Black Bear Bits

February 16, 2023

Important Dates

2/19: No School - President's Day

2/21: 5th Grade Tribute order forms DUE

2/21: PTA meeting 7:00 p.m.

2/25: Garden Work Party 9:00 - 11:00 a.m.

2/27: Memory Book order forms DUE

2/27: Spirit Week - Read my Shirt Day

2/28: Spirit Week - Be Green Day

3/1: No School - Teacher PD Day

3/1: Spirit Week- No School - PJ Day

3/2: Spirit Week - Wacky Day

3/2: 2nd Grade Music Performance 6:30 -7:00 p.m.

3/3: Spirit Week - Hat Day

3/3: Kindergarten Book Character Day

3/6-3/17: Packed with Pride Food Drive

In this Edition

  • Message from the Principal
  • School Community Need
  • Site Council News
  • Kindergarten Registration
  • Memory Book Orders Due Soon
  • Memory Book Tributes
  • Parking Lot Expectations
  • PTA Meeting and Volunteer Needs
  • News from the Garden--Garden Work Party
  • Golden Sneaker Award
  • Read Across America Spirit Week
  • Packed with Pride Food Drive
  • Celebrating Staff (photo gallery)
  • 5th Grade ELL testing
  • 2nd Grade Music Performance
  • Help Bridge the Gap
  • Memory Book Photo Submissions
  • Health Room Clothing Needed
  • Art Rutkin Elementary Open Enrollment
  • Flu and Covid Information
  • Volunteering at Tualatin Elementary
  • Important Links

Message from the Principal

Black Bear Families,

Safety was on our mind on Friday after the news from Tigard High School.

I want to assure you that we are adhering to the safety protocols put into place by TTSD. That includes our new-ish vestibule that serves as our gateway into the school. Keeping our second set of doors in the vestibule locked at all times provides a necessary safety measure preventing access to anyone who enters. Additionally, all of our exterior doors remain locked at all times, including classroom doors that open to the outside. The only exception is our front doors, that get propped open at arrival and dismissal, but we always have staff present in those cases. In our office, we have emergency buttons that control our ability to lockdown the school in a moment’s notice, and we have direct connections with our SRO that supports our school.

You also play a role in helping keep our campus safe. At arrival and dismissal, keep a watchful eye on our surroundings and let us know if you see anything questionable. Continue to keep a respectful distance by standing near the flagpole, allowing us a clear view to match up parents and students. Enter our parking lot respectfully, and be observant not only to other cars but students and families that are walking through. Working together, we can keep our school safe.

I also wanted to share with the community that Friday was the last day of our first grade teacher, Mrs. Gibson. Sadly, she needed to resign her position due to unforeseen health reasons. We will miss her positive attitude and literacy expertise she brought to our school. An announcement about our new teacher is coming soon.

Be sure to join us at our first garden work party of 2023 on Saturday, February 25th, from 9:00 -11:00 a.m. Refreshments and tools provided. Bring family, friends, and water bottles. Plan to get dirty. We will be weeding, pruning and spreading mulch to get our garden beds ready for Spring planting.

As always, thank you for all that you do to support the learning of our little Black Bears.

Working with you for our kids,


School Community Need

We are sad to report the passing of three year old Abraham Torres Hernandez over our Winter Break. The Torres Hernandez family has been a part of our community for the past decade. In order to assist the family, we’ve created a Go fund me for the family, and are sharing the link with our community to help cover expenses. Thank you for your consideration!

Join Tualatin Elementary Site Council!

Hello Families,

Site Council is looking for new parent members! What is Site Council you ask? The Tualatin Elementary Site Council is a group of teachers, parents and classified staff who work with the principal to develop, review and evaluate school improvement programs and make recommendations for how to use our school resources. Our Site Council’s main goal is to increase student achievement by improving instructional programs, plan professional development and foster family involvement. We also discuss school needs, enrichment opportunities and grant funding. Our Site Council meets each month after school from 2:45-3:30.

If you are interested in joining Site Council please email Amy Barnes the Site Council Chair at

We look forward to new parents joining Site Council.

Big picture

Kindergarten Registration

Kindergarten registration for 2023-24 is open! A child must be 5 years old on or before September 1, 2023, to enter Kindergarten for the 2023-2024 School year. Online registration and more information about Kindergarten can be found here. We also have staff at the building who can help with registration. Please contact the office (503-431-4800) or Ana Uriostegui (503-431-4767) for assistance.

There will be a Kindergarten Kick off on May 25th, where families can meet teachers, tour the school, take a bus ride, and more! Information will be sent to families in May.

Memory Book Orders Due SOON!

Memory Books are on sale NOW for $20 each! Order forms went home with students and xtra order forms can be found in the office. You can also pre-order online:; enter school code: 709558.

Our pre-sales campaign (which reserves a memory book for your child) ends on Feb 27th. After this date we cannot guarantee that there will be enough memory books for everyone who wants one.

