Compass Family Update

July 7, 2014

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This Week's News:

  • We hope you enjoyed the holiday weekend! Michelle and Brooke, along with their partners and some friends, enjoyed the fireworks at Brooklyn Bridge Park.
  • Brooke and Heather Maxon, Compass parent, met with representatives from Studio in a School last week. We learned more about the program components and curriculum. This program is a great opportunity to expose our young students to visual arts before we have a full time visual arts teacher. We are hoping to be able to partner with the organization to provide 14 weeks of visual arts instruction to our students and training for our teachers.
  • Brooke met with Kirsten, our Sustainability Coordinator, last week to begin planning some of the projects she will be working on this year. Kirsten will join Michelle and Brooke for our first visit to Materials for the Arts later this week where we will be able to "shop" for free arts materials for our school.
  • We have a few more home visits this week. Michelle is now finished with teaching and back from vacation, so she will do some home visits this week as well. If you have not yet scheduled your visit/assessment, please email Brooke (
  • Michelle and Brooke are having an intensive curriculum planning week this week. We will be putting our emails and other tasks aside and focusing on finish up our curriculum so we are ready for our students in the fall.
  • We will reach out to all committee volunteers this week to set up initial meeting times. Thanks for your patience and for joining a committee!

Donors Choose Giving Page: Please share with your friends and family

Thanks to the help of some of our founding teachers, we now have projects posted to Donors Choose! This website allows teachers to create proposals for materials they need in their classrooms. We have one project posted right now and a few others will be posted once they have been reviewed by Donors Choose.

We created a Compass Giving Page on Donors Choose so our friends and supporters will be able to see all of the proposals for our school in one place.

Here's the link to the giving page:

Please note that proposals can only be posted for 4 months and our school will not receive any of the materials requested unless we raise the entire amount for each proposal. In order to be as successful as possible, we kindly ask that you share our giving page with your networks, including your friends and family. Also, please note that all of the proposals that are being created at this time include materials that will be used by all 100 of our incoming students.

School Food: Please complete as soon as possible

Compass has now been added to the Department of Education's School Food program.

The Department of Education asks that all families enter in their information, even if they do not intend to eat school food. Certain state funding depends on having ALL FAMILIES fill out this information. We need everyone to apply for School Food even if you do not intend to use it for your child.

Please click the link and complete the information as soon as possible as this will impact our funding. Please make sure to choose Compass Charter School 84K789.

Here is the link to the application:

As of yet the DOE has not informed us how to keep track of your submissions. Please email our summer fellow, Sam, once you have completed the form. Her email address is Thank you!

What we are reading:

The article below was sent to us by Jennifer Thomson, parent of an incoming first grade student. Please take a look, share your thoughts, and feel free to send any other articles you would like to share.

Thanks, Jen!

Living Things Committee: WHY KIDS BENEFIT FROM PETS

The article pasted below was sent to us by one of the parents who is leading up our Living Things Committee. This committee will be exploring ways we can get animals and plants into our classrooms.


Animal interactions help enrich children's development through the senses. Here are a few examples of how this happens -

1. Working with and caring for animals teaches responsibility
2. Touching the animals stimulates the tactile system
3. The olfactory sense (smell) is used when working around animals (i.e., many new scents are introduced - smell of hay, grain, food, etc.)
4. Carrying food/hay, shoveling the manure, brushing the animals all work on the proprioceptive system (stimulates the senses of joints/muscles)
5. Walking the animals teaches the child how to lead, work on balance skills, strength, responsibility, and safety skills
6. Teaching tricks to animals demonstrates cause and effect to the child
7. Living with animals at an early age may protect children from allergies according to research (
8. Having a pet, helps children to establish a strong bond with another living being - see below article for demonstration of this!

Needs Assessment for Founding Families

Thanks to all of the families who completed this survey! If you have recently joined the Compass community, please complete the following survey so we can better understand your needs for the upcoming year. Thank you!

Monthly Family Gatherings: Mark Your Calendar!

Our next two Family Gatherings will take place on July 26th and August 23rd. We will send info about location and time before each event.

If you are interested in planning or helping to plan one or both of these events, please email Brooke (

Compass Charter School

Feel free to reach out anytime with questions or to catch up. Our contact info is listed below.

Our office at the Charter Center: 212-437-8372

Brooke Peters, Co-Director of Curriculum and Instruction


Michelle Healy, Co-Director of Curriculum and Instruction

Todd Sutler, Co-Director of Strategic Development