Playtime: Old and new tools for back to school

As the homeroom and teacher assignments trickle into the house, one showing up on Skyward and the other in the mail, it’s clear that times have changed from the posted class lists I used to scan with an index finger, first to find my name and then to see who would be in my class. The way it works for us now is, I text with my kids’ friends’ parents asking about teacher assignments and I pass the info onto the kids. And while I love some of the advances like having the Skyward app on my phone, mainly because it will use my thumbprint and I don’t have to remember my password, I still rely on some old fashioned methods and print out the yearly Family and Community Calendar and tape it up in the kitchen. This way I can physically look at all the half and non-student days, and amend the last day of school if there are any snow days.

The 2018-2019 Family and Community Calendar, a one page school year calendar, is available now by clicking HERE. This calendar basically covers when to be at school, when there is no school, and when to pick up early. The 2018-2019 Calendar and Family Handbook, which covers September ‘18 to September ‘19 and features artwork from 50 district students should have come in the mail this week. This calendar has a lot more information than just when school is in session. It has holidays, district events, and information on Move 60! and Clothes for Kids, it also has the phone number and principal’s name for each school in the district. There is also a PDF of the calendar, which you can find HERE.

Along with the calendar, information and communication options we currently have, there is now an Edmonds School District app for families. The Edmonds K12 app, which we were able to get on both our Apple and Android devices, allows you to quickly find school locations, get important notifications, the latest news, lunch menus, and the athletics calendar. You are able to choose which schools you’d like info for and the important dates then fill the calendar within the app. There are also links to report issues and a staff directory that after a quick test, has an e-mail address I couldn’t find online over the summer when I wanted to plead my case that our school couldn’t possibly go on without our assistant principal – the list had everyone I searched for. The app also offers direct links to Skyward, online payment for things like PE Clothes, and the district’s social media. You can search for the app using “Edmonds K12” or click HERE.

The district’s Food & Nutrition Services launched a “menu and nutrition app for families and students — My School Menus. This app allows access to nutrition information for the school meal programs on any device — you can also get this info online at Users will be able to find nutrition and ingredient information on menu items and a list of all the food choices available for your student including pictures of the food. You will also be able to see which foods are GMO-free, kosher, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, locally grown, [or] made from scratch. To get the My School Menus app on your phone, you can click HERE for the App Store and HERE for Google Play.

While we are talking about news from the district, there are two opportunities I wanted to share. First is Edmonds PreK: A Family Learning Experience which is a program available to all families located within the Edmonds School District boundaries. This program is eight FREE two-hour sessions, once a week, for you and your child to “develop skills to help families succeed in kindergarten.”

I know that our family could have definitely used this as a nice transition into school, and, as the district describes it “a chance to connect with other families in your neighborhood.” There are AM and PM sessions available at the following schools: Beverly Elementary, Chase Lake Community School, Lynndale Elementary, Meadowdale, Elementary, Oak Heights Elementary, Spruce Elementary, and Terrace Park Community School.

The information reiterates that all families are welcome, so don’t feel discouraged if you don’t see your home school. You can contact any of the schools in the above list for registration and more information and those numbers are available on the Edmonds K12 app, in the Calendar mailed to your address, or by calling the district at 425-431-7000.

There are also English classes offered for parents of children in the Edmonds School District this fall at Mountlake Terrace High School, 21801 44th Ave. W. The twice-weekly classes are Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7 p.m. and begin on Sept. 20. Free extended learning time for potty-trained children, ages 3 to 10, is available and registration is available in the cafeteria on the first night. The flyer explains it’s also an opportunity to meet other parents and learn about available resources. Those interested can head to the MTHS Cafeteria on the 20th. Though these classes are open for anyone, I am including the information the district provided in Spanish below:

Clases de inglés para padres de niños en el distrito escolar de Edmonds comienzan el jueves, 20 de septiembre, a las 7:00 de la tarde en la cafetería de la escuela secundaria Mountlake Terrace, 21801 44 Avenue West (avenida oeste). Por favor, regístrese para la clase a las 7:00 de la tarde, el 20 de septiembre, en la cafetería de la escuela. Tenemos tiempo de aprendizaje extendido gratis para niños de 3 a 10 años. Por favor, anote que solamente aceptamos niños que ya no usan pañales. Gracias.Por favor venga y disfrute de conocer a otros padres y aprender inglés. Esta sesión nos encontramos por 8 semanas. Tenemos clases de principiante y de nivel intermedio. ¡Esperamos verlos ahí!

— By Jennifer Marx

Jen Marx

Jen Marx, a mom of two boys, is always looking for a fun place to take the kids that makes them tired enough to go to bed on time.

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