Bear Essentials Jan. 21, 2022

Weekly eNews for Parents and BLES Families

This link will take a visitor to the same newsletter but in Spanish

Principal's Message

Dear Parents,

It was another great week of learning at BLES. For a short week, it sure did go by fast! In last Friday's newsletter, we shared a link to a class preference survey that you may fill out for next year. This survey is intended to get your feedback on your child's classroom placement. We love to hear what worked or didn't for your child in previous years, as well as a description of anything you think we need to know to make a good placement. We do not accept requests for specific teachers, so please do not ask for a teacher by name. You can describe the kind of teacher that your child has worked well with in the past, or the kind of teacher you feel your child may need (patient, firm, etc.), and we will do our best to make everyone happy! You may also let us know if there are other students that your child may need to be separated from. You can find the link further down in this newsletter.

I hope you have a great weekend!

Your Principal and Partner,

Dr. Pendleton

A Look Ahead...

Monday, January 24

  • 3:00pm Chess Club- Media Center

Tuesday, January 25

  • Digital Learning Day
  • Soccer Club Cancelled due to DLD (make-up date will be April 12th)

Wednesday, January 26

  • 12:30pm Play to Learn
  • 3:15pm Green Team

Thursday, January 27

  • 6:00pm Counselor's Parent Workshop #2: Respect Agreements at Home and School. (more information below)

Friday, January 28

  • No events
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Class Preference for Next School Year

It's time to work on class lists for next year and we want your input! Please complete this form by January 28th:



Tuesday, January 25th will be a County-Wide Digital Learning Day

Students will not come to the school building on Tuesday but should participate in the Digital Learning Day from home or daycare. Teachers will post assignments on their eClass pages for students to work on during the day. Chromebooks will be sent home Monday afternoon. If you have already requested a Chromebook for your child to borrow this year, you do not need to make a new request but If you still need to borrow a Chromebook for your child, please complete this form.

PTO News

  • This week we were able to fund two cultural arts productions. On Monday, our 3rd graders attended the Tattingtales' production of "The Adventures of Hernando de Soto" and on Wednesday our 4th graders attended the "Buttons for General Washington" production. Funding various cultural arts activities is just one of the many things the BLES PTO does to support learning.

  • Spirit Wear- we are searching for a volunteer(s) to chair the Spirit Wear this year. We have local vendors we work with but are looking for someone to coordinate and help arrange the sales. If you would be interested in volunteering for this position, please contact us at

Upcoming Parent Workshop - Respect Agreements, A Tool for a Harmonious Household

Respect Agreements are a simple strategy for discussing how to give and receive respect in your household. Join the Berkeley Lake Counselors for a how-to presentation on creating your own Home Respect Agreement.

During the workshop you will:

  • Learn why Respect Agreements are impactful

  • Hear how we have used Respect Agreements at BLES

  • Receive the tools you need to write a Respect Agreement at home

  • Learn how to use the Respect Agreement after it is written

Thursday, January 27

6:30-7:30 p.m. via Zoom, with Spanish translation

*The Zoom Link will be sent via Class Dojo closer to the presentation date.

I.T. Girls

I.T. Girls will start back up at 7:00am on Tuesdays, beginning February 1st. The other dates will be February 8, 15, 22, March 1 and 8.

Ms. Bentley

Unclaimed Items from the Lost and Found Will Be Donated on February 18th

Our lost and found is full! If you think your child may be missing a jacket, coat, water bottle, etc., please have them come to the lost and found, which is in the lunchroom. We will donate all items that have been in the lost and found for more than three weeks on February 18th.

Kids Heart Challenge is Coming!

I can feel the excitement at our school!

We’re about to kick off this year’s Kids Heart Challenge with the American Heart Association, and I’m leading our school’s team.

Our students are ready for fun! They’ll be moving more doing things like dancing, shooting hoops, jumping rope and conquering a warrior obstacle course. And here’s my secret: While they’re having fun, they are learning about gaining physical and emotional strength, while supporting a great cause – a true “win-win!”

