- Welcome to the Elementary School
- Security Notification
- Safe School Environment
- How Parents Can Help their Child Succeed in School
- Address Changes
- Admission Requirements
- Arriving at School
- Asbestos Notification
- Assignment to Class
- Bus Behavior
- Child Abuse
- Dismissal Procedures - Parent Picking up Students after School
- Emergency Drills
- Emergency Closing of School
- Emergency Numbers
- Field Trips
- Family Vacations
- Grading System
- Gum Chewing
- Head Lice
- Health Services
- Lost and Found
- Lunch Time
- Lunch Program
- Make-up Work
- Medicine at School
- Non-Discrimination Policy 03/24/98 (REVISED)
- Notification of Pictures of Students and Media
- Papers Sent Home
- Parent-Teacher Conferences
- Parent-Teacher Organization
- Personal Appearance
- Pledge of Allegiance
- Report Cards
- Sexual Harassment
- Solicitation of Students or Employees
- Special Education
- Student Council
- Student Support Team (SST)
- Toys and other Personal Belongings
- Transportation Changes
- Weapons in School
Welcome to the elementary schools. The Chestnut Ridge School District has served the families of our community for over 50 years. Founded in 1952, the district has a history of community-based, quality education. Our elementary student body of around 750 students with an average class size of 22 allows our teachers to connect individually with each student, and makes every family part of a true school community. Central also has two pre-kindergarten classrooms. Central Elementary is now our primary school with all our kindergarten, first and second grade students. New Paris Elementary is our intermediate campus with all our third and fourth grade students. The Head Start building at New Paris houses two pre-kindergarten classrooms. A dedicated faculty provides our children with an academically rich and demanding instructional program. The PTO actively supports all student and staff endeavors. Parents can be counted upon to join in our many activities. Our students flourish because of this strong sense of community that is shared by our students, parents, staff, and neighbors.
All persons having any reason to enter our elementary school buildings must report to the main office. If you have an appointment to visit a classroom during instruction time, you must first sign the school register in the office where you will be given a visitor's badge to wear during your visit. Before leaving, you will need to return to the office to sign out. You will not need a visitor's badge if you are visiting the office area only. Teachers and staff members are instructed to question any non-employee without a visitor's badge.
Parents are encouraged to visit school and actively participate in the education of their children. We request that parents avoid conferences with the teacher during such visits, but rather schedule conferences for a mutually convenient time.
If you need to give your child a message, medication, homework, lunch money, supplies, etc., the office staff will take care of this for you. These short class interruptions hamper valuable instruction time.
If you are going to pick up your child during school hours, please wait in the office. The office staff will call for your child. The teaching staff will not release a student to anyone other than office personnel.
We are taking these steps only to protect the safety and welfare of your children. We appreciate your cooperation in this matter.
Safe School Environment
The students in our school deserve to learn and play in the safest and finest education environment we can provide. Accordingly, all staff and students must make every effort to observe that students in our school have the right to:
- learn in a disruption-free environment;
- know what is expected of them at all times in every area of the school;
- be protected from physical harm;
- be protected from verbal abuse;
- have their positive behavior recognized;
- have their personal property protected;
- have their concerns heard;
- and be treated with kindness and caring.
How Parents Can Help their Child Succeed in School
Parents can help make school a successful experience for their children. Consider the following recommendations to help your child have a good school year.
1) Start each school day right. A calm beginning at home makes the school day much better.
2) Be sure that your child gets at least eight hours of sleep and provide him or her with a good breakfast. A child cannot concentrate on what the teacher is trying to teach if he or she is tired or hungry.
3) Praise your child each day for something he or she has done. Have a special place to display work or other papers your child brings home from school.
4) Encourage your child to think of school as exciting and important. Attitudes developed during the elementary school years will set the tone for your child's entire school experience.
5) Listen attentively to your child as he or she talks about school experiences.
6) Keep the lines of communication open between you and your child's teacher. Inform the teacher of any family situations which could affect your child's behavior or performance.
7) Do not compare your child's progress with that of brothers and sisters or other children. Each child's abilities are different, and each has different strengths and weaknesses.
8) Show an interest in school through visiting and participating in PTO activities.
9) See that your child attends school regularly and arrives on time each day.
In the interest of students, it is critical that the school is able to contact parents at any time the child is at school. Therefore, it is essential that the school have on file parents' current address and home and business telephone numbers. Emergency contacts with telephone numbers are needed in case a parent cannot be reached. If parents move or change jobs, they should contact the school immediately to update this important information.
Kindergarten students must be 5 years old on or before September 1. First grade students must be 6 years old on or before September 1. A copy of the child's proof of age must be supplied at the time of enrollment.
If any person other than a natural parent has custody of a child, proof of legal custody or guardianship must be provided before the child may be enrolled in a Chestnut Ridge school.
