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Sebago Elementary Family Handbook 2017-2018
Sebago Elementary

Family Handbook

2017 - 2018

The purpose of the Sebago Elementary School Family Handbook is to give you information about school rules, policies, procedures, and programs you need to support our important home/school partnership. Please keep this handbook on hand throughout the year as a resource for questions you or your child might have.

The school has the right to change the terms of the handbook at any time, with School Board approval. If there is a discrepancy between this handbook and a district policy, the district policy will prevail. IF THERE IS A DISCREPANCY BETWEEN THIS HANDBOOK AND STATE LAW, STATE LAW WILL PREVAIL.

ABSENCES/ATTENDANCE:
If your child is absent or tardy from school, you are asked to notify the school before 8:30 a.m. at (207)787-3701.  A message can be left on the office answering machine. If we do not hear from you, the school will contact you at your home or office for the Childwatch Program.  This is an important part of keeping children safe. If you know of a tardiness or absence ahead of the actual day, a call to the office secretary would be greatly appreciated. Attendance at school is a state law.  Regular school attendance is vital to the continuity of instruction.  Maine law identifies five excusable absences/tardies from school.  
They are:   
        * personal illness
        * doctor appointment which cannot be made outside the school day                                                * observance of recognized religious holiday
        * family emergency  
* planned absence for personal or educational purposes, which has been approved in advance by the school.
The school intends for students to meet all requirements regardless of the reason for the absence.  We hope parents will encourage good attendance.  Parents will be contacted via letter or phone call when absences, tardies, or dismissals jeopardize their child’s learning. Please understand that according to state law, elementary school students are considered “habitually truant” if they are absent a total of seven unexcused days or five consecutive unexcused days.
 
Requests from parents for a planned absence for personal or educational reasons require prior notice and approval of the principal. Please keep these requests to a minimum as your child misses valuable class time that cannot be made up easily. We ask the office and classroom teacher be given a ten-day notice in advance of a planned absence. Also, please understand that vacation days cannot be excused absences. Please see a copy of state law (Chapter 303, LD 454) surrounding school attendance in the appendix at the end of this document.
If a child is absent, he/she cannot attend after school events or activities.

ACCIDENT INSURANCE:  
This optional insurance is available to all students and will cover medical costs if your child has an accident at school and you do not have a health insurance plan.  Information concerning coverage and cost is given to all students at the start of the school year.  Claims are handled directly through the insurance company.

ALLERGIES OR MEDICAL CONDITIONS CAUSED BY  FOODS/SUBSTANCES/SCENTS:
We encourage our staff and students to not bring in foods that may be an allergen for other people. We also ask our staff and students to not use scented substances (i.e. lotions). School staff will work to limit the use of food and/or substance allergens and items, which may emit strong scents in the school environment. Students will be instructed not to trade food or wear heavily scented products.

ANIMALS:
Animals are prohibited from school buildings and grounds per Board policy.

