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PTSA Summer Update – June 22

While the school year is officially over, there is still much happening this summer during this unprecedented time. So we’ll be sending out a PTSA summer update at the beginning of each week. This week we have updates from REC and the Family Support Team:

HW PTSA RACIAL EQUITY COMMITTEE (REC):

Hazel Wolf Community of Practice for White Men/Those who identify as white men: We are creating an online Community of Practice (CP) for white men affiliated with HW. The focus will be anti-racism work. The goal of a CP is to create a community of people who want to focus on a subject, to learn from each other, and to be accountable to the others in the group. It is meant to be safe, challenging, and engaged. We are starting this CP for white men in response to interest from men following formation of the CP for white women.

Each meeting will have a facilitator, who will send out the general topic, and any (brief!) readings. The facilitator will loosely guide the discussion, encouraging everyone to speak and to listen. The facilitator will keep an eye on the time, and draw the meeting to a close in a positive way, noting any major themes and letting participants know about the take-home ideas or actions, as well as the time and focus of the next meeting time.

Possible focus subjects are the following:
– What does it mean to be white?
– How can parents/fathers best talk with their kids about racism and racist events?
– What actions can we take as white men, beyond reading books, especially if we don’t know any BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color)?
– How do we as white men talk with white family or friends who have racist views, who “don’t see color,” who say “all lives matter”?

If you are interested in attending, email ptsa_rec@hazelwolfk8.org. We will send you the Zoom link and any other info needed.

We will begin next week, Tuesday, June 23rd at 8:00 pm, then decide on the schedule going forward (every other week, for example). Going into the summer, in these unprecedented times, we expect that folks will miss some sessions, but hope that folks will participate with consistency. We are not looking for perfection. We are looking for engagement, discussion, deep listening, and accountability. Any questions? ptsa_rec@hazelwolfk8.org

Hazel Wolf Community of Practice for White Women continues this Sunday 4:00-5:00pm. A couple weeks ago, we introduced an online Community of Practice (CP) for white women affiliated with Hazel Wolf, and it has been very well attended with more than 40 participants. The goal of a CP is to create a community of people who want to focus on anti-racism and related subjects, learn from each other, and be accountable to the others in the group. It is meant to be safe, challenging, and engaging. We will continue to meet weekly for one hour each Sunday in June from 4:00-5:00pm. We will then decide if we continue on a weekly basis or switch to a different schedule (every other week, for example). For meeting details, contact Maureen McCauley at ptsa_rec@hazelwolfk8.org.

Please check out the REC section on the PTSA blog to learn more about the formation of these CPs.

FAMILY SUPPORT:

Thank you to our incredible community for your continued support of the Honor Pantry at the school building. The most needed items at the pantry are personal hygiene and cleaning items– laundry detergent, shampoo (Pantene or Suave), hand soap (Dove), dish soap (sink), dish washing detergent (dish washer), bleach, and baby wipes. Additionally: puzzles, books (kids and adults), art supplies, games, and playing cards.

Non-perishable food items and long-lasting fresh produce are always welcome. Shoe and clothing donations are not needed at this time. Also, we are trying to find a working lawn mower for a family. If you, or someone you know, are ready to pass one on, please let us know.

There are many ways to donate:
1) Drop off items at the Honor Pantry at the front of the school at any time.
2) Drop off items at a volunteer’s house (email familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org for address).
3) Order from our updated Amazon wishlist.
4) Order from your store of choice and ship to a volunteer’s house.
5) Donate to the COVID-19 Relief Fund that is open for donations.

If your family could use help with supplemental grocery delivery, or if you’d like to be added to our list of volunteer drivers, you can email Tracy Buckingham at: familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org

Volunteers to check on pantry: We hope to have a volunteer check on the school pantry every day this summer to take general inventory, keep it tidy and make sure grains and produce are in bins away from critters. Please consider signing up for some days here on this Signup Genius.

