Welcome to Stone Creek Elementary School and the 2017-2018 school year. The teachers and I believe that success for all students is the shared responsibility of both home and school. Please take the time to read through this handbook, and bookmark it as a handy reference throughout the year. We hope that you will be able to participate in many of the activities planned by our Stone Creek staff and PTA. We welcome and encourage your interest and involvement. We look forward to offering another year of engaging, twenty-first century learning to all the students of Stone Creek. Please feel free to contact me if I can be of any assistance.
Jenna Berumen Principal
updating emergency info
Parents and guardians are reminded that they have the ability to update contact information (excluding mailing address) for their student(s) at any time by going to the district’s Parent Portal at https://my.iusd.org/LoginParent.aspx?page=default.aspx. It is imperative for the school office that you keep your contact information up-to-date. Thanks for your help!
student health requirements
California immunization laws and Irvine Unified School District Policy 5141.31 require that upon school entry, all pupils must show written proof of immunizations. A personal immunization record completed by a physician or clinic or the blue California School Immunization Record from a former school or another state’s school record serves as documented proof. A list of required immunizations are found at https://iusd.org/sites/default/files/documents/pdfs/tk.kinder_through_12th_gr_immunization_requiremen ts.pdf
California Immunization Exemption Law: As you may be aware, there was a change in student immunization requirements in 2016. Under a new law known as Senate Bill 277 (SB 277), beginning January 1, 2016 immunization exemptions based on personal beliefs are no longer available for the vaccines that are currently required for school admission.
Personal belief exemptions (PBE) on file with the school district before January 1, 2016 for a student already enrolled in school will remain in effect until the student reaches the next immunization check point at Transitional Kindergarten, Kindergarten or 7th grade. Any PBE must have been received by the school district before January 1, 2016 in order to be valid.
The new law requires that all students follow the State immunization requirements for school enrollment unless there is a documented medical reason provided by a licensed physician. The main components of SB 277 and the new immunization requirements are outlined below:
- Personal beliefs exemptions from immunizations accepted by IUSD prior to January 1, 2016.
- Students entering into Transitional Kindergarten, Kindergarten, and 7th Grade on and after July 1, 2016, will be required to submit documentation verifying compliance with the State immunization requirements, unless a valid medical exemption is on file with the school district. Immunization documentation must be provided at time of registration.
- A parent/guardian may submit to the school a written statement by a licensed physician (MD or DO) or the Medical Exemption to Required Immunizations from the American Academy of Pediatrics & California Academy of Family Physicians exempting a student from immunization (medical exemption). In order to obtain a valid medical exemption, SB 277 requires a written statement by a licensed physician which states: (1) the physical condition or medical circumstances relating to the student are such that immunization is not considered safe; (2) the specific nature of the medical condition; (3) the probable duration of the medical condition; (4) circumstances, including, but not limited to, family medical history, for which the physician does not recommend immunization, and (5) that the student shall be exempt from the vaccines indicated by the physician's statement.
Information about school immunization requirements and SB 277 Frequently Asked Questions are available at https://iusd.org/about/departments/education-services/student-support-services/healthservices/immunizations and on the State's Shots for School website at www.shotsforschool.org
State law allows school personnel to administer medication if a Parent/Guardian & Health Care Provider Request For Medication Administration is on file in the school office. These forms are available in the school office or under “Medication Request - 2 Page FORM” at http://iusd.iusd.developmentpreview.com/sites/default/files/documents/imported/requestformedicationadministration.pdf. No medication can be given without these two forms on file. Medication must be in the original prescription container. Students must not bring aspirin, cough medications, cold remedies, or any other medication to school to take on their own. Parents should follow the same procedure for over-the-counter medications as for those prescribed by a physician. There is the possibility of another child taking the medication and having a severe reaction. ALL MEDICATION TAKEN BY STUDENTS WHILE AT SCHOOL MUST BE KEPT IN THE OFFICE. Please contact the school office if you have any special problems regarding medication.
Regular attendance is crucial to your child's success in school. Also, full-time attendance is compulsory by State law. This means all children ages 6 years and up must attend school every day.
