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Our First Week Back
Jenny Lynch
Friday, August 16, 2019

Dear Austin Creek Families,

We are off to a great start to the new school year! Students have spent the first few days getting to know their new teachers and learning new classroom routines. I have visited each classroom and chatted with students during lunch and recess periods. It’s so much fun for me to meet new students and to reconnect with returning students.

Next week, beginning August 19th, we will begin Caught Being Good Assemblies, PE instruction, Safety Drills, and Music Academy. Caught Being Good assemblies are our opportunity to meet as a school community and celebrate everything we do. We always start by celebrating our school rules:

· Be Safe

· Be Respectful

· Be Responsible

· Be Kind

Be sure to ask your child about our rules, what they might look like, where you might see the rules in action, and when it's best to follow the rules. Emphasizing positive behaviors and celebrating positive choices are a central part of our approach to education and are embedded into everything we do.

Each week, Coach Knapp will be working with each grade level to provide PE instruction to 1/2 the class while the classroom teachers will provide small group instruction to the other 1/2 of the class. For example, Coach Knapp will take 1/2 of each second grade class out for PE instruction and each classroom teacher will remain in the classroom working with the remaining students on core academics and the following day or period the students will switch groups. This will allow us to provide structured PE lessons to all students in all grades, and give classroom teachers the opportunity to target instruction to specific students in a small group format. It's a big change and we are very excited about it!

Music Academy will also begin for all students in all grades. In our introductory week, students will meet the music teachers, learn about the program, and what they are going to learn in the 2019-20 school year. Erin Garcia-Norris is joining our team to provide music instruction to our Kindergarteners. Erin is an experienced classroom and music teacher who is looking forward to meeting and working with our youngest learners. Andy Darrow and Dan Hetzer will work with our primary students in first, second, and third grade. Andy Darrow, Dan Hetzer, Cody Martin, and Ashley Holmberg will work as a team to provide Band and Orchestra instruction to our fourth, fifth, and sixth grade students. Welcome to the team Erin and welcome back Andy, Dan, Cody, and Ashley!

At the beginning of the school year the teachers and staff work hard to emphasize positive behavior choices and to set up procedures we will follow throughout the school year. For example, putting away classroom and recess equipment when you are done using it or always writing your name on your work. Learning and practicing our Safety Drills in part of this process. Over the next few weeks the teachers will be introducing a new safety drill each week. After we hold these drills I will contact all parents and ask you to talk with your child about the drill and what they can do to stay safe at school and at home. These drills are not meant to be scary and practicing safety procedures is necessary and important. If you are interested in learning more about school safety, please contact me directly.

Wow! This ended up being a pretty long post. I will be holding our next Coffee with the Principal on Monday, September 16th, at 8:30am. In the meantime, if you have any questions, concerns, or ideas, please check in the office or send me an email.

It’s going to be a great year!

Jenny Lynch, Principal