Saturday and Sunday, January 5-6: SES tree recycling

It is that time of year for the annual Sunnyside Environmental School (SES) Holiday/Christmas Tree Recycling Event with all monies raised benefiting the school’s Go FUND. The goal of Go FUND is to ensure that all students, regardless of financial resources, are able to fully participate in our curriculum-based overnight field trips. SES middle-schoolers earn community service credits by working on event logistics, our neighbors feel welcomed on the school grounds, and we provide a valuable service — including eastside tree pickup whether in the rain, hail, snow or sun.  

In the spirit of recycling and a ‘circular economy,’ a local resource, Honl Tree Care, turns the trees into mulch chips, helping keep the perimeter school gardens well tended.

We offer both drop-off and pickup options and encourage early reservations via email or online. For residents who bring their trees to the school, we will have complimentary coffee, tea and hot cocoa. Invite your neighbors and help us promote the benefit! 

Click here to print a flyer and click here for a Facebook event to share.

Event hours and dates:  Saturday Jan. 5 and Sunday Jan. 6 from 10:00am to 4:00pm

Drop-off service: Just bring your trees to Sunnyside Environmental School; 3421 SE Salmon St, Portland OR 97214 on event weekend; drop-off in the asphalt area just behind the school bldg. Follow signs onsite. Requested donation is $ 5.

Pick-up service:  Online or email reservation deadline is Thurs, 1/3/19 at 1pm. Available to eastside PDX residents with advance reservations. Requested donation is $ 10. You can make a reservation for tree pickup HERE.  Alternatively, you can email: and make sure to include requested day, name, full address, contact #, and any special instructions. We ask that residents leave trees on a porch or nearby area no later than 9:00am on pickup day.

We prefer donations be made via direct PayPal link at: Cash or checks made payable to SES PTSA are also acceptable.  

Key Contact persons:   Matt Pozos, and Jeff Skoke,

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Friday, October 19 is SES Run/Walk/Move!

It is today!!!

We are excited to announce the annual SES Run Walk Move event on Friday, October 19, 2018. This school-wide fundraising event is organized by the SES PTSA and family volunteers with collaboration and support from school staff. SES Run Walk Move is similar to a traditional jog-a-thon where participants gather pledges from sponsors and run or walk laps around the school. At SES, our participants can also earn “laps” by dancing with a NW Dance Project instructor. Pledges may be made as lump sums or per lap. The idea is for families and others to support the students in any way they can, be it in dimes, dollars, running along side your student, or cheering. The money raised from this event goes towards funding the SES place-based-learning curriculum and events. Last year this fun-filled event raised over $12,000 for our school!

We invite you to join us in supporting SES Run Walk Move and all of our students by following these steps:

  1. Help your student(s) gather pledges through the traditional paper forms [link coming soon] or online. You also have the option to also ask friends and family to donate online by setting up a Walkstarter webpage. With a parent or another adult, students can visit and set up a page in minutes. Each participant can visit and create a webpage, setting lap and fundraising goals with a custom avatar to share with potential donors via email or social media. Donors simply click the link and make a pledge in a few easy steps. Parents and kids can monitor progress toward their fundraising goals and easily send thank-you emails from the site. Walkstarter is private and secure, so no one can get to your child’s page unless they have your unique URL. Note: You can get donations on the paper form, on the PTSA website, through Walkstarter or a combination! Whatever works best for you, your family and your sponsors.
  2. Help your student remember to bring a water bottle and wear weather and activity appropriate clothing and shoes for the event day on Friday, October 19.
  3. Join us on the day of the event to cheer our students, run or dance along with them, and/or help tally laps. We plan to have supporters stationed around the school to help cheer and monitor students.
  4. Turn in your students’ pledge forms and collected pledges to the SES office or by online payments by Thursday, November 1.

