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    Principal’s Message - January 2020

        Happy New Year to all!  It’s hard to believe it is January! We’re just shy of our halfway mark this school year, so it is full steam ahead for our students and teachers.

        January always presents an inconsistent schedule. There is no school on January 20th for Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday. In addition, we will have two early dismissal days, January 28-29, followed by a teacher workday (no students) on Thursday, January 30th. While parents often look at those early dismissal days as “half” days, students are actually in school long enough each day to have math and reading. This also falls within our quarterly assessment window, so important tests may take place in all subject areas. If you plan to take your child out of school during any of these days, please touch base with their teacher to ensure that tests can be made up upon your child’s return. As our school policy states, no work will be provided to students prior to absences.

        To further add to the importance of school attendance, the State of Maryland has adopted a new accountability system within ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act). Part of the new rating system for each school includes student attendance. Our school is penalized each time a student is absent more than 10% of the time. Just within the first marking period this school year we had 28 students fall into this category. Now, the impact of poor student attendance will be felt by all. It is critical that we keep our students in school where the learning takes place. Your efforts are greatly appreciated! 

        There is so much going on each week at DES. What a wonderful place for children!  I hope this new year brings you much happiness and joy. Thank you for your continued trust each day!

     

       Mrs. Colleen Harris