Volume 4 - Byram Lakes Elementary School - December 2022
November 23rd: Early Dismissal
November 24th-25th: Happy Thanksgiving! School Closed
December 9th: Mr. Magico Show @ BLES sponsored by the PTA (More information below)
December 10th: Night Out @ Nester's Greenhouse sponsored by the PTA (More information below)
December 14th: Board of Education meeting
December 14th-16th: PTA Holiday Shop (More information below)
December 15th: 4th Grade Choir performance at ShopRite @ 6:00 pm
December 21st: Holiday Concert @ 7:00 pm at BIS (BIS students only)
December 23rd: Early Dismissal (Students dismissed at 1:43 pm)
December 26th: - January 2nd: School Closed for Winter Break
January 3rd: School Reopens
A Message from the Principal
The first marking period is over! We are fully into the swing of the school year now, and boy it's been an exciting past month. On Monday October 31st, students and staff went all out for our Halloween parade and parties. Next came conferences for three days. We got a full week of learning in, and then just like that it was Thanksgiving. With Thanksgiving in mind, I've been thinking about some of the things around BLES that I'm thankful for.
I'm thankful to you, the parents of our students. Our families provide the foundation at home every single day that gets our students ready to learn. Getting children ready for school and able to decompress after school is no easy task. You gave up time from your evenings to come meet with our teachers during the second week of November to help understand your child's school experience. You support our teachers and staff and work with them to create a powerful team at work for the kids. Many of you came to the Halloween parade. I'd like to extend a HUGE thank you to all of our room parents for giving their time, energy, and spirit to create Halloween parties for our students. So many of our parents also stepped up to help run an incredible PTA Book Fair this past month. We wouldn't be able to create these lasting and indelible memories without you!
Thank you to those parents who helped inform our climate by filling out the climate survey that was distributed a couple weeks ago. We have formed a staff committee to analyze these results and discuss possible options to address our needs based on this information.
I'm also extremely thankful to our staff. We have an INCREDIBLE team of teachers and support staff at Byram Lakes. The teachers go above and beyond in terms of the time and effort they give to their classrooms on a daily basis. They've taken on new challenges this year in the hope of continuing to improve student learning. Many of them offered their own personal time to provide conferences for families. The staff at this school support one another during good times and during tough times, and I couldn't be more thankful to work with every one of them.
Last but not least, I'm so thankful for the students we have at Byram Lakes. Every day, I see hundreds of smiling faces getting off the school bus. The students at this school are respectful, resilient, kind, caring, and hardworking. They are the reason Byram Lakes is the special place that it is. I've found my favorite parts of each day are the times when I get to chat with a student or two, and I am so grateful to work with children that truly deserve the effort that the staff here put in to teaching them.
I know we all have much to be thankful for, and I hope you have had a chance to reflect on these things over the Thanksgiving break and during the holiday season!
Included in this edition of the Lakes Ledger:
A Look Back
- Teaching & Learning
- PTA Book Fair
- Fit Club
- Veterans Day
A Look Ahead
- Holiday Events
- Holiday Concerts
- Teacher Wishlists
- Stuff the Stocking
- Abigail's Army Gift Drive
- Early Dismissals
- Cold Weather
- Pickup Patrol
- Wreath & Poinsettia Sale
- Gertrude Hawk
- Upcoming Family Nights
- Holiday Shop
- Lego Club
- BLES Building Calendar
- Classroom newsletters
- Spirit Wear
- Byram Twp. Recreation Committee info
A Look Back
Teaching & Learning: Comparing
PTA Book Fair
Teaching & Learning: Sideline Soccer
Teaching & Learning: Detailing Emotion in Writing
Teaching & Learning: Learning our letters and sounds
Students in 4th Grade were fortunate enough to be taught about Veteran's Day today by Major General Edward Chrystal. Following this presentation, John Broda of the Armed Forces Financial Network presented our 4th grade with a sponsorship for the newly created Kindness Club. This is the FIRST Kindness Club sponsored by AFFN in the country! What a great way for our students to learn of the sacrifices made by our veterans and show their gratitude for the service of these brave men and women.
A Look Ahead
During the last week before winter break, we will have some special events going on for our students. The week before break will be a spirit week! Themes for each day will be...
Monday 12/19: Walking in a Winter Wonderland - celebrate all winter has to bring and wear white
Tuesday 12/20: Grinch Day! Wear green but don't be mean!
Wednesday 12/21: Happy Hanukkah: Celebrate the Festival of Lights and wear blue
Thursday 12/22: Ugly Sweater Day
Friday 12/23: PJ Day - Wear your favorite cozy pajamas
On Thursday, we will also have our class holiday parties. Room parents, you will be receiving information shortly about these parties from your child's morning meeting teacher. If you have any questions about these parties, please contact your child's teacher.
On Friday, we will be holding a December Celebrations assembly! During this assembly, we recognize our amazing students for some of the incredible things they have accomplished this year.
Then it's off to holiday break! I hope you and your family have a joyful holiday season. Please remember, school opens again on Tuesday January 3rd.
Stuff the Stocking
We are asking for donations of new, unwrapped gifts and gift cards for children of all ages. These will be distributed to local families in need through the Season of Hope Toy Shop.
The school that collects the most items will take possession of the Stuff the Stocking trophy!
