Table of Contents
Please note this handbook contains information required by law, rules you would expect your child to follow and other important school related information you may need to know throughout the year. If there is a conflict between the handbook and the school policies, school policies govern. You are welcome to view school policies. Please call so we can make them available to you. We will be glad to answer any questions you may have.
Parent Teacher Conferences
Emergencies and Cancellations
No School Announcements
School Cancellation Procedure
Special Education Referral/504
After School Activities
Food Service Program
Free/Reduced Lunch/ Payment
Lunch Room Rules
Dressing for the Weather
Inside the Building
Pledge of Allegiance
Care of the School Property
Access to Records
ATTENDANCE POLICY AND PROCEDURE
Maine State Law has placed the legal obligation for your child’s attendance in school on both school personnel and on parents. School attendance has a direct effect on each student’s educational growth and development.
It is important to note that although students can have excused absences, the state tracks total attendance and we need to maintain at least 94% attendance throughout the year. Every day counts, so please make every effort to have your child here whenever possible.
Maine Statutes provide only five legitimate excused kinds of absences. These are for:
· Personal illness
· Doctor or other health professional appointments that cannot be made outside of regular school hours
· Emergency family situations, approved by the principal
· Planned absences for personal or educational purposes, approved by the principal
· Observations of recognized religious holidays when the observance is required during the regular school day
Whenever your child is absent:
* Call the school between 7:15 a.m. and 8:00 a.m.
* When your child returns to school, send a note with reasons for the absence.
* A doctor’s note may be requested for frequent or extended absences
(I.e. absent more than 1 day per week on a regular basis etc.)
d. To be certain children sent to school are accounted for, Ms. Donna Cutliffe (school secretary) will contact the parents of each student that is absent (if possible). These phone calls will be made after 8:30 a.m. Parents may call the school if their child is absent for all or any portion of the day.
*Students may not attend any after school activity when they have not been in attendance during the day due to illness.
A written note is required for all absences and dismissals. Parents who request their child be dismissed during instructional time are urged to limit these requests to emergencies only. Frequently, doctors and dentists will comply with parent requests for appointments during non-school hours, if possible.
Truancy: Your child is considered truant when unexcused absences occur for ten (10) full days or seven (7) consecutive half days during a school year. When a child is classified as truant, the name is entered into the state electronic recording system as well as referred to the Superintendent of Schools for further action.
At the beginning of the school year an open house is scheduled to encourage communication between you and the school. Please take this opportunity to meet your child’s teacher, explore the school, and other classrooms.
Parent Teacher Conferences
Individual Parent-Teacher conferences are scheduled in December and March to discuss your child’s progress, test results (when available), strengths, weaknesses and subject content.
If at any other time during the school year you wish to discuss your child’s progress with the teacher, please call to make an appointment.
EMERGENCIES AND CANCELLATIONS
In the event of a crisis (i.e. bomb threat, natural disaster, violence, threat of harm by person(s) etc.), plans developed by the district will be implemented to ensure the safety of your child (see policy for more information)
Emergency sheets need to be completed and returned promptly to school every year with names and numbers of people we can contact in an emergency. Accuracy is important. Should your child ever be involved in an injury or some emergency situation, the school will use this information to immediately contact you at home or at work. If we are unable to do so, the school will take whatever action is necessary to secure the well-being of your child until you are notified.
Fire Drills & Lockdowns
Fire drills will be held at least 10 times per year and lockdowns will be practiced at least 3 times a year. Students should become familiar with exit plans for their classrooms and follow teacher’s directions quickly to get far back from the building.
No School Announcements
No School announcements are as follows:
RADIO WSYY 95.5
TV WLBZ Channel 2
WABI Channel 5
WABC Channel 7
Alarm Signal (8-8-8)
School Cancellation Procedure
At times, cancellation of school may become necessary because of inclement weather or dangerous road conditions. We realize road conditions vary from place to place. If school is not canceled and in your opinion the road conditions are too hazardous to be traveled, parents are advised to use their own discretion in sending their children to school.
Granite Street School’s curriculum is aligned with the standards of the Maine Learning Results and Common Core State Standards ELA/Math. Students are expected to meet the standards at regular intervals during their educational career (PreK-2, 3-4, 5-8, and 9-12). Assessments (formal and informal) will help us better understand your child’s learning strengths, weaknesses and to assist with program planning.
