Tiger Tracks

Oakdale Elementary's Monthly Newsletter | September 2022

No School for Students September 2 - 5

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NEW - Teacher Feature!

This year, we would like you all to get to know our staff. Be on the lookout in our monthly Tiger Tracks newsletter for our new "Teacher Feature" highlighting our excellent teaching staff. Please see below for our first edition introducing you to our three Team Leaders at Oakdale.

Andrea Brady - 3rd Grade

  • Position: 3rd Grade Teacher and 3-6 Team Leader
  • Years at Oakdale: this is my 11th
  • Years in Education: this is my 17th
  • What would students be surprised to find out about you? I flew on an airplane without my parents for the first time when I was 6 years old (I also had my 4 year old brother with me!)
  • What is one of your hidden talents? I know the songs to about 90% of Disney movies :)
  • What is your dream vacation? I really want to stay in a hut over the water in Bora Bora.
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Alli Pontious - 2nd Grade

  • Position: 2nd Grade Teacher and K-2 Team Leader
  • Years at Oakdale: 9 years
  • Years in Education: 15 years
  • What would students be surprised to find out about you? I love to memorize Disney movies and their soundtracks.
  • What is one of your hidden talents? I am fluent in sign language.
  • What is your dream vacation? I love to travel! A European trip is definitely at the top of my list!

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Carrie Wendt - Reading Coordinator

  • Position: Reading Coordinator and Specials Team Leader
  • Years at Oakdale: 7
  • Years in Education: 17
  • What would students be surprised to find out about you? I swam with sea lions last year
  • What is one of your hidden talents? Tennis
  • What is your dream vacation? Australia
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Parent Teacher Open House Night

Don't forget that the Oakdale Parent-Teacher Open House is on Thursday, September 8th, from 6:00-7:00 pm. There will be two time slots for our parents to meet teachers and hear about "A day in the life of your child at Oakdale." Plan to stop by from either 6:00-6:25 pm, or 6:30-6:55 pm. Or, if you have more than one student attending Oakdale, visit both/multiple classrooms. As a reminder, this is a parent/guardian event. We hope to see you at Oakdale!

Lunches 2022-23 School Year

Lunch Costs

For the last two school years, Westside Community Schools received waivers and reimbursement provided by the USDA to provide breakfast and lunch to the students of the district at no charge. As we move into the current school year for 2022/2023, these waivers will not be extended. Therefore the district has returned to a traditional pre-pandemic model where students either pay full price for all meals or will have to qualify, directly or via application, for free or reduced-price meals. Costs per meal for the 2022/2023 school year are as follows:

Elementary School Meal Pricing:

Student Breakfast=$1.70

Student Lunch=$2.60

If you think you may qualify or are interested in applying for Free or Reduced Price meal benefits, you can fill out an Application for Free/Reduced Meal Benefits. Please remember this status is always kept private and there is no way for other students to have access to this information. Also keep in mind extra servings that are not part of the original meal (fruit/vegetables, main entrée, etc.) are not included with free or reduced lunch accounts.

My School Bucks

To deposit money into your child’s account you may bring a check or cash to the office, or you may go to MySchoolBucks.com. (You will need your student's ID number. Please call or email Mrs Rhyner if you need that information.) We send an email or a note in your child's backpack to any student whose account has become overdrawn. Please check your email, spam folder, MySchoolBucks account, or your child's backpack for your child's lunch balance. We need to have negative balances at zero or positive balances. This balance carries over to the next year. Start 2022-2023 year off right for your child's lunch account.

School Picture Day!

School picture day is Thursday, September 22. Order your school pictures today! You now have the convenience to place an online order for school pictures. Please click the link to place your order. Order forms will be sent closer to picture day. Only one method (online or paper) of order placement is needed. All students will be photographed but only orders placed will be charged. Thank you!

Safety Update

WCS uses a safety protocol at the K-12 level called the Standard Response Protocol (SRP). Area schools and local law enforcement agencies have adopted this language across the metro.

Key Terms:


During a secure situation, there isn’t an immediate threat inside the building, rather there may be a reasonable threat in the area. During a secure situation, school will remain in typical operating procedures (inside) but no one will be allowed to enter or exit the building.


During a lockdown situation, there is an immediate threat inside the building. Students and staff are instructed to lock the classroom doors, shut off the lights, and move to a secure area of a classroom that cannot be seen from the hallway.

