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News for the Week of September 29

Dear Upper School Parents,

It was wonderful to see such an enthusiastic and large turnout for last week's Back to School Night. It is always so gratifying to see how parents experience the evening, and I heard time and again parents who wish they could take these classes. Clearly, your children are indeed fortunate to have such committed and talented educators.

This past week we had a House meeting in which the 16 Houses chose their senior leaders. We decided that our new House system provided a wonderful opportunity for seniors to take a leadership role in helping to shape our new system. Approximately once a month the senior student leaders will meet with the faculty House leaders to help identify discussion topics for upcoming House meetings. Moreover, these student leaders might present to the House on a particular topic or will identify other students who wish to learn about and present on the issue. Finally, these leaders will work with the faculty House leader to faciliate discussions. We are confident that student leadership and involvement will help make the House system as meaningful as possible. 

As we continue to examine students' technological needs for now and in the future, the Middle and Upper School Tech Committees meet on a regular basis to discuss how we can coordinate and build upon our vision and use of technology in grades 6-12. As previously noted, one of the issues that came to the foreground was the use of iPads in the upper school. The thinking has evolved regarding the effectiveness and appropriateness of an iPad program for each grade level in the upper school. Recognizing the commitment that families and the School have made, we have decided to continue the implementation of iPads in this year's 9th and 10th grades but not introduce them formally into the 11th and 12th grades. Instead, for this year we have welcomed students to bring their own device to class in grades 11 and 12 as they are free to do so now. Moving forward (2015-16),  we will implement a structured BYOD (bring a device from a defined and limited selection of options) thereby completing the 1:1 implementation in the middle and upper school. This development will complement and deepen our use of Google Apps and Haiku (Learning Management System) in the months and years to come. Our device choices for families will be informed by these questions: What do US faculty want students to be able to do with a device? What are the outcomes, tasks and activities that we want students to produce or work on during the day? Which are the most cost effective choices? Which choices will offer the greatest flexibility while guaranteeing a consistent and reliable learning environment? What are the divisional priorities and tech specifications that will meet our educational expectations? In the next few weeks, we will send along additional information on the program. 

As we head deeper into the fall and towards Homecoming, I look forward to seeing you at the below upcoming events. 

Best,

Paul Barsky

Key Dates

Sep. 27 8:00AM-9:30AM AIDS Walk Balboa Pk

Sep. 28 2:00-4:00PM Theatre Production PAC

Sep. 29 3:30-5:30PM Theatre Production PAC

Sep. 30 7:00-9:00PM Theatre Production PAC

Oct. 2 10:45-11:30AM HC Theme Announcement FH

Oct. 7/9 10:45-11:35AM Inclusion Assemblies (Dr. Jones) TBD

Oct. 7 5:45-7:45PM 10th Grade Parent Presentation NCB

Oct. 8 8:00AM-1:00PM 12th Grade Justice 101 Program SD Court

6:00-7:30PM 9th Grade Four-Year Plan Night JCH

Oct. 10 8:00AM-3:00PM Prof. Development Day FP

Oct. 13 Fall Break (No Classes)

Oct. 14 10:45-11:35AM HC Assembly FH

Oct. 15 8:00AM-12:00PM PSAT (10th-11th Graders) Gym

9:00AM-12:00PM 12th Grade College Workshops CC Office

3:00PM-8:00PM Floatbuilding Field

5:00-7:00PM Floatbuilding Dinner Cafe’

Oct. 16 10:45-11:35AM House Meetings Various

Oct. 17 7:00-9:00PM Powderpuff Game Field

Oct. 18 11:00AM-3:00PM Homecoming Day Field

8:00-11:00PM Homecoming Dance Gym

Oct. 20 6:30-9:00PM College Fair FP

Oct. 21 10:45-11:35AM Town Hall Meeting FH
Oct. 23 10:45-11:35AM Community Service Fair Lawn

Oct. 24-25 5:15PM-6:00PM Robotics Tourney FH/GYM

Oct. 28 7:00-9:30PM "Unplugged" Show JCH
Nov. 4 10:45-11:35AM Town Hall Meeting FH
Nov. 5 6:30-8:30PM College Funding Night JCH
Nov. 11 10:45-11:35AM Veteran's Day Program TBD
6:00-7:00PM Classical Guitar Concert JCH
Nov. 15 8:00AM-12:30PM Practice ACT Gym
Winter Sports begin

FROM COLLEGE COUNSELING: 

Tuesday, September 30, 2014 is the Grade 12 Parent Coffee.  The college counselors will be at the Lawrence Middle School Commons from 8:30 - 10:30am to answer parents' college-related questions. Refreshments will be served. No registration is required to attend this event.

