The latest Gator Blast

January 6, 2021

Fundraiser for the Davidsonville Elementary School PTO

By popular demand…

Joe Corbi’s Catalog Fundraiser
is back and it starts NOW!

               pizzas, snacks & sweets…          

The delicious pizza kits, frozen desserts, and yummy snacks are PERFECT for the time we are all spending at home. Kids can help create their own dinners AND eat them, too!! 

All orders are online, no cash or checks, and all items will be delivered Feb. 3rd for distribution (or have them shipped to you for a fee). And every order helps raise funds for the DES PTO. Win-win-win-win!!

             soft pretzels, funnel cakes, cheesecakes…        

Visit the website today

Get started by registering for a simple account. Use our Organization Code #9833 and you’ll get a Participant Code of your own to share with friends, family, and neighbors. Everyone can order online directly that way. 

When you register, you’ll be invited to enter contact info. for friends and family. Doing so can earn you a discount and help your student sell items, but if you don’t want to, just click “continue” on each section. You can then go to your “Participant Page” to copy text that you can use to contact your favorite folks who might want to order.

             calzones, cakes, pie, cookies, cinnamon rolls…        

There’s lots of great stuff to look at so read the flyer attached and get busy making some super fun pizza kits with your family! Group delivery is Feb. 3rd (location TBA), or you can arrange to ship to your address. Kids love Joe Corbi’s and you will too! The DES PTO thanks you for your support.

  • Sale ends Friday, January 15, 2021 •  

Folks have been asking if we would do Joe Corbi again because they love the convenience of these pizza kits and treats in the freezer ready to go and the foods are really good. Ask your neighbors, you’ll be surprised how many have heard of Joe Corbi’s! https://www.joecorbi.com/register/


See the Joe Corbi Fundraiser flyer here


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of January 4-8, 2021

Ah, that was a nice break –And a new year begins just like that.

Calendar:                               

This week:
Monday, January 4: Schools open
Tuesday, Jan. 5: Public Hearing on the proposed budget for AACPS 2022, 6:30-8:30 pm
Wednesday, Jan. 6: Board of Education virtual meeting, 6 pm, details here
Wednesday, Jan. 6: PTO Board meeting
Thursday, Jan. 7: Public Hearing on the proposed budget for AACPS 2022, 6:30-8:30 pm

A look ahead:
Monday, Jan. 18: NO SCHOOL, Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday
Wednesday, Jan. 20: Board of Education virtual meeting, 7 pm
Thursday & Friday, Jan. 28-29: Two-hour early dismissal, end of second marking period
Tuesday, Feb. 2: New daily schedule changes begin for elementary schools

News:                                           

Lunch is a bit shorter and friends & fun is moved around
Daily school schedule changes start February 2nd
You got the e-mails and texts about the virtual school changes happening for all AACPS students. But, in case you don’t recall, the changes for elementary and middle schools start on February 2nd. 

Start time for K-2nd grade is still 9:00, end time will be 3:05 pm, or 11 am on Wednesdays. Afternoon block begins at 12:55 pm.

Start time for 3rd-5th grade is still 8:30 am, end time will be 3:05 pm (was 3:00) or 11 am on Wednesdays. Afternoon block begins at 12:55 (was 1:15), so that’s worth noting.

Blocks for older students are now 50 minutes long rather than 45 and things have been shuffled subject-wise and for lunches, so check it out for details. Here’s the link to the aacps.org page with all versions, or see Pre-K-2nd & 3rd-5th schedules attached below. Note that high schools adopt schedule changes next Monday. If you have comments about any of this, reach out to your Board of Education members, here’s their contact information.

Public Service Announcements:    

Board of Education meeting this Wednesday
Tune in to the January 6th Board of Ed meeting at 6 pm for updates from AA County Dept. of Health Officer Dr. Kalyanaraman as the board again looks at the topics of school reopening and health data updates. Other agenda items include the adoption of the 2021-2022 school calendar and fiscal year revenue reports. There are 3 new board members on the BOE now, so reach out if you have opinions to share with them. Watch the weekly reopening report online here

Fill out the survey
All families are asked to fill out the annual Federal Impact Aid Student-Parent Survey that AACPS uses each year for school funding purposes. You can find it thru Jan. 31st online at this link

AACPS budget hearings this week
Add your opinions on the proposed $1.37 billion school budget for 2022 at public hearings set for Tuesday, Jan. 5th and Thursday, Jan. 7th, both 6:30-8:30 pm (visit here for location info.). You can also send e-mails, letters, and phone calls to the Board of Education. You can check it out at this link. The budget will now be discussed and voted on by the BOE and forwarded to the county for approval by March 1st.


   •   Dining for Davidsonville/Support A Local Business   •   

Harvest Thyme Modern Kitchen & Tavern
1251 W. Central Ave., Davidsonville, MD 21035

———————

Tomorrow – Sunday, December 27th
10:30 am – 9:00 pm

Dine-In, Carry-Out, Gift Card purchases –
ALL DAY LONG!!!

A portion of proceeds will be donated to the DES PTO.
Mention Davidsonville Elementary School PTO when you order/pay

Reservations suggested, call: (443) 203-6846
See the menu at harvestthymetavern.com


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of December 21-23, 2020

Monday is the first official day of Winter.
Happy Holidays to all of our DES family.

Calendar:                                      

This week:
Monday, Dec. 21: Board of Education virtual hearing on school times, 6 pm, details here
Now thru Wednesday, Dec. 23: DES Spirit Days “Countdown to 2021,” details below
Thursday, Dec. 24-Sunday, Jan. 3: NO SCHOOL, Winter Break
Sunday, Dec. 27: All day, Dining for Davidsonville at Harvest Thyme restaurant, details below

A look ahead:
Monday, January 4: Schools open
Tuesday, Jan. 5: Public Hearing on the proposed budget for AACPS 2022, 6:30-8:30 pm
Wednesday, Jan. 6: Board of Education virtual meeting, 6 pm, details here
Thursday, Jan. 7: Public Hearing on the proposed budget for AACPS 2022, 6:30-8:30 pm
Monday, Jan. 18: NO SCHOOL, Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday
Thursday & Friday, Jan. 28-29: Two-hour early dismissal, end of second marking period

News:                                               

DES Spirit Days let everyone join in
OK everyone, let the Countdown to 2021 continue! Each day offers something interesting for everyone to join in on. Let’s all have some good Gator FUN together! Here’s the schedule for this week in case you missed it.
Monday, Dec. 21: Share a family holiday tradition
Tuesday, Dec. 22: Wear white for the “Winter Wonderland Whiteout”
Wednesday, Dec. 23: Pajama Day – “A long winter’s nap”

Harvest Thyme, Sunday, Dec. 27th ALL day
“Dining for Davidsonville” is actually in Davidsonville!
Join your neighbors and friends for a meal (or two) from local restaurant Harvest Thyme on Rte. 214 in Davidsonville. They have graciously offered to donate 10% of all orders and gift card purchases for the entire day (Sunday, Dec. 27th) to the DES PTO. The cards will make great gifts for teachers, school staff, friends, family members, and fund future meals for yourself. If you’ve never been to Harvest Thyme, check them out. It’s local, it’s delicious, and they are great community partners, so come show your support while you get an awesome meal. We’ll try to send out a reminder as the event gets closer.

In Recognition:
Thanks for making the school look merry & bright!
The school administration and the PTO would like to take a moment to give thanks to our ever-faithful School Beautification Committee for the lovely decor and holiday-themed display at the entryway of the school building. Committee Chair Nicole Gunhus, parent Kim Marr, and other helpers have brought their holiday magic to the front of DES for the staff and families to enjoy. We want to let them know their efforts are noted and appreciated.

