Parent Newsletter August 30th, 2021

Parent Newsletter August 30th, 2021

August 30, 2021

Hello Gilham Families, 

Regular School Schedule — We will be returning to a regular school schedule this year.  Monday – Thursday  starting at 7:55  and ending at  2:25.

Friday starting at 7:55 and ending at 1:10.

First Days of School — 

KINDERGARTEN: First day of school is Thursday, September 9th, 7:55-2:25.

ALL GRADES: First Day of school is Friday, September 10th, 7:55-1:10.

Class Assignments — Classroom placement letter will be emailed to families the afternoon of Friday, September 3rd, just prior to Labor Day weekend.

Kinderzone– Kindergarten students do not start with an assigned classroom and class lists are built as we learn more about our kiddos! Watch for more information.  

Classroom Teachers– 

Kinder — Cherie Aaron, Kami Icenhower, Rachel Harris, and Kat Irwin/Priscilla Piper

1st — Roxanne Simpson, Annette Corbeau, Mary Recker, Susie Belnap

2nd — Sandi Jacobsen, Laura Points, Alison Bumstead, and New Teacher

3rd — James Squires, Shannon Edwards, Marnie Price

4th — Leah Roderick, Skye Lipson, Carly Langford/Deena Welch

5th — Brian Gulka, Pete Wergeland, Sarah Johnson

Mask Requirements – See 4J’s Mask Covering Requirements for full details, but students and staff must wear face coverings properly at all times.

  • Face coverings must be worn at all times indoors (with the exception for meal times) and riding on a school bus.
  • Face coverings should fit snugly and cover the nose, mouth and chin at all times.
  • Face coverings must be an effective design. No gaiters, bandanas, masks with valves, or face shields alone (face shields may be worn in addition to masks).

Families are encouraged to pack an extra face covering or two in their student’s backpack in case the one they’re wearing becomes wet, dirty, or breaks.  We will have masks available for students, if needed.  

Update Your Child’s Health Information – Ensure your child’s health records are current. We especially want to be aware of respiratory based diagnosis, such as asthma & seasonal allergies, because if we do not have a written record of those conditions (signs & symptoms), the student will be sent home for exhibiting symptoms of COVID. Please call the nurse or the office if you are needing to update your forms.  

Breakfast & Lunches – All students will be provided with a free breakfast and lunch. For breakfast, students will pick up their meal upon entering their classroom and will be given time to eat each morning. Students will eat at their desks and are allowed to remove their masks while eating. Lunches will be eaten in the cafeteria. Each grade level will have their own lunch period. Students will have assigned seats and tables and seats will be sanitized between grade level groups.

Nut Free Home Lunches – Breakfast and Lunches will be provided for free for all students. Families are welcome to send home lunches if you choose, but those lunches need to be “Nut Free” (both peanuts and tree nuts) since we are eating in classroom cohort groups and do not have space in the cafeteria for our usual Nut Free Table.

Classroom Set-Up – Students will be spaced 3-feet apart. Students will not share supplies and school supplies will be provided for each student.

Health Rooms – If a student does become sick, they will be escorted to the office. We have two designated rooms for students showing signs of illness to wait until their family is able to pick them up. These rooms have been outfitted with air purification systems to help prevent the spread of germs and viruses.

Bus Routes Changing Due to Driver Shortage — School districts across the country are facing a shortage of bus drivers. Because of staffing shortfalls and COVID complications, our school district does not have enough bus drivers to support full service levels. 

Bus transportation will continue to be provided. But there will have to be reductions in bus stops and services, with bus pickup points fewer and farther apart. Bus routes will be changed and new bus stop information will be available next week. There could also be delays and disruptions to scheduled bus routes. 

Physical distancing will not be able to be maintained on buses. Once at school, 3 feet of physical distance between students will be maintained to the extent possible. 

Parents are encouraged to transport your own students to school if you are able to, by walking, biking, carpooling or driving. 

If you or someone you know is a safe driver, who likes working with kids and supporting our community, applications for bus driver positions are open now! 

How do I find my child’s bus stop? —  4J’s Transportation Department has set up a new system for finding your child’s bus stop and times. The steps are as follows: Log onto, select the “department” tab, next select the “transportation” tab, and then finally select “find my bus stop” and enter your address. This will give the most accurate information available.  This link should be up and running on September 1st.  