Memory Book Tributes - 5th Grade Parents

5th Grade Parents – There are only a few days left to write your 5th grader a special tribute. Written tributes are $10 for 50 words and must be purchased and written by Tuesday, February 21st.

Tribute order forms were sent home with the memory book order forms and extras can be found in the office or in the Black Bear Bits. You can also email your tributes to

If you order a 5th grade tribute, you can just write one check for $30 ($20 for the memory book + $10 for the tribute).

Parking Lot Expectations

Unfortunatly, we are having situations in our parking lot that could potentially put our students at risk. Please make note of the following:

  • Please do not use the back parking lot to pick up or drop off your students. There is no room to safely turnaround or back up and students walk through that parking lot to get home.
  • If you are dropping off or picking up your student, please remain in the car lane unless you are parking and getting out of your car to meet your student in the grassy area. It is unsafe for you to drive around other cars in line and pull up in front of them.
  • Please follow all traffic laws around the school. If turning left into the front parking lot, please use the turn lane. Please do not pass cars on the right side in the bike lane and do not park your car and leave it in the line on 95th Ave.

If, on rare occasion, you have somewhere to be after school and are concerned that you will be late if you have to wait in the car line, please feel free to call the office and arrange for your student to leave early if necessary.

Big picture

PTA Meeting and Important Volunteer Needs

Join the PTA on Tuesday, February 21, at 7:00 p.m. for their monthly meeting.

The PTA is also looking for volunteers to fill important board positions next year. This year, your PTA has brought you a variety of events and raised funds for our school that were used for field trips, supplies, our garden, and more. However at the end of this year some of our amazing committee heads are moving on, along with our PTA President and other board members. If we would like to continue to provide the same level of support to our students and teachers next year, we need parents to volunteer for these PTA Board and Committee positions. If the committee head positions are not filled, the events will not happen next year. If the board positions - especially President - are not filled, NO events will happen in the future at all. Please help us continue to support our students and teachers by volunteering just a few hours of your time. The more volunteers we have the stronger the next year will be!

Available positions include: President, Treasurer, VP Fundraising, and VP Communications. Open Committee Chair positions: Fun Run, Boo Hoo Woo Hoo, Harvest Festival, Back-to-School Night, Winter Holiday, Read-a-thon, Auction, 5th Grade Promotion Celebration, Art Lit Co-Chair, Membership and Child Care Coordinator.


Our school garden is a treasure to behold! Please make it a part of your life here at Tualatin Elementary.

  • Explore our native plant area.

  • Discover seasonal changes.

  • Help us prepare for spring planting.

  • Like us on Facebook @TualatinElementaryGarden

Our first garden work party of the year is coming soon! Join us Saturday, February 25, from 9:00-11:00 a.m.. Refreshments and tools provided. Bring family, friends, and water bottles. Plan to get dirty. We will be weeding, pruning and spreading mulch to get our garden beds ready for planting.

We also would love to have more committee members to help us keep our garden sustainable. Please contact Paul Taylor ( or Pam Soderquist ( to find out more.

See you in the garden!

Big picture

Walk + Roll to School--Golden Sneaker Award

In total, five elementary schools participated with over 1,290 total students who chose to walk, bike, roll, or bus to school. That means that over 51% of students at participating schools travelled to school without a car!

And now for the Golden Awards! We have awards for the schools with the largest percentage of walkers, the largest percentage of rollers (bike/scooter/wheelchair/etc), and the largest percentage of bus users. Without further ado (drum roll)…

Winter 2023 Golden Awards

Golden Sneaker Award: Tualatin Elementary

Golden Roller Award: Metzger Elementary

Golden School Bus: Deer Creek Elementary

Big picture

Read Across America Spirit Week

To celebrate Read Across America we are having a spirit week-

  • Monday 2/27 - Read My Shirt Day - "Wear a Shirt with Words!"
  • Tuesday 2/28 - Be Green Day - "Wear green or colors of the Earth!"
  • Wednesday 3/1 - No School, PJ Day - "Read in your PJ's!"
  • Thursday 3/2 - Wacky Day - "Wear wacky socks or mismatch clothes!"
  • Friday 3/3 - Hat Day - "Wear your favorite hat!"


NEA’s Read Across America is the nation’s largest celebration of reading. This year-round program focuses on motivating children and teens to read. When people make the time to read with children, children get the message that reading is important. Parents, members of your community, and local celebrities who make time to read at monthly or annual Read Across America celebrations help motivate kids to read and celebrate the diversity in their community and our country.

Read what parents can do to engage in Read Across America

Packed with Pride Food Drive

Tualatin Elementary Den leaders are heading up a food drive in support with Packed with Pride Food Drive happening, March 6th-17th.

Packed with Pride was developed by the foundation for Tigard Tualatin schools to provide food boxes to families impacted by the pandemic. Due to the need Packed with Pride continues to provide food to families. To do this they need the support of families and the community.

Items most in need-

  1. Peanut Butter
  2. Canned Sauces
  3. Soups/ Tuna Fish
  4. Rice and Pasta
Canned items appreciated- No glass of any kind.