AACPS Board of Education updates

Just a summary after watching all 6+ hours of the Dec. 16 AACPS Board of Ed. meeting:
Reopening of schools
No real changes on school opening yet at this point. The January 6th meeting will feature updates from AA County Dept. of Health Officer Dr. Kalyanaraman as the board again looks at options for any type of hybrid return to schools as the semester change approaches. The Superintendent mentioned they will be putting out yet another Parent Survey for selections to be made if and when plans are made. AACPS received nearly all of the 30,000+ Chromebooks that had been ordered and is now preparing them. There are 3 new board members on the BOE now, so reach out if you have opinions to share with them. Watch the weekly reopening report online here

Fill out the survey
Also of note is the annual Federal Impact Aid Student-Parent Survey that AACPS asks EVERY family to fill out each year for school funding. You can find it online at this link

AACPS budget
Another item is the $1.37 billion budget proposal made by Superintendent Arlotto for Fiscal Year 2022. There are many interesting items with new technology, staff, and construction being just some of them. You can check it out at this link. Add your opinions at public hearings set for Tuesday, Jan. 5th and Thursday, Jan. 7th, both 6:30-8:30 pm (visit here for location info.). You can also send e-mails, letters, and phone calls to the Board of Education. The budget will now be discussed and voted on by the BOE and forwarded to the county for approval by March 1st.

Public Service Announcements:    

Last chances for holiday lights
Visit the Lights on the Bay show now thru Jan. 2nd, from 5-10 pm nightly at Sandy Point State Park (Rte. 50, Exit 32). There are discounts and theme-nights all the time. For prices and tickets, visit their website at: www.lightsonthebay.org.

There is also the Festival of Lights drive-through event at Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro. Cost is $8 in advance, $10 at the gate and the show is open thru Dec. 25th daily from 5-9:30 pm. They accept canned goods for donation too. For details visit the website at this link.

Happy Holidays to everyone from the DES PTO Board!
To the administration still at the school keeping things together.
To the office staff still there answering questions and managing all.
To the teachers making real magic happen each day (we thank you 1,000 times)
To the cafeteria staff still making meals and feeding multiple families every day.
To the custodial crew still maintaining our lovely little school.
To all the aides & staff still helping, teaching, and creating new ways of doing things.
To the volunteers still planning clubs, events, and fundraisers.
To the students still learning, laughing, and making unique memories.
To the parents who helped bring it ALL together in this challenging year
We wish you & your families all the joy in the world.
We miss you all & hope to see you again soon.


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of December 14-18, 2020

The holidays are nearly here!

Calendar:                                     

This week:
Now thru Friday, Dec. 18: Fisher Popcorn Fundraiser continues, details below
Now thru Wednesday, Dec. 23: DES Spirit Days “Countdown to 2021,” details below
Monday, Dec. 14: PTO Board Meeting, 7:30 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 16:  Board of Education meeting, virtual, 6 pm
Friday, Dec. 18: Interims to be sent home by this date per AACPS

A look ahead:
Thursday, Dec. 24-Sunday, Jan. 3: NO SCHOOL, Winter Break

News:                                           

DES Spirit Days offer fun for all!
Hopefully, you’ve all seen the flyer from the school about the Countdown to 2021 and ongoing spirit days from now until the holiday break. Each day offers something interesting for everyone to join in on. Let’s all have some good Gator FUN together! Here’s the schedule for this week in case you missed it.
Monday, Dec. 14: Share a Holiday Book – ‘Tis the Season to be reading
Tuesday, Dec. 15: Holiday accessory Day – Jingle all the Way
Wednesday, Dec. 16: Fireside reading with your favorite stuffed animal
Thursday, Dec. 17: Holiday Sweater Day – Let’s get cozy
Friday, Dec. 18: Dress Your Best today

Book Fair wraps-up online fall sale
Thank you to all who participated in this Fall’s DES PTO Book Fair! We were able to raise $585 in Scholastic Dollars that will go towards resources for our school! Thank you all for your support and keep on reading. We send a big congratulations out to our Scavenger Hunt winners!
H. Hicks, Kindergarten
S. Gough, 2nd Grade
H. Priehs, 3rd Grade
L. Wallace, 4th Grade 

Fisher’s Popcorn still sending gifts for the holidays!
This is the delicious fundraiser you’ve been waiting for! You can shop from home and send gifts to friends and family all over the country – all while raising funds to support the PTO. Just visit www.fisherspopcornfundraising.com and use Code DES2020 at checkout. You can arrange to have your items shipped anywhere, or even pick it all up in Ocean City. Check out the great gift tins, or gift someone the holiday-themed tubs. Check out the website and see the flyer for more.
See the Fisher’s Popcorn fundraiser flyer here

Gator Wear orders
Just a quick note that all of the Spirit Wear orders have shipped at this point. If you haven’t received your order or are missing any items, you can contact Carrie Groff at: cagroff@comcast.net. Thank you to everyone for your support of the DES PTO and this fall’s Gator Wear fundraiser!

Reminder – Yearbook Committee seeking photos
We are asking parents to please send any photos you have of your child celebrating fall activities such as sports events, families staying active or just spending time together, or Halloween or Thanksgiving related. This can include your child participating in sports, or maybe you did a family bike ride, hiking, etc., or trick-or-treating, a movie night for fall, celebrating Thanksgiving with family, etc. You can send photos to: desgatorsyearbook@gmail.com. Please include if it’s sports, family activities, holiday, etc.

Skate Zone coupons attached
So, we’re not sure how useful these will be over the holiday break now that things are shutting down a bit more, but we’ll offer them to you all just the same. The SkateZone in Crofton has sent along the annual discount passes to their skate sessions held over the holiday break. So, we are passing them along to any DES families that would like to use them. Check their website for hours and accessibility.
See Skate Zone flyer here

Public Service Announcements:       

AACPS Calendar survey closes Dec. 18
The school system would like to gather family opinions on the proposed school calendar for the next school year. Take a look at it and fill it out at this link by December 18th at 4 pm.

Some things to do for the holiday season… 
(Note: None of the following are school-related events and the DES PTO does NOT sponsor or endorse any of these events or organizations, we are just offering information for families. Please continue to adhere to all required rules to keep yourselves and everyone as safe as possible.)

Get out & see some lights
Visit the Lights on the Bay show now thru Jan. 2nd, from 5-10 pm nightly at Sandy Point State Park (Rte. 50, Exit 32). There are discounts and theme-nights all the time. For prices and tickets, visit their website at: www.lightsonthebay.org. Due to crowds, rumor is they are offering time slots for visitors this year, so check that out on the website while you’re there.

There is also the Festival of Lights drive-through event at Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro. Cost is $8 in advance, $10 at the gate and the show is open through Dec. 25th daily from 5-9:30 pm. They accept canned goods for donation too. For details visit the website at this link. Try to go on a weeknight – it was BEYOND crowded this past weekend.

Local Light reviews
Your Gator Blast editor drove around some local neighborhoods this Saturday evening with a car full of kids, looking for lights as we sang holiday tunes and drank cocoa (in to-go cups). Here’s our review: Berkshire has it going on! Lots of homes with lots of light displays. Not all, but many, many fun sites to look at. 

Annapolis Landing also seemed to have a lot to see, but we wanted a bit more from such a big area, we didn’t get to finish, so maybe there’s more to see. 

The opening homes at Stone Ridge are just WAY over the top, and super, mega fun. Now we just need all the other neighbors to try to keep up (though our PTO President’s home was very colorful)!

Glen Isle is, as usual, spotty but lively on a few roads with some lovely standouts.

And, finally, we drove through Ashley off of 214. There are several lovely homes with lots of lights, but it seems long distances between things. So, this one’s easy to miss.

That’s this week’s review. We’ll let you know if we find any others to share.


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of December 7-11, 2020

We hope everyone is warm and safe…

 Calendar:                                     

This week:
Now thru Friday, Dec. 18: Fisher Popcorn Fundraiser continues, details below

A look ahead:
Monday, Dec. 14: PTO Board Meeting, 7:30 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 16:  Board of Education meeting, virtual, 6 pm
Friday, Dec. 18: Interims to be sent home by this date per AACPS
Thursday, Dec. 24-Sunday, Jan. 3: NO SCHOOL, Winter Break

News:                         

Great gift ideas – Caramel Corn, Old Bay Corn & more!!!
This is one yummy fundraiser
If you love Fisher’s Popcorn, you’re going to love this fundraiser! You can shop from home and send gifts to friends and family all over the country – all while raising funds to support the PTO. Just visit www.fisherspopcornfundraising.com and use Code DES2020 at checkout. You can arrange to have your items shipped anywhere, or even pick it all up in Ocean City. Check out the great gift tins, or gift someone the holiday-themed tubs. Check out the website and see the flyer for more.
See the Fisher’s Popcorn fundraiser flyer here

Yearbook Committee wants your photos!!
Hello parents! This has been an interesting few months of school for our kids. With the situation we are in and the uncertainty of how the school year may proceed, this year’s yearbook will certainly be different. We would like to put a book together to remember this unique year and remember how our Gators survived this memorable time.