Acceptable reasons for excused absences include: Illness (verified that the student was actually ill or under quarantine); Medical or Dental Appointment; Family Funeral (immediate family only - mother, father, siblings, grandparents); Religious (those recognized by the state; retreats – 4 hours per trimester with approved letter from religious center); Court Appearance (the student is subpoenaed). All other absences will be considered unexcused. It is the student's responsibility to make up all missed school assignments regardless of reason for absence.
- If your child must miss school, please call the 24-hour absence line (949.936.6201) by 8:30 a.m. each day your child is absent and record the pertinent details on the telephone answering device.
- If you are unable to call the school, your student must bring a note from you stating when and why he/she was absent in order to be admitted back to class.
If your child is late for school for any reason, he/she must report to the front office to allow us to change our attendance records.
picking up students from school
- Help us keep your student safe! Please follow the 10-minute rule! In accordance with Irvine Unified School District Board Policy 5142 (additional information is available through the IUSD website at https://iusd.org/about/board-education/board-policies/student-safety, we have staff on duty after school for 10 minutes to ensure students are on their way home safely. THERE IS NO SUPERVISION AFTER THIS 10 MINUTE TIME PERIOD.
- If a Parent and/or authorized person is late to pick up their student, they must go to the front office to sign the student out.
- Be sure you are on time to pick your child up at the end of the school day. Frequent negligence in picking students up on time is unacceptable.
- Students can only be picked up by a parent or authorized person as listed on the student’s emergency contact information.
student release at irregular hours
Students are not authorized to leave school grounds by themselves at irregular times. For all irregular hour dismissals, it is required for the parent or the authorized individual (as listed on the student’s emergency contact information) to come in to the front office to sign the student out. A student will be called out to the front office upon the arrival of parent or authorized individual. Students may not wait in the front office for an anticipated early pick-up since valuable instruction time is often lost with parents arriving later than expected.
- Limited playground supervision begins at 7:55 a.m.
- Children may not be on campus prior to that time, with the exception made for students enrolled in Creeker’s Club.
- For the safety of all our students, we ask parents to remind students that prior to school beginning each morning, playground activity is limited and that general recess equipment is not permitted on the playgrounds and fields due to limited supervision. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated for the safety of our students.
There is no playground supervision after school hours or on weekends. Children are to proceed home or to their respective daycare centers immediately after school. Primary grade students may NOT wait on campus for upper grade siblings. Children may NOT play on the field, playground, or blacktop while school is still in session. These areas are to be reserved for the use of students participating in physical education and other school-related activities during school hours.
The City of Irvine provides a crossing guard for our students at the corner of West Yale Loop and Stone Creek South. All students and parents are to cross at Stone Creek and West Yale Loop with the crossing guard. No one is permitted to cross at any other location. Crossing in front of the school on Stone Creek South is not permitted. The crossing guard's schedule is coordinated with the supervision capabilities stated above.
- Each Wednesday for grades 1 through 6, students will be involved in a modified day, with the same start time as the daily schedule, and the dismissal at 1:15 p.m.
- Kindergarten AM students will have no change in schedule.
- Each Wednesday Kindergarten PM students’ modified schedule will be 10:10am-1:30pm
- The staff will be involved in Wednesday afternoon staff meetings, seminars and professional learning sessions.
Additional modified/minimum days can be found on our school calendar.
The school has the prerogative of keeping students after school if the necessity arises. If, at any time, your child is kept after school for longer than 10 minutes, you will be notified by either the child or teacher.
Visitors are welcomed at our school. To minimize disruptions of the learning environment and educational process, as well as for the safety and security of all our students and staff members, we ask that all visits be pre-arranged with the teachers and/or school office. In addition, unless otherwise preauthorized, visiting time in the classrooms is limited to 20-30 minutes, as per Board policy. All visitors must enter and exit school grounds through the front office where they will sign-in and out. First time visitors will be required to present a valid identification card or driver’s license. Visitors are required to wear a visitor/volunteer sticker at all times while on campus.
One of our goals each year is to teach and foster responsibility among our students. As parents and teachers, we tend to want to “take care of their forgetfulness.” Examples of this occur daily at school with forgotten homework, instruments, library books, and lunch money. Office staff members cannot interrupt valuable learning time by walking into the classroom to deliver forgotten items, or allowing parents to do so. You may deliver forgotten items to the front office. But you must also email the teacher to have your student pick that item up from the front office during recess or lunch time. Musical instruments should be left in the front office by the book case. Students will be instructed by their music teachers to look for their instruments there, prior to class starting.
