PTA Weekly Newsletter - Week of May 14, 2018

Dates to put on the calendar


  • May 16 - 25: Spain Trip (rescheduled)
  • May 17 (Thu): Early Release (11:45) for Professional Learning
  • May 18 (Fri): Field Trip: Team Apollo
  • May 23 (Wed): Taiwan Trip
  • May 23 (Wed): Field Trip: Teams K2 & Everest
  • May 24 (Thu): 7th Grade Screening
  • May 25 (Fri): Field Trip: Team Pegasus
  • May 28 (Mon): No School: Memorial Day
  • May 29 (Tue): Quebec Trip
  • Jun 1 (Fri): 9AM: Principal Coffee at Diamond Cafeteria


Announcements from Diamond PTA


Teacher appreciation week is here! All families please remember to drop off flowers for our big bouquet project this Wednesday morning. Your children can bring them with to school or feel free to drop flowers off anytime after 7:30 am on Wednesday. All types of flowers are needed except lilies because of an allergy. Thank you in advance for your help! 


Many thanks to 8th grade parents Vinita and Amit Verma for hosting our last evening coffee and conversation with Principal Turner this past Tuesday. The PTA will be hosting one final morning principal coffee on June 1. 


Teacher Appreciation Week is May 14-18!

The PTA has planned a week of activities to honor the teachers and staff at Diamond Middle School.  Let’s show the entire staff just how much we appreciate the hard work and dedication they devote to our kids.  Here’s how you can contribute:

Write notes of appreciation to teachers and staff members, and encourage your kids to write “thank you” notes, too!

Grade 6 parents have the opportunity to sign up to bring hot entrees, bagels, yogurts, pastries and other breakfast treats for the staff breakfast on Tuesday, May 15.  Sign-up here:

Grade 7 parents we would love your help creating fresh flower bouquets on Wednesday, May 16.  We are asking all families across all grade levels to send flowers to school that day and volunteer parents will assemble bouquets for the staff members.  Sign-up here:

Grade 8 parents can provide salads, desserts, beverages, and more for the staff appreciation luncheon on Thursday, May 17.  We will have entrees catered by Royal India Bistro.  Sign-up here:

 All families on Wednesday, May 16, we will be assembling fresh flower bouquets to give to every staff member.  Please have your child bring in a small bunch of flowers that we can use to create the bouquets.  Due to a severe allergy, no lilies please!

Thanks in advance for your help making Teacher Appreciation Week a great success at Diamond Middle School!


Upcoming Diamond and LPS Events


Screening of National Geographic's Gender Revolution


This Tuesday, May 15, the Student Health Advisory Council “SHAC”, in conjunction with Lexington High School's GSA & PTA/O Presidents Council (and others) are pleased so present a screening of National Geographic's Gender Revolution, including a panel discussion moderated by Safe Schools, featuring LHS students and Vanessa Ford, who's family is featured in the film.


Gender Revolution: A Journey with Katie Couric

May 15, 7-9pm  

Clarke Middle School, Lexington s/177497212907234/


12%     Millennials identify as transgender or nonbinary

  5X      Growth in MA high school students identifying as transgender

3 Yrs    Age at which gender awareness begins


When a child transitions, the entire community transitions along with them. Everyone needs a new understanding of gender, including the complexities of gender development and the best way to show acceptance and respect. For many, this can be confusing, or scary. Many parents, teachers & community members struggle with basic questions. This film and the panel discussion aim to unpack the mystery in an evidence based, relatable way.  


* How has our understanding of gender evolved?

* How is gender different from romantic attraction?

* What is gender dysphoria and how is it treated?

* What do people of varying gender identities say? What do parents say? What do scientists say?

* How do I talk to my kids about all of this?

* How do our families, schools, and communities work together to be more welcoming and respectful of all people, including people of varying gender identities?


Critically acclaimed, Gender Revolution follows Katie Couric as she travels coast to coast to meet with the leading scientists and experts to answer questions about gender identity. She also speaks with ordinary people who find their bodies and lives on the front line of a rapidly changing world. This film examines roles of science, politics, and culture on gender, shedding light on the countless untold stories of struggle, understanding, ignorance, and love. Panel discussion featuring Vanessa Ford, who’s family is featured in the film & gender diverse Lexington students will follow the film.


