**Tuesday, December 5, 2023,** Due to extensive flooding and water on roadways, district transportation may be impacted.
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**Tuesday, December 5, 2023,** Due to extensive flooding and water on roadways, district transportation may be impacted.
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Cherry Crest LogoCherry Crest Chronicler

January 5, 2023

Happy New Year Charger Families!

I hope the holiday season found you safe and warm in spite of the snow and ice.  My family traveled over the holidays and were part of the Southwest airlines debacle when our flight from Denver to Seattle was cancelled on Christmas Eve.  The good news was that we were fortunate enough to find a rental car to drive our family of 5 back to Seattle.  The bad news was that our car was a compact SUV (think Toyota Prius) and 1250 out of our 1300 mile trip home was on snowy roads.  Ultimately, we pulled into our home safely late on Christmas day and our luggage showed up a week later.  Although exhausting, I kind of enjoyed the additional forced family fun and we now have a great story to tell and memories we won’t soon forget.

It was wonderful welcoming your children back to school on Tuesday.  As always, January is a busy month as we prepare for the end of first semester on January 27th and the ensuing progress reports that will be sent home to families in early February.  There will be no school on Monday, January 16th as we are closed in observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. .

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


Dusty Steere, Principal Cherry Crest Elementary


3 – 18     Book Collection for Used Book Fair (details below)
16           Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (No School)
18          Mod Pizza Fundraiser – Use code MODF17410 or mention Cherry Crest & 20% will be donated to the school
20          Used Book Fair and Evening Concert
27          Virtual Principal Chat 8:30 – 9:15 am  Join Via Teams
27          End of First Semester
30         First Day of Second Semester (this was formerly a day off and now a school day to make up for the snow day on 12/1/22)

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

https://bsd405.org/cherrycrest      https://www.cherrycrest-ptsa.org/

Book Collection for Used Book Fair. Do you have any gently used kids books that you’d like others in the Cherry Crest community to enjoy? Please consider donating them to the First Cherry Crest Used Book Fundraiser!

  • Jan 3-18  Collection boxes are out at each grade flex area. Please encourage your kids to drop off gently used books they no longer need. Parents are welcome to drop off a large pile of books.

Jump Rope Club for Grades 3 – 5 begins Tuesday. Cherry Crest PE teacher (Judy Brison) is opening up the gym to intermediate students for jump rope activities during morning arrival beginning Tuesday January 10th.

  • When:  7:40-7:55 am every morning except Monday (Ms. Brison is at Wilburton ES on Mondays)
  • Who: 3rd, 4th, and 5th grader students
  • How:  Students enter through exterior gym doors & place backpacks along climbing wall.
  • Exit: With 7:55 am bell, students put jump ropes away, exit out the gym door to go to class
  • Begins January 10th and extends through April 7th (Spring Break)

Used Book Fundraiser and Evening Concert. Welcome to the First Ever Used Book Fair and Concert on Fri 1/20/2023.

Thanks for the generous donation of books from the Cherry Crest and Odle school families!

Time:  Fri 1/20/2023

  • 2:30 – 3: 15pm Book Fair in Cafeteria
    • Students accompanied by a family member can choose up to 10 books with a suggested donation of $20 per family.
  • 5:00 – 6:30pm Evening Concert & Used Book Fair Continued in Cafeteria
    • Featuring Cherry Crest Alumni Corlan Costello on piano/guitar along with musical accompaniment K – 2 students and select students from the 5th grade band.
    • Book fair continues.  After 6 pm, students may choose an unlimited number of books.
    • Admission: Free, or with a suggested donation of $20 per family at https://givebutter.com/cc-books-concert

Sign up for Variety Show tryouts. There are a still slots left so find your friends to form a group and sign up for the Variety Show Tryouts, happening on Tues, March 14 from 2:45-5PM and Wed, March 15, from 12:45-3pm. We’re looking forward to seeing your fun group acts!  Here is a link to the Variety Show Webpage with all the details about this fun event.

MOD Pizza + Cherry Crest families = More funds for PTSA grants. MOD Pizza will raise the dough as you join them with your family and friends to support the Cherry Crest PTSA on Wednesday, Jan 18th.

Stop by the Overlake or Downtown Bellevue restaurant and mention this fundraiser or order pizza online using the code MODF17410. 20% of the cost of your orders will be donated back to the Cherry Crest PTSA. Please help share this post within your network as well!

January Schedule.  BSD has set Monday, January 30, 2023 as the makeup day for the December 1st weather closure. This day will now be a regular school day.

Family Information Sessions for 2023-24 Schools. To help families transition to their next step in the 2023-24 school year, every neighborhood school is offering Family Information Sessions in January for incoming kindergartners, sixth graders and ninth graders. Additionally, each choice school hosts an information night for families who may be interested in applying.

