SEPTEMBER 11, 2021 - Vol.15 Issue #4


Perform Daily Health Checks

Parents/guardians should keep their children home if they are experiencing symptom(s) associated with any communicable disease. In addition, parents/guardians are to perform daily health checks for COVID-19 symptoms before the student leaves home.

Veterans Elementary School

Robert Bruce, Principal -

Alexcia Redd, Assistant Principal -

Jaime Gittleson, Administrative Intern -

Monday thru Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Please call ahead 410-313-1700


Youmi Jun, Principal Secretary -
Jane Pak, Teacher Secretary -
Maria Martinez, Teacher Secretary -
Dulce Boyer, Teacher Secretary .5 -


Para información y apoyo adicionales, por favor, llame al 410-313-1591.

欲知详情或想获得更多支持,请电 410-313-5920.

보다 자세한 문의와 지원을 원하시면, 410-313-1592 로 연락 주시기 바랍니다.

For all other language needs please contact Monica Ranta at 410-313-7102.

Stay Informed:

HCPSS electronic School Messenger

Once you have created an HCPSS Login Account/ ParentVue upon completing the student registration, you will automatically be part of our email communication, School Messenger.

We are “green” and do not send hard copies of newsletters and other notices, so your electronic connection to the school is important even over the summer.

Email & Text Alerts

HCPSS News emails and text alerts keep families up-to-date on news and events, and deliver real-time notices of emergency closings and information. All HCPSS News subscriptions are generated from the information provided in Family File. Parents/guardians of previously enrolled HCPSS students do not need to sign up for, or manage an HCPSS News account. Parents/guardians who are new to the system are automatically enrolled for email notification and must opt in to text alerts.

Emergency Notifications

In times of emergency situations, information will be shared with the community through our website, social media, text, email and weather hotline. All parents automatically receive email messaging and new parents need to opt in to text messaging (see above). Unsubscribing from any school or district email or text will unsubscribe a user from all messaging, including emergency notifications.


*We are requesting for Back to School Nights that one parent attend, and please leave children at home since this is not a meeting for children.


13 - Grades 2 and 4

14 - Grades 3 and 5
20 - Kindergarten and Grade 1


13 - Back-to-School Night: Grades 2 & 4 at 6:30pm

14 - Back-to-School Night: Grades 3 & 5 at 6:30pm
20 - Back-to-School Night: Grades K & 1 at 6:30pm


15 - NO SCHOOL - PD Day (Professional Work Day)

Weekly Message from our Principal

Dear Parents,

On this sad day in history we remember those who gave their lives during the September 11th attacks on the United States. We especially pay tribute to the first responders who are still working hard today as we face the Co-VID 19 crisis.

Please remember to do those home health checks every day on your children. If we do this, we can keep Co-VID spread down.

We are anxious to have safe Back to School Nights for our parents. The following dates are established:

Monday September 13th 6:30-7:30 pm Grades 2 and 4

Tuesday September 14th 6:30-7:30 pm Grades 3 and 5

Monday September 20th 6:30-7:30 pm Grades K and 1

We are requesting for Back to School Nights that one parent attend and please leave children at home since this is not a meeting for children. The following arrangements have been made. Most large group meetings have been canceled for this year. The usual large group presentations such as PTA, Principal's Message, ESOL, and Gifted/Talented will be posted on the school website no later than Monday morning September 13th. Administrators will be available for questions in the lobby following each meeting listed above.

Monday September 13th 6:30-7:30 pm

Grade 2- To meet in each homeroom teacher's classroom beginning at 6:30 pm.

Grade 4- To meet as a team at 6:30 pm in the school cafeteria. Grade 4 will meet in the cafeteria.

Tuesday September 14th- 6:00-7:30 pm

PTA- 6:00 Meeting outside the front of the school to pass budget.

Grade 3- To meet in each homeroom teacher's classroom beginning at 6:30 pm

Grade 5- To meet in each homeroom teacher's classroom beginning at 6:30 pm

Monday September 20th- 6:30-7:30 pm

Kindergarten- To meet in each homeroom teacher's classroom beginning at 6:30 pm

Grade 1- To meet in each homeroom teacher's classroom beginning at 6:30 pm.

We are anxious to meet with you and discuss school curriculum on these evenings.

