August 16h, 2022
August 16, 2022
Message from Principal
A few reminders:
1. Parents may not get out of their cars during arrivals or dismissal. Please stay in line for the safety of your children.
2. Display your car tag so staff members can enter the number quickly during dismissal.
3. The doors open at 7:15. Students may eat breakfast before going to class. Class starts at 7:45. Students need to finish breakfast by 8:00.
Thank you for sharing your children with us. It is going to be a great year at Hillcrest PDS!
Haley Dean, Principal
Meet the Instructional Leadership Team
Welcome to HPDS! We are so excited to have your students at HPDS this school year!
The ILT consists of Ms. Dean (Principal), Dr. Flentge (Assistant Principal), Dr. Heltenberg (Instructional Specialist) and Mrs. Gunness (Counselor).
Ms. Haley Dean, Principal (second from right) is beginning her 21st year in education, having held teaching jobs at the middle school level and administrative jobs at both middle and elementary schools. She is beginning her second year at HPDS as Principal.
Dr. Amanda Flentge, Assistant Principal (second from left), is beginning her 16th year in education, having taught at both middle and elementary school levels and administrative positions in both middle and elementary schools. She is beginning her fourth year at HPDS as Assistant Principal.
Dr. Melissa Heltenberg, Instructional Specialist (far left), is starting her 23rd year in education. She taught at the elementary school level and has held administrative positions at the elementary school level. She will be beginning her eighth year as IS at HPDS.
Mrs. Gunness, Counselor (far right), is starting her 16th year in education. She taught at the high school level and has held counseling positions at both high schools and elementary schools. She will be beginning her second year at HPDS as counselor.
Again, we look forward to seeing everyone this week and are excited to see your students elevate this school year!
Hi! My name is Mrs. Gunness. I am excited to begin the 2022-2023 school year! I am also honored to serve as the Lead Elementary School Counselor for Waco ISD. I will continue in my role to provide social-emotional support for our students through individual and group counseling sessions, facilitate classroom guidance lessons, collaborate with teachers, parents, and community leaders, and refer students for mental health services. My responsibilities also include serving as the 504 coordinator, GT contact for parents who request their children to be tested, and contact to initiate referrals for SPED evaluations. Feel free to call me or email me. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hi! My name is Rachel Martinez. This is my 3rd year teaching Pre-K at HPDS! Prior to coming to Hillcrest, I worked for four years as a Pre-K assistant in WISD. I graduated with my Bachelors degree in Child and Family Studies from the University of Texas Permian Basin. Outside of school, my time is spent at home with my husband and two kids, Emma and Aiden.
Along with our fabulous aides, Mrs. Scott and Mrs. Contreras, we look forward to an amazing school year with your students!
Welcome to the 2022-2023 school year! We are very excited to have our classrooms filled with little faces and learning all about each one of them. If you need to communicate with your child's teacher please email or Remind 101 with them and they will respond at their earliest convenience.
Remind 101 Class Codes:
Mrs. Rabine Class Code: @rabine22
Mrs. Whatley Class Code: @whatley22
Mrs. Whitley Class Code: @24kh7d
This week we will practice school/ classroom procedures, learn where places are in the building, and get to know our classmates and teachers.
Kindergarten parent meeting is scheduled for August. 22. There will be lots of information you will not want to miss out on. Please plan to attend.
First Grade is thrilled to welcome a new group of students! Our teachers are Mrs. Garth, Mr. Harris and Mrs. Holey. We love to start off the year with books and activities that are fun and help the students feel comfortable at school. We will become familiar with our math tools and station procedures. First grade is such a wonderful year, full of new learning and adventure. Please be sure to attend the FIRST GRADE PARENT MEETING this Thursday, Aug. 18 at 5:30 in the cafeteria. It is jam packed with important information! If at all possible please leave the kids at home for this one meeting. If not, come on anyway! See you then.
We are looking forward to a TERRIFIC year in grade TWO! If you need to communicate with your student’s teacher, please do so through email or their messaging platform (see codes below).
**Please be sure to attend our Parent Meeting on August 23rd from 5:30-6:30. We encourage parents to come without children, but understand if you are unable to arrange childcare.**
Stay Connected! Please add yourself to our messaging platforms:
Mrs. Holt (Remind): @Holt22-23
Ms. Ronnenberg (Remind): @missronne
Mrs. Whyburn (Class Dojo) link here
(was recently married and has not had her last name changed on her email yet!)
This week in 2nd Grade:
*This week there will be a heavy emphasis on practicing classroom procedures and HPDS expectations
RLA: Practicing RLA station rotations and back-to-school read-alouds
Math: Practicing math station rotations & graphing our first day feelings
Social Studies: Making our “class contracts” and discussing how to be a part of our class family
Science: What is Science/What is a Scientist?
Welcome to the 2022-2023 school year! We are so excited to get to know each and every 3rd Grader! Throughout the year we will let you know what we are learning and let you know any fun things that will be happening with your student! If you need to communicate with your student's teacher please email or Remind 101 with them within their working hours 7:45-4. Please remember that the teachers may choose not to answer while teaching your beautiful student!
Remind 101 Class Codes:
Kittner Class Code: @3rdkit
Miah Class Code: @mrsmiahsm
Oubre Class Code: @Bf94h2
What is going on in the classroom?
Math: This week we're off to the races with Touch Math and Place Value!
