December 12, 2014 

DECEMBER 12, 2014

Tuesday, December 16

            Winter Concert – 2:30 & 7:00 pm

Friday, December 19

            All-School Assembly

Wednesday – Sunday, December 24 – January 4

            VACATION  - NO SCHOOL

Monday, January 5

            First Day of School in 2015



Kudos are in order!

We have just received word from NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children) that we have been reaccredited for a new five year term. The accreditation process is fully a year long, beginning with the development of an extensive portfolio. This portfolio established the school’s commitment and competencies in ten different areas, ranging from relationships with families to leadership and management. Every element of the early childhood program is scrutinized and compared to the rigorous NAEYC standards.

In October, a staff member from NAEYC spent the day here in Leverett, observing in the PreK and kindergarten classrooms, the cafeteria, and other spaces used by our youngest students, as well as on the playground. She also had individual meeetings with me, with Gillian Budine, our Early Childhood consultant, and with PreK teacher Ruth Love Barer and kindergarten teacher Amanda King.

I am happy to report that on six of the ten NAEYC criteria, we exceeded 100% (yes, they give extra credit!) and we were at, or very close to, 100% in the other four areas. Given that NAEYC looks at a threshold of 80% for granting accreditation, the excellence of Leverett’s program is very apparent!

Since 1985, the NAEYC accreditation system has set professional standards for early childhood programs. This system is used throughout the country, and is an essential element of remaining in good standing with the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Requirements aside,  this process helps us to make absolutely sure that we are doing everything possible to ensure the highest quality program for our early learners.

Hats off to Ruth Love, Amanda, and Gillian for their incredibly hard work throughout the accreditation process. Thanks, too, to paraprofessionals Carol Allis, Sherri Goodwin, and Martha Guilmette for the many things they do every day to keep our little ones happy, safe, and learning. And, finally, much appreciation goes to Chris Geiling, Marianne Vinal, Bethany Politylo, and Karen Gallagher of our SPED staff, for their continual support of our preschoolers and kindergarten. 

It does, indeed, take a village to raise a child! 

                                    -Margot Lacey 



The LES Chorus Winter Concert, cancelled because of bad weather this week, has been rescheduled for next Tuesday, December 16th. There will be two performances:  in the afternoon at 2:30, and in the evening at 7:00.  All chorus members should be dropped off in the school cafeteria no earlier than 6:45 pm for the evening performance. Everyone is welcome to attend and enjoy this wonderful show! 


Now that cold, windy, wet and snowy weather is here for the duration of the winter, please send your child to school dressed warmly for outdoor recess everyday. This includes wearing socks, boots, hats, gloves, snow pants and a warm winter jacket. We go outside for recess everyday except Wednesday. Many children have been coming to school underdressed for recess.  In order for kids to be able to fully enjoy recess, they must be dressed warmly and follow the school rules outlined here: 

Children who want to play in the snow during recess MUST wear:

     • PS, K, and Grade 1:  boots and snowpants

     •Grades 2, 3, & 4:  boots to play on the snow, snowpants to play in the snow

     •Grades 5 &6:  boots

Leaving boots, snow pants and gloves at school for the week can be a solution for kids who “forget” to bring these items in on a daily basis.  Another option is to always keep a pair of gloves, a hat and an extra pair of socks in your child’s backpack. Also, please remember to send in a pair of “indoor shoes” to change into once the wet boots come off.

We have a limited supply of boots, gloves and snow pants in the Nurse’s office with limited storage space to keep any more than that on hand.  I try to save these items for “emergencies” like when kids get soaked while having fun at recess. Also, they are for kids who may have outgrown last year’s boots or snow pants or may not own all of the items listed.  

If you are in need of financial assistance to purchase warm winter clothing for your growing child, please contact Nurse Jill at 548-9144 ext. 3, to inquire about the Kimball Trust fund. 

Thanks for helping to keep LES kids warm, dry and happy!

-Nurse Jill


Leverett Community Interview of the Week


Grade 2

What do you like about Leverett School?

I like studying maps. I like gym!

What do you like doing outside of school?

Horseback riding.


