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GWMS Spelling Bee: Call for Liaison

The annual GWMS Spelling Bee is coming up soon and this is an early call for a liaison. To make this event a success, we need a liaison to work with our GWMS teachers and staff. Please contact Joy Pochatila if you are interested in learning more about this exciting event, and in serving as our liaison!

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A Message from our PTA President

We wrapped up last week celebrating our GWMS Principal, Dr. Mazur, our Grade Level Principals, Mr. Harrell (6th Grade), Ms. Vinson (7th Grade), and Ms. Ortiz (8th Grade), during Principal Appreciation Week. Our GWMS community is so lucky to work with these individuals.

Did you miss Dr. Mazur’s updates regarding the new ACPS COVID policies at the PTA Membership meeting last Tuesday, January 11th?  If so, please watch the Facebook Live recording.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is observed on the third Monday of January, which, this year is tomorrow, January 17. All ACPS schools and offices are closed in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day (MLK Day).

Also known as a day of service, MLK Day is an opportunity to give back to the community in memory of Dr. King who dedicated his life to opposing racial discrimination and spoke of a world where all people were provided the opportunity they needed to succeed.

Many in our nation work to honor Dr. King’s legacy through service projects to address community needs, and there are a variety of ways in which the ACPS community can serve our neighbors. For some people, that may be delivering meals or collecting food and clothing; others may serve as a mentor. The work of volunteers is always appreciated by various service organizations in need of assistance. To learn about volunteer opportunities in Alexandria, visit Volunteer Alexandria.

The GWMS PTA will also be honoring our PTA volunteers this winter with an Honor Roll of Volunteers.  Would you like to specifically recognize a PTA volunteer?  If so, contact Joy at [email protected]

Joy Pochatila
GWMS PTA President 2021-2022

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A Message from our PTA President

What a chaotic start to the new year! Teachers, staff, parents: A big thank you for hanging in there as we all navigate a highly contagious COVID strain and two snowstorms last week. As you may be aware, ACPS has adopted new policies and protocols regarding in-person and virtual learning. The GWMS PTA Executive Committee met with Dr. Mazur on Friday and we will be dedicating the majority of our January PTA Membership meeting this Tuesday to answering parent questions and concerns specific to GWMS. Also, please note that Dr. Mazur has confirmed that all students will be offered the opportunity to participate in outdoor lunch when we return to school. No tents or seating will be provided, so we suggest your student bring a mat or towel to sit on.

New School Board members were inducted this past week. PTAC would like to use this “fresh start” to advocate for those measures and issues that are important to our families. To this end, our PTAC Executive Board has prepared a survey to gather feedback from our PTA members on budget and policy advocacy priorities. The survey will remain open until January 13.

On a positive note, we ended 2021 with more donations to our Honor Roll of Donors, bringing our campaign total to $13,865. Thank you to everyone for your generosity! While the campaign has ended, the Honor Roll of Donors will continue to grow throughout the school year. If you still would like to donate, please click here.

This winter we will be recognizing our volunteers with an Honor Roll of Volunteers. More information to come!

Joy Pochatila
GWMS PTA President 2021-2022

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PTA Meeting January 11

The GW PTA meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, January 11th at 7 p.m. and we will be dedicating the majority of our meeting to answering parent questions and concerns specific to GWMS. The meeting agenda and the December meeting minutes are attached for review.

  • PTA Meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 11 – Join us on Zoom (passcode: 699586) or Facebook Live
  • Spanish translation will be available at this meeting
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Winter Coat Donation

GWMS is collecting winter coats at school. If you have new or gently used coats to donate, please send them to school and have your student drop them off in the boxes set up in each grade level office.

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Honor Roll of Donors Campaign – Thank you!

THANK YOU GWMS COMMUNITY!  We enter winter break full of gratitude.  Our Honor Roll of Donors Campaign raised $13,315.  These funds help us pay for teacher grants, such as Mr. Clemmons Lego Robotics Kits, Alexandria Soccer scholarships, and GWMS water bottles, to name just a few things.  The PTA wishes everyone a restful break.

