Roadrunner News

Riverside Elementary School

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September 2022

News from Mrs. Thode

Happy September. We officially enter the season of fall this month.

Great Start to the Year:

Thank you to all staff, students and families for a great start to the 2022-223 school year. We are so happy to have our Roadrunner Family back together. Students and teachers are working on building relationships, learning routines and learning new academic content.

Student Drop-Off:

Please do not have your child arrive too early for school. This is a safety concern, as I do not have adults to supervise your child if they arrive too early.

Children eating breakfast may arrive at 8:00 or after. Students enter through the gate at the playground, walk to the first set of doors, walk up the steps and enter into the breakfast area through the back hallway.

Children not eating breakfast should not arrive until 8:25. At that time, they will enter the gate onto the playground, do walk and talk around the outer edge of the playground and then line up on their line at 8:35 when the bell rings.

Students are marked tardy if they arrive after 8:40. Please have your child to school on time. Starting they day off on time and with their class is very important and can start their day on the right foot!

New Staff:

We have some new staff at Riverside this year. Please welcome the following people to our school:

Mrs. Popken is one of our new Special Education Foundations Teachers. She comes to us from Morningside Elementary. Welcome to Mrs. Popken!

Mrs.Medbourn is one of our new first grade teachers. She was formally Ms. Jaques from Irving Elementary and since then has gotten married and moved to our school. We want to wish her a very warm welcome to Riverside.

Mrs. Besh is our other new first grade teacher. Mrs. Besh student taught at Riverside last year and now she is officially a Roadrunner. Welcome, Mrs. Besh.

We have an additional art, music and PE teachers at Riverside as well. Mr. Dudgeon will be teaching art, Mr. Comstock will be teaching PE, and Ms. Healy will be teaching music. They will each be teaching 4 sections of students at Riverside. Mr. Nguyen, Mr. Wheeler, and Mrs. Nieuwendorp will still be our other art, PE and music teachers.

Mrs. Ayala is our new permanent substitute. Riverside is lucky enough to be one of four elementary schools to have a permanent substitute and we are lucky enough to have Mrs. Ayala! Welcome to you, Mrs. Ayala!

Mrs. Danna Henningfeld is new to our special education department as an instructional assistant working with Mrs. McCarthy and Mrs. Blatchford. We welcome you, Mrs. Henningfeld.

Mrs. Angelina Harmon is a new instructional assistant in our Alternative School. She comes to us from the banking world and has been a great addition to your staff. Welcome!

FAST Assessments:

Students in grades kindergarten through fifth grade have begun taking the Fast Reading Assessments. Students in kindergarten and first grade are taking the Early Reading Assessment. Students in grades second, third, fourth and fifth grade are taking the CMBR Reading Assessment which calculates how many correct words a student can read in one minute. All students in grade one through fifth also take the aReading assessment which is a test that looks at many different areas of reading. These assessments are given in the fall, winter and spring to track student progress. Teachers will go over the results of these assessments with you at fall conferences which will be help Monday, September 26 from 8am-8pm and Tuesday, September 27 from 3:40pm-6:20pm.


The Sioux City Community Schools will have students in grade Kindergarten through fifth use iReady Math as an additional math component in their math block. iReady is a computerized math program that students complete on a device at school. They start by taking a diagnostic test to determine their current math level. It will then take them through lessons at their level to increase their math knowledge. The diagnostic will be taken in the fall, winter and spring to track student progress. We look forward to using this fun, new program this year. Teachers will go over the results of the fall diagnostic with you at fall conferences which will be help Monday, September 26 from 8am-8pm and Tuesday, September 27 from 3:40pm-6:20pm.


Please call the office if you have any questions or concerns. We look forward to working with you all this school year.

Mrs. Thode

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Student Birthdays

We love celebrating students’ birthdays. To help us keep your child’s celebration safe for everyone, treats for birthdays should be store purchased, individually wrapped items. Your child’s teacher will assist with distributing birthday treats as needed.

School Safety

The safety of our students and staff is a top priority. Each year, our school has fire, tornado, and intruder drills to ensure our students and staff are prepared for potential emergencies.

If an emergency should occur, we will notify you through our Blackboard messaging system. The system will call every phone number listed for your child, providing details about the emergency and directions for you on where and when to pick up your child if necessary. For more information on our safety processes, visit our website at

Information on West High Sporting Events

  • Cost to get into any High School Event is $5.00. These students must be accompanied by a paying adult. (18 years or older)
  • All students kindergarten or younger may enter FREE to any event at West High School.
  • Activity Passes may be purchased at West High School. For more information on prices please go to the West High Facebook page.
  • All students are expected to remain seated during the before, during and after the game. If a student needs to use the restroom or get a snack, they must be accompanied by an adult to the restroom and concessions areas.
  • All students are expected to display positive behavior while attending the games. These positive behaviors are like those used in each school's PBIS programs.
  • We will invite our elementary friends onto the field or court before different games throughout the year. We will notify the elementary administrators as to which games these opportunities will occur.
  • Have fun, Be safe, Go Wolverines!
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Riverside School Counselor

Mrs. Melackrinos is our counselor that is at school every day. She has a practicum student this fall from the University of South Dakota. Her name is Libby Jervik. Ms. Jervik will be meeting with students with Mrs. Melackrinos in the their office, in classrooms and throughout the school building.We welcome Ms. Jervik to Riverside!