Reunification location

In the unfortunate event of a crisis resulting in an evacuation of our school, the reunification location is at Westside Community Center (near 108 & Grover). School buses will take our students to the reunification site.

We will practice and teach the procedures throughout the school year. If you have any questions please call Mr. Jagels at 402.390.6460.

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Westside Community Schools continues the implementation of MTSS, which stands for Multi-Tiered System of Supports. MTSS in Westside assures that we regularly monitor student skills and follow-up with providing students what they need to be successful in learning. Beginning in August and September this means that we first screen all students to determine their current skill levels and plan our instruction to meet their needs.

What is MTSS? MTSS is a framework for providing instruction and support to promote the academic and behavioral success of all children. Individual children’s progress & skills are measured, and these results are used to make decisions about further instruction and intervention. The MTSS process is flexible and allows for a continuum of supports designed to meet the needs of individual students. This support may be provided in a large or small group by the classroom teacher or other support staff, either within or outside the classroom.

What does this mean for my child? A key component of the MTSS process is that all children receive high quality instruction in their classroom. Universal screenings are brief tests used to measure the progress of all students and are given three times per year. As a result of the screenings, students may be identified as needing some degree of supplemental intervention in addition to the instruction they are receiving in their classroom. If your child is identified as needing intervention you will be notified. Please contact your child’s building principal with questions.

Nebraska Reading Improvement Act:
The Nebraska Reading Improvement Act went into effect at the start of the 2019-2020 school year. The goal is that all Nebraska students are able to read at or above grade level by the end of third grade. This is accomplished by ensuring all students have access to high-quality instruction and for struggling readers to receive targeted support (intervention). Our current MTSS framework in Westside Community Schools already allows for us to meet these state requirements. Also, the more students continue to read, review math facts, and write/journal each day at home, in addition to their instruction from school, the more secure their skills may become.

School Arrival Time

Our instructional school day starts at 8:30 am. Doors are opened at 8:20 am allowing students plenty of time to walk to classrooms, hang up backpacks, check in with teachers and peers, and be ready for those first important words of the day at 8:30 am. Give your students every advantage of a successful day by having them here at 8:20 am!

All students will enter the building at the East entrance (Main Entrance).

  • 8:30 am Classes Begin

  • 3:30 pm M, T, Th, F Dismissal

  • 3:00 pm W Dismissal

We will have supervision outside the building starting at 8:10 am. We ask that students not arrive before 8:10 am unless:
  • Participating in a school activity

  • Serving on Safety Patrol

  • Working with a teacher

  • Attending Club 66 Before Care program

Why can’t we arrive early?

Teachers are involved in team meetings, staff meetings and individual planning from 8:00-8:20 am. Students may enter the building when the first bell rings at 8:20 am. Our school day begins promptly at 8:30 am. Thank you for your continued cooperation.

For the safety of all of our students, we ask that parents say good-bye outside of the school during arrival. Students are to independently arrive at their classrooms each morning. If students need assistance, Oakdale staff members are available to help.

Absences and Tardies

We want to know that all our students are safe. Please notify the office at 402-390-6460 (available 24 hours a day) or email Mrs. Rhyner (rhyner.julie@westside66.net) when your student is not coming to school or will be late for school. If we have not heard from you, it is our policy to call.

Students arriving after 8:30 am must come to the office and check in. Parents picking up or dropping off their students during the day for appointments, illness, etc., must sign them in and out through the office.

Oakdale Year-at-a-Glance Calendar

Linked you will find our year long Oakdale Calendar. Please know that this calendar is subject to change. We encourage you to access our Oakdale Calendar through our Website, the Westside Community Schools App, and to subscribe so that this information shows right up on your own calendar for iPhone, iPad, Mac, or any other Google Calendar subscribable platform.

Pizza Hut Pizza

PIZZA HUT PIZZA day is on Tuesdays this year! Students in 3rd - 6th grade may purchase extra slices from their lunch accounts if they have a positive balance in his/her account. Parents, make sure you let your child know whether you want them to have an extra slice. Extra slices are $1.20. Extra slices are not included with free or reduced lunch accounts.
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Battle of the Books

Mark your calendars to join us for the 2022 Battle of the Books on March 25, 2023 at Westside Middle School!

