VES Eagle Express Newletter

FEBRUARY 6, 2021 - Vol.14, Issue #23

SY2020-2021: Saturday Weekly Circular


Robert Bruce, Principal -

Amy Green, Assistant Principal -

Kelly Ryan, Administrative Intern -

The office has coverage from 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. on
days when school is in session.
Please call ahead 410-313-1700


They are available to assist you during this time:

Youmi Jun, Principal Secretary -
Jane Pak, Teacher Secretary -
Maria Martinez, Teacher Secretary -
Dulce Boyer, Teacher Secretary .5 -

Send Student Attendance-related notifications directly to:

(i.e. student will be absent due to illness, appointments, religious, or travel obligations)


Para información y apoyo adicionales, por favor, llame al 410-313-1591.

欲知详情或想获得更多支持,请电 410-313-5920.

보다 자세한 문의와 지원을 원하시면, 410-313-1592 로 연락 주시기 바랍니다.

For all other language needs please contact Monica Ranta at 410-313-7102.


This month has been set aside as an opportunity to recognize the contributions of African-Americans to American History. This month teachers will take some time to recognize the efforts of African American citizens who have helped shape America. This is an opportunity to shine a light on the fact that for so long these efforts and contributions were overshadowed by others. To build a strong and equitable future we must truly understand our experiences of the past. We salute all the trailblazers who helped move America towards its future.


Make sure you know important dates on the 2020-2021 Academic Calendar. There are no printed calendars; you may view the online calendar and/or download printable calendar PDFs on our website. The calendar is subject to change.

SY2020-21 HCPSS Calendar list view of Event Dates

Board Approves 2021-2022 Academic Calendar

The next school year will begin on August 30, 2021, for students and on August 19, 2021, for school staff. Winter break will be December 23-31, 2021, with schools reopening on Monday, January 3, 2022. Spring Break will run from April 11-18, 2022. The last day of school is scheduled for June 14, 2022.

Learn more

Black History Month


3 - MAP ELA Testing: 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

5 - Parent-Teacher Conference Scheduling Window CLOSES 10:00 p.m.

5 - Q2 Report Cards Issued via HCPSS Connect ParentVue

10 - MAP Math Testing: 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

10 - Parent-Teacher Conferences

11 - Half Day Schedule: Parent-Teacher Conferences

12 - Schools Closed to Students: Professional Work Day

15 - Schools and Offices Closed: President's Day (State Mandated Holiday)

20 - PTA Virtual Trivia Night - 7:00 p.m.


1 - Group E Students Begin In-School Hybrid

8 thru 12 - Begin SY2021-22 K&1st Grade Online Registration

15 - Grades PK, K, 1, 2 Students Begin In-School Hybrid

29 - Grades 3, 4, 5, 6, 9,12, and ARL Students Begin In-School Hybrid

MARCH Phase-In Model (see below)


2 thru 6 - SPRING BREAK Schools and Offices Closed

12 - Grades 7, 8, 10, 11 Students Begin In-School Hybrid

14 - 3-Hour Early Dismissal for Students: End of Q3 Marking Period


March 1st Reopening:

On March 1st we will welcome back many students with academic needs for a five day a week program. These students primarily are IEP students. They will spend 4 1/2 days in the building and be off on Wednesday afternoon.

These students had a choice to remain virtual or attend 4 1/2 days a week.

On March 15th we will welcome back students in Grades Prekgn through Grade Two to a 1-2 day program. These students had a choice to remain virtual or to return to a 1-2 day program.

On March 29th we will welcome back students in Grades 3-5 to a 1-2 day program. These students also had a choice to remain virtual or to return to a 1-2 day program.

We will be able to ascertain whether our program will run 1-2 days once we receive all the results from the survey back from parents. The deadline is February 10th. Staff will begin to call on Monday to ensure all students have made their choice. If we can not reach a parent due to changes in information or they are unreachable, their choice will default to remain virtual for the rest of the year. Please keep in mind that individuals will only be allowed to become hybrid if space exists in our classrooms.

Staff have been presented various options. Once we know what staff are returning we will inform our parents.

In some cases, if staff are given an ADA accomodation to remain teaching virtually then the class will be assigned a classroom monitor while the teacher continues to teach virtually to all of his/her students.

CONGRATULATIONS to TWO Veterans Elementary School Students
who placed at the county level for
Young Author's Contest!

Kheamraj Rambharat

1st Place in the Grade 5 Short Story category

title: Hu(gh)Bris(s)

Janani Devi Rambharat
2nd Place in the Grade 2 Short Story category

title: Clinging to Home

Click on images to view complete list of winners on the website

2020-2021 Howard County Young Authors' Contest Winners

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We would like to make our community aware of several temporary positions that will be available.