Curriculum areas include reading, writing, math, science, social studies, health, music, art, and physical education. On some occasions, after school and summer programs may be offered depending on staffing availability and interest.
Developmentally appropriate field trips will be scheduled throughout the school year by grade level and building teams. These trips will be designed to supplement the classroom curriculum by offering children opportunities to learn information in an exciting, different way. Parents will receive notices of field trip dates in advance and will be asked to sign a field trip permission form. Sometimes a small amount of money may be requested from each student to help defray cost. Your help chaperoning these trips will be appreciated.
Traditional report cards will be issued three (3) times a year at approximately 12 week intervals along with PRIDE Standards Reports. The PRIDE report will share information on skills that are building blocks for learning such as work habits, communication, problem solving, and following directions.
Special Education Referral/504
In addition to regular educational instruction, other educational services are provided for individuals meeting the necessary eligibility requirements. These services include:
o Title I: A federally funded program that provides interventions to qualified children struggling in the areas of reading, writing, and mathematics.
o Special Education: Children referred and identified as individuals with disabilities under IDEA are provided with specifically designed programs based on their needs in the least restrictive educational setting.
o 504 services: These services are provided for children identified as having a physical or mental impairment, which substantially limits one or more major life activities. For these individuals, accommodations or modifications in order to access the general curriculum are identified.
During the last several weeks of the school year we spend a great deal of time working to place children in appropriate classes for the next year. Our goal is to provide each child with a suitable learning environment and each teacher with a productive, positive grouping of children. These are some of the criteria we use: Class size, personalities, social relationships, boy-girl ratio, learning difficulties, teaching styles, learning styles and heterogeneous groupings.
In each case, we try to set up “balanced classes” so there is a reasonable mix of learning abilities and distribution of strengths and weaknesses. The sending teachers, receiving teachers, guidance and learning specialists, special subject teachers and the principal are involved in grouping decisions. The process takes between five and six weeks.
In most cases, your child’s teacher should be sufficiently knowledgeable about your child’s needs to make a wise placement. However, parents sometimes have information of a different nature which ought to be considered. Parents need to make an appointment to speak to the principal about these concerns. Please realize the final decision must rest with the staff and the principal. There is no way we can make reasonably balanced classes if parents ask for preferential treatment.
After School Activities
There are many extra activities offered either by the school or by the Recreation Department that occur after school hours. Permission slips are required and will be available through the office. Students who sign up for after school activities are expected to attend all sessions unless ill.
FOOD SERVICE PROGRAM
All full-day elementary school children may participate in the school lunch and/or breakfast program. They may purchase the school lunch/breakfast, milk only, or they may bring their lunch/breakfast snack from home.
Free/Reduced Lunch and Payment
At the beginning of each school year an application for free and reduced lunch is sent home with each child. Regardless of whether you feel you are eligible, please complete and return the application. Parents will be notified within approximately two weeks of receipt of the application as to whether or not they qualify.
Students use an assigned ID card for crediting and debiting their lunch account. Credits are made by sending in payment to the Millinocket School Nutrition Program at 199 State Street in Millinocket or by bringing it to school. Please send payments in an envelope with the students name and grade on it. Please make check payable to Millinocket School Nutrition. The amount will be credited to the student’s account.
Monthly menus are provided to each child. Free and reduced priced meal application forms are available at the school office. More information is available on the Millinocketschools.org website.
Lunch Room Rules
1. Follow directions the first time they are given.
2. While waiting in line to be served, keep your hands and feet to yourself. Do not bother others.
3. Once seated, stay seated unless given permission to leave your seat.
4. Raise your hand if you need help.
5. Talking in a normal conversational tone is permitted.
6. Before leaving, dispose of trash on your table and on the floor around your table.
7. Show good manners and use appropriate eating behaviors at all times.
8. Avoid committing serious offenses listed in the Student Code of Conduct.
The school nurse covers both Granite St. and Stearns Jr/Senior High School. Parents/Guardians please alert the nurse to any change in vital information – address, telephone number, physician and person with whom the child is staying if you are away in case of emergency.
Home Injuries: If your child has a bump, bruise, cut, etc. which happens at home, please try to care for it at home. We’d be glad to check it also.
School Injuries: From time to time, we will see your child for something that happened at school. We may send a note home or call. This is because we are concerned and want to let you know what we think might be wrong or what we did to take care of the problem.
