PTO News

We’re Now On Facebook!

Please “like” us to follow and get all the latest on all things SHS PTO. Our page name is
Summit HS PTO”.

PTO Teacher Grant Awards

Congratulations to this year’s Teacher Grant recipients!  We are thrilled to support them as they enrich and enhance students’ educational experiences and well-being.

Christina Stelmach
Judy Shue
Laura Kaplan
Michael Magdalenski
Eric Fontes
Amy Herber
Aurora Hermo
Vanessa Hernandez
Joan Lu
Jennifer Jean-Louis
Helena Blanton

Our new online process and earlier application date for the Teacher Grants generated an abundant response from our teachers.  The end result is that the benefits from these innovative and creative grant awards will be enjoyed by students for more of the current school year.  Thank you for your generous PTO donations and to our Grants Committee, Holly Moller and Chrissy Torell for making this possible.


Local Composer Strikes a Note with the Summit Concert Choir

This past year the Summit Concert Choir which has over 100 students from Summit High School had a piece written for them by a local Summit Composer Mark Miller.  Mr. Miller has been working to have the piece professionally published so it will be available to other choirs around the world.  If published, Summit Concert Choir can proudly say that we had the world premiere of the piece on May 23rd, 2017 at Summit High School.

Mr. Miller came in and worked with the choir on multiple occasions and re-wrote the piece adding a cello part to it. He even played with the choir in the spring concert.  The song is entitled “Thanks to the Human Heart” and has 3 separate movements.

The cost of the commission was partly funded by the Summit Music Parents Association and SEF.  Unfortunately, the project was still short 25% of the funds. The PTO was able to respond by tapping its Co-Curricular Fund to bridge the gap.  Innovative learning experiences like this are often promising candidates for PTO teacher grants and assistance.

Mr. Mallette, former director of the choir worked with Mr. Miller on the project.  Mr. Mallette is now at Scotch Plains and the baton has been passed to Mr. Dan King who is now the Director of Choral Activities/AP Music Theory.

Concert Choir is an unauditioned group that performs concert repertoire and is the primary choral ensemble at Summit High School. The group has received numerous Superior ratings at a wide variety of adjudications and clinics.

About Mr. King…  This is Mr. King’s first year at SHS.  He previously taught at LCJSMS for six years.  On a funny side note, Mr. King did not sing in choir until he was a sophomore in high school (a late bloomer!).

Dan King
Director of Choral Activities/AP Music Theory
Summit High School

Swipe Right to Hook Up with the PTO’s First Parent Book Group!

Save the date for our inaugural parent book club gathering at 7 pm on Thursday, October 26, in the HS library. Take advantage of this new opportunity to meet other parents and share observations with literature as the backdrop! Light fare will be served.

Our first book is Mrs. Fletcher, by Tom Perrotta, author of Little Children, The Leftovers and Election. The story follows Eve and Brendan, a mother and her son, as they reinvent their lives after Brendan leaves for college. Eve ponders her future as she fills her empty nest — she makes new friends, takes a class and develops an online fixation. Brendan faces his own struggles — will he adapt to his sometimes isolating university, understand his divorced parents and grow into a responsible sexual being?

NPR reviewer Michael Schaub said Mrs. Fletcher is a “stunning and audacious book, and Perrotta never lets his characters take the easy way out. Uncompromisingly obscene but somehow still kind-hearted, Mrs. Fletcher is one for the ages.”

Copies of Mrs. Fletcher are available for borrowing at the Summit Free Public Library and the SHS Library. Public library card holders may also reserve/borrow Mrs. Fletcher from all Union and Middlesex county libraries. If borrowing from the HS Library, speak to one of the librarians since the books are not in the stacks, but being held in the Library Office. Alternatively, the book may also be purchased from Amazon at the following link: Mrs. Fletcher book purchase

Mrs. Fletcher is one of three books the PTO parent book club will read and discuss this year. Future meeting times and book titles to be announced at a later date. We look forward to lively discussions!

