Panther Pride STEM School

Achievement: Every Student Matters, Every Moment Counts

November Newsletter

A message from Pinello’s Administrative Team:

We have been so excited to see all our Pinello families joining us for PTO meetings, academic nights and conferences. Please make sure to contact the front office if you are not receiving notifications from the school via the Remind software. We want to make sure you are up-to-date on events and activities at the school.

Visit our website for information about our Social Emotional Learning program, Capturing Kids’ Hearts including a monthly newsletter.


Soon we will be sending home a survey for parents connected to our Capturing Kids Hearts program. Pinello will be going for National Showcase status, and parent surveys are a part of the process.

Mrs. Crigger-Principal

Mrs. Lind-Assitant Principal

Capturing Kids Hearts Family Survey

In our process of becoming a National Showcase school we need to have families complete a survey. We need at least 50 families to complete. Thank you for your support of Pinello. The link is provided below.

Counseling Corner & Social Worker:

Social Emotional Learning

For the month of November, Pinello will have a school food drive to support

Pinello families. This collection of canned foods and nonperishable items will run from

Wednesday, November 1st to Wednesday, November 15th. The most needed items to

make holiday meal baskets are stuffing, gravy, pumpkin pie filling, cranberry sauce,

and yams. Unlike previous years, we will not be collecting money, just the

nonperishable food items. This food drive will be a wonderful way for our whole school

family to support our community during the holidays.

Since the Holiday Season is just around the corner, if your family needs assistance

with food or gifts, please contact Mrs. Monson, Pinello School Counselor, at (719) 391-

3398, or Ms. Zarkovacki, Pinello Social Worker at (719)391-3410, Resources are limited, so it is on a first come first serve

basis. Please let us know if you have any questions about holiday support.

For November, our Capturing Kids Hearts’ the word of the month is teamwork.

Students will be working on collaborating with each other to meet group goals. On a

team, we are sharing, listening, encouraging, helping, and giving affirmations to one

another. We are better together when we are a team!

With Children First,

Pinello’s Mental Health Team

About Pinello

Please visit us at our Website and Facebook page for updated information.

A Note from Music

Hello Families,

I cannot believe it is already November! Students have been working with instruments and learning different concepts in the Music classroom. Fifth grade is working hard on their program, which they will perform on November 7 at 2:30 pm and 6:00 pm. Fourth grade is learning about the different musical time periods and how that music relates to music today. Third grade is exploring the pitches do, re, and mi (yes, think Sound of Music). Second grade is working on playing an ostinato while others are playing the beat. First grade has started to work on the music for their performance, which will be on December 6, at 2:30 pm and 6:00 pm. Kindergarten is exploring high and low pitches.

The choir has been working on the music for the Widefield District Honor Choir Festival that will happen on December 9. Only 20 students will be selected to participate in this district wide event. It is a great opportunity for students to represent Pinello, perform with other elementary choirs and perform on a large stage.

Stay Safe and Warm,

Mrs. Means

PE News

Pinello Families,

A HUGE thank you for all of your hard work helping to make this year's Fund Run such a success. The weather was awesome, the kids ran hard and had a good time. Even a few parents joined in and ran with their students. Thanks again!

In PE we just finished our Soccer unit (striking with our feet) and will be starting some striking with our hands. Kindergarten through third will be using balloons, while fourth and fifth graders will be learning some basic Volleyball skills.


By Miss Siedler

STEM has been focused on force and motion this month. Kindergarten and First grade students have been learning about pushes, pulls, gravity and describing motion. Second and Third grade students have been learning about friction, predicting and measuring motion. Fourth and Fifth grade students have been expanding on their knowledge and learning about energy transfer and collisions.

All students have had the chance to get hands-on experience with motion in many different ways. We have begun to deepen our understanding of force and motion through exploration and inquiry. Students have learned many great collaborative skills and are growing as STEMists each and every class.

