Clemens Crossing Cougar Comments

October 21, 2022 - Volume 44, Issue 10

Clemens Crossing Elementary School

Edward Cosentino, Principal

Jaime Gittleson, Assistant Principal

Important Upcoming Dates and Events


  • 21 - Professional Work Day, Schools closed for students
  • 24 - Professional Work Day, Schools closed for students
  • 25 - 4th-grade field trip - Annapolis
  • 28 - Fall Festival Trunk or Treat, 5:00 p.m.
  • 29 - Atholton HS Homecoming parade. CCES students are invited to be in the parade.


  • 2 - End of 1st Quarter - Schools close 3-hours early at 12:45 p.m.
  • 3 - Picture retake and make-up day
  • 7 - Fall Parent-teacher conference scheduling opens, 8:00 a.m. (more info to come)
  • 8 - Election Day, Schools and offices closed
  • 11 - Veterans Day - Wear Red, White & Blue
  • 11 - Report cards issued
  • 14 - World Kindness Day - Wear something with kind words
  • 14 - Fall Parent-teacher conference scheduling closes, 4:00 p.m. (more info to come)
  • 14 - American Education Week 2022 starts - (more info to come)
  • 18 - Bingo Night, 6:30 p.m. in the cafeteria
  • 21 - Parent-teacher conferences - Schools close 3-hours early at 12:45 p.m.
  • 22 - Parent-teacher conferences - Schools close 3-hours early at 12:45 p.m.
  • 22 - Parent-teacher conferences - Schools closed for students
  • 24 - Thanksgiving Holiday - Schools and offices closed
  • 25 - Thanksgiving Holiday - Schools and offices closed

To subscribe to the CCES calendar on your smartphone, electronic device, or email system use the calendar ID

From School Administration

Now that the school year is underway, I want to encourage all families to consider making reading a nightly habit. Research shows that reading to or with your child each evening for as little as 20 minutes has a major impact on your child’s language and literacy development. In the primary grades, a parent reading aloud to their child each evening provides modeling of the appropriate rate, intonation, and fluency that we want all children to aspire to. As children get older, taking turns reading pages in a book is a great way to practice these skills. As children approach middle school, setting aside time where all family members take a break from their busy schedules to read their own selections independently helps solidify the value of reading in everyday life. The benefits of building reading routines at home will go far beyond the classroom and I encourage everyone to make time to read.

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Atholton Homecoming Parade!

Calling all future Atholton High School Raiders! Atholton High School's homecoming is Saturday, October 29. Current Clemens Crossing students are invited to be part of the homecoming parade!

If you are interested, please join us! We will meet in the Hickory Village Center parking lot between 9:30 and 9:45 a.m. The parade is scheduled to run from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. The parade route takes us down Freetown Road, left on Quarterstaff Road, right on Fair Oaks, and into the Atholton High School bus loop. Parents must accompany children.

Picture Retake and Make-up Day

Students' school individual pictures were distributed this past week. If you missed the picture day or would like a retake, Strawbridge photographers will be back at Clemens Crossing on Thursday, November 3.

Please note, school pictures are the largest fundraiser for the school (separate from the PTA). A portion of the money for school pictures goes directly to the school. When teachers need supplemental supplies and materials, Mr. Cosentino uses funds generated from school pictures for those materials.

The following link allows parents to sign up to receive updates via email regarding their child's school portraits. These updates include promotions, additional deals, and the ability to order more pictures at a later time. When entering student information, parents should be sure to enter the student's name as it is on file at the school.

Trunk or Treat

Friday, Oct. 28th, 5pm

10320 Quarterstaff Road

Columbia, MD

At CCES, our Halloween celebration takes place after school hours. We do not have parties or dress up during the school day. Instead, we have a school-wide celebration after school where you can dress up, participate in games, and walk in a parade. Please join us!

PTA Trunk or Treat & Fall Festival

Friday, October 28th, 5:00-7:00 PM @ CCES

Come one, come all for some family fun this Fall! Wear your costume and participate in any or all of the events below. The Fall Festival is free, and Cougar Pumpkin Raffle tickets will be available for purchase ($0.25/each or 5 for $1.00). If you can help in any way, please sign up here. If you plan to attend, just show up – no sign-up required!