Students should have a legitimate reason for requesting the use of the school telephone. The office telephones are business telephones and should not be used for personal reasons such as arrangements for play dates and other planning that should occur in advance. In order to use the telephone, a child must first secure the permission of his or her teacher and the office staff.
lost & found
When a student finds something -- money, books, clothing, etc. -- he/she should turn it in to the office or Lost & Found.
dropping off lunch
Stone Creek is an open campus. As such, in order to ensure the safety of our students, we monitor all visitors. Accordingly, parents are not allowed to deliver lunches directly to their children. Lunches may be dropped off in the front office any time before 11:20 a.m. Our noon duty supervisors will take the lunches out to the lunch tables for all grade levels every day at 11:25 a.m. If lunch is not delivered by that time, your student will be instructed to buy a hot lunch in our cafeteria.
nutrition services & milk
A hot lunch is available daily for $3.25 for children in grades one through six. Monthly menus are available through the IUSD website at https://iusd.org/about/departments/business-services/nutritionservices/menus. Children may bring their own sack lunch. Milk is available daily for $0.50. Students are not able to purchase an additional slice of pizza. If they want an extra slice of pizza, they must purchase another whole meal at $3.25. This is also true about any extra entrée. We are no longer able to sell any of the entrees ala carte. The students are able to purchase an extra salad or fruit, or juice, milk or water ala carte.
We encourage parents/guardians to pre-pay for meals to ensure faster-moving serving lines. Cash and checks are accepted at all school sites and there is NO transaction fee for depositing money through the front office. Pre-payment envelopes are available in the school office, and when a check or cash is received in the morning, it is deposited into the account the same day. Also available is the online parent payment portal at https://www.myschoolbucks.com/ver2/login/getmain?requestAction=home. Here you may view your student’s balance, transaction history, make credit card payments, and set up scheduled, automatic payments online for a modest fee using the website or from a mobile app on your phone. Online payments are available in your student’s account the same day that you make an online deposit. The more students who participate in this pre-pay program, the more efficiently Stone Creek’s lunch program can operate. Even if your student only buys lunch on Pizza Days (or occasionally forgets to bring lunch or money), it’s a great idea to have a small balance in the account, eliminating the need/time for cash transactions.
food / student birthdays/ class celebrations
The Stone Creek staff has determined two classroom parties may be held during the school year. While we all enjoy the celebration of birthdays, Stone Creek has chosen to celebrate at school without sweet treats such as cakes, cookies, brownies, cupcakes, or other foods. In order to support the District’s Nutrition and Wellness policies, and be cognizant of food allergies, no food, store bought or homemade, may come into the school during instructional hours. A more lasting celebration would be the donation of a Birthday Book to our library or your child’s classroom. A simple goodie bag that does not contain any edible products is also acceptable. Parents are requested to make arrangements for any classroom celebrations directly with the classroom teacher. Please no food items of any kind. Nutrition Services within the IUSD can provide snacks for the two classroom parties. Room parents will be encouraged to coordinate through Nutrition Services for these events. Non-mandatory opportunities, social events outside of the school day (family nights, socials, multicultural nights, etc.), or after-school events that are voluntary in attendance will not be considered part of the instructional day, and therefore these times will not be monitored by school staff for compliance.
pets on school grounds
Pets are not allowed on school grounds unless special permission has been granted through the front office. Please be aware that pursuant to Orange County Ordinance 41.46, dogs are not allowed to be on school grounds at any time. If you choose to bring your dog when walking your child to and from school, please wait for your child off school grounds.
playground structure usage
The playground and play structure located across from the Kindergarten classrooms is closed EVERY school day during school hours between 7:00a.m.-3:00p.m.
traffic safety plan
The primary goals of the school’s traffic safety plan are to ensure the safety of Stone Creek students and to expedite parent traffic to and from school. To better meet these needs, the school has developed a traffic circulation pattern through the school parking lot each morning and a traffic safety plan, based on consultation with the staff, parents and the Traffic Control Department of the City of Irvine. PLEASE REVIEW THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF OUR TRAFFIC SAFETY PLAN AND STRICTLY OBSERVE ITS REQUIREMENTS.