ARRIVAL and DISMISSAL:
Just as schools nationwide are heightening school security, so must we. To that end, parents are not allowed to accompany their child(ren) to class. Please understand this is for the safety of all students and staff and is not meant to be unwelcoming.
1.  The beginning of the school day is 8:30 a.m.  Students are to arrive no earlier than 8:15 a.m. If your child walks or rides his/her bike to school please make sure they adhere to this time, as there are no school personnel on duty before 8:15 to supervise them.  Students arriving after 8:30 a.m. are tardy and must report directly to the office to be signed in by a parent.
2.  Dismissal time is at 2:55 p.m. for walkers.  Parents/guardians sign children out in the office and wait in the lobby. Your child will come to you.  Students may not be dismissed directly from the playground or from individual classrooms without being signed out at the office first.  Children are ONLY released to someone other than their parents by written parental permission.  In the event you are not recognized by one of our staff members, you will be asked for identification.  Please do not be offended as this is for the protection of all students.  If you need your child released early from school for an appointment, please see the secretary in the front office.
3. Students taking a different bus must be accompanied by a signed note from their parents stating where their child should be dropped off. Changes in bus transportation or dismissal routines must be in writing and will not be taken over the phone unless it is an emergency situation.  If a child does not have a signed note we will put your child on his/her normal bus home.
4. If a student is not riding the bus home at the end of the day and is being picked up, please wait for the student in the lobby of the school entrance and sign the sign-out sheet.  Since buses park next to the sidewalk for student loading and unloading, we ask you to please park your vehicle around the remainder of the driveway loop or in the school parking lot.  Your cooperation will help assure a safe and orderly dismissal for your children.
BEHAVIOR:
Our elementary school is a Positive Behavior Interventions and Support (PBIS) school.  What is PBIS?  Put simply, it is a proactive approach to A POSITIVE school-wide CULTURE. This initiative is meant to reinforce the positive behaviors of students doing what is expected of them as well as supporting students who need extra assistance to reach the school-wide behavior expectations to be safe, be respectful, and be responsible.  As a staff, we will consistently define, teach, reinforce, and monitor positive behaviors. The most powerful tool we have at our disposal for teaching appropriate behavior is the feedback staff gives students when they do or do not meet our expectations.  Consistently addressing students when they do or do not meet our behavior expectations will increase compliance, provide them with greater structure, and clarify expected behavior. Through consistency and positive relationships; we will improve the behavior of all students.  

BICYCLES/SCOOTERS:  
Students are allowed to ride bicycles/scooters (no skateboards or heelies) to school, but cannot arrive before 8:15. Upon entering school grounds, students with these items need to secure his/her bicycle, scooter, etc. in the designated area IMMEDIATELY upon arrival at school. Bicycles are to be left in the designated area until students leave at the end of the day.  Students cannot ride in the driveway as it is a busy area in the morning and afternoon with buses and cars. Reminder, according to state law cyclists under 16 years of age are required to wear bicycle helmets.  They are not to be ridden around school grounds during school hours. At dismissal time, bike/scooter riders are held until ALL buses have left. We encourage leaving bikes and scooters at home in the winter months when roads are icy.
 
BOMB THREATS:   
1.  Bomb threats constitute not only a violation of school policy, but also a violation of civil and criminal law.  Maine’s law enforcement community has assured us of their resolve to maintain our schools, communities, and our state as the safest of all places in America.
2.  Law enforcement officers with the strong cooperation of educators will pursue the investigation and subsequent prosecution of all perpetrators, encouraging boards to use strong sanctions in cases where students are the perpetrators.  
3.  Any school evacuation will follow Sebago Elementary School’s Emergency Response Plan.

BREAKFAST PROGRAM:
We are very fortunate to have a breakfast program in our school. Breakfast is provided each morning between bus arrival and the start of school. Students participating in the breakfast program should go directly to the cafeteria upon their arrival at school to eat breakfast. The costs are:      Breakfast    $1.50               Free/Reduced Breakfast   $.00

BUS REGULATIONS / TRANSPORTATION POLICY:
School buses are owned, operated, and maintained by Sebago Elementary School for transportation of eligible children located within the town of Sebago.  

If for some reason your child does not get off the bus as normally expected, please call the school for students in grades K-5 at 787-3701. For students in grades 6-12, please call the MSAD 61 bus garage at 647-5343 or 693-6467.   For safety reasons, students in grades K-3 are not let off the bus without an adult present. If there is a change to your child’s established bus routine, a signed note from the parent is required. If your child doesn’t have a signed note, we’ll put your child on his/her regular bus per the paperwork which was submitted at the beginning of the year.

Rules for behavior are discussed with the students by the classroom teacher and the bus driver.  Parents are encouraged to impress upon their children the necessity for good behavior and safe riding on school buses.  Our school buses contain video cameras to monitor student behavior. If you would like to view the video from the previous day, please contact the school.  Bus drivers will give students a handbook regarding bus safety.  
 
