McKinley Elementary Newsletter

October 2021


Oct 5 -PTC Meeting 6:30-8:00 PM under the covered area

Oct 7 - Fun Run! Yes, this is a THURSDAY!

Oct 8 - NO SCHOOL, State Inservice Day

Oct 12 - Take Out Tuesday, Panera Bread 4:00PM-8:00PM

Oct 20, 21- NO SCHOOL, Confernce Days 7:30AM-7:30PM

Oct 22 - NO SCHOOL

Nov 2 - PTC Meeting 6:30-8:00 PM under the covered area

Nov 9 - Take Out Tuesday

Nov 10 - Picture Retake Day

Nov 11- NO SCHOOL, Veterans Day Holiday

Nov 24-26 - NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving Holiday

*Every Wednesday is a 1 hour late start at 8:50 AM - the other days 7:50 AM

Be On Time Please

We have had 10-15% of students tardy most days. Several students are just minutes away from being on time. Please help your student make it to school and be ready for class by 7:50 AM (8:50 on Wed). If your child does arrive after the bell, please have them push the button at the front door and we will check them in.

EVERY Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday

7:30 Breakfast available in cafeteria (free to all students)

7:35 Doors Open for all students

7:50 School Starts- tardy bell rings

2:20 School Ends

EVERY Wednesday

8:30 Breakfast available in cafeteria (free to all students)

8:35 Doors Open for all students

8:50 School Starts- tardy bell rings

2:20 School Ends

Counselor's Corner - Mrs. Tanikawa

I wanted to take a moment to talk about school anxiety, why it’s so common this year and what we all can do as a team, to support your children.

Young students (preschool and kindergarten) often struggle to detach from their caregivers at the beginning of the school year. But given all the quality time at home students have been experiencing due to COVID, we expect that separation anxiety will be heightened this year, and it already has.

Setting the stage for school success starts before the school year does. Take the time to walk your child through what getting ready for a school day will look like ahead of time. This is a great way to prepare your child for success. Practice beforehand as if you were actually getting ready to go to school! They will LOVE roleplaying with you. Pretend to go through the entire routine starting with the night before.

To read more on school anxiety, scoll to the end of the newsletter.

Safety First, Fashion Second! PE is ACTIVE

Wearing the correct shoes can positively impact a student’s safety and success during PE activities. Shoes like boots, sandals, slips-ons, even dress shoes can get in the way with activities like running, jumping, and stopping. It is important for students to wear proper footwear (tennis shoes, running shoes, sneakers) in order to participate safely in class activities. Your support for student safety and active participation is appreciated.

BoxTops for Education

Check out their website for the new, non-clipping way to collect BoxTops. Thank you for supporting McKinley!

Picture Retake Day is November 10th

If you missed the September 28th Picture Day or need a retake, our photographer will be back on November 10th. If you are having retakes, please send the original photos and packet to school on this day. Images will also be available online to order direct from the photographer. Go to for details.


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Yay, McKinley PTC is hosting the annual Fun Run this year! This is a FUN opportunity to volunteer. Important requirement for ALL volunteers: Make sure you have your background check up to date. They are good for 5 years. Click here to submit your backgroud check right now, today. These can take up to 3 or 4 weeks to process so please fill yours out ASAP.

There will be limited volunteer opportunites available this year. Field trips will be one of those volunteer opportunties. In order to be ready to volunteer for that in October, you need to submit your background check today.

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Color Run Details

Students and Parents,

On behalf of the McKinley Elementary Parent Teacher Club: Welcome back to school!

We hope you are enjoying the school year so far and look forward to providing

additional education opportunities and fun activities during the rest of the year.

Our first fundraiser, The Color Run is coming up on October 7th, Thursday. It is an event

that provides extra resources for McKinley. We are enthusiastically anticipating the

students having fun running around the park and parents participating in supporting our


In a few days, students will receive an envelope and pledge sheet to take home. You

will have the option to ask people in your lives to sponsor you, offering a pledge per lap

or a flat pledge for participation. Students will be recognized for their running and

pledging achievements.

Record the information on the pledge sheet prior to the Color Run. After the event,

collect your pledges from your sponsors and return to your teacher by October 18th. It is

our goal to raise $10,000 this year. The students will receive prizes for the entire student

body if they reach certain levels of overall fundraising. The $10,000 reward is TBD as

we are restricted this year on what sorts of activities can be held.

Thank you for making McKinley Elementary a special place. If you would like to

volunteer for this event, please email . Be aware that a

background check must be completed before you are allowed to participate: .

We will need many volunteers to make this Color Run happen. Be on the lookout for a

SignUp Genius link to be shared soon to sign up for shifts for that Thursday.


The Parent Teacher Club of McKinley Elementary.

