When the world is flipped on its head, at least it gives you a new perspective.   Whenever I feel overwhelmed by the everything-ness of it all right now, worried about the state of affairs in our country, concerned by continued racial inequities in our culture, or focused on making sure online learning is relevant and effective, I remind myself that all of this is giving me a new perspective. I actually see things differently.

 Over these past seven months, I have learned so much about myself. I have realized how much of my daily  life used to be filled with superfluous activities — I now know how little it takes for me to feel fulfilled and happy.  My  inner circle of loved ones is remarkably meaningful and small. Although my house remains in a constant state of too-much, I have systematically been making sure each space in my home fills a purpose and creates joy. I have learned how important fresh air and time outdoors is to me. And, I’ve realized how much I love and miss our CNH in-person community.

Although this time has not been ideal, I hope that it has allowed you some space to see a new perspective on yourself and others. Hopefully, this short week (Monday through Thursday) and long weekend (Friday through Sunday) will allow you all some time to step back, breathe, and appreciate your new perspectives.

Happy Week 6, everyone! 

–Dr. Shyla.


Important Dates:

  • Oct. 13 — 6:00-7:00 — Committee Night — Join a Committee

  • Oct. 16 — No School, Professional Development Day for Teachers

  • Dec. 4  — End of Trimester 1


Important Links

  • The CNH Academic Calendar — This gives all important dates for this year (end of each trimester, Progress Report Conferences dates, etc.)

  • CNH Family  Site — This is one-stop shopping for families (links to Google Classrooms, Family  Resources, the Care Center, Tutorial Videos, etc.)

  • School Schedule Spreadsheet — This document has each grade’s schedule with links to Zoom meetings in one mega spreadsheet.  (NOTE: Student schedules are also posted in every Google Classroom with links to Zoom meetings)

  • CNH Main Website — Here is the main website with information about the school and resources.

  • Shyla Rao’s appointment calendar — Feel free to make an appointment if you have questions, comments, or concerns. Shyla looks forward to meeting with you!  


Committee Night — THIS TUESDAY, October 13 

Our school is able to provide great programming and events due to the fact that every  family agrees to complete 40 participation hours every school year. This high level of family  engagement is the centerpoint of what makes our school so great! 

Join Committee Night to help support the school, fulfill your 40 hours of participation, and to meet other parents/guardians/caregivers.  Hope to see you there!

To join Committee Night, click on this link for the all-school introduction before joining your committee of interest.  

  • Click here to see the list of Committees (with links to each meeting).

  • Click here to complete the Google Form to sign-up for a committee.


After Committee Night — 7:00-7:20 

Join the Family Sharing and Caring Group

Lauren Clements, our school Social Worker, will host a Sharing and Caring group from 7:00-7:20 after Committee Night for family members who would like a space to talk and support one another with ideas for navigating the social-emotional growth of our kids. 

Below is the link to join (you  must log in using your child’s CNH email account):

Join Zoom Meeting


Meeting ID: 895 751 4609

Passcode: pqTpw5

One tap mobile

+13017158592,,8957514609#,,,,,,0#,,471851# US (Germantown)

+12678310333,,8957514609#,,,,,,0#,,471851# US (Philadelphia)

Dial by your location

        +1 301 715 8592 US (Germantown)

        +1 267 831 0333 US (Philadelphia)

        +1 646 518 9805 US (New York)

        +1 646 558 8656 US (New York)

Meeting ID: 895 751 4609

Passcode: 471851

Find your local number: https://bcps-k12-md-us.zoom.us/u/kdcgQPDxxA


Want to Help your Child Read More Effectively?

We have a FREE program, called Springboard Collaborative that helps parents and caregivers learn how to support their child’s reading at home.  It is a super supportive program that provides free books and materials to students as well as some meetings with CNH teachers to help you help your child. 

Sign-Up Here if you are interested. Kim Farley (kfarley@cityneighborshamilton.org) will follow-up with you to discuss the program in more detail. 

This program is open to any elementary student (K-5). 

Spaces are limited so sign-up now!  


Go Guardian on Chromebooks

All school-issued Chromebooks have Go Guardian installed on them.  This program alerts administrators when students are searching for something that might indicate a potential for self-harm or inappropriate content on the internet.  

Lauren Clements (Social Worker), Jerred Anderson (School Culture Advisor), and I (principal) will reach out to the students and their parent/guardian if we receive such an alert.  Our goal is to make sure that our students are safe and are not exposed to inappropriate content for their age.  


