Happy Holidays Charger Family!

From all of the staff at Cherry Crest Elementary, we wish you and your families a safe, healthy and restful winter break.  2020 has been a year like no other.  I’m grateful for the incredible ways that students, staff and families have adapted to new modes and models for learning.  I’m eager to put 2020 behind us and look forward with optimism to welcoming students and families back to school in 2021.

Dusty Steere – Principal
Erin Stedman – Assistant Principal

*Photo inspired by the last 9 months on virtual madness!

K-2 Return to In Person Learning.  Click here* to view a video explanation of Mr. Steere on what to expect from in-person learning at Cherry Crest Elementary, including the structure/sequence of the school day, safety protocols in place to safeguard students and staff, and answers to frequently asked questions we have received.  *use your child’s bsd username and password to access this Stream recording. 

Our return to in-person learning aligns with updates from the Governor and State Superintendent as summarized in this Seattle Times article:

For families with students in grades K-2, if you have not already taken the K-2 Back to Buildings Family Survey, please take the survey and indicate whether or not you would like to bring your student back for in-person learning. If your student is not ready to return to the classroom, we will continue to offer remote learning.  SURVEY LINK: https://intentsurvey.bsd405.org/

Planned in-person start dates:

  • Second Grade starts on Thursday, January 21
  • First Grade starts on Monday, January 25
  • Kindergarten starts on Monday, February 1

Gov. Jay Inslee and Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal announced updated guidance for school districts regarding when students can safely return for in-person learning. The updated standards announced this week follow new data showing limited COVID-19 transmission in school environments when health and safety protocols are implemented.

For regions with more than 350 cases per 100,000 residents, the new standards encourage elementary school students to return to school in small groups of 15 or fewer. The rate in King County is currently 409 cases per 100,000 residents over the last 14 days, according to 12/16 data released by Public Health – Seattle & King County. The Bellevue School District plans to bring back K-2 students in groups of approximately 12 or fewer students.

An update to the K- 12 Schools 2020-21 Guidance is available from the Washington State Department of Health.

If you have taken the survey but wish to reconsider, you may do so up until the survey deadline.

Please complete the survey for your kindergarten, first grade and second grade students.  A survey should be completed for each student independently. If you have any questions, please contact Dusty Steere directly at steered@bsd405.org.

SURVEY LINK: https://intentsurvey.bsd405.org/

Surveys must be completed by Tuesday, December 22 at 5:00 PM.

Specialist Schedule Changes. District balancing of specialist teacher assignments in elementary schools has resulted in changes to students’ specialist schedule starting January 4. Please note the following:

  • There will be specialist classes in the morning AND in the afternoon
  • Specialist classes are part of a student’s required school day
  • Classes last 25+ minutes (specialist teachers will send invitations to student Teams calendars; start times are included)
  • The new schedule can be viewed from the linked attachment below:

Thank you to Cherry Crest Read-a-thon Participants! Thank you to all students and families who participated in the Cherry Crest PTSA Read-a-thon! With your generous support we met and exceeded our fundraising goal.  Altogether, students read over 189,000 minutes with families generously providing funds to support instructional assistants, virtual field trips and other PTSA-sponsored programs.  Learn more about Read-a-thon on our Cherry Crest PTSA website here.  Thank you for your support.

Computer Science and Coding resource for families.  Students in nearly every classroom participated in Hour of Code Activities last week.  Families interested in ideas for CS/Coding activities at home can check out this website.

  • Games
  • Books
  • Free coding programs
  • Robots
  • Other interactive toys and tools


Winter Break Tips and Activities. While the winter break is a great time to relax and recharge, it is also a two-week break from the daily educational demands of school. Here are some tips to make sure your child will be ready to go when school resumes in January.
• Try to keep a consistent schedule. Don’t stay up too late because it will make for a very difficult adjustment period when it is time to head back to Cherry Crest.
• Find time to stay active. Regular exercise is good for the body and the mind. Walking the dog, going on a hike, skiing, or ice skating are all great ways to stay active.
• Read a good book or two.
• Write in a journal. This a great way to practice writing skills while also keeping an account of all the fun and excitement experienced over break.
• Visit some of the museums that the greater Seattle area has to offer.
• If you exchange presents, consider giving gifts that promote learning. Books are always an excellent gift ideas but also consider science experiment kits or making a pen-pal kit (a plastic container with colorful pens, paper, envelopes, and decorative postage stamps).
20 Fun Learning Activities for the Holiday Break

District News: Open Enrollment & Choice Schools. Open Enrollment is a period of time each year when Bellevue School District RESIDENT students may apply to attend a school other than their neighborhood school. All students in the Bellevue School District are guaranteed a spot at their neighborhood school.   If you are interested in learning about the process, please read on.

Open Enrollment Timeline. This year, Open Enrollment applications will be accepted from Monday, December 7, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. through Friday, January 15, 2021 at 4:30 p.m.

Choice Schools and Programs Timeline. Choice Schools and Programs Applications will be accepted between Monday, January 6, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. through Friday, January 31, 2020 at 4:30 p.m.

As a reminder, the definitions of these two processes are:

  • Open Enrollment – the time when students can request to attend a school other than their home attendance area school.  Click here to see a list of schools and their open enrollment status.  All applicants will be placed in a lottery.  Transfers will be approved or denied based on projected enrollment numbers for the building and grade level at both the neighborhood and requested school in addition to projected staffing levels and building capacity at the requested school.
  • Choice Schools and Programs Applications – the time when students can apply for our choice schools – Big Picture (6th grade entry), International (6th grade entry), Jing Mei – Mandarin dual language (Kindergarten entry), Puesta del Sol – Spanish immersion (Kindergarten entry), Spanish Dual Language Program (Kindergarten entry).  Acceptance is generally by lottery.

We are once again using an online application process.  Additional details and applications are available on the district website: https://bsd405.org/departments/student-placement/open-enrollment/

The Bellevue Schools Foundation’s Fall fundraising campaign is underway! Their goal is to raise $350,000 this Fall from parents like YOU to support all Bellevue Public School students!

Public funding is not enough to fund the exceptional programming that makes Bellevue Schools the best in the Nation.

Donate here or at BellevueSchoolsFoundation.org to continue to fund these programs in our schools:

  • Cutting-edge Computer Science curriculum.
  • Subscriptions to interactive eBooks for all Elementary students with videos, curriculum games and more to engage students while distance learning.
  • Classroom grants for music software Apps and Art kits for all Grades.
  • BSF Grand funds will be used to issue licenses to teachers in all Middle Schools to create engaging web-content for school projects during distance learning.
  • Training for 40+ counselors to support students facing stress, anxiety and depression.
  • And much, much more.

In order to meet our year-end goals, we hope to raise an additional $41,000 during these last days of the year. We can use your help. Remind your friends, school networks, and family to keep BSF in mind when making their year-end, tax-deductible gift.