 FROM THE GALA COMMITTEE:

10/24: Gala Meeting, 8am coffee with 8:30 start, Board Room (next to Cafe).

FROM THE UPPER SCHOOL DRAMA CLUB:

Parker Theater presents The 39 Steps:

The 39 Steps (dun dun duuunnn!) is a stage adaptation of the Alfred Hitchcock classic spy thriller of the same name. The twist? All 39+ characters are played by only five actors. With thrilling intrigue, raucous comedy, and trope-twisting good times, The 39 Steps is a hilarious romp through the thrilling, dangerous, and melodramatic world of the 1930s spy game. 

Join the hero, Richard Hannay (and his really quite attractive pencil mustache) as he races to uncover the secret behind The 39 Steps, save the fair maiden, and defeat the villain. This is your last chance: are you sure you want to be… involved?

Shows are in the Amelita Galli-Curci Theater (PAC):

September 28th at 2:00PM

September 29th at 3:30PM

September 30th at 7:00PM

Tickets are $5.00 for students and $10.00 for adults.

WECARE SPEAKER FOR THE FALL

Acclaimed author Ashley Merryman will draw upon her recent books Nurtureshock and Top Dog when advising us how to best support our children.  See flyer

From AsB:

I want to share part of a note from a representative of San Diego Blood Bank to our ASB Awareness Director, Alison Carey, who helped organize the recent successful blood drive event. Many congratulations and thank to those that contributed or helped with this effort!

Hi Alison,

I have your final results from your Blood Drive; we registered 47 people; and, collected 39 units. This will touch the lives of at least 117 people from your drive in just one day. This was the school’s largest drive since 2006! 44 units – I am sure you will beat it in January. It is great drives like yours that keep San Diego Blood recipients alive and able to enjoy their lives. In fact the majority of the blood collected at your drive, is already at the hospitals and being given to patients.

From Nurse Maggie:

Enterovirus D68: Enterovirus D68 is a respiratory virus that has had a recent surge in activity among children. This virus causes a mild to severe respiratory illness. Most children recover fully from enterovirus however children who have other health problems such as asthma or impaired immunity are at higher risk. Rady Children’s Hospital has the following recommendations concerning Enterovirus D68:

  • If your student is ill, with symptoms such as a runny or stuffy nose, sneezing and chest congestion, treat the symptoms. If your student has a fever and a productive cough please keep them home from school. If your student has difficulty breathing, wheezing, high fever for several days, or difficulty keeping down fluids consider seeing your primary care provider.
  • Remember Parker policy: Any student with a fever of 100 degrees F or above should stay home from school until they are fever free without fever reducing medications (such as Tylenol or Advil) for 24 hours.
  • Be aware that viruses are spread by coughing, sneezing and touching another person or surface with your hands and then touching your face. Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
  • Viruses can live on surfaces for hours.
  • Keep a distance of six feet from someone who is coughing or sneezing
  • Wash your hands often or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, dispose of used tissue and wash your hands
  • Whether you are well or ill, drink plenty of fluids and get enough rest.

Please contact me with any questions: mwest@francisparker.org or 619-717-0235.

 

Posted by us-newsletter on Saturday September 27
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News for the Week of September 22

Dear Upper School Parents,

Earlier this week we held our first Town Hall meeting. Our new schedule give us the opportunity to come together as an entire divisional community to present current issues in the upper school and the world, celebrate Parker teams, clubs and students, and simply to have some good fun. Town Hall meetings will occur approximately every three weeks and take the place of a Flex Period thereby not disrupting academic classes or other activities. For this first Town Hall, we introduced some more faculty and staff to the students and a couple of student groups highlighted their work. Cherie Redelings, the Head of the Social Studies Department, gave a short presentation on the development of ISIS in northern Iraq and Syria and the U.S.'s developing strategy in the area. As events evolve in the Middle East we may have a voluntary lunch time discussion in Nicholas Commons so that interested students have a greater grasp of this particular issue. Finally, the Town Hall meeting ended with a spirited pep rally for our sports teams. Kudos to our dance team and cheerleading team which carried on with their elaborate and enthusiastic performances even when the sound system went down. They did not miss a beat and were cheered on by 500 of their closest friends. I will keep you posted on other issues and events that are presented during Town Hall and am delighted that we have this time to come together and celebrate all things Parker. 

