Thank you and Happy Fall

My daughter and I had fun yesterday morning at drop-off, donning our Piedmont purple and greeting parents with a Giving Campaign pen and pin to celebrate the official launch of Piedmont’s largest fundraiser for our schools.  Please take a look at the individualized letter that you should have received at home yesterday and read below for more information on the campaign.  Our schools need our support more than ever.  Thank you in advance for your participation and generosity.

Friday marks the beginning of autumn, and there’s no better way to ring in the fall season than Harvest Festival weekend.  Put on your walking/running shoes and partake in the FallFest 5K, benefiting the PUSD Wellness Center, on Saturday, September 23, at 8:30 am at the Piedmont Community Hall.  To register,  go to Piedmont Fall Fest Registration and click on the “Register Now” button.  Medals and prizes will be awarded to the top winners in all age categories!  If you don’t want to walk, run or stroll, please consider volunteering.  Course monitors are needed to keep the race safe.  To sign up, please use this link:  Volunteer Sign ups for Fall Fest.  On Sunday, September 24, enjoy the time-honored tradition of the Harvest Festival from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm in Piedmont Park.  Bid on your child’s grade-level scarecrow (thank you scarecrow volunteers!), play carnival games, win a baked good at the Cake Walk, get your face painted, and much, much more, while helping support our elementary schools.  See you there!

Our lunchtime activities are starting this week with art on Tuesday and Wednesday, a SERVES community service activity on Thursday, and a science project on Friday.  Thank you to Lara Dickinson for organizing and leading the program and to volunteer parents Christina Vo, Katie Gudiksen, and Alissa Welch for running some of the lunch activities.  More information on the program will be sent next week.

Dana Lung
HPC President

Message from Dana Lung

Next week Tuesday, September 19, is the official launch of the Giving Campaign, Piedmont’s largest fundraiser for our schools.  To celebrate this amazing fundraising endeavor that we are undertaking for the more than 2700 students in our district, please show your Piedmont pride and support and wear PURPLE on that day.  Look out for campaign materials at each Havens entrance that morning as well as information in Highlights and individualized letters at home.

Also next week is Harvest Festival Weekend, including the FallFest 5K on Saturday, September 23, and the Harvest Festival on Sunday, September 24.  Registration is open for the 2017 FallFest 5K, which starts at 8:30 am on Saturday at the Piedmont Community Hall.  Proceeds from the 7th annual walk/run/stroll event benefit the PUSD Wellness Center.  To register, visit http://www.piedmontfallfest5K.org (http://www.piedmontfallfest5k.org/) and click on the “Register Now” button.  Medals and prizes will be awarded to the top winners in all age categories!  If you don’t want to walk, run or stroll, please consider volunteering.  Course monitors are needed to keep the race safe.  (I was a course monitor with my daughter last year, and it was very fun.)  To sign up, please use this link:  http://www.signupgenius.com/go/409054caaa722ab9-fallfest

For the Harvest Festival on Sunday, Havens will be well represented in Scarecrow Alley thanks to the valiant efforts of our Room Parent Chair Heidi Upton, the Room Parent Volunteer Coordinators in every classroom, and the following brave and enthusiastic parents who are leading the creation of a scarecrow for their grade:  TK – Anne Hawkins and Rachel Tucker; Kindergarten – Donatella Mazzini and Laura Edeen; 1st – Anne Hawkins; 3rd – Michele Kwok and Donatella Mazzini; 5th – Alessandra Keys.  Please show your appreciation by contacting these kind souls and helping them make the scarecrow(s) for your child(ren)’s grade.  Please note that we still need parents in the 2nd and 4th grades to facilitate the scarecrow-making effort.  Let’s not have those grades be without a scarecrow at the Harvest Festival–please volunteer today!

Thanks for your time and consideration,

Dana Lung, HPC President

Back-to-School Night was quite informative and fun, and I enjoyed seeing many of you in the classroom, in the hallway and in the breezeway in front of the Merchandise table (thanks for buying the great spirit wear, and thank you to our wonderful Merchandise team for their ubiquity).  A lot was said that evening, so in case you missed some of the announcements, here are 2 important reminders:

