Cherry Crest LogoCherry Crest Chronicler

March 1, 2019

Charger Families,

On Thursday, I shared the message below with families requesting your feedback via an anonymous survey to help us in our school improvement plan efforts.  I really appreciate you taking a few minutes to provide this invaluable feedback.

Thank you in advance for completing the PARENT SURVEY by Friday March 15th

As part of our continuous improvement efforts, Cherry Crest and Bellevue School District are in the final stages of developing and communicating our vision, mission and shared values which provide direction for our work over the next five years.  Our vision is to affirm and inspire each and every student to learn and thrive as creators of their future world.  In pursuit of this vision, six priority areas focus our work, all with the purpose of serving each and every student as depicted in the graphic below.

With respect to Student Well Being, Cherry Crest staff strive to support the emotional and physical well being of all students by affirming their sense of identity and belonging.  In an effort to better understand the school climate and the experience of our students, there are two data projects in the works that I want to share with families:

  • Student Focus Groups
    • We administer the Panorama Climate Survey to students in grades 3 – 5 two times each year as a tool to help measure our efforts.  Our fall survey results indicated that student “Sense of Belonging” and “Connection to adults at school” are areas of growth for our school.
    • To better understand these low points, I am working with our school counselor to conduct Student Focus Groups in March
    • We are selecting small groups of representative 3rd – 5th grade students who will participate in a lunch meeting to further discuss their perceptions and experiences at school, especially as related to sense of belonging and connection.  This student input will be used to inform administrative and instructional decision making this spring and next year.
  • Parent Survey
    • Working with a few parents from our schools PASS team (Partnership for Academically Successful Students), we have developed a parent survey connected to the Panorama domains to help us gather information from parents related to the school experience.
    • I strongly encourage all Cherry Crest families to spend a few minutes completing this short, anonymous survey.  Your feedback is invaluable as we continually strive to improve as a school and serve each and every child every day.

Thank you in advance for completing the PARENT SURVEY by Friday March 15th

If you have any questions or additional feedback, please don’t hesitate to reach out directly to me.

In partnership,


Dusty Steere, Principal Cherry Crest Elementary


1 – Last Day for PTSA Auction Early Bird Discount

6 – Book Fair Family Night @ 5:30 pm
12 –  PTSA General Membership Meeting (Social @ 6:30, Meeting at 7:00)
15 – Snow Make Up Day – school day for all BSD students K – 12
18 – No School for Students (Staff Professional Development Day)
20 – Principal Coffee
22-Cherry Crest Movie Night and Auction Art Walk @ 6:30 pm
25 – Principal Coffee @ 8:15 am
30 – Cherry Crest PTSA Auction

8-12 – No School (Spring Break)

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

Spring Book Fair is next week! The Book Fair will run from March 4th to 7th in the Cherry Crest Library. Book fair is open to students at lunch with a pass from their teacher, each day after school and Family Night on Wed. from 5:30-7:30.  Scholastic accepts cash, check or credit card.  New feature: set up a student e-wallet through Scholastic!

To check out the schedule, online purchasing options and the new e-wallet feature go to:

**If you do choose to send cash to school with your student(s) please send in a sealed envelope or bag with their name on it or in a purse or wallet.  Loose bills are easily lost.

Set up will be on Friday afternoon March 1st and tear down on Friday morning March 8th.  Our librarian, Mrs. Lux, needs many volunteers to make this popular event happen.  All proceeds go to new books for our library.  To volunteer  sign up directly at:!/showSignUp/30E044AA8A92FA7FA7-cherry

Questions? Contact Mrs. Lux in the library at:

PTSA Auction is March 30th! Please consider joining me, my staff and your wonderful community for a fun kid-free social evening to celebrate our school!

Early bird discount for Auction Tickets end THIS FRIDAY March 1st. Don’t miss it and be sure to RSVP HERE to save on your ticket!

You can get additional details on the PTSA Auction Page or by following the auction news on Facebook.

Order Yearbooks Now Through March 23rd. The Cherry Crest Yearbook captures photo memories of school year events and includes pages for each classroom (with photos and names of classmates.)

Order now for $18.00 and guarantee your copy. A few yearbooks (at a higher price) will be available for students who don’t order by the March 23rd deadline, but supplies will be limited.

Order Online – Lifetouch

Yearbook ID code: 1577519

Right Time, Right Place.  Safety First! 

  • As the days get longer and the weather improves, support your child in walking/biking to school and/or using the school bus.
  • If you choose to drive your child to school, leave adequate time so you are not rushing.  School doors open at 7:40 am with adult supervision for students.  Students are expected to be in their classroom seated and ready to learn when the 8:00 bell rings.
  • Should you find find yourself running late or stuck in Cherry Crest traffic, RELAX!  Do not sacrifice student safety for the sake of avoiding a tardy.  Rather, follow the regular dropoff procedures and enjoy your last moments with your child before entrusting them to us for the day.
  • Please be respectful of our Cherry Crest neighbors during the busy dropoff and pickup times.  Avoid blocking driveways and keep an eye out for residents who may be entering or leaving their homes.

Registration Open for BSD Preschool and Before and After Care. Registration forms are available for Bellevue School District preschool, before and after school programs for the 2019-20 school year! In particular, Cherry Crest spaces for after care fill up extremely quickly, so don’t delay in applying now.  Learn more about the programs and how to apply on the program website

2019-20 School Calendar.  Next year, school starts on Wednesday September 4th.  A DRAFT of the 2019-20 calendar is currently available online. A final version will be available later this spring.

Smarter Balanced Testing. With spring comes state 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 our current draft of  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 
3rd Grade May 7 – 10 May 29 – 30
4th Grade April 30 – May 3 May 21 – 22
5th Grade April 23 – 26 May 14 – 15 May 31

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 (

Proactively Report Absence, Illness, Appointments: When you child know your child will miss all or part of a school day due to illness or an appointment, please contact Cherry Crest Attendance at 425-456-4902 or email When leaving a message, be sure to include your child’s first and last name and the reason for the absence.

Washington State law requires schools to report student absences as excused or unexcused.  BSD Policy 3122 clarifies valid reasons for excused absences.  If no excuse is provided or the excuse does not fall within those outlined in the policy, student absences will be marked as unexcused.

For prearranged absences of three of more days, a prior approval form submitted to the teacher and principal must be completed one week prior to the absence. Prearranged absence forms can be picked up in the main office and accessed on our website here.

“Our Virtue of the Month for March is  ‘Confidence.’  Confidence is believing in something or someone. It is a type of trust.  When you have self-confidence, you trust that you have what it takes to handle whatever happens.  You feel sure of yourself and enjoy trying new things. Self-confidence is something that you can control and is up to you to believe you can do it. When you tell yourself you can do something, you are more likely to achieve that goal since you will to try your best and not give up.  Have you ever noticed that people with confidence are likable and you want to be around them?  

Without confidence, fears and doubts hold us back.  When we don’t have confidence, we feel worried and uncertain, and afraid of making a mistake.  With confidence, we try new things and learn all the time.  

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.