Wildcat News

~ End of the Year: June 1st Early Dismissal ~

Safe, Responsible, & Kind...

Grant Wood Families,

No School on Monday, May 30th - Memorial Day.

We have reached the last week, the last two days, of our school year.

  • Tuesday (May 31st) is a regular dismissal day with our students dismissing at 2:55pm;
  • Wednesday, June 1st - however, with it being the last day of school is an early dismissal day with our students dismissing at 1:55pm.

The 2021-22 school year has been a year of learning and a year of working to be safe, kind, and responsible for all our students and our school community. This year like last, has also been a year of navigating change and challenge. We are proud of all our students' and families' perseverance. We are thankful to our supportive and dedicated staff.

Our work in community continues and in collaboration we shall continue our growth and progress next year. It is our hope for everyone to have a relaxing and safe summer.

Our 2022-23 school year will start on August 23rd; the District calendar for next year can be found at our District's website.

Golden Ticket Update:

Congratulations!!! Great job being Safe, Kind, & Responsible within and beyond the classroom. Our two most recent recipients of the traveling Golden Ticket class plaque are:

21-22 Golden Ticket class recipients:

May 27th, 2022 - Ms. Williams' 2nd & Ms. Bargo's 5th grade classes!

May 20th, 2022 - Mr. Muñoz’s 3rd

May 13th, 2022 - Ms. Gibson’s 1st

May 6th, 2022 - Ms. Wantock’s 2nd

In December 2021, Grant Wood Elementary incorporated this additional recognition system to acknowledge when whole classes are observed meeting school expectations in various settings throughout the school day. The Wildcat Way: being Safe, Responsible, & Kind.

*Students are unaware of which staff members posses the golden tickets on any given day.



  • May 30th - No School (Memorial Day)
  • May 31st - Dismissal at 2:55pm

JUNE: 6th grade "send off" info sent separately to 6th grade parents

  • June 1st - Last day of the school year - early dismissal 1:55pm

JULY: Summer School info sent separately to registered families

  • July 11th - August 4th (Monday through Thursday only; 8am-11am)


Principal: Ms. Maria, martin.maria@iowacityschools.org

School Facilitator: Mr. Brown, brown.ryan@iowacityschools.org

Counselor: Ms. Newman, newman.heather@iowacityschools.org

Student & Family Advocate: Mrs. Palante, palante.alyssa@iowacityschools.org

Instructional Design Strategist (IDS): Ms. Fischer, fischer.stacy@iowacityschools.org

Attendance Secretary: Ms. Steggall, steggall.kara@iowacityschools.org

Office Secretary: Ms. Peggy, tucker.peggy@iowacityschools.org







Congratulations to Grant Wood's 2022 6th graders!

Our Wildcat Compass

By Ms. Maria - June 1st, 2022

As we think through all that you have been…

this year and last;

Let us also think back to KG, even pre-school;

You may have been here at Grant Wood

...or might not…

At times you may have felt lost,

Other times, you may have felt just right.

And as you move on - beyond Grant Wood

Let us not forget our Wildcat compass…

Be Safe, Kind, and Responsible

Remember always, “You are braver than you believe,

Stronger than you seem, and, smarter than you think,”

Said Winnie the Pooh

Pooh’s words ring true when you

Remember your Wildcat compass;

Remember where you’ve been

As you follow your path into the future.

We are not smart because of what we already know;

We are intelligent because of our commitment…

To always learn and grow.

Think back if you can, to the first time

…You wrote your name,

…Read your first word,

…When you overcame your first challenge;

You were smart then, and

You’ve continued to become smarter

Through your journey here at Grant Wood

Think of what's to come next year,

With jr. high, high school, college, and further

You’ll be pushed to learn more

Than what you think you already know.

Keep your Wildcat compass close:

Be safe, kind, and responsible

But also broaden the various directions

In which the compass can take you:

Be compassionate, honest, and courageous…

As well as trustworthy, inclusive, and empathetic.

Persist and persevere as you continue…

To learn and grow.

In your future - years, well into your future -

Some small child might ask you,

as some of you have asked me,

How old are you?

And instead of answering with a number

You’ll share about the many journeys

Through which you’ve learned and grown

You might even share with them

Your Wildcat compass -

to be Safe, Kind, and Responsible

Our Wildcat compass, however,

Should never keep you from exploring

Nor from taking learning risks;

Push yourself to discover

The Wildcat compass may not only point you

North, South, East or West…

But in directions we have not yet envisioned

Discover and explore your voice & your ideas

Remember your Wildcat compass:

Be Safe, Kind, and Responsible -

Once a Wildcat, Always a Wildcat!

