Berkeley Lake ES

"Bear Essentials" Weekly e-Newsletter, May 7, 2021

Principal's Message

Dear Parents,

I am so excited to share that BLES has been named a No Place for Hate by the Anti-Defamation League. This is an honor that we are really proud of, this year more than ever. Special thanks goes out to Ms. Lyndsay Murphy, one of our school counselors, who spearheaded the effort.

If you didn't get a chance to send your child's teachers a thank you eCard through the "GCPS Strong" campaign that began earlier this week, it is not too late to send one now. Just fill this form out (you can choose your language) and the message will be sent. It's a nice way to let the teachers know you appreciate all of the hard work they have put into this unique year.

Today, we celebrated Mental Health Awareness by wearing green to remind everyone of the importance of supporting each other and paying attention to our own mental health needs. We work with the children throughout the year to become aware of their emotions and their bodies for signs of stress, and then teach them strategies to self-regulate and advocate for themselves. We also teach the importance of building empathy for others and building strong relationships through our classroom morning meetings and restorative practices.

I want to take a moment to say thank you to our PTO, Perimeter Church, and the Berkeley Lake BLOSOMS for making this week extra special for our teachers and staff. We appreciate your thoughtfulness and generosity!

Your Principal and Partner,

Dr. Pendleton

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A Look Ahead...

***Specials Rotation Schedule for Digital Learning Students for Week of May 10th - 14th:

  • K-2nd: Have Art and Music
  • 3rd-5th: Have Science and P.E.


Sunday, May 9

PTO Tupperware & spirit wear sale

Mother's Day

Monday, May 10

PTO Tupperware & spirit wear sale

Tuesday, May 11

PTO Tupperware & spirit wear sale

Wednesday, May 12

PTO Tupperware & spirit wear sale

PTO Pizza Night - order from Papa Johns

8:30am 5th Gr. ELA 1 Milestones

12:30pm Play 2 Learn

Thursday, May 13

PTO Tupperware & spirit wear sale

8:30am 5th Gr. ELA 2 & 3 Milestones

Friday, May 14

PTO Tupperware & spirit wear sale

PTO Items:

Teacher Appreciation Week:

Thanks to your generous donations throughout the month of March, we were able to buy the teachers a delicious catered lunch from Zoe's Kitchen, along with desserts and drinks. Special thanks to Monique Somervell for not only this year's Teacher Appreciation Week activities, but for several years of dedication to this committee as chair. A big thanks, too, to the luncheon helpers Lateisha Hardy, Jessica Porter, and Megan Schaap!

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For the board votes:

Thanks to all who submitted their input to us for next year's PTO Executive Board. We have a unanimous approval of the proposed slate of officers.

  • 0 write ins/nominations for Vice President
  • 3 write ins for President: 2 for Monique Somervell and 1 for Tammie Wagner. Should these two candidates accept the nominations, we will share a link to vote for the President role.

Our 2021-2022 board is in place and can begin planning for the next school term. Thank you to those who've already reached out to get involved in next year's activities! We will have a virtual transition meeting on May 20 at 6 p.m. Contact if you'd like to attend to provide input, learn more about the board or see what PTO is all about.

Berkeley Lake Elementary Spirit Wear:

Have the kids outgrown their BLES Spirit Wear? Check out the new designs we are offering for spring! The online store is open now until May 14th - we even have a shirt for incoming Kindergartners! Click here to check out the online store.

Tupperware Fundraiser:

Clean out those kitchen pantries and get ready to replenish your Tupperware! Check out our online Tupperware sale where a percentage of the proceeds will go to BLES. The fundraiser will be open April 29 - May 21, 2021. Click here to place an order.

Papa John's Pizza Night:

Save yourself from cooking on May 12th and order pizza to support Berkeley Lake Elementary! Plan for pizza night with Papa John’s! A portion of proceeds from your order that evening will come to BLES. Use the promocode: Berkeley20 and we will receive 20% of your order total.

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School News:

Transportation for Next School Year

Parents, if you have not completed the required GCPS Transportation Form for next school year, please do so using one of the documents below. We need this form completed, whether your child will ride the bus, be a car rider, walker, or day care rider. Email the saved form to in the front office, send a completed paper copy through your student, or bring it in to the front office.

Please note: The form will not be fillable if you downloaded it on your cell phone. It must be downloaded on a computer.

End of the Second Semester

Thank you for all the support you have given your child this school year. The school year ends on Wednesday, May 26. It is very important that assignments in all classes including specials are submitted to the teachers by Friday, May 21. Please check your Parent Portal under the Grades section for your child’s current grades and assignments. Your child can also check the My eCLASS Student Portal for this information. Please contact your child’s teacher as soon as possible if you have any questions.

If Your Child Borrowed a Laptop or Hotspot from the School This Year

If your student has a school-owned chromebook, laptop, hot spot, or other device, please plan to return the device on the designated date below. Click here to read more specific information about device return.

