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News You Can Use 8.30.2019


Wednesday night I spoke to the school community about a desire for more and better communication, outreach, and connection about YOUR school experience. Schools are wonky. They and the people who inhabit them are a subculture all their own. Teachers, parents, and students too. So now, being here for the eighth year, I have seen the revolving door of newcomers and crafty veterans managing the elementary experience. Expanding a bit on the Wednesday night message, what I’m striving for with families is a way in which to manage the changing members of this subculture AND maintain knowledge of the pulse of the school community in a way that is most productive for the kids. This leads me to naming power dynamics of schools and working to balance the power that naturally exists between insiders (veterans) and outsiders (newcomers).


The virtue of power in any organization between insiders and outsiders is complex and has historical implications for maintaining a range of status quos (think business circles and civil rights to name a couple). In educational institutions, this is no different. Regulatory capture is the process by which those who make decisions are captured by external and internal forces. It is the force that constrains newcomers ability to think and act independently, to limit choices, and exert pressure to achieve certain desirable outcomes.


It is almost comical to apply such a definition to school based decisions or to the functions of our parent community, but it exists and we all must be invested in the path forward. Being open to new ideas is not the same thing as making changes. Listening to those ideas and examining the work it would take to enact the change also is not the same thing as making the change. While I invited, with actual personal phone access, opinions, ideas, criticism, and praise on Wednesday night, I want this for us all. 


How do we, as adults, recognize the power that insiders or veterans in the school community have and be open to the ideas of the energized newcomers? As we move beyond week two I look forward to the work of our school team in examining our practices to identify new and exciting ways to engage students with choice. This all begins with open and welcome communication. I welcome it, my team welcomes it and hopefully as we move through the year we find ways to keep the conduits for communication open to all members of our community (new and returning) with balance in power for all voices that need to be heard.




Joseph Hailpern

Braeside School Principal


Follow on Twitter @braesideES



Slides from Open House are linked here.



This week was a great one for community. We began with an awesome Back to School Bash led by our PTO Wonder-Parents. Having time set aside to be together at school without any expectation to do anything is always so important. From dripping ice cream to the craziness on the bounce houses to the calm crafts under the tree, a fun time was surely had. Thank you all for showing up.


Following the Bash was our annual Open House and the turnout and texts showed what a promising year we have ahead. The classrooms were buzzing as our newest staff shared their awesome with you in person. The seasoned veterans found words of wisdom for you first time parents to a grade. And giving out my phone number has already paid dividends to some while zero regrets have been accumulated. :-) 


Moving forward look out for dates for the grade level sings and STEAM Night, all of which are sure to entertain and provide more community experiences. Thank you for showing up and getting excited about the year ahead with us.



All classes have now had a chance to visit the library and check out books. It’s a great reminder to see how many enthusiastic readers we have at Braeside. Librarians reviewed suggested guidelines for library book use.


They include:

  • Read and share your book with your family. Have fun!
  • Find a special place to keep your library book so it does not get lost.
  • Protect your library book from pets, younger brothers and sisters, food and the weather.
  • Allow the librarian to repair damaged or torn pages in a library book.
  • Remember to return your library book on time. Please see below for your child’s library day.

Thank you for your support! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact either of us.


Thank you,

Mrs. Lau ( & Mrs. Behn (


Mondays: 5th Loebbaka, 5th Lieberman, 4th Skevin, 3rd Footlik, 2nd Bayless, 1st DeBoer, 1st Rossman, K Smith & K Joseph

Thursdays: 4th Weissman and 2nd Prestinario

Fridays: 4th Simon, 3rd Winkler and 2nd Mendelson



Upon arrival, students are to enter the building through the main front doors. These are the doors that students will enter daily and is similar to how we handled arrival last year. The parking restrictions around Braeside School are on our website and linked here. Please respect our neighbors and avoid parking across from driveways. Please also understand that there is not enough parking for everyone to park directly around the school. If you live close by we highly encourage taking a stroll to school to avoid the headache personally and contribute to the solution for the community.


At dismissal time, students will exit outside the door nearest their classroom or ride the bus, whichever is the method of transit home. Should the planned route home from school every change, please send a note to school with your child letting the teacher know that the plan is different on that day.