VES Eagle Express Newletter

SY2020-2021 SEPTEMBER 10, 2020 - Volume 14, Issue #4

Veterans Elementary

The building is closed due to the State Superintendent's decision regarding COVID-19.


They are available to assist you during this time with attendance, student records, new student registrations/withdrawals:

Send Student Attendance-related notifications directly to:

(i.e. student will be absent due to illness, appointments, religious, or travel obligations)


Para información y apoyo adicionales, por favor, llame al 410-313-1591.

欲知详情或想获得更多支持,请电 410-313-5920.

보다 자세한 문의와 지원을 원하시면, 410-313-1592 로 연락 주시기 바랍니다.

For all other language needs please contact Monica Ranta at 410-313-7102.


HCPSS News emails and text alerts keep families up-to-date on news and events, and delivers real-time notices of emergency closings and information. All HCPSS News subscriptions are generated from the information provided in Family File and have been automatically updated for the 2020-2021 school year.
Parents/guardians new to the system are automatically enrolled for email notification, however must opt in to receive text alerts.

Virtually Visit Veterans Elementary

Here Is your chance to take a virtual tour!

VES Student Virtual Visit Day


One week is complete. My very special thanks to each of you. Our students have been focused because of your efforts at home to provide a positive environment and setting your expectations. This is a tough job. I appreciate all of you who have called or emailed seeking help and have done so in a positive and patient manner. Further I appreciate the words of encouragement from so many of you. We have tried to give you as much help as we possibly can. Sometimes we can't always deliver what you are requesting. This does not mean we don't care about your children. Some of you are frustrated and we are as well. The county is always striving to make our system of delivery safer and more effective. One parent complained of too many emails, I agree. We are going to wait until Saturday morning to send out our Eagle Express. This is too much information to read with the emails from teachers through Canvas. We will include helpful links in the Eagle Express and we repeat these for the benefit of our larger than normal community so everyone has a chance for access. Our Eagle Express is delivered to over 2500 email addresses.

Lastly, I want to commend over 125 staff members who have stepped up over the last several weeks to help get this "virtual school" up and running. All of this while balancing the health needs of themselves and their families. Staff has been here to prep and deliver chromebooks, help with chromebook access, deliver packets, yearbooks, register students, plan & deliver information sessions and so much more.

Every one of these staff members are committed to helping your children to grow and thrive. While we certainly want everyone to be safe and healthy, we dream about the day of a return to normalcy. Quite frankly, we miss your children...our students. As we continue this adventure, we are on the same team and we are in this together. Thank you to everyone who makes this work.

Robert C. Bruce
Principal- Veterans Elementary School
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22 - Back to School Night: Grades K thru 1, 6:00p.m. - 7:00p.m.

23 - Back to School Night: Grades 2 thru 3, 6:00p.m. - 7:00p.m.

24 - Back to School Night: Grades 4 thru 5, 6:00p.m. - 7:00p.m.

28- No School - Yom Kippur


16 - No School for Student - HCPSS Professional Work Day

School Calendar
Make sure you know important dates on the 2020-2021 academic calendar. There are no printed calendars; you may view the online calendar and/or download printable calendar PDFs on our website. The calendar is subject to change.


2020-2021 HCPSS Back to School Nights will be held via
Google Meet. All dates are subject to change.
Parents/guardians will receive details and information from their child's school. Please check with your child's school prior to the event to verify the event date and time.

Veterans Elementary:
  • September 22 - Grades K-1, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
  • September 23 - Grades 2-3, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
  • September 24 - Grades 4-5, 6:00-7:00 p.m.


Student Schedules

All parents/guardians can log in to HCPSS Connect to view teachers and schedules beginning Saturday, September 5.

Information on Related Arts

Information is forthcoming. Please access synchronous Related Arts courses from the

Canvas Calendar.

We realize there may be some confusion with regards to the Related Arts schedule of synchronous and asynchronous assignments. During the first synchronous session for each Related Arts class (i.e. PE, Music, Art, Media, Technology) your child’s Related Arts teacher will communicate with the students how to best navigate the course and identify where students will obtain weekly assignments and lessons.

Students will not be responsible or required to complete asynchronous assignments for any Related Arts until they have their first synchronous class with their Related Arts teacher.
You can find the synchronous Related Arts Class Schedule on the Canvas Calendar along with the link to access the Google Meet live synchronous session.

It’s time for Band & Strings Sign-Up!

