Weekly Notes from the Head of Lower School, 10/31

“Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart.” -Elizabeth Andrew

Dear Families,

There are so many of you who work tirelessly behind and in front of the scenes to help our students, faculty and school community. I am continually amazed by the generous giving of time, and on behalf of the faculty, I extend my sincere thanks. Just this week, Mr. Garcia from first grade worked with Señora Huerta to set up the Dia de Los Muertos display, Mrs. Jones and Mrs. Rotman will be in our library bright and early tomorrow to decorate for November, and Mrs. Schiel and Mrs. Habibipour come weekly, without fail to work in the library. If you attended the Fall Festival this week, you were able to see the result of the hundreds of hours given by the Parent Association. Not to mention, all of our Room Parents and parents who are helping to make Halloween so special. This is just the tip of the iceberg!

I hope you get a chance to view the Dia de Los Muertos display in the Lower School lobby. We will take this down Friday after school. Like Halloween, Dia de Los Muertos has roots in several religions. However, it has become much more of a cultural holiday than a religious one. We are focused on the cultural aspect of this holiday.

November is Native American Heritage Month. We are honored to have the Cahuilla Bird Singers perform some traditional songs and dances for the Lower School students on Monday, November 5th at 2:00 pm. Fifth-grader Michael Pete is part of the group, which just performed in Hawaii!

Mrs. Rice's first Coffee with the Head of School is tomorrow, November 1st at 8:30 am in the MPR. All families are invited to attend!

Another cultural tradition students learn about is Diwali, a five-day festival of lights celebrated by millions. This celebration coincides with the Hindu New Year. Mrs. Bajaj and Mrs. Deshpande will give a short presentation during the all-school assembly on Friday, November 2nd. Diwali is on Wednesday, November 7th. On this day, the buddy groups will meet and create Rangoli, which are colorful patterns made during Diwali and other Indian festivals.

As you may know, Veteran’s Day is very special at Palm Valley School. You are invited to join us at a special assembly on Veterans’ Day, Monday, November 12th at 8:30 a.m. in our gym. This event is free and open to the public, RSVP here. Please remember to send your student in dress uniform that day.

This Friday is the end of the first quarter, and report cards will go home on Friday, November 16th. If you are not aware, students begin to receive letter grades in fifth grade. Kindergarten through fourth graders are graded based on how they are meeting expected developmental standards.

Here is the breakdown:


Exceeds developmental standards most, if not all, of the time


Meets developmental standards most of the time exceeds standards some of the time.


Meets or is approaching developmental standards


Not meeting developmental standards most of the time


Have a safe, fun Halloween!

Mrs. Fisher
Head of Lower School