Kennedy Newsletter for Families

October 2020

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Principal's Post

Kennedy Families,

Greetings from the Kennedy Elementary Office!

This year has felt like a sprint if you ask me! Even though school started late, everything has been so different this year. I think we all need next week to catch our collective breath and prepare for the time between now and Thanksgiving! This is always an exciting time in an elementary school. The holiday season is right around the corner. It sure will be nice to have some things to celebrate!

With the Coronavirus spreading around our area, please make sure to wear your masks, wash your hands, and stay socially distant from others over Fall Break! We will get through this together!

This school and community are blessings in my life, and I hope you feel the same way. I am proud to say I love my job and the work we do. Thanks so much for partnering with us in your child's education. As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions or comments!

Enjoy your Fall Break!

Proud to serve you and the Lynn Garden Community,

Janice Irvin, Ed. D.

Proud Principal

Kennedy Elementary

Face-to-Face and Remote Choice Learning Updates

As you may know, one of our 2nd grade teachers, Ms. Sarah McMillan, has been working in the remote choice setting during the first quarter. Due to a reduction in the number of students requiring remote choice learning, we have some changes to make you aware of:

  • Ms. McMillan will return to face-to-face instruction on October 20, 2020. This will necessitate some changes to our current class rosters and teaming structure. We are excited about these changes because they will result in smaller class sizes and increased academic support for our students.
  • Ms. Jennifer Fielden will rejoin us as a 5th grade math team teacher with Ms. Bethany Paupeck.
  • Ms. Julie Whitaker will remain as a Remote Choice Teacher for Kindergarten.

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Flu Shots at Kennedy


Please call the Kingsport Health Department for more information!

Join our PTA!

Our PTA will meet via Zoom this year! So, no matter where you are, you can jump on line and share your voice!

Be looking for papers from the PTA on the following:

  • Rada Fundraiser (This is always a great way for our PTA to make money and support our students. I've purchased the dip mixes, food, and cutlery and it's all amazing!
  • PTA Membership - It only costs $5 to join and your membership supports our Coyotes!
  • Gift Baskets/Raffle - Be on the look out for info coming home about an awesome basket full of great stuff being auctioned off by our PTA! If you have a local business and would like to contribute, let us know! We'll include your name and business in the next Family Newsletter.
  • Our PTA Meeting Date/Time to be announced soon!

Kennedy is a Bully-Free Zone! #CoyotesAreKind

Students can use P3 Campus to report: assault, bullying, cyberbullying, fighting, suicide concerns, drugs, alcohol, weapons or other types of dangerous situations that threaten their safety or the safety of others for the purpose of prevention and intervention.

Reporting can be done via the school or district websites (click the light bulb icon on the homepage), P3 Campus mobile app, going to, or by scanning the QR code on posters in schools.

P3 Campus is one more part of our continuous efforts to improve school and student safety. Please encourage your student to use this potentially life saving technology when needed to better our schools and community.

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This year is different than any other year we have had together. Here are a few things to be looking for in your email:


Date TBA - Book Fair online this year (We get a portion of the profits!! Yay!)

Date TBA - PTA Meeting at 12:00 noon Via Zoom at JFK

October 12-16 Fall Break (No School)

October 19 - Teacher In-service Day (No School)

October 27 - Picture Day (Say Cheese!) - RCL Vitual Students will be scheduled in the afternoon after Face-to-Face students are finished.

Things we sure will miss this year...

Things we'll miss this year: Spooky Literacy Night, Fall Festival, and our Thankful Meal :(

HOPEFULLY, next year everything will be back to normal.

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When progress monitoring indicates that the intervention is no longer needed, the child continues to receive support from the general education curriculum (Tier I). When progress monitoring shows that a child is not responding to the intervention, another approach or intervention may be tried. If a higher level of support is needed, students may be given more intense intervention that further focuses on the supporting skills they need to be successful learners (Tier lll). Students who do not respond to Tier III interventions may be referred for special education.

Students receiving Tier II or Tier III interventions will take home a letter every 4 1/2 weeks to let their families know how they are progressing.

Here are a few ways parents can support what their child is doing in school:

  • Make reading an everyday habit a home
  • Communicate with your child’s teacher
  • Monitor and assist with homework assignments
  • Review progress monitoring data
  • Share your child’s successes
  • Learn more about the curricula and interventions being used in your child’s school
  • Attend parent/teacher conferences and other school meeting about your child

Talk to your child’s teacher or principal for more information about how RTI² is being implemented in your child’s school.

For more information, please contact:

Brett Herron, Associate Principal or 857-2700

**** Kennedy Office Staff ****

Ms. Cindy Culbertson - Office Assistant

Ms. Kem Padgett - Award Winning KCS Secretary

Ms. Debbie Allen - Family Liaison

Ms. Kim Oaks-Blair - School Counselor

Mr. Brett Herron- Associate Principal

Dr. Janice Irvin - Principal

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Kennedy Constants

We hope you find this permanent section helpful! Please let us know if we can clarify anything for you.

Attendance, Absences, and Tardiness

Every Coyote is urged to form excellent habits regarding attendance and promptness. A good start every day helps foster a positive attitude. Should your Coyote be absent, please call our school office to let us know the reason. Children should arrive to their classrooms no later than 8:15 having eaten breakfast.


Please only send healthy snacks as a birthday treat for your child's class. We cannot accept cupcakes, cakes, or homemade items. Please make arrangements with your child's teacher before sending in healthy treats.

Flowers, balloons, etc. should not be sent to the office for students. Please give these sweet gifts at home.

