Welcome Back Letter

August 2018

Welcome Carson 2018, en Español

Dear Carson Families,

I am so excited that I will be your new Principal for the upcoming school year. It was a pleasure meeting some of you at the last PTA meeting and Principal’s Coffee. I am looking forward to meeting the rest of you in August and start acclimating myself to the Carson Community. 

Education has always been my passion. Throughout my 28 years of experience in education, it is my uncompromising view that all students can learn in a positive atmosphere that encourages exploration and hard work, while enhancing student confidence. I believe that students achieve learning goals in a safe, caring, yet challenging environment. I am confident that Carson Elementary is just this place. Working together with you, your children, and the staff at Carson will be valued and this partnership will be beneficial for all students. My commitment is to our students, you, and the staff to ensure everyone is safe and feels successful.

The first day of school will be Wednesday, August 15th.  In the meantime, here is some information about the opening of the 2018-2019 school year.

Monday, August 13th:  We have two special events.  Please see below.
•2:00-3:00 p.m. Kindergarten Play Date:  Kindergarten parents are invited to bring their children to play and meet other kindergarten students and families, the kindergarten teachers, and the principal.  We will meet on the playground.
•3:00-5:00 p.m. Class Lists Posted:  Lists for ALL classes in all grades will be posted at the front of the school.  Please note that no requests for changes will be made.  If parents have concerns about their child’s placement, please articulate your child’s needs directly with the teacher. Together, parents and teachers will work on a plan to address each student’s unique needs. This may require time, collaboration, and patience. Nevertheless, some roster adjustments may be necessary in order to ensure that classes are balanced within the first month. Class stability is important to building a successful class community.

More Kindergarten Info:  You are invited to attend our Kindergarten Parent Orientation on the first day of school, Wednesday, August 15th at 8:15 a.m. in the Cafeteria. Students will be dropped off in their classrooms at the start of the school day (8:00 am) and parents will meet in the cafeteria. The meeting will start at 8:15 allowing the teachers a few minutes with their students before leaving them to do the orientation with the parents. Kindergarten parents will have an opportunity to meet the teachers, learn about the curriculum, and find out how to participate in classroom and school activities. During the orientation, the kindergarten students will take a tour of the school and meet Carson staff members. After the orientation, students will leave school with their parents. 

For the first eight days of school, from August 15th through August 24th, kindergartners will attend from 8:00 a.m. until 12:21 p.m. Shorter school days will help our kindergarten students acclimate to school more easily. Their regular schedule begins on Monday, August 27th.

Wednesday, August 15th: The first day of school! School begins promptly at 8:00 a.m. The warning bell will ring at 7:57 a.m. Students not in line by 8:00 a.m. will be considered tardy. Please ensure your child is on time. Late arrival can cause your child to miss important first day information and can be disruptive to the other students’ learning. If you know your child will be absent, please call the office at 408-287-6311. If you do not contact the office, and your child is not in attendance by Tuesday, August 21st, we will assume he/she is not attending Carson, and YOUR CHILD WILL BE DROPPED FROM OUR SCHOOL ENROLLMENT. 

School Hours:  We have a new bell schedule. Please see attached bell schedule or visit our website. http://www.sjusd.org/carson/school-information/bell-schedule/  Starting time is at 8:00 a.m. for all students. Students in K-2 will be dismissed at 2:10 p.m. and dismissal for 3rd-5th grades is at 2:20 p.m. on regular school days.  Thursday is our early release day, starting August 16th.  ALL students are released at 12:21 p.m.  Lunch will be served before dismissal. 

Children should not arrive on campus before 7:30 in the morning, as there is no supervision to monitor your child before that time. Only children eating breakfast may arrive starting at 7:15 a.m. Be sure to pick up your child promptly at the end of the day. This is a safety issue, as the Carson staff does NOT provide after school supervision. If your schedule prohibits you from picking up your child on time, fee-based after-school childcare is available on our campus through the City of San José’s R.O.C.K. program.  To learn more about this option please contact them at (408) 268-1133 or online at http://www.sanjoseca.gov/prns.

Traffic Safety: Help us keep every child safe while riding or walking to school. Please be mindful of traffic laws, speed limits, children crossing the street, and our neighbors’ driveways during peak times.