Introducing the Hazel Wolf Lake City Pantry! We are opening a second pantry to support families who live in the Lake City area. Items will be stored in the Build Lake City Together office on Lake City Way. This will be different than the Hazel Wolf school pantry, as items will not be out in public for families to pick up at any time. Families will need to contact the Family Support Team to pick up items there.
Hazel Wolf Lake City Pantry location:
Build Lake City Together office
12544 Lake City Way NE, 98125

  • Drop off items for donation: Monday and Tuesday, 11am-1pm
  • Pick up items: Contact Tracy Buckingham or Zoe Leverson to set up a time for pick up. The Family Support Team will continue to send out pictures of items available on a weekly basis.  Families can then contact Tracy or Zoe about the items they need and those items can be picked or delivered.

Does your family or student need help meeting your basic needs? Such as needs for your student to learn and play or needs for your family to remain healthy? Principal Nelsen has access to a limited fund to help support our families. To request support please fill out this form. *NOTE: While we will do our best to connect students and families with resources available, we do not make any promises to fulfill these needs directly. Any information will only go to the Family Support Team.

Updated list of immediate support resources for Hazel Wolf families: Available in Amharic, Tigrinya and Spanish. Please share with anyone you know that might find this useful: 
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1lhBzBYL5hmTXMjFMNkZcDIat3RdtYrE4gDj1Wtp6Rig/edit?usp=sharing

COVID Relief Fund still open for donations: Funds to support Hazel Wolf families are made available through the donor-supported COVID Relief Fund. Thank you to everyone that has been able to contribute to this fund at the auction. This fund is going to remain open for donations. If you’d like to make a donation to the fund to help support families during this time, you can make a donation here.

Bike donations: If you happen to be upgrading your child’s bike over the summer and it is in rideable condition, please considering donating it. We are happy to try to find someone who could use one and help get more kids safely active outside this summer. Please email Tracy at familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org. (If you have a bike that needs repairs, please consider donating to a non-profit like BikeWorks.)

Featured

Hazel Wolf K-8 PTSA Statement on Racial Inequities and Injustice

The deaths of George Floyd and too many others weigh heavily on all of us, including the PTSA
at Hazel Wolf. We are also in the midst of a pandemic crisis that is also impacting our
vulnerable communities disproportionately during this time. This is a time to pause, to listen,
to contemplate, and – most importantly – to stand up and take action.

Generally, the work of the PTSA is not controversial: it’s about fundraising to support tutoring,
playground equipment, overnight camping trips, and pancake breakfasts. We are proud at
Hazel Wolf to have funded grants for art, music, PE, and engineering; to have helped with the
Read-A-Thon and Back to School Nights; to have held annual auctions and restaurant nights. All
of this work, which involves hundreds of hours and dozens of volunteers, is directed to
enhancing the quality of life for students and teachers, as well as to providing valuable
community building.

Sometimes, we are called to step up our efforts at community building in more complex ways.
The Hazel Wolf PTSA last year decided that “increasing awareness of racial equity” would be
our primary area of focus for the 2019-2020 school year. We publicly declared that we would
focus on making decisions using a racial equity lens, by listening to students and parents of
color and by offering community, staff, parent, and student education opportunities. We meant
it, even as we acknowledge that the focus, if it is to be meaningful, requires stepping out of
traditional comfort zones, and taking actions as well as saying words.

Last October, the students of Hazel Wolf K-8 E-STEM School in north Seattle held a peaceful
protest. The students, supported by the PTSA’s Racial Equity Committee (REC), were protesting
the use of the N-word and other racial slurs at school, and asking for accountability around
what happens to those who use the slurs. Our principal, Ms. Nelsen, and other administrators,
teachers, and staff, as well as dozens of family members and siblings, listened to and cheered
for the students who spoke out. The peaceful protest lasted about 15 minutes in front of the
school and received some coverage in Seattle media.

