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  • Writer's pictureSarah Schoolcraft

Brookside Blast 8/26/22

Updated: Sep 2, 2022

Dear Brookside Community,

We are SO excited for another amazing school year beginning Monday, August 29th!

We are kicking off this year with some solid connection activities to build and strengthen relationships. We invited all families to join us for Pizza, Popsicles and Playground on Thursday, August 25. It was a chance to visit, connect, and kick off a wonderful year together. Additionally, we had back-to-school conferences this week, which was a chance for your child(ren) to meet their new (or known) teacher, connect and prepare. These are just the first two of the many exciting things to look forward to this year!

Speaking of joy, our building is bustling right now. We have the staff coming together to connect with colleagues, plan and prepare for this amazing school year, and welcome new staff members who will be joining us.

We are thrilled to share about some new staff joining the Brookside Community. Alex Prior is a new 1st grade teacher and Jennifer Wedge is a new kindergarten teacher. Neither Ms. Alex nor Ms. Wedge are new to Brookside, as both were part of our school community in 21-22 as long term subs. Matt Currier joins us as a new Student Support Specialist and Sonia Tagliento and Victoria Brusca join us new instructional assistants! Finally, as Ms. Mosher is on parental leave this fall we welcome school counselor Liane Couture, who will be joining us Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays! Please join us in welcoming these folks to the Brookside School Community.

As hinted at above, there are so many things to be excited about for the upcoming school year. Our new superintendent, Dr. Mike Leichliter kicked off teacher inservice this week with positive messages, reminding us all how awesome our schools are for students. Some pretty amazing things happen in the HUUSD Schools, and Brookside is an amazing place to learn and grow.

Relationships will be a guiding principle this year. Our staff started our time together this week investing in relationships with colleagues. Our first contact with students, during before-school conferences, was focused around connection and relationships. In our continued dedication to our school codes: be safe, respectful and responsible, we are continuing our commitment to Responsive Classroom, restorative practices, and PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports - aka fish and gems). These approaches will be used proactively to establish trust, and will also be used in response to when things are more difficult. Relationships build a strong foundation, even when things get a little shaky. In building our social emotional learning we are increasing students' responsible decision making, personal responsibility, social awareness, self awareness, relationship skills, optimistic thinking, self management and goal-directed behavior. All students at Brookside this year will engage with the Social-Emotional-Learning (SEL) program Second Step. More details will be forthcoming as we roll out this excellent program to all students!

While COVID 19 is still present in our community, we all hope it will become less and less impactful on our everyday lives. We will work together to keep you updated on anything you need to know.

As you and your family prepare for the new school year consider these steps that can be taken to insure a smooth transition at the beginning of the year:

  • Talk with your child about the school year to come. What are they looking forward to? Is there anything they are nervous about? What do they hope for in the coming year? Validate their feelings and encourage risk taking and connection. The way you talk about school does much to shape your child’s perceptions. If you share excitement and positive thinking, it is likely that they will feel that as well.

  • Build your child’s confidence by revisiting all that your child accomplished last year, as well as growth and accomplishments from the summer. From learning to ride a bike, to reading, making a new friend or connection, to public speaking, to understanding division, our children accomplish such growth that we sometimes take it for granted. It’s good to celebrate the accomplishments while we simultaneously offer even more challenges.

  • Help your child prepare by organizing a backpack for school, looking over the lunch menu for the first week, going through before and after school plans and identifying a spot and time where reading or homework can be done. Also help your child acclimate to the school schedule with earlier bedtimes and wake up times. And practice going to the bus stop to make sure you leave yourself enough time.

  • Label all of your child’s belongings. Many kids will have the same backpacks, lunch boxes, etc. Print your child’s name, use stickers, or even use a luggage tag to help them identify their stuff. Help your child to learn emergency information. This will help both you and your child feel secure.

The main office at BPS is open beginning at 7:15 on school days. Our main contact number is 244-7195 if you need to reach us in the morning. The school will be open beginning at 7:30 for drop off of students. School begins everyday at 7:30 a.m. and dismissal is at 2:30 p.m. If your child arrives after 7:50 a.m. they are considered tardy and are required to check in at the office upon arrival to obtain a slip that will notify their teacher that they have checked in. Classrooms start their day promptly at 7:50 with all classes holding morning meetings to promote and reinforce the social curriculum. This is time dedicated to social connection and building classroom communities. It is extremely important that each child be here on time so that they can participate in these activities. If your child will be absent or tardy, please complete the online absence tool. Additionally, please update plans in Pick Up Patrol if students will be absent or dismissed early. Thank you for your cooperation with this, as it helps exponentially.