5:00-5:45 - FALL FUN

  • Eat (Bring your own dinner or eat before you arrive)
  • Dance in the Monster Mash
  • Create free Kidz Art crafts under the tent
  • Pose for a smile in front of the photo wall
  • Get your ghoul game on near the blacktop
  • Enter the Cougar Pumpkin Raffle for the chance to win a special pumpkin decorated by CCES staff/grade levels! (Kids will have already voted for their favorites in school the week before the Fall Festival!)



  • Parade will begin on the Blacktop, move past the playground, wind onto the field, and will end near the entrance to the parking lot.
  • Parade is for CCES students/siblings & staff (and their kids) only. All other family members are asked to watch.
  • Kids will reunite with their families at the end of the parade for Trunk or Treating!
  • Games, Crafts, Music, etc. will still be open
  • Cougar Pumpkin Raffle winners will be announced at 6:50 PM!


  • All children can participate in Trunk or Treating, regardless of whether their family is bringing a decorated vehicle
  • Children should bring their own bags or buckets to hold treats.

For those bringing a decorated vehicle…

  • Arrive in the parking lot no later than 5:20 PM. Overflow trunk or treating will occur in the bus loop, but the parking lot will be filled first. Only decorated cars will be allowed to park in these areas.
  • Please supply your own candy or some other treat to hand out (non-edible items such as stickers, pencils, small toys, etc. are also fun!)
  • PTA will supplement your treats with donations from families attending the event, but not bringing a decorated vehicle.
  • Make sure an adult is stationed at your vehicle to hand out your treats

For those not bringing a decorated vehicle, but still trunk or treating…
  • You may not park on campus. Instead, please park at the Clemens Crossing Pool, or on Quarterstaff Road/surrounding neighborhoods.
  • Please consider donating a bag of treats to help the cars who are participating! A bin will be available near the parking lot to drop off your donation. Extra treats will be distributed amongst cars participating in Trunk or Treat.

Healthy Habit Tips to Set Your Family Up for Success this Cold and Flu Season

School health sectors, parents, and communities all have similar goals to improve child development. A key component is family engagement to reinforce student health at home and in school. In this Report to Parents, school families can use these healthy habit tips to set up their kids for success this cold and flu season and help stop the spread of illness-causing germs.
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National School Bus Safety Week

School bus transportation plays a critical role in the education of our nation's students, and is the direct link between a neighborhood and the classroom. More than 25 million children ride the yellow bus every school day, and National School Bus Safety Week serves as a reminder for students, parents, teachers, and the community to keep school bus safety in the forefront. Here are tips to keep our children safe at the bus stop.

Getting Ready for School

• Have your children put everything they carry in a backpack or school bag so that they won’t drop things along the way.

• Encourage them to wear bright, contrasting colors so they will be more easily seen by drivers.

• Make sure children leave home on time so they can arrive at the bus stop before it is due, ideally at least five minutes early. Running after or in front of a bus is dangerous.

Walking to the Bus Stop

• Walk young children to the bus stop or encourage children to walk in groups. There is safety in numbers; groups are easier for drivers to see.

• Practice good pedestrian behavior: walk on the sidewalk, and if there is no sidewalk stay out of the street. If you must walk in the street, walk single file, face traffic and stay as close to the edge of the road as you can.

• Stop and look left, right and then left again if you must cross the street. Do the same thing at drive -ways and alleys. Exaggerate your head turns and narrate your actions so your child knows you are looking left, right and left.

At the Bus Stop

• Have children wait in a location where the driver can see them while driving down the street. Try to avoid waiting in a house or car.

• Do not let children play in the street. Playing with balls or other toys that could roll into the street is also dangerous.

Getting On and Off the Bus

• Warn children that if they drop something getting on and off the bus, they should never pick it up. Instead, they should tell the driver and follow the driver’s instructions.

• Remind children to look to the right before they step off the bus.

• If you meet your child at the bus stop after school, wait on the side where the child will be dropped off, not across the street. Children can be so excited to see you after school that they dash across the street and forget the safety rules.

CCES Read-a-thon 2022

Let's Get Reading CCES!