Breakfast and Lunch Programs

Kennedy Elementary was the lucky recipient of a grant that allows our Coyotes to eat a "no cost" breakfast and lunch each day. Please have your Coyote to school by 7:55 if she or he needs to eat breakfast with us. Eating here is encouraged-- our food is really good.

Ice-cream day is Friday and must be purchased ($1)

Healthy chips can also be purchased ($1)

Per school policy, students cannot bring fast food in the cafeteria. Please have your student eat his/her meal prior to arriving at school.

Bus Transportation

Students who live more than 1 mile from school are eligible for bus transportation. Our buses are 14, and 20. If your child's transportation plan needs to change, please call the office prior to 2:45 PM (earlier is always better) so we can make sure that message gets to your Coyote.

The number to the transportation garage is 392-4416, if needed.


  1. During AM drop off, please stay in your car and allow your child to exit independently.
  2. During AM drop off, please unload at all 4 numbers/lanes. No need to stop at the bottom of the hill.
  3. During AM drop off, students can walk into the cafe from 7:30-8:05.
  4. In the afternoons, 4th and 5th grade cars (side parking lot) please turn RIGHT after you pick-up.
  5. In the afternoons, PLEASE USE YOUR CAR TAG! :) There is often a glare and I cannot see faces until you are right beside me. This helps our line move as quickly as possible.


As a school, we voted to start using the ClassDojo app last year. This year we will fully implement the use of this app. It's an awesome tool for us to share events and pictures with you of your child doing great things!

Contact us!

857-2700 - Main Office

857-2704 - Cafe, Karen Mullins

857-2702 -Nurse Lundy

378-2340 -Fax

1500 Woodland Avenue

Kingsport, TN 37665


Our school-wide expectations are used in all areas of our school.

They are:

H- Helping Others

O- Overcoming Challenges

W- Willingness to Learn

L- Leading with Respect

Hear us HOWL!

In addition to these expectations we use Positive Discipline with Lifeskills at Kennedy Elementary. We know that a part of growing our students as leaders includes citizenship and character. We believe our students are the best in Tennessee.

Kennedy Family Lifeskills for Reference

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Kennedy Family Positive Discipline Reference

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This (above) is the guide a group of Kennedy teachers brought back from a Positive Discipline training in Atlanta this past summer. Each teacher in our school uses this guide during Classroom Meetings each day.

Positive Discipline really boils down to discipline that is kind and firm. We focus on fixing the behavior, not necessarily punishment. It's based on respect and character building.


Each month we have fire drills, and other drills as mandated by state law. These are recorded. During drills students are instructed not to talk. Additionally, our school is also equipped with an AED (automated External Defibrillator) and stock EpiPens.

Health and Medical

Our school nurse is Angie Lundy, RN. She is outstanding and has been at Kennedy for over a decade. If your child is ever sick and you aren't sure if they are well enough to attend, you can always bring your child in to be checked by her. Many Kennedy faculty members have used her office in this capacity.

Additionally, we have a tele-medicine program where a child can be seen via a camera and equipment in Nurse Lundy's office. They can receive antibiotics through this program if needed! We encourage you to use this program! It's awesome!


As a general rule, Kennedy Elementary does not assign homework every night. We do encourage you to read with your child at least 20 minutes each night (about three story books with the littles!). If your child is older/able, they can read out loud to you on the way to practice, while you make dinner, or on your way to the grocery. Reading each night adds up! Please add this to your daily routine!

Lost and Found

Please, please, please put your child's first and last name/telephone number in your child's coat! We have a mountain of homeless coats by the end of the year! If you are wondering, we donate homeless coats to Higher Ground at the end of the year so they can go back into our Lynn Garden Community where needed. Please visit our Lost and Found periodically.

Opportunities for Coyotes

Ambassadors (4th and 5th Grade Student Council)

AM Tutoring (5th Grade)

Big Brothers Big Sisters (all grades)

Breakfast Club (for students with sensory needs)

Chorus (all grades)

DBYes (DB student mentors)

HOWLers (Boys, 4th and 5th)

Kiwanis Club Readers (volunteers)

RTI - Response to Intervention (time set aside to catch up academically)


Ladies of Lynn Garden (Girls 4th and 5th)

Lego League

Maker Space (only one in a KCS elementary school!)

Morning Mile (Coach Robbins - 7:45-8:00)

Speech Services (for qualifying students)

Spelling Bee (3rd, 4th, and 5th)

Snacks/Water Bottles

Everyone knows a hungry brain can't concentrate and learn. No need for our Coyotes to be hangry! Healthy snacks and water bottles are not only welcomed, they are encouraged! Please remind your Coyote that only water should be in their bottles. Examples of good snacks- Goldfish, cheese sticks, pretzels, and apples.

Testing Policies

For your information and scheduling purposes, a schedule of tests administered to our Coyotes is included on our district website under the "Parents" tab. You will also receive a school flier prior to the administration of standardized tests. Kennedy families will receive results of our TNReady/TCAP testing as soon as they become available (this past year it took several months).

Our KCS Website can be found here:

Zoning and Tuition

If you don't live in Lynn Garden but you would like your child to attend/continue attending Kennedy, you will need to apply for a zoning exemption every year. Applications for the 2020-2021 school year will be available on our website starting in March 2020.

If you have any questions feel free to contact Alisa Strong ( via email or by calling (423)378-2100.

Approvals are based on: Attendance, Behavior, and Classroom Space

Our vision, our students, our community, our future!

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Highlights - more pictures can be found on Twitter! @KCS_Kennedy

Hear us HOWL!