WAG Header

September 22, 2013


Hello BCS!


We have exciting new updates for the enthusiasm we’re garnering around our partnership with Project COPE Zambia

1.      First, our Media Specialists Barbara Clark and Ann Truesdell have created a CultureGrams database to introduce our community to Zambia as part of our project.  They have posted a Zambia Pathfinder on the Media Center Wiki.  Click here to LEARN GLOBALLY!

Below are some areas students can explore for all to enjoy:

·The photo gallery

·Interviews from Janet (30) Chimuka  21, Samuel  31, or Namulino, 32

·Listen to the national anthem

·See the Flag of Zambia

·Find recipes

·View the  slide show of people going to vote

·Use the World Clock to see the time difference

·Explore the Country Development data (life expectancy, literacy, human development, etc.)

2.      Second, we have another short, 2-minute video, created by students,for you to share with othersand encourage businesses you may know of to give to our effort.  Click here to view the video!  Any businesses or business owners out there looking to give to an amazing cause to help eradicate poverty in the Sub-Saharan region of Chilipula, Zambia? Have them contact us at BCS if you'd like to help us with this worthwhile effort and to help us SERVE LOCALLY!

3.      We’ve begun our planning with Project Cope connect our students with students in Chilipula, Zambia via a sort of “pen pal” effort.  More to come on this – LEARN GLOBALLY!

4.      And finally, with our impending student-led video-conference setup for this Tuesday in Mrs. Roberts’s class with Viktor Phiri (project co-chair in Zambia), the Detroit News will visit and is eager to visit and hear about our project. LEARN GLOBALLY, SERVE LOCALLY!


It has been a pleasure indeed to welcome our 3/4 & 5/6 parents and guardians to our Curriculum Nights the past twoThursdays.  We have another great learning opportunity ahead and look forward to seeing all of our 7/8 parents and guardians at our final Curriculum Night this Thursday.This is a great chance for you to learn about the curriculum, programming and educational schedule for your child(ren) as well as one of the most important steps in partnering with our teachers in your child’s learning this year.  Following are the details:

·7/8 Curriculum Night will be Thursday, September 26th

o   6:00-6:30 p.m. – PTSA Curriculum Night Meet and Greet and Refreshments in the main hallway

o   6:30-7:00 p.m. – Principals, Co-Curricular Teachers, PTSA & Proud Dads presentations in the media center

o   7:05-8:45 p.m. – Teacher presentations to parents in classrooms based on your student’s schedule (start in your student’s Academic Lab)

We hope you will find the time in your schedule to join us for your respective Curriculum Night.  They truly are “don’t miss” events!


And finally, has your child had a teacher that made a positive difference in their life? Is your child a writer?  Consider having him/her enter the Michigan PTA Essay Contest: The Teacher that Changed My Life. Southeast Michigan elementary, middle and high school students from public and private institutions are invited to write a short essay describing the teacher who inspired them and changed their life. Contest entries should highlight how the teacher influenced their life and why they appreciate and admire them.  The winning teacher and their one special guest will be award by Cadillac Travel Group of Southfield, a 4 or 5 night cruise in an ocean-view stateroom on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship. The prize also includes round-trip airfare, taxes, gratuities and transfers for the winner and guest to the cruise ship port city.  The student who writes the winning essay will receive an iPad.  Click on the links for the Essay Contest Rules and for the Essay Contest ApplicationDeadline: September 30, 2013.


Here’s to what will be another fantastic week of learning at BCS!


Wishing you well,

Mark Morawski




P.S.We wanted to remind you that we had our 1st Lock Down drill on Tuesday where we practiced locking down our classrooms and following our school’s lock down procedures, and we’ll have Evacuation/Fire drill on Monday.  Feel free to ask your child about them.  Our drills (6 evacuation, 3 tornado and 6 lock down) over the course of the year help us practice what to do in case an actual crisis were to arise, and we thank our students and staff for their “perfect practice” with these drills.


