Dear Atholton Families,
It is with excitement that I, along with all of the staff at Atholton Elementary, welcome you to the 2019-2020 school year. We are excited that in just eleven days the halls and rooms at AES will once again be filled with our students. We have been busy preparing for the upcoming school year with our leadership team and various staff work groups. Many staff members participated in professional learning, taught summer school, attended meetings and planned during the summer months and we are grateful for their commitment to our students. Our custodial team (Mr. Lincoln, Mr. Osei, Mr. Cureton and Mrs. Smith) did an amazing job preparing the building for opening; the floors are glistening! Our incredible office staff was busy registering students and keeping things organized!
In addition to the new students and families that will join us this school year, we will also welcome several new staff members. We look forward to greeting the smiling faces of new and returning students and working and learning with our new and returning staff members. Our theme for this school year is “Constructing Great Minds and Building a Strong Foundation.” The AES staff will work collaboratively to support and maintain a positive school culture and learning environment for all, where everyone is valued, connected, supported and appreciated. It is through our collective efforts that we will reach all students, academically, socially and emotionally while encouraging and modeling how to be kind citizens, problem solvers and creative thinkers.
As the summer comes to an end it begins a new and exciting chapter. In addition to the excitement, the new year brings new experiences and new opportunities to learn and grow. The road ahead is paved and ready to be traveled! Undoubtedly, the road will have its share of twists and turns but, it will be traveled in great company with our students, staff and community. We are excited to see the difference we are going to make this year!
Our phones, email inboxes, and doors are always open for feedback, questions, and suggestions. We look forward to serving each of you!
News and Information
Please Join Us in Welcoming New AES Staff
Welcome to Susan Webster, Acting Assistant Principal
Welcome Mrs. Susan Webster! We have the fine privilege of Mrs. Webster supporting us while Mrs. Krablin is on maternity leave. Prior to retiring from HCPSS, Mrs. Webster served many roles during her 35-year tenure. She even served as Assistant Principal right here at Atholton! She brings a wealth of knowledge and we are delighted to have her. Please find out more about Mrs. Webster on the AES website.
A Warm Welcome to:
Lisa Carter, (.6) School Psychologist
Catherine Clark, (.8) Occupational Therapist
Kelly Clavell, (.5) Band Teacher
Daniel Graham, (.6) Physical Education Teacher
Shannon Majoros, PreK/Preschool Special Education Teacher
Kelly Turner, Cafeteria Manager
Eric Piccirelli, (.5) Strings Teacher
Monica Zaleski, (.5) ESOL Teacher
Important Upcoming Dates
First Day of School Information and Reminders
Every child’s safety is important and we need your help. It remains our highest priority to ensure that students are dropped off and picked up daily in a safe and organized manner. We are reminding everyone to follow the pick-up, drop-off procedures. Failure to do so creates chaos, and unsafe conditions for our students, parents, and staff. Please be kind to our staff and community members that may be directing traffic and guiding students.
Please have your child come to school the way he/she will come to school every day. We will have staff boarding buses and placing bus number tags on backpacks. All bus riders will be escorted into the building. Our walkers and car riders will enter through the rear entrance doors. Doors will open at 9:00 a.m. Any student arriving after 9:15 a.m. must be accompanied by an adult to the front office.
Kindergarten students that attend the Open House will receive a nametag necklace specific to the assigned to teacher. If families are unable to attend the Open House, the kindergarten student will receive a nametag the first day of school. Staff will guide the kindergarteners off the bus and escort them to class. Kindergarten staff will also meet walkers and car riders at the back of the school next to the blacktop. Students in grades 1-5 will be directed to their classrooms. Staff will be available throughout the building to assist all students. We ask parents/guardians to say goodbye at home and at the front or rear door of the school. Thank you for understanding.
During arrival, between 8:50 a.m. and 9:15 a.m. orange cones will be placed along the crosswalk at the back of the school. During this time cars cannot enter or exit the rear parking lot. Persons that enter the parking lot prior to 8:50 a.m. will be asked to remain in the parking lot until 9:15 a.m.
Please do not leave your child without supervision. There is no supervision for students until 9:00 a.m.
AM Drop Off
Parents/guardians driving children to school should use the Atholton Park or park along Donleigh Drive. Please do not park along the entrance or exit to Atholton Park. Please be courteous of our neighbors and only park on one side of the street in the neighborhood.
Parents may also park on Groveleigh Drive and use the crosswalk to escort children across the street. Please do not drop off children along Seneca Drive. This is dangerous.
After all buses have dropped off students, cars will be permitted to enter the bus loop, after 9:15 a.m. If your child arrives after 9:15, please park and walk your student to the main office to sign them in.
All car riders, walkers, and students that participate in after school programs or attend after care centers will be dismissed at 3:38 p.m. All bus riders will be dismissed at 3:45 p.m.
