Hampton Cove Elementary School
September 20, 2021
Parent Information Letter
Hello HCES families,
Thank you to our PTA and parents for assisting with the Book Fair this past week. And speaking of books, we want to encourage our children in 2nd-5th grades to reach their AR Goals every nine weeks this school year. We have two more weeks until the end of the first nine week grading period.
The State Department has released our ACAP data and once that becomes public I will share the data with you as well as our goals for this year.
There are many different scenarios that can occur with the exclusion policy, so I have tried to explain the questions we have encountered from parents below:
-If your child has been exposed to a positive individual, we are sending home students to be excluded from class to watch for any signs or symptoms of Covid for 14 days. Your child can not test out of an exclusion. They could show symptoms within 14 days, so there is not a way to test out of exclusion.
-If you have multiple students here and only one was sent home for exclusion, the other children in your household do not have to stay home.
- If you have a positive case in your home, we are asking that all members of your household stay home because of this exposure.
-If your child exhibits two or more covid symptoms while here at school, your child will be sent home and there are two options in this case: 1. They can visit their doctor/provider and if a negative covid test is provided along with an alternate diagnosis, they will be able to return to school, but we have to have the alternate diagnosis. 2. Stay home in exclusion for 10 days.
This is your choice as the parent.
Our cafeteria will begin selling ice cream on Fridays beginning Sept. 3rd, but we need our students to bring their money by Thursdays of each week. Any student can purchase ice cream on Fridays for .75 cents, however, Ms. LaTonya has to know by Thursday if your child plans to buy ice cream. We have asked our teachers to gather this information on Thursday so the cafeteria has time to process our class orders for Friday. Please know that if you have placed a block on your child's EZPay account to NOT purchase snacks, they will be unable to provide ice cream for your child, so make sure you didn't set blocks on your child's account.
If your child has a birthday, you can purchase ice cream for the class to celebrate your child's birthday and it does not have to be on a Friday, however, Ms. LaTonya (our cafeteria manager) does need to know this in advance so she can place her ice cream order. I would contact your child's teacher and/or Ms. LaTonya a few days before the ice cream is needed. I have added her contact below as well as the EZ Pay website that can be found on the HCS website or below.
To find the EZ pay website, visit the HCS website, click on the parent tab and then click on Breakfast and lunch. Scroll down and you will see the EZ pay link.
Even though the HVA enrollment window has closed, there is a waiting list that I can send in to the district. If you wish to move to HVA, please email me at email@example.com and I will add you to the wait list for HVA. Also, I need you tell me the reason you wish to move to HVA (health or other reason).
We are in the process of scheduling Open House, so stay tuned for a date to be shared soon.
I will ask that we do not have visitors to lunch due to the fact that we are still rotating classes eating in the lunchroom. We are also asking that parent volunteers not enter the classrooms when students are present. Again, this is an effort to keep everyone safe and healthy and here at school! :)
If your child is out of school due to exclusion, please know the STAR testing window has been extended through Sept. 24th, so we will have time to ensure they are tested when they return.
Please continue to alert your child's teacher if your child or someone in your home is positive for COVID. Masking is required while on campus. If you or a member of your family are positive, we ask that you do not enter our building to pick up your children or their materials. Please call us if you need us to walk your children out to you. If you are positive and in quarantine, please send someone else to the school to pick up needed materials for your children. We are happy to work with you, please call us at 256-428-7180.
The specific arrival and dismissal procedures below to ensure we have a smooth arrival and dismissal. Our main priority is the safety of our students and getting the car line moving.
Please ensure your child's teacher knows how they will go home each and every day. If you tell them they are a bus rider, your child's teacher must know which bus they are to ride. Please share with your child's teacher. If you are a car rider, please make a sign with your child's name, grade, and teacher's name to place in the front dash of the car when you come for dismissal pick up. (I have added an example picture below.)This will help us to call their name and expedite the car rider line.
Mrs. Smotherman is our Afterschool Tutoring site facilitator and you can email her with any questions about Afterschool Tutoring: firstname.lastname@example.org
The state has shared that our school menus may be a little different due to the supply chain shortage and staffing shortages experienced around the state. Please know there could be menu changes due to the delays in shipments and order changes. We will also postpone our VIP Luncheon to a later date in the spring.
We sent home the Powerschool parent portal information in this week's Wednesday folders. This is where you can check your child's grades and absences.
I am very excited to have Dr. Sanchella Graham join our faculty as our Assistant Principal. Please welcome Dr. Graham. She has worked with HCS for the past 19 years and received her doctorate this past May in Instructional Leadership. We are so happy to have her join our school family!
Upcoming Events and Important Dates:
Thursday, September 30th: The PTA Membership drive ends
Friday, October 1st: End of first nine week grading period
Monday, October 4th - Friday, October 8th: FALL BREAK!
Friday, October 15th: Report Cards are sent home
HCS Launches COVID-19 Dashboard
Huntsville City Schools has launched a COVID-19 dashboard that will be updated throughout the school year.
