The latest Gator Blast

DES PTO Gator Blast e-mail
Week of January 13-17, 2020

Send in your sports gear donations
for the upcoming Gator Gear Swap by Friday.


This Week:
Tuesday, January 14: Board of Education Budget Workshop, 6pm, details in last week’s Blast
Friday, January 17: Yearbook Club & Group photo day
Friday, January 17: Sports Equipment drop-off morning at DES, details below
Friday, January 17: Optional Science Fair Help Session, 8:15 am, details in last week’s Blast

A Look Ahead:
Monday, January 20: 
NO SCHOOL, Martin Luther King Jr. holiday
Wednesday, January 22: Strings Concert, 6:30 pm
Thursday, January 23: Band & Chorus Concert, 6:30 pm
Friday, January 24: Family Fitness Fun Night event, 6-8 pm, details below
Tuesday & Wednesday, January 28-29: 2 Hour Early Dismissal both days
Thursday, January 30: NO SCHOOLprofessional development
Friday, January 31: Start of the third marking period
Monday, February 10: Report Cards distributed
Wednesday, February 12: 2 Hour Early Dismissal, professional development
Wednesday, February 12: Skate Zone fun night for DES, details to come
Friday, February 14: Valentine’s Class Parties


Share another season…
Donate used sports equipment – final call this week
WANTED: Any and all used sports equipment!!! You’ve got old cleats, lacrosse sticks, shin guards, etc… that you aren’t using anymore? Then donate them to the Gator Gear Swap at the DES Family Fitness Night so they may be passed along to other DES families.  Please bring your items to the DES office on or before January 17th  and we will take care of the rest.  Any items that are not “adopted” at the DES Family Fitness Night will be donated to another school within our area. This is a GREAT opportunity to help area youth, to be environmentally friendly, and to get some items you CAN use!
See the Sports Gear Donation flyer here

Sign-ups still open, sessions start today!
Winter Coding Program for grades 2-5
Registration is now open for students in grades 2-5 for another Coding Club session at DES. The program will be led by the Silver Knights Enrichment crew that hosted the fall session and will meet on Mondays before school, from Jan. 13 through March 16. Cost is $196 for 8 sessions. Fill in the registration form and submit with payment (checks to DES PTO) marked for Coding Club. Given the late date, anyone wishing to register their student for tomorrow’s session should contact the program chair, John Ellinwood, tonight, e-mail here.
See the DES 2020 Winter Coding Program flyer here

Get Fit with DES!! 
Family Fitness Fun Night is January 24th
Bring the whole family! We believe in healthy minds and healthy bodies at DES.  So, join us for our first annual DES Family Fitness Fun Night! Try a Zumba class or Jazzercise, or even a Martial Arts class for FREE at DES! Snacks and drinks are also being provided to help fuel that mind and body! We’ve even got a representative from Pathways coming to discuss the dangerous new trends our teenagers are facing. Join us for a fun and informational night at DES on Friday, January 24th from 6-8 pm – wear your comfy clothes and join the fun!
All are welcome to participate! Please RSVP for the event so we know you are coming.

** Got a fitness or healthy lifestyle business to share and/or want to help support the event? Contact Jodi at  
See the Family Fitness Fun Night 2020 flyer here

Yoga returns for 3rd thru 5th graders
Whole Kids Yoga returns for 3rd thru 5th graders at DES. This program is more than just yoga, with fun kid-oriented activities also included. The 6-week session will be held after school on Wednesdays, February 5th – March 18th. Cost is $99. Registration form and waiver must be turned in with payment (checks to DES PTO) in an envelope marked for Whole Kids Yoga. Limited enrollment, so turn in your registrations soon.
See the Winter 2020 Yoga flyer here

Martial Arts program begins in February for all grades
DES and East Coast Martial Arts (ECMA) are teaming up for the 2020 Martial Arts Enrichment program! ECMA will offer Gracie Bullyproof classes (for info. visit this link) on February 4, 6, 11 & 13th. Classes will be after school at DES for students of all ages and cost $40. All profits will be donated to the DES PTO. Kids will learn the basics of conflict avoidance and bullyproofing techniques. This will be a much different program than past classes. Kids with martial arts experience are welcome and parents can participate as well!  Space is limited.

