TES Family News

Monday 9/13/2021

Principal's Message

Thank you for supporting all our efforts as we work to provide in-person instruction in a safe and manageable way. We continue to be off to a great start to the school year. Students are regularly engaged in a variety of learning tasks and expectations. I recently challenged all students to make Cougar Commitments. These commitments are to help them set learning goals as well as ways to help make our school better. The commitments I have asked students to make also relate to our R.O.A.R. characteristics and Habits of Work expectations. I wish for students to set a goal and push themselves to meet or exceed those goals. Thank you for also supporting us as we develop these skills and characteristics.

Remember, in the last TES Family Newsletter I shared that R.O.A.R stands for Responsibility – Organized – Academic - Respectful. To help further our work in developing our R.O.A.R characteristics, we have started to discuss the Habits of Work with our students. You will begin to see a lot of information come home to you about these habits. The Habits of Work include; Perseverance, Self-Advocacy, Social Responsibility and Learner Agency.

We shared some important messages last week as we moved closer to the 20th anniversary of September 11th. As you may know, in the spirit of service that by joint resolution of the U.S. Congress on Dec. 18, 2001, September 11 was designated as Patriot Day. I made sure to connect the message of how our country pulled together as one after that fretful day to how we on a smaller scale at Thurmont Elementary can pull together to make our school better each day. We can honor that day in a way that allows us to demonstrate cooperation, collaboration, courage and respect for one another. I know that through our Cougar Commitments and the work students do each and every day, we will achieve the goal of making our school the best that it can be.

Our focus on student wellness is some of the most important work we do each day. It is grounded in the policies and regulations which ensure we provide a safe, stable and nurturing environment. The TEPS Family handbook outlines general FCPS information, health and safety, home and school communication, special services and school specific information.



As always, we are here to support your child and family. Please contact the school with any questions or needs.

Yours in education,

Karl Williams


Thurmont Elementary


Thurmont Elementary School, in partnership with Sandy Hook Promise, a national, nonprofit organization led by several family members whose loved ones were killed in the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School is taking part in Start With Hello Week during September 20th – 24th. Thurmont Elementary will have several special guests that will visit our school and greet students as they arrive.

Start With Hello teaches students how to reach out to and include those who may be socially isolated as well as to create a culture of inclusion and connectedness within their school or youth organization.

Start With Hello Week brings attention to the growing epidemic of social isolation

in our schools and communities and empowers young people to create a culture of inclusion and connectedness within their school or youth organization.


Thurmont Elementary & Primary Schools (TEPS) are still looking for individuals who want to help re-establish our PTA. The PTA provides support to students, staff and our community in many ways such as...

  • planning family fun events like donuts with grownups and the fall festival
  • supporting school sponsored events like the book fair
  • organizing spirit wear fundraisers
  • providing funds to support literacy, mathematics, STEM and more
  • offering staff reimbursement for classroom expenses

If you are interested in supporting TEPS with a role in the PTA please contact karl.williams@fcps.org

FCPS to update Health Metrics Dashboard twice per week

Frederick County Public Schools will begin updating its health metrics dashboard twice per week in order to provide families with more recent data on the prevalence of COVID-19 in the community.

The dashboard will now be updated by noon on Mondays and Wednesdays. The first Wednesday update will be September 8.

In February, FCPS introduced the health metrics dashboard to give the community an opportunity to track COVID-19 cases that are reported to FCPS. Those cases are broken down by school buildings.

The health metrics dashboard also includes:

  • Frederick County metrics compiled by the Frederick County Health Department, including COVID-19 test positivity rates.
  • Maryland school outbreaks, compiled by the Maryland Department of Health.

Health & Safety Resources

As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic we know there are ongoing questions related to how we are keeping our schools safe for fully in person learning. FCPS has provided the resources below to assist families in understanding how we respond to individuals who are symptomatic, those who test positive and those who are identified as close contacts. Please review these resources which outline our systemic response protocols.

· Contact Tracing & Quarantine Video

· COVID-19 Response Sheet in English

· COVID-19 Response Sheet in Spanish

· Contact Tracing and Close Contact Information in English

· Contact Tracing and Close Contact Information in Spanish

Back to School Frequently Asked Questions

Health Room Contact Information

Any questions, concerns and/or needs related to your child(ren)'s health can be directed to our health room. Please contact our health room staff at:

  • Thurmont Elementary Health Room- 240-236-0932
  • Thurmont Primary Health Room - 240-236-2806

Our school nurse and/or health tech is available to support you!

Visitor Information

As we continue to prioritize the health and safety of all those in our school community, we share the following information regarding visitation:

  • All FCPS schools will ask for parents to "kiss and go" during drop off at school. Parents, or other family members, will not be permitted to escort students to their classroom.
  • If/when you have an in person appointment at the school please ring the doorbell, answer the screening questions posted on the front door and report to the main office for assistance.
  • Bring a photo ID with you any time you are visiting the school.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we work to maintain health and safety during our full in person reopening!

Free and Reduced Meal Applications

All families should have received a Free and Reduced Meal Benefits Application form with their child's teacher/class assignment letter. We ask for the form to be returned. Even if you think you will not qualify for meal benefits, or do not plan on accessing them, the information you provide can still help our school to access funding for materials, resources, and more.

Additional information, online application and printable application forms are included below...

Bus Information

Bus stop information is at https://www.fcps.org/transportation/bus-stop-information-online.

Please visit the website to look up your child's bus number and pickup/drop off times. Check periodically to confirm the times as there could be changes.

If you need support regarding transportation, please call the school at 240-236-0900.


  • Thursday, Sept. 16 - Schools Closed
  • Tuesday, Sept. 21 - TES School Picture Day
  • Thursday, Sept. 23 - 2-Hour Early Dismissal
  • Friday, Sept. 24 - 3.5-Hour Early Dismissal
  • Tuesday, Oct. 12 - Parent-Teacher Conferences - Schools Open 4 hrs late
  • Wednesday, Oct. 13 - Parent-Teacher Conferences - Schools Open 4 hrs late
  • Thursday, Oct. 14 - Parent-Teacher Conferences - Schools Close 3.5 hrs early
  • Friday, Oct. 15 - Schools Closed
  • Tuesday, Oct. 26 - Schools Closed