Clemens Crossing Cougar Comments

September 24, 2021 - Volume 43, Issue 6

Clemens Crossing Elementary School

Edward Cosentino, Principal

Sonia Hurd, Assistant Principal

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Important Upcoming Dates and Events

For a complete list of dates and events visit cces.hcpss.org/calendar

September

  • 27 - Chromebook Inventory Day for Grades 2 - 5


October

  • 13 - PTA Meeting, 7:00 p.m.
  • 15 - Schools Closed for Students
  • 21 - Flu Clinic
  • 29 - Pumpkin Run (Grades 3-5)
  • 29 - PTA Halloween Family Fun Night & Fall Festival


To subscribe to the CCES calendar on your smartphone, electronic device, or email system use the calendar ID sqspkjkbr6v6arss44js3n21eg@group.calendar.google.com.

From School Administration

The Howard County Public School System released the annual report highlighting Educational Partnerships throughout the county and here at Clemens Crossing.


We are extremely fortunate to have educational partnerships at Clemens Crossing Elementary School. Business partnerships benefit our school in many ways. Whether the business partnerships provide financial assistance, help enhance the curriculum, or allow students to learn basic life skills, everyone benefits from these collaborations.


In addition to the wide range of At-Large partners, our school benefits from a group of businesses and organizations directly. Please support the organizations that partner with our school.


We would like to thank the following businesses and organizations for their commitment to our school and students:

  • Smoothie King of Wilde Lake
  • Patient First
  • Chick-fil-a (Johns Hopkins Road)
  • Howard County Public Library
  • Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center
  • Hickory Ridge Village Association
  • Wendy Slaughter Team at Elevate Real Estate Brokerage
  • Horace Mann, Corporation
  • First National Bank


If you have any business or organization that would be a great partner with us, please reach out to me.


Mr. Cosentino

NEW INFORMATION

Meet Our Cougars - 4th Grade

Mrs. Lea Billinglsey - I got my undergrad degree from Virginia Tech and my master's from James Madison University. This will be my 11th year teaching in Howard County; I have worked in Clarksville Middle, Wilde Lake Middle, Bushy Park Elem., and now I'm loving my time at Clemens Crossing. This is my 7th year at Clemens and I plan on retiring here, but not for many, many more years. Why on Earth would I ever leave a community as wonderful as this one? ;-) I have 3 children, whom I love to tell stories about. :-) Both of my sons graduated from Atholton High School and due to redistricting, my daughter is slated to attend River Hill High School...but we couldn't be a "Hawk" family, so she attends Atholton High School and is a Sophomore this year. One of the things I love about living in the community where I teach is seeing my "kiddos" out and about in the neighborhood, so please always say hi if/when you see me.


Mr. Dale Allen - I am a third year teacher and have always wanted to be a Fourth Grade Teacher since I was in the 4th grade! I am from Columbia, Maryland, and I graduated from Hammond High School.
I am a huge fan of the Dallas Cowboys and Duke Basketball. I like to run, play basketball, and play video games on my free time.


Ms. Shelly Alban - Hi! I am Shelly Alban, and I am a 4th grade teacher at Clemens Crossing!
I am known as the cactus teacher! :) This is my 5th year, and I am lucky to have been in 4th grade the whole time! I completed my undergrad at UMBC and completed my graduate degree at Loyola. I love watching football! Go Ravens!


Mrs. Lorna Walls - This is my fifth year at Clemens Crossing and I have worked with 2nd-5th grade. I have three boys-my oldest just graduated from West Virginia University and I have a freshman and senior at Hammond High. I love to play golf, watch football, read and go to the beach.

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Chromebook Inventory - Grade 2 through 5

On Monday, September 27th, our school will be conducting a Chromebook inventory for grades 2-5. As it is every day, it is important that your child brings their fully charged device to school on that date so that it can be verified.

Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from September 15th to October 15th each year in the United States. This celebration honors numerous people from Spanish-speaking backgrounds who have come to the United States. We celebrate their cultures and traditions during this month. September 15th was chosen as the starting point for the celebration because it is the anniversary of the independence of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Also, Mexico celebrates its independence day on September 16th and Chile celebrates its independence day on September 18th.


Check out these websites for more information about Hispanic Heritage Month and how you can celebrate virtually and at home!

