Cherry Crest Chronicler

October 6, 2023

Dear Cherry Crest Families,

The schoolyear is off to a wonderful start! As I shared at the PTSA General Membership Meeting on September 26th, teachers are currently collecting valuable data to determine the overall needs of each student. Teachers, by contract, have release days (up to three each school year) to work with students individually to assess progress and benchmarks. With conferences just around the corner, you will have the opportunity to hear more about your child’s individual learning goals.

I appreciate your partnership and commitment to your child’s learning and school experience. This week, I attended the PTSA Family Dinners and connected with many of you individually. I felt so much joy meeting you and connecting with your whole family. Thank you for joining us! If you haven’t already joined our PTSA, you can join HERE. Your commitment to our school, students, and teachers is invaluable!

Thanks to those who joined me this morning at my Principal Coffee. I appreciated your questions and our conversation. Please take note below of our daily start time and traffic concerns that we need your support with.

Feel free to contact me ([email protected]), or our assistant principal, Amy Chu, ([email protected]) with any questions you may have!


Erin Stedman, Principal Cherry Crest Elementary School


  • District Cultural Calendar
  • October 9 – 4th/5th PTSA Family Dinner 6-7:30 PM (pre-order deadline is today!)
  • October 13 – NO SCHOOL – State Professional Learning Day for Teachers
  • October 18 – Unity Day
  • October 19 – WA Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill K-5
  • October 20 – PTSA Movie Night (Super Mario Brothers)
  • October 31 – Advanced Learning applications close by 4 PM (Grades 1-5)
  • October 31 – Fall Festival Classroom Celebrations at Cherry Crest
  • November 3 – Principal Coffee (You can view recordings HERE)
  • November 3 – Family Engineering Night (details coming soon)

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

Daily Schedule and Traffic Concerns.

Cherry Crest begins promptly at 8:00 AM. Our goal is for students to be in class and in seats right on time. We understand that morning traffic is busy. Traffic concerns have been an ongoing frustration through the years, which is why we have traffic attendants and volunteers working with us to keep our drop-off lane moving. If you arrive between 7:52-8:00 AM, traffic is at its peak. Be prepared to wait in a line that could last up to 10 minutes or more. We suggest you arrive early beginning at 7:40-7:50 AM. Traffic flows nicely between this timeframe and congestion often occurs when families are running late.

Regardless of whether you are running late, your child’s safety is our main priority. DO NOT let your child out of the car in the middle of the drop-off line in front of moving cars. These cars are not watching for students or pedestrians. This is a disaster waiting to happen. You must wait to drop your child at the front of the line near the red fire lane in front of our school. We encourage you to stay in the drop-off/pick-up lane versus parking to walk your child to school. Crossing pedestrians do hold up our traffic line and can create congestion. DO NOT drop your child off in the parking lot to walk to campus alone. You must park and walk them yourself. If parking is not available, please circle back around.

We begin marking tardies between 8:00-8:05 AM.

Daily Bell Schedule:

7:55 First Bell (Students should be in lines waiting for their teacher)

8:00 Second Bell (In class ready to learn)

8:05 Entry doors lock; all students enter the main office

(12:15) Dismissal on Wednesdays

2:30 Dismissal on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday

Please pay attention to our traffic attendants and our supportive parent volunteers. We ask that you follow their instructions. If morning or afternoon traffic is a concern to you, please reach out with suggestions. We’re always looking for volunteers and welcome your support.

To avoid congestion, students should walk, roll, carpool, or ride the bus to school. If those suggestions are not possible, you can also park in the neighborhood and walk your student(s) to their arrival lines. Do respect our neighbors and park only in areas that don’t block driveways or through traffic please. If all else fails, arrive early to avoid frustrating wait times (7:40-7:50).

Dismissal Changes and Communication.

If there is a change to how your student is getting home, send an email to their teacher the day before or morning of (preferably before 8 AM as teachers won’t often check email during the teaching day). It can be very difficult to communicate last minute changes. We understand emergencies happen. If there is a last-minute change, you can contact [email protected] between 8 AM – 1 PM or call 425-456-4900 for immediate changes due to unforeseen circumstances. We will do our best to communicate to your child prior to dismissal.

