Wilder Elementary School

Parent Newsletter - December 2021

Greetings from Wilder Elementary School!

December Greetings!

We have just 3 weeks of school remaining in 2021. The last day of school before Christmas is Tuesday, December 21. But, we have much happening before then! The Choir, Band, and Orchestra concert is set for Monday, December 13 at 6:00 PM. This involves students who are part of these groups. On Thursday, December 16 at 6:00 PM, Mrs. Hepper will lead our 2nd graders in a special holiday program. Look for information to come from the directors of these programs.

Trimester 1 is now behind us. Report Cards will be emailed to parents on Friday, December 3.

Thanks to all parents for your cooperation with our Covid protocols. We appreciate that you keep your kids home if they are experiencing symptoms that could be Covid related. Your child also needs to stay home from school if there is a positive case in your household. Click the link "ND Covid 19 School Attendance Guidance" for specific directions on this.

I hope this finds you and your famliy well. Thanks for all the ways you support your child's learning at Wilder. We appreciate you!


Leslie Wiegandt


Upcoming Dates

Please take note of these important upcoming dates!


Wednesday, December 1 - Early Dismissal - SCHOOL OUT at 1:30 pm

Monday, December 13 6:00 PM- Wilder's Music Program Concert

(Band, Orchestra, Choir)

Wednesday, December 15 - Early Dismissal - SCHOOL OUT at 1:30 pm

Thursday, December 16. 6:00 PM - 2nd Grade Music Program

Wednesday, December 22 through Sunday, January 2 - Winter Break - NO SCHOOL


Monday, January 3 -- SCHOOL RESUMES

Tuesday, January 11 - PTO Meeting 6:00 - 7:00 pm

Meet via Zoom: Click Here

Wednesday, January 12 - Early Dismissal - SCHOOL OUT at 1:30 pm

Monday, January 17 - MLK Day - NO SCHOOL- Professional Development

Wednesday, January 26 - Early Dismissal - SCHOOL OUT at 1:30 pm

A Note from the PTO

At our November meeting we discussed our coupon book fundraiser which brought in approximately $4,000. Thanks for participating! We also want to thank our book fair and American Education Week volunteers. Thank you for your time and treats, Kayla Hoff, Sonja Brandt, Amanda Vingelen, Jen Ekberg, Christina Frank, Sarah Prescott, and Gretchen Kindseth.

Kirsten Zachman-Schomer was the DQ gift card winner for attending our PTO November meeting. Mr. O'Connor's 4th grade and Mrs. Johnson's 1st grade classes had two or more family members in attendance at our November PTO meeting, and Mr. O'Connor's class won the drawing for a class pizza party! PTO will be meeting again in January, so come one and come all to learn about what we are doing for Wilder and how you can help, as well as for a chance for you to win a DQ gift card and your student's classroom to win an ice cream party.

The next Wilder PTO Meeting on Tuesday, January 11th from 6-7pm! We will meet via Zoom: Click Here

Enjoy your winter break and see you in 2022!

Sonja Brandt, President

Amanda Vingelen, Vice President

Cindy Prescott, Secretary

Tim Prescott, Treasurer

PTO Members: All parents/guardians, teachers, and staff of Wilder Elementary

Contact: wilderelementarypto@gmail.com or Wilder PTO on Facebook

Early Release Days

Grand Forks Public Schools has determined a number of early release days to allow for teacher collaboration time. Wilder Elementary School is committed to providing the instruction and support needed for all students to achieve high levels of academic success. This collaboration schedule and what we do during this valuable time is vital to that commitment.


December 15

January 12 and 26

February 9

March 23

April 6 and 20

May 4 and 18

On early release Wednesdays, students who are walking home or being picked up will dismiss from Door #4 promptly at 1:30 pm. Please plan accordingly.

Students enrolled in ENCORE's Early Out Club will report to their designated attendance location at Wilder at 1:30 pm.

Early Out Club will dismiss at 3:00 pm. Parents (of children not also enrolled in Encore) are to come to Door #1 (parking lot door) and sign their child out.

Pre-Kindergarten Readiness Opportunity

Waterford Upstart helps 4-year-olds develop the skills they need for kindergarten. This program is funded through a federal grant and is aligned to North Dakota Early Learning Standards. To date, over 600 children in North Dakota have participated in the program.

The program takes 15 minutes per day, five days a week. During that time, the child receives a personalized lesson in reading or math and science. Each family is assigned a coach to assist. Computers are provided as part of the program, and Internet service is included if the home does not have it.

Waterford Upstart is available at no cost to children in North Dakota the year before they enter kindergarten. To register:

  • Visit waterfordupstart.org/register and complete the entire form or call 1-888-982-9898 Monday through Friday 7 a.m. - 7 p.m. and Saturdays 7 a.m. - 4 p.m. Central Time.

  • Visit mentor.waterford.org and click “Sign up” to create a new account.

  • Complete orientation online through Waterford Mentor. It will be in the “Training” tab.

Please note: registration will close at 7 p.m. on Friday, December 17, 2021.

If you have any questions, please call 1-888-982-9898.

Thank you,

Dr. Terry Brenner, superintendent, Grand Forks Public Schools

Dr. Brenda Lewis, assistant superintendent of elementary education, Grand Forks Public Schools

GFPS School Cancellation and Postponement Procedures

School postponement and cancellation alternatives will be as follows:

  • a. Hold school as normal
  • b. Open school but delay sending buses
  • c. Delay the start time in all schools by two (2) hours based on each school’s start time
    • Elementary School: Start time is 8:25, so school would start at 10:25. Doors will open at 10:15 a.m.
    • Middle School: Start time is 8:40, so school would start at 10:40. Doors will open at 10:30 a.m.
    • High School: Start time is 8:00, so school would start at 10:00. Doors will open at 9:50 a.m.
    • Head Start: Start time is 8:00, so school would start at 10:00. Doors will open at 9:50 a.m.
    • When school starts late, there will be no morning Early Childhood Special Education classes. Afternoon Early Childhood Special Education classes will be held.
    • Breakfast will not be served at any sites.
  • d. No school in Grand Forks Public Schools all day
  • e. No school for the Grand Forks Air Force Base School District students all day
    • Decisions related to the weather-related delayed opening or closing of air base schools may not always be consistent with those made for in-town schools. On those days when severe weather makes travel conditions so hazardous as to threaten the safety of staff members, opening delays or the closing of base schools will be given special consideration.
  • f. Once school is in session, it will not be terminated until the regular closing time except in very severe situations. However, school buses may leave early. Radio and TV stations will be used to notify parents.

The decision to close or delay school will be made as early as possible. Announcements will be made on the District webpage (www.gfschools.org), and District social media (www.facebook.com/GrandForksPublicSchools; www.twitter.com/GFSchools). Announcements will also be made on local radio and TV stations.

Grand Forks Public Schools will be using our Automated Calling system to call staff and parents if school will be delayed or cancelled due to severe weather conditions. Typically, this automated call will occur to staff between 5:30 a.m. and 6:00 a.m., and to parents between 6:30 a.m. and 7:00 a.m.

Parents or guardians may always exercise their right to keep students home or pick them up early during stormy conditions.

If an emergency situation should develop during the time school is in session, children will be cared for in school until the storm has subsided.

If buses are sent home early, all buses will be sent.

  • a. Radio and TV stations will make the announcement of the departure time.
  • b. The lead-time needed for the procedure is approximately one (1) hour.
  • c. If conditions are dangerous, bus drivers must use common sense in discharging students that must walk a considerable distance. If possible, use the radio and contact the base station. Have parents meet the bus or be on the lookout for their children. If the driver is unable to contact parents and conditions are dangerous, do not let students off the bus but return to school and notify the principal. Schools that have bus students must have a written procedure for caring for students in the event they must be kept overnight at school.

Updated 9/30/2019

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Parents Lead: Substance Use Prevention Tips

Help children separate reality from fantasy. Watch shows or movies with them and ask lots of questions to reinforce the distinction between the two. Remember to include advertising in your discussions, as those messages are especially powerful. Source: https://drugfree.org/

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