PTA Newsletter - February 25, 2019
Mon, Feb 25 10:33am
Frank Otis Elementary


February 2019
February 26th, Tuesday
February 27th, Wednesday
-Equity & Inclusion Meeting, 6:00pm, Media Center
February 28th, Thursday
-PTA Meeting, 7:00pm, Media Center (free childcare in Room 102)
March 2019
March 2nd, Saturday
-Dr. Seuss Birthday Celebration, 1:00-3:00pm at Tucker's Ice Cream, 1349 Park Street (10% of proceeds go to Otis)
March 9th, Saturday
-Owlapalooza, 10:00am-3pm, Krusi Park Stage (or MPR depending on weather)
March 10th, Sunday
-Daylight Savings Time Change: SPRING FORWARD 1 HOUR!
March 13th-15th, Wednesday, Thursday & Friday
- Spring Parent/Teacher Conferences - Early Release Days (Kinder at 12:30pm / Grades 1-5 at 1:50pm)
March 14th, Thursday
-Math & Science Night, 6:00-8:00pm, MPR
March 21st, Thursday
-PTA Meeting, 7:00pm, Media Center
March 22nd, Friday
-Early Release Day - 12:30 dismissal for all grades
March 25th-29th
-Ability Awareness Week, Media Center
March 27th, Wednesday
-Equity & Inclusion Meeting, 6:00pm, Media Center
March 28th, Thursday
-Soul Shoppe Parent Workshop, 6:30-8:00pm, Media Center
March 29th, Friday
-School Spirit Day - "Animal Day"
Dear Otis Families,
I hope you had a wonderful time during our recent President's Week break. The current school year is moving along at lightening speed as we enter the third trimester of the year.
Report Cards
The second trimester is coming to an end, and report cards will be going home beginning Wednesday, March 13th.   Students will be released early March 13th-15th so that teachers can meet with families regarding student progress as needed. Conferences will be scheduled by teachers or at the request of families.
School Alarm and Alert System
Otis was one of the first schools to receive an updated phone system. Phones have the ability to receive calls, call out, conduct school-wide all calls, and inform of emergencies, including the need for a lockdown. The system is beneficial from a safety perspective, but it is highly sensitive. Staff and students have inadvertently triggered the lockdown alert notification three times this year. We recognize the stress this causes on the entire school community, and have reached out the AUSD Technology department for support. Concerns are being addressed at the District level, and District staff is providing technical assistance and training for the site.
Students and families are wondering if the plan is to go back outside for lunch in the park. Absolutely, as soon as weather permits! Feedback from students has been that they enjoy lunch much more when they eat outside. It is much more relaxing, less sticky, and less smelly! 
While we wait out the wet and rainy weather in the MPR, we are focused on the lunchroom Three Bs. Expectations include:
  • Eating your own food and healthy choices first
  • Sitting in your designated area
  • Avoiding nut free tables when needed
  • Using appropriate voices
  • Sorting trash and keeping areas tidy
  • Making sure that everyone has a place to sit and feels included
While many students are eager to get outside and play, the lunchroom staff makes every effort to encourage students to focus on eating. Although we have three lunch rotations with very minimal time to cleanup in between (typical of a very large school) we always allow students more time to eat when needed.
Students and classes demonstrating the expected behaviors are positively reinforced and incentivized. Currently, the favorite incentives are the Hoot Hoot Hooray tickets and Early Bird Release. Hoot Hoot Hooray tickets are placed in the classroom Hoot box and prize drawings are held on Fridays. Early Bird Release is when tables are allowed to go outside 2-3 minutes early (again, no child is expected to stop eating if they are not ready).
Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS)
Behavioral expectations are reviewed school-wide after each long break. In the coming week we will focus on playground, hallway, and bathroom expectations, as well as how to address conflict using Soul Shoppe strategies and Peace Makers. 

For more information on PBIS please checkout our website.
Have wonderful week! 
Tanya Harris, Principal
PTA Meeting - Thursday, February 28, 2019

Please join us for the next PTA meeting on February 28, 2019 from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. in the Media Center. Free childcare in room 102.  It will be a busy meeting with the following items on the agenda:
  • Spring Auction update and fundraising goals
  • Owlapalooza update
  • Mini-Grant Awards
  • Ways & Means survey planning for 2019-20
  • Review current budget and spending through end of school year
  • Discuss needs for PTA Executive Board for next school year and select Nominating Committee
The Nominating Committee is looking for people to step up and join the PTA Executive Board for next school year. Serving on the Executive Board in any role is an opportunity for you to connect more deeply with fellow parents, get to know Otis better, and support our kids/teachers in a meaningful way. 

If you are interested in serving Otis and this amazing community, contact Beth Aney for more information.

Thank you for supporting Otis!

Jenny Beck
Otis PTA President
Dine & Donate Event
Tuesday, February 26th
1338 Park Street
15% of food and beverage sales from lunch, dinner and takeout from any customer who presents this flyer will be donated to Otis school. 