Drop off and pick up will look much like it did last year with one addition in the morning drop off routine…please see the map and details in this Brookside Blast post. We ask that students be dropped off outdoors (front or back). There will be Pre-K staff at the back center-building door for Pre-K student entry. If you need to walk your child to the door, please park in one of the drop-off parking spots near the chicken coop. Kindergarten students will gather in the bus loop on the first day and much of the first week - Kindergarten teachers will be stationed around the loop to gather their students before heading into the building together.

We will ask all parents and guardians to say goodbye at the door to ensure student safety. Please do not accompany your child into the building at drop-off. Greeters, including both Mr. Neville and Ms. Schoolcraft will be stationed at the front and back entrances. A goal of increased bus ridership will support smoother drop-off and pick-up routines. Please check the new bus numbers and routes for your stops. For families who pick up their student afterschool, please pull into the loop and stay in your car, and your child will be dismissed to you. Please, please do not park on Stowe or High Streets to drop off or pick up your child. We are in a residential area and need to respect our neighbors. Pick up Patrol is an important tool for us to make sure every student heads in the correct direction when leaving at the end of the day. Please take a moment to set up the default plans for your child(ren). These can be changed at any time, but are incredibly important to have complete the first day of school.

BPS continues to be committed to safety and security, using the tools we have in place. Our main entrance doors will be locked everyday between 7:50-2:30. Please use the buzzer at the front door and smile for the camera. Bonnie or Michele will greet you and ask the reason for your visit. We are excited to bring families, volunteers and visitors back into the building and learning spaces. Masks will continue to be optional in the school.

Student meals are all free again this year. We do ask folks to fill out the free and reduced lunch paperwork regardless, as it is helpful for a multitude of reasons. Please see the letter and packet in first day folders. Erika, Deb, Carmen and Allison will all be returning as our food service heroes, serving up breakfasts and lunches for students every day. To find out more about local ingredients, payment options and, of course, the awesome Eagle Cafe menu, check out the food service website

We will continue to send the Brookside Blast, our schoolwide communication, via Swift Reach every week. Please take a moment to read through the post as it will be information important to know. For families without internet access, we are happy to send out these communications in an alternate format upon request.

An important first day packet will go home on the first day of school. This packet will include a copy of this letter, a school photo order form, a free and reduced lunch form, a school calendar, a menu and other important forms. Some forms that we used to send are now part of the online registration, i.e.Health forms, a Field Trip form and a Photo Release form. Please take the time to review the information contained in the packet and send back the required forms to school as soon as possible. Also, please complete the online registration as soon as possible, if you have not already.

Our handbook provides additional information regarding our school procedures and expectations. It is accessible via our school’s website Speaking of our website, we are continuing to update it, please be patient as we get it current.

We are SO excited to have the kids walk in on that first day. We look forward to working with and forging relationships with students, staff and families to ensure success for every BPS student. See you Monday!

In Partnership,

Chris and Sarah


Community Postings

Volunteers Needed for Nature Education Program Brookside Primary School's Four Winds Nature Education program is seeking volunteers to help teach kids about our natural world. Get kids outside to experience hands-on standards-based science education concepts. This year the theme is “Earth” and we will be teaching 6 different lessons on topics including sunlight & shadows, erosion, rocks & minerals, air, wind & clouds, and the water cycle. If you’ve been a volunteer in the past please join us again this year. You do not need to be a parent of a BPS student. We have had excellent volunteers that were grandparents, aunts/uncles, neighbors, and interested community members that just want to help introduce the splendor of our natural world to young minds. We offer all the training and supplies to get you started. Please email us at to let us know if you are interested in volunteering this year or if you have any questions about the program.

2022-2023 Stowe Youth Hockey Programs

Learn to Skate Weds 3:45 or Sat 8 am for :45 min. 10 weeks beginning 11/2 or 11/5 (Sat) with a couple of holiday breaks $50 Registration is open now at: Bruins Learn-to-Play (up to age 9) 4 Sunday sessions (10/9 10am, 10/16 10am, 10/23 1:30, 10/30 1:30) $180 Includes FULL set of hockey gear to keep Registration opens August 16 at: Learn-to-Play (any age) Weds 3:45 or Sat 8am 10 weeks beginning 11/2 (Weds) or 11/5 (Sat) $75 registration open now at: 6U (5-7 year olds) Practices both Weds 3:45 and Sat 8am with games and a little bit of travel. Incredibly fun group of kids and coaches. Kids must already know how to skate registration open now at: Chicks With Sticks (girls ages 7-13) Practices Mondays 5-6pm.

11/7-2/13 (12 sessions) $120 Registration: Contact Kelvey Wilson at or Mary Donati at or Audra Hughes (


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