BSD Family Information Nights

Attention 5th grade families. Click this link to view the dates and times for our BSD Middle School Parent Information Sessions in mid January.


Open Transfer & Choice Schools. The Open Transfer and Choice Schools/Program application period for the 2023-24 school year is currently open and closes on Friday January 20, 2023.   Please review the Open Transfer and Choice Schools & Programs webpages and the frequently asked questions for each to learn more about the application process and programs offered.

Important notes about Open Transfer and Choice School Applications.

  • Open Transfer – the time when students can request to attend a school other than their home attendance area school.
    • If your child is already attending Cherry Crest on Open Transfer, it is not necessary to re-apply.
    • If you have a sibling at one of our neighborhood schools and you would like to have them join Cherry Crest, now is the time to apply through Open Transfer.
    • 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.
    • Fall enrollment for students living in the Cherry Crest attendance area will open in early March.  Additional details will be shared as the date approaches.
  • 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.  Click to view the dates and times for Choice School Family Information Sessions.

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/

Family Engagement Survey. Bellevue School District will conduct a survey to understand whether families across the district feel Informed, Supported and Empowered to contribute to their student’s success. It is a school and district priority to create long-lasting partnerships between families and schools for better student outcomes.

Your valuable feedback is essential to the continuous improvement and advancement of the family engagement practices at Cherry Crest elementary and we thank you in advance, for your participation. Look for an email in your inbox early next week.  The survey window is open January 10 – February 7th. 

For more information, please visit: Family Engagement Survey

Counselor’s Corner. Hi Cherry Crest families!  I wanted to share some resources around various New Years celebrations and Mental Health Wellness Month.  Here are a few places to get you started with celebrating and honoring these occasions.

  • Review this list of a whole host of other culture’s New Years dates – Which are new to you? Which do you celebrate? How could you bring some of these experiences into your home and family?
  • Build your own New Years traditions! Whichever day(s) you celebrate the New Year, practice these traditions with your kiddo(s).  Looking for some new tradition ideas? Here are some fun ideas and foods from around the world!
  • Check out this great compilation of coping strategy ideas complete with visuals and step-by-step guides to practice with your child(ren)!  These are all great things for your students to have in their coping “toolkits” for the next time a big feeling comes along.
  • A great collection that is routinely updated of mental health resources for caregivers of children and teens put together by Seattle Children’s.

Please feel free to reach out any time for support or resources of any kind.  My website also is a great resource for all sorts of topics: Ms. Mykela’s Website.  Not finding what you need?  Let me know by emailing me at: fantonem@bsd405.org. I’m here for you and your family!

Stay informed. Subscribe to the Charger Chatter Newsletter. The PTSA sponsored Charger Chatter newsletter is a one-stop read for school related information that is emailed weekly to parents on Tuesdays.  The Chatter is a nice complement to the monthly Chronicler sent by the school principal.

The Cherry Crest PTSA’s mission is to serve as a resource for unifying parents, teachers, students, and the comm(UNITY). We provide outstanding educational enhancement opportunities for every child, and work on building a strong community to support our Cherry Crest staff.

The PTSA newsletter strengthens the Cherry Crest community by providing timely information about educational enhancement activities for kids, school events, and BSD news. This year, because of the pandemic, we realize that getting caught up on the news by socializing at school is not possible, and many parents are missing out on a wealth of information. If you haven’t done so yet, please subscribe to the Charger Chatter newsletter here.

The PTSA newsletter is a 100% parent-volunteer led weekly newsletter. Every week, the parent volunteers coordinate and collect information from ALL relevant sources, including the principal/teachers, curriculum/after-school enhancement opportunities, school events calendar with important dates, PTSA events and fundraisers, administrative notices/housekeeping from the office staff. There are handy links provided in the newsletter for any item requiring action, along with links to the online school directory, news from the Bellevue School District and Bellevue School Foundation.

For any feedback on the newsletter, please write to editor@cherrycrest-ptsa.org

Reporting Safety Concerns. Bullying and safety concerns can always be reported to any staff member at school.  The Elementary Level Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying Incident Reporting Form is available to all families in the office. Finally, Bellevue School District also utilizes an anonymous reporting tool called SafeSchools Alert through which anyone can make a verbal or written report of harassment, intimidation or bullying. Information on how to submit a report via any of these methods is available on the district website at www.bsd405.org/help/report.

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. 

The Bellevue School District acknowledges that we learn, work, live and gather on the Indigenous Land of the Coast Salish peoples, specifically the Duwamish and Snoqualmie Tribes. We thank these caretakers of this land, who have lived and continue to live here, since time immemorial.