P.P.S.Vote for BCS at http://givewith.target.com/ - If you have a Facebook account, go to this website and search for BCS by typing “Birmingham Covington School” in the “School Name” section.  Then sign into your Facebook account.  Make sure Birmingham Covington School name appears and click the top “VOTE” button. Then you will see a message “Give With Target will receive the following info: your public profile, friend list and email address. This does not let Give With Target post to Facebook, Your public profile is your name, profile picture, age range, gender, language, country and other public information” you provide. From there, you can even post this vote option to your “friends”. For every person who clicks on the “VOTE” button, Target will grant money to BCS.  For every 25 votes, BCS can earn $50.


– To view previous 2013-14 BCS WAG documents click here!) –


Character Connections Word of the week: RESPECT

Infuse this word into your conversations with your children throughout the week.

·         Love and respect are the most important aspects of parenting, and of all relationships. – Jodie Foster

·         In recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute. – Thurgood Marshall

·         Be curious, not judgmental. – Walt Whitman


WEEK AT A GLANCE –   Week of September 23-27, 2013

(Disclaimer:  Please check all your calendars and bcsonline.info in case we missed something) 

To submit an item for next week’s “WAG”, email mz07bps@birmingham.k12.mi.us  by WEDNESDAY at 5PM 

Monday, September 23




Tuesday, September 24-DELAYED START TODAY

·         DELAYED START:  School Begins at 9:50 a.m.

·         BAGEL TUESDAY IS BACK! 9:30-9:50 a.m. – Click here for the flier!

·         4PM-7/8 GIRLS BASKETBALL @ HOME vs. West Hills Middle School


·          4:05-5:30PM-SOCCER PRACTICE-

Wednesday, September 25



·         10AM- 12:30PM Session 1 - K-8 MATH OVERVIEW-see below for details


·         3:30-5:30PM-SOCCER PRACTICE

·         6 to 8:30PM-Session 2- K-8 MATH OVERVIEW- see below for details

·         6:30pm, BCS Cafeteria  - Parent information meeting for GUYS AND DOLLS JR - see below for details

Thursday, September 26



·         7/8 Curriculum Night

o   6:00-6:30 p.m. – PTSA Curriculum Night Meet and Greet and Refreshments in the main hallway

o   6:30-7:00 p.m. – Principals, Co-Curricular Teachers, PTSA & Proud Dads presentations in the media center

o   7:05-8:45 p.m. – Teacher presentations to parents in classrooms based on your student’s schedule (start in your student’s Academic Lab)

·          4:05-5:30PM-SOCCER PRACTICE

Friday, September 27


·          4:05-5:30PM-SOCCER PRACTICE


K-8 Mathematics Overview for Parents

Join Birmingham Public Schools on Wednesday, Sept. 25 as we focus on the new math curriculum and pilot materials.  Parents can select a morning or evening session, with materials available to view in the Birmingham Education and Administration Center’s Evergreen Conference Room. District administrators and textbook publishers will be available to provide more information and answer questions.  Location:  Birmingham Education and

Administration Center, 31301 Evergreen Rd., Beverly Hills, MI 48025 – Click here for the flier!

Session 1

Materials Open Exhibit ………..10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Math Expressions Breakout

(elementary school focus)………11:00 a.m. to Noon

Big Ideas Breakout

(middle school focus) …………..11:00 a.m. to Noon

Session 2

Materials Open Exhibit ………….6:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Math Expressions Breakout

(elementary school focus)………..7:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Big Ideas Breakout

(middle school focus)…………….7:00 to 8:00 p.m.


Proud Dads Annual Meeting- October 3rd at 6:45 p.m.

CALLING ALL “DADS” – The one and only meeting of “Proud Dads” will be held on October 3rd at 6:45 p.m. Click here for more information.  We NEED your leadership!  “Many hands make light work”, but more importantly, “many hands make a positive difference in the lives of our children!”



Calling all 5th-8th grade girls wanting to play tennis this fall.  Proud Dads has organized a twice/week program through the Beverly Hills Club.  Tuesdays at 5:00-6:00 and/or Thursdays at 4:00-5:00.  Starting next week and continuing for 6 weeks.  Cost is $108/for 6 weeks.  Contact the Beverly Hills Club or Kristen Harrison (kharrison2@comcast.net) to register

Proud Dads Tennis


Birmingham African American Family Network Meeting Monday (9/23)

The first Birmingham African American Family Network Meeting of the school year is this Monday (7:00pm - 8:30pm) September 23rd at Groves High School in the staff planning room.   There will be a special presentation from Jamii Hitchcock (Principal of Beverly Elementary School).  She will be presenting on the topic of "Closing the Gap" Strategies for excellence with Equity.



