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.
WHEN DOES THE SCHOOL OPEN?
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.
HOW DOES DROPOFF WORK?
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 :-).
WHAT HAPPENS DURING ASSEMBLY?
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!
WHAT DO WE DO IF WE ARE RUNNING LATE?
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).
WHAT IF I NEED TO PICK MY CHILD UP EARLY?
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.
WHAT TIME DO KIDS HAVE LUNCH?
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.
WHAT SHOULD I PACK FOR LUNCH?
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.
HOW CAN MY CHILD BUY LUNCH?
Visit myschoolbucks.com 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.
HOW DO I BRING OUR SCHOOL SUPPLIES?
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.
WHAT HAPPENS AT THE END OF THE DAY?
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.
WHERE SHOULD I PARK/HOW DOES TRAFFIC WORK?
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.