  • In order for our classes to go on the field trips that our teachers have planned for the year, and to show our collective appreciation for our teachers and staff, we need your support.  Thank you to everyone who has already contributed to the field trip and class funds.  If you haven’t yet contributed, please consider doing so today by visiting the Piedmont Store (www.piedmontstore.com) and making your donations.  While on the store site, if you’re not already a member, please join the Havens Parents Club.  We would love to have every Havens family be a part of HPC.
  • This year’s Harvest Festival will be on September 24 and Havens Harvest Festival representatives Sarah Holt and Jennifer Hong (thank you!) are busy planning for the event.  They need volunteers to staff booths at the event, prepare baked goods for the Cake Walk, and help create scarecrows for Scarecrow Alley.  Please note that the tri-school carnival and scarecrow creations are important fundraisers for Piedmont’s elementary schools.  Please consider volunteering in any of the 3 ways by signing up at http://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090948aaa92babf94-harvest1 for day-of-event duties or baking for the Cake Walk, and/or at http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c084bafae29a13-scarecrow to facilitate creating a scarecrow.  And just in time for those scarecrow creations…The Piedmont Makers are holding a workshop to help people build scarecrow bases THIS Saturday, September 9, from 1:00-4:00 pm in the Makers Space (PMS Room 125).  To register, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2017-scarecrow-makerspace-tickets-37328155518

Last but not least, our after-school enrichment (ASE) classes started this week thanks to the leadership and dedication of ASE Co-Chairs Cindy Hinman, Samantha Nobles-Block and Carey Valentine and their creative and conscientious ASE coordinators.  The entire team has worked since last spring to provide a rich and diverse mix of course offerings this fall, and we appreciate their tireless efforts both for our students’ enrichment and as an HPC fundraiser.

Thanks and enjoy the short week,

Dana Lung, HPC President

What a fun and full first day of school!  I enjoyed meeting and catching up with many of you yesterday morning at the Back-to-School Coffee.  We had a packed auditorium with our wonderful HPC Board members talking with parents and signing them up for our many Havens volunteer opportunities.  Thank you to everyone who staffed a table and attended the event.  A special shout out to our amazing Hospitality team, represented by Jacque Jumper and Blair Paige, who provided the delicious food and beverages.

If you missed the coffee, but still want to celebrate the start of the school year, bring the entire family to the Havens Family Funfest this Friday, August 18, from 5:00-7:00 pm. You can enjoy dinner (available for purchase or bring a picnic- remember no alcohol on school grounds) and hang out with old and new friends while learning about the many parent groups that support our school district. And if you haven’t had a chance to buy the new Havens gear for this year, our fabulous Merchandise team will be on hand to show off their wares.  Don’t miss out–see you on Friday!  Family Funfest Flyer

Lastly, NEW this year and happening this Saturday, August 19, from 8:00 am-12 noon, NitPixies will be at Havens in Ellen Driscoll to provide on-site lice checks.  Sponsored by the parents clubs of all 3 elementary schools, these convenient checks were requested and organized by parents who care and want to prevent this nuisance from entering the classrooms.  This Saturday will be the first of three lice checks offered during the year for the low price of $15 per student for all 3 checks.  Go to the Piedmont Store (piedmontstore.com) to purchase and sign up for this helpful service.  See details in the lice checks section below.

Thanks and enjoy this first week of school,

Dana Lung

HPC President

Welcome Message from the HPC President

Are you ready?!  If you’re like me, you’ve been trying to get organized for the first day of school, while still relaxing and savoring the last bits of summer.  It’s not really working all that well trying to do both, but hopefully we’ll be prepared.  Speaking of the start of school, have you updated your Infinite Campus accounts and visited the Piedmont Store yet?  If you have, thank you, and if you haven’t, please do so as soon as possible.  The updating is important in maintaining student safety, and your contributions to our schools, parents clubs, and parent support groups are vital to the success of our schools and district.  For the Piedmont Store, please pay particular attention to the Havens-specific items such as Havens Parents Club membership, Class Funds, Field Trip Funds, Volunteer Opportunities, Technology Fund, and Tri-School Lice Checks.

In addition, to get you in the school spirit, please join us at the HPC Back-to-School Coffee in Ellen Driscoll on the first day of school, Tuesday, August 15, from 8:30-10:00 am.  After you drop off your student, you can grab a cup of joe, sign up for Havens volunteer opportunities, talk with HPC board members, meet new parents, and catch up with old friends.  Then bring the entire family to celebrate the start of the school year at the Havens Family Fun Fest on Friday, August 18, from 5:00-7:00 pm.  Kick off the weekend by hanging out with friends and meeting new ones, enjoying dinner (available for purchase or bring a picnic), learning about the many parent groups that support our school district, signing up to volunteer, and purchasing fabulous new Havens merchandise.  It will be fun for both parents and kids, so please join us.

