Welcome to Route Forty Elementary School. Included in this handbook is much of the information that you can reference for questions that may occur throughout the year. While this handbook covers many topics, it is not all inclusive. Parents are always encouraged to call and ask questions for clarification or seek information. We welcome the opportunity to discuss matters with you and work together as a team to create the best learning environment for students. We publish classroom newsletters and weekly school newsletters with additional information throughout the year. An archive of these is maintained on the school website (https://garrettcountyschools.org/route40). Any staff member can be emailed at email@example.com (just insert the person’s name).
Our school motto is “Route 40 students work together to solve problems and make a difference.” Our PBIS mantra is Respectful, Responsible, and Safe. We strongly believe there is no limit to what can be achieved when we work towards this ideal. Enjoy the year of growth with your child(ren)!
Meet Our Staff
Principal: Mrs. Candy Maust Secretary: Mrs. Karie Spataro
School Based Staff:
Ms. Shannon Miller Pre-Kindergarten Teacher
Mrs. Laura Bolden Pre-Kindergarten Assistant
Mrs. Debra Nicklin Kindergarten Teacher
Mrs. Twila Maust Kindergarten Assistant
Ms. Ashley Forrest First Grade Teacher
Mrs. Jencene Tice Second Grade Teacher
Mrs. Penny Lapp Third Grade Teacher
Mrs. Kyler Clise Fourth Grade Teacher
Mrs. Donna Deal Fifth Grade Teacher
Ms. Meg Knauer Fifth Grade Assistant
Mr. Mitchell Hall Special Education/Intervention
Mr. Scott Swauger Head Custodian
Mrs. Joyce Kisner Custodian
Mrs. LuAnn Klink PIC
Mrs. Doreen Haggerty Cafeteria
Ms. Jessica Yoder Media Assistant (Wed., Fri.)
Ms. Peggy Redfield School Nurse
Mr. Cameron King Music/Band/Chorus (Wed., Fri.)
Mr. Jason Brenneman Physical Education (Tues., Thurs.)
Ms. Kelly Lasher Art (Mon., Tues.)
Mrs. Amy Yoder-Yutzy Speech and Language Therapist
Mrs. Lyndsey Gregory Pupil Personnel Worker
Mr. Douglas Copeland IEP Coordinator
Ms. Susan Thatcher School Psychologist
Mrs. Carrie Hook Family Support Worker
Mrs. Jamie Kamp GCHD Therapist
Mrs. Connie Glotfelty Counselor
Ms. Kirsten Welch Behavior Support Teacher
It is essential that parents read the Garrett County Public Schools handbook on attendance which can be found online under Pupil Services. A paper copy is provided to all families at the beginning of the school year. It is imperative that students attend school to gain maximum benefit of their educational program. Questions can be directed to Mrs. Maust or Dr. Lauver, Supervisor of Pupil Services.
Our school teaches bullying prevention. Students are taught that bullying is repeated and targeted behavior through our Second Step program. Students are taught to speak up and be active bystanders when any type of bullying behavior is observed. When bullying is reported, teachers create plans of action for the victim and the bully with follow up components. Any time parents are aware of bullying, the school should be contacted to initiate these plans to assist in the situation. Incidents can also be reported online (https://garrettcountyschools.org/pupil-services/forms/bullying-prevention-/bullying-harassment-or-intimidation-form) or a reporting form can be requested from the school.
Students are permitted to change their regular dismissal route (bus or parent pick up or daycare) with a note from the parent or guardian. If a child is going home with another child, a written note to the principal is required from the parent of each child involved. Unless we have permission from both parents, your child will be going home on his/her regular route. If you need to make other arrangements concerning your child’s dismissal, please contact the school before 2:30 p.m. to be sure to reach us in ample time to make the changes.
Bus dismissal changes can be very difficult. While we do our best to accommodate the needs of our families, it is best that students ride their assigned bus every day. Try to make arrangements for someone to pick your child up at the bus stop when you can’t be there.
Long term requests for transportation to any other location than the one regularly assigned requires a bus pass. A form will need to be approved by the Board of Education’s Transportation office as bus space permits. This form may be obtained from the website under Transportation. Click on Parent Forms and select Long Term Bus Pass.
