Starside's Comet

Newsletter Communication for February 11, 2022

Starside Elementary

Our Starside Mission:

Through a collaborative learning community we will build a foundation upon which all students can develop essential academic and life skills.

Click HERE to visit our school website!

School Climate Survey for Parents Due February 15th

Your Input is Valuable!

The annual School Climate survey opens today, Tuesday, February 8th, 2022. The feedback parents and guardians provide will assist us in making improvements, as well as identifying future considerations for district objectives and goals.

The voluntary School Climate Survey, created by the U.S. Department of Education, asks parents about the environment of the schools in which their students attend. We want to know your opinions about the climate, including the safety, discipline, and environment for learning for your school(s). The survey is anonymous and should take about 15 minutes to complete. It is important to note not all questions may be applicable to elementary.

You may complete a survey for each student you have in the district. Each building has a separate link, so anonymous feedback will be tied to a particular school. The link for Starside is

The parent-school climate survey will be open February 8-15.

Thank you for your time and feedback.

A Message From Principal Hicks

Next week is an exciting week! We start the week with Valentine's' Day. Students will celebrate Valentine's Day with their classes and teachers. Thank you to all the parents and room moms who donated, provided supplies and organized the event to make the class parties special. We are running the parties similarly to our Holiday Parties. Teachers will be facilitating the parties throughout the day and visitors will not be allowed. While we will miss having visitors in the building but the kids are in for a day of fun!

Next week is also Parent Teacher Conferences! On Wednesday school will dismiss at 12:10pm. This allows teachers to finish preparations for conferences. Conferences will run Wednesday evening though the end of the day on Thursday. This is such a special time for teachers and parents to discuss student progress. The home/school connection is vital for student success. Teachers look forward to these meetings each year. Conferences are either in zoom or in person based on preference. The format and times have been communicated. If you need to make any changes please contact the office. Also please remember there is no school on Friday or Monday the 21st due to Presidents' Day.

Lastly, Kindergarten Round Up is coming soon! If you will have a new kindergartner next fall, please mark your calendars and plan to attend Kindergarten Round Up on March 9th from 6-7pm at Starside. This informational session is for parents. You will hear from kindergarten teachers as well as other Starside staff. You will also have the opportunity to fill out beginning enrollment paperwork and ask any question you may have. Looking forward to seeing all of you then. To get the enrollment process started you can also fill out the link below. This will ensure we have your contact information entered into the system correctly. Thanks!

Kindergarten Round Up Link

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Starside's Virtual Lost and Found

Starside Parents, Are your students missing any items such as coats or accessories? Do I have some exciting news for you! Starside now has a virtual lost and found! Thank you to Andrea Clem for the idea and organization of this. Thank you to Michelle Brown for adding this to our website. Check out the link below to browse pictures of all lost items. If you find something that belongs to your student please email your child's teacher and let them know. Thanks for helping us clean house around here!

Lost and Found Link

Save the Date


  • 10 - Yearbook Group Pictures
  • 14 - Classroom Valentines Day Parties
  • 16 - Half-Day of school - dismissal @ 12:10 PM
  • 16 - 4:40-8:10 PM - Parent-Teacher Conferences
  • 17 - 10 AM - 8 PM - Parent-Teacher Conferences, No School
  • 18-21 - No School - President's Day
  • 2/22/22 - Too Tired Tuesday - Palindrome PJ Day!
  • 22 - SPARK
  • 24 - 3rd Session of Clubs begins!


  • 3 - Class Pictures
  • 4 - PTA event Java with Jan
  • 4 - PTA Glow Dance Party during the school day - no visitors
  • 9 - Kindergarten Round-Up at Starside from 6-7 PM
  • 11 - GUM DAY! End of Q3
  • 14-18 - No School - Spring Break
  • 21 - No School for students - Teacher PD and Work Day
  • 22 - Q4 Begins

Counselor's Corner

Spirit Day and Gum Day are back!

We will be having a Spirit Day on 2/22/22! Celebrate the Palindrome with "Too Tired Tuesday" (PJ Day)!