Birthday Celebrations

Treats need to have the ingredients label (no homemade goods) on the packaging with zero trans fat listed. Treats need to be brought in 24 hours before serving. Treats from Walmart meet the guidelines.

PTO News

Good afternoon! Here is the newsletter stuff for the PTO.

Kindness week is November 13th-17th. Please help us celebrate by joining in our fun themed week.

Our next PTO meeting will be November 16th at 4pm in the library. We look forward to seeing you all there.

Thank you,

Janae Howard


One criteria of a student’s success in school is regular and punctual attendance. To report an absence or tardy, please call our attendance line, available 24 hours, at (719) 391-3396.

Compulsory School Attendance

In order to reduce the incidents of truancy, parents/guardians are hereby notified that every child who has attained the age of six (6) on or before August 1 of each school year and is under the age of seventeen (17) shall attend public school for at least the following number of hours.

  • One thousand fifty –six (1056) if secondary school pupil;

  • Nine hundred sixty-eight (968) if an elementary school pupil in a grade other than kindergarten;

  • Nine hundred hours (900) if a full-day kindergarten pupil;

  • Four hundred fifty hours (450) if a half day kindergarten pupil;

(Except as otherwise provided in CRS 22-33-104)

Two hour Late Start

Widefield District 3 may use a two-hour late start as an option between closing schools or starting at the normal times. A two-hour late start may be used when a storm is passing or when additional time may be needed to prepare for students and staff arriving at their schools. Two-hour late starts will be announced by 6:00 a.m. through the same channels as a school closure. These channels include television, radio, and the district website. When district officials announce a two-hour late start, all start times and bus pickup times will be moved back by two hours. Pinello Elementary will start school at 10:50 a.m. Please do not have children arrive before 10:35 a.m. No breakfast will be served on these days.

Red Flag Days

The red flags will be hanging on the playground and out front to let parents know that it is indoor morning recess. The guidelines for calling red flag is as follows:

  • The red flag temperature will be 25 degrees or below including wind chill.

Students will enter through outside classroom doors.

Inclement Weather Procedure

Widefield District 3 will:

• make inclement weather decision(s) based on students’ safety

• collect data at the earliest appropriate time

• make the decision as to whether schools will be open and announce no later than 5:30 am by calling radio stations and TV stations

• not penalize students if parents keep them home or pick them up from school early on questionable snow days.

In the event the decision made earlier is to open schools and the storm worsens unexpectedly, Widefield District 3 will:

• inform the same media as stated above that schools will dismiss students early

• keep buildings open as long as necessary to evacuate all students safely

• announce that if an early dismissal occurs, afternoon activities, and evening events will be cancelled

Parents are expected to:

• be responsible for custody of children

• listen to the news broadcasts on stormy days

• decide whether or not to send children to school on threatening, stormy days

In the event the decision is made earlier to open schools and the storm worsens, parnets are expected to:

know that students may be dismissed earlier than normal

• listen for an early dismissal announcement

• make sure children know what to do and where to go if dismissed early

• not rely on telephones to make last minute arrangements for their children. (Lines tend to malfunction during storms.)

Title 1: Parent Right to Know

Your child participates in a program in Widefield School District which receives funding under the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015. You have the right to know what professional qualifications are held by the teachers who instruct your child. The Act gives you the right to the following information about each of your child’s classroom teachers:

  • Whether the teacher is licensed or qualified for the grades and subjects he or she teaches.

  • Whether the teacher is teaching under an emergency permit or other provisional status under which state licensing criteria have been waived.

  • The college major of the teacher, any advanced degrees held by the teacher, and the subject matter of those degrees.

  • What instructional aides or similar paraprofessionals, if any, provide instructional services to your child, and if so, what qualifications they possess.

If you are interested in receiving information of this sort, please contact the Human Resources office at 391-3015.

