The Groundhog Gazette

Amity Elementary - Home of the Groundhogs

February 3, 2016

Boise School District Attendance Policy

Being at school every day and being on time are of utmost importance. The Boise School District follows the State of Idaho's requirements that maintain all students must be in school 90% of the time. This only allows for a maximum of 9 absences per semester.

The school district requires that we send attendance letters after the 5th, 8th and 10th absence. These letters are a reminder of how many days your child has been absent. If you receive a letter after the 10th absence, you will need to contact the office.

Students who go beyond the 9 absences may be subject to Attendance Court. If you have reason to exceed the 9 days due to illness or other family matters please contact the school office and we will do our best to work with you. If your child is absent for consecutive days, it helps if we have doctors’ notes specifying the entire period of absence.

We understand the occasional tardy, however, anything over 5 tardies per semester is considered habitual. We want to set our students up for success before heading to junior high where tardies will turn into documented absences. From the beginning of the year to present, we have had 1,793 absences and 868 tardies. We value your education and want you to have a successful second half of the school year; you can do this by committing to being on time to school.

We thank you for your attention to this matter.

Full Day Kindergarten

We have some good news for parents with incoming kindergarten students. We have been given the opportunity to offer a full day, tuition based kindergarten class at Amity! Students enrolled in a full day kindergarten program will start school at 9:15 a.m. and be dismissed at 3:45 p.m. The school district is only funded for a half day program, so we need to charge a $250/month tuition for students to participate. This is a fantastic educational value!

If you are interested in enrolling your child in the full day program, you will need to make a $35 non-refundable deposit during registration to hold your child’s position. We will need to have a minimum of 20 students enrolled and committed to the full year in order to offer the program next year. Mrs. Coslett will be teaching the program if we have enough students enrolled. The class will be “capped” at 23 students. If we have more than 23 students enrolled, we will hold a lottery to determine which students will be in the program. (IF we have a lottery and your child is not selected, the $35 deposit will be refunded.)

Fifth Annual Bingo Night

Join us on Friday, February 19th, for our annual Family Bingo Night from 6-8 p.m. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m.; come early to get the best seat, buy your Bingo cards and order nachos.

If you'd like to volunteer to help at the event, please either fill out the volunteer sheet that will be sent home in Friday Folders or sign up on Sign Up Genius.

As in the past, we will hold our Silent Basket Auction during the event. Themed baskets will be available for bidding. We'd like to have a large variety of fun baskets to auction off; however, we need your help! The baskets are put together with your donations.

There are three ways to donate:

1. Each grade level has been assigned a theme (listed below). Purchase an item(s) for any of the themes.

2. We will accept gift certificates from any family friendly location. These make great additions to the baskets.

3. Don't have time to shop? Send in a monetary donation, and we'll do the shopping for you. (Checks can be made out to Amity PTA).

Kindergarten - My Mom Rocks!

First Grade - Do It Yourself (crafts for kids or adults)

Second Grade - Family Game Night

Third Grade - Reading is Fun

Fourth Grade - College Spirit

Fifth Grade - Super Dad!

Sixth Grade - Great Outdoors

We are also looking for donations of new, small items that can be used as prizes. We gave out over 400 prizes last year; donations help alleviate this expense.

A parent or guardian must stay onsite during the event.

Thank you for your donations. We depend on Bingo Night as one of our two main fundraisers; all proceeds benefit your child's classroom. We hope to see you there!

From the Counselor

This is a very busy month for our 6th grade students as they register for next year's classes. If this is your first time launching a student to the big world of Junior High or you have done this before but have some questions regarding the ever changing secondary level, please feel free to contact me. I was a high school teacher and spent nine years as a counselor at the secondary level at North Junior High and Borah High School. I would be happy to talk through any questions regarding the world of secondary education.

In my sixteen years in education there have been many changes but none bigger than the influence of technology in our students' lives. I found this article from "Psychology Today" interesting regarding the possible effects of screen time. Click here to read the article. Have a great month.