Monroe Newsletter

What's New at Monroe

-December 2016-

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  • When your child is going to be absent or is ill please call 207-5657.
  • Call the Weather Hotline for weather related updates 386-4777.
  • No School December 23-January 2. See you on January 3, 2017!! Have a safe and happy Holiday Season!

From The Principal


One of our goals each year is to provide a safe and welcoming school for students and parents. With the recent presidential election results comes a variety of emotions and responses of adults and children. What children see around them (in and out of school) influences them greatly. We want you to know that the Monroe staff has provided a great place to send your student(s) both before and after the election. We will continue to be proactive in setting high expectations and ensuring that students show their Monroe PRIDE towards one another at all times. If you ever feel that this is not being done, please do not hesitate to contact a teacher, staff member, or me.

We also want to make sure you feel welcome here! If you ever want to visit a classroom to see what's happening or volunteer, please contact the classroom teacher to arrange it. We love to have parents involved as we partner to meet the needs of your student(s).

I hope that you had a great Thanksgiving and a chance to spend time with family. It seems like once Thanksgiving is over, we are fully into the hustle and bustle of all of the December holidays that are celebrated. I hope you are able to slow down and enjoy spending time with friends and family over the next month.

Happy Holidays!

Steve Johanson

Winter Music Program-December 20th

The 1st, 3rd, and 5th graders are preparing a vocal music concert called "Making Spirits Bright" for Tuesday, December 20th. The concert will be performed twice, once at 9:30 am and again at 1:15 pm. We ask that you only come to one performance due to space.

PLC- 2 Hour Late Start-December 13, 2016

On the second Tuesday of every month the teachers meet for a Professional Learning Community Meeting. Buses will run 2 hours late on late start days. Monroe School will begin at 10:00 AM, rather than 8:00 AM on these days. To accommodate parents that need childcare on late start days, we will provide supervision beginning at 7:40 AM for students needing this service. However, parents MUST complete the online form to sign your child up. There will be no charge but it is very important that we have an accurate count of students arriving early to plan for adequate adult supervision. You will be asked to complete a registration form for each month. This is the link for the December 13th PLC Sign up- Activities for students during this time may include such things as homework help, quiet reading time, and story time. Breakfast will be available serving from 7:40-7:50 AM.

**If you sign your child up and they DO NOT come, we ask that you CALL THE SCHOOL by 8:00 AM that morning as we will be taking attendance.

Children not needing childcare on the late start days should arrive at school between 9:40-9:50. Students arriving to their classrooms after 10:00 AM will be marked tardy.

Late Start Dates: The second Tuesday of Every Month

  • December 13
  • January 10
  • February 14
  • March 14
  • April 11
  • May 9

Weather Hotline 386-4777

The potential for wintry weather and cold temperatures is always possible as we move into December. One way to make sure you stay on top of the school’s weather related announcements is to call the SCHOOL HELP LINE at 507-386-4777. On snowy days, school announcements will be broadcast on local radio and television stations.

Snow Storm Early Release

If school is released early due to snow, Monroe will dismiss 15 minutes earlier than the announced time. For example, if it is announced that elementary schools dismiss at 1:00 pm, Monroe will dismiss at 12:45 pm. Once there is an announcement, you may pick up your child(ren) earlier than the dismissal time. When picking up your child(ren), DO NOT park in the bus-loading zones. Also, on a snow dismissal day, parents must come into the school to get their child(ren). Students will be held in school until a parent or other approved caregiver picks the child up inside the school. If your family plans have changed from when you filled out your early release form at the beginning of the year, please contact the teacher to let them know of this change immediately.

~Coming Soon~


12/13 PLC- 2 Hour Late Start

12/20 Winter Concert 1st, 3rd & 5th Grades

12/23-1/2 NO SCHOOL


1/3 School Resumes

Jump Rope For Heart

1/10 PLC-2 Hour Late Start


1/23 PTO Meeting

1/27 No School-Teacher Workshop/Prep Day

1/30 McEducator Night- 3rd Grade

~Specialist's Corner~

From the Media Center-Mrs. Hagen

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From the Music Room-Mrs. Hopf

Winter Concert Information

This year’s winter concert will be held December 20, 2016. There will be two concerts:

9:30 a.m. and 1:15 p.m.

GRADES 1, 3, and 5 will participate in the winter concert this year, which is a change from past years.

Kindergarten, 2nd Grade, and 4th Grade will participate in "informances" the first week of April and these will take place in the music classroom during your child’s regular music class. Please remember that an “informance” is a mini-performance, which will showcase the skills and concepts covered throughout the school year. This new model will give students the opportunity to perform in both small and large performances by rotating grade levels every year.

Students have begun preparing for the concert and are anxious to share with parents, teachers and community. We hope you can join us for a performance and share in the spirit of the season!