CLASSROOM MONITOR- If a teacher is unable to return to teaching in person due to health issues, a monitor would be hired to supervise the classroom of 6-7 students while the teacher continues teaching virtually.

LUNCH/RECESS MONITOR- These individuals supervise students at lunch and/or recess, under the supervision of VES staff.

These are temporary employment positions with no benefits except for Sick and Safe Leave. The normal rate is $11.75 but this will be increased during this hybrid period to $14.25 per hour for LRM's and Classroom Monitors.

If interested please file an application at the Human Resources,

Employment – HCPSS

Application Process. Individuals applying for positions must complete all sections of the online employment application and submit a completed application before the closing date (if applicable) in order to be considered for the position.

While an application must be on file, please email Mr. Bruce if you are interested or have any questions.


Please visit the HCPSS website Community News and Programs page for upcoming events and programs sponsored by non-profit organizations.

Hybrid Learning Resource Document

Comprehensive Hybrid Learning Document

As families review learning options for the remainder of the school year, the Bridge to Normalized Instruction: Hybrid Instructional Model resource document summarizes all major aspects of the school system's planned transition to hybrid in-person and concurrent virtual instruction that begins on March 1, as the first stage of a gradual return to normalized instruction. The document serves as a reference for families and staff on all aspects of HCPSS' preparations, including:

  • Instructional components, including hybrid and virtual options, timeline, daily schedules and professional development
  • Details on student meals and transportation, including a revised meal pickup schedule
  • School and office components, including building modifications, HVAC adjustments and cleaning protocols
  • Health and safety provisions, including PPE, social distancing, staff and student screening, as well as protocols during and following instances of confirmed or suspected infection

As a reminder, families now have until 5 p.m. on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 to complete the commitment survey.




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The goal was 150,000 reading minutes and our VES students logged in 199,455 minutes.

This is awesome!

Whooo's Reading Read-A-Thon Update

Our Whooo's Reading Read-A-Thon, ended this past Friday.

Collectively, our students logged an IMPRESSIVE 199,455 minutes over the two-week period, surpassing our goal of 150,000 minutes and read more than 2,550 books! Our students also raised a WHOPPING $6,298, ~110% over our goal of $3,000. Way to go VES! The PTA is looking forward to planning assemblies and celebrations when we can all gather again.


· Top Fundraiser: Brielle Sai-Palm (1st grade) - $1,185

· Top Readers: Big Tie! Lots of kids logged 8 hours per day.

Below is the leaderboard for our classes.

Way to go Ms. Nguyen, Ms. Graves, and Ms. Menne's classes for raising the most funds! Congrats to Ms. Aytona, Ms. Chan, and Ms. Chong's classes for logging the most minutes.

Special thanks to Nelly & Heidi for running this great event and to all the teachers and staff for helping the PTA get the info out to the kids.

PTA Virtual Trivia Night - February 20th at 7pm

Mark your calendars! We will be using Zoom to play some fun Kahoot Trivia!

How well do you know the Related Arts teachers? See you on the 20th to find out!

Gather the Fam and grab some snacks! Let the games begin!

Sign Up Here:

Seeking Volunteers for the Virtual County Wide School Events:

Links are coordinated by the Bushy Park PTA

International Night (April 2021)

Career Fair (May 2021)

Questions? Email Cara Adornetto at

Follow us on Facebook:


BOOKS and "BUNDTS" Reading Program 1/15 thru 3/31/2021

Who: Pre-K thru Elementary School Students

What: Students will receive a FREE Bundtlet for each month that they read for 400+ minutes.

When: January 15, 2021 - to - March 31, 2021

Why: Reading at an early age enriches children's brains, increases vocabulary and test scores, introduces readers to the world around them, and helps develop their imaginations.

A Youth Reading Program by Nothing Bundt Cakes

Columbia, MD Location

10730 Little Patuxent Pkwy

Columbia, MD 21044

(410) 587-0670

Message from Media Center:


Your child will be able to check out from our Media Center with no contact.

You can request books from the VES PAC and pick them up on
Wednesdays 11AM - 3PM.
All the information about the procedures, how to set up your child's account, how to request books, and how to see if books are ready for pick up are in your child's Canvas Media Course in the module named Check Out.