Introducing Cherry Crest’s Family Engagement Specialist.

Please meet Vanessa Sanchez, our Family Engagement Specialist.  Back To School Intro FLYER to Families! 2023-2024.docx

Win Principal for a Day!

Join Cherry Crest PTSA by Friday, October 20th for a chance to win Principal for a Day for your student/s!  One lucky member will be drawn, and their student/s will get to “rule the school” with Mrs. Stedman. They will start planning the days work, likely visit classrooms, and determine how best to support the school. The Principal for a Day will enjoy lunch and recess monitoring and planning for an upcoming assembly. What a memorable day! The boss will go home with a fresh perspective and a signed certificate commending their hard work!

All PTSA members enjoy voting rights at our General Membership Meetings and various discounts at Great Wolf Lodge, Seattle Symphony, car rentals, airport parking, movies, hotels, shows, concerts, sporting events & more. Anyone can join for $12 per member per year. Sign up yourself, your partner, your student! The more members in your family, the more opportunities to benefit. Questions? Contact [email protected]

Unity Day is October 18th.  

We wear orange on October 18th for Unity Day at Cherry Crest to unite for kindness, acceptance, and inclusion in order to send a message that no child should ever experience bullying. Students will participate in an assembly (details to be determined) to better understand the importance of this day. During lunchtime, students will be encouraged to sit with someone from their grade level that they don’t know well. Question cards will be available at every table to support conversations to help kids get to know something new about another student they’re sitting by. If a student sits with someone new, they can fill out a raffle ticket to be entered to win an official Unity Day t-shirt!

Need more information? Visit

Resources for Families:

We are increasing family connection with our Bullying Prevention Unit by sharing the following (set up a new account!) family activation codes with you:

  • Kinder: BPUK FAMI LY00
  • 1st grade: BPU1 FAMI LY01
  • 2nd grade: BPU2 FAMI LY02
  • 3rd grade: BPU3 FAMI LY03
  • 4th grade: BPU4 FAMI LY04
  • 5th grade: BPU5 FAMI LY05

Common Sense Media’s Cyberbullying portal includes great resources for teaching students about safe online behavior, what to do in response to cyberbullying, and how to set parental controls on various apps and devices.

View Ms. Mykela’s Counseling Resources and Website: Home | Counselingcorner (

Hindi and Korean Family & Community Listening Events.

The Heritage Language Program is looking to hear from Hindi and Korean speakers to join in efforts to develop a bilingual vision for all. They are keen on hearing from BSD families regarding a Hindi Language Program and Korean language courses.

Hindi Family & Community Listening Event HLP Hindi LC Flyer – Event takes place on 10/12/2023 @ 5-6:30 PM at Stevenson Elementary


Korean Family & Community Listening Event HLP Korean LC Flyer – Event takes place on 10/19/2023 @ 5-6:30 PM at the new Jing Mei Elementary (Old Wilburton site)


Extra Clothes and Lost and Found.

K-2 Families: Please pack extra clothes in your child’s backpack for accidents and rainy weather. Thank you!

We are collecting lost and found items daily. Students can check the lost and found located by the undercover area before/after school, and during recess time. Please check your child’s belongings each night to determine what might be missing. We donate items multiple times per school year.

All items will be donated on November 10. Be sure to check out our cart beforehand!

Bus Transportation.

Before sending your children on school buses, we recommend:

  1. Please note that without a bus card, you will not be able to track your child on Edulog:

  1. Go to the afternoon bus stop pick up area with your children to show them the surroundings and name of the bus stop so they know where to get off the bus.
  2. An adult should always be at the afternoon bus pick up area on time for pick up.
  3. Remind your children if they don’t see an adult picking them up at that bus stop, do not get off the bus. Tell the driver there is no one there to pick them up. Driver can contact Transportation.
  4. Print student’s morning and afternoon bus information (bus number and bus stop) and put it in their backpacks.
  5. Whenever there is change to your pick up plans, write it down and put it in each child’s backpack so they can refer to it (because they will forget).
  6. Go through School Bus Rules together as a family so everyone is aware of the safety procedures:

NOTE: If you have already contacted Cherry Crest and/or the Transportation Department regarding bus cards, please be patient. Transportation will let you know if there is a space on a bus for you.