I look forward to seeing many of you this coming Tuesday, September 23 for Back to School Night.  As in the past, registration takes place starting from 5:45 pm to 6:10 pm at the fountain and then you will go directly to your first class which begins promptly at 6:15 pm. 

UPCOMING KEY DATES

Sep. 23 5:45-8:30PM Back to School Night

Friendly Reminder: This evening is not designed for individual parent conferences. If you wish to speak privately to a teacher we encourage you to schedule an appointment for another time. 

Sep. 24 7:30AM-3:30PM Blood Drive NCB (Please see important information below.)

Sep. 27    8:00AM-9:30AM  AIDS Walk Balboa Pk

Sep. 28 2:00-4:00PM Theatre Production PAC (See below for more details.)

Sep. 29 3:30-5:30PM Theatre Production PAC

Sep. 30 7:00-9:00PM Theatre Production PAC

Oct. 2 10:45-11:30AM HC Theme Announcement FH

Oct. 7 5:45-7:45PM 10th Grade Parent Presentation NCB

Oct. 8 8:00AM-1:00PM 12th Grade Justice 101 Program SD Court

Oct. 10 8:00AM-3:00PM Prof. Development Day FP

Oct. 13    Fall Break (No Classes)

Oct. 14 10:45-11:35AM HC Assembly FH

Oct. 15 8:00AM-12:00PM PSAT (10th-11th Graders) Gym

              9:00AM-12:00PM 12th Grade College Workshops CC Office

              3:00PM-8:00PM Floatbuilding Field

              5:00-7:00PM Floatbuilding Dinner Cafe’

Oct. 17 7:00-9:00PM Powderpuff Game Field

Oct. 18 11:00AM-3:00PM Homecoming Day Field

               8:00-11:00PM Homecoming Dance Gym

Oct. 20 6:30-9:00PM College Fair FP

Oct. 24-25 5:15PM-6:00PM Robotics Tourney  FH/GYM

Oct. 28   7:00-9:30PM   "Unplugged" Show  JCH

FROM TOM CROWLEY, DIRECTOR OF GLOBAL STUDIES

There are still spots available on our one-week Interim trips and two-week Global Studies trips. The deadline for registering and applying is Friday, September 26 @ 5:00 p.m. Please contact Mr. Crowley if you have questions on either program. 

FROM COLLEGE COUNSELING: 

Tuesday, September 30, 2014 is the Grade 12 Parent Coffee.  The college counselors will be at the Lawrence Middle School Commons from 8:30 - 10:30am to answer parents' college-related questions. Refreshments will be served. No registration is required to attend this event.

From the Upper School Drama Club:

Parker Theater presents The 39 Steps:

The 39 Steps (dun dun duuunnn!) is a stage adaptation of the Alfred Hitchcock classic spy thriller of the same name. The twist? All 39+ characters are played by only five actors. With thrilling intrigue, raucous comedy, and trope-twisting good times, The 39 Steps is a hilarious romp through the thrilling, dangerous, and melodramatic world of the 1930s spy game. 

Join the hero, Richard Hannay (and his really quite attractive pencil mustache) as he races to uncover the secret behind The 39 Steps, save the fair maiden, and defeat the villain. This is your last chance: are you sure you want to be… involved?

Shows are in the Amelita Galli-Curci Theater (PAC):

September 28th at 2:00PM

September 29th at 3:30PM

September 30th at 7:00PM

Tickets are $5.00 for students and $10.00 for adults.

Blood drive information:

For more information about this important event please read the attached link and for parental consent please sign the release form.

WeCare speaker for the fall

Acclaimed author Ashley Merryman will draw upon her recent books Nurtureshock and Top Dog when advising us how to best support our children.  See flyer

From Carol Jensen, Director of Community Service:

AIDS Walk is Saturday, September 27. Registration forms are available in the Community Service Office.