PTO Update

Give the Gift That Gives Twice! This holiday season consider making a tax deductible donation to the PTO in honor of a teacher/staff member. For every donation made a card and your message will be sent to the teacher/staff member. A form is attached to this Post.



Please join us at the Leverett Library on Thursday December 18 at 7pm, for a visit from local comedy screenwriter Steve Adams. Adams’s credits include the 2010 romantic comedy Waiting for Forever, the 2004 comedy Envy starring Jack Black and Ben Stiller, and Donny and Marie in the 1970s. Adams will be talking about his screen writing career and his  brand new “self-help” book, What’s What and What To Do About It, which he wrote as Waldo Mellon. This program is not appropriate for children.

“ Waldo Mellon knows What's What. His advice to the perplexed fills this wry, witty, and heartfelt book. Some three-dozen short chapters, each a Dear Waldo letter followed by Waldo's response, deal with the yearnings and fantasies of Everyperson. Death. God. Breasts. Stupidity. Hope. Marriage. Fighting. Forgiveness. But Waldo does more than advise and amuse. He offers memorable mechanisms for coping with the challenges of living. This unique book, part self-help parody, part sincere wisdom, contains enough hope and laugh-out-loud zaniness to earn a permanent position on your Favorite Books list”. –Amazon. 



The staff and teachers wish to thank the PTO for the many surprises that have been provided to show appreciation.  We’ve had birdhouse gourds, breakfast treats, and flowers to name a few!





(Items listed here are not school sponsored)


NEED BABYSITTING?   Rheannon Stewart and Rosie Dinsmore  have recently been certified by the Red Cross as official babysitters.  They are 7th graders who are enthusiastic and fun with kids.  They live close to LES and are welcoming to all children between the ages 0 and 7 years old. Fliers are up at both the Leverett Library and Post Office.  They are responsible, careful, and loads of fun!  Please call Rheannon at 549-6535,  or Rosie at 549-6067.


MAKE AND TAKE CRAFT FAIR – Come and make all your holiday gifts in one day!  Saturday, December 13th, 10am-3pm, at the Montague Common Hall (formerly the Grange), 34 Main Street, Montague Center.  For adults, teens and children.  Free admission.  Gifts $1-$10 to make.  Crafts will include spin art, shrinky dinks, glass magnets, juggling balls, beeswax candles, snow globes, holiday ornaments, and so much more.  Savory snacks and baked goods will also be available.  All proceeds will benefit the Montague Common Hall.


Our Union #28 substitute, Mary Lou Conca, will have her poetry/photography show on display for your viewing pleasure.  Her work is meant to be thought-provoking.  Her show will be up for the month of January at the Jones Library, downtown Amherst, under her pen/maiden name of Ferro.


Christmas trees and wreaths!  The Field Family invites the LES community to the Christmas tree lot in the front yard at The Field Family Farmstand, 264 Long Plain Road.   Ben Field and his dad, Jeff, have hand picked and cut every tree and can even make you a wreath for your door if you want. Come and pick out your tree during the day or under the lights, until 8:30pm or so, every day. No worries if we are not home, just help yourself to twine and put your cash or local check in the lockbox on the farmstand. Thanks so much for your support and we hope all have a wonderful and peace-filled holiday season! Merry Christmas!  


LES students Madeline and Toler Poole will perform in Amherst Ballet’s production of Cinderella on Saturday, December 20th, 1:00 pm, Bowker Auditorium in Stockbridge Hall on the UMass Campus.  Ticket prices are $15 adults, $5 for children.


If you would like to put a notice in the Community Bulletin Board section of the Friday Post, please submit notices to be published no later than Thursday at noon.  The easiest way to do that is by e-mail to [email protected] Flyers for non-school sponsored events can be attached to the Post.  They must contain a disclaimer “This is not a school-sponsored event” and a sufficient number of copies (125) should be provided to the office by the end of the school day on Thursday.




Please leave canned or dry food at the Town Hall, School, Library or Transfer Station.  Donated food will be delivered to the Amherst Survival Center and the Franklin Area Survival Center.  Thank you!

-The Leverett Selectboard



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