Proof of Residence
Proof of residence must be furnished at the time of registration. Examples of proof of residence are home mortgage or warranty deed documents, vehicle tag transfer receipts, utility bills, bank statements, charge account statements, moving company receipts, health insurance documents, federal/state tax returns, documents from a governmental agency, driver's license, and voter registration information. A notarized statement from another adult living at this residence is not ordinarily sufficient evidence. Proof of residence is subject to investigation and may be required at any time.
Arriving at School
DO NOT DROP OFF STUDENTS BEFORE 7:30 - Building doors are unlocked at 7:30 A.M.
Students who are brought to school by transportation other than the school bus should not arrive earlier than 7:30 a.m. There is no adult supervision until this time.
At Central Elementary: After 7:30 a.m. parents should drop students off by the cafeteria door on the High School side of the building. Use the road that has been extended completely around Central. Please enter at the modular classroom parking lot entrance, drive slowly around to the back of the school. Drop off your student(s) and exit back to route 56 near the High School. The road around Central is one lane. Please take your turn and do not pass other parents unloading students. If you want to park in the rear of the building, be sure your car is out of the normal traffic flow so other parents can safely drop off their children. DO NOT DROP OFF STUDENTS IN FRONT OF CENTRAL ELEMENTARY BEFORE 8:15. THIS AREA IS RESERVED FOR BUS AND EMPLOYEE TRAFFIC ONLY. After 8:15 you may drop off you child in front of the school.
In accordance with EPA regulations, this school has been inspected for friable (easily crumbled) materials that contain asbestos. Friable asbestos containing material may cause health problems.
Friable asbestos containing material is present in Chestnut Ridge Elementary Schools. A record of the inspection, a diagram of the locations of friable asbestos containing materials, and a copy of relevant EPA regulations are available in Chestnut Ridge Central Elementary School, office of the Director of Elementary Education.
NOTE: All asbestos except for that in the floor tile has been removed from the elementary schools.
Assignment to Class
All classes, grades Pre-K through 4, will be taught as heterogeneous, self-contained classes. This does not preclude teachers from engaging in team teaching activities or utilizing other similar teaching techniques when appropriate. Reading groups are formed in all grades to assure instruction meets student needs and make sure student are working at their reading level.
There is a positive correlation between student attendance and student achievement. The theory is that the student must have a consistently high level of attendance for learning to take place. The Chestnut Ridge School District has developed a set of procedures to be followed at the elementary schools. These procedures fulfill recommendations from the Pennsylvania Department of Education concerning student attendance. Each time a child is absent from school the parents must send in a written excuse explaining why the child was absent. The absence must be for a legal reason such as illness of pupil, quarantine, impassable roads, recovery from accident, court attendance, death in the family, approved family educational trips and other urgent reasons that directly apply to the child not ordinarily to other members of the family or home conditions. Absences are generally recognized as cumulative or non-cumulative. Cumulative absences refer to days that contribute to the allotted number of days a student may be absent. This number is ten (10) for elementary students. Non-cumulative absences are absences that do not contribute to the specified ten days.
Excused absences include:
- a maximum of ten days of absence for elementary students during a school year verified by a parent note submitted within three school days of each return.
- pre-approved family educational trips. See educational trips.
- any absence in which a physician's written excuse is submitted within three school days of a student's return.
Unexcused/unlawful absences include:
- any day for which a written excuse is not submitted within three school days of a student's return, including notes from physicians.
- any absence not excused by a physician's note after ten days of absence.
- suspensions from school.
- illness verified by a physician's note submitted within three days of a student's return. (Any absence in which a physician's note is submitted is not included in the ten days permitted for parental excuses.)
- death in the family
- religious holidays.
- school sponsored activities.
Parents are strongly encouraged to schedule family vacations with the School District Calendar in mind to ensure that students attend school a maximum number of days.
- Students at the elementary level will be permitted to take educational trips not to exceed five (5) days per year.
- The application for permission for student excusal due to an educational trip must be submitted to the principal ten (10) school days prior to the trip. The form can be obtained from the District web page or at the school’s office. The principal may grant an excused absent for a request that comes in after the trip if there are unexpected factors.
- Any days taken beyond the maximum of five (5) days permitted for educational trips in a given year may be considered unexcused and unlawful for students under the age of seventeen (17) and unexcused for students seventeen (17) years of age and over. Appropriate legal action may be taken where applicable.
- The following will be taken into consideration by the principal in granting permission for the trip:
- The student’s academic standing
- The student’s attendance record
- The effect the absence will have on the student’s educational welfare
- Exceptionality of the request
- Parental requests which go beyond the numbers of days allowed must first be approved by the building principal and then receive approval of the Superintendent.
- It will be the parent/student’s responsibility to contact teachers and make up assignments missed.
- Parents/guardians are discouraged from taking trips during the state’s testing periods. (see family vacations)
Compulsory Attendance Law:
Three unlawful absences will result in written notice of violation of the Compulsory Attendance Law and may result in prosecution pursuant to Section 1333 of the Pennsylvania School Code. Parents can be fined up to $300. A student may lose his/her privilege to apply for a drivers permit at age 16. Students under 13 can be referred to delinquency proceedings.
