Otter News

September 7, 2023


Welcome our Newest Otters! Tomorrow, September 8th!

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First Few Days

Hello Otter Community,

We have been busy these past two days and we are excited to have our Kindergarten Otters join tomorrow, Friday, September 8th. This week we reviewed school wide expectations (show respect, solve problems, make good decisions). Students have been busy earning splash tickets when they demonstrate our expectations. Classroom teachers have been explicitly teaching students the expectations and Mrs. Hill, Mrs. Faker, Recess Supervisors, Mrs. Mathews and Mrs. Rosendahl also taught in our common areas (recess, hallways, bathrooms, lunchroom, etc).

In Partnership,

Mrs. Rosendahl


Student Drop-Off and PIck-Up

Please make a double cue after you arrive at the entrance to reduce backups on 40th street. The double cues then merge into a single line at the cones. Please be polite and let every other car go in the line (see map below to view the cue line). As you are in the line, please try to leave no gaps between cars and go as close as possible to the car in front of you so we can get as many cars as we can in our cue line. Thank you!
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During school hours, please do not park in the loading and unloading area in front of the school building. We need to keep that open during the school day as we have preschool and delivery trucks all throughout the day.

Student Drop Off & Pick up

Hello Artondale Families,

Student drop off and pick up is a busy time, we ask for your help to get students into school as safety and quickly as possible.

AM - Student Drop Off:

  • In the morning, we are asking when you drop of your students please have 3rd - 5th graders exit the vehicle at the cones on the sidewalk. This will allow us to try and get students out quicker.
  • We will still help unload K-2 students. As a reminder, drivers need to stay in the vehicle and we will assist students with unloading.
  • If your child needs more time getting out of the vehicle or has extra items to carry to school, please park and walk your child to the front door. We also ask that you please use the crosswalk at the entrance and wait until a staff member has stopped traffic and wave you across.

PM -Student Pick Up (Same as last year):

  • Drivers wait in the pick up line (double cue) and we will call your child to a numbered cone.
  • Staff members will assist your child getting into the car
  • We try to limit the number of walk ups so we do not have many people crossing the pick up line to keep the line moving.

Thank you for your assistance to ensure are students are safe coming and going from school.

Counselor Corner

My name is Mimi Mathews and I am so lucky to say that I am the school counselor at Artondale. I am here to help ALL students be successful socially, emotionally and academically. I visit all classrooms where I teach social-emotional education skills. I also meet in small groups or individually with students who might need a little extra support. I love to consult with staff and parents to provide resources or educational support to help students become the best they can be, but my favorite part of my job is spending time with your kids!

Please feel free to stop by my office or contact me at any time!

Mrs. Mathews


Otter Summer Reading Program

Otters, we hope you enjoyed some wonderful books this summer.

Don't forget about our summer reading program, to read 1,000 minutes this summer! Use the reading tracker to keep track of the minutes that you read this summer. For every 20 minutes of reading, color in a circle...if you color all 50 circles then you have done it! 1,000 minutes of reading!!

Students took home the bookmark and tracker form in June. If you lost your tracker or you are new to Artondale you can still join the program. Here is a copy of the tracker to use if you would like.

There are only a few weeks left. Return the tracker log and bookmark at our meet and greet to earn free books! We hope to see you there! Please return the tracker and bookmark to your classroom teacher.

Summer reading program will end on September 22nd.

1st through 5th Grade Students Go-Home Plan

Parents of 1st through 5th graders - Please complete this student go-home form to help us with your student's transportation for the first week and permanent go-home plan. Thank you!

Artondale Go Home Information

ParentSquare Reminders

ParentSquare is used for mass communications (school newsletters, district information, urgent alerts), classroom communication (one-to-one and group messaging, parent-teacher conferences), and school services (attendance, lunch balances, forms). You can watch this ParentSquare 3 minute overview to learn more.

ParentSquare FAQ's

Library Card Sign-Up!

