Kiker Comments November 30, 2021

A Joint Newsletter from the Bernice Kiker Admin Team & PTA

In This Edition...

  • Upcoming Events
  • Attendance Notes
  • Art Fundraiser Updates
  • Drop Off and Pick Up Reminders
  • Outdoor Learning Areas
  • End of Virtual Program Timeline
  • Updated Quarantine Protocols
  • Gorzycki Visit
  • PTA News: Sister School Drive, Night of Giving, Sweets for Staff, Grants
  • AISD News - Bowie Lacrosse, COVID Testing Hubs, Dual Language
  • December Staff Birthdays
  • Get to Know the Staff
  • Repeated Information (from previous newsletters)
  • Health Room Screenings
  • Quarantine and Ill Person Requirements for Return - UPDATED
  • After School Programs
  • All the Links to Everything You Need

Upcoming Events


4 - AISD Dual Language Information Session

13 - 8:00 am 5th Grade Parents/Guardians Invited to a Talk With GMS's Dr. Mitchell

17 - Last Day with Students before Winter Break

17 - PJ Day

January 2022

3 - Winter Break

4- Professional Development Day, Staff Only

5 - First Day Back for Students

Attendance Notes

Please send all attendance notes to the front office or email to


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Art Fundraiser

The Art Fundraiser was a success this year because of the continued support of the arts at Kiker. Thank you so much! The Art Fundraiser orders will be distributed on December 14.

We hope you enjoy the items.

Volunteers Needed!

Volunteers are needed for the Art Fundraiser orders distribution on Tuesday, December 14, from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. Please consider helping. It is fun, fast, and organized! Contact our art volunteer coordinator Kathryn Sampson at or Ms.Swint at if you would like to help.

Thank you!

Drop off and Pick up Reminders

Please follow these procedures to help us run our drop off and pick up more efficiently. We appreciate your help.

  • Please refrain from parking in the staff lot on Dahlgreen. This is for buses and staff only.
  • To the greatest extent possible, stay in your car if you are in the drop off circle drive. Staff are available to help your child exit the car. When parents/caregivers exit the car, it can cause significant delays in our line. If you need additional time to exit, please consider parking on LaCrosse and walking up.
  • Use crosswalks any time you are crossing the street. Little eyes are watching and learning by example.
  • When turning from LaCrosse into the circle drive, alternate one car from the eastbound side, one car from the westbound side.

New and Updated Outdoor Learning Areas

Last month we received eight new picnic tables from the AISD service center. We currently have enough tables for outdoor eating, so we selected to use the tables to create two outdoor learning areas.

The tables needed preparation to be ready for students and to withstand the weather. A huge thank you to Lindsey Lawley Rerecich and Matt Rerecich for training our volunteers to properly stain/seal the tables. Approximately 20-25 students from Bowie High School's honor society and PALS program worked in shifts over the weekend to finish the tables and set up our new spaces.

In addition to the work on the tables, numerous students weeded our garden beds to prepare them for classes to engage in gardening projects.

We are incredibly grateful to the Rerecich family and James Bowie High School for their time and effort to create learning areas for our campus.

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End of AISD's Virtual Program Timeline

December 1 - Kiker receives information on new staff

December 10 -Families of students in the virtual program informed of their new class placement

December 14 - 4:00-5:00 pm

Welcome Back Event for Virtual Students (see above)

January 5 - First Day Back for ALL Students

Virtual students and families are invited to 'Meet the Teacher' on Tuesday, December 14. Say hello to your teachers and visit your classrooms from 4:00-4:30. Take a tour with Mrs. Matheny from 4:30-5:00 (optional).

Changes to Quarantine Procedures

AISD recently updated its Covid protocol for close contact unvaccinated students. Instead of automatically quarantining for 10 days, there are now three options for unvaccinated or partially vaccinated people who are in close contact to a positive COVID case.

Why it matters: We’ve done a great job keeping our COVID cases low this year. The better we are at keeping COVID cases low, the more we can stay the course this school year.

Here are the new options for anyone who is unvaccinated or hasn’t reached full vaccine protection (exposed to COVID within the two-week window after a vaccine):

  1. The close contact can quarantine for 10 days and return on the 11th day — this protocol is currently in place.

  2. The close contact can “test to stay” at school or work, meaning they don’t have to quarantine, but they do have to test on day five after the exposure.

    • If it’s negative — Yay! Go back to work/class

    • If it’s positive — 10-day quarantine starts.

  3. The close contact can quarantine for four days and return on day five with a negative rapid or PCR test result.

Testing can take place at our campus testing hub on Day 5 prior to student reporting to class. The Concentric Team can be reached at 512-841-7857 to schedule a test.

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5th Grade Families - Meet Dr. Mitchell

Gorzycki Middle School Principal, Dr. Mitchell, has arranged to do a presentation for the parents/guardians of our current 5th graders. Save the date: December 13 at 8:00 am.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 881 2251 9235

Passcode: BKE

PTA News

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Show Our Sister School Some Holiday Season Love!

Show Our Sister School Some Holiday Season Love!

Kiker is sponsoring an Amazon wishlist drive for Allison Elementary, our sister school in East Austin. These necessities for learning and staying warm were chosen by Allison Elementary as their most-needed items. We can support the Allison community by providing some of these basic needs so they can focus on teaching and learning!