Mark your Calendars for our first in a long time Gum Day!! Friday, March 11th. Bring $1 and chew gum in class all day!

Kindest Kansas Citian contest

The Kindest Kansas Citian Contest is sponsored by Synergy Services in an effort to find the GOOD things that are happening in our community. School-age children from the entire metro area are encouraged to nominate someone who is 18 years or older, who is not in their family, and who lives in the KC metro area that they feel represents KINDNESS in some way.

Students can nominate an individual, couple, or group who they feel deserves the “Kindest Kansas Citian” distinction. All they need to do is submit a one-page essay or a drawing (Grades K-2) describing the caring ways of the person(s) they have nominated.

From thousands of entries, the top 20 students and their nominees will be honored on Friday, May 6th, 2022 at a Virtual Kindest Kansas Citian Awards Celebration. We encourage any Starside students who are interested to participate and continue this wonderful tradition. This year, instead of turning in a paper copy of your child’s essay or drawing, we are asking that you use the link below to submit your entry electronically. If you have any questions please contact Mrs. Mispagel,

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SPARK & Clubs

No SPARK or Clubs February 14-18th due to Parent-Teacher Conferences.

No SPARK on Monday, February 21 due to President's Day Holiday / No School.

We will have SPARK on Tuesday, February 22.

3rd Session Clubs begin on February 24.

No SPARK or Clubs March 14-18th due to Spring Break / No School.

McKenzi Mispagel,

Madison King,

Starside Yearbook

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Order your Yearbook now!!

Yearbook Order Deadline is March 28th!

The online ordering code is:

If you have any questions about Yearbook, please contact Mrs. King or Mrs. Hessong.

Maddie King,

Danielle Hessong,


-The PTA Glow Dance Party has moved to March 4. See Flyer below!

-No Bingo Night this year. Instead PTA will be helping with Starside's Family Night in May. More information to come later in the year.

- Several changes to note! The updated calendar is available on our website at Or go to and click on Calendar and then the Calendar file.

View our monthly meeting minutes from November and January on the website, too.

Join our Facebook page at Starside PTA and follow us on Instagram at starsidepta232 to stay up to date on information and events.

Fundraising Opportunities:

  • Casey's Rewards - download their app and earn points
  • BoxTops - download the app and scan your store receipts
  • - choose Starside PTA as your favorite charity
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MAKERSPACE Donations Appreciated!

If you are able to donate anything, Makerspace is in need of the following items:

-Aluminum foil


-Cotton balls

-Hot glue sticks

-Pipe cleaners

-Pringles cans

-Small canning jar lids

Nurse's Notes

Illness and Isolation/Quarantine Information Resources

Please see below for Johnson County Department of Health and Environment guidance and recommendations regarding COVID symptoms, isolation, and quarantine timeframes.

  1. Image 1 provides a comparison of common symptoms to help you consider possible illness causes.
  2. Image 2 is a link to the JCDHE isolation and quarantine calculator and is an excellent resource for clarity on isolation and quarantine recommendations, including calculating return dates.
  3. Image 3 is an easy-to-follow chart to help determine what steps to take if you or your child become ill or exposed to COVID-19, which is also found on our district website.
  4. Image 4 is a link to our district Covid-19 page for answers to any other questions you may have, as well as other available resources.
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SE Community Information

DHS Baseball Camp

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USD232EF Quarter Kudos

The USD 232 Education Foundation would like to recognize the amazing teaching and learning going on in our classrooms. We even want to brag about it! Getting students excited about learning is a teacher's superpower, so we want to CELEBRATE the teachers of USD 232!

Last quarter, we came up with the idea of “Teacher Kudos”. This gave parents and teachers alike a chance to share a fun or innovative activity that really impacted students' learning by posting on Facebook. Each post submitted was a chance for the teacher to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card from the USD 232 Education Foundation.

