JW Killam Principal's Corner

Ms. Leveque's Weekly Newsletter

From the Desk of Ms. Leveque

We had a lot to celebrate this week! Our annual "Report Card" came out from the Department of Education. The Killam School is showing great success! To find out more about the report card and see our results, click here.

Our Fourth and Fifth Graders participated in the final school-based competition of the National Geographic Geography Bee, supported by Mrs. Adamo. It was an intense competition and our finalists were Jack Barry, Kylie Gomes, Erin Glenn, Jared Frazier, Curran Healy, Ethan Greatorex, Ella Kenton, Brendan Boutiette, Nathan Manoj, and Kamden Greatorex. After two rounds, we crowned the Killam champion Brendan Boutiette. He will have the opportunity to advance to the next level of competition and the national champion wins a college scholarship and prize trip! Good luck to Brendan!

We had other winners in our school. Each year, Reading Municipal Light Department (RMLD) works with the local schools to hold a student art contest for fourth graders in Reading, North Reading, Wilmington, and Lynnfield. The contest seeks to complement existing electricity curriculum and focuses on electricity basics, electrical safety, and energy conservation during peak times. RMLD provides each school with art materials and an RMLD produced educational video focused on electrical safety. All of the artwork was outstanding and it was a tough decision for the RMLD staff to determine the top three winners from Killam. This years winners are Richard Crosby (1st Place), Chase Sinclair (2nd Place), and Charlie Ballestas (3rd Place). Check out the winners and our artwork below. Congratulations to all our fourth graders and a special thank you to Mrs. Hussey and our fourth grade teachers for supporting the students in this work.

Thank you to everyone who donated to our Killam for Koalas fund. We raised $175.82 which goes directly to the World Wildlife Fund, earmarked for animals impacted by the devastating fires in Australia. Way to show our koala pride!

On a final note, there will not be another newsletter until the week of March 1st. Like many of you, I will be enjoying February break!


Ms. Leveque

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Important Killam Dates

Monday, February 10th: TRRFCC Time

Tuesday, February 11th: Grades 2 and 5 Drop-In Coding Session, 7:45-8:15 am in the Library; No RSVP needed.

Thursday, February 13th: Grades 1 and 4 Drop-In Coding Session, 7:45-8:15 am in the Library; No RSVP needed.

Friday, February 14th: Grades K and 3 Drop-In Coding Session, 7:45-8:15 am in the Library; No RSVP needed.

Week of February 16th: No School- February Break

Monday, February 17th: Presidents' Day- Killam School Office closed

Monday, February 24th: Welcome back students!

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Killam Extended Day Registration

The dates for extended day registration for families are coming up after February vacation. Here are the dates below.

  • Thursday, February 27th - Registration for Killam Families, 6-7:30 pm at Killam Cafeteria
  • February 24th – March 16th – Priority registration for incoming kindergarten students and existing Extended Day families
  • March 16th – ongoing – Registration is available to anyone in the district provided space is available

You can find forms and registration information at the Extended Day Website.
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Killam's Newest Logo

The staff has unanimously voted to change the official Killam School logo from the bucket image to the koala image! We've been the Killam Koalas for many years so this only seems fitting. It also supports the new Killam gear we've had available through the PTO and allows us to have a unified mascot for Killam's 50th year. Don't worry- we'll still teach being bucket-fillers and our TRRFCC core values so these social-emotional pieces will remain a part of our practices. Be on the lookout as you'll start to see the koala image more frequently on communications to our community.

Killam Turns 50!

We will be celebrating Killam's 50th Anniversary on April 14th! In preparing for the festivities, the Killam 50th Celebration Committee is reaching out to past Killam students. If you or a family member attended Killam and would like to share memorabilia or stories from your time at Killam, please contact Sarah Leveque.

Report Cards for Term 2

Term 2 grades will close on Friday, February 28th and teachers will begin working on report cards. Our standards-based report cards will be emailed to families in mid-March. Please speak directly to your child’s teacher if you have any questions or concerns about your child’s progress in school.

As a reminder, parents and guardians can access your child's released report cards at any time! Login to your PlusPortal account and choose the eLocker tab on the top of the page. This will bring you to all official report cards that can be downloaded as a PDF and printed or saved from the luxury of your home.

A Note from the Health Office

February 2020

Dear Killam Parents,

Our transition in the cafeteria, employing ‘Red Dot’ tables, has gone well. I appreciate the support from students and families for this change. We are all working to make sure that students with food allergies are protected and that we maintain the school’s allergy protocol.

Beginning February 24th, we will designate a second ‘Red Dot’ (allergen-free) table per classroom. As before, the Red Dot tables will be reserved for students who bring allergen-free lunches and those who buy lunch from the cafeteria.

Each classroom will also have one ‘Open Table’. Students who bring lunches containing allergens will sit together at their classroom’s ‘Open Table’ and they will use a handwipe before returning to class.

We are designating a second Red Dot table because more students are bringing food items for lunch that contain allergens. Having these students sit together at the ‘Open Table’ will allow us to better monitor the cafeteria.

Please contact me at sharon.grottkau@reading.k12.ma.us with any questions or concerns.

Thank you,

Sharon Grottkau, BSN, RN

School Nurse

Understanding Disabilities

This month, Understanding Disabilities will be teaching the final lesson of our elementary curriculum to all of the 5th grade students in the district. The lesson focuses on Emotional and Behavioral challenges, and in addition to defining what an Emotional / Behavioral challenge can be, we share with the students techniques to improve their own emotional and behavioral health. We finish the lesson by discussing in an age-appropriate fashion when and how to ask a trusted adult for help. This lesson is especially relevant for students as they prepare to enter middle school, and we encourage them to identify and understand their emotions and behaviors, and of course we remind them once again that in spite of our differences, we are all the same on the inside. One note about the 5th grade lesson - we do not have small group activities in the 5th grade and therefore we do not ask for classroom assistants, however UD is always happy to discuss the curriculum with families.

Next month we will be teaching our physical disabilities unit in the 1st grade, and for this unit and our 2nd grade unit in May we do need classroom assistants to help with centers! If you are interested in participating, keep an eye out for further updates with links to sign up.

If you have questions about what we teach, or if you would like to learn how to get involved with UD, please contact Allison Sillers at asillers@understandingdisabilities.org.

Allison Sillers
Program Leader
Understanding Disabilities

PTO Corner

New in 2019-20 - Pay PTO dues with Venmo at @KillamPTO!

Please be sure to include your child/family’s name in the notes when you submit your Venmo payment so we can credit the dues to the appropriate family.

Killam MCAS Dates

Below are the MCAS Testing Dates for 2020. Please consider these dates when making appointments or other plans that involve absence from school. These dates are also posted under the Students tab on the Killam website.
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The SEPAC meets throughout the school year in the RMHS Library Media Center at 7:00 p.m. Please plan to attend on the following dates, or click here for additional information.

  • Tuesday, March 10th
  • Tuesday, April 14th
  • Tuesday, May 12th
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About These Services

The Town of Reading contracts with William James College to offer a special service for our residents. The William James INTERFACE Referral Service maintains a mental health and wellness referral help line Monday through Friday, 9 am-5 pm, at 888-244-6843 (toll free). This is a free, confidential referral service for individuals across the lifespan living in Reading. Callers are matched with licensed mental health providers from our extensive database. Each referral meets the location, insurance, and specialty needs of the caller. Click here to learn more!