Welcome Back, GVES Families!

August 17, 2018

New School Hours

GVES Families,

Welcome back! Your summer mailing information is below. Please also be aware of new school hours that will begin this year. The school day is now from 8:45-3:15. Students must be in the homerooms by 8:55 or they will be marked absent. Car line for morning drop off will start at 8:25. After 8:50, please park in front of the school and walk the children in. Dismissal at the end of the day will begin at 3:05. We recommend using the school bus whenever possible.

We look forward to seeing you at the Open House on Wednesday!

Summer Mailing Information

All of our Back to School information is electronic this year and contained within this newsletter. Below you will find:

  • Upcoming events
  • Link to Alma for class assignment
  • Link to Transportation & Bus Information
  • Link to Family ID for emergency medical cards and sign-offs
  • Open House invitation
  • Drop off & Pick up map
  • Letter from our nurse
  • Link to cafeteria menus and accounts
  • Back to School Night dates and times
  • Communication procedures
  • GVES Google Calendar
  • School Supply lists
  • Summer Reading
  • Band & Orchestra
  • Voluntary Foreign Language

We are excited to welcome everyone to a new school year and hope to see you at our Open House. Additional information from our Home & School will be sent to you in the future.


Dr. Jason Kotch, Principal

Mrs. Caitlin Jones, Assistant Principal

Upcoming Events

8/29: Open House

8/31: VEFLS - Voluntary Elementary Foreign Language Studies Early Registration Deadline (see more info below)

9/4: First Day of School

9/5: 3rd Grade Back to School Night - 6:30PM

9/5: 5th Grade Back to School Night - 7:30PM

9/10: No School

9/13: 4th Grade Back to School Night - 7:00PM

Class Assignments - Alma

Class assignments are available through our student information system, Alma. The address is https://gves.getalma.com/home and it can also be accessed through the Parent Portal on any of the GVSD websites. Special area schedules will be added soon. Alma access information has been emailed to new families. Everyone else has the same access information as last year. Please call our office if you have trouble accessing Alma.

There are many factors that go into our placement including any information that we received from you through our requests in the spring. Our placement team has worked diligently through the summer to find the best class for each student while balancing our classes. Each year is a new and valuable experience for your child and we have high expectations for the class in which s/he has been assigned.

Emergency Cards and Parent/Guardian Forms - FamilyID

All Garnet Valley School District emergency cards and parent forms will now be completed online usingFamilyID. This means that all of the information that was once mailed home and stored on paper is now digital, making the process for both our parents and staff more efficient. Family ID is a secure registration platform that provides families with an easy, user-friendly way to complete school emergency cards, sign school policies, media releases, and more. FamilyID also helps the district to be more administratively efficient and environmentally responsible. When you register through FamilyID, the system keeps track of your information in your FamilyID profile. You enter your information only once for each family member for multiple uses and multiple programs.

Please click here to access the FamilyID Site and create or sign into your account (top right corner of the page). All emergency cards should be completed before the start of school.

Transportation Information & Bus Assignments - InfoFinder

The Garnet Valley School District is pleased to introduce a new feature of our bus routing system for the 2018-2019 school year. InfoFinder-i provides online access to assist in finding your child’s bus number, pick-up/drop-off locations and times.

InfoFinder-i allows you to:

  • Find your child’s designated bus stop;
  • Find the estimated pick-up/drop-off times for your child’s bus stop;
  • Locate which school your child would attend if you are planning to move.

Parents/guardians are encouraged to check InfoFinder-i periodically between August 15th and the start of school as pick-up and drop-off times may be slightly altered due to daily enrollment changes.

Also, please read this very important procedure change for the 2018-2019 school year. Students will only be able to ride their assigned buses this year. Daily changes will be permitted through the Transportation Department for emergencies only.

Please click here to access the site.

Open House Invitation

We are excited to host a new event to start the next school year! On August 29th, all three elementary schools will be hosting an Open House in the afternoon so that students and their families can visit the schools and meet their teachers before school officially start. The schedule has been developed with families in multiple schools and siblings in mind. It will be split into two sessions to accommodate the parking needed for this new event.

The Open House is a casual event for families. You will park at GVE or Concord and your family will go visit your child's classroom and meet the teacher. HSA activities will also be going on. There are no formal presentations so please come and go freely within your assigned time. More information is in the guide below.

For those who -preordered school supplies, the supplies will be in your child's homeroom at the Open House. If you cannot attend the Open House, the supplies will be in the homeroom for your child on the first day of school.

We look forward to starting the school year with our students, families, and all teachers!

Click here for the Open House Family Guide

Click here for background information on the new Open House

Car Line Map

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Letter from our Nurse

Dear Parents/Guardians,

The school nurse’s office maintains a file of emergency and other pertinent health information on each student. It is very important that this information be updated each year to better implement health care services for your child.

Please complete the online EMERGENCY CARD through FamilyID. I cannot stress enough how crucial this information may be during the course of the school year, so please be very thorough in completing this card. EMERGENCY CARDS SHOULD BE COMPLETED BEFORE THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL.

PHYSICAL EXAMINATIONS: Required by law prior to admission to school. If your child has had any recent immunizations, please submit written documentation from your physician’ office to the nurse’s office so we may update your child’s health records.

