NOVEMBER 20, 2021 - Vol.15 Issue #14


Para información y apoyo adicionales, por favor, llame al 410-313-1591.

欲知详情或想获得更多支持,请电 410-313-5920.

보다 자세한 문의와 지원을 원하시면, 410-313-1592 로 연락 주시기 바랍니다.

For all other language needs please contact Monica Ranta at 410-313-7102.

Perform Daily Health Checks

Parents/guardians should keep their children home if they are experiencing symptom(s) associated with any communicable disease. In addition, parents/guardians are to perform daily health checks for COVID-19 symptoms before the student leaves home.


Robert Bruce, Principal -

Alexcia Redd, Assistant Principal -

Jaime Gittleson, Administrative Intern -

OFFICE HOURS 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Please call ahead 410-313-1700

Youmi Jun, Principal Secretary -
Jane Pak, Teacher Secretary -
Maria Martinez, Teacher Secretary -
Dulce Boyer, Teacher Secretary .5 -

Weekly Message from our Principal

We are very thankful to our very supportive school community.
The business of school is educating your child. This comes with challenges this year due to CO-VID and staffing shortages nationwide. We hope you have productive virtual conferences with your child's teacher next week, use this time to forge a productive working relationship. The success of your child depends on the united front you can establish with your child's teacher.

The Howard County Board of Education made a calendar adjustment on November 2, 2021.
The academic calendar was updated Nov. 2, 2021, to include 3-hour early dismissals on Dec. 15,
Jan. 19, Feb. 16, March 16, April 27 and May 18. On December 15, 2021 school will close 3 hours early at 12:55 pm. Please plan accordingly.

There will be no Eagle Express next week. The next Eagle Express will be sent on Saturday December 4th.

We sincerely hope all of our families have a healthy and Happy Thanksgiving.

Robert C. Bruce
Principal- Veterans Elementary School

Every Day Counts !
Connectedness Strategic Responsibility Arranger Intellection

NOVEMBER: Native American Heritage Month

22 - VES TURKEY TROT (no spectators this year)

22 - Schools Close 3 Hours Early Dismissal at 12:55 p.m.: Parent-Teacher Conferences

23 - [ ain date for TURKEY TROT - no spectators]
23 - Schools Close 3 Hours Early Dismissal at 12:55 p.m.: Parent-Teacher Conferences

24 -NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS: Parent-Teacher Conferences
24 - Schools and Offices Closed for Thanksgiving Holiday (State mandated)
25 - Schools and Offices Closed for Thanksgiving Holiday (State mandated)


2 - Picture Retakes by Classic Photography
6 thru 10 - VES Spirit Days: Inclusive Schools Week

15 - Schools Close 3 Hours Early Dismissal at 12:55 p.m.

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Picture Retake will be on December 2

Classic Photography will be photographing new students, students who were absent on the original picture day, and any student whose parents are requesting a retake.

Parents of the students participating on Retake Day should be aware of the following:

  • If a student was absent on the initial picture day, their name will appear on the unphotographed list so that you are aware that they need to have their picture taken for the yearbook.
  • If a parent has expressed interest in having their child’s picture retaken, this can also be done on retake day. The student should bring the original photo package, including original envelope and all picture products, to turn into the photographer when they come to sit for a new picture. They do not need to fill out a new order form.

Inclusive Schools Week December 6-10

Monday, Dec 6: Be a HERO for inclusion. Dress up as someone you look up to or a superhero you admire.

Tuesday, Dec 7: We are UNIQUE! Dress to show what makes you unique.

Wednesday, Dec 8: EXERCISE your right to be different! Wear athletic wear.

Thursday, Dec 9: Let’s “LIGHT IT UP BLUE” for Autism Awareness.

Friday, Dec 10: Unity Day! We are all INCLUDED in the VES community! Let’s wear our VES colors/spirit wear to show how we are one!

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Hey, VES Family!


We raised $4000!

Our top 3 fundraising classes were Ms. Lim, Ms. Grady-Johnson, and Ms. Kleinow class!

Thank you to Nelly Sai-Palm for running the event for us!

We will be able to fund school parties, assemblies, and staff appreciation events with the funds!


Our Scholastic book fair is online this year! It will run till Nov 21.

While you’re adding to those home libraries, it's also a great time to help refresh those classroom shelves. Not only are you helping to get great books into the hands of our students, but a percentage of your purchase also goes towards helping the school!

Staff wish lists for books are here:

Book Fair runs until Nov. 21:

Thank you for your support!

VIRTUAL TRIVIA NIGHT - Next week - NOV 23 - 7pm

Let's start Thanksgiving Break with a little fun. 3 rounds of trivia with prizes for each round!

Sign up here so we can email you the zoom link.

You will need access to Zoom and Kahoot to participate.

Email Cara if you have any questions


"I Will Change the World By"... is the 2021-2022 Contest Theme

Veterans Elementary will participate in this year's "Art Reflections Contest led by the National PTA. All students are encouraged to explore and express themselves using the theme "I Will Change The World By...

Categories include: Dance Choreography, Literature, Music Composition, Photography, Visual Arts.

