Belmont Public Schools
Mary Lee Burbank Elementary School
266 School Street | Belmont, MA 02478
phone: 617 - 993 - 5500
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PTA NEWS October 7, 2014

PTA NEWS – October 7, 2014

In today’s newsletter:

  1. Annual Capital Appeal
  2. Teacher Grants
  3. Burbank Walks – Walk to School Day; Join a Walking School Bus!
  4. Landscape Revitalization Project – We need you!
  5. Burbank Multicultural Fair—Friday November 21 (*change of date)
  6. METCO Host Family Program
  7. Fall Potluck Social – October 17
  8. Help Wanted!
  9. Collect Box Tops and Labels for Education
  10. Picture Day—Thursday October 9
  11. Upcoming Events


October is Principals Month! On behalf of the PTA we want to say a special thank you to Dr. Clifford for her fabulous support of our collective efforts to enrich the school experience for students, staff, and families. Thank you, Dr. Clifford! We appreciate all that you do!


We are off to a great start! Many thanks to the Burbank families who have already contributed to our capital appeal! If you haven't yet, please take the time to send in your donation via check or using the Paypal link below. The funds we raise in the next few weeks make such a difference for the children in our community, supporting classroom enrichment, teachers, curriculum, technology and the library. They also play an important role in creating the fun community that we have here at the school. Donations are a quick investment that yields a better school for all of us.

We ask that each family consider donating $125, but hope that all households will join the PTA and donate what they are able. Click below to bypass pesky paperwork and donate online! Thanks in advance!


The Burbank PTA is thrilled to announce $3000 in PTA Faculty Grants. Thanks to your generous support of the PTA, we are able to offer this opportunity. Teachers may apply for grant money for training or special projects. For more details, please check out the September 29 PTA Meeting Minutes posted on the website. 

Thank you for your generosity! Together we do great things for our school!



Wednesday, October 8 is International Walk/Bike to School Day! We look forward to a great turnout of Burbank students and families walking to school tomorrow! Each class will take a tally of how students got to school, and the class with the highest percentage of walkers/bikers will win the Golden/Silver Sneaker Trophy contest! Dr. Clifford will announce and present the trophies to the two winning classes.

Please enable your child to walk (or bike, or scooter) at least part of the way to school the morning of Wednesday, October 8. They might see a "Celebrity Walker" on the way! When they arrive at the blacktop they can add their name to the Burbank Walks chalk wall of fame! This event is rain or shine, so dress for the weather and please put safety first. Let's walk together and celebrate how lucky we are to be a walking school!


Participating students who were signed up will receive their Walk-it Ticket from their teacher today. Please check backpacks! Students can clip the Walk-it Ticket to their backpack and begin recording their walking trips starting tomorrow, Walk to School Day, and continuing through December 10. In December the Walk-it Tickets will be collected. All participating students will receive a small prize and have their name displayed on a Walkers Hall of Fame. Questions? Contact Hyon-Jee Voigt of the Burbank Walks committee:


Try out a Walking School Bus on Walk to School Day - Wednesday October 8! It's fun to walk with a group of friends and neighbors.

There are 4 Walking School Bus routes, departing from Concord Ave/Bright Rd; School St/Lewis Rd; Dalton Rd/Elm St; and School St/Orchard St.

For information about the routes and how a Walking School Bus works, please read the Walking School Bus Parent Info & Consent packet.

To join a Walking School Bus, please complete the online consent form:  and then email the Coordinator of your bus route to let them know your child/family will join the Walking School Bus. A parent consent form must be submitted in order for a child to participate in a Walking School Bus. 

Questions? Contact Jessie Bennett, Burbank Walks committee, at


We are excited to announce the Burbank Landscape Revitalization Project!  Our Landscaping Committee is organizing a massive overhaul of the Burbank grounds.

Join this great community building effort!  We launch our project on Monday October 13, in conjunction with Belmont Serves, for the first of our work days.  We will assign teams to work sites around the grounds and clean things up. 

Also on October 13, we will begin the renewal of the "Sunken Garden", the area between the playground and the building.  Burbank Alum, Belmont High School Sophomore and Eagle Scout, Walker Thomas, will coordinate this portion of the project.  He envisions an interactive, educational space that supports the curriculum, improves the overall appearance of the area, and increases a sense of pride in our school. His goal on October 13 is to completely clear the sunken area in preparation for redesign and spring planting.
We need your help!  Please join the effort on October 13.  We encourage whole families to come and work.  We will have jobs for all ages!   Sign up here,

**By registering here you will automatically be signed up with Belmont Serves.  If you have already registered with Belmont Serves, please also sign up here so that we know to expect you.**

We are seeking input and inspiration from teachers and students at Burbank.  If you have any ideas or visions, please share your ideas with us.  If you have any expertise or connections in the areas of landscaping or landscape design, please let us know.  We welcome your ideas and support!