The protest and the coverage evoked a lot of emotions. There was shock that racist incidents
happened at Hazel Wolf. There was dismay that the protest was mentioned in the news. For
some, the students’ descriptions of racist incidents were a wakeup call. For others, it was
nothing new. The recent murder of George Floyd, one in a tragic series of similar events, has
brought great grief to our community. As parents and as PTSA members, we work hard for the
betterment and safety of our beloved children.

Among 46-year-old George Floyd’s words while dying were a call for his deceased mother, a
wrenching reminder of the bond of family that we all share. We also know he leaves behind a 6-
year-old daughter who has lost her father in a public, painful way.

George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery are all names in the news these days due to
racist violence—they are also folks like us with moms and dads and children. The recent
protests not only here in Seattle but across the country and the world have reminded us in
daunting ways of the work to be done to heal our community from the trauma of racism. As
happened after our peaceful October protest, the recent deaths and reactions are shocking to
some, old news to others.

We know that a PTSA cannot solve these problems. We at Hazel Wolf also know that we cannot
look aside. We cannot shrug our shoulders. We will continue to do the work we have done
successfully in the past: supporting the needs of our teachers and students, through the
traditional and valuable events and grants. More than that, though, we will take seriously our
responsibility to create equity for our black students, our immigrant students, our students of
color. We will continue to support Black Lives Matter at School and Black History Month, as we
have done every February. We have also offered to support professional development for our
teachers (who, as is true at most schools, are predominantly white) around racial equity
trainings. We will support efforts to bring in more black and other teachers of color, who are
role models for all our students. We will fund our Family Support programs, which provide food
and other supplies to our low-income families. We will recognize that many of our low-income
families are families of color, due to the systemic and entrenched history of racism that has
created tremendous disparities in health care, education, employment, and more.

The REC has created an online Community of Practice for white women to focus on anti-racism
work. The REC is also offering an online Community Gathering and Healing Space for black
parents and caregivers. As we learned from Erin Jones, our guest speaker at the January
General Session, we have so much more in common and we must continue to make progress as
a united front – with authenticity and appreciation for each other as human beings. We, as the
REC and PTSA, are grateful for the way our whole school community has not just talked (though
talking is important) but is also walking the difficult path toward racial justice.

Sincerely,

The Hazel Wolf K-8 PTSA Board and Racial Equity Committee

Reflections Art Contest – Submissions due by Oct. 30

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Reflections Art Contest

Does your child enjoy art, music and dance or have an interest in writing, producing films and taking photos? We would love to have them unleash their inner artist with an entry for the PTA Reflections arts program! This year’s theme is “I Matter Because”.

Students can submit artwork in six categories: Dance Choreography, Film Production,Literature, Music Composition, Photography, and Visual Arts (2D or 3D). Only one entry per student per category is accepted, though students can enter work in more than one
category!

Grade categories are preschool-2nd grade, 3rd-5th grade, and 6th-8th grade. There is also a special artist category for children who receive accommodations.

For inspiration, visit the Reflections virtual art gallery and learn more about prizes and scholarships at PTA.org/Reflections/Awards.

Find common questions, rules, entry forms and more at the PTA Reflections website:
wastatepta.org/events-programs/reflections

Tatiana Kaminsky, our volunteer Reflections Chair, is organizing this program for HW students again this year. Contact her by email for any questions: tatiana.kaminsky at gmail.com

FAQ:

  • Are there certain specifications for entries? Yes, there are some rules. Please check the Reflections website and click on ‘Student Entry Packets’ for more details about each category.
  • Do I need an entry form? Yes, it’s available at the Reflections website. Click on ‘Student Entry Packets’. There is a link: 2020-21 Student Entry Form. Hard copies of entry forms are also available through our Reflections Chair, Tatiana Kaminsky. 
  • How do I submit my child’s artwork and entry form? Contact Tatiana to arrange pickup.
  • I’m not sure how to fill out the entry form? If you need some help filling out the form, contact Tatiana for help.
  • How do I contact Tatiana? Email: tatiana.kaminsky at gmail.com

Download the 2020-21 Reflections flyer

Community-based technical support

Dear Hazel Wolf Community:

We understand this new year is bringing many new technical challenges, and we are trying to figure out ways to support you all. HW Parent, Mat Martineau, has emerged as an incredible resource, and we are all so thankful!

