PTA Weekly Newsletter February 15, 2019

February 15, 2019 Issue 

In this issue:

Dates to put in the CalendarFebruary 18-22Schools closed (February vacation)Wednesday February 27Winter Orchestra Concert , LHS Gymnasium (7:30 pm)Thursday February 28PPC School Committee Candidates’ Forum, Community Center (9:30am)
Youth Substance Use, LHS Commons 1 (7pm)March 7 - 10School Musical "Annie", Auditorium (7:30pm, 11am)Monday March 11PTA Board Meeting (9 am)Announcements from Diamond PTA

There will be no Weekly Newsletter over February vacation, but we will be back on March 1.  
Hope you all have a good break!

Youth Substance Use: What Parents Need to Know 

  • When: Thursday, February 28, 7 pm

  • Where: LHS, Commons 1

  • Co-sponsored by: LHS PTO, Clarke PTO, and Diamond PTA

Parents of 6-12th graders are invited to this important session led by LPD School Resource Officer Kristina Hankins and Lexington Public Schools Prevention Specialist Kristie Demirev, LICSW. Parents will have the opportunity to hear about current trends in youth substance use (including vaping, marijuana, and alcohol); review recent data; understand the science behind the developing brain and the impact of substances; and learn strategies for talking with their children. LHS students will also be in attendance to facilitate Q&A with parents. This will be an interactive session, and all are welcome. The "Hidden in Plain Sight" display of a mock teen bedroom will also be set up starting at 6:30 for parents to walk through to help them understand common household items that could be an indication of substance use by their teen.


Upcoming Diamond and LPS Events

Parents/Guardians of Grade 8 Students: Class of 2023 Events

  • February 26 and February 28: LHS Presentation to Diamond MS Students (in school)

For more information on events at LHS:


PPC School Committee Candidates’ Forum

  • When: Thursday, February 28, 9:30-11 am

  • Where: Community Center, Rm 237

Residents are encouraged to come and find out more about Scott Bokun and Eileen Jay, the two candidates running for School Committee. This is a great opportunity to meet the candidates and share your thoughts on what you are looking for in a School Committee member. We will have ample time for audience questions during the event, but you can also submit questions prior to the forum HERE.
For more information or questions, please email:
Sara Cuthbertson, Chair, PTA/O Presidents Council


Phase II Redistricting, Advisory Committee Application Deadline Feb 20

At the January 22nd School Committee meeting, Superintendent Julie Hackett announced the start of Phase II elementary and middle school redistricting. Phase I redistricting began in 2015, with an outcome of some modification of the elementary school assignment map that applied to new,
incoming students. It was planned that Phase II would involve a more comprehensive effort that would occur at or near completion of the new Lexington Children’s Place and Hastings Elementary School. It is now time for us to begin the challenging and important work of adjusting our school assignment maps.

Phase II Redistricting is expected to be more widespread, impacting more neighborhoods and areas of town than our 2015 redistricting effort. Our goal is to effectively use existing and newly available school capacity to ensure learning environments that are as equitable as possible for all students
across the district. New maps will be implemented for the 2020-21 school year.

A complete project timeline is available at: The full Superintendent’s report can be read at New information and redistricting updates will be posted to the Superintendent’s blog at

  • Advisory Committee: Interested in participating in our Advisory Committee? Parents or caregivers may apply herebetween now and February 20.

  • Twitter/Facebook: Interested in staying informed and up to date on LPS elementary and middle school redistricting? Information and updates will be posted to the Superintendent’s blog at


LexSEPAC/SEPTA Special Education Resource Fair

  • When: Saturday, March 2, 10 am - 1 pm

  • Where: Community Center

Please join Lexington SEPAC/SEPTA for the second annual Special Needs Resource Fair. Come meet therapists, recreational organizations, nonprofits, support groups, and other providers who serve families and children with special needs. Child care will be available.  For more information about the fair and other special needs programming, please visit us. Did you know it's free to join?