Notice Concerning Directory Information:

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), a Federal law, requires that Widefield School District 3 (“the District”), with certain exceptions, obtain your written consent prior to the disclosure of personally identifiable information from your child's education records. However, the District may disclose appropriately designated "directory information" without written consent, unless you have advised the District to the contrary in accordance with District procedures. The primary purpose of directory information is to allow the District to include this type of information from your child's education records in certain school publications. Examples include:

  • A playbill, showing your student's role in a drama production;

  • The annual yearbook;

  • Honor roll or other recognition lists;

  • Graduation programs; and

  • Sports activity sheets, such as for wrestling, showing weight and height of team members.

Directory information, which is information that is generally not considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if released, can also be disclosed to outside organizations without a parent's prior written consent. Outside organizations include, but are not limited to, companies that manufacture class rings or publish yearbooks. In addition, two federal laws require local educational agencies (LEAs) receiving assistance under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) to provide military recruiters, upon request, with three directory information categories - names, addresses and telephone listings - unless parents have advised the LEA that they do not want their student's information disclosed without their prior written consent. If you do not want the District to disclose directory information from your child's education records without your prior written consent, you must notify the District in writing by September 20th each year. The District has designated the following information as directory information:

  • Student's name

  • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports

  • Address

  • Telephone listing

  • Weight and height of members of athletic teams

  • Electronic mail address

  • Photograph

  • Degrees, honors, and awards received

  • Date and place of birth

  • Major field of study

  • Dates of attendance

  • Grade level

  • The most recent educational agency or institution attended

Annual FERPA Notice

Annual FERPA Notice The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords parents and students over 18 years of age (“eligible students”) certain rights with respect to the student’s education records. These rights are:

1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the school receives a request for access. Parents or eligible students should submit to the school principal [or appropriate school official] a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The school official will make arrangements for access and notify the parent or eligible student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.

2. The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the parent or eligible student believes are inaccurate or misleading. Parents or eligible students may ask the school to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the school principal [or appropriate official], clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the school decides not to amend the record as requested by the parent or eligible student, the school will notify the parent or eligible student of the decision and advise them of their right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the parent or eligible student when notified of the right to a hearing.

3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the school as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a person serving on the School Board; a person or company with whom the school has contracted to perform a special task (such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant, or therapist); or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the school discloses education records without consent to officials of another school district in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.

[NOTE: FERPA requires a school district to make a reasonable attempt to notify the parent or eligible student of the records request unless it states in its annual notification that it intends to forward records on request.]

4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the school to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA are:

Family Policy Compliance Office

U.S. Department of Education

400 Maryland Avenue, SW

Washington, DC 20202-4605

Educational Rights of Homeless Children

Students have a right to:

  • Go to school, no matter where they live or how long they have lived there.
  • Choose between the local school where they are living, the school they attended before they lost their housing, or the school where they were last enrolled.
  • Enroll in school immediately, without proof of residency, immunizations, school records or other documents.
  • Get transportation to their school of origin
  • Get the school services they need.
  • Be free from harassment and isolation
  • Have disagreements with the school settled quickly.

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Calendar of Events


-Nov 7th-Coffee with principal 8:45 am, 5th Grade Music Program 6:00 pm

-Nov 9th-PTO Meeting 4:00 pm in the library

-Nov 10th-No student Professional Development Day

-Nov 14th- Picture Retakes, District Speech Competition 3rd-5th (By invitation only)

-Nov 15th- Mid terms sent home

-Nov 17th-Buck a Hat Day

-Nov 20th-24th-No school (Thanksgiving Break)


-Dec 4th-8th-Holiday shop

-Dec 6th-1st grade music program

-Dec 7th-Parent Involvement Breakfast 7:30 am-8:35 am

-Dec 9th-District 3 choir festival

-Dec 15th-Buck a Hat Day

-Dec 20th-2nd quarter ends, sing a long at 2:00 pm, classroom parties at 2:45

-December 21st-January 3rd No School (Winter Break)


Teamwork makes the dream work.
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