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Year at a Glance

  • 1st Tuesday of most months - PTC Meeting 6:30 PM-8:00 PM
  • 2nd Tuesday of most months - Take Out Tuesday - fundraisers at local resturants
  • October 7th - Fun Run
  • November 29- Dec 2 Book Fair
  • November thru February OBOB (Oregon Battle of the Books)
  • February 28-March 4 - Read-A-Thon
  • March - Spaghetti Feed (if restrictions allow)
  • June 3 - School Carnival

Rainy Day Recess

Please send your child to school with a hooded jacket or coat on days when there may be light rain. Whenever possible we will recess outdoors this year to maintain a safe distance between students of other classrooms. When the weather is severe we will move classrooms into various areas of the building for indoor play.


Conference scheduling information will be sent home with your child soon. Conferences will be available virtually and in person.

October 20-22

· October 20 – NO SCHOOL – Elementary Conferences 7:30 am-7:30 pm

· October 21 – NO SCHOOL – Elementary Conferences 7:30 am-7:30 pm

· October 22 – NO SCHOOL


We are excited to introduce ParentSquare, a new two-way communication platform that will streamline and improve communication with families and staff. It has the functions of both Remind and SchoolMessenger and will eventually replace both platforms.

To sign up go to

It is very important that parents keep their contact information current.

Be sure to let your school office know if you have a new address, email or phone number.

The parent or guardian marked as the primary contact in the student information system will receive automated communication.

Stay Home If......... & COVID Hotline

If your child is not feeling well, please keep them home and call the office. With added procedures for COVID, here is the district’s current policy for sick students. If a child has any of these symptoms listed below, please contact the school office and your child will need to stay home and quarantine until they are symptom free for 24 hours AND after a COVID-19 test is negative OR quarantine for 10 days if not tested. If a student comes to school with any of these symptoms, students are brought to the office and parents are called to pick students up.

  • temp of 100.4 or higher
  • new cough
  • difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • loss of taste or smell

Please notify the school if your child is not feeling well. For information regarding a potential COVID exposure, please call the District COVID Hotline 503-399-9797.

Face Masks Need to Fit Properly

Please send your child to school each day with a properly fitting face mask. The mask needs to be able to stay up over the nose. Some students may like a "fresh" mask after lunch and families have been sending a second one in their backpack or lunchbag. Gator style are ok if they are two layer and cover nose and mouth.

Halloween Costumes

In an effort to minimize disruptions and maximize our education hours, we ask that students not wear Halloween costumes to school. We know that some families celebrate Halloween; others choose not to for many reasons. We make these kinds of decisions based on inclusiveness for our school community, and whether they support our educational mission.

Please save costumes for your home celebrations. Thanks for your understanding and continuing support.



It’s a new school year and a good time to share a few reminders about traffic around the school.

Students, parents, buses, staff and school neighbors all share the same travel routes through the neighborhood to and from the school. Peak travel times can create congestion and increase the need for safe and courteous travel practices.

Here are a few ways parents can help us create a safe, respectful and positive environment when driving near the school:

  • Please drive slowly. Remember, the speed limit in a school zone when lights are flashing is 20 miles per hour.
  • Please don’t park in neighbors’ driveways at any time, even if the driveway is open.
  • Don’t block streets, stop in intersections or crosswalks, and please obey crossing guards’ instructions.
  • Remind children to stop and look both ways before crossing streets, and to respect neighbors’ property – for example, don’t make shortcuts through neighbors’ yards.
  • When lining up to pick-up or drop-off students, leave at least three feet of space between your car and the nearest driveway opening.
  • Avoid lining up early for pick-up or drop-off to help minimize congestion.
  • Don’t drive in bus lanes, even if no buses are present.

Click on flyer below for more information


As a Salem-Keizer Public School community, we have grown through some challenging times. We continue to have the opportunity to show up for each other. Pain is not always noticeable and someone experiencing emotional pain can often feel isolated. People who experience depression may appear angry, irritable, withdrawn, and/or quiet. If there is any concern, lean in, trust your instincts, and ask yourself, “is this behavior different for this person?” Your show of care and concern may help someone experiencing suicidal thoughts. Asking “are you thinking about suicide?” opens the door for a caring conversation about how someone might be hurting and how you might be able to support. For more information, click here.


Oregon families with children who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals will get pandemic food benefits. This includes students that attend a school where all students eat meals at school for free, children in foster care, children of migrant workers and youth experiencing homelessness. Click here for more information
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MONTHLY MEAL MENU- click on the menu below to go to the district food service page

Thanks to the USDA’s Seamless Summer Option, we will be able to feed all students breakfast and lunch at school for free this year

Lunch Menus

  • Food Services will not be printing lunch menus to send to the schools. They will post on each schools website, as well on the District website. They are having a hard time getting anything on a consistent basis and cannot depend on suppliers to have what is needed. The food chain/Supply and Demand is ever flexing.


Through the Oregon Health Plan, youth 19 years of age and younger have access to free health coverage, regardless of immigration status if they meet the income requirements.

More information, including income requirements and how to apply for coverage, is available online.

2021-22 DISTRICT CALENDAR - click the calendar to go to the website for details

School Anxiety

I wanted to take a moment to talk about school anxiety, why it’s so common this year and what we all can do as a team, to support your children.

