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A Message from Principal Mary Sepler, April 10th, 2019

Dear Lowell Families,

Due to my work schedule this week, I’m sending this news a day early. Don’t worry, it’s Wednesday and not Thursday!

It’s National Volunteer Week and we want to recognize all the parent and community volunteers who work to support our students and school. Your work is vital to our school community.  Later this spring we’ll be having a breakfast to say thanks through coffee and yummy treats.  Until then, thank you for all your time and energy.  We are so much stronger because of you!

Dr. Baker will be at Lowell tomorrow, Walking in the Shoes of Joanne Szegedi, a paraprofessional supporting our BRIDGES program.  We are so grateful Dr. Baker seeks to understand the daily learning experiences of all our students and staff.

We are continuing to work on our school culture statement at Lowell and are reaching out through morning circle discussions to discuss feeling valued and feeling safe at school.  Our number one statement regarding our school culture is “We are valued, and we feel safe”. Safety is our number one priority and sometimes balancing big emotions, safety and valuing the humanity of each student is a difficult thing to do.  Please know we are dedicated to advocating for all students and believe that understanding and valuing how we are different is a key toward increased kindness and collaboration.  If you, or your child, ever hear or see something at school that raises questions in your mind, please reach out to me, Sarah Walker or Jessica Raymond so we can discuss and be informed of your experience.

This spring, Lowell will be among the first to use a new school bus card, or “Hamster Pass” for students. Children who ride the bus now have a card that they will use to “beep” when they get on and off the bus each day. We plan to have the intermediate bus riders in grades 3-5 use them starting Monday, April 22.  The primary students in grades K-2 will use them on Tuesday, April 23.  This pass will be given to students who use the school buses to arrive and depart from school.  It will not be used for field trips.

The cards will soon be attached to students’ backpacks. School personnel and bus drivers will help children learn how to use the card to “beep” on and off the bus each time they ride.  Students who do not have a backpack will not be given their pass until they have one.  If you need assistance in getting a backpack, please contact us as soon as possible.

Thanks to the 2016 voter-approved school bus levy, we have enhanced our GPS location services on all school buses. This allows our staff to know the location of our buses. We are now working on the next phase of this project, which is to increase student safety by knowing which students are on board.

We ask that bus riders keep this card attached to their backpack and follow the school bus driver’s directions upon getting on and off the bus. We encourage families to reinforce with each child the importance of keeping this card attached to their backpack.

We understand that this is a new process for staff, students and families. That said, this technology will be very helpful to staff and families as we roll out this new program at our schools. So, the more our students use this card, the more we can learn!

Thank you in advance for your help. If you have any questions or feedback, please contact the Lowell office at (360) 676-6430

Our Smarter Balanced State testing continues next week with 4th and 5th grade students continuing the English Language Arts portion on Wednesday and Thursday morning.  The times are the same as this week.  Please contact your teacher if you’d like more information.

Wishing you all a happy end of the week.

Sincerely,

Mary