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An Important Note From the Physical Education Department

Please remember:

  • Appropriate athletic and supportive footwear is needed for safety, protection, and performance. Students should wear athletic shoes that can be tied or velcroed.
  • No attire on/around the neck (necklaces, lanyards, garments).
  • No dangling clothing (scarves or clothes that are baggy). Exceptions should be made for religious garments.
  • No jewelry, with the exception of stud earrings, medical bracelets, and fitness trackers, may be worn during physical activity.

Room Parents- Volunteers Needed

In a normal school year, a volunteer is obtained from every homeroom class to assist in communication between the teachers and the families about topics such as coordinating volunteers, getting items donated for in-school parties/activities, and coordinating teacher gifts for those families that are interested. So far this year there will be no in-class volunteering or activities, but we would like to start up the Room Parent program again to assist teachers in communicating with the families and coordinating the collection of items needed for the classroom. The position will be mostly done over email. If you are interested in volunteering to be a Room Parent for your child’s homeroom class, please email Rachael Kelly with your name, your child’s name, child’s grade, and homeroom teacher to rachael.christine@gmail.com

Dressing for the Weather

As the season starts to change to cooler weather, it is recommended for students to bring a sweatshirt or jacket to school. If students ride a school bus, the windows will be down to promote air circulation. All students will go outside for recess every day unless the temperature and wind chill combined is not less than 20 degrees Fahrenheit. Students who eat outside will follow the same "rule" for eating outside.

INFORMATION WORTH REPEATING

Headphones

Students will begin using their Chromebooks in Technology as well as other parts of their day. Please send in a pair of ear buds or headphones for your child to use. If you don't have any to send in, we have some for students to share.

Clemens Crossing Spirit Wear Store Is Open

This year’s online store will remain open throughout the entire school year and items will be shipped directly to your home!

In addition to promotional discounts that will occur periodically throughout the year, you can also save 10% by joining the 1st Place Spiritwear VIP Club.

You can browse the large selection and place your orders by visiting https://1stplacespiritwear.com/schools/MD/Columbia/Clemens+Crossing+Elementary+School

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State of Maryland Assessments for Fall 2021

As part of continued COVID-19 recovery efforts, the Maryland State Department of Education is conducting an early all student assessment. The Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP) is the overarching term used for all state assessments.


MSDE will administer assessments in the Early Fall for English Language Arts/Literacy (ELA/L), Mathematics, and Science (Maryland Integrated Science Assessment- MISA), as well as the Alternate Assessments in ELA, Mathematics and Science, and the Kindergarten Readiness Assessment (KRA). See the attached MSDE flyer for more information and a general testing schedule.


MCAP_EarlyFall_Overview.pdf

MCAP_EarlyFall_Overview_Spanish.pdf

GRADE LEVEL INSTRUCTIONAL PACKETS

The HCPSS Curricular Office created choice board packets for each grade level (kindergarten through fifth grade) to include content-specific instructional activities to help keep students intellectually active while at home when schools are closed for inclement weather, during quarantine, or other unexpected events.


The tasks that students complete at home will not be used for assessment purposes or counted as part of the students’ grades. Each instructional area included has a “choice board” of task options. During each day of quarantine or when we are closed for inclement weather, students should select and complete a variety of tasks from each instructional area “choice board”.


We wanted to ensure you had access to these instructional packets; however, in the event your child has to quarantine or we close for inclement weather, we will share your child's grade level packet with you:

CHROMEBOOK OBLIGATIONS

Beginning Monday, September 13, HCPSS will charge families for lost, stolen, or damaged devices per the following parameters.

  • Families will be charged for any devices that are lost, stolen or damaged while in their care.
  • If devices are lost, stolen or damaged during school hours and in the school building, school administrators will conduct an investigation to determine if the incident was the result of neglect on the part of the assigned student.

Please access more information HERE.

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Reporting Absences

Absence Notes

All students are required to have a note explaining why they were absent. Please send an email to your child's teacher as well as ccesabsence@hcpss.org.

From the Heath Room

Self-Screening

When should students stay home and what health checks should families conduct?


Returning to School

Please be sure to communicate directly with the CCES school nurse, Jessica_Schrumm@hcpss.org, to receive clearance prior to your child's return to the school building if they were sent home for COVID-like symptoms.

Dress Code

Please help your child come to school prepared for learning. HCPSS Policy 9210 provides information about the dress code in all Howard County Schools. Please review the policy here. Here are a couple of highlights:

  • Hats, hoods, and headwear are permitted as long as the face is visible, and it does not interfere with instruction.
  • Tank tops and tops with spaghetti straps are okay but....
  • Clothing that exposes or reveals the chest, midriff, pelvic/groin area, and buttocks is not permitted.