The dashboard will provide a weekly case update on schools across the district. Data will be updated on Wednesdays by 1 p.m. CST.
The dashboard reflects the number of students and staff members out due to COVID-19.
Thank you all for your support,
Front office and Administrative Assistant:
Covid-19 Exclusion Policy
Dear HCS Family,
Effective Monday, August 23, Huntsville City Schools (HCS) will implement the Alabama Department of Public Health’s (ADPH) guidance regarding close contacts. ADPH recommends that students and staff members who are close contacts of an individual who tests positive for COVID-19 temporarily isolate away from school campuses and activities. HCS will be excluding all individuals who are deemed a close contact per ADPH guidelines from HCS schools, campuses, and other buildings.
HCS will be implementing the following based on guidance from the ADPH:
COVID-19 CASE EXCLUSION - Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 or are reported to ADPH as being suspected of having COVID-19 should isolate and will be excluded from schools, campuses, and other buildings. The isolation/exclusion time period for a person that tests positive for COVID-19 is 10 days from symptom onset or 10 days from the date a test is administered. For more information, please see huntsvillecityschools.org/covid.
CLOSE CONTACTS EXCLUSION – Students who are close contacts to COVID-19 positive individuals will be excluded from schools, campuses, and other buildings for 14 days. HCS employees who are close contacts to COVID-19 positive individuals will be excluded from schools, campuses, and other buildings for 10 days.
Currently, the exceptions to exclusion include:
• Asymptomatic, fully vaccinated individuals;
• Asymptomatic individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 within 90 days and have recovered; and
• Asymptomatic students in the k-12 indoor classroom setting who consistently wear masks who were distanced by 3 feet or more of a positive individual who also consistently wore a mask.
Understanding that these close contact exclusions may be present challenges for our HCS employees, the Superintendent and her Preventative Measures Team are developing procedures for temporary exclusion leave. The Superintendent will seek authorization from the Board to implement these procedures during the Board meeting on Tuesday, August 24 at 6:00 pm. The Superintendent will share details about the planned procedures during that Board meeting.
The district is in the process of developing a COVID-19 Dashboard. The dashboard will be updated weekly and will be published when available.
Students will use Schoology to access assignments. Additionally, packets may be available upon request. We ask families for their support and flexibility as we work to provide a safe and healthy learning environment.
Huntsville City Schools
HCES Arrival and Dismissal Procedures
Arrival and Dismissal Procedures:
Our amazing PTA is working to fund early morning supervision for parents who need to drop off at 7:00 a.m. and go on to work. Please understand I only have one staff member to assist with early morning supervision, so if you can wait until 7:30 to begin dropping off, please wait. However, if you need to drop off early, you can do so. We will need to keep the line moving so I will ask any parents who wish to park and wait for the 7:30 bell to wait and park between 7:15 and 7:30. You can still wait in your car with your child until 7:30 if you wish, but please know cars will be driving around you to move on through. The doors are only open for our students at 7:00 a.m., all parents who need to enter the building for PreK or otherwise will need to wait until 7:30 to enter. Early morning drop off is just for our students. Thank you to our PTA. The link below to donate to this fund is located below under PTA. As students enter between 7:00 and 7:30, they will sit in the "pit" area. We ask that they read a book while they wait. At 7:30, the bell will ring and students will be dismissed to their hallways.
All students will sit in their grade level hallways from 7:30 to 7:45. At 7:45 the bell will ring and students will enter their classrooms to begin eating breakfast. School begins at 8:00 a.m.
Arrival time begins at 7:30 a.m. and class begins at 8:00 a.m. If you arrive after 8:00 a.m., please be prepared to park and walk your child in (wear masks) to sign them in at the front foyer. All tardy students will be escorted to their classrooms as well. We do ask that you please have your children at school on time each morning. It makes for a much smoother transition.
PreK begins at 7:50 a.m. and dismisses at 2:20 p.m. The PreK teachers will provide detailed procedure information.
Kindergarten - Fifth Grade dismissal begins at the 2:30 p.m. bell. We are unable to dismiss students before 2:30 p.m.
Student check out: If you need to check out your child, please wear your mask, ring the door bell and enter the front office. Please make sure you bring your I.D. (Driver's License) to check out your child. We do not allow check outs after 2:00 p.m. due to the entry and exit of the car rider line.
Arrival: Car riders:
At 7:30 a.m. the doors will open and all car riders in K - 5th grades will be dropped off in the car rider line at the front of the school. Please pull all the way forward for students to unload. Middle school students can be dropped off in our car line, we just ask that they walk around to the front of the middle school. We ask our PreK parents to park in the PreK parking lot and walk their children in to their classrooms to sign them in. All car riders will walk to their grade level hallway and sit until 7:45. At 7:45 the bell will ring and students will enter their classrooms to begin unpacking and eating breakfast.
Arrival: Bus Riders/Walkers/Bike riders:
Bus riders will unload at the back of the building and will exit the bus to walk to the back doors. Once they enter the back hallway, they will be directed to their grade level hallway to wait until 7:45 a.m. They will enter their classrooms at 7:45, unpack, and begin eating breakfast.
