STAR GAZER GAZETTE

January 2022 Star Lake Newsletter

Greetings Star Lake Families,

Happy New Year! While this week has been a bit “bumpy” with weather, late starts and transportation, our staff has been so excited to welcome all of our eagles back to school! We always like to take the time after a break to revisit our classroom expectations, check in with students and see if we need to make any revisions, and “reboot” that energy and excitement needed to be active, engaged learners! This week we have been discussing and practicing our common area behavior expectations, bus expectations, and what it means to be “Kind, Safe and Productive” at school. So far, our scholars are doing a great job! As always, we appreciate the continued support from family members at home.


In addition to restarting and reviewing expectations, January is a month in which we spend a good deal of time assessing student progress. Students will be taking the iReady reading and math diagnostic to measure growth and teachers will be conferring with students to assess reading growth through IRLA. Teachers will also be assessing standards to ensure scores on report cards are accurate.


Students progress will be documented on report cards, which your family will receive the first week of February. On the report card you will see your child’s current reading level and descriptor. Their current iReady assessment scores will also populate. In the past, each standard assessed was listed on the report card with a score. Starting last year, the report card was revised to list broader, overall standards and skills that each priority standard feeds into. I feel the report card is easier for parents to read and understand. Students will receive a 4,3,2, or 1 for standards assessed.


Our district has an important Levy vote coming up on February 8th! Please see the information about the Levy included in this newsletter, and please join me at our joint family zoom/ PTA meeting on January 19th at 6:00pm as I will be presenting information at that meeting as well. In addition, if you have any questions about the Levy, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me for information.


I wish your family joy, health and happiness in the coming year!


Best Regards,

Kris Rennie, Principal

krennie@fwps.org 253-945-4007

Mark Your Calendars

JANUARY

17 - MLK Day - No School

18 - Kindergarten Registration Begins

19 - Early Release - School ends at 1:45

19 - Joint Family Zoom/PTA Meeting at 6:00

21 - Career Spirit Day

28 - End of Semester - No School


FEBRUARY

3 - Virtual Family Engagement Night, 6-7:30

9 - Early Release - School ends at 1:45

18 - Snow Make Up Day - Possibly No School?

21 - NO SCHOOL - President's Day

23 - Early Release - School ends at 1:45

25 - Tie-Dye/Rainbow Spirit Day

Feb 3rd - Virtual Family Engagement Night

Be sure to join us Thursday, February 3rd, 6pm-7:30pm for our Virtual Family Engagement Night. We will have games & activities for families and will be joined by local author, Teresa Bateman, for a book reading. Prizes drawings will be happening throughout the event and will include 2-hour jump passes for Catapult Adventure Park! The event Zoom link will be sent out through email as well as the Remind App the week prior. We are looking forward to seeing all of you there!

HIGHLY CAPABLE REFERRAL WINDOW OPENS 12/1/21 - 1/10/22

The FWPS Highly Capable program identifies scholars who many need additional support in their classroom through Highly Capable services. These services are provided at each school site, typically in English Language Arts (ELA), Math, or both through differentiation, extension, or acceleration opportunities.


This year, the HCP referral process is completely digital, and will be collecting formative data about every scholar referred, reviewed in conjunction with assessment data, for a whole-child approach to the identification process.


FWPS families, teachers, staff, scholars, and community members may refer a K-11 scholar for consideration during Dec. 1, 2021 - Jan. 10, 2022 for the 2022–23 school year.


For more information, visit the website at https://www.fwps.org/Page/8215

To make a referral visit: https://www.fwps.org/Page/8219

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Is There School Today?

When snow is falling all around us we sometimes question if there is school today.


So what do we do if school times are changed due to snow or bad weather? Any severe weather changes can cause a change in school operations like a delayed start, early dismissal or even school closure.


The FWSD has a plan in place to assess and monitor actual weather and road conditions overnight and in the early morning hours.


The most current information about school operations can be found on the FWPS website http://www.fwps.org. All families and staff will receive messages about school closures and delays by voice, text, email alert or notification on the FWOS Mobile APP. Some local radio and television stations broadcast information regarding the operation of school during emergency or inclement weather.


TIPS:

  • Remember our district is large, some areas of the district may experience more severe weather and driving conditions than others.
  • Any school closures or changes are district wide, even if your neighborhood is not impacted.
  • Changes apply to that day only.
  • During delayed/late starts, students may NOT be dropped off more than 15 minutes before school starts.
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY, If no announcement is made by FWPS, schools and buses are operating on normal schedules.
  • For more information, go to: https://www.fwps.org/domain/783

Calling Grades 3-12 Scholars: Nominate an Educator for the Because of You Award!

Any scholar in grades 3-12 has a chance to nominate any Federal Way Public Schools staff member in the district you believe has positively impacted you, your school, and/or your community with the “Because of You” award.


Nominations will be reviewed and selected by the Superintendent’s Scholar Advisory team and each month educators will be honored. Nominations forms can be completed online at: https://www.fwps.org/Page/5018 or you can access it below. Forms should be submitted by the end of the month. Stay tuned as we highlight these extraordinary staff members who make a difference each day in our schools!