If your child needs to leave school during the day they MUST be signed out in the front office. Only a parent/guardian or other person authorized on the EMERGENCY CARD can sign a student out. Please bring your driver’s license or other picture ID because our parent volunteers or office staff will need it to check for proper authorization on the EMERGENCY CARD. Please arrive to the office in sufficient time to allow for verifications and to call your child down from their classroom. Please do not call the office to ask for an advance sign-out or to have your child wait in the office for your arrival. This same procedure applies during the Choice Hour program.  In addition, once the office staff has checked identification and authorization on the EMERGENCY CARD, a pink slip will be issued to you, which needs to be taken to the Choice Hour desk.  The student helpers will assist you by locating and retrieving your child.  Thank you for your patience and understanding.To avoid all this, we’d love to keep your child in school for the full day! J


More on the BCS Partnership with Project COPE Zambia

The partnership with the village of Chilipula continues to unfold!  Following is the video I shared with students at each of the Town Hall meetings on the first day of schoolif you would like to review as necessary with your child (Learn Globally).  Also included are links to the full interview with George Sherman (unedited) if you’re interested in more details of the region and project.

·         Project Cope Zambia Town Hall video for students:  http://youtu.be/Xm07t5WAjZA (10 minutes)

·         For the full interview with George Sherman, Project Cope Zambia Co-Chair click on the following links:

o   Part I:  http://youtu.be/aMvHdK4laHU (15 minutes)

o   Part II:  http://youtu.be/ccwDIN_O-rQ (5 minutes)

As I mentioned, more to come on our efforts via our BCS Service Learning Committee, but feel free to continue learning about Zambia (and the village of Chilipula) – Learn Globally – and think with your students who (besides you our parents) we could ask to support our project fundraising goal.  Local businesses for example – Serve Locally!The goal of Project COPE Zambia is to eliminate rural poverty in one generation without going through the carbon economy. This week’s Town Halls included students hearing from George Sherman via the video above, learning about Chilipula, Zambia and their needs.


Battle of the Books (4th and 5th grade)

The District-Wide Battle Launch is Monday October 28, 2013. The BCS Battle page has been updated so check it out! (http://bcsbattle.wikis.birmingham.k12.mi.us/home)


BPS FOOD SERVICEShttps://www.sodexoeducation.com/segment%5F0200/district%5F3102/ENM/Entry1/

Twitter: @BPSFoodService    Facebook: BPS Food Service 



The first delayed start is this Tuesday, September 24.  School will begin at 9:50am.  Due to the fact that all staff will be participating in professional development that morning, the building will not be open until 9:30am.  Please DO NOT drop your child off before 9:30am.  For those of you who need child care from 8:20-9:50am, please complete the Delayed Start Registration Form and return it to the office.  The fee is $5 per child.



Parents are you up and running on the PowerSchool Web Portal ?  This gives you access via the Internet to your child(rens) schedule, grades and attendance.  If you are having trouble  please email mb08bps@birmingham.k12.mi.us.



Starting September 24 bagels will be sold in the front of the
Media Center before school. Send in the flier and money for the year and don't worry about having to remember $1.25 every Tuesday.  Bagels are nut free and cream cheese included.


For those of you who missed 5/6 curriculum night, information was presented about an optional trip to Williamsburg and Virginia Beach, April 25-28, 2014.  There will be a parent information meeting on Wednesday, October 2, 2013, 6:00pm in the Media Center.  Registration for this trip will open at the completion of the information meeting.  Space is limited to 44 students.  For a brief description of the trip, please click Williamsburg and Virginia Beach Information


CALLING ALL 6th / 7th / 8th GRADERS! GUYS AND DOLLS JR -- January 29-31, 2014


There are many male/female performing roles and tech crew opportunities in this junior version of the classic Tony Award-winning musical depicting gangsters & gamblers amidst the hustle bustle of 1920's New York City! 