Students will hear more about it in gym classes or you can follow the link in the attached flyer to register. Sign up now!  Send in your payment in an envelope marked “Martial Arts” or bring it to the front office. Contact Chair Mike Schneider with questions at 410-693-8967, If students need financial help, contact Mrs. Isett (school counselor) at this e-mail address.
See the Winter 2020 Martial Arts flyer here

DES’ Gator Gallop Registration is now OPEN!
Join in the family fun at this spring’s Gator Gallop on Saturday, May 9, 2020 at Davidsonville Park. The event includes the 5K, the 1 mile for kids, and the 100 yard Gallop for kids as well as pre-race warm-ups, post-race refreshments, a Mascot chase and more! Visit the registration site to find out more about this fun, annual event. Register at this link. Registration is open through April 23rd.

It’s an all-new experience…
Committee Planning meeting for this year’s Gator Gamble
This is the big event of the year and this time, the whole family is invited to The Gator Gamble – Family Edition, set for Friday, March 13th. The Gator Gamble Committee will be holding an event planning discussion this Sunday, Jan. 19th at 5:30 pm (time & location will be confirmed with all who RSVP). We could use some help making this year’s Gator Gamble come to life with a new look, a new feel, and a new location – join us to find out more. If you think you’d like to attend, reach out to PTO Fundraising Chair Lisa Gebbia by e-mail. Thanks to all who can help.

Stay informed & involved!
AACPS and County Council discussing billion-dollar budget
It’s that time of year again. Everyone is busy planning budgets for Fiscal Year 2021. Superintendent Arlotto presented his plan to the Board of Education in December. The BOE now gets to listen to opinions and tweak things as needed until a target date of Feb. 19th. They must present their final version to the County Exec office by March 1st, who then sends it to the County Council by May 1st for inclusion in the county budget.

The DES PTO would like to inform everyone of the many opportunities to take part in the process. You can attend any session that is open to the public of either the Board of Education or the County Council. You can attend to just listen, or you can plan to speak your opinion on topics. Whatever you choose, please stay informed if you care about education in Anne Arundel County. Click here to get more information or here to read a summary. You can also contact members of the AACPS Board of Education by phone or by e-mail. Visit this link for that info.

Here is a list of upcoming dates and locations:

Board of Education meetings/budget hearings:
(Please review new rules to sign-up to speak)
January 7, 6:30 p.m. at Old Mill HS (Budget Hearing)
January 8, 10 a.m. at Board of Education (BOE Meeting public session)
January 9, 6:30 p.m. at BOE Board Room (Budget Hearing)
January 14, 6:00 p.m. at BOE Board Room (Budget Workshop – no public testimony)
January 22, 7 p.m. at BOE Board Room (BOE Meeting public session)

County Executive/County Council Town Halls:
January 7, 6:30-8 p.m. Lindale MS Auditorium- District 1
January 9, 6:30-8 p.m. Annapolis MS Cafeteria- District 6
January 16, 6-7:30 p.m. Old Mill HS Media Center – District 2
January 22, 6-7:30 p.m. Northeast HS Auditorium – District 3
January 23, 6-7:30 p.m. Arundel HS Cafeteria – District 4
January 28, 6-7:30 p.m. Southern HS Auditorium – District 7 (most DES families)
January 29, 6:30-8 p.m. Severna Park MS Cafeteria – District 5

You do not have to attend the County Town Hall only in your district. You can attend/speak at any of them to share what you would like funded in this year’s budget.
See info. on the county Town Hall meetings here.

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