Newsletter #9 - October 17, 2022
We hope you enjoyed a restful 3 day weekend, either locally or away from home. This past Friday teachers engaged in all day learning with each other and in their departments, and we are grateful for the opportunity to continue to refine our craft. Thank you on behalf of Medina staff for the Italian inspired lunch on Wednesday. It was so delicious that we didn't get a chance to take a picture!
This past week we also had our first Listening Circle with new to Medina families. Thank you to those who were able to make it to this session. We are including some resources for families below based on the request of some of the participants.
If you are coming to any conferences this week or in the next few weeks, please take some time to look at student work on display in the hallways and bulletin boards. We especially want to highlight the colorful student murals based on Jen Stark art, led by our amazing art teacher Ms. Bena. We look forward to seeing you soon!
Kati & Betty
Unity Day Information
Here are our grade-level themes to recognize Unity Day. Please ask your child when they get home on Wednesday what they did!
Kindergarten - It ROCKS to Be United for Kindness!
1st Grade - Pennants and flags for Unity
2nd Grade - Unity Tree
3rd Grade - "Pumped" Up for Unity Day
4th Grade - Beaded Bracelets for Unity Day
5th Grade – "We All Have a Hand in Uniting Against Bullying"
Spotlight on October Cultural Celebrations
District Observance: Indigenous People’s Month – Focus on the Duwamish, Suquamish, Stillaguamish, and Muckleshoot People.
Monthly Acknowledgement: Learning Disabilities Awareness Month, National Principals Month, Czech Heritage Month , Italian American Heritage and Culture Month, Polish American Heritage Month
- 10/2/2022 – National Custodian Day
- 10/4/2022 – Chongyang Festival/Seniors Festival
- 10/5/2022 – Yom Kippur – Starts at sunset on Oct. 4.
- 10/5/2022 – International Walk to School Day
- 10/7/2022 – Mawlid-al-Nabi
- 10/9/2022 – National Indigenous People’s Day
- 10/9/2022 – Sukkot
- 10/10-10/14/2022 – National School Lunch Week
- 10/11/2022 – World Mental Health Day
For those families engaging in these celebrations, please know that we love learning about how you and your families celebrate. Please share with us the traditions and experiences you have!
Right At School After Care Update
The childcare worker shortage has had a devastating impact in King County, including here in Bellevue. Over the past few months, Right At School educators and workers have gone above and beyond to provide safe and meaningful programs for students in the Bellevue School District. However, as a result of inadequate staffing, they currently find themselves no longer able to continue offering Right At School locations in every BSD elementary school.
As a result, Right At School will temporarily pause both before and after school services in eight BSD elementary schools. These schools include Ardmore, Bennett, Enatai, Medina, Newport Heights, Phantom Lake, Sherwood Forest and Wilburton.
For the past few years, the Right At School Program has aligned with BSD’s strategic priorities and has been committed to providing equitable access to their programs for students in the Bellevue School District. We recognize that the pause of Right at School programs results in challenges for the students and families affected. The BSD and Right At School commit to supporting families through this period and working together to find alternate supports.
Right At School, in partnership with BSD
Frequently Asked Questions
Which schools are affected by the closure of Right At School Programs?
Schools impacted are Ardmore, Bennett, Enatai, Medina, Newport Heights, Phantom Lake, Sherwood Forest, and Wilburton.
Will I receive a refund of my October payment?
Yes. Right At School will apply a refund to the payment method on file to cover the last week of your October payment. For other payment questions, please contact Right At School staff directly.
Why are staffing shortages causing closures of sites?
The childcare worker shortage has had a devastating impact in King County, including here in Bellevue. Right At School has made every attempt to keep programs open and accessible to students in the Bellevue School District. WAC 110-301-0356 identifies school-age program capacity, ratio, and group size. In order to ensure students receive optimum care, and to maintain the ratio required for licensing, Right At School programs cannot be consolidated.
Are there other after school options while Right At School is closed?
The Boys & Girls Club of Bellevue offers on-site after school programs in select BSD elementary schools and off-site locations. Families can learn more about the programs at their nearest Boys and Girls Club on the Project Learn Before & Afterschool Program webpage.
Samena provides before and after school care for children ages 5-12. Programs include daily snacks, swimming, homework club, and group activities. Samena currently provides transportation from Ardmore, Bennett, Cherry Crest, Jing Mei, Lake Hills, Phantom Lake, Sherwood Forest, Spiritridge, Stevenson, and Puesta Del Sol. Families can learn more about the program offered at Samena on the Before & After School webpage.
The Salvation Army’s Eastside Corps provides afterschool program for children ages 5-13. Activities include music programs, educational programs, 1:1 homework help, arts and crafts, computer sessions and daily snacks. Families can learn more about the program through the Salvation Army’s Afterschool Program webpage.
When does the Right At School program hope to reopen at these eight schools?
Right At School will continue their efforts to hire qualified, caring educators. It is of utmost importance for Right At School to operate in a capacity that ensures student safety. Right At School will notify families with an update of their progress once it is available.
Please contact Right At School with questions:
BSD families can also contact district staff by using the Let’s Talk feature and selecting the option for Student Services, Before and After School Childcare.
Fall Celebration Information
If costumes will be a part of the classroom celebration, please keep in mind the following:
- Please do not have anything that looks like blood or gore
- No weapons or plastic toys that look like weapons
- Full face masks or full face paint is not allowed
- Please refrain from using face paint or other material to mimic the skin color of another person, or use the dress of another culture as costume
- Students must put on their costumes over their clothes and be able to take them off before leaving school
There will be no food during the celebrations, including any packaged food to be consumed later. This is to ensure that there is no consumption of food that may cause a health risk to unsuspecting students.
Thank you in advance for your understanding and support of an inclusive school climate and culture.
Family Resources from Elise Geck, Counselor
One of the questions from last week's Listening Circle was a request for resources on how to support our child(ren)'s social-emotional needs.
Here are two resources shared by our counselor that provide some guidance:
This page outlines ways families can help children improve social skills through coaching, modeling, role-playing, environment, and talking. Scroll down for Social Skills Tips and Advice from Experts!
This page refers to the DESSA, which is a tool we use to identify the strengths of our students as related to social and emotional behaviors. Scroll down to find Resources for Students and Families for the following:
- Personal Responsibility
- Goal-Directed Behavior
- Relationship Skills
- Optimistic Thinking
BSD Family Technology Nights
Parents, would you like to learn more about the educational technology your student uses here at BSD? Here is your chance.
BSD K-12 families are invited to attend one of our educational technology information nights to learn:
- How parents can access critical information for your student
- The technology ecosystem your student navigates as a learner
- How BSD protects students online
- How parents can get technology help
This is also an opportunity for parents to share your technology needs. Choose the night and location most convenient for you:
- Tuesday, October 25, 6-7 p.m. at HIGHLAND Middle School
- Tuesday, November 1, 6-7 p.m. at CHINOOK Middle School
- Tuesday, November 8, 6-7 p.m. at TYEE Middle School
- Wednesday, November 16, 6-7 p.m. on TEAMS - Click here to join the meeting.
We look forward to seeing you there.