Burns Park Elementary

Ann Arbor Public Schools

  • Dear Burns Park Families, 

    It was a very short, but busy week at Burns Park. I was involved in an unusually large number of meetings and unable to keep up with email. I apologize for my slow response and hope to be caught up soon. Thanks everyone for your patience!

    We are very excited for three special events at Burns Park; March is Reading Month, Science Olympiad, and Kindergarten Roundup.

    Kindergarten Roundup is held this Tuesday, February 28th, beginning at 6:00 PM


    . Incoming Kindergarten students are included with families in this fun and informative event (we do not provide child-care for other age siblings). Information will also be shared for our school district’s Young 5’s program which we will be offering next fall at Burns Park. If you are considering Young 5’s as an option for your child, I encourage you to enroll now to save your spot.


    This Thursday, March 2nd, at 1:00 we will have our March is Reading Month all-school kick-off assembly. Look for MIRM packets in backpacks on Thursday for more details on the month. Please watch also for my remarks about March is Reading Month in this month’s Burns Park Press.

    Science Olympiad practices begin this Thursday and Friday, March 2nd and 3rd and

    Science Olympiad sign-ups are available online! Thanks to many amazing parent volunteers, we have coaches for all events, and you can sign your interested child (in grades 2-5) up for Science Olympiad. All the information is on our website (see link below).

    We will also send out a paper form for those who don't have easy access to the internet. Again, practices start this week.
    Please make sure you look over the practice schedule on the website because many events overlap time slots and also are only available to certain grades. For example, Potions and On Target and ICompute take place at the same time on Fridays. Potions and ICompute are only available to grades 4 and 5, while On Target is available for grades 2, 3, 4, and 5. The link can be found on the Burns Park Science Olympiad website under "Register Your Child":


    In addition, this year we will need help from volunteers to oversee some of the practices. This just involves sitting in the hallway outside the office and directing kids and making sure rooms are clean and closed up at the end of practices. I'll send out more information once sign ups are complete.

    Please direct any questions to Valerie Taylor (valeriejotaylor@gmail.com). (But first check to see if your question is answered in the Q & A link on the website.)

    Our equity and inclusion group met this past Tuesday in furtherance of the goals I mentioned in my message last week. I’m including an attachment of a short story by Sandra Cisneros, titled Eleven, which helped us all remember how vulnerable our children are and how important our care for them is.

    Over 40 of us were also happy to gather as a group of folks who speak Spanish, are learning to speak Spanish, or just interested in hanging out with Spanish speakers. Our potluck dinner was wonderful, as was our fellowship. Please watch for similar opportunities and an upcoming update on Spanish instruction at Burns Park Elementary.

    As many of you have heard this past week, an Ann Arbor immigrant member of our community, Yousef Ajin, has recently been detained. His deportation trial is scheduled on Tuesday, February 28th at 2 pm at the McNamara Federal Building in Detroit. Mr. Ajin has been a long-standing member of our community with several children attending Ann Arbor public schools and one son who requires full-time care due to developmental disabilities.

    For more information see this article. http://www.chscommunicator.com/front-page/2017/02/24/detained-but-not-deported-a-familys-final-chance-to-remain-undivided/

    This is an unfortunate situation and one that gives us the opportunity to show our commitment to inclusion and the incredible value of ethnic and religious diversity within our schools and community.

    For those interested in showing support of Mr. Ajin and his family, please join us at the Burns Park Elementary School Media Center from 4 - 6 pm on Monday, February 27th.

    We will gather to write letters that express 1) our wish for Mr. Ajin to be released and remain part of our community, 2) our concern for his children if he is deported, and 3) our community's wishes to continue to be inclusive and diverse. We will have the ability to scan and email these letters to Mr. Ajin's attorney prior to the Feb 27th midnight deadline.

    All members of the community are welcome, including children. Finally, for those of you interested in attending his hearing, more information can be found on this facebook page. 


    I hope that you have heard comments from your students about their learning during Black History Month. As February comes to a close I want to share the following link with you about a local initiative, the Living Oral History Project, presented in partnership between the African American Cultural & Historical Museum of Washtenaw County and the Ann Arbor District Library.


    These interviews serve as a road map illustrating what local African-Americans witnessed, experienced, and contributed to building the community we share today.

    This website can help all of us understand and celebrate our community’s journey toward fulfilling the American promise as a pluralistic democracy committed to the dignity and freedom of all.

    We're looking forward to another wonderful week at Burns Park and hope to see you soon.

    Your Principal,

    Chuck Hatt