Meet the Teacher session times are listed below. Each session will last about 45 minutes. It is necessary that you attend one of these sessions.

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1 Willow School Newsletter Meet the Teacher Going to kindergarten is an important milestone in a child s life. We have planned the first day of school as a family day to help ease the fears and anxieties that children (and parents) have as they start school for the first time. Meet the Teacher is scheduled to provide students, parents, and teachers an opportunity to get acquainted. Parents and children can meet the teacher, see the classroom, learn about classroom procedures, and hear some of what is planned for the year. At this time, students can bring their supplies, if they would like. Meet the Teacher session times are listed below. Each session will last about 45 minutes. It is necessary that you attend one of these sessions. Session 1: Thursday, August 18 th Session 2: Thursday, August 18 th 4:00 4:45 PM 5:00 5:45 PM Individual Parent Conferences If you would like to meet with your child s teacher to share information or concerns, you can schedule an individual parent conference. Parents may sign up for an individual conference during their Meet the Teacher session. Individual conferences can be scheduled at any time during the school year. Parent conferences will be scheduled for ALL District #108 parents in November and March. Kindergarten Schedule Kindergarten students will begin in a full day program right away. There is no shortened day at the beginning of the year for us. Getting Started Schedule August 22 nd May 26 th 8:30-3:10 September 5 th LABOR DAY No School Please Note: Be sure to check calendars and newsletters for early dismissal dates and days off.

2 Arrival Our school day begins at 8:30. Breakfast is served from 8:15-8:30. Students will be considered tardy after 8:45am. Children should arrive no earlier than 8:20, unless they are in PEAK Extended Day or participating in the breakfast program. On August 22 nd, Kindergarten students will line up on the front playground by class. Teachers will be present to greet the children. Beginning on Monday, August 22 nd, a Willow teacher will wait with students from 8:20-8:30 in the morning. At the 8:30 bell, kindergarteners will be asked to walk to their classrooms with their teacher. Many responsibilities are taken care of during the time from 8:30-8:45: coats and jackets are hung up, bookbags are emptied and put away, restrooming is taken care of, students get their supplies and sharpen pencils, and a morning activity is started for the day. Our tardy bell sounds at 8:45. Kindergarten bus students will be greeted by a staff member when the bus arrives. Staff will dismiss students to their kindergarten classrooms. If your kindergarten student is supposed to eat breakfast at school, please make sure they know that they go straight to the cafeteria AND that they must get busy and eat so that they are not late to class. After breakfast, each child will be sent down to their classroom. If your child will be absent, leave a message anytime on the Willow School Office voic at Dismissal Parents of Willow students are asked to complete a Daily dismissal Plan for their child(ren) at registration. Each teacher posts the dismissal instructions for their students near the door of their classroom. Your child s teacher will dismiss your child according to your instructions. Anytime there is a change in the instructions for going home, parents need to send a note to the teacher or call the school office no later than 2:30. At the end of the school day, PEAK students and bus riders are dismissed first at 3:00. Kindergarten teachers then dismiss those students who are picked up at 3:10. If you plan to pick up your child, please be prompt and remain outside the school building at the North doors (near the church). Students will be brought to the door individually by the teacher to be sure that each child is picked up according to parent instructions. On your child s enrollment form, you are asked to list the name(s) of any person(s) allowed to pick up your son or daughter. Students will not be released to anyone who is not listed on their dismissal plan. Please be patient with us as we get to know everyone. Remember, we all need to work together to keep our children safe. Make sure to inform the office if there are any changes in dismissal plan information. Know that a driver s license will be asked for, if necessary, from anyone who is picking up your child. SAFETY IS #1.

3 As stated above, Kindergarten students will be dismissed at 3:10. If you are late in picking up your child, he/she will wait with a teacher by the office. We do not ever allow children to wait outside unattended. Staff members will escort bus riders to their buses. Bus riders will be given a sticker to wear each day the first few days of school. The bus stop, student name, grade, and phone number will be included on each student s sticker. Bus drivers will drop the children off according to this information. Please help your child to be confident in knowing the plans for the day. It is very important that your child knows how and with whom he/she is to go home each day. If there is a change in the normal routine, please send a note to the teacher so he/she can be sure that your child knows where you will need for him/her to go that day. Always, call the office, as well. Traffic Alert Please do not ever use the parking lot in front of the school as a pick-up/drop off point for your child. During arrival, dismissal times, this is a bus loading zone. Parents are not permitted to drive into the parking lot during those times. To help alleviate the traffic jam on Veerman Street, we encourage kindergarten parents to park down farther north of the school and walk with your child to the front playground in the morning and to the kindergarten doors for dismissal. There are buses and many cars near the school during arrival and dismissal times. To keep your child safe, please escort him/her to and from the building. Please use the sidewalks and marked walkways. To keep ALL children safe, please drive slowly near the school. If your child walks to school, please discuss traffic safety, and remind your child to cross only at the crosswalks provided near the school. Please be sure that everyone who will be involved in dropping off or picking up your child knows this procedure.