Young students (preschool and kindergarten) often struggle to detach from their caregivers at the beginning of the school year. But given all the quality time at home students have been experiencing due to COVID, we expect that separation anxiety will be heightened this year, and it already has.

Setting the stage for school success starts before the school year does. Take the time to walk your child through what getting ready for a school day will look like ahead of time. This is a great way to prepare your child for success. Practice beforehand as if you were actually getting ready to go to school! They will LOVE roleplaying with you. Pretend to go through the entire routine starting with the night before.

Another way to support your child is by helping your child name their feelings about school. Using an I message (I feel _________ because ________.) is a great format to use when helping your child verbalize their feelings. Ask your child how they are feeling about school long before school starts.

Validating your child’s feelings is important. For example “I am sorry you are feeling scared.” or “Trying new things can be hard!” “Being away from Mom/Dad can feel scary sometimes.” It is also helpful to help children realize that a thought in their mind isn’t reality. It is a possibility (often the worst case scenario). Helping your child learn that they are in charge of their thoughts can be really helpful. Making small adjustments to the words they are telling themselves in their thoughts by adding words like “yet” to the end of the thought can be really helpful. For example “I don’t like school” can be completely transformed by adding “yet” to the end; “I don’t like school yet.” and then talking about ideas you and your child have to make school better. Bringing your child’s teacher into the conversation is always a good idea too. We are a team!

It is also important to ask your child “What can I do to help?” Most young children will probably need a list of things you can offer since even they don’t really know what will help sometimes. Do they need a reassuring hug, or to wear a piece of your jewelry to school to remind them of you, or to put a picture of you in their pocket, or do something special with you after school? Having a plan of what can be done when they are struggling will often reduce anxiety on it’s own.

Routines (after school, before bed, when I wake up, etc.) help create predictability and structure for kids which in turn helps them feel safe and less anxious. Routines also help ensure your student gets a healthy amount of sleep (9-12 hours a night for elementary aged students). Sleep is IMPERATIVE to your child’s success in school and it’s especially important if your child is struggling with anxiety. When we are tired we are much less capable of coping with difficult emotions. A quick google search of morning and bedtime routine charts will give you endless customizable visual options to use at home. They help show kids what is expected, they help foster independence and they allow for smoother bedtimes and mornings that set the stage for a great school day. Nothing gets in the way of a good day more than a chaotic or rushed morning or a poor night's sleep, so plan ahead and set those alarms and back up alarms in advance. These routines can be practiced in the weeks leading up to a new school year so by the time the big day arrives, everyone is ready to go! Adding an incentive to the routine is a great way to get your child excited. For example you could say if you complete your routine in thirty minutes, you can pick a game for us to play after dinner tonight. Sometimes a simple sticker or a high five will do the trick too.

On your way to school, make the ride as pleasant as possible. Play fun music, play ‘I spy’ or make a plan for the evening for your child to look forward to. You can even ask your child to recite affirmations with you. I am capable, I am strong, I can do hard things, I am a big kid, I have a smart mind hungry to learn, etc. This will help pump your child up for a great day. You can also tell them how excited you are to hear all about their day when they get home or when you pick them up.

Despite all of these preventative efforts, students may still struggle with separating from caregivers for the first few days or weeks of school. Typically after just a few days or a couple of weeks, children will adjust and the tears will subside. If after four consecutive weeks of school (in attendance everyday, on time) your child is still clinging to you, crying, or refusing to get out of the car, it may be time to seek professional help to address your child’s anxiety. You can contact the school counselor to get more information about community counseling services in your community.

Even though it is very difficult to see your child cry, it is important to model confidence to reassure your child that going to school is what everybody does, it is a fun part of growing up. This can be accomplished through speaking to your child about how much fun they hope to have at school and what exciting things they hope to get to do that day. Speaking positively about school as much as possible will help and allowing school staff to take over once you’ve dropped off your child, will also help demonstrate your confidence in the teachers and staff at the school to care for your child.

Make your drop off short and simple! “I love you! _____ will pick you up after school. See you at 2:15. Have a great day!” and go. This is really the hardest part! Leaving your crying child will tear up your heart at first but your confidence in leaving your child with school staff will directly impact your child’s confidence that they are safe at school with school staff. You have to put on a brave face, and hide your emotions from your child. You can let all of your tears out once you are driving away from the school. Please know that school staff are trained to support children and if an instance arose where staff needed your help or insight into your child after you have left, they will call you. It is very important to NOT ALLOW YOUR CHILD TO STAY HOME when they are feeling anxious about school. Allowing them to stay home shows them that they can avoid the anxiety by just not going to school. We need to work through the anxiety together as a team. School staff cannot support your child, if your child doesn’t come to school. If you would prefer, you can call the school and ask to meet with the school counselor and your child’s teacher to make a plan. We are always happy to collaborate:)


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School hours: 7:50AM - 2:20PM (M,T,Th,F) Wednesday Hours 8:50AM - 2:20PM

Doors open at 7:35AM

Office 7:30AM-3:50PM

Address: 466 McGilchrist St SE Salem OR 97302

Phone: 503-399-3167