February 2020

Principal Points from Mrs. Hill

I want to give a very special thank you to all of our volunteers and mentors at Cypress Woods! Your dedication to our students and staff is incredible and because of you we continue to help our Eagles achieve at higher levels. Thank you so much for going above and beyond to make every student and staff member feel special. Remember to sign in and out each time you volunteer. Currently, we have logged close to 5000 volunteer hours, have over 650 active volunteers, and 19 Lunch pals mentoring our Eagles!! Every minute counts towards meeting our goals for parent and community involvement for the 2019-2020 school year!

All year our Eagles have been working hard on applying the learning strategies they have been working on in reading, writing, math, science and social studies. Soon, our 3rd – 5th graders will have the opportunity to shine as they show off all that they have been learning. It is at this time of year that many parents ask me how they can help their children become better readers. They also want to know how to help their child meet grade level expectations. The following are skills needed to be successful on the FSA (Florida Standard Assessment):

  • Determine the meaning of words (vocabulary) by using is context clues (read through the sentence, skipping the unknown word and figuring out the word from the meaning of the sentence)
  • Determine the main idea or essential message of the passage.
  • Identify supporting details and facts (sentences or words that tell about the main idea.)
  • Retell (child tells you the story in his own words).
  • Recognize comparison and contrast (what is similar and what is different).
  • Recognize the difference between fact and opinion (fact- actually happened in the story; opinion- what person in the story thinks about something).

These strategies will help your child become better readers and thinkers. Research tells us the more children read, the better readers they will become.

I am looking forward to a great “second half of the 2019-2020 school year. Your child(ren) are our greatest resource and we will do whatever it takes for them to succeed!

Upcoming Dates & Events

2/6 - Class Group Photos

2/6 - Kindergarten Concert 6:30-7:00 PM

2/9 - Volunteer Cafe 9:00-11:00 AM

2/17 - District Wide Training Day - NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS

2/19 - SAC Meeting 3:15-4:15 PM

2/20 - SEM Celebration 5:00-7:00 PM

3/6 - Volunteer Cafe 9:00-11:00 AM

Notes from Our Guidance Counselor


Class picture day is coming! Memories are made every day and Leonard’s captures them! Class group photos will take place on Thursday, February 6th. There are two package options to choose from. Package 1 is an 8x10 class photo for $12 and Package 2 is an 8x10 class photo with protective covering for $15. For easy ordering and to pay by credit card families can order at with the access code G490742. Cash and checks are also excepted. If paying in cash please have the exact amount (No change will be given). Please make checks payable to Leonard’s. For all orders, students must complete the envelope attached to the form and turn it in to the photographer on picture day. Please write your online confirmation # in the space provided if you have purchased online. There is an $8 shipping and handling fee for pictures purchased after picture day so please be sure to order before or on picture day.

Notes from Our Music Program

The 1st grade, 2nd grade, Access, and Chorus music program will take place on Thursday, March 12th in the East Lake High School auditorium at 6:30 pm. All students participating should be dropped off in the chorus room at East Lake High School at 6:00 pm. There will be signs posted to direct the students. Parents should stay for the entirety of the program which should conclude by 7:45 pm. After the performance, the 1st grade, 2nd grade, and Access students should be picked up from the chorus room. The chorus students will perform last so they can meet their parent inside the auditorium.

The theme is Disney this year, so your child may wear a Disney costume (no masks or hats please), a dress or pants with a button down shirt. If your child is in 1st grade and has an outfit they could wear to represent traditional attire from another country please e-mail Mrs. Richter. She would like to feature some of our students in the song “It’s A Small World.”

There will be a few speaking parts within the show, and Mrs. Richter, the music teacher, will e-mail parents of students with a speaking part to ensure they practice at home and attend the performance.

If you have any questions, please e-mail Mrs. Richter at



Please remember that we hold PE class outdoors. Please check the weather and have the children dress accordingly. Proper footwear is always a must.