In partnership with Mat, we have set up a new page on our blog that will be updated regularly with helpful info and tips based on feedback and questions received from the community. There is a lot of discussion on Facebook, but we realize not everyone uses Facebook, so we are trying to make information more easily accessible for everyone.

Also, we have set up a new tech support email address for our community: it@hazelwolfk8.org. You can send issues and questions to this email address. We are gathering issues and reporting to SPS in order to advocate for our community and get feedback.

Hazel Wolf K-8 Community-based Technical Support page

SPS Technical Support page

Introducing HW Parent Wolf Packs!

This year, instead of homeroom reps, we are introducing a new program: Parent Wolf Packs. The strength of this program relies on community engagement and keeping groups small. Our goal is to create groups of about 10 families including one lead.

This means we need at least 9 volunteer leads per grade level.  And we promise to keep the volunteer lead role simple – we know you have a lot on your plate! The PTSA and School admins will ensure that these leads have all the latest information, helpful tools, and even suggestions for family-driven connections.

If you’re interested in volunteering – fill out this Google Form:  http://bit.ly/parentwolfpack. Thank you for helping us keep the Hazel Wolf community going strong during this time of social distancing!

Sign up to shop at the Clothing Swap

The Clothing Swap is open for HW community sign ups! You do NOT need to donate, just sign up for a time slot and pick up what you want for free! Sign ups are required so we can maintain social distancing at the event.

The Clothing Swap will be open during each of the materials pick up times: Weds. 11:30am – 1:30pm, 1:45-3:45pm and Thursday 12-4:00pm. We have collected clothing and shoes for all sizes, adults, children, and babies.

Sign up for a time slot so we can maintain social distancing at the event. Masks required.

Volunteers still needed! We love offering these events to support our community, but we need volunteer support to make them run smoothly. If you can spare a one or two hours, please consider helping out at the event. Sign up to support our event.

Please message Tracy Buckingham with any questions: familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org

Volunteer at the HW Clothing Swap

Come volunteer at the HAZEL WOLF CLOTHING SWAP
Wear a mask while being socially distant – Help keep the event organized –> Sign up

Wed, September 9: 11:30am-1:30pm, 1:45-3:45pm
Thurs, September 10: 12-4pm
(This event is during HW school materials pick-up)

We are still accepting donations!
Donate clothing & shoes in ALL sizes for babies, children and adults.
Please ONLY donate items in VERY good condition. No toys or baby gear.

Email or text for donation drop off information: 
familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org or 206-445-3548

More details about how this event will work:

  • Masks and social distancing will be required.
  • There will be a sign-up for time slots to increase social distancing.
  • For equity purposes, priority sign-ups will go to HW Family Support families.
  • Next priority sign-ups will go to HW families donating items from a food list (coming soon!) or donating clothing.
  • Third priority sign-ups will go to all remaining HW families.

Hazel Wolf Welcomes Incoming Kindergarteners

The transition to school is a big step in your child’s life. In this anxious, unsure time for so many of our families, we wanted to illustrate how hard our Kindergarten team has been working to make this weird start to the year as warm and welcoming as possible for our kiddos. That’s why, even before school officially starts, we want to begin a connection with our families.

Last week, the incoming class of Hazel Wolf Kindergartners participated in a reimagined Jump Start and received their very own “Welcome to Kindergarten” kits – stocked with art and school supplies to inspire drawing, writing and creativity.