  • Monday, May 24th - devices will be collected from in-person students in KG and 1st
  • Tuesday, May 25th - devices will be collected from in-person students in 2nd and 3rd
  • Wednesday, May 26th - devices will be collected from in-person students in 4th and 5th
  • Friday, May 28th - digital student devices should be returned to the school at the designated time sent by an email from Jessica Hill (Craig) or your child's teacher. You may also reach out to the teacher if you do not receive an email telling you what your drop time will be.

Rising Kindergarterners

If you haven't called the school (770-446-0947) to make an appointment to bring your rising kindergartener in, please give us a call ASAP. We're excited to see you!

There will be an informational Zoom meeting about kindergarten on Tuesday, May 18th at 6:00 PM. Check the Announcements section of the website for more information and the Zoom link.

Another Opportunity for You to Purchase a Yearbook for Your Child

The yearbook sale will be open until May 23rd at midnight OR until we sell the last 127 copies. Please order today! The yearbook will be soft-bound and will cost $20.00. Click here to order one for your child today.

Summer Enrichment and Acceleration

This summer’s K-8 learning experience—set for June 14 to July 2—has been redesigned with the goal of helping all students, while specifically addressing learning losses that have occurred over the past year-and-a-half during the pandemic. The focus on enrichment and acceleration is intended to help students get a head start on next year’s learning.

SEA activities will focus on accelerating and expanding on student learning for the current grade and previewing what students will learn at the next grade level. In addition to the acceleration, students also will participate in enrichment opportunities outside the core subject areas, taking part in engaging activities and learning typically offered in Specials and Connections courses.

Click here to learn more.

Summer Reading Challenge

Families of BLES Students, summer is right around the corner! Let's promote summer reading!

Please click the link below to learn about Gwinnett County Public Library's Summer Reading Challenge! We would like to encourage all BLES students to participate!

Summer Reading 2021 Presentation (in English)

Summer Reading 2021 Presentation (in Spanish)

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Media Center Book Returns

Now until the end of the school year, students should return books they have checked out from the BLES Media Center.

If students have overdue or lost Media Center books, please have your students search for these books at home and in their classrooms at school. Digital students and families of BLES students are welcome to return BLES Media Center books to the Drop Off Bin at the front of the school building.

Students who are issued a fine for their lost Media Center books are welcome to bring in money to school to pay for their library fines. We accept payment in the form of cash or check. Families can also pay for these fines via MyPaymentsPlus.

Fines for Media Center Books:

Paperback Books - $5.00

Hard Cover Books - $15.00

***We do not accept replacement books. Our Media Center books are purchased from county-approved book vendors.

Thank you,

Niki Norby (Vanden Hoek)

Media Specialist

Berkeley Lake Elementary School

AKS at Home

AKS@Home recordings and tip sheets for parents of students in Kindergarten through 5th grade are posted on the district’s AKS@Home webpage.

5th Grade Information Page on Our Website

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For Parents of Kids Ages 3 - 8: "Playground Detectives" is Coming to Pickneyville Park on May 25th

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i9 Sports Summer Camp:

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Camp Invention

Camp Invention will now be offered in-person and online! See the flyer image or PDF below for details. In order for proper Covid guidelines to be followed, space will be limited, so don't delay registering your child.

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Food Finder

Visit the FoodFinder website or download the app to find places nearby where you can get free food and meal assistance.

2020-2021 GCPS Promotion Criteria for Elementary Students:

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Did You Know BLES is Now on Instagram?

Follow us on all of our social media accounts by clicking the links below:

Do You Have a Parent Portal Account?

You may have heard about Gwinnett's Parent Portal. The Parent Portal is a website that will allow you to log in and see your child's information, such as attendance, grades, standardized test scores, etc.

If you need to register with the portal, please print and complete this registration form and turn it in to the main office. Along with the completed form, you are required to show a photo I.D. for verification.

Berkeley Lake Recycles

Berkeley Lake recycles aluminum cans and old clothes and shoes (in any condition) in the two bins in the upper parking lot. The Green Team receives 10¢ per pound of donations, which helps pay the fee for the weekly paper and cardboard pick-up. The aluminum cans are recycled at Progressive Recycling on Simpson Circle. Please support our Green Team by recycling these items here at Berkeley Lake. Thank you!

We Collect Box Tops (Online)

Box Tops for Education is Online: Starting this year, Box Tops are being collected online only. Here are instructions for how to continue to give to our school using the new Box Tops process.

Our Parent Center

The Berkeley Lake Parent Center is located across from the front office and it's providing services by appointment. For Parent Center support please call Ms. Sandra Orci, Parent Liaison, at 678-291-4232 or email her at

Our Mission

To provide learning experiences in a secure and stimulating environment where every child can develop to his/her fullest potential academically, socially, and emotionally.

Our Vision

BLES is a positive safe, nurturing environment that fosters respect among all students, teachers, parents and community members, while forwarding world-class achievement that successfully maximizes each student's individual potential through engaging instruction.

Contact Us:

Berkeley Lake Elementary

4300 S. Berkeley Lake Rd.

Duluth, Georgia 30096

P: (770)446-0947

F: (770)582-7514