Penguin Press News

March 23, 2021


Dear LPE Families,

Happy Spring to all! We are looking forward to a wonderful track out ahead and even better fourth quarter of the 2020-21 school year. Please take a moment to review the updates in this newsletter. Thanks for your constant support and understanding!

Cary Honor a Teacher Nominations - Due Friday, 3/26

Excellence in teaching – we know it when we see it. It can be the teacher who spends extra time with the students who need it most, or the teacher who is creative enough to inspire a real love of learning in a student. Perhaps it’s a teacher who cares enough to be involved with their students beyond the classroom. Whatever their methods, certain teachers make a real impact on students and their learning abilities. The COVID-19 pandemic has only highlighted the great importance of the role that teacher's play in our society.

We would like to recognize one such teacher and we need your help. The Cary Chamber of Commerce has been a leader in supporting education in our community through numerous programs and activities. One of the most critical needs of Wake County schools is that of attracting and retaining the best classroom teachers. With the Cary Chamber of Commerce's Honor a Teacher Program we hope to help our school system in meeting that challenge.

Building on the success of the Discovery Award first sponsored by the Ashworth family in 1991, followed by the Clara Knoll Award in 2000 by Barry and DJ Mitsch, the Cary Chamber has secured sponsors to develop a teaching awards program for all schools in the Cary Area.

We are asking our community to nominate teachers for this award. Included with your nomination, please describe why you feel this particular teacher deserves this award.

Nominations must be submitted no later than Friday, March 26th at 5:00pm. These nominations will then be narrowed down to finalists that will be interviewed by a designated committee.

Here is the link to the nomination form:

If you have any questions, please email Perry Price, Director of Education & Government Relations, at

Track Change Requests:

  • Disclaimer: At this time we are planning for a multi-track year round schedule for the 2021-22 school year. However, please be aware that track changes will be considered only after we understand the impact of our Virtual Academy enrollment.
  • All students who were in attendance during the 2019-2020 school year are still assigned to the track they were on prior to this school year. If your child is new to LPES this school year and you need to know your assigned track for 2021-22, please contact Mrs. Murray (Data Manager) at
  • If you would like to request a track change, please complete this form by April 23, 2021 and submit to the front office (by mail, by email to, via carpool drop off).

Bus Transportation:

  • With more students returning to in person learning, this is a great opportunity to consider using the bus for transportation to and from school. Our buses are underpopulated and much faster than carpool. It is not too late to sign up! APPLY HERE

Kind Regards,
Mrs. Raleigh Bame, Principal

  • March 29th - Asynchronous/ Remote Learning Day* (live morning meeting)
  • March 30th - Asynchronous/ Remote Learning Day* (live morning meeting)
  • March 31st - April 13th - Spring Track-out
  • April 14th - First day of 4th Quarter
  • April 21st - Asynchronous/Remote Learning Day* (live morning meeting)
  • May 5th - Asynchronous/ Remote Learning Day* (live morning meeting)
  • May 19th - Asynchronous/Remote Learning Day* (live morning meeting)
  • May 26th - Asynchronous/ Remote Learning Day* (live morning meeting)
  • May 31st - Holiday
  • June 21st - Last Day of School

*Live morning meetings scheduled from 9:15 - 9:30 am, followed by asynchronous learning assignments

Next PTA Spirit Night:

Wednesday, March 24th


Information for ordering:

Your group: Laurel Park Elementary School PTA

Your fundraiser date: Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Your fundraiser time: 11:00am – 8:00pm

Your fundraiser location: City Barbeque Cary,

Your fundraiser code: FundA

The Penguin Pledge - Sharing Diverse Voices

Calling all students!

Do you read and speak a language other than English? If so, Mrs. Bame would like to invite you to be a guest Penguin Pledge Reader during morning announcements! We have already had a student recite the Penguin Pledge in Spanish and German. We welcome more students to participate! Please let your student's teacher know if interested.

The Penguin Pledge:

As a Laurel Park Penguin I will be:

Respectful of myself, others, and school property,

Engaged in all activiities,

Accountable for my options,

Determined to do my best all


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Care for Your Chromebook

Here are a few helpful hints to keep your devices safe:

  • Clean desk and empty hands.

  • No food or water near your computer. Food can get into cracks on your keyboard and liquid can accidentally spill and ruin your computer.

  • Use 2 hands.Try to keep your computer on the table so you aren’t carrying it a lot. If you have to move it, use 2 hands to carry it.

  • Leaks Happen. If your device is in your backpack, make sure you don’t put your water bottle in it. Maybe put it in a waterproof bag.

  • Close the lid gently. The screen is fragile and can get hurt if it’s slammed closed.

  • Keep devices off the floor. People may accidentally step on it!

  • Turn off your computer. Every once in a while, your computer needs to be turned off so it can run updates.

Update from Social Learning Class

Happy Spring LPES families! In Social Learning class, we have been busy learning about how to resolve conflict. Friendships are so important to everyone and we talk about what it means to be a good friend and not a "Mean Jean" (from Superflex). There are red thoughts that may come into our heads when we are mad, but we need to try to keep them in our head, so we don't make an argument worse. Green thoughts are thoughts that we know are kind and everyone appreciates. Yellow thoughts are tricky because you have to think about who you are saying it to, how you are saying it, when and even what. Using our social filter is always helpful for navigating friendships.
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Art Update from Ms. Benner


Do you have some amazing artwork you would like to share during STEAM night? show off your talent! Please upload your artwork to this google form:

Hi families and friends,

Don’t forget to upload a piece of your child’s artwork to Art to Remember! You can save the artwork in your digital family gallery and purchase keepsake products customized with your child’s art. There are over 50 products to choose from and a percentage of every purchase goes right back to our school. Click on the link below to search for your child’s name and upload art!