๐Ÿ“š๐Ÿ“– ๐—ฆ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—Ÿ๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐˜† ๐—–๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ ๐—ฆ๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ป-๐˜‚๐—ฝ ๐— ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜๐—ต! ๐Ÿ“š๐Ÿ“–

September is Library Card Sign-up Month, and the Peninsula School District is teaming up with the Pierce County Library System to share this opportunity to supercharge your back-to-school experience! ๐ŸŽ’๐Ÿ“

With this incredible resource, you can start the school year off with a bang:

๐ŸŒŸ Get help from live tutors 24/7, available in both English and Spanish.

๐ŸŒ Dive into research databases covering world cultures, historical figures, and science.

๐Ÿ“š Access reference content, including newspaper and magazine articles, and videos.

๐Ÿ”ฌ Find ideas for science fair projects, STEAM activities, and science research.

๐Ÿ“– Prep for standardized tests with practice tests and study guides.

๐ŸŽ“ Get tips to navigate WASFA (Washington Application for State Financial Aid) and FAFSA (Federal Application for Federal Student Aid).

๐ŸŒŽ Explore learning assistance for more than 160 languages.

"The last few years have been really rough for students and families with severe impacts to student learning," explains Pierce County Library Executive Director Gretchen Caserotti. "With access to free, thoroughly vetted, and reliable resources through Tools for Students, such as live tutors 24 hours a day, seven days a week, students can get the help they need to be successful in school." ๐Ÿ“šโœ๏ธ

In addition to these incredible tools, the Pierce County Library also offers an extensive collection of books and other materials to support your school success journey. Explore them all at ๐Ÿ“–๐ŸŒ

Add a Pierce County Library card to your back-to-school essentials and let's make this school year the best one yet! ๐ŸŽ“๐Ÿ“š

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Free/Reduced Meals

๐Ÿ“ฃ Apply Now for Free/Reduced Meals and More Benefits for the 2023-2024 School Year! ๐ŸŽ๐Ÿ“š

As we gear up for another exciting school year, we want to remind you about an important opportunity that goes beyond just meals. Now is the time to apply for the Free/Reduced Meals Application for the upcoming 2023-2024 school year. This program offers a wide range of benefits that extend far beyond the cafeteria.

Eligibility is More Than a Meal!

When you qualify for the Free/Reduced Meals program, not only does your student receive nourishing meals, but they also gain access to discounts on various fees associated with technology, credit recovery, college applications, and college preparatory exams. This means your student can explore their academic potential without the worry of financial constraints.

Empowering Education Through Support

Beyond the immediate benefits, the Free/Reduced Meal program plays a pivotal role in funding students' overall education. The program helps provide essential resources such as technology tools and internet access, ensuring that every student has the opportunity to engage in digital learning environments. By participating in this program, you're contributing to a more equitable and inclusive education for all students in our district.

Applying is Easy and Flexible

We understand that life gets busy, and that's why we've designed the application process to be hassle-free. Applications can be submitted at any time during the school year, giving you the flexibility to apply when it's most convenient for you.

For more information on how to apply and eligibility criteria, please visit

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The school will be providing the necessary supplies for K-5 students again this year. This is a practice that we want to provide each year to support our families.

We are just asking you to provide the following for your student:

  • Headphones - please no earbuds
  • Backpack
  • Water bottle

*If you need assistance with the above supplies, please contact Mimi Mathews our school counselor,

Bus Information

You can access your students bus information using this link. You will need their students ID# and DOB to register. If students have a chromebook they have their student ID# on their device, you can look on the Parent Portal as well.

Routes do not get posted to the website any longer.


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Y Care Information

If you would like information on Y Care, please call 360-813-1813 or follow this link. Thank you!

Peninsula Hands On Art!

Upcoming Important Dates

  • Friday, September 8th - 1st Day of School for Kindergarten
  • Monday, September 25th - Read-a-Thon Begins
  • Tuesday, October 3rd - Picture Day!
The Peninsula School District does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation including gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability in its programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. Inquiries regarding compliance and/or grievance procedures may be directed to the Districtโ€™s Title IX and Compliance Officer, Dan Gregory, at (253) 530-1009, email or the Section 504 and ADA Coordinator, John Yellowlees, at (253) 530-1081, email address: 14015 62nd Ave. NW, Gig Harbor, WA 98332.