Wednesday, May 9, 2012

MPA Newsletter, 5/9/12

Thanks go out to everyone who contributed toward the teacher and staff appreciation events this week.   Your donations helped fund the flowers/vases, card boxes, gift cards, supplies, snacks, coffee, drinks and raffle baskets.   The baked good donations looked delicious! A special thank you to our Board for donating a luncheon on Tuesday - and thanks to Suzanne Hanselman for chairing the luncheon.  A special thank you to all of the wonderful volunteers that helped the past two weeks as it was so greatly appreciated.  Also, a very special thank you to Chris Major for donating a surprise breakfast bar with fruit and the works this morning for our Teachers and Staff! There were a lot of happy teachers here at school!


Congratulations to the Middle School students who were "caught" displaying April's character trait, respectfulness: Kathleen O'Donnell (5th grade), Dierdre O'Malley (6th grade), Ashley Hofstetter (7/8th grade).

The week of April 16th, 200 students from Menlo Park Academy competed in The Noetic Learning Math Contest, an elementary math problem solving contest held twice a year. More than 12,000 young students representing 649 teams across the country participated in this spring contest. The purpose of participating in the contest is to stimulate our students’ interest in math and to inspire them to excel in math.  The contest results show that our students can rise to the occasion and can meet the challenge. It also demonstrates our students’ great math skills and talents.  The following students are the winners of their teams: Will Gonzalez, Elizabeth Woods, Aidan Bemer, Vincent Romano, Megan O'Donnell, Angelina Pfister, Alex Masgras, Alaina Keirn-Swanson, Aidan Dalton, Lexi Soltesz, Dylan Laurianti, Clement Liu.  Way to go!  

Also, the following students won the Noetic Learning Math Contest National Honor Roll title, which is only awarded to the top 10% of participating students in the country: Angelina Pfister, Megan O'Donnell, Aiden Bemer, Vincent Romano, Young Kim, Dominic Mayhew, Emily Atkins, Mary McDonald, Adam Ahmed, Amelia VonGlahn, David Veloso, Johnathan Carmen, Maura Ingraham, Sakari Ammari, Will Gonzalez, Alex Masgras, Aidan Dalton, Clement Liu, Dylan Laurianti, Jonah Fechner, Carter English.

Congratulations go out to first grader Young Kim, who won the 1st Place trophy in the K-2 division at the 2012 Westlake Scholastic Chess Tournament held on May 5, 2012, at Lee Burneson Middle School in Westlake.  The tournament was hosted by Progress With Chess and attracted players from the Greater Cleveland area.  In addition, his little brother, Dae San Kim, who will start kindergarten at MPA in the fall, finished in a 3-way tie for third place in terms of overall points.  Way to go, guys - remind me not to challenge you to a game anytime soon!

The MPA Boys Basketball team seized the day Saturday afternoon and in grand fashion; winning a double header to become Spring League Co-Champions. The boys won the first game 21-12 despite being short handed with 4 players unavailable. Zach Peacock's 10 points and Sam Ammari's 7 points along with great defense was enough to hold on for the win. Game #2 was a different story. We had the return of 3 additional players to get back to full strength and the Wizards came out and scored the first 15 points of the game and then cruised to an easy 41-13 win. Zach Peacock scored a season high 18 points with a dominant low-post game and Ojas Nadkarni played well at point guard scoring 9 points. The two wins helped the Wizards to finish the season at 5-2 and become league co-champions, the first Basketball title in school history!  Congratulations to the entire team: 6th graders Zach Peacock (Spring Team MVP), Marshall Monette and Ojas Nadkarni, 5th grader Sam Ammari and 4th graders Matt Harrington, John Harrington, Jacob Love, Hunter Caraballo, Gino Palotta and Sam Peacock.
The final Walk-A-Thon fundraising results are in!  Thanks again for all of your hard work an donations - and thanks especially to:
Mrs. Eby's 6th grade class, which walked the longest distance - more than 78 miles.
Mrs. Schroeder's 1st grade class, which raised the most money - a total of $890.
Kindergartener Addyson Kuzma, who raised the most money for the event - she'll receive a $50 gift card for her hard work.

Student Information

Did you know ... In order to ensure the safety and security of the students and staff, the Board has clarified and formalized our expectations and procedures in policy.  The full policy can be accessed at  It is also posted just inside the doors to the school building - look for the laminated sheets on your right as you enter the building. Here is a brief synopsis of key points:

  • Arrange visits to the school in advance with school personnel. Teachers and staff will let the office know who is expected; this applies to class parties and to field trips, too.  If a visit is unexpected, school personnel may disallow it at their discretion. Visits with students are subject to approval by the School Director or administrator. 
  • The School Director or administrator is authorized to prohibit any person from entering the school or expel any person when there is reason to believe the presence of such a person would be detrimental to the good order of the school.
  • You may have lunch at school with your child with prior permission of the School Director.  Please do not share food with other students as they may have food restrictions.
  • When volunteering or visiting, please respect the confidentiality of all of our students by not discussing students other than your own.
  • Clear any and all treats brought to school with the teachers so that no students are left out and allergies are accommodated.
  • Party invitations may be distributed in school only if every classmate is included. If not, please mail the invitations.

This is the last week to check out books from the MPA library. Starting May 14, no books may be checked out, and we'll be doing our best to round up those that may have gone missing. Thanks for your help finding any that may be hiding at home!

Attached is the revised flyer for the MPA summer basketball camp, which will be held July 25, 26, and at the Olmsted Community Center in Olmsted Falls.  The camp is open to all boys who are entering grades 4-8 this coming year, but only seven slots remain, so sign up soon if you want to participate!