​Thank you,

Laura Benner

Art teacher

Laurel Park Elementary School


Single Subject Acceleration (SSA) Nomination Window Now Open

Single Subject Acceleration (SSA) is the practice of assigning students to a higher grade level for a single subject, than is typical, given the student's age, for the purpose of providing access to appropriately challenging learning opportunities. SSA is an accelerative practice that allows students to show mastery of an elementary or middle school course.

Students must meet qualifying Single Subject Acceleration (SSA) criteria in grades K‐7 to take advanced academic content in Mathematics or English Language Arts. Nominated students for Single Subject Acceleration (SSA) will be assessed at their school, based upon their current grade level. Depending on their grade level and subject, this could include a multiple-choice test and/or a writing sample. Students can be nominated for SSA by either their teacher or parents. If interested, please talk with your students' classroom teacher.

The LPES SSA nomination window is open now until Friday, March 26th. SSA Testing window will be Monday, April 19th - Friday, May 7th.

Is your child a good candidate for SSA?

  • Consider your child’s social and emotional maturity.

  • Your child may be taking classes with peers who may be older.

  • Consider your child’s organizational skills and ability to focus.

  • Can your child begin or complete projects by themselves?

  • Your child will be skipping an entire year’s worth of content and background knowledge.

The AIG teacher and homeroom teachers are not responsible for covering any content your child skipped as a result of receiving SSA services.

  • If your child qualifies for SSA in math or ELA in elementary or middle school, some courses take place online. During the school day, students participate independently in these online courses.

  • SSA may result in a different class schedule. To accommodate your child's academic needs, the school may assign your child a nontraditional schedule. The final decision about scheduling will be made by the principal at each school.

SSA Testing Information

Assessment for SSA will include a comprehensive examination to establish mastery of the foundational skills and content this course /subject requires. Specifically:

  • Kindergarten students looking to skip first grade math, the student must receive a proficient score on each of the individual constructed response tasks without assistance.

  • Kindergarten students looking to skip first grade ELA, will be assessed using iStation.

  • A 1st-7th grade student in mathematics must earn a minimum of 80% accuracy on the above grade level comprehensive assessment. The assessments have open response questions.

  • In English/Language Arts all students must earn >85% correct on Acceleration Assessment AND score proficient (level 4) on scored writing prompt for elementary school. Middle school students must score proficient (level 3) on a writing prompt.

  • Prior to the exams, students may review the content standards for the course or subject area that they are seeking to demonstrate mastery. North Carolina State Standard Course of Study Links: ELA NC State Standard Course of Study and Math NC State Standard Course of Study

  • All SSA testing will be administered in an online platform.

  • No iPads can be used for SSA online testing.

  • Acceleration assessments will be reported as percent correct.

  • Due to test security, specific items on any Acceleration Assessment Test will not be reviewed.

  • Eligibility to accelerate is based on meeting the above criteria. Students who do not meet the criteria for SSA will have an opportunity to test again during the spring of 2022 for the next school year (2022-2023).

If you would like more information or have specific questions, please email Amy Stone, our SSA Coordinator and AIG Teacher at


Student Performers for 2021 Virtual STEAM Night

We invite your LPES Penguin Star Student to perform for STEAM Night! Because this year looks a little different, we're going to create a video scrolling "talent showcase." Click here for more information!


Dear Parent or Guardian,

I hope this letter finds you and your family safe and healthy. My name is Mark Edwards and I am the Physical Education teacher here at Laurel Park. I want to take a few minutes of your time to introduce the kids heart challenge that your child will be participating in over the next six weeks during their PE classes. Please take a few minutes to read the attached letter.

All the students will be introduced to jump roping skills during class and the importance of staying active. This year we will be doing all donations online using the KHC app or the website. So please do not send in checks or cash. You can find directions on how to get started on the attached letter. Please try to help your child look at the app or website and collect donations to help other kids that have special hearts and make our community healthier. The app and website also have a lot of great videos and activities.

Some students have already donated online so we are off to great start. We would like to collect donations over the next 5-6 weeks. We would like to finish up donation collections at the end of March.

I would like to thank you all in advance for your support for this great cause. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at

Thank you again and stay healthy, Mark Edwards

Physical Education Teacher

Laurel Park Elementary School

Apex, North Carolina


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It's here! - Yearbook Information 2021

Yearbook Sale info & ordering links will be coming soon!

Until then, we’d love to have some awesome candid photos of your children from this school year! These photos can include anything from enjoying an LPES Spirit Night to your Virtual Academy student hard at work, remote learning spaces, first day back to school, supply pickup, students proudly wearing their Spirit Wear, etc.

Please follow the link below to upload:

If you have any trouble uploading, you can send them directly to with the subject Yearbook Candids.

Positivity Project Resource for Families

P2 for Families is an easy and effective way for families to discuss the importance of character strengths and positive relationships. It is differentiated for grades Pre-K – 2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Each character strength follows a 1-1-3 model: 1 quote, 1 video, and 3 questions to drive conversations around character at home.

Please choose your child’s grade level found at the link below:

Need to Update Your Contact Number? Want WCPSS Texts?

The district uses the SchoolMessenger notification service to send important information to families through phone calls, email, and text messages. General school news is shared by email and text message. Phone calls are used for urgent school news.

Grocery Store Rewards Cards

Laurel Park Community Calendar

Please click on this link to view our daily calendar. Thank you!