The GWMS PTA takes pride in providing this Honor Roll of Donors for the 2021-2022 school year. We sincerely thank all listed below for their support of the GWMS PTA.

  • Anonymous
  • GWMS PTA Officers (Joy Pochatila, Reagan Moore, Krista Tongring, Greg Ruff, Kristina Seppala, Marie Randall)
  • Graham and Sue Setliff
  • Kimberly Fondren
  • Cathy and Peter Gwin
  • Jack Gallardo’s Family
  • Jennifer Pulliam
  • Teresa Schofield
  • Elizabeth Klein
  • Elizabeth Webber
  • Harold Hernly
  • Elizabeth Salgado
  • Linda Williams
  • Catherine Estes
  • Jessica Hazlett
  • Crystall Merlino
  • Jennifer Mattson
  • Danielle Aiello
  • Rene Browne
  • Kelley O’Dell
  • Maria Pellegrini
  • Maureen McNulty
  • Christine Halsey
  • Tara Kilfoyle
  • Kathryn Pattarini
  • John Major
  • Nancy Drane and Dana Colarulli
  • Mariel Rodriguez
  • Meghan Crimmins
  • Greta Gordon
  • Clease Erikson
  • Christina Schwengel
  • Gabriela Canamar Clark
  • Missy Estabrook
  • Martha Davis
  • Deborah Nemeth
  • Erin Kidd
  • Mary Ritley
  • Alexander St Clair
  • Jennifer Ware
  • Arthur Smith
  • June Shih
  • Randy and Lindsay Clarke
  • Claire and Matthew Maucieri
  • Maria Salinas
  • Preshion Lynch
  • Stephanie Nagel
  • Megan Hess
  • Bonnie Naugle
  • Linda Jarrett
  • Jennifer Heatherington
  • Lisa Camooso Miller
  • Melanie Peterson
  • Jessica Wszalek
  • Andy Davis
  • Molly Pugh
  • Andrew Corso
  • Jessie Kamens
  • Carly Robb
  • Joe Cavender
  • Megan Tempel-Milner
  • Sue Heiler
  • Carrie Keene
  • Kristen Weber
  • Bonnie Naugle
  • Teri Gennarelli
  • Matthew Mulder
  • Carol Conjura

Every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of the list, but any person who finds an error or omission should contact Joy Pochatila.

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PTA Meeting Tonight!

The December GW PTA meeting is scheduled for tonight, December 14th at 7 p.m. and the topics will include a presentation from the Coordinator of the Special Education Center; a presentation from Dean Salvador about the PBIS program; and reports from the principal, PTAC, our Health and Safety committee chair, and our school board representative. The meeting agenda and the November meeting minutes are attached for review.

  • PTA Meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 14 – Join us on Zoom (passcode: 654630) or Facebook Live
  • Spanish translation will be available at this meeting
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A Message from our PTA President

Happy Holidays! As we wrap up the end of the calendar year, the PTA encourages you to send a note of thanks and gratitude to our GWMS teachers and staff.  The PTA Executive Committee also extends a big thank you to parents and caregivers for all the support you’ve provided in so many ways.  We recognize that it’s certainly been a challenging first few months and we cannot thank everyone enough.

This week we will wrap up our Honor Roll of Donors campaign. We are OVERWHELMED by your generosity! The PTA set a goal of $10,000 in donations by December 17th, and the total is currently over $11,815! Thank you! We are going to keep this train going and raise the goal to $15,000, which will allow us to eliminate future fundraisers in the winter and spring. We’ve mentioned some of the programs the PTA financially supports (teacher grants! family emergency fund! the PBIS store! staff appreciation and hospitality!), but the PTA also fully funds the end-of-year socials for each grade, the 8th grade promotion activities, the field trip fund, and a $1,000 budget for our drama department. All of these programs have been absent for two years and we’re excited at the prospect of bringing them back. Please consider the GWMS PTA in your end of year giving plans.

https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=B92XEUJHRFWK6&fbclid=IwAR05HMLin40oi5cMOJIAl2GhczF6Ok5xurEjr0FuZmRymrYRE2TvUThiPaQ

On Tuesday we will hold our December 14th Membership meeting. We are hosting a presentation from the Coordinator of the Special Education Center and we’ll also hear from Ms. Salvador about the PBIS program. Please see the agenda and November minutes, as well as the Zoom information, below.

