Cottonwood News

August 28th, 2017

Back to School-Mrs. Rooks

On behalf of the staff at Cottonwood Elementary School, I would like to welcome you to the 2017-18 school year! Even as I start my 15th year as Cottonwood's principal, "Back to School" is always an exciting time. So many new school supplies, back packs and friends. The first few days brought classroom meetings, team building and review of procedures. We are looking forward to getting to know our 394 students and their families.

I would like to welcome Ms. Eliana Martinez and Mrs. Lindsey Ralston to our Cottonwood family. Ms. Martinez will be teaching music at Cottonwood, after 18 years in the Wichita schools. Mrs. Ralston will be teaching 4th grade, after 7 years in the Shawnee Mission schools.

As we strive to help students become responsible, respectful and resourceful young people, we ask that you guide and support your child’s learning by ensuring that he/she:

1) Attends school daily and arrives on time, ready for the day’s learning experience

2) Completes assignments given by teachers

3) Reads daily to develop a love for reading and to improve literacy skills

4) Shares school experiences with you so that you are aware of his/her school life

5) Informs you if he/she needs additional support in any area or subject

Active school partnerships are the key and truly make the biggest difference! Here’s to a strong year of teamwork, community building and academic growth. Thank you for making Cottonwood Elementary a place to learn and grow together. It is going to be a great year!

Educationally yours,

Shari Rooks, Principal

School Safety

Students should not arrive at school before 8:20, unless he/she is registered for YMCA Latchkey. We do not have supervision available and we don't want anyone to get hurt or lost before school begins.

Breafast is served from 8:20-8:50.

After school dismissal is at 3:45. Please continue to follow the traffic patterns. It helps the adults if you have the name cards in the side windows. If you have suggestions on how to make our process and flow of traffic safer, feel free to share your ideas.

Food Service -$10.00

New this year, students who have a negative $10.00 lunch balance will be given a sack lunch. This meal will be charged to the student for a period of three days. If at the
end of this three-day period, Andover Food Services has not been notifed as to payment arrangements or if payment has not been made, further charges will not be allowed. The student must bring payment to purchase a lunch or bring a lunch to school.

Free & Reduced Meals are available to qualifying households. They are available through Parents/Free/Reduced Lunch Forms or through Bonnie Scarth at Support Services, 202 W Market, 316-218-4604

Picture Day is August 31st from 9:00-1:00 Students need to bring their packets!

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Lake Cottonwood-A Memorable First Day

Counselor's Corner--Marcie Faust

Welcome Back!!!!

We have several new faces at Cottonwood. Please help in making them feel at home. We are starting a new student group in August to support in their transition. We are so glad they are here. If you have any questions about the group or any suggestions on how we can help, please contact me at 218-4620 ext. 2 or

Counselor Time:

I have established my visitation schedule and am looking forward to working with all students. The classes will come to counseling twice a month. This month the theme will be friendship. This will help them become better aquatinted with all their new friends. Friendship is a relationship to someone with whom I enjoy sharing my thoughts, ideas and time. Someone once said, “A good friend is more valuable than gold”. Please reaffirm good behavior and being a great friend at home with your children.

Group and Individual Counseling:

I have time each day to visit with children in a one-to-one setting. Please let your students know that confidentiality will always be respected. They can place a note in my box or ask their teachers.

We continue to have small groups at CES. The groups include: friendship, divorce, grief support, new kids, anger management, etc….Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns about the groups. I meet with the teachers to set the groups during the least restrictive times. Some groups are offered during lunch time.


We use the STAR Enterprise Reading and Math assessments for students in grades 2-5 to assess for strengths and weaknesses. Students are tested in August - December and May. Throughout the year, if you have questions, please don't hesitate to ask.

Please let me know if your child is in need of any additional school supplies. I am looking forward to a wonderful school year!!

Nurse's News

Welcome back to school from the health office. Julie Clopton and I are happy to team up again this year. This is my (Denise Tauke) 6th year at Cottonwood, but I've been in the nursing profession for over 20 years. My background includes critical care and pediatrics. Julie has been with the Andover schools for 36 years and at Cottonwood for the past year.

It has been a busy back to school. Julie and I have been going through Care Doc's and checking up on students with health concerns, doctor's orders and immunizations. Thank you for sharing your information with us. Please know that if you ever have any concerns regarding your child, we would love to help you. Our goal is to keep Cottonwood healthy and ready for learning.