  • WED SEPT 25, 6:30pm - Parent Information Meeting with director and producer 
  • TUE OCT 1, 4:05-6:00pm - Pre-Audition Workshop for students  
  • MON OCT 7, 4:00-5:15pm or 5:15-6:30pm - Cast Auditions (choose 1 of 2 sessions)
  • TUE OCT 8, 4:30-5:30pm - Tech Crew Interviews

Participation in the play will include Quarter II Tuesday and Thursday Choice Hours required for all cast and tech crew members.

Questions prior to 9/25 parent info mtg, please contact Lynnette Kennedy <bcsguysanddollsjr@gmail.com>.



Here are links to important information for Band and Orchestra

·         ORCHESTRA NEWSclick here for Orchestra News

·         BAND NEWSclick here for Band News



Saturday, September 28, from 7:30 a.m. to Noon (sessions start at 9)

Birmingham Education & Administration Center (adjacent to Groves HS)

Free registration at: http://bpsparentcamp2013.eventbrite.com 

ParentCamp is…

·         An opportunity for our community to engage in dialogue regarding what is best for our children, and build relationships designed on the premise that “We’re all in this together.”

·         Breakout sessions with the focus on harnessing the expertise and experience in the room, and conversations driven by audience participation that are authentic and real, where every voice is heard. 

Our keynote speaker will be Dr. Vickie Markavitch, Superintendent, Oakland ISD, addressing her strong beliefs on “why public education is not failing.” 

Also scheduled to present:

·         Dr. Dan Nerad, BPS Superintendent

·         Steve Scheidt, President, Board of Education

·         Cathy Hurley, Principal, Groves

·         Dee Barash, Principal, Seaholm

·         Paul DeAngelis, Deputy Superintendent

·         Roy Bishop, Assistant Principal, Berkshire

·         Patricia Chinn, Assistant Principal, BCS

·         Robin Moten, Teacher, Seaholm

·         Noelle Davis, Assistant Principal, West Maple 

Breakout session topics will include: 

·         Strategic planning

·         High school curriculum

·         Leveraging technology

·         The “teen years”

·         Enrichment opportunities

·         Where to go for answers, and more… 

And follow us on Twitter @BPSParentCamp13 (#BPSparentcamp2013)!



Come cheer on our bands, and see some great halftime performances! Both Groves and Seaholm Marching Bands, along with guest band Berkley High School will be performing their halftime shows at the Groves Marching Band Invitation, September 28, 2013, 5:00-8:00 p.m. Make sure to come out and support our High School bands at this entertaining event! Only $5 per person or $10 per family.  Locaton:  Groves High School.




October 3, 2013   7:00 p.m.-Birmingham Covington School (BCS)-1525 Covington Road • Bloomfield Hills, MI 48301

“Children with disabilities, including physical, developmental, intellectual, emotional, and sensory disabilities, as well as children with special health needs, such as epilepsy or food allergies, are at an increased risk of being bullied.  This is something that we want to see addressed in our schools and community. Any number of factors— physical vulnerability, social skill challenges, or intolerant environments—may increase the risk of bullying.  This presentation will share some insights into what we can do as parents, teachers, administrators, and community members to stop bullying.”

Drew Yanke, M.A. TLLP, Adjunct Professor, Psychology Dept., Wayne State University is a psychotherapist working with children and families. His focus is on boyhood issues, which include ADHD, dealing with bullying, building confidence and emotional management. He is a Boys Empowered instructor which you can learn more about at www.kidsempowered.com.

All Friends meetings are FREE and open to everyone!  For more information contact Kathy Sinclair-Pearson at Kathy@execrecruiters.com or 734-678-6200 or visit our web site at www.friendsofdifferentlearners.org.



We are excited to invite you to Birmingham's very first Victory Day on Wednesday October 2 during the Freshman Football halftime.