Joy Pochatila
GWMS PTA President 2021-2022

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PTA Meeting December 14

The December GW PTA meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, December 14th at 7 p.m. and the topics will include a presentation from the Coordinator of the Special Education Center; a presentation from Dean Salvador about the PBIS program; and reports from the principal, PTAC, our Health and Safety committee chair, and our school board representative. The meeting agenda and the November meeting minutes are attached for review.

  • PTA Meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 14 – Join us on Zoom (passcode: 654630) or Facebook Live
  • Spanish translation will be available at this meeting
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A Message from the PTA President

The GWMS PTA kicked off the Honor Roll of Donors Campaign this week. Our goal is to raise $10,000 between now and December 17th – and so far, our total is $7,100!

How does your monetary donation translate into support to our GWMS community?

  • $1000 – Fully fund the Family Emergency Assistance program for our social worker. The fund provides support for the neediest children for items such as health snacks, eyeglasses, and emergency clothing.
  • $500 – One teacher grant providing additional resources for our children’s education.
  • $115 – A scholarship for a child to attend after school activities with Alexandria Soccer Association.
  • $75 – Coffee for our monthly staff and teacher appreciation breakfast.
  • $50 – Rewards for the Positive Behavior Intervention System (PBIS), where children spend the Prexie dollars they earned for good behavior.
  • $25 – Awards for our competitions, such as Reflections, Science Fair, and National History Day

To recognize the generosity of our families and friends, donor names will be listed in the Honor Roll of Donors posted on the GWMS PTA website and published each week in the Town Crier. Donors can opt out of this recognition if they choose.

All contributions are TAX-FREE. You can donate through our PayPal account using this link: https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=B92XEUJHRFWK6.

Joy Pochatila
GWMS PTA President 2021-2022

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Honor Roll of Donors Campaign

Dear Prexie Families and Friends:

We are very excited to announce the GWMS Honor Roll of Donors Campaign for the 2021-2022 School Year! This year, in lieu of various holiday fundraisers, we are asking for direct monetary contributions from our GWMS families, friends, and community. Our goal is to raise $10,000 between now and December 17th.

All contributions are TAX-FREE! This year, the PTA Executive Committee is issuing a Pledge Challenge! We have pledged to match $2,000 in contributions – we will contribute these funds as soon as the first $2,000 goal is met. This matching pledge will raise 40 percent of our total goal!

The PTA exists to support our children, faculty, and administrators – and every dollar you contribute assists in that effort. Your generous contributions allow the PTA to support GWMS teachers, staff, and families in important ways, including funding for teacher grants, teacher and staff appreciation events, end-of-year socials for all grades (fingers-crossed!), and the family emergency fund.

To recognize the generosity of our families and friends, donor names will be listed in the Honor Roll of Donors and posted on the GWMS PTA website and published each week in the Town Crier. Donors can opt out of this recognition if they choose.

You can donate through our PayPal account using this link:
https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=B92XEUJHRFWK6

We appreciate your support for our wonderful school!

Krista Tongring
GWMS VP Fundraising, 2021-2022

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PTA Meeting, November 9

The November GW PTA meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, November 9th at 7 p.m. and the topics will include a presentation from the Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria (SAPCA) & Alexandria Campaign on Adolescent Pregnancy (ACAP); reports from the principal, PTAC, our Health and Safety committee chair, and our school board representative; and ways to support the PTA through fundraising efforts. The meeting agenda and the October meeting minutes are attached for review.

