Charlemagne Weekly Update

June 7, 2020

From the PTO

Hello Charlemagne Families!

It’s our last week of school, and it’s been a strange and different end to the 2019-2020 school year. Let’s give a shout out to the incredible teachers, staff, principal and our volunteers at Charlemagne! Even under circumstances none of us anticipated, they’ve done an amazing job providing quality distance learning to our students and helping us navigate these challenging times. Thanks also to our incredible families who have supported each other and our community. We are so grateful for each and every one of you, and we’ll continue to support each other as plans for the next school year unfold.

Supporting Our Students

We know that the past week has been difficult. Our thoughts are with everyone in our local community, and particularly our communities of color, who are the most affected by recent events and continue to suffer from racism in our country, which we must all do our part to eradicate. This includes our learning environments.

One of Charlemagne’s core values is to create a learning environment that “is inclusive, appreciative and respectful of our diverse community.” We hope that recent events can help us reflect on what we can all do to support diversity and work against racism and implicit bias in our community.

It can be difficult for families to know how to talk to their students about what is happening. We want to share the following links from the 4J school board that may be helpful in discussing and caring for your children:

End of Year

Keep reading below for important updates for the next week-- lots to come! Even from a distance, it’s hard for us to say goodbye to our families and our students. It can feel even harder in a year in which we aren’t able to connect physically as we are accustomed to doing. We hope that this summer brings some much needed respite to our families, and we look forward to connecting again in the fall in whatever form that takes.

Thank you for being a part of this amazing school community!

All our best,

Jenny Jonak

PTO Co-Chair

From Mme Courtney

Dear families and friends:

As we enter the final week of school in our current context-- a global pandemic and historic civil unrest-- undoubtedly like all of us at Charlemagne, you're experiencing the gamut of emotions. In the space of the past week, I've felt deep sadness, some relief, grief, joy, uncertainty, anger and finally, resolve.

My resolve centers around my own identity as a white, female leader, and my responsibility to my multi-racial family and our beautiful and diverse Charlemagne family. Though these are days of fear and despair in our country, we all have a responsibility to turn our energy towards striving to do more, and do better to change our world... above all, for our children. Here, we find our source of inspiration and joy.

I whole-heartedly believe in the power of language to open hearts and minds-- language learning plays a pivotal role in developing the world view of our students. Our work, however, is not only to teach a language, but to create a learning environment that is safe, supportive and free from bias and bigotry of any kind. We pledge to acknowledge, value, and cherish the differences between our students and to provide students with the skills and ability to examine and interrupt injustice. We will come together across race and difference to actively combat systemic racism and oppression... and I look forward to conversations we have as an immersion community in this work.

In the meantime, I invite you to peruse some resources listed below. There is much to read and consider and with the right tools, talking with children about racism, violence and oppression can be empowering and enlightening.

We miss you and wish we could be together, processing and learning in real time. Until then, we wish you a restorative summer break full of long, sunny days, thoughtful conversation, and family connections.

On behalf of the Charlemagne staff and with love, light and solidarity,


How to talk to your children about protests and racism

Understanding race and privilege

Talking to kids about racism and justice

"They're not too young to talk about race"

End-of-School-Year Events

Thank you so much to parents who found themselves mastering Seesaw and other remote resources to support their students in distance learning! Our last week of school will focus on end of the year celebrations and class activities designed to provide some closure and community to our students.

Our last day of school is Wednesday, June 10. We are planning a “reverse parade” to celebrate our students on the final day of school. Our 5th grade students will lead us out at 4:30 pm and all other grades will start at 4:45 pm-- parade route photo below. We will follow social distancing recommendations, so we ask that all families stay in their cars for the entire parade! If you would like to ride bikes for the parade, we welcome your active participation with the same social distancing guidelines.

Tuesday, June 9, at 4:30 pm, we will celebrate fifth grade Promotion Fifth grade families will receive a class email with more details.

Device drop-off will be two days, June 10 and June 11 at the times listed below. It may take some time given the number of families and devices, so please plan accordingly and be patient during this process.

Below are the dates and times for this week:

  • Monday, June 8 - End of the year celebrations and activities in classes

  • Tuesday, June 9 - End of the year celebrations and activities in classes

  • Tuesday, June 9, 4:30 pm - 5th grade virtual promotion

  • Tuesday, June 9, 6:30 pm - PTO Meeting: Elections and Conversation

  • Wednesday, June 10 - Virtual Field Day with Mme ErinMarie

  • Wednesday, June 10, 4:30 pm - Reverse parade at school, Yearbook pick-up and materials/ device drop-off

  • Thursday, June 11 - Teacher work day- no school. Devices and materials drop-off, lost and found and Yearbook pick-up from 8:00 am - 12:00 pm and 1:00-5:00 pm.

  • Friday, June 12 - No school/Furlough day

Here's the parade route for Wednesday, June 10... We can't wait to see you all! Remember: 5th grade at 4:30 pm and all other grades at 4:45 pm.

Big picture

Educational Resources for Summertime

Some families have expressed worry and concern about their students falling behind as a result of distance learning. Please know that we are all in this together, and we will work as a community to make learning for the next school year as supportive as it can be. Everyone will experience some gaps. In the meantime, here are some links for any parents looking for educational resources over the summer for their students:

Summer Learning Resources and Learning for families during school closures

In addition, some classes are making resources such as Freckle Math, Dreambox, etc. available for their students during the summer. Quantile also offers a free Summer Math challenge for any families interested.

Along with doing academics, don't forget the importance of creative and imaginative play! Long days of book reading, tree climbing, garden planting, and road tripping are equally important to focusing on academics.

Have a great summer!