Enrollment/Registration —  If you have enrollment/registration questions please contact the Gilham Office at 541-790-6200 or email Patti at  You can also find the information on our Gilham website at  

School Building — All 4J school buildings are closed to visitors, but we are open by appointment for families needing to enroll new students or who have other business. To make an appointment contact office staff by email or by phone at (541) 790-6200.

School Supplies — This year the district and school will be supplying all needed school supplies.  Students will need to bring a backpack and a water bottle with them to school.  If you are wanting to donate to a classroom fund or to the school, please reach out to the office for more information.  

Messages for Students– Please make sure that your child knows what they will be expected to do when the school day is over before they leave home in the morning. Staff is not available to hand deliver messages throughout the day and when the bell rings at the end of the school day it becomes quite difficult to reach individual children that we have taken messages for. We will be happy to deliver messages in an EMERGENCY situation, but if at all possible please make sure that your child(ren) knows who will pick them up, if they should walk home, or ride the bus before they leave for school.

 Student Attendance and Tardies — One of the most reliable predictors of school success is regular attendance. Absences for any reason result in lost instruction time. We know that students who fall behind often become discouraged learners. It is our hope that we can work together to encourage your child’s regular attendance and success at school. We understand that there are many factors in your lives that make it difficult, at times, for your child to be in school or on time. However, it is important that we work with you to reduce these to an absolute minimum. Class activities start promptly in the morning. This morning class time is one of the most important times of the day. When a child comes in late, not only have they missed valuable class time, it is disruptive to their classmates.

When your child is going to be late or absent from school, please call the attendance line at 541-790-6225, before 8:15 a.m. and inform the office staff. You may leave a message on the voice mail, if calling before office hours. Please leave the name of your child, their teacher’s name, and the reason for the absence. It is extremely important that this be done, as every child must be accounted for on a daily basis. As a friendly reminder, according to Oregon Truancy Regulations, if your student has eight unexcused half-day absences in any four-week period, you will receive a letter from the school notifying you of our attendance concerns. Please understand that if irregular attendance continues, we will be obligated to make a referral to a truant officer for further investigation.



Regarding Bullying, Intimidation, Harassment, Discrimination, Hazing and Retaliation – Eugene School District 4J has policies and programs to prohibit and prevent bullying, intimidation, harassment, discrimination, hazing and retaliation. Discrimination is prohibited on the basis of disability, race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, age, religion, marital status, socioeconomic status, source of income, cultural background, familial status, physical characteristic, or linguistic characteristic of a national origin group, in any instructional program, extracurricular activity, or in the provision of any other service or benefit.

The district encourages students, parents and other patrons to share their concerns with district officials if they believe they or someone else has been the victim of bullying, intimidation, harassment, discrimination, hazing or retaliation. They can be assured that no reprisal or adverse action will occur as a consequence of initiating a complaint. Complaint forms and information about the complaint process are available in all 4J school offices and at the 4J Education Center, 200 North Monroe Street, Eugene, OR 97402. For more information, contact your school principal or the superintendent’s office, 541-790-7707.

School to Inform Parents if Their Student Receives a Threat – “Oregon law requires schools to inform parents if their son or daughter’s name appears on a targeted list (i.e. a “hit list”) that threatens violence or harm from another student.” We will be using the following procedure to inform you if your student either receives or makes a serious threat of violence or harm.

If your son or daughter’s name appears on a list threatening violence or harm by another student, we will attempt to meet with you personally, or talk by telephone, within 12 hours of learning about the threat. We will tell you about the threat, who made it (if we know) , and the action we are taking to respond to it. We will also send you a notice within 24 hours, stating that your son or daughter received a threat. Our number one priority will be to make sure that school is safe for your children.

If your son or daughter made the threat, we will let you know that he or she made it and the action we are taking, including informing the parents of the student who received the threat that your student made. We are also required by the district’s “Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook” to inform the police.

Stay tuned and visit the school district website for the latest information. 

Important Dates — 

9/3 — Classroom Placement Letter emailed to parents

9/9 — First day of school for Kindergarten

9/10 — First day of school for all students

Lavinia Page 


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