Friendship Festival Opens School Year at Carl Lauro

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In a twist on the traditional Open House, Carl Lauro Elementary School hosted a Friendship Festival on Thursday, September 18 featuring a Puerto Rican band and many other activities for students and parents in addition to classroom and library visits led by teachers.

Representatives from community partners City Year, United Providence!, Sodexo, Resilient Kids, Shoes that Fit and Panera Bread participated. Sodexo provided healthy snacks and City Year corps members distributed free shoes from Nordstrom and New Balance to the first 100 students who attended.

There were backpack raffles for students and the Boy Scouts signed up third-fifth graders to form a den based at Carl Lauro. New curriculum resources were on display for parents, including Reading Street and My Math.

Parents were also able to receive free background checks, which are required for those wishing to volunteer with Providence Schools, and sign up for activities. Families had an opportunity to meet the United Providence! staff, a labor-management collaborative leading the transformation of three Providence schools, including Carl Lauro.

Families were entertained by the Conjunto Latino, a Puerto Rican band that includes speech/language teacher Bienvenido Velazquez as one of its members. “We all danced until sundown,” said Principal Dr. Christopher Kennedy.