Backpack Express

Good morning,

I hope you were able to relax and enjoy the long weekend.  This week’s Backpack Express is below, filled with a lot information that you need to know.

  • Open House:  Save the date for our annual Open House.  It will take place on Wednesday, September 27, 2023.  Kindergarten and grade one parents are invited to classrooms from 7:00 pm - 7:45 pm; our second and third grade parents are invited from 6:00 pm - 6:45 pm.  This is the time for you to hear from our teachers about what occurs on a daily basis in your child’s classroom.  This evening is for adults only.

  • Back to School Picnic:  Reminder, the PTO’s back to school picnic is scheduled for tonight from 5:30-7:00.  Bring a blanket and your dinner and hang out with old and new friends.

  • Volunteer on School Teams:  There are two teams in which parents are invited to become members of:  School Improvement Team and the Special Education Task Force.  To be considered for either of these teams, please complete this application.  Applications are due by September 15, 2023.

    • School Improvement Team:  This principal advisory team assists with creating goals for our school, progress monitors these goals, assists with creating our building-based budget, works with the principal on hiring considerations, and other duties as assigned.

    • Special Education Task Force:  This group will provide feedback and share perspectives on special education related topics, draw attention to areas of concern, and contribute to solutions.

  • Covid:  Covid is still going around and we have had cases at our school already.  We will notify parents if there are clusters in a classroom (similar to how we do when there is a cluster of strep throat or lice).  As a reminder, a student needs to stay home for five days from symptom onset.  As long as the child feels better, they may come back to school on day six and wear a mask through day 10.  Questions should be directed to our school nurse teacher, Sue Mungovan.  Her email address is

  • Background Checks:  Anyone who volunteers in the Barrington Public Schools needs to have a background check on file with our Volunteer Office.  Background checks need to be updated every other year.  To get a background check, you can schedule an appointment with the Barrington Police, go to the Attorney General’s office in Cranston, or show up a drop-in BCI at our schools in the district.  To find out information about the drop-in dates and locations, please click this link.

  • PTO Meeting:  The first PTO meeting of the school year is Monday, September 11, 2023, at 7:00 pm.  It will take place in-person at Sowams.

  • Octoberfest:  Sowams Octoberfest is BACK this year on October 14. This is Sowams biggest fundraiser requiring the most volunteer hours from our community. There will be notifications weekly until the event. The most needed help right now is in two areas: decorations and sponsorships/silent auctions. We need two volunteers to head up the decorations committee which includes obtaining the decorations and decorating the front of the school and the Haunted Hayride for the next day. As well, we are in the process of obtaining sponsorships and Silent Auction items for the event. If you would be willing to ask a few businesses or donate yourself, please let us know! This is the biggest revenue generator of the event! Any inquiries can be sent to  There are two notices for you about Octoberfest:  information about what it is and sponsorship/silent auction information.

  • Grade 1 PTO/Arts Alive Play:  Our school is fortunate to have an after school theater program for students in grades one, two, and three.  Our grade one program will be starting soon.  All of the information you need for this may be found here.  There is a cost to this program; however, scholarships are available.  If you would like a scholarship, you should reach out to me at  Volunteers are needed at play practices.  If you are signing up your first grader, please consider volunteering to assist.  You may sign up here to volunteer.  Information about the grades two and three program will be sent out later in the school year.  The parent meeting scheduled for tonight (grade 1 parents can see the email that was sent out yesterday) is being recorded.  Once I receive the recording, I will share it with grade 1 parents.

Have a wonderful day.


Jim Callahan