Dragon News – March 2019

In this issue:

  • PTA President’s Message

    As we reach the interim of the third marking period, Spring is just around the corner. February was a very busy but awesome month, and I want to thank everyone for their hard work and support. We began with Chipotle night and our annual Silent Auction, celebrated Bus Driver Appreciation week and Valentine parties, and are now on to the science fair.

    A big thank you to all of our families who supported Damascus ES by dining at Chipotle. Based on sales, Chipotle donated $535.71 to our PTA to benefit our students!

    Our annual dance and silent auction was a wonderful success. This year, we chose a sports rally theme, and our dancers enjoyed games and a fun sports related raffle. Thank you to Tara and Melissa for all of their hard work to make the dance possible. Our silent auction had more than 50 items for bidding. I would like to thank our donors, our organizer, Beth, and all of our bidders. Our silent auction raised more than $1,000 which will go directly toward field trips and classroom needs for our school. Thank you to our many volunteers that helped the evening run smoothly: Kristen, Brittany, Josh and Christine, and our SSL helpers: Justin, Lucas, Katherine, Ethan, Jazmin, Alexander, Emilia, Kade, Lexis, Bella, and Gracie.

    Finally, our fifth grade celebration team provided an array of concessions and hosted our staff raffle. Many thanks to all of our staff who donated prizes. The fifth grade was able to earn almost $1,100 which will go toward their end of year celebration. Congratulations to our team of fifth grade volunteers: Kelly, Jen, Stacey, Sheila, Tamara, Bethany, Trish, and Jennifer.

    Our PTA also celebrated Bus Driver Appreciation Week with little gifts each day to surprise our awesome bus drivers. Thank you to Kimberly and Itzel for all of their hard work!

    Students had a blast at Valentine parties. Thank you to Melody for organizing, and to so many room parents and families who donated their time, money, and items to make it a special memory.

    This past week, the PTA paid for a guidance sponsored assembly presented by Dr. Paul Wichansky about taking the “Dis” out of Disability. He gave a very powerful message about confidence in yourself and disability awareness. If you haven’t heard about it from your child, ask them what they learned. Thank you for your support that allows us to provide presentations like these.

    At this point, we have received many registrations for the science fair. If your child wants to participate but did not yet submit a registration form, please touch base with us as soon as possible. Thank you to Christi and Terry for their work on the science fair. Boards are now available for pick up in the main office, and information for our SSL helpers is available as well. We look forward to seeing you on March 7 for a night of discovery. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. to set up, SSL helpers report at 6:45 p.m., and presentations begin at 7 p.m. We will be in the all-purpose room this year.

    In March and April, be on the lookout for the following PTA events: (more information is available about each event on our website)

    As always, thank you for all that you do to make our school amazing!

    ~ Christine Derby, DES PTA President

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    Restaurant Spirit Night

    Thank you for continuing to support our Spirit Nights at local Damascus restaurants. So far this year, we have raised close to $1,000! Looking forward, our next Spirit Night is at McDonald’s on Tuesday, March 5. We finish out the school year with Ledos on April 3 and Maggi’s on May 7.

    Stay tuned for possibly an additional night towards the end of the school year. Thanks again for your support!

    ~ Ashley LeFave, Chair

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    The 5th Annual Read-A-Thon kicks off with a celebration on March 27 and ends on April 12. Last year our students read 154,278 minutes and raised $8,341!

    We have lots of fun prizes planned for the students and to reward our readers and fundraisers. If you have any questions or would like to be part of the fun, please contact Laurie Murtaugh at laurie.murtaugh@verizon.net.

  • ~ Laurie Murtaugh, Chair
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    Order Yearbooks Online

    Don’t miss out – the 2018-2019 yearbook will be out of this world! Deadline to order is April 5 and the cost is only $20. Order online at ybpay.lifetouch.com using code 11510219. Or you can use the form sent home (additional copies available in school main office) and make checks payable to DES PTA.

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    PTA Communications

    This year the DES-PTA has been focused on transitioning to a more digital presence and we want you to be part of that transition!

    E-MAIL: We’ve changed things up a bit this year and the DES-PTA email announcements, reminders, and volunteering opportunities (for adults AND older MoCo student’s looking for SSL hours!) are now going through Mailchimp – if you haven’t signed up yet please do so at:


    SOCIAL: DES-PTA is on FACEBOOK! If you haven’t checked out our FB page yet, go to https://www.facebook.com/damascusPTA/ and “LIKE” us! Our Facebook page will keep you up to date with DES-PTA events, meetings and fundraisers. And if you are interested in the different areas the DES-PTA is involved in take a look at the ‘Services’ section on the left hand menu of our Facebook home page!

    DES ONLINE SPIRITWEAR SHOP: Don’t forget DES-Spirit Wear is now available all year around! Order online at:


    The DES Spirit Wear Store on Zazzle allows you to choose your favorite DES design and then pick the T-Shirt, sweatshirt, or tank-top style you want. Each style comes in a variety of colors for you to choose from too! Just click on the design you like and you’ll see all of the options on the right hand side.

    Purchasing DES Spirit Wear through Zazzle helps the DES-PTA support the DES school community with field trips, educational programs, books, supplies, staff appreciation and more. See the PTA website or Facebook page for more information about the DES-PTA programs.

    We are looking for a creative soul to help us design new items for the DES-PTA Zazzle shop. Please email KKlosterGrady@gmail.com if your interested in helping.

    ~ Kristen Kloster-Grady, Vice-President

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    Clothing Donations Needed

    Sometimes accidents happen. The health room is currently looking for donations of clean clothing that can be used to change in case of an accident at school. Clothing can be any elementary school size for either boys or girls. Soft sweat pants are especially helpful. Donations can be sent directly to Ms. Floyd in the health room. Thank you for your generosity.

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    Silent Auction Thank Yous

    Thank You!The Damascus ES PTA would like to thank all of our Silent Auction sponsors for their generous donations. Thank you also to all of the families that donated to our class baskets and who bid on our exciting choices. The Silent Auction raises funds to help with field trips and classroom supplies for our school, and we raised over $1,000. It was a fabulous evening.

    ~ Beth Walter, Silent Auction Chair and Christine Derby, PTA President

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    Volunteer Training Requirement

    Please remember that if you are planning to help at school this year (this includes field trips), you will need to bring a photo ID to come into the building. However, Montgomery County has a volunteer requirement that they feel will help to keep our children safe. The online training on Child Abuse and Neglect is designed to help volunteers be aware of signs of potential abuse and neglect and how to handle situations where you might suspect abuse and neglect. This training is required for adults who would like to volunteer within the school building or attend field trips. The same training is required for any Montgomery County school including Baker MS and Damascus HS. Montgomery County has decided that the training will be good for three years. So if you took it last year, you do not need to retake it this year.

    The training is available online at: http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/childabuseandneglect/

    It takes roughly 25 minutes to complete. At the end you will be provided with a confirmation number and the system will send you an email showing that you have completed the training. You will need to show this email to the office when you come to volunteer. If you have any questions or concerns, including the need for computer access, please contact Christine at derbyjc@bellatlantic.net.

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