Cherry Crest LogoCherry Crest Chronicler

May 1,  2017

Cherry Crest Families,

I can hardly believe May is here.  At Cherry Crest we are busy working to finish out this school year strong while also planning for next year.  Part of that planning includes welcoming nearly 70 new students to our Comm(Unity).  This growth is due in large part to new students coming to Cherry Creset through the Open Enrollment process.  For the last 4 years, Cherry Crest has been a “closed” school, meaning that our general education program has only served students that live in our attendance area.  While other parts of Bellevue experienced considerable growing pains and crowded schools, our neighborhood enrollment has actually declined.  To alleviate growth challenges in other schools and also support a vibrant neighborhood program, our school status changed this year and hundred of families applied for Open Enrollment to Cherry Crest.  The BSD Placement Office increased our allocation of general education kindergarten and 2nd grade classrooms from two to three and then approved applications for students in grades where we had “space”.  One of the nice side effects of being an open school is that we can typically avoid split classes (i.e. having one class with both 3rd and 4th grades students in it).  It’s important to note that Open Enrollment does not negatively impact class size and the school district continues to support smaller class sizes at the primary levels with slightly larger class sizes in the intermediate grades.  Find below a preliminary estimate of our school staffing for the 2017-18 school year.  Of course, this may change based upon spring and summer changes to our enrollment and/or summer qualifications for the GESP program.

2017-18 Kinder 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Projected Enrollment
GenEd 3 classes 3 classes 3 classes 2 classes 2 classes 2 classes 370 students
GESP 2 classes 2 classes 3 classes 3 classes 256 students


Have a great week!


Dusty Steere

Thank you for taking a few moments to read the important dates and announcements in the parent newsletter below.


May 4                Variety Show Performance @ 6 pm

May 9                PTSA General Meeting @ 7 pm (social at 6:30 pm)

May 13              5th grade Applebees Fundraiser 9:00 – 10:30 am

May 19              PTSA Principal Coffee @ 8:15 am

May 19             Family Movie Night @ 6 pm

May 23             Band/Orchestra/Choir Concert @ 6:30

May 25             New Family Potluck @ 6 pm

May 29             Memorial Day – No School

June 27             Last day of school

Please remember to regularly visit the Cherry Crest & PTSA websites for the most current information.

K – 4 Parent Input requested for Class Placement.  In May and June, Cherry Crest teachers and staff begin the important task of creating classroom assignments for the 2017-18 school year.  Creating balanced classrooms where children will be successful is a complex task and we need parent cooperation to make it work.  If you have not already done so, please take a few minutes to share your feedback by completing the 2017-2018 Class Placement Parent Input.  Thank you for completing this online survey for your returning Kindergarten – 4th grade child by Friday May 5th.  

Smarter Balanced Testing. All 3-5 students take the Smarter Balanced Assessment for English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics online during the spring of this school year. 5th grade students will also take the MSP for Science.

The schedule below outlines when testing will occur. Please avoid scheduling vacations or time away from school during these important assessment windows. Vacation requests may not be granted if they conflict with state standardized testing.

English Language Arts (ELA) Math Science (MSP)
3rd Grade May 9-May 11 June 5-June 6*
4th Grade May 1-May 4 May 16 & May 18
5th Grade April 18-April 20 May 22 & May 26 April 25

The Washington Comprehensive Assessment Program website contains lots of test-related resources for parents and students: .  From this site, you can also try out a Smarter Balanced practice or training test.

For more information, contact Cherry Crest Assistant Principal, Erin Stedman (, or Chris Lindberg, BSD manager of state testing (

5th Graders Host Final Pancake Breakfast on May 13. Cherry Crest 5th graders host their final pancake breakfast at the Bellevue Applebee’s on May 13th from 9:00 – 10:30am. Fifth graders will be your greeters, seaters, order takers, and servers at these breakfasts. It’s a fun community event for a worthy cause! For only $10, your breakfast ticket will get you pancakes, eggs, bacon and coffee and support 5th grade fundraising for charity. Tickets are online or from any fifth grade student. 