CARE OF SCHOOL MATERIALS:
Students are expected to properly care for books and equipment.  Failure to do so could result in having to make reimbursement for lost or damaged items. This includes library books.

CHORUS/INSTRUMENTAL:
Chorus and Instrumental Music instruction are available to 4th and 5th graders.
 
CODE OF CONDUCT:
It is our expectation all students will behave in a way which demonstrates respect for themselves and others.  For every action, there is a natural consequence; this applies to both appropriate and inappropriate behavior. Our staff makes every attempt to notice and acknowledge appropriate behavior of students (see recognition). If a child’s behavior is disrespectful or dangerous to him/herself, other people, school property or property of others, a continuum of consequences will occur as outlined by district policy following the Code of Conduct (File Code JK). Parents will be notified by phone, email, letter, or meeting, depending on the circumstances.  When a child is experiencing ongoing problems with behavior our goal is to work out a solution so the child can be successful in his/her interactions with others.
Bullying behaviors such as teasing, name calling, pushing, grabbing, tripping, racial, ethnic, or sexual harassment are not tolerated. Students who engage in any of the above behaviors will participate in a Bully Awareness Program and be subject to appropriate consequences.

COMMUNICATION:
The district has adopted the use of Schoology as its primary source of parent communication. Classroom teachers will post updates, curriculum information, and events on Schoology. At the beginning of each year, teachers will provide information on how to access their Schoology page. This form of electronic communication takes the place of paper newsletters.  Traditional means of communication (i.e. phone calls, emails, etc.) will continue.

CONFERENCES:
We report student progress using a trimester reporting system, which includes two Parent/Teacher conferences to increase communication between parents and school.  A fall conference will be scheduled for the end of October or beginning of November and a spring conference will be scheduled just before the April break.  Conferences are a time for parents and/or students to meet with teachers, to explain the child’s needs as a learner, and to set goals for learning.  All parents are highly encouraged to attend both of these conferences to find out important information about your child and to ask questions.  In addition to scheduled conferences, staff is available to meet with parents as needed throughout the school year.  Please call ahead if you wish to schedule an additional conference.
 
CONFIDENTIALITY:
To protect the wellbeing of all students, staff members cannot discuss with you other children or their families nor can we provide you or your child with class lists, student addresses, phone numbers, or parent/guardian information without written permission from the parent or guardian.
 
COUNSELING:
Sebago Elementary School  has a school counselor.  The school’s philosophy is for the counseling program to be for all students while still addressing those students with individual needs.  The school counselor teaches classes and works with small groups, individuals, and parents.  Please call the school to contact the counselor. Additionally, Spurwink Mental Health Services are available onsite for families who qualify. The school counselor is typically here all day Monday and Friday and on Wednesday afternoons.

CURRICULUM / INSTRUCTION:
In addition to teaching the core subjects of reading, writing, social studies, mathematics, and  science, we offer classes in music, art, physical education, library, and health, once per week, which are taught by specialists in those areas. Instrumental music and chorus are also available for grades 4 and 5.  
 
DRESS CODE:
Students are encouraged to dress neatly and appropriately for school.  
Clothing should be appropriate for the season and should be of neat appearance.  This includes jackets, boots, snow pants, hats, and mittens in the cold and snowy weather, and appropriate shorts on the warm days in the spring.  This should be done in such a way which does not endanger the health and safety of themselves or others, while not violating the rights of any parties.  In considering a student dress code, there are three important issues considered.  They are:
  • The desire to eliminate clothing with messages which may reasonably be anticipated to cause disruption or violence.
  • The desire to eliminate clothing with obscene, lewd, or vulgar MESSAGES.
  • The desire to foster in students good grooming standards.
For those reasons we do not permit the wearing of:
  •  Tops with straps less than two inches wide
  • Cropped shirts that expose the midriff
  • Hats or bandanas
  •  Jackets while inside the building
  •  Clothing which contains profanity, sexual content, or other messages which might reasonably  be considered offensive to others
  •  Sunglasses within the school - okay outside
  •  Any clothing which exposes undergarments
  • Chains of any type
  • Heelies
  •  Shorts/skirts which do not reach the middle of the thigh.
Should a student’s dress be disruptive to their learning or the learning of another child, parents will be requested to bring other clothing to school.   