We are asking that for now, parents please send any photos you have of your child celebrating fall activities such as sports events, families staying active or just spending time together, or Halloween or Thanksgiving related. This can include your child participating in club team sports, county sports, maybe you did a family bike ride, hiking, etc., or trick-or-treating, a movie night for fall, celebrating Thanksgiving with family, etc. You can send the photos to: desgatorsyearbook@gmail.com. Please include in the subject if it’s sports, family activities, holiday, etc. and the grade/name of student.

Public Service Announcements:                                 

Cabin Fever?
Some things to do now and for the holiday season…
(Note: None of the following are school-related events and the DES PTO does NOT sponsor or endorse any of these events or organizations, we are just offering information for families. Please continue to adhere to all required rules to keep yourselves and everyone as safe as possible.)

Virtual Puppy Bowl features Annapolis SPCA animals
The U.S. Naval Academy Alumni Association & Foundation is hosting a super fun and super cute online Puppy event in honor of the annual Army-Navy football game. Set for Friday, Dec. 11th at 7 pm, the 2020 Virtual Army Navy Puppy Bowl will be hosted on the Facebook page of the group., so check it out there.

Real-life dinosaur drive-through this weekend
This Saturday & Sunday, Dec. 12-13 9 am-4 pm, bring the family and drive through “The Great Little Dinosaur Show on Earth.” With life-sized dinosaurs moving and roaring, the event is held at the Anne Arundel County Fairgrounds in Crownsville and costs $10 per car (plus $1.50 fee). Tickets are sold online for reserved time slots. Visit www.jurassicwonder.com for more details.

Virtually Fun – Family Pajama Storytime!
Woo-hoo! A real reason to get into your PJ’s early in the evening. The Edgewater Library is hosting an online family Pajama Storytime event on Tuesday, Dec. 15th from 7-7:45 pm. If you don’t believe us, check it out for yourself, but hurry, space is limited. Maybe the PTO should look into hosting one of these…

Kid Craft & Secret Santa Shop
The Paws at the Mall folks from the AA County SPCA are hosting a kid-only event from Dec. 7th-9th with a ticketed Kids Crafts and Secret Santa Shop for kids to craft gifts with help from volunteers and for an additional cost, they can buy gifts for parents while there. Visit this link to get all the details and buy tickets.

Hop in a car (or on the couch) and see some lights
There are several light displays in the area each year and now they are better than ever! Many neighborhoods are making an extra effort to give everyone fun things to look at. So, drive around and report your findings to others (or send us a line and we’ll share)!

• Visit the Lights on the Bay show now thru Jan. 2nd, from 5-10 pm nightly at Sandy Point State Park (Rte. 50, Exit 32). There are discounts and theme-nights all the time. For prices and tickets, visit their website at: www.lightsonthebay.org.

• There is also the annual Festival of Lights drive-through event at Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro. Cost is $8 in advance, $10 at the gate and the show is open through Dec. 25th daily from 5-9:30 pm. They always accept canned goods for donation too. For details visit the website at this link.

• Gather the whole family and virtually check out the 2020 National Christmas Tree Lighting Program online this year. This amazing tree and the entire annual event can be watched online! Make it part of your holiday season, watch it all happen at this link. If you want to visit the tree in-person at some point, you can find it at 15th & E Streets NW, Washington DC 20500 and find details at the link above.

Wondering how to visit Santa this year?
Some local options exist, we just wanted to share them.
• The Riva Volunteer Fire Dept. will once again be visiting all of the local neighborhoods with Santa on board. Things are obviously a bit different this year, but you can still come out and see Santa as he comes through your community. Visits begin Dec. 14th and the schedule is on their Facebook page at this link.

• The big local option is the Meet Santa promotion at Santa’s Cottage at Annapolis Town Center. They have a whole process and photo package cost, so learn details on their site at this link.

• Davidsonville’s own Homestead Gardens is offering a Virtual Visit with the big guy. You can reserve a visit window online and send Santa a wishlist by visiting their online link for the appointments here. The Garden Center has also expanded their amazing holiday train display this year so you can take the family to enjoy some light displays and holiday spirit at the store also.

• Pets can get their photo taken with Santa at Pet Photos with Santa at the Paws at the Mall location. Sponsored by the SPCA of AA County, only pets (no humans) can be photographed and you must bring your own camera. This is a ticketed event and a donation of $10 is requested, visit this link

Miscellaneous –
Ice Sculpting Masters – Drive thru Holiday Display in Ellicott City. Nearly sold out at $40+ per vehicle for Dec. 19th, visit this link.
Drive-In Holiday Movie. The movie “Elf” is showing in Prince Frederick on Friday, Dec. 11th at 6 pm, $25/car. Details here.
For info. on Annapolis Holiday events and downtown programs, visit this link.
Many virtual and in-person events in Washington DC this month are available online at this link.
We can’t stress it enough, but the AA County Libraries continue to offer so many virtual fun and learning opportunities for ALL ages. From holiday cookie-making sessions, to book clubs and so much more, you’ve got to check it out! Visit this link and search events.


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of November 23-27, 2020

Wishing a wonderful Thanksgiving to all of our DES families!

Calendar:                                     

This week:
Monday, Nov. 23: Report cards available for viewing on Parent Portal
Tuesday, Nov. 24:  Magnet School application deadline is at Noon
Wednesday, Nov. 25-Friday, Nov. 27: NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving break

A look ahead:
Monday, Nov. 30: Town Hall event on Opportunity Gap, public comment welcome, details here
Wednesday, Dec. 2:  Board of Education meeting, virtual, 6 pm
Thursday, Dec. 24-Sunday, Jan. 3: NO SCHOOL, Winter Break

News:                             

Use AmazonSmile for holiday shopping
Many of you are using the AmazonSmile link at the bottom of every issue of the Gator Blast, and we say “Thank you!” The last quarterly donation check from the program was $123.23. That’s amazing! With holiday shopping upon us, we just want to remind everyone how simple it is to head to smile.amazon.com and raise funds with your online shopping. Once there, just designate the Davidsonville Elementary School PTO as your charity of choice, then shop like normal. You can even put the app on your cell phone – here’s how:
Get the app
Download or update to the latest version of the Amazon Shopping app on your phone. You can find it in the App Store for iOS or Google Play for Android.

Turn on AmazonSmile
Open the app and find ’Settings’ in the main menu (☰). Tap on ‘AmazonSmile’ and follow the on-screen instructions to turn on AmazonSmile on your phone.

Help Wanted:  Looking for Program Chairs & Future Helpers
Running Club
We’re looking for a Chair and Volunteers for a DES Running Club (jogging and walking are also encouraged)! We’d like to get busy with some planning for a future launch date. Volunteers will monitor kids and keep them motivated while they exercise.

Spelling Club
Would you volunteer as Chairperson to coordinate a virtual Spelling Club? A Spelling Club is a great opportunity for our kids to see other kids virtually while also practicing their spelling. The Chair can choose which day would work best for him/her in the near future.
Please reach out to Laura Addeo (levaddeo@gmail.com) if you are interested in chairing or volunteering.

Interested in a PTO position for next school year?
With several volunteers moving on next school year, we’re already thinking about finding help for the school’s very active PTO. Several jobs could use a shadow to start learning the ropes. If you think you might be able to help, reach out using one of the e-mail addresses at the bottom of this e-mail. For instance, the Gator Blast will need a new editor…sniff. You’ll be hearing more in the coming months.

Public Service Announcements: 

AA County Public Libraries offer online fun
Be sure your family is checking out the online activities hosted by your local libraries. They’ve been creating some great programs to break up the dullness lately. Check out Family Trivia Night online Thursday, Dec. 3rd, 7-8 pm. All ages welcome, register online ahead of time. Or check out info. on their Virtual WInter Scavenger Hunt for families, or their kid writers program, and many others. You can visit them online anytime.