Here’s an update from the Kindergarten team about how it went:

As with everything else right now, Jump Start 2020 looked a little different than in previous years but it was still a great week!  The kindergarten teachers created a week of virtual videos and activities for our incoming kindergartners to do at home to get ready to join the Wolf Pack.  We ended the week with a socially distanced “Meet the Teachers” event where each kindergartner got to see their teacher, wave hello and then take home a Kindergarten Kit!  These kits are filled with all kinds of school supplies and tools for our kindergartners to use at home: scissors, number cards, alphabet tiles, counters, and so much more.  This event meant so much to all of us but for the teachers, it was the highlight of our summer!  Seeing our students smiling, even in their masks, jumping up and down and waving to us was just what we needed.  The kindergarten teachers are going to do everything we can to make this first year special for our kindergartners and their families.  We can’t wait for a great year together! 

❤ Mrs. Dixon, Ms. Turek & Mrs. Wheeler

And here’s what Rebakah, a parent of an incoming Kindergartener had to say:

I think it is safe to say that “this” is not how I pictured the start of elementary school for my 5 year-old daughter. Yet, here she is in her flower dress that she picked out for the special day of meeting her new teachers. She’s just as excited as I envisioned. As she jumps/skips up to the front of Hazel-Wolf to meet her teachers and pick up her kindergarten packet in a socially-distanced event, I realize that my expectations for her experience are dragging us down. Once I put those aside and reflect on her excitement, I see that this is all new to her and perfectly meet her own expectations as there is no precedent for her.

She’s thrilled to listen to Ms. Turek explain in a posted video of what she’ll find in her new kindergarten kit. Her eyes light up as Mrs. Dixon, Ms. Turek, and Mrs. Wheeler introduce themselves and their favorite colors in a video posted on Youtube for the first day of Jump Start. “That’s my favorite color too!” she exclaims. There has been so much planning by the Kindergarten team in order to change a week-long in-person Jump Start program into a virtual experience and it shows. They realized long before I did that regardless of the details, this is an exciting time in our students’ lives.

Thank you, Hazel-Wolf Kindergarten team for all your work, helping my daughter prepare for this new chapter in her life, and teaching us parents that just because experiences look a bit different doesn’t mean they can’t be filled with wonder and joy.

Want to make sure you don’t miss the latest on Hazel Wolf K-8? Check out all the ways you can stay connected with us!

PTSA Summer Update – August 18

The school year is officially over, but there’s still much happening! Here’s the latest update:

2020-21 Reflections art program THEme:

The theme for the 2020-21 National PTA Reflections art program has been announced! It’s I Matter Because... We will be collecting submissions for student work to represent our school this fall and will have more information after school starts, but we thought students might want to begin working on submissions now.

Reflections is a National PTA arts recognition program for students in pre-K through grade 12 that helps students explore their own thoughts, feelings and ideas, develop artistic literacy, increase confidence, and find a love for learning that will help them become more successful not only in school, but in life. Students submit their completed works of art in one, or all, of the available arts categories: Dance Choreography, Film Production, Literature, Music Composition, Photography, Visual Arts.

While the primary focus of Reflections is a celebration of creativity through positive recognition, finalists from local PTAs will move on to their council PTA (if applicable), then finalists from councils will move on to the state round. Washington State PTA finalists who receive an “Outstanding Interpretation” award will advance to the National PTA round. For more information, visit: https://www.wastatepta.org/events-programs/reflections

Hazel Wolf PTSA RACIAL EQUITY COMMITTEE (REC):

Read the latest message by Ardel Jala, REC Co-Chair: Pandemic Pods and More

UPDATE ON THE COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE (CP) FOR WHITE MEN

Our next meeting is Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 8 p.m. Meetings are scheduled every other Tuesday at 8 p.m., for the foreseeable future. During the summer, in these unprecedented times, we expect that folks will miss some sessions, but hope that folks will participate with consistency.

As part of the Hazel Wolf Racial Equity Committee, we have created an online Community of Practice (CP) for White Men affiliated with Hazel Wolf. The focus is anti-racism work. The goal of a CP is to create a community that wants to focus on a subject, learn from each other, and be accountable to the others in the group. It is meant to be safe, challenging, and engaged. We are not looking for perfection. We are looking for engagement, discussion, deep listening, and accountability. We are looking to grow, learn and be better allies together and welcome people at all stages of their anti-racist work.