Band & Strings is back this year and we can’t wait to have you in our virtual classes!
To explore what instruments you can play this year and for class information, visit You’ll find cool videos and information about each instrument just like when we host our recruitment show every September.

Please note: if you participated last year and would like to continue this year, you must still sign-up using our Google form located on the website.
Deadline to register is September 18th and classes start September 21st, so sign up today!

“See” you soon!

- Mr. Viets, Mrs. McLagan & Mrs. Jacobs


FAQ - Will 2020-2021 virtual instruction synchronous (live) classes be recorded?: This updated FAQ helps families understand why HCPSS does not allow recordings of live instruction.

Please take some time to go through the Canvas Orientation with your child. Included is a list of topics that will help you use Canvas in their classes. Click on each topic to learn how to use that feature in Canvas. When you are finished, you will have mastered the Canvas basics and be ready to navigate smoothly within their courses. Remember you can always refer back to this guide throughout the school year.

Student Canvas Account Self-Service

Students now have the ability to reset their passwords and manage their accounts independent of Teachers and Staff.

Student Technology Devices

All elementary school students will be provided with a Chromebook. All families may indicate a need for internet access. Full details online.

Virtual Instruction Responsibilities, Expectations and Best Practices

A successful virtual instruction program for the 2020-2021 school year requires collaboration and shared responsibilities among students, educators and families.


As we begin a new school year with all students having an HCPSS issued Chromebook for use at home, we know that our children may encounter some technical difficulties. Some of those difficulties may be logging in, forgetting their username, having trouble accessing assignments in Canvas, or other questions that might arise during this semester. We are here to help! We have a school based technology support team to assist with matters like this when your child’s teacher is unable to provide assistance. Please use this link to complete a form that will go to our team. Once the request is submitted, one of our team members will reach out to you to provide assistance. Please note: our team will not be able to provide technical support to devices other than the HCPSS county issued Chromebook. If you have not yet picked up your HCPSS Chromebook from the school, you can still do so.

Please find below suggestions on how to proceed if your student experiences an issue:
For common issues
Account Self-Service allows families to request a password reset or student’s username
Canvas Orientation – tips for navigating Canvas Chromebook Orientation - a tutorial to assist with using your Chromebook
Google Meet resources

Remember, students must log in with HCPSS credentials in order to access Canvas and Google Meet sessions.

We look forward to working with you this year.

Virtual Instruction Student Tip Sheet: A downloadable tip sheet was created for students and parents or guardians to use for quick access to login information, course meeting codes, and instructions for logging in to platforms. Please share this wonderful resource with your school community and students along with this helpful note from the Instructional Technology Office: Students - Don’t forget to check your “to-do” list area in Canvas for new announcements, Google events and assignments that are due. Once a task/event is complete, be sure to click on the “x” next to the event so that your upcoming assignments/events will appear at the top of the list.


Hello, students! Welcome back to school! We are so excited to have you back!!
If you are new to VES, know that we are so happy to have you. We will be hosting new student welcome lunch bunches to introduce ourselves, get to know each of you, and play a few games. If you are new to VES and you want to come, log into google meet using the code VESNEWSTUDENTLUNCH at 12:00 p.m. on the following dates:

First Grade - Tuesday, September 15

Second Grade - Wednesday, September 16

Third Grade - Friday, September 18

Fourth Grade - Tuesday, September 22

Fifth Grade - Friday, September 25

Supply List

ES_Supply_List_2020 (2) (1).pdf

The Howard County School System is acutely aware of how the pandemic has affected family budgets. It has reviewed school supply lists and released one general supply list for families which I am attaching to this special announcement . The number of items have been reduced to the most needed items based on knowledge of curriculum to be covered. I hope you find this helpful.


Send all attendance notes directly to:

Each HCPSS school now has an attendance email for parents to send notes pertaining to their child missing any time out from school, even during virtual learning (ie. sick, appointment, travel, etc.)

During Virtual Learning, attendance will be taken daily by teachers for

Homeroom (.5 day) and Math (.5 day) to account for a full school day.

Please take the time to review the HCPSS ATTENDANCE POLICY


Changes to the grading policy will be discussed at the September 10 Board of Education Meeting. More information will be provided as it becomes available.

HCPSSConnect Family File Update Directions:

Update your Family File in HCPSSConnect to view Teacher Assignments when they are available!!!

Looking forward to a great year. It will be what we make it !!!