Students and their parents/guardians hold the primary responsibility for school attendance and for following the attendance policy. We ask for the cooperation of both students and parents/guardians in these matters so that the student can receive the best education possible.
Regular attendance shall be defined as attending school for the full day on each day during which school is in session. Students are expected to attend all sessions unless properly excused by school authorities. The first academic classes start at 8:30. The official school day will be from 8:30 AM until 3:00 PM. The school day will be divided into ten periods. The periods are as follows:
Period 1 8:30 9:09 -- Period 2 9:09 9:48 -- Period 3 9:48 10:27 -- Period 4 10:27 11:06
Period 5 11:06 11:45 -- Period 6 11:45 12:24 -- Period 7 12:24 1:03 -- Period 8 1:03 1:42
Period 9 1:42 2:21 -- Period 10 2:21 3:00
Attendance will be calculated to the tenth of a day. If a student would arrive at school at 9:23 he/she would be absent two periods. If this would occur four more times this would be ten periods or one full day. If a student would leave school at 2:25 he/she would be absent one period. If this would occur nine more times this would be ten periods or one full day. A written excuse must be turned in when a student arrives after 8:30 AM or leaves before the first bus call in the afternoon.
Outstanding Attendance Certificates will be awarded to those students who have less than one full day (9 periods or less) of absence, for any reason, in a school year.
Perfect Attendance Certificates will be awarded to those students who have been in attendance for every minute or the year.
The first step to success in school is getting there. It is an obligation of student, parent and school authorities to insist upon good attendance. It is also the LAW.
The faculty and staff of your school are happy to recognize student birthdays. However, because learning time at school is very important, no birthday parties may be held during the school day. Please speak with the classroom teacher if you have questions about this. Private birthday party invitations may be distributed at school if distributed to all classmates in the room.
Kindergarten and Pre-K may have a birthday celebration once each month for the students that have birthdays within the month.
Bullying Prevention Program
The New Paris Elementary School utilizes a bully prevention program following the Olweus Bullying Prevention Model. The Olweus Bully Prevention Program is a multi-component school-based program designed to prevent or reduce bullying in elementary, and middle schools. The program tries to restructure the existing school environment to reduce opportunities for bullying. It works to involve all students in the preventative process. The Olweus Bully Prevention Program shows students that they can help to stamp out bullying in their school.
Raising Healthy Children used in both elementary schools and the Second Step program used at Central Elementary serves as the primary grades best defense against bullying.
In both schools students are exposed to many different classroom activities and discussions to inform students on how to properly and effectively eliminate and prevent instances of bullying from occurring. Open-ended conversations and teaching decision making skills are among the different methods utilized to combat bullying.Nationally these three program have shown significant reductions in reports of students being bullied and bullying others, and have been awarded recognition as positive pro social instruments.
Student behavior before boarding or leaving the bus is the responsibility of the student, parents or legal guardians. Students are encouraged to arrive at their bus stop just prior to the bus arriving. Arriving too early invites problems to occur. Riding the bus is a privilege. The head teacher or Director of Elementary Education may choose to suspend a student from riding the bus when any of the bus rules have been violated. Parents will be notified when a student has been suspended. In the event of a bus suspension, students are still required to attend school. Failure to attend school will result in an unexcused absence. All bus drivers will enforce the following rules:
1. Students should be seated in their assigned seats immediately upon entering the bus.
2. No pupil shall stand or move from one seat to another while the bus is moving or without authorization from the bus driver when the bus is stopped.
3. Loud, boisterous profane language and indecent conduct will not be tolerated.
4. Students are not allowed to tease and bother each other.
5. Students are not allowed to open doors and windows without permission.
6. All students are to be at their pick-up spots on time and should not keep the bus waiting.
7. Students are not allowed to throw any objects in or out of the school bus.
8. No eating or drinking allowed on the bus. Exceptions may be allowed on field trips.
9. Radios, noisemakers and toys may not be used by students while riding the bus.
10. General school rules apply to the students while riding the bus.
11. Disrespect to the bus driver will not be tolerated.
Any student who plans to go home on a different bus MUST bring a note from his/her parent or guardian to the office for approval. Approval is not automatic because many busses are filled to legal capacity. If there is no note, the student will be sent home on their regular bus.
Please read with your child the discipline section in this handbook.We must all work hard to make the trips to and from school as safe as possible.
Pennsylvania law requires that school employees report to the Children Services any suspected cases of child abuse or neglect. Failure to comply with this requirement may result in prosecution of the school employee. Once a report has been made, official representatives of Children Services have the right to and may come to the school to interview the child. Parental permission need not be obtained by the department.
Parents/guardians must sign and return the computer usage agreement form before students are allowed to use the Internet. The Internet is a valuable instructional tool. Students will follow the computer usage policy. Failure to do so will result in restricted usage or complete denial of computer privileges.