Many HPC board members, such as those working in the areas of Merchandise, After-School Enrichment, Room Parents, Lunch Services, and Harvest Festival, have been busy this summer preparing for the new school year.  Please thank them by stopping by their tables at the coffee or family fun fest and buying their wares, signing up for classes, or volunteering.  By doing so, you will be benefiting Havens greatly.  Thanks!

Dana Lung, HPC President

Have a wonderful summer

Although this month has been a little nuts with the number of concerts, plays, competitions, shows, recitals, tournaments, and other year-end festivities, it has also been an amazing window in which to view our children’s growth over the past year.  Along with classroom assessments and the CAASPP testing, all of these events together help demonstrate, and celebrate, the academic, social-emotional, artistic and physical development that our kids have achieved.  Thank you to the dedicated teachers and staff who are largely responsible for this progress at Havens by teaching and guiding our children in their learning each and every day.  Please join me in also recognizing the leadership of Principal Anne Dolid and Assistant Principal Ken Taylor and their support team, Melanie Reed and Michael Wong, who somehow are able to manage the needs of students, parents, community, faculty, staff, and district in a balanced, thoughtful and effective manner.  Thank you for a great school year.  

Looking ahead to 2017-2018, please mark your calendars for the Welcome Back Coffee on the first day of school, Tuesday, August 15, at 8:30 am; the Welcome Back Family Fun Fest on Friday, August 18, from 5-7 pm; and the first Havens Parents Club meeting of the year on Tuesday, August 29, at 8:35 am.  

And last, but certainly not least, thank you, Havens families, for your continued support in helping Havens thrive.  As we all know, it takes a village, and I feel very fortunate to be a part of this one where the parent community contributes so much of their time, talents and treasure to the school and all of the students.  A special shout out to the 5th grade parents who are moving on to the middle school–thanks for all your years of service at Havens.  

Have a wonderful summer and see you in August!

Dana Lung, Havens Parents Club President

Thank you to all of the families who voted to approve the Havens Parents Club Board slate for 2017-2018.  Yesterday, we held the annual “changeover” meeting to thank and celebrate the outgoing board members and welcome the new ones.  We have an outstanding group of parents lined up for next year who are ready, willing, and able to volunteer their time to support Havens, and I am honored to lead and serve along with them.

As many of you saw on the new board roster, Laura Amen has agreed to serve as the HPC Vice President in 2017-2018 and as HPC President in 2018-2019.   For those of you who have the good fortune of knowing Laura, you are well aware of exactly why I asked her to be the VP–she is bright, friendly, funny, organized, generous, hard-working, and even-keeled.  She has chaperoned and driven to/from every field trip that Havens offers and has contributed every item that her kids’ teachers have ever requested.  She has volunteered in the classroom for numerous projects, helped coordinate the 5th grade overnight trip, and serves as an after-school enrichment coordinator.  I am thrilled and grateful that she and I will be working together next year, and I am excited for the Havens community that she will be at the helm the following year.  Please join me in welcoming Laura as the new HPC Vice President!

Also at yesterday’s meeting, we unfortunately had to say goodbye to Rebecca Thornborrow as the outgoing HPC President.  Working alongside Rebecca for the past year, I have witnessed how conscientious, hard-working, caring, and committed she is with everything she does, but in particular, with our school community.  For example, for the past year, she has been helping in the instrumental music class at 8:00 am every Thursday and has served lunch almost every week in addition to her duties as president.  But more than just putting in the effort and hours, Rebecca has been an effective and impactful leader and has helped us accomplish much this year (helping pass Measure H1, supporting the implementation of the new instructional design, facilitating the approval of the Havens gate and the approval of the reserve spending, to name a few).  The woman gets things done, and does it with kindness, integrity, grace, honesty and humility.  So if you see Rebecca on campus in the next week or have a moment to write her a quick email, please thank her for her dedication and service to the Havens Parents Club.

Enjoy this last week of school,

Dana Lung, Havens Parents Club President

Thank You Havens Community for an Amazing Year!

Final HPC Meeting of the Year, May 23 @ 10:00 am (off-campus)

Our final HPC meeting will be next Tuesday, May 23, at 10:00 am, when we will thank the outgoing HPC Board and welcome the incoming HPC Board.  If you are not a board member but would like to attend, please send me an email (rthornborrow@me.com) and I’ll send you the address of the off-campus location. All are welcome!

