From the Principal's Pen

April 19, 2020

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Earth Week of Action

Dear Parents and Guardians,

This year is the 50th anniversary of Earth Day! Originally, we had planned some amazing in-person activities, but now we will be taking our collaborative Townwide Earth Week Celebration online! All of Greenwich's schools - public, private, faith-based, preschool, elementary, and secondary - are working together as one educational community to preserve our home.

Between Monday, April 20th and Friday, April 24th, students will have the opportunity to take part in activities designed around different themes during the school day. Each day will have a different theme:

  • Monday 4/20 - Artists for the Earth
  • Tuesday 4/21 - FoodPrints
  • Wednesday 4/22 - Earth Day Tribute
  • Thursday 4/23 - Citizen Science
  • Friday 4/24 - Arbor Day, Trees for the Future

Students will be informed and reminded of each day's activities through our JC Daily Update. An informational document with all of the week's activities is attached below in both English and Spanish.

Earth Week 2020 will be a historic experience for the Greenwich educational community. What a difference we can make by working together!

The Julian Curtiss Earth Week Team

Mrs. Brenda Brush - Committee Chair

Ms. LeAnn Hinkle - Teacher Co-Chair

Mrs. Kristina Loechner - Teacher Co-Chair

Mrs. Trish McGuire - Parent Liaison

Planning for the 2020-2021 School Year

April 19, 2020

Dear Parents,

Although we are in a time of crisis it is important for us to look ahead and begin to make plans for the next school year. Our teachers will soon begin the class placement process for the 2020-21 school year. We make class placement decisions based on the best interest of all children in the class and ask you to continue to trust our professional judgment in determining class placements. Our teachers see the full picture of learning styles, needs, and personalities when they are developing class make-up. Having said this, we do value input from parents as you are aware of the various teaching styles in your child’s academic career. As always, we will be following the Board of Education procedure regarding class placement:

In accordance with Board of Education procedure E040.17, The building principal will have the responsibility and the authority for the assignment of each student to his or her class and, therefore, his or her teacher with the best interests of the child in mind. The principals will not take requests to place children with particular teachers. The parent(s) will have the opportunity to inform the principal or designee in the spring prior to classroom assignments concerning the child's learning style, specialties and difficulties, and particular needs, personal or educational. The parent(s) is/are also encouraged to discuss with the principal the child's progress in the fall once classes are underway. However, the principal will make the final determination in placing all children.

To assist us in making this process easier during this time we have created an electronic survey with some questions for you to answer. If there is something imperative you feel would benefit our staff in the placement process, please provide us this information in the comments. Please click on the link below this letter to complete the survey. We ask for surveys to be completed by May 1st. Please remember your letter should not contain a request for a specific teacher.

As it stands now, Julian Curtiss is slated to have 14 sections for the 20-21 school year.

We are planning on 3 kindergartens, 3 fifth grades and 2 sections at grades 1-4. This is subject to change as our enrollment numbers may continue to change. Teacher assignments are not official and are subject to change so it is important that you speak to your child’s learning needs rather than your choice for a specific teacher.

Additionally, placement with a teacher that an older sibling had will not be automatic. All children have different needs and it is not a foregone conclusion that having a student placed with the same teacher as a sibling will be the best possible placement. We take each child’s academic and social-emotional needs into account when determining placement, therefore having a teacher you are familiar with may or may not be in the child’s best interest. It is important to note, teachers will reference these letters during the placement process, and I ask you to refrain from writing any negative comments about a particular teacher. Similarly, while there are occasions when it is necessary to ensure particular students not be placed together, we ask you to keep your peer requests to a minimum. It is vital for children to continue to develop new friendships at the elementary level.

Should you hear of new families moving into your neighborhood, please encourage them to contact Lisa Maniscalco ( or Chris Oca ( to register their children as soon as possible to ensure we have accurate enrollment projections.

Thank you for your continued cooperation and support. All surveys must be received by Friday, May 1, 2020. Formulating class lists is a lengthy process, therefore any requests coming in after this date will not be considered.


Trish McGuire

Julian Curtiss Class Placement Survey 2020-2021

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JC's Got Talent!

Be on the lookout for more information about our upcoming VIRTUAL talent show!!

JC Reads Together

Mrs. McGuire, Mrs. Brush, and many members of our JC Staff are doing read-alouds from home! Some of our students are even joining in. Please click on the link below to enjoy some wonderful stories!

JC Reads Together

Parents as Partners in Distance Learning

Please review the information below from our Parent Engagement Consultant, Patti Jomo about what you can do as a parent in the Distance Learning environment.
Families As Partners In Distance Learning - VIDEO 2
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Digital Posture Awareness

As kids and parents are at home using their digital devices in new and different settings, it is a great time to think about posture awareness. Paying attention to how we sit and hold our bodies while working and reading can help avoid stress on joints and muscles and support healthy spines.

Click below for a Digital Posture Tip Sheet!

Additional Information

Local & State Competitions/Activities

FREE Coding Courses & Tech Speaker Series for Students

  • The Coding School is launching a series of free online and instructor-led coding courses and tech talks for students starting this Saturday. Students will learn how to code and also meet software engineers from the biggest tech companies including Google, SpaceX, Microsoft, Netflix and more.

  • The Coding School is a 501c3 educational nonprofit dedicated to empowering the next generation through code. We’re partnered with UCLA and USC Schools of Engineering and we're doing everything we can to help families during this time and students stay productive.

Perrot Library Haiku Contest:

  • The Perrot Library is sponsoring a haiku poetry contest for students in grades 3 and up, as well as adults. The contest will run from April 13 through June 1, with winning entries announced on June 15. Further information, rules, etc. may be found here.

Eesmarts Competition:

  • The sponsors of Energize Connecticut are proud to sponsor the fifteenth eesmarts student contest for grades K through 12. The eesmarts program is an energy efficiency and clean, renewable energy education initiative. Each year we invite Connecticut students to enhance their skills in science, writing and technology by entering the eesmarts student contest.

  • Students are asked to answer grade level-specific prompts regarding efficient and renewable energy technologies in the form of a poster, a poem, an essay, a speech or a report. The contest is open to all students in Connecticut, and all eesmarts materials support and align with Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core Standards for Math & English Language Arts.

  • The 2020 K-12 Student Contest Poster contains information regarding the contest, procedures and rules. All contest winners will be honored during a special virtual awards ceremony.

  • For information about the eesmarts program and this contest, please contact us at 877-514-2594 or visit

Remote Working Background Noise:

Boost creativity and productivity while playing FREE background noise with Coffitivity: A web and app tool that recreates the ambient sounds of a cafe to boost your creativity and help you work better. Proven and peer reviewed, see the research to learn more.

Please follow Mrs. McGuire and Mrs. Brush on Twitter

@JCSPrincipal and @JCSEaglesAP

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