Items purchased from the wishlist will be sent directly to Allison Elementary. Be sure to select Allison Elementary as the shipping address at checkout.

Find the list here: Please purchase your items by December 8.

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Give to our sister school and then join us for a night of giving

If you would like to attend Kiker’s Night of Giving, respond here:

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Sweets for Staff

We’re looking for volunteers to donate baked goods to show our appreciation for all the hard work of our Kiker teachers and staff.

Sign up here to donate treats and see more details! There are still quite a few spots open. All treats will need to be delivered to the front office on Monday, December 13.
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We earned it together, now let's spend it together!

PTA Members (including staff, parents, and community members) are invited to apply for PTA funds for projects, services, and ideas benefitting the Kiker community. Please submit your grant applications through this form by December 10. Grant applications will be ranked as a high, medium, or low priority based on the considerations described in the application, then voted on by the PTA Executive Board at its December 12 meeting. Funding decisions will be communicated to applicants on or before December 14, 2021. Requested items or services must align with the Kiker PTA mission "To make every child's potential a reality." Every effort is made by Kiker PTA to be fair and equitable when considering grant applications. While the PTA would like to honor all requests for funds, we give preference to funding requests that will impact as many Kiker students, families and faculty as possible, with consideration given to those that provide a longer-term benefit.


Bowie Lacrosse Event

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Free Covid Testing for Staff and Students - 8:00-2:00 Daily With Completed Consent (QR Code Above)

Starting Nov. 1, students and staff will have access to a free rapid antigen testing program through a new partnership with Concentric by Ginkgo. Kiker is a hub and has Concentric Staff on site in Portable 6B daily. (FYI - there is no classroom on the 6A side of the portable.). The direct line to schedule is 512-841-7857.

Why it matters: Research shows that the more people get tested, the safer everyone is from the spread of COVID-19. You’ll be able to access rapid antigen or PCR tests (when available) at 11 sites across Austin.

  • Students and staff can get a test at will for any reason, whether you’ve been exposed or are just looking for peace of mind.
  • Sites include: Travis, Northeast Akins, Norman-Sims, Pillow, Kiker, Eastside, Cunningham, Navarro, Blazier, McCallum .
  • Testing will run 8 a.m. -2 p.m. Monday-Friday.

Yes, but: Only students with completed consent forms can get a test. Consent form via QR code above.

  • This is an opt-in program, so no one will participate if they don’t want to.

Completing the consent form takes about five minutes on a computer or smartphone.

  • When completing the consent form, use this code: AISDTEST
  • If you have more than one child, please complete the form for each one.

Dive deeper: For more information, visit Concentric by Ginkgo’s website, reach out to our Let’s Talk portal or send a text to 512-886-6434.

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AISD Virtual Dual Language Workshop - December 4

Dual Language is for Everyone: AISD Virtual Dual Language Workshops

Interested in learning more about Dual Language programming? Whether your child currently participates in Dual Language or you’re exploring options, we’ve got you covered.

Choose a date:

Each event will include workshops facilitated in English, Spanish, Mandarin and Vietnamese.

For more information, contact Janeth Medrano at 512.414.9648 or

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December Birthdays

4 - Amy McGovern

10 - Neethu Kalesh

12 - Lupe Rocha

13 - Alma Chapa Moore

16 - Jenny Badell

18 - Jessica Boone

Get to Know the Staff

Each week we will feature a few staff members. This week we are featuring our 2nd Grade Team.
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Repeated Information

Health Office:

On going: Screenings for Acanthosis Nigricans for 1st, 3rd, and 5th Graders

On going: Vision and hearing screenings for Pre-K 4, Kindergarten, Grades 1, 3, and 5, and any new student to Austin ISD.

Questions about Returning to School after Quarantine and/or being Symptomatic-Updated


Day 0 is the last date of exposure.

Day 1 is the first day without exposure.

Day 5 is the 'testing day'

We can accept a rapid test OR a PCR test from any testing facility that provides a paper document or email copy of the results. At home tests are not accepted. Testing from our hub is accepted.

Symptomatic / Ill students or staff:

For a student/staff member who was symptomatic (sent home from school sick or self-reported sick), a negative PCR or a doctor's note is required to return.

Staff or students may request a rapid test via the hub.

After School Programs

After School Enrichment

Did you know our Comets have a variety of after school activities in which to participate? This fall, after school activities will include coding, art, cooking, Spanish, and more. For a full listing, please visit the after school enrichment page on our website to learn more and see the wonderful variety of classes and programs offered!

What's New?

Young Rembrandts Holiday Drawing for Kids

Sticky Fingers - There is still time for the Fall Session!

Printable Lunch Menu - December

Library Volunteers: View Openings by Clicking Here

Email to sign up

A Message From the Cafeteria

At AISD Food Service, our top priority is to ensure all students have access to healthy, tasty meals. The country is dealing with a nationwide food service worker shortage, directly impacting AISD; we currently have over 100 open positions, in addition to managing COVID-19 protocols. Because of this, changes in school meal operations and menus may occur. Please note, any menu changes will not be reflected on or on printed menus.

Bernice Kiker Elementary Administration Team

Cory Matheny - Principal

Alma Chapa Moore - Assistant Principal

Kelly Meyer - Assistant Principal