Buzzin' in the Hive

Graden Parent and Family Newsletter, September 2020

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In our July Buzzin' in the Hive, we included a student interest group survey for students to provide us with information about what interest groups they would like to participate in this year. To comply with CDC and district guidelines, we will not be able to group students K-2 and 3-5, but we WILL continue to have students practice Habit 8: Find your Voice, with a modified version of interest groups once a month beginning on Thursday, October 1st with The Funny Magic Show as our virtual assembly.

Each Interest group day will include a virtual assembly and a classroom interest group activity. Students and staff will wear their leadership shirts and engage in Interest Group Day within their stable classrooms. We hope to create amazing opportunities for students to continue practicing Habit 8

Interest Group Schedule:

Thursday, October 1

Thursday, November 12

Thursday, December 10

Thursday, January 2

Thursday, February 4

Thursday, March 4

Thursday, April 8

Thursday, May 6


As we focus on opening the year on September 8th, we are postponing all before and after school clubs until 2nd quarter. The district will collaborate closer to 2nd quarter to decide if schools can begin hosting clubs. When this decision is made, we will communicate with all families.


Hello hornet families! We are so excited to welcome back our online and in-person learners next week! Below is a link to the Graden School Counseling website. Here, you will find the monthly counseling newsletters, community resources, parent referral forms, and social/emotional learning “hubs” where students can access their counseling lessons, as well as several other fun resources to cultivate social and emotional development. As always, if you have any questions, concerns, or would like to schedule a time to meet in person or via Zoom, you can reach me by email at or via phone at 816-359-5647. Excited for another awesome year!”

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In the Park Hill School District, we are blessed to have a number of resources available to help our families. If your family can benefit from any of the resources listed in the link below, please check the service(s) you feel will be beneficial. All information received, and any service provided, is kept strictly confidential. We look forward to providing support to your family and cannot wait to get the school year started!

Upon return of this completed form, the School Social Worker and/or School Counselor will either send you information or applications based on the needs indicated, or contact you directly for further information. By submitting this form, you give the School Social Worker/School Counselor permission to contact you and to provide referrals to community resources. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Graden Elementary School Social Worker, Carolyn Child, at or (816) 359-6229 or the Graden Elementary School Counselor, Cari Cetola, at or (816) 359-5647.


If you have an incoming kindergarten student, please take time to access your classroom teacher's link below and answer the quick questionnaire. This will help prepare us for the first day of school.
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We are looking forward to our first day of school on Tuesday, September 8th. To comply with safety guidelines, please follow the arrival and dismissal procedures in this newsletter.



ALL students at Graden Elementary will receive a photo badge and lanyard which they will use each day to hold their face mask, access their lunch account, check out library books, access print jobs and to ride the bus. Students will be responsible for bringing their ID badge and lanyard to and from school each day. Students will wear badges all day. If a student loses their badge, there will be a $5.00 replacement fee. Your help with this process is very much appreciated.

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We are preparing to reopen our doors for fall, but understand that it will look much different than a "regular" return to school after summer break. The district created a Reopening Task Force that used input from families, students, and staff to create a plan called the Five Pillars of Prevention. These pillars are considered the five most important actions we can take to mitigate the spread of any virus:

  1. Hand Washing
  2. Social Distancing
  3. Cloth Face Coverings
  4. Cleaning and Disinfection
  5. Maintain Stable Cohort Groups

At Graden we have specific plans and procedures in place to ensure that our students are safe every time they enter the building.

  1. All students must wear a face mask on the bus and when the enter and exit the building.
  2. Face masks are required in ALL areas of the building EXCEPT for when students are eating, in PE or at Recess.
  3. Students will wash hands frequently and desks and tables will be sanitized multiple times throughout the day.
  4. Students will social distance while at lunch: two classrooms in each grade level will eat in the cafeteria while the other two eat in their individual classrooms. This rotation will switch weekly so that we are able to clean and sanitize accordingly.
  5. Students will stay with their stable classes at recess. Each class will be assigned a location on the playground to play and students will play in this location for the entire period. This will be a daily rotation so that students will have opportunities to play on all areas of the playground throughout the week.
  6. All classrooms will be cleaned and disinfected throughout the day.
  7. Plexiglass dividers will be provided for student tables to offer an additional layer of protection.

