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Welcome Back from the Principal: August 29, 2017

Dear Cambridgeport Families,

As August comes to a close, I am missing you all more than ever! I have been thinking a lot this summer about what a unique community we have here at Cambridgeport. We are truly fortunate to have a community that is filled with people from different backgrounds, coming together every day to learn, engage, celebrate, play, laugh, and wonder. Now more than ever, I want to be sure that we take the time to honor and celebrate that diversity. As you think about the return to school, I encourage you and your children to bring your WHOLE selves to school each day. We welcome all of you, and all parts of you. This is what makes us a community.

At the end of last year, we conducted a brief survey, asking the Cambridgeport community, “What makes Cambridgeport unique?” We asked this question in a variety of ways, and got a variety of answers, but there was one common theme. Most people mentioned in some way that Cambridgeport is a small school. I will admit that at first I was disappointed in this response. How could the mere size of a school make us unique? And anyway, that is not something we really have control over, so it shouldn’t be something to be proud of. But then I stepped back and looked at the size of schools across the district. We are actually NOT a small school. There are only 4 schools that are larger than Cambridgeport. Cambridgeport isn’t inherently a small school. But Cambridgeport feels like a small school because we are a tight-knit community, looking out for one another. We care about one another like a family.

I miss you, family! I can’t wait to see all of your shining faces again in September! You will notice some changes when you come to school next. We have added a Kindergarten classroom! This also means that we do not have a computer lab anymore. Our library is getting a bit of a make-over as we make this change, and may not be ready for you to check out books on the first day of school. But don’t worry, Liz the Librarian will be here, ready to welcome you.

There are also some new faces around the school:

Liz Barlock—new kindergarten teacher joining us in a newly constructed classroom! Liz has just moved here from the Chicago area where she has been teaching kindergarten in progressive schools for the past 12 years.

Amel Younis—assistant teacher in Justin’s classroom (Val is going to be working in Liz’s classroom). Amel completed a teacher education program as an undergraduate, and he has been working at a charter school in Worcester for the past few years.

Michayla MacGlashing—assistant teacher in Diane’s classroom. Many of you (and certainly the children) know Michayla from Wade’s community schools program. She has taught many classes, and has already integrated herself into the community in many ways.

Owen Lewis—building substitute. Many of you know Owen from his substitute work at Cambridgeport last year. He was a beloved daily substitute, and now he will be at Cambridgeport every day!

Killian Mooney—music teacher. Killian brings great love of music and enthusiasm for teaching. He has been teaching music at a private school in Cambridge for the past three years. He will be at Cambridgeport on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays.

Annie Shah—literacy coach for 3rd-5th grades. Annie will be at Cambridgeport every other week, and her alternate weeks are at the Haley pilot school in Boston. Before working at the Haley, she taught for several years at Young Achievers in Boston. She is a literacy collaborative trained coach, with a passion for integrated, project-based learning.

Mei Cornue-Hollander—full-time assistant in 1st grade with Alexandria. Mei recently completed her teacher preparation program as an undergraduate at Brandeis University.

Pearl Kerber—full time intern in 1st grade with Jackie. Pearl is a student at Lesley University, and has been leading outdoor education through Mass Audubon.

Megan Porter—full time intern in 2nd grade with Maisha. Megan’s claim to fame here at Cambridgeport is that she taught in Dana’s daughter’s classroom in Brookline!

Ally Ryan—full time intern in 2nd grade with Suzie. Ally is not new this year, but she’s in a new position as an intern with Suzie.

Some important reminders (or new information for those of you who are new):

  • The district will be mailing home the annual booklet of required forms. Please complete and bring this to school on the first day of school.
  • Our cafeteria opens for breakfast at 7:45AM. The doors will be locked prior to 7:45AM. Please do not drop students off before 7:45AM. In the event that your child is on a bus that arrives before 7:45AM, we will be sure that they are supervised.
  • Our school day starts at 8:10AM. Important learning for all children starts at this time. Please plan to arrive at school at 8:10AM.
  • If you would like to walk your child into the school building (which we do encourage) and you are driving, please leave enough time to find parking. You may not park in front of the school to drop off. This space is reserved for bus parking.

Other information you may need:

  • All staff emails are: first name initial, last name @cpsd.us
  • School Phone Number: 617.349.6587
    • Main office—Extension 150
    • Family Liaison—Extension 111
    • School Nurse—Extension 203
  • School Fax—617.349.6511
  • Cambridgeport Afterschool Program: 617.497.0063
  • Cambridgeport Community Schools: 617.349.6307
  • Our school website will be updated regularly with our newsletters as well as updated event information: cambridgeport.cpsd.us

I can’t wait to see everyone on the first day of school, and/or at the Potluck on the Playground on Tuesday, September 12th at 6PM.