Kiker Comments December 15, 2021

A Joint Newsletter from the Bernice Kiker Admin Team & PTA

In This Edition...


  • Upcoming Events
  • Attendance Notes
  • Art Fundraiser Updates
  • Kiker Keynotes Choir
  • Library New
  • Drop Off and Pick Up Reminders
  • PTA News: Lost and Found, Sweets for Staff, Grants, Veterans Day Photo Pick Up
  • AISD News: Bowie Cheer Camp
  • December Staff Birthdays
  • Repeated Information (from previous newsletters)
  • Covid Hub
  • Quarantine and Ill Person Requirements for Return - UPDATED
  • After School Programs
  • All the Links to Everything You Need
  • Lunch Menu

Upcoming Events

December

16 - Winter Shirt or Sweater

17 - Last Day with Students before Winter Break

17 - PJ Day


January 2022

3 - Winter Break

4- Professional Development Day, Staff Only

5 - First Day Back for Students

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Attendance Notes

Please send all attendance notes to the front office or email to amy.mcgovern@austinisd.org.

Announcements

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Kiker Keynotes

The Kiker Music Department is preparing for the SPRING 2022 Edition of THE KIKER KEYNOTES! This group has been a proud representation of Bernice Kiker Elementary since the school's opening in 1992. Our practices will be after school on Tuesdays or Thursdays from 3:15 – 4:30. Practices will begin on January 18th. When the Spring Semester starts, be on the lookout for a registration paper or here on the Kiker Comments to see how to sign up for Kiker Keynotes.

I look forward to singing with your students.

Tiffany Cortez-Machado

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Art Fundraiser Orders

The Art Fundraiser orders are going home on Tuesday, November 14h. Please get in touch with Ms. Swint at danielle.swint@austinisd.org with any questions. Thank you for supporting the Arts at Kiker!
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Austin Public Library Cards

Austin Public Library Cards are here! Your student should have received their Austin Public Library Card in class today, so be sure to check their backpacks. We are fortunate in Austin to have AMAZING public libraries with programming and events that is always free. Happy reading!

Drop off and Pick up Reminders

Please follow these procedures to help us run our drop off and pick up more efficiently. We appreciate your help.


  • Please refrain from parking in the staff lot on Dahlgreen. This is for buses and staff only.
  • To the greatest extent possible, stay in your car if you are in the drop off circle drive. Staff are available to help your child exit the car. When parents/caregivers exit the car, it can cause significant delays in our line. If you need additional time to exit, please consider parking on LaCrosse and walking up.
  • Use crosswalks any time you are crossing the street. Little eyes are watching and learning by example.
  • When turning from LaCrosse into the circle drive, alternate one car from the eastbound side, one car from the westbound side.

PTA News

Lost and Found

Lost and Found

Please remind your child to swing by the lost and found rack before winter break to grab any items they may have left behind!


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Thank You to our Sweet Bakers!


Thanks to everyone who donated cookies and treats for our Sweets for Staff event. The smiles from teachers and front office, custodial, lunch and administrative staff were as sweet as the more than 3,000 treats we handed out.


PTA Grants Announced

Exciting New Projects!

The PTA received 14 grant requests totaling more than $32,000 from teachers, staff, and parents in our Kiker community. We are blown away by the thoughtful and creative initiatives to live our PTA mission of making every child’s potential a reality. We are able to fund more than $18,000 in new projects and money is being allocated just six weeks after our APEX fundraiser. Grant submitters are being notified this week about the board’s decision so stay tuned for more on some exciting projects coming soon!

Pick Up Veterans Day Submissions

***Remember to pick up your Veterans Day photo from the front office before winter break if you would like to have it back.**

AISD News

Bowie Events

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December Birthdays

4 - Amy McGovern

10 - Neethu Kalesh

12 - Lupe Rocha

13 - Alma Chapa Moore

16 - Jenny Badell

18 - Jessica Boone

Repeated Information

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Free Covid Testing for Staff and Students - 8:00-2:00 Daily With Completed Consent (QR Code Above)


Starting Nov. 1, students and staff will have access to a free rapid antigen testing program through a new partnership with Concentric by Ginkgo. Kiker is a hub and has Concentric Staff on site in Portable 6B daily. (FYI - there is no classroom on the 6A side of the portable.). The direct line to schedule is 512-841-7857.


