Hillside News Brief
August 27, 2021
Important Dates for You
Tuesday, August 31: Instrumental Curriculum Information meeting from 6:30-7:30pm (this meeting will be held at Westside Middle School in the auditorium)
Thursday, September 2: Hillside Curriculum Fair/Information Night (Hillside Cafeteria) from 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Monday, September 6: Labor Day (No School)
Thursday, September 30: One School, One Book Family Activity Night
Hillside's Curriculum Fair is Coming!
One School, One Book for 2021 is Coming!
One School, One Book is almost here! This is a wonderful, school-wide reading opportunity for every family at Hillside. Each family receives a copy of our book for this year (and it's still a surprise, so you will find out September 2). If you need a copy in Spanish, we've got you covered!
You will receive all the information you will need to know to participate in our school-wide reading of the book; on September 30 we will celebrate finishing the book with an all-school family activity night here at Hillside!
We are excited to begin our reading adventure! Stay tuned...
Westside Community Schools continues the implementation of MTSS, which stands for Multi-Tiered System of Supports. MTSS in Westside assures that we regularly monitor student skills and follow-up with providing students what they need to be successful in learning. Beginning in August and September this means that we first screen all students to determine their current skill levels and plan our instruction to meet their needs.
What is MTSS? MTSS is a framework for providing instruction and support to promote the academic and behavioral success of all children. Individual children’s progress & skills are measured, and these results are used to make decisions about further instruction and intervention. The MTSS process is flexible and allows for a continuum of supports designed to meet the needs of individual students. This support may be provided in a large or small group by the classroom teacher or other support staff, either within or outside the classroom.
What does this mean for my child? A key component of the MTSS process is that all children receive high quality instruction in their classroom. Universal screenings are brief tests used to measure the progress of all students and are given three times per year. As a result of the screenings, students may be identified as needing some degree of supplemental intervention in addition to the instruction they are receiving in their classroom. If your child is identified as needing intervention you will be notified. Please contact your child’s building principal with questions.
Nebraska Reading Improvement Act: The Nebraska Reading Improvement Act went into effect at the start of the 2019-2020 school year. The goal is that all Nebraska students are able to read at or above grade level by the end of third grade. This is accomplished by ensuring all students have access to high-quality instruction and for struggling readers to receive targeted support (intervention). Our current MTSS framework in Westside Community Schools already allows for us to meet these state requirements. Also, the more students continue to read, review math facts, and write/journal each day at home, in addition to their instruction from school, the more secure their skills may become.
Free and Reduced Lunch Applications
This year, the federal government will continue to subsidize free breakfast and lunch for all students. While the meals are free, extra helpings and water bottles are not free. Also, there is a charge for milk if a student is buying that to go with a lunch brought from home.
If you think you might qualify, please complete an application for meal assistance (see below links).
Students who qualify for free or reduced meals may also qualify to receive discounted fees for other district expenses such as bussing or activities. All children in the district benefit in areas beyond the lunch program when qualified applications exceed a certain percentage of the district’s enrollment.
Safety During Arrival and Dismissal
- Consider putting your child seat on the curb side of your back seat; this helps kiddos to enter and exit the car quickly. If you are able to teach your child to buckle up, even better!
- Please do NOT walk through traffic in our circle drive during arrival or dismissal; cars are fast and furious during these times, and we have a sidewalk available for you and for students to walk around
Thank you for helping us to keep everyone safe at arrival and dismissal.
To 5th Grade Parents and Students
You are invited to BE A PART OF THE MUSIC! This fall, 5th grade students will have the opportunity to do what so many successful students have done in previous years by being a part of Band and Strings! In the first three weeks of school, instrumental music teachers will be visiting all elementary buildings, demonstrating the instruments available, and giving students the opportunity to select an instrument of their choice. The instrumental music team will have a parent meeting about the program on Tuesday, August 31, at 6:30 pm at Westside Middle School. All are welcome to attend to learn about elementary instrumental music and to meet the teachers. The whole team is excited to introduce your child to the world of instrumental music!
The Elementary Instrumental Music Staff
Gail Carpenter-Johnson, Michael Freeman, Viktoria Matheson and Ken Meints