Feb 10

MCAS 2.0 Parent Resources

Click here for the QPS MCAS 2.0 Parent Resource Guide.


For additional information available on the Quincy Public School website

At the December 12, 2016 Citywide Parent Council meeting, Senior Director of Curriculum Madeline Roy and Special Education Director Erin Perkins presented on the new MCAS 2.0 Assessment which will be administered to students in Grades 3-8 in 2017.  Students in Grades 4 and 8 will be taking MCAS 2.0 online; through the Mayor’s Capital Improvement Plan, technology upgrades are underway at all Quincy Public Schools to prepare for full implementation of online testing in 2019.  Continue reading…

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/mcas-2-0-parent-resources/

Dec 01

Disney Raffle fundraiser Update

Dear Squantum Families,

Students were given a packet for the Disney Raffle fundraiser.  Each student starter

packet contains 10 raffle tickets ($5.00 each) for a $5,000 Disney gift card! The lucky

winner will be able to use the gift card to enjoy a vacation at a popular Disney resort

(Orlando, Florida; California; Hawaii; Paris) or on a Disney Cruise (to Alaska, the

Bahamas, the Canadian Coast, the Caribbean, Europe, Mexico, or the Panama Canal).

Wherever you imagine your family vacation, you can tailor-make it with the Disney gift


Raffle sales will end on December 14 th, 2016.

The raffle drawing will be held December 16 th , 2016.

Please help Squantum School make this a record-breaking fundraiser. Another

neighboring school raised $20,000, and we think we can do even better!

With thanks in advance for your support,

The Squantum PTO


Frequently Asked Questions

When do we send back the sold tickets and the money? There are 4 white

envelopes in your student’s packet. Sold ticket stubs and the money should be returned

in the white envelopes either at the end of each week or earlier. Each week students

who return sold ticket envelopes will be entered into a seller prize drawing.  There will

be 4 drawings.

Can I post the raffle information on social media? Yes, social media like Facebook,

is a fast simple way to get the word out to friends and family. Check out Paypal.me as a

way to collect payments online for free.

What if we are ready for more tickets to sell? When you send in your tickets sold we

will supply you with more.  If you anticipate selling a bunch of tickets you can request a

specific number of tickets.

What if we run out of tickets? While you are waiting to get more tickets students can

continue to sell tickets by writing down names and phone numbers of their buyers. Once

more tickets are picked up at school, the names and number can be filled in on the


What if I lose my ticket stub? It is not necessary to have the ticket stub to win.

What if we don’t sell all our tickets? Unsold ticket can be returned to the school.

Are there other prizes for the sellers? Yes, the student packets have a list of prizes

that will be award to students for selling tickets and an explanation on how they can be


How will the winner be announced? On Friday, December 16 th , the school will hold a

drawing to select the winner of the $5,000 Disney Vacation. The winner will be

contacted directly

What if I don’t want my child to carry cash? Write a check to Squantum PTO for the

amount collected from sales and keep the cash or hand deliver your sold tickets and

money to the office.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/disney-raffle-fundraiser-update/

Dec 01

Squantum Polar Express Night


Celebrate the season riding aboard the

Squantum Express Trolley

Board at Squantum School December 2, 2016

Boarding times starting at 6:00pm

Tickets: $5.00 or


Pizza, Cookie Decorating and Festive


Children… wear your P.J s and bring along a parent/guardian.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/squantum-polar-express-night/

Dec 01

November PTO Meeting Minutes

Squantum Elementary School PTO Meeting Minutes

November 17, 2016

Present: Principal Sylvia, Dr. Bloom, Kenda Coulter, and assembled parents.