From the Art Room-Mrs. Wingen

Students in grades 1, 3, and 5 are getting ready to decorate the gym for the Winter Concert. While K, 2, and 4 will create seasonal projects for the hallway. Have a Merry Christmas.

From the Gym.-Mr. Carlson

Monroe participates in the ALPS (Active Learners Program in School). Kids are given tickets in the morning if they come to school using active methods of transportation. Cars and buses do not count. If they go to and from school actively, they are rewarded with two tickets. If students ride the bus or get dropped off by parents, they are given the opportunity to jog the ALPS trail for tickets. Our noon hour supervisors also give out tickets for students that have an extra active recess. Students write their name on the back of the ticket and put it in a drawing for prizes at the end of each month. The class in each grade with the most tickets, earns the ALPS banner that is displayed outside their room for the next month. Ask your student how they are doing. Encourage them to be active both at school and at home. An active child is a smart child. More blood to the brain nourishes brain cells and encourages growth and development.

We will be doing our annual Jump Rope For Heart event in January. We will do this in conjunction with our rope jumping unit during the day. Look for fundraising envelopes to be sent home the first week of January. You can go online ahead of time and start raising money for the American Heart Association.

Last year we raised over $8000 dollars. That was a Monroe record! Our goal this year is $9000. This is our 21st year participating in this great event. This is a wonderful organization that strives to find cures for heart disease, stroke, and other heart defects.

~News From the PTO~

PTO Minutes

Monroe PTO - Meeting Minutes

November 28, 2016

Introductions: 11 present; Jackie, Trisha, Jillian, Meg, Steve, Angie, Courtney, Sabrina, (Hannah and John- MSU guests)

6:30 pm start

Secretary’s Report:

Approved for October-No new items

Treasurer's Report:

Pencil Sharpeners - $1,755 (lifetime warranty)

Tee Shirts- $200

Principal’s Report:

Playground Equipment: installed 2nd skyrunner (yay 1st graders, shorter in height than others)

3 Water Fountains: after evaluation it is more than originally budgeted ($1,000 each) because you must replace entire fountain. Saved money on other options, instead of 3 fountains, there will be 2 fountains. Must decide where the fountains will go.

Holiday Concert: When will they be? 1st, 3rd, and 5th grade Winter Concert will be Tues. Dec. 20 at 9:30 and 1:15 pm. Kindergarten, 2nd and 4th will be Informances in April. Rotation will be the same each year.

Teacher’s Request: (Angie)

Children’s Museum in March $308 per class x 4; busing// $760

  • 2 hours

  • Last year bus funding was provided

  • $6,000 field trip fund

  • Motion to approve

  • History Festival: Jack McGowan’s Farm was a success, thanks to all involved!

Community Report:

  • 2 approved water fountains

  • Sign-Up Genius for the Color Run: May 13

  • May 4 Book Fair

  • Bells On Belgrade on Dec. 3: $20 gift card from prior donation + $30

How do you win the gift card? Favorite decorated house in the area...Notify parents via facebook: return to school by Friday: Clarification with Jolly.

Any questions can be answered by asking PTO email for the holiday contest.

  • Teacher Meals: pizzas, and it was originally a volunteer basis. Chair for this position would be beneficial but budget ($500) is doubled as of now; unsure of amount of food for parents to make; catering is most ideal; restructure how the meals are distributed; recruitment of chair will commence.

  • Review/Feedback:

  • Survey Monkey, what would people like to see, incorporate needs of the PTO and an opportunity for parents to be involved at their comfort level

  • Concerns regarding Studies Weekly that is sent home with Kindergartners: No longer in Minnesota is Christopher Columbus Day observed; in lieu Indigenous People's Day. Using this opportunity to create a more inclusive way to learn about all sides of history.

  • Art Fair: Native American Student Association (NASA) at MNSU

  • Book Fair at Children’s Museum is good to go for February!

  • Community Cookbook (Fundraiser) Students bring in favorite “healthy” recipes/snacks and parent’s can buy. Price point depends on amount of recipes are in there (-10) Earmark Community Cookbook fundraiser--Fun Run Parents type in favorite recipes (Jan.), collect in time for turnaround in May; typeset could mean longer turn around-will revisit at January PTO Meeting.

Laminator Report:

The film is an outlandish amount of money...

$2013 - possible deal, school district will provide the film, 6 rolls free from district, $27 per sheet after that is used up. Purchase order from PTO to pay for laminator 1 yr. Warranty on parts and labor; unsure of service when maintaining machine (approved). Gear does not work on old machine and it is several years old. Fundraiser was meant for: campus upgrades, water bottles, under original budget. Money was approved already. Having a training on maintenance will be priority. Mara will follow up on deals for future laminator.

Meeting adjourned at 7:40 pm.

~School Menus~

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