Here is the run schedule by grade:

  • 3, 4, 5: 9:15-9:45am
  • Middle School: 10:15-10:45am
  • K, 1, 2: 12:25-12:55pm
General Interest

A note from your library: September, 2018

Welcome back, Sunnyside Readers! The library books and I have missed you this summer! I hope you had a wonderful summer of fun and READING! A few announcements and reminders to get the year started in the library:

  • Summer reading ends August 31
    Don’t forget to get your reading logs checked at Multnomah County Library before the last day and wear your summer reading t-shirt on Friday, September 7 for our summer reading celebration!
  • Middle School apps4pps passwords have been reset to a default by the district. We will be resetting passwords in the coming weeks, but, until then, students can use the default password of Pps+their 6-digit ID. (The first P must be capitalized!)
  • The library needs volunteers
    Our library depends on volunteers to keep it running smoothly. If you are interested in volunteering for the library, please let me know.
  • Oregon Battle of the Books
    It’s time to start thinking about teams and reading OBOB books. We have a shelf dedicated to OBOB books, both for middle and elementary levels. Registration for OBOB teams will begin soon!
  • Don’t forget to check the new library website for news and announcements about what’s happening in the library, news about OBOB, research and homework help, and a donation link. Click the library tab on the school website to check it out.
General Interest

A welcome from SES PTSA President Charity Fain

Dear Sunnyside Family,

Happy start of the 2018-2019 school year, and welcome to all incoming and returning families! I am so excited to start the year and to be working with the rest of the PTSA to help make Sunnyside the best school for all our kids. 

Each year, the PTSA not only organizes some amazing parties and events such as the Harvest Fair, Stone Soup and Pi(e) Night, but we also organize fundraisers that support our teachers, staff, and the enriching programs at Sunnyside. You have received a letter detailing the Back to School Ask, so please check it out! We also organize large fundraising events such as the Run-Walk and Read-a-Thon along with smaller fundraising activities. These funds ensure that all children at Sunnyside can actively participate in all events!

You may not be aware that a small, dedicated group of parents make all this happen. I run a local nonprofit and fundraise for a living. I know how much time, talent and dedication it takes to fundraise in the best of situations, and this parent-led group does an amazing job for the school, the kids, the teachers, and the staff. Plus, we all have fun in the process!

If you are looking for more ways to get involved or to just feel more connected to the school and our community, please join the PTSA today. You don’t have to know how to fundraise, just to be willing to help! You will find information in the Back to School Ask letter on how to join. But really, just simply show up for a meeting at any time, or feel free to contact me with questions. 

We need you! We need your time, talent and treasure. We need your organizational skills, your humor, and your creativity. I look forward to getting to know you and seeing you at the next meeting. You can find the PTSA full schedule here:

Charity Fain
The Sunnyside Environmental School PTSA

Past News

2018-19 classroom supply lists [All grades posted]

Important note about 2018-2019 supply lists: This year, many teachers will ask for cash donations, rather than for purchased supplies. The goal is for parents to spend LESS than we normally do.

As SES grade supply lists are made available, they will be linked from this page and the headline will be updated.

It is never too early to find a bargain on school supplies!

Click on the link for the appropriate grade(s). Don’t forget:

  • If you shop at Office Depot (in person or online) and use the school code 70084282 and Office Depot will donate 5% of your purchase to SES.
  • If you shop at Target, link your Target REDcard to SES and SES will earn 1% of your purchase (on top of the 5% discount you receive). Go to to learn more.
  • If you shop at Fred Meyer’s, make sure to register your reward card—you’ll still get your rewards, and SES will also receive a donation from Fred Meyer.
  • If you shop at or, use the links on the right side of this page; SES will receive donations that way, too.

The supply lists:


FOR REFERENCE, the 2017-2018 lists can be found here.

Past News

Wanted: Room Parent coordinator

Do you love Sunnyside and have been looking for a way to give back, get involved and make a difference during the school year?

The PTSA position of Room Parent Coordinator is open and needs YOU! This job involves recruiting and organizing a team of room parents for every classroom (and one for each special) and continuing communication through the school year (relaying information and support to your RPs) through weekly emails. (If this sounds daunting, take a breath and know that Justine Light has done it for the past 5 years and says it was 100% worth it.)

Please contact Justine if you have more questions about the job. Your school community will be so so grateful for you.

Past News

Saturday-Sunday, August 4-5: Sunnyside Annual Swap

It’s that time of year again, to gather up all your useful goods and bring them to Sunnyside Community House Social Hall for our annual swap!

We look forward to this event for the great thing that it is… a place to check in and swap around for fab new-to-you things before going to a store to buy them.

