Susitna Elementary News


April 5, 2017

Volume 4, Issue 8

Please take a few minutes to read over all the exciting things happening at Susitna Elementary School. The newsletter is sent directly to your email address(es) once a month, so please make sure to keep the front office current on your preferred email contacts. Paper copies are available in the front office, or you can go to our school’s website to read this issue, or any others in the archive library.

Principal's Corner

Dear Susitna Families -

Our students are zipping right into Spring! This past week, it was awesome to recognize more than 70 students for the academic, social, emotional, and improved progress, and 75 students perfect attendance! Thank you to the parents and family members who took time out of their busy schedules to attend and cheer at the assemblies. We have a great community of compassionate learners. This week we are talking about making good choices. During announcements students remind each other daily by using an example about how to make good choices. Please continue to reinforce this at home. Way to go, Susitna!

Dodgeball K-2 (Tuesdays) and 3-5 (Thursdays) began this week! Drama Club continues their prep for The Elephant's Child Musical scheduled for May 11th and May 12th.

PEAK Testing - our state's annual testing for 3rd - 10th graders has started and is going smoothly. I really appreciate everyone's scheduling flexibility, and hard work to prepare. Please remember to get your child to bed early so they can be fresh and ready to test. Kids' need good nutrition, a good attitude, and a good nights sleep. Thank you for getting your children here on time and encouraging them to do their best.

PTA Family Spring Fling Carnival Night - Friday, April 7th, from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Join us to celebrate spring and a fun family night. There will be games to play and food is available for purchase.

Walkathon - 2nd Annual Walkathon is coming next month. We are in the process of finalizing our school needs and a flyer will go home soon with more details. Last year Susitna students earned money by being physically active for Technology upgrades. It was a huge success and we had a lot of fun in the sun staying active and benefitting our school.

We are trying to embed links into the newsletter to make it shorter. So wherever you see the heading and it says link you can click on it for more information.

Please read on to see more of the latest happenings at Susitna, and enjoy the pictures we've included in this issue of our newsletter!


Diane Hoffbauer

Students reminding our school community about social emotional learning (SEL) standards.
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Upcoming Dates of Importance


3rd - 7th - 4th Grade PEAK Testing

4th - Municipal Election!

7th - Susitna PTA Spring Fling Carnival 5:30-7:30 pm Friday

10th - 14th - 5th Grade PEAK Testing

10th - 21st - Drew Michael as Artist in Residence

13th - STEM (Science/Technology/Engineer/Math) Night 6-7:30 pm

16th - Easter

19th - Visit from Begich Counselors 2 pm for 5th graders

21st - Optional Family Dance 6-8pm

24th-26th - Project KI'L mini-camp

25th - Kindergarten Roundup 4pm

27th - Begich Middle School Open House 5:30-7 P.M. (see flyer)

28th - Optional K/1 Learning Lunch

- Optional PACT


1st - 5th - Susitna Educators Appreciation Week (teachers and anyone who works with your child here at Susitna)

3rd - Optional Parent Work Night

5th - Last day to check out library books from Susitna Library

9th - 11th - Alaska Native Heritage Center Preview Performances FREE (Community News)

10th - Walkathon

- Bike to School Day

11th - 12th - Optional Intensives

11th-12th - Drama Club The Elephant's Child Performances (Thursday 6pm Friday 2pm)

14th - Mother's Day

16th - Optional Jump up Tea

18th - All library books returned to Susitna Library

19th - Field Day k-2 am 3-5 pm

22nd - Optional 5th Grade Trip

24th - Last day of School - Wednesday

- k/1 Celebration

- 5th Grade Recognition

29th - Memorial Day


21st - First Day of School 2nd grade - 5th grade for 2017-2018 School Year

28th - First Day of School Kindergarten - 1st Grade for 2017-2018 School Year

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Begich Middle School Open House for 5th Graders

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Musical Notes

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All things musical .......

Grades K-2 have been exploring the barred instruments through an amusement park improvisation activity. They are learning the difference between glockenspiels, xylophones, and metalophones of different sizes. K-2 is also working on melodic direction, bigger is lower and smaller is higher. Grades 3-5 are continuing our recorder study with many BAG songs and improvisations. We are also working on team building through movement activities.

If your 3-5th grader would like to purchase a recorder, they will be on sale for $4 until the end of April.

Our music production The Elephant's Child has been postponed. We will perform for families Thursday, May 11th, at 6:30 P.M. and have a school assembly Friday, May 12th.

Our school was fortunate to receive a performance by the 9th Army Band "Frigid Brass". They brought a brass quintet featuring trumpet, horn, trombone, tuba, and drum set. The band played excerpts of music through time ending with some of the students' favorite popular radio songs. It was a wonderful educational experience to see and hear the band instruments in person.


Susitna Music

Yearbooks On Sale Now

Yearbooks are getting ready! Your yearbook committee has been hard at work preparing our yearbook to commemorate this year at Susitna. The price of the yearbook is $20. Please remember without a signed media release your child will not be pictured in the yearbook. The forms can be signed in the office anytime.

Physical Education Activities

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K-2 is on Tuesdays 3:30-4:30 P.M.

3-5 is on Thursdays 3:30-4:30 P.M.

Dodgeball will run the entire month of April. Please pick up your child promptly by 4:30 P.M.