Chestnut Ridge elementary schools have an elementary school counselor. The counselor works with individual students, small groups, and classes. A student may be referred to the counselor by a teacher, parent, or by self-referral. If a parent would like their child to talk to the counselor, they should call the school or send a note to the teacher, the counselor, or the principal.
Parental permission is not required in order to see the counselor or to participate in classroom guidance activities. Please call the school counselor or Director of Elementary Education for more information regarding school counseling services.
If custody changes after enrollment, documents should be provided to the school as soon as possible after the change. Students cannot be withdrawn without this information.
Court orders that specifically authorize or direct the release of custody by the school system will be followed. The school system will not interject itself in a custody or visitation dispute between two parents. The school system will give to non-custodial parents, upon request, all information required under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act unless there is a valid court order directing the school system not to divulge such information. If such an order exists, a certified copy must be delivered to the Office of the Director of Elementary Education.
A parent requesting an early dismissal for a student must send a note to the school in the morning of the requested dismissal. The note should state the reason and time of the requested dismissal as well as the person picking up the student. Following this procedure should be a time saver for parents.
Check - Out Procedures During School Hours:
• If a student leaves during the school day, parents must check him/her out in the office . The student will then be summoned to the office via the intercom.
• The parent or guardian must have some form of identification.
• Please do not go directly to the classroom or remove your child from the playground during recess.
If a student is only to be released in the custody of a certain parent or guardian, a court order document must be on file with the school office.
Parents Picking Up Students After School
Parents picking up students after school must send a note to the school in the morning stating that the student will not be riding the bus and will be picked up. The note should also state the name of the person coming for the student.Central Elementary students may not be picked up between 2:30 and 3:00 because of the buses loading in front of the building. If you need to pick up a student before 2:30 please park in front of the building and come to the office. After school pick up begins at 3:00. Parents must use the parking lot behind the modular classroom. Enter the parking lot from route 56 and exit the same way. Do not drive around the building. Children riding school vans are being loaded in the rear of the school by the cafeteria doors. Do not enter the flow of bus traffic in the parking lot in front of Central Elementary. Do not park in the large parking lot at the front of the school and walk through the bus traffic. Please use the door at the end of the building next to the modular classroom. Students will be in the last room next to that door. Parents must sign their child out with the teachers on duty in that room. Children not picked up by 3:28 will be in the office.
The safety of your child is one of our greatest concerns. The school holds regular drills to teach pupils to respond calmly in the event of an emergency. Fire drills are conducted once each month, and a tornado drill is conducted once each year. Detailed escape plans are posted inside the door of each classroom. Each class has an escape route to an outside area a safe distance from the building.
Emergency Closing of School
School will be in session unless the weather makes it dangerous for school buses to run.
Early Dismissal: If weather conditions become severe enough during the day to require buses to make their runs before the regularly scheduled time, each local radio and television station will be notified. Parents need to discuss in advance with their children what to do if an early dismissal requires procedures for arrival at home or pick up to be different than normal.
Cancellation: In the event school is to be canceled due to inclement weather or other emergencies, announcements will be made over radio and television.
If the decision to cancel school is made by 11 p.m., this announcement will be broadcast on the 11 p.m. television news. If the decision is made later than 11 p.m., then this information will be broadcast at or before 7 a.m. over WBFD-AM, WRAX-FM, and WAYC-AM in Bedford; WSKE-AM in Everett, WJAC-TV Channel 6 in Johnstown; and WTAJ-TV Channel 10 in Altoona. The television station in Johnstown is no longer connected with the radio station, and people who live near the Johnstown area should listen to WJAC-AM (850) or WKYE-FM (95) radio.You should also receive a phone call from the superintendent’s office if school is canceled or delayed.
The school must always be informed as to a parent/guardian's work telephone number or emergency number in the event a child becomes ill or is injured at school. Please remember to notify the school of any change of address or telephone number. This is important. Please return the EMERGENCY CARD during the first week of school.
Educational field trips to nearby locations are scheduled by various classroom teachers throughout the school year. These trips are designed to supplement different aspects of the classroom curriculum and to introduce students to the resources of the community. Parents will receive notices of field trips well in advance of the scheduled trip and will be asked to sign a field trip permission form. Sometimes a small contribution may be requested to help defray costs. No student will be denied the opportunity to go on the field trip or penalized in any manner for failure to contribute.
Family Vacations: School Achievement and Attendance Correlations
Sharing a family vacation is a great experience for students. However, parents and guardians should be aware that, when children miss school for vacations, the impact of lost classroom time cannot truly be measured - even if students take along books and complete assignments.
The faculty and administration encourage family closeness, and we support weekend excursions because they are excellent learning opportunities. We wish to ask your cooperation, however, in planning trips so that students do not miss school. Requests for and approval of vacations during the school year suggest that the issue of school absence for trips is acceptable. In fact, we discourage it and ask parents to plan vacations, if at all possible, so that children do not miss school. It is very important to have all students in school during the PSSA test. This year the PSSA testing window is April 12 – April 16 for reading and math in grades 3 and 4. Also April 26 – April 30 for 4th grade Science.