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of November 16-20, 2020

Last chance for Book Fair fun this week

 Calendar:                       

This week:
Monday, Nov. 16: Beginning of 2nd marking period
Monday, Nov. 16-Friday, Nov. 20: American Education Week celebrated
Monday, Nov. 16- Friday, Nov. 23:  Fall Book Fair continues at DES, details below
Wednesday, Nov. 18: Board of Education meeting, 6 pm, details available here

A look ahead:
Tuesday, Nov. 24: Report cards sent home
Tuesday, Nov. 24:  Magnet School application deadline is at Noon
Wednesday, Nov. 25-Friday, Nov. 27: NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving break
Wednesday, Dec. 2:  Board of Education meeting, 6 pm

News:                                        

2nd & final week
Virtual Book Fair offers SO many great options!
It’s time for some fall FUN with the book fair! From November 9th – 23rd, you can shop the DES book fair virtually using the link below! It’s a great time to encourage reading and stock up on holiday gifts. Plus all book orders over $25 ship free. There’s a 360-degree virtual experience complete with suggested reading lists and author clips, so make sure to check it out! 

And to get everyone excited about reading, we’re also hosting a virtual Book Fair Scavenger Hunt! Use the Scavenger Hunt flyer attached and have your student enter for a chance to win $25 in FREE books. There will be one winner per grade, must enter by Nov. 24th. Here’s the link to the online Book Fair fun this year: https://www.scholastic.com/bf/davidsonvilleelemschool
See the 2020-2021 Fall Book Fair flyer here

Looking for Club/Program Chairs 
Running Club
We all know our kiddos could use a non-screen activity and some outdoor time. We’re looking for a Chair and Volunteers for a DES Running Club (jogging and walking are also encouraged)! We envision the Running Club taking place at some point and we’d like to get busy with some planning and such. Volunteers will monitor our kids’ outdoor stretching/running/jogging/walking and keep them motivated while they exercise.

Spelling Club
We are looking for a (can you spell it?) Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Chairperson to coordinate a virtual Spelling Club. Given the auto-correct and predictive spelling mechanisms on all of the electronic devices these days, our kids are not forced to work on their spelling. A Spelling Club is a great opportunity for our kids to see other kids virtually while also practicing their spelling. The Chair can choose which day would work best for him/her in the near future.
Please reach out to Laura Addeo (levaddeo@gmail.com) if you are interested in chairing or volunteering with either (or both) of the above.

Thank you for your support
Thanks to all of our DES families who came to the Dining for Davidsonville night at Chick-Fil-A last Wednesday evening. It was a great turnout and we are so grateful for the opportunity to host such a wonderful fundraising event. Stay tuned for news coming soon about next month’s Dining for D’ville event. 

Reminders:
Boon Supply Fundraiser is still on
Shop the Boon Supply Catalog Sale and raise funds for the PTO by doing all of your shopping at home and get items shipped there in time for the holidays. 40% of your total supports the DES PTO. We hope you check it out because this one’s pretty fun. This fundraiser is set to close up shop Nov. 20th, so time is nearly up. Visit the online store at www.boonsupply.com/63508

Virtual Yoga program registering all grades
Yoga registration is open for a bit longer. The Whole Kids Yoga program will be virtual on Wednesdays, 1-2 pm, for all grades. The 6-session class will be starting soon and the cost is $62. You can pay with PayPal and send your registration by e-mail. For questions, e-mail Robin, or call 240-383-6326.
See the Fall Yoga flyer here


DES PTO Gator Blast
Midweek Mail – November 10, 2020

Get your dinner at Chick-Fil-A Edgewater & tell ‘em
you’re there for Davidsonville Elementary School!

Chick-Fil-A • Wednesday • 5-8 pm
Dining for Davidsonville is ON tomorrow!
Come support your school! Get your dinners at Chick-Fil-A in Edgewater from 5-8 pm on Wednesday, Nov. 11th. Due to Covid-19, all participants are asked to order through the drive-thru. If for some reason a participant can not come through the drive-thru, you can come inside the store to place your order. Just mention Davidsonville Elementary School’s Spirit Night! 

Books make wonderful gifts…
Virtual Book Fair, Let’s Get Reading!
The book fair is underway! Now through November 23rd, shop the DES book fair virtually using the link below! Once you click through, make sure to sign in or create an account on the Scholastic website to ensure DES receives 25% of your order for fundraising. It’s a great time to encourage reading and stock up on holiday gifts. Plus all book orders over $25 ship free. There’s a 360-degree virtual experience complete with suggested reading lists and author clips, so make sure to check it out! 

And to get everyone excited about reading, we’re also hosting a virtual book fair Scavenger Hunt! Use the Scavenger Hunt flyer attached and have your student enter for a chance to win $25 in FREE books. One winner per grade. Follow this link to shop online now!
See the 2020-2021 Fall Book Fair flyer here


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of November 9-13, 2020

It’s like no other –
The Virtual Book Fair starts Monday!!

Calendar:                                     

This week:
Monday, Nov. 9-23rd: Online Book Fair hosted by the DES PTO, details below
Wednesday, Nov. 11: Happy Veteran’s Day to all of our DES families!
Wednesday, Nov. 11: Dining for Davidsonville plans now on hold, see details below
Friday, Nov. 13: End of 1st marking period
Sunday, Nov. 15: New deadline for Gator Wear Spirit Sales orders, details below

A look ahead:
Monday, Nov. 16: Beginning of 2nd marking period
Wednesday, Nov. 18: Board of Education meeting, 6 pm, details available here
Tuesday, Nov. 24: Report cards sent home
Wednesday, Nov. 25-Friday, Nov. 27: NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving break

News:                                        

Before we get going –
Just in case anyone missed the big announcement by AACPS, we just want to make sure everyone knows that the hybrid school plan has been delayed as of last week’s Board of Education meeting. Get all the news at the AACPS.org website here.

Go on a Scavenger Hunt for prizes
Virtual Book Fair, Let’s Get Reading!
It’s time for some fall FUN with the book fair! From November 9th – 23rd, you can shop the DES book fair virtually using the link below! It’s a great time to encourage reading and stock up on holiday gifts. Plus all book orders over $25 ship free. There’s a 360-degree virtual experience complete with suggested reading lists and author clips, so make sure to check it out! 

And to get everyone excited about reading, we’re also hosting a virtual Book Fair Scavenger Hunt! Use the Scavenger Hunt flyer attached and have your student enter for a chance to win $25 in FREE books. There will be one winner per grade, must enter by Nov. 24th. Here’s the link to the online Book Fair fun this year: https://www.scholastic.com/bf/davidsonvilleelemschool
See the Book Fair Scavenger Hunt flyer here

Just wait one minute…
Dining for Davidsonville on hold for a moment
The restaurant has put us in a holding pattern as the kind folks at Chick-Fil-A may now have a conflict for our planned fundraiser this Wednesday. So, we are calling it “tentative” at this point and may need to reschedule. You will be getting a special Gator Blast notification as soon as we know. Thanks for understanding.

Get a shirt to always remember the Year of Virtual Learning! 
Gator Wear store closes this weekend
This year’s special selections of Gator Wear won’t be available for much longer. We extended it through this week already and now need to wrap up the sale so we can deliver all of your orders ASAP. Log on by this Sunday evening if you want to make an order.  Order youth & adults sizes online, help raise funds for the PTO, and show your support of your student’s school. Items will ship directly to your home. Masks, sweatpants, fleece jackets, vests, shirts of all types, and more! And the prices are very reasonable. Go DES – Go Gators!!
Online Virtual Gator Gear Store

Now that’s nice wrapping paper…
Boon Supply Fundraiser is still on
Have you seen this catalog? They offer great bags, two-sided wrapping paper (!) storage totes, green-friendly kitchen goods, motivational posters, and pencils that offer encouragement to all. OK, there’s more than all that, you just have to go look for yourself. Raise funds for the PTO by doing all of your shopping at home and get items shipped there in time for the holidays. 40% of your total supports the DES PTO. We hope you check it out because this one’s pretty fun. Visit the online store at www.boonsupply.com/63508

Looking for some volunteers
We’re looking for folks interested in all things running or walking related in order to bring some activities to life for our students. If you think you could volunteer some time to something like this, you should reach out to the PTO’s own Volunteer Coordinator, Laura Addeo. She can then fill you in on what’s kicking.