Chris Putman

Susitna Elementary Physical Education

News from the Librarian

Dear Families,

I can’t believe it is almost the end of the school year. With that mentioned, I need to have all borrowed library books back on the shelves. Please assist your child and search the house and car for borrowed library books that need to be returned to Susitna. The official last day for all ASD book checkouts is May 5th and I need all books returned or fines paid by May 18th. ASD accepts cash and checks. I will send home a receipt with your child. If books or payment is not received by the deadline, your child will partially miss field day and help me in the library with end of the year chores. Your child and I would prefer s/he be outdoors amongst friends during field day. Please look for the lost books. Many children tell me they found their books in the closet, on a bookshelf at home, under the sofa, in the car, and mixed with papers on a coffee table. Thank you for understanding that books are treasures that need to be found so they can be read next school year by all students and teachers.

Happy Searching,

Mrs. Benfield,

Teacher-Librarian for Susitna Elementary

Summer Reading Program

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Greg and Patsy Romack Education Fund

Susitna Elementary librarian, Ann Benfield, hosted Greg Romack and family through the United Way, in a gathering to honor the Greg and Patsy Romack Education Fund. A family financial contribution was given to the library in honor of his late wife Patsy, a past ASD teacher and local young-adult author, to purchase books and furniture for the Reading Oasis program in the library. Superintendent Dr. Deena Bishop, along with Susitna's principal, Ms. Hoffbauer, and invited students presented Mr. Romack with thank you cards and pictures for his gracious generosity. Visit the Susitna library and see what reading treasures the school community has available for your children. Mrs. Benfield will be happy to show you the Patsy and Greg Romack Education Fund plaque that is proudly displayed in the library.

Ann Benfield,

Teacher-Librarian for Susitna Elementary

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Dr. Seuss Breakfast Bash

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Susitna Spelling Bee Winner

At the Alaska State Spelling Bee, Kelty successfully spelled

"hacienda" during Round 1, but during his next opportunity, he

misspelled "archipelago" which was one of the challenge words. He studied

nearly 1000 words while preparing for the state competition.

Susitna is so proud of Kelty, a 4th grader in Ms. Jennifer's class!!! When he was told he still had three more years of eligibility, he was raring and ready to go with preparations for next year to include other challenging words..since the current words of bildungsroman, asthmogenic, and nachtmusik weren't already challenging enough.

Great job Kelty and thank you for representing Susitna with Pride.

News From The NURSE

Global Epinephrine Pen Recall


There has been a recent recall of EpiPen and EpiPen Jr auto-injectors. If your child has either of these at home for anaphylactic allergic reactions, please check the lot numbers, the NDC numbers, and the expiration dates on the box. There are only two EpiPen Jr batches (0.15mg) that have been recalled. Both of these batches have April expiration dates. The other epinephrine pens being recalled are the adult dosages (0.3mg) with expiration dates in April, May, September and October. Most of the students at Susitna have doctor’s orders for the adult dosages. The recall is due to a defective part that may result in the device failing to inject the medication. If an emergency should occur, this would result in wasted time for treatment and putting your child at a much greater risk of not surviving the reaction. Please check the numbers and expiration dates on any epinephrine pens you have at home.

The affected products are listed below. All student EpiPens at school have been checked and parents have been notified. There were three found at Susitna and there have been many others found throughout the district nursing offices, so please do not neglect checking these numbers and dates. Having a defective epi pen and having to wait for the EMTs could jeopardize your child’s life.

If you are impacted by this recall, contact Stericycle at 877-650-3494. Stericycle’s hours of operation are Mon-Fri. 8 a.m.-10 p.m. and Sat.- Sun. a.m.-5 p.m. eastern standard time. If you have any questions please call the nurse Anne at 907-742-1401.

Product/Dosage NDC Number Lot Number Expiration Date

EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg 5GN767 April 2017


EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg 5GN773 April 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 5GM631 April 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 5GM640 May 2017


EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg ≈ September 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM082 September 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM072 September 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM081 September 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM088 October 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM199 October 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM091 October 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM198 October 2017


EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg 6GM087 October 2017


Thank you,

Anne McCarron, RN

Susitna Elementary School Nurse

907 -742-1401 (direct line to the nurse. Please call this number, not the main office.)

STEM Night

STEM night is April 13, at 6:00 to 7:30 pm. We are looking for a few more presenters from our community. This years theme is Jobs in STEM. Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.

We would love to involve parents who have jobs in any aspect of STEM to come have a space and share with our kids what they do. With the school wide theme of "Dream Big", we wanted to show our students all of the amazing jobs that they could have. What better way to do this than STEM night? The pride students get when their parents have that "cool job" is priceless. If you or anyone else you know would like to share your job with the children of Susitna please let us know.

Thanks in advance for all of your support in the things we are doing.

Kristi and Cori

Kristi Therriault

4th Grade Teacher

Susitna Elementary School

Cori Bailey

1st Grade Teacher

Susitna Elementary School

New Item in school lunch

We have a new item coming up! We will be featuring Blood Oranges on the menu on Thursdays in April.

In case you are not familiar, the inside is very deep red and the skin can be reddish orange.

They are high in fiber and potassium, and have up to 40 percent more vitamin C than other varieties of oranges. They are beautiful and nutritious, but also feature a unique and intense berry-like taste, which has been described as an orange, berry and pomegranate flavor.

Any help you can offer to educate your child so they will be receptive to try this new item would be greatly appreciated.

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The spring lottery ran March 24th and parents were notified by April 1st. Those that are on the wait list will be notified as soon as a position opens up. Thank you all who have applied and told their friends about our wonderful Optional Program. The fall online lottery application system will open for the July lottery on March 31, 2017 after 5:00 p.m. and remain open until July 27, 2017 at 5:00 p.m.

News from the Community

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Anchorage School Board

Tam Agosti-Gisler - President

Elisa Snelling

Starr Marsett

Kathleen Plunkett

Bettye Davis

Pat Higgins

Kameron Perez-Verdia

Superintendent - Dr. Deena Bishop

School Business Partners