  • PTA Meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 9 – Join us on Zoom (passcode: 213373) or Facebook Live
  • Spanish translation will be available at this meeting
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A Message from the PTA

It’s November and the season of gratitude begins.  I’d like to offer a few suggestions on how parents can show gratitude to the GWMS teachers and staff.  First, if you have the time and ability, please consider working as a substitute teacher or crossing guard (see the links below):

Substitute Teacher: https://acps.tedk12.com/hire/ViewJob.aspx?JobID=2331
Crossing Guards: https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/alexandria/jobs/2567298/school-crossing-guard

Second, the November Staff and Teacher breakfast, hosted by the PTA, is scheduled for November 15th (see link to sign-up below).  Be on the lookout for more volunteer opportunities from our Hospitality Committee.

Third, support the PTA through our fundraising efforts so we can continue to fund teacher grants!  The Scout Bag fundraiser starts this week (holiday shopping!) and save the date for the Haute Dog restaurant night later this month.

Joy Pochatila
GWMS PTA President 2021-2022

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GW Orchestra Thanksgiving Pie Sale

WHO’S HUNGRY FOR PIE?! The Orchestra’s Thanksgiving Pie Sale is BACK! This year, the pies are GIANT, affordable, and goin’ quick!

? ? ? tinyurl.com/GWPies ???

Check your kids’ backpacks for one of these flyers (in a page protector) to take to neighbors—they are our best pie-sellers!

Please place your order by Tues, 11/16 for pick-up on Mon, 11/22 OR delivery Mon, 11/22 & Tues, 11/23!

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Haute Dogs & Fries Fundraiser

GWMS will participate in a fall fundraiser with Haute Dogs & Fries on November 30 from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. 20% of all funds will be donated to the GW PTA! See more information here!

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Scout Bags Fundraiser

GWMS will participate in a fall fundraiser with Scout Bags November 8-14. 30% of all funds will be donated to the GW PTA! See attached flyer for more information.

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Sign Up to Help at the PBIS Store

Would you like to support the PBIS Store this school year? If so, please use this Signup Genius to select a shift over lunch.  This program allows teachers to reward positive student behavior with “Prexie Tickets” that can be cashed in at the PBIS store for things like cool pencils, balls, fidget spinners, notepads, school supplies, gift cards, and other treats. Students save up the tickets and then, once a month, the PBIS store is open outside the cafeteria so they can come through during their lunch periods.

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Donate Your Halloween Candy to GW Staff

Too much Halloween candy? Need to get the temptations out of your house?  Please donate any extra Halloween candy to be used as treats for our amazing GWMS teachers and staff.  The PTA is gathering Halloween candy (preferably not candy with Halloween-themed packaging) to distribute in mid-December for a sweet treat for all GWMS teachers and staff.  Please drop off donations at 528 N. Payne Street Alexandria (the blue house on the corner of Payne and Pendelton).  A bin will be on the stoop from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. each day.  Collection will take place November 5-15.  Thank you for helping to sweeten our GWMS staff’s day!

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Volunteer for the November Staff Breakfast

Every month the PTA treats our hardworking teachers and staff to coffee, juice, and a light breakfast.  Please sign up here to contribute items and/or volunteer for this month’s breakfast on Monday, November 15. You can deliver your items to the school library on Monday morning around 7:15 am.  Due to COVID concerns, we ask that all items be purchased (and not homemade).

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PTA Meeting Tonight!

Please join us tonight at 7 pm for the October PTA meeting. The topics will include a presentation from the GWMS staff on services for social and emotional support; a review of the 2021-2022 proposed budget; reports from the principal, PTAC, our Health and Safety committee chair, and our school board representative; and ways to support the PTA through fundraising efforts (Election Day Bake Sale; Holiday Wreath Sales; and Family Night Events). The meeting agenda, the September meeting minutes, and the proposed budget for 2021-2022 are attached for review.

  • PTA Meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 12 – Join us on Zoom; Passcode: 300872