Tuesday, August 13, 2013

SATEC Parent/Student Welcome Back Letter

August 13, 2013

Greetings SATEC Families,

It is hard to believe that August is already upon us!  We hope you have all had a wonderful summer. We would like to welcome everyone to the start of the school year and to provide you with some general information and dates.

We would like to welcome our new faculty and staff and wish them success.
Faculty and Staff changes for the 2013-2014 school year:
      Kirsten Brown will be our new 1st grade teacher.
      Melissa Lovejoy will be our new Kindergarten teacher.
      George Murphy will be our new 5th/6th grade Language Arts/Social Studies teacher.
      Sharon Alessi will be our new special educator in CS.
      Katie Lamb will be our new special educator in AS.
      Kate Barnard will be our new special educator in AN and 4th grade.
      Elizabeth Larkin will be a para-educator in AN.
      Mindi Picard will be a para-educator in AS.
      Courtney Johnson will be a para-educator in B2S.
      Kim Brow is our new custodian.
      Marie Jennette will be a TA in CN.
We would also like to welcome Jason Wetherby from the Saint Albans Police Department who is assigned as our School Resource Officer and Brianne Heyer who is our new NCSS school-based counselor.

Based on the parent survey given in the spring of 2013, one of our goals this year is to increase our communication with parents.  We are creating a daily notice for parents that will be on our website.  In addition, we would also like to send these notices out via e-mail each day. This will make it essential that we have updated e-mail contact information from each family. Ongoing communication between home and school is a powerful tool to maximize student achievement and helps to build strong relationships with families.  As always, we welcome your questions and visits to school.  Thank you for your continued support.


Angela Stebbins  


Jason Therrien 
Assistant Principal


First Day of School: The first day of school for students in grades 1-8 only will be held on Wednesday, August 28th . This will be a regular day of school for students only.  We will be sending home a variety of materials on the first day of school which will include: the emergency verification form, the first newsletter, Abbey Group information, free and reduced lunch applications, health office forms, and the Student/Parent Handbook K-2, in grades 3-8 the Handbook is part of the student agendas.  Kindergarten students and their parents have been invited to one two-hour session (9:00-11:00 with a bus ride 11:00-11:15 or 12:30-2:30 with a bus ride 12:15-12:30) on Friday, August 31st. The first full day of school for Kindergarten will be on Tuesday, September 3rd.

School Schedule: All students will be welcome in their classrooms at 8:00am.  Students in grades 3-8 will be considered tardy if they arrive in their classrooms past 8:05am and K-2 students will be considered tardy after 8:15am.  K-2 students will be allowed to eat breakfast in their classrooms between 8:00-8:15am.   The front and back doors will remain locked until 7:45am.  Students will be allowed to enter the school building at 7:45am.  Please do not drop students off before 7:45 a.m.  Dismissal Times: K-2 will be dismissed from their classrooms at approximately 3:18pm, 3-4 students at 3:22pm, and 5-8 students will be dismissed at 3:25pm.  Our goal will be for the buses to leave school at 3:30pm.  We appreciate your cooperation.

FOOD SERVICE: *School Lunch and Breakfast Prices have changed
Breakfast is available before classes begin each day. The price for student breakfast is $1.25, lunch is $1.95, and milk is .50.  Adult breakfast is $1.90 and adult lunch is $3.60.

Lunch and breakfast payments are strongly encouraged on the first day of each week.  Payments may be made monthly.  Please do not send Canadian money.  Meals may be charged for one day, after which an emergency sandwich will be served for two days.  If a special diet is needed, parents must present a doctor’s form stating the special requirements.
All families are strongly urged to apply for the National Free and Reduced Price Breakfast and Lunch Program. Please contact Tammy Deso at tdeso@fcsuvt.org or 527-7191 ext 9300.
If you have questions about the Food Service Program or your child’s lunch account please call 527-7191 ext 9214.

K-4 will be held on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 from 5:30-7:00pm.
5-8 will be held on, Thursday, September 26, 2013 from 5:30-7:00pm.

