March 29, 2018

This week’s announcements:

Thoreau News:  Cake Walk Thank You! Spring Before & After School Activities, Library Gift Program, Box Tops for Education, Book Character Parade, Annual Appeal, Thoreau at the Red Sox, Math Night, Earth Day Workshops

Around Town: Gaining Ground, Concord Public Library, Concord Recreation, Concord Family Network, Digital Socialization and our Children, Conversations in a Civil Society, CMS Production, SEPAC, Concord Conservatory of Music, League of Women Voters, Children’s Story-teller, CC Community Chest, Event Juggler

PTG Co-President’s Message and News

Thank You!

We appreciate the efforts of Steven Kirincich, Catherine Barber, Courtney Tucker, and Bidushi Pokharel who worked tirelessly to make the Cake Walk a success! There were countless others who contributed time, energy and CAKES. Thank you all for another great year of this fun Thoreau tradition.

Thank you to Kim Capello and Jordan Binder for coordinating the Bus Driver/Crossing Guard breakfast. The drivers and guards were so happy to be appreciated. Thank you too all those that contributed and helped make this event a success.

Thank you to Kimber Lynn Drake for all the help you gave to assist with the first session of Kindergarten Registration. For many this is their first interaction with the Thoreau Community. Your smiles, handouts, and conversation represented Thoreau CARES in the best way!

Reminder: Mark your calendars for the April PTG meetingTuesday, April 3rd at 7:30 pm in the Thoreau School Library. (Please note the change in date and time)

Thank you,
Deb & Kathleen

School Budgets meet Finance Committee Guidelines
After several weeks of facing a budget gap, the School Committees and Finance Committee have come to agreement on recommended FY19 budgets for both CPS and CCHS.

  • On March 1st, the Finance Committee revised its guidelines upward, closer to the School Committees’ recommended budgets.
  • This past Tuesday, March 21, the School Committees adjusted their recommended budgets to close the remainder of the gaps.

The new recommended budgets are as follows: 
Concord Public Schools:  $38,246,896 (3.9% operating increase)
Concord-Carlisle Regional School District: $33,749,420 (3.78% operating increase*) *Equates to a 7.55% increase in cost to Concord residents due to an enrollment shift 

Reductions to meet the guidelines included newly projected revenue, savings and one central administrative position.  Meeting the Finance Committee guidelines means that the potential impacts of the former gap (i.e. Elementary Spanish, Field Trips, Teaching and Tutor Staff, a School Psychologist, etc.) are no longer at risk.

In addition, thanks to adjustments to absorb the increased costs faced this year, the Concord School Committee does not plan to request the slated supplemental appropriation for the current fiscal year. Many thanks to our administrators and staff who have made this possible.

Thank you to all who have come to coffees or hearings already to learn about the budgets and express your views.  And please – stay involved!   It’s important to attend Town Meeting and Vote!!  Town Meeting begins April 9 at 7:00.

The School Committees will be holding one more Community Coffee leading up to Town Meeting on Thursday 4/5, 6-7:30pm; Sanborn cafeteria

Please join us to learn more about the budgets, recommended capital expenditures, or any other school-related topics of interest  We hope to see you at any of these events and look forward to hearing from you.
You can reach the Concord School Committee and Concord-Carlisle Regional School Committee at and

CAKE WALK – THANK YOU! On behalf of the 2018 Cake walk committee I would personally like to thank all of our volunteers. I would especially like to thank our staff members and PTG members who offered their time and already do so much for our school. A special thanks to Mr. Hourihan, Ms. Keefe, Ms McKenna, Ms. Swain, Ms. Pettyjohn, Ms. C, Ms. Hiltz, Ms. Murphy, Ms. Charles, and all of the PTG members who volunteered their time and made this event a success. I’d also like to thank our custodial crew who went above and beyond by helping us with set up. Until next year, thank you all! Steven Kirincich & Catherine Barber

SPRING BEFORE & AFTER SCHOOL ACTIVITIES: There is still room in two of our exciting after school courses: For the Birds (Wednesday mornings) and Japanese Crafts and Culture (Thursday afternoons). Please visit the following link for detailed descriptions and to register:

LIBRARY GIFT BOOK PROGRAM: THANK YOU to the following generous donors to the Thoreau Library Gift Book Program!!! Your gift is truly appreciated!!