4 Adjusting to School The first few days of school can be an anxious time for children and for parents, too! Help your child to adjust to school more easily and quickly by NOT staying at his/her side during these first days. It is best for your child to say good-byes before joining his/her class in line or, later on, in the classroom. The teachers will be with your child. A bell will ring at 8:30. Our day will then get underway. Even if your child is having a hard time adjusting to this separation from you, he/she will be fine, and it remains best for your child and for you to tell your child that you are proud of them, that you will see them soon (right after school) and that you want to hear all about their school day at that time, and then say good-bye. We also, insist the you not stand by your child in the line for the first two days before we enter the building. The longer your stay and your child clings to you, the harder it becomes to say good-bye and the more likely it is that there will be a scene. Do bring your camera! You do not want to miss first day of Kindergarten picture opportunities! Lunch Kindergarten students will have lunch at school beginning on Monday, August 22 nd. Students have a 60 minute lunch period. Our kindergarten lunch hour is 11:20-12:20. During lunch time, students eat their lunch and then, go to recess. For the first few days, there will be helpers who will help your kindergartener learn about the lunchroom. They will learn about the lunch line, how to get their milk and carry their own tray, and how to sit properly and quietly at the table until they are dismissed. Lunchroom supervisors and staff will be on hand to provide additional assistance. Parents are welcome to join their child(ren) for lunchtime. If you wish to order a school lunch for yourself, you will need to call our secretary by 9:00 a.m. to order your lunch for the day. ***We do ask that you wait to have lunch with your child until we have had several weeks to establish a routine. In Case of Emergency On the enrollment form you are asked to list someone to contact in case of an emergency. That person will be contacted only if you cannot be reached. Please be sure to keep the office informed of any changes in your emergency information.

5 Bus Information Bus transportation is provided for students who live more than 1 ½ miles from the school. Bus information will be available at Meet the Teacher. Clothing and Personal Items Please put your child s name on each article of outside clothing and anything he/she brings to school. Clothes should be simple, washable, comfortable, sturdy, not too tight, not to big, safe and easy to manage. Jackets and coats should have fasteners that your child can easily handle. Snaps, buttons and belts need to be easily fastened by your child. Winter boots or rain boots should be large enough so he/she can put them on and take them off. If your child is unable to tie his/her own shoes, this would be a good time to help them learn this skill. We NEED your help at home. Please be sure that your child wears shoes appropriate for outdoor play everyday. Please send your child to school in Gym shoes on their scheduled P.E. days. NO BLACK SOLES, PLEASE! Your child will not be able to participate Gym class if they do not have the correct shoes. Physical education is a requirement! Your child will have recess time each day. The temperature often changes during the day. Please be sure he/she is always dressed appropriately for outdoor play, especially when the weather gets colder. In better weather, no flip-flops, please! Injuries can easily occur in flipflops and therefore are flip-flops are discouraged. For safety reasons, students should not bring: Electronic items cell phones, IPods, video games, etc. Toys Make-up Necklaces or other jewelry, hair items that can easily fall or be taken out, etc. If there is ever any Show and Tell or sharing time, that will be arranged with your child s teacher.