Our school staff is continuously preparing for the safety of the Graden community. There are guidelines set by the Park Hill School District to ensure that all schools have emergency plans in place. It is our goal at Graden Elementary that all students, parents, and staff feel safe. This school year we will conduct ten fire drills, one earthquake drill, two tornado drills, two intruder drills, and a secondary rally point evacuation drill. Our staff has been trained and will be discussing emergency procedures for all drills in the classrooms. We want you to know that each teacher will approach their class discussions with care and consideration of the students present.

To ensure the safety of your children and to comply with CDC guidelines, classroom visitors will not be allowed for the 2020-2021 school year or until safety precautions are lifted.

To access your child or to enter the school building, you will need to scan your state issued ID (driver’s license, military ID, government ID, state ID cards….). If students arrive late to school, they WILL need to be signed in by an adult with their school ID number NOT by name. Therefore, it is imperative that an adult park and escort the child into the office and assists with the check in procedure should they arrive late.

If you are bringing a forgotten lunch or homework, please bring it to the office instead of walking to your child’s class. We will be happy to call your child to the office to pick up the items. Staff members have been instructed to stop visitors who do not have an ID badge.

We have phones in all classrooms so that you can call the classroom directly. Please note that during the instructional day the phones will be set to go directly to voicemail. You can leave the teacher a message and they will return your call during one of their break times.

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  • Supervision of the students begins at 8:50 am. Please do not drop off students prior to 8:50 am
  • All students must wear a face mask to enter the building
  • Only students eating breakfast should report to the cafeteria at 8:50 am
  • Students are not allowed to roam the hallways before classes begin
  • Everyday car riders should be dropped off on the west side of the building
  • Students arriving after 9:10 am will be counted as tardy and will need to report to the office to receive an admit slip


In an effort to decrease the number of students riding on the bus, we encourage you to explore alternative transportation for the semester. While we understand that this is not possible for all students/families, for those who are able, we appreciate your partnership to ensure that there are as few students riding the bus as possible.

With that said, all Graden students are provided with bus transportation at no cost. At times, students may need to ride a bus different than the one they are normally scheduled to ride or get off at a different stop from their regular bus. In that case, you must request an alternate bus transportation form and meet with Nikki or Meghan in the office prior to the change in transportation. These requests are not intended for students going over to play at a friend’s house. Bus changes are designed for changes in daycare or for the safety of the student.

Any time your child will be going home a different way than usual, please send a note or an email to the teacher or give us a call. We would appreciate a phone call no later than 3:00 pm for transportation changes.

Bus riders will be dropped off and dismissed through the doors at the center of the building. Bus riders will be loaded and unloaded one bus at a time to ensure students are able to social distance as the enter and exit the building.


Everyday car riders will be dismissed to the west parking lot at 3:55 pm. Staff members will help the children into their cars. Parents will be given a placard that needs to be displayed in the front window of their vehicle so our staff can identify you. Please note that all car riders will use the same entrance and exit, on the west side of the building. In order to keep the flow of traffic moving, please pull up as far as you can before unloading. Our goal is to release your children safely and as quickly as possible.

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The Park Hill School District will offer before and after school child care at Graden Elementary. Arrangements can be made by calling the Adventure Club office at 359-4064. Students who attend Adventure Club should drive around to the back of the building and enter through the cafeteria doors.

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Things in the health room look quite different than they did a year ago. As we move forward to the start of the school year at Graden Elementary, I want to communicate the ever-changing guidelines for the health and safety of our Hornets. Specifically, what does it look like to visit the school nurse during a pandemic?