Our annual PTA Read-a-Thon is underway and runs through Halloween! Mrs. Rausch's homeroom is currently leading in minutes logged, followed closely by Ms. Alban's and Mrs. Addy's! 7 homerooms have started submitting minutes with over 1000 minutes logged so far! The homeroom with the most reading minutes logged will earn prizes plus a $100 gift card for their teacher! Visit the PTA Read-a-thon website ( for more info, to log your student's minutes, donate, and find the secret activity from Mrs. Greene and the Media Center worth a bonus 60 minutes!

How does it work?

Make reading goals--how many minutes can your students spend reading between now and Halloween?!? Log your student's reading at the PTA readathon website. The homeroom with the most minutes logged at the end of the month will earn a $100 gift card (teacher's choice) for their teacher and prizes for each student!


Families, please consider asking friends and family to sponsor your child's reading goals with a donation to the CCES PTA. 100% of the proceeds go back to the school!

Parent-Teacher Conference Registration Opens Nov. 7

Registration opens at 8 a.m., Monday, Nov. 7 for fall conferences, which will be held Monday, Nov. 21 in person and Tuesday, Nov. 22-Wednesday, Nov. 23 virtually. Details and directions on how to register are available online.

News from the Media Center:

Mrs. Greene has pledged to read Nigel and the Moon by Antwan Eady to the entire school between October 20 - 27, 2022 as part of #ReadForTheRecord! This event brings millions of adults and children together to read and raises awareness about the importance of #earlyliteracy.

Dream Big!

Together, we can help Jumpstart bring high-quality children's books to underserved communities and foster a love of reading in children across the U.S.

Learn more at

Attention all 5th Grade Battle of the Books Interested Participants!

Here are the slides from the information meeting that was held October 12, 2022: BOB Info Slideshow

Please also note the following important dates, all found on the HC Library Website:

Mon. Oct 24 Registration OPENS at 10 am and remains open until capacity is reached or November 6 at 11:59 pm, whichever comes first.

Tues. Nov 15 Mandatory coach meeting via Zoom (recorded) OR

Weds. Nov 16 (new date) - Mandatory Coach Meeting at Miller Branch (in person)

Nov 16 (new date), 18, 19 - Book pick-ups at HCLS Miller Branch (registration required)

Mon. Feb 6 Permission forms due and last day to change team info


Announcing the Young Author's Contest

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October 27 – GT Education Program Information Nights

HCPSS families interested in the G/T Education Program are invited to come learn about the advanced-level offerings available and how their students can become involved. The evening will begin with an overview of G/T Education Program offerings and will be followed by a question-and-answer session with Central Office G/T Education Program staff.

Secondary Focus: Thursday, October 27, 7 – 8:00 pm virtually via Microsoft Teams

For more information, including how to register for the sessions, please refer to this HCPSS News announcement.

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PTA - Parent Teacher Association


Don't forget to renew your annual PTA membership, or join if you haven't already:

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National PTA Reflections Creative Arts Recognition Program

The National PTA Reflections Arts Recognition Program is a program designed to inspire and celebrate your kid’s creativity. To participate, students create a piece of art in any of 6 different categories that reflect this year’s theme, Show Your Voice! Every student who enters receives a certificate celebrating their work! Each artwork is evaluated on an interpretation of the theme, creativity, and artistic merit. Reflections is not just for “artsy” kids- it’s for EVERY kid!

HOW TO ENTER: Reflect on the theme “Show Your Voice!” and create an original work in one (or more!) of the following categories (click on the hyperlinks for more information about each):

  1. Fill out an Entry Form, and be sure to include your Artist’s Statement, which is how you feel that your artwork connects to the theme (this is 50% of your score from the judges).

  2. Turn in your artwork and entry form to the office at Clemens Crossing by Tuesday, November 29, 2022! OR, if your submission is electronic, please email it to me:

Artwork will be judged in 3 categories:

Entries will be reviewed by experienced arts and education judges. All participants will be celebrated with certificates of participation, the top three entries will receive ribbons and the first-place entry will receive a medal. The top three entries in each category will move on to the Howard County Reflections Contest; the top three County entries will move on to the Free State Reflections Contest, and State winners in each category will compete in the National PTA Reflections Contest.

EVERY artwork will be celebrated!


Contact Risa Carlson, Reflections Chair




The following announcements have been approved by the Public Information Office for distribution.