Union Center Elementary

Learn...to Achieve!

August 28th, 2020

Parents and Guardians of UCE...we have completed the second FULL week of school!

Please check below for some updates on all things happening at Union Center Elementary!


Hopefully you received the email from earlier this week regarding the new change in playground procedures. If not, please take a look at the below message:

After communication with the Porter County Health Department and our UTSC Central Office in regard to students testing positive at schools and the PCHD change that the 15 minute exposure window is now cumulative and not consecutive, we must readjust the way we operate our recess at Union Center.

What this means is that if we want to continue to send our students outside for recess, classes now have to stay separate, meaning students cannot intermingle with other students not in their classroom during recess.

What has been communicated to us is that if we didn't comply with this, if a positive case were to happen in a grade level, the entire grade level would be shut down and not just the class.

Beginning today, we will be separating classes outside during recess by Group and Location: One group will be on the playground, one on the blacktop, and one on the soccer field: Each class will be monitored by one of our three recess aides.

For extra recess, the same rules apply. If a grade level goes outside in the afternoon, one class needs to be on the playground, one on the blacktop, and one on the soccer field.

I know this is yet another change in our 2020-2021 school year, but we must stay positive and look at the bright side...our kids at least still get to go outside!

A rotational schedule has been created so that each class will move through the three different locations throughout the week. If you have specific questions about your child’s recess schedule, please reach out to your child’s teacher or look at their weekly newsletter for updates :)

Let's keep driving The Energy Bus together and staying positive for our kids! We got this!


Picture Day is set for Thursday, September 24th!

If you are a Virtual Learner, a schedule of times will be sent in the following weeks for times when your child can come to Union Center to get their picture taken!

For our in-person students, information for puchasing digitally and the day-of will be sent home in the coming weeks, as well :)

Hawaiian Day Next Friday (NEW INFORMATION)

To celebrate our fist three and a half weeks of school, next Friday, September 4th is going to be Hawaiian Day!

We encourage students to wear their favorite Hawaiian attire. We will be selling Hawaiian Leis for $1 that day: The money we raise will be donated to the Make-a-Wish Foundation.

On Hawaiian Day, we have a few guidelines for our students:

  • No bathing suits.
  • No spaghetti straps unless covered by a shirt.
  • Friday is PE: Students in PE should not wear sandals or flip-flops.

ATTN: In order to avoid touching money, please send your child to school with their leis money in a Ziploc bag with their name and teacher on it.

For more information on the Make-a-Wish Foundation, please check out their amazing website HERE.

We look forward to a rocking Hawaiian/Beach Day next Friday!


If you are interested in joining a local Cub Scout Pack ran by two wonderful parents, please click HERE for more information!

Elementary Virtual Pick-Up

The 4:00-6:00 Virtual Learner Pick-Up window is working GREAT, and I hope it is making life easier for parents to be able to pick-up their child's supplies for the week!

As a reminder, the vestibule will be open on both Monday and Friday from 4:00-6:00 PM.

Parents, please contact your child's teacher to see when materials will be ready for your child to pick-up, as to avoid any unnecessary trips :)

Breakfast and Lunch at Union Center

In order to properly social distance our students, our tables have been spread apart in the cafeteria and only 4 or 5 students will be allowed per table. Students will have assigned seats for the foreseeable future, after the first day of school.

We are asking that lunches be funded through check or credit card. You may find information at this LINK to create an account or add your child to your Mealtime account. Please make sure the check is in an envelope marked with your child's name and indicate amount. Our kitchen manager, Kim Camplan, will get all Kindergarten and new student families their lunch account information the first week of school, should you choose to create a Mealtime account, this will be needed information. Please contact Mrs. Kim Camplan at kcamplan@union.k12.in.us for more information.

The Free and Reduced Price Breakfast and Lunch Application may be completed online through your Harmony Family Portal Account or picked up in our office anytime. Applications need to be completed each year. Families who applied and qualified last year will need to reapply at the start of school. If you would like us to send a copy home with your child during the first week of school please call the main office.Our school serves breakfast at 8:30 AM and lunch each day, and an August menu can be found on our website HERE.

Ice Cream Friday and Snacks: These will be available to students after we get our school year started. More information will be communicated in an upcoming newsletter.

Lunch Visitors: To start the school year, we will not be allowing visitors during our lunch periods. Thank you again, for understanding the changes in place to support our safety measures this school year..