Physical Education: All students participate in physical education classes which are scheduled for once a week. If your child has sustained an injury that requires them not to participate in their physical education class, they must have a note from their physician saying they cannot participate and for how long. They will need another note from the physician allowing them back into their PE class.
Vision/Hearing: We do eye and ear checks on all children in K, 1, 3 & 5. If our machines indicate a problem then we send home a notice on what we found for a problem. It would be the parents’ responsibility to follow up with their doctor on the problem. We are obligated by the State to test each child and send home notices if there is a problem.
Medication: By law, medication may not be administered by unlicensed personnel at our schools. Written permission from the parent is needed for over the counter medications to be given at school. Provider and parent permission is needed for prescription medication to be given at school. Medications must be brought in by the parent/guardian and not by the student. Children are not allowed to bring medication to school in their backpacks. Medication permission forms are available at the office.
Immunizations: All children are required to have 5 DPT shots, 4 polio vaccines, 2 Measles, Mumps and Rubella, and 1 Chickenpox vaccine prior to starting school. Please call the school nurse at 723-6430 any time your child has received an immunization to keep the Health record current.
Head Checks: Children are examined occasionally for pediculosis or head lice. Please check frequently yourself. This is the only way we can control this pest. No pesticide shampoos or sprays are used in school buildings.
Healthy Snacks: Please send healthy snacks with your child. (i.e. fruit, cheese, yogurt, crackers, raw veggies).
Water Bottles: Teachers may choose to allow students to have water bottles at their desks during the school day. For those classrooms where this is allowed, only clear bottles with clear liquids.
Dressing for the Weather: Please be sure your child is dressed appropriately for the weather. (I.e. cold – mittens, warm jackets, boots, ski pants etc. hot–loose fitting clothing)
Outdoor Recess: On most days students in grades PreK-5 will play outdoors for 15-20 minutes. During periods of inclement weather or temperatures below 0 degrees Fahrenheit, students will have an indoor recess. Special arrangements can be made for children with a doctor’s note not to participate in outdoor recess due to a medical situation. Please contact your child’s classroom teacher.
Asbestos: All schools in the Millinocket School Department have been inspected for the presence of asbestos-containing materials. A written plan for the management of these materials has been developed. This plan is available for inspection at the Central Office of the Millinocket School Department.
SCHOOL EXPECTATIONS FOR STUDENTS
All students are expected to dress neat and clean in clothing that is not distracting to teachers or other students. Wearing clothing depicting tobacco products, drugs or alcohol is not permitted. T-shirts that endorse substances, inappropriate language, and reveal midriff area are not allowed. Students should not wear clothing that is too revealing such as very short shorts, very thin straps on shirts, or cleavage showing. Parents will be contacted if their child is wearing inappropriate clothing.
Cell phone use on school grounds or school bus is prohibited. Students may carry a cell phone in their backpack as long as it is not turned on. Any cell phone observed by staff will be taken from student and returned at the end of the day. Repeated violations will prompt a phone call to parents. Any cell phone that interrupts a class will be taken from the student and parents will be contacted to pick up phone at school. For safety reasons, cell phones are not to be used on school busses. Please contact the principal’s office if you have a specific concern about this.
The staff at Granite Street recognizes the positive benefits of electronic devices such as kindles, nooks and other e readers. Students will be allowed to use these, under the teacher’s discretion, only in classrooms. A form granting parent permission will be sent home early in the year.
Inside the School Building
1. Observe rules of good school conduct at all times.
2. Walk; do not run in the building.
3. Never throw objects of any kind about the room.
4. Gum is not to be chewed in school.
5. Students should help in keeping classrooms neat and in an orderly condition.
6. All students should remove baseball caps inside the school.
We expect students to display habits of behavior that are exemplified by our motto:
“BE KIND, BE SAFE, BE HERE”
Pledge of Allegiance
It is the responsibility of each classroom teacher to ensure the Pledge of Allegiance is held each morning in their classroom.
Violations of school rules will result in disciplinary action. Depending on the nature and severity of the action, consequences for broken rules may include, but are not limited to the following:
1. Teacher reminder of expectations
2. Loss of privilege
3. Cool down in a quiet location
4. Completion of a behavior plan
5. Phone call/note home
6. Parent/Teacher Conference
7. Multiple violations of disrespect (i.e. picking on others, poor language choice etc.) or dangerous behavior (i.e. fighting, hitting, property destruction etc.) may result in detention, in-school suspension, and out of school suspension at the discretion of the principal or assistant principal.
