Back to School Tacos and Popsicles

Students and their families were invited to practice their walk or bike ride to school and meet on the basketball court to get to know their classmates and neighbors on the Saturday before classes started. Our neighbors at Servant Church generously provided tacos and coffee, and the PTA  brought popsicles. Dozens of families came out for a relaxed morning to (re)connect before the beginning of the school year.

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Photos by Melanie Chasteen and Heather Wagner Reed


Back to School Dates and Newsletter

The first day of class at Maplewood will be Monday, August 21! This will be the school’s 65th anniversary and we are looking forward to welcoming new and returning students to campus. The PTA has published it’s first weekly newsletter with all kinds of info for families. You can find it online here. To subscribe, email You don’t want to miss it!

Important dates

New Kid Camp – Wednesday, August 17th, 1 – 2 PM
Kinder Camp – Wednesday, August 17th, 3 – 4 PM
For families with kiddos new to Maplewood, these “camps” are an opportunity for you all to visit the Maplewood campus, have an informational session with Principal Jacobson, meet some of our faculty, and tour the classrooms. It’s also a chance to get to know other incoming families and classmates.

Meet the Teacher, Friday, August 18th, 4 – 5 PM
This is your family’s opportunity to meet your student’s new teacher and visit the student’s new classroom.

Popsicle Social Saturday, August 19th at 9:30 – 11:30 AM On the Blacktop
Maplewood PTA’s annual Popsicle social is an informal event to gather with your Maplewood community. Special thank you to our friends and neighbors from Servant Church, for providing breakfast!


Maplewood Kindergarten Roundup is April 4

Join incoming Kindergartners, their families, and Maplewood teachers and staff at the 2017 Kindergarten Roundup on April 4! At this orientation, parents and caregivers will receive information about the Austin School District’s full-day kindergarten program, including curriculum, daily schedules, attendance requirements, the school year calendar, how to help a child prepare for school, and information specific to the individual campus.

WHEN: Tuesday, April 4, 9-10 a.m.
WHERE: Maplewood Elementary School Cafeteria

Early kindergarten registration assists the District in determining enrollments, assigning staff, and meeting individual school needs. Accurate enrollment projections reduce the need to reorganize classes and teachers after school has started.

Enrollment Information:

* Kindergarten students must be five years old on or before September 1, 2017.

* All students new to Austin ISD must provide a birth certificate, current record of immunizations, child’s last report card, proof of address (rental contract or utility bill with valid address), parent photo identification or driver’s license, and the child’s Social Security Card (optional).

For more information, call Maplewood Elementary School at (512) 414-4402 or visit the

Connect with other new Maplewood parents at the Facebook event.


FAQ: What you Need to Know Before Starting Kindergarten at Maplewood

We had a great KinderCamp on August 15, and put together this FAQ based on the main questions that were raised there and on the Maplewood Community Facebook group.


Doors open at 7:10 a.m., which is when the cafeteria starts serving breakfast.  Student cannot come into the building until that time, and there are no staff members to supervise students until 7:10.  If your kids are not eating breakfast, the administration recommends that they arrive closer to 7:30 (especially younger kids) so they don’t have to wait so long for the start of assembly.


Kids enter the school at the Maplewood Ave. entrance. On the first day of school, they will walk directly to their classrooms. Families are welcome to join them until the bell rings.   For the rest of the school year, students will go directly to the gym for assembly. They sit with their class, and you are welcome to walk them to their row or drop them off at the entrance. Assembly lasts 15 minutes and it’s a great opportunity to stay in touch with what’s going on at the school, especially since some 5 year olds are not the best at reporting back :-).


The principal and/or vice principal will make general announcements about upcoming events; and every Monday through Thursday our counselor, Ms. Kirk, announces the Peacemaker awards. These are public commendations of children who have demonstrated kindness, empathy, and helpfulness toward their classmates and teachers. The awards are fantastic, and the focus on being a Peacemaker is the heart and soul of Maplewood.

After assembly, classes are escorted by their teacher to their classrooms to begin the school day.  Families are welcome to wait in the hallway outside the gym to give a final wave to their children; and help holding the gym doors open is always appreciated!


If your child is running late to school, stop by the office to have Ms. Alma give them a tardy slip to hand their teacher. If your child arrives after the start of the school day because of a doctor’s appointment, please remember to bring a note from the doctor’s office (often staff at doctors’ offices will ask parents of school age children if they need a note).


If you need to pick up your child early from school, please first check in at the main office. Staff will call your child’s classroom and have him or her meet you at the office.   Depending on how early your child needs to be picked up, staff will let you know if you need to bring a note so the absence will be marked as excused.