EMERGENCY FORMS:
It is vital for basic, up-to-date information such as telephone number, residence, mailing address, family doctor, parents’ places of employment, etc. be available at all times in the school office.  This information is necessary in the event of an emergency or if your child becomes ill during the day.  Emergency forms need to be completed as soon as possible after they are distributed.  During the school year, if there are any changes in your emergency contact information, please notify the school as soon as possible.  We must be able to contact either the parent/guardian or the person noted as the “emergency contact” should the need arise.

EMERGENCY RESPONSE PLAN:  
Sebago Elementary School has developed a school-wide Emergency Response Plan to be implemented in the event of an emergency. A timeline has been developed for students and staff to practice the procedures of an emergency drill for several kinds of situations in order to become better acquainted with them should we ever have to respond accordingly.
EXIT/DRILL PROCEDURES:
The classroom teacher explains the evacuation process to his/her class for exiting the building in the case of an emergency. We conduct a minimum of 10 fire drills each year. When the fire alarm sounds, students should move quickly and quietly out of the building. Once outside, students must wait quietly with their class and teacher until the all clear signal is given, then students may re-enter the building safely. In an unusual circumstance when the alarm goes off in the winter, there is no time to stop and put on boots, coats, etc. It would be advisable during these months to make sure your child leaves a second pair of shoes to wear when boots come off (not slippers) and is dressed in layers with a sweater or sweatshirt kept at their seat (not in their locker or cubby) to be prepared for a winter evacuation. These are very unlikely but we need to be prepared just in case.

EXTENDED STUDIES:
The Extended Studies program supports students who have been referred through teacher recommendation, parents recommendation, and testing to qualify for extended study in a particular content area. If you have any questions regarding the Extended Studies program, please call the school.
FIELD TRIPS:
From time to time, the staff will plan educational field trips to supplement the curriculum.  Parents will be required to sign permission slips before their child is allowed to go.  Verbal permission or faxed permission slips on the day of the trip will not be accepted. Students without an original, signed permission slip will not be allowed to go on the trip.   

GUM CHEWING:
Students may not chew gum while on school property during school hours. Administration may determine exceptions to this guideline.

HARASSMENT:
Sebago Elementary School recognizes the right of each employee and student to carry out his/her respective work and responsibilities in an environment free of intimidation, ridicule, hostility, or offensiveness.  In order to ensure this environment exists, no student or employee shall harass another.  Acts of this nature are not only a violation of this policy, but constitute illegal discrimination under both state and federal laws.  Unwelcome sexual advances, gestures, comments, contact, threats, offensive jokes, ridicule, slurs, and derogatory actions or remarks, constitute harassment.  Incidents of harassment are taken seriously and should be reported immediately so they may be investigated and dealt with promptly.  

HEALTH REGULATIONS:
A student who becomes ill or injured at school should report to the nurse’s office.  A school nurse or a staff member with First Aid and CPR training is on site to assist with injured or ill students.  Parents are called if their child has an injury or illness which requires their attention, needs to go home, or needs medical attention. Therefore, it is important for the school office to be kept up to date and notified of any changes in the home, work, or backup telephone numbers.  For the well being of all, if your child is ill, it is best he/she not come to school.  Children should stay home if they have a contagious situation until it is cleared up.   
 
HIGHLY QUALIFIED TEACHERS:
You have the right to request the professional qualifications of your child’s teachers.  If you would like this information, please send your request by email to shelly.willey@sebagolearners.org or by mail at 283 Sebago Road, Sebago, ME 04029.  If you have any questions, please call the Superintendent’s office, which is located in the school at 787-3701.
 
