Oakhurst Weekly

August 4, 2022

From the Principal

Greetings Oakhurst Family!


I would like to thank all of you for welcoming me with open arms. I truly appreciate it. As a retired principal, it was soon apparent to me why Oakhurst is a Blue Ribbon School. All stakeholders in the Oakhurst Community play a vital role in creating the rich culture of our school. A collaborative spirit exists among the staff, students, parents, and the entire Oakhurst Community. Everyone that enters Oakhurst receives that same feeling of acceptance and respect that makes you feel like you belong here. As your interim principal, my primary goal is to build relationships with the staff, students, parents, and the Oakhurst Community so that we can continue our high standards of achievement by providing quality instruction in a safe environment.


I shared a story with the staff earlier this week about something I found while rummaging through things to donate to a local charity. While I was going through this sorting process, I was looking at the evening news on one of the local television stations. I suddenly became quite sad after hearing a story about a tragic incident that occurred overseas. I then began to think about everything that had impacted all of our lives over the past few years. As I was questioning the “why” of all of this, I found a bracelet my son gave me as a gift when he was a child. I then noticed the message inscribed on the bracelet - “I’ve Got This.” I immediately smiled, and felt a sense of calm. So, I told the staff no matter what challenges you face this school year, just say to yourself, “I’ve Got This.” Oakhurst Family, remember together - “”We’ve Got This” and let’s make this school year the best year ever!


Mrs. Sharon Gay

sgay@csdecatur.net

Coach's Corner

This week has been the best first week of school in my career as an educator. Everyone is learning new routines and procedures in the building, classes are fostering bonds and developing their classroom community, students are supporting one another with everything from remembering names of new friends to gentle reminders of class/school expectations. Oakhurst is such a special place to learn and grow.


Next week all grades will launch our new curriculum with ARC Core and begin their orientation with Fundations. The first week in the ARC curriculum is about establishing the culture of reading and writing in our classrooms. This follows beautifully with the First Six Weeks of School, where teachers scaffold the work of learning how to do so that students can be fully engaged in the work of learning successfully throughout the year.


Students will continue to learn about what it means to be a mathematician and explore beginning of the year concepts in math. Much like the work in reading and writing, mathematicians learn how to "speak math", use tools appropriately, and demonstrate their understanding of concepts in ways that authentically show their mathematical thinking.

We look forward to the exciting learning experiences for our students, seeing how their resilience shows up everyday, and being inspired by their commitment to learning and growing as young owls.


- Cindy Aldridge


caldridge@csdecatur.net

Nurse Notes

CSD Health Cards: CSD Health cards will be arriving home in folders this week. Please complete and return the card in your child’s backpack as soon as possible. As always, if you would like to share additional information about your child’s health condition, you can email me at ddurham@csdecatur.net or call the main office and ask to speak with Nurse Durham. The more pertinent health information we have regarding your child, the more prepared we are to keep them safe and healthy this school year.


Immunizations: Thank you to the parents who reached out regarding their child’s immunization status. I want to clarify the information I sent last week regarding immunization records (and apologize for any confusion). If your child is currently up-to-date on their childhood vaccines, you do not have to send in any forms to me. If your child is not currently up to date on vaccines, is on a delayed schedule or has an out-of-state immunization record, please reach out to me and I can assist you. Students are required to have current immunization records or notarized immunization exemptions(GA form 2208) to be enrolled in GA public schools. Of note, COVID vaccines are not considered required childhood vaccines for school enrollment.


COVID-19 Information: Please notify us if your child tests positive for COVID-19. An email to ddurham@csdecatur.net is the quickest way to reach me and I will respond with isolation dates and what is needed to return. In general, students will isolate for five full days after the first day of symptoms, and can return to school on day 6, provided their symptoms are improving and they wear a mask at school for a full ten days after symptoms began. A negative COVID-19 test is not required for return to school, but students must be fever-free with symptoms improving. At this time, we are not offering concurrent learning for student absences due to COVID-19. For information on CSD’s current COVID-19 mitigations, please click here.


Student Mask Wearing: Oakhurst Parents/Families, DeKalb County community levels of COVID-19 continue to remain in the high range, with the CDC recommending mask wearing indoors in public settings. While we encourage and support students wearing a mask indoors, teachers/staff are not able to monitor and remind students about keeping their mask on during the day. This conversation must be between students and families at home. We do have disposable child masks should your child need a replacement at school, but we will not be reminding students to put their mask on if they choose to take it off while indoors. Thank you for your understanding.



For any health-related questions or concerns, please contact Nurse Durham at 404-371-4470 or ddurham@csdecatur.net.

School Notes/Announcements

Reminder: ID is required for walker and car rider pickup

When you pick your child up as a walker or a car rider, you will be required to show ID that matches the approved pickup contacts listed for your student in Infinite Campus. Once we've given you an approved Oakhurst car tag or walker ID, you will not need your ID. Any changes in who will be picking up your child must be communicated in writing to Kizzy Terry (kterry@csdecatur.net) AND the classroom teacher. If you need to update the list of who is allowed to pick your child up from school, please complete the annual data information here.


Thank you for helping us make sure all of our students arrive home safely!

Oakhurst SLT Elections This Fall

Oakhurst's School Leadership Team (SLT) is an important crew that is created and guided by CSD's charter. SLT members - including administrative, staff, parent and community representatives - operate as a governing body with the purpose of maximizing school-level decisions. Parent representatives are an elected position and serve two-year terms. There will be two open parent seats this Fall; we will hold an election in late August to fill those positions.