8. While students are responsible for books and property that become damaged or lost, parents are liable for replacement or repair costs.
1. Students should follow directions given by playground and lunchroom supervisors.
2. Students should not leave the school grounds without the approval of the principal.
3. Stay in assigned areas, keeping away from parked cars.
4. Throwing of rocks and snowballs is not permitted.
5. Fighting is not permitted.
6. Pushing, tripping on ice or snow banks and other harmful, rough activities are not allowed.
7. Do not litter.
Care of School Property
1. Students are not allowed in the parking lot or near parked cars.
2. Playing ball against the building and especially near windows is prohibited.
3. Trash and scrap paper are to be put in the waste barrels to prevent littering.
4. Any school property marked, damaged or lost – books, equipment, furniture, walls and windows – will cause loss of privileges. Student and/or parents will be held responsible for payment for such damage.
Drugs: the sale, possession, distribution or use of alcohol or scheduled drugs is forbidden. Anyone found under the influence will not be allowed to remain on the school premises. Those found selling, possessing or distributing these products will be disciplined according to school policy, state and federal laws.
Smoking is prohibited by everyone anywhere on school property (busses, buildings grounds, etc.). Possession or use of tobacco products, by students, is prohibited. (Please see the school policy for more information.)
Students are expected to treat each other with respect at all times. Any student who feels harassed (i.e. threats of physical force, intimidation, discrimination, unwanted sexual advances etc.) should report the incident. Any form of harassment is a serious offence. All reports will be investigated in a confidential manner and appropriate disciplinary action will result for violations.
Desks, cubbies etc. are considered school property. Students should not store materials they do not want others to see in them. If there are reasonable grounds to suspect that an individual is in possession of illegal or dangerous materials (drugs, weapons etc.), the student’s clothing, desk, backpack etc. may be searched. (Please see the school policy for more information).
Weapons (firearms, knives, chains, etc.) as defined in the school policy are not permitted on school property, at school functions and events. Violators may be suspended, expelled and referred to local authorities. (Please see the school policy for more information).
Deliveries: Please do not have balloons, flowers etc. delivered to your child at school.
Party Invitations: Party invitations should not be brought to school. Neither students nor teachers are allowed to pass them out on school grounds. We discourage the sharing of birthday snacks brought to school by parents.
Parents shall have access to the entire student record at times mutually agreed upon with the school. (Please see the school policy and FERPA for more information).
The district will not publish or provide any personal student information on the web or other sources without first obtaining written approval from the parent/guardian.
Upon written request from a school designee to which your child has transferred, all student records will be transferred. (I.e. Grades, test results, disciplinary reports, special education records, etc.)
Ø All students living in the immediate vicinity of schools are expected to walk to and from school.
Ø Any child, regardless of grade, age or locale, may receive conveyance if for a medical reason (substantiated by a doctor) he or she is deemed unable to walk.
Ø All students must ride buses assigned and report, on time, to bus stops designated. Parents requesting changes are requested to contact Bruce Bragdon.
Ø The School Department provides bus transportation for students as a privilege based on good behavior. It is not a privilege to be abused.
Ø Students reported to the principal by a bus driver for safety and rule infractions will be given a warning and a chance to correct their behavior. Parents will be notified by mail and asked to help correct their child’s behavior. For further driver reports, the bus privilege will be removed.
Ø The bus privilege will be restored upon evidence of student improvement.
1. Observe same conduct as in the classroom
2. Be courteous, use no profane language
3. Do not eat or drink on the bus
4. Keep the bus clean
5. Cooperate with the driver
6. Do not be destructive
7. Stay in your seat
8. Keep head, hands, and feet inside the bus
9. Do not use electronics on the bus
Walkers and students being dropped off should not arrive at school before 7:30 AM. They will leave for home at 2:15. All students will be dismissed through the front lobby. If you are waiting for your student to be dismissed, please wait in the school lobby.
Parents visiting school are always welcome. It is appreciated when you call in advance and make an appointment with the teacher. Please stop first in the school office.
Volunteers are encouraged to assist in school. Anyone wishing to assist as a volunteer is invited to contact the school for more information.