Welcome back, I hope you have all had an awesome summer. I had a terrific summer with my family! We had plenty of good fishing trips and read a lot of great books.
I would like to welcome you to our school. I am thrilled to be working with such an outstanding faculty, staff, amazing students, and supportive parents and community members. Teachers have been working hard getting their classrooms and lesson plans ready in anticipation for the new year, and Tyler and his staff have worked extremely hard all summer to make sure the school is in excellent condition.
We are welcoming the following new teachers to our school this year: Sarah Parry in third grade and Brandee Tapp in Kindergarten, she replaced Annette Otten who moved to second grade. They are both outstanding professionals, and we are very lucky to have them on our faculty.
This year we are excited to be continuing our researched based program called Second Step to teach and reinforce positive social, emotional, and bullying prevention skills in grades 1 - 5. Social and emotional skills, like math skills, build on each other. This classroom-based program is designed to teach children how to understand and manage their emotions, control their reactions, be aware of others’ feelings, and have the skills to problem-solve and make responsible decisions. Each grade-level will receive weekly lessons that include engaging songs, games, daily activities, and take-home materials to reinforce learning.
We are also continuing with our Road to Success nightly reading program this year. In Utah, the program currently has over 240 participating elementary schools, with approximately 165,000 students and 11,000 faculty and staff. The program provides a framework with tools for educators to help students, and incentives to motivate students to read every day. According to the National Education Association, having kids read on their own at home was a crucial component of becoming good readers. Young readers need to become practiced at recognizing letters and sounds. The only way to keep improving is to practice. The U.S. Department of Education found that, generally, the more students read for fun on their own time, the higher their reading scores. Students who log their minutes online will receive monthly prizes and be eligible for larger prizes conducted through drawings four different times during the school year. They can also earn reading badges online. We will be sending home further information along with students’ login information.
I would like to strongly emphasize the importance of regular attendance. Students have a much greater chance of succeeding in school when they attend on a regular basis. It is especially crucial when learning new math and reading skills. Regular attendance can make all the difference in whether or not a student finds academic success or frustration. Students will also find school much more enjoyable when they are caught up and feeling positive reinforcement through academic achievements.
Regular kindergarten will start on Tuesday the 29th. The kindergarten teachers will be conducting initial testing and a meet and greet the first week of school. Watch for a postcard in the mail that will have the specific day and time for you to bring your child.
Also, first grade will be holding an open house on August 21st from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. This is an excellent opportunity for the first grade students to come and get introduced to their new teachers and learn all about being a first grader. You will be receiving a letter in the mail with specific details.
The first day of school is Tuesday the 22nd of August, and school will be out at 1:40 p.m. on Tuesday and Friday the first week. Because of supervision and safety concerns the school doors will remain locked until 7:30 a.m., please plan accordingly when dropping off students in the morning.
Back to School night will be held this year on, Tuesday, August 22nd, the evening of the first day of school.
Please feel welcome at our school anytime. We encourage volunteers and community involvement. Your concerns, ideas, and positive comments are appreciated and respected. Communication is vital to student success, and to our overall growth and sense of community here at Ephraim Elementary.
I look forward to another great year at Ephraim Elementary, and we will see you soon!
Principal Gannon Jones
Important Dates and Events in August
August 5 Class lists will be posted on the outside doors.
August 21 First grade open house from 10:00-12:00.
August 22 First day of school (Short day schedule out @ 1:40)
August 22 Back to School Night @ 7:00.
August 23 Summer Bridge Packets/Workbooks due.
August 25 School out at 1:40 (Friday is our early out @1:40)
August 29 First day for kindergarteners.
August 30 Summer Bridge Swim Party @ the Manti Pool.