Seattle and our own McGilvra community are experiencing a resurgence of local action and advocacy for positive change. This dedication to community, and the widespread public education values of inclusion, empathy and compassion were on display time and time again through McGilvra Elementary’s school activities:

The MLK Day assembly on Jan. 20 had the theme of resilience and unity and featured songs, spoken word, videos and dance performances by students who worked hard on their performances. Maya Angelou’s work was incorporated throughout many of the performances, sending the message that in a time of uncertainty it is important to be a community that keeps persevering. A big thank you goes to Ms. Tammie Le, first grade teacher, who spent long hours to rehearse and coordinate each part of the inspirational show. Thank you to all the parents and family members who came out, and thank you to the Northwest Tap Connection for communicating resiliency through dance, and dedicating the time to put on a thrilling performance for the kids.

The second grade PTA fundraiser, Bingo! Year of the Rooster took place on Fri. Feb. 10. The kids had a blast trying to win any number of exciting prizes donated by the PTA, in a gym decorated with festive red lanterns, calligraphy and paintings. Thanks to Brynne Veitengruber, Debbie Collins, Lesley Bobek, and all the volunteers who helped put on a smooth and successful fundraising event.

The whole school was treated to a special assembly by author Javaka Steptoe, a winner of the Caldecott Medal and Coretta Scott King Award. During the assembly, the kids got the chance to learn more about Steptoe’s life, and role-play scenarios from his books. That week, students were able to order autographed books from his collection to take home, including “Jimi: Sounds like a Rainbow,” “A story of the Young Jimi Hendrix,” “In Daddy’s Arms I am Tall,” “African Americans Celebrating Fathers” and “Radiant Child: The story of young artist Jean-Michel Basquiat.”

The school joined PTAs across the state passing a resolution calling on the State Legislature to amply fund Public K-12 Education and extend the Levy Cliff, to avoid a $400 million shortfall for school districts across the state, and $74 million in the Seattle Public Schools.  McGilvra families advocated to our state legislators of the 37th and 43rd Districts to keep working to fulfill their paramount duty to Washington's children. HB1059 would allow school districts across the state to use voter-approved levies to fund education.  It needs one more vote in the Senate to pass. 

The community outreach team of the PTA has been working on replenishing the Wildcat Pantry in anticipation of the mid-winter break. We are pleased to announce that in this round, the McGilvra community donated a total of 22 bags of food and several monetary donations! Just before each break, participating students will be sent home with a backpack of kid-friendly snacks and easy-to-prepare meals. Such donations are essential in helping our students in need get through the week-long break. As usual, surplus items will be donated to another elementary school in need.

Right now we are starting to organize and procure items for our online spring auction, which is an important PTA fundraiser that supports staffing costs, academic specialists, technology and music and arts programming. If you are interested in donating an item, please contact fundraising@mcgilvrapta.org. Thank you in advance!

The next general PTA meeting is on March 8. We hope to see you there! Please follow us on Facebook search “McGilvra Elementary School PTA” or visit our PTA site, at mcgilvrapta.org for more of the latest updates and in-depth information.

Sian Wu is a McGilvra Elementary parent.