Please refer to the Garrett County Student Handbook for additional information regarding Garrett County bus rules and discipline policies.
Cell Phones and Communication Devices
Students should not be carrying cell phones or communication devices during school. If a child has one out during the day, it will be collected, turned into the office, and parents will need to come to school to retrieve them from Mrs. Maust.
Change of Address
Any time your address changes, you must provide proof of residency to the school. Acceptable proof of residency would be a current electric bill, a current rental agreement, tax assessments, property deed or an affidavit of residency form which can be obtained at the school and must be notarized. The affidavit will need to be accompanied by the home owner’s proof of residency.
Character Education promotes basic standards of courtesy, including respect for themselves, parents, school personnel, others, and their school and community. Each month, one of the 8 traits will be emphasized through pep assemblies and classroom activities. At the Pep Assembly, children will be chosen for showing good character at school. Following the school mantra of Respectable, Responsible, and Safe only adds to the positive character we expect from Route 40 students.
Parent conferences are scheduled twice a year, one at the end of the first grading term and the other at the end of the second grading term. The dates are currently set for November 4, 2019 and January 28, 2020. Parents will be sent a notification asking for times of preference. We will do our best to honor the requests and keep times consecutive for those with more than one child in the school. It is important that you attend the conferences and share your thoughts on your child’s progress. Please don’t wait until these dates to contact the teacher if concerns arrive throughout the year.
Every child has a right to a positive, safe school climate conducive to learning. Along with that right comes several responsibilities. We believe that our students should act in a respectful, responsible, and self-controlled manner. Route 40 is a PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) School. In addition, we use the principles and practices from the Love and Logic Institute and Second Step to assist our students in becoming responsible and problem solving individuals. We support the guidelines as written in the Students’ Rights and Responsibilities Handbook, the Garrett County Students’ Discipline Policy, and the guidelines of the Safety Care program.
PBIS focuses on developing data, systems, and practices to support positive behaviors through evidence-based practices. Our mantra is Respectable, Responsible, and Safe. Students are explicitly taught expected behavior for the all settings and events at school with review as needed. All students receive support through positive slips of recognition for expected behaviors. Students struggling with meeting the expectations will be provided with extra support under the Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) model provides different levels of support and intervention based on student need and response to the intervention. This could include a referral to the Pupil Services Team, student specific goals, additional data collection, and appropriate plans and services to enable improvement in desired behaviors. MTSS When a student is in need of additional supports, parents will be informed of the process used for their specific child.
The Love and Logic Institute process involves our students in a problem solving method that allows them to make choices and face the consequences of those choices. Students are encouraged to think through their problems and look at more than one option and the outcome of each before making a decision.
Second Step focuses on teaching social skills to students and takes steps to prevent bullying. Children learn empathy, problem solving skills, and anger management through scenarios and stories. Kits have been incorporated into lessons at every grade level. Teachers use the lessons and the counselor reinforces the concepts taught.
The Student Handbook of Rights, Responsibility, and Discipline is utilized in the Garrett County School System. It has many components including discipline and students rights. Adhering to this handbook helps foster a positive school climate in which each child is supported as he/she learns to take responsibility for their actions.
Route Forty Elementary School has adopted the following school-wide rules:
1. Be Safe
2. Be Respectful
3. Be Responsible
Failure to follow these rules results in various natural consequences as well as those listed in the Student Handbook of Rights, Responsibility, and Discipline. They may include Alternative Structure, office referral, parent conference, suspension and expulsion.
While positive reward systems are established to recognize when students choose to follow the rules, we are focusing on intrinsic rewards to increase student motivation and a natural desire to perform and behave in an acceptable manner. Encouragement is the most frequently used form of positive intervention.
Distribution of Information
Garrett County Public Schools recently revised Procedure #KHC: Distribution of Materials. This procedure pertains to materials distributed via the schools by non-profit organizations.
Garrett County Public Schools, and any school-sponsored groups, including Parent Teacher Organizations, can distribute materials and publications via the schools anytime during the school year.