Upcoming Events:

  • 12/1 Thursday, ‘Tis The Season Concert (with ticket)
  • 12/2 Friday, Squantum Polar Express Night, 6-8 pm


  • 12/13 & 12/20 Tuesday, Parent-teacher conferences


  • 12/16, Thursday, Winter Concert in the gym at 8:45 a.m.
  • 12/24-1/2, Winter Recess

Principal Sylvia’s Report:

  • Update on MCAS transition to computers for 4th graders. 4th graders are working on writing prompts, math problems, etc. on the Parke website for practice. Mr. Sylvia will set a date for a parents’ meeting about the transition once we have a better idea of what the test will be like.
  • Update on the lead testing at Squantum School. Two of the drinking fountains were shut off at the school for high levels of lead. Sinks have been labeled “for handwashing only.” Fresh water is now available to students via a water cooler in the media center. Mr. Sylvia to look into getting the spigot for the outdoor garden hose tested as well.
  • Thanks to Jenn Bergin for the display of 500 flags in the school’s front yard for Veterans’ Day. We raised nearly $500, and profits will go to Quincy Veterans in the form of $50 Stop-n-Shop gift cards. Parents Mandy & Jason Oberton and Tony Wolowicz were honored at the Veterans’ Day assembly.
  • The student council Food Drive donated 10 boxes of canned goods to support local pantries. Thanks to our student council and Dr. Bloom for organizing and to all those families who donated.
  • This month’s character trait is Gratitude. Students will be honored at assembly on November 18th.
  • Earlier this month, Principal Sylvia presented our annual school improvement plan to the school district, which will be available on line as well.
  • By February vacation, we hope to have completed adding new InFocus projectors and ENO Smartboards to all the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classrooms.
  • A guard fence around the solar box behind the school has been installed for safety purposes.
  • Our thanks to Kim Dailey for color-printing our Disney flyers and school newsletter.

Dave Blaton’s Citywide Report

Various schools reported that students have voiced concerns about the election. Superintendent DeCristofaro will be sending out a letter that addresses the importance of acceptance in our schools.

There was further discussion of adding time to recess and lunch. Also talk of ensuring that there is an ever-ready pool of paraprofessionals for students.


  • Student photos have gone home. If you’d like to order more, you may do so on the Hayward Photos website (www.haywardphotography.com). We raised $1,800! Thanks to parent volunteers who helped out on picture day. Make-up photos will be in the first week of December.
  • Square One Art orders are due back. You can order up till November 20th online.
  • Book fair will be held all next week. Please let Moi Blaton know if you’d like to volunteer.
  • Please note that the first trimester ends on Thursday, December 1. Report cards go out on Monday, December 12 (also available online). Parent-teacher conferences will be held on December 13th  (day and evening) and December 20th (evening only) this year.
  • Please continue to send in your BoxTops. Congratulations to Dr. Bloom’s class who had the most BoxTops for the month of October.
  • We are still looking for more art docent volunteers and a few more volunteers for Reading Counts.
  • January 3rd will be the first day of school after winter break.
  • On March 2nd, there will be a Cat in the Hat assembly.
  • On April 27th, there will be a poetry assembly.

Upcoming Events:   

The Squantum Polar Express is coming to town on Friday, December 2nd! We are still looking for volunteers for set-up and clean-up in the gym. There will be a movie, cookie-decorating, and a trolley ride around Squantum to see the lights (6-8). Kids, wear your PJs! Rides begin at 6 o’clock. ($5/person; $20/family.)  Thanks to Beth and Trish Vacca for organizing. Peggy Ronan also offered to research prices for a Christmas train for comparison.

Get your green on for the Celtics game!! 165 tickets are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Firm deadline is January 3rd. Flyers will be going home. $20 per ticket.

Disney Raffle Update

The Raffle is going strong! We’ve already made up the $5,000 needed for the Disney gift card and then some. Please keep selling those tickets ($5 each). Every little bit helps our school. Thanks to Sarah Wood, who has been spearheading this fundraiser. The Disney flyer will also be translated into Mandarin for any parent who would like it. Raffle drawing will be held on Friday, December 16th. Get your tickets ready!

Treasurer’s Report:


  • Available PTO balance after allocations: $10,032.


  • We raised $2,014 for baked goods from the Election Day bake sale! Thanks to all our volunteers. We also raised $1,900 on Election Day for the Disney Raffle.