Reading/Writing: This first week is all about getting to know our Reading and Writing resources and how to work the best within our classrooms.
Science: What does a scientist look like to you? How do they act around each other and experiments?
Social Studies: Our class is a strong unit among a greater community.
This week in 4th grade we will get to know each other, learn procedures and expectations and begin working on our first units of study.
ELAR: Launching Strong Literacy Habits
Math: Place Value of Whole Numbers and Decimals
Science: Investigating Natural Resources
Social Studies: Thinking Like a Geographer
This week students will complete a "Brown Bag Biography" in which they bring in items special to them and present them to the class. Please bring your items by Wednesday or Thursday so we can learn a little more about each other.
Make sure you have signed up for Remind notifications by texting your class code to 81010.
Mrs. Braswell @gd7662a
Mrs. Hall @bhall4
Ms. Reeves @he9b73
We look forward to a great school year filled with amazing experiences and learning opportunities!
This Week we are excited to get the year started. This week we are mostly getting our notebooks; journals; and establishing our school routines. We are looking forward to many things this year from Showtime to an over-night field trip in the Spring. We will be putting an emphasis on Science while building on the amazing growth in Reading and Math that the students achieved in 4th grade.
A few reminders:
* If you have not done so; please sign up for your class Remind. Use the app or text 81010 with your class code.
- Land: @landhpds
- Dossey: @abkdgg3
- Hardin: @89dhcb
*We do not have water fountains in our classroom. Please send a water bottle so that the students may stay hydrated.
* Reading 20minutes every day exposes you to 1.8 Million new words a year and is the largest indicator of future success. We strongly encourage that students read every day.
We are looking forward to a great year!
The Fabulous Fifth Grade Team
(Mrs. Land; Mr. Dossey; Ms. Hardin)
Paula Hoover has been the music teacher at Hillcrest PDS since the school opened in 1993. This school year marks her 38th year of teaching. A native of the great state of Missouri, Mrs. Hoover earned her degree from William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri. Married for 35 years to her husband, the Hoovers have three daughters who are Hillcrest PDS alums. Hallie is a child care provider, Helen is in her 3rd year of residency in emergency medicine and Harper is a junior at Washington University in St. Louis. Three cats, Haiku, Half-Pint and Finn complete the family. Mrs. Hoover has fond memories of a childhood filled with learning and making music at home, school and church and strives to help each of her students experience musical joy!
Hello, my name is Ashley Stephens and I am your child’s PE teacher this year. I am originally from Round Rock, Texas where I played volleyball and swam throughout high school. I attended Baylor University. I am beginning my 20th year in Waco ISD teaching PE. My family includes husband Matt and daughters Rachael and Sarah. Both of my daughters attended Hillcrest PDS, Tennyson MS and graduated from Waco High School. Rachael is in her final year at The University of Texas and Sarah will begin at Texas A&M this fall.
I believe that each student in PE falls into one of three groups- athlete, mover and non-mover. It is my goal to teach a class where each of these students can be successful and enjoy PE so hopefully they will have the desire to stay active and healthy throughout their lifetime.
My name is Mrs. Weatherly, and I am so excited to be your art teacher! This is my eighth year at Hillcrest and my twelfth year teaching art. I am most excited about diving into using new mediums in the art studio this year. My favorite thing to watch is our artists take on familiar subject matter in a brand new way. I also can’t wait to create our set, props and costuming with our 4th and 5th grade Showtime Company, explore the Art Expedition with 3rd grade, and have Artist Market with our entire school family later on in the year.
I have been married to my best friend for 16 years, and we have four children, two boys and two girls, ages ranging from 13 to 6 months! We also have an Aussie named Livie and several fish as pets. Welcome back to school and welcome to the Art Studio, where everyone’s an artist!
My name is Dana Telep and it's not a secret that I have the best job at Hillcrest! This is my fifth year building the library here at Hillcrest PDS and I love the space we have created.
I’m rather famous as far as librarians go. As a recipient of the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries award, I was invited to be a guest on the Kelly Clarkson Show Texas School Librarians Surprised With $100,000 Grant. I hold an undergraduate degree from Baylor University in English Literature and Journalism. I have done master’s work in English Literature and Education: Curriculum & Instruction. I am currently completing my graduate studies as a certified librarian.
I am a reader, a mother, a storyteller, and a firm believer in fairytales. I believe that reading has the power to change the world, giving us the ability to foster empathy and understanding. Together with the Hillcrest family, we have cultivated a culture of literacy in our school that humbles and emboldens me daily.
The HPDS PTA is ready for another great year!
Are you curious about the Hillcrest PTA? What do they do? Should I join? Do I have to pay?
Throughout the year, PTA members will be the first to know about opportunities at the school. Membership is FREE (donations are accepted). Joining the PTA does NOT mean that you are signing up to volunteer but we'd love to have you! It simply means that you are wanting to support the Hillcrest PTA activities and mission!
In the past, the PTA has been able to provide things like: Fall Carnival, Book Fair, Inflatables for Field Day, Dismissal Software for carpool lines, Ice Cream Social, Teacher and Staff Appreciation days, field trip lunches and so much more. The theme this year is ELEVATE and we have some new ideas that will help the PTA elevate our school even more!
Hillcrest PDS is truly a wonderful community of students, school staff, and family members and we can’t do what we do without you!