- EMPLOYEE ONLY PARKING AT STONE CREEK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL. Our parking lot is open for the dropping off and picking up of students, but parking itself is limited to teachers and staff.
- PARKING LOT ENTRY/EXIT SIGNS ARE CLEARLY POSTED. All parent traffic must enter the parking lot at the Stone Creek South ENTRANCE only. There are two (2) lanes available; the right lane is for “drop-off/pick-up” only, and the left lane is for “drive-through” only.
- ALWAYS use caution and drive slowly. We have some very small children that are not always visible and could dart in front of your car. Be alert!
- NEVER leave your car unattended in the right “drop-off/pick-up” lane. This lane is only meant for parents to drive through and drop off their children before school and to wait in their car for children to meet them after school. Cars are allowed to pull from the right lane into the left lane after picking up or dropping off students. Please pull forward as the cars in front of you move up in line.
- If you are waiting for small children, you should park your car and meet your child at the curb or outside the classroom. Parking is available: On Stone Creek South (where/when posted).
- On Birdsong off of West Yale Loop, at the back of the school and students may walk across the park to the school campus.
- At Cobblestone Park, just a few yards past Stone Creek School on Stone Creek South; students may walk onto campus from there. Please consider using a few of the above-referenced alternative drop-off locations in order to ensure the safety of students and to ease traffic congestion.
- For your safety and for your child’s safety, always use the crosswalks. They are located at the corner of West Yale Loop and Stone Creek South.
- There is a curbside drop-off area on the school side of West Yale Loop outside the upper grade classrooms, but parents are to remain in their car at all times.
- OBSERVE NO PARKING SIGNS. During school hours, there is NO PARKING between the entrance to the parking lot and the corner of West Yale Loop and Stone Creek South. The lane adjacent to the curb is used as the entrance lane to the parking lot only.
- School staff is present to monitor the parking lot before and after school. Please be respectful of their requests to follow the parking lot guidelines.
Students are expected to follow SOAR expectations at all times. Please review the matrix on the last page of the handbook for specific behaviors in each area of our school.
As a reminder, students are expected to:
- play games and use school equipment according to the rules.
- walk when they are in the quad area.
- eat at the lunch tables during recess snack time and lunch (due to food allergies, students are asked not to share food or snacks with one another.)
- keep hands and feet to themselves.
- leave items of sentimental or monetary value at home.
- clean up after themselves at the lunch tables and wait to be excused by the noon duty supervisor.
- play on blacktop and grass area behind school during recess avoiding the areas to the side and behind the buildings.
Stone Creek Elementary School is committed to maintaining a learning environment free from harassment, intimidation or insult, student-to-student or adult-to-student, on the basis of an individual’s actual or perceived sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression. Please report any misconduct to your teacher or principal.
Classroom standards will be developed in each classroom using the Stone Creek SOAR Matrix of school wide behavioral expectations and district’s policies as a background. A copy of Stone Creek’s SOAR Matrix is located on the last page of this handbook.
In accordance with Irvine Unified School District Board Policy 5140 (additional information is available through the IUSD website at https://iusd.org/about/board-education/board-policies/bicycle-use, all bicyclers must wear helmets and students in grade levels K-2 shall not be permitted to ride bicycles to school. As further measures of safety:
- Bicycles should be licensed through the Irvine Police Department.
- Each bicycle must be locked.
- The bicycle racks are not supervised during school hours and are off-limits for students.
- All bicycles must be walked while on school grounds.
- Electric skateboards as defined by AB604 (additional information is available at https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160AB604 ), regular skateboards, razor boards, hover boards, scooters, roller blades, and skate shoes are NOT permitted at school.
student dress & grooming
Parents have the primary responsibility to see that their children are dressed in a manner which is clean and not hazardous to their safety, nor disruptive to instruction. For these reasons, and to be consistent with other elementary schools in our area, we are sharing the following guidelines and request your assistance in guiding your child to dress in a manner in keeping with these guidelines which shows they are ready for school and respectful of themselves and others.
