Dragon Tales

September 7th - September 10th

Spoiler Alert: First Week, Community Care Day, PTSA Meeting, Phone/Devices and more...

Happy Friday da Vinci Artists and Families!

Bravo to all of you for helping to prepare our artists for their transition back to in person school! We had a successful first week of school. Students did a great job with wearing their masks; and although, I couldn't see their actual smiles, I had many conversations with students and the feedback was positive. Bottomline, students are happy to be back in our building and our staff are elated to be back together again.

As I roam about our playground during lunch recess, I hear lots of laughing and so much chatter, which let's me know students are settling in. I am also noticing some of our newer students have not quite identified or found their peer group. Sometimes it takes a moment for students to settle into a new school. Our counselors will be organizing (with the help of our student leaders) more structured opportunities for students to connect during recess.

Moreover, I feel so proud to get to lead such a wonderful community. Last Saturday was our first Community Care Day (CCD). Our families showed up and really put in work - thank you for coming and supporting our school. Check out the photos below.

If you weren't able to make it out to CCD, no worries; there will be other opportunities to connect. Our next opportunity is via our upcoming PTSA meeting this Wednesday, September 8th. Check out the PTSA Corner for details (below).

Please remember that Monday is Labor Day (it is still okay to wear white after Monday!) and there is no school.

Have a happy extended holiday weekend.

Ms. Davis

Highlights from Community Care Day

Cellphone & Device Policy

Families, as students are getting back into the groove of things, we need your help with reminding students that da Vinci has a no cellphone policy. Cellphones and devices (non-academic times) are to be off and way during the day. This includes lunch and recess times. Please know we will do the following:

1st time: Remind students of the policy and ask them to put their device away.

2nd time: The device will confiscated by staff and taken to the front office. Students will be able to pick up the device after school.

3rd time: If a device is taken for the third time, I will be calling families to schedule a time with me so that we can create a plan to support the student in managing their device(s). During this time, families will be able to pick up their student's device.


We understand that families have different balls to juggle. However, we ask, if possible, please be mindful of how early students arrive to school, as we have limited adult support to monitor students in the morning. The first bell rings at 8:40 AM and the late bell rings at 8:45 AM. Students who are grabbing breakfast should arrive between 8:20 AM - 8:40 AM. As a reminder, breakfast is served through the doors nearest to the courtyard and is to be eaten outside.

Thank you for helping us with discouraging students from crowding, by not having students arrive too early to school.


Attendance Reporting

If your student will be absent from school for any reason, please notify sbryan@pps.net with their name and the reason for the absence. You can also call the main office at 503-916-5356 but we receive a high volume of calls and email is preferred.

Revised Bells, Breakfast times and Entrance/Exit Routines

To reduce congestion and gathering in the halls, we are making a few adjustments.

Breakfast will now be available from 8:20 to 8:40 in the morning. Students should enter from the SE corner/playground gate through the garden courtyard. Nutrition Services is set up right inside the door and students can get breakfast and go back outside.

The first bell for students to enter the building and go to class is now at 8:40 am.

  • 6th grade enters the building through the east doors, closest to the playground.

  • 7th grade enters the building through the center/main doors.

  • 8th grade enters through the west doors, closest to the driveway from the parking lot.

After lunch, students return to the building through these same doors.

After school, students should exit through the closest exit to their classroom. We will be having a fire drill next week to practice leaving the building.

Special Schedules and early dismissal

Next Friday we will have a special schedule to share the Talent Show video in the 6th period classes. If you need to pick up your student early, it is very helpful to let us know in advance. It can take some time to locate students to have them sent down.

Visitors in the Building

Visitors in the building are limited to essential business. If you are dropping off something or need to pick up your student, please ring the doorbell at the front door or call us at 503-916-5356 and we will meet you at the door or send your student out to you.

About that Doorbell

For security purposes, the building is locked during school hours. If a student arrives outside of normal arrival hours, or you need to visit, the doorbell rings the main office phone line. We can answer on an intercom and release the door. There is a camera so we can see who is at the door. However, if we are on the phone or attending to a student, we may not be able to answer immediately. Please keep trying if we do not answer immediately.

Traffic Pattern Reminder

We are working with the Portland Bureau of Transportation to improve traffic safety. Please remember to travel east on Everett St. in front of the school. If you want to be on the carpool list, fill out this form.