UPDATE ON THE COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE (CP) FOR WHITE WOMEN

Our next meeting is Sunday, Aug. 23, from 4:00 – 5:30 p.m.The Community of Practice for White Women meets every other Sunday. Once school starts, we will decide what schedule makes sense for facilitators and community members.

Our focus as a community is to create accountability for anti-racism, and we have done so by sharing resources, ideas, and conversations. Some participants are at the beginning of working through what it means to be white in our society today; some have been doing anti-racist work for years. We are all continuing to learn. Our four facilitators (REC members Kristen Cater, Zoe Leverson, Maureen McCauley, and Kelly McIntyre) have taken turns leading the meetings. We continue to use breakout rooms, and talk together as a group.

Visit the Racial Equity Resource page on the PTSA blog for more information about anti-racist actions.

If you have any questions or are interested in attending, email ptsa_rec@hazelwolfk8.org.

FAMILY SUPPORT:

GET YOUR DONATIONS READY FOR THE HAZEL WOLF CLOTHING SWAP
Event date to be announced. Donations start NOW.
Donate clothing & shoes in ALL sizes for babies, children and adults.
Please only donate items in VERY good condition.
No toys or baby gear.

Email or text for donation drop off information: familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org or 206-445-3548

More details about how this event will work:

  • We are hoping to schedule this event during Hazel Wolf school supplies and technology distribution (date to be determined).
  • Masks and social distancing will be required.
  • There will be a sign-up for time slots to increase social distancing.
  • For equity purposes, priority sign-ups will go to HW Family Support families.
  • Next priority sign-ups will go to HW families donating items from a food list (coming soon!) or donating clothing.
  • Third priority sign-ups will go to all remaining HW families.
  • To limit exposure/groupings of people/time, we are planning this eve

TWO PANTRIES AVAILABLE AT HAZEL WOLF SCHOOL AND IN LAKE CITY
Thank you to our incredible community for your continued support of the Honor Pantry at the school building and our pantry in Lake City at the Build Lake City Together office (12544 Lake City Way NE, 98125). Please continue to support our community in need. Non-perishable food items, pantry staples (pasta, rice, cereal, beans) and long-lasting fresh produce are always needed. Most needed items are personal hygiene and cleaning items including: feminine hygiene products (pads), laundry detergent, dish soap (sink), dish washing detergent (dishwasher), toilet paper, paper towels and bleach. Puzzles, books (for kids and adults), art supplies, games, and playing cards are appreciated by families.

We are still trying to track down the following items to support some of our families:
– 20-26″ bicycles in working condition
– front loading washing machine (at least H 35″ x D 23.5″ x W 27″)
– metal plant stands/shelves
Please email Tracy Buckingham at familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org if you have any leads!

There are many ways to DONATE:
1) Drop off items at the Honor Pantry at the front of the school at any time -or- at the Lake City Pantry on Mondays and Tuesdays, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. or contact Tracy Buckingham or Zoe Leverson to set up a time for pick up.
2) Drop off items at a volunteer’s house (email familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org for address).
3) Order from our updated Target wishlist (and ship directly to volunteer’s address)
4) Order from your store of choice and ship to a volunteer’s address.
5) Donate to the COVID-19 Relief Fund.

Does your family need supplemental grocery delivery? Please email Tracy Buckingham at familysupport@hazelwolfk8.org.

Does your family or student need help meeting your basic needs? Such as needs for your student to learn and play or needs for your family to remain healthy? Principal Nelsen has access to a limited fund to help support our families. To request support please fill out this form. *NOTE: While we will do our best to connect students and families with resources available, we do not make any promises to fulfill these needs directly. Any information will only go to the Family Support Team.

Updated list of immediate support resources for Hazel Wolf families available in Amharic, Tigrinya and Spanish. Please share with anyone you know that might find this useful.