Phoenix Family News

November 6, 2020

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Important Dates Ahead...

  • Monday, November 9 and Wednesday, November 11 - Group A In-Person / Group B DL
  • Tuesday, November 10 and Thursday, November 12 - Group B In-Person / Group A DL
  • Friday, November 13 - Group A & B Distance Learning
  • For updated calendars visit our District Website or District A/B Hybrid Calendar

  • November 9-19 - MAP Testing for Hybrid Students
    - November 9 & 11 - Reading MAP Testing & Makeups Group A
    - November 10 & 12 - Reading MAP Testing & Makeups Group B
    - November 16 & 18 - Math MAP Testing & Makeups Group A
    - November 17 & 19 - Math MAP Testing & Makeups Group B

A Note from the Principal - It's really November!

What a wonderful weather week for this first week in November! Get out and enjoy the sun and warmer temperatures while we have it!! Next week students will need to bring their winter gear back to school... only in Minnesota!

Please remember that it is SO important to call our health office at 651-425-7506 if you or your children test positive for COVID or are experiencing COVID-like symptoms. In order to keep everyone safe and to mitigate the spread of the virus, we conduct contact tracing to inform any individuals that are deemed to be close contacts or low-risk contacts. For this reason, I also wanted to include the information from last week to make sure everyone had a chance to read it in the event your child is quarantined. Thanks for helping us keep our students and staff healthy!

What happens if my child needs to quarantine for an extended period of time? We understand that this may occur at some point this school year. Your child will still have access to the activities posted on Seesaw on their typical at home learning day. We understand that some of the activities may be difficult to complete (please know it is OK to skip activities that they don’t understand) there will be lots of activities that they will be able to continue to do independently. On their typical in-person day your child’s teacher will have a schedule of activities for them to do to keep up with their math, reading and writing school work. While it may not look exactly like what they are doing in the classroom, we are very lucky to have online resources that have activities that are linked to state standards AND our curriculum. Please understand that teachers cannot completely recreate what is happening in the classroom but will ensure that the activities that will be provided on their typical in person days will help your child keep up with school work. When they are able to return to school, the teacher will work with them on their in-person days to “catch up” as needed. Thank you for your understanding as we work together during this unpredictable time!

2020-21 Fall Pictures - Mon. Nov. 9th and Tues. Nov. 10th

Fall pictures are next week! To preview, personalize and pay online, visit and enter event code: FE70220

Group A will have their picture taken during the school day on Monday, November 9th, and Group B students will have their picture taken during the school day on Tuesday, November 10th.

Here is an overview of what the picture sessions will look like:

  • Each class will be going for pictures as a homebase, and they will not be in the picture area with any other classes.
  • Students will maintain their 6 feet social distancing while wearing their mask while they are waiting for their picture to be taken.
  • Students will wear their mask the entire time, except when they are standing in their picture spot, and then they will remove it while their picture is taken.
  • Students will put their mask back on as soon as their picture is taken and will return to their socially distanced line.
  • Photographers will wear masks at all times.

Our VLA families are invited to come for pictures anytime between 4:00-6:30 pm on Tuesday, November 10th. The process for pictures will be similar to the above, but you will stay in a socially distanced line as a family. The photographer can take a picture every two minutes, which is why we are not having families sign up for a time slot.

For any family choosing not to participate in school pictures this year, you will still have an opportunity to submit a picture for the Yearbook. Once we know who does not participate, we will send those families the Josten's picture parameters and details on how to submit your picture for the yearbook.

Ideas for Distance Learning Days

Here are some excellent ideas if you or your child are seeking more activities to do on Distance Learning days.

VLA Book Checkout

If your child requests a book, it will be outside on a cart with your name on it between 10am-2pm on the designated dates. Our next date is November 13. This video can help your child determine whether or not their book is ready for pickup. Also, please return any previously checked out books. You can leave them on the curbside cart on designated Fridays, or they can be dropped off anytime on the black cart in the front vestibule labeled “Return VCES Library Books Here.” All VLA Book Checkout Procedures, and future book checkout dates can be found on our Media Center website, linked here. Please contact Ms. Lanners, Media Specialist, if you have any questions!

Notes from our School Social Worker

Dr. Gervais is able to offer you or your child(ren) the opportunity to meet with her virtually in 15-minute increments. Dr. Gervais scheduling calendar can be found at If you should have any questions or resource needs, please contact Dr. Gervais at

VCES Mindful Movement Minute - Join Dr. Gervais on Tuesday and Wednesday's at 2:30 pm CST to practice Mindful Movement via YouTube live. You can access live and recorded sessions here:

Resources for Families - District 833 has a website that will link you to a variety of resources from food, mental health, and unemployment and so much more. Bookmark this page for future use:

PTA News

Fall Fitness Fundraiser

Only a week left in our Fall fundraiser! Thank you to those who have registered, shared and/or donated, we have reached $11,000 of our $30,000 goal. Please register, share and consider donating to ensure opportunities for our students and staff can continue! A suggested $25 donation per student would help offset t-shirt costs and allow the PTA to continue enrichment opportunities we have been able to provide students and staff in the past.

Make sure to register!

To register, visit the Fundraiser Registration Site

School Identifier code: 5d2f3c17caf66


Fun Run Parent Letter

Fitness-A-Thon BINGO card Turn your completed BINGO card in for a prize drawing!

Fall Book Fair

Our online book fair is underway! Orders must be placed by 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, November 8 in order for our school to receive 25% in rewards. Books ship free with a $25 book-only purchase!

New this year--e-gift cards! Surprise your teacher with an e-gift card to purchase books for their classroom! E-gift cards are immediately emailed to the teacher and they can purchase books and support our book fair at the same time! Win-Win!


Don’t forget to sign up for our PTA Memberhub. Get exclusive information, announcements, and visit our online store to sign up to become a PTA member.

Please use this link to sign up a new account:

Returning families: Your MemberHub login will carry over from past years. Login HERE

Make sure to follow VCES PTA on Facebook!

VCES Contact Information

Connha Classon, Principal: / 651.425.7503

Kristine McDonald, Assistant Principal: / 651.425.7523

Merita LaPlante, Office Coordinator: / 651.425.7501

Jen Gackstetter, Office Assistant: / 651.425.7507

Jen Gervais, Social Worker: / 651.425.7605

Family Technology Support Line: Fall 2020 website / 651.425.HELP (4357) - M-F 7:30-4:00