Notes from the Administrators

Fri, 09/08/2017 - 2:19pm

Welcome back to BWES!!! We are excited the start to the 2017-18 school year.  Hopefully, your summer was filled with fun, relaxation, and reflection.  As we embark upon a new school year, we want to inspire our students and families to BELIEVE in themselves!!!  Our school staff is committed to the ongoing success of each and every student that crosses the threshold of Bryant Woods Elementary School.  Please be on the lookout for the Bear Facts Newsletter on a bi-weekly basis.  The newsletter includes lots of important news and updates and will keep everyone up to date with the happenings at BWES.

New Staff to BWES:  We have several new staff members that have joined the BWES family.  We would like to welcome the following new staff members to Bryant Woods:

  • Monique Gooden, Kindergarten .5 Para-Educator
  • Shavonne Boone, Grade 1 Teacher
  • Tara Brown, Grade 2 ELA Teacher
  • Matthew Prestbury, Grade 4 Para-Educator
  • Irika Lee, Grade 5 Para-Educator
  • Ann Marie Powell, Reading Support Teacher
  • Darryl Nicholson, Behavior & Academic Specialist and Math Interventionist
  • Valerie Keeley, Reading Recovery
  • Kimberly Dustin, Reading Recovery
  • Elyse Singer, Media Specialist
  • Jennifer Matlack, School Psychologist
  • India Rosa-Skerrett, Family Involvement Coordinator
  • Jennifer Fenzel, Special Education Teacher
  • Aswathy Sreedharan, Speech and Language Teacher
  • Anastasia Mazza, Student Assistant
  • Sonya Crosland, Student Assistant
  • Terry Burroughs, Student Assistant (TE)
  • Hillary Jones, Grade 4 ELA
Back to School Night:  Back to School Night for families Grade K-5 will be hosted on Monday, September 18, 2017 from 6:30-8:00.  Families will gather in the cafeteria for an overview presentation, including our Annual Title I Meeting at 6:30.  Families will then have an opportunity to visit classes to learn more about what their students will be learning this year from 7:00-8:00.  There will be two rotations of classroom presentations for families (7:00-7:30 and 8:00-8:30) with students in multiple grades. There will also be a GT presentation in the cafeteria from 6:00-6:30 for those families enrolled in GT classes.  We look forward to all of our families joining us on the 18th!!!

PTA:  Hats off to the BWES PTA for their on-going support of BWES students, families and staff.  The goal of the PTA is to partner with school staff and the broader community to enhance the educational experience for all BWES students.  The staff of BWES would like to thank the PTA for the delicious welcome back luncheon that was hosted during pre-service week.  Mr. Kori Jones, PTA President, was also present on the first day of school to welcome students and families.  BWES families are encouraged to join PTA.  Memberships only coast More information regarding PTA membership, 2017-18 PTA meeting dates, as well as the upcoming PTA newsletter will shared during Back to School Night on Monday, September 18, 2017.

Family File:  Families are encourage to complete and/or update their Family File for each student enrolled at BWES.  Families can log onto HCPSS Connect (website) to add and update contact information and emergency procedures.  Families with an existing account should update their students' information annually.  If you are a new family to HCPSS you will need your students' ID number to create an account.  ID numbers can only be retrieved IN-PERSON from the registrar.  ID numbers cannot be shared over the phone. If you have any questions regarding the completion of the Family File please contact Ms. Keri Ekert at 410-313-6859.

BWES Bear Standards:  Our students are encouraged demonstrate our BWES Bear Standards everyday.  Our standards are:

  • BE Safe
  • BE Respectful
  • BE Ready
We ask that our families support our vision of embracing diversity and respect or all individuals by supporting adherence to the BWES Bear Standards.  Through our PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention Supports) initiatives, we seek to promote positive behavior through positive reinforcement.  Students will regularly be recognized for demonstrating behaviors that align with our Bear Standards.
Arrival and Dismissal Procedures:  BWES doors open for students at 8:25 each school day.  Students enter the school building through the rear doors near the black top.  Breakfast is served from 8:25-8:45.  The instructional day begins promptly at 8:45.  Students wishing to eat breakfast at school should arrive by 8:25.  Students arriving after 8:40 are considered late and will have to report to the front office for a pass in order to be admitted to class.
Dismissal begins at 3:10 for BWES students.  During dismissal, bus riders and after school programs are dismissed first, followed by car riders and walkers.  Your patience is requested as we ensure that all of our students are dismissed safely.  As an additional request, families are asked to NOT park along Blue Heron Lane in the morning and afternoon as the road is unable to support parked cars and passing vehicles.  Your patience and cooperation is appreciated as we work with students and families with these dismissal procedures.  Please know that our ultimate goal is that each and every child arrives safely at home at the conclusion of his/her learning day.
Canvas:  Families will learn about the features of Canvas during Back to School Night.  Canvas is a tool that allows teachers and parents to communicate.  Teachers will update Canvas pages every Friday with information regarding class events as well as instructional goals for the coming week.  We encourage families to access the Canvas pages regularly in order to stay abreast of classroom happenings.
Calling All Volunteers!!!  BWES LOVES its volunteers.  The partnership between home and school is crucial for students' success and our volunteers are an important component of that partnership.  If you are interested in volunteering at BWES, including serving as a chaperone on field trips, you must complete the required Volunteer Training Module.  The module is located on the BWES website.  Once you have completed the training module and followed the 5 Step process, please print out and turn in the confidentiality certificate and child abuse and neglect certificate to the the Main Office.  An in-person volunteer training will be provided families who would prefer to participate in a face-to-face training.  Be on the look out for dates for Volunteer Training in the coming weeks.
Salad Bar:  The newest addition to the cafeteria made its debut on Tuesday, September 5th.  BWES has a salad bar!  Students are able to access the salad bar daily, in addition to their traditional daily entree selections.  All of the items on the salad bar are fresh.  Just a few of the samplings on the salad bar include romaine and ice berg lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, strawberries, watermelon, and oranges.  These are just a few of the the items that are offered daily on the salad bar.  So far, the salad bar has been a HUGE hit with students.  What a great way to continue to instill healthy eating habits at school!!!
Lobby Guard:  In an effort to keep our students safe, HCPSS has instituted the use of Lobby Guard.  Lobby Guard is the system that allows visitors to access the building.  All visitors, volunteers, chaperones, as well as individuals picking up students early from school MUST have a state issued ID in order to access our building or any of students.  Unfortunately, no exceptions to this policy will be honored so please come prepared with your state issues ID if you want to be granted access to the building.
School Supplies and Personal Items:  Many thanks to our families and community members that have graciously donated school supplies.  Families are strongly encouraged to label ALL school supplies and personal items (coats, back packs, lunch boxes, etc.) so that these items can be easily returned to their rightful owner if misplaced. 
Donations:  Our school is always in need of tissues, pencils, and glue sticks.  Feel free to send these items.
Again, we are very excited about the start of the school year and are looking forward working with the students and families of BWES.  As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Educationally yours,
Ms. Hough, Principal
Ms. Williams-McKinney, Assistant Principal