Upper Elementary News
Learning Support Lab students at FUEL took a break Wednesday to work outside and get some fresh air. A member of the 5th grade garden club and several other 4th and 5th graders went in search of a potato harvest in one of the back gardens at FUEL.
Planted in the spring after the building was closed, the Big Green gardens and the back raised beds still did their thing with the help of 2 dedicated FUEL parents–Christine Martin and Keri Winne–and Ms. Hillebrand as the planting and watering team!
The kids were able harvest about 7 pounds of potatoes, with enough left in the ground for another harvest day. The front gardens will also host a harvest day pop-up for students to pick some carrots and potatoes and gather dried flower seeds on the calendula plants to save for next year. We will keep families posted on the pop-up dates.
Montessori is a curriculum with great emphasis placed on didactic materials. Moving to an online format creates some very unique challenges for our Montessori program! With everyone being at home, monthly subscription boxes have become more and more popular. So, Ferndale Schools Montessori Teacher Amy decided to put the two together. Thus, the FrasBox was born! (The name FrasBox is a play on their self-assigned classroom nickname: the SassaFRAS Room.)
With a team of amazing volunteers to create materials and deliver the boxes, children in the Sassafras Room will receive a box of didactic materials delivered to their door to help with their learning each month. This allows them to have the sensorial opportunities necessary to move them from concrete experiences to abstract reasoning.
Special thanks to the following family members for making materials, delivering boxes, and picking up boxes from children's homes so that Mrs. Pommereau can sort things out and have a new box ready to go next month! Half of the Montessori families volunteered to help out in some way!
- Veronica Kisor
- Jennifer Rogers
- Jen Beaudoin
- Sylvia Oatley
- Kirsten Suer
- Dennis O'Connell
- Emilie Macaulay
- Susie Oswald
- Christina Mossine
- Tecla Wolfe
- Jessica Paruch
- Lucas Harrison-Zdenek
- Megan Owens
Here is a picture of some of the items that went out to kids this weekend:
Mrs. Pommereau said she is "Feeling beyond grateful for this AMAZING community of learners! It truly takes a village to raise a child and I am so honored to be apart of these families' village!"
Ferndale Lower Elementary students were invited to a very fun and active Pop-Up with Playworks on the Lower playground. Students had a great time while staying safe and enjoying the beautiful weather. Watch for more pop-ups throughout the year!
Ferndale Schools continues to provide contactless meal pick-up for children throughout building closures. Pick-up is available at the FMS North Entrance at 725 Pinecrest Dr. (glass awning pictured below):
- 9:00 am – noon
- Breakfast and Lunch for Mon, Tues, Wed
- 9:00 am – noon
- Breakfast and Lunch for Thur, Fri, Sat, Sun
Meals include breakfast and lunch including milk. Vegetarian options are available upon request.
Due to Labor Day building closures, meals intended for Tuesday (9/8/20) were given on Wed (9/2/20), in anticipation for the holiday.
We will be open for service 9:00 am–Noon on Wednesday the 9th and Thursday the 10th for this week only.
We have set up a complete guide to returning to learning for this fall on our website. You will find helpful information, upcoming dates & times, and all the documents you need start distance learning on August 31st.
Visit FerndaleSchools.org/Return today!
It is with great excitement that I announce the hiring of Radhika Issac as the new principal of Ferndale High School and the promotion of David Gardner as the new principal of University High School.
With 20 years as an educator, Radhika brings experiences as a classroom teacher, curriculum coordinator, and administrator to Ferndale Public Schools. Leading with empathy to build meaningful relationships is what defines both her professional and personal focus. Radhika actively facilitates opportunities to grow equitable access to curriculum and instruction for all students, families, and staff. She has been a learner, leader, and advocate for social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion in both at the district and county level.
"I am eager to join the Ferndale Public Schools family. I look forward to connecting with each student, family, and staff member at Ferndale High School as we continue to build a community that honors our history and culture. I will strive to support students and staff as we develop our purpose, create a plan, and find our passions," Radhika Issac, Principal, Ferndale High School.