Please RSVP to Julie Adams at

It’s a Wonderful World

It’s a great big world out there and this year, SHS students will have the opportunity to go on school-organized trips to Spain & France, Eastern Europe and Nashville!  Your generous donations to the PTO have enabled us to provide travel scholarship assistance to students.  Click on the link to see eligibility rules and to get the ball rolling on the travel scholarship application.  Even though the trips will all take place in April 2018, the deadline for travel scholarship applications is November 20.  Click link to access application. SHS Student Travel Scholarship Application

Saving Green by Going Green – SHS Online Directory

In an effort to be responsible stewards of our environmental and PTO resources, the SHS Directory is now available online. Access directory information anywhere and any time on your computer or mobile device by downloading the MySchoolAnywhere app or via the PTO website’s “Directory” tab above. The app is free and can be downloaded for Apple or Android phones. Monies saved from printing the directories will enable us to fund more transformational programs at SHS.

If you haven’t already signed up, we encourage you to do so at If you would prefer to have a hard copy version of the directory, please click the “Print” icon at the top of the page once you log into

Traffic Do’s and Don’ts

SHS Traffic Do’s and Don’ts

1. Classes and instruction begin at 7:45 am. Please factor that in to your travel time (especially during peak traffic times) so that your student is not late for school.

2. When dropping off students in the SHS driveway, please pull as far forward as possible to maximize the number of cars dropping students off at that time.

3. Safety is a primary concern:

  • Students should exit the car on the sidewalk side to avoid stepping into traffic.
  • Please do not make K-turns or U-turns on Kent Place Boulevard.
  • Students should only be dropped off on the school side of Kent Place Boulevard.
  • Do not drop off students in the middle of the driveway or roadway requiring them to walk in the flow of traffic to enter the building.

This Week’s Email

Holiday Teacher Breakfast, Parent Book Club, Open Mic…  Another busy week ahead.  Missed something,   CLICK HERE  to read this week’s blast again.  Still holiday shopping?  Don’t forget to use the Amazon link in  right around the corner and support the PTO!

  You can access past emails by selecting EMAILS under the INFORMATION tab above.


Dear Summit High School Families,

On behalf of the SHS PTO, we’d like to welcome you to the new school year and share some key information that you might find helpful.

  • We’d love for you to become a part of our PTO and we invite you to participate in General PTO Meetings and Coffees with the Principal, attend our Speaker Event featuring Ron Lieber, have spirited discussions in our brand new Parent Book Club, socialize with old friends and new ones at our Dueling Pianos Fundraiser in January and so much more!

Your membership in the PTO this year will help fund many innovative, inclusive programs that enrich our school community including:

  • PTO Scholarships for graduating seniors attending college.
  • PTO Travel scholarships for students interested in department sponsored trips such as the ones to France, Spain, Nashville etc.
  • A renovated SHS lobby and Senior Lounge that is comfortable and welcoming for students, teachers and visitors.
  • Speaker Ron Lieber, The New York Times “Your Money” columnist, will lead student and parent-specific discussions on how to “raise kids who are grounded, generous, and smart about money.”
  • Funding for Project Graduation at LifeTime Fitness that provides a fun, safe experience for seniors immediately following graduation.
  • Sponsoring student clubs and activities which celebrate student initiative and leadership.
  • Teacher Grants that enhance student learning in and out of the classroom.
  • Teacher appreciation events throughout the year.


Send your voluntary donation in the attached envelope and return it to the SHS Main Office by September 11, 2017 OR click “Join the PTO” button on our website ( Should you have questions, please contact SHS PTO Membership Chair, Alison Chieffo at

  • Mark your calendars (note new time):
    • Friday, September 22 at 8:15 – first General PTO Meeting in SHS Library.
    • Thursday, October 19 at 8:15 – first PTO Coffee with the Principal in SHS Library.
  • Next, we encourage you to update your student’s information in the new online directory at It is easy to do and you’ll love the convenience of being able to access directory information on your mobile device, especially when you are on the go.
  • Stay informed by signing up to receive weekly SHS PTO emails by clicking on the “Manage My Account” button at


We’re excited to see you throughout the year ahead.

Warm regards,

Susan Sidebottom & Anjali McCormick

PTO Co-Presidents

Get Between The Covers With PTO’s First Parent Book Club!

Save the date for our inaugural parent book club gathering at 7 pm on Thursday, October 26, in the HS library. Take advantage of this new opportunity to meet other parents and share observations with literature as the backdrop!