Making A Difference for APS!

Edition 2

Welcome back to Edition 2 of the Making A Difference for APS! newsletter. There are so many awesome things going on in our schools and I am excited to share. Volunteers are often the glue that holds the schools community together. Volunteering allows you to connect to your school community and make it a better place. Even helping out with the smallest tasks can make a real difference to the lives of our students. In this edition, lets take at look at a few new and existing partnerships and how organizations, businesses and our APS parents are making a difference around the school system.

Family Market at Carlin Springs

Carlin Springs kicked off their first monthly Family Market program of the year on October 27! During the event families shopped for free, fresh produce and shelf stable groceries, provided by the Capital Area Food Bank. Many other community partners were key to making the event a success for the whole family! Saint Katherine Greek Orthodox Church donated laundry detergent for all our families; the Arlington Medical Reserve Corps recruited volunteers to support the market; St. John’s Baptist Church hosted a “free yard sale” with clothing, shoes, and household items; the Master Food Volunteers and AFAC hosted an interactive cooking demonstration; and the Arlington Department of Parks and Recreation hosted children’s movement activities, including inflatables! Many more volunteers and partners help make this important monthly event educational, exciting, and successful for our community.

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month


Langston High School Continuation Program celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month with an art installation, live performances, and a luncheon for the students and staff. The students volunteered their time to create the artwork and work on the live performances. Staff volunteered to cook and bake many wonderful Hispanic dishes to share with the school community. The entire event was coordinated by Langston EL teacher, Ms. Matus, and many others who volunteered their time and skills to contribute to the success of the event. The day was enjoyed by the Langston-Brown Community Center Senior Citizen’s program and the entire Langston High School Continuation Program.

Kenmore Middle School

Kenmore Middle School also celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month with a staff luncheon. A big shout out to parents, teachers, and the Student Association (PTSA) for their support, food donations and to the staff who promoted Hispanic Heritage Month via Kenmore News, and school decorations.

Partnership Previews

Gunston staff are so excited to welcome partner, Brett Corey, from Camden Living. He and his colleagues will be at Gunston from time to time to help beautify the school, inside and out. They plan to paint, pick up trash around the school grounds, and help with other projects. We can't wait for them to get started!

Dr. Charles R. Drew Elementary School, under the direction of the school's PTA, is creating a multicultural community mural to be installed on the concrete wall of the PreK/K playground.

Cheryl Foster, a visual artist specializing in large-scale public art and visual arts residencies, will work with Drew students and the community to create a mural that represents our community. The mural design is inspired by the text and illustrations in the book Maybe Something Beautiful. This book speaks to a child’s efforts to turn her drab neighborhood into a stimulating and beautiful community with the help of neighbors and friends.

PEP (Program for Employment Preparedness) located in the Arlington Career Center is happy to partner with Burlington Coat Factory at Bailey's Crossroads. The PEP students are learning hard and soft skills while completing their internship hours at Burlington.

A long-time partner with Arlington Community High School, AAUW joins our students during lunch to discuss gender equity and the value of education for our future leaders

Montessori Public School of Arlington

The official mascot of MPSA is the monarch butterfly, and the students and staff work hard to maintain a garden filled with all the favorite plants and flowers that are attractive to them. They also rely on school volunteers to come out on the weekends to help with the weeding and planting that otherwise would not be completed in a timely manner. MPSA students and staff really appreciate the families that give of their their time to help keep MPSA gardens and grounds beautiful!


Hoffman-Boston has been able to bring back the Adult English Language classes this year which had been halted since the pandemic. The classes are open to all Hoffman-Boston parents and meets twice a week at the school. The group is led by Susan Weinbeck, an experienced adult literacy teacher and long-time Hoffman-Boston volunteer. The classes are a wonderful way for parents to improve and practice their English language skills and have the opportunity to meet and get to know other Hoffman-Boston parents in the group. Susan shared that “Conversing with immigrant parents is energizing. They are without a doubt eager learners. They want to have English language skills to interact with their children who are immersed in English. They enjoy conversations with parents from other countries. Although our words may vary, there is much we all share.”

Parents around the School system

A big shout out to the many Taylor volunteer parents who helped out with picture day and with the Book Fair. Our volunteers help these types of activities run smoothly and we are very grateful for their participation.

Kindergarten parents also volunteered in the classroom for the "Apple Lab" where students and parents learned all about a favorite fall fruit, the apple. They ate pie, counted apple seeds and did many other apple-related activities.

Barrett's Friday Volunteer Group

Barrett's Friday Volunteer group meets in person every Friday to discuss issues related to their childrens' learning and stays afterwards to help teachers with cutting, laminating and/or sorting their classrooms' learning materials. This year marks the group's 24th year anniversary, and we are happy to report that the teachers at Barrett are very thankful and appreciative of all their hard work and dedication.