Empty Bowls is coming

The Dearborn Public Schools Art department is hosting its 28th annual Empty Bowls meal on Monday, November 25, from 4-6:30 p.m. at Park Place Banquet Hall, 23400 Park Street, Dearborn.

For a minimum suggested $5 donation, guests who attend this family-friendly dinner may select a one-of-a-kind handmade bowl and enjoy a serving of tasty soup and bread. The bowls are made by students in kindergarten through high school who attend Dearborn Public Schools.

Donations will support Gleaners Food Bank and Blessings in a Backpack, local charities that help feed the hungry. Guests can take their bowls home as a reminder of all those who go hungry each day.

“This community service learning project is a win-win-win.  Empty Bowls allows art teachers and their students to create bowls to raise money.  It involves the community, which donates items and attends the event, and it provides more than $3,000 each year to local charities to help those in need.  The Art Department is very proud of the continued success of Empty Bowls,” said Susan Briggs, the District’s Art Resource Teacher.

A variety of soups will be available, including vegetarian and gluten free options, at this simple meal of soup and bread to fight hunger. A tin can raffle will also be held.

No reservations are required, but those who arrive early will see all of the unique bowls made and donated by students and teachers in the Dearborn Public Schools.

The annual Empty Bowls event is hosted by the Dearborn Public Schools Art Department and Park Place Banquets & Catering.  Empty Bowls events are held around the world as part of a grassroots movement by artists and craftspeople to care for and feed the hungry in communities. For more information, contact Dearborn Public Schools Art Resource Teacher Susan Briggs, at 313-5800960 or briggss@dearbornschools.org.

Care Packages for the Homeless

Care Packages for the Homeless

In the spirit of giving back this November River Oaks School wants to help the homeless in our area. How we want to do this is by creating care packages filled with everyday essentials, but we can’t do it without your HELP!

We are asking each grade to bring in items to complete our Care Packages:

Kindergarten: Adult Socks

1st Grade: Travel Size Tissues

2nd Grade: Travel Size Toothpaste & Toothbrush

3rd Grade:  Adult Gloves

4th Grade: Travel Size Deodorant

5TH Grade:  8oz Water & Granola bars

Each grade with the most donations by November 22nd, 2019 will win a Pizza Party provided by the PTA.

Please help us reach our goal of 200 bags!

Battle Against Hunger

Battle Against Hunger returns to Dearborn Schools

Food, money collection will run from Nov. 18 to 24 to help local organizations Dearborn Public School students and families are again stepping up to Battle Against Hunger.The fifth annual “Battle Against Hunger” will run from Nov. 18 to 24 this year. In the last four years, Dearborn Public Schools has donated more than 200,000 non-perishable food items to feed thousands of families in need in our area. Last year alone, the schools donated almost 12 tons of food to help those in our community.Donations this year will be collected at all three traditional high schools – Dearborn, Edsel Ford and Fordson –and participating elementary and middle schools.The Battle began in 2015 as a friendly off-field competition between rivals Dearborn and Fordson high schools.Edsel Ford High School later joined the food drive, and it was opened for the District’s elementary and middle schools to participate.Local Realtor and former Dearborn School Life editor Raad Alawan came up with the idea.“There’s a ton of school spirit when it comes to the Dearborn-Fordson rivalry, and both those student bodies are compassionate about giving as well,” Mr. Alawan said. “So, I was driving around one day, and just put the two together. Today it’s blossomed into a district-wide effort. Everyone wins.”Initially, the event was a competition between schools to see who could collect the most non-perishable food and money. Now, the event is a cooperative effort to help families in need through two local non-profits – Zaman International and Amity Foundation.This year’s event will kick off with a fundraiser at the Dearborn Ice Skating Center, 14900 Ford Road on Nov. 17.Tickets are $10 each and include skate rentals. The community, including younger students, is invited to skate from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., and high school students can skate from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. For tickets, contact the high schools, including Ms. Altomonte at Fordson at altomoa@dearbornschools.org, Ms. Rumler at Dearborn High atrumlers@dearbornschools.org, and Ms. Gass at Edsel Ford at gassm1@dearbornschools.org .“It is wonderful to see how our high school students and the now younger students come together as one Districtto help others in our community,” said Superintendent Glenn Maleyko. “The generosity of our students and families will have a positive impact for those in need in our area.”