Please join us! Thank you!

Questions?  Contact the Landscaping Committee Co-chairs, Heather Barr, or Sue Moss,


Join us in celebrating the cultural diversity in our Burbank community at the Burbank Multicultural Fair.  This is a unique opportunity for our children (and adults) to learn about different cultures and countries! The event will be held on Friday, November 21, 6:30-8:30 pm (please note the change of date). 

Exhibitors wanted!  Come share your heritage with our community.  Set up a booth and celebrate your culture, wear traditional clothing and join our costume parade. We are excited to bring a special “main stage” performance to the evening too.  Watch for details soon!!

Thank you to our Co-Chairs, Mollica Manandhar, and Tatiana Pantazopoulos,  


METCO is a grant-funded State program to enable children from Boston to attend school in Belmont and other districts. It is a voluntary program intended to expand educational opportunity and increase diversity. For details see

Families attending Burbank via the METCO program face the challenge of distance (and traffic!) when it comes to arranging social activities for their children with their classmates. The PTA’s METCO Family and Friends committee and the METCO Mentor teachers would like to rejuvenate a host family program to help strengthen friendships and support our METCO students.

We are looking for willing host families who live in Belmont who can serve as a main point of contact for METCO parents to be in touch with about play dates, sleep overs, after school events and other social activities. For example, a host family could arrange to attend school events like the Potluck Dinner, Multicultural Fair, Movie Night, or Science Night with the METCO student’s family. Host families could also plan social opportunities for their child's class in the Boston area in conjunction with the METCO student's family.

The host family program is intended to be flexible and fun – whatever works best for the families. Making the effort to get to know each other at each other's homes goes a long way toward everyone feeling a part of the school community.

If your family might be interested in being a host family for a METCO student’s family, please contact Nina Biggar or Monica Tchakmakian to learn more about it. You can also speak with Burbank’s METCO Mentor teachers: Ms. Pellegrine, Ms. O’Sullivan and Ms. Ames. Thanks for your support of our METCO friends! 


The Pot Luck Social is fast approaching. Please reserve Friday October 17 for a night of friendship and fun! This annual social is a great way to celebrate our return to school and enjoy some time reconnecting with old friends and making new ones. We ask each family to contribute one dish, and in return we provide dinner, crafts, gym games and lots of merriment. In the coming weeks, look for a signup sheet in your child's backpack.

We hope to see you there!

For questions, or to volunteer the night of the event (we need adults willing to take 10-15 minute shifts serving food or helping with craft activities) please contact Jen Martin , Kristi McMullin  or Jen Thomas .


Wanted:  Cone Fairies!  As we are sure you have noticed, we have many large orange cones outside around the school on weekdays intended to increase visibility of crosswalks and no parking areas, making it safer to walk to school.  These cones can’t stay out on the weekends.   Cone “Fairies” are needed on Gale road to stack the cones inside the school fence after the commute home from school on Fridays and to replace them again early Mondays before the morning trip.  Do you have few moments to assist?  Please contact Harriet Wong,  Thank you!

Chairs Needed! 
*The PTA is looking for a volunteer to coordinate our annual sale of Burbank Spirit Wear.  This task is brief in duration and easily accomplished in evenings and on weekends. 

*Our Social Action Committee is in need of a leader or two.  This role involves coordinating community service within Burbank and with the larger community.  At this time, our only scheduled outreach is participation in a town-wide school food drive for the Belmont Food Pantry.  We would love to discuss ideas for other service projects.

Interested?  Please contact Laurie Bufano,     

Please consider joining us!  We can’t do it without you! Thanks!




Have your family clip, collect, and bring Box Tops and Labels For Education in to school! There is a collection box in the school office. Relatives/coworkers can mail their Box Tops/Labels for Education to the school:

c/o Mary Lee Burbank Elementary School
266 School Street
Belmont, MA 02478


You could earn even more cash for our school online, just become a member (it’s free!) by visiting Over 175 retailers give eBoxTops to your school when you shop online at the marketplace. We can earn 1-12 BONUS BOX TOPS for every $10 you spend at retailers you may already patronize!

Thanks for helping us reach our goal! All proceeds directly benefit the school.


Remember your order forms!  The PTA receives 25% of all proceeds from school pictures! This money helps to fund all that we do.  


Wednesday 10/8, International Walk/Bike to School Day

Thursday 10/9, School Picture Day

Saturday, 10/13, Landscaping Project Work Day

Friday 10/17, Family Potluck Dinner/Social

Monday, 11/3, PTA Meeting

Friday, 11/21, Multicultural Fair

posted: October 7, 2014 by webmaster
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