From the Superintendent's Desk
Summer is here! As I thought about how to sum up a year that was unprecedented, I remembered a message I sent in April, 2020. The last paragraph read:
Above all, know that the Ballard District, more than ever, is both honored and humbled to be of service to our children and community. As in normal times, in the weeks ahead we will strive to “empower all learners” and do our best for our students, families, and staff. Our thoughts and prayers are with all who are experiencing hardship. We are committed to stand together until, once again, we can be together. From the bottom of my heart, take care everyone!
At the time of the writing, we didn’t know if we would return to school in the spring. Graduation was in question, and summer activities were up in the air. August seemed years away and nobody knew whether we would be in school in the fall or what it would look like. There was more stress and anxiety than many of us had ever experienced.
Amidst all of the uncertainty, a couple of things were clear. As a school district, our commitment to educating children was unwavering. To be successful, we would have to work together, with students, staff, parents, and the community supporting one another. I was confident if we could keep our vision at the forefront and help one another, we could successfully navigate whatever came our way.
I asked one of our district partners, the Donovan Group, to produce this video. This expresses better than anything I can write about how much I appreciate you all. Have a great summer, everyone. You have earned it!
2021-2022 Registration Information
Registration is now open for all Preschool - 12th grade students
New Family to the District
You do not have any children currently enrolled at Ballard or any of our local preschool programs
Current Ballard Family
You already have a child enrolled at Ballard Schools (EK-12) or one of the local preschool programs
For all families who have had a child enrolled in Ballard Community Schools or one of our 4 year old preschool programs, please log into your Infinite Campus Parent Portal account and select Online Registration from the menu. You will be able to register any existing students and add any new students to your existing household.
3 year old preschool
Ballard West offers a 3-year-old preschool program. To be eligible for 3 year old preschool, a student’s birth date must fall between 9/16/17 – 9/15/18. Registration procedures are the same as the 4-year-old program. This program requires a monthly fee.
4 year old preschool
Ballard Schools, along with several community partners, participate in the Statewide Voluntary 4-year-old Preschool Program through the Department of Education. To be eligible for 4 year old preschool, a student’s birth date must fall between 9/16/16 – 9/15/17 for the 2021-2022 academic year. This program is FREE to all families. If you are interested in your child attending any of the following preschool programs, please follow the steps below for registration.
Participating Four Year Old Programs
Ballard West Preschool: 515-228-3890
Ms. Hollie’s Preschool: 515-291-5604
Miss Wendy’s Preschool: 515-597-3478
Lily Pad Learning Center: 515-597-5437
Whistle Stop Academy: 515-597-3637
Call your program of choice directly to be added to a roster. *You must get confirmation from the preschool program that you are on their roster before moving to Step 2.
Register online for preschool on the Ballard Community Schools website. Regardless of your child’s attendance center, you MUST register online.
You may submit the required paper documents in one of the following ways:
1. To the Registrar at the District Office, 509 N Main Ave, Huxley, IA 50124
2. Via mail: Ballard Community Schools Attn: Registrar, 509 N Main Ave, Huxley, IA 50124
3. Via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact District Registrar, Amber Jungst with any questions or concerns about the enrollment process.
Phone: (515) 597-2811 ext. 1002.
Summer Chromebook Expectations
Ballard CSD students in grades PK-12 have the great opportunity to utilize a Chromebook for learning during the school year. To encourage ongoing educational opportunities, students in grades 6-7 & 9-11 will continue to have access to their Chromebooks by taking them home during the summer months. To assist you, the district is providing the following tips for summer Chromebook use:
Keep Chromebooks away from pets and young children.
Avoid heat and direct sunlight.
Avoid liquids-beware of wet swimsuits and towels.
Lack of charging may result in damage to the battery. The cost of a replacement battery will be the responsibility of the student/guardian.
Students that aren’t using their Chromebook over the summer should put the Chromebook in storage mode by completing the following steps:
Charge your Chromebook so the battery is at least 80% full. This ensures that even when the battery discharges while unplugged over the summer, it won’t fully run out of power.
Connect the device to the charger and turn it on.
With the charger still connected to the device, put the device in "Battery Cut-off mode". Hold Refresh + Power at the same time for at least 3 seconds.
While holding these keys, remove the power cable from the device, and then release the keys. The device should shut down and remain off.