PTSA Corner

A Note from Elena, our PTSA President

From PTSA Elena

If your child is anything like mine, they are coming home buzzing about the first days at school. Whether finding their way from class to class and floor to floor, seeing familiar faces known only through a computer screen or simply feeling the nerves of being back in the classroom, it’s a time of transition. Just as our children navigate their new normal the PTSA must do the same.

Please join us for the first PTSA meeting of the year, scheduled for Wednesday, September 8th at 6pm. Next Wednesday we will discuss the PTSA budget, lay out a map for fundraising and community building events and begin to build out our volunteer support network. Please save next Wednesday, September 8th at 6pm and follow this link to attend.

As of today we have 31 da Vinci PTSA members for the 2021-2022 school year. How quickly can we build that to 100? Become a member by following this link and joining today.

Thank you,

Elena Rotondi

Pronouns: she/her/hers

da Vinci PTSA President

Save the Date

Please mark your calendars for the following events:

Picture Day is Coming, September 17, 2021

LifeTouch will be at da Vinci on September 17 to photograph all students and staff. These photos are uploaded into Synergy. Purchase of portrait packages is an option online through LifeTouch. You will be receiving emails directly from LifeTouch to place an order.

Back-to-School Night (B2SN)

B2SN will be held on the evening of September 23rd. Due to the fact that we are limiting the amount of people in our building, B2SN will be virtual again this school year. We will send out the link to our program soon.

Back to School Family Guide

A message from Ms. Wilson, Vice Principal

LatinX Club in the Works!

As I said in the last newsletter, we will be starting a Latinx Student Union in partnership with Latino Network. Please see the information provided here: English and Spanish

If you are interested, email mwilson5@pps.net or text me. Texting me is the best way so we can schedule a chat if you need. 971 754 5047.

Be safe and love lots.💜

Ms. Wilson

Back to School Information

Bell Schedule

Big picture

Accessing Students' Schedules & Canvas Observer

Schedules are now viewable on ParentVue/StudentVue. If you need help with access to your account, contact sbryan@pps.net or call the main office at 503-916-5365 between 8 am and 4:30 pm. We will do our best to return messages but email is the best way to reach us.

As a reminder, here is the Course Guide and forecasting instructions from last spring, way back in February 2021. We used forecasting to guide our staffing decisions and make our master schedule. Based on your input, we are excited to add three sections of Visual Art, build Drama Tech offerings, maintain African Drumming and Creative Writing. We did our very best to honor requests for electives but there are constraints. We must balance class sizes as much as possible and some classes are only offered certain periods. This year in particular, due to distancing restrictions, physical space is limited in some rooms.

Unless there is something majorly wrong with your schedule, we ask that you plan to get started with the six classes listed on your schedule for the first quarter. Many classes are full to capacity and there is not a lot of wiggle room. Even if your child did not get their top choice for an elective, we hope they will be willing to try something new.

If there is a big problem, please fill out this form. Students should fill out the form from their PPS account themselves. We will prioritize Special Education and students with 504 Plans who have issues with their schedules and core class placements, e.g., the wrong math placement. Our Assistant Principal will be reviewing requests. Until confirmation of a change is made, please plan to attend your classes as scheduled.

MOST importantly, changes will be made by Tuesday, August 31, 2021 5pm, if approved by Ms. Wilson. Otherwise, the priority for changing will be done the first to second week of school.

We appreciate your patience and understanding.

Video Tutorials of Accessing Parent/StudentVue and Canvas

Safety Measures

COVID Rapid Test Permission

Covid Testing Consent- NEW FORM LINK

If you have not yet filled out a form giving consent for your student to be tested in the event they show symptoms during the school day, there is a new form. Please fill out this form. When we receive information about the opportunity for weekly testing at home, we will share it with you. This will be starting with elementary schools first.

da Vinci's Lunch Plan

This year we are introducing our students to two different lunch periods. Administrators have participated in a series of meetings within the last few days to help us plan for busy times, such as lunch times. During these administrator specific meetings, we were given the guidance that lunches should be outside as much as possible. da Vinci will follow this new guidance. Below are a few answers to some popular questions:

Q: How many lunches are there and are they grade specific?

A: This year, we will have two separate lunches. Lunches are not grade specific, so 6th - 8th graders will be eating lunch together in the identified spaces, based on whether they have 1st or 2nd lunch.

Q: Where will students eat lunch?

