Parents and Families Newsletter

November & December 2021 - Winter Edition

All content will be trans-adapted for a Spanish version of the newsletter.

Other languages are available through the S’more newsletter.

Users will also have access to a 508 compliant PDF if needed.

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Boletín informativo para Padres y Familias.

Dear Parents and Families,

Winter has arrived! During this time of the year, families may be focusing on upcoming holidays and celebrations or just spending time sharing traditions and family stories. Spending time together not only helps you stay connected, but it also provides opportunities to help increase the language proficiency and academic success of your child.

In this issue, information is provided around some of the following topics:

  • At-home learning opportunities

  • Ways to connect and volunteer with community agencies

  • Winter activities to keep your child engaged

  • Self-care tips for the holiday season

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Don’t forget to fill out a quick survey to share any information or suggestions you might have for the next newsletter. We value your input!

Upcoming 2021 Fall Conference Opportunities

Virtual Statewide Parental Involvement Conference

December 9-10, 2021

Attend this great event from the comfort of your home to learn about ways to support your child’s academic and mental health needs. Visit to register.

Topics to be discussed:

  • Tips to help with homework

  • Managing their behavior with loving discipline

  • Bullying and cyberbullying

  • Internet and school safety

New Eligibility Criteria

Great news, TX families: Today starts the new eligibility criteria for the Supplemental Special Education Services program. $1,500 one-time grants are available to parents of eligible PreK-12th grade students served by special education.

Go to to apply.

Helpful Websites for At-Home Learning

As fall and winter breaks approach, it is important to provide your child the opportunity to continue learning. The following are helpful websites for at-home learning located on the Supporting My Child page:

Time to Volunteer

This is a great time of the year to connect with community agencies. Many of them need volunteers to distribute food, hand out gifts to children, or to provide other resources and services. Some examples of agencies that you can contact are:

  • Local food banks

  • Places of worship

  • Health agencies

  • Community service agencies

  • Local government agencies

Contact your school staff or counselor to get information about services in your community and opportunities to volunteer.

Assistance is Available

Visit to find food assistance, help paying bills, and other free or reduced cost programs, including new programs for COVID by entering your zip code. This site can also be translated into other languages.

With multiple school breaks built into November and December, students may have a lot of downtime. To keep them engaged while spending time together, consider these fun at-home activities to help your child build their listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills.

Get Cooking!

The holiday season is full of traditional treats and dishes. In addition to making meals and treats to enjoy, this is a great opportunity to talk about why the recipe or meal is meaningful. Share a funny memory or event that reminds you of when you first enjoyed the meal or treat. As you share your story, have your child write down their favorite part or create a recipe book for the family to share for the future.

A Stroll Down Memory Lane

This may be a great time of year to bring out old photo albums of past family gatherings. Sharing stories while looking at family photos is a great way to bond with your children. Discuss special traits that your family members may have in common with your child. This may help them feel more connected to loved ones when they see each other at family gatherings.

Let the Celebrations Begin!

Many families have traditions that are unique to them or their culture. As these family traditions occur during the holiday season, take time to talk about them to your child and explain why they are important. A good way to start is to say, “we do ____ because ____.” Your child could then share what they learned with friends and family members about the traditions. Talking about where the traditions come from and why they are important helps traditions get passed down from generation to generation.

This time of year can be stressful and filled with commitments and events. Follow these tips to alleviate some of that stress:

  • Communicate schedules in advance and try not to overbook yourself. This will help you avoid rushing, unexpected surprises, and last minute stressors.

  • Get in your exercise, and make it a family thing! After a big meal or celebration, take a walk together and talk about how delicious the meal was or how much you enjoyed your celebration.

  • Ask for help when you need it. Talk to a family member or trusted friend. You can also connect with mental health agencies in your community.

  • Set a budget and stick to it. It can be easy to overspend during this time of the year, which adds to the stress of the season. Set a reasonable budget and make every effort to stick to it.

If you missed or would like to revisit previous Newsletters, click below.

Take Some Time for You and Your Family

This time of the year can be filled with a lot of hustle and bustle. In the rush of it all, remember to slow down and savor the moments. Be intentional about finding ways to spend time, reconnect, and make memories with your family. Have a wonderful holiday season!

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