We Love our Volunteers: Thank You, One and All!

Over the course of the year, Open School engages in many events and activities that seek to support and enhance the educational experience of our students.  We try, after each of these events to show our appreciation, to the Chairs and their teams for their efforts.  It would be impossible to individually thank everyone who makes a difference at Open School in the Backpack - we are a community of giving families.  But as the year closes, we would be remiss if we did not thank some of our community leaders whose work may not be linked to specific events, but who have made an invaluable and ongoing contribution to Open School throughout the 2019-2020 school year. 

Thank you, Communications Team

Have you ever wondered how Thursday's Backpack gets published every week? Well, wonder no more. Our dedicated parent Shazneen Gandhi works tirelessly to compile all of the articles, provide the pictures and collaborate patiently with all stakeholders as we get the news out to our community. Thank you, Shazneen, for your weekly behind the scenes work. We truly appreciate it! And we also thank you Shazneen for being our Communications Committee Chair.

We also have wonderful Friends of Open FaceBook moderators, Jessica Ferguson and Cheri Dame. We thank you both for your thoughtfulness and leadership as we think through the best ways to get information to our Open School families.

Mark Fischer, thank you again for all of your work on our school website. 

Thank You, Friends of the Open School

Throughout the school year, Friends of Open School organizes many events for our school community.  While the purpose of many of these events is to raise funds, they all also serve an invaluable community building opportunities.  Shachar Lavi-Pangindian and Jamie Shwartz served as the Co-Presidents of Friends this year.  Shachar and Jamie, we thank you for your leadership and your collaboration with all stakeholders at Open School.  We appreciate the hard work and dedication of every member of the Friends Board, and your encouragement of wide spread participation and support for your initiatives on behalf of our school. We would also like to acknowledge the Friends cabinet, Sheri Lipschutz (Vice President), Berta Howard (Secretary) and Sue Sywak (Treasurer).

Thank You, Annual Giving Campaign

Annual Giving is the school's direct donation fundraising drive.  100% of contributions made to the Annual Giving Program go straight to the school.  And while our Open School Family is always generous, fundraising doesn't just happen by itself!  Ann Kaatz-LoBue and Kevin Joyce have led the fundraising effort for this past year. Ann and Kevin, thank you for providing our families with reminders for why fundraising matters, and incentives to make it fun.  

Thank you for the Book Fair

Our Library Committee, headed by Maria Magallanes, is behind our fabulous Book Fair that happens twice a year. Thank you to Brynn Karwas for being the chair and for keeping the Book Fair exciting and enjoyable for all families. You continue to spark a love of learning for our kids.

Thank You, Governing Council Executive Board

The Governing Council makes many decisions related to our school.  Matt Wall ably led Governing Council for the third year in a row, to ensure that the needs of our students were aptly met.  Thank you, Matt, Michael Thomas (Vice President), Maria Magallanes (Secretary), Cherie Dame (Treasurer and Budget Committee Chair) and all members of Governing Council, for your commitment to working together toward our common goal of delivering an extraordinary educational experience for our students here at Open School. 

Open School's Governing Council has so many Committees and we would like to thank their Chairs:

Thank You, Bylaws, Charter, & Program Evaluation Committee

The Governing Council wouldn't continue to exist if it was not for the work of the Bylaws, Charter & Program Evaluation Committee, who oversee and organize Governing Council elections and work to ensure that our school's Charter principles are met and renewed.  Thank you, Matt Wall, for your leadership and management of our elections and Charter status. 

Thank You, Staff Selection Committee

Jessica Ferguson, we are forever grateful for your investment in Open School and the quality educators that we hire. Your time and wisdom are so valuable.

Thank You, Community Building & Education Committee

Sibyl Wickersheimer, thank you for looking into parent education classes, such as the presentation on Sleep and the Brain and GATE workshops.  We know we had much more planned for this year and look forward to new offers next year.

Thank You, Site Committee and Safety Committee

Anne-Marie Cziko and Michael Thomas (safety committee too), we appreciate your above and beyond spirit in keeping Open School fresh and safe. We are forever indebted to you for all of your hard work. You have made our campus beautiful. 

and some big thank yous beyond our committees...

Thank You, Open Hearts, Hospitality and Teacher Appreciation Crew

Open Hearts is the school's community service club.  Over the course of this past year, Open Hearts has involved our students in making valuable contributions to communities across Los Angeles. Rocki Davidson and Adrianne Robertson, thank you for your commitment to the mission of Open Hearts and helping our children learn that they can make a difference!

Rocki, thank you for all that you do as the Chair of the Hospitality Committee.

Vivian Blasi and Isis Raja, the teachers and staff are grateful to you for spearheading the Teacher Appreciation Week. We feel the love all year long, but especially during this week.

Thank You, Valet Support

Our team of volunteers in the morning are such an important part of a good day as our students take their first steps into school.  Rain or shine, they were there for us with a helping hand and smile--Michael Thomas, Don Barrozo, Don Wilson, Kurt Lykes, Eric Weingrad, and Jess Ferguson.

Thank You, Culminating Parents

It has been an honor to partner with all of our fifth grade families in a partnership for your children. We are forever grateful for your support of Open School and the work that we do for all of the children.

It is the end of the school year. I am grateful not just to these leaders, and to those acknowledged in the past, but to all parent, family and friend volunteers, teachers, aides, and specialists, who give their time and resources towards the success of our common enterprise for the good of our students.  Let us take the summer to renew our energies and plan for a fantastic school year to follow in the Fall. 

With gratitude and in partnership, 

Antoinette Cass

Expiration Date: 
Jul 1