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Friday, September 9, 2016

And We're Off! Sept. 6, 2016


Sexton Mt. Families:

Great things are happening at Sexton Mt. School.   We are having a great first day.  The Chief of Police, a parent of Sexton alumni, welcomed families at the intersection in front of our school and there seemed to be hundreds of smiling faces eager for the day to begin despite the scent of skunk that hung in the air.

As I visited classrooms I got to see the Sexton Mt. core values come to life!  Thanks for sharing your children with us.

We are a community of learners!
Jan Hunt’s fourth graders relied on classroom experts to teach one another about how we do school.  As the class gathered on the carpet, one child described how we celebrate with school-wide assemblies each month.    Throughout the month, students are recognized for safe, respectful and responsible behavior. Recognition might include a smile, thumbs up or positive words.  On occasion, students might be recognized with an Eagle Eye.  A copy of the Eagle Eye is turned in for a school-wide drawing at the monthly assembly. As the fourth graders transitioned from the carpet to the work time, Ruben leaned, smiled at his group and whispered, “Let’s be the quietest table and get right to work!”   We are a community of learners.  We celebrate together and support each other in learning new things. 

We have high expectations for our learners!
As students learned or revisited routines and procedures, the language used showed that we know that how we talk changes the way we work.  Our goal this year is for students to increase the use of academic language in all subject areas throughout the day.  Michelle Brock led her third graders down the hall on a tour of the school.  After the group paused for instruction, she asked them to “proceed” and they did!  In Kaela Munoz’s fifth grade classroom, a student was recognized for using precise language to describe the steps for completing an assigned task.  His descriptive language and complete sentences showed that he was demonstrating the posted learning targets.” 

We collaborate!
Steven Senteney, school counselor, facilitated the Mt. Guides (the kids in red shirts who pretty much run the school) and “recess rodeo” where kids learned about expectations for the playground.  All in all, we expect kids to be safe, respectful and responsible in all parts of the school.  He recognized that Julie Fryer, Chelsea Sanderson, Becky Douvris, Jeff Anderson (playground supervisor and Driver of Bus 163) and Katie Davison are experts on the playground, so relied heavily on their expertise. 

We promote independence!
Our students practice morning routines and are set for afternoon routines. 

Morning Routines - Our goal is for students to learn how to get around their school independently and confidently.  We will teach many skills and routines to help students do this. 
The door closest to the cafeteria will open at 8:05am.  If you drive or walk your child to school, aim to have them here at 8:05am.  That’s the time that students may go to the cafeteria.  Mt. Guides and staff will be here to assist children. We hope that you will take advantage of the school bus if it’s available for your child, as this too will help them build their independence and confidence.
At 8:10, students may go to the cafeteria, gym, covered area of the playground, or library, but they must then stay in that location until 8:25.   Mt. Guides will close an area when it reaches capacity.  The cafeteria is the only option once the gym and library are closed.
At 8:25 the first bell will ring.  Kids will go to the classroom at 8:25am.  Teachers will use every second up to that time to prepare for the day so will not be available to students or parents until 8:25.  (Parents—Please always try to make an appointment with the teacher if you need to see him or her.  The best way to do this is by sending an email or calling before 8:15 or after 3:15. The teacher’s workday is 8:00-4:00.)
If your child rides the bus to school, they will be greeted by staff and provided direction on what to do next.  We know that the best way for students to engage with other students and be ready for the school day to begin is to start the day independently.

If at anytime you join your child beyond the front doors, remember that every time you enter the building, you are expected to sign in and get a visitor or volunteer badge.  This will usually be done in the office but on the first few days, we will have sign in tables in front of the school since we expect so many guests.
If adults come into the building with children, they will enter through the main door then must sign in and get a pink visitor’s sticker before joining their child in the cafeteria.

After School Routines
After school can be the most challenging part of our routine as we reconnect kids and families.  Dismissal Time is at 3:05pm.  With 500+ students leaving school at the same time there will undoubtedly be traffic congestion at times. Unless enrolled in an on-site after school program, all students are expected to go home or to an after school child care provider following school.  

Students may WALK or BIKE home with parental permission. Kids are expected to walk their bikes on campus, wear helmets and ride in a safe and cautious manner.

The BUS or DAYCARE VAN waiting area is on the covered area of the playground
       Kids should know their bus number and/or the name of their daycare.
·       Know that bus drivers will allow students to get off at their bus stop whether an adult is present or not so make sure your child knows how to get home from the bus stop independently.

