Principal's Welcome Letter

  • August 14, 2019

    Dear Grant Elementary School Families,

    On behalf of the Grant faculty and staff, welcome to the 2019 – 2020 school year! Once again, I am honored to be serving as the Principal of Grant school and lookforward to seeing you and your children on Thursday, August 22nd! I hope you and your family have had a restful and enjoyable summer break, that your childrenhave been engaged in enriching activities, and that they feel ready for the new school year.

    This year at Grant our goal is to continue to build upon our efforts from last year by cultivating strong relationships between parents, students, staff, and communitypartners. I am very eager for our families to meet our phenomenal new staff in the coming weeks. We will focus on fostering an environment where collaboration,communication, critical thinking, and creativity are essential elements to student success. In addition, the Grant Staff will use relevant data to guide instruction;continue to reinforce the pillars of positive character development; instill in all students a sense of responsibility to others through community service-learning activities;celebrate and honor student achievement; maintain a nurturing and safe campus environment; and provide exciting and challenging enrichment opportunities for allstudents. Over the course of the last year and during the summer break, our dedicated staff worked diligently to develop knowledge and skills in English/Language Artsand mathematics practices; Restorative Justice; the Social Justice standards; and the Responsive Classroom learning approach, which will be beneficial to your child’s academic and social and emotional growth. We will continue to create a clear and sustainable path towards realizing the school district’s mission of achieving Excellence through Equity.

    I believe that when we all work together positively with a common purpose in mind, our students can only benefit. This year, I am requesting that all of our parents andguardians play a role in the important task of reinforcing in our students the idea that setting goals is the first critical step on the road to personal success and that hardwork is the catalyst to their achievement. A focus on steady attendance, good work habits, healthy living, and a positive attitude are key components to your child’sprogress.

    This year, we will be implementing new student drop-off procedures. You may recall that last year our school community engaged in an extensive, healthy, andproductive dialogue around bolstering Grant’s safety and security. All stakeholders, including members of the School Leadership Team, School Site Council, PTA, ELAC,Santa Monica Police Department, and SMMUSD district administration, had an opportunity to share their ideas and feelings about how we as a community can bestprovide a safe and nurturing environment for our children. The consensus among all of these groups was that Grant students deserve a more secure campus and a greater emphasis on protecting instructional time. With this in mind, we will begin the new drop-off procedures beginning Monday, August 26th. Details of this shift will be sentshortly before school begins.

    Another improvement coming to Grant for the 2019 – 2020 school year is a shift in the bell schedule. In an effort to maximize instructional time, assist with thedismissal process, and ensure Grant is in compliance with state requirements for instructional minutes, the new bell schedule is as follows and will be enacted the firstday of school, Thursday, August 22nd:

    • 8:00: Cafeteria and Yard Opens
    • 8:25: Pre-K – 5 Line Up Bell
    • 8:30: Pre-K – 5 School Begins
    • 1:45: TK – K Dismissal
    • 2:30: Pre-K Dismissal
    • 2:50: Grades 1 – 3 Dismissal
    • 2:55: Grades 4 – 5 Dismissal

    *Please see school web site for full school schedule
    **There will be no late start on the first Friday of the school year – Friday, August 23
    rd

    Grant’s outstanding teachers create the foundation for your children’s academic success. In addition, a large part of Grant’s success is attributed to its robust andengaged PTA and Education Foundation. Please consider contributing to the GRANT PTA so that we can continue to fund stimulating programs in music, field trips,enrichment programs, assemblies, and much needed equipment and supplies in our classrooms. PTA donations directly affect your child’s education. Please join the GrantPTA by visiting our website at http://www.grantPTA.org. Here you can learn of the many volunteer opportunities available at Grant. We urge you to not only become a member of the PTA, but also to contribute to the SANTA MONICA EDUCATION FOUNDATION at https://www.smedfoundation.org/ so we may continue to provide ourstudents with enrichment programs like STAR Science, P.S. ARTS for music and the visual arts, and highly trained instructional assistants in the classrooms. Your generosity allows us to provide your children with a world-class education.