And as Pooh says,

There is always more to discover!

¡¡¡Congratulations, Wildcats!!!

2021-2022 Grant Wood Yearbook

Please use this link to order 2021-22 yearbooks! They are $10.
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2022-23 Infinite Campus Registration -

Registration for the 2022-2023 school year is now open - (if you have the needed documentation, specified below) you do not have to wait for August!

We encourage you to take this early opportunity to register your students for the next school year. As a reminder, all families are required to register their students in Infinite Campus through the process known as Online Registration for the 2022-2023 school year (this does not necessarily mean you are registering for the online program). Please use the link below to register your child(ren). Remember to select the school year “22-23” to register for next year.

Registration instructions for returning families to the District

Families who need assistance with the registration process may attend on-site registration in August:

On-Site Registration Schedule

  • Elementary School On-Site Registration
    August 1, 2022: 8:00am - 6:00pm

  • Junior High and High School New-to-District Student Registration
    August 8, 2022

  • Returning 7th and 8th Grade Student Registration
    (North Central Junior High and Northwest Junior High)
    August 11, 2022

  • High School Returning Student Registration
    August 11, 2022 and August 12, 2022

  • Returning 7th and 8th Grade Student Registration
    (South East Junior High)
    August 12, 2022

If you are planning to attend on-site registration, please prepare by bringing the following items with you. If you do not have the needed documentation, please come to on-site registration and we will assist you. Required documentation:

  • Verification of your child’s birth date (examples: a copy of your child’s birth certificate or passport); required for new students only. For additional options, please contact the Educational Services Center at (319) 688-1000.
  • Child's immunization records (see Immunization Requirements)
  • Proof of residency (examples: a lease/rental agreement or utility bill); only required for returning students when changing schools or if you have moved.

We thank you for taking the time to register your students early.

Health & Safety - 5/27/2022 Update:

Our District has continued to track COVID-19 rates in our schools and in our county while also working closely with Johnson County Public Health and local health experts regarding appropriate COVID-19 safety protocols. Unfortunately, the Johnson County COVID-19 transmission level has again shifted into the “high” category.

As a reminder, our District continues to follow our health and safety guidelines, which are adjusted based on the county transmission level. Due to this shift into the “high” transmission category, we encourage you to wear a mask indoors when appropriate, practice social distancing when possible, and stay home when sick as these continue to be effective COVID-19 health and safety measures. On May 16, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit ruled that school districts cannot universally require facemasks to be worn; however, we continue to strongly encourage their use when COVID-19 transmission rates are high in our community. In addition, it is recommended to get vaccinated (and boosted) if you are eligible.

The Golden Ticket - Traveling Classroom Plaque

Congratulations!!! Great job being Safe, Kind, & Responsible within and beyond the classroom.

21-22 Golden Ticket class recipients:

May 27th, 2022 - Ms. Williams' 2nd & Ms. Bargo's 5th grade classes!

May 20th, 2022 - Mr. Muñoz’s 3rd

May 13th, 2022 - Ms. Gibson’s 1st

May 6th, 2022 - Ms. Wantock’s 2nd

In December 2021, Grant Wood Elementary incorporated this additional recognition system to acknowledge when whole classes are observed meeting school expectations in various settings throughout the school day. The Wildcat Way: being Safe, Responsible, & Kind.

*Students are unaware of which staff members posses the golden tickets on any given day.

South East Junior High - Summer BOOST Program

We are excited to kick off the 2022-2023 school year with our Summer BOOST program! Students in this program will have the opportunity to develop relationships with staff members, meet their peers from other elementary schools, gain a familiarity with the building, and build some skills essential for success in junior high.

This program is great for any incoming 6th grade students or any students that were online this previous year. However all South East Junior High students are welcomed. We will be doing fun activities throughout the two weeks. Students can come to one, some, or every day the program is offered. Here are some important details about the 2 week program:

  • Dates: July 25th- July 28th, August 1st-4th (Monday-Thursday)

  • Time: 8:50am-11:50am

  • Entering and Exit: Students will enter and exit using Door 9 in the back parking lot. The back parking lot can be accessed using 1st Ave. Please do not use the main driveway/entrance.

