Monday Notes, Message from the Head of School 11/27

"Gratitude makes sense of your past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow." -Melody Beattie

Dear Palm Valley Families,

I hope that today finds you returning to school from a restful week filled with family and loved ones. Thanksgiving is one of those special holidays when we practice gratitude for the things that make our ordinary lives - extraordinary! I have much to be grateful for and I am sure you each do as well! This past weekend, we hosted our Annual Thanksgiving Alumni Reunion event where Alumni spanning many decades came by the school to share lunch, community, and play/watch our annual Alumni vs. Varsity Basketball game. I am particularly grateful for the efforts of Ms. Steinman, Mr. Hewitt, and Mrs. Sholander who put together a wonderful luncheon and memorabilia display, and for Coaches Makkai and Zinman who made sure our Firebirds were ready to play! It's a wonderful event and we are hoping to have another in the Spring this year for Alumni of all ages. Stay tuned for more details coming soon!

I am also grateful this week for the Preschool and After-Care Staff who worked over the holiday week to provide our Thanksgiving Mini Camp for kids and families! These camps are a great opportunity for working families who need child care and for kids who want to come to school and have some fun with friends. We saw over 30 students last week and a ton of fun was had by all. Our next Mini Camps will take place over the Winter Break in December/January and they happen in two sessions. The first will be December 27-29 and the second on January 3-5. Each camp has a three-day price as well as a daily rate, depending on your needs. We would love to have you PS-5 children attend! These camps are packed with activities and fun, and they are open to the public, so let others in the community know about it too. To learn more or to register your child, please visit our registration page. I hope you will join us!

On December 4th, we are hosting our second Admissions Open House of the year. If you have a child in PS, 5th, or 8th grade this year - we want to extend a special invitation to you to come to this event and to learn more about the Division your student will be entering next fall. This is a great opportunity for you to meet new teachers, hear about curriculum and programs in another division and ask questions of Faculty and Administration. Making the transition from PK to Kindergarten, 5th grade to Middle School or 8th grade to Upper School can be a bit daunting and we want to make it as seamless and easy for you and your student. Please RSVP here or just stop by that evening. We are also inviting many new families who are looking at Palm Valley for the future, so it's a great way to connect with other families as well.

Lastly, tomorrow is #GivingTuesday - a global initiative to support non-profit philanthropy across the globe. This is the second year that Palm Valley School has participated and last year, we raised around $15,000 for our Annual Fund based on the donations that came in on that day alone! We will be giving a special individualized "shout-out" on all our social media channels to anyone who donates to the Annual Fund on #GivingTuesday. This year, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is also MATCHING all gifts made on #GivingTuesday through Facebook to registered non-profits until they reach $2 million. So, as a registered non-profit if you donate to us through your Facebook page - you could qualify for a doubled gift. All gifts, regardless of size, will receive a special shout-out and thanks! You can also make your gift in honor of or in memory of some someone you want to recognize or remember. Your social media shout-out will give that information too! It is a great way to say something special to someone special. Please help us to reach our goal this year of 100% parent and family participation in our Annual Fund. What you give helps to support all our students, faculty, and special programs - the things that make our school so great. Be a part of something special by giving this year!

I hope that each of you have a great Monday - welcome back!


Susan Rice
Head of School