Halloween & Fall Festival Celebrations, October 31st.

At Cherry Crest, we aim to include all students in our annual celebrations. We recognize that some of our families may not celebrate Halloween and might choose to keep their students at home on October 31st. We’re looking for input from you to determine best practice as our Racial Equity and Inclusion and Building Leadership Teams plan future celebrations.

This year, classes will enjoy a Fall Festival celebration on October 31st. Costumes are allowed and optional. As always, students who choose not to dress in costume are included in our daily learning along with everyone else and can attend the classroom celebration (more details will be shared by Room Parents and/or individual teachers).

Should your child prefer to join a non-fall/Halloween themed alternative, Ms. Mykela and Mrs. Chu are hosting a book character event celebrating reading. This year, the book of choice is The Day the Crayons Quit. Your child is welcome to come dressed as their favorite crayon color (completely optional!) to join in this fun reading celebration on 10/31 at 1-2:15 PM in room 110.

Please provide input HERE about Halloween. We will use this data to drive future decisions about this annual holiday moving forward.

Costume Guidelines.   

  • Costumes may not include any blood, guts, gore, or weapons.  Students may not wear a mask that covers their eyes/head, but face paint is acceptable.  Costumes should not demonstrate cultural appropriation (taking dress or expressions from a culture that is not your own without showing you understand or respect the culture).   
  • If your child would like to wear a costume to celebrate, the costume should be worn to and from school.  It is difficult for us to find adequate changing space and adult help in assisting students with costume apparel.    
  • Students who arrive at school with a costume that does not meet our requirements, or a costume that detracts from the learning environment, will be asked to call home for a change of clothes.   

Family Engineering Night, November 3rd.

The much beloved Family Engineering Night is coming up Friday November 3rd at Cherry Crest Elementary.  We have 9 all new super challenges for families, 2 high school robotics teams and small robot coding.  PTSA is asking for donations for items to support this event. Whatever is not donated, the school will fund and provide.  This wish list has everything we need and will ship directly to the school:  Thank you for your generosity and we can’t wait to see you November 3rd!

Celebrating Diversity and Inclusion at Cherry Crest.

Please refer to our District’s cultural calendar (linked HERE) for each month. At Cherry Crest, we aim to recognize the many celebrations, holidays, and heritages that make our world, community, and neighborhood so beautiful. If you’re interested in sharing your rich culture with us, please reach out as we’re always looking for ways to enrich our students’ experiences and for students to see themselves in our hallways and in our classrooms.

October is:

Hispanic Heritage Month (through the 15th)

Indigenous People’s Day – October 9th

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Filipino American History Month

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

National Bullying Prevention Month

Here’s are some resources I’ve shared with teachers to learn more and share more with students. Enjoy!
National Disability Employment Awareness Month & Filipino American History Month: (NDEAM Video) (Disability Pride Month) (Books about Disabilities) (Filipino Children’s Books) (with traditional Filipino music resources included!) (History of Filipino Americans – Best for grades 3-5) (Celebrating Disney Cast Members)

Hispanic Heritage Month:

Read-Alouds: 15 Picture Books That Celebrate Hispanic & Latinx Heritage. “Areli Is A Dreamer” by DACA recipient, Areli Morales is a new staple in my home. Hope you find a few to add to your library too!

Events & More: Check out this list of amazing Hispanic heritage events, Latinx owned businesses to shop at, and restaurants to enjoy in the Seattle area.  I’m a big fan of Askuatu Bakery’s allergen-free goodies!

Indigenous People’s Day:

What does it mean to be Indigenous?

The word Indigenous explained for Kids -CBC Kids News

Twinkl Teaching – Rethink Columbus Day

Indigenous People’s Day Song for Kids w/ ASL Lesson Included

“One World (We Are One)” Official Video

“Stand Up #NoDAPL” Official Music Video

Challenged/Banned Stories to Read:

For K-2 – Fry Bread

For 3-5 – We Are Water Protectors

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.