Attendance Update

Remember as we are in the winter months and it’s cold outside, to dress for the weather, wearing layers. Gloves and hats are recommended for going outside. And because it’s cold and flu season, here are a few guidelines on if you should send your child to school or not.


Please do not send your scholar to school if they have any cold symptoms or illness such as: runny nose, cough, congestion, sore throat, fever, loss of taste or smell, shortness of breath, fatigue, headache, muscle or body aches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or red eyes with discharge. If they are showing any of these symptoms please keep them home until the symptoms have improved or if they are consistent with a diagnosed chronic illness.


Scholars should also be kept at home if they:

  • Show any signs or symptoms of Covid19
  • Have tested positive for Covid19 in the past 10 days or are waiting results of a Covid19 test due to possible exposure or symptoms and not from routine asymptomatic Covid19 screening, or
  • Have been told by a public health or health professional to self-monitor, self-isolate, or self-quarantine because of concern about Covid19 infection in the past 14 days.


If scholars have Covid symptoms, please report it to our office and Mrs. Rennie will contact you to discuss when your scholar should return to school.


Remember: Every Day Counts AND Every Day Matters!

Upcoming Enrollments:

CHOICE ENROLLMENT OPENING SOON: Please visit https://www.fwps.org/page/434 for application and updates on Choice.


KINDERGARTEN REGISTRATION OPENS JANUARY 18TH:

Do you or a friend or neighbor have a child that will be age 5 by Aug 31st? If so please visit http://www.fwps.org/kiosk


If this is your first student attending Federal Way Schools, then please click on Student Registration and Create a New Account.


If you currently have or have in the past had a student registered in any Federal Way Public School , this includes Preschool & ECEAP, then you already have a ParentVue account. Just click on “ParentVue” to access your family's information. If you forgot your password you can click the “More Info” button. DO NOT make a new account for each student. If you need help recovering a forgotten User ID, please contact Kathy Miller at 253-945-4002 or kamiller@fwps.org

Bus Rider Expectations

With so many of our scholars riding the bus this year to our temporary location, our bus drivers are asking we share the common expectations we are using to teach our scholars about the expectations for riding the bus.


Please take a couple of minutes to review with your scholar the importance of a safe bus ride. These expectations are right out of our PBIS common expectations matrix. If you want to know more about our PBIS structures at school please email Mrs. Robinson tbiles@fwps.org or Mr. Geving tgeving@fwps.org

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Library Learning

Last month, Star Lake students participated in Hour of Code activities. Star Lake students enjoyed coding using coding programs on the Star Lake Library website on the student launchpad. The programs are under the Coding and Programming section. Students may do any of the coding activities at home including Kodables, Scratch, Angry Birds code, Minecraft code, Star Wars code, Dance Party code. Ask your student which coding activity they enjoyed.


Those of you who plan to be involved with Battle of the Books - keep reading! Please see the list of books below that you should be familiar with.


Happy Reading!


Ms. Nelson

jnelson@fwps.org

253-945-4010

Counselor's Corner

Recently our Kindergartners, First Graders, and Second Graders learned about Kelso’s Choices. This conflict resolution curriculum teaches children the differences between big and small problems. Big problems involve situations where danger is or could be present…things that make us feel scared. These problems need the attention of an adult right away. Smaller problems involve milder emotions like anger, sadness, frustration and disappointment. The Kelso wheel provides 9 choices for how to solve these smaller problems without the help of an adult. It is recommended that a child tries two different options, and if neither of those work, they should seek help from an adult.


Students in grades 3-5 learned about Kelso’s Choices when they were younger, and there are posters in prominent locations in our school to help remind these students about their options. This program is meant to help students feel empowered and equipped to become problem solvers.


If your student approaches you with a small problem, ask them to consider Kelso’s choices, try two options, and then come back for help if those don’t solve the problem. Here is an image of the wheel for your reference. I even have a copy posted on my refrigerator at home! As always, please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.


Sincerely,


Tiffany Williams, School Counselor

tiwillia@fwps.org

(253) 945-4005

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Free COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic

The Federal Way School district is offering another COVID-19 vaccine opportunity to support the health and safety of our community. Our partner OmLife Health is hosting a free mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinic this Saturday, January 8, 2022, from 1:00 – 6:00 p.m. at Federal Way High School.

As you may know, anyone ages 5 and older may receive the COVID-19 vaccine, which has been proven to be effective in reducing the effects of the virus. Additionally, the FDA recently approved booster doses for children ages 12 and older and shortened the time between the second dose and booster. Now, anyone 12 and older may receive a Pfizer booster dose at 5 months after a completed COVID-19 vaccine series.

Registration for this event is filling up fast. Reserve your spot at: http://www.covid19tacoma.com/fw0108

Learn more at: www.fwps.org/vaccine.

Nurses News:

As families are making choices about vaccinating their children, we would sure appreciate it if you would notify our school nurse if your child has received the Covid-19 vaccination. Please call Sybel Johnson at 253-945-4009 or email syjohnso@fwps.org Thank you!