Help Wanted

River Oaks Elementary is looking for Noon Hour Supervisor substitutes and also looking to hire a Noon Hour supervisor.

Go to www.dearbornschools.org and fill out an application

There will be 2 job fairs to can also go to.

November 12th at Smith Middle School from 3:00 – 5:00 pm

November 14th at Salina Elementary from 3:00 – 5:00

For more information please call 313-827-3002

Battle Against Hunger

River Oaks School is helping with the Battle Against Hunger for Dearborn High School. All three of Dearborn’s high schools have a competition to collect the most canned during the month of November. They are asking for donations of non-perishable food donations which will be counted out and then sent to Zaman International where they will deliver food for the hungry.

Please drop off canned and boxed non-perishable food in front of the main office at school.

Please help out this great cause.

Water Quality in Dearborn Heights

November 1, 2019

Dear River Oaks Community, 

Recent news stories regarding water quality in Dearborn Heights has raised some questions regarding the water here at River Oaks. Since this topic might be on the minds of others as well, I thought it would be best to share a few thoughts with everyone this evening. 

First and foremost, I want to express that there is not a water problem at our school. The reason for this communication is to make sure all parents have the same accurate information and to continue to keep our line of communication open between school and home. 

The Dearborn Public Schools has been testing water and air quality in buildings for more than 20 years. When a concern is discovered, the District takes immediate action, corrects any possible issues, and works to ensure a safe school environment. In addition, each school has a building engineer, a highly qualified employee responsible for maintaining the HVAC, water, and other safety systems in the building.  Most districts do not have this position.

Water testing is not mandated or required but in 2016 the district took a proactive approach to its ongoing voluntary water testing program by hiring an independent company to do a systematic test of 572 of the District’s 4,000 plus water outlets in schools and other district buildings.  River Oaks was part of that testing and results showed no elevated levels of lead or copper. Our school will be tested again in the weeks ahead to continue this ongoing proactive approach to maintaining safe conditions at our school. 

Whenever an issue is discovered corrective action is taken immediately. Corrective actions may include establishing proper flushing protocols, minor repairs, or complete replacement. At River Oaks our engineer and custodial staff follow prescribed protocols to ensure our water is safe.  

According to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the action level for lead in water is 15 parts per billion (ppb) and for copper 1.3 parts per million (ppm) or 1,300 ppb.  In 2025 the level for lead is changing to 12 ppb. A way to visualize one part per billion (ppb) is to think of one drop of water in an Olympic size swimming pool. 

In addition to testing, monitoring, and following proper water handling protocols our school has added a hydration station. These water fountains provide cool filtered water to students and help to reduce the number of plastic bottles we use in school.  

Again, I want to assure students, parents, and staff that the water in our school is safe. It is important to have this conversation, answer these questions, and put concerns to rest so that your children will be ready to come to school eager to learn in a safe and secure school environment. 


Joe Martin


River Oaks 

The Big Read


Call for Entries

We’re sending out a call for stories, poems, or essays regarding nature with an emphasis on trees and plants. The call is open to everyone, and the deadline is November 30, 2019. Submissions will be compiled and published as a book. Copies will then be added to the library collection for checkout. We will also sell copies as a fundraiser for future Big Reads in Dearborn. To differentiate this book from Call of the Wild Dearborn (our first community anthology), we are not looking for entries on animals or wildlife.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Do you have a favorite tree from your childhood?
  • A poem about trees/plants? How about a haiku?
  • A flower you want to write about?
  • A true story or a fictional narrative involving trees or plants?
  • What do trees mean to you?

Can’t come up with something regarding trees or plants? How about writing about gardening or your favorite nature trail? How about focusing on nature in a more general sense? Or how about something science related? Hope Jahren is a geobiologist who mainly studies plants, trees, and soil. Remember: the world is your lab. Or how about something on friendship? Jahren portrays a close friendship she has with Bill, her lab partner.

Click here to submit your work. We prefer you to fill out this online entry form and email your work as an attachment to thebigreaddearborn@gmail.com.

However, if you do not have access to a computer, you may mail your submission, along with a filled-out participation form, to:
Dearborn Public Library
22100 Michigan Ave.
Dearborn, MI 48124
Attn: Big Read

If you have questions, please contact the library at (313) 943-2330 or thebigreaddearborn@gmail.com. The library is looking forward to reading your submissions!

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