Care Center Site 

Families can access the Care Center Site by accessing the CNH Family Site and clicking on the Family Resources tab. You can also click here to access the site. Students, teachers, and families can find different ways to support social-emotional learning on this site. You can also use this site to get in touch with Ms. Lauren & Mr. Jerred. 

Care Center Week Ahead 

  • Mindful Monday (10/12): Empathy

  • Wellness Wednesday (10/14): Journaling Exercise: Goal Setting

  • No School (10/16): No School (Teacher professional development day)


Social-Emotional Lessons for Students

The school counselors at Hope Health Systems have put together 25 social emotional learning lessons for students. These lessons are free and focus on 5 topics: Feelings 101, Healthy Self Esteem, Managing Stress and Anxiety, Healthy Coping, and Resiliency. Please encourage your students to check out our School Counseling Hub to complete these brief yet impactful lessons by following this link. https://bit.ly/3bZ9beL 


Suggestions for teachers: add these lessons to your google classroom, use them for your daily SEL check-ins, or invite your school-based clinician to come in to your virtual classroom to assist with these SEL activities. 


Suggestions for guardians: explore our school counseling hub for activities to help your child improve their social emotional skills for free!


Parental Involvement in Classes

Class is happening in your home, and you have new insights to your child as a learner and classmate.  You also have new insights to your child’s classes and teachers. What an amazing opportunity!

Please note: When your child is in class, do not address the teacher. If you have any thoughts or questions for your child’s teacher, please send them an email or talk with them during Office Hours.  

Keep in mind that interrupting class with a question or comment for the teacher disrupts the lesson flow for the entire class.  Thanks for understanding. 



City Neighbors Votes! Please join us as we commit to vote this fall. We’re partnering with My School Votes to spread the word and make registering to vote a little easier. 

If you haven’t registered yet, now is the time! Click the link to access our portal. Then click Register to Vote. 

Following these links gives you access into Maryland’s online voter registration process, which is open to anyone 16 or older. In Maryland you can register as early as 16, although you have to wait until 18 to cast a vote. Please make sure you’re registered, and share the link with your friends, family, and neighbors to help us spread the word. 

Let’s make our voices count! https://myschoolvotes.whenweallvote.org/cityneighborsvotes


Follow Us on Social Media!

CNH is on Social Media — Follow us! Please note that Twitter and Instagram are new endeavors for CNH so please know that it will pick-up momentum as we breathe through the start of school.  🙂 

  • Twitter — @CNHschool

  • Instagram — city_neighbors_hamilton

  • Facebook — Follow us at our official school page City Neighbors Hamilton (to receive important information) and our City Neighbors Hamilton Family page (where you can share photos and comments with CNH Families as well as Staff)


Donations to the School

Some families reached out to the school over the summer mentioning that they would like to donate the money they didn’t spend on groceries this summer due to receiving the P-EBT card for their children.  Other families reached out to me wanting to donate money to support our acquisition of technology to support families this fall.  

If you would like to donate money to the school (for any reason), the easiest ways are through our CashApp or PayPal accounts.  Checks mailed to the school will also be accepted. Please add a note, no matter how you might donate, with how you would like it used (general educational expenses, technology, arts, etc). 

If you aren’t able to donate funds to the school, we always appreciate your donation of time supporting the general programming needs at our school (all virtual, of course).  If you would like to volunteer for the school, please email our Family Participation Board Director Elisabeth Hyleck at ehyleck@cityneighborshamilton.org



  • Meal Sites

    • This Spring, Baltimore City Schools opened meal sites at any school location that offered.  We were one of them.  This upcoming school year, the school district is carefully selecting meal sites so that they are spread out evenly throughout the city and in areas of highest need. Here is the link to the school district’s Meal Sites page.  It provides information for meal sites as well as other resources for accessing food. Bookmark the link so that you can visit it again closer to the start of the school year to see which schools will serve as meal sites near you.


Connecting with Shyla

Below the signature of every email I send from my computer (not the ones from my phone), I have the following text.  

Want to meet?  Click here to make an appointment. Be sure to add the topic/agenda of our meeting in the Notes section, so that I am prepared. I look forward to speaking with you. 

I wholeheartedly mean it when I say that I am happy to meet with you anytime you’d like to talk. It can be something you’re excited or upset about, a new idea you have for the school, if you want to share news about your family, or just to connect.  I would love to meet with you!



Have a great week, all!