For the flyer going over Stuff the Stocking, please click the image next to this post. For more information on the drive sponsor, Project Self Sufficiency, or to register as a family in need of donations, please check out the link below. Donations will be accepted through December 12th. Thank you in advance for your generosity!
Abigail's Army First Annual Gift Drive
This drive was organized to honor Abigail Sara Nicosia, a student at Byram Schools through 8th grade.
Donations should be new, unwrapped, gifts that are still in their original packaging. All gifts and proceeds will be used to benefit RWJ Children's specialized hospital. Please see the attached images for all details on the drive. Donations will be accepted through December 12th. Thank you in advance for your generosity!
4 absences/tardies: letter home about the importance of attendance generated (Truancy Officer)
8 absences/tardies:second letter home with importance of attendance, and warning of what will happen if absences/tardies increase (Truancy Officer)
12 unexcused absences/tardies: mandatory meeting to develop an Attendance Improvement Plan (RTI Coordinator)
18 absences/tardies: possible referral to truancy court (Administrator)
In order to avoid an unexcused absence, please send in a doctor's note or other documentation providing an excused reason for the absence. The regulation on absence classification can be found here. If you have doctor's notes or documentation for any school days already missed, please send those in to our main office as soon as possible.
Please click here for an informational flyer that will explain more.
In order to opt-in:
- If you already have a mobile phone number in our system attached to your contact card and you wish to opt-in, you may send a text message to 67587 with Y or Yes in the text message at any time. Doing so will opt you in to receive text alerts after we complete the migration.
Click here for an informational flier with more information as well as a QR Code that you can scan to assist you with opting in as well.
If you do not opt-in using one of the methods provided above, you will not receive any text alerts from the school after we migrate to the new system. You can also opt-out at any time by sending STOP to 67587, or by replying to a school alert with STOP in the message.
If you opted-in, but are finding that you are not receiving school alerts via text, this likely means we do not have your number in our system, or it is not correctly marked as a mobile number. Please contact the main office of your child’s school to have the contact number corrected, and marked as a mobile number.
Students have been loving our school lunches provided by Maschio's Food Services! Maschio's is committed to serving healthy and delicious food options to our students on a regular basis. Unlike last year, lunch will not be offered at no cost to students. Lunch options include a main course option, a bagel bag, and a muffin bag. All lunches include components of a well-rounded nutritional meal, such as a vegetable, a milk, and a cheese stick or yogurt for the bagged options. A student lunch costs $3.50.
Using their online portal, you can check out the upcoming menus for each month. You can also preload your child's account so that they have the funds to buy lunch. See the below links for more information. If your child buys lunch, it is very helpful if they know their PIN to ensure a quick buying process and more time to eat. Your child's lunch pin is the last four digits of their Student ID number.
If your child charges lunch and you have not yet added funds, you will be receiving notices from me to fund your account.
A message from the Board Office:
The school lunches are not free anymore unless you qualify through the free and reduced application process.The income guidelines have changed so if you didn't qualify in the past you may qualify now. Please complete an application and send it in an envelope to the Byram Board of Education office.Those families that qualify for reduced lunch will get it free this year under a state subsidy.The applications can be found on the Byram School website under the students tab and food service tab.
There will be no letters sent home for positive cases this year. If your child isn't feeling well, play it safe and keep them home.
Masks are optional for all staff and students.
The PTA is always looking for volunteers, please contact them at email@example.com
Here’s your 2022-2023 Byram PTA Board Members:
President Marla Rodriguez
Vice President Ana Lavrador
Secretary Oriana Strohmeyer
Treasurer Lindsey McBain
By-Laws Chair Patricia Trentanelli
A message from the PTA
Thank you everyone that came out to Turkey Bingo and a special thank you to Kristy D’Amelio for hosting this great event, Ms. Krista Gimigliano and Ms. Gnecco for helping. A gobble gobble thank you to Dr. Morris and Mr. Kulesa for for calling the numbers and being silly turkeys. Our families really enjoyed it. Thank you for all the food donations for the Waterloo pantry. We helped a lot of families have a nice thanksgiving this year.
Our fall Book Fair was a success and we couldn’t do it without our Book Fair Chairs Ann Marie Kraemer and Stacy Michaels and the Book Fair committee Sonja O’Connell and Kara Pilek. Thank you ladies for all your hard work.
See below for some pictures of Turkey Bingo along with upcoming events!
Glow in the Dark Painting Night (BIS Students Only) - December 2nd
GLOW IN THE DARK PAINTING EVENT FOR BIS 5-8th graders. Sign up and save your spot. Create a glow in the dark canvas with the help of Mrs. Bethon a very talented art teacher. We will have all things glow in the dark as well as snacks. Sign up below!
Mr. Magico - December 9th
Reserve your spot
Night Out at Nester's Greenhouse - December 10th
Purchase your tickets below you don’t want to miss this event.
We are excited to start the Lego Club for the 1st and 2nd grade students. It will be held on Tuesdays starting in January. If anyone has any legos they would like to donate please contact us. It will be held after school until 4:45pm. A sign up form will be coming out soon.
Starting December 7th Lego Club for the3rd and 4th grade students will be on Wednesdays. It will be right after school until 4:40pm.
Lego Club for BIS will be held on Mondays starting December 5th after school until 4:20pm. Please remember to change your pick up patrol to school activity.
Our 2023 holiday sale will run from November 7th through early December. We are creating new holiday-themed marketing materials that we will share with you in advance of the sale.
Store Link: https://1stplace.sale/62495