We encourage students to wear sneakers to school. They are the safest shoe for PE and for recess.

We are seeing an increase in spinner and popper toys being brought to school. These items should be kept at home or in your child's backpack during the school day.

Before and After School Activities

The PTA invites you to sign your child up for Before and After School activities at CCES. Just make sure you always send your child with a note for the homeroom teacher to remind them that your child stays after school for the activity.


None of the activities require any experience and all materials are included.

Register here: https://www.howardcountymd.gov/recreation-parks/resource/fall-activity-guide


  • Tennis (age 6-11) - Fridays starting 9/17
  • Soccer (age 8-10) - Mondays starting 9/20
  • Adventures in Science with Club SciKidz (Grades K-3) - Wednesdays after school starting 9/29
  • KidzArt (Grades K-5) - Thursdays after school starting 10/7
  • Chess with Silver Knights (Grades K-5, no experience required!) - Before School on Fridays at 8:10 am starting 10/8 (https://skchess.com/collections/howard-county-chess)
  • Learn Now Music, Violin or Drums (Grades K-5) - Mondays after school starting 10/11
  • Minecraft Modding with CyberTek Academy (Grades 1-3) - Mondays after school starting 11/8

Cub Scout Pack 618 - Updates

Clemens Crossing Cub Scout Pack 618 is open to all Girls and Boys Grades K - 5. We have a fun year planned with campouts, rocket launches, campfires, and more! Our next Pack meeting is Wednesday, October 6th at 6:30pm in the CCES Cafeteria. Perspective members are welcome to join us!

Please visit our website at www.pack618md.com or contact Cubmaster@pack618md.com.

Text Messages from CCES

As parents/guardians, you do not need to sign-up for CCES and HCPSS email. That is done through the registration process and can be updated by you through Family File. We monitor email communication delivery rates to ensure our families are not inadvertently blocked from our email system. We typically have 99-100% delivery rate for email through our SchoolMessenger email system.


Text Messages

To comply with wireless carrier requirements, parents/guardians must opt into receiving CCES and HCPSS text message alerts. Standard data fees and text messaging rates may apply based on your mobile plan. If you are unsure if you have already opted in, text the word “YES” to 67587 from the cell phone number on file in HCPSS Connect.

Please contact your child’s school if you have questions regarding your information in HCPSS Connect. We monitor this means of communication, too and notice that less than 50% have accurate cell phone numbers with this means of communication. We will send text message alerts for emergencies, but this is not our primary means of communication since the accuracy and delivery rate is poor.

Flu Clinic

HCPSS and CCES will be hosting a Flu Clinic on Thursday, October 21. More information will be coming out soon.

Food Services Menus at CCES

Each day, we provide free meals to students. If you want your child to have breakfast, they simply need to go to the cafeteria as soon as they arrive at school. They will have time to eat in the cafeteria before they go to their classroom.


Lunch is free to all students again this year. There is no pre-ordering or any need for adding funds to your MySchoolBucks.com account.


The breakfast and lunch menu website can be found on the main page of the CCES website under Food Services. The direct link is below.

CCES Breakfast and Lunch Menus

This will take you to the nutrislice website.

Free Student Meals for 2021-2022 School Year

Beginning Monday, August 30, breakfast and lunch will be provided at no cost to all students through the entire 2021-2022 school year, on days schools are open.

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Join the CCES PTA (Parent Teacher Association) – Family Membership

PTA membership will allow you to be active with the PTA and enjoy discounts with Maryland PTA partners. Most of all, your membership dues support the many programs we offer to the CCES community. While we encourage all of our families to be involved with PTA, membership does not obligate you to volunteer your time.


After trying many fundraisers over the years, the CCES PTA’s major fundraiser is a direct donation program (and later in the fall, a Read-a-thon). Rather than sell wrapping paper or other merchandise, we ask each family to contribute $50 in addition to their membership dues to support the programs we sponsor throughout the year.

To join the Clemens Crossing PTA, please fill out the form below and pay the membership dues (plus any donation you choose to give) through the PayPal link that follows. If you prefer to pay by check, please contact our membership chair, c/o president@clemenscrossingpta.org.
To report a problem with this form, contact web@clemenscrossingpta.org.