Virtual Yoga program still registering all grades
So, we want to welcome as many students as possible and have decided to host registration for a couple of more weeks. The Whole Kids Yoga program is back and will be virtual on Wednesdays for all grades. The 6-session class will be held on Wednesdays in November from 1-2 pm and the cost is $62. You can pay with PayPal and send your registration by e-mail. Flyer still lists old dates, but they are flexible. For questions, contact Robin by e-mail at this link, or call 240-383-6326.
See the 2020 Fall Yoga flyer here

Hello DES Families,
If you haven’t paid your PTO membership fee yet, please do so now.  We know we are all busy and the school year just doesn’t feel the same.  However, there are still many things that the school and staff need, and the PTO is trying to fulfill all that we can. We have had to eliminate our big fundraisers so we are relying on the typical support we receive through our membership drive and smaller catalog sales to keep us from depleting savings. Only about 30% of our DES families have paid their dues (less than $3K) compared to over 90% of our families from last year. So far, we have spent about $10K on Brain Pop software licensing for all DES kids, the annual teacher supply gift cards, agenda books, some art supplies, and accounting/insurance/website fees as well as other expenses.  

Please click on the Paypal link on our website and help us with your $20 or $30 booster dues. We also need your info that we gather with the membership form to finalize the Student Directory this month. You can visit the membership form here and find the Paypal link right there as well. We really appreciate your support in this difficult year.

Thank you!!!!!!!
Carrie Groff, DES PTO President 2020/2021


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of November 2-6, 2020 

No school Tuesday – Go Vote!

 Calendar:                                     

This week:
Tuesday, Nov. 3: NO SCHOOL, election day
Wednesday, Nov. 4: Board of Education meeting, 6 pm, details available here

A look ahead:
Monday, Nov. 9-23rd: Online Book Fair hosted by the DES PTO, details below
Wednesday, Nov. 11: Dining for Davidsonville night at Chick-Fil-A Edgewater. 5-8 pm
Monday, Nov. 16: Beginning of 2nd marking period
Tuesday, Nov. 24: Report cards sent home
Wednesday, Nov. 25-Friday, Nov. 27: NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving break

News:                                        

Reading is where it’s at
The DES Book Fair is coming soon!!!
We are excited to bring DES the first virtual Book Fair! The fall book fair will be held online only from November 9th – 23rd. What a great way to encourage reading while raising funds for the PTO. And while it may feel different this year, there will be a great virtual walk-through of the fair, free shipping on book orders over $25, and even a few fun prizes! Stay tuned for more information next week!
See the 2020-2021 Fall Book Fair flyer here

Great stocking stuffer idea! Deadline is November 9th
Gotta’ get your great Gator Gear
Did you see the AWESOME new designs this year? Wouldn’t you LOVE to show off your Gator Pride with a unique mask? Don’t you want some COZY fleece? Your chance to order some of these great items is here with this fall’s Gator Wear on sale NOW

Order youth & adults sizes online and help raise funds for the PTO and show your support of your student’s school. Items will ship directly to your home. The store is open until Nov. 9th so hurry and get your order in. Go DES Gators!!
Online Virtual Gator Gear Store

Virtual Yoga sign-up still open – all grades
Time to relax and have fun too. This program offers so much more than just yoga. The Whole Kids Yoga program will be virtual on Wednesdays for all grades. The 6-session class is set to begin this Wednesday, Nov. 4th, from 1-2 pm and the cost is $62. You can pay with PayPal and send your registration by e-mail. For questions, contact Robin by e-mail at this link, or call 240-383-6326.
DESyogaFlyerFall2020

Don’t Forget …        
Boon Supply catalog sale continues
Bags, wrapping paper, and kitchen gear galore! Great items for you and all of your holiday gift-giving while helping to raise funds for the PTO. Do all of your shopping at home and get items shipped there as well in time for holiday giving. 40% of your order total supports the DES PTO. We hope you check it out if you haven’t already. Visit the online store at www.boonsupply.com/63508

Last chance to join
DES PTO Membership Drive
OK, everyone, this may be your final chance to join the Davidsonville Elementary School Parent-Teacher Organization for this school year. The PTO’s support of school and students continues despite the year we’re all having. And the need for your help is strong as we are well below normal member levels this year. Thank you for your support. 

 – Visit this link to join the DES PTO Today –

Food Pantry donations still accepted
This year’s Harvest for the Hungry donation drive is still open. Please consider giving to the cause. No in-person food donations this year, so they really need your help. Donate today at this link.

 Coming Soon…   
Dining for Davidsonville at Chick-Fil-A on Wed., Nov. 11th, 5-8 pm

Public Service Announcements:     

 Wednesday Board of Education meeting worth watching
The next BOE meeting will be held this Wednesday at 6 pm. This is the meeting where the Board of Education indicated they will be hoping to make final determinations for the current hybrid plan. The so-called, “go or no-go” date to confirm any return to school will be discussed. So, all parents and stakeholders may want to tune in to the meeting, which is broadcast live on TV and on YouTube by AACPS. If you want to find out how to tune in, visit this link.

 Virtual Math help available for students
AACPS is offering online help with math concepts or homework problems for Pre-K to 5th graders. You can click the link in the attached flyer on Tuesday and Thursdays, from 6-8 pm and be connected to a Google Meet with a live math tutor for assistance. Make math easier!
See the Math tutoring info. flyer here


DES PTO Gator Blast
Week of October 26-30, 2020

School Spirit Week & Halloween too!

 Calendar:                                         

This week:
Kona Ice event: Postponed, details below
Monday-Friday, Oct. 26-30: Spirit Week for students and staff, details below
Friday, Oct. 30: Yoga program registration deadline, details below
Saturday, October 31: Happy Halloween!
Sunday, Nov. 1: Daylight Savings Time ends, turn clocks back one hour

A look ahead:
Tuesday, Nov. 3: NO SCHOOL, election day
Wednesday, Nov. 11: Dining for Davidsonville night at Chick-Fil-A Edgewater. 5-8 pm

 News:                                             

Friday will be Halloween costume day!
 Say Yay! It’s Spirit Week at DES
OK, everyone, it’s time to make some memories. A whole week of joining together and having some fun. Everyone is asked to check out the schedule for the first Virtual Spirit Week at DES.
Monday – Gator Day (Wear Green or Gators)
Tuesday – Mix & Match (get crazy!)
Wednesday – Crazy Hair Day
Thursday –  Share your favorite stuffed animal with everyone
Friday – Halloween Costume Day

Special edition gator goods this year
Get your Spirit Wear now!
Gator Gear – virtual learning edition is here!! Grab your super cool gator wear at the online store to commemorate this unique school year. No time to waste… Place your orders until November 9th. All products will ship directly to your home and should arrive in a week. Youth & adult sizes available. Cozy fleece, comfy lounge pants–even totally unique gator masks! We’d love to see some pics of your kiddos in their new gator wear; send them to the PTO for the yearbook and the FB page (e-mail addresses in the Blast). Visit now to see all of the great custom items and start shopping!
Online Virtual Gator Gear Store

 Sign-up is now open for Virtual Yoga – all grades welcome
Time to relax and have fun too. The Whole Kids Yoga program returns and goes virtual on Wednesdays for all grades. The 6-session class begins Nov. 4th, from 1-2 pm and cost is $62. You can pay with PayPal and send your registration by e-mail. For questions, contact Robin by e-mail at this link, or call 240-383-6326.
DESyogaFlyerFall2020

 Have you checked out the Boon Supply catalog?
Great items for you and all of your holiday gift-giving. All while helping to raise funds for the PTO. Do all of your shopping at home and get items shipped there as well. 40% of your order total supports the DES PTO. Please share it with your friends. Time is running out! You can check it all out online at www.boonsupply.com/63508

 Kona Ice event
The Kona Ice event previously promoted by the PTO has been momentarily postponed. Stay tuned as we confirm some details. We will send out a special notice when things are sorted. Thanks!

Don’t Forget …
DES PTO Membership Drive
Please join the PTO today. Register online now as we are running out of time to get your student’s information in the Student Directory, which is only offered to members. We know the year is different, but your PTO has the same commitment as ever to make the year a special one for all. 

 – Visit this link to join the DES PTO Today –

Harvest for the Hungry
This year’s collection for the food pantry is still going. Please consider giving to the cause. No in-person food donations this year, so they need your help. Donate today at this link.