Focus on Achievement Night April 30

Please circle the date April 30 and plan to attend Focus on Achievement Night. There are many activities including classroom visits, SEM presentations, Art, Music, and PE.

Focus on Achievement Night is traditionally a huge night for PE. This spring will be no different. Children in Grades K through 5 will all be invited to participate in their own age-level PE performance on the court. More details will emerge as we get closer to the evening of April 30.


Homework Helpline

The Homework Helpline is a free service for all PCS students. The service is available 5 to 8 p.m., Monday-Thursday. Students can get help with math, science, social studies and language arts. Students who need practice reading can also call the helpline and spend 10 minutes reading to an adult. Families can reach the Homework Helpline at 727-547-7223.

Notes from Our School Nurse

Vision, hearing and BMI screenings are complete! All students who were screened brought home a notice with their results.

If your student did not pass their vision screen we request you follow up with an eye Dr. Please have the optometrist complete the lower portion of the notice and return to the school nurse.

Any students that did not pass their initial hearing screen will be rescreened by the nurse in the coming weeks. You will be notified by letter if additional follow up is necessary.

For those students whose BMI fell either above or below the recommended range you will receive a follow up phone call from the school nurse. Although we don’t ask for documentation related to BMI follow up with your Pediatrician, we always encourage you to discuss these findings with your child’s doctor. If your child’s BMI was within range but you still have questions, please feel free to reach out to Nurse Jennifer in the clinic or to bring these results to your child’s next Dr. visit.

On another note, February is Dental health month! This is a great time to talk to your kids about proper brushing technique, regular flossing and over all good oral hygiene! You should replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months so go ahead and get a nice new toothbrush to celebrate! Also, it’s a good time to get your child scheduled for a dental visit if you don’t already have one planned! Ideally, you should see a dentist twice a year for a check-up and cleaning!

If you need help locating a dentist or with oral care supplies, please reach out to Nurse Jennifer!

Notes From Kim Shipley, Family & Community Liaison

Greetings Volunteers!

As you may know, 2020 is a “Leap Year”, and there will be many opportunities for you to ‘Leap’ in and volunteer (please excuse the pun, I simply couldn’t resist). One of the most rewarding and beneficial ways to volunteer is to become a Mentor a/k/a Lunch Pal. Districtwide there is a great need for volunteers to participate in the Lunch Pals Program. Please take a moment to view this video featured on Bay News 9 recently: For Thirty (30) minutes a week, you can make a difference in a student's life! Listen, encourage, and be a friend to a student. Schedules are flexible, Lunch Pals meet during the student’s lunch time any day of the week. If you are willing and interested in becoming a Lunch Pal, please follow this link to sign up for an upcoming workshop or Webinar:

Our Volunteer Hours are very low for this time of the school year. Please remember to enter your volunteer hours. Remember, every hour counts such as, classroom assistant (at school or at home), field trips, lunch pals, lunch heroes, book fair/library, PTA meetings, SAC meetings, School Activities, etc. These hours are reported twice per year to Tallahassee and display the wonderful community involvement we have at Cypress Woods and they allows us to maintain our 5 Star Award. Hours can be entered in chunks, as the dates are not as important as recording the time itself. If you are unable to log your hours for any reason, please contact me and I will be happy to help you.

Do you know about Peachjar? Pinellas County Schools and Cypress Woods Elementary use Peachjar to send school information and approved flyers from community organizations digitally via email to the parent address in the FOCUS system. In addition to important school events and information, these flyers contain programs and events offered throughout your community that help your child succeed. After-school sports, local family events, free community programs, and college prep are just a handful of the resources found in our district’s Peachjar emails. You can also always find all school-approved digital flyers by clicking the Peachjar button on your school’s website homepage. Please make sure you have parent/guardian email addresses associated with your student’s record in FOCUS so you are not missing these important flyers. The primary contact can keep their email address updated via the Student Reservation System (SRS). Please visit the front office if you have more than one contact, as additional email addresses need to be added/updated at your child’s school. If you are not currently receiving flyers please check your spam folder. To ensure smooth delivery of Peachjar flyers, we suggest you add the following address to your email contacts. When you receive your first Peachjar flyer email, be sure to click “always display images.” If you have questions about Peachjar, please contact the front office or email Sheila Kane, the PCS District Coordinator at