David Gardner graduated from Ferndale High School and has been a leader at University High School for more than a decade, first as a teacher, then counselor, assistant principal, and now principal. David inspires everyone around him to be a better educator, colleague, mentor, and person. The meaningful and authentic relationships he establishes with students and staff have lead to significant increases in student academic achievement and growth at UHS.
"I am excited and prepared to continue working on behalf of the students, families, and staff of UHS and Ferndale Public Schools. I recognize the strong work ethic and innovative practices of the UHS team and pledge to support them as we continue our journey of equity through inclusive and relevant curriculum and instruction and meaningful socio-emotional practices. UHS is a special place and I consider myself fortunate to be given the opportunity to continue the growth of its student-centered culture," David Gardner, Principal, University High School.
Our Ferndale Family is incredibly lucky to welcome these outstanding educational leaders to their new roles.
Dania H. Bazzi, PhD
Superintendent, Ferndale Schools
Starting on July 1st, Ferndale Schools will be transitioning to a new communication platform, replacing Q Communication with Remind. While we understand how frustrating it is to learn a new system, this decision was made after careful deliberation and consultation with many staff and community members.
What is Remind?
If you're not already familiar with Remind, it's a classroom communication tool that makes it easy to stay involved with your child's learning. Remind is free to use, and you'll be able to get and send messages on any device—even a simple text message from your phone! Remind uses email, text, and telephone calls to help you communicate with individuals or groups quickly and safely. Many staff, parents, coaches, and students may already be experienced in using Remind.
How does this impact me?
Families are automatically signed up to receive communication from their child's school, teachers, and Ferndale Schools. In order to receive emails, telephone calls, and even text messages, all you have to do is maintain your contact information and manage your personal preferences within our student information system, MiStar. Click here to update your contact information in MiStar. If you do not remember your login information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of this rollout, official accounts will be created for all the educators, parents, and students in Ferndale Schools. Around the 1st of July, you'll receive an email or text message from Remind. All you need to do is follow the steps in the message to finish setting up your account. Watch a video demo here to see how Remind works »
Thank you for your patience and flexibility as we roll out this new system. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to ask.
5th graders transitioned out of Ferndale Upper Elementary with a 17-minute video celebration on Thursday. The first 6 minutes is the actual "celebration" that would have been held on the playground. Thanks for a great year, and good luck to the incoming Middle Schoolers!
In conjunction with Lighthouse, St David's Episcopal Church in Southfield will be distributing 20 lb boxes of fresh produce every Thursday through August. Boxes will contain potatoes, onions, celery, carrots, cabbage, apples and strawberries. The hours of the distribution are Thursdays, 9:30 am – 1:00 pm. The church is located at 16200 12 Mile Rd, Southfield, MI 48076.
Thursdays 9:30 am - 1:00 pm
St David’s Episcopal Church
16200 12 Mile Rd, Southfield, MI 48076
During times of crisis, our students need extra support to process their emotions. The Michigan Cares Portal offers Michigan families and educators FREE digital lessons designed to help students in grades K-12 develop the skills required for social, emotional, and mental well-being. This portal will be freely available until the end of the 20-21 school year.
Topic covered include:
- Mental health
- Stress management
- Time management
- Nutrition and wellness
- Anger management
- Social media use (pressures and responsible use)
- And hundreds more!
This week, we received the results of a community survey conducted by the City of Ferndale through the Cobalt Community Research Company. This survey showed tremendous gains in the community's perception of Ferndale Schools compared to the previous time the survey was conducted in 2009. Below you will find several slides showcasing the tremendous growth.
While we are very excited to see this renewed confidence you have shown in our progress, we also want to assure you, that as an organization committed to continuous improvement we will not rest on our laurels but rather continue our efforts to provide each student with the world class education they deserve.
Ferndale School Family is looking for volunteers to be part of the District Wellness Committee. The committee will support our new Strategic Plan goal to examine, motivate, and ensure physical, mental and nutritional health and overall wellness for our entire school family. This committee will be comprised of families, community members, secondary students, and staff members. If this is of interest to you, please email Dina Rocheleau at Dina.Rocheleau@ferndaleschools.org.
Our first meeting will take place on March 23 at 4:00 pm, Ferndale High School, Room 333. Once the team meets, we will make a collective decision on what dates and times work best for the team.