 Coming Soon…
• Dining for Davidsonville at Chick-Fil-A on Wed., Nov. 11th, 5-8 pm, put it on your calendar now

 Public Service Announcements:     

AACPS accepting public comment
If you wish to make official comments about the 2020 School Reopening Plan, you can get all of the details online at this link. Please note that commentary is limited and demand may be large.The link for live testimony sign-up will be posted Monday, Oct. 26 at 7 pm on the AACPS website, and on their Facebook and Twitter pages. Written comments can also be dropped off at the Board of Education building prior to the meeting. Get all of the details at the link above. 

 Carving Pumpkins for a Cause!
Hello families! The South River High School UNICEF club is planning a pumpkin carving contest to raise money for UNICEF, which helps meet the needs of children around the world. To enter, fill out the Google Form linked below, upload a photo of your creation, and the entrance “fee” is a $5 minimum donation to the club’s GoFundMe. We encourage people of all ages to enter, not just SRHS students. The prize for the winner is a $15 Sweet Frog digital gift card sent to the email in the form. The deadline for submission is Wednesday, Nov. 12th. Feel free to send questions to:  southriverunicefclub@gmail.com.

Google Form link for registration

GoFundMe link for donations


 

DES PTO Gator Blast E-mail
Week of October 19-23, 2020 

School option choice due Mon at 5 pm; Unity Day is Wednesday

Calendar:   

This week:
Monday, Oct. 19:  AACPS School model choice due by 5:00 pm
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Board of Education meeting, public session at 6:00 pm, details here
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Unity Day sponsored by AACPS, wear orange today, details below

A look ahead:
Wednesday, Oct. 28: Kona Ice sale, details to come
Sunday, Nov. 1: Daylight Savings Time ends, turn clocks back one hour
Tuesday, Nov. 3: NO SCHOOL, election day
Wednesday, Nov. 11: Dining for Davidsonville night at Chick-Fil-A Edgewater. 5-8 pm

News:                         

Make a schooling choice by Monday at 5:00 pm
The AACPS deadline to submit a preference on the learning model in which you wish to enroll your child is now at 5 p.m. this Monday, October 19th. Go to www.aacps.org/oct2020familyreopening before  5 p.m. on Monday, October 19, to indicate your preference.

Families that do not register a preference will have their students enrolled in virtual learning for the remainder of the school year, which is the Virtual Full-Year Model. More information, answers to frequently asked questions, and the link to register is at www.aacps.org/oct2020familyreopening.

Sessions start this Wednesday for all grades
Spanish language program anyone?
No time like the present to learn a new skill set. The DES after school Spanish Enrichment Program is back! Starting Wednesday, October 21st from 2:30 pm to 3 pm the DES PTO will run a 6-session Spanish program to introduce interested students to the Spanish language. This session is open to all grades and no experience is necessary and only costs $21 (payment made by PayPal). 

To sign up NOW, visit this link. Fill out the form there and you can also submit payment using PayPal. Contact Mike Schneider, chayaandmiri@gmail.com or 410-693-8967 for questions. We are limited to 15 students for the program this year, so sign up as soon as possible!
Visit this link to register

Wear Orange on Wednesday!
Please join the DES community this Wednesday as we celebrate Unity Day! Wear ORANGE to show that we all stand together against bullying and UNITED for kindness, acceptance, and inclusion!  Choose something orange you already have or create your own orange item, like an orange bracelet made from ribbon or construction paper. Our Gators will participate in special lessons Wednesday morning to bring awareness to this valuable message.

Don’t Forget…   
Boon Supply catalog sale is going strong
This fundraiser offers so many useful items for families AND it helps raise funds for the PTO. Do all of your shopping at home and get items shipped there as well. 40% of your order total supports the DES PTO. Please share it with your friends. You can check it all out online at www.boonsupply.com/63508

DES PTO Membership Drive truly needs your help
The PTO needs more families to join this year. Please register today as we are running out of time to get your student’s information in the Student Directory, which is only offered to members. We know the year is different, but your PTO has the same commitment as ever to make the year a special one for all.
 – Visit this link to join the DES PTO Today –

Harvest for the Hungry
This year’s collection for the food pantry is still going. Please consider giving to the cause. No in-person food donations this year, so we need your help. Donate today at this link.

 Coming Soon…   
• Dining for Davidsonville at Chick-Fil-A on Wed., Nov. 11th, 5-8 pm, put it on your calendar now
• Gator Wear spirit sale is coming very soon
• Get your Halloween costumes ready!
• More program & club news

 Public Service Announcements: 

Science to Go
AA County Libraries offer fun class “All About DNA”
Anne Arundel County Public Libraries are creating some great programs. Ages 5-11 are welcome to register for a fun online session called, “SERC Science to Go: All about DNA.” Join a real molecular biologist for this virtual session online this Saturday, October 24th, 1-2 pm, as you learn all about DNA and take part in a fun lesson. Registration is still open at this link. Some materials are being offered, check out the site for info.

Last Reminder
Nominations for 2020 Ravens Community Award due
Supported by the Ravens Foundation, Inc. and the NFL Foundation, the Community Quarterback Award recognizes individuals who exemplify leadership, dedication, and a strong commitment to improving the communities in which they live. Volunteers, ages 13 and up, who provide extraordinary service to area nonprofit organizations are eligible for the award. Charitable organizations are encouraged to nominate their own volunteers and individuals can also nominate themselves. Recipients of the award will receive Ravens apparel and a financial grant benefiting their organizations.

Applications for the 2020 Baltimore Ravens Community Quarterback Award accepted until Oct. 23 and can be completed at https://www.baltimoreravens.com/community/community-qb/


DES PTO Gator Blast
Midweek Mail, October 14, 2020

AACPS changes deadline for school selection to 10/19

Thanks to all who attended the PTO Meeting Tuesday
We had a GREAT turnout, maybe even a record!! Guess it helps when there’s a huge issue going on right this minute. We want to thank everyone who has joined the PTO this year, and all who tuned in for some chat about our plans, our goals, and our path. Thanks for the ideas, the feedback, and the kind words. We are ALL the PTO – this year more than most. If you haven’t joined yet, please do, we can use the help.

November school decision is THE hot topic!
Lots of communication this week about upcoming changes. Tuesday’s PTO meeting had a good talk and a quick survey (take the PTO survey at this link, results will be shared with administration), along with some great questions for Mrs. Harris and the PTO. Principal Harris also hosted a Q&A on Monday that was well-attended and very helpful. And County Exec. Pittman (a DES parent himself) hosted a live Facebook event on Tuesday with some BOE members and others to explore the topic further. There remain many unknowns at this time and we understand that families are anxious for information and definite answers. The DES PTO hopes for the very best outcomes for our staff, our students, and our families as we all move forward together.

Check out a few of our survey response graphics below.
An interesting way to see how some of your fellow DES parents are thinking.

What you can do
1. You MUST let AACPS know your preference for your elementary student learning plan by the NEW DEADLINE of Monday, Oct. 19th at 5:00 pm using their online Family Registration link here. Note, this has been referred to as a survey, but it is NOT optional. Read each question carefully, and review all details before submitting it. If you have any questions about it or need any additional help, e-mail: oct2020familyquestions@aacps.org.

* IMPORTANT *
If you DO NOT submit a selection by Monday, Oct. 19 at 5:00 pm, all students without a submission default to VIRTUAL students for the rest of the school year. 

2. There is another Board of Education meeting on Wednesday, October 21st at 6 pm. If you still have questions, or thoughts to share on this topic or others, PLEASE contact any or all of the Board members at the addresses linked here and listed below. Your voice matters and perhaps you have an idea or issue that nobody has even yet thought of. The PTO encourages you to speak now as many decisions are still being made. The agenda for this meeting was not yet available, but check this link as the date approaches. You can also find guidelines for public testimony on that page.

Here are the e-mail addresses of current Board of Education members & our County Executive:

Michelle Corkadel (President) – mcorkadel@aacps.org

Melissa Ellis (Vice President) – mkellis@aacps.org

Candace C.W. Antwine – cantwine@aacps.org

Terry Gilleland – tgilleland@aacps.org

Eric Grannon – egrannon@aacps.org

Julie Hummer – jhummer@aacps.org

Robert C. Leib – rleib@aacps.org

Dana Schallheim – dschallheim@aacps.org

Drake Smith (Student Member) – dmsmith8@aacps.org

General AACPS Comments & Questions – comments@aacps.org
County Exec. Steuart Pittman – Click here to send a message or call 410-222-1821

Please note that communications with public offices are considered public records.


