A Note from Our New PTA President

Hi, 5th Grade Families!

I hope this email finds you well and getting ready for the start of a new school year.

As we prepare for Orientation this evening and the kids first day back to school, I wanted to share an important PTA calendar update that directly impacts each of you. The PTA Board and Committee Members gathered for a summer planning meeting to discuss goals, events/programs and budget for the upcoming school year. Two specific topics were discussed during the meeting:

1.) Morehead’s Annual Carnival and

2.) PTA Budget for 5th Grade Field Trip

In the past, PTA allocated $2,000 in the budget to assist with reducing the overall cost of the 5th Grade Field Trip for each child with the understanding that the 5th Grade families, specifically students, would spearhead Morehead’s Annual Carnival.

The PTA Leaders spoke in length about the timing of the Carnival and 5th Grade Field Trip and made an executive decision to move the carnival this year from spring to fall. The Morehead Annual FALL Carnival is scheduled for Friday, October 9, 2015.

Why did PTA Leaders change the Carnival from spring to fall?
There were multiple reasons for the date change but the most obvious was the timing of the 5th Grade DC Field Trip. We felt the carnival needed to take place BEFORE the PTA funds were given towards the 5th grade trip. There was also a general consensus that PTA Programs were heavily weighted in spring.

What does this mean for 5th Grade Families?
The PTA Leaders are asking 5th Grade Families to create a “Carnival Committee” to take the initiative to organize the FALL Carnival (food, games, raffle baskets and volunteer schedule). As last years volunteers can attest to, this event does not require extensive planning but LOTS of teamwork. I think the event was successfully organized in 3 weeks last year.

When do the Fall Carnival Committee Chairs need to be selected?
The answer to this question….sooner than later! The PTA is currently seeking 2-3 Fall Carnival Committee Chairs, preferably 5th Grade Parents who are not already serving in a PTA Board and/or Committee Chair capacity, to take the lead on organizing this event. Please remember, the main goal of the event is to have FUN! The Carnival is a wonderful community building event where 5th Graders take a leadership role in serving their community.

What is PTA doing to help plan the Fall Carnival?
The PTA created a FALL Carnival Volunteer Save the Date – Sign-Up form that will be included in the PTA Welcome Packets distributed this evening at Orientation. (If families do not attend this evening then children will be given the packets the first week of school to take home.) Any returned forms will be shared with the designated Carnival Committee Chairs.

How do you let PTA know if you are interested in serving as a Carnival Committee Chair?
Please send me a separate email (jfrederick300@me.com) or give me a call if you are interested in serving as a Carnival Committee Chair. The PTA would like to have designated Committee Chairs no later than August 31st.

Thank you in advance for your support of Morehead’s Annual Carnival!


Jarin Frederick
Morehead Montessori PTA President

Preparing for 2015-2016

Over the next week or so, you might notice that things around here are constantly changing. Please bear with us as we try to get this site shaped up and ready for the new year. We are trying to add some features that will improve your experience here. If you have ideas for features you’d like to see on this site, please leave a comment!


Weekly Announcements

  • Thanks to everyone who helped with the carnival last week, and to all of you who came out to enjoy it. It was a huge success! The sun came out and it sure did look like everyone was having a great time. We are still tallying the final numbers on how much money we made, and we will let you know the total when we have it.
  • Please remember that we are looking for volunteers to come in to lunch on Friday so that the teachers can have a break! This week is National Teacher Appreciation week, and we’d love to be able to have enough volunteers at lunch on Friday that our hard-working teachers can take a break to eat a peaceful lunch away from the students. If you are able to help out (and if you have the required clearance from DPS), please contact your class parent.
  • Mark your calendars for May 19th, which is our final full PTA meeting of the year. We’ll be covering important PTA business including passing next year’s proposed budget and voting on the slate of board members for next year. There are still several leadership roles that we need to fill so please think about donating your time and energy next year to make Morehead an even better place! Contact Crystal Miller if you are interested in potentially volunteering for a committee chair of board member position.