We are doing this again for the second quarter which will be a great way to end the semester. Here is the Facebook link:

Second Quarter Teacher Kudos

Pre-School Enrollment begins 2/21/22

USD 232 offers high quality preschool programs for children, ages 3 to 5, that are not yet kindergarten eligible. All programs are half-day, hold low student to adult ratios and use research-based curriculums tied to the Kansas Early Learning Standards. Preschool programs are located in the NEW Cedar Trails Exploration Center at the corner of Mize Blvd & 83rd St., next to Mill Creek Middle School. Grant funded (FREE) preschool spots are available for students who qualify. Transporation (busing) will also be available for grant funded spots and special education services.

Preschool Enrollment for the 2022-2023 school year begins on February 21, 2022. On that date, an online application will be available via the USD 232 Early Childhood website at Paper applications are also available within Cedar Trails Exploration Center (Lenexa, KS) and Starside Elementary (De Soto, KS) offices. All applications must be submitted to the Cedar Trails Office by March 4, 2022 at 4pm, to be considered in the first round of enrollment.

For more information, please visit

Contact the Cedar Trails Office at 913-667-1820 with questions.

Construction News will be continued next Spring...

Eastbound K-10 on-ramp and highway are now open! Both East and Westbound K-10 will remain open until construction begins on the Westbound ramp and highway in late spring or early summer!


Community Service

Community service hours should be tallied from April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022. Attached you will find a form for tracking service hours. All service hours are due no later than Monday, April 4th this school year.

The definition of service under the President’s Volunteer Service Award program includes any activity that has a significant impact on meeting the needs of the community. Services that are paid for or carried out for a family member do not count towards service hours. Some examples of services include helping with community organizations, school-based programs, scouting services, or any effort to help others.

Students are responsible for keeping track of ALL of their community service hours including hours completed at Starside such as Comet Guard. If you have any questions, please feel free to call me at Starside at 667-6270 ext. 2196 or e-mail me at Thank you for your support.


McKenzi Mispagel

Starside School Counselor

Contacts: Front Office

Email: to reach our secretaries, Starla Newberry and Jackie Johnson, and Nurse Tara Brown with your inquiries, attendance reporting, or student enrollment/records requests.

Be sure to add to your contacts list so we don't end up in your spam folder!

LIKE the Starside Facebook page!

"Like" our new Starside Facebook page: to receive updates on school news and events via Facebook!

Making A Difference

We are blessed to have such an amazing staff members here at Starside! They deserve to be recognized! Through the Great American Bank and our very own USD 232 Education Foundation they are providing you the opportunity to recognize staff members that you feel go above and beyond in their daily interactions with our students. All you need to do is click on the link below and fill out some general information of the deserving nominee. Thank you for helping our staff feel special!

Making a Difference Nomination Link

What is Bullying?

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SKYWARD Report Card Access

Parents – This year Starside will not be printing grade cards to send home with students. However, you may access your child’s grades in Skyward.


Log in to Skyward Family Access

Click on the Documents tab on the left side

Next, click on the blue link that says 21-22 Q1 Report Card

For further instructions please reference the Link (Pay close attention to page 3 and page 7):

Skyward Directions

Substitute Teachers Needed

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USD 232 Parents As Teachers

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Clickable Links:

Virtual Tour of Starside with Principal Hicks

Welcome to Starside
USD 232 Text Alerts

Sign up to receive alerts regarding special events like school closures, school pictures, late start reminders, etc.

2021-2022 School Year District Calendar

Details on school dates - late start dates and holidays, etc.

Starside Website

Your best resource for all things Starside!

Skyward Family Access Guide

Skyward Family Access instructions to check grades, SE Messages, fees, enrollment, and more.

Nutrition Resources

Menus and information regarding the USD #232 Nutrition program.

FirstView Student Bus Application

Parent App providing up-to-the-minute bus information including estimated bus arrival time, opt-in district messaging regarding delays or issues and customizable alerts.

Starside Family Handbook

Details on Starside procedures regarding arrival and dismissal, attendance notification, birthdays, snacks, special events, transportation changes, and everything Starside!

USD 232 Flyers

Electonic flyers for Scouts, Clinics & Camps, Sports & Miscellaneous events.

Family Resources

Community resources and information for USD 232 Families.

Education Foundation

Benefitting the District and enhancing the services and education provided by USD232.