Dear Brittan Acres Families,
I hope you are enjoying a summer full of much-deserved rest, relaxation, and fun with family and friends. We are only a short time away from school starting and I want to welcome returning and new families to the 2022-23 school year.. Below, you’ll find details about what to expect in the weeks ahead.
This year, we’re focused on the following key areas as we continue to implement our Strategic Plan:
- Using best practices to address the individual needs of all our students
- Continuing our work around DEIB (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging)
- Focusing on the needs of all learners - Academic and Social-Emotional
- Fostering the 8C’s through innovative practices (We’ve added 3 C’s)
- Supporting parents as partners in their child’s educational journey
Please read below to find out more information about the start of school and important dates. I look forward to welcoming our students on Wednesday, August 24th and sharing more about the year ahead with parents at our Back to School Night on Tuesday, August 30th.
Brittan Acres Website
Calendars and Bell Schedule
First Day of School - Wednesday, August 24th
The first day of school is Wednesday, August 24th, 2022. All students will attend from 8:25 am - 12:25 pm, our regular Wednesday schedule. Please send a backpack, a water bottle and a nutritious snack labeled with your child's first and last name. Please also remember that tennis shoes or sturdy, closed-toe shoes are important for active play each day.
Parents will be invited to join the PTA in front of the Multipurpose Room for our annual First Day Coffee. This will be a great time to meet other parents and sign up for the activities and events that you want to be involved in during the coming school year.
COVID Safety Guidelines
We continue to have enhanced safety procedures at Brittan Acres and will follow all San Mateo County Health Guidelines, which are directed by CDPH. Masks are optional both indoors and outdoors. We have extra masks available in the office if these are needed. In addition, we continue to use air purifiers and high MERV filters in all of our HVAC systems.
Hand washing will continue to be a focus of our daily routine. In addition, we will have hand sanitizer available for students entering the blacktop area and their classroom but also encourage families to get into the routine of washing their hands prior to entering the school campus.
We are no longer required to have social distancing among students. Teachers will continue to utilize their outdoor learning spaces that were so helpful last year to encourage more learning opportunities between students throughout the school day.
Children who have symptoms consistent with Covid should test and stay home if positive. Rapid antigen tests (at-home test kits) are the preferred method for testing as they are more readily available. We have tests in the office, if they are needed.. As we did last year, we are updating our Health and Safety Plan following the SMCOE plan. As we get closer to the start of the school year, I will send another update.
Every morning, yard supervision will begin at 8:10 am. Students in TK/Kindergarten can go directly to the TK/K playground from the front of the school. Students in 1st-3rd grade should walk through the school gates and go directly to the upper playground. We'll ask parents to help children join playtime on their own as much as possible to limit the amount of adults on the yard. By asking parents, caregivers, and preschool siblings to stay off the yard, we are able to provide a safe space for active play. Our "students only" routine also allows supervisors to see the children playing and be visible when students need help. The bell at 8:20 is a reminder to students to head to their classrooms and be ready to begin the day promptly at 8:25. School gates will be locked at 8:25 so all adults should have left campus by this time.
During the first day of school, students will be welcomed by teachers out front of the school at 8:20 where they will find their class lines and see their classmates. Teachers will review the routine for the morning drop-off with students during this first week of school.
If your child arrives late to school, please go directly to the school office for a late slip before your child proceeds to his/her class.
TK/ Kindergarten Parents: During the first day of school, teachers in Rooms 1-4 will line up inside the TK/Kindergarten playground to greet students for the day. Students in Rooms 6 and 7 should meet their teacher out in front of the school.
All Kindergarten students follow the Early Bird schedule (8:25 AM-1:25 PM) for the first 4 weeks of school. Early Bird / Late Bird schedules will be finalized by teachers during this time and you will be notified of final assignments with this adjusted schedule starting on September 19th.
Breakfast and Lunch
Breakfast and lunch are provided free of charge this year to all students. More information was sent out in an email from Superintendent Frentress regarding the change to our lunch program. Please visit our School Lunch webpage for more information.