DES PTO Gator Blast E-mail
Week of October 12-16, 2020 

PTO General Membership Meeting Tuesday at 7:30 pm

Calendar:                                   

This week:
Monday & Tuesday, Oct. 12-13:  NO SCHOOL, Parent/Teacher conferences for all grades
Monday, Oct. 12: AACPS Magnet program application window opens 8 am for 2021-2022, details here
Tuesday, Oct. 13:  DES Parent Q&A with Principal Harris, 12-1 pm online, see Saturday’s e-mail
Tuesday, Oct. 13:  PTO General Membership meeting, virtual at 7:30 pm, details below

A look ahead:
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Board of Education meeting, public session at 6:00 pm, details here
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Unity Day sponsored by AACPS, activities to be announced
Sunday, Nov. 1: Daylight Savings Time ends, turn clocks back one hour
Tuesday, Nov. 3: NO SCHOOL, election day

 News:                                             

AACPS offers new school options
In case you missed the big school news…
AACPS has announced that a hybrid school option and two virtual school options will be put into place by mid-November. They are asking all AACPS families to make a decision by Thursday, Oct. 15th. To review the information pages on each and to fill out the required form, visit this link

If you haven’t done it already – join us!
Become a member of the PTO today
We are still accepting PTO memberships for this school year. Your PTO is already working to fulfill the needs of the school, the staff, and the students at DES. Recent topics have included a software license so our students can use their favorite BrainPop app online. The PTO also supports the purchase of agenda books and colored pencils for every student’s supplies as well as the annual Back to School gifts for teachers. As you can see, the current situation hasn’t prevented us from getting things going and we need your help as much as ever. 

Please join the PTO this year, as a regular member or as a booster. This and your support of the smaller fundraisers we will be hosting throughout the year will be very helpful. Thank you all for your help. Note that only registered PTO members can vote on budget approval during the upcoming general membership meeting Tuesday.
 – Visit this link to join the DES PTO Today –

It’s fundraiser time and you’re going to like it!
One of our favorite fundraisers is back this year! Boon Supply is a favorite of many families for their expansive selections–from their awesome bags to wrapping paper to kitchen supplies! It’s a great time to think about Christmas presents, for your family or yourself. Items will ship directly to your house and 40% of your order total supports the DES PTO. Please share it with your friends and family! The fundraiser closes Dec. 7th. You can check it all out right now online at www.boonsupply.com/63508.
See flyer attached

PTO Meeting set for this Tuesday
The PTO will be having the 1st General Membership Meeting on Tuesday, October 13th beginning at 7:30 pm.  The Zoom link to join is below. This will be an informal meeting to discuss upcoming plans for the fall, approve the annual budget, and to share your thoughts/ideas/questions regarding the upcoming school year. Please join the PTO board & Mrs. Harris for this meeting. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to e-mail PTO President Carrie Groff at cagroff@comcast.net and/or join us for the meeting on Tuesday the 13th at 7:30 pm. Meeting link: Join Zoom Meeting.

Don’t Forget…
Harvest for the Hungry is still going. Donate today at this link.

Coming Soon…
Dining for Davidsonville at a local restaurant
Martial Arts program sign-up
Halloween costume day, and more.

Public Service Announcements: 

Nominations for 2020 Ravens Community Award now accepted
Supported by the Ravens Foundation, Inc. and the NFL Foundation, the Community Quarterback Award recognizes individuals who exemplify leadership, dedication, and a strong commitment to improving the communities in which they live. Volunteers, ages 13 and up, who provide extraordinary service to area nonprofit organizations are eligible for the award. Charitable organizations are encouraged to nominate their own volunteers and individuals can also nominate themselves. Recipients of the award will receive Ravens apparel and a financial grant benefiting their organizations.

Applications for the 2020 Baltimore Ravens Community Quarterback Award will be accepted until Oct. 23 and can be completed at https://www.baltimoreravens.com/community/community-qb/. We look forward to reviewing the impactful work of community volunteers and are excited to celebrate this year’s nominees.


DES PTO Gator Blast E-mail
Week of October 5-9, 2020 

We are ALL the PTO. Join the PTO today! 

Calendar:                                   

This week:
Wednesday, Oct. 7:  Board of Education meeting, public session now at 6:00 pm, details here

A look ahead:
Monday, Oct. 12:  NO SCHOOL, Parent/Teacher conferences for all grades, info. to come from DES
Monday, Oct. 12: AACPS Magnet program application window opens 8 am for 2021-2022, details here
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Board of Education meeting, public session now at 6:00 pm, details here
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Unity Day sponsored by AACPS, activities to be announced
Sunday, Nov. 1: Daylight Savings Time ends, turn clocks back one hour

News:                                             

**We are far from our goal!**
Still seeking families for DES PTO Membership
Thank you to all who joined the PTO since this time last week. We want to share that we are still far below our goal and we really need more families to join the DES PTO this year. It seems many are missing the simple cash payments that we usually welcome, but we just don’t have the option. Instead, we offer dues payment by PayPal and registration form submission online.

This year has been challenging for all of us in unique ways, and the PTO at Davidsonville is asking for your help today. Please consider joining the PTO today and lend your support to the many programs we bring to life, as well as all of the other school facility requests and teacher needs that we help to fulfill. Together, we can still help with SO much. 

For those who have joined (Yay!), we are waiting to wrap up our new member registration so that we can announce the date of the first PTO meeting. So, hold on for a bit longer as we hope to be ready soon.
   Visit this link to join the DES PTO Today! 

Note: To those who had some slight tech problems with the online form, we are offering an alternative form and method of getting to payment. Check this page at the PTO website. We’d prefer you use the main form, this is just an attempt to help those who couldn’t get through.

Give money to share hope
Harvest for the Hungry gets going with online drive
It’s an annual tradition, and it’s ALL different this year. The need for food by the hungry will never change, so the Harvest for the Hungry Kids Helping Kids food collection event will run countywide from October 1st thru November 25th. Families are asked to donate funds only this year at a special online link set up for donations. All proceeds will benefit the AA County Food & Resource Bank. Visit the donation site for more details. Please give what you can to help solve hunger in our area.
See flyer attached

Help in the time of COVID
Our own school counselor Mrs. Isett has joined with other counselors from the South River cluster to assemble a very helpful website for families in search of resources during this COVID-19 situation. You can find all types of resources and information there that should help to answer some questions. Visit this link to view it.

Public Service Announcements:     

Come out & have some local fun this Saturday!
Kids Bike Safety Rodeo  in D’ville hosted by Cub Scouts
All elementary-aged kids are invited to visit the outdoor Bike Safety Rodeo event set for this Saturday, Oct. 10th from 10 am to noon at the DES Bus Lot. Kids, bring a bike, a mask, and a bike helmet. Enjoy safety tips and handling lessons, along with a demonstration, an on-site bike mechanic for bike safety checks, and some special guests and small prizes. You can also join scouting or just learn more about it at the event. Sponsored by Cub Scout Pack 454. Questions: chair.pack454@gmail.com. More information on the pack website: www.scout454.org.
See flyer attached


DES PTO Gator Blast E-mail
Week of September 28 – October 2, 2020 

How’s the school year going for you so far?

Calendar:                                  

This week:
Monday, Sept. 28:  NO SCHOOL, all schools & offices closed
Thursday, Oct. 1: AACPS free curbside meals (p/u 12-12:30 pm) now include dinner, details here

A look ahead:
Wednesday, Oct. 7:  Board of Education meeting, public session at 10:00 am, details here
Monday, Oct. 12: NO SCHOOL, Parent/Teacher conferences for all grades, info. to come from DES
Monday, Oct. 12: AACPS Magnet program application window opens 8 am for 2021-2022, details here
Wednesday, Oct. 21:  Board of Education meeting, public session at 7:00 pm, details here

 News:                                       

PTO Membership drive heads into week #4!
The annual membership drive for the Davidsonville Elementary School PTO is up & running and we hope you ALL join us. Thank you SO much to all of you who have joined this past week – it is awesome! We are still talking and planning and trying to figure it all out! We have committee chairs working on plans for the year, and lots of stuff getting worked out. Never fear, we have some great ideas. So, stay with us and keep listening. 

