VES Eagle Express Newletter

OCTOBER 31, 2020 - Volume 14, Issue #12

SY2020-2021: Saturday Weekly Circular

Veterans Elementary

Robert Bruce, Principal -

Amy Green, Assistant Principal -

Kelly Ryan, Administrative Intern -

The office has coverage from 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. on
days when school is in session.
Please call ahead 410-313-1700


They are available to assist you during this time:

Youmi Jun, Principal Secretary -
Jane Pak, Teacher Secretary -
Maria Martinez, Teacher Secretary -
Dulce Boyer, Teacher Secretary .5 -

Send Student Attendance-related notifications directly to:

(i.e. student will be absent due to illness, appointments, religious, or travel obligations)


Para información y apoyo adicionales, por favor, llame al 410-313-1591.

欲知详情或想获得更多支持,请电 410-313-5920.

보다 자세한 문의와 지원을 원하시면, 410-313-1592 로 연락 주시기 바랍니다.

For all other language needs please contact Monica Ranta at 410-313-7102.


Next week is the end of the first quarter. Friday November 6th will also be a day when we end instruction three hours early so that teachers may begin work on report cards for the first quarter. It is crucial that every student and parent have checked their Canvas pages to ensure that all assignments due by the end of the quarter are completed and submitted to the teacher. We ran an announcement about parents checking on this a few weeks ago. Please understand that grades are based on;

  1. Attendance
  2. Completion of synchronous assignments
  3. Completion of asynchronous assignments

While certainly the school system recognizes that some of our families are struggling through this time as well as our staff, we still have guidelines to ensure a fair grading system is in place. While virtual learning is not ideal for most of our students, it is what is in place and therefore I urge all students and parents to make the best of it. The Board of Education will soon be presented with a plan that explains what a "hybrid" model of education may look like in Howard County. Regardless of the methods used each student is asked to commit themselves to learning not for the good of the school but for their own good. When Co-VID is over or we have ways to deal with it, society will continue to function. Our job is to give your children the skills they need to be successful in society. We are trying to do just that. Our teachers and staff are working hard often beyond the average work day to deliver our programs. We expect our students to at least meet us and participate in virtual instruction. Thank you to so many of you who are committed to learning in the worst of circumstances. You are truly SOARING!!!

Be Safe this Halloween

The school system is stressing the need for all students to be safe once again this Halloween. Co-VID 19 has influenced every act in our lives. Trick or Treating is always a risky activity without parent support. Please keep in mind that social distancing and mask wearing is crucial if you are out and about in groups.

School Calendar

Make sure you know important dates on the 2020-2021 Academic Calendar. There are no printed calendars; you may view the online calendar and/or download printable calendar PDFs on our website. The calendar is subject to change.

SY2020-21 HCPSS Calendar list view of Event Dates

November Early Dismissal Schedules

The HCPSS 2020-2021 calendar includes several upcoming 3-hour early dismissal days on: Friday, November 6, Monday, November 23 and Tuesday, November 24. Click on the above link for more detailed information.


National Native American Heritage Month

1 - End of Daylight Savings Time

3 - Schools and Offices Closed: ELECTION DAY (State Mandated Holiday)

6- End of HCPSS 1st Quarter Marking Period

6 - 3-Hour Early Dismissal for Students: Professional Development Day

9 thru 13 - Virtual Spirit Week: Celebrating World Kindness Day

9 - Spirit Day #1: Hats off to Kindness - Wear your favorite Hat
10 - Spirit Day #2: Ride the Kindness Wave - Wear Beach Attire
12 - Spirit Day #3: Kindness Rocks - Dress like a Rock Star

13 - Spirit Day #4: Dream of Kindness - Wear Pajamas

13 - Parent-Teacher Conference scheduling Window Opens via HCPSS ParentConnect

16 - Q1 Report Cards Issued

20 - Parent-Teacher Conference schedulingWindow Closes

23 - 3-Hour Early Dismissal for Students: Parent/Teacher Conferences

24 - 3-Hour Early Dismissal for Students: Parent/Teacher Conferences

25 - School Closed to Students: Parent/Teacher Conferences

26& 27 - Schools and Offices Closed: THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY (State Mandated Holiday)

Important Current Events

HCPSS Connect Online Parent-Teacher Fall Conference Scheduling Window

Opens Nov 13 - 12:01am

Closes Nov 20 - 11:59pm

Fall Conferences will be with Homeroom teachers with the focus on Language Arts.
To schedule conferences, you will need to login to HCPSS Connect.
Here is a link to the HCPSS Connect video on "how to" schedule conference slots:

The link below will help you keep track of a number of things your child experiences on Canvas. One important piece is a way to keep track of assignments due to his or her teacher. Please download and make use of this app.

Parent Canvas Mobile App

To: Parents of Special Needs Population

Recently we announced that Veterans Elementary will soon offer in-person support programs for small groups of HCPSS students. Although you may have expressed interest in having your child participate, we will not be able to include your child in the in-person program/service delivery model at this time. Unfortunately, our ability to offer these programs/services is dependent on staff availability, which is currently not sufficient to meet the level of family interest, and thus we are able to begin transitioning a very limited number of children for this level of face-to-face service and support. We continue to use the survey responses you provided to identify other options for serving additional children in small groups. Again, the availability of staff will help us determine when we can safely open for additional small groups.

As a reminder, any child may interact with their teacher, related services provider, or assigned support staff individually or in small groups at mutually agreed-upon times during the synchronous support times built into the daily school schedule. Please contact your child's case manager to ensure this opportunity.

Please know that we are fully committed to providing services to your child to the greatest extent possible. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me, Amy Green, Kelly Ryan or any other staff member if there is anything else that we can do to help support your child.

Robert C. Bruce
Principal- Veterans Elementary School

From the VES Counseling Department:

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We will be celebrating World Kindness Day by participating in a Kindness Spirit Week!

Monday, November 9: Hats off to Kindness - Wear Your Favorite Hat

Tuesday, November 10: Ride the Kindness Wave - Wear Beach Attire

Thursday, November 12: Kindness ROCKS - Dress like a Rockstar

Friday, November 13: Dream of Kindness - Wear Pajamas

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We are currently in the process of updating our database for families in need.
Please submit all information by Friday, November 20, 2020.

Please let us know if you are interested in receiving food by filling out the google form below. We will try our best to honor your request, however it is not guaranteed. The food pickup location is at St. Peter’s Church in Ellicott City.

Please fill out the Pete’s Packs Sign Up form to receive more information.

Please fill out the google form below if you are in need of gift cards for the holidays. We will put all names in a raffle and you will be notified if you are selected.

Please fill out the Holiday Gift Card Raffle form to be entered.

Mensaje del consejeros escolar:

Nos gustaría saber si su familia necesita apoyar. Por favor envie toda la información antes del viernes 20 de noviembre de 2020.

La iglesia de San Pedro en Ellicott City está proporcionando alimentos a las familias. La familia recogería la comida en la iglesia. Si está interesado en recibir alimentos, completa la encuesta.

Vamos a tener una rifa de tarjetas de regalo para las navideñas. Para una oportunidad para ganar, completa la encuesta.

If you have an immediate need for help with depression, suicidal thoughts, or other serious

mental health issues, please contact:

Grassroots Crisis Intervention at 410-531-6677

The Maryland Crisis Hotline: Dial 211 and then choose option 1

The Crisis Text Line: Text 741741 and a trained counselor will respond.

The National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255

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HCPSS News Subscriptions

HCPSS News emails and text alerts keep families up-to-date on news and events, and delivers real-time notices of emergency closings and information. All HCPSS News subscriptions are generated from the information provided in Family File and have been automatically updated for the 2020-2021 school year.
Parents/guardians new to the system are automatically enrolled for email notification, however must opt in to receive text alerts.

Community News

Please visit the HCPSS website Community News and Programs page for upcoming events and programs sponsored by non-profit organizations.


Virtual Public Hearing: Policy 8090 Non-School-Hour Curricular Programs

The public hearing on Policy 8090 Non-School-Hour Curricular Programs will take place on Thursday, November 5 at 7 p.m. Board meetings are currently held virtually, live on the HCPSS website and on Comcast 95/Verizon 42. Learn about pre-registration and testimony. Register online to testify by Monday, November 2. Specific instructions on testifying virtually will be emailed to each registrant prior to the public hearing.

Project SEARCH Information Session

Tuesday, November 10, 6:30 p.m., Virtual session

Families of youth with disabilities are invited to learn about Project SEARCH, an internship program that prepares young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in their last year of high school for competitive employment.

Changes to Grading and Reporting for 2020-2021

The Board has temporarily modified sections of Policy 8020 Grading and Reporting: Middle and High School to remove final assessments. For .50 courses, the quarter grade will be the final grade. The temporary change will terminate at the end of the 2020-2021 school year.

Board of Education Approves New Equity Policy

The HCPSS Board of Education recently approved the school system’s first equity policy. The purpose of Policy 1080 Educational Equity is to achieve educational equity by establishing expectations related to the identification and elimination of disparities in education outcomes.

Free Student Meals

Grab-and-Go meals are served every day school is in session, Monday through Friday from 8-9 a.m. and 10:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m. and are free of charge for all students and any child under age 18. All meals include breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner. Find details about pre-ordering, weekend meals and more information online.

Google Meet Expectations

To ensure a positive and productive virtual learning experience, it is important that all students and parents/guardians adhere to these Google Meet expectations, and review the virtual instruction responsibilities, expectations and best practices provided online.


PTA Membership Still Open!

JOKE OF THE WEEK: Why is the eagle a bird of many skills?

A: He’s talon-ted! All our Eagles are talented!

Membership still open!

We have 20 new members since last week! Keep those memberships coming! We can do this! You don't even have to volunteer, just joining helps your school!

I bet we can get 50 more memberships by next week! Let's go VES!

Reflections Art Contest Chair Needed

Do you love art and want to manage the annual Reflections contest participants from Veterans Elem school? Reflections is an annual contest run by the National PTA. Students enter at their local PTA level and submit entries in the categories of Dance, Film, Literature, Music, Photography, and Visual Arts. There is a handbook to guide you. This year's theme is "I Matter Because..". Email Cara at if you would like more info about this opportunity.

Spirit Wear Launching Soon!

All your favorite Veterans Elementary gear is launching on our memberhub website NEXT WEEK! Keep an eye out for the link! Great options for gifts for kids, parents, and grandparents! No shipping costs. We will have a drive thru pick up at the school by mid December.

Become a PTA Member:

Follow us on Facebook:

FARMS Applications: Applications for the Free and Reduced Meals program for the school year 2020-2021 are available online in multiple languages and paper copies are available at all meal sites, effective 9/8/20. Please use this document for strategies for increasing FARMs awareness and participation.

COMCAST Internet

To help connect more families to the internet at home, Comcast is offering two months of free internet to new Internet Essential customers. more information

Greetings from your VES School Psychologists!

Welcome back for the 2020-2021 school year. Our school psychologist team at VES has grown this school year. We are here to help you!

Debra Moniodis (School Psychologist, Infants and Toddlers):

Michal Boyars (School Psychologist, RECC):

Katie Burkhouse (School Psychologist, K-5):

Kristen Marsico (School Psychologist Intern, K-5):

School psychologists are available for parent and staff consultation by level. Please reach out via email to schedule an appointment!

HCPSS COUNSELING SERVICES for Students, Families, and Staff

The COVID-19 pandemic has made this an especially stressful time for many, especially those already impacted by mental health concerns. Find information about local and online resources for counseling and mental health supports for you and your family on our website.


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More Than Karate! This after-school program, typically offered by our business partner - Okinawan Karate Dojo - now available ON-LINE on the ZOOM platform! It is the perfect way to keep YOUR CHILD(REN) (ages 6 -10...K-5th) engaged in exercise and character development during this season of limited options for youth! Registration is OPEN, and classes are offered every Wednesday, beginning Wed. Nov 4th. Fun and enjoy this awesome introduction to the benefits of martial arts training! All classes will be held on-line via ZOOM! The Instructors have been teaching on ZOOM for a long time, and have a truly engaging format for classes! The results are AMAZING! So convenient for your family...10 WEEK/class package is only $119. Led by adult Instructors from THE OKINAWAN KARATE DOJO, students will gain improved focus, more respect, and sound self-defense skills! For Information and Registration:; call: 443-574-8999; or email: Also ask about our Virtual School Support program, Dojo During the Day!!


Are you a girl looking to have fun and adventures with new friends? VES Girl Scout troops have openings in all grade levels, and a new kindergarten troop is forming!

For more information, contact Lauren Oviatt at

Cub Scout Pack 305

For information, please contact Heidi Potter at

Please Continue to Return Media Books

A bin is located right inside the front door of our school for book drop off. You don't need to go inside the school, just drop the books off in the bin. We would like for all media books to be returned by November 1st, so we can clear our student accounts and make plans for a possible contactless media book check out later on this year. If you have books from another school, you may drop those off in the bin as well and we will send them to your old school.
If you have any questions, please email your media specialist, or

Howard County Library Resources

  • Created While Isolated: Students ages 13 and up and adults are invited to share photographs, art, music, creative writing, and personal stories from this unprecedented time in acollaborative creativity journal.
  • TumbleMath is a fun and engaging way to learn math concepts through stories. Students can access this and many other learning resources with their A+ student accounts by selecting HC Library.

Send all attendance notes directly to:

During Virtual Learning, attendance will be taken daily by teachers for

Homeroom (.5 day) and Math (.5 day) to account for a full school day.

Each HCPSS school now has an attendance email for parents to send notes pertaining to their child missing any time out from school, even during virtual learning
(ie. sick, appointment, travel, etc.)

Please take the time to review: HCPSS ATTENDANCE POLICY


MOVING into VES: FILLABLE_VES RequestforRecords.pdf
We can assist you to obtain student records from their prior school by filling out the

Request for Records form and emailing it back to the registrar.

MOVING AWAY/ Withdraw from VES: FILLABE_Withdrawal form

Please initiate the process by filling out the HCPSS Withdrawal Form and email it back to the registrar.

Privacy Guidelines for Parents/Guardians

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To maintain a positive, productive learning environment and assure confidentiality for students and teachers during distance learning, all parents/guardians are asked to follow the following privacy guidelines.

  • Google Meet virtual instruction is designed for students. To prevent disruptions to the learning environment, parents/guardians should not actively participate in check-in sessions, although parents/guardians may assist their child with technology and/or remain nearby.
  • Do not video record, audio record, photograph, live stream, or transmit in any other way any part of a Google Meet, including not posting on any social media platform.
  • Any confidential or personally identifiable information related to students participating during Google Meets should not be collected, discussed or shared.
  • Parents/guardians should not engage with students during Google Meets. If you need to speak with your child during a check-in session, first mute your child’s microphone.
  • If a parent/guardian has a question, please email your child’s teacher.

Parents/guardians should email your child’s principal with any questions or concerns regarding privacy or virtual classroom expectations.

Thank you for your support and cooperation in ensuring that distance learning is a positive, productive and enjoyable experience for all participants