SM Early Childhood Education Center

November, 2021

Administrative Team

Carla Heintz, Principal, Early Childhood Education Center

Tracy Smarr-Dolezal, Early Childhood Special Education Coordinator

In the News

From the Principal's Desk


October has come and gone and we are ready to move into November. Thank you to everyone to participated in Parent/Teacher conferences this month. It's important to us to partner with you for your child's success. We welcome your input!

Our fall parties were a success! Thank you to those of you that helped by contributing snacks, or sending your child in pajamas or other attire to celebrate the day! We appreciate the time you give to support your children and the things they are doing at school.

Your child should have come home on Thursday, Oct. 28th, with a fall family activity pack of fall activities to do at home. We hope you have fun exploring the activities together, and if you do, take some pictures and tag us on social media!

Please be sure to check out our Facebook page and Twitter for additional information and ideas of fun things to do with your child!

Important Calendar Reminders

November 1-10- "We Care I Can" Food Drive

November 19- Early Childhood Screening

November 22- 26- No School, Professional Learning and Fall Break

Our building follows the district calendar and PreK schedule, with the exception of no school on Fridays. You can access the district calendar here District Calendar 21-22

"We Care, I Can " Food Drive

This November, the Shawnee Mission School District will once again participate in the annual “We Care, I Can” food drive to benefit Johnson County. We will be collecting non-perishable food items between Nov. 1- Nov 10. With continued economic challenges and the growing number of Johnson County families in need, the efforts of the Shawnee Mission School District are even more deeply appreciated. If you would like more information regarding where our donations are going, you can find it here

The items most needed are:

Canned Tomatoes, fruit, corn, peas, and meat


Macaroni and Cheese


Peanut Butter,

Dry Baby Food

Canned dinners and soups

Outdoor Recess

As the weather gets colder, please be sure to dress your child appropriately for outdoor play. We follow the school district guidelines and go outside for recess as long as the temperature is above 15 degrees, the wind chill is above 0 and there is no falling moisture.

Birthday Treats

If you would like for your child to celebrate their birthday at school, please contact your child's teacher to set up a time and day for the snacks to come. We are able to share store bought, individually wrapped, items. Unfortunately, we cannot accept home made treats or unwrapped items in clam shell packaging, such as cookies or cupcakes that are not individually wrapped. In addition, as of right now, visitors are not allowed past the office, due to current community COVID numbers so parents could not attend the celebration with their child. But we are happy to celebrate and snap a picture or two for you if you wold like!

Masking and Mitigation Protocol for SMECEC

On July 26th, The Shawnee Mission Board of Education adopted the Maintaining Healthy School Environment Proposal B. That proposal requires all elementary, including the students at SMECEC to wear a mask until such a time as all students have the opportunity to be vaccinated. In additional all students must wear a mask on the bus.

Students will not be wearing their masks outdoors, on the playground.

All parents and outside visitors to the building must wear a mask. At this time visitors are not allowed past the office when school is in session.

Students are required to wear a mask on the bus as they are able.

For those of your bringing your child to school, masks are strongly recommended for the adults during drop off and pick up when around other adults, however because it is outdoors, a mask will not required. If you are waiting outside a door we do request you honor social distancing protocols of 3 feet.

We will continue to disinfect rooms between sessions daily, cohort as much as possible, and utilize assigned seating and social distancing when masks are off for meal time.

Please know that at anytime these measures may change based on data from the Johnson County Department of Health and decisions made by the Shawnee Mission Board of Education.

If you have questions, please feel free to reach out to me.

Masking at SMECEC

We continue to work with your child to wear a mask while at school. While we understand this will be very difficult for some of our students, we believe the majority of then can learn to wear them and keep them on. When students are able to wear a mask, it decreases the chance that they might get sent home for a long period of time if they happen to be exposed at school. Please continue to work with your child at home as well, when you are out and about, encourage them to wear a mask as you run errands or visit others. You can find a social story here about mask wearing to help them understand.

Food Service

Free Meals

School breakfast and lunch meals are FREE for ALL students at all schools for the 2021-22 school year. Once again, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has put into effect nationwide waivers allowing school foodservice departments to continue to serve healthy school meal options free to all students. PreK students at SMECEC attending the AM session receive breakfast, those attending the PM session receive lunch.


Breakfast is available each school day. The breakfast menu includes an entrée, grain, fruit and milk. Students are served all items to receive a full breakfast; including the required ½ cup of fruit.


Lunch includes an entrée, grain, fruit, vegetable and milk. Students are served all of these five components on their lunch tray, including the required ½ cup fruit and/or vegetable.

The “pig” symbol on the menu means that the item contains pork.

Menus, nutritional and allergy information are available online at

Special Diet

If you have an allergy or specific dietary concerns, contact your school nurse for a medical form to be filled out by your doctor.

Food service information is available on the district’s web site at or you can call the Food Service office at 913-993-9710.

Early Childhood Screening

SMSD offers an early childhood developmental screening which includes the areas of vision, hearing, problem-solving, personal-social development, gross/fine motor skills, and speech/language skills. The purpose of the screening is to identify children who may have substantial developmental delays and who may be eligible for special education services. SMSD’s Early Childhood Screening (ECS) is appropriate for children ages 2 years 9 months to 5 years old who reside within the Shawnee Mission School District boundaries.

How often are screenings offered?

Screenings for 2020-2021 occur monthly on a Friday morning and are by appointment only. Parent or other legal guardian must complete a request for screening and submit the required documents before an appointment is offered.

How do I request a screening for my child?

More information about the ECS program can be found on the district’s Early Childhood Special Education home page under Early Childhood Screening.

Connect with us via Social Media

We have new social media sites this year! Please feel free to follow us and like us!!

Twitter: @theSMECEC


Or search for #EarlyEDSMSD to see what's happening district wide in PreK!