COVID-19 TESTING SITES AT FWPS


FWPS Educational Service Center Parking Lot

· Located at 33330 8th Ave S. Federal Way, 98003

· Open to staff, scholars, families & community members

· Monday-Friday 7:30 am to 4:00 pm

· No appointment needed

· PCR testing for all ages

· Results usually available in about 48 hours


Sacajawea Middle School Parking Lot

· Located at 1101 S. Dash Point Rd. Federal Way, 98003

· Open to staff, scholars, families & community members

· Wednesday-Sunday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm

· No appointment needed

· PCR testing for all ages

· Results usually available in about 48 hours

· Those visiting the testing site will not have access to the school campus


People visiting these sites can pre-register for appointments in addition to walking up:

Sac: http://www.curative.com

ESC: http://www.curative.com


King County also offers additional testing locations. More information about testing sites within the county is available at https://kingcounty.gov/depts/health/covid-19/testing.aspx.

PBIS: SAFE, KIND AND PRODUCTIVE!

Welcome back Eagles! I can’t believe it’s 2022 already! We had such an amazing start to the year, let’s keep that momentum going and keep earning those Eagle Wings and Star Lake Way tickets. We have two amazing shopping opportunities this month, so continue getting caught being Safe, Kind, and Productive.


Scholars have been doing an excellent job modeling standout behavior as we welcome Olympic View scholars into the building. We have been spending this first week back reviewing expectations in common areas, our Social Contracts, and our Classroom Norms to make the transition back to school as smooth as possible.


A new year is a perfect opportunity to review expectations at home as well: what does it look like to be safe, kind, and productive at home? Remember to celebrate successes and reteach when needed! Let’s make 2022 an awesome year of growth and learning.

PTA Updates

Star Lake PTA wants to say Thank You to our community and staff for the amazing turn out for membership this year. Washington State PTA Recognizes Star Lake PTA 9.4.55 with the Platinum Membership Growth Award . PTAs are presented with this award for enrolling at least 20% more members this year compared to last year. That means our PTA is growing! Thank you to everyone who has become a member so far this year: YOU are the reason our PTA achieved this award! If you haven’t yet signed up for a 2021-2022 PTA membership, please consider joining today! Sign up for membership on our website at: starlakepta.memberplanet.com


In lieu of our traditional fundraising such as catalogs, cookie dough, bake sales we are asking for donations to continue enriching the students and staff at Star Lake. Please continue to send in donations made out to Star Lake PTA in an envelope. Thank you!


Next PTA meeting will be on Wednesday, January 19 at 6 pm on Zoom. Zoom link will be sent out closer to the date.


The Executive Board is still looking for a Secretary. If you are interested please email us at starlakepta@gmail.com


Reminder Star Lake PTA will be hosting an Online Book Fair February 14-27th. All proceeds are given to the library to buy new books! More details to come.


PTA SPIRIT DAYS:

January 21st - Career day

February 25th - Tie-dye/Rainbow day


Join our Facebook page to keep up with the Star Lake PTA: https://www.facebook.com/groups/StarLakeElementary


* Remember that a successful PTA needs your participation. We appreciate your support! If you have any questions, please email us at: starlakepta@gmail.com

Star Lake Building Progress:

Evergreen Middle School moved into their side of the new building on Jan 3rd. They say it is lovely! It makes us even more excited to move into our side of the school this August.

Staff List:

2022 Educational Programs and Operations (EP&O) Levy and Tech Levy

These levies provide critical funding for our district scholars and staff. They are not new taxes - voters have consistently supported these levies.


Tech levy

Supports student learning in 3 key areas:

  • Continued student technology access
  • Teacher devices and professional development
  • Infrastructure and software maintenance upgrades


EP&O Levy

The EP&O levy is approximately 8% of the district's overall budget, and funds essential programs and staff beyond what the state provides:

  • Staff: Nurses, Counselors, and Social Workers, Career College Specialists, Curriculum Support Specialists, Paraeducators, Clerical, Security Staff, and Custodians
  • Services: Special Education and English Language Learner Services
  • Activities: Music, Athletics and Activities, and After School Programs


Please remember to vote by February 8, 2022!

For more information visit: http://www.fwps.org/Levies2022, email levy@fwps.org, call 253-945-2000.

2021-22 Annual Notification

The 2021-22 Annual Notification publication provides notices that are required by state and federal law, and other helpful information:


  • Title I: Part A—Parent Notification of Teacher Qualifications
  • Employment Hiring Statement
  • ChildFind
  • Whooping Cough Vaccine and Flu Shots
  • HIV and Sexual Health Family Information Session
  • Student Accident and Sickness Insurance Coverage
  • HPV and Meningitis
  • Download the FWPS App
  • Safe Schools Tip Line
  • Pesticide Use
  • Low Cost Internet Access and Computers
  • Student Email/Microsoft Office 365
  • Registered Sex Offenders


To view the Annual Notification publication visit: www.fwps.org/AnnualNotification.