Eagle Express- September 19, 2019

Thu, 09/19/2019 - 3:17pm

Veterans Elementary Eagle Express

September 19, 2019 - Volume 1, Issue 3


Soar to Excellence!

School Mission

Veterans Elementary School promotes life-long learning by embracing its diversity, providing students with dynamic classroom experiences and exposing them to the cultural arts in a climate that is rigorous, safe, nuturing and respectful.

Veterans Elementary School

Veterans Elementary School

Robert Bruce, Principal

Amy Green, Assistant Principal

Derek Lewis, Assistant Principal


School Start and Dismissal Times: 9:25 a.m. - 3:55 p.m.


Important Upcoming Dates and Events



  • 19 - Back to School Night for Grade 4 and Grade 5
    6:00pm GT Orientation in Media Ctr
    6:30pm PTA Meeting in Cafe
    6:40pm Principal Mr. Bruce's Presentation in Cafe
    7:00pm Classroom Presentations in student classroom
  • 30 - Schools and Offices Closed


  • 3 - PTA Ice Cream Social, 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  • 16 - Flu Clinic

From the Principal

Thank you, parents, for updating another 20 Family Files. This leaves 133 yet to be updated. Please complete these files as soon as possible. We will begin contacting families who have not completed their file. https://www.hcpss.org/connect/guides/#family-file-guides


Your children have responded wonderfully to the beginning of the school year. They are taking advantage of their fresh start and it looks like this could be a banner year for all students. Thank you for sending your children ready to learn each and every day. Great attendance is a key to great student achievement.



This year's school Flu Vaccine Clinic will be on Monday, October 16. If you would like your child to receive the flu vaccine, you may sign and return the paper consent form that will go home with your child OR you may register online at www.vaccineconsent.com

Please do NOT do both the paper and the online registration. Thank you!


Upcoming HCPSS Boundary Review Process

This past January, the Board of Education directed that HCPSS initiate a system-wide school boundary review, which could potentially impact any or all of the 74 comprehensive schools in our county beginning in the 2020-2021 school year. This review officially began on June 13 with the presentation of the 2019 Feasibility Study and is critical due to population growth that has resulted in crowding at many schools while schools in other areas are underutilized.


Families are encouraged to remain informed and engaged throughout the process and there will be multiple opportunities for you to participate. As Superintendent Dr. Michael Martirano has said that a successful outcome for this process depends directly on the level of respect, empathy and careful listening that we as adults model for our children. We must remember that they will follow our lead in responding positively to the challenges and changes that are inevitable throughout life. I ask our community to practice civility during what can be an emotional process.


Please be sure to visit the boundary review page on the HCPSS website for more information, resources, a timeline, and ways to participate and provide input.


HCPSS Updates:

There are several documents which are no longer printed by the county.

The 2019-2020 School Calendar is available to be printed online: https://www.hcpss.org/calendar/


The 2019-2020 Student Parent Handbook will be available by mid-September online as well. You may reach the Student Code of Conduct now at the following link:



HCPSS Calendars

There will be no printed 2019-2020 calendars. Staff, students, and families may add our online calendar to their own mobile/online calendar by

  1. Going to https://www.hcpss.org/calendar/
  2. Scrolling down to subscribe to a Calendar
  3. Right-clicking on the calendar you wish to subscribe to
  4. Selecting Copy Link Location/Address/Shortcut
  5. Adding to your calendar of choice (See your calendar for specifics on adding a new calendar)

You may also view and/or download printable PDFs of the full calendar and/or important dates only. Updates to the PDFs will be noted on the HCPSS calendar page.

PLEASE NOTE: The calendar is subject to change. The online calendar reflects the most recent version.


Important Links for Attendance and Transportation Changes

Attendance Notes: Please send all attendance notes to VESattendance@hcpss.org.

An absence note is required for every absence, within 24 hours of your child returning to school. When your child returns, if you are unable to send the message via vesattendance@hcpss.org please send a note to his/her classroom teacher. The note should include:

  • Your child's first and last name
  • Your child's grade
  • Your child's homeroom teacher
  • The date of the absence
  • The reason for the absence


Extended Absences: If your child will be absent for more than 3 days, please fill out an HCPSS Extended Absence Form and send it to the front office: https://www.hcpss.org/f/aboutus/absence_request.pdf

Accommodations for Religious Observance:

The Board is committed to promoting respect and appreciation for religions, beliefs and customs of its diverse school population. The Board is committed to providing reasonable accommodations for religious obligations.

If a religious observance requires a student to miss all or part of a school day, parents should complete the Religious Obligation: Request for Absence form and submit the request to the principal/designee documenting the need for the absence. Requests should be submitted, whenever possible, at the beginning of the school year. Absences for religious holidays will be considered a lawful absence either for the day or any portion of the day.

A student may make up work and receive a recorded grade when an absence for religious observance is approved. This includes opportunities to make up any missed tests or assignments.

Board policies related to religious observance apply to student participation in athletic practices and games, as well as other extracurricular activities.

Students are excused from attendance at, or participation in, any extracurricular activity when their attendance or participation conflicts with their religious observance. Athletic practices and events are optional for students on any religious holiday.



The school should be notified whenever a child’s dismissal transportation changes.