Why it matters: Research shows that the more people get tested, the safer everyone is from the spread of COVID-19. You’ll be able to access rapid antigen or PCR tests (when available) at 11 sites across Austin.


  • Students and staff can get a test at will for any reason, whether you’ve been exposed or are just looking for peace of mind.
  • Sites include: Travis, Northeast Akins, Norman-Sims, Pillow, Kiker, Eastside, Cunningham, Navarro, Blazier, McCallum .
  • Testing will run 8 a.m. -2 p.m. Monday-Friday.

Yes, but: Only students with completed consent forms can get a test. Consent form via QR code above.


  • This is an opt-in program, so no one will participate if they don’t want to.

Completing the consent form takes about five minutes on a computer or smartphone.

  • When completing the consent form, use this code: AISDTEST
  • If you have more than one child, please complete the form for each one.

Dive deeper: For more information, visit Concentric by Ginkgo’s website, reach out to our Let’s Talk portal or send a text to 512-886-6434.

Changes to Quarantine Procedures

AISD recently updated its Covid protocol for close contact unvaccinated students. Instead of automatically quarantining for 10 days, there are now three options for unvaccinated or partially vaccinated people who are in close contact to a positive COVID case.

Why it matters: We’ve done a great job keeping our COVID cases low this year. The better we are at keeping COVID cases low, the more we can stay the course this school year.

Here are the new options for anyone who is unvaccinated or hasn’t reached full vaccine protection (exposed to COVID within the two-week window after a vaccine):

  1. The close contact can quarantine for 10 days and return on the 11th day — this protocol is currently in place.

  2. The close contact can “test to stay” at school or work, meaning they don’t have to quarantine, but they do have to test on day five after the exposure.

    • If it’s negative — Yay! Go back to work/class

    • If it’s positive — 10-day quarantine starts.

  3. The close contact can quarantine for four days and return on day five with a negative rapid or PCR test result.

Testing can take place at our campus testing hub on Day 5 prior to student reporting to class. The Concentric Team can be reached at 512-841-7857 to schedule a test.

Health Office:

On going: Screenings for Acanthosis Nigricans for 1st, 3rd, and 5th Graders

On going: Vision and hearing screenings for Pre-K 4, Kindergarten, Grades 1, 3, and 5, and any new student to Austin ISD.

Questions about Returning to School after Quarantine and/or being Symptomatic-Updated

Quarantine:

Day 0 is the last date of exposure.

Day 1 is the first day without exposure.

Day 5 is the 'testing day'


We can accept a rapid test OR a PCR test from any testing facility that provides a paper document or email copy of the results. At home tests are not accepted. Testing from our hub is accepted.


Symptomatic / Ill students or staff:

For a student/staff member who was symptomatic (sent home from school sick or self-reported sick), a negative PCR or a doctor's note is required to return.

Staff or students may request a rapid test via the hub.

After School Programs

After School Enrichment

Did you know our Comets have a variety of after school activities in which to participate? This fall, after school activities will include coding, art, cooking, Spanish, and more. For a full listing, please visit the after school enrichment page on our website to learn more and see the wonderful variety of classes and programs offered!


What's New?


Register now for next semester...

Mighty Kids Chess Club

Coding for Kids

Wicked Workshop Youth Architecture Program

Printable Lunch Menu - December

Library Volunteers: View Openings by Clicking Here

Email ashley.cross@austinisd.org to sign up

A Message From the Cafeteria

At AISD Food Service, our top priority is to ensure all students have access to healthy, tasty meals. The country is dealing with a nationwide food service worker shortage, directly impacting AISD; we currently have over 100 open positions, in addition to managing COVID-19 protocols. Because of this, changes in school meal operations and menus may occur. Please note, any menu changes will not be reflected on www.SchoolCafe.com or on printed menus.

Bernice Kiker Elementary Administration Team

Cory Matheny - Principal

Alma Chapa Moore - Assistant Principal

Kelly Meyer - Assistant Principal