Here is a message from Ms. Jervik:

My name is Libby Jervik and I’ll be interning for the next three months at Riverside Elementary. Through my Masters of Social Work program at the University of South Dakota, I will be working alongside the Riverside school counselor Marusia Melackrinos as she guides me through her daily responsibilities and experiences working with elementary students. I’m excited for this experience as I’ve been very interested in becoming a school counselor/therapist ever since working with young girls at Girls Inc. I’m looking forward to this experience!

Upcoming Important Dates

Monday, September 5: Labor Day- No School

Monday, September 26: No School- Parent Teacher Conferences 8am to 8pm

Tuesday, September 27: Parent Teacher Conferences 3:40pm to 6:30pm

Friday, September 30: No School-Parent Teacher Conference Exchange Day

Tuesday, October 13: Picture Day

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Box Tops, Pop-tabs, and Hy-Vee Receipts

Riverside Elementary is collecting Box Tops in which you can scan right from home. We also accept Hy-Vee Receipts. We collect pop-tabs for the Ronald McDonald House. We have a place to collect all of these items in the office.Thank you!

Newsletter Translations:

Click the Translate Newsletter button to the right of this page to view this newsletter in over 100 languages.

Haga clic en el botón Translate Newsletter para ver una traducción automática de esta carta de noticias en más de 100 idiomas.

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Share the Next inspiring Story

Do you know a #SCCSD student or staff member with an inspiring story? We want to tell their story. Our “Believer. Achiever. Succeeder.” campaign highlights the remarkable people of our district. Stories of individuals are shared on our website and social media sites. To nominate a deserving individual, email the individual’s name, contact information, and a one-sentence description about why the individual deserves to be highlighted as part of the District’s campaign to

Need to Connect with Your Student?

You may reach your student during school hours by contacting the school office to leave a message for them. If your student needs to contact you during the school day, they may come to the school office.

Parent Advocates are Needed

Volunteers are needed to join the District’s Grassroots Advocacy Committee. As a volunteer, you will receive email updates about important legislative events that could impact public education and asked to contact our legislators with the information you receive. Tips are provided to help volunteers connect with legislators. Volunteer today and let your voice be heard!

Contact to volunteer.

Keep Your Contact Information Updated

The District and our school are continuously updating families on important school information, closings and cancellations, and other announcements. Information is shared through email, phone calls, and text. Make sure we can connect with you by keeping your contact information updated in Infinite Campus. If you need to change your contact information, please contact the school office.

Virtual Backpack is Coming to your Inbox

Discover community events, programs, and activities for your entire family through Virtual Backpack. From camps and sports leagues to family services and resources, the District’s Virtual Backpack e-newsletter is a one-stop resource for community information. The e-newsletter will be sent monthly to district families. Or, avoid waiting for the e-newsletter and visit the Virtual Backpack page on the District website today!
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We’re Hiring

Looking for a part-time or full-time career with flexibility? Instructional assistants, bus drivers, and food service staff are needed to join our amazing team! Extra incentives are available for many positions. Check out the District’s openings today!

Immunization & Screening Requirements

Make sure your child’s immunizations, dental screenings, and vision screenings are up-to-date. According to law, there are requirements for children entering kindergarten, third grade, seventh grade, ninth grade, and twelfth grade. Visit our website to learn more.

Paying School Fees is Quick and Easy Online

Do you have school fees that need to be paid? Visit and click on the “Parents” tab to pay your fees online. On the drop-down menu of the “Parents” tab, you can select “Pay Curriculum and Meal Fees.” Both links will take you to “My School Bucks” to complete the payment transaction. Payment for curriculum resource fees can be made under the “School Store” by selecting “Categories” and then “Curriculum Fees.” If you have any questions, please contact our school’s bookkeeper. Thank you.

Community Resources

Click here for the Sioux City Community School District Community Resource list that is a valuable directory of services for our families and community partners.

Non-Discrimination Statement

The Sioux City Community School District offers career and technical programs in the following areas: Business & Marketing, Family & Consumer Science, Health Science, and Industrial Arts, Technology, & PLTW.

The Sioux City Community School District is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information (for employment), national origin, religion, age (for employment), disability, socioeconomic status (for programs), marital status (for programs), or veteran status (for employment) in its educational programs and its employment practices. The District is required by Title IX and 34 CFR Part 106 not to discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs, activities, or employment.

Inquiries or grievances under Section 504 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act may be directed to Dr. Dora Jung, Director of Student Services & Equity Education/Title IX Coordinator at 627 4th Street, Sioux City, IA 51101, (712) 279-6075, Inquiries about the application of Title IX and its regulations to the District may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, the Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, or both. Please see District Board policies 103 and 504.4 for additional information on available grievance procedures.