DENTAL EXAMINATIONS: Required by law on all THIRD grade students (and students recently registered). Dental forms were enclosed with the report cards sent home in June. If you did not receive a form, they are available on our website or you may pick one up in the main office. Please return the completed form to the nurse’s office by the end of September. If this form is not received by the deadline, your child will be scheduled to see the school dentist.

MEDICATIONS ARE NOT TO BE CARRIED BY STUDENTS!!! This includes all prescription and over the counter medications as well as vitamins. Metered dose inhalers for the treatment of asthma OR epi-pens for use with severe allergies, are the only exceptions to this rule and ONLY after written parent consent has been secured and is on file in the nurse’s office.

If it is necessary for a student to take medication during the school day, it must be kept and dispensed in the nurse’s office. All medications must be clearly labeled with the student’s name, medication name and dosage instructions. Prescription medication MUST be in its original pharmacy container. Your pharmacy can provide you with a duplicate container for school use upon request. WRITTEN PARENTAL PERMISSION MUST ACCOMPANY ALL MEDICATIONS!

If your child is on a long-term daily medication, please contact the nurse’s office to make these arrangements. Please be reminded that a current physician’s order and a parental consent form will be needed to dispense these medications. Please feel free to call the nurse’s office at 610-579-4146 with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your child’s health. My best to you and your family for a safe and healthy school year.

Lin Wesolowski, RN, CSN
School Nurse

Lunch Menus & Cafeteria Accounts

Link to breakfast and lunch menus

Link to MySchoolBucks for account information

Link to GV Food Service's website with pricing and MySchoolBucks directions

Back to School Night Dates & Times

Wednesday, September 5: 3rd Grade--6:30pm; 5th Grade--7:30pm

Thursday, September 13: 4th Grade--7:00pm

*** Please note different start times for 3rd and 5th grades

Communication Procedures

New App - Having a district app will allow our parent community to easily stay connected to district news and events. Key features of the app include push notifications, a calendar of events sections, and district news. Please note the app is new and not all features are active. We also anticipate improvements being made throughout the course of the school year. Please click here for directions on how to download the new app.

Early Dismissals - Early dismissals due to weather or unforeseen circumstances will be announced through the phone number you provide in Alma, email, district-level social media, and websites. Please keep your Alma contact information current. You can update this information in your account.

Absence Reporting - Launched at the end of the last school year, the new School Messenger (Safe Arrival) Absence Reporting System makes it easy for parents/guardians to report their child's absence, reduces the time it takes to verify student attendance and will allow our staff to respond to unexplained student absences more efficiently. Please click here for directions on how to use your phone, app, or computer to report an absence.

Social Media - GVES is on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram! Our handle is @GarnetValleyES on all three platforms. We also podcast on iTunes. Just search iTunes for "Jaguarmax."

GVES Calendar

The GVSD Instructional Calendar and upcoming events are on our website.

The view the full calendar on our website, click here or go to https://gves.garnetvalleyschools.com/calendar.

School Supplies

Doing your own school supply shopping for the fall? See the lists below for each grade.
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Summer Reading for Students Entering Grades 3, 4, and 5

Reading over the summer is important to prevent a "summer slide." Students who return a completed log will earn a raffle ticket for each page. Additional raffle tickets can be earned for other activities. Click here for the summer reading packet. The raffle prize basket is pictured above!

Sign up for Band and Orchestra

Don't forget to sign up for band or orchestra! All incoming 4th and 5th graders are welcome to sign up. Lessons will begin in September. Please click here to register.

Contact Mrs. Burke (orchestra) or Mr. Olson (band) with any questions you may have.

Mrs. Burke: burkej@garnetvalley.org

Mr. Olson: olsonj@garnetvalley.org

The new schedule for this year is below:

Monday - 4th Orchestra in LGI

Tuesday - 5th Orchestra in LGI, 4th Band in Cafeteria

Wednesday - Wind Ensemble in LGI

Thursday - 5th Band in Cafeteria

Sign Up for Chorus

Every student is invited to join chorus. Singing in chorus gives your child a wonderful opportunity to perform in an ensemble while building upon concepts generated in the general music classroom. We perform two concerts a year, one in the winter and one in the spring.

At the beginning of the school year, parents may go to the online sign up form which will need to be filled out with contact information, student home room and grade level. The information provided will help me communicate with parents regarding rehearsal attendance, performances and other announcements. Students may join in January if they did not join in September.

Morning chorus rehearsal begins after the buses arrive and runs from 8:30 to 8:55 a.m.; students are then dismissed to their homerooms. Chorus rehearsals will not conflict with morning language classes. Students who participate in language class will be dismissed from their class to attend chorus at 8:30 a.m.

PLEASE NOTE: There is absolutely no conflict with orchestra/band lessons and chorus. Instrumental lessons run during the day with ensemble rehearsals after school. More than half of our chorus students also perform in an instrumental ensemble.

Use this link to sign up for chorus.


RadRobots Clubs

Robotics clubs are registering for the fall. Go to www.radrobots.net to see what is available at GVES.
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Voluntary Elementary Foreign Language Studies

Early registration pricing in effect until August 31st. See the flyer below for all the details.
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Connect with GVES! Now Podcasting!

Please connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! If you would like to receive text alerts, please sign up here or text @jaguarmax to 81010. Also, check out our Jaguarmax Radio Podcast on iTunes!

Garnet Valley Elementary School

"A Caring Community of Learners"

Est. 1997

The mission of our learning community is to maximize the potential of all students by empowering them to do their personal best.