Other items discussed:


  • The possibility of installing fans in the gym for cooling purposes during concerts, etc. was discussed. Principal Sylvia to investigate.
  • Some concern about the Veterans’ flags not being recycled appropriately by the kids (note for next year: maybe recycle all the flags instead of sending some home?).


  • The PTO voted to approve providing dinner on December 13th for the teachers on the night of parent-teacher conferences.
  • PTO approved Katherine O’Connor’s request for a new I-Pad for student use (up to $400).
  • PTO approved a school subscription to an art history magazine.
  • Peggy and Kim raised idea of launching a Valentine Day/Sweetheart Dance in February for a fundraiser. Kids could dress up. Talk of renting a photo both. More to come.  

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/november-pto-meeting-minutes/

Nov 07

Bake Sale Volunteers Needed

please reach out to us at volunteers@squantumpto.com

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/bake-sale-volunteers-needed/

Nov 02

Squantum PTO Meeting Minutes: Oct 26 2016

Squantum Elementary School PTO Meeting Minutes
October 26, 2016

Present: Principal Sylvia, Dr. Bloom, Mrs. Kiley, Kenda Coulter, Sarah Wood, Torrey Smith, and assembled parents. Introductions were made around the room.


11/8 Tuesday, Election Day Bake Sale (NO SCHOOL)
11/10 Uno’s Restaurant Night Fundraiser (Braintree)
11/11 Friday, Veterans’ Day (NO SCHOOL)
11/17 PTO Meeting, 7 pm (media center)
12/1 ‘Tis The Season Concert
12/2 Polar Express Night, 6-8 pm
12/13 & 12/20 Parent-teacher conferences


* Thanks to all the parent volunteers, especially Peggy Ronan, Moi Blaton, & Heather Morkan, for a fantastic Monster Mash! We raised $1,586 and the kids had a great time.

* Principal Sylvia, Dave Blaton, and Peggy Ronan met with district adviser to determine that Squantum School does have 501C3 status when applying for grants. This will help us as we go forward with our fundraising efforts.

* Congratulations to our seven teachers who applied for and won mini-grants for the school (average grant was $300)! Teachers will be recognized in early November.

* We discussed thanking our generous donors (such as Carmine’s) by posting thank you “ads” in programs like our monthly school newsletter. Stay tuned.

* Thanks to Mrs. Curtin, we are offering a typing program for fourth graders after school. There will be a second session to come.

* Principal Sylvia spoke briefly about Squantum’s “School Report Card,” which is available on line (at http://bit.ly/2eeDOhJ) and where we performed as a “strong level 2 school.” MCAS were recently mailed home, and Principal Sylvia and teachers are happy to meet with any parents who might have questions about the test.

* This year, for the first time, 4th GRADERS ONLY will be taking MCAS 2.0 on computers in the spring (3rd and 5th graders will continue to take MCAS as a paper test). There was discussion about preparing our kids for this transition and making sure all students who need access to computers for practice will have access. Sarah suggested a parent/teacher meeting to help educate parents about the switch to computers. Principal Sylvia noted that there are sample tests available on the Parke website, and we’ll be sending information on this link home shortly. Stay tuned for a meeting time with 4th grade teachers re: MCAS.

* The MCAS “window” for 2017 goes from April 3rd to May 26th. Grades 3 through 5 will have various portions of the test administered during some point in that window.

* Principal Sylvia reported that he’ll soon be presenting Squantum’s “School Improvement Plan” to the city, which is based on an assessment team’s recommendation of areas where our school might do better.

* Dr. Bloom reports that the Student Council is already hard at work on Unicef, a canned food drive, and various presentations at school assemblies.

* The Garden Club met twice this fall and made pizza topped by vegetables from the classroom garden and pesto sauce from the garden basil. Thanks to Ms. Cordero, Ms. Griffith, and Ms. LaRose for coordinating this fun group.

* Ms. Salas’s drama club will be performing the Wizard of Oz in March.

* 300 cookies have been ordered for our annual trip to the ‘Tis The Season concert at Quincy High on Thursday, December 1st. The Polar Express event (movies and a trolley ride around Squantum) will be the following night, Friday, December 2nd.