    There will be pizza for sale preceding the meeting. Also, we will also have a pajama party with story time in the media center (including several special readers) and cookies & milk. Kids are encouraged to wear their pajamas!!

  • A message from the Lakewood Middle School PTA to parents who might not yet have a child at Lakewood, but who may have one there in the near future: LMMS PTA is having a Just One Check fund drive, and most of the proceeds are to be earmarked for some very important school equipment: Picnic Tables. Yes, I know, it sounds silly.  But in case you haven’t heard, recess isn’t really a ‘thing’ in middle school.  The kids get breaks and have ‘personal time’, but they don’t get outside much.  At Lakewood, there is a *strong* desire to get kids out more often, and Principal Reynolds has spearheaded the idea to obtain some very nice, high quality picnic tables so that students may eat their lunches outside. The LMMS PTA (and many teachers and current parents) are really excited about this idea. Of course, really nice, high quality picnic tables are rather expensive.  So, we are reaching out to future families, as well as current ones to meet the challenge of purchasing this furniture. Donations may be made via check and mailed to the school:
2119 Chapel Hill Rd, Durham, NC 27707
OR – use this handy-dandy link and donate by credit card:
Thanks for your consideration!
  • Pre-K Fee Discussion– As many of you probably know, there has been some discussion in the school district about the possibility of introducing a fee for the Pre-K year at Morehead and at Watts.  We know that this is a topic that interests many of you and that could potentially impact some of you directly in future years. The PTA at Watts has a committee that is following this district discussion closely, and they recently had Matt Sears, a Durham Board of Education Member, attend on of their general PTA meetings for a Q&A session. We have posted the minutes from that session (available in both English and Spanish) on our PTA website, and we will continue to post information on that page as it come in.http://moreheadpta.org/en/pre-k-fee-discussion/
  • We’re down to 10 yearbooks available.  Send in a check for $12, or contact a PTA representative if you want one.  Great teacher gifts, too!

Spring Carnival Tickets

Our annual Spring Carnival is Friday, May 1st. Bring the whole family for an evening of fun! (Bring your friends and neighbors, too! In addition to being a great community event, this is an important fundraiser for our school.)

Admission to the carnival is 2 tickets. Dinner will be available for between 3 and 5 tickets. Locopops will be available for 2 tickets. We’ll also have games, and auction of classroom crafts and projects, and a raffle! You don’t want to miss this. Tickets are basically $1/ticket, but if you can also get 25 tickets for $20, so if you want to eat, and play games, and enter the raffle, order lots!!

Tickets will be available on site Friday, but you can streamline the process by pre-ordering your tickets. Fill out the form and send it, along with cash or check, back to school by Wednesday of this week.


Multicultural Night!!


Multicultural Night is this Friday, March 6th!  We will celebrate with a potluck dinner from 5:15 – 7:00, activities/crafts for all ages from 6:00 – 7:10, and student performances from all grade levels starting at 7:15.  There is even a small reward for students who complete the activity at each station!  Please plan to bring a dish for the potluck dinner – the PTA will provide a variety of types of rice to accompany your food, and we hope to have a broad range of items to go along with it! (Please bring a recipe or list of ingredients with anything that you make.) We are also looking for VOLUNTEERS to help the evening run smoothly: please sign up to help here: http://vols.pt/DoUbzi 