The following are approved organizations that collaborate with the school system for educational purposes. These approved organizations may distribute materials and publications at any time during the academic year without being subject to the approval procedure via school information tables and/or backpacks:Garrett County Health Department
Garrett County Community Action Committee (Judy Center, Head Start)
Local Management Board
Garrett Regional Medical Center
The Ruth Enlow Library
University of Maryland Extension Office
Local nonprofit sports organizations
Other non-profit organizations, groups, or persons not listed above who wish to distribute publications on school property may distribute materials and publications at any time of the year, but must abide by the approval process. The form can be accessed under the Public Information section found under the Departments tab on the main menu. For more information regarding distribution of materials in Garrett County Public Schools, please visit the school system’s website at https://www.garrettcountyschools.org/public-information/distribution-of-materials or BoardDocs at https://www.boarddocs.com/mabe/garrett/Board.nsf/Public#
Birthday invitations will be approved by the school administration to be distributed to specified students. Birthday invitations will need the above disclaimer statement placed on them before distribution.
· Students need to be dressed in appropriate clothing. No cut off or midriff shirts should be worn. No spaghetti strap shirts. Straps on clothing must be two fingers wide.
· Clothing, including hats, should not contain inappropriate words or pictures.
· Students must wear appropriate shoes. Tennis or athletic shoes are most appropriate. Flip flop or other unsecured shoes are hazardous and children are asked not to wear them to school. Tennis shoes MUST be worn for physical education classes and playground activities.
· Shorts and skirts must be at least long enough that when a child puts his/her hand to the side, the shorts reach the bottom of the fingertips or have leggings under it.
We appreciate your cooperation in helping keep our school safe, comfortable, and
in an atmosphere conducive to learning. In the case that a child wears something
inappropriate, he/she will be given something from the office to wear.
Emergency Response Procedures
Students practice safety drills throughout the year. Fire drills are practiced monthly as the weather permits. Lock down drills are practiced quarterly to prepare for invasive situations in the school. An earthquake drill is practiced in the fall and a tornado drill in the spring. Bus evacuation drills are practiced twice a year. All drills are meant to ensure safe practices for our students.
Students are provided with educational field trips to the Hickory Environmental Center and the Planetarium. Additional field trips are at the discretion of the school staff and limited to three per year. If a teacher plans an additional trip, he/she must select a field trip that relates best to the curriculum. The purpose of a field trip is to extend and expand academic learning. Most field trips will be conducted with staff and students only. Occasionally, parents are invited to accompany students to elevate the learning experience through conversation and activities conducted with that parent at a 1-1 ratio. Due to the need to maintain safe and secure operating procedures, any parent asked to chaperone any children beyond the view of a staff member must follow the board policy for approved volunteers which includes a background check and fingerprinting. All field trips must be approved by the appropriate Board Supervisor and Mrs. Maust. You will be notified of trips and asked to sign permission forms. Further information can be found by reading Policy IHOA, Leaving School for Curricular, Co-Curricular or Extra Curricular Events under Section I.
Grading Policy/Parent Conferences
Students in grades Pre-K, K, 1, and 2 are graded on a number system, while students in grades 3, 4, and 5 earn letter grades. Student report cards will be issued quarterly. Midterm reports will be sent home at the midpoint of each quarter.
End of Grading Periods
Report Card Dates
September 26, 2019
October 29, 2019
November 4, 2019
December 4, 2019
January 15, 2020
January 28, 2020
February 20, 2020
March 23, 2020
March 30, 2020
April 27, 2020
May 29, 2020
NOTE: Grading periods will be adjusted accordingly if scheduled days of school are cancelled. For
the first and third grading periods, report cards are released for parent conference nights.
Parents are encouraged to use the Power School online system to monitor grades for grades 1-5. Kindergarten report cards are maintained there, but the reports are standards based and don’t show individual grades like the older students. Pre-Kindergarten student grades are NOT maintained in powerschool. Please visit the school or county website for a link to the parent site or call the school to get your password. https://ps.garrettcountyschools.org/public/home.html Parent conferences will be held at the end of the first and third grading terms. All parents are encouraged to attend. However, it is encouraged to stay in contact with your child’s teacher throughout the year.
