It is our district and school’s vision to affirm and inspire each and every student to learn and thrive as creators of their future world. As a school we want each of our students to feel they can show up to school as their true authentic self and that their voice and story are valued and celebrated. It is also true that we want our students to accept and understand that our diverse personalities, cultures, and races are an asset. When we listen to one another’s stories, we are more able and willing to affirm the differences we have, unpack bias, and remove stereotypical thinking. Feeling affirmed and accepted allows for a stronger sense of belonging. A strong sense of belonging is one of the key attributes for high social, emotional, and academic success.
May is Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month and we will take the time to affirm our AAPI community, increase our cultural competencies, and celebrate the often untold, and very important contributions this group has brought and continues to bring to our community. Each week in May, Somerset staff will have optional opportunities to build their understanding and capacity, k-5 classrooms will engage in text from AAPI authors with themes focused around the AAPI diverse cultures, and families will be invited to participate in some activities at home. We hope this focus honors our AAPI families by elevating their story and builds an even more collaborative and compassionate Somerset community.
Every Somerset Family is invited to join us on May 26th for an outdoor (socially distanced with covid safe mitigation) culminating celebration! We are asking all families in our school who identify as one of the 48 different countries and cultures that make up the AAPI to share your family’s story. Templates for posters to line our track will be sent home next week as well as a Nearpod link for video sharing. We are excited to hear the stories within our community and share them on May 26th. As a school leader who does not identify as Asian American Pacific Islander, I am excited to learn about the diversity within our Asian community, read about historical events and contributions that were left out of my public education experience, and gather together (virtually or physically distanced) for a One Somerset Strong celebration. Details with times, interactive experiences, and event online sign up are to come in future weeks. If you and/or your family identify as Asian American or Pacific Islander, I hope you will speak up and share your story. Your voice is important to our community and will help to empower our young learners to be proud of their unique identity.
Save the Date
Asian American Pacific Islander Celebration
All Somerset families
Highlighted in this video, created by our PTSA, are the faces of many of our students experiencing the joys of spring. https://youtu.be/lgAbwVdAUQI
Somerset Elementary Important Information
Teacher Appreciation Week is May 3-7!
Our fantastic PTSA and dedicated room parents have worked together to ensure all of our staff at Somerset feel appreciated next week. In addition to our school wide focus, you can show your gratitude to our educators on Thursday, May 6, by sharing your appreciation through social media with the #Thanka Teacher campaign. From virtual stickers to digital certificates, click here to find all the resources you need to share your appreciation with educators.
We are excited to announce the opportunity for an in-person (outdoor, Covid Safety mitigation and socially distanced) Camp Kindness group! Camp Kindness is a small group for both students and their families to come together to build connections, strengthen relationships, and empower students through acts of kindness. It is designed for families and their students to work together in building important skills such as self-awareness, compassion, and empathy for others.
Camp Kindness will be held once a week for about 30 minutes. Each week, Camp Kindness will focus on a different character strength and will include group activities and discussions, as well as activities that you will do on your own as a family.
Please email our counselors, Camille Schuyler firstname.lastname@example.org or Shelly McNulty, counselor intern Mcnultys@bsd405.org if you and your family is interested in joining the in-person Camp Kindness group!
We look forward to hearing from you and getting to know your family!
Quarantine Expectations for BSD students who travel out of State
Please note the district is following the recommended guidance from the CDC. If students traveled within ten days of attending school in person, they will need to acknowledge that on the daily health attestation. To return to school students should do the following:
- Get tested 3-5 days after your trip and stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel, even if your test is negative.
- If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.
If your child(ren) will be absent due to travel, please contact email@example.com so we can mark it excused. They should continue to participate in specialist class and complete their async assignments.
We appreciate your support in being honest and following the guidance to keep our school community safe and to mitigate the spread of Covid 19.