* Mr. Sylvia reported that there are new street signs up around the school, marking drivers’ speed, and also in back of the school, where buses need to turn into.


* THERE WILL BE NO SCHOOL ON ELECTION DAY, Tuesday, November 8th, and NO SCHOOL ON VETERANS’ DAY, Friday, November 11th.

* On Election Day, the gym will be open for voting and for our annual bake sale. Please let Sarah Wood (swood5944@gmail.com) know if you’re available to volunteer time or treats on November 8th.

* Jenn Bergin talked about our “Flags for Squantum” veterans’ drive. Our goal is to have 500 flags flying in the school’s front lawn for Election Day in honor of our veterans. Flags will be available for purchase on Election Day; students will also have a chance to buy a flag for $1. All proceeds go toward helping local veterans. The PTO approved an advance of $170 to order flags in time for Election Day.

* The 5th graders will have science “Pumpkin Day” on Thursday, October 27th.

* Please note that the first trimester ends on Thursday, December 1. Report cards go out on Monday, December 12. Parent-teacher conferences will be held on December 13th and December 20th (evening) this year.

* Thanks to the Quincy Elks Club, who donated dictionaries to all the third graders in our school!

* Information will be going home about the American Education Week Essay contest (optional).

* Submissions for the annual holiday poster contest will be due on November 10th. Information will be going home soon.


* Sarah Wood presented her idea for a Disney raffle, which was greeted enthusiastically around the room. Based on a neighboring PTO’s success with this fundraiser, Squantum School will launch its own raffle for a family to win a $5,000 trip to Disney!!!

~Raffle tickets ($5 each) will be available for purchase at the school bake sale on Election Day (November 8th).
~Students will also have the option to sell tickets in packets of 10 or more.
~ We hope this will be our biggest fundraiser yet! (Another school raised nearly $20,000).

҉ Ideas were discussed re: how to promote raffle to other local schools/neighborhoods.

~ A banner at the bake sale to advertise. Will also post a banner at the intersection of Quincy Shore Drive and Furnace Brook Parkway.
~Discussed publicizing via flyers and on social media (Nextdoor Squantum, PTO website and Facebook page, twitter, etc.).
~ Sarah to investigate a PayPal link so people can purchase raffle tickets on line as well.
~The PTO approved money to buy raffle tickets in advance.
~ Also discussed awards such as $100 gift certificate for student who sells the most tickets and a prize (pizza party?) for class that sells the most tickets.
~ We discussed when to draw/announce winner’s ticket (maybe on the day before December vacation?).

CITYWIDE REPORT from Dave Blaton:
Dave reported that the last meeting covered:

* Concern over the only 15 minutes that kids currently get for lunch, then recess (1/2 hour total). Discussion about how Quincy might extend both lunch and recess by 5 minutes. Principal Sylvia noted that Squantum School now lets the 4th and 5th graders go out for recess before lunch, which cuts down on the wait line for hot lunch for grades K-3.

*The possibility of hosting a “Parent Academy,” so parents and educators can discuss how to better meet the needs of students in special education classes.

*The ongoing need to address the amazing diversity in our schools and how to ensure every child feels as if he or she is being treated equally.

*Making sure people know that district meetings and Squantum School meeting minutes are available on-line; parents/guardians can select to read them in their preferred language.

*General concerns over moving the 4th grade MCAS to the computers were discussed as was making sure that every student has the computer access he or she needs to practice/train for this transition.

* Quincy school water is being tested for lead; results will be available in early November.

Torrey gave a financial update.

* The PTO has raised $7,298 to date. Thank you!
* Available balance after allocations: $6,856.86
* Thanks to all who purchased/sold Kidstuff Coupon Books, which has brought in $3,355 to date (the school gets half of that ($1677.50)).
* The Kindergarteners will have a special presentation, “The Lifecycle of Raptors” 🙂 (funds allocated)
* On March 2nd, there will be A Cat in the Hat assembly (funds allocated)
*On April 27th, there will be a poetry assembly (funds allocated)


* We discussed the need to reinstate “room parents,” one or two volunteers who would be willing to reach out to their child’s teacher/other classroom parents regarding volunteer opportunities/PTO ideas. There was talk of how important it is to expand our volunteer list this year, as many of our dedicated volunteers will soon be leaving when their children graduate.