Student Fraser Hamilton is raising money for the American Cancer Society at lunchtimes - for a donation of only $0.15, students will receive a Dum-Dum sucker in thanks.  So dig some coins out of the couch and help Fraser support this worthy charity!

Next week is standardized-test-a-palooza at MPA!   Our K-4th grade students will be taking the IOWA tests on Monday-Thursday, while on Wednesday, the 5th and 6th graders take the ACT Explore test, and the 7th and 8th graders take the ACT Plan test.   Please make sure your students arrive at school on time next week, well-rested and ready to show what they know.  Best of luck to all of our students - we know they'll do their best!

Girls Scout Troop 70854 is continuing their service project to collect the following to donate to the Berea Animal Rescue Shelter in Berea: slightly used cloths, hand towels, pillow cases, and bath towels.  Donations of NEW pet items will also be accepted.  Please bring items in by Friday, May 25th, and place them in the marked box in the Gym.  Thank you for your support of our Girls Scouts and the animal shelter!

May 21st-25th is Spirit Week this year!  Start planning your students' outfits now to fit the themes the Student Council has chosen for each day of the week: 
  • Monday-Retro Day
  • Tuesday - Fake an Injury Day
  • Wednesday - Hawaiian Day
  • Thursday - Twin Day
  • Friday - Crazy Hair/Clothes day
Would your Middle Schooler benefit from learning more about careers in a STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) field? Then mark your calendar for Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.! The STEM Enrichment Committee is pleased to announce a Middle School STEM Career Night where students can learn about different STEM careers and have one-on-one conversations with professionals in those areas. If you have any questions about Middle School Career Night, please contact Grant at

Mark your calendar now - the 12-page enrollment packet for the 2012/2013 school year will be due July 23-25th.  These forms are due for ALL students, returning and new, so don't assume that your returning student can skip it.  Like last year, we're planning to have parents drop off the forms in person at school so that we can confirm at that time that all of the required documents are there.  Keep your eyes open in the coming months for links to the form, and specific information on dates and times to turn in your paperwork.

Development Information

There's still time to order tickets for MPA’s Annual Lake Erie Crushers  Game Day at the ball park on Sunday, June 3rd.  The Lake Erie Crushers will be hosting the Chicago Windy City Thunderbolts in an afternoon of baseball and fun.  MPA students will be singing the National Anthem before the game, and a member of the Mingus family will be throwing out the first pitch!  Tickets are $9 each, and can be ordered using the attached form.  Anyone selling 8 tickets or more will be entered into a drawing for a Crushers t-shirt and baseball cap, so encourage your kids to invite your family and friends.  Order by May 11th to insure that your tickets will be in the block of MPA seats!  Tickets will still be available after May 11th, but we can't guarantee you'll be seated in the MPA area. 

If you made a pledge to the MPA Annual Appeal but can't remember if you paid it in full, have no fear!  Our Development Coordinator is sending out letters to those families who have not fulfilled their full pledge amounts.  Pledged amounts can be sent to the attention of Tanya Reno, who is also happy to answer any questions you have about completing forms for your employer's matching gift program.  Feel free to contact her at with any questions you have.  And thanks, as always, for your support!

Time to start planning your last scrip card order for the year!  Orders are due Monday, May 20th.  Stock up so you have plenty of cards for your summer activities (and birthday gifts, and travel, and groceries ...), as we will not be doing this fundraiser over the summer.

Volunteer Information

The Student Council Carnival is being offered to students in Grade K-4 after school on Thursday, May 17th.  We're looking for parent volunteers to help supervise at this event.  Student Council Members will be running the event, but we need adults to help supervise the participants.  If you can help out, please contact the Student Council advisor Marilyn Hahn at

Field Day is coming to  Menlo Park  Academy on Friday, June 1st !  This event is a wonderful time for our kids to take a break from books, work their bodies and have some fun.  We spend the day at  Lakewood   Park  playing games like football toss, sack races, standing long jump, ring toss, rubber chicken throw, corn hole, washer toss, kickball, and an obstacle course just to name some of the fun games.  Parents, this is a great opportunity to spend the day with your child(ren) at an all day school event.  We will need a lot of volunteers in different areas to make this event successful.  All of the help is needed on “game day” so it’s a great way to get in some volunteer time while having fun without any pre-work.  Just sign up on the attached form and show up.  Thanks, and we'll see you there!

Calendar Highlights
  • May 10-11 - Fourth Grade field trip to COSI in Columbus
  • May 14-17 - Iowa Tests for grades K-4; Explore Tests for grades 5-8
  • May 17 (Thursday) - 3:30 - 5 pm K-4 Carnival Sponsored by Student Council
  • May 18 (Friday) - No school; 6:30 - 8:30 Middle School Dance
  • May 21 - 25 - Student Council Sponsored Spirit Week
  • May 24 (Thursday) - Middle School STEM career night, 6:30 pm
  • May 25 (Friday) - Volunteer Appreciation event
  • May 28 (Monday) - No school (Memorial Day)
  • May 29 - June 1 - Eighth Grade Celebration Week
  • June 1 (Friday) - Field Day at Lakewood Park
  • June 3 (Sunday) - Crushers baseball game, 5:05pm in Avon
  • July 23-25 - 2012/2013 MPA Enrollment forms will be due
  • August 26 (Sunday) - Back to School picnic at Lakewood Park
If you've got something you'd like to share with the school - a need for volunteers for your school event, an exciting achievement your child has made outside of school, or anything else you think MPA parents should know about - send the information to Gretchen Woods at  The submission deadline for the weekly newsletter is each Wednesday at noon.

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