Submission forms can be printed from here:

If you would like to participate, but art supplies are a financial burden please reach out to the PTA at

If you would like to join the Reflections Committee, we will need 2-3 more parents to help us judge the artwork and send it into the county level. Email if interested.


Anyone cleaning out their game closet before the holidays? Reach out to your teachers. Teachers are in need of games for indoor recess for the winter months. Card games are especially popular. Make sure they have all their pieces!


We have committee openings to help plan events for the kids!

Use this link to see your options.

JOIN THE PTA! Our Goal is 300 families!

We would love 100 more families to join this year! Help us hit our goal!

Parents, please join the PTA using the website above. Membership dues allow us to fund all the activities we run! You do not have to volunteer when you join.

Questions: Email Kim Davis at

Follow us on Facebook

Change to HCPSS Contact Tracing Procedures

In an effort to increase efficiency at notifying families, and to ease the burden on school nurses, health assistants and other school staff, HCPSS has contracted with Ameridial to manage notifying families when a student is identified as a close contact. This change is effective Thursday, Nov. 18.

ES Student Canvas Update

Effective Monday, Nov. 22, elementary school students no longer will have the ability to message each other within the Canvas Inbox. Elementary students will still be able to use the inbox to communicate with their teachers. Please note that this does not apply to Digital Education Center students, who still will have the ability to message both students and teachers.

Calendar Reminder and Meal Service Update

Schools close three hours early Nov. 22-23, and are closed for students Nov. 24. Schools and offices also are closed Nov. 25-26. There is no meal service on days schools are closed. View the HCPSS calendar.

COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Requirements

HCPSS’ current COVID-19 vaccination and testing requirements for students, staff, and others are available online. A link to information about Howard County vaccine clinics also is available.

FARMS Applications: Applications for the Free and Reduced Meals program for the school year 2020-2021 are available online in multiple languages and paper copies are available at all meal sites, effective 9/8/20. Please use this document for strategies for increasing FARMs awareness and participation.

HCPSS COUNSELING SERVICES for Students, Families, and Staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has made this an especially stressful time for many, especially those already impacted by mental health concerns. Find information about local and online resources for counseling and mental health supports for you and your family on our website.

VES REMINDERS: Worth Repeating...

Will attendance be taken when students are quarantining?

HCPSS Update: Nov. 8, 2021

The Maryland State Department of Education recently released additional attendance guidance for students who are required to quarantine but who are otherwise able to participate in academic activities.

Students will be counted as present for the school day if they engage in at least a half day of meaningful academic activities. These activities include synchronous check-ins with teachers, virtual tutoring services via the Evening School program, and access to instructional materials in Canvas, and for elementary students include 20 minutes of work in Lexia Core5 and/or 20 minutes in DreamBox each school day.

HCPSS Link to view other frequently asked questions regarding COVID-19 Student Quarantine

Academic Resources for Quarantined Students

If your child needs to quarantine, we have instructional materials for them to stay engaged in academics while they are away from the classroom. These materials include the following:

  • Robust Instructional Packets - These large packets will be sent home with students are on quarantine. These packets are grade level specific.

  • Synchronous Support Sessions - Each ELA and Math teacher will offer synchronous sessions that quarantine students can access. Teachers will send the dates/times and login information for these sessions.

  • Canvas Materials - There may be activities on Canvas that students can complete. Your child's teacher will communicate this to parents when a student is quarantined.

  • Dreambox, Typing Agent and LexiaCore will be available for students to utilize.

  • Evening School - This program offers academic enrichment for those students who are put on quarantine. If you want your child to participate in this, please email Alexcia Redd. Her email address is

If your child is quarantined and left their Chromebook at school, please call the front office to arrange a pick-up time to get your child's device. This will allow them to access the above supports. If your child does not have a Chromebook assigned to them, a Chromebook will be assigned to them if they need to be quarantined. In the event that your child is not in school when they are placed on quarantine, you can contact the front office to arrange a pick-up time to get a device.

Please contact your child's teacher or the front office if you have any questions or concerns.

Early Dismissals must be prior to 3:30 pm

* Please bring your phone to scan the QR code to sign out student(s) for Early Dismissal.

** Please also be prepared to present your Photo ID

Please plan accordingly. Students are dismissed from class upon parents' arrival after they are signed out from the office.

At this time, we can't allow students to take a different bus other than their assigned bus due to COVID.

After 3:30pm, students will be dismissed at VES normal 3:55pm dismissal with the Car Riders.

No Transportation Changes can be accommodated During Dismissal

*Please reserve any last minute requests for

~Help us keep your children safe ~

Making these requests causes confusion and leaves a lot of room for errors during the mass exodus!

Any transportation changes made after 3:30pm is disruptive to the VES dismissal process.

Please do not call or enter the school building requesting a staff member to pull your child from their normal dismissal plan.


For the safety and security of the children - parents/guardians are not allowed to board and pull their child/children from a school bus at any time, especially during our dismissal.


See an Administrator or Front Office Secretary for assistance!