The health office throughout the school year is need of donations. Currently we could use in need boys underwear size 4-6 and 8-10 , boys shorts size 4-6, girls underwear size 4, and girls shorts size 7-8 ,9-10. Any clean gently used items are greatly appreciated.

Denise Tauke and Julie Clopton


Cottonwood Library

Mrs. "O" Ohlund and Mrs. "K" Klaassen have been working with Cottonwood students for over a week. The library has new carpet and a new look. Students are checking out new books and starting to take AR tests in grades 2-5. Check us out online @ We look forward to working with you and your student.

Cottonwood Site Council

Looking for another way to get involved in your child's education? Join us on September 12th from 5:30-6:30 in the Cottonwood Library to learn more about what is happening in our school. During the year, we will have speakers from Food Service, the District Office, teachers, the librarian, the SRO and others who will share news and best practices.

All Kansas schools are required to have a council of patrons that meet regularly. We would love to have you. Future meetings will be held on Oct, 10th, Nov. 14th, Jan. 16th, Mar. 13th and Apr. 10th. Call Mrs. Rooks (316) 218-4620 or for more information.

Cottonwood PTO

The Cottonwood PTO consists of parents and teachers working together for the betterment of the school. Our purpose is to support our Cottonwood staff and provide opportunities for all students. Our meetings are the 1st Tuesday of each month from 6:30-7:30 in the Cottonwood library. (Sept. 5th, Oct. 3rd, Nov . 7th, Jan. 9th, Feb. 6th, Apr. 3rd and May 1st) Childcare is provided by high school students.

Throughout the year there are several opportunities to volunteer. Check out our Facebook page for more information.

Order shirts here. T-shirt orders are due Sept. 15th.

PTO officers for the 17-18 school year are:

President—Tijen Owings

Vice President—Mike Scolari

Secretary—Rachel Niebling

Treasurer—Sarah Osburn

AHS Trojan Soccer Needs You!

Needed: soccer ball handlers for home JV and Varsity games. If your child is interested, contact Rebecca Rather at or Rachelle Fairback at Your child will receive a free drink and snack at halftime as a thank you!

Communication is Key

Cottonwood has several ways in which we try to communicate our news and views to the world. You can download the Andover Schools Mobile App in either iTunes or Google. We also use School Messenger to share upcoming activities through phone calls and emails. If you have suggestions on how to help communicate our learning and teaching, please don't hesitate to e-mail me

School website:

Facebook page:

PTO Facebook page:

Andover Twitter:

Cottonwood Twitter:

Teacher Facebook/Twitter pages:

Mrs. Defebaugh

Mrs. Fox

Mrs. Gallagher

Mrs. Plank

Mrs. Ralston @Mrs_Ralston

Mrs. Rich

Ms. Wright

Mrs. Hachen

Mrs. Davis

Mrs. Highfill

Mrs. Barscewski

Mrs. Kindle

Ms. McKenna

Mrs. Hanna

Mrs. Wilson

Peachjar-- Peachjar is an “electronic backpack” system where schools post calendars, activity information from enrichment providers, and school letters. This system is used exclusively for distribution of school-approved fliers. Your email address will not be shared or used for any other purpose.

Andover Food Service-- Andover School Lunch Menus are digital. Look for the link on our district website at, or go to There is also an app available. Just look for Nutrislice in your app store. Please call Nutrition Services, 316-218-4603 with any questions.

Cottonwood Picture Day

Thursday, Aug. 31st, 8am

1747 North Andover Road

Andover, KS

PTO Night at AllStar Adventures

Friday, Sep. 1st, 6-9pm

1010 North Webb Road

Wichita, KS

PTO Sonic Night

Tuesday, Sep. 12th, 5-8pm

331 North Andover Road

Andover, KS

Enjoy a night at Sonic. Eat a meal or just a drink. Mention Cottonwood PTO and a portion of the sales go back to PTO.

Trojans in Training at AHS FB game

Thursday, Sep. 14th, 6:30-8:30pm

150 West Allison Street

Andover, KS

Cottonwood students are invited to attend the AHS vs. Goddard football game. Students will be able to cheer the Trojans onto the field before the game and then sit in a special section designated for Cottonwood families. Come help cheer the Trojans onto victory.

There was a lot of information in this newsletter:) If you read all the way to the bottom, send me an e-mail and your student will get a donut on Friday :)