Sponsors: School Health Advisory Council “SHAC”, LexPride, LHS GSAPTA/O Presidents Council (PPC), Diamond PTAEstabrook PTO, Community Coalition-Mental Health Subcommittee and Greater Boston PFLAG




Homework Policy and School Start Times


Over the next couple of weeks, the School Committee will be seeking feedback on two topics: the new Homework Policy and School Start Times.  Parents are encouraged to let the School Committee know their opinions, ideas, and questions so they can make informed decisions about these important topics.  


Homework Policy - This policy was implemented at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year.  You can find more information about the policy here: .  The School Committee is evaluating the policy and seeks feedback. There will be a public hearing to discuss the Homework Policy on Tuesday, May 8 from 6:30 to 7:30 in the Selectmen’s Meeting Room. 


School Start Times - The district is considering a change in school start times. The School Start Times Task Force has been meeting for a year to research and investigate the various options. You can find background information, research, some findings, and presentations by the Task Force on the LPS website: will be a public hearing to discuss School Start Times on May 22 from 6:00pm to 7:00pm at Cary Memorial Building, Battin Hall. 


If you cannot attend these hearings, you can reach the School Committee in the following ways:  


Message for 8th grade parents from LHS and the LHS PTO


Parents of 8th grade students (incoming to LHS in Fall 2018)- this is for you.

Our annual PTO meeting is on May 15th at 6:30 pm to 8 pm at LHS, Library Media Room. It's open to the public and we encourage you to attend.

We encourage you to volunteer for the LHS PTO! If you are interested in volunteering please email

It’s a great way to feel connected to your child’s high school experience and support the entire LHS community of students, teachers and families.  The LHS PTO has two primary purposes: To enhance the education and welfare of LHS students and to foster communication throughout the LHS community.

The Lexington High School PTO Nominating Committee is almost done deciding on the complete slate of PTO Board officers for the 2018-19 school year. We will complete the list next week and here are the names that have been finalized.   

PTO Board

    Co-president – Shubhra Chandra
    Co-President - Christina Lin
    VP Communications - Patricia Valda
    VP Grants - Manya Chait
    VP Forums – TBD
    VP Hospitality – TBD
    VP Membership – TBD
    Treasurer - Betsy Wilkinson
    Secretary – Joan Zhong

PTO Committees
We encourage you to volunteer for the LHS PTO Committees!  The people who have already volunteered have been assigned to the committee of their choice. Any parent or guardian with a rising freshman and any PTO member with a rising sophomore, junior or senior is eligible.  



Calling Incoming LHS Class of 2022 Parents – Be Part of the LHS All Night Graduation Party Community!


It’s not too early to help carry on LHS’s All Night Graduation Party tradition!   In fact, since Senior Parents cannot chaperone the event, we depend on 8th – 11th grade parents to oversee this parent run party.   Beach Party 2018 represents the 32nd LHS All Night Graduation Party (ANGP).   Unlike traditional dances, the ANGP, held the night of graduation, offers something for everyone from games, All-Night DJ, inflatable obstacle course, yearbook signing, arts and crafts and much much more!


Each year the LHS Field House is transformed into a magical venue based on the senior class chosen theme.  With 85 to 90% of each graduating class attending, it’s a true gift that our town of Lexington including our parents, businesses and police and fire departments support as a safe, memorable way for our graduating seniors to share that one final moment the evening of graduation.   Grab a friend and sign up today!  Come help us decorate Friday June 1st / Saturday June 2nd or sign up for one or more party shifts on Sunday June 3rd / Monday June 4th at  


For questions about volunteering, please contact Betsy Wilkinson at betsy@myemline.  


SET-UP (50 8th – 12th Parents) + CHAPERONES (200 8th – 11th Parents) 

LHS All Night Graduation Party:  10pm Sunday June 3rd

through 5am Monday June 4th



Community Announcements


LEF STAR Awards for Teacher Appreciation Week


In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week May 7-11, thank your teachers, coaches, counselors and others who make a difference with a LEF STAR Award. For a donation of $30 or more to Lexington Education Foundation, LEF will deliver a personalized STAR (Staff and Teacher Appreciation and Recognition) Award certificate to your teacher. Team STAR Awards are available for a donation of $60 or more. All proceeds go back to teachers and schools via teacher-initiated grants awarded by LEF.


Go to to order your STAR awards today!




Lexington Symphony Presents:

Community Music Festival, 2:00 - 5:00pm

Music from the Movies: Broadway Goes to the Movies!, 7:30pm

Saturday, May 19th, 2018 at Cary Hall

This two-part event kicks off with the fun, family-friendly, FREE celebration of cultural diversity and music, featuring an array of local ensemble performances followed by an evening concert featuring selections from legendary Tony Award winners Richard Rodgers and Leonard Bernstein, as well as highlights from Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera and much more! Special guest appearance by the New World Chorale.

