ABS Thursday Notes- August 5, 2021


Published for the Arts Based School Community

August 5, 2021

First Day of School: Wed, August 18th

Starting the New School Year

Hello to all our new and returning families! As we continue to enjoy our summer, we’re also doing the planning and preparation work to launch into a great school year. Although there are still some unknowns based on the COVID pandemic, we anticipate having all our students back to in-person learning on a regular schedule for the 2021-22 school year. The State continues to provide updates on requirements for health and safety. We will keep you informed as we know more. The latest update allows parent volunteers back into school buildings and has students and staff in K-8 schools wear masks in the school buildings. ABS Health and Safety plan will be reviewed for approval by ABS Board August 10. This plan is based on the COVID protocols required and/or recommended by the Strong Schools NC Public Toolkit 

How Do I Stay Up to Date with School Health and Safety Plans?

We’re doing our best to keep ABS families, staff, and community updated with the latest information about our Health and Safety plans as the requirements continue to be adjusted based on current COVID spread and latest science. We will continue to provide information in multiple places, including direct email, Thursday Notes, and Virtual Parent Meetings. Our next virtual information meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 11 at 12 pm. You will receive an invitation and link via your email from Evite. If you have specific topics or questions, please send them to us via this form so we can be sure to address them. This session will be recorded and available for those who are unable to attend.

Parent Rep & Teacher Breakfast: Monday, August 16th 

Calling all Class Reps, Specialist Reps, Teachers, and Staff! Please join us Monday, August 16th at 8:30am in the ABS Café for a meeting with Principal Robin Hollis, Assistant Principal Paige Raper, and the Parent Council Board. Breakfast, coffee, and juice will be provided. We look forward to seeing you all there! Outdoor childcare will be provided from 8:30-9:30am.


Parent Council Meetings 

All parents, grandparents, and caregivers are members of the Parent Council and are invited to attend our monthly meetings. These meetings are for everyone, and attending meetings is a great way to learn more about what is happening at school and how you can get involved. We will send out a schedule of Parent Council meetings for the 2021-22 school year soon so that we can all plan ahead! We plan to have meetings via Zoom and they will be held at different times to accommodate as many people that would like to attend. 

Class Representatives Needed

We are currently recruiting class representatives for all classrooms at ABS for the upcoming school year. It’s a great way to get your volunteer hours for the year and to be more involved with our amazing school. If you’re interested, please contact Aaron Willey at [email protected] Thank you so much for your willingness to volunteer! 

Pizza Volunteers Needed

Our students look forward to ordering pizza on Fridays. We need parent volunteers to assist with separating lunches into baskets and delivering the pizza to the classrooms in both of our buildings. If you can help with this volunteer need, please email Donna Brown: [email protected]


Time frame needed: 10:30 to 12:00

Locations: both the MLK building cafeteria and the 7th St building 

New Parent Orientation Slideshow

In case you missed the New Parent Orientation or the Middle School Orientation, here are the links to the slideshows. You will also have opportunities to learn more about our school and your class at Special Visits and Virtual Back to School Night.

Special Visits

Educational research shows that the relationship between the student and his or her teacher is one of the most important factors in a student’s academic success. This critical relationship is enhanced by our small class size and our educators’ commitment to children. In support of the teacher/student relationship, our teachers will be offering a Special Visit before school begins. A Special Visit is simply an opportunity for your child to meet his or her teacher in a familiar setting, a chance to learn a bit about the class and what to expect in the coming school year. This year’s scheduled days for Special Visits are August 12 and 13, 2021. Your child’s teacher will be contacting you to schedule a 15-20 minute appointment.

Back to School Night 

ABS Back to School Night will be virtual this year. ABS Back to School is scheduled for Monday, August 16. Your classroom teacher will send you a link to the Virtual Meeting for the Back to School meeting. Sessions will be recorded if you are unable to attend.

Parking Lot Safety

Here are a few safety reminders and procedures to ensure the safety of our students and families in the school parking lot when school begins.

  • Please drive slowly and cautiously through the school parking lot at all times. 
  • Do not use cell phones while in our parking lot.
  • Watch for children and adults in the parking lot.
  • Please allow extra time the first week as parents and children become accustomed to the routine. 
  • Please be kind and courteous to parking lot helpers. 
  • Please be responsible for explaining the drop off/pick up procedures to your afterschool daycare vans or anyone else who may be picking up your children.

Remember to enter only on Chestnut St. (by the white church) during pick-up and drop-off.

Please review the attached traffic map for more information about drop off and pick up procedures.

PikMyKid App

In our ongoing efforts to enhance safety, we will continue using the PikMyKid dismissal app. This system will allow us to avoid congregating students at dismissal tents, leaving them inside the classrooms until you arrive in the pickup line. All new families will need to download the PikMyKid parent smartphone app on IOS or Android. Once you have downloaded the app, you will press the “Register” button and follow the prompts to sign up. When you have successfully registered, please log in, allow notifications, and check to make sure that you see your ABS student(s) listed. If you do not see your child’s name, it is likely because we do not have your mobile phone information. Please contact Stephanie LeFever at [email protected]

If you do not have a smartphone or are unable to download the PikMyKid app for any reason, please email Leah Lavin so that we can help find a solution: [email protected]

See more information about downloading the app attached to the Thursday Notes email.

Staffing Update

Our recently hired Middle School Music teacher, Mr. Northcutt, is unable to take the teaching position due to unforeseen circumstances. Fortunately, we had several very qualified applicants and we are pleased to report that Mr. Court Wynter will be joining the ABS team. Mr. Wynter received his Master’s degree in String Bass from UNCSA and is a dynamic, accomplished musician well-known across our region. He’s experienced in teaching both strings and beginning band, and we are delighted to welcome him to ABS!

ABS Regular Board Meeting

The ABS Board of Directors will meet in person on August 10, 2021 at 5:45pm in the gym of the 7th St Building. Board meetings are open to the public. If you would like to view the meeting, please email Principal Hollis [email protected] for the link.

Looking for more information about our school?

Check out the website artsbasedschool.com. As an ABS parent, you will have access to the Parent Portal. Last year’s password will expire soon. You should have received the log in and new password with your class lists.