From the Desk of Mr. Yoshida

Birdneck Elementary 8/24/18


Thursday, August 30: Meet and Greet 1:30 -3:30

Monday, September 3: Labor Day Holiday

Tuesday, September 4: First Day of School

Friday, September 21: 5th Grade Airshow Fieldtrip to Oceana

Tuesday, September 18: Back to School Night 6:00 - 7:30 pm


Hello Birdneck Community,

The excitement in our building is growing as we get closer to the first day of school and I am anxiously awaiting the return of our students to hear about their summer adventures. For those of you who are new to Birdneck I am honored and pleased to welcome you to the "Birdneck Family." Our staff and our PTA are using "We Are Family" as a theme to build stronger relationships with each other, students, parents, and our community. My goal is to bring us all together to support the success of our students. Our academic focus for the year will be on targeted differentiation during small group instruction. We recognize that each child has their own needs and their pathways to learning may be different. We will strive to meet each child where they are to ensure success. Your student will be setting and monitoring their own academic and social goals here at school. You can help your child meet these goals by reinforcing concepts at home and having them read every night.

Classroom assignments have been mailed and will arrive soon. Please join us for Meet and Greet from 1:30 - 3:30 Thursday, August 30, to drop off school supplies and meet your child's teacher. If your child will participate in daily parent pick-up this year, please stop by the table in front of the gym while you are here for Meet and Greet to register for parent-pickup and get updates about our procedures.

We will host Back to School Night on September 18, 2017 from 6:00-7:30. At 6:30 Mr. Yoshida will share school-wide information alongside our PTA in the cafeteria. At Back to School Night you will have an opportunity to learn more about programs, procedures and routines we have at Birdneck. Your child's teacher will share information about what students will be learning and other specifics regarding their individual classrooms.

School supply lists can be found on our webpage. I'm looking forward to an AMAZING school year and seeing each and every one of you soon.

Have an awesome day,

R.V. Yoshida : Member of the BIRDNECK FAMILY since 2016

Join our PTA

Support Birdneck Elementary students by joining the PTA. Our PTA is AMAZING! We collaborate together to create opportunities for our students and community to learn and have fun in the process. Don't miss out on the benefits from joining the PTA. Receive over $300 in savings... all for just $5 for a membership. Registration forms were sent home in the envelope with your student's placement letter. Please know that becoming a member of our PTA does not obligate you to volunteer or do anything but does still help support our school. Our goal is to have 100% participation!!!!!!!!!

Our PTA will have a table set up and will have Birdneck T-shirts, snow cones and membership registration forms that can be purchased with cash or check.

Please visit the PTA website at



I am excited to announce that we have a new A-phone system at our front doors to increase security and ensure the safety of our staff and students. A door bell to the left of the front door will allow us to see and speak to visitors prior to entering our building. We will be able to electronically unlock the door handle for our visitors to enter after determining the reason for the visit.

Arrival and Dismissal Procedures

This year we will be continuing our daily parent pick up system. Parents who elect to drop off and pick up their students on a regular or daily basis will be assigned a car "tag" with a number matched to your child in the parent pick up database.

The tag must be hung in the front window of your automobile so that you can be identified as the parent. The main loop directly in the front of the school will be used as the drop off and pick up point. Staff will be at the curb to escort students to and from cars.

If you will be picking up your child every day after school please go to the table outside the gymnasium to register your child for daily parent pick up and drop off during the Meet and Greet on August 30. Should you not be able to make the meet and greet, staff will be outside at the curb the first day of school, September 4th, and will sign you up then.

Only students who are signed up for daily parent pick up will receive car tags. Any child who needs to be picked up early due to illness or an appointment will be checked out by the parent using the procedures at the front desk. (Please bring a valid ID).

Also, should you need to come into the school for any reason, you must park in an allocated parking space as parking in the front lane is against the fire code. For daily parent pick-up purposes, we will allow two lanes of traffic to pull up in front of the school in order to make dismissal more efficient and safe. For safety reasons, do not pull up in the lane prior to 2:30 as the lanes cannot be blocked for long periods of time.

Please be patient with us as we get the system rolling a the beginning of the year. After we get to know the students and their cars and work out any unforeseen issues, things should run quite smoothly. Our goal is to make daily parent pick up both safe and easy for everyone.

New Alert Now System

AlertNow sends important information quickly via phone or email about emergency situations, school delays or cancellations due to inclement weather and other school happenings.

As a parent or guardian, will I need to register or sign-up to receive messages?

All parents and guardians of students enrolled in the school division are automatically enrolled.

If I use my cell phone as my home/primary phone will non-emergency messages be delivered to it?

The home/primary phone provided at the time of enrollment is considered to be the main contact number, and is the only number used to call parents in a non-emergency situation. If you would prefer to have these calls sent to your cell phone, you must list this number as your home/primary contact with your child’s school.

How will parents/guardians and staff be notified?

Non-emergency messages will go to your home/primary phone.

School emergency and emergency closing or cancellation messages will go to your home phone, to the various phone numbers and email addresses you have provided to the school/division.

How do I update my notification information?
Parents must contact the school office to update their contact information.

What if I opted out of calls, but now want to receive them again?
If you have opted out of receiving phone calls, you can always opt back in. To do so, call 1-855-502-7867 from the phone number that has been opted-out.

If I move out of the area, must I request to have my phone numbers and email addresses removed?
No. If your child is withdrawn from school, your information is removed from the system.

How will I know that I have received a message?

  • If you have Caller ID, the school’s main number will appear in the display for a non-emergency message,.
  • If you have Caller ID,757.263.1000 will appear in the display for an emergency message or for school closings, cancellations or delays due to inclement weather.
  • AlertNow will leave a message on any answering machine or voicemail.
  • If the message stops playing, press any key 1-9 and it will replay from the beginning.
  • At the end of every voice message sent, you will be prompted to press #1 on your phone to repeat the message.
  • If an email is sent, the subject line will read Virginia Beach City Public Schools.