Lunch Times:

10:45-11:10 (KG Lunch/1st Recess)

  • 5 Min Clean Break

11:15-11:40 (KG Recess/1st Lunch)

  • 10 Min Clean Break

11:50- 12:15 (2nd Lunch/3rd Recess)

  • 5 Min Clean Break

12:20- 12:45 (2nd Recess/3rd Lunch)

  • 10 Min Clean Break

12:55- 1:20 (4th Recess/5th Lunch)

  • 5 Min Clean Break

1:25- 1:50 (4th Lunch/5th Recess)

  • Cafeteria Cleaned/Closed


We know that parents have prepared travel plans for their families well in advance, and once the current pandemic happened, many parents found themselves in a difficult situation.

After receiving guidance from the Porter County Health Department, Union Township Schools have been told that upon return students should self-quarantine for seven (7) days. Now, this does not apply to every state, only the states that are on the list from the CDC.

If your family is planning on traveling on vacation to one of the current nine (9) states on the CDC list, please contact Mrs. Ana Brocksmith to discuss learning options and dates for self-quarantine upon your arrival home: abrocksmith@union.k12.in.us

Please click the link HERE to review the letter from our Central Office.

Building Construction Update

You may or may not have noticed that a large fence has been placed behind our gymnasium! That is because our new addition to Union Center is starting to become a reality!

Architects and construction workers have been frequenting our building, and the plan is that they will begin breaking ground sometime in early to mid September.

This is VERY exciting for all our UCE students, teachers, and staff, and I hope exciting for our families, as well!

As we inch closer to the beginning of construction, I will share updates about our plan for safety, pictures, and hopefully some early renderings of what the new addition has to offer :)

COVID-19 Student Guidance

  • The Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) has released some wonderful tips to parents about how to begin having the conversation with your child regarding wearing a mask. Please click HERE for more information.
  • For a look at the difference between Quarantine and Isolation, please take a look at the attachment HERE.

A Day in the Life at Union Center!!

Click Here to Register for the KidStop Program

Please click HERE to register for the before and after school program, KidStop.
Big picture


Friday, Aug. 28th, 4-6pm

272 North 600 West

Valparaiso, IN

Virtual Learners can pick-up any supplies in our glass vestibule! Please contact your child's teacher to see if there will be supplies for that week!

Virtual Learners Supply Pick-Up

Monday, Aug. 31st, 4-6pm

272 North 600 West

Valparaiso, IN

Virtual Learners can pick-up any supplies in our glass vestibule! Please contact your child's teacher to see if there will be supplies for that week!


Friday, Sep. 4th, 8:30am-3:30pm

272 North 600 West

Valparaiso, IN

Students are encouraged to dress up in their favorite Hawaiian attire! Students can purchase a Hawaiian Leis for $1, and the proceeds go to the Make-a-Wish Foundation!


Friday, Sep. 4th, 4-6pm

272 North 600 West

Valparaiso, IN

Virtual Learners can pick-up any supplies in our glass vestibule! Please contact your child's teacher to see if there will be supplies for that week!


Monday, Sep. 7th, 8:30am-3:30pm

272 North 600 West

Valparaiso, IN

Rest and Relax~!

School Board Meeting

Wednesday, Sep. 9th, 7-8:30pm

599 West 300 North

Valparaiso, IN

UCE School Board Meeting from 7:00-8:30


Thursday, Sep. 24th, 9am-2pm

272 North 600 West

Valparaiso, IN

UCE Picture Day! Stay tuned for more information!

Principal Fuller's Thoughts

Two and a half weeks into the school year, and school feels a lot like...well, school!

Our students love being back in the building, and while things are most definitely different, the smiles on our children's faces are still the same :)

These last few weeks have flown by, and I have to remind myself of my favorite Ferris Bueller quote:

Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.

As we continue to adapt to new changes, we can't move at too fast a pace that we fail to see the wonderful opportunities and blessings that we do have.

I recently started reading the book The Energy Bus by Jon Gordon, and the first step in creating your own Energy Bus and getting it to move is a positive attitude. The way in which we handle situations will dictate the way in which those situations plays out; if we approach each day or each situation with a positive attitude, we are going to have a positive and productive day.

Now, some days may be more difficult than others, but it's imperative we hold on to at least one golden nugget of positivity each day, all the while knowing that some days there may only be one golden nugget for the whole day.

I sincerely appreciate all of the wonderful parent support our Union Center Family has shown to our teachers and staff these first few weeks: I wish I could show everyone how hard each individual in this building is working to ensure our students are safe and receiving the best education possible. It truly means the world knowing that we have such a supportive community that has our back during this time.

We will continue working together as a team, and we will approach our obstacles with a positive attitude each and every day to move our Energy Bus!

As always, we are here to help, and if you ever need anything from me, please don't hesitate to reach out :)