The school district uses nine weeks grading periods. Students will be graded based on their performance on the following: (1) class participation; (2) class assignments; (3) homework assignments; (4) tests and quizzes; and (5) special projects. More and more schools are moving to a skills based report card for the early elementary years. We are looking at moving in that direction for our report card. This type of report card is sometimes called a “standards based report card.”
Kindergarten report cards tell what skills a student has learned. A skills checklist is completed and sent home. No numerical grades are given to kindergarten students. Kindergarten has used a “standards based report card starting in the 2007-2008 school year.
First grade A standards based report card is used in first grade. The skills reported will be aligned to the Pennsylvania Academic Standards. First grade students will also receive a traditional letter grade along with the standard based report.
Second grade students receive a numerical grade in Language Arts and Mathematics. Science & Health, Social Studies, Art, Music, Physical Education, and Handwriting are graded with "O", “G”, "S", or "U". Starting this year second grade students will also have their skills reported as they relate to the Pennsylvania Academic Standards in Reading and Mathematics.
Third grade students receive numerical grades in Reading , English, Spelling, Mathematics, Science & Health, and Social Studies. Art, Music, Physical Education, and Handwriting are graded with "O", “G”, "S", or "U".
Fourth grade students receive numerical grades in all academic subjects ( Reading, English, Spelling, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies). Art, Music, Health & Physical Education, and Handwriting are graded with "O", “G”, "S", or "U".
Numerical grades are equal to the following letter grades:
A+ = 99-100; A= 96-98; A- = 94-95; B+ = 92-93; B = 89-91; B- = 86-88;
C+ = 83-85; C = 79-82 C - = 76-78 D+ = 73-75; D = 69-72; D- = 65-68; F = 0-64
Parents of students in grades 3 and 4 may access their child's grades on line. An access code and directions will be sent to parents. This code will allow parents to access their child's grades on “Power School ”.
The school has a three-part policy about the use of gum during school hours: 1) NO GUM, 2) NO GUM, and 3) NO GUM! Students are expected to follow all parts of this policy.
Because head lice are so easily spread from one child to another, children with head lice cannot remain at school. If a child has head lice, a parent will be asked to come to the school to get the child. The child will not be allowed to return to school until proof of effective treatment is provided.
The nurse is on duty during the regular school day. Unless there is an emergency, the student must be excused by the teacher to go to the nurse's office.
The nurse will decide if it is necessary for a student to be excused from school. If so, she will make the necessary arrangements to go home.
Parents will be contacted to pick up students who have:
- symptoms of a contagious condition
- head lice
- fever of 100 F or higher
- been to health room previously that day and has no improvement in symptoms
The nurse will provide emergency first aid only. She will not diagnose or administer medication unless prescribed by a physician. For minor complaints of headache, stomachache, or nausea the condition will be assessed, temperature checked, and a trial rest period given. Tylenol may be administered as needed only with signed permission on the medication policy.
When it becomes necessary for a prescription medication to be given during school hours, the student must obtain an authorization form from the nurse or office. This form is to be signed by the parent or physician and must accompany the medication to the health room where the medication will be kept until it is time for it to be administered. Please see MEDICINEAT SCHOOL in this handbook.
Medications will be administered only if:
- medication policy and/or consent form is properly signed
- medicine is medically indicated
- medicine is in the original container and clearly marked
The educational philosophy of the elementary school is to teach the fundamentals of reading, writing, speaking, and mathematics and their application in all subject areas. Teachers provide instruction to each student so that mastery of the subject matter can occur. However, homework is a vital part of this learning process since instruction often needs to be reinforced with additional practice outside the classroom.
Understanding that the nature of the subject matter being taught lends itself to different "types" of homework, the following are examples of homework assignments given to students at Chestnut Ridge Elementary:
1. independent practice of newly learned skills
2. expansion activities beyond the subject matter presented in class
3. introduction of new materials (such as the reading of a number of pages in the text with a stated purpose for the reading)
4. independent student projects that are approved by the teacher
The learning process is a joint effort. Teachers, students and their parents/guardians share in the responsibility for the students' mastery of the subject matter. Homework and/or individual study units will be discussed fully in the classroom so that parents are not required to give instruction. The teacher will provide the instruction. However, parents should establish a learning environment in the home by:
- showing a positive attitude toward education;
- taking an interest in your child's school work;
- establishing good study conditions;
- monitoring your child's study habits;
- and exercising patience as you encourage your child.
Learning is not merely the completion of assignments, but it is the understanding of ideas and the ability to utilize the materials covered in the assignment. Since the educational process is a cooperative effort, parents should encourage and support good study habits and the daily completion of homework assignments. Students must assume responsibility for their homework just as they will assume job responsibility in the future.
The Chestnut Ridge Board of Education does not provide accident or medical insurance coverage for students. School accident insurance is available at the beginning of the school year for a reasonable fee. Both school day coverage and 24-hour coverage are available. Accident claim forms may be obtained from the school office for this insurance, but the parent is responsible for filing claims.
