Principal’s Message

Welcome to Kittredge School

We are excited about the 2015 – 2016 school year. Kittredge has a wonderful history of providing excellent education in a safe and nurturing environment. We are pleased that you have chosen Kittredge School and are proud to provide a positive place for your child to grow and blossom.

This handbook is designed to serve as a reference guide of the school’s expectations and is intended for your use throughout the year. Clear communication between parents and the School is animportant part of a successful year. It is our desire that our school and its families work together.

The Kittredge tradition is successful and has benefited many children and their families. Everyone here is dedicated to the principles that have established Kittredge School as a positive and successful academic institution.

After you review this handbook closely with your child, please sign and return the acknowledgment form along with the other release and waiver forms that are in your Summer Mailing packet. A self addressed stamped envelope has been included in that mailing for your convenience.


2015/2016 Parent – