February Newsletter

Silent Auction

Where can you get homemade soup, bread and dessert lovingly made and delivered to your door? Saturday afternoon Raptors tickets against the Boston Celtics? A cottage rental with hot tub in Prince Edward County?
The one and only annual Withrow Silent Auction!  It’s only 5 weeks away. There will be food. There will be wine. There will be amazing class baskets, awe-inspiring class art and the ever-popular teacher experience raffles.  So book your sitter (it’s a child-free event) and come out to the school to bid for the kids on Friday, March 27th.  Help us raise money for a new school yard climber.
Check out the hundreds of items you can bid on in our catalog at www.charityauctionorganizer.com/auction/WithrowSilentAuction2015.
  • Keep your eye posted for class basket notices – coming soon!
  • If you have products from your employer, sports tickets, lessons or advice of any kind or anything at all that you could donate, please contact us at withrowauction@gmail.com

Facebook

Withrow Home and School has gone all social media crazy. We have been on Twitter for awhile and now we are on Facebook. What next, Instagram??? Please Like us and Follow us!

Afterschool Program Sign up

We have a slew of new afterschool programming for the spring term – including Pawsitively Pets (as suggested by a parent and to be added to the blogspot this week!). Update! Pawsitively Pets will be on Thursdays and the sign-up link should be ready by Tuesday.  Afterschool sign up is on-going. Please visit http://withrowafterschool.blogspot.ca/. Undersubscribed programs run the risk of being cancelled. Programs are capped at 15 students, per instructor, and all programs that do not have sufficient enrolment will be cancelled by Monday, March 9th, to allow impacted parents to make alternative arrangements.

If there is other programing that you wish to see at Withrow (where the gym or school yard is not needed), please get in touch with the After School Committee, or become a volunteer and make it happen!

Withrow Fun Fair – Saturday, May 23, 2015

We’ve got a date!  Now we need folks to help organize this year’s Fun Fair.

Interested in seeking sponsors? Handling logistics? Taking care of communications?  Or perhaps helping to organize the whole darn day? We’d love to have you join us. And don’t worry…you won’t be doing this alone. Most positions just need someone to “shadow” for next year. For those of you who are new-ish to our school, this is a great way to get involved with the school and meet other fabulous parents. And unlike the H&S meeting, other beverages are allowed.

Please contact erinbinnie@gmail.com for more information.

The Fun Fair is a great community event which raises money for our school, including much needed improvements to the school yard. Mark May 23rd in your calendar!

Schoolyard Update

Our kids have been enjoying the use of the Pit especially with all the snowy weather. But what is next? On the masterplan, the next step is to put in an irrigation system in the field, topsoil and then seed with extra-hardy grass seed. In addition, an asphalt running track will be put in around the field. We are hoping for an early summer start date but need confirmation with the TDSB. This will take some time as there are many other repairs at other schools that may take priority.

Home and School Meeting

Transition to middle school?
Four former Withrow students came back with their parents for a short panel on the transition to Middle School. Three of the students are currently at Earl Grey Middle School and one is attending Quest Alternative School. Both the kids and the parents spoke of the increased independence of middle school. The two schools are polar opposites. Quest has a class of 34 kids in each year (total of 68 students in the whole school), whereas at Earl Grey the kids mix with a much larger pool drawing from other local junior schools. Takeaways were that both the students and parents need to accommodate to the kids being more in charge of their day-to-day work. In contrast to Withrow, the school provide a lost less information about what is happening at school. It was stressed however that dialogue is available but now it must be initiated from home. Both were well recommended academically. Earl Grey due to its size can offer broader sports and extracurricular activities.

Earl Grey has a format that mirrors high school while Quest has a more varied structure of intense study combined with projects, sport and trips. What’s clear was that there are many options for Middle School and as our kids begin grade 6 we should take advantage of the information and open houses available to check them out and find the best fit.

How about figuring out how to help your pre-teen navigate their relationships? 
There was a good presentation by j wallace of Gender-Based Violence Prevention (TDSB) about changing pre-teen relationships. While bullying was addressed, many other aspects of changing relationships was also touched on. A pdf copy is available here.

(Summary provided by parent, Rick Fishell)

Next H&S meeting Wednesday, April 1st. See you there!