mind. 



If you thought we were done promoting Farmer Creef Science Teacher Mr. Creef’s incubation project, wow, you must have egg on your face. 

The focus this fall is on baby chickens, but in the spring, Mr. Creef hopes to broaden the brood and include ducklings and poults. What’s a poult, you ask? Why it’s a cute baby turkey, before they get big and really ugly interesting looking. It’s also worth mentioning that the science project is made possible by a $600 Donors Choose donation that funded five five-egg incubators. 

Look how cute poults are: 


FUN ON FACEBOOK. Principal Byrd posted this great photo of her meeting this week with the student government leaders. Do you follow Payne on the official Facebook page