HOMEWORK POLICY:
Meaningful homework is an integral part of the learning process and is a valuable contributor towards good study habits, individual responsibility, and time management skills. The school board has created common guidelines for each grade level, which are developmentally appropriate. The homework guidelines for our elementary students are listed below and represent the maximum amount of time for which students should be assigned homework M-TH. Teachers may also give long-term assignments such as research reports or book related projects.  
 
  Grade 1  10 minutes   
  Grade 2  20 minutes
  Grade 3  30 minutes
  Grade 4  40 minutes
  Grade 5  50 minutes
   
Homework time will vary from student to student and day to day. More capable students who are able to complete assignments in less time than their peers should be instructed to read until the amount of time invested is adequate with the grade level guideline.  Each fall, parents should receive written information regarding homework guidelines and expectations.  It is helpful for students to have a regular study time and a quiet place at home where they may do their homework.  Teachers will contact parents of students not fulfilling homework requirements.  If homework incompletion still persists, students can be subject to homework detentions.  Parents are encouraged to communicate directly with teachers regarding homework issues.  Students in grades 4 and 5 will be given homework planners.  
Parents are asked to help students develop good work habits by checking the child’s use of these homework planners daily and signing off each night by initialing the book indicating you have seen it and your child has completed the work.  If your child is having difficulty with an assignment and cannot complete it after giving it some effort, write the teacher a note in the comment box explaining the reason and your child will be excused from that assignment until the teacher can give your child additional help.   Planners make excellent communication vehicles with the classroom teacher on a regular basis as there is a separate area for parent comments on each page.
 
INTERNET USE BY STUDENTS:
Student use of the Internet has moved from being a novelty to being a necessary tool for meeting academic requirements. We now view Internet access as important as library access. We expect students to use this valuable teaching tool as part of their learning and we will do everything in our control to insure your child does not encounter inappropriate information.   

LEAVING SCHOOL GROUNDS:
Under NO circumstances are students to leave school property during the school day without requesting and receiving permission through the office.  Students who do so are subject to the school’s discipline code of conduct. For the safety of the child, police may be contacted if a student leaves school grounds.
LOST & FOUND:
Students should check with their classroom teacher for lost articles.  Occasionally, items are also turned into the school office.  Students and parents are urged to occasionally check the Lost & Found box for missing items.  You’ll be amazed at the number of unclaimed items. Please label all personal items including coats, boots, ski pants, lunch boxes, etc. Periodically, the Lost & Found box is cleaned out and the items are given to charity.
LUNCH:
Hot lunch is provided to any student in grades K-5. Parents need to send lunch and drink money for the week on Monday (or the first day of school for the week).  This can also be done online through our student information system, Infinite Campus (IC).  As there is no milk or juice available to purchase for a snack, we encourage you to send a juice box if you want your child to have a drink to accompany their snack. Applications for free and reduced lunches will be sent home on the first day of school along with the district’s charging policy. Please read this information over carefully. Our school receives additional money each year for extra reading and math services, depending on the number of students who qualify for free and reduced lunch. For this reason, it is very beneficial to our school if you complete the form no matter what your income level is or if your child will be taking it or not. If your financial status should change, please request another application from the office.   
  The costs are:   
  Lunch (includes drink)        $2.50
  Reduced Lunch                 $  .40  
  White Milk                    $  .50
 Chocolate Milk                $  .50
 Orange Juice                  $  .50

MEDICATIONS:     
Whenever possible, medication should be given at home before or after school.  Students requiring medication at school must have a parent/guardian bring the medication in the original prescription bottle. A Request for Administering Medication In School Form must be completed before medication can be dispensed at school. All medications must be brought to the nurse’s office to be checked in and kept during the day (this includes the use of over the counter drugs).  Parents whose children are taking ongoing prescriptions will be notified when the prescription is getting low.  