-Emily Small “Into the Wild: Yet another Misadventure” in honor of Ms. Marotta
-Emma Kelly “Hammer of Thor” (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #2) in honor of Ms. Watson
-Kai Routhier’s Family “Stink and the Slime Mold” in honor of Mrs. Pettyjohn

The Thoreau Library Gift Book Program allows families the opportunity to purchase books honoring a special person (i.e. student, teacher, staff member) and gift them to the school library. This is a special way to honor a child, teacher, etc. with a lasting gift to the Thoreau School community.
Gifted books are shown to the honoree’s class, and the donor is the first person allowed to check out the book.

If you would like to donate a book, you have two options. First you can visit the Gift Book Cart in the Library and follow the directions listed there (don’t forget your checkbook). If you are not able to make it into the library, please follow the link to the Gift Book Program and Katherine Hollywood, Library Gift Book Program Coordinator, can assist you in making a gift. This link includes all of the books currently available through the Gift Book Program available for giving.

BOX TOPS FOR EDUCATION: The scorecard is up! The Box Tops for Education classroom contest has been quietly underway and we are now rounding the final turn before the finish line. The kids will be watching the whole year’s action unfold on a scorecard posted above the collection box in the school lobby between now and the end of May.  It’s time to start gathering up those box tops that have been lying around the kitchen and turning them in.  Please put your clips in a small plastic bag and include in the bag a slip of paper with your child’s name and their teacher’s name.  If you just have one or two you don’t need a bag – you can just write the names on the back of each box top.  You don’t need to count them or check the expiration dates – we’ll do that part.  Even expired clips get credit in the classroom contest, so turn them all in!  Which will be the top-clipping classroom this year?  Stay tuned!

FROM THE LIBRARY: READY FOR THE BOOK CHARACTER PARADE?  There are only two weeks left until our 30th annual Book Character Parade! Everyone is hard at work on masks, simple costumes and props to represent a favorite book character. Families are invited to watch the parade as it moves through the school on Tuesday, April 10, beginning at 11:15 A.M.
 NOTE TO PARENTS WHO WOULD LIKE TO DISMISS THEIR CHILDREN EARLY, AFTER THE BOOK CHARACTER PARADE IS OVER:  The Book Character Parade early dismissal will follow the same process that we used for the Turkey Trot.  Parents who would like to pick up their children after the Parade need to send in dismissal notes in the morning to the teachers.  The teachers will have an “Early Dismissal” form for parents to sign out their children.  Parents who send in notes may pick up their children from the classroom at 12:00, but please wait outside the building until 12:00.  Students without notes will be sent home on their regular buses at 12:30, the usual Tuesday dismissal.

As always, we appreciate time and effort you take to make the parade a success. If anyone has questions or problems, please let us know. Thank you, Karen Pettyjohn and Kristin Haddad

ANNUAL APPEAL:  Annual Appeal needs your help!
We can feel it – spring is in the air (although now that we type that, it probably means there will be a snowstorm). Usually, in springtime, people get a pep in their step and perhaps start to feel a little generous! Okay, we might have made that up but hopefully it got your attention. Thoreau needs your help! We haven’t seen great participation this year towards the Thoreau Annual Appeal and we need that to change. Please take a minute to donate – your money is well spent. All those programs your child loves – many of those are funded by the PTG. Please help!
Visit and channel that springtime feeling! 

Red Sox vs. Atlanta Braves – Friday, May 25, 2018 – 7:10pm – Bleacher Seats, Section 38

Once again Thoreau Elementary has been given the opportunity to purchase Red Sox tickets in a group block! Given the popularity of games in the past we have secured 250 tickets at a cost of $25 each. A great opportunity to take a family of 4 to a game for $100!! Tickets will be given out on a first come/first serve basis with mandatory adherence to the guidelines below.

Ticket requests must be emailed to JENIFERLPERRY@GMAIL.COM. Please note: no other modes of requesting tickets will be honored. You will receive an email response letting you know if tickets have been secured for you within 24 hours. Your email must include the following (requests not containing the required information will not receive tickets):
– Your name
– Students name
– Number of tickets requested

Tickets must be picked up at 40 INGHAM LANE in Concord on either Thursday, March 29 or Friday, March 30 between 6:00PM and 7:30PM, no exceptions. At that time, a check made out to ‘Thoreau PTG’ will be required to pick up tickets. NO TICKETS WILL BE MAILED. Any tickets not picked up by Friday, 3/30 at 7:30 will be given to remaining families on the waitlist.
Thanks!! Prior games have been a lot of fun, looking forward to another great time!!

