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Madison Metropolitan School District

Community School Updates - Fall/Winter 2023

Community School Updates - Fall/Winter 2023

Lake View Community School

Thank you for Supporting our School Supplies
We received an outpouring of donations to keep our school supply room well-stocked for the start of the school year. Thank you to American Family Insurance, Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools, Indeavor, Lakeview Lutheran Church,  Messiah Lutheran Church, and UW Health Northport Clinic for supporting our school to make sure our students have the tools they need to learn!

Food Pantries

Lake View staff pose for a picture next to the Second Harvest delivery truck.

Our monthly outdoor, drive-through food pantry distributions, in partnership with Second Harvest Food Bank of South Central Wisconsin, have been busier than ever! We serve both Lake View Community School families and the community. Our most recent distribution was held on Monday, Dec 4.  

We are excited to report that our food pantry has served over 80 households and 400 individuals in the last two months.

Oct. 2 Stats: 

  • 49 households served  (209 individuals)
  • 102 children
  • 100 adults
  • 7 seniors

Nov. 6 Stats: 

  • 38 households served (200 individuals)
  • 94 children 
  • 89 adults 
  • 17 seniors

(Literacy Night) Book Fair and Hispanic Heritage Month Dinner
We offered a FREE book from the Scholastic Book Fair for every child from Lake View, thanks to a donation from Silver Lining Foundation. We had 280 people attend this event! We ate delicious food from Cafe Costa Rica and La Taguara, thanks to a donation from an anonymous donor. 

Madison Hmong New Year - November 4 and 5
Students in our Hmong Bilingual Program performed a paj huam (poem) to open Madison Hmong New Year! We also had an informational table about our Hmong Bilingual Program and we hosted a children's play area. Nyob zoo xyoo tshiab!

Lake View students at the 2023 Madison Hmong New Year celebration.

Composting Lake View has joined the movement to reduce food waste! Every lunch period, food scraps from the kitchen and extra foods are taken outside to the school compost system. There, students engage in chopping compostable items into small pieces and mixing in dead leaves to facilitate the breakdown of veggie scraps into soil. All of the compost produced from school lunches will be applied to Lake View’s garden in the spring!

After-School Cultural Cooking Clubs started in early November

A student and teacher cut vegetables.

K-5 students explore culture and gardening by preparing meals from around the world. This month, we have explored food from Latin America, the Philippines, and  the Wisconsin Fall Harvest. At the end of the club in winter, students will go home with a cookbook of all of the recipes made so that they can share their cooking skills! Skills we focus on developing in this club are understanding world cultures, different ways of preparing foods, knife handling, measuring, and developing a sense of taste!


Leopold Community School

Community Schools Staff

Leopold Community Schools staff pose for a picture outside.

This year we are very fortunate to have a full Community Schools Team consisting of two Village Builders (Dasha Hodge and Janet Ramos Aguilar), a Parent Liaison (Rickey Carter) and two Community School Resources Coordinators (Thomas Kearney and Cindy Diaz). This team works together to best meet the needs of students, staff and community.

Community Celebration
This fall, Leopold hosted its first community celebration in honor of Latinx/Hispanic Heritage Month. The event was a collaboration between staff, families and community members to create a space where our families could feel honored, seen and create moments of joy.  There was music, dancing, performances, Loteria, arts and crafts, a raffle ,zumba, piñatas and of course delicious food prepared and served by some of the Leopold families. 

Bilingual Yoga
On Oct. 14, we started our four-part series in partnership with Amor y Asana LLC, bringing Yoga to Leopold! This bilingual class is family friendly and open to all levels.

Students and families do yoga at Leopold Elementary.

Food Pantry
We have continued our bi-weekly food pantries here at Leopold. We are proud to announce that we are consistently serving 75-100 families on a bi-weekly basis at the food pantry. Our most recent food pantry we were honored that NBC15 came out to see us in live action. We look forward to serving our families the rest of the year. 