Save the Date: 5th Annual Lexington Parent Academy

  • When: Saturday, March 23, 9:30 am – 2:30 pm

  • Where: Lexington’s Community Center

Designed to educate and empower parents and caregivers to manage the changing demands of parenting in today’s world, this is a free event for all interested parents and community members.  A list of presenters will available soon.  Please contact Julie Fenn, Assistant Coordinator of PE, Health and Wellness with any questions:


Fourth Annual Diamond STEAM Fair 2019

  • When: Wednesday, March 27, 6-7:30pm (awards 7:30-8pm)

  • Where: Diamond Cafeteria

  • Register: Use QR code on the flyers and mini cards, or go to the website and select STEAM FAIR

  • Registration deadline: March 10

Who can participate? All Diamond students can participate, either as individuals or in a team.
Is this a Science Fair?  A STEAM fair is similar to a science fair, but is open to even more project topics. Steami s an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math.  Projects at past fairs have included a variety of topics: poetry, a homemade beverage dispenser, an intro to fencing, human impact on coral reefs, optical illusions, DNA models, optimizing a glider, the best tasting cookie, slime, ultimate artwork, origami, clay figures, black holes, bottle rockets, Flint Michigan water crisis, music compositions, and more.
Can I use a project I created for something else? Yes! If you have created a poem, composed music, or created artwork, you can share it at the steamfair.  If you were on a robotics team, you can bring in your robot.  If you participated in the Science Olympiad you can bring in your project. If you have a project for a class in school, you can bring it.  You can create a project specifically for thesteamfairon a topic that interests you, or you can use a project you created that you would like to share with others at the fair.
Do I have to make a poster?  No, it's not required.
Are there awards?  Awards will be determined in multiple categories by impartial members of the community, in addition to a "People's Choice" award to be determined by visitors at the fair.
Questions? Email


LexSEPTA / SEPAC Events: Winter / Spring 2019

Link to events:  To register for a speaker event:  click on event, registration button appears at bottom of description.


Diamond Performing Arts Calendar

FOLMADS is proud to present the listing of Diamond Performing Arts Events for the next couple of months.  The full calendar can be found at:

Diamond Performing Arts Calendar of Events 2018-2019DateEvent DescriptionTimeLocationWed, Feb 27Winter Orchestra Concert - All 5th Grade Strings, All Town Orchestra, Clarke and Diamond 7th Grade Combined Orchestra, LHS Repertoire Orchestra7:30pmLHS GymnasiumThu, Mar 7 - Sun Mar 10Diamond Middle School Musical Production "Annie"7:30pm
11amDiamond Middle SchoolWed, Mar 13LPS Vertical Chorus Concert (Grades 5-12)6:30pmLHS Gymnasium


Community Announcements

A Midwinter's Evening: Lexington Symphony's The Muse, Feb 16

Come in from the cold with a heartwarming evening at Lexington Symphony this Saturday! Two inventive Stravinsky pieces showcase the richness and precision of our wonderful string players through dancing lyrical melodies and dense rhythmic textures. Nielsen's Little Suite is fresh and appealing, by turns charming and dramatic. And Principal Clarinet Bill Kirkley steps into the spotlight with Finzi's expressive yet playful clarinet concerto. Altogether, a perfect respite on a winter's night:

  • Stravinsky | Concerto in D. 

  • Finzi | Clarinet Concerto, Op. 31 - Bill Kirkley, Clarinet

  • Nielsen | Little Suite for Strings Op. 1

  • Stravinsky | Apollon Musagète

 Please be in touch if you have questions: Alix Fox,


Overcoming Unconscious Bias Workshop, Feb 23

  • When: February 23, 10 am - 12 pm

  • Where: Cary Library (large meeting room)

  • RegisterCary LIbrary Calendar

All of us harbor unconscious biases, even those of us with positive intentions. The good news is that training can help us recognize our biases, challenge them, and replace them with inclusive practices. Doing so can create a more just and welcoming environment for all. This training covers all types of biases. It is suitable for adults and motivated teens. Sponsored by LexPride and Cary Memorial Library.  This event is free, but space is limited.