Thank You Havens Community for an Amazing Year!

It’s hard to believe, but this is my final message to the Havens community as HPC President. I very much enjoyed — and am grateful to have had — the opportunity to lead HPC and our generous, caring, and talented parent community.  Together we accomplished a great deal (endorsement of and volunteer efforts for Measure H1, the approval of a gate at Highland Avenue, and the approval of a reserve spending proposal for 2017-18, just to name a few!) and most importantly, we showed our children how much we can do when we work together for a great cause. Thank you Havens parents!

Next week at this time you will be reading a message from the supremely-talented Dana Lung, incoming HPC President.  It was an absolute pleasure to work with her this year, and HPC will be in the most capable hands possible next year.  Dana is dedicated, thoughtful, conscientious and creative, and I can’t wait to see what she has planned for HPC.  I’d also like to give one more thank you to Heather Meil, 2015-16 HPC President, who is down to her last few weeks as a Havens parent.  I turned to Heather innumerable times with questions or to ask advice, and without fail she responded with intelligence and kindness.  Thank you Dana and Heather!

Finally, we are extremely lucky to have such devoted teachers and staff at Havens. Please join me in thanking them for all they have done this year to instill a love of learning in our children, and for helping each and every child grow towards his or her potential. Having the chance to work with and learn from Anne Dolid was one of the most rewarding parts of my job; Anne’s dedication and intelligence (not to mention her patience for my many questions!) make Havens a great place for all of us, children and adults alike, to grow and learn.  Thank you Anne and the entire Havens staff!

With Gratitude,

Rebecca Thornborrow, HPC President

Thank You Dads Club!

Please join me in thanking the Dads Club for a very fun Family Dance Party last Friday night.  Havens families had a blast dancing, socializing, and taking photos in the photo booth, all while raising money for the Dads Club/Havens Parents Club.

PAINTS Big Art pARTy

Looking for another fun Friday night? Join me at the PAINTS Big Art pARTy this Friday,  May 12 from 5-7 pm at the Piedmont Center for the Arts. For tickets and more information, click here.  And please join me in thanking PAINTS for their incredible support of the arts and arts education in our schools.

Spring Book Fair Next Week!

Please see the Library Committee’s message below for details about next week’s Book Fair.  The Fall and Spring Book Fairs are some of my favorite events at Havens, and they raise crucial funds for our library.  I’ll see you there!

Reserves Funding Vote

Thank you to those who attended our discussions on Monday, May 8 and/or reached out to me personally with questions about the reserve funding proposal.  The HPC Board voted (with 31 “yes” votes and 0 “no” votes) to fund the requests from PUSD.  Thank you for your support of the proposal, and for understanding the importance of using some of our reserves to support PUSD’s 2017-18 budget.

Have a great week,

Rebecca Thornborrow, HPC President

Thank You Havens Community

What a wonderful morning (despite the heat) at Havens!  I very much enjoyed both the art show and the music concert, and am grateful to all of our art and music teachers for dedicating so much time and energy to our children’s arts education.  I also loved watching the students arrive at school with a flower to show appreciation for their teachers; thank you for making that sweet gesture possible on a very busy morning.  In addition, thank you to the amazing HPC Hospitality team of Frannie Cooley, Jacque Jumper, Blair Paige and Jen Rego, who coordinated a delicious Mexican luncheon for all Havens staff members in celebration of Teacher Appreciation Day.  An extra special thank you to Liz Tuuri-Mosbaugh for baking six dozen (yes, six dozen!) cupcakes for the Havens staff to enjoy for dessert.  

Havens Family Dance Party on Friday Evening

Spend your Friday evening showing off your dance moves at the Dads Club Family Dance Party, 6-9 pm in Ellen Driscoll.  Don’t miss the photo booth and the amazing D.J. skills of Havens dad Jeff Hiller.  Admission is $10 per person and the proceeds go to Havens. In addition, a taco truck will be on hand so that you can purchase dinner.  Thank you Dads Club!

HPC Reserve Spending

Please be on the lookout for an important email from me (via your room parent) regarding the proposed spending of some of our reserves to prevent budget cuts at PUSD.  PUSD is faced with significant and immediate budgetary challenges as a result of recent State of California funding decisions, and HPC is in a position to help. Stay tuned for more information.

Have a great week,

Rebecca Thornborrow, HPC President