Community Walk
On Oct. 18, Leopold students celebrated being part of a vibrant community with our annual Community Walk around our school's neighborhood! Students created posters, which they carried on the walk. We were very fortunate to have the help of many volunteers that were stationed along the route to help keep our students safe and provide cheer! Many shared that they loved seeing the students joy, smiles, laughter & signs while they listened to them singing and cheering for their school. “A cada paso creamos comunidad mientras demostramos la alegría de Leopold!” Maestro Gomez Silva, 4th grade DLI teacher.

Students hold inspirational signs they made during a walk around the neighborhood.

Resource Fair
On Nov. 2, Leopold hosted a resource fair located in conjunction with parent/teacher conferences. We had thirteen representatives from local organizations at this event, who shared valuable  information with our families!

Leadership Summit
A few members of the Community Schools team were able to attend the 365 Leadership Summit to share space with Wisconsin’s most influential leaders of color to build community, address issues and develop strategies for Wisconsin’s future.



Mendota Community School

Apple Crunch

Students at Mendota ate apples as part of Apple Crunch Week.

Mendota participated in a school-wide “Apple Crunch” in October celebrating the apple harvest in Wisconsin. This promotes eating healthy and eating local. Our Community Schools team got a donation of apples and each classroom celebrated “Apple Crunch” at the same time. Classrooms talked about healthy snacks that they can enjoy every day!

Haiti Meal Pack
Meal Pack for Haiti was hosted at Mendota and invited volunteers to help for the school-wide event. This is an annual event that builds community and allows scholars to experience the importance and power of giving back. Scholars put together meal packages,  left messages for the kids in Haiti to read, and decorated the boxes that the food would be transported in. During the day they were told about the scarcity of food in Haiti and how these packages would help them.

Door Creek Church partners with Mendota Elementary School to host the meal-packing event through Mission of Hope. Mission of Hope is an organization that partners with businesses, churches and schools around North America to organize and host meal packaging events so that food can be provided for children at nearly 500 schools and orphanages around Haiti. Every meal pack event is a lively, community-building experience.

Orchard Ridge Community School

Elementary student creating art in the classroom.

To close out October and bring in November, we held spirit week, which is always fun for our scholars and the staff! Recognizing that November is Native American Heritage month, Orchard Ridge scholars listened to the book "Arrow to the Sun" in their buddy classrooms and created their own mosaics with their buddies to hang in the cafeteria.

Orchard Ridge kicked winter break off with cozy clothes and cocoa on Tuesday, Dec. 19 in the Family Hub! To help make the family space feel warm and welcoming, students have been working on different art pieces to be displayed in the room. 

Also, we are thankful for our community partners! Good Shepherd hosted our Toys for Tots pick up and Sub Zero adopted 21 of our amazing families this year. 



Sandburg Community School

Thanks-a-Brunch Family Breakfast Appreciation
At Sandburg Elementary, we held our first Thanks-a-Brunch Family Breakfast Appreciation event. We decided to split up this event into quarters this year since we had such a huge turnout last year. This first Thanks-a-Brunch was for our 4K, Kindergarten, and 1st grade students and their families. We welcomed them into the school and provided breakfast selections from Hy-Vee. Hy-Vee graciously donated a huge selection of donuts, donut holes, and muffins to our event. We were able to provide juice. We had another great turn-out with our families and they had such a great time sitting down to eat with their student and then walking them to class so they could begin their day!

Families at Sandburg Elementary eat breakfast in the cafeteria.










Holiday Gift Support
Community Schools’ Holiday Gift support pick-up for families was a huge success this year. In October, we sent out two Google Form sign-ups where families could request if they needed some support with holiday gifts. This week, we received the drop-off of toys from Toys for Tots. Over the past weeks, our school partners and community sponsors dropped off the gifts they purchased for the families they were matched with. Since then, we've been busy organizing each families' packages. It is a huge process, but we are so fortunate to be able to provide this for our families!