Gal Project, Feb 25

  • When: Monday, Feb 25, 6–7 pm

  • Where: Cary Library

  • RegisterCary Library

Through exploring debate, public speaking, and quiz bowl activities, the Gal Project seeks to empower girls in Grades 6-8 to develop critical thinking skills, teamwork, and self-confidence.  The next session will cover science bowl/quiz bowl competitions, and the girls will get the opportunity to try them out and ask questions!
The Gal Project is led by Jyothsna Bolleddula, a junior at LHS, who developed the program at the MIT Leadership Training Institute and through a Disney Be Inspired grant.  Ms.  Bolleddula has experience working with middle school students and has also been involved with Model UN, debate teams, quiz bowl and student government.


Training Active Bystanders for Children, Feb 22

  • When: Friday, February 22, 10am - 12 pm (Grades 4-6) or 2 - 4 pm (Grades 7-10)

  • Where: Cary Library (large meeting room)

  • Recommended: Grades 4-6 or Grades 7-10

  • RegisterLibrary online calendar (sign up opens on February 11 at 7 pm)

If you witness a harmful situation, you have a choice to make. Do you do something? What do you do? This program helps you recognize when you are a bystander, how you can interrupt harm, and how you can encourage others to help as well.  These sessions are free, but space is limited. 


Special Education at Minuteman High School, Feb 25

  • When: Monday, February 25, 6 - 7.30pm

  • Where: Community Center

We are finding that a lot of people within the community aren’t aware of everything Minuteman offers students.  Did you know that almost 50% of Minuteman students receive support through an IEP? Did you also know that Minuteman earned a 2018 National Blue Ribbon Award?  Representatives from Minuteman will explain Minuteman’s educational model, the opportunities and services available, and how students apply for admission. The goal is to help families understand all of their options for high school in order make informed decisions about their future. See you there!


Grade School/Middle School Spring Softball Training Clinic, Mar 5-7

  • When: Tuesday-Thursday March 5, 6 and 7 (makeup date: March 13, 5 -7 pm)

  • Where: LHS Field House, 251 Waltham Street

  • For: Grades 2-8 (groups will be broken into grades to work through in stations together)

  • Fee: $75

  • Register: e-mail Connie Stump

Instructors: Coaches & Players of the Lexington High School Softball teams.
Clinic goals: Get ready for your Middle School/Little League softball season! This clinic will prepare and condition players for the season ahead. Players will be kept moving and active, going through a variety of drills in their stations. The clinic will primarily focus on the skills of throwing, fielding, base running, hitting and pitching. Any player that’s interested in pitching will have an opportunity to get instruction and work on their mechanics.
Things to remember: Wear sneakers/running shoes, Bring your own bat/glove; Battling helmet, if you own one; In the event of weather issues, please check your email.


Won't You Be My Neighbor?, Mar 13
"moving and illuminating" -- The New York Times
"touching, triumphant tribute" -- Common Sense Media
"timely and timeless" -- Rolling Stone

Come to a free screening of the Mr. Rogers documentary, "Won't You Be My Neighbor?”, part of the 2019 Discovery Museum Speaker Series. Doors open at 6:30pm, movie 7 – 9pm. Watch the official trailer here


Lexington Ski Club

For almost fifty years the Lexington Ski Club has catered to avid snow sport families.  Members enjoy comfortable accommodations at our lodge located in the White Mountains, prepared hot meals during ski season, and after ski activities such as board games and ping pong.  If your family likes to ski or snowboard and appreciates cooperative living, the Lexington Ski Club might be for you.  Currently, we are accepting applications for new members.  For additional information, please contact Joe Scholl at jpscholl4@gmail.comor 781-891-1832 or visit our website.