This annual Westside district tradition provides an opportunity for teams of 3-5 students in 4th-6th grade to participate in a quiz bowl-style competition where they answer questions based on content from the 2022-2023 Golden Sower nominees.

Visit our FAQ or rules page for more information about the event. Team registration begins October 7!

Calendar Reminders


5 Labor Day - No school

8 Parent Teacher Open House Night, 6:00 & 6:30 pm

8 Don & Millies Night, 11:00 am - 9:00 pm

13 Community Club Meeting, 6:30 pm @ Tanner's near 120 & Pacific

22 School Picture Day


7 Early Dismissal, 12:30 (lunch will be served)

7 Homecoming Parade starting at 1:30

10-14 Book Fair

12 Parent Teacher Communication, 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm

13 Parent Teacher Communication, 8:00 am- 4:00 pm

13 - 17 NO SCHOOL for Students

20 STEAM Night, 5:30 pm

28 Halloween Parties, 2:30 pm

Emotional Well Being

We know it is important to consider both the physical and social-emotional wellbeing of our students, families, and staff. We continue to be committed to providing regular instruction and support for studying in managing thoughts and feelings.

If your child is experiencing particular difficulties (whether related to the pandemic or other life circumstances) and you would like to explore options for additional support we encourage you to contact our School Psychologist, Mrs. McPadden (mcpadden.mary@westside66.net) who can help in coordinating additional support and resources.

Community Club Information

Get your Oakdale Gear!

Oakdale apparel is available to purchase online until September 7, 2022. Orders will be delivered approximately Sept. 28 to the school for your child to bring home. Whether you're new to Oakdale or need a new size, be sure to place your order so you can show your Tiger Pride!

Don & Millie's Night

Dine at Don & Millie's on Thursday September 8th! Take a night off from cooking to raise money for Community Club. Be sure to let them know you are with Oakdale. Complete the form below and turn in to enter your student for a prize.

Community Club Meeting

Join us at our first Community Club meeting on Tuesday, September 13th at 6:30 pm at Tanners near 120 & Pacific. Come learn about what we have planned for the next couple of months and maybe make some new connections. If you can’t make it, no worries, we distribute the recording following the event.

Community Club Website and Family Directory

This year you can gain FREE access to the family directory! So make sure to confirm or update your info on the Oakdale Community Club website details to get FREE access to the directory! Easily get contact info for birthday parties and playdates. See these helpful instructions for website assistance.

Don't Forget to TAGG

SHOP - Shop at participating local businesses.

SNAP - Snap a pic of your receipts with the TAGG app.

EARN - The business will donate a percentage to Oakdale!

Oakdale Community Club Website

Bookmark this site for Oakdale Community Club Information!

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Notice of Nondiscrimination

Westside Community Schools does not discriminate on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, age, marital/parental status, military/veteran status or any other category protected by law in its programs and activities or in admission or access to, or treatment in, hiring and employment, and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups.

The following District personnel have been designated to coordinate compliance and can address inquiries about the District’s nondiscrimination policies and procedures:

For questions or concerns by students, parents or others:

• Coordinator of Student Services/Title IX Coordinator – ABC Bldg. 909 So. 76th St. Omaha (402) 390-2100 E-mail: titleixcoordinator@westside66.net

• Director of Special Services/ADA & 504 Coordinator (disability/accommodation) ABC Bldg. 909 So. 76th St. (402) 390-2100 E-mail: ADAcoordinator@westside66.net

For questions by District employees or applicants:

• Ass’t Supt. for Human Resources/Lead Title IX Coordinator - 909 So. 76th St. Omaha, NE (402) 390-2100

Annual AHERA Notice

The Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act of 1986 (AHERA) requires that each public school district annually notify parents, staff, and employee groups if an asbestos management plan is in place at their school building.

Oakdale Elementary School, a newly constructed building opened in 2018, was designed with asbestos-free materials. No management plan or inspections are therefore needed.
The Designated Person responsible for managing the District’s AHERA compliance and the contact person for questions is the Director of Facilities, Russ Olsen (402) 390-8331.

Oakdale Elementary School

Oakdale Elementary's mission is to ensure academic excellence and to serve the unique needs of all learners.

Our Expectations:

  • Be Safe
  • Be Respectful
  • Be Responsible
  • (Be Kind)