You can sign up right now with the link to become a swap sorter (the best way to see and have first dibs on everything that comes into the swap); volunteers make it happen.

Many of us have been to the swap every year for the past 13 years; I’d love to see you all again. Spread the word to neighbors, family and friends. The more the merrier.

Event info:

  • On Saturday, August 4, doors to the Sunnyside Community House Social Hall (corner of SE 35th and Yamhill) open from 4pm to 8pm take in Community donations: Those jeans that don’t fit anymore, all the clothes your kids have outgrown, a lunch box or backpack with plenty of life left in it, sports gear, art supplies, books, toys, games. Everything should be in good, usable condition.
  • On Sunday, August 5 the donating and swapping continues from 9am-4pm. Everyone who brought in items on Saturday or volunteers their time gets in for free. Everyone who comes on Sunday without volunteering or donating in advance is asked to bring items and pay a $2 per family fee. All fees and monetary donations will be donated to the Community House program that allows people to shower and get a hot meal there.

At the end of the swap, all remaining kids’ clothing items will be donated to the PPS/PTA clothing center. Adult clothing will be left on site for those in need.

Everything is free in the last hour!

We are looking for someone that works or volunteers for a nonprofit that would take away the infant clothing and any other baby items still left at the end of the swap. Let me know if this is you!

Remember to spread the word. Here is the Facebook link, like, share and come to our event.

Hope to see you there!
Samantha Fisher

Past News

From Principal Amy: 2018-2019 staffing announcements

I hope you are all having a wonderful summer so far!

The office has been a busy place up until the last few weeks, and I’m writing to announce some of our staffing changes for the upcoming school year. 

As many of you may already know, Ryan Pederson, Heidi Wigman, Rebecca Wagner and Shannon McClure will not be working within our Sunnyside community next year. Rebecca, Ryan and Shannon will still be in PPS, and Heidi has decided to pursue a career in higher education. Given these changes, several of our staff–and some parents, thank you!!– have been hard at work, interviewing and meeting candidates. I’m proud to announce that we have hired some amazing folks to join our school community! We do still have a few, additional smaller, support/temporary positions to fill, and I will announce these once hiring has been completed:

  • Tiffany Lane will be teaching 3rd grade. Tiffany’s most recent teaching experience has been at the Emerson School and Faubian K-8 in PPS.
  • Monica Vogel will be teaching 1st/2nd grade. Monica completed her student teaching at Sunnyside many years ago, and has spent several years in the West Linn-Wilsonville School District. Last year Monica taught at Llewellyn Elementary in PPS.
  • Tyler Young will be our new K-8 counselor. He comes to us from Terra Linda K-5 in the Beaverton School district. He will be joining Ashley Bevan, our .5 counselor, completing our SES counseling team.
  • Iris Powell will be our full time PE teacher, fully taking over the position that was vacated through Dian Christensen’s retirement last spring.
  • Sarah Conley will be our new school secretary in the front office, joining Michelle Schaefle as a permanent front office team. Sarah has been a paraeducator at Sunnyside for several years, most recently supporting 3rd grade in Heather Chaney’s classroom.
  • Alix Pickett will be our new Assistant Principal. Alix comes to PPS from the Lake Oswego School District. Most recently, she has been the principal at Hallinan Elementary School for the last few years.

Please join me in welcoming this incredible group of educators to their new positions at Sunnyside!

In other news, a few of our staff will be changing grade level teaching assignments:

  • Heather Chaney will be moving up to the middle school, teaching Year of the Forest and 6th grade math/school skills (formerly called “Friendship”).
  • Jeremy Thomas will be teaching 4th grade.
  • Asa Gervich will be teaching 4th grade.
  • Leo Soell will be teaching a 4th/5th grade blend.

Enjoy the summer, more announcements to come as we get closer to the start of school.

With gratitude,

Past News

Summer gardening events at SES

Happy Summer from Steph and the SES chickens!

It is nice and quiet here, but it can get lonely, too. There are many projects that need more attention than one little garden teacher can tackle. This is meant to be a school community garden; a place that is the creation of a group of people working together. Call a Sunnyside friend to meet you to work on a garden project for an hour this summer. Here are times that Steph will be facilitating with tools, directions and possibly treats!