Attempt to power the Chromebook on by using the power button. If the unit does not power on, you have completed the steps and can safely store the Chromebook. If the unit powers on, you should repeat steps 2 to 5.
Store it in a cool, dry place, and near 78°F (25°C).
This is the ideal way to store devices, as it reduces battery discharge to a minimal rate, prevents constant charge / discharge from reducing the battery life and keeps the Chromebook in a stable, powered off state.
Families should continue to monitor use at home by checking the Chromebook browser and observing student use. Instructions on how to check a browser is available at the Ballard Website>Parents>1:1.
Families always have the right to limit use over the summer.
For your security, your password should not be shared. Also, remember this is a school device, not a personal device; please do not use anyone else’s account on your school Chromebook.
GoGuardian monitoring software and accessibility remains active during the summer.
For further questions, review the district’s 1:1 technology information available via the Ballard District 1:1 Parent Webpage.
DO NOT attempt to do repairs on your own.
If Chromebooks are in need of repair, the student or parent should complete a repair request form. If you are not able to complete the form from home, you may complete the form at the Ballard District Office between 9:00 A.M. and 3:00 P.M. Monday - Thursday, except for holidays, where a kiosk will be available to complete the repair form.
While Chromebooks will be repaired as quickly as possible, replacements are not available over the summer.
If an email address is provided, information will be sent when the repair process is completed. If not, you will be called when repairs are complete with the phone number you provide.
A letter will be sent home to the parent if there are any fees that must be paid before repairs are made.
If the charger is broken it must be returned or there is a $30 replacement fee.
For questions please contact Dave McGill - Technology Director at 515-597-2811
Summer Food Service Program Extension
Ballard Health Department
• All students entering, advancing or transferring into 7th grade and born after September 15, 2004, will need proof of one dose of meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY). All students entering, advancing, or transferring into 12th grade and born after September 15, 1999, will need proof of two doses of meningococcal (A, C W, Y) vaccine; or 1 dose if received when the student was 16 years of age or older.
• Meningitis vaccine protects against meningococcal serogroups A, C, W, and Y. Meningococcal disease caused by any serogroup is a very serious, life-threatening illness. It is caused by bacteria that can infect the blood, brain, and spinal cord. Meningococcal bacteria are spread through upper respiratory droplets, such as saliva (kissing, living in close quarters). About 10 to 15% of people with meningococcal disease die even with appropriate treatment. Twenty percent of people recovering from meningococcal disease suffer from serious effects including permanent hearing loss, limb loss, or brain damage. Meningococcal vaccines are very safe and effective at preventing meningococcal disease. The meningococcal vaccine is 85 - 100 percent effective at preventing infection from the subtypes of meningococcus found in the vaccine.
West Elementary News
1st Grade Loves to Read
“You're never too old, too wacky, too wild,
to pick up a book and read to a child.”
First grade is time of huge growth for little learners! A large part of that growth happens in reading, where we work hard all year long to become confident, fluent readers. First graders start the year with letter sounds, and by the end of first grade are reading entire books by themselves!
To help our first-graders work towards becoming fluent and independent readers, teachers ask students and their families to keep a log of the minutes they spend reading at home. Students could count minutes they spent reading independently, reading to someone else, or listening to reading. Many students reached 3,000 minutes, some read over 4,000 minutes, and some even read OVER FIVE THOUSAND MINUTES!
The first-grade teachers want to say CONGRATULATIONS to the first-grade readers at Ballard West and a huge THANK YOU to those parents for encouraging and helping their students to be readers!
Pictured below are the top 3 readers from each first-grade classroom. Together, this group of students read over 80,000 minutes this year!
Submitted by Ms. Sara Prins - 1st Grade Teacher
East Elementary News
Middle School News
High School News
Ballard Fine Arts Festival
2021-2022 Athletic Registration
On-Line Activity Registration for the 2021-22 School year will be ready by the week of July 19.
An email will be sent out to parents via Infinite Campus as a reminder with instructions when it is available.
Any 7-12 Grade Student who plans to participate in an activity during the 2021-22 school year, will need to complete the On-line Activity Registration.
Reminder that each participant needs to have a current sports physical on file.
Physicals are good for 13 months from the date of exam written on the form.
Questions about this process can be emailed to Terri Weeks at the Activities Office – email@example.com
Ballard Elementary PTO
Ballard Education Foundation
Ballard Dollars for Scholars
Ballard Fine Arts Boosters
Ballard Activities Boosters