A Message from the Counseling Office

Holiday gift card drive and raffle

We are going to be doing a holiday gift card drive and raffle this year at VES. We are looking for donations of Amazon, Target, or Walmart gift cards in a suggested amount of $25.
Gift cards that we collect will be given to families in our community who are in need this holiday season. If your family is interested in donating a gift card and have any questions, please contact Julie Wentz ( or Jessica Wilson-Carr ( Please send any gift cards to Youmi Jun in the front office by Monday, December 6, 2021.

If your family is interested in entering the raffle to receive gift cards (to either Target, Amazon, or Walmart), please let us know HERE. While we cannot guarantee that we will be able to support every family who enters the raffle, our goal is to support as many families as we can.

School Rainbow Representatives

Rainbow Representatives ensure that schools are allies and advocates for LGBTQIA+ students, staff, and families. The school Rainbow Representative attends quarterly meetings; receives and disseminates information regarding LGBTQIA+ topics of interest to the school and school community as appropriate; and provides instructional support for educators. If you have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Veterans Elementary Rainbow Representative Ava Greene at

Safe Space Posters

Around our school, you will see some "Safe Space" posters. Sometimes, for a variety of reasons, a person, or certain group of people, might feel unsafe to show their true colors for fear that others might treat them differently, or refer to them in an unkind way.
At HCPSS, it is our priority to make sure every student not only is safe, but also feels safe to be their authentic and true selves. We hope our Safe Space posters serve as a reminder that there is a trusted adult you can go to who is an ally to the LGBTQ+ community, who will affirm a student's chosen name and pronouns, and who will not disclose information to others about identity and orientation if a student shares that information. Teachers who have this poster in their classrooms have declared their space a safe space for ALL students.

Below are the SY2021-22 standardized testing window dates:

Grade specific dates and testing details are communicated in advance of each assessment. Dates subject to change.

Grades 1-8 MAP Reading/Math: Oct. 18 - Nov. 5

Grades 3 & 5 CogAT: Jan 18 - Feb. 4
Grades K-5 Access for ELLS: Jan. 10 - Feb. 18

Grade 5 MISA: March 14 - 25

Grades 1-8 MAP Reading/Math: April 4 - April 29

Grades 3-5 MCAP ELA/Math: May 4 - June 3


MOVING into VES: FILLABLE_VES RequestforRecords.pdf
We can assist you to obtain student records from their prior school by filling out the

Request for Records form and emailing it back to the registrar.

MOVING AWAY/ Withdraw from VES: FILLABE_Withdrawal form

Please initiate the process by filling out the HCPSS Withdrawal Form and email it back to the registrar.

Stay Informed:

HCPSS electronic School Messenger

Once you have created an HCPSS Login Account/ ParentVue upon completing the student registration, you will automatically be part of our email communication, School Messenger.

We are “green” and do not send hard copies of newsletters and other notices, so your electronic connection to the school is important even over the summer.

Email & Text Alerts

HCPSS News emails and text alerts keep families up-to-date on news and events, and deliver real-time notices of emergency closings and information. All HCPSS News subscriptions are generated from the information provided in Family File. Parents/guardians of previously enrolled HCPSS students do not need to sign up for, or manage an HCPSS News account. Parents/guardians who are new to the system are automatically enrolled for email notification and must opt in to text alerts.

Emergency Notifications

In times of emergency situations, information will be shared with the community through our website, social media, text, email and weather hotline. All parents automatically receive email messaging and new parents need to opt in to text messaging (see above). Unsubscribing from any school or district email or text will unsubscribe a user from all messaging, including emergency notifications.

Volunteer/Observer Vaccine Requirements

All volunteers and chaperones who interact with students, as well as current HCPSS students who attend a field trip or volunteer at a different school during the school day, are required to use the PinPoint platform to show proof of full vaccination at least five school days in advance. This requirement does not apply to HCPSS students who are going to another school as part of their academic schedule. Vaccination and testing requirements for other community stakeholders are outlined online.

COVID-19 Self-Screenings

All parents/guardians are to perform a COVID-19 health check every day before your student leaves home. Students are not to come to school if they are experiencing any symptom(s) associated with COVID-19 or other communicable disease.


Please visit the HCPSS website Community News and Programs site for upcoming events and programs sponsored by non-profit organizations.


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All-Female Self Defense Seminar!! Inviting all women, daughters, grandmothers, and more! Our partner/friend, The Okinawan Karate Dojo (and Sensei Stanley Crump) is hosting their 10th Women's Self Defense Seminar this Saturday Nov 20th from 1-4pm! Over the past several years, the rise in abuse and crime has been staggering. This seminar will be the perfect way to learn/practice the Situational Awareness - Physical Defense Tactics - and Verbal Confidence that is necessary for survival in the face of threat! The seminar will be appropriate for young females through Adults, and will take place at The Dojo (4900 Waterloo Rd in Ellicott City) in a clean...COVID-safe...fully-equipped space. Facilitated by certified blackbelts, the experience promises to be FUN, comprehensive, and results-oriented! For more information or registration, visit - OKDkarate.dom or call 443 574 8999!

Stanley Crump


6th degree black belt

Okinawan Karate Dojo