Please follow steps 1-4 to create an account and get signed up:
- Register - Create an account by visiting the website: https://www.thelunchmaster.com/register/
- School Code - Brittan Acres Elementary use code: brittanacresschool
- Order Placement
- Meals can be ordered daily, weekly, or monthly, either online at www.eatnow.thelunchmaster.com or through the phone App, The LunchMaster.
- Breakfast meals must be placed three days before meal service.
- Lunch meals can be placed by 10:00am two days before meal service.
- Meals will be distributed daily at your student's campus.
In addition to signing up for free meals, we ask that each family fill out the EZ Meal Application to benefit your family, school, and community even if you do not believe you will qualify based on your income. Completing this form helps your school receive more funding to support your child’s learning environment. The application is used to calculate school funding levels from the state and federal level. Please visit our Free & Reduced-Price Meal Application webpage for more information.
Students will be eating breakfast in the MU and lunch outside on the picnic tables. If you are not planning on ordering a hot lunch, please send a healthy lunch packed in a lunch box with your child’s name every day except Wednesday. In early fall, we occasionally see more yellowjacket activity around the lunch areas, even though we do our best to mitigate them. They are more annoying than harmful. We encourage students to take a bite and then cover up their food. Yellowjackets are often attracted to food and sugary drinks. We have found that they tend to prefer meat products and juicy fruit so if your child is bothered by them, please avoid sending these types of foods.
School Entrances / School Safety
For the safety of our students, all outside gates are locked during instructional hours. All TK and Kindergarten students in Rooms 1-4 will enter campus through the black gates by the Kindergarten playground and classrooms. This entrance will be locked after morning drop-off at 8:25 but reopened for Late Bird drop off (9:25) and Early Bird pick up (1:25).
All other grades will enter campus through the other two gates. These will be opened by 8:10, locked at 8:25 and then opened for dismissal at 2:30. During the school day, please come to the office if you need to drop off or pick up a student.
Between 7:30-8:00 and after 2:30, the central gate will be open to allow parents to enter campus to drop off or pick up students from ACE, San Carlos Belmont After School or any other after school enrichment classes.
15 Miles per Hour School Zone
The speed limit for 15 streets adjacent to school sites will be lowered to 15 miles per hour in the next couple of weeks before school resumes. Please be extra cautious and mindful while driving in school zones. The Sheriff’s Office will deploy message boards to communicate the new speed limit in school zones in advance of school starting.
The speed limit reduction in school zones aligns with the City Council’s strategic goal to implement the citywide Safe Routes to School initiative which seeks to improve street conditions in order to encourage children to walk or bike to school. Also, it is a policy recommendation in the City’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan. Most importantly, it improves safety and minimizes the risk of severe or fatal conflicts between vehicles and pedestrians and bicyclists.
Drop-off / Pick-up Reminders
Please remember the following when dropping off and picking up your children:
- Please try to walk or bike to avoid congestion on Belle Avenue.
- When dropping off or picking up your child, please do not park in the white loading zone on Belle Avenue in front of the school. An adult must stay with the car at all times in this zone. If you need to park, please do so on a side street to help with the flow of traffic.
- When picking up your child, please be sure your teacher is aware that they have been picked up.
- As a reminder, only cross Belle, Tamarack and Cordilleras at the designated crosswalks. DO NOT cross Belle in front of the school.
- If you are picking up your child from the car line, please remember to have a sign with your child’s and teacher’s name clearly displayed on the front windshield. These will be handed out to all students during the first week. 1st-3rd grade parents should not enter the car line prior to 2:25 to allow TK/K parents to pick up their children first due to the earlier dismissal time.
- We are hoping to have crosswalk volunteers this year to help with the flow of traffic. If you are able to help in the AM between 8:10-8:30, please email [email protected]. Please be respectful of all crosswalk volunteers. They are there for your child’s safety so please follow their instructions. It is better to be a few minutes late, than to jeopardize the safety of our children or volunteers.