Library - Media Center
Students are encouraged to use the media center-library at school. Students may check out books from the media center to take home. They may also use filmstrips, tapes, records, and other items in the media center. The media center is open most of the time during each school day. Students are responsible for items that they borrow from the media center and will be required to pay for any items which they lose or damage. The librarian will give instruction in how best to use all the resources.
Lost and Found
Each school has a "Lost and Found" area where lost items are turned in and may be claimed. Coats, sweaters, and caps should be labeled with student's name. Any items in the "Lost and Found" which are not claimed by the end of the school year will be discarded.
Dining Room Discipline: Life-long social skills are stressed in the dining room as they are throughout the school. Conversational talking will be permitted with those seated next to or across from the student. Simple rules of respect and manners will be observed. This would include walking to and from the table, staying seated while eating, cleaning up after yourself, etc. There is to be no pop or soft drinks brought from home. Fruit drinks are acceptable. Trading food from child to child has proven to be unsanitary and will not be allowed.
In the interest of safety, we are requesting that parents not provide their children with snack time and lunch items containing peanut butter or peanut products. Please read package labels carefully to work at protecting the health of the students with allergies. We have a number of students who because of an allergy to peanuts, are placed at serious risk by being exposed to these products. When providing baked goods and snacks for your child's class please keep in mind that some students may be allergic to foods containing nuts.
Peanut allergy is one of the most severe food allergies often causing a life-threatening reaction called anaphylactic shock. Anaphylactic shock involves sudden low blood pressure, extreme swelling and difficulty breathing which can be fatal. If your child is extremely sensitive to these foods please let us know and provide the school with the necessary medication that is needed to counteract a reaction.
The Chestnut Ridge School District operates a lunch program in each school. A hot meal is served daily, and all meals are nutritionally balanced.
Meal Prices Grades K – 4
Breakfast $ .80
Reduced Price Lunches $ .40 and Breakfast $ .30
Adult Lunches are $2.70 and Adult Breakfast is $1.70
(Paying for Lunch)
Chestnut Ridge elementary school cafeterias use a computerized Point of Sale (POS) system to purchase meals and ala carte. Every student has an account in the cafeteria that can be accessed by their student PIN (Personal Identification Number).
Students are encouraged to bring a check made payable to: CRSD
Cash is acceptable but CHECKS are preferred. All deposits are to be taken to the cafeteria and given to the cashier. Prepayment then will be entered into the student's account. Money can be deposited anytime for any amount—weekly, monthly or annually. The cancelled check will serve as your receipt. Deposit envelopes are available at each cashier station for cafeteria staff to properly credit your child's account.
Students are permitted to pay cash on line at the time of the purchase.
All elementary school students will always be provided a meal during scheduled meal service times.
Free and reduced price lunches are provided for those students who qualify. Applications for the free/reduced price lunch program are sent home with every student at the beginning of the school year and are available from the school office at any time.
Within the first 20 days of each new school year, new meal applications for free or reduced meal eligibility are required to be submitted to the school district's food service office. They can be submitted any time throughout the school year, if there is a change in household income that may change the eligibility status for free or reduced meals.
Parents are invited to join us for lunch anytime!If parents would like to eat lunch with their child at school, they must notify the school office by 9:00 a.m. so that the lunch count can be increased. However, on special days there may be more requests then the cafeteria can handle. On these days we may have to turn down requests for lunch.
Make-up tests or class work are the responsibility of the student and the teacher. Generally, the teacher should allow the student as much time to make up work as the time the student was absent. Make-up work is not given to students who are illegally absent.
Medicine at School
No medicine may be kept in any area of the school other than that area designated by the Director of Elementary Education. All medication must be dispensed by the school's nursing staff or employees designated by the Director of Elementary Education. Medicine can only be dispensed with written medical instructions or, in the case of non-prescriptive medicine, instructions from parents. All medicine (prescriptive and non-prescriptive) must be dispensed from the original container. Prescriptive medicines should be brought to school by parents and not on the school bus.
Non-Discrimination Policy 03/24/98 (REVISED)
Chestnut Ridge School District is an equal opportunity educational institution and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, disability and/or possession of a GED as opposed to a high school education in its activities, programs, or employment practices as required by Title VI, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, Title IX of the Education Amendments, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Americans With Disabilities Act. For information regarding Civil Rights or grievance procedures, contact the appropriate building principal or the Civil Rights Coordinator for Title IX, Chestnut Ridge School District, (814) 839-4195. For information regarding services, activities and facilities that are accessible to and usable by disabled persons, contact the Office of the Superintendent, Chestnut Ridge School District, (814) 839-4195.
