Van Allen Newsletter

A Preview and an Update for Our School Community

January 27, 2023 | Volume 11

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🚨 Van Allen News 🚨

PTO Meeting, Thursday, February 9th

  • 6:30pm in the Van Allen Library

No School, Friday, February 17th

  • The elementary school day begins at 7:55am and ends at 2:55pm

  • Please note that every Thursday is a one-hour early release

Yearbook Orders

Below is our link for ordering your 2022/2023 Van Allen yearbook. The link is active now; it will expire on March 3rd.

🚨 Iowa City Community Schools News 🚨

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Iowa City Districtwide Parents Organization (DPO)

The Iowa City Districtwide Parents Organization (DPO) promotes active engagement and awareness at the school and district level through monthly open meetings that include speakers on matters related to education as well as opportunities to interact directly with the ICCSD administration, foundation, and school board.

DPO meetings are your opportunity to:

  • Connect with parents and caregivers from other schools’ parent organizations

  • Find out what is happening in our district directly from the school board and administration

  • Learn from experts about important matters related to children, youth, and education

  • Exchange ideas and gain information on local, state and national legislative issues

General meetings are held on the second Wednesday of the month, September-May, at 6:30-8:00 PM. Meetings will be held via Zoom through 2022. Additional information is available on the ICCSD DPO web page including the DPO Meeting Calendar.

ICCSD Foundation

What does the Foundation for ICCSD provide for our students? See below.

How do they do this? It only happens through giving. Donations from you and our community impact every student in every grade at every school. Your help can make such a difference. Please consider giving today.

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Iowa City Music Auxiliary Raygun T-shirt Contest

We're raising funds to support the performing arts in ICCSD. The winning design will get a free shirt! Student submissions are due by Sunday, February 26. More info and to submit:

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Liberty High Mini Cheer Clinic

Liberty Varsity Cheer will host a mini cheer clinic on Sunday, February 12th from 8am-12pm in the Aux gym. Here is the link for registration:; registration closes on February 2nd.

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Liberty High School Sports Camps

  • See the link inserted below

Rumble Bots Robotics & STEM Workshop

5th & 6th Grade Students Only

The Liberty High School's robotics teams are thrilled to be hosting a day-long robotics camp for 5th and 6th graders on Friday, February 17th (a no school day). See the flyer and the link below for more information. Thank you for your interest as we strive to develop enthusiasm for STEM in our community & make connections among the students in our schools!

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🚨 Standing Items within the Newsletter 🚨

Arrival + Dismissal Procedures* - (Links, Below)

Specific Car Line Points of Emphasis/Reminders:

    • Supervision begins at 7:40am. As a result, students should NOT begin to arrive until 7:40am.

    • Students begin to enter the building at 7:50am.

    • School begins at 7:55am. At 7:55am, all students should begin entering the building through the front entrance (east side doors).

    • Always pull forward if/when there is space ahead of you.

    • Drivers should always remain in their vehicle when dropping off and picking up students. Please have your child as ready as possible when it is time for them to get out of the car.

    • Students should enter and exit their vehicle curbside through the passenger side doors; please do NOT allow children to leave the vehicle on the driver's side.

    • At dismissal, please place a visible sign in your vehicle to show the name and grade-level of the student(s) that you are picking-up.
      If you need a sign, they are available in the office.
      If you don't have a sign, a sheet of white paper and black marker will work.

    • Please share this information with anybody who might drop-off and/or pick-up students.

    • For a more comprehensive understanding of our arrival and dismissal procedures, please refer to the documents that are further below within this newsletter.

Abiding by these procedures help us create and maintain a "Safe, Supportive, and Collaborative Culture" (HRS, Level One) at Van Allen and more specifically, "Students, parents, and the community perceive the school environment as safe, supportive, and orderly" (HRS, Leading Indicator 1.1).

Your attention to this, and your patience are appreciated. Thank you.

Van Allen's Morning Car Line Procedures

Cell Phone/Personal Device Policy

Earlier this month, the Policy and Governance committee of the School Board requested that policy for the use of cell phones and personal devices be created for Elementary Schools to begin this school year. The final policy is, which is in effect immediately, is updated on the district website in the Elementary Handbook (linked); it is under personal property on page 10.

The District is committed to providing a safe and healthy learning environment for our students.

When food is served to students in the classroom as a snack, birthday treat, 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.
  • a list of acceptable foods (linked).

Thank you for your attention to this.

High Reliability Schools (HRS) Update

Thank you for taking the time to complete our High Reliability Schools (HRS) survey earlier this year. While reviewing our stakeholder data, it is evident that there is an opportunity for improvement with Leading Indicator 1.6, "Students, parents, and the community have formal ways to provide input regarding the optimal functioning in the school."

As a result, this linked form (also inserted, below) will become a standing item in our newsletter. We will look for additional opportunities to ensure that this form is readily available to you. Please note that submitting an idea to this form does not ensure that it will be implemented. Once we have responses to share, we will plan to include a section within our newsletter dedicated to providing feedback and/or any response in regards to the different ideas that we have received from this form (on a monthly basis).

HRS at Van Allen Elementary
Introducing our Van Allen Support Staff

#VanAllenPride - Follow and Like Us

We use these platforms (below) to highlight our accomplishments (including pictures) and share relevant announcements and reminders.

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Non-Discrimination Statement

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,