CSF and NHS forms are due Friday, October 3.

TiE Young Entrepreneurs Business Plan Competition

Looking for 40 high school students who want to be entrepreneurs!  Students will be taught, mentored, and judged by successful entrepreneurs and business professionals from TiE - the largest not-for-profit organization for entrepreneurs in the world. Students will form teams, work with a mentor and present their business plan at the local competition. Classes on every other Saturday morning (except holidays) from October 11 - March 21 from 9:00am - 12:00pm at Otterson Hall at the RADY School of Management, UCSD. October 11, 2014 will be a "Program Kickoff Orientation" and parents are welcome to attend. Applications and information is available in the Community Service Office. The deadline is October 3.

From Nurse Maggie:

Pertussis: There are almost 1,400 cases of pertussis (whooping cough) in San Diego county so far this year. Pertussis is a very contagious, vaccine preventable respiratory illness caused by the Bordetella pertussis bacteria. Pertussis is spread via respiratory droplets when another breathes in the pertussis bacteria when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The disease usually starts with cold-like symptoms such as a runny nose, low-grade fever, and a mild cough. After one to two weeks, severe coughing can begin that then can become a series of coughing fits that continue for weeks. Pertussis is generally treated with antibiotics however the best way to prevent pertussis is to get vaccinated. The recommended pertussis vaccine for infants and children is called DTaP. This is a combination vaccine that protects against three diseases: diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis. All junior kindergarten students must have four doses of DTap and all kindergarten students must have five doses of DTaP to attend school. Additionally, due to the increase in pertussis cases, all 7th grade students must have one dose of Tdap vaccine to attend school. Please make sure your student, regardless of grade level, is current with immunizations and those updated shot records have been sent to school. Questions? Call 619-717-0235 or contact mwest@francisparker.org.  

Posted by us-newsletter on Sunday September 21 at 05:14PM
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News for the Week of Sept. 15, 2014

Dear Upper School Parents,

We are certainly getting into the rhythm of the year. To all new upper school parents, thank you for joining us earlier in the week to welcome you again into the community. I can certainly say that as I get to know your children I am particularly impressed by the strength of the new students- we are so fortunate to have them. During the same evening, we had the senior college night where Terri Devine, the Dean of College Counseling, Bob Hurley and Jasmine Taylor shared a great deal of relevant information to parents as the college application process heats up. Additionally, I am glad that the school had the opportunity to get together to commemorate 9/11 during a middle-upper school program. As part of our remembrance for this day, we had an informal voluntary program for students as part of our flex period. I was glad to see that we had approximately 80 students attend this session in which Mr. Crowley shared the historical background to the day and I had the opportunity to share my reflections as I was teaching and living in NYC during that traumatic day. 

One of the goals of the new schedule was to create an environment where students could have more time and "head space" to settle into their work and classes. The schedule seems to have achieved the goal of encouraging students to slow down and more deeply engage in the material. As we looked at creating a schedule which meets students needs, we also looked at how we wanted students to work and think beyond our classrooms, so we began earnest discussions about coursework. (Please note that we intentionally do not use the word "homework" because we want students to do work during their free periods to free up time in the evening). Please find attached our coursework policy to make work outside of class as intentional and purposeful as possible. 

I look forward to seeing you at Back to School Night on Tuesday, September 23. It is wonderful opportunity for you to meet and hear from your child's teachers.

With some unseasonable weather upon us, we would like you to know that we want to make sure that your children and the staff are well cared for. We do encourage you to send your children to school with refillable water bottles to help them stay hydrated. We have several water fountains and many air conditioned rooms around campus to help keep them comfortable.

Regards,

Paul Barsky 

UPCOMING KEY DATES

Sep. 18 10:45-11:30AM Clubs Fair Lawn

Sep. 23 5:45-8:30PM Back to School Night Friendly Reminder: This evening is not designed for individual parent conferences. If you wish to speak privately to a teacher we encourage you to schedule an appointment for another time.