Prescription Medication Form: If your child needs to take prescription medication while in school, you need to complete the appropriate form on the first day of school.  This authorization must be on file at school in order for your child to receive such medications.  If you have questions, please call the School Nurse’s office at 527-7191 and press 4.

EMERGENCY INFORMATION VERIFICATION:   On the first day of school, please look for the Emergency Information Verification form for you to fill out and return to the school by September 6th.  We need to know where to reach you or the childcare person/program for your children in case of an emergency early closing of the school. We appreciate your cooperation in giving us this information.  

ALERT NOW is a notification service that allows us to send telephone and e-mail messages to you providing important information about school events or emergencies.   We will continue to use this service this year. Information about how the service works can be found in the Parent/Student Handbook.

ALLERGY INFORMATION: A number of our students have medically documented severe or life threatening allergies to all types of nuts. In order to follow our Policy and Procedures, we are asking for the support of the entire school community to help us maintain a safe environment.  The support is in the form of accommodations we are asking teachers, staff, students and families to follow.  We are kindly asking that you do not send in any snacks or lunches that have nuts or are processed on machinery that may have traces of nut products on it.  Please read labels carefully.   We realize that we cannot guarantee a completely “nut free” school, but we do hope through education and communication we can make the SATEC learning environment as safe as possible for all.
HANDBOOKS: We provide a Student/Parent Handbook to each student.  We encourage you to review the Handbook and to contact us if you have any questions.   In grades 3-8 the handbook can be found in the student agenda books.  Please look for a handbook sign off sheet that will provide an opportunity for parents to review policy information and to give approval for students to use the Internet.

Earlier this month the VT Agency of Education announced the 2013 Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) results, which were based on the fall 2012 NECAP Assessments taken by our 3rd-8th grade students. We are required to inform our families that SATEC did not meet the AYP targets set by the State in Reading and Mathematics for all students, for students who receive free and reduced lunch and for students with disabilities.  Although we did not make AYP, our students of American Indian decent were acknowledged and commended for an increase of 10% or more in the area mathematic.  This is an excellent accomplishment for our students and it reflects a concerted effort to improve learning outcomes for our students.

The Supervisory Union has a plan to help improve student learning in all FCSU schools.  The SU plan centers around creating a K-12 curriculum framework and common assessments that will be monitored through the use of protocols. 

SATEC’s school based improvement plan involves teachers setting specific learning goals for all their students throughout the year and using data to monitor individual and group progress toward the identified learning targets.  This upcoming school year, in addition to the math and reading assessments we already use, SATEC will be implementing an on-line student assessment system called Measure of Academic Progress (MAP).  The MAP assessment is a computer based student assessment in reading, math, and science that is individualized for each student.  Our goal will be to use this data in conjunction with our current assessments to monitor student progress and to make adjustments to instruction.  SATEC teachers offer extended learning time in grades K-4 and enrichment time in grades 5-8 to provide additional supports and challenges to all students. SATEC teachers work together in teams to share ideas and identify supports needed for their students.

We have also been asked to share how SATEC performs in comparison to other schools in terms of academic achievement.  On the following page we have included two charts that will show you how SATEC students performed on the NECAP reading and math assessments in the fall of 2012 as compared to a number of other Vermont schools.  This assessment is given to students in grades 3-8 only. We included all three FCSU K-8 schools, other schools in Franklin County and the last three schools listed are K-8 schools that are of a similar size to SATEC.

Fall 2012 NECAP Assessment in Reading: The TARGET score for reading is 468

Barre Town
Barre City
All Students average score
Students who receive free and reduced lunch average score
Students with disabilities average score

Fall 2012 NECAP Assessment in Math: The TARGET score for math is 463

Barre Town
Barre City
All Students average score
Students who receive free and reduced lunch
average score
Students with disabilities
average score

We encourage parents to carefully review student reporting and assessment information that is shared with them by teachers.  Parents can sign up for conferences two times per year (once in October and once in March); however we can meet more frequently to develop specific learning plans for children through the Educational Support Team (EST) process.  In addition, please ask your child each week about what they are learning in school.  Parental involvement is essential to the ongoing learning of each student.  If you have specific questions or concerns at any time throughout the year please contact your child’s teachers.