* We discussed possible fundraisers for specific grades or classrooms. The point was made that it can be motivating to know that your dollars go straight to your child’s class or grade. Targeted fundraisers might also better meet teachers’ specific needs.

* We discussed promoting school events and fundraisers through avenues beyond social media. It was suggested that a large white board easel be set out front (by Squantum School sign) to announce upcoming events and meetings.

* Kenda adjourned the meeting and thanked everyone for their great ideas and enthusiasm.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/squantum-pto-meeting-minutes-oct-26-2016/

Sep 13

Upcoming Dates and Reminders


Just a few dates and reminders to start your year!

Welcome back Parents!!!

Please join us for the Squantum School Open House on Tuesday, September 20th from 6:00PM-8:00PM. We will be having a one night book fair and the classrooms will be open from 6:30PM – 7:30PM.

Our first Outdoor Movie night will be Friday, September 23rd at 6:30PM behind the school in the outdoor classroom. Bring the family, your chair/blanket and join us for some popcorn. We hope to watch the Jungle Book.

The first PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) meeting will be on Tuesday, September 27th at 7:00 PM in the media center. We will be discussing the fall activities and would love for you to get involved and share your ideas to enrich the school. All are welcome to attend.

School photo day with Hayward Photography will be on September 29th beginning at 8:30AM. More information will be sent home next week and the school receives 40% of the proceeds from this.

Please save the date for the Halloween Monster Mash dance on Friday, October 21st from 6PM-8PM.

Stay tuned for the full fall calendar to be sent in the next two weeks.

Have a great weekend!!!

  • The Fall Open House schedules have been posted.
  • Squantum Open House is Sept 20 from 6pm to 7:30pm
  • The Lunch Menu is here.
  • The School Year Calendar is here
  • Quincy Public Schools website is here.


Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/upcoming-dates/

Mar 27

Free Dyslexia Presentation – Open to Public – April 25 in Quincy


Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/free-dyslexia-presentation-open-to-public-april-25-in-quincy/

Nov 15

Nov 2015 Events Update

  • Week of November 16: Book Fair
  • November PTO Meeting is Thursday, 11/19 at 7pm in the Media Center
  • ‘Tis the Season Quincy Symphony is Thursday, 12/3 (tickets can be purchased through the school for $20 and we will have cookies and cocoa in the media center and all take a bus to the event)
  • The Polar Express Event (movie and crafts) will be Thursday, 12/10 in the Gym
  • Holiday Concert is Friday 12/11 at 8:45am
  • Square One Art orders will be here before Thanksgiving
  • Report cards will be available on December 18 and you should have received a flier with your electronic login information


Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/nov-2015-events-update/

Oct 15

A Few Upcoming Events


Eat Out With Squantum Tonight
Who wants a day off from cooking? Please join us all day tomorrow (10/15)at the Panera on Hancock Street for a school fundraiser. Attached is the flier to bring with you. If you work in Quincy, why not have your office place a lunch order?


At 6pm there is a Dyslexia Awareness Rally in Squantum. It is at the Seawall and in conjunction with Decoding Dyslexia – MA #lightitupred campaign tonight – Zakim Bridge is being lit up in red to recognize and bring awareness to early detection and proper teaching of dyslexia students. Everyone will receive a red carnation to throw over seawall for Dyslexia Awareness. Quincy Sun will be there doing a story on it.


Halloween Dance Friday Night
We hope to see your costume clad children at the Monster Mash Halloween Dance on Friday night (10/16) from 6:30PM -8PM, Parents should be in attendance and we are still looking for any raffle items you wish to donate (think kids items) as well as any baked goods/treats for them to nibble on during the dance.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.squantumpto.com/a-few-upcoming-events/

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