The Core

September 16, 2022, Volume 14, Issue 6

Notes from the Principal

Hello Parents and Guardians,

We topped off our first full week with our first Seed Time. Seed Time is our newest endeavor in which we mix up all grades: K-2 & 3-5 into smaller groups with the purpose of working on relationship building. Our first one was a lot of fun and very exciting! Check out our photos and read through Ms. Abby's article!

Heads up - we have an Early Release next Friday, September 23rd. For new parents, there are nine early release days scattered throughout the year (approximately one per month) designed to provide staff time with curriculum work and professional development. Dismissal will be at 12:30 and a bag lunch will be available on those days.

We are still working through the long lunch lines. The hot lunch line is definitely improving but still taking some time out of each lunch block. One thing we can do to make things run more efficiently is if students know their PIN#. We would appreciate it if all students could practice their PIN# for homework - it's only four digits! This would help a lot!

If you don't have your child's PIN#, sign in on the student portal and you will find it right beneath their name and student ID.

So many sports and community activities to check out, scroll down to see them.

Have a terrific weekend; take some time each day to read with your child.

Mark T & Olivia K

Homework? Students Should Practice their PIN#s!

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Seed Time: A New Community Building Practice at Orchard School

Today was the first day of Seed Time at Orchard School! Seed Time is a new practice we are using to help students build connections across grade levels with students and adults. During Seed Time, students are mixed into multi-age groupings of either Kindergarten - Grade 2 students or Grade 3 - Grade 5 students to participate in connecting activities that reinforce our SEL curriculum, Second Step. Seed Time will be held every other Friday at the end of the day - a great way to play, connect, and end the week!

The concept for Seed Time came from a strong desire to return the sense of community and belonging that we have all been missing during the COVID19 pandemic. This past June, Orchard School sent a group of teachers and student support team members to the BEST conference in Killington, where they focused on creating this model that will restore connection and deepen our understanding of each other while giving students the opportunity to practice social and emotional learning skills that we are teaching. The addition of Seed Time is helping to build a bank of proactive practices that support whole-student learning and growth here at Orchard School.

Here is a little about today’s Seed Time:

  1. Welcoming Activity - Students gathered in a circle to share their names.

  2. Mindfulness - A quiet moment to get ourselves ready to work together!

  3. Activity - Working collaboratively to build a toothpick and model magic tower! Lots of teamwork, older students helping younger students, and problem-solving together.

  4. Closing activity - Students gathered in a circle to rate the “fun”-level of the activity.

We hope that students come home excited about Seed Time! If you have any questions about Seed Time or our SEL curriculum, please reach out to our SEL Coach, Abby Hill (

Photos of our First Seed Time!

News from Our Medical Team


We are seeing lots of respiratory illness in our health room! If your child is sick, please keep them at home. If your child's nose is congested/dripping constantly or they have a concerning cough, please keep them at home to rest. Fever? Before returning to school, the fever must be gone (under 100.4) for at least 24 hours (without the use of fever-reducing medicine).


Per the Vermont Department of Health (VDH), Omicron-specific COVID-19 boosters are now available in Vermont. The updated booster is for people 12 and older who have completed their primary COVID-19 vaccine series and received their last booster or additional dose at least two months ago.

CDC also recommends:

COVID-19 primary series vaccines for everyone ages 6 months and older.

COVID-19 boosters for everyone ages 5 years and older, if eligible.

People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised follow specific recommendations for COVID-19 vaccines, including boosters.

Find out more information from the VDH HERE.

Find local walk-in clinics HERE (or talk with your health care provider).

Find Translations HERE.

Be well,

Kara Cassani &

Sarah Pineda, School Nurses

Classes Celebrating their Good Work in Pajamas!

PTO News

Fun Run: The Fun Run is coming on October 7th! See your child's take-home sheet for more details, and go to Konstella to volunteer or donate today!

Fundraising: The Fun Run is meant to be our one big fundraiser for the year, but there are other ways you can support our school. Orchard School is a beneficiary of Amazon Smile; click here to learn how to set Orchard as your charity of choice:

Box Tops is another easy way to support the school! Download the Box Tops for Education app here:

Use referral code VI7J42XS when you sign up and you’ll get 20 Bonus Box Tops.

Konstella: Join today to connect with your child's friends, to sign up for classroom events, and more!

What is Konstella? It's an app and website with a school directory by classroom (students are added by their caregiver, so it is not necessarily a full class list). It is also used throughout the year as a place for people to sign up to volunteer for classroom events, and it can accept payments for field trips and other donations

Our First 5th Grade Morning Announcers - Henry & Emmet!