  • Schedule: Day will consist of four periods, each 40 minutes long. There is a 3 minute transitional period in between classes. The four periods are: Reading/Language Arts, Leadership, Math, and Organization/Team Building

  • Breakfast/Lunch: Students will be able to grab a sack lunch that includes the next day's breakfast at the end of each day. Students are encouraged to bring their own refillable water bottles.

  • Transportation: There is no transportation provided

We are excited to meet new faces and see some familiar ones in July. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Reggie Shipp via email (shipp.reginald@iowacityschools.org)

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2022-23 School Meal Update:

Dear Families and Staff,

We would like to share information with you regarding meal costs for the 2022-23 school year. Unfortunately, the government-funded free meal program for all students that was established during the COVID-19 pandemic will come to an end at the conclusion of the 2021-22 school year. This means that there will now be a cost associated with school meals for all families who do not meet the Free & Reduced Meal requirements when school begins next fall.

We understand this change may cause concern; however, there are important steps you can take today to make sure your student receives the meals they need next year.

  1. Complete an application for Free & Reduced Meals. If your student qualifies for free or reduced meals, they can still receive them next year, but you must take action to make it happen. The 2022-2023 online application will be available on our District’s website after July 1, 2022, at https://www.myschoolapps.com/Home/PickDistrict. Even if you completed the 2021-2022 application, you will still need to complete the 2022-2023 application as well. If you need assistance completing this form, please contact the Nutrition Services Department at (319) 688-1021.

  2. Families that do not qualify for free or reduced meals can begin depositing money into their student’s meal account by logging into MySchoolBucks.com to prepare for the cost of school lunches next year. Information on meal prices for the 2022-2023 school year can be found at www.iowacityschools.org/MealPrices. If you have questions about adding money to your student’s account or if you need assistance accessing MySchoolBucks, please contact the Nutrition Services Department at (319) 688-1021.

Our District will make summer meals available for all children without charge. Meals will be provided, on a first-come, first-serve basis, at the site and times as follows:

WHAT: Morning Snack
WHERE: Wetherby Park
WHEN: June 13th - July 1st AND July 11th - August 5th
TIME: 10:30 AM - 11:00 AM Monday through Friday

Thank you for your attention to this upcoming change. We remain dedicated to ensuring that all students have access to school meals and we will provide the necessary assistance to make that possible. Please have a safe and enjoyable summer!


Alison Demory

Director of Nutrition Services

Iowa City Community School District

May - Jewish American & Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month

Along with National Poetry Month, in May we also honor the history and contributions of our Jewish American and Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities.

Watercress is a picture book for ages 4-8 that tells the story of an Asian American family who find watercress on the side of the road, which brings up powerful stories and memories of the mother’s family in China.

Regarding Jewish American heritage the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center has exhibitions that help teach younger visitors about prejudice, discrimination, racism, and speaking out for what’s right. They provide exhibitions that are recommended for ages 8 and up.

The Wildcat Way - in all settings:

Please help remind our students of the Wildcat Way: Being Safe, Responsible, & Kind, across the various settings of the school day - within classrooms, hallways, recess, and restrooms. And within the cafeteria during meal times.

Cafeteria -

  • Kind & Responsible: Clean up after self- throw out trash;
  • Safe & Responsible: Remain seated facing the table;
  • Kind, Safe, & Responsible: Voice volume 1 & 2 (inside voices: whisper & conversation);
  • Kind to staff & students: Use "please," "thank you," "excuse me," and other kinds words;
  • Safe & Kind: Maintain personal space - keep hands & feet to self, do not touch others or their food;
  • Safe, Kind, & Responsible: Show patience & use walking feet, including when lining up

Recess/Playgrounds -

  • Safe & Responsible: Line up and transition using walking feet;
  • Safe & Kind: Maintain personal space - keep hands & feet to self;
  • Kind, Safe, & Responsible: Voice volume 1 while in line and in the building (inside whisper voice volume);
  • Kind to staff & students: Use "please," "thank you," "excuse me," and other kinds words including while playing;
  • Safe, Kind, & Responsible: When playing - engage in school-appropriate safe play

Your support is greatly appreciated!

Monitoring Children's Internet Use

Did you know that parents have the ability to monitor and see your child(ren)'s internet activity on District devices, and to set additional limits beyond those established by the District?

