Clemens Crossing Cougar Comments

December 4, 2020 - Volume 42, Issue 16

Clemens Crossing Elementary School

We're Here to Help You!

Edward Cosentino, Principal

Sonia Hurd, Assistant Principal

Stacey Wells, Principal's Secretary

Jennifer Aballo, Teachers' Secretary

Dulce Boyer, Teachers' Secretary

Important Upcoming Dates and Events

For a complete list of dates and events visit


  • 7 - Inclusive School Week
  • 9 - PTA Restaurant Day - Chick-fil-A, Johns Hopkins Road
  • 18 - PTA Virtual Bingo (new date)
  • 24 thru 31 - Schools Closed: Winter Break (24 & 25 - state mandated holiday)


  • 1 Schools and Offices Closed: New Year's Day (state mandated holiday)


I hope everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving break with their family. During this time of year,

we often reflect on what we are grateful for in our lives. I have not shared this recently, but I am so grateful to be part of such an amazing, welcoming school community. Your kindness and acceptance, coupled with your support and love for Clemens Crossing Elementary School, make me one lucky principal. That was clearly illustrated during Thanksgiving week when over 150 Thankful Shout-Outs were filled out for our incredible teachers and staff. It meant so much to hear directly from our community in that manner. The most frequently used words are highlighted in the word cloud below. Truly, thankful was an understatement.

December is usually a magical month filled with hope, love, and traditions. I know that for many of us those traditions that we hold in our hearts might look a little different this year. However,
I am hopeful that we will see a brighter future ahead of us filled with health and promise! I look forward to the day when we can safely bring back our students to our beloved school building. When that day comes, things will surely look different. However, with continued collaboration, planning, and preparation we can make this the best experience possible for our students.

Please know you can always reach out to your child's teacher or me for anything you need or any questions you might have along the way. I can be reached via email at or by phone at 410-313-6866.

Mr. Cosentino, Principal

Big picture


Library Media Center books are available for checkout!

Students are welcome to borrow up to 3 books at a time from the Library Media Center.
Mrs. Seamonson and Mrs. Marshall fill orders on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings. Books are available on the pickup cart outside the school's front doors each school day from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. Families will be emailed when your books are placed outside.

Students in Grades 3 - 5 can place their requests in the PAC website at:

Students in Grades K - 2 can also use the primary PAC at: and they can place their requests at

Please return Media books within 2 weeks to the blue plastic bin outside the school's front doors.

Big picture

CCES PTA Virtual Bingo Night

The CCES PTA is excited to bring you

Friday December 18

Log on through Google Meet for a fantastic evening of family fun - absolutely FREE!
Advance registration is required. Please fill out this brief form to sign up:

Questions? Please email Bingo Coordinator Alex Kent at

Big picture

Inclusive Schools Week

Inclusive Schools Week is an annual international event celebrated the first full week in December. It’s a time designated to acknowledge the hard work and commitment of teachers, administrators, students, and parents in making their schools more inclusive and, thereby, significantly contributing to the development of a more inclusive society.

The Week offers an opportunity for educators, students, and parents to engage in dialogue about inclusive education and to plan for the future. Students will have lessons this week geared towards highlighting Inclusive Schools Week. This is also a time when we, at Clemens Crossing, can highlight our journey toward providing a quality education to all children regardless of differences in ability, gender, ethnicity, language, and health status.

Since the inaugural celebration in 2001, Inclusive Schools Week has been celebrated by tens of thousands of students, families, and educators in schools and communities in every state in the United States as well as communities across the globe.

Pandemic Game #6

Pandemic Game #6: For this game, we raffled off 3 Thanksgiving themed baskets. To win, the staff had to guess the TOTAL number of years that all of the current staff has been working at CCES. Our awesome staff has been working at CCES for 580 years combined!
Our 3 winners were Ms. Gelinas, Ms. Yung, and Ms. Chandler.