Veterans Elementary Fall Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP) Math and ELA for grades 4 & 5

Veterans Elementary

Fall Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP) Math and ELA for grades 4 & 5

As part of continued COVID-19 recovery efforts, the Maryland State Department of Education is conducting an early fall student assessment. The results will help educators better understand student needs, so that we can address disrupted education and accelerate learning opportunities for all students. Please see the dates and times below for 4th and 5th grade testing.

Grade 4:

MCAP Math – Tuesday September 28th at 10:45 AM

MCAP ELA – Monday and Tuesday October 4th & 5th at 1:05 PM

Grade 5:

MCAP Math – Wednesday September 29th at 9:40 AM

MCAP ELA – Wednesday and Thursday October 6th & 7th at 9:40 AM

For more information, please access the link:

Alexcia Redd

Assistant Principal

Veterans Elementary School

It’s time for Band & Strings Sign-Up!

Band & Strings is back this year and we can’t wait to have you in our in-person classes!

To explore what instruments you can play this year and for program information, visit

Please note: if you participated last year and would like to continue this year, you must still sign-up using our Google form located on the website.

Sign-up deadline is Thursday, September 17th
Classes start September 20th, so sign-up today!

See you soon!

- Mr. Viets, Mrs. McLagan & Mrs. Jacobs

A Message from the VES Student Support Team:

Hello, VES Community! The Salvation Army is organizing their annual Angel Tree.

If your family has a need for support around the holidays, please see the attached flyer.
Applications are being accepted from September 14 through September 24.

Parents/Volunteers and Proof of Vaccination:

Will parents and other visitors entering the school be required to show proof of vaccination or testing?

Update: September 2, 2021

Parents and visitors who are entering the school for a brief visit to pick up or drop off their child, or for other reasons, are not required to show proof of vaccination or testing. They are, however, required to be masked regardless of their vaccination status.

Parents are not permitted to eat lunch in the school cafeteria with students at this time. Parents who are conducting classroom visits or observations must provide proof of vaccination status or a negative COVID-19 test (within seven days of the current date) to school administration when they check in at the front office. Visitors should perform a COVID-19 health check every day before coming to an HCPSS building and should stay home if they are experiencing any symptom(s) associated with any communicable disease.

Will school volunteers who work with students be required to show proof of vaccination or testing?

Update: September 2, 2021

Effective Monday, Sept. 20, all volunteers who enter HCPSS schools to interact with or support students must provide proof of vaccination status or a negative COVID-19 test (within seven days of the current date) to school administration when they check in at the front office.

Volunteers must be masked regardless of their vaccination status. Volunteers may be able to access the free weekly testing offered within school and office buildings, subject to availability of tests. Volunteers should perform a COVID-19 health check every day before coming to an HCPSS building and should stay home if they are experiencing any symptom(s) associated with any communicable disease. Additionally, all volunteers must complete a Confidentiality Training Course about protecting the privacy of our students, staff, and schools, and the Child Abuse and Neglect Training about reporting any suspicion of child abuse or neglect to Howard County Department of Social Services.

HCPSS to Acquire 4,600 HEPA Filters to Further Enhance Classroom Air Quality

September 3rd, 2021

During the September 2, 2021, Board of Education meeting, Howard County Public Schools Superintendent Michael J. Martirano announced his intention to make an emergency purchase of 4,600 HEPA filter units to be installed in all classrooms in every HCPSS school. Board members endorsed the emergency acquisition, which will provide an additional layer to the multiple mitigation efforts HCPSS already has in place to ensure a healthy in-person school learning environment during the COVID-19 pandemic. The units are expected to be delivered to all classrooms by the end of September. Installation will begin immediately upon receipt, starting with elementary school classrooms and congregant spaces.

“Our commitment to a safe reopening has been driven by a singular goal – to return to normalized instruction and do everything possible to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 so that our students can continue receiving in-person instruction and supports,” said Martirano. “Earlier this week, I met with industry experts in ventilation and air quality who affirmed that the measures we have already taken demonstrate a strong commitment to air quality and proper ventilation. These experts recommended the use of HEPA filters in all of our classrooms to provide an additional layer of protection and we will be moving forward with this recommendation. I appreciate the support of our

Board in supporting this extra precaution to safeguard the well-being of our students and staff.”

At the onset of the pandemic, HCPSS installed MERV-13 filters in all buildings wherever possible, and have continued to perform maintenance to ensure all HVAC units operate at peak efficiency.