Please send all transportation changes on the day it applies to by 2:00 p.m. It is very difficult to keep track of changes during dismissal of almost 1000 children outside of this time frame.


Note that an Early Dismissal is not considered a transportation change. It is an Attendance issue.


2019-2020 Student Parent Handbook

The 2019-2020 Student Parent Handbook will be available by mid-September online as well. You may reach the Student Code of Conduct now at the following link:




School Meal Program



Please keep your child’s lunch/breakfast accounts up to date:


If you owe money on your account, your child will be served an alternate lunch which is at a reduced price.


Student Breakfast
The procedure for morning breakfast is for students to go directly to the cafeteria to get their breakfast once they enter the building at 9:15 am. and take it to the classroom.

Breakfast – $2.00

Alternate Breakfast – $1.00

Reduced Price Breakfast – $0.20 (Find out how to qualify)



Student Lunch

Milk (1/2 pint) – $0.50

Elementary School Lunch – $2.75

Middle/High School Lunch – $3.25

Reduced Price Lunch – $0.30
(Find out how to qualify https://www.hcpss.org/food-services/ )




For information related to setting up your child’s lunch account and how to apply for Free or Reduced Priced Meals, please go to:




School Parking Lot Tips:

NOTICE STUDENT MORNING ARRIVALS: Please do not drop off your child before 9:15 a.m. You must wait with your child if you arrive early. There is no supervision by staff available.


1. When you drive onto the lot and see the school electronic sign, all school buses will turn to the right. No cars should go to the right. Parents wishing to drop students off go to the left-hand side along the curb.

2. Students stay in the car until they reach the curb of the front door. Students exit the car from the curbside, never on the driver’s side.

3. Do not drive down another aisle. Students would have to cross significant traffic as car traffic is diverted once individuals drop their child off at school to these aisles.

4. Please be patient. Everyone waits in the same line. Everyone is trying to get to work. If you have a concern about waiting, please place your child on the school bus. The line will move if everyone cooperates.

5. Do not park along the curb in the parent drop off lane or bus loop. Park in an officially designated spot if you must leave your car.

6. Never leave a car unattended in the parent drop off lane.

7. Please drive no faster than 10 mph. We are a school zone.

8. The Howard County Police do enforce the spots for Handicapped Parking. Please do not park here unless you have an active permit visible.


Thinking of chaperoning a field trip or volunteering in a classroom?

Please take the mandatory trainings regarding "Child Abuse and Neglect Report Procedures" and "Confidentiality Training Course" before you do! This is an annual requirement and only takes 5 minutes per training.



Parent/Guardian Visits:

Parents often want to come to school and eat lunch. These are the procedures for having Lunch with your children.

1. Verify the lunch schedule for the day. Usually, the lunch schedule is as follows:

11:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. - Kindergarten
11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. - Grade 1
12:00 p.m. - 12:30 p.m. - Grade 3

12:30 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. - Grade 2
1:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. - Grade 5
1:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. - Grade 4

2. Come to the Front Office with your Driver’s License, sign into LobbyGuard to obtain a visitor pass.

3. Wait in the lobby until your child’s assigned lunchtime then proceed to the cafeteria.

4. Upon the conclusion of lunch, please sign out and return your pass to the office and depart.

5. Please note that visits at Recess are not allowed to due to student security concerns.

Sometimes parents wish to observe in their child’s classroom. We invite all parents in during American Education Week. If you have a reason to observe at other times, follow these procedures.

  1. Teachers must have 24 hours’ notice before a visitor comes to their classroom.
  2. Notify the teacher of your desire to visit at least 24 hours in advance. Notification can be by email, phone call, or note to the teacher and once confirmed, you may visit.
  3. Upon arrival inform the office of your pre-arranged visit, sign in and get a pass.
  4. Please go directly to the observed teacher’s classroom. Please do not disturb instruction. This is an observation, not an appropriate time for a conference. A conference should be pre-arranged if needed.
  5. Upon completion, please return to the office and turn in your pass and depart.

Permission to visit a classroom is not permission to roam through the building. Please help us to keep your students feeling safe.



The VES PTA works to support the students, teachers and families by sponsoring activities to enrich, educate and bring our community together. Click here to view their website!

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Ice Cream Social

Even though school has started, summer isn’t over yet. Join us for a last blast of summer fun at Veterans Ice Cream Social! The date is Thursday, October 3rd from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Let's celebrate the new school year with ice cream, popsicles, games, and music. We need your help to make the event a success.

Please sign-up to volunteer:


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Mount Hebron Parade Including Future Vikings


Saturday, Oct. 19th, 10:30am


Church of the Resurrection Paulskirk Drive, Ellicott City, MD, USA


More information


Dear future Mt. Hebron Vikings,

Each year for Homecoming, MHHS holds a parade that stretches from the Church of the Resurrection and walks all the way to MHHS. We would like to invite any student who will one day attend Mt. Hebron HS to join us for this parade. Participants will ride in trucks or convertibles and toss candy along the way. We encourage any participants to hold signs demonstrating their future Viking pride.

If you are interested please join us at the Church of the Resurrection on Saturday, October 19th at 10:30am. We will be located in the parking lot.


If you would like further information or are interested in driving a vehicle, please contact the SGA sponsor Phil Herdman at philip_herdman@hcpss.org.