As an extra special thank you to our amazing staff, the PTA has put together goody bags filled with treats for all of our staff members, and we gave them out before the Thanksgiving break.

Pandemic Game #7

For the 7th Pandemic Game, we raffled off 9 items donated by our awesome families and one awesome staff member! The prizes for this game were three “Scouting Gift Bags” (including one bag of Boy Scout Carmel Popcorn and 4 boxes of Girls Scout Cookies), three $25 Amazon Gift Cards, and three Gift cards for one free set of Color Street Nail Strips by Ms. Schrumm. We had many staff members enter the raffle, and here are our 9 winners chosen at random:

  • Scouting Gift Bags: Ms. McKim, Ms. Roda, and Ms. Goode
  • $25 Amazon Gift Cards: Ms. Lyerly, Ms. Hutt, and Ms. Cohen
  • Color Street Nail Strips: Ms. Walls, Ms. Nelson, and Ms. Hodge

Thank You to all the families that have donated items for our staff! We have three more Pandemic Games planned for our staff between now and the end of the first semester. Anyone wishing to donate items can contact us at

Experience Howard Community College Kids on Campus!

HCC’s well-known Kids on Campus program provides enrichment education for youth ages 8 to 17. Topics range from Art from Around the World, Roblox, Nature Explorers, World Languages, and SAT Prep. HCC Kids on Campus has something for every interest! Registration is now open for Winter and Spring courses, and several scholarships are available. For additional information, please click here and plan to attend the information session on Wednesday, December 9th at 6:30 pm (

Big picture

Volunteens Social Justice Art Contest

Volunteens 1st Annual, Social Justice Art Competition

This competition is open to all elementary school, middle school, and high school students.

The theme is broad; simply asking students to “interpret social justice in their own way.”

Cash prizes are offered to those who place. **Rankings are separated by age group, so all have an equal chance of winning.

The proceeds can also be donated towards a charity of the recipient’s choosing.

  • 1st- $150,
  • 2nd- $100,
  • 3rd- $75

The deadline for submissions is 12/15, and results will be announced on 12/30.

In today’s socially tense environment, this competition poses as a means for learning, and therefore a catalyst for change.

The goal of this non-profit is to teach students about social justice through art, and for this reason.

Please note: Submissions need to be emailed to

If you have questions, Mr. Schmitt is the CCES contact for this award.

Big picture

Chick-fil-a Day

Wednesday, Dec. 9th, 6-10pm

10975 Johns Hopkins Road

Laurel, MD



2020-2021 Inclement Weather Protocols

Email sent from the HCPSS on December 3, 2020

The implementation of virtual instruction has changed the way the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) will manage inclement weather days. In prior years, inclement weather delays and closings have resulted in scheduling challenges and instructional disruption for students, staff and families, as well as unpredictability about when the school year will end.

For the 2020-2021 school year, while in virtual, small groups or hybrid instructional models, HCPSS will transition to fully virtual instruction during inclement weather days. This will allow the school system to make a decision earlier when inclement weather is expected and provide families with earlier notice so they may make necessary adjustments. The Maryland State Department of Education has approved the inclusion of virtual instruction days among the 180 minimum required academic days each school year, so these days will not have to be made up at the end of the school year.

Four possible inclement weather decisions are provided below. For the 2020-2021 school year, there will no longer be an option for a 2-hour delay. Instead, HCPSS will transition to virtual learning on those days.

On inclement weather days that virtual instruction is implemented, the same virtual schedule will be implemented that has been in place for the entirety of the 2020-2021 school year. Students will be expected to log in to each of their classes and attendance will be recorded. To provide consistency and remain aligned to current virtual instructional schedules, instruction will be synchronous on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday and asynchronous on Wednesday.

It is important to note that the primary purpose for closing schools is for safety. Canceling all instruction on inclement weather days would require make-up days to be used in the summer. By being able to use virtual instruction during inclement weather days, HCPSS will be able to follow the academic calendar as scheduled. This will allow staff better flexibility to implement summer interventions without disruption for students requiring the additional academic support.