Children exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 may not attend school

These students need to be evaluated for COVID-19 or an alternate medical diagnosis by a doctor.
They may not return to school until the School Nurse gives clearance. Parents/guardians should keep their children home if they are experiencing

Any ONE of the following:

  • fever of 100.4 degrees or higher
  • sore throat
  • cough
  • difficulty breathing
  • diarrhea or vomiting
  • new onset of severe headache (especially with fever), or
  • new loss of taste or smell

Unvaccinated students who have been exposed to anyone with COVID-19 must remain in quarantine for the designated period of time.
If vaccinated and showing symptoms, student must be medically evaluated prior to entering the building.


Parent Drop Off and Pick Up Reminders:

  1. Please do not block intersections at traffic lights or at STOP signs. In particular, the STOP sign at school where buses turn to enter the Bus Loop. We need room for buses to maneuver by so we can begin to get our bus riding students here on time and leaving at a reasonable time.
  2. Please make sure that you pull as far down the curb as space allows when you pull up to the school. Our line often extends back to Montgomery Rd. This helps to keep traffic flowing.
  3. Please ensure that school buses and school system vehicles have a way around you. We are asking buses to pull around other traffic if it is safe to do so.
  4. Follow the directions of any staff member directing traffic.
  5. It helps if students exiting or entering vehicles are on the right hand side or passenger side of the car. This allows for students getting in and out of vehicles next to the curb.
  6. Do not block the parent pick up lane or bus circle anytime from 8:45-9:45 am and 3:30- 5:00 pm.
  7. It is crucial that the office is informed of transportation changes before 2:00 pm. Parents arriving at dismissal time to pick up their child without prior notice greatly disrupts the school dismissal process. Buses are held to get children off the bus and children will not be located in their classrooms so the process of getting the student at this busy time is more complicated. Of course, emergencies are understandable but this should not happen often.

We can all help each other by following the rules which should help with Student Pick Up and Drop Off. As soon as you feel comfortable allowing your child to ride the bus, this will help as well. Until that time, patience is key as there is increased traffic at arrival and dismissal times.


For absences of up to 3 days per year, the principal may determine whether the absences will be lawful/excused or unlawful/unexcused. This completed form should be submitted to the principal in advance. For absences in excess of three days, the principal in consultation with the administrative directors will determine if the absences will be lawful/excused or unlawful/unexcused. If the request is for 15 consecutive days or more, the written request should be submitted 2 weeks in advance. Students with unlawful absences of 10 consecutive school days or more will be withdrawn from school and may be allowed to re-enroll, provided they meet enrollment requirements, upon their return.

FAMILY FILE: Parent Access to Student Information & Classwork

[Click on image to be directed to the main HCPSS website]

HCPSS utilizes Family File for parents/guardians to complete emergency information. parents/guardians must verify and/or update information for each child. Parents/guardians can complete or update Family File by logging in to HCPSS Connect, selecting the More Options tab on the left and then Family File in the center column. Family File guides are available online.

Temporary Employee Positions at Veterans Elementary

We are looking for caring and compassionate individuals to assist students with disabilities who require direct adult supervision throughout the school day. The position works under the daily supervision of the school administration and the direction of a special education teacher and/or a classroom teacher. Some experience working with children or individuals with disabilities preferred. Below, please are details regarding the position.

· Temporary Employee (TE) position are with Social Service Consultants, Ltd.

· Compensation is $13.00 per hour

· The hours are 9:25 AM – 3:55 PM Monday-Friday.

To apply, please email Robert Tencher at to request an application packet. Please specify the school you are interested in. You can also apply using this link.
Please contact Alexcia Redd at or at 410-313-1700 when you have competed all parts of the application.

Veterans Elementary Needs SUBSTITUTE TEACHERS

We are seeking substitute teachers to work with our students when teachers are absent. Below, please find some details regarding the position.

The Substitute Teacher instructs students during the absence of a regular teacher. Substitute Teachers are expected to maintain a professional attitude toward their work and support the mission and goals of the school system. Substitute Teachers are assigned on an as needed basis and are temporary employees. Substitute Teachers hours are 9:05 AM - 4:10 PM each day.

Daily Rate of Pay
Non-degreed (Minimum of 60 credits) $100.00 per day
Degreed (Bachelors or higher) $110.00 per day
Retired Teacher (Must provide verification) $125.00 per day

Long-Term Pay
Non-degreed (Minimum of 60 credits) $125.00 per day
Degreed (Bachelors or higher) $135.00 per day
Retired Teacher (Must provide verification) $135.00 per day

Communication, initiative, and flexibility are important attributes for those filling the position(s).
Interested applicants can go to the following link below to begin the application process. Contact Alexcia Redd at or Jaime Gittleson at

when you have competed all parts of the application.