  • If your child should need medical care, a staff member will assess if it can be handled within the classroom. First aid kits will be available to every teacher for simple things like a lost tooth, small cut, dry skin, or old injuries. This will help decrease traffic in the health room and continue to keep kids in stable groups.
  • If your child needs further care, a staff member will attempt to contact the nurse for direction and guidance on sending a student to the health room.
  • All students will wait outside the health room until a temperature check is completed and it is safe to enter.
  • All students will be required to wear a mask in the building (except for while eating, in PE or at recess) This includes wearing masks in our classrooms, hallways, restrooms, and the health room.
  • As always, significant attention for injuries, asthma, bee stings, severe nose bleeds should be sent immediately.
  • In the case of a severe illness or fever, an isolation room is available until that student is picked up by a parent.
  • When a student presents with a mild symptom(s) at home, please do not send them to school. This year all precautions to prevent the spread of illnesses will be taken extremely seriously and unfortunately, will result in the child needing to be sent home.
  • Please be proactive in having a “Sick Child Plan” in place. This could simply be a designated family member to care for a sick child, when a parent is working.
  • All students and staff returning to school after an illness will need to meet the current criteria to come back. This may include some or all the following criteria: being symptom free, a negative COVID test, a quarantine period for at least 10 school days, or a physician’s clearance to return to school or work.
  • For acute or chronic conditions that require medication at school, please contact the nurse to drop off your child’s prescription or over the counter medications. Students should not carry medication to and from school, including cough drops.
  • If your child has a medical condition such as asthma, diabetes, seizures, or any other condition which may affect their day at school, please contact me.

For the most up-to-date detailed information on health and safety, please visit:

After six years at Graden Elementary, I am ready more than ever to start the school year and be the school nurse. I am looking forward to caring for all your children. As always, I am here to answer any of your questions.

Wishing You A Healthy &

Successful School Year,

Nurse Kris

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Meet our Board Members:

Jolayne Gorman, President

Jamie Fender, Vice President

Erica Scott, Secretary

Mary Carrier, Treasurer

Jessica Freels, Parliamentarian

What is a PTA?

A PTA is a local, self-governing unit. It promotes the Purposes and Mission of the Missouri and the National PTA as it plans its programs and activities to meet the needs of children and youth in the community. It is linked through its all-inclusive membership and by its acceptance of the Purposes and Mission of the National PTA and the Missouri PTA. It shares in the resources of the entire organization, such as national and state conventions, workshops, conferences, publicity and special leadership development conferences.

All of us have a great responsibility to our children. As a PTA, your group is part of a larger community working on behalf of children advocating for health, welfare, safety, education, and the protection of children at every level of government. PTA is recognized throughout many communities as the organization that continues to make a difference for children’s issues.

For more information visit: National PTA at or Missouri PTA at

Why Should I Join PTA?

PTA's mission is to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children. When you join Graden PTA you also become a member of Missouri PTA and National PTA - one of the largest child advocacy groups in the country. According to , “Over the past 120 years, PTA has helped solve some of the biggest issues facing America’s children. Many of the structures all children benefit from today—child labor laws, universal kindergarten, the National School Lunch Program and the juvenile justice system—were accomplished as a result of PTA

members’ advocacy.”

Missouri PTA is very active in advocating for children in the Missouri House and

Senate and when you join Graden PTA you join the more than 40,000 members

statewide to give strength and power to the voice of Missouri PTA.

Yes! We also love for you to volunteer your time, energy and dollars - and there will

be plenty of opportunity for all of those - but even if you feel you have nothing to give

you can still be part of this organization that supports every child.

PTA Meetings Meetings will be held on the second Monday of each month at 6:30pm via Zoom.

Watch your email for a link to participate in meetings!

20/21 Meeting Dates:

September 14th

October 12th

November 9th

December 14th

January 11th

February 8th

March 8th

April 12th



School Office (816) 359-4340

School Fax (816) 359-4349

Attendance Line (816) 359-4341

First Student Bus Company (816) 359-4560

Adventure Club (816) 359-5015

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