MATH NIGHT: April 6th from 6-8pm! The evening will give you a new look at the math of food & nutrition. We use math in eating, cooking, baking, food shopping and in health. Let’s have a fun evening of math games! Snacks and a light dinner will be available (cash only). Prizes! Raffles! Sponsored by your PTG. Volunteers needed.
Sign up here:
Please email with any questions.

THOREAU EARTH DAY WORKSHOPS: Celebrate Earth Day by creating music makers, colorful banners and masks of local animals and plant species. Imagine a fox costume with a head made from cardboard, papier maché and acrylic paint, or a large butterfly puppet-on-a-stick using tyvek and acrylic paint. You’ll have a chance to choose your own project, draft a plan, and experiment with different materials to make it come to life. All three workshops are led by Musketaquid artist/educator Morningstar Medaye. The students will have the opportunity to bring creations to life at the Earth Day parade and festival on Saturday, April 28. A parent volunteer (or 2) is required at each session.

Who: Grades 2-5, maximum of 10 students
Where: Art Room
Cost: $35 per student for all three sessions
When: Wednesday, March 28, April 4, April 11 3:30-4:45PM

Registration is open, please sign-up here:
Please contact Thoreauly Green member Jessica Grogins ( if you have any questions.


GAINING GROUND: Hunger Relief from the Ground UpThursday, March 29 at 7 pm
Join Gaining Ground and three visionaries in the field as we explore connections between hunger relief, soil vitality, and healthy food.
Location: The Fenn School, 516 Monument Street, Concord.  Please register.  Presented by Gaining Ground.  Contact: Fan Watkinson,

CONCORD PUBLIC LIBRARY: “No school? No problem! Have too many snow days caused you guys with younger kids to run out of ideas about how to keep the kids entertained? We’ve got you covered this Friday morning, March 30, 10:15 am

Coffee and Conversation: The Future of Concord Free Public Library Children’s Space
Children’s Room, CFPL
Light refreshments, kid friendly

Bring the kids in to enjoy a sing-along with Liz Buchanan and then join us to hear more about the Library’s upcoming expansion plans.”

CONCORD RECREATION: 2nd Annual Egg Hunt  Concord Recreation ( will hold their Second Annual Egg Hunt on March 30th beginning at 5PM. The event will take place at the Beede Swim and Fitness Center and the Memorial Field at Concord Carlisle High School. This is a free community event for children age 2 to grade two.  Participants will collect candy and prized filled eggs, play games, make crafts, take a photo with the Easter Bunny and more! Egg Hunt times are as follows: Age 2 – 5:15 PM, Age 3 – 5:30 PM, Age 4 – 5:45 PM, Grades K&1 – 6:00 PM, and Grades 2 – 6:15 PM. Bring your baskets!

CONCORD FAMILY NETWORK: Hop Hop Hop! Here comes the Easter Bunny!
Join us for the Concord Family Network’s annual Spring Egg Hunt on Saturday, March 31st, from 3-5 pm on the grounds of the Old Manse at 269 Monument Street.
The event will include:
– Egg Hunts by age! (ages 5-8 @ 3:30 pm, ages 3-4 @ 3:45 pm, and ages 0-2 @ 4 pm)
– Prizes!
– Games courtesy of Concord Recreation!
– Crafts!
– Refreshments!

Admission is free for CFN members; non-members can attend for $3/child (max $10/family)
PLEASE RSVP by visiting our website, Due to the popularity of the event, we will cap the event at 150 children.

April 2 at 6:30pm – Nashoba Brooks School, 200 Strawberry Hill Rd, Concord – Open to the Public
As children spend more and more time with technology, they are becoming “digitally socialized” – building their identities online, texting instead of talking, building relationships on social media instead of through face-to-face human interaction. This is a major shift in the way we communicate. At this event, we will explore how research findings and experience are changing the way we think about and use technology. Parents will have an opportunity to ask questions and learn more about how we can embrace technology while also promoting the mental health of our children. Please join us!
Panelists include:

Elizabeth Englander, PhD, Director, Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center, Professor of Psychology, will discuss new research findings on the association of cell phone use in young children.
Danielle Heard, Head of School, Nashoba Brooks Schools, will share how educators are navigating the rapidly-changing tech world and how schools can create innovative policy and practices.
Irene Todd, Concord parent of four, will share her personal parenting perspective of raising children with smartphones.