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Welcome Back To School VES!

We are excited to get rolling with some fun activities this fall!

Parents, please join the PTA using the website below or the QR code. Your membership dues allow us to fund all the activities we run!


PTA MEETING - Tuesday Sept 14 at 6pm in front of school (prior to Back to School Night) - All Members please attend!

We need to approve our budget. Please watch the video below for our budget outline and an update from the PTA.

Membership from last year is good until September 30 of this year.


"I Will Change the World By..." is the 2021-2022 Contest Theme

Veterans Elementary will participate in this year's "Art Reflections Contest led by the National PTA. All students are encouraged to explore and express themselves using the theme "I Will Change The World By...

Categories include: Dance Choreography, Film Production, Literature, Music Composition, Photography, Visual Arts.

Submission deadline and more details to come!

If you would like to participate, but art supplies are a financial burden please reach out to the PTA at

If you would like to join the Reflections Committee, we will need 2-3 more parents to help us judge the artwork and send it into the county level. Email if interested.


Since our Annual Ice Cream Social is not able to happen this year, we are planning an outdoor movie night. Stay tuned! Date TBD! If you would like to help us plan snacks or logistics please reach out to Cara at

Join the PTA:

Follow us on Facebook:

The HCPSS 2021-2022 School Year and HCPSS Help sites provide a wealth of information and answers to dozens of frequently-asked questions (FAQs) on all aspects of the current school year. Check back frequently as new information and FAQs are continually added. Several of the most frequently sought answers are provided below.

More News | Events | Reminders


FARMS Applications: Applications for the Free and Reduced Meals program for the school year 2020-2021 are available online in multiple languages and paper copies are available at all meal sites, effective 9/8/20. Please use this document for strategies for increasing FARMs awareness and participation.

Hello VES Community!! One of our local partners is looking for families to provide food to. Food can be picked up at St. Peter's Episcopal in Ellicott City. If you are interested, please fill out the Pete's Packs Sign Up and we will be in touch with more details. Thank you!!

Julie Chang Wentz, M.Ed, NCC
School Counselor
Veterans Elementary School

HCPSS COUNSELING SERVICES for Students, Families, and Staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has made this an especially stressful time for many, especially those already impacted by mental health concerns. Find information about local and online resources for counseling and mental health supports for you and your family on our website.

COMCAST Internet

To help connect more families to the internet at home, Comcast is offering two months of free internet to new Internet Essential customers. more information

Cub Scout Pack 305 Open House

Cub Scout Pack 305 invites all families with children in grades K-5 interested in scouting to our fall open house event. This will be held on Thursday, September 23, from 7-8 PM at St. John's Episcopal Church located at 9120 Frederick Rd, Ellicott City, MD. Masks must be worn by all in attendance and we ask that only potential scout(s) and a single guardian attend (no siblings if possible) to help keep numbers low. This event will have several stations for the scouts to move through and will also include an informational session for all prospective parents/guardians. We hope that you are able to join us!

Contact Heidi Potter at with any questions or if you are unable to attend but would still like to hear about scouting!
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School’s Out Ninja Day Camps!

HCPSS will be closed Sept 7 & 16, Oct 15, Nov 4, and Dec 23.
Make sure to reserve your child’s spot with our business partner - The Okinawan Karate Dojo! The
OKD’s "School’s Out Ninja Day Camp" has you covered from 9 AM to 4 PM...or...8 AM to 6 PM (with available before/after care)! OKD's year-round camps are action-packed, tons of fun, and will keep your kids happy, entertained, challenged and moving all day! Not only that, they are licensed as a Child Care Provider by the state of Maryland. The staff is highly trained and certified to give your child a safe, enriching, AWESOME, COVID-safe camp experience! Voted #1 Martial Arts School in HoCo and one of the best ChildCare Providers in 2021, this will be OKD's 22nd annual camp season! Find additional information about the camp, online registration, and OKD's COVID safety policy at: Space is Limited. Questions? Call: 443 574 8999 or Email:


MOVING into VES: FILLABLE_VES RequestforRecords.pdf
We can assist you to obtain student records from their prior school by filling out the

Request for Records form and emailing it back to the registrar.

MOVING AWAY/ Withdraw from VES: FILLABE_Withdrawal form

Please initiate the process by filling out the HCPSS Withdrawal Form and email it back to the registrar.