Emergency Card Procedures with Family File
HCPSS utilizes Family File for parents/guardians to complete emergency information. Regardless of virtual or in-person learning, parents/guardians must verify and/or update information for each child. Parents/guardians can complete Family File by logging in to
HCPSS Connect, selecting the More Options tab on the left, and then selecting Family File in the center column. Family File guides are available online.


MOVING into VES: FILLABLE_VES RequestforRecords.pdf
We can assist you to obtain student records from their prior school by filling out the

Request for Records form and emailing it back to the registrar.

MOVING AWAY/ Withdraw from VES: FILLABE_Withdrawal form

Please initiate the process by filling out the HCPSS Withdrawal Form and email it back to the registrar.

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School Messengers Worth Repeating...

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Welcome back to school from your VES PTA

Welcome back to school from your VES PTA. You’ll be hearing more from us in the upcoming weeks, but here are a few important bits of information to help all of us get the school year started.


One of the best ways to help our PTA is to become a member! Please consider supporting the PTA that does so much to support your child’s experience here at Veterans Elementary. Becoming a member (just $10 per adult) ensures we are an official PTA organization within the national structure and helps support all that we do here at the school.

The membership process is a bit different this year. Please visit to purchase your membership and download your PTA membership cards. Cost is $10 per person.

Our goal is to get 300 PTA members at VES this year - please help us get there!


Due to the pandemic, the PTA was unable to hold its normal election at the end of the last school year. We have now been approved to host an outdoor general meeting in order to facilitate the elections process. We will be announcing this date soon.

The Nominating Committee has put forth the following ballot of candidates as officers for the 2020-2021 School Year:

President - Cara Adornetto
Secretary - Nicole Tsang
Treasurer - Tomi Adebo
1st VP - Heidi Potter
2nd VP - Kimberly Davis
Delegate - Ana Maldonado
Delegate - Open

You may still request to be on the ballot and nominations can be taken from the floor on the night of elections. Please email if you are interested.

FARMS Applications: Applications for the Free and Reduced Meals program for the school year 2020-2021 are available online in multiple languages and paper copies are available at all meal sites, effective 9/8/20. Please use this document for strategies for increasing FARMs awareness and participation.

Grab-and-Go School Meals

The food services program during the first semester of the 2020-2021 school year will consist of Grab-and-Go breakfasts and lunches served Monday through Friday from 8:00a.m.– 9:00a.m. and 10:45a.m.–12:45p.m. beginning Tuesday, September 8.

Parents of students who qualify for Free and Reduced-Price Meals (FARMs) must submit a new application every school year. View program details and learn how to apply.


Cub Scout Pack 305 Virtual Open House

Cub Scout Pack 305 invites all families interested in scouting to our Virtual Fall Open House on Sunday, September 20, from 7-8 PM.

This is an informative meeting for parents/guardians of Kindergarten-5th grade youth to learn about all aspects of the Pack 305 scouting program. If you’d like to join, please fill out the simple form located at: and we will send you the zoom link invitation the morning of the meeting.

Please contact Heidi Potter at if you have any questions.

SuperSquads Cheerleading

After school cheerleading (virtual while schools are closed)
starts soon for the Fall Semester! Contact, or 410-796-2244 to join!

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COMCAST Internet

To help connect more families to the internet at home, Comcast is offering two months of free internet to new Internet Essential customers. more information

2020 Census

Several HCPSS programs rely on funding based on accurate census information. For this and several other reasons, all families are encouraged to participate in the 2020 census, which may be completed online. Learn more.

Howard County Library Resources

  • Created While Isolated: Students ages 13 and up and adults are invited to share photographs, art, music, creative writing, and personal stories from this unprecedented time in acollaborative creativity journal.
  • TumbleMath is a fun and engaging way to learn math concepts through stories. Students can access this and many other learning resources with their A+ student accounts by selecting HC Library.

HCPSS COUNSELING SERVICES for Students, Families, and Staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has made this an especially stressful time for many, especially those already impacted by mental health concerns. Find information about local and online resources for counseling and mental health supports for you and your family on our website.

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THE REGISTRATION PROCESS for the SY2020-2021 BEGINS ONLINE for all new students Grades PK thru 5. Please use the following link:

*Once a new registration is filled out online, a school registrar will be in contact with you.

Our teacher secretaries/registrars are working remotely and available for questions:

*Parents/guardians who have already registered online, please remember that registration is not complete until a registrar reviews/verifies uploaded required documents.
A registrar will coordinate a virtual GoogleMeeting with the parent/guardian to complete the enrollment.