This varies by class. Parents are welcome to join their kids for lunch, which is a fun way to immerse yourself in the school for 25 minutes. Being a fly on the wall for the conversation 5 year olds have when otherwise unsupervised is also … interesting.  Let’s just say they’re learning to make casual conversation, and it’s hilarious.


Make sure that kids are able to open any containers that you are (packaged food, condiments, tupperware, etc.) on their own.  Microwave access in the cafeteria is limited (only two available and there might be five classes in the cafeteria at the same time). Please consider sending food that can be eaten cold or at room temperature; or use thermal containers to keep food hot. Otherwise your child may run out of time to eat because they were waiting for their turn to heat their meal. You may also want to include any needed forks, spoons, and napkins. These are available in the lunch line, but if they don’t go through the line kindergartners might not remember to go get them.


Visit to set up a lunch money account. You can pay for meals using a credit or debit card. After you set up an account, your child is assigned a four-digit ID number. Your kindergartner’s teacher will have these numbers on hand for anyone purchasing lunch. It’s a good idea to set up an account whether you plan to use it or not. Your kid might end up loving the school lunch, and it might save your morning if you run out of time to pack lunch, or forget the plans you made to bring lunch to school. It’s happened to many of us! However, if for any reason your child doesn’t bring lunch or have money in their account, they can still go through the lunch line and get something to eat. They will not go hungry at Maplewood.


If you ordered a box of school supplies through Sprouts they were delivered to the school and you probably picked them up at Meet the Teacher night. If you are bringing them on the first day of class, don’t worry about labeling anything as supplies are shared.


When the school day is over, teachers will walk their kids outside, dropping those staying for aftercare with Creative Action or Extend-a-Care in the cafeteria. Kids taking the bus home or to Escuelita or the Hancock Rec Center will be dropped off at the Ashwood Rd. entrance to the school on Ashwood Rd. Students are grouped by bus routes, and staff are on hand to ensure that students safely board the correct buses. The kids who are getting picked up at the end of the day head outside to the E. 38th ½ St entrance, where parents can drive through the pick up line or park a block away and walk up to meet their kids.


There will be major congestion for about 20 minutes after school lets out. If you can walk or bike, that’s awesome. If you are driving, please

  • Park a block or two away on Maplewood Ave.
  • Do not block traffic flow by parking on the same side of the street as the school once you pass the school zone loading and unloading zone
  • Stay to your right on the road
  • Stay in the car if you are doing car pickup: school staff will bring your child to you.

You’re child is going to have a great year at Maplewood! If you have any additional questions, feel free to post them on the Maplewood Community Facebook group or email


Back to School Breakfast + Popsicle Social

Join Servant Church and the Maplewood PTA in celebrating the start of another school year! Practice your walk or bike ride to school and meet us on the basketball court to get to know your classmates and neighbors over coffee, breakfast tacos and popsicles.

Saturday, August 27, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Meet us on the blacktop in front of the school!

  • Breakfast tacos provided by Servant Church
  • Popsicles provided by Maplewood Parent Teacher Association
  • Coffee provided by Cherrywood Coffeehouse

For updates, visit the Facebook event page. Please note that this event has been postponed from the original date (August 20) because of construction delays and rainy weather.


Kinder Camp Introduces New Students to Maplewood Elementary School

Do you have a little one starting kindergarten at Maplewood Elementary School in August 2016? Come out to the school for Kinder Camp on Thursday, August, 15 to learn all the basics you and your child need to know when school starts, meet the kindergarten teachers, and take a tour of the classrooms!

Kinder Camp will take place 9-10:30 a.m., and parents/guardians are welcome. Tentative agenda below. Please email your RSVP to

9:00-9:30 Greeting and general overview, introduction of teachers, PTA discussion, table group work, (What do I want my child’s Kinder experience to be?), walk through cafeteria line for snack, distribute Peace medallions.

9:30 Transition (talk about that with parents/students, ask parents permission to be in charge of their child for the next hour)

* Students in two groups will rotate between 2 classes 9:30-10, and 10-10:30

During this hour with parents in the cafeteria, Pam Martin will talk about Social Emotional Learning (SEL), and each Kinder teacher will have a little question answer time, along with any others for PTA/parents.

10:30, students return to hall outside cafeteria, we remain in our 2 groups for a short school tour, then meet up on black top for popsicles and good byes.

For updates, visit the Facebook event page.

If you have a child transferring to Maplewood Elementary School in August 2016, please join us for New Kid Camp 1-2:30 pm. on the same day! Email your RSVP to