A message was delivered to my phone, I said “hello” and no message played or only part of the message was delivered. Why?
The message plays as soon as the phone is picked up or answered. Errors can occur if the person repeatedly says "hello" or answers in a noisy environment (i.e. traffic, children playing, loud music or television, dogs barking, etc.). If a person offers an extended greeting that overlaps the message, the system pauses, waits for silence, and replays the message from the beginning. With background noise, it is possible that the system is unable to detect the end of the "greeting" and thus the message did not initiate. In a noisy environment, call recipients can press any number (1-9) and the message will play from the beginning without interruption.

How does the system distinguish a live person from an answering machine?
The system starts the broadcast immediately upon telephone pickup and listens for interruptions. If the system is not interrupted by noise or someone speaking within the first 3.5 seconds, the message is delivered in its entirety. If the system detects a greeting longer than a few seconds, the system treats this as an outgoing message from an answering machine and will wait for a pause (usually after the beep) before delivering the message to be recorded.

What if the line is busy or there is no answer?
The system will make up to three attempts to reach each number.. If the message is not delivered by the third attempt, it is considered a failed number. Failures happen when a phone number is busy, disconnected, invalid, etc. If you are aware of a message that was delivered, but you did not receive a call, please contact your school

Why is my answering machine recording only half of the message or no message at all?
If your greeting is sporadic with varied periods of silence, the system will read this as a live person and begin playing the message, even though the machine has yet to start recording. This will result in a recording of silence (if the AlertNow message finishes playing before the machine begins recording) or if just the last portion of the AlertNow message runs over, this will also result in message cutoff. The recommended solution is to set your machine to record for a longer period.

The system determines it has reached a live person and begins the message prior to the voicemail recording is engaged. Please make sure that the greeting is seamless to facilitate successful message delivery. The system is set to allow for six rings before hanging up. If your answering machine is set to pick up on seven or more rings, the message may not be delivered to your machine. Therefore, we encourage you to set your machine to six rings or fewer.If you failed to receive a message during the school day, please call your child's school to obtain the information.

Positive Behavioral Intervention Supports

What is School-wide PBIS?

One of the foremost advances in school-wide discipline is the emphasis on school-wide systems of support that include proactive strategies for defining, teaching, and supporting appropriate student behaviors to create positive school environments. Instead of using a piecemeal approach of individual behavioral management plans, a continuum of positive behavior support for all students within a school is implemented in areas including the classroom and non-classroom settings (such as hallways, buses, and restrooms). Positive behavior support is an application of a behaviorally-based systems approach to enhance the capacity of schools, families, and communities to design effective environments that improve the link between research-validated practices and the environments in which teaching and learning occurs. Attention is focused on creating and sustaining Tier 1 supports (universal), Tier 2 supports (targeted group), and Tier 3 supports (individual) systems of support that improve lifestyle results (personal, health, social, family, work, recreation) for all children and youth by making targeted behaviors less effective, efficient, and relevant, and desired behavior more functional.

Why is it so important to focus on teaching positive social behaviors?

Frequently, the question is asked, "Why should I have to teach kids to be good? They already know what they are supposed to do. Why can I not just expect good behavior?" In the infamous words of a TV personality, "How is that working out for you?"

In the past, school-wide discipline has focused mainly on reacting to specific student misbehavior by implementing punishment-based strategies including reprimands, loss of privileges, office referrals, suspensions, and expulsions. Research has shown that the implementation of punishment, especially when it is used inconsistently and in the absence of other positive strategies, is ineffective. Introducing, modeling, and reinforcing positive social behavior is an important step of a student's educational experience. Teaching behavioral expectations and rewarding students for following them is a much more positive approach than waiting for misbehavior to occur before responding. The purpose of school-wide PBIS is to establish a climate in which appropriate behavior is the norm.

What is a systems approach in school-wide PBIS?

An organization is a group of individuals who behave together to achieve a common goal. Systems are needed to support the collective use of best practices by individuals within the organization. The school-wide PBIS process emphasizes the creation of systems that support the adoption and durable implementation of evidence-based practices and procedures, and fit within on-going school reform efforts. An interactive approach that includes opportunities to correct and improve four key elements is used in school-wide PBIS focusing on: 1) Outcomes, 2) Data, 3) Practices, and 4) Systems. The diagram below illustrates how these key elements work together to build a sustainable system:

  • Outcomes: academic and behavior targets that are endorsed and emphasized by students, families, and educators. (What is important to each particular learning community?)
  • Practices: interventions and strategies that are evidence based. (How will you reach the goals?)
  • Data: information that is used to identify status, need for change, and effects of interventions. (What data will you use to support your success or barriers?)
  • Systems: supports that are needed to enable the accurate and durable implementation of the practices of PBIS. (What durable systems can be implemented that will sustain this over the long haul?)

Education Connection Resources

Please click here to view our Math and Science Connection newsletters. There are many activities that help students connect academics learned at school in practical ways at home in a fun and collaborative manner. I highly encourage you to use these resources with your students at home.



We build relationships to encourage, inspire, and empower others to meet the challenges of today and to foster the love of learning.


We are dedicated to nurturing an inclusive environment to ensure engaging, student-centered learning resulting in confident, independent learners.


We believe in a collaborative community in which teachers, administrators, students, and parents work together for student success.

We believe in creating a safe, nurturing, and positive environment in which all students can strive for excellence and achieve their individual potential.

We believe we will prepare our students for success by providing 21st century learning and developing within our students critical thinking, effective communications and problem solving skills.