Thank you for making a difference in our community- We could not do this without you!

Celebrating Tualatin Elementary Staff

5th Grade ELL Testing

Our 5th grade ELL students will be taking ELPA February 21-24. Please help them prepare by ensuring they get a good night's rest and eat a healthy breakfast.

Nuestros estudiantes ELL de 5to grado tomarán ELPA del 21 al 24 de febrero. Ayúdelos a prepararse asegurándose de que descansen bien por la noche y coman un desayuno saludable.

Second Grade Music Performance

Don't miss our second grade music performance on March 2, 2023 from 6:30-7:00 p.m. They've been working hard putting together a fun show!

Big picture

Help Bridge the Gap for our Students!

The Foundation for Tigard Tualatin Schools (FTTS) annual Fund Drive is happening now! Donations from the drive help enrich our students' education. Your donations hire part-time teachers, support innovative teaching ideas and provide college scholarships.

The goal is to raise $75,000 during this year's Fund Drive! That will put the Foundation on track to give each school a $10,000 check for their School Grant, to be used to fund teacher hours that will bridge their most pressing instructional gap. More teachers, more learning!!

Check out all the ways that The Foundation for Tigard Tualatin Schools has helped Tualatin Elementary and donate today!

NEW! Memory Book Photo Submissions

Photo Submissions - Deadline March 5th, 2023 - Please see below for specifics on the photo submissions we are now accepting and note our submission deadline date of March 5th, 2023. Your contributions will help make this year's Memory Book extra special!

We are accepting the following photos:

Art Lit*

Spirit Week/Days (Hat Day, PJ Day, etc)*

Kinder & 1st Grade Music Informances*

Classroom Field Trips


Walk & Roll Day

Are you volunteering in the school?...what a wonderful opportunity for you to document school happenings while our memory book volunteers can't be there. Please snap some pics and send them our way.

Please send your photo submissions to AND label with the following information: student's grade, teacher's name, student's first and last name and the name of the activity, i.e. 2nd grade, Fossati, John Smith, First Day of School.

Have other memory book questions, please reach out to Ashley Young at

Health Room Clothing Needed

Did you sort through clothes over Winter Break? Do you have gently-used clothing that you are planning to donate? Please keep the health room in mind. We are especially short on small (sizes 5-8) elastic-waist pants and underwear, although we are happy to accept all sizes! (And remember--for tax purposes, this may be an "in-kind" donation to the school!)

Art Rutkin Elementary Enrollment Open

TTSD’s newest elementary school is almost complete. Enrollment for Art Rutkin Elementary is open for the 2023-2024 school year. Please direct any questions or needs for information to Jamie Kingery, Art Rutkin Elementary principal,, 503 431-3508.

Art Rutkin Elementary website

Art Rutkin Elementary School boundary map

Frequently Ask Questions

Big picture

Flu and Covid Season is here!

With colder weather, comes more opportunity to spread cold, flu, and Covid-19 germs. We are seeing all three at Tualatin Elementary and ask you to do your part by following these recommendations:

  • Please monitor carefully for the following primary COVID and Flu symptoms, and keep your student home if they exhibit any of the following:
    • Cough

    • Temperature of 100.4 or higher

    • Shortness of breath

    • New loss of taste or smell

    • Fatigue

    • Muscle or body aches

    • Headache

    • Sore throat

    • Nasal congestion or runny nose

    • Nausea or vomiting

    • Diarrhea

  • Please contact the school for assistance with the following:
    • Information on testing – We have at-home tests available at the school

    • If you test positive for COVID-19

    • If you have questions regarding symptoms and exclusions

  • Wash hands often, especially after coming in contact with body fluids. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer
  • Cover coughs and sneezes

Where Can I Get a Flu Shot?

The Washington County website has a list of locations offering the Flu Shot and other Vaccinations.

Where Can I Get a Covid Vaccine or Booster?

Volunteering at Tualatin Elementary

We love our volunteers and are excited to welcome you back into the building this year! To volunteer at Tualatin, please follow the steps below. When your application is completed, you'll receive an email from the front office and you'll be able to schedule volunteer time at the school.

All volunteers must complete the checklist below to volunteer

Masks will be optional in the building for volunteers that are vaccinated. We ask that if you are sick or have any symptoms, that you postpone your volunteering until you are well.

Volunteers with a vaccine exception on file will be required to:

  • Wear a mask while on TTSD property OR;

  • Be given a rapid test at the time and location of their volunteer assignment.

Please contact Amanda Thorderson ( or 503-431-4800) with any questions.

Breakfast and Lunch Menus

subject to supply chain disruptions

Titan Website

Pay for meals, see the school menu, apply for free and reduced lunch

Black Bear Bits Archive

Did you miss a past edition of the Black Bear Bits? Read them here!

Sign up for Flash Alert

Get information on school closures and delays.

2022-2023 TTSD Approved Calendar

See the approved calendar for the school year.