Smarter Balanced tests canceled for Spring 2021
On April 14th, Washington’s OSPI office announced that Smarter Balanced (SBA) tests in English Language Arts and Math, along with the WCAS science test will not be administered to students this spring. Instead, the state is planning to have students assess in Fall 2021. When the state provides details of the new fall assessment plan, we will share them with you.
Kindergarten Enrollment for 2021-22
If you know of a family who has an upcoming kindergarten student, please remind them that kindergarten registration is open now and they need to complete the “New Student Enrollment Packet”. The more we know about our upcoming enrollment, the better we can staff our classrooms. New Student Enrollment Packet: English (PDF) / Spanish (PDF) / Simplified Chinese (PDF)
Principal Birthday lunches – 12:30-1:00
April Birthday lunch celebration will be April 28 at 12:30. Students with a April birthday will receive a Teams invite through their student email accounts from Ruth Embaye, our office manager on the day prior. If you don’t receive an invitation, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and she will send the link. Each session includes an opportunity for students to share something exciting about birthdays, a quick art project and a short story. It is a highlight for us to share this time celebrating students. Please note we have moved the birthday lunch celebrations to Wednesday to ensure all students, both virtual and hybrid can attend.
Somerset Library Wednesday Check-out Dates
Librarian Mrs. Bravenec would like to remind families that students may reserve and check out books from our Somerset library! Books may be picked up by all families on Wednesday afternoons from 3:30-5:30pm at the front doors of Somerset. Masks and social distancing required.
For hybrid students attending in person, Mrs. Bravenec will deliver books to your child’s classroom teacher if you are not able to pick them up. For virtual students attending remotely, please contact Mrs. Bravenec to make alternate pick up arrangements if that Wednesday time is not convenient for you.
Check-out Wednesdays: May 5th, May 12th, May 19th, May 26th (last day for checkout)
Tech Center Updates
The Tech Center at Highland Middle School permanently closed on April 7. Expanded in-person technology support is conveniently available at individual schools, online, and via phone. Virtual elementary students needing in-person support may visit the new Elementary Student Tech Center at the Wilburton Instructional Service Center (WISC). It is located at 12241 Main Street, Bellevue, WA 98005, which is across the street from Wilburton Elementary School. They are open from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Contact your school or visit https://bsd405.org/techsupport for details. Additional Languages
From BSD…Looking ahead to Fall 2021-22 School Year
While we are focused on a strong finish to this school year, with both in-person and remote learning options, the BSD team continues planning for the 2021-22 school year.
We anticipate in-person learning to be the primary learning model for the 2021-22 school year. We will continue to follow recommended safety guidelines as students and staff return to school communities and look forward to seeing more students in person.
We anticipate classrooms and physical distancing to be based upon 3 feet, which allows our students to be in full in-person classes, pre-K through 12th and the Transitions Program. Staffing for schools in the fall will be based upon this assumption.
We are also planning that schools will serve meals, including lunch for all grade levels. In addition, bus routes will be scheduled to operate for full-day, in-person learning at our schools during the 2021-22 school year.
Early release Wednesdays will continue, providing opportunity for our staff for professional development, collaboration with colleagues and professional time for educators.
In addition, BSD is considering an option to provide a virtual education model of learning for students in grades 9-12 with limited enrollment. We are completing some research in this area and we will share more information about this option as soon as possible.
Upcoming Important Dates
May 3-7 Somerset Teacher and Staff Appreciation Week
May Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month
Staff, students, and families will have opportunities all month to learn, affirm and celebrate the contributions
of this group who make up a large percentage of our community.
Teacher Appreciation week
May 26 Somerset School-Wide, In-person, Outdoor Event
Sharing the Pages of Asian Stories: past, present, & future!
For more information and important dates please follow this link to our Somerset PTSA: Link to Somerset PTSA
Photo(s) of the Week
In-person and virtually, Somerset students celebrated Color Day!
Ms. Serafin’s virtual first graders
K-5 students celebrated school spirit by wearing their grade’s color