The Prospector Post

September 1, 2019

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Welcome to 2019-2020!

Dear Prospector Families,

Welcome to the 2019-2020 school year! We had a great turn out at Back to School Night with members of our community joining us to welcome students and families. I am looking forward to a year of building community and supporting increased student achievement.

This year, our focus word is INTENTIONAL. We will be intentional with our relationship building, teaching standards, using assessment to guide our instruction, and building a close, active school community.

In this month's edition of the Prospector Post, I would like to highlight three key areas of working together for student success:

1. Attendance

2. Communication


Other important news items and dates are also in this edition of the Prospector Post.

Thank you for your support as we work together for continued student achievement!

Celeste Wahlberg, MA, MEd


Yucca Valley Elementary School

Attendance Awareness

September is Attendance Awareness Month! We are excited about the progress we made in our attendance last year! We increased our attendance rate to 95.19%. Up 1.35%! Our goal this year is a 96% attendance rate. Students with less than 90% attendance are considered chronically absent.

Research shows that consistent attendance increases student achievement. YVES is working to encourage attendance in the following ways:

  • Engaging and effective lessons and a caring community.
  • Class perfect attendance words: classes fill in a letter of a word (example: wow, cool) for each day of perfect attendance they earn. When their word is colored in, they get extra recess or activity time!
  • Weekly highest attendance: each class with the highest percentage of attendance gets to keep the grade level attendance mascot (stuffed animal) for the week.
  • Monthly perfect attendance: students with perfect attendance for the month will get to have pizza with the principal! Perfect attendance is bell to bell; no tardies or early releases. (Absences can be made up on Saturday Academy for perfect attendance)
  • Sports and dance camps are coming! Students should have 90% attendance and no more than 3 minor incidents each quarter to participate.

We are working on a few other ideas and will share with you once those are solidified. More information will be coming soon about district-wide Saturday Academy for attendance recovery. Thank you for your efforts to ensure that your children are in school!

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Your partnership is vital to your child's success in school. As the expert on your child, you have important information to share with the classroom teacher regarding your child. Thank you for regular communication!

Our classroom teachers have communication tools in place including: newsletters, email, Class Dojo, student planners and telephone.

  • If you have a concern regarding instruction or events in the instructional day, please communicate with your child's classroom teacher first.
  • If you have a concern outside of the instructional day, with transportation, or an office related matter, please contact the school office.
  • Encouragement is always welcome! Please take a moment to express gratitude or share a word of kindness for our hardworking teachers and staff.

In addition to this monthly newsletter, school happenings are posted on Class Dojo School Story, our website, Facebook and Instagram!

You can access our website at:

Our hashtag is #YVESGOLD

PBIS - Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports

YVES is a PBIS school! We are working to improve implementation and success of our PBIS program. We are pleased to welcome Ms. Kristen Mery as our PBIS Coordinator! Ms. Mery will also be working as our MTSS (Multi-tiered Systems of Support) teacher to support our students.

Please click on this link to find out more about PBIS in YVES!

We are also pleased to welcome Dr. Karina Veas, our new Assistant Principal, who will be working closely with Ms. Mery on our PBIS programs. From Dr. Veas:

Your children are working hard every day to remember to Be Respectful, Be Responsible, and Be Safe in all areas of our school. Every day they are earning gold slips to achieve specific items they have selected, such as a new pencil, chalk at recess, or even lunch with the principal, just to name a few. We want each day to be full of learning and full of fun!

This year we are incorporating daily hashtags:

#MakeanewfriendMonday- students do not have assigned tables in the cafeteria, but instead are encouraged to make new friends and sit at a table of their choice

#ThoughtfulTuesday- students will get to create positive notes for friends, staff, and teachers

#WellnessWednesday- students will learn the importance of nutrition and health #ThankfulThursday- students will be encouraged to thank their friends, teachers, staff, and parents for something amazing they did that day

#FunFriday- students are celebrating the end of a successful week with music in the cafeteria

Again, we appreciate all your support in making this year our best year yet!

Dr. Karina Veas

Assistant Principal

Yucca Valley Elementary School

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Nutrition and School Funding Form

Nutrition is an important component to learning. The district is providing breakfast and lunch if you are interested. Students also benefit from a healthy snack from home including: fruits, vegetables, yogurt, cheese, and protein bars.

Please do not send candy and sodas or energy drinks. Snacks should be in individual size packages. Because of food allergies, we discourage food sharing. We ask that messy snacks such as sunflower seeds and Taki's or Flaming Hot Cheetos be saved for after school.

Our district is continuing a special program to offer free breakfast and lunch to all students. In order to continue receiving funding for this and other programs, the district is asking ALL parents to complete this one page survey. Click on the link to get started.


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Under Construction

In order to make this the most successful year for your children, please plan ahead as construction will be taking place around our school. There will be some delays, detours, and parking issues. Parents can pick up, drop off, and park in all the usual places unless actual construction is taking place. The construction workers will be working around the school hours and will not be working during drop off/pick up times. The week of September 9-13, access to Hopi may be limited, but construction should take place between 10 am - 3 pm.

Please note that emergency services will always have access to the school. Please be patient and realize that this is only temporary and will pass through the area soon. We will update via social media and Class Dojo. Thank you for being understanding! #YVESGOLD

Get Involved!

We have monthly meetings with our Family Faculty Association (FFA). The FFA could use your help with events, fundraising, and improving and supporting our school community.

Our School Site Council (SSC) helps guide the yearly school plan, gives input, and plans for the future. The site council also meets monthly. The SSC is made up of parents, faculty, and staff.

Volunteers need fingerprinting and TB testing to work with children. You may pick up a volunteer application in the office. After 20 hours of volunteering, you may submit for reimbursement for the costs of testing needed. There are many ways to volunteer! Thank you for working together to support the success of our school and students!

September CALENDAR

2- Labor Day - No School

3- School Site Council Meeting, 4 pm

3-13 Benchmark Testing

10, 17, 24- Morongo Basin Health Mobile Dental Clinic on site

11- Late Start Day

18- Family Faculty Association (FFA) Meeting 4 pm

30- School Pictures

30- October 8 BOOK FAIR

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