If students are being PICKED UP, the front of the school sidewalk is where kids are taken to wait for their ride.
       Kindergarten students will wait on the kindergarten porch for adults or older siblings to pick them up.  If an older sibling picks up the kindergarten student, the sibling may walk the child to the car in the front traffic loop.  When adults pick up students from the porch, adults will park in a legal parking space then walk to the porch.  Cross with the crossing guard when returning to your vehicle.
       First through fifth grade students will wait in the front of the school.
       Students should look for their vehicle and alert staff members when the ride arrives.
       Drivers will remain at the wheel in the driveway and traffic circle or park legally and wait for your child on the sidewalk near the benches or bike rack. Students are not allowed to cross the parking lot crosswalks without an adult.
       Adults should wait outside for students.  Adults in the classroom or pod can be very disruptive at the end of the school day as kids see adults and think that learning is done for the day.

Mark your calendar-Curriculum Night-Sept. 15
The purpose of Curriculum Night is to inform family members about the why, how and what for each grade level.  The evening is focused on adult learners knowing that when families and teachers are on the same page, kids benefit. Please plan on joining us September 15.  Please note that teachers will make one presentation.  Childcare is not provided for this event.  
K-1-Teachers Present- 6:15 to 6:40
2-3 Teachers Present- 6:45 to 7:10
4-5 Teachers Present- 7:15 to 7:40



 2016-2017 Sexton Mt. Activities Calendar

Trimester 1
2016
Trimester 2
2016-2017
Trimester 3
2017
September 2016

7 First Day for Kinder M-Z
7 Parent Party on the Stage at 8:30am
15  Back to School/Curriculum Night
K-1-Teachers Present- 6:15 to 6:40
2-3 Teachers Present- 6:45 to 7:10
4-5 Teachers Present- 7:15 to 7:40
27  PTC Meeting @ 3:05pm
October 2016
3--6-Book Fair
14  Teacher Work Day-No School for Students
20-21  Family/Teacher Conference Day-No School for Students
25  PTC Meeting @ 3:05pm
28  PTC Dance 6:30-8:00pm
November 2016
10  Staff Development Day-No School
11 Veterans Day Holiday-No School
23  School Closed
24-25  Thanksgiving Break No School
28-Grading Day-No School
29-PTC Meeting at 3:05pm
December 2016
2 Report Cards Go Home with Students
19-Winter Break Begins
January 2017
2  Schools Closed-No School
3  School Resumes
16 Martin Luther King Jr. Day-No School
19  Family Bingo Night-6:30-7:30pm
31 PTC Meeting at 3:05pm
February 2017
10  Kindergarten Orientation 5:30-6:30pm
10  Family Movie Night 6:30-8:30pm
20  President's Day-No School
28  PTC Meeting at 3:05pm
March 2017
2  Conference Day-No School for Students
3  Conference Day-No School for Students
9  Talent Show
10  Grading Day-No School for Students

March 2017
17  Report Cards Go Home
21 PTC Meeting at 3:05pm
27-31  Spring Break
April 2017
25 PTC Meeting at 3:05pm
27  Jog-a-thon
27 STEAM Fair 6:30-8:00pm
28 Staff Development Day-No School for Students
May 2017
1-5  Staff Appreciation Week
19  Carnival 5:30-7:30pm
26 Assessment Day-No School for Students
29 Memorial Day-No School
30 PTC Meeting at 3:05pm
June 2017
1 Family Literacy Night (kick off summer reading season)
3 Sexton Mt. Run with the Eagles 5K
21  Last Day for Students


 Planning for 2017

Early Release/Teacher Collaboration--Starting in September 2017, the Beaverton School District will implement a 90-minute early release on Wednesday afternoons to allow teachers time to collaborate and participate in professional development opportunities. The schedule change is a result of the new contract between the District and the Beaverton Education Association. The agreement adds nine student days over the next three years. 

We recognize the impact this change will have on families and childcare may be a challenge. 

We are exploring opportunities for additional after school activities with the Beaverton Education Foundation and other community partners. 

The District recognizes this fact and has already begun the planning process. Some of those steps include weekly planning meetings, conducting parent focus groups and regular communications about the change. Much of the work is focused on determining how to support families and students in the transition. This topic will be on the agenda during the Principal's Update at PTC meetings.  

The District has developed an Early Release/Teacher Collaboration webpage. There is a link to this page on our school webpage in the “School Resources” box. The webpage includes an FAQ that may contain answers to many of your questions.
Planning for Early Release/Teacher Collaboration will continue to take place throughout the 2016-2017 school year. Please check the District’s BSD Briefs newsletter, our school newsletter and the Early Release/Teacher Collaboration webpage for updates.


Teresa Clemens-Brower, Ed.D.
a.k.a. Mrs. C.-B.
Principal
Sexton Mt. Elementary School
503-356-2473

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