A CALIFORNIA DISTINGUISHED SCHOOL
Regular Day Schedule
Early Birds: 7:45 am to 11:05 am
Late Birds: 9:30 am to 12:50 pm
Grades 1 to 5
Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays
7:45 am to 2:10 pm
7:45 am to 1:40 pm
PLEASE REPORT YOUR STUDENT'S ABSENCE DAILY!
All absences must be reported to the school within 72 hours.
You can report this absence in any of the following ways:
Our Attendance Rate Goal is 96.02% for the 2015-2016 school year. We started off strong in our first month of school with a rate of 98.04%, but as of 12/3/15, we have dropped to a considerably lower rate of 95.99%. Attendance is critical to student success. One day out is equivalent to approximately 2 days of lost instruction. Keep your children at home if they are truly ill, otherwise, please make your best effort to get your children to school on time, every day!
The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress, or CAASPP, is the state’s academic testing program. CAASPP is a system intended to provide information that can be used to monitor student progress and ensure that all students leave high school ready for college and career. CAASPP includes computer adaptive assessments in English-Language Arts and mathematics for students in grades 3-8, and 11 and paper-based tests in science for students in grades 5, 8 and 10.
This year, testing dates are as follows:
*Please check our school’s website soon for more information on testing dates. For more information about testing options for your student, please visit the Assessment, Research and Evaluation tab of the Mt. Diablo Unified School District webpage at http://www.mdusd.org/departments/r-n-e/CAASPP.
Parent School Climate Survey
Please take a few minutes to participate in this state-wide survey to help us determine how we can better serve our students and their families.
Click on the following link for information and access to the survey in ENGLISH: Westwood_Elementary en.docx
Haga clic en el siguiente enlace para acceder a la encuesta en español Westwood_Elementary es.docx
I hope you all had an opportunity to rest and rejuvenate during the break in preparation for our last push to the end of the school year (it’s going so fast!). As we enter the home stretch, teachers are reporting that students’ skills are really beginning to ‘blossom’. Discrete skills are starting to blend, with students showing more fluency with reading, writing and math. Our teachers have recently been introduced to the concept of having a “Growth Mindset” when it comes to their own practice, and the way they communicate with the students about their abilities. This philosophy supports a shift in thinking that moves us away from fixed ideas of who we are and what we can do (i.e. “I’m not good at math.”), to a more flexible mindset based on the belief that we can persevere when faced with challenges by learning from our mistakes (“What can I do differently to do better next time?”) and from the success of others (“What can I learn from them?”). It’s a great time of year for unlocking learning potential - ask your child’s teacher about the power of ‘yet’!
New Teacher: We would like to offer a warm welcome to Ms. Kelly Starick as the new 3rd grade teacher in C2. Ms. Starick was selected among many qualified candidates and we are excited to have her join our team!
5th Grade Outdoor Education: Just before the break, many of our 5th grade students took part in the traditional trip to Camp Sea Lab for their Outdoor Education Program near Santa Cruz. Highlights of their experience included kayaking alongside a Sea Otter and her baby, sand-crabbing on the seashore, studying plankton under the microscope, and sitting around a bonfire on the beach. Ms. Bradley and Ms. Johnston worked with a team of parents to make this trip a reality. Thanks to everyone who contributed time, energy and funds in support of providing our Wildcats with an experience they’ll remember forever! Special thanks to Mrs. Bascom who creatively provided a camp-like experience on campus for those who chose to stay! It’s never too early to start planning for next year’s trip. If you have suggestions about how we might earn the money to fund the camping experience for all of the students who wish to participate, please let us know your ideas!
Attendance: Westwood’s attendance rate is second-to-last among other elementary schools in the district (yikes!). Currently, we are at 93.87% as compared to a district elementary average of 95.87%. We can do better! Obviously, the more students are at school, the better prepared they will be for the next grade, and beyond. If your child is clearly ill (fever, diarrhea, vomiting), please keep him/her home, but please make every effort to get them to school otherwise. Our tardy rates are also dismal. The final bell rings at 7:45, which is when instruction is expected to begin. Spring is a great time to refresh your family’s routines. Good habits start early. You can drop off your child as early as 7:30. Supervision is provided in the front of the school. Children who arrive late to class disrupt the morning routine, and are losing valuable instructional time (especially if it is a chronic problem), and students who are rushing in appear flustered and stressed – not a good way to start the day. Please support your child in getting to school on time, every day.
Parking, Pick-up/Drop-off: Please remember to follow all parking rules and drop-off/pick-up procedures. When everyone respectfully utilizes the processes we have in place, the morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up move much more smoothly. As a reminder, please:
We are always in need of volunteers to help keep children safe, and to direct traffic. If you have any time to offer, please contact the office staff. Everyone’s cooperation is greatly appreciated!
We offer our condolences to Ruth Miller, our Crossing Guard, and her family. Ruth’s husband passed away suddenly just before our break. Please consider extending a gesture of support as you see her in front of the school in the coming weeks.