NO SCHOOL (including no school, early dismissal, or late arrival):
No school or school delays are announced after the Superintendent consults with the bus supervisor and sometimes town officials.  The announcement is usually aired on local TV and radio stations by 6:15 am.
The District has electronic messaging capability and families will automatically be notified electronically regarding delayed openings, early dismissals, or school closings. Families will receive a message via any contact method on file with the district. This includes landlines, cell phones, and email. If you choose to “turn off” one or more of the contacts, please inform our school secretary.
For those rare occasions, when school is dismissed early because of exceptionally poor weather, it is essential for parents to make arrangements in advance so their child knows where to go in the event of an early dismissal.  Be sure your child is prepared to follow your family’s plan and for you to give us a copy of any alternate plan which is different from your normal dismissal. Also, please keep this information updated throughout the year if anything changes.

NOTES:
The safety of your child is our utmost concern, which is why we need to make sure the information we have on where your child is going each day, who is allowed to pick him/her up from school, etc. is current and accurate. For these reasons, we need to have a written note if there is any change in your child’s arrival or dismissal routine. This includes a note each time your child stays after school for a non-school related extracurricular event such as sports’ practices. This also includes a note if the normal daily routine is changed such as if your child is taking the second designated bus location other than his/her first choice or if you or someone you designate unexpectedly needs to pick your child up. It is also important to send a note when a child has returned to school after sickness or other absence. When a child is unable to participate in physical education for health reasons, we require a note. If a child is to be dismissed early, please send a note to the teacher or the secretary informing us of the dismissal time.     
 
NUTRITION & EXERCISE:
Teaching students proper nutrition and physical activities are ongoing district goals.  The school board passed a district policy regarding no sales of soda and candy on school grounds, as well as, offering health classes for students in grades K-5. We are committed to the health of our students and have a walking program in which students participate.  We ask for your help in sending healthy snacks for your child’s lunch box, as well as, for sharing at class parties. Veggie and fruit platters make wonderful and festive treats for these occasions.
 
PTC:
Sebago Elementary School is fortunate to have an active Parent-Teacher Club.  This energetic group offers recognition for staff, as well as offering financial assistance for materials and programs that directly benefit the students.  Meetings are held each month in the school’s library.  Early in the fall, there will be information sent home regarding the first meeting. Please join us in supporting your child’s school.
 
PARKING:  
Visitors are asked to park vehicles away from the main entrance if it is during bus time. Please be observant of the handicapped parking.

PARTY INVITATIONS:
To avoid hurt feelings and misunderstandings for your child’s classmates, please pass out party invitations for parties at school only if the whole class is invited.
 
PERSONAL PROPERTY:
Generally, students are asked not to bring playthings to school with them unless it is a special “sharing” day and the teacher has given permission.  Radios, electronic devices (including cell phones, DS, Gameboys, MP3 players, SPINNERS, etc.), skateboards, “heelie” sneakers, trading cards of any sort, and other toys are not appropriate for school unless special permission is given by a teacher for a specific function. These items serve no instructional purpose, can become damaged or stolen, and can be an unnecessary distraction. Also included in this list of items which are not permitted are cleats, any bats or hard balls, like baseballs, for safety reasons.  Students should not bring money to school unless it is absolutely necessary, such as for lunch or some special school event as it can be lost or stolen.  Also, students are not allowed to sell, trade, or give away their food or other personal items to another student.
 
READING AT HOME:
Set a good example by making reading a high family priority.  As with everything else, “Practice-Makes-Perfect”.  Children learn to read by READING!  When reading with older children, take turns reading.  Have them predict what the selection may tell, explaining why they made that prediction.  Not surprisingly, children of parents who read to them earn higher grades.  The time you spend sharing stories with your child will pay benefits for years to come.