Please inform your child’s teacher in writing if dismissal is different than arrival. During dismissal, our staff will ensure students get on the correct bus based on the bus they rode to school in the morning, or other information obtained in writing from the parent/guardian.
Please do not email to teachers to inform them of dismissal changes. They will be with students and may not see your email. Please call the school and speak to the office staff if your child’s dismissal procedures change and you did not provide a written note. We will make certain the child’s teacher is informed.
All walkers will be escorted to the back of the school to meet their parent/guardian, or be escorted to the parent/guardian selected after care provider or program. All walker/car rider kindergarten students will be dismissed from the rear kindergarten doors and be released to the parent/guardian, or designated adult for pick up.
Parents/guardians of walkers and car riders should park at Atholton Park and walk to the back of the school to meet their children. If the Atholton Park lot is full, please do not park along the entrance to the park. Please park along Donleigh.
If your child rides a bus, please arrive at the bus stop 5-10 minutes before your bus is due to arrive in the morning. Please allow some flexibility in morning and afternoon arrival times the first few weeks of school.
It is very important to put your child on the bus on the first day. Students who ride buses will have their bus number tagged on their backpack with a wristband strip. Please leave the bus tag on their backpack. This will help staff escort students to the correct bus in the afternoon and throughout the school year.
Our Food and Nutrition Services web page has information parents/guardians may find helpful, including meal prices, how to pay for meals, where to view menus, nutritional and allergen information, and more.
Student Breakfast - $2.00 Student Lunch - $2.75
Reduced Breakfast - $.30 Reduced Lunch - $.40
Milk - $.50
Parents/guardians of students who qualify for Free and Reduced Meals (FARMS) must submit a new application each school year. Students that qualified for free or reduced meals last school year will receive free or reduced lunch prices during the first 30 days of school. Details on the HCPSS FARMs program is online including how to apply. Please call the school if you have questions or need assistance.
We serve breakfast each morning from 9:00 a.m. to 9:15 a.m. Students who wish to purchase breakfast may go directly to the cafeteria when they arrive.
Lunches are scheduled between 10:50 a.m. and 1:35 p.m.
We love pets; however, for the safety of our students we ask that you not bring pets to school with you to drop off or pick up students. Effective August 29, 2017 animals in schools or offices, leashed or not, present safety, environmental, and liability issues. Students and staff may be exposed to potential physical hazards, such as bites, and/or allergy related health problems. As a result, animals are prohibited within HCPSS buildings. Animals are also prohibited on school system property during arrival, dismissal, recess or other HCPSS sponsored outdoor activities. Service animals or service animals in training per MD Annotated Code Section 7-705 (Service Animals) and the American Disabilities Act (ADA) as well as animals approved for instructional purposes are exempt from this prohibition.
How to Find the Name of Your Child’s Homeroom Teacher
You will only be able to access the name of your child’s homeroom teacher prior to our open house events if you complete your child’s Family File (emergency contact and dismissal information) on or before August 28th. Beginning on August 28th, you will be able to view your child’s homeroom teacher when you log on to your HCPSS Connect account. See the directions below to update your Family File. As of today, only 47% of our students have updated emergency contact information.
Update your Child’s Emergency Contact and Dismissal Information
If you have not updated/completed your Family File, please take care of this as soon as possible at HCPSS Connect. There are several resources to assist you in completing the emergency contact information.
HCPSS Family File is where parents input and find all of the information located on their child's Emergency Procedure Cards, such as transportation, contact information, and medical considerations. To update your Family File, go to https://www.hcpss.org/connect/ . For the safety of your child/children, it is very important that this information remains current. This information must be updated every year. Please ensure that it is completed prior to the start of school. For directions on how to input your child's information on Family file, click here. For frequently asked questions, click here.
As an additional bonus, families who fill out and update their family file information will find out their child’s homeroom teacher two days before our Open House! Don’t delay! Spread the word!
Parents who do not have, or may have forgotten their log-in credentials can request assistance using the help link in the HCPSS Connect page. If you need help, click here.
Bus numbers, routes, and stops are now available on the HCPSS transportation website.
2019-2020 HCPSS Calendars
There will be no printed 2019-2020 calendars provided by HCPSS this year. Instead, families may add the online calendar to their own mobile/online calendar by:
1. Going to https://www.hcpss.org/calendar/
Families may also view and/or download printable PDFs of the full calendar and/or important dates only. Updates to the PDFs will be noted on the HCPSS calendar page.
PLEASE NOTE! The calendar is subject to change. The online calendar reflects the most recent version.
2019-2020 Student & Parent Handbook
The Student & Parent Handbook (https://www.hcpss.org/about-us/handbook/) will no longer be printed and instead will be available online. The 2019-2020 Student & Parent Handbook will be available by early September.
The handbook outlines districtwide practices and polices related to students and parents. It additionally features sub-topics that describe various services, procedures, and protocols implemented in Howard County Public Schools.
The Student Code of Conduct can be found within the Student & Parent Handbook and is also available online.