Guidance and Counseling Services
Our school has a full staff available for guidance and counseling needs. Mrs. Glotfelty, our school counselor works collaboratively with teachers, administrators, students, parents, and the community to provide a comprehensive and coordinated counseling program for all students. The developmental needs, interests, and goals of each student are addressed in the areas of Personal and Academic Growth, Development of Social Skills, and Educational and Career Decision-Making. A detailed list of services will be sent out in addition to the handbook at the beginning of the year or upon request. Ms. Thatcher serves as our school psychologist conducting assessments and meeting with children to address needs. Mrs. Hook is our family support worker and assists connecting families with needed resources, acts as a liaison between home, school and community services and meets with children. Our behavior support teacher, Ms. Welch, assists in behavior issues students face in school and develops plans with the school and families. Ms. Strubin serves as our pupil services worker and focuses on attendance issues. Mr. Copeland, our IEP Coordinator, chairs IEP meetings and 504 plans to address health concerns impacting students’ academic progress. All of the members of this team are assigned to more than one school. Please contact the school if you need to speak to one of them and we will be glad to provide the correct contact information.
Our health room is staffed by Ms. Redfield, RN, and a CMT. We encourage students to access the health room as needed, however, staff will work with teachers to ensure that students are not visiting to avoid classroom responsibilities. Parents will be notified when a child has an injury, fever or confirmed illness like vomiting.
Lost and Found
Many students misplace items that are brought to the office. We will maintain these items for one month. Items not claimed will be donated to a local charity.
Student Prices Adult Prices
Breakfast $1.35 Regular Price $2.95
20c Reduced Price
Lunch $2.60 Regular Price $3.95
30c Reduced Price
Breakfast is served from 8:15 - 8:30 a.m. If your child arrives after 8:30 a.m., please make sure he/she has had breakfast at home.
Our meal program is based on meal accounts. We ask that you send money in a marked envelope with your child’s name and what it is for and have your child deposit it in the mornings. Children are assigned a PIN number that is used to access their account, much like a debit card for your checking or savings account. You can also use myschoolbucks.com to track and fund your child’s meal account. This site charges you a fee, and tracks all of your child’s cafeteria purchases. It sends you an e-mail when the account goes below the amount you set. Mrs. Klink has detailed records as well. If you have any concerns, please feel free to call Mrs. Klink, 301-687-6132, or Mr. Scott Germain, Food and Nutrition Manager at 301-334-8917.
Students may purchase the following ala carte items: ice cream (85 cents) a cookie (50 cents) and milk (50 cents). The money for these items runs through the same account as the breakfast and lunch money. If your child’s account has a negative balance, he/she will not be permitted to purchase any extra items. Please track this carefully because it is very traumatic for a child to have his/her ice cream money taken and added to a negative balance.
If you qualify for free or reduced meals, the application can be submitted online or on paper. Please understand that students pay full price unless this form is completed EVERY year.
Menus for meals are now accessible through an app that can be downloaded to electronic devices. If you are interested, it is call GCPS Food Services. It will be kept accurate with updates as changes are made. It also carries
Media Class Process
Students visit the media center weekly for circulation of books. They begin checking out books as early as the second week of school with media classes being held on Fridays. Only one book is permitted at a time. A book is expected to be returned or renewed the following week when the class returns to the media center. Students may check out a new book when the previous one is returned. Books that are lost will be assessed for replacement cost and parents are responsible for the cost.
While we discourage the administration of medication to students during school hours, your physician might decide that medication needs to be given during the school day. The Board of Education has a form which must be filled out by your physician in order for this to take place. Non-prescribed medication must also be brought into the school office with the Board of Education Medication Form, signed by your doctor, indicating explicit instructions about the medicine. We want to emphasize that it is absolutely against school rules for a student to have any kind of medication in his/her personal possession. Medications could be picked up by another student and serious problems could occur.
1. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to provide the school with any medication if it is to be given during school hours.
2. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to obtain written order from the attending physician. The Parental and Physician Authorization Form for Medication is provided for this purpose. Area physicians and pharmacies in Garrett County and Allegany County have been provided with the above mentioned form. If the physician or pharmacy has not been supplied with the necessary form, please contact our school to have them added to our mailing list. Parents may pick up an order at the school.
3. The parent/guardian must provide the school with the completed Parental and Physician Authorization Form for Medication and the medication must be labeled as follows:
The original prescription container must accompany all medication. Two containers, one for home and one for school, should be requested by the parents from the pharmacist.