You can join the excitement. Visit to register and get started and spread the word. Let’s raise much-needed funds for the Kids Heart Challenge!

Ms. Birozes, P.E. Teacher

Gwinnett County Schools Night at the Atlanta Hawks Game

Join us for Gwinnett County Schools Night at State Farm Arena as the Atlanta Hawks take on the San Antonio Spurs. Each ticket includes $10 worth of food and beverage credit. A portion from each ticket purchased through this offer will benefit the Gwinnett County Public Schools Foundation. Tickets can be purchased through the provided link below.

ATL Hawks vs. San Antonio Spurs | Friday, February 11th | 7:30pm

Purchase your tickets by clicking on this link

Mathnasium of Berkeley Lake Contest

One of our business partners, Mathnasium of Berkeley Lake, is having a membership contest. For more information, please click this link.

Excuse Notes for Absences

Communication between home and school is a key component of your child's success in school. We appreciate phone calls, Dojo's and emails letting us know the morning of your child's absence. That helps us not wonder and worry about why your child is not here, and helps us anticipate when they will return to school.

It is also important to send an excuse note with your child following any absence. We have students returning from being out due to illness without excuse notes. This causes their absence to be coded as unexcused. Students with 10 or more unexcused absences are considered truant. If it is more convenient, you can email the excuse note to the teacher and they will print it for you. A Dojo message cannot be printed as an excuse note.

Please contact our school counselors with any questions.

Laura Marantz

Counselor for K, 2, 4

Lyndsay Murphy

Counselor for 1,3,5

Clinic is In Need Of

Our Clinic urgently needs:

  • pants (boys-girls-adults) all ages and sizes. (sweatpants, stretch pants, yoga pants, running pants or any pants )
  • groceries bags

Please drop them by the clinic if you have any to donate. Thank you.

Think First and Stay Safe

The annual personal safety lessons designed to prevent sexual abuse will begin the week of January 10th and continue until counselors are able to deliver these lessons to all classes K-5. A letter will come home the day your child receives their lesson. The Think First & Stay Safe™ program is a research-based program that teaches specific personal safety education by way of interactive classroom lessons, classroom posters, role playing and corresponding activities. Think First & Stay Safe™ enables students to take an active and necessary role in protecting themselves from abuse and exploitation. A committee of professional school counselors reviewed the program and selected components that were developmentally appropriate for elementary students and developed lessons around those concepts.

Family Engagement Tips

Visit the BLES website and check out each day's Family Engagement tip. There is a tip for every day, Monday - Sunday, and they are offered in both English and Spanish.

Instructional Resource Review Committee Applications Now Available

GCPS invites community members to participate in resource review committee

Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) is inviting parents and community members to apply for the district’s Instructional Resources Review Committee (IRRC), a group charged with evaluating print and digital instructional resources. Feedback from the IRRC and teacher reviews will be considered in the selection of resources to pilot in the district. This year’s IRRC will convene on Feb. 22 at the J. Alvin Wilbanks Instructional Support Center (ISC) located at 437 Old Peachtree Road, NW, in Suwanee. Instructional resources will be reviewed for courses in the areas of Health (grades K-9), Mathematics (grades K-5 and select High School courses), Career and Technical Education (select courses in grades 6-12), and Social Studies (select elective courses in grades 9-12). Learn more about the IRRC and complete the application online. The deadline to submit completed applications is January 24.

School Calendar for Next Year Approved and Released

Click on a blue link below to view the recently approved and released GCPS calendar for the 2022-2023 school year:

Positive Interventions and Behavior Support (PBIS)

Our school is a Positive Interventions and Behavior Support (PBIS) school. Each week we will spotlight a particular theme of good behavior and ask that you reinforce this theme with your child when it at home.

Will Your Child Be Withdrawing as a Student from Our School?

If you child with be withdrawing from our school, please be aware that you must contact the front office to complete the withdrawal. Most districts require certain paperwork from the previous school before you will be able to register your child at the new school. Be sure to bring any library books, Chromebooks and powercords, and other school-owned items when you begin the withdraw process.

Recreational Spring Soccer Sign Up:

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First Ever GCPS Relay for Life Car Show:

Camp Invention Is Coming Summer 2022

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Berkeley Lake Elementary is a Georgia After School Program (GASP) School

Parents, are you tired of waiting in those long car-rider lines? Or, do you need someone to watch your student after school until you can get home from work? If so, the Georgia After School Program may be something you want to consider. The program is offered at our school and follows strict COVID protocols. If you want to learn more about the program, click here.
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T-Mobile Offering Cellular Plan for Gwinnett Families

Please note: For questions regarding the program, please contact

LeanStream support at or 833-943-4463.

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COVID 19 Help

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Gwinnett County Substitute Teacher Incentive Plan

In Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS), our people are our greatest resource, including our substitute teachers and the tremendous support they provide to our students, staff members, and schools. GCPS substitutes play a critical role in our students’ education, making a difference in the lives of children every day! Click here to learn more about the GCPS substitute teaching program.

Do You Have a Young Child at Home That is Not Yet in School? If so, Get Involved With Play to Learn.

Play 2 Learn is a program for young children— ages birth to 5— offered at 42 elementary schools in Gwinnett County Public Schools. Children and parents and other adults in the family learn together through engaging lesson plans in a high-quality preschool environment for 90 minutes each week during the school year. Families are empowered to keep the learning going at home so that all children will be ready for Kindergarten! Berkeley Lake Elementary one of the county's Play to Learn Schools, so if you have a young child at home, we encourage you to consider joining the program. See the image below or click here to learn even more about the program.
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We Collect Box Tops (Online)

Box Tops for Education is Online: Box Tops are being collected online only. Here are instructions for how to continue to give to our school with Box Tops.

Do You Have a Parent Portal Account?

You may have heard about Gwinnett's Parent Portal. The Parent Portal is a website that will allow you to log in and see your child's information, such as attendance, grades, standardized test scores, etc.

If you need to register with the portal, please print and complete this registration form and turn it in to the main office. Along with the completed form, you are required to show a photo I.D. for verification.

Do You Have a MyPaymentsPlus Account?

Gwinnett Public Schools uses MyPaymentsPlus as a site for school-related payments and documentation sign off. If you do not yet have an account with this site, you will need to set one up. Click here to learn more.

Did You Know BLES is on Various Social Media Apps?

Follow us on all of our social media accounts by clicking the links below:

Opportunity for Discounted Portable WiFi Hotspot for Families

The Gwinnett County Public Schools Foundation is offering a discount on a portable WiFi hotspot for its families for $50/month. Data is unlimited and there is no contract required. See the image below or click here to learn more.

Berkeley Lake Recycles

Berkeley Lake recycles aluminum cans and old clothes and shoes (in any condition) in the two bins in the upper parking lot. The Green Team receives 10¢ per pound of donations, which helps pay the fee for the weekly paper and cardboard pick-up. The aluminum cans are recycled at Progressive Recycling on Simpson Circle. Please support our Green Team by recycling these items here at Berkeley Lake. Thank you!

Our Parent Center

The Berkeley Lake Parent Center is located across from the front office and it's providing services by appointment. For Parent Center support please call Ms. Sandra Orci, Parent Liaison, at 678-291-4232 or email her at

Our Mission

To provide learning experiences in a secure and stimulating environment where every child can develop to his/her fullest potential academically, socially, and emotionally.

Our Vision

BLES is a positive safe, nurturing environment that fosters respect among all students, teachers, parents and community members, while forwarding world-class achievement that successfully maximizes each student's individual potential through engaging instruction.

We Thank Our Business Partners

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Contact Us:

Berkeley Lake Elementary

4300 S. Berkeley Lake Rd.

Duluth, Georgia 30096

P: (770)446-0947

F: (770)582-7514