Afternoon festival performances include: Boston Guzheng Ensemble (Chinese zithers), Eastern Rhythm Indian Dance Troupe, Real School of Music Students, Peter & the Wolf Lexington Symphony Quintet, Great Meadows Orchestra, Yamaha Music School Student Composers & Players and more!!

Evening concert highlights music from Jesus Christ Superstar, The King and I, My Fair Lady, Oklahoma, Man of La Mancha, West Side Story, Lord of the Rings, Les Miserables & Phantom of the Opera.




The Estabrook PTO is proud to sponsor its 10th annual Run of the Mill! On Sunday, May 20, 2018 all families and friends of the Estabrook School community are invited to join in this healthy and fun community event. To kick off the day, we will begin with the Jim Banks Kids Fun Run, followed by the main event, the 5K Run/Walk. The Kids Fun Run does not require registration.

Starting at Estabrook, the winding, hilly 5K course takes runners and walkers through the beautiful Turning Mill neighborhood, finishing back at the school. Proceeds from the race will benefit the Estabrook Elementary School. This USATF sanctioned event will be chip-timed by RaceWire. After the race, participants and spectators are invited to join in the post-race party.


To register and get event details, click this link at of-the-mill and follow the instructions.

Race Date: Sunday, May 20, 2018

Kids’ Fun Run: 9:30 AM

5K Run & Walk: 10AM

Post Race Party: Immediately following the race


Pre-race entry (before race day): $25

Race Day entry: $30

Kids’ Fun Run: Free

First 200 entries include a Run of the Mill T-shirt. 

Hope to see you on Race Day!




Summer Strategies for Your Fall Career Launch


Are you interested in getting back into the paid workforce?  Jennifer Voss, Lexington mother and Diamond parent, is hosting a free meet-up/information session with the company she works for, FlexProfessionals, a mission-driven company that helps professionals looking for flexibility-- mostly mothers-- find professional-level work at local employers. This month's Meet-Up features a mini-workshop on what you can do over the summer to land a job by the fall. Join us in a judgement free zone to learn more about returning to work on your own (flexible!) terms.


May Meet-up- Summer Strategies for Your Fall Career Launch

Wednesday 5/23, 10:30-11:30

Cambridge Savings Bank, Burlington

Free, register and read more here




Lex Hack 4 Good
Date: Saturday, May 26, 2018
Time: 9am-3pm
Location: Lexington Discovery Day (Waltham/Muzzey Parking Lot)

Design and code a website that helps the community, town, country or world. (e.g website about recycling, cancer research, animal adoption, endangered species ) Use your tech skills to make the world a better place!

Form a team with 2-4 people and complete the web project during the 6 hour period.

Prize: $200 donated to non-profit; website registration fees paid; LHS students eligible for community service credit



Don’t know how to code? No Problem!
Come learn the basics of HTML/Javascript that will allow you to create a basic website and service by the end of the session.
Friday, May 25th
Hancock United Church, 1912 Massachusetts Avenue
Two sessions to choose from - 4pm-6pm; 6pm-8pm


Sponsored by Penguin Coding School and LHS Volunteer Organizers




LEF’s Annual Celebration for Education


Get in on Early Bird pricing for tickets to Lexington Education Foundation's Celebration for Education party taking place at Hayden Lower Field on June 16, 7-11pm. 


Party with friends! Dress up and dance to live 80s dance pop and new wave music by Scattershot! Enjoy the company of our Lexington community! Treat yourself to specialty hors d'oeuvres! Refresh with beer and wine! Smile for red carpet photos!

  • Tickets are $125 ($100 limited quantity with code EARLYBIRD)
  • Tickets include: 1 person entry + 1 drink ticket + hors d'oeuvres + red carpet photo + access to online auction
  • Get tickets »

Thank you for your support, and we'll see you at the party!


LEF is a nonprofit organization of mostly volunteers dedicated to bringing the community together to fund teacher-initiated grants that enable our educators to bring their passion for learning to our classrooms by creating innovative curriculum, piloting new initiatives, and employing new technology.




Debate and Public Speaking Summer Camp


Your child can learn debate and public speaking this summer at Lumos - with locations in NY, NJ, and MA. It's a really fun program, with fun activities and games your child will love. Open to students Grades 6-9. Email or call 617-901-4564. You can use the special promo code "COMMUNITY" for $300 off - register at: