Monday, September 28, 2009

Partnership for South Portland Schools

Parents, this is your chance to be heard. Good schools are an integral part of any successful community. A school system in decline means negative population growth, a shrinking tax base, and, worst of all, less opportunities for our children’s future. To ensure that South Portland schools remain strong, a group of South Portland parents recently formed the Partnership for South Portland Schools (SPPS).

The goal of the group is to be a both a sounding board and an independent source of advice for South Portland School Department, as well as a conduit of information about South Portland schools to our community at large.

We want to be able to work on political issues facing all levels of South Portland schools, work toward the betterment of our schools, and, eventually, establish a foundation that would seek to make the educational standards in our schools some of the best in the state.

This is a critical moment in South Portland School history; enrollment is up at the elementary level, the middle schools are in the midst of several educational, technological, and safety upgrades, and, last year, our High School was placed on a warning status for national accreditation because of physical plant structural concerns. It’s time for South Portland parents to take ownership of their child’s educational experience and the Partnership for South Portland Schools will seek to do that.

The initial organizational meeting for this school year will take place on Wednesday, October 7, 6:30 PM, at the Rec Center. Please attend if you can. Ask your PTA for updates on SPPS progress if you can’t. Good schools build good communities!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Grades K-2 5:30pm - 6:15pm  
Grades 3-5 6:30pm - 7:15pm 

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Volunteer Orientation

The South Portland School Department recommends that all school volunteers participate in a training session to ensure the ongoing safety and security of our students, staff, and community. We invite you to attend any session that fits your schedule. If you are a Veteran SoPo School Volunteer, please remember to fill out a new registration form each year. It is not necessary to attend a training every year.

September 21, 2009 9:00am Small School
September 22, 2009 9:00am Dyer School
September 23, 2009 9:00am Kaler School
October 1, 2009 6:00pm Skillin School
October 5, 2009 9:00am Skillin School
October 14, 2009 6:30pm Brown School

Contact Molly Aldrich, Director of Volunteer Services, with any questions (773-5629, ext. 432 or

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ice Cream Social, Friday, 9/25, 6-8pm

Mark your calenders! Skip dinner! Drop by the gym on Friday the 25th at 6:00-8:00 pm for the first social of the year. We'll supply the ice cream and the toppings. You bring the mouths to feed. Mingle with other Small families while the kids eat and run off their sugar high. And it's become sort of a tradition that dads polish up their scoops and flex their muscles while they dish out the ice cream, so if you can help out with that, or gathering donations, or cleaning up, drop Margaret Donahue (PTA Co-Pres) a line at

Monday, September 14, 2009

Volunteers Needed for Flu Shot Clinics

The South Portland School Department will be providing free Seasonal Flu Vaccine Clinics at schools in September and November. The Nursing Department is seeking help from parents who are nurses to volunteer to be a back up for the EMT personnel running the clinics. The nurse volunteers will be asked to keep an eye on the kids who have had their shots, to look for any reactions.

Small School will have its clinic at the start of the school day on Monday, September 28th. If you are qualified and able to volunteer during this clinic, please contact the Small School nurse, Louise Cormier (

H1N1 Flu Vaccine Clinics will be held in November and December.

We are also seeking volunteers (no medical expertise needed) to assist with helping kids back and forth to their classrooms. If you can assist, please call the office: 799-7676

Friday, September 11, 2009


Co-President, Jim Frederick (
Jim returns as PTA President, this time, sharing duties with Margaret. Previously Jim was Secretary for two years. This is his last year at Small as next year his youngest, Ethan, moves on to Mahoney, where his daughter Isabella is currently an eighth grader. Jim is a life-long resident of South Portland. In fact, Jim's 3rd grade teacher at Hamlin, Anne Tewhey, also taught his two kids in 3rd grade at Small! Now that's life in a small town.

Co-President, Margaret Donahue (
Margaret is joining the PTA as Co-President. Margaret has a daughter, Eleanor, who is beginning first grade, a daughter, Alice, who is beginning kindergarten and a son, Miles, who will be running close behind them. Margaret has joined the PTA because she has a strong interest in being a part of the community.

Co-Vice President, Stephanie Pandora (
Stephanie and her husband Peter are parents of second grader, Anna Louise, and also of Whitney, a Senior at Saint Michael's College in Burlington, Vermont. This is her third year as a PTA member and her second as Vice President. Stephanie comments, “I simply love Small School and its community-kids, parents, teachers, neighbors-and desire to be involved and helpful however I am needed. I always welcome all input and ideas so feel free to reach out to me if you wish. I am looking forward to a fun and enriching year! ”

Co-Vice President, Pam Remy (

Pam has a son, Eli, who is starting in the 1st grade, and a younger son, Henry, who will be starting kindergarten next year. By getting involved in the PTA, Pam hopes to help Small School teachers and administrators create an educational and enriching environment for her children to learn in.

Secretary, Sue Peterson (

Sue is looking forward to her 2nd year as serving as PTA Secretary on the executive committee. Sue is mom to Bradley who is in 3rd grade this year. She loves the Small School Community and encourages everyone to join the PTA and get involved.

Treasurer, Carol Zechman (

Carol joins the executive committee this year as Treasurer. Carol is mom to Finn in 5th grade and Paul in 1st grade. She also has a 7th grader at Mahoney. She is looking forward to becoming more involved with the Small School Community since transferring from Brown School last year.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


Small School PTA welcomes all new and returning families! The goal of our PTA is to enhance our children's education by promoting a strong community and supporting school education. We fundraise to support field trips, school projects, classroom supplies, and grounds improvements, and provide a communication forum for our school community.

All parents are welcome to join the PTA. There is a yearly $5.00 fee to join, but you can donate more; $1.75 goes to the National PTA, $2.50 goes to Maine PTA and any additional funds are used by the Small School PTA to support Small School. The money you spend is tax deductible.

If you have any questions or would like more information about your Small School PTA, please contact a PTA executive member:

Presidents: Jim Frederick (
Margaret Donahue (
Vice Presidents: Stephanie Pandora (
Pam Remy (
Secretary: Sue Peterson (
Treasurer: Carol Zechman

Please join us!