The original prescription container should be labeled with:
Name of student
Name of medicine
Directions for use including dosage and times the medication is to be given during the school day.
Name of physician ordering the medication, and
Date of prescription
4. The parent/guardian must submit to the school written notification from the physician of any change in dosage, time of administration, or the duration over which the medication is to be administered.
5. The parent/guardian must give the first dosage of any new medication at least 8 hours prior to attending school unless the order is for “in school medication only.”
6. The parent/guardian must pick up unused medication within one week after the expiration of physician’s orders. (Medications not collected by parent or responsible adult will be destroyed.)
7. All topical ointments, creams, eye and ear drops will be administered under the same guidelines as previously stated.
8. Inhalants- All of the previous guidelines apply. If the attending physician and parent believe a student is capable of self-medication with inhaler, a written request for the child to use an inhaler in the class should be submitted to the school principal. If parents prefer, the inhaler will be kept in the school office until needed.
9. Cough Drops- Students may not carry cough drops during school hours but can place them on the teacher’s desk. A parent note will be accepted in order for the administration of cough drops.
10. Over the counter medication shall be administered in accordance with the same guidelines as prescriptions medications at the principal’s discretion.
Parents Dropping Off Children
Parents may bring children to school with entry through the front foyer after 8:10 a.m. We ask that you park in the parking lot and walk your child(ren) to the front door. We do not have staffing assigned to monitor students any earlier than this. Please say goodbye in the front foyer. As a safety precaution, parents are not permitted to walk their child(ren) to the classrooms.
Parents are partners with the school and viewed as essential to your child’s success. It is important that students are encouraged to try their best in school and complete homework. Homework is an extension of the lesson in class and should be able to be completed by your child. If your child claims s/he does not understand the assignment, ask them to read the directions. Use questions to determine how much your child understands or have her/him wait to complete it during their morning work time with the teacher.
When students are absent from school, it is not always possible to make up the missed activities. However, please make arrangements to ask the teacher for any make up work and complete it as soon as possible. Students are given two days for every day missed. It is preferred students learn to do this for themselves.
Students are issued textbooks. It is important that the students take care of these books so they can be used again the next year. Students and parents are responsible for the replacement cost of any lost or damaged books.
Many sources of communication are shared with parents. Planners are provided by PTO. Please check it daily for communication between home and school as well as any assignments your child may need to complete. As soon as any concerns arrive, please write a note in it or place a phone call to your child’s teacher to work together to address the issue. We ask that you call and interact with teachers before bringing a concern to the office. If the issue is not resolved, then contact Mrs. Maust for assistance.
Read the newsletters sent from the office and classroom. Check the website to stay informed of events and information.
We are a small school and can always use your talents and time. Ms. Miller chairs the Parent Involvement Team. She is looking for interested parties to create special events for parents as part of the school process. Please contact her if you would like to share a plan of how you add another layer of activity and involvement. Please share with your child’s teacher how you could support your child’s class this year. When parents are involved, students see value and perform better.
Please park in the designated parking lot spaces when visiting the school, dropping off, or picking up children. We need to keep the traffic lane in the main parking lot clear and safe for students. Only buses may be in the bus lane during arrival and dismissal times. Parking along the sidewalk is not permitted due to it being the fire lane. Our School Resource Officers are active in helping us ensure safety for all.
Parent Volunteers are welcome to come on our volunteer workday, Wednesday afternoons. We appreciate any time you can spare for us. If you would like to volunteer at other times, please call the school to make arrangements. Please use the sign in sheet in order for us to track all volunteer hours. This includes any time you spend working on school or PTO related projects. At times, classroom teachers are in need of volunteers for various tasks. In addition to supporting the daily operations of the school, parent volunteers are needed for special projects and activities. PTO and the school sponsors the Halloween Social, yearbook, and Variety Show. Volunteers will be needed to ensure that these events can continue. Please watch for more information specific to these opportunities.
Parents have a power school portal that permits you to stay informed and monitor daily school progress for students in first grade and above. The address is https://ps.garrettcountyschools.org/public/home.html and can be accessed from any internet connection. Parents need to visit the site and set up the account. Login identification and passwords can be obtained from the school. Power school will enable you to receive updates and newsletters from the school through email. School delays and closings will also be sent using this database. It is highly encouraged that all parents login and choose to receive emails and updates that are not always available through other avenues.