Notifications of Pictures of Students
Unless the parent or legal guardian request otherwise, the news media may take pictures and/or make audio-visual recordings of students during sporting events, awards ceremonies, and general interest events. Pictures and/or audio-visual presentations of students may appear in the school’s newsletter or on the school web site. If the parent or legal guardian wishes to prohibit the taking of any picture or the making of any audio-visual recording of their child by the news media or school system, notification must be filed, in writing, within 30 days of the date of enrollment or the beginning of the school year. A notification form is placed inside of the back cover of this handbook. Return this form only if you do not want your child's name or picture given to the media or placed on the school's web site. Pictures and/or audio-visual recording that identify students as receiving special education instruction will not be allowed without prior approval.
Papers Sent Home
Check daily with your child to see if any information has been sent home by either the office or classroom teacher. Even if your child has no homework, the teacher or the office may have sent a memo or an announcement that should be read by parents. It is especially important to check book bags on the weekend even if your child has not received any homework assignments. You may be requested to sign papers for prompt return to the teacher. Your signature does not indicate approval of the quality of the work or grade given, but merely that you have seen the papers and are aware of your child's performance. If you have questions, please contact your child's teacher who will be happy to answer them.
Parents are encouraged to contact the school to arrange a parent-teacher conference when the parent would like more information on his or her child's school performance or when the child is experiencing problems at school. Parent-teacher conferences can be a productive way of helping to improve student performance. If there is any major change in a student's home environment that may affect his or her school performance, parents should notify the child's teacher by sending a note or scheduling a conference. To schedule conferences, parents should contact the school office or the teacher. Teachers are not available for parent-teacher conferences during instructional time. Teachers typically have a half-hour planning/conference time each day, and conferences may be scheduled for this time.
Parents are encouraged to become actively involved in the Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO) at their child's school. These organizations provide opportunities for parents and teachers to plan and work together for the betterment of the school and for the benefit of students. Parent-teacher groups hold regular meetings in the schools.
Because they take away from class time, only two formal parties are permitted during the school year, one on the last day before winter holidays and one on or near February 14th. However, we take part of a day the last week of school to celebrate the end of another school year.
While school accommodates a wide variety of individual tastes, appropriate dress helps promote a positive school atmosphere and is encouraged. Students, with the assistance and guidance of their parents, have the responsibility to keep themselves, hair, and clothes neat and clean.
Guidelines for School Dress:
Short shorts, halter tops, muscle shirts, cut-off tee shirts with inappropriate messages and any other revealing articles of clothing will not be permitted. The following types of messages, symbols and types of clothing will be excluded from what is considered acceptable:
- Articles displaying indecent messages, pictures, slogans or advertisements.
- Articles promoting drugs, tobacco, alcohol or other dangerous chemical products.
- Articles displaying violence.
- Articles which could be dangerous to students or property.
- Articles displaying symbols of death.
If any of these are worn to school, parents will be notified and asked to bring a suitable change of clothes to school.
The use of make-up, perfume, and temporary hair dye is discouraged at the elementary level.
In addition, common courtesy dictates that students will remove all hats upon entering the building and those hats will remain off until they have left the building. Exceptions will be made for special theme days such as “Hat Day”.
We would like to remind you that children need proper footwear to get the most out of scheduled gym activities and recess periods. It is impossible for them to play and compete safely in sandals, clogs, leather-soled dress shoes, and heels. Flip flops are not permitted. We strongly urge you to be firm with your child (children) regarding this policy for their own safety.
Unless weather is unusually severe, children will be outside for recess. Therefore, it is your responsibility to dress then appropriately. This includes hats, gloves/mittens, boots, etc.
Thank you for helping us develop and maintain a positive school climate.
No pets of any kind are allowed at school without permission from the principal. Teachers may give special permission for pets to be brought to school as part of a special display or activity if this has been approved by the principal. Under no circumstance is a potentially dangerous pet to be brought to school. Animals wild or tame are not allowed on the school bus.
Pledge of Allegiance
Students will be given the opportunity to recite the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America during each school day. If a parent does not wish their child to participate in reciting the Pledge, they should send a note to the teacher. If a student does not participate, he/she may either stand or remain seated respectfully.
The Chestnut Ridge Board of Education has established requirements for promotion from one grade level to the next. At any time during the school year when it is determined that a student may not be promoted, the teacher will notify the student's parents. The teacher will schedule a parent-teacher or parent-teacher-principal conference and/or request a SST meeting.
(please see STUDENT SUPPORT TEAM in this handbook)If parents would like more information about promotion criteria or about retention, they should contact the Office of the Director of Elementary Education at 839-4195 ext. 4442.
Whenever weather permits, recess will be held outdoors. Make sure that your child is dressed appropriately for the weather.
- Student must play on designated areas.
- Only one student per swing at a time.
- Students must stay off the top of cross bars.
- Students must sit down to slide. Walking up the slide is not permitted. No sliding, down the brace poles.
- No playing in water or mud.
- Games may be played on the grass fields with supervisor's permission.
- ABSOLUTELY NO WRESTLING, ROUGH PLAYING. Students are to keep their hands to themselves.
- Students are not allowed to pick up, kick or throw rocks or snowballs.