Students may not wear:
- Attire which is sexually explicit or brief such as: tops or pants designed for bare midriffs, halter tops, tops with straps that are less than 1-1/2 inches in width (spaghetti straps), tight or revealing clothing or low cut tops, fish net tops, clothing which allows underwear to be exposed, short shorts. A good guideline for shorts: shorts should be as long as fingertips, when hands are at your side;
- Sagging pants, baggy clothes (pants or shorts should be the proper size and must fit securely at the waist above the hip bone, and are not allowed to hang below the waist), caps worn backwards/sideways, beanies, chains or clothing that can be construed to be “gang like”;
- Attire that advertises alcohol, drugs, tobacco, violence, or obscenities;
- Body glitter or excessive make-up;
- Jewelry or other accessories that poses a threat to personal safety, or the safety of others;
- Thongs, flip-flops, sock-like footwear, slippers, platforms, open-toe or back-less shoes. Students should wear athletic shoes when P.E. is scheduled and will not be allowed to participate if they are wearing unsafe shoes. Shoes must be worn at all times.
If your child wears prohibited attire, we will:
- Call home/work for appropriate clothing.
- If families are unavailable, students will use clothing from the Health Office, to be returned the next day. Note: Students may not return to class until appropriately dressed.
All Stone Creek School homework assignments are given to provide practice and reinforcement of newly-learned skills; to help develop a sense of personal responsibility; to encourage self-discipline; and to extend each child's ability to study independently.
We ask parents to assist the school in the following ways: SUPPORT the concept that homework is important; ENCOURAGE your child to complete his/her homework; PROVIDE an environment/space for your child that is conducive to studying at home; CHECK to see that all homework has been completed. As a parent, you are not responsible for teaching any concept or skill and you are not responsible for correcting any work that is assigned to be completed at home.
Your child's homework assignments could include any or all of the following:
- Finishing work assigned during the regular school day.
- Reinforcing skills previously taught.
- Long-term assignments, such as book reports and research projects.
- Weekly assignments, such as spelling, vocabulary, and math facts.
The amount of time spent on homework can vary with the individual child; however, in general terms, the following is a realistic overview of expectations at Stone Creek School:
- Kindergarten -- 15 to 20 minutes Monday through Friday.
- First and Second grades -- 30 to 45 minutes Monday through Thursday.
- Third grade -- 30 to 45 minutes Monday through Thursday.
- Fourth grade – 30 to 45 minutes Monday through Friday, not including weekends.
- Fifth and Sixth grades – 60 to 90 minutes Monday through Friday, not including weekends.
Grades 4-6 may assign weekend homework.
** Students are encouraged to include nightly independent reading. **
When riding school buses, students are to observe the following rules:
- Students transported in a school bus shall be under the authorization of, and be responsible to, the driver. SOAR behavioral expectations shall be observed and honored at all times.
- Students shall be seated prior to any school bus being put into motion and shall remain seated until after the bus has come to a complete stop. Students shall refrain from any action that could distract the driver while the bus is in motion.
- Students who become a serious disciplinary problem on the school bus may be removed from the bus and have riding privileges suspended.
- Students must keep arms and hands inside the bus window.
- Eating on the bus is not permitted.
Students who fail to comply with bus rules will lose their privilege to ride the bus
school site council
The following are the objectives of the School Site Council:
- Provide a means to involve parents and staff in the development and continual evaluation of the educational goals of Stone Creek School.
- Examine issues facing Stone Creek School and make recommendations as appropriate.
- Provide the Stone Creek School staff with information regarding the expectations of the community as it relates to the quality of education.
- Disseminate information as deemed necessary to the community-at-large as it relates to the quality of education at Stone Creek School.
parent teacher association
A listing of the current PTA officers is located at the Stone Creek website http://www.stonecreekpta.org. The purpose of this organization is:
- To promote the welfare of children at home, school, and within the community.
- To bring about a closer relationship between home and school so parents and teachers can cooperate in the education of their children.
- To develop between educators and the general public such united efforts as will secure for all children the highest advantages in physical, mental, and social education.
You can be involved in one of the following ways:
- Share your special knowledge of a skill, hobby or occupation. Children can learn from you.
- Spend some time with us in the classroom, on projects, on field trips, or working on special activities.
- Volunteer in the Library and in the school office for a variety of other opportunities helping the office staff.