Walkers and Bike riders: *If your child is a walker or a bike rider, we will need a walker agreement on file. Please email your child's teacher for the walker agreement. Walkers are students who are walking to and from their home to school.
At the 2:30 bell, bus riders and PreK siblings will be dismissed.
Dismissal: Car riders:
At the 2:30 bell, walkers, bike riders, bus riders and PreK siblings will be dismissed. All other students will remain in their classrooms with their teachers. PreK siblings will walk to the front of the school and directed out to their cars where PreK parents are waiting out front. PreK dismisses at 2:20 p.m. and we ask all PreK parents to pull around the line to enter the car rider line first. Once all PreK siblings are loaded and cars pull forward, we will begin calling the first names in the car rider line. Please have your HCES car tag AND your car rider sign with your child's name, grade level, and teacher's name. (See picture below) We will continue calling students to the front until dismissal is completed. My goal is 2:45 p.m.
At 2:45 p.m., any parents who are parked and waiting in the middle school line may walk up while we call your child to come to the front. Please stay by the crosswalk and we will walk students over to you. Please show your HCES car tag and have a sign for your child to be called.
*We will be sending HCES car tags home with our new students. You will receive 2 car tags with a family number. This will be your number for the duration of the time you are with us at HCES. Please look for the car tags in your child's backpack. If you are not new to HCES but need a car rider tag, please email our front office aide at email@example.com
Dismissal: Bus Riders / Walkers/ Bike Riders:
At the 2:30 bell, walkers, bike riders, and bus riders will be dismissed. Students will walk out to the hallway as designated teachers gather the bus riders to walk them out to their buses by grade level and ensure they enter the correct bus. I will ask our walker parents to please wait in the grassy area by the buses for the students to be walked out. Please do not crowd by the doors, we need room for our students to exit. We also ask that our parents not park in the back of the building to pick up our children. If you arrive in a car to pick up your child, you will need to use our front car rider line. This helps to ensure the safety of our walkers as well. No-one should ever drive through the bus line. The bus line is for buses only.
Again, we ask that all parents go through the car line and remain in your cars. The car line must keep moving. If you need to exit your car to buckle in your child, we will ask you to pull all the way forward to just around the turn and then exit your car. Staff can assist to show you, just let us know.
Afterschool Tutoring: You will receive email confirmation for after school tutoring on Tuesday, August 3rd. All students will sit in the hallways during dismissal and once we have most of our students dismissed (2:45 or 2:50 p.m), our afterschool tutor teachers will invite our afterschool tutoring students in to their classrooms for snack. Once we have a better idea of how dismissal runs and who is going where, I expect this process to become quicker and students will be able to have their snack a little sooner. Please note the information in the letter being sent out Tuesday.
Please send a water bottle with your child labeled with their name.
You may send a lunch from home for your child, however, breakfast and lunch are free to our students. Students will eat breakfast in their classrooms. Lunch will either be eaten in the classrooms or in the cafeteria.We are on a rotating lunchroom schedule. Your teacher can share your class schedule, however, we are not able to have parents each lunch with us just yet. We are not allowed to share food.
Students will have PE in the PE gym or outside and recess will be daily if weather permits.
If you have any other questions or concerns, please email me or your child's teacher.
Please visit the PTA website at hcespta.com for more information.
HCES PTA Hawk Talk
HCES Parents, we need your help!
Our enrollment has increased this year and it shows in morning carline. School doors do not open until 7:30 AM, but carline starts building closer to 7:00 AM. Ms. Spivey has found a staff member willing to come in early in order to provide supervision to students prior to 7:30 AM. This supervision will look the same as when Cecil B. Ashburn was closed. Doors will open at 7:00 AM. All students entering prior to 7:30 AM will wait quietly in the front lobby area, affectionately known as "the pit". At 7:30 AM, they will be released to the hallways outside their classrooms.
HCES PTA has agreed to add the funding of a staff member to our 2021-2022 proposed budget (coming soon to all PTA members for a vote!). However, we are adjusting other items in order for our proposed budget to accommodate this expense. So we are reaching out to you for help. We have added an Early Open Supervision donation item to our MemberHub store. All funds received from this item will be earmarked specifically for the payment of the Early Open staff member. Donating to that fund will allow HCES PTA to redirect general donations back to our planned events and items. Your donation may be made HERE.
Ms. Spivey will be sending out further details, but I can tell you the Early Open Supervision will begin next Monday, August 16th.
On behalf of Ms. Spivey and the PTA Board - thank you!
Calling all students! It is time for the annual arts program - REFLECTIONS.
Students can express their creativity in the following categories:
Finalists will be chosen in each category by notable judges from the arts community. Each finalist will be recognized during the school’s morning announcements. Finalists have the opportunity to move to the state and National level for more recognition and prizes.
Submission deadline: October 15
Rules and entry form:
Questions? Email Katie Martin at firstname.lastname@example.org