The 2018–19 school year will be starting soon—the first day of school, Monday, August 27, is quickly approaching. (The year-round schools are already in session.) A Durham Public School employee said that she’d really appreciate it if the Skywriter encouraged parents not to wait ’til the last minute to register their children for school. (It has been a bit of a problem in past years.)
The Durham Public School system has traditional-calendar and year-round schools, Montessori schools, magnet schools with special programming, CTE (career and technical education) pathway programs, a hospital school (for students with serious health issues), and early- and middle-college high schools. The Office of Student Assignment (919-560-2059) is the best place to start to figure out students’ base school assignments (depending on where they live) and other opportunities.
Parents of students with special needs, especially those were taught in separate settings or classes, should set up an appointment to put together/update their child’s Individual Education Plan (IEP). This means that children with special needs can get extra help, more time for tests, or whatever else the school can provide to help them in school. The Office of Student Assignment works with the Exceptional Children’s Department in figuring out the next steps of enrollment. Call the Office of Student Assignment at 919-560-2059 to get started.
For parents who want to register their little ones for kindergarten: Your child must be 5 years old on or before August 31. Click here and here for all the information you need—be sure you can provide your child’s birth certificate; your proof of domicile (POD), which can be a rental or mortgage document, property tax or utility bill in your name; your child’s immunization records and health assessment form. Call the Early Education Department at 919-560-3505 for more information.
Registration for students in 1st through 12th grades should be pretty straightforward, but understandably, additional paperwork will be needed for students who are living with someone other than their parents due to hospitalization, incarceration, death, military deployment, foster placement, etc. In cases like these, a Non-Parental Enrollment Affidavit will have to be submitted.
Click here for all the details you need to register your child(ren) for grades 1 through 12. Click for a enrollment packet for K–8 in English or Spanish and here are the enrollment packets for high school in English and Spanish.
Summer Reading Program
Did you work hard this year to get good grades? Don’t let all that effort go to waste! Did you know that you can fall behind in your reading skills if you don’t read this summer? That’s why the Durham County Library started the Summer Reading Program!
This year’s theme is “Libraries Rock!” Here’s how the Summer Reading Program works: First, make sure that you have a Durham County Library Card. If you don’t see if your parent can take you to your closest library to get one. And while you’re there, you can sign up. Your parents can sign up, too. The Summer Reading Program is for everyone—and everybody has the chance to win prizes!
Now here’s the good part: Start taking books out. Find books about your favorite subject—sports, mysteries, whatever you like best. Then you keep track of the time you spend reading (in the log you get from the library). When you get up to a certain number of minutes, you can earn prizes. Try to read at least 15 minutes a day. You can earn minutes reading to your little brother or sister if they’re too young to read.
The Summer Reading Finale: Meet Up in the Park will take place in Durham Central Park (501 Foster St) on Saturday, August 11, 6–8pm. Relax in your lawn chair or on your blanket and enjoy a free concert featuring Rissi Palmer, Huepa, and The Beast. If you participated in the Summer Reading Program, don’t stop now—keep it going and promote reading and literacy year ’round!
Fill That Bus! school supply drive
Crayons2Calculators asks caring individuals, businesses, and organizations to Fill That Bus! by donating school supplies on Saturday, August 18. Throughout the school year, teachers routinely pay out of their pockets for supplies for their low-income students, and that takes away from what they can do for their own families. Crayons@Calculators has a school-supply warehouse on Holloway St, where teachers can “shop” for their students and keep them from falling behind in their schoolwork because they don’t have what they need. Supplies can be dropped off between 9am and 3pm in the Sam’s Club/Office Depot parking lot (4001 Hwy 15-501/Chapel Hill Blvd), and between 11am and 2pm at Chick-Fil-A (7835 Leonardo Dr, not too far from the Streets at Southpoint). Here’s what they need most: hand sanitizer, clipboards, packets of tissues, Sharpies, colored markers, scissors (both safety (with round edges) and adult), construction paper, mechanical pencils, colored pencils, dry-erase markers, #2 pencils, and tape (clear, masking, and duct). Visit the Facebook event page for more info.
School-supply drive for Eastway
GoDurham employees want to help the students at Eastway Elementary School with a school supply drive. If you’d like to help, you can drop off supplies in the marked bins at the Durham Station (515 W Pettigrew St) and the Fay St GoDurham administration office (1911 Fay St) until Monday, August 20. What students need the most are 3-ring binders, college-ruled paper, composition notebooks, folders, pencils, glue sticks, scissors, erasers, colored pencils, and pencil pouches.
Free college-level courses
Keep your skills sharp and have fun learning new things over your summer vacation. edX is an online source for finding classes offered by renowned colleges and universities from around the world that you can take for free. Some courses start on specific dates and others are totally self-paced. Most require that you dedicate a few hours per week to the course, and although work is involved, you don’t have to worry about finals and term papers. Here are some upcoming courses; click here to explore the site and look for classes on subjects you’re interested in.
Arabic classes for k–6
Arabic Classes are being offered on Saturdays from 6 to 7:30pm at Jamaat Ibad Ar-Rahman’s Fayetteville St masjid (3034 Fayetteville St). These classes are for young people from kindergarten through 6th grade. Call 919-394-7336 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.