STEPS TO SET UP YOUR PARENT PORTAL IN POWERSCHOOL:
1. Contact your child’s school to receive his or her “Access ID” and “Access Password”.
2. Go to garrettcountyschools.org
3. At the top of website, click on “Parents”.
4. Click on “PowerSchool Parent Portal”.
5. Click on “Create Account” tab.
6. Click on “Create Account”.
7. Create Parent Account: Fill out all fields. The user name and password is what you will
remember. (This is not your child’s Access ID or Access Password).
8. Link Student Accounts: Fill out all fields. This is where you place your child’s name, Access ID, and Access Password.
9. Scroll to bottom of page and hit “Enter”.
HOW TO LOG INTO YOUR PARENT PORTAL
1. You must have already created an account.
2. Log in using your own username and password.
We have an active PT0 with regular meetings. Our PT0 supports school activities and needs. Please consider becoming a member this year. The membership drive will take place in the fall. The officers for this year are:
President Mrs. Ginger Blocher
Vice President Mrs. Brittany Fazenbaker
Treasurer Mrs. Amy Rowe
Secretary Mrs. Jessica Beeman
Auditor Mrs. Jennifer French
We encourage parents to attend our meetings.
There will be a supplemental insurance program offered for students. Regular and 24 hour insurance are available. The office will send out information during the first week of school.
Individual school pictures are taken in the fall and the spring. The dates will be published in the newsletters. You will have the option of purchasing various packets from the proofs that will be sent home or online. The funds for the picture benefit the school and funds are used for school supplies. Please send the funds with the envelope sent home or make your purchase online.
Students Arriving Late/Leaving Early
Students are marked tardy if they arrive after 8:30 a.m. or leave before 3:15 p.m. Teachers are instructing until 3:15. All students leaving early must be signed out in the main office. When signing your child out, please wait for Mrs. Spataro to page your child. Please try to keep all appointments after 3:30. If appointments must be made during school hours, please attend the appointment and return your child to the school for the rest of the day.
Students will be dismissed from classes on the following schedule:
Parent Pick Up 3:15
Busses 3:20 Bus 20, Bus 74, Bus 12
Due to the limited number of staff available to cover these duties, students will need to report for dismissal on time. Any noncompliant student will be treated as not being in their assigned area and the Discipline Policy will be followed.
Student Day 8:30 – 3:15
Staff Day 8:00– 3:30
All exterior doors of the building will be locked at all times. Please approach the building through the main entrance and push the button under the access panel. Speak clearly to state your name and reason for visiting to gain access. Then report directly to the office. All visitors must sign in before visiting any other part of the building. A visitor’s pass will be issued upon check in and must be signed back in before leaving the building.
School Telephone 301-689-6132
Students are encouraged to practice responsibility with their supplies and schoolwork. Calling home to retrieve forgotten items is greatly discouraged. Please be sure to send in all materials and notes with your child.
Toys and Electronic Devices
Students need to keep toys and electronic devices at home. These items can become a distraction to the learning process and will be collected when they are found. Parents may come to the school to pick them up. There will be special occasions when teachers have activities that invite students to bring these. You will be notified in writing when those activities occur.
Our school website is available as an additional source of information. Newsletters, a calendar of important dates, the School Improvement Plan and handbook can be found by accessing it. The address is http://www.garrettcountyschools.org/route40 . The Garrett County Public Schools website also contains the latest releases from central office. It can be accessed at http://www.garrettcountyschools.org. Staying informed is a parent responsibility that can be accomplished by reading the school and classroom newsletters as well as checking both websites.
Students are not allowed to bring large amounts of money, cameras, baseball/football cards, etc. to school. Students, not the school, are responsible for personal property. Remember, too, that you are responsible for anything brought from home to be used in class work. Do not send family heirlooms, books, etc. unless you are willing to assume responsibility for them.
Students are not allowed to bring visitors to school. Parents are always welcome, but are asked to make an appointment to see a teacher, the principal, or the counselor. Anyone visiting the school for any reason must first check in at the office and receive a visitor’s badge before entering any other part of the building.