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Updates from our Director of Nutritional Services

Create a Lunch Account

Orchard students can receive a free breakfast and free lunch at school each day.

  • Extra meal items and a la carte items, including milk, are not part of the USDA Free & Reduced meal programs. If your student brings lunch from home and wishes to purchase milk, the cost is $.50.
  • Extra meal items and a la carte items may not be charged; a student must have funds in their account or pay cash at the register.
  • All students will be assigned a pin # to be used for making a purchase from their lunch account. Don't worry! if your child can't quite remember their pin # yet, we can credit the account by name.

MySchoolBucks is an online payment service that provides a quick and easy way to add money to your student’s meal account using a credit/debit card or electronic check. You can also view recent purchases, check balances, and set up low-balance alerts for FREE!

Enrollment is easy!

  1. Go to or download the mobile app and register for a free account.

  2. Add your student(s) using their school name and student ID.

  3. You will find the student ID, listed as Student Number, in the PowerSchool Parent Portal.

  4. Make a payment to your student's accounts with your credit/debit card or electronic check.

Already have an account?

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Try Hockey for Free!

On Saturday, September 24th at 5:30pm CSB Hawks will be hosting a "Try Hockey for Free" event at Cairns Arena. Part of their mission is to broaden the access to hockey for all members of our community and a first step to accomplishing that goal is to provide some free equipment and ice time to kids who may not otherwise get the opportunity.

Dolphins Youth Football Announces “Try Football for Free” Dates

Try football for free with the South Burlington Dolphins, the cornerstone of S.B. youth football since 1967! A fun experience for players of all genders and experience levels to learn the fundamentals of football and grow with the sport. The Dolphins offers flag football (grades 1-4) and tackle (grades 5-8).

Meet our new head coach and try a practice Monday, Sept. 19 & 26 and Tuesday, Sept. 20 & 27 at 5pm at Jaycee Park in South Burlington.

For more information, contact Coach Bryan Belisle at

Why play for the Dolphins?

· Inclusive, encouraging coaching that supports the latest in player safety & proper skills development.

· The only S.B. youth football team to be a member of the Northern Vermont Football League.

· Practices held locally at Jaycee Park:

o Flag (grades 1-4) practice Mon., Tues. & Thurs. from 5p-6:30p. Games on Thurs. or Sat.

o Tackle (grades 5-8) practice Mon.-Fri. from 4p-6p. Games on Sat.

· Head Coach Bryan Belisle combines over 20 years of football coaching experience at the youth through semi pro levels. Holds USA Football and Advanced Contact certifications.

· All Dolphins coaching staff are USA Football certified, have experience playing and/or coaching at the collegiate level and want to pass on their love of the game to a new generation!

Registration is Still Open For SB Youth Football!

Do you have a child who is interested in football? The South Burlington Youth Football organization offers both flag (grades K-8 as the Jr. Wolves) and tackle, as there is a team made up of fifth and sixth graders, as well as a team of seventh and eighth graders.

The Jr. Wolves NFL Flag team will practice once a week (Wednesdays from 5:30-7 p.m.) at Farrell Park starting on Wednesday, September 7, with a focus on fundamentals, having fun, and learning the game. The Jr. Wolves will also have one game per week.

For kids in grades fifth through eighth, there is also a tackle option. That team practices four nights a week from 5:30-7 p.m.

Learn more and register online by visiting:

You can also direct any questions that you may have to:

Building Bright Futures

Hello Orchard parents!
We have an opportunity as caregivers to share our thoughts and experiences on raising young children in Vermont through the Building Bright Futures Family Needs Survey.

You can complete the survey online by clicking on this link or request a paper copy from the school office.
The survey is designed to gather information and feedback on up to 3 supports and services (you choose) that families with young children prenatal through age have received. Responses to this survey are anonymous and will be used to inform policy and decision-makers on how families are feeling about services and supports in Vermont.

Those who complete the survey will be entered to win a $50 gift card.
Here's to a great year, and thank you for considering adding your voice to the survey!

Leigh Jaschke,
Orchard Parent and member of the BBF Families and Communities Committee

Building Bright Futures (BBF) is Vermont’s early childhood public-private partnership, charged under Vermont Title 33 § Chapter 46 and the Federal Head Start Act (Public Law 110-134) as Vermont’s Early Childhood State Advisory Council (SAC) and Network.

We are Hiring!

We have been hiring new staff throughout the summer though there are still lots of employment opportunities. The pay is good (with health insurance benefits) and you would be working during your child's school schedule. Most importantly, the work is very rewarding and you will make a difference in the lives of students. We have lots of support staff openings ranging from para-educators and interventionists to lunch/recess supervisors. Contact me with any questions at