The most important requirement of an SLT member is to have an honest desire to contribute to the educational experience and learning of all children at Oakhurst Elementary. We hope you will consider being a part of this very important work! Those interested should contact Jennifer Young, our Assistant Principal (jeyoung@csdecatur.net) and Cindy Aldridge, our Instructional Coach (caldridge@csdecatur.net) to share their interest, along with a short bio to add to our voting form. Thank you for your support!


Feel free to contact any of our current parent representatives with questions or for further information including Erica Bacher (Parent)-ebacher@csdecatur.net and Jeff Carter (Parent) - jcarter@csdecatur.net.

PTA

School Supplies for 22 - 23 School Year

The Oakhurst PTA ensures that every student has a full school supply kit with everything they need at the beginning of the school year! If you are able to pay for your child’s supplies, please contribute $35 per student to the PTA via the information below.


If you are unable to do so, please know that all children will receive the needed supplies regardless of reimbursement. If you'd like to donate above the requested amount to help cover these costs, we invite you to do so!


Thank you for your support of the Oakhurst PTA!


How to Pay - $35 per Oakhurst student:


-Cash/Check (made out to Oakhurst PTA): leave at the front desk


-PayPal: Pay to oakhurstelementaryschoolpta@gmail.com or go to paypal.me/OakhurstPTA.

ROOM PARENTS WANTED & PTA COMMITTEE VOLUNTEERS!

Room parents help to support and celebrate our teachers and staff, keep classmates updated on PTA events, and help create community within the classroom! If you’re interested in volunteering, please let your child’s teacher know!

Interested in serving on a PTA Committee for 2022-23, or learning about other ways to volunteer? Learn more and SIGN UP HERE - volunteers for the Book Fair and Read-A-Thon committees are specific needs this fall!

STOCK THE TEACHER’S LOUNGE

Let our awesome Oakhurst staff know that they're all that and a bag of chips by helping to stock the teacher's lounge! Individually packaged, non-perishable snacks can be dropped off at the front office or ordered from the Amazon Wishlist, and items will ship directly to the school!

5 MINUTES TO FUNDRAISE: YOUR GROCERY SHOPPING & AMAZON SHOPPING HELPS US!

Did you know that when you do your everyday shopping, our partners give a percentage of sales back to our school? Take five minutes to link your shopper loyalty cards/accounts - it’s the easiest fundraising ever!


Our partners include AmazonSmile, Kroger, Publix, Mabel's Labels, BoxTops for Education & Minted. Learn how here!

JOIN THE PTA FACEBOOK GROUP

Get the scoop and connect with the PTA on Facebook - join now!

SAVE THE DATE FOR FAMILY FUN NIGHT - THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 15th

Save the date for the PTA’s fall family fun night on Thursday, September 15th! More details to come!

Join us at our next meeting!

You’re invited to join our next PTA meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 16th at 6:30pm in the Media Center (enter via the media center doors on the right side of the building)!

Dates to Note

August 9: Board of Education Meeting @ 6:30pm

August 16: SLT Meeting @ 4:30 in the media center

August 16: PTA Meeting @ 6:30pm in the media center

September 5: Labor Day - NO SCHOOL

September 13, 6:30pm: Board of Education Meeting

September 14: School Picture Day

September 16: Picture Day make ups

September 19 - 23: CSD Fall Break - NO SCHOOL

September 27: PTA Meeting @ 6:30pm in the media center

CSD Partners

Decatur Education Foundation

Welcome back to a new school year! We are so excited to be back, it’s going to be a great year! DEF works in partnership with City Schools of Decatur to ensure that every student has what they need to learn and thrive. We have several programs in place to do just that: Virtual Pals Tutoring Program, AIM Scholars Mentoring Program, and a BRAND NEW program for high schoolers, FOCUS Prep Program. We need volunteers for each program to be a success, so please read below to learn how you can help.


Tutoring: We are continuing our Virtual Pals tutoring program in which we pair a 2nd-8th grade student with an upper high school student or adult volunteer to help with homework, time management, and motivation. If you would like to sign your student up for the program, you can go here: https://forms.gle/SjYinSLJkZ363pi57 If you would like to help as a volunteer tutor, you can apply here: https://forms.gle/YTbDUk8H4iS4qfD57 (High school students can earn volunteer hours!)


Mentoring: Covid has made it VERY difficult for our mentor pairs to meet these last two years. We’re renewing the program with fervor this school year, and need male and female adult mentors to volunteer 2-4 hours per month with our new third-grade cohort. For a mentor application, click here: https://forms.gle/DNFkXJyTCKTaFd1S9


FOCUS Prep: Finding Opportunities to Create yoUr Success Prep is just for high school students who want a little extra “coaching” to reach their post-secondary goals. High schoolers will be paired with volunteer coaches who will encourage, motivate, and hold them accountable. Coaches will receive training from College Ave Consulting to know how best to help with career research, college applications, financial aid, and time lines! Time commitment is only 2-3 hours per month for the school year. If you’d like to become a coach, click here: https://forms.gle/F73gdN5fxzXqET5o7. If your high schooler is interested in the program, please click here: https://forms.gle/zYMUsPJQ1Wv7uiNs8



You can also find all forms and information at our website, www.decatureducationfoundation.org/mentoring. Together we make a difference for our kids!

For more information about all the ways you can help DEF, click here!

Who Do I Contact?

Did you know that we have a super awesome one-sheeter on the appropriate person to contact for various issues you may have or questions you need answered? We do! Here it is! You can also find it in the Quick Links section of our website.