School Calendar.  Please note that Friday, May 26, is a regular school day (8:00 – 2:25). Some confusion resulted from an earlier calendar indicating a 1/2 day for students on May 26. Because of the our snow days, the final day of school is now Tuesday, June 27th. As before, this final day is a shortened 2 hour day (8:00 – 10:00).  For more information on the District’s updated 2016-2017 calendar, click here.

Five Minutes added to Lunch and the School Day for 2017-2018. The elementary school day will be increased by five minutes to create 25-minute lunch schedules in all elementary schools starting next year. Visit the district website to see additional details on the two-pronged lunch study process this year. Current findings indicate that having a minimum of a 25-minute lunch period with up to 10 minutes of transition time for students will assist our students in having sufficient time to eat their lunches. The goal is 20 minutes of seat time for all students.

Post-Auction Online Bidding.  Back by popular demand, the PTSA offers you a post-auction opportunity to sign up for items online – from parties to teacher outings, books and even classroom art.

All proceedings from the Spring Auction directly pay for 2017-2018 Instructional Aides and Curriculum Enhancement. Help us keep these benefits next year. Click here and start bidding now.

If you choose to simply donateclick here. Any contribution that you make will help us continue to provide your children the wonderful learning experience that Cherry Crest Elementary offers.

The online auction ends on Thursday, May 4th at 6pm PST.

Our Virtue of the Month for May is ‘Perseverance.’ Perseverance is being purposeful and steadfast.  It is sticking with something, staying committed, no matter how long it takes, or what obstacles appear to stop you.  When we persevere, people can depend on us to finish what we start.  When we persevere through difficult work or tasks, we grow and learn and develop our best selves.  You practice perseverance by committing to someone or something.  When you commit to a task, pace yourself, and persist, you are demonstrating perseverance.  Great athletes persevere through exhaustion and injury, and great scholars persevere through frustration and confusion.  You are practicing perseverance when you set goals and keep working to achieve them.  You take one step at a time and remain steady.  You work through feeling discouraged and keep striving to reach your goal.

Where do the three ‘R’s meet the four ‘C’s? Our schools – with your help! Join Bellevue Schools Foundation’s GiveBIG campaign on Wednesday, May 10, and help us reach our goal of expanding groundbreaking Computer Science Integration in the District. When students learn critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and creativity, it enhances every aspect of their education—including Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic. Log on to and schedule your donation. Every gift of $100 or more will be matched, doubling your impact.

Community News:  South Bellevue Park-and-Ride will close on Tuesday, May 30.  When East Link opens in 2023, Eastside commuters will be able to travel from downtown Bellevue to downtown Seattle in 20 minutes. However, the period between construction and opening day will bring challenges and change. We understand changes you make during this transition may be difficult. For the next five years, getting to and from your destination may involve taking two bus trips in the place of one. Or, you may choose to pair your bus commute with another mode such as walking, bicycling or joining a King County Metro VanShare group. As you explore your options, please know Sound Transit is working to expedite the delivery of congestion-free train services and build new light rail stations with more parking. The expansion of light rail and bus service on the east side will be a game changer for our rapidly growing community. Thank you for your patience.

For more information about Park-and-Ride options on the Eastside, bus service along Bellevue Way SE during East Link construction and travel options view the full bulletin from Sound Transit. ​

As part of the Consolidated Program Review (CPR) process, OSPI is requiring notification of the District’s sexual harassment and discrimination complaint procedures. Students, staff and parents can find this information on the Official Notices page:

Under state law, information about the District’s sexual harassment policy and complaint procedure must be included in staff and student handbooks, or other publications that set forth the rules, regulations, and standards of conduct for the school or district (WAC 392-190-058). The school district must also annually inform all students, parents, and employees about its discrimination complaint procedure (WAC 392-190-060).

Cherry Crest Elementary prepares all students to become life-long learners through inquiry, collaboration, and discovery.  Each student will feel a sense of belonging in our Comm(UNITY) while learning social-emotional and academic skills to be successful in an ever-changing and diverse society.