Extended Learning Program Assistance Available
This year, we have additional opportunities for students to participate in our Extended Learning Programs, both before and after school. If you believe your child would benefit from attending one of our programs, funding is available to help pay for tuition for qualifying families. Please reach out to Jesse Torres, Program Supervisor, through email at [email protected] for more information.
We are happy to announce the following staff changes for the 22/23 school year: Please join me in welcoming our new members of staff: Jenny Goines - Administrative Assistant; Nicole Stier - 3rd Grade Teacher.
On Friday, August 19th, individual class assignments will be sent out in an email. Class lists will not be posted on campus.
The San Carlos School District and the Brittan Acres PTA continue to be committed to providing the necessary school supplies for each student in order to ensure that all students have equal access to educational opportunities. There is no need to fill backpacks with new school supplies.
New Families Buddy Program
If you are a new family entering grades 1-3 and would like to be connected with a buddy family, please fill out this short Google Form. Veteran parents can answer questions large and small, from favorite activities to best extracurriculars to First Day of School prep.
PTA Welcome Day
Sunday, August 21st - 3:00-4:30 pm
Join new and returning families as we welcome students to the 2022-23 school year. This event will be hosted by the PTA on the upper playground at BA. Please enter through Tamarack gates.
New Family Tour (Grades 1-3)
Monday, August 22nd: - 3:00-3:30 pm in front of the office
Join us for lemonade and a tour of the campus with Mrs. Fast. Meet new friends along the way!
TK, Kindergarten Meet and Greet
Tuesday, August 23 - 10:00-11:00 am
Your TK/Kindergarten teacher will be reaching out prior to the 23rd to provide details on what to expect during this year’s Meet and Greet. You’ll go directly to your classroom to meet the teacher, say hello to friends and see the classroom.
Back to School Night
Please join me for my Principal’s Welcome at Back to School Night on August 30th from 6:45 - 7:00 pm; “Adults only” classroom presentations will occur during the following times.: 6:00-6:40 pm: TK-1st Grade; 7:00-7:40 pm: 2nd-3rd Grade.
Goal setting conference week is October 3-7th. All days will be minimum days (8:25-12:25) to allow teachers time for conferencing in the afternoon. Teachers will be sending out more information and a schedule closer to the time.
Join your PTA and Support SCEF!
Community support for San Carlos schools is essential to our ability to offer a well-rounded education to all students. The nonprofit San Carlos Education Foundation and school PTAs have joined together to consolidate fundraising this year. I encourage you to join the Brittan Acres PTA and support the San Carlos Education Foundation. Your donation to SCEF now supports our PTA and helps fund several educators and programs essential to a quality education. Learn more here.
If your child will not be attending Brittan Acres, please email Jenny Goines in our school office as soon as possible. ([email protected]). We're preparing each and every seat! Thank you for your help.
Important Dates to Calendar:
August 16th: 6:00-8:00 pm - SCEF “New Parent” Social, RSVP via Paperless Post invite.
August 19th: Class assignments emailed by the end of day.
August 21st: 3:00-4:30 pm - PTA Welcome Day - Meet on the upper playground.
August 22nd: 3:00 pm - 1st-3rd Grade - New Family Tour of Campus - Meet in front of the office.
August 23rd: 10:00-11:00 am - TK/Kindergarten Meet & Greet in classrooms.
August 24th: First Day of School, Minimum Day - 8:25 AM - 12:25 PM.
August 30th: Back to School Night - 6:00 (TK-1st) / 6:45: Principal’s Welcome / 7:00 (2nd and 3rd).
September 2nd: Minimum Day Schedule - 8:25 AM - 12:25 PM.
September 5th: Labor Day, School Holiday, no school.
September 28th: School Picture Day.
October 3rd - 7th: Conference Week - Minimum Days all week - 8;25-12:25