Important Dates and Opportunities:

  • Thursday, February 6th – Class Photos 8:45 AM until finished (around noon/1 PM), 1-2 volunteers needed to assist the photographers, contact Kim Shipley to volunteer.
  • Thursday, February 6th – Kindergarten Music Program 6:30 PM
  • Friday, February 14th – Volunteer Café 9:00- 11:00 AM in Media Center - Join us and help complete various projects for our teachers. Coffee and snacks provided, sponsored by GradePower Learning. Any amount of time you have to offer is welcomed! – RSVP to appreciated, Thanks!
  • Monday, February 17th – No School
  • Thursday, February 20th – Camp SEM Showcase 5 – 7 PM
  • Friday, March 6th - Volunteer Café 9:00- 11:00 AM in Media Center - Join us and help complete various projects for our teachers. Coffee and snacks provided, sponsored by GradePower Learning. Any amount of time you have to offer is welcomed! – RSVP to appreciated, Thanks!

Thanks for reading…Hope you have a Fabulous February!

Kim Shipley
Family & Community Liaison

Cypress Woods Elementary

4900 Cypress Woods Blvd

Palm Harbor, FL 34685

727-538-7325 ext. 2045

Safety Reminders

The safety of our staff and students is a top priority. Here are a few safety reminders for all families.

· Our car circles are running efficiently at this point in the school year so we highly encourage parents to use the car circle during arrival and dismissal times to drop off and pick up your child. However, if it is essential for you to walk up during these times, please park in a parking spot and avoid parking along Cypress Woods Blvd. The sheriff’s office will be monitoring this area and enforcing no parking zones.

· NO students are to be dropped off in the parking lots or along the road. The only drop off and pick up locations are in our car circles.

· Please remember the inside lane (curb side) in the front car line always has the right of way when exiting the car line. This expedites movement of cars in the car circle.

· We understand the traffic light at Cypress Woods Blvd and East Lake sometimes does not stay green long enough to accommodate the volume of traffic during peak times of arrival and dismissal, but; we are asking parents to please adhere to speed limits when exiting the campus and on to East Lake Road. We have had reports of cars speeding down Cypress Woods Blvd just to make the light. We have many bikers and walkers each day and it’s important for everyone to be alert, avoid texting and being on your cell phone, and maintain the speed limit.

Thank you for your help in keeping our students and staff safe!


It’s time to order your yearbook. Don’t be left out. The deadline is Monday, April 6th!! Order now at:

$25 for a soft cover and $31.95 for a hard cover. All yearbooks include two free, customizable pages.

Save the Date for these upcoming CWE PTA Events:

Friday, March 6th: Parent Daughter Dance. New this year: Sweetheart Promenade and a new location, Ruth Eckerd Hall! A flyer will be sent home soon with all the details. Don’t wait to buy tickets, this event sells out every year.

Friday, April 3rd: Eagle Fest at CWE on the PE Fields. This is the PTA’s family friendly festival & fundraiser with bounce houses, face painting, carnival food, an awesome silent auction and more. Do you own a business? Would you like to donate to the silent auction? Please email the PTA for more details.

April 27-May 1: Staff Appreciation Week: the PTA Is busy planning a week of special recognition to thank our teachers and staff for all they do. Please note CWE is celebrating a week early so students can concentrate on testing in the month of May (national teacher/staff appreciation week is May 4-8.)

We love our Volunteers! If you are interested in helping at any PTA events please email us at:

Sign Up for Bus Updates!!