Sep. 24 7:30AM-3:30PM Blood Drive NCB

Sep. 27    8:00AM-9:30AM  AIDS Walk Balboa Pk

Sep. 28 2:00-4:00PM Theatre Production PAC

Sep. 29 3:30-5:30PM Theatre Production PAC

Sep. 30 7:00-9:00PM Theatre Production PAC

Oct. 2 10:45-11:30AM HC Theme Announcement FH

Oct. 7 5:45-7:45PM 10th Grade Parent Presentation NCB

Oct. 8 8:00AM-1:00PM 12th Grade Justice 101 Program SD Court

Oct. 10 8:00AM-3:00PM Prof. Development Day FP

Oct. 13    Fall Break (No Classes)

Oct. 14 10:45-11:35AM HC Assembly FH

Oct. 15 8:00AM-12:00PM PSAT (10th-11th Graders) Gym

              9:00AM-12:00PM 12th Grade College Workshops CC Office

              3:00PM-8:00PM Floatbuilding Field

              5:00-7:00PM Floatbuilding Dinner Cafe’

Oct. 17 7:00-9:00PM Powderpuff Game Field

Oct. 18 11:00AM-3:00PM Homecoming Day Field

               8:00-11:00PM Homecoming Dance Gym

Oct. 20 6:30-9:00PM College Fair FP

Oct. 24-25 5:15PM-6:00PM Robotics Tourney  FH/GYM

Oct. 28   7:00-9:30PM   "Unplugged" Show  JCH

FROM TOM CROWLEY, DIRECTOR OF GLOBAL STUDIES

There are still spots available on our one-week Interim trips and two-week Global Studies trips. The deadline for registering and applying is next Friday, September 26 @ 5:00 p.m. Please contact Mr. Crowley if you have questions on either program. 

from Nurse Maggie: 

Hope you had a safe, relaxing summer. Here are twelve tips for a healthy school year: 1. Make sure your student’s immunizations are up to date. Access www.shotsforschool.org to find out the required shots for your child’s grade/age. Please provide an updated copy of your student’s immunization record to school. 2. Review hygiene tips with your student to prevent the spread of infections 3. Establish a bedtime and wake-up time to ensure adequate and consistent sleep 4. Develop a routine for homework and after school activities 5. Eat breakfast each day 6. Make sure your student’s health concern is know to me, the school nurse, and, if warranted, to the appropriate school staff. This is especially important if your student has a life-threatening medical condition. 7. Bring current, signed healthcare provider orders for treatments and all medications to be given at school (contact me if you need a copy of the form). Let me know if your student is taking any medications, even if not administered at school. 8. Bring all prescription medication that needs to be administered at school in the original pharmacy container 9. Make sure all medication delivered to school has not expired 10. If you student requires an epinephrine autoinjector, please provide that to school as soon as possible along with the appropriate allergy action plan filled out by your healthcare provider 11. Keep your student home from school if they are sick—especially if they are running a fever of 100 degrees F or over 12. Let the school know if your student has a communicable disease (such as conjunctivitis, chicken pox or influenza) and keep your student home until he/she has recovered from that disease Please contact me at mwest@francisparker.org or 619-717-0235 with any questions, concerns or comments!

From Carol Jensen, Director of Community Service: 

AIDS Walk is Saturday, September 27. Registration forms are available in the Community Service Office.

Junior and Senior Parents

Francis Parker School has two honor societies to recognize students for their academic excellence. The National Honor Society (NHS) and California Scholarship Federation (CSF) are available to junior and senior students based on their grades for the 2013-2014 school year. Students can pick-up application forms and eligibility requirements in the Community Service Office.

 CSF dues are $10.00 per year and must be turned in with the application to the Community Service Office. There is also a specific CSF community service project that is required for membership.

CSF and NHS forms are due Friday, October 3, 2014.

 Project Concern International is excited to invite high school students from the San Diego community to apply to its 2014/15 Global Youth Leadership Program. This is a great opportunity for students who are eager to learn about leadership and to try out their newly acquired skills at PCI’s Walk for Water in March 2015.  The curriculum includes leadership training, event planning, public speaking, branding as well as resume writing and interviewing. The deadline for applying is September 16. www.pciglobal.org

 See Mrs. Jensen in the Community Service Office for information and an application.

Posted by in 09. September on Sunday September 14
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Mr. Barsky joined the Parker community in 2010 after 18 years in New York City working at a variety of independent schools and several international programs. He is drawn to schools in which the mission is clear and the goal is for students ... Read more.


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