Victory Day is an opportunity for middle school and high school Birmingham students with disabilities to have a full game-day experience as a football player or cheerleader. It’s a special day for students with impairments to have their day in the sun while family members, care givers, teachers, and peers cheer them on and witness a dream coming true.  Victory Day was created in 2010 by Aaron Segedi, a football coach and teacher in Trenton, Michigan. The idea behind Victory Day came from his strong belief that building character holds equal importance to teaching his athletes game-winning plays. To see inspiring pictures from past Trenton Victory Days and read more about the event, please visit www.victorydayfootball.comVarsity Coach Brendan Flaherty has been working to bring this event to BPS for over a year and now it's finally here. I hope you will consider attending the game that night to support all students and share in the joy. Let me know if you would like to help out.  The Freshman game will start at 6:30PM and the halftime will probably be somewhere around 7:30PM



Discipline: What Works & What Doesn't

Presented by Dr. Bernie Les on October 8, 2013 at 10am at the Booth/Doyle Center (7275 Wing Lake Road)

Discipline is a tool used by every parent.  The interesting thing about discipline is that when it's used appropriately, it works but when it's used inappropriately, it can make a bad situation worse.  Learn how to use discipline effectively as a strategy to promote self-esteem and confidence and how to draw the line between what works and what doesn't.  This program is free and open to the public.  Go to www.bbfaprevention.org for more information or register online.


Applying to College Today: What Parents Need to Know

Choosing a college can be one of the most exciting times in a student's life - but with so many choices and so many other students applying, how can families stay focused on what matters?  Patrick O'Connor, Ph.D., award-winning college counselor and author shares the keys to success for a family-focused approach to college selections – below workshops take place at Baldwin Public Library in Birmingham and begins at 10am.

October 3, 2013 Session:  For Parents of 9th and 10th grade students (& middle school parents) - What do students in grades 9 & 10 really need to be college ready?  Join a veteran college counselor to talk about the three keys to a successful start to the college selection process.

October 10, 2013 Session:  For Parents of 11th and 12th grade students - Is applying to college really that stressful, or is there a better way to support your child in this important life transition?  Join the author of College is Yours 2.0 to talk about preparing, searching, and applying for college in a way that is exciting, sane, and student-centered.

Go to www.bbfaprevention.org for more information or to register online.  There is a small fee to attend these workshops and space is limited so register today to reserve a spot!


·         Covey 7 Habits for Highly Effective Teens Training… open to 9th and 10th grade students, Sunday, October 6, 12:30-5:00 p.m. Registration deadline is Sept 30. For more info: http://tiny.cc/k4y92w

·         “The Truth & Consequences of Marijuana & Youth” featuring Kevin Sabet, internationally-known speaker and drug policy expert  parents, educators, and other community leaders are encouraged to attend Thursday, October 10, 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. at Oakland Intermediate Schools, 2111 Pontiac Lake Road, Waterford, 48328. Cost is $10 which includes a boxed meal. Space is limited and pre-registration is required at http://www.achcmi.org/ . This program is sponsored by Oakland Schools and Oakland County Health Division/Office of Substance Abuse Services.

·         Matching Pledge in Progress… Any financial contribution made to BBCC in September will be matched up to $20k by a local couple. This is a great time to make your $$$ go twice as far to support BBCC’s efforts to keep our kids substance free. Make an on-line donation at www.bbcoalition.org or mail a check to 1221 Bowers #261, Birmingham, MI 48012. Thank you!

·         Check out our latest News &Opps piece… click here http://tiny.cc/s8cm3w

For more info on substance abuse prevention focused on our youth visit www.bbcoalition.org 


GROVES HIGH SCHOOL GARAGE SALE        OCT. 26   Groves Garage Sale
9 am to 3 pm - Early entry at 8 am for $2
Bag sale Sunday, October 27 - 10 am to 1 pm - $5 per bag
Donation drop-off in the cafeteria:
Thursday, October 24, 3pm - 9pm
Friday, October 25, 3pm - 9pm
Please contact Jennifer Roma at jro@romatech.com, Vickie Edwards at vfse55@comcast.net, or Jill Robnett at jbrobnett@comcast.net if you have any questions.  If you are interested in helping during the drop off or sale days, please contact Jennifer, Vickie, or Jill or go to http://tinyurl.com/Groves-Garage-Sale-Vol-SignUpfor Google sign-up.