Weekly Announcements Jan 26-29

There are a lot of announcements this week and we hope you will make the time to read through all of them. We also really hope to see all of you on Wednesday evening for our PTA meeting! Free dinner! Free childcare! A great speaker! The chance to see all your Morehead friends! Why would you want to miss that?!?
  • Girls on the Run started yesterday.  Practices typically run from 3:30-5:00 on Mondays and Wednesdays. All registered students should meet in the school lobby after school dismissal.  Parents should pick-up students at 5 pm in the playground parking lot.  There will no practice on Wednesday, Jan. 28th due to early release.  
  • January Full-body meeting: Wednesday Jan 28th. (This is an early-release day.) We’ll provide dinner and free childcare. In addition to a brief business meeting, we will have a guest speaker (David Reese of the East Durham Children’s Initiative) give a talk about the Achievement Gap in our schools- what it is, and why we should all be concerned about it. We expect this to be a really informative, great presentation and we are hoping for a big turnout!
  • February 13th is the Evening of Entertainment at DPAC. Get more information here: http://www.dpsscholarshipfoundation.org/
  • 5th Grade Parents: Remember that you must APPLY for a space a Lakewood Middle School if you plan to send your child there next year. The application period is open now until January 30. Check the DPS website (www.dpsnc.net) for more information.
  • Show us what you can do at Morehead’s Talent Show! Group and solo acts wanted; must be in good taste, duration of 2 minutes or less. Auditions (low pressure) are immediately after school Friday Feb 6th. Show on Thursday evening Feb 19th. Click here http://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0d4aaca92ea57-talent1 for an audition signup sheet. For an alternative audition time, or to submit a video audition, email Tonya Kirk at tonya@carotids.com, or contact Mrs. Hughes at school. Please bring any background music with you on Feb 6th.
  • Winners have been selected for the Yearbook cover. You can see the final art selection as well as the runners-up here. What a talented bunch of students we have!
  • Yearbook support: Costs for yearbook production are $18-20 per book. Last year, with advertising support, we were able to offer each issue at a discounted price of $12/copy. We hope to do the same this year.
    Please consider supporting our yearbook in one or more of the following ways:

    1. Traditional advertisements: If you want the Morehead community to be aware of your business, please consider placing a traditional ad in the year book. Ads are full color and can feature any artwork/graphics you provide for us. Remember your child’s extracurricular organizations too. Our rates this year are as follows:
      $40 for 1/8 page ( business card size)
      $75 for 1/4 page
      $145 for 1/2 page
      $250 for full page
    2. Meerkat boosters: Instead of support through traditional advertisements, consider being a booster. We will accept donations from family/friends of the Morehead community as Yearbook Boosters. For $10 minimum donation, you get listed as a Meerkat Booster and it will reduce everyone’s yearbook cost. We acknowledge your support in a small square on our Boosters page. You can list your name, a grandparent’s name, a teacher’s name, a class name, or even a silly name. Due to space limitations, we will not be able to place pictures for the booster section.
    3. Pictures, Pictures and More Pictures!!: We are always in need of pictures of our Meerkats in action. If you have taken pictures in high resolution (unfortunately, mostcell phone pictures will not work), please consider sharing the pictures with the editors. Please see information below.

    Please contact gowthami.arepally@duke.edu

  • Multicultural Night is coming up on Friday, March 6th, so mark your calendars. We will celebrate the diversity of our school community and our world with a potluck dinner, activities/crafts, and student performances. Right now, we are looking for volunteers to organize and staff activity stations that represent countries or cultures or that celebrate diversity in some way. Also let us know if you would like to organize small groups of students for short dances, songs or poems during the program part of the evening. Email cmayerpatel@yahoo.com or send in a note addressed to PTA Multicultural night to sign up. Please let us know if you are willing to lead an activity by January 28th at the PTA meeting! Thank you!
  • Students, please remember to enter your reading time on www.reading-rewards.com or turn in your paper reading logs in the blue Library Book Return at the front door. Students who have read and logged over 1,000 minutes by January 16th will receive a small prize from Mrs. K for being a Meerkat Reading Leader! Our school goal is to reach 1 million minutes read by May 1.  When we reach 500,000 minutes, our school will adopt a sea turtle from the World Wildlife Fund. We hope to celebrate reaching our goal of 1 million minutes at our family library pajama party in May. Please call or e-mail Mrs. K if you have questions about this program and thank you for encouraging your child/children to READ, READ, READ!


Community Messages (The following messages do not originate with the Morehead PTA but we feel that they are of interest to this community.)