RECESS:  
Students will have a daily 30-minute recess break during the school day. Other recesses are scheduled at the teacher’s discretion. Students need to be prepared to go outside each day wearing the appropriate footwear and clothing for recess activity. If your child is well enough to be in school, then going outside for recess is part of their day. Living in Maine, we know wearing appropriate clothing for the changing seasons is extremely important. Please be sure your child wears all necessary clothing especially in the colder weather. All students must have boots on in order to play in the snow; younger students must wear snow pants and mittens as well. Students not dressed in the proper winter attire may go outside but must remain on the blacktop.  
Students will not go outside if the real temperature or chill factor is below 20 degrees. Students, of course, also do not go outside in inclement weather or when the playground is unsafe or unusable. On the playground, students will follow the playground rules and will use the same code of conduct as they do inside the building in respect to the use of the equipment and one another.
 
REPORTING SYSTEM:
Our reporting system includes but is not limited to: report cards, progress reports, and parent-teacher conferences. The reporting system is also supported by collections of work samples, formal or informal evaluations, and verbal or written communication as needed. Report cards are sent home three times a year. They will be produced in an online format and will be made available for parents to access approximately a week from the end of a trimester. Parents will have the option to download report cards at 3:00 (noon on the last day of school) on the day the report cards are sent home, with the window remaining open until the next time report cards are being prepared for the next trimester. If parents do not choose to receive information electronically, a paper copy of the report card will be sent home each trimester. This paper report card can be reviewed and kept at home.  In addition, all students will receive a progress report halfway through the trimester. The progress report is not intended to give you final grades as these could fluctuate in the future depending on future assessments. They are to alert you if your child has a weak subject or study habit to be improved upon before the end of the trimester. In addition, two parent/teacher conferences are used in conjunction with the reporting system. Conferences are highly advised because they give you much more information than a paper report.  
  
SECTION 504:
Section 504 is one part of the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973 barring discrimination against persons with disabilities.  Sebago Elementary School’s Section 504 Officer is the building principal and can be reached at (207)787-3701 ext. 203.

SMOKING/VAPING:  
Sebago Elementary School has declared its school, grounds, and vehicles shall be smoke-free areas.  This means NO SMOKING OR VAPING is allowed by students, employees, or guests to the school any place on school property at any time.  All parties are thanked for adhering to this policy, and thereby setting a good example for students and advancing the health and safety of everyone connected with our school.  
 
SPECIAL EDUCATION:
Annual Child Find Notification:  If you know of a school-age child residing in the town of Sebago whom you suspect may be in need of special education services, you may contact the Sebago Elementary School office at (207)787-3701. If you have concerns about a preschool child who may have special needs and be in need of special education services, please call Child Development Services at 743-9701.  A child’s special needs may be in one or more of the following areas: vision, hearing, speech-language development, social-emotional development, orthopedics, health, learning, or cognition.
Sebago Elementary School provides special education services to students who are eligible.  Every school provides services for school-age children with special needs.  If you have questions about special education services or wish to make a referral for your child, please contact the superintendent’s office at 787-3701.

STUDENT ABUSE/NEGLECT POLICY:
We recognize the abuse and neglect of children as a serious problem in our society.  All of our school personnel are trained in the indicators and dynamics of child abuse and neglect and in the appropriate procedures for dealing with this problem.  Maine Law requires any “teacher, school counselor, or another school official who knows or has reasonable cause to suspect a child has been or is likely to be abused or neglected” to report or to cause a report to be filed immediately with the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).  Parents/guardians are in most cases, but not in all, notified of our intent to make a report to DHHS, depending on the circumstances of the case. Each year your child will receive instruction in this area through our personal safety/health curriculum.  
 
RESPONSE TO INTERVENTION TEAM (RtI):
The Response to Intervention Team is a group of dedicated school professionals whose purpose is to support all staff and students in working to help build our students’ self-esteem, promote responsibility, and provide interventions for improved social and academic achievement.  Members of the team include the principal, guidance counselor, special education teacher as well as regular classroom teachers.  Please contact your child’s teacher for more information.

STUDENT COUNCIL:
To teach our students about citizenship, leadership, and school government, students in grades 4 and 5 can participate in Student Council and represent their class.  The selection process is held early in the fall.  Student Council meetings are usually held during the students’ recess.  Student Council members are a voice for their classmates on school issues and in the past have sponsored family fun events as well as community service projects.  
 
