News from the Nest

Sand Pine Elementary School 2023-24

September 2023

Cranes gROWing Together!

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A Note from your Administrators

Happy September, Crane families!

We have had a wonderful start to the 2023-24 school year! We hope your family fared well during Hurricane Idalia.

Students are settling into routines and procedures, and lots of learning is happening in each and every classroom. We are seeing many examples of our schoolwide expectations in practice - Be Kind, Be Responsible, Be Engaged, and Be Safe. Students are earning Sand Dollars for following expectations and will be able to cash in those dollars in our new PBIS Store in the cafeteria beginning on September 15. Very exciting!

Due to being out of school for two days, our Open House nights had to be changed. The new dates are below. We are looking forward to seeing all of our families at Open House and all of the other activities we have planned for the month of September!

If you have not already done so, please visit the Parent Portal and complete all the parent acknowledgments at your earliest opportunity.

If either of us can ever be of any assistance to your child or family, please reach out to us.


Mrs. Shauger and Mrs. Grimsley

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Picture Day

Fall pictures for all students will be on Friday, September 15. These will be individual pictures that will be included in our school yearbook at the end of the year. Save the date flyers will go home with students in the coming days. A more detailed ordering flyer will follow.

We look forward to seeing all our Cranes looking sharp on picture day!

Parent Portal

The myStudent Parent Portal is an online platform where you will view your child's grades, attendance, communicate with teachers, and can make payment for things like field trips and other school-related activities.

There are a series of required parental acknowledgements and consents about various specific educational opportunities and related activities based on the new legislation passed by the state of Florida. You will need to proceed through these acknowledgements and consents in order to access the portal for this school year. There is a link to log into the portal on the district website. If you need any assistance, please call the office at (813) 794-1900.

Arrival and Dismissal

Car line:

Our new double car line seems to be helping expedite arrival and dismissal! Thank you for bearing with us as we implemented this new procedure. We now have permanent striping on the pavement thanks to the prompt attention of our district painting department.

To ensure safety, please adhere to these simple rules while you are in the car line:

  • Refrain from being on your cell phone while in the line. We need all drivers paying full attention to the flow of traffic and being attentive to where students are walking.
  • Students must exit on the passenger side of the vehicle only.
  • Please place your car in PARK after you pull into a numbered space. This will assist keeping our students and staff walking between the cars for the outside lane safe.

Also, please do not drop off your child in the turn lane on County Line Road. This not allowed and is a safety hazard. Please come through the car line completely.

Changes of Transportation:
If you need to change your child's mode of transportation, the latest you may do so is 2:15 pm. This allows us ample time to let both the teacher and child know of the change. You may change transportation by calling the office at (813) 794-1900 or by using our online form on the school website. Please do not send last minute notification to the teacher via email, as all changes in dismissal must come through the front office.

If you need to pick your child up early, the latest you may do so is 3:00 pm, so as not to interfere with dismissal.

On Early Release Day, dismissal begins at 1:30 pm. Please have change of transportation reported by 11:45 am. The latest time you may sign out your child on these days is 1:00 pm.

Rainy Day Dismissal:

Rainy day dismissal is called when severe weather is predicted to affect dismissal.

Severe weather is defined as lightning, thunder, heavy rain or wind.

Here at Sand Pine, we utilize the messaging system in myStudent to notify parents if we have Rainy Day Dismissal. We will also post a flag on the fence at the entrance of the school if we will be having rainy day dismissal. Rainy day will be called if it is raining hard or if there is lightning in the area. If it is just sprinkling, rainy day dismissal may not be called. Please monitor myStudent to be sure. Our first priority is student safety! We will make every effort to send a notification by 2:45 pm if we will have rainy day dismissal.

Breakfast and Lunch

Breakfast for Walkers/Bikers/Car Riders:

If you wish your child to eat breakfast at school, please be sure that they arrive prior to the tardy bell at 9:20 am. Breakfast concludes at that time.


Students that bring a lunchbox from home will be asked to eat their lunch from the lunchbox first before going through the lunch line for cafeteria lunch. This is so that food is not wasted and that your child eats the lunch you have prepared for them. Please contact your child's teacher if you need further clarification or have a special request. Thank you!

Here is a link to the school meals menu for Sand Pine:

Lunch Visitors

Family lunches will be on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday only, excluding Early Release Days. We will start welcoming visitors for lunch on Monday, September 11. Here are the lunch procedures:

1. Parents must show ID and be Raptored in prior to joining their child for lunch. They must wear badge the entire time they are on campus. Only family members listed on the emergency card of the child may visit for lunch.

2. Parents may not sit at the table with the class. There are some tables inside the cafeteria, outdoor lunch tables, and in the Butterfly Garden where you can enjoy lunch.

3. Parents may only eat with their own child (no classmates).

4. Once lunch is over, parent should go back to office to check out. They may not join their child at recess or walk them back to the classroom.

We look forward to seeing our families enjoying lunch together on campus!

Family Communication

All schools in Pasco County will be using communication features through myStudent this year. Please be sure your contact information is updated in the Parent Portal. We will continue to share information on our school website, Facebook and Twitter pages.

We have a new and improved version of MyStudent for the 2023-24 school year. MyStudent is now your ONE STOP SHOP for everything from student grades, attendance, and district messages.

Connect with Us on Social Media

Please be sure to follow our school Facebook page at, our Sand Pine PTA page at, and our new school Twitter (@SPES_Cranes). Direct communication with our families will occur within the myStudent Parent Portal. The bios of our new school staff members are posted now! Throughout the school year, we will be posting not only information for families, but also photos of all the amazing things that happen here on campus!

Volunteering at Sand Pine

We love our volunteers at Sand Pine! Before volunteering, you must be approved by the district. This includes chaperoning field trips or helping teachers on campus. Please visit this website for more information: or call Mrs. Urban in the front office if you need assistance.

Staff Golden Cranes for August

Upcoming Events

Early Release Days

For staff to be able to participate in district and school directed professional development, there are eight Wednesdays during the school year where students will be released two hours early (1:30 pm). The dates are listed below. Please ensure that you have a concrete plan ahead of time about how your child will get home on these days. Thank you!

  • September 6, 2023
  • October 4, 2023
  • November 1, 2023
  • December 6, 2023
  • January 10, 2024
  • February 14, 2024
  • March 13, 2024
  • April 10, 2024
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Progress Reports

Progress Reports for the first quarter will be released in the Parent Portal on Friday, September 15. Please log in to the portal to find out how your child is progressing, and contact your child's teacher if you have any questions or concerns. Our goal is for every student at SPES to grow academically, socially, and emotionally each and every day!

Sunshine State Young Reader Award Celebration

We are so excited to celebrate our amazing Crane readers on Friday, September 29 during the school day. This celebration is for students who have read and passed quizzes for 3 SSYRA books. Please see the flyer below for more information.
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Ceiling Tile Painting Night

On Friday, September 29, our awesome SPES PTA will host a ceiling tile painting night for our families. This was a big hit last year, and these tiles are now displayed in the ceiling of our cafeteria. Please see the flyer below for more details. Space is limited, so please reserve your spot soon!
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