We need 2-3 volunteers to work an arts & crafts table making truffula trees - it's very easy and materials will be provided. Please contact Jenny Beck if you can help.
Tucker's has created a Dr. Seuss-inspired ice cream flavor and there will be a contest held among Otis students to give the flavor a Dr. Seuss-style name. The winner of the naming contest will see their name on the Tucker's board and will get a free ice cream on Saturday. The flavor is blue cotton candy ice cream with colored marshmallows (funmellows) and sprinkles.  Have a great idea for a Dr. Seussian name? A box for name ideas will be posted on the PTA bulletin board by the Main Office for students to submit their ideas. The winner will be announced on Friday, March 1st.
Sign up for the karaoke contest HERE.
SATURDAY, APRIL 27, 2019 6-11PM
The Donations team is working lean, fast and furious to bring in donations from local businesses like Phoenix (shout out to our fabulous Otis parents, Ben and Saskia Winter, who own and run this wonderful community space), Chabot Observatory, Galileo Camps, Ridge Vineyard, and KOA Petaluma, among others.
But WE NEED MORE! If you have any goods, services, vacation homes, or airline miles to contribute, or if your employer has a matching program, please contact Neveen Acero or Beth Leonardo. The Frank Otis PTA is a 501(c)(3) so donations are tax deductible.
Another great way to contribute is to host a party. Gather a few friends and host a unique party. Past parties have included:
  • DIY Pizza Party
  • Ugly Dress Party
  • Cake Decorating Party
  • Paella Progressive Dinner Party
Have an idea? Need an idea? Contact Kristan LaVietes to get your party listed.
The next Solid Gold Committee Meeting is THIS Wednesday, 2/27 at 1016 Broadway from 7:30pm to 9:00pm. Newcomers are welcome and encouraged to attend!

Tickets go on sale NEXT MONDAY, MARCH 4TH. Stay tuned for more details!
Box Top$ Are Back!

The Box Top$ for Education collection bins have been returned to the individual classrooms so you can bring any you have been saving in at any time. Box Top$ bins will be collected after Spring Break (second week of April) so you have plenty of time to bring them in. 
Thank you for supporting Otis!
TerraCycle® and Dixon have partnered to create a free recycling program for Ticonderoga, Prang, and Lyra art supplies and writing instruments.
Program accepted waste: Prang Art Markers, Ticonderoga Highlighters, Ticonderoga & Dixon Pencils (mechanical and wood), LYRA & Prang Paint Kits, Prang Crayons, Prang Glue Sticks, Prang & Dixon Erasers, and Prang & LYRA Colored Pencils.

Bring in used pens and markers (including sharpies, ball point pens, and dry erase markers) and put them in the box inside the office. You'll find the special box on top of the pencil dispenser across from LaShonda's desk. We go through lots of pens and markers - let's keep them out of the landfill!
Terracycle has partnered with Hasbro Toys to recycle used, broken toys! There is a bin for this in front of the main office. The toys DO NOT have to be strictly Hasbro brand, and can include stuffed animals (which we all know cannot be donated), board games, electronic toys & games, metal/plastic/wood toys & games, action figures, dolls, etc.

PLEASE REMEMBER!!! REMOVE ALL BATTERIES before recycling. Also NO car seats, skateboards, bikes, scooters, or things of that nature. This is a pilot program, so take advantage and clear out those broken and unwanted toys now! This program will continue until further notice. 
 Hi Otis Owls,
This is our last week to collect donations for blessing bags! Otis families will be assembling bags during Owlapalooza. Thank you for your generosity! 
We still need:
Socks Kleenex Baby Wipes Small First Aid Kits
Chapstick Notebooks Pens  

We are excited to announce that the Community Service Club is partnering with The Local and Alameda Giving Hearts Foundation to create and distribute our Blessing Bags!  The Local has agreed to let us collect donations from the larger Alameda community in front of The Local on Saturday, March 2 from 10-2. We need Otis families to help us accept and sort donations - can you help? Sign up for a shift here!

We are also looking for volunteers to help manage blessing bag assembly during Owlapalooza on Saturday, March 9th from 10am - 6pm! If you can help, please sign up here!  
Thank you!
Click HERE to sign up to receive newsletters and other important information from AUSD. 
  • Next Board of Education Meeting: February 26at 6:30pm (City Hall).
  • Click HERE for the agenda.


The next North Region SELPA Community Advisory Committee meeting and presentation will be held on Monday, February 25th, in the Marina Room at the Alameda USD District Office.  The meeting will be held from 6:30-7:00 and will be followed by a one hour presentation from 7:00-8:00pm addressing "Transition to Elementary and Middle School."  

Please see the flyer for further details. 
Flag Football Alameda
Registration is open for Alameda Flag Football's spring season. The program is open to boys and girls aged 7-12. 
Practices are on Saturdays, March 9 to May 18. For more information, go to
OTIS 101
Ever wonder what a room parent does, what "MPR" means, how the money from PTA fundraising events is used, or what's what at Otis?  If so, you will find this guide to be a helpful resource and reference guide.  It's also posted on the school website at for easy reference.  Please take a few minutes to read Otis 101 so you're up to speed!

Questions?  Please contact any member of the PTA Executive Board for more information. 
To contact Otis PTA Outlook, please send an e-mail to, or hit reply to this newsletter. These emails will go directly to the Editor's personal in-box. 

Thank you, 
Outlook Editor