- No snacks, candy, gum or food on the playground.
- No standing by doorways without permission. No jumping over bushes or hanging/climbing on trees.
- When the bell rings, playing is to stop. All students are to line up in their designated area.
The report card is a record of progress in each subject area. The school year is divided into nine (9) week reporting periods. At the end of each nine week period, a report card is issued to the student to take home.Kindergarten students take report cards home at the end of each nine week period. The first report card will come with Parent Conference Day. The kindergarten report card is a record of the skills the student has learned. It does not report grades, but identifies the skills taught and the progress made toward mastering those skills.
Inappropriate oral, written, or physical conduct of a sexual nature may be defined as sexual harassment and, as such, shall be fully investigated. A substantiated charge against a student shall subject that student to immediate and appropriate corrective or disciplinary action.
It is important for parents to help the school explain to young students the importance of reporting all incidents that may relate to sexual harassment. It is equally important that parents help the school system explain to students the absolute prohibition against such acts and the consequences for acting in any manner that may be interpreted as harassing. Any student or parent who alleges sexual harassment may complain directly to the principal, head teacher, guidance counselor, or teacher.
Solicitation of Students or Employees
Solicitation of students or employees on the part of a business, industry, organization, or individual for the purpose of selling a product, service, or membership to students, their parents, or employees is prohibited on school grounds. The selling of any article or subscription or any other activity undertaken for the purpose of raising funds or collecting monies in or through the school is prohibited unless the particular activity is approved by the Director of Elementary Education. Please do not allow your child to bring articles to school to be sold to students or employees.
Special education services are provided by the Chestnut Ridge School District to meet the needs of students with disabilities with specialized instruction. Programs are provided for elementary students in all areas of disability: intellectual disabilities, specific learning disability, emotional/behavioral disorders, severe emotional/behavioral disorders, orthopedic impairment, other health impairment, visual impairment, hearing impairment, speech/language impairment, and autism. Resource and self-contained programs are available and provided based on the identified needs of each student. For more information regarding special education programs, contact the Director of Special Education at 839-4195 ext 2007.
New Paris Elementary uses a student council to encourage student involvement and input in school improvement issues. The council is comprised of third and fourth graders. The council is selected by an election process.
Student Support Team
Students who experience academic or behavior/social difficulties have access to support in regular education. The Chestnut Ridge Elementary Student Support Team (SST) assists parents and classroom teachers in assessing a child's difficulties, planning interventions to help the student succeed at school. The team assists in implementing strategies that are designed to produce successful results for the identified student. Referrals may be made by classroom teachers or parents. It you have any questions about the SST program, please contact the Elementary Counselor at ext. 4444 .
Parents are requested to give their child all instructions prior to coming to school. In the event of an emergency, the school office will relay messages to students.
Students are restricted from using the telephone unless it is of EXTREME importance. Students will not be permitted to call home if they have forgotten to bring their homework assignments to school.
Textbooks are the property of the school and are loaned for student use during the school year. Students are expected to handle books carefully and to keep them in good condition. Students will be required to pay the cost of any textbooks which are lost or damaged.
Toys and other Personal Belongings
Toys or personal belongings such as radios, tape players, electronic games, trading cards, and cameras may not be brought to school or on class field trips unless they have been approved as part of a class assignment by the teacher. If such items are brought to school, they may be collected and kept in the school office until parents come to claim them.
Parents requesting student transportation changes to day care or a sitter on a routine basis must make arrangements with the elementary office and have final approval from the Director of Elementary Education. Some buses will fill to capacity therefore not all request will be granted.Daily bus changes will be accepted only for emergency situations. It is the parent responsibility to transport their child to routine family or social functions.
Parents are encouraged to visit the school for conferences and school activities. Please remember that all visitors to the school must report to the school office when they arrive. Students may not bring relatives or friends to school as "spend-the-day" visitors without special permission form the Director of Elementary Education.
Weapons in School
Any student who possesses, uses, or threatens use of a real, look-alike weapon, explosive, or flammable material in a school building, in a school vehicle, on district property may be expelled for one year, unless determined otherwise by the Superintendent of Schools. Objects that may be considered weapons include, but are not limited to: firearms, guns, explosives, bombs, knives, chains, needles and clubs.PLEASE CAUTION YOUR CHILD CONCERNING WEAPONS AND TOYS THAT RESEMBLE WEAPONS. POSSESSION OF THESE ITEMS WILL RESULT IN SUSPENSION OR EXPULSION FROM SCHOOL. PLEASE READ ELEMENTARY SCHOOL DISCIPLINE CODE WITH YOUR CHILD .
When a student is withdrawn from school during the school year, a parent or guardian must complete withdrawal procedures through the school office. At the time of withdrawal, students must return all books and other school-owned items. Those items not returned must be paid for. Payment of school-related expenses, such as lunch charges, for which the student is responsible, must be completed at the time of withdrawal. When possible, the school should be given a minimum of two days notice prior to the student's withdrawal.