TELEPHONE:
The school phones are used for school business.  It is quite a task to keep lines available in a building serving many people. Students will only be allowed to call home when it is deemed absolutely necessary by the teacher, secretary, or principal.  Students may not use the phone to make after school arrangements.
 
TESTING:
Teachers use a variety of means to regularly assess student skill and progress.  Information gained from these assessments is used by teachers to plan for instruction.  In addition to these classroom assessments, other more formal evaluation means are administered by the school.  The Maine Educational Assessments (MEAs) are administered to students in Grades 3 - 5 annually, as required by the state. As with any formal testing, please make sure your child has a good night’s sleep and a good breakfast each day.   
 
TITLE I PROGRAM:
Title I is a federal program designed to support the core program in reading and math to students identified through an approved screening process. Title I services are intended to reinforce student skills. The screening process includes a review of student work and scores on testing instruments. It is the intent of the Sebago Elementary School Board to provide remedial reading and math services to identified elementary school children. Parents will be informed if their children are recommended for Title I services by school personnel. Written parent permission is required for all testing except tests administered to all students school wide. The parents of a child receiving Title I services will be provided with timely information on their child's progress and placement as well as on methods of instruction. Parents have the right to decline Title I services for their children and the school will honor their requests. If a child no longer qualifies for services based on the approved screening process, the parents will be notified that services have ended.

USE OF SCHOOL FACILITIES:
Non-profit groups may use school facilities such as the conference room, gym, library, cafeteria, playground equipment, and ball fields anytime school is not in session. For more information or to schedule an event, contact the school office to obtain a Facilities Use Form.

VISITORS:
For the safety of students and staff, all visitors and volunteers must report to the office upon entering the building. A visitor’s badge is required to go beyond the office because it is necessary for us to keep track of who is in the building and on school grounds.  Parents may visit their child’s class with prior notice. You can make these arrangements with the classroom teacher in advance. If your visit is to give your child a brief message or drop something off for him/her, let the front office know and we will call your child to the front lobby to speak with you. Please do not walk to your child’s classroom as you will interrupt the teaching in progress. If you need to speak to your child while he/she is at recess, or need to dismiss them from school, come into the school and let the front office know. We will get your child for you from the playground. These are all precautions to account for every student while keeping them safe.   
 
VOLUNTEERS:
Our school has been very fortunate to have an active group of volunteers each year. Volunteers are a vital part of a school. There are many ways in which the schools can use your services.
Please call the school office or contact your child’s teacher if you are interested in volunteering.  



REFERENCES
A complete list of our district policies can be found on Sebago Elementary School website.


FOR PARENTS ONLY

“WHAT IF”......

  • Your child does not get picked up or come home on time:
  • Wait ten minutes, the bus may be running late.
  • Call the school at 787-3701 for students in grades K-5.
  • For students in grades 6-12, please contact the MSAD 61 bus garage at 693-6467.  They can reach your child’s bus driver to verify that your child is on the bus.
  • Your child comes home with a story about something that happened at school that bothers you: call the school and talk with the teacher or principal.
  • Student brings home a report card that is not up to what you expected: call the school and conference with the teacher.  
  • You have a concern about your child’s education: call the school and set up a conference with the teacher. If not resolved, call the school and set up a meeting with the principal.
  • You think your child may have a learning difficulty hindering his/her learning: talk with his/her teacher.  You may refer your child to Special Education for a special education referral.
  • You know your child is having a hard time dealing with a particular family/emotional issue: call the school guidance counselor, to alert her of the problem.  She will talk with your child and will refer you to a specialist if the problem needs further attention.  
  • You are moving out of the district or going on a vacation: notify your child’s teacher and the school office.
      
Sebago Elementary School
283 Sebago Road
Sebago, ME 04029
(207)787-3701 or (207)787-3707
Fax Number: (207)787-2472
Marc Gendron, Superintendent