Bus Identification Tag
If your child rides the school bus, the Transportation Department will be mailing the bus tags to your home prior to the first day of school. Your child will be required to wear the tag to board the bus. Please call the SJUSD Transportation Department at (408) 535-6185 if you have questions.

School Breakfast and Lunch: We offer breakfast and lunch to all students at Carson. Breakfast is served from 7:15-7:55 a.m. and a “second chance” breakfast is served at the morning recess for students who did not have time to eat breakfast before school. Lunch is served each day during school hours. Applications for free or reduced lunch will be arriving in the mail in just a few weeks. If your child received free lunch at the end of last school year, he/she will begin the year with free lunch, BUT YOU MUST RE-APPLY BY SEPTEMBER 27th.

Carson PTA:  Please consider joining the Carson PTA this year, which benefits ALL students at our school! You will receive a special packet from the PTA the first week of school.

Parent Volunteers:
Parent volunteers are welcomed and valued at Carson. We have a wonderful group of parent volunteers and are always looking at building up this group. If you are interested in volunteering you will need to complete a district volunteer form at http://go.sjusd.org/volunteer or http://go.sjusd.org/voluntarios.  Please complete page 2 and click on COMPLETE when done.  You will then need to follow the steps sent to you via email.  Once the process is complete, you will be notified from the district that you are cleared to work on the campus.  The district has established procedures and forms that must be completed before volunteering, in order to protect child safety and confidentiality. All volunteers must sign into the Main Office before assisting in the classroom. As a reminder, no parents will be allowed on campus with their children unless they are volunteering.

Welcome Back Coffee with the Principal: Our first Principal’s Coffee will be on Friday, August 17th @ 8:05-9:00 am in the multipurpose room.  I look forward to seeing you there! If you cannot make it to this event, please know that my door is always open, and you are welcome to schedule an appointment to discuss any questions or concerns.

Parent Communication: Carson staff will be sending home envelopes every Thursday with important school communications. This is a good family time to look over and discuss the materials, and plan for the upcoming week together. Please return the envelopes on Friday. A monthly newsletter will be sent home from me and when necessary, a Parent-link phone call or email.  To stay informed throughout the year, please log onto our webpage at http://www.sjusd.org/carson/ and like our Carson.  You can also sign up with our Carson Yahoo! Group by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Donations:  SJUSD provides all necessary supplies and instructional materials for our students. However, if you would like to make some donations, attached are some basic supplies that would be appreciated. Feel free to reach out to your child’s teacher during Back to School Night if you would like to make donations.

Uniform Policy:  Student dress is very important at Carson. Carson has a school uniform dress policy.  Please see the attached sheet with details about the policy.  There is a uniform closet at the school. It is supplied with donations and outgrown uniforms. Please contact the school office if you need uniform assistance. Parents wanting to opt out of uniform must submit their request in writing.

PBIS: A Carson Cougar always R.O.A.R.S. As we return to school, our teachers will continue to reinforce school expectations. We’ll begin with PBIS assemblies on the first few days of school and reinforce the behavioral expectations and positive consequences regularly. Behavior will be taught as part of the daily curriculum. Teachers will identify monthly Super Citizens who always R.O.A.R.S (Respectful, On Task, Accepting, Responsible & Safe).

Team Building: We are a team! I encourage you to introduce yourself to your child’s teacher to begin the most important relationship that will impact your child’s school experiences. I also encourage you to investigate the many ways to participate at school through volunteerism and our PTA.

Upcoming Dates:

August 13, 2018 between 3-5 PM Classes posted
August 13, 2018 @ 2 PM Kindergarten Play Date
August 15, 2018 First Day of School
August 15, 2018 @ 8:05 AM Kindergarten Orientation (Cafeteria)
August 17, 2018 @ 8:05 - 9:00 AM Principal’s Coffee
August 28, 2018 Back to School Night: K-3rd 5:30-6:30pm
  4th-5th 6:30-7:30pm
5th grade Science Camp meeting 7:30-8:00pm
September 3, 2018 Labor Day- No school
September 5, 2018 Fall Picture (uniform required)
September 28, 2018 Principal’s Coffee/PBIS Awards/Spirit Day

I look forward to meeting and working with you, your child, our wonderful staff, and the dedicated community members to close the opportunity gap and to prepare each of our children for the exciting opportunities that lay ahead of us in this century.


Anna Chitwood, Principal
Carson Elementary

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