Every parent volunteer is required to complete the initial registration process through our Raptor visitor/volunteer check in software. Please bring a photo ID upon your first visit to our school to complete this process. All volunteers must sign in and out in the front office and wear a volunteer badge. Please do not sign out before you actually leave as an emergency can occur and we need to know exactly who is on campus at all times for safety reasons.
One of our many volunteer jobs is that of room parents. Mothers or fathers, or sometimes both, may serve as room parent. Room parents assist the teacher and obtain help for various class projects.
pupil progress / student expectations
Parents can expect to receive student report cards three times a year. Parent-teacher conferences are scheduled in the Fall and Spring. If you wish additional conferences with a teacher, it should be arranged for times other than during school hours. It is best to send a note, e-mail, or call, to arrange a conference at a mutually convenient time for you and the teacher. Our teachers maintain office hours before and after regular class hours.
Back-to-School night is held in August to acquaint parents with materials and content comprising our instructional program.
Open House is scheduled for February so the children may share their classroom and activities with their parents.
In an effort to assure that materials sent from school reach home, you may expect materials to be brought home each Thursday throughout the school year. The school asks that parents take the time each Thursday evening to review the enclosed materials with their child and return the envelope to school with the child on Friday.
Parents are encouraged to check the school calendar posted on our website.
independent study contracts
Stone Creek no longer offers Independent Study Contracts (previously an option for students missing a minimum of five school days). Absences for vacations will be considered unexcused. You must also call in your absence into the 24-Hour Attendance Line at 949.936.6201.
classroom placement procedures
Annual classroom placement is carefully determined prior to the start of school for each student returning to Stone Creek. Placement is determined by the principal, the current grade-level team of teachers, all certificated resource personnel, and the school psychologist.
The primary purpose of placement teams is to match students with instructional environments that complement their learning styles and talents, as well as their academic, social and emotional needs. The placement teams also ensure a balance of variables in each classroom setting. Such variables include, but are not limited to:
- Boy/girl ratios Levels of academic progress
- Degrees of self-directedness
- English Language proficiency
- Behavior traits
- Learning/teaching styles
- Class size as it relates to state-district guidelines
Please do not make specific requests for teachers. If you have information helpful to understanding any special needs your child may have, please address the principal in writing (e-mail preferred) prior to the last week of school. Such information will be thoughtfully considered in making your child’s classroom assignment.
Fall assignments will be e-mailed to parents, posted online and available for viewing via Parent Portal on Wednesday, August 23, 2017 after 3:00 p.m.
As most of our community is aware, combination/multi-age classrooms (serving two grade levels) are a fact of schooling in most public elementary schools in California. At Stone Creek, we will continue to form combination classrooms as needed based on our enrollment.
As careful as we try to be, it is sometimes necessary during the second or third week of school to reform classes. You can help us prevent this exercise by doing the following:
- Give us complete and accurate information regarding your child’s fall enrollment on the end-ofyear survey.
- Call the school office (949.936.6200) or District Office (949.936.5000) during the summer, and leave a message for the principal regarding any changes in your child’s enrollment status.
- Make sure your child attends the first day of school.
IN THE BEGINNING
The first day of school, classroom assignments are considered to be firm, though last-minute notification of withdrawals or increased enrollments during the first few days of school may necessitate staffing changes and/or classroom reassignments.
It is not uncommon for someone to hear that “so-and-so” is the only and best teacher to have in “such-and-such” a grade. Nor is it uncommon for a student to initially feel his teacher is “too mean” or “too strict” or “too” something else. Fortunately, once given a chance to succeed at adapting to a new classroom and building a new student-teacher relationship, most parents discover that their child’s placement is working well after all. Remember, placement was carefully selected for your child by the principal, the grade-level team of teachers, and all support personnel.
Students’ attitudes towards their teachers and school are highly influenced by the attitudes of their parents. We can all provide our children with a successful beginning-of-the-school-year experience by responding to their classroom assignments with positive enthusiasm.
IN THE LONG RUN
We at Stone Creek are blessed with a supportive and active community, students who are raised to value education and school personnel who are dedicated to meeting the needs of students. Through knowledge, understanding, cooperation, and trust, we can all work together to enhance personal achievement and the general school climate for all our children.