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BearFacts News                 
September 27, 2018

Message from the Principal

Dear Parents, 
I am excited to share that we had a very successful School Site Council (SSC) meeting, our first of the year, last Wednesday. Your 95 votes in favor of our proposed slate at Back to School Night allowed us to seat our new council members at that September 19 meeting. Parent members of our SSC include Katherine Cunningham (chairperson), Forrest Bell, Iracema Camargo, Betsy Hayes, Ana Smith, Jade Thomas and alternates Dawn Paxson (BSEP representative) and Sarah Herbelin. Staff members include teachers Anna Stuppi, Katie White, Pam van der Poel, Elana Woodward, classified staff member, Lily Howell, alternates Jeannie Wang and Kirstin Snyder, and me. At this first meeting, we provided an overview of the responsibilities of the SSC, discussed recent budget allocations, and learned about a new assessment called the STAR 360. 
A few important needs also came up that I'd like to share with you. Our long time BSEP (Berkeley Schools Excellence Program) representative, Dawn Paxson, will be "graduating" this year. She has done an outstanding job of representing Emerson at the district level BSEP meetings over these many years. In order to have a new representative set for next year, we should have someone shadow her this year. She would be more than willing to train a replacement over the course of this year so the new person would be ready to carry on as our representative in ‘19-20. A second representative (and alternate) we need this year is to the Parent Advisory Council (PAC). The PAC is a group of parent representatives from all schools that works with District staff to learn about, review, and make recommendations about services provided to our schools through the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP). 
I know that's a lot of words and acronyms. But I want you to know that these are both important ways to represent our school, and we are required to have people in these positions. Please email me if you are willing to consider stepping up to help out in one of these leadership roles. Just email me at
Ms. Hodge

Upcoming Events & Important Dates
  • Thurs, Sept. 27: Walkathon registration packets due (today!)
  • Fri, Sept. 28: School Picture Day, Grades 3-5 & Free coffee and pastries on the yard at 8:10am
  • Mon, Oct. 1: Enrichment classes begin.
  • Weds, Oct 3: Equity Speaker Event 6-8pm, childcare and dinner provided (see details below)
  • Fri, Oct 5: Free coffee and pastries on the yard at 8:10am; All School Meeting 8:30am; Deadline to complete Equity Circle interest form
  • Mon, Oct 8: No School: Staff Development Day
Find more dates / details at:
PTA-Sponsored Speaker Presentation 

All welcome on October 3 for "Empowering Parents for Social Change: Tools to help our children flourish during these uncertain times." Presented by equity expert Pamela Harrison Small. 6:00pm - 8:00pm. Childcare and dinner provided.
Reminder: Walkathon Registration Due Today!

Join fellow Emerson students to walk on October 21, from 11-3. Please make sure to return your completed registration form and check by Thursday, September 27. (Registration packets and pledge envelopes were in last week's look folders.) If you would like to help volunteer to help with this awesome Emerson tradition, please email

Enrichment Classes Start Monday

PTA After-school Enrichment classes begin Monday, October 1. Please let your student know their new after-school schedule. If you are not in Kids' World, please be at the Enrichment classroom door five minutes before the end of class for pick-up. Class locations are posted on the Enrichment bulletin board in the main hall. 
Questions? Email

Order Your Emerson Gear

If you didn’t get a chance to purchase your t-shirt or hoodie at the Back-to-School BBQ, now is your chance! We’re taking orders for the October shipment of Emerson gear, and you can still get your school spirit on! We are putting together a large order of t-shirts and hoodies to arrive in October around the time of the Walk-A-Thon. We’ll be accepting orders through Monday, October 1, so don’t miss out on that cool hoodie you know you want! Pick up your order form in the ‘Emerson Gear’ mailbox in the front office at school or email to request a PDF of the form. Drop off  your completed order form and payment in the ‘Emerson Gear’ mailbox in the front office.
Join the Emerson Racial Equity Circle 

A reminder that ALL parents/guardians and staff are invited to participate in the Fall 2018 Equity Circle. We will engage in "real talk" about diversity and inclusion, improving student achievement and increasing parent engagement. The kick-off is Saturday, October 13 9:00am-2:00pm, and then the group will meet on Thursdays 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8 and 11/15 from 6-8pm. Childcare and food provided. Interest forms are available in the Emerson office or email any of the Equity Liaisons: Katy Davis (, Mary Gilg (, Mia Villanueva ( or Emily Nathan ( The deadline to submit an interest form is OCTOBER 5.
Message from the Berkeley Public Library

Calling all 4th and 5th graders! Come join Berkeley Public Library’s 4th & 5th Grade Book Club. Read and talk about great books, eat yummy snacks, play games, make new friends, discover new authors, and meet an author via Skype. The club meets once a month, and the first meeting of the school year is Tuesday, October 2 from 4-5 pm in the Central Library (2090 Kittredge St) 4th floor Children’s Room. At this meeting, we vote on books to read for the remainder of the year, so no preparation is necessary. Contact Ann at or (510) 981-6223 with any questions.
Donate to the Heart of Emerson!

Please be on the lookout for the red "Heart of Emerson" donation forms coming in the look folders this week. Our goal this year is to raise $550 per child, and we can't do it without you. If you are a new parent, hopefully you are feeling how special our community is. If you are returning parent, you know how lucky we are to be a part of this incredible school. Help us foster and grow Emerson's culture by donating to the Heart of Emerson. We are accepting donations now via the link at the bottom of this newsletter. If you’d like more information about this fundraiser, please contact


Shop for Emerson!
Click below to raise money for Emerson when you shop at Amazon

Find Emerson Online


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About BearFacts News:
BearFacts News is a weekly publication created by parent volunteers. It is distributed each Thursday in students' Look Folders and via email. 

If you have a news item or announcement to include in the BearFacts News, please send an email to Please keep your message brief and include all the pertinent details including dates, times, locations and contact information. The deadline is each Monday at 6 p.m.

Copyright © 2018. Emerson Elementary PTA. All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
2800 Forest Ave.
Berkeley, CA  94705

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Emerson PTA · 2800 Forest Ave · Berkeley, CA 94705 · USA

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