  • Impact of NC Budget on Local School DistrictsThe League of Women Voters of Orange, Durham and Chatham counties and the North Carolina Central University (NCCU) School of Education present: ‘The Economics of Education: What We Owe Our Children and Our Nation’ with Moderator: Dr. Wynetta Lee (Dean of the School of Education at NCCU). Tuesday, February 3, 2015 at 7pmExpert participants include:Dr. Del Burns, Orange County Interim SuperintendentDr. Tom Forcella, Chapel Hill-Carrboro SuperintendentDr. Derrick Jordan, Chatham County SuperintendentDr. Bert L’Homme, Durham Superintendent

    LOCATION: School of Education Auditorium, 700 Cecil Street, NCCU campus, Durham (Parking is available in any of the campus lots after 5 pm, and elevator access is on the lower level of the building from the front parking lot.) This event is free and open to the public.

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a policy statement recommending that middle and high schools delay the start of class until 8:30 AM or later. http://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/Pages/Let-Them-Sleep-AAP-Recommends-Delaying-Start-Times-of-Middle-and-High-Schools-to-Combat-Teen-Sleep-Deprivation.aspx . This recommendation is based on the evidence that start times before 8:30 result in significant health consequences to teens due to the effects of sleep deprivation. The DPS school board has announced their intention to follow this recommendation by the 2016-17 school year. They have created a survey for DPS families to gather input from the families. Please follow the link below to complete the survey.
  • We are excited to inform you that we have opened registration for the FEMMES 2015 Capstone event! The event will be held this year on Saturday, February 21st from 8:45 am – 4:15 pm on Duke University’s West Campus. The day includes a keynote speaker who explains her role in her particular STEM field and the path that led her to that role, followed by two morning activities, lunch, two afternoon activities, and closing remarks. Each hands-on activity is designed and led by female faculty members, female graduate students, and STEM undergraduate female organizations. Participants are placed in groups of 12-15 girls led by two undergraduate or graduate student volunteers who guide the participants through four different activities held in the engineering, science, math, and laboratory buildings at Duke. This event is for 4th-6th grade Durham girls.
    If you would like to register your daughter for the Capstone event, please submit one of the registration forms, linked below:
    **Please note that this event is not the same as our Saturdays at Duke program, which goes on all semester. This is our annual, one-day event.
    The full registration packet is due by February 6, 2015. However, as usual, registration is on a first-come first-serve basis, so please submit the forms at your earliest convenience to assure a spot for your daughters. We appreciate any help in informing other parents and students of Durham of this program. Please let us know if you have any questions!
    Please note: When you submit the electronic registration form, you must still mail us the two legal releases (Legal Release and Lab Participation Agreement).
    Please send the releases to the following address:
    FEMMES c/o Suqi Huang
    Duke University
    Box 95211
    Durham NC, 27708-9838
    All the best,
    Elisa Berson, Janvi Shah, Maria Kohlbrenner, and Colleen Chung
    FEMMES Program Directors
As always, thanks for your time and energy. Our PTA is only as strong as you make it!

January Full Body Meeting – Jan 28th (Wednesday)

Happy Thursday, Morehead Families.

As (we hope) you know, next Wednesday, January 28th, is our next full-body PTA meeting. This is an early-release day. We hope that you will join other Morehead families for a free pasta dinner that will be catered by Northern High School’s Culinary Arts Program. After dinner, we’ll have a brief PTA business meeting. The highlight of the evening is Speaker David Reese, president of the East Durham Children’s Initiative, who will give a talk about the Achievement Gap in our schools. We are very excited to have secured Mr. Reese as a speaker and expect his talk to be interesting and informative.

(Don’t know what the ‘Achievement Gap’ is? Here are a few links to get you started: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Achievement_gap_in_the_United_States

Please review the agenda for the PTA business portion of the meeting as well as the budget (which the whole parent body must approve).  Please direct any questions or concerns you have in advance of the meeting to PTA President Amy Cummings (cummings.amy@gmail.com; 919-619-4605).

Free childcare will be provided during the meeting and talk.
We are hoping for a BIG turnout. See you next week!

Your PTA

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