August 2012


    Dear Parents and Friends of Hillcrest Elementary School,


    I would like to take this opportunity to welcome new families to our school and welcome back returning families. It has been an awesome summer! Personally, I have enjoyed spending time with my family.  We enjoyed our summer getaways together and time resting and relaxing.  Professionally, I have been steadily preparing for the upcoming school year. I am looking ahead to September with great enthusiasm and anticipation.


    There are quite a few staffing changes this year. Some of these changes were communicated prior to the end of the school year.   At the time of this writing, some positions are still pending board approval.


    Please Welcome…

    • Victoria Walker- 5th grade Learning Support (co-teaching with Bill Waite)
    • Stephanie Fitzgerald- Math Specialist (replacing Gina Pflanz-1 year leave)
    • Lauren Dougherty- Primary Literacy Support (replacing Karen Kleppinger- .5 HCE  &  .5 RES)
    • Kathy Manning- Literacy Specialist (replacing Nina Biller-retirement)
    • Kate Decker- Speech/Language Therapist (part-time)


    Please Welcome Back…

    • Elyse Holovak- 1st grade
    • Lauren Karczewski- 2nd grade
    • Heather Wade- Primary/Intermediate Life Skills
    • Amanda Gensbauer- Instructional Assistant (Primary Life Skills-Gallagher)
    • Jackie Phillips-Speech/Language Therapist (full-time)



    • Rachael Lose will be Rachael Gallagher as of 8/18/12. (Congratulations on your marriage!)


    Returning from Leave…. (WELCOME BACK!)

    • Laura McCullough-5th grade teacher


    As you know, Council Rock School District continues to move forward in its effort on going green.  As a result, less and less paperwork will be coming home; while more and more information will be accessible on-line. Most information can now be found on teacher websites and the school webpage.  Many teachers have already begun this great use of technology for supply lists and introduction letters. Please know that a majority of school communication throughout the year will take place through electronic methods such as the e-Friday folder, listserv,  global connect and by accessing the building calendar on our school website.  Get connected today so that you do not miss out on critical information!  Visit the Hillcrest webpage to find out how to subscribe to the Hillcrest listserv. (Located under E-Friday Folder)  Be sure not to confuse this listserv with the district listserv.  You must sign up for both if you wish to receive Hillcrest and District information.  Make sure that we always have your up-to-date contact information and you will always be kept abreast of the latest Hillcrest Happenings.  

    Technology Tip…Make it a habit to check the e-Friday Folder once a week.  Pick a day and stick to it!


    Per my End-of-the-Year Parent Communicator, teacher assignments will be available for viewing today, Monday, August 6th.  At this time parents of students grades 1-6, can view teacher assignments through the Home Access Center. Kindergarten Assignments were mailed directly to families in June. Additionally, bussing information will be available for view through the Home Access Center on August 20th. The Transportation Department recommends that you re-visit HAC a few days before the start of school, in the event that pick-up/drop-off time changes occurred.  All Kindergarten and private school bussing information will be mailed.  Information on how to access the HAC can be found on the District & Hillcrest Home Pages. 



    During the first week of school you will be receiving a great deal of important papers and information. Much of this paperwork will be in electronic form. I encourage you to read all of the documents thoroughly. Please be diligent in submitting all paperwork that should be completed and returned in the allotted time, especially emergency and health information. In addition, please be sure to read our Parent/Student Handbook closely, as it outlines important procedures and policies that will help keep students safe and our school running efficiently. The electronic Parent/Student Handbook will be available for review on the Hillcrest webpage during the first week of school-September 4th.  Additionally, information pertaining to the Hillcrest Code of Conduct will be forthcoming following our first Town Meeting.  Some important updates within the Parent/Student Handbook that you should review: 


    • New K-2 policy for classroom birthday parties ( pg. 21)
    • 3 Ways to Report a Student Absence (pg. 11)
    • Personal Electronic Devices in School (pg. 22/37)
    • Revised Visitation/Volunteering Policy (pg. 27/28)
    • Forgotten Items (pg. 17)
    • ROAR RULES/Code of Conduct ( pgs. 29-33)
    • New Troubleshooting Tips for Parents (pg. 39)
    • Emergency School Closing Procedures (pg. 4)
    • Lunch Information (pg. 19)  Lunch prices for 12-13 school year= $2.75 for all lunches, including special pizza; milk prices= $0.55 


    Lastly, be sure to communicate with your child’s homeroom teacher regarding transportation changes.  Currently, all HCE students are assigned district bussing.  This information is communicated to us directly from our Transportation Department.  However, if your child will not be following this dismissal procedure it is IMPERATIVE that you contact your child’s homeroom teacher before or on the first day of school.  This would include daycare arrangements (i.e. Champions).  Although we are collaborative, please note that these agencies are separate entities and are not employed by the Council Rock School District.  As a result, it is the responsibility of the parent to ensure that teachers are made aware of these changes in daily routines. 


    For the upcoming year, the staff and I will collaborate on our yearly building goals. We will continue to focus on engaging parents and the community, fostering a positive school climate and increasing our academic achievements. I am eagerly anticipating the start of the 2012-2013 school year, and wish you and your family a safe and peaceful conclusion to the summer season.  I look forward to seeing everyone during our Back-To-School-Nights on September 10th and 11th.  (see attachment)


    Educationally Yours,

    Nakia Jones-Tate




    24/27                Kindergarten Orientation (scheduled individually with Ms. Szagola)



      3                    Labor Day-  All Schools Offices Closed

      4                    First Day of School for Students (k-6)

    10                     Back-To-School Night (K-3) 6:30-8:00 (see flyer)

    11                     Back-To-School Night (4-6) 6:30-8:00 (see flyer)

    13                     PTO Sponsored Back-To-School Picnic (more information to follow)

    17-18                Holiday- No School

    26                     Holiday- No School



    3                      Early Dismissal (12:15- AM Kindergarten Attends)



Last Modified on August 22, 2012