ICCSD is entering its fourth year of using Securly, a service that filters internet access on District devices and also includes the SecurlyHome Parent Hub, which parents can use to monitor internet usage, receive usage notifications, and establish limits on what your child can access. Limits parents can set include turning school-issued devices off at parent-determined times (such as bedtime).

You may have already received an email from Securly when your child was issued their 1:1 device. You can access Securly at https://www.securly.com/parent-login, and your login email will be the primary email address listed for your child(ren)'s contacts in PowerSchool. If you have trouble accessing Securly, please verify your primary contact email in PowerSchool or contact your child's school to do so (Grant Wood, 319-688-1180). You can also contact Securly support if you've confirmed your email in PowerSchool and are still having trouble accessing Securly.

The Securly Home App allows you to monitor & restrict children's internet use. Once you register for your Securly Parent Portal account, download the Securly Home app and navigate the tools from your cellphone/handheld device to support your child's safe internet use on the school-issued chromebook.

Additional information about content filtering and about Securly can be on the ICCSD Technology & Innovation Blog.

Care Assessment & Securly Monitoring Tool

In 2018, our Board directed the administrative team to create a safety committee. The goal of the committee was to conduct research and make recommendations back to the Board on safety measures to be implemented across our District. Care Assessment was one of those recommendations.

Care Assessment is a program to prevent violence and resolve conflicts proactively. The goal is early detection and attention to problems such as bullying, harassment, teasing, and conflict before it escalates into violent behavior. This is accomplished through staff observation, student reporting, and the Say Something incident reporting tool. In addition to these methods, our District implemented the Securly 24 monitoring tool for District technology devices.

Our District uses Securly content filtering to block access to inappropriate websites and material on school-owned devices. In addition to blocking inappropriate content, Securly alerts the district when they detect activity such as searches, sites visited, or emails sent and received that indicate a student may be considering self-harm and harming others. The goal of this monitoring is to provide early notification of concerns so that families and schools can work together to provide intervention and support in an effort to circumvent violence and harm to oneself.

For additional information on the process Securly uses when concerning activity is detected, please visit the Securly informational page located on the District’s website.

If you have any questions regarding Securly and its use within our District, please visit our Care Assessment webpage or contact Kate Callahan at callahan.kate@iowacityschools.org.

PBIS - Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports

PBIS invests in proactive prevention. Some of the strategies include:

  • Ongoing recognition of appropriate behavior—including verbal praise & documented recognitions, ClassDojo points reedemable for tangible rewards, and the traveling Golden Ticket class plaque;
  • Proactive intervention—identifying expected building behaviors throughout all school settings;
  • Active teaching & reteaching—teachers, students, families, and community members often work together to teach and model appropriate and expected behaviors;
  • Clear, consistent responses to inappropriate behavior;
  • Additional support for students with more significant needs; and,
  • Collecting and using data to inform decisions

More PBIS information available here.

Pick up/Drop Off - Front Parking Lot Use:

  • Much needed SAFETY: We ask that everyone practice extra caution when entering, driving in, and exiting the front parking lot. Please do not enter your vehicle onto the back parking lot of the school and remember - For the safety of our students and their families, as well as our staff, the only school parking lot for drop off and pick up at Grant Wood is the school's front parking lot;
  • BUS parking - depending on weather, the school bus will be using either the neighboring front lot or the gated drive way spot - these designated bus spots must not be used by staff or families;
  • CAR LINE: in the front parking lot - please advance your vehicle to the front-most available car spot in the car line - this will help minimize safety issues in the parking lot associated to cars trying to pass each other while pedestrians may be walking up from designated parking spots and while parents exit their children from vehicles in the car line. Children should only enter vehicles from the side of the car closest to the walkway/sidewalk, not the parking lot side - to avoid safety issues relating to moving vehicles;
  • If using the car line (morning or afternoon) versus a designated parking spot - drivers must remain in your vehicle (do not leave your car unattended in the car line) - also,
  • (In the afternoon) please advance in the car line when Wood Staff indicates to do so; students will not be allowed to approach cars along the walkway/sidewalk going towards Lakeside Drive.
  • All students being picked up at the car line will be sent to the car line according to the numbered spot called by the staff in the parking lot;
  • Pedestrian parents & students: Walking students will be able to access campus in a variety of directions from the front or back of the building - At dismissal pedestrian parents should approach a staff member to have their child's name called (via radio) for their child to meet them at identified location;
  • City Streets: If you are using California Ave. or Western Road - please note that neither city streets nor the Fairmeadows Park lot (off of Western Road) are school property (they are not) and require that you adhere to Iowa DOT Traffic and Safety. We highly encourage and recommend the use of Grant Wood's front parking lot for drop off and pick up.