6 Absences/Picking Up Your Child Early If your child is ill and won t be at school, please call our school office at by 9:00 a.m. You can, also, leave a message on our voic anytime. Please send a note to the teacher after any absence. Without a parent contact to explain the reason for a student absence, the student will be considered truant. Please be sure that your child arrives to school on time every morning. If it is necessary for you to pick up your child early, you must go to the office. Our school secretary will get your child for you or call the classroom and your child will come to the office. If there is a doctor or dentist appointment, a problem, or an emergency, arrangements must be made through the office. Please know that our building doors are locked during the day. Every visitor must buzz in at the front door and talk to the secretary before being allowed entrance into our building. Safety is of prime importance and we are fortunate to have this system in place. Money Anytime you send money to school for any reason, including breakfast or lunch money, book orders, picture money, PEAK payments, etc. the money must be in an envelope. Write your child s name, the amount of money enclosed, your child s teacher s name, and the purpose for which the money is being sent to school. Visiting Our School We hope you will visit our school often. School board policy requires that all visitors must buzz in at the front doors and register at the school office. All visitors during the school day are required to sign in and wear a visitor s badge. The school door safety system and this registration procedure are both in place to protect everyone in our Learning Community. While visitors are encouraged anytime, it is necessary to let your child s teacher know if you would like to help in the classroom. To help your child adjust, it is best that you wait until after the first month of school. It is necessary for your child to have time to learn classroom rules and routines. Your child s teacher will keep you informed about special class events and/or parent involvement opportunities. Volunteers are sometimes helpful for a variety of activities in the classroom, Learning Center, field trips, etc.

7 Notes and School Work Your child should have a book bag or backpack to carry important papers and books to and from home and school. This book bag needs to come to school everyday! No rolling bags, please. We send notes about school activities and additional information about class and Willow School, as a whole. It is especially important that daily papers are taken home so that you can be informed of your child s progress. Occasionally, your child will be requested to do some projects at home and then return their finished work to school. Please check your child s book bag each evening. This is a good opportunity for you to talk to your kindergartener about the experiences and learning that occurred that day. Know, also, that a huge part of your child s day is spent working in journals and doing hands on activities that cannot be sent home. Talking to your child is very important to find our about these activities, as well. I-Care The staff at Willow School is committed to helping our kids to develop self-discipline and practice good behavior. Willow School has adopted the I-CARE RULES as the basis of our school s discipline plan. The I-CARE RULES teach the value of self and of each person, the importance of having friends, of treating others with respect, of sharing, and of finding ways to work together peacefully. The program presents ways for teachers to help students develop skills through a variety of learning opportunities and practice. It is our hope that through this set of rules our students will learn the skills needed to maintain a safe, productive learning environment in our school. No one will be allowed to act in a way that disrupts the safety and learning of others. Handbook, Calendars, & Newsletters Each Willow School family will be given handbooks that explain our procedures and rules. Please read through the handbooks carefully and keep them for reference throughout the school year. If you have any questions about these handbooks, please ask your child s teacher. Your registration forms include a daily schedule and calendar for the school year. District #108 publishes a parent calendar for each family. The calendar lists important dates and district policies and procedures. These calendars are usually distributed during the first weeks of school. You will receive a school newsletter each month. The monthly school calendar will be included in this newsletter. Our Willow School PTA sends home frequent newsletters about PTA activities planned for your whole family. In addition, your child s teacher will send home newsletters, information about upcoming activities, permission slips and special notes. Much effort goes into preparation of newsletters in order to help parents stay informed. Check your child s book bag nightly and read your newsletters. We welcome your constructive comments and suggestions.

8 PTA We encourage you to join our school s PTA. Our PTA is wonderful!!!!!! It is an active organization that sponsors many activities throughout the school year, including Family Nights and the Willow School Carnival. Please consider becoming a part of and/or supporting this organization. You can get a membership form from the school office. We are so fortunate to have this parent group. Many schools do not have this advantage. PEAK Extended Day Program A before/after school care program, known as PEAK, is offered at Willow School. The program is administered by the Tazewell County Health Department. Services are from 6:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on school days on a prearranged, prepaid basis. In addition, to before and after school care, sessions of enrichment activities will be offered during the year. Our Willow School PEAK program director is Mrs. Rebecca Onken. School Secretary Our school secretary is Mrs. Julie Draher. She is very prompt in getting messages to us during the school day. She is very dedicated and thorough. She is trained in following district and school regulations and procedures that are essential for our school environment to run smoothly, to insure that all members of our school community are safe and that rules are being followed. Mrs. Draher wears many, many hats and she is a wonderful resource for you, as well, if you have any questions or concerns. Please take note that there are over 300 students in this building, your patience will be greatly appreciated. Questions Comments Concerns Please contact your child s teacher or the school office with any questions or concerns. We are happy to answer any questions you may have. We strive to work with you to address any concerns you may have, so that this year will be a positive experience for all of us. Here s to a great year in Kindergarten! Revised May 2016

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