If you have any questions, please email your media specialist,

Howard County Library Resources

  • Created While Isolated: Students ages 13 and up and adults are invited to share photographs, art, music, creative writing, and personal stories from this unprecedented time in acollaborative creativity journal.
  • TumbleMath is a fun and engaging way to learn math concepts through stories. Students can access this and many other learning resources with their A+ student accounts by selecting HC Library.


FEBRUARY 2021 Meal Service Adjustments

February 2, 2021

Howard County public schools will not be in session Friday, February 12 for a professional work day and Monday, February 15 for Presidents Day. There will be no meal service either of these days and additional meals may be picked up in advance of the closures.

The following adjustments will be made to meal services:

  • There is no meal service Friday, February 12.
  • Meals that were pre-ordered for pickup Thursday, February 11 will include meals for Thursday-Monday.
  • Meals that will be picked up via walk-up service on Thursday, February 11 will include meals for Thursday-Monday. Pre-ordering is not required.
  • Lunch for Monday, February 15 can be pre-ordered for pick-up on Thursday, February 11.
  • There is no meal service Monday, February 15.

Meals are provided at no cost to any HCPSS student or any child under age 18. More information about 2020-2021 meal services is provided online.

Grab-and-Go meals are served every day school is in session, Monday through Friday from 8-9 a.m. and 10:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m., and are free of charge for all students and any child under age 18. All meals include breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner. Find details about pre-ordering, weekend meals and more information online.

FARMS Applications: Applications for the Free and Reduced Meals program for the school year 2020-2021 are available online in multiple languages and paper copies are available at all meal sites, effective 9/8/20. Please use this document for strategies for increasing FARMs awareness and participation.

COMCAST Internet

To help connect more families to the internet at home, Comcast is offering two months of free internet to new Internet Essential customers. more information

Send all attendance notes directly to:

During Virtual Learning, attendance will be taken daily by teachers for

Homeroom/ELA (.5 day) and Homeroom/Math (.5 day)
to account for a full school day.

Each HCPSS school now has an attendance email for parents to send notes pertaining to their child missing any time out from school, even during virtual learning
(ie. sick, appointment, travel, etc.)

Please take the time to review: HCPSS ATTENDANCE POLICY


MOVING into VES: FILLABLE_VES RequestforRecords.pdf
We can assist you to obtain student records from their prior school by filling out the

Request for Records form and emailing it back to the registrar.

MOVING AWAY/ Withdraw from VES: FILLABE_Withdrawal form

Please initiate the process by filling out the HCPSS Withdrawal Form and email it back to the registrar.


Technology Support Centers

HCPSS is currently operating two Technology Support Centers for device exchanges, returns and support: Old Bushy Park Elementary School, Room E2 and Applications Research Laboratory (ARL), Room B37. Hours of operation are Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 7:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., and Tuesday and Thursday from 2-5 p.m. The Technology Support Centers are closed any day that HCPSS offices are closed. The HCPSS Logistics Center and Ascend One facility are no longer available for technology.

Online Safety

While HCPSS continues to invest in information security efforts, upgrade equipment and ensure that the network is secure, it is critical that all students, staff and parents/guardians do their part to maintain a safe virtual learning environment. View safety guidelines and additional resources.

HCPSS News Subscriptions: HCPSS News emails and text alerts keep families up-to-date on news and events, and delivers real-time notices of emergency closings and information. All HCPSS News subscriptions are generated from the information provided in Family File and have been automatically updated for the 2020-2021 school year.

Parents/guardians new to the system are automatically enrolled for email notification, however must opt in to receive text alerts.

NEED VES TECH ASSISTANCE? Fill out this VES Student Device and Tech Support Request Form

HCPSS COUNSELING SERVICES for Students, Families, and Staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has made this an especially stressful time for many, especially those already impacted by mental health concerns. Find information about local and online resources for counseling and mental health supports for you and your family on our website.

VES School Psychologists

We are here to help you!

Debra Moniodis (School Psychologist, Infants and Toddlers):

Michal Boyars (School Psychologist, RECC):

Katie Burkhouse (School Psychologist, K-5):

Kristen Marsico (School Psychologist Intern, K-5):

School psychologists are available for parent and staff consultation by level. Please reach out via email to schedule an appointment!

VES School Counseling Department

School Counselors:

Ms. Wilson (K and 4th):

Ms. Wentz (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th):

We are available to support the school community.

Please reach out to schedule consultation time.

If you have an immediate need for help with depression, suicidal thoughts, or other serious

mental health issues, please contact:

Grassroots Crisis Intervention at 410-531-6677

The Maryland Crisis Hotline: Dial 211 and then choose option 1

The Crisis Text Line: Text 741741 and a trained counselor will respond.

The National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255