Dreambox Math

Dreambox recommends that students complete five or more lessons per week with DreamBox Learning; because students who complete five lessons each week show more learning growth than peers who complete fewer lessons. Your student should not shy away from incorrect answers, because those wrong answers actually help DreamBox find the best lesson for each student to reinforce concepts they’re struggling with and build on their strengths.

Set goals with your student to help them gain self-discipline, self-awareness, and self-esteem. Practicing and learning math with DreamBox is fun, but it can still present a challenge. Productive struggle is all part of the program, and parents should let students work through their struggles, helping them see that they can do what at first may seem difficult. DreamBox automatically and intelligently adjusts the difficulty based on your child’s progress, including their use of hints/help, ensuring they don’t become overwhelmed or bored.

Lexia (Core 5) Usage Minutes

On average, students can complete a unit in Lexia Core5 in about five minutes. However, the time to complete a unit will naturally vary from student to student. The time it takes an individual student to complete a unit also depends on the complexity of the unit, the number of questions in the unit, and whether the student branches to a different instructional step, including if the student branches to a different instructional step multiple times in a unit.

Each activity is marked with a colored unit meter that shows how far the student has progressed in that activity. The color of each unit meter indicates the area of reading the activity targets: Phonological Awareness, Structural Analysis, Vocabulary, Phonics, Fluency/Automaticity, and Comprehension. As students complete units in an activity, the sections of the unit meter will fill in.

Recommended Lexia minutes by grade:

  • KG-3rd grades: 20 to 60 minutes per week
  • 4th & 5th grades: 20 to 80 minutes per week
  • 6th graders: 100 minutes per week

Breakfast at Grant Wood starts at 7:30am:

  • Only students eating breakfast at school should enter school via the cafeteria from 7:30am-7:50am; breakfast service at the cafeteria stops at 7:50am;
  • Students entering the cafeteria during breakfast time will need to remain in the cafeteria up until 7:45am;
  • At 7:45am staff will start dismissing students from the cafeteria to the classrooms - dismissal from the cafeteria is structured with 1-2 tables dismissed at a time by staff;
  • In support of a positive culture and climate within our cafeteria - indoor voice volume at either 1(whisper) or 2 (indoor conversation) is most conducive;
  • Students arriving at 7:50am or later should enter and pick up a breakfast at the front door;
  • School starts at 7:55am - at which time all students should be in their classrooms.

Celebrations and Food updates:

The ICCSD is committed to providing a safe and healthy learning environment for our students. In line with that goal, changes are being made to our District’s Wellness Policy regarding classroom snacks birthday treats and classroom celebrations.


When food is served to students in the classroom as a snack or during a classroom celebration, the following rules apply (ICCSD Wellness Policy 507.9):

  • allow only fresh fruits/vegetables or purchased foods with the ingredients listed (no homemade foods).
  • allow only foods that meet the Healthy Food Guidelines/ Smart Snacks. (the only exception to this would be food-tasting related to district-approved curriculum lessons)
  • not allow foods with peanuts or peanut butter, or foods that were made in a factory where cross-contamination may occur.
  • food that does not meet the guidelines will be sent home.

The ICCSD Wellness Policy Classroom Snacks and Celebrations is a complete list of approved foods including where the approved food items can be purchased.

NOTE: While the policy detailed below does allow for some approved foods, at this time given the extra precautions due to Covid-19, we will be acknowledging birthdays without food/snacks brought from home.

NO food birthday-celebrations in school/classrooms

In line with our District’s Wellness Policy, student birthdays can be acknowledged in the classrooms with a special acknowledgement. Please note these birthday celebrations will not involve food. If food is sent to school for birthdays the food items will need to be returned home.

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ICCSD Non-Discrimination Policy

It is the policy of the Iowa City Community School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic status in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices. There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. If you have questions or a grievance related to this policy, please contact Eric Howard, Director of Equity and Employee Relations, 1725 N. Dodge St., Iowa City, IA 52245, 319-688-1000, howard.eric@iowacityschools.org.