Hillcrest Elementary School

April 17, 2020

As you may already know, Governor Wolf announced last week that Pennsylvania schools are now closed for the duration of the school year. The staff and I were equally as disappointed as you upon hearing this news.

Please know that the Hillcrest staff is prepared and committed to providing the best instruction possible, as teachers implement distance learning activities. We will continue to support our families in every way we can during the challenging weeks and months ahead.

As you may have seen this week, the teachers are facilitating activities and instruction on new concepts and skills. If you have multiple children at HCE you may have observed that the activities will vary from grade to grade and teacher to teacher. Some lessons will be recorded videos while others will be virtual interactions through Zoom or Google Meet. As a reminder, please don't hesitate to contact your child's teacher directly, if your child is experiencing difficulty with an assignment or on the contrary if the assignments are too easy. Like in the classroom, teachers may be able to adjust assignments accordingly.

Lastly, We will be providing additional activities for staff, students and parents to virtually connect throughout the rest of this year. See below for more information on some of these activities! Other activities will be communicated through our weekly HCE listserv messages.

As I shared with you earlier during this pandemic...We will get through this together! I wish you continued health and safety.


Mrs. Jones-Tate

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We wanted to introduce a way for you to see some familiar faces from our school and also get a little Language Arts going on before bedtime! Coming soon, there will be TWO versions of "Goodnight Hillcrest!" available for your listening and viewing pleasure. One link will have our own HCE staff reading a variety of picture books, and one will have chapter books where you can click on one chapter to listen to at a time. The first chapter book that is available will be Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary. We have had a lot of fun making videos of books and we hope that you enjoy listening to them as much as we enjoyed making them!

Look for these links to be ACTIVE and located on the website beginning early next week.

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Got pictures? Please send snapshots of your children in their Distance Learning Settings. Send pictures directly to your child's homeroom teacher or Special Area teacher. We hope to share these pictures on our websites, through HCE social media and in our listservs. This is one easy way for us to stay connected.

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Attendance During Distance Learning

While Council Rock students are engaged in Distance Learning, the following procedures will be implemented to track student attendance:

  • Beginning Monday, April 20, 2020, students/families will be responsible for recording their attendance each day.
  • ALL teachers will be provided with a link to post in their Google Classroom for students to be able to access.
    • Students will click the link ONCE per day to record their attendance for that day.
    • Students are NOT required to record their attendance for each class.
  • Attendance secretaries will email the link community-wide every day at the start of each school day, since some of you may not be directly in your child's Google classroom.
  • If a student is absent, parents/guardians can reply to the attendance secretary reporting the absence. Those who do not fill out the Form will be marked absent; excused absences should be emailed to the attendance secretary.
  • Each school day, students and/or parents will access the link to the Attendance Form, and enter a valid email address (students are encouraged to use their school address), and their student ID number.
    • Attendance is being recorded from 12:00AM to 11:59PM on a school day. Students and parents CANNOT record attendance in advance - this must be completed each day.
    • Parents/guardians of multiple CR children MUST complete this Form once for each of their students; students CANNOT be combined into a single record.
    • The Attendance Form needs to be completed once each day in order for a student’s presence in Distance Learning days to be recorded; however, no issues will occur if a student and/ or a parent records the attendance several times.
  • If students do not know their student ID number, families can log into HAC, click the registration icon, click the demographic tab, and in the top left corner is the student ID.

Here is the link that will be provided by the HCE Attendance Secretary and the homeroom teachers:

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Yesterday, Dr Fraser sent out an email to the community about our continued focus on Student Wellness in CRSD. Starting next Friday (4/24) and Every Friday for the remainder of the school year, students will have a WIN Day (WHAT I NEED). As a result, there will be no NEW LEARNING/ASSIGNMENTS from classroom teachers on Fridays.

Fridays can be used as:

  • Catch up Days
  • Exploratory Days---work on something that interests you! (w/your parent's permission of course!)
  • Enrichment Days (perhaps you can go back to your classroom assignments and complete some of those optional activities that you may have skipped during the week)
  • Visit those Special Area sites that you just haven't gotten around to yet
  • Work with your teacher in an area that you might be having difficulty
  • Work with specialist/counselor in an area that you might need support
  • Visit the Student Wellness Website that will feature activities and learning opportunities on health & wellness (physical, mental, social)

(This list is not exhaustive...but simply ideas for those WIN Fridays!)

Please read Dr. Fraser's email for more information

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A Message from Central Registration...

On-Line Registration is now fully open! Please go to the CRSD site at www.crsd.org and click on the Student Registration tab.

You can submit your completed registration by using instructions listed on the site. Once your file is reviewed, we will be in contact to complete the process via e-signature. Please do not forget applications must be submitted by June 1st to guarantee a spot in your student’s home school!

If you have any questions please reach out to our registration department at registration@crsd.org.

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Our distance learning is providing wonderful opportunities for children to connect with their classmates and teachers. However, the children may not be aware of the unwritten online “rules” in this digital age. The atmosphere of an online classroom is different from a normal classroom, and the children would benefit from knowing proper netiquette guidelines. Here are some areas to review with your child:

  • In most situations, typing in ALL CAPS is inappropriate. Typing in all caps can be interpreted the same as yelling at someone.
  • What may seem like an obvious joke to one person could come across as off-putting or rude to someone else. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to avoid sarcasm altogether in an online classroom. Instead, students should lean toward being polite and direct in the way they communicate to avoid these issues.
  • Chat boxes are incorporated into many online classes as a place for students to share ideas and ask questions related to the lesson. It is not an instant messenger for communicating with friends. It should be treated like the learning tool it’s meant to be, and students should avoid off-topic discussions.
  • Always make an effort to use proper punctuation, spelling, and grammar.
  • It’s good netiquette to use respectful greetings, full sentences and even the same old “please” and “thank you” that is used in real life.
  • A passing comment spoken in class can be forgotten a few minutes later, but what is shared in an online classroom is part of a permanent digital record. A good rule to follow is think before typing.
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Problem with Technology?

Contact your child's homeroom teacher first. The teacher may be able to resolve the issue or find an alternative way to complete an assignment. If the issue is with regard to a Council Rock Chromebook being broken or not working, please send an email to chromesupport@crsd.org.

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Support from Our School Guidance Counselor

During our distance learning, there may still be times in which students may need the support of our guidance counselor, Dr. Sandberg. She is available during this time to help students and their families.

Each week, Dr. Sandberg is posting daily activities to help your child’s social and emotional growth. You can find the link on her website, but below is direct access for this upcoming week. Many of the activities can be used as a creative break or even as activities to help when your child says s/he is bored.