Sponsored By: Concord Promise – – and Nashoba Brooks School

Come join us on Tuesday, April 3rd at 7 pm for a discussion on how to navigate our differences: politics, religion, values, lifestyle. Panel discussion moderated by CCHS Social Studies teacher Ethan Hoblitzelle, with panelists Ona Ferguson from Consensus Building Institute, Dr. Robert Munro from Middlesex School, and Rose Pavlov from Ivy Child. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door, $5 for students. Register online at or call 978-318-1432. Offered through Concord Carlisle Adult & Community Education.

CMS PRESENTS: “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” Elementary Preview show Tuesday, April 3 at 6:30 PM; Friday, April 6 and Saturday, April 7 at 7:00 PM; Sunday, April 8 at 2:30 PM. For tickets, please go to

SEPAC COFFEE AND CONVERSATION: Hosted by the Concord Public Schools and Concord-Carlisle Regional School District Special Education Parent Advisory Council.

Do you have a child on a IEP or 504 plan?
Would you like to network with other parents in a similar situation?
Do you want an opportunity to discuss special education in our schools?

Please join us for an informal session where we can enjoy coffee and support each other through discussion and the sharing of ideas.

When:  Thursday, 5th April 2018 from 9:30 – 11:00 am
Where:  Club Car Cafe, 20 Commonwealth Avenue, Concord
If you have any questions please contact us via e-mail at

CONCORD CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC: Jazz by CCM on Friday, April 6th at 7 pm. To kick off National Jazz Appreciation Month, the CCM Jazz Faculty, Tsuyoshi Honjo, on saxophone, Justin Meyer on bass, Brian Friedland on piano, Phil Sargent on guitar, Mike Connors on percussion, and Gabriela Martina, vocals, will perform classic jazz compositions standards and originals. Tickets are available at the door: $20 for adults, free for students 18 and under. To buy tickets online, go to For more information call 978-369-0010 or email CCM is located at 1317 Main Street in Concord (within the West Concord Union Church).

LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS CONCORD-CARLISLE: On April 3rd, only six days before Concord’s Town Meeting, the League of Women Voters Concord-Carlisle will be hosting the final Forum in its series Mapping the Road to Town Meeting. The Forum will feature Carmen Reiss, Concord’s Town Moderator, who will explain the intricacies of Town Meeting rules and procedures. It is an opportunity for citizens to get their questions answered and to prepare to participate effectively in the upcoming Concord Town Meeting. Knowledgeable citizens are the key to effective democracy.

Please join the League and Carmen Reiss at the Harvey Wheeler Community Center on April 3rd at 7:30 PM for an informative discussion of Town Meeting.

Designs Inspired by Life’s Passions and Changes:  Join us on Saturday, April 7th for the League’s 2018 House Tour: Beyond Expectations – Designs Inspired by Life’s Passions and Changes. You will be amazed at the creativity of the owners of these seven homes, which were transformed in unique ways to address their owners’ dreams. And by participating in the League’s major fundraiser, you will help support our work. Please bring your friends and plan to attend. Tickets are $40 the day of the tour or $35 in advance. Register by mail:  LWVCC House Tour, P.O. Box 34, Concord, MA 01742 or by PayPal: Ticket pickup will be on the day of the event at 59 ORNAC from 9:30 am to 1 pm.

CHILDREN’S STORY-TELLER AFTERNOON: “A Trip to Africa” on Sunday, April 8th at 2pm at Nashoba Brooks School in Concord, MA.

Julie Najjumba, an African children’s story-teller, will delight your family with her storytelling, music, and creative craft projects. Children will join Julie in playing traditional African instruments and making fun take-home toys like soccer balls and jump ropes! It will be a great opportunity for your children and grandchildren to travel to Africa for an afternoon, connect to another culture and learn about the ways children’s lives are similar and different halfway across the globe.

Children ages 5-15 are welcome and must be accompanied by an adult. In addition, handmade Ugandan crafts will also be available for purchase.

Tickets: $18/family online, $25/family at door. Register here.

CONCORD CARLISLE COMMUNITY CHEST: Please Join Us for a Night Out for Neighbors to benefit Concord-Carlisle Community Chest  April 27th at 7PM at the Battle Road Brew House in Maynard.  Casual brew house atmosphere, live band, full bar, raffle, games!

Tickets $75 in advance, $85 at the door (Includes apps and 2 drink tickets)

CONCORD – CARLISLE COMMUNITY EVENTS CALENDAR: Check out – the event calendar for the Concord & Carlisle community!