The full list of weather status codes are available on the HCPSS Status website.


Virtual Instruction: Buildings Open

This option will include minor weather events that are deemed not significant enough to close the building for staff. This option allows HCPSS to make the decision and provide notification to families and staff much earlier without having to make up a day of instruction at the end of the school year.

Virtual Instruction: Buildings Closed

This option will include weather events that may have closed school in years past.
Similar to the Virtual Instruction; Buildings Open option, all instruction will be delivered virtually resulting in an approved academic day.

  • Instruction: Virtual for all students
  • Meal Service: Canceled
  • Buildings: Closed
  • Athletics: Canceled

No Instruction: Buildings Closed

This option mirrors a typical inclement weather day when schools and offices are closed.
This decision may be implemented at times of widespread internet or power outages when virtual instruction is not feasible. These days would potentially need to be made up at the end of the school year.

  • Instruction: Canceled
  • Meal Service: Canceled
  • Buildings: Closed
  • Athletics: Canceled

Early Dismissal

This option would be implemented when an unexpected weather event occurs while students may be in school buildings (small groups, hybrid, etc.). During an early closing, instruction would end early (90-minutes or 3-hours) for all students, including those learning virtually.

  • Instruction: Virtual and in-person ends early
  • Meal Service: May end early
  • Buildings: Closed early for all
  • Athletics: Canceled

Virtual Learning Continues Through Third Quarter

During its work session on Monday, November 16, 2020, the Howard County Board of Education voted to continue the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) in a virtual instructional model through the Third Academic Quarter, which ends April 14, 2021.

Virtual Learning Reminders

As we get into the colder months and holiday season, it is important to keep persisting with virtual learning. Please work on maintaining a good routine schedule and structure at home. This includes a work/study space that is conducive to learning. Students are making great strides and progress. Let's Keep this momentum going!

Chromebook Care!

Our Chromebooks are stirdy devices, but you still need to take care of those devices. Here are some important reminders to care for your Chromebook:

  1. Make sure to hold and lift your Chromebook by the base and not by the screen. The screen is very fragile and can be easily cracked or scratched. Close your Chromebook before you carry it.
  2. Keep food and drinks away from your Chromebook and make certain your hands are clean when using the device.
  3. Keep your Chromebook charged so that it will be ready for use each day.
  4. Keep your Chromebook on a flat surface like a table or desk. If you sit on the floor when you’re using it, when you are finished put it on a table or desk to prevent someone from stepping on it.
  5. Be careful when removing the power cord from your Chromebook or wall outlet. Pulling on the cable can cause damage to the charging cable, or can cause the charging cable to break off in your Chromebook.
  6. Don't leave your Chromebook in a car. Temperature can affect its use and the chance of theft is greater when it is left in a car.
  7. Avoid placing heavy materials, such as books, on top of your Chromebook. Chromebook screens are fragile and not meant to hold any weight.
  8. To clean the screen or your Chromebook, use a dry, soft, lint-free cloth. Keep the keyboard clear and make certain nothing is on the keyboard when you close it. Pencils and other small items can damage the display screen if the laptop is shut on them.

Holiday Help

We frequently receive donations and opportunities to help families in need during the holiday season. If you would like to request assistance for your immediate family, please contact our school counselor, Mrs. Rogers. We cannot make any guarantees, but we will do our best to utilize resources in a way that best supports our families.
Big picture
Big picture

Community News and Programs

Please find the link to the Howard County Public School System's Community News and Programs page.

In alignment with Howard County Board of Education Policy 10010, Distribution and Display of Materials and Announcements, the following announcements have been approved by the Public Information Office for distribution. Please visit Distributing Community Information through the School System or contact the Public Information Office at 410-313-6682 if you have any questions.

The below community notices are neither sponsored nor endorsed by the Howard County Public School System.