Weekly Update

Together we can. Together we will.

Learning and Growing


This week, all West Dodge Station students took the MAP test. MAP stands for Measures of Academic Progress, and that is truly the purpose for the test--to measure progress. At West Dodge, we value progress and growth. There have been so many changes in the lives of students since March. And yet, I have noticed SO MUCH growth and progress since the start of the 20-21 school year.

One thing I know for sure....the West Dodge Station students are amazing! The students have helped me see that we can all do hard things. We can learn and grow in a time when school doesn't look the "same." We can persevere. Things change daily, and change is hard. But, we can work through changes together-openly and honestly.

I've learned a lot this week. I've grown a lot as a principal.

Students have learned a lot this week. Students have grown.

We are all in this together--Together we can. Together we will.

Mrs. Brittany Sidders

West Dodge Station Principal

Summer Reading Logs

Students who have completed their summer reading logs need to return them to their classroom teacher by Friday September 4th. Students who have read a total of 1,500 minutes or more will earn a prize for their hard work and dedication to reading.

Pick-Up, Drop-Off, and Traffic Tips

There are just a few reminders regarding pick-up and drop-off to keep everyone safe:

1. Please remain in your cars

2. If you are choosing to walk up to the school campus, please wear a mask and stay socially distanced.

3. Please use the cross-walks that are designated. We have Safety Patrol at all locations that will help stop the flow of traffic if needed to cross.

4. Do not stop in the crosswalks

**The video and directions below are helpful to share with anyone that is new to the pick-up and drop-off procedures.

WDS Dropoff Pickup Directions

Counselor Corner

Sweaty palms. Shaky knees. Dry mouth. We’ve all been there. Maybe it was when you were up at bat against a tough pitcher. Maybe you had a solo in the music program. Maybe it was as recently as a presentation at work. Anxiety is present in every person, but it becomes problematic when it interferes with important events in our lives such as school, work and socializing. Some people manage anxiety provoking moments pretty easily by taking a deep breath or two and moving forward. For others, kids and adults, that process becomes much more uncomfortable. Researches say that managing anxiety isn’t about a person’s tenacity or “toughness”, it’s more about the body and brain misreading situations and getting stuck in the fight vs. flight mechanism. It still can be managed but may take some help.

If your child is struggling with anxiety about coming to school or during the school day, there are some basic strategies you can try. First, recognize what can and cannot be controlled. For example, I can’t control that I have to go to school, but I can control my behavior and I can get support from adults there who I trust. I can make a plan with my teacher to take a break. During my breaks I can practice my breathing and do a quiet activity that will help my body to slow my breathing and heart rate. If tests cause extra worrying, I can ask to take my test in the counselor’s office. If teachers can be made aware of extra anxiety, there are several things we can do at school to support a student throughout their day.

If coming to school is tough, plan out the evening so that the morning can go as smoothly as possible. Pack lunches and backpacks and put them in a safe place. Lay out clothing for the next day. Prep breakfast as appropriate. Plan a quiet bedtime routine with limited electronics that tend to stimulate the brain. Reading a book together or alone is a great bedtime routine! As your child is laying in bed, have them practice taking in a deep breath through their nose and slowly exhaling through their mouth. Talk through the morning plan together, always with positivity, and visualize together them being successful.

I am always available to support anxious students through the day and I have some “socially distanced” calming stations in my office where students can spend a few minutes. If you feel that your child’s anxiety needs more support, there are a couple of options. Talk with your health provider for suggestions. There are also many local therapists who work with children. Your provider may have suggestions that work with your health insurance. Elkhorn Public Schools also contracts with Arbor Family Counseling. https://www.arborfamilycounseling.com/ Any Elkhorn student can see a counselor at Arbor Family free for two visits. After that, the family can decide to continue with the counselor using their insurance or other means or not to continue there. There are several counselors there with whom I have cooperated if you would like some suggestions.

Again, thank you for being at West Dodge Station. Anxiety is a part of life at some level for all of us. It’s okay to find yourself struggling at times - I think being in a world with a pandemic, quarantine and mask wearing has been tough on most of us. Give yourself grace. Find healthy ways to take care of yourself then model them and teach them to your children. And please let me know if I can offer any support!

Mrs. Jean Herold



Important Dates

August 31st through September 11th - MAP testing window open

August 31st - Live Learning for Remote Learners begins

September 7th - NO SCHOOL

September 11th - Remote Learner Supply Pick-Up (9:00-11:00)

September 14th - PTO Meeting (6:30)

September 16th - 24th - WDS Book Fair (online)

The link that I provided in last week's newsletter is NOT working.

So, if you would like the shirt (shown below), please send me an email (bsidders@epsne.org) and specify the student(s) first and last name as well as size(s).

Sizes are limited. Below are the sizes that remain available:

*Youth Small

*Youth Medium

*Youth Large

I will pull out the sizes that I still have available and get the shirts to you as soon as payment is sent to the office. Each shirt is $12.00. Payment can be cash or a check made out to WDS.

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District Information

COVID-19 Student Handbook Addendum Reminder

As a reminder, all parents/guardians must electronically acknowledge receipt of the COVID-19 Student Handbook Addendum. If you have not yet completed your electronic acknowledgment, please refer to the email you received on Friday, August 14 from Elkhorn Public Schools with the subject "2020-2021 STUDENT HANDBOOK: COVID SUPPLEMENT" and follow the link in that email to complete the acknowledgment.


Starting Tuesday, September 8th, guardians will be able to receive email summaries about their student’s activity in Google Classroom. Guardians will receive an email invitation on September 8th and will need to accept the invitation in order to receive Google Classroom email summaries. Email summaries do not include grades.

In email summaries, you can review:

  • Missing work—Work not turned in when the summary was sent.

  • Upcoming work—Work that’s due today and tomorrow (for daily emails) or that’s due in the upcoming week (for weekly emails).

  • Class activities—Announcements, assignments, and questions recently posted by teachers.

If there’s no activity to report or if a teacher turns off email notifications, you might not get an email summary.

Please click on this link for more information.
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The District is Hiring!

Make a difference with the Elkhorn Public Schools!

The Elkhorn Public School District is currently hiring teacher assistant/paraprofessionals for the 2019-2020 school year in our early education, elementary, and secondary settings. EPS is seeking caring and collaborative individuals with a desire to help students achieve.

· Family friendly hours – follows the school day and calendar

· Competitive pay ($14.65/$15.15)

· Rewarding working environment

Apply at www.elkhornweb.org Employment: Support Staff Non-Certified: Teacher Assistant

Sodexo Lunch Account Information

The September breakfast and lunch menu is coming online soon.

I will try to send that out whenever it goes live on the district website.

Nurse Newsletter

Click the picture for the September Nurse Newsletter

PTO News

Save the Date: 9/14/20, 6:30 pm, September PTO Meeting (Via Zoom Videoconferencing- Details Coming soon)

WDS Spirit Store Now Open!
Show your school spirit and support our school by purchasing some WDS apparel for the whole family. The order deadline is Friday, September 4th. Items will ship to WDS and be distributed 2-3 weeks after the order deadline. To view the entire school store and place your order, visit:

Send Us Your First Day of School Photos!
Parents, do you have "First Day of School" photos that you would like to submit for the WDS Yearbook? Whether your child is participating in school remotely or in-person, we would love your photos. To submit yearbook photos, email them to: yearbookwds@gmail.com. Include your child’s name and grade.

Contact Information

Please feel free to contact me any time if you have questions, concerns, feedback, or want to share your great news. ~Mrs. Sidders