  • Tuesday, July 24, 8:30-10:30am: Morning planting, weeding, watering and chicken care
  • Friday, July 27, 9-11am: Planting, watering, weeding and popsicle party
  • Tuesday, August 14, 8am-2pm: Gardening drop-in hours
  • Tuesday August 21: Grade-level gardening get-togethers. Meet with friends that may be in your class, tend to your specific grade-level garden projects and welcome new student families.
    • 8:45-10:00am: Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grades
    • 11am-12pm: 3rd, 4th and 5th grades
    • 2-3:15pm: Middle school grades

Contact Steph with inquiries:

Past News

From PTSA President Holly Cook

Hello Dear SES Community,

As we head toward the glory of summer fruits and swimming holes, I want to send you one last blast as your PTSA President.
First let’s celebrate the munificent people stepping in to leadership roles at the PTSA. Hooray and thank you! Your incoming PTSA Board for 2018-2019 will be:
  • Executive Board
    President—Charity Fain
    Vice President—Michelle Pier
    Secretary—Desiree Hull-Smith
    Treasurer—Julie Helzer 
  • Board
    Assistant Treasurer—Ashley Ramona Preece
    Board Member At-Large—Justine Light
    Board Member At-Large—Holly Cook
    Teacher Representative—Eric Fass
    Student Representative—Wrigley Cook
Second, I want to give huge thanks to the outgoing board for their bottomless enthusiasm and willingness to work, organize, and share. Elizabeth Levi and Matthew Latterell both have been involved with the PTSA and making things happen at SES for as long as I can remember. Each of them has served in various capacities on the board and off over the years. Jarrett Altman was our Secretary and is taking over the Run-Walk-Move and other Go Fund fundraisers. She is a bubbly sharknado. Kate Foster volunteered for so many other things while serving as Assistant Treasurer and helping behind the scenes with what I call, “money stuff.” Katy Powell and Desirée Hull-Smith were our Members-at-Large, stepping in to fill the gaps. Jeremy Thomas was our Teacher Rep, helping us better understand the needs of the teachers and staff while also having the insight of a parent. And finally, Leatile Kelly served as the Student Rep. She helped us reach out to students and brought the voice of the students to us. And she taught us a lot about what not to bring for MS snack. Thank you.
There are many other positions that round out the PTSA. Kieran Cannistra, Ina Zucker, Charity Fain, Corby Watkins, Justine Light, Letícia George, Ingrid Larssen, Elizabeth Levi. This group held the reins for the Standing Committees last year. Many of these people have been quietly serving for years. Just getting it done, day after day. Thank you.
And thank you to the folks who sign up to manage all the events! So many people help our school recycle trees, run-walk-move, and make Stone Soup, eat pie at Pi(e) Night and lasagne at Riparian Festival, organize Harvest Fair and the Auction, buy wreaths, and lead the read-a-thon, coordinate school photos, the trip to Westwind, MS dances and Go-Fund childcare, create a directory and manage the beastly lost and found. Thank you.
There are so many more people who deserve recognition. More than I even know.  here are art, PE, gardening, math and reading volunteers.  There are garden volunteers and cooks and library helpers. There are people who teach mini-classes and go on field studies both day and night.  There are grandparent volunteers and middle school volunteers. There are community members who don’t have ties to the school who come to help. People help in the office and in the classrooms. Heck, some ladies cleaned the basement! Thank you.
Finally I want to publicly apologize and take responsibility for not organizing the thank-you post-it notes for volunteers this year. Sunnyside would not be Sunnyside without the hundreds of volunteer hours that make the school hum. Each and every one of these volunteers deserves a (biodegradable) ticker tape parade, an ice cream party with so many sprinkles, and a serenade from Beyoncé. The post-it notes are our community’s way of saying thank you to all the volunteers, the unsung foundation of the PTSA. I dropped the ball. I am sorry.
On behalf of the PTSA, three cheers and a Beyoncé serenade to all of these folks for volunteering their time and expertise to help our small school do big things to benefit all the kiddos, the school, and, let’s be real, the future of the planet and humanity. For reals. No matter if we use bulldozers, shovels or spoons, mountains are getting moved.
Thank you for showing up.
Thank you for helping.
Thank you for bringing it.
Thank you.
Holly Cook