This week we gave our teaching staff their annual back to school gifts from the PTO. Traditionally, these gift cards are used by teachers to help get things for their classrooms that they need to have even if they’re not in the budget. This year, we figured there were probably lots of things that teachers need that they haven’t necessarily needed before. So each of them got some help from the PTO with your support. Teachers, if you haven’t gotten your gift yet, contact the school office-they have them waiting for you. We LOVE our teachers at DES! 

The PTO does a lot of great things and the goal is always 100% participation. Visit this link to join the PTO & pay your dues online. Info. on the form will also be used for our student directory. Thanks again to all who have joined already this year. 


If you’re going to shop online…
Amazon Smile anyone?
Don’t forget to use the Amazon Smile program every time you shop at Amazon. This raises funds for the PTO each year and is the easiest way to do so that we’ve seen. They have now made it simple for folks who use the Amazon app on their phones to set it one time and forget it (hint: it’s in the menu on the bottom of the screen, look under Programs & Features). Or you can just click the link at the bottom of every issue of the Gator Blast before you start shopping. It’s also on the front page of the website here.

 Coming Soon… 

  • Gator Gear school spirit wear is in the final planning stages! Cool gear (some never before seen) will be available to order very soon. It’s a great time to be a Gator!!
  • Rumor is we might have a few great fundraisers this year, including Boon Supply with their cool bags and reversible wrapping paper! This one is always popular, and you shop at home!
  •  

 Public Service Announcements: 

If you need tech help…
Because the problems can be ongoing, AACPS has set up a Virtual Family Support Center, or a helpline, to address any tech troubles parents and students might have. Get help with Chromebooks, passwords, tutoring, and more by calling 410-222-5001.

Ages 6-10 can travel into a hurricane!
AA County Public Libraries offer cool STEM session online Oct. 3
You need to visit the AACPL website to get details on lots of fantastic (and free!) offerings and programs – from yoga to science, the county libraries are making things work during this unique time we are in. Like this great online program all about “Exploring the Atmosphere.” Held on Sat., Oct. 3rd, from 1-2 pm, kids age 6-10 will get to look at all kinds of cool weather-related sciences. Seats are still open, but limited. Register online at this link.


DES PTO Gator Blast E-mail
Week of September 8-11, 2020 

Welcome to Davidsonville Elementary School.
Welcome to the Gator Blast.

 Calendar:                           

This week:
Tuesday, Sept. 8:  School begins for all grades 1-12
Tuesday & Wednesday, Sept. 8-9:  Kindergarten Conferences held
Tuesday, Sept. 10-14:  Staggered entrance continues for Kindergarten

A look ahead:
Tuesday, Sept. 15:  First full-day for all Kindergarten
Wednesday, Sept. 16:  Board of Education meeting, public session at 10:00 am, details here
Wednesday, Sept. 23:  DES Back to School Night for all parents, 6:30pm
Monday, Sept. 28:  NO SCHOOL, all schools & offices closed

 It’s the Gator Blast!             

This is the e-mail distribution list for the families of Davidsonville Elementary School coordinated by the PTO at DES, home of the Gators! The Gator Blast lets you get info. about lots of things that happen beyond the classroom. Clubs, programs, events, county school news, issues of interest, and much more are shared with parents weekly and any family at DES can sign up to get it free of charge (that explains the ads above).

Thanks to all of our new families signed up for the Blast already. If you know of anyone who isn’t signed up, let them know to head to despto.org and sign up there. Unlike more normal years, we don’t have many new Kindergarten families signed up yet.

During the school year, we will send out the Gator Blast fairly regularly on Sunday evenings, sometimes midweek, and as items come up. Holiday weekends will usually be on a delay.

If you are receiving this e-mail, but wish to unsubscribe, drop us a line at desgatorblast@gmail.com. We realize many of you may have moved on as last year ended abruptly. 

 The News:                                 

School Info for DES
Yes, it’s all virtual school for now. Every student will take part in a virtual classroom experience using computers or devices. You should have gotten many e-mails from AACPS and a couple of updates from DES Principal Harris about how it all works. If you have any questions, visit the AACPS Virtual info site at this link. AACPS is recommending students log-in to their virtual Google classrooms daily using Classlink. The Classlink link is here. Best of luck to everyone as we get going. 

School hours are different this year
K-2nd grade 9:00 am – 3:00 pm on Mon., Tues., Thurs., Fri. (Wed. is 9:00-11:00 am)
3rd-5th grade 8:30 am – 3:00 pm on Mon., Tues., Thurs., Fri.
(Wed. is 8:30-11:15 am)
Students need to be on their computers, logged in and ready to begin at the start time. If you have any questions about forgotten passwords or general problems, contact the DES front office staff and they can help you find answers. The DES office phone number is 410-222-1655.
See the schedules & school year calendar at aacps.org

We are ALL the PTO!  Join online today!
PTO Membership sign-up starts now
Hello everyone and welcome to a most interesting school year! The annual membership drive for the Davidsonville Elementary School PTO is up & running and we hope you ALL join us. Despite the virtual nature of the school start, the PTO still has very real expenses. Like the cost of the gift cards we give to teachers at the beginning of each year, the purchase of supplies and technologies as needed, website hosting, taxes, insurance, and much more. The PTO does a lot of great things around here and are proud of the awesome community spirit at DES. The goal is always 100% participation. Check out the PTO website to see past project lists, fill out the membership form & pay dues online while there. Info. on the form will also be used for our student directory. Thank you for your support.
Visit this link to join the PTO

Back to School Night is online 9/23
Wednesday, Sept. 23rd you can head back to school for one night and learn more about your student’s classes and teachers as well as general policies and procedures at DES. Parents will log-in via their student’s Google Classroom on the computer. There will be brief presentations by the Principal and the PTO. Then teachers will host two-20 minute classroom sessions, just like we do in more “normal” years. So, if you have students in multiple grades, you will get a chance to visit with more than one teacher during the evening. We hope all parents will join online for this important opportunity to be involved in your children’s education.

Parents, take some photos!
We just wanted to remind everyone that a virtual start won’t hold us back from trying to make a yearbook happen this school year. So, the PTO is reminding all of you to grab those pictures of special events. First day of school, fun moments in virtual schooling, cultural arts moments, or ideas you come up with. We don’t want to miss out on the year’s early memories, so help us out. We will send info. soon on where & how you can share these photos with our yearbook committee. Thanks.

Virtual clubs can happen & volunteers will still be needed
Never fear! We are working on all kinds of ideas to try and offer students things to do and to explore during this virtual window. And we are ready to listen to suggestions you might have to offer. Our new PTO Volunteer Coordinator Laura Addeo, is focused on all things related to clubs, programs, and volunteers. Stay tuned to future Gator Blasts for any and all news on programs, where we might need help, and how you can be involved this year at DES. Meanwhile, if you want to reach out to her with ideas or questions, fill out the contact us page on this site.

 Public Service Announcements: 

Sports and things…
Our friends over at the Davidsonville Athletic Association (DAA) are doing everything they can possibly do to make things more “normal” for kids and families during this pandemic. This includes some sports happening now or others that still have registration open. If you are new to the area and want to know how to get your kids involved in local athletics, visit DAA online at daagators.org

You can also check out our other neighboring sports league at South River Youth Athletics where you can also find several sports up and running. Visit this link.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 

PTO Executive Board 2020/2021  

President: Carrie Groff
VP Communications: Christina Feindt
VP Volunteer Coordinator: Laura Addeo
VP Fundraising: Jamie Quinn
Treasurer: Jenn Phillips
Asst. Treasurer:
Secretary: Leeanne Whitwell

If you need to contact the PTO Board,
visit the Contact Us page on the menu above (under PTO Info)
fill out the form,
and we can get it to the right people.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 

 Like us on Facebook
Davidsonville Elementary PTO 

 See us on Twitter
@PTO_DES

 Support us EVERY TIME you shop at Amazon  using the Amazon Smile program
Click here before you shop. 

 Visit the PTO website
DESPTO.ORG

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