A: Per the current the guidance from PPS, schools need to have students eat outside as much as possible. da Vinci will follow these guidelines. Students who bring their lunches will head straight to the playground. If your student is eating hot lunch, they will head to the cafeteria, maintain distance and rotate through the hot lunch line. After students have their lunch, they will head outside to enjoy their lunch. Students will again, be expected to maintain their distance, wear their masks at all times, unless they are actively eating and/or drinking.

Q: Can my student use the microwave to warm up their lunch?

A: We are discouraging the use of microwaves. Please send your student with a true cold lunch that does not need to be microwaved.

da Vinci Locker Plan

I know many of our students look forward to having assigned lockers; however, we have concerns about congestion and students not being to resist the urge to congregate in the halls during passing times. We, as community, have decided not to assign lockers. I will assess the impact of no locker use during the first few weeks of school and revisit this issue if needed.

Q: My student is taking band or dance, what is the plan to support their carrying load?

A: Students who are taking band, have the option of dropping off their instruments to the band/choir portable at the start of school (before the head to their 1st period class). Students who are taking Dance and dressing down, should plan to bring their items with them and carry them in their backpack. If your student has dance specific shoes and is unable to carry them in their backpack, please connect with Ms. Martins or Mr. George. Our dance and admin team will work to determine support on a need -by- needs basis.

Q: Should I send my student with a bunch of stuff?

A: No, thank you. Please only send your student with only the essential items (fully charged chromebook, zipper binder, materials/supplies necessary to access their education, etc.). Students need to be prepared to carry their backpack, jackets, etc. with them at all times.

Q: What if my student brings their lunch from home?

A: Students should plan to carry their lunch with them or if need be, they are welcome to take their lunch to their 4th period teacher's classroom. Lunches will be stored until their lunch time. Please be sure to remind your student to clean out their lunch box each night, so that they are not traveling with old food and/or containers.

Q: Since my student will have their lunch with them, can they snack during class?

A: No. Students are required to keep their masks on and will not be able to take their masks off while they are in class. If your student has a medical reason or a pre-identified plan identified via an IEP or 504 Plan that requires them to eat a snack outside of lunch times, a plan will be established with their case manager.

Entry/Exit Plan

Students will enter through grade-level-specific doors. At the end of the day, students will be expected to exit nearest to their 6th-period class (the last class of the day).

6th Graders - Enter through the doors to the east of the main entry doors at the front of the school.

7th Graders - Enter through the main doors in the front of the building

8th Graders - Enter through the doors to the west of the main entry doors at the front of the school.

Feeling Sick?

Families, if you have a child who is feeling ill or reports that they feel sick, we need you to please keep them at home. By keeping your sick child home, you are helping to keep our students as safe as possible and reduce the unfortunate spread of the COVID virus. In the event somehow your student makes it to school and they are displaying COVID-like symptoms, they will be asked to transition to our Symptoms Space, where (if there is a signed permission form) they will be provided with a self - administered rapid covid test. Students who take a rapid covid test will need to go home, even if the results are negative.

COVID- 19 Updates

While we will be back to school 5 days a week, PPS has introduced some guidelines for the upcoming school year. Please note, as the state of our county's health changes, the guidance and expectations may change as well. At current, students and staff are expected to wear face masks (unless there is a medical reason that prohibits them from doing so) and remain a physical distance of 3 ft. apart. You can find answers to many of your questions about the reopening of school on the PPS Back-to-School Portal.

Carpool List and Family Directory

Carpool List and Family Directory If you want to be added to the directory, fill out this form. The sheet is only shared with those families that opt-in.

Need a Device?

Many of our students have laptops or chromebooks from last school year; however, if your student is in need of a device or they need a replacement, please complete our device survey and we will work to support their request for a device.

We are asking that students bring their chromebooks to school each day. Please be sure to send your student to school with a fully charged device each day.

PPS 1:1 Tech Program Family Flyer: English, Spanish, Mandarin, Somali, Russian, Vietnamese

Free Lunch for ALL Students

PPS has announced that all students will have access to one breakfast and one lunch, per day, free of charge. This is huge in making sure every student has access to healthy breakfast and lunch options during an already tricky pandemic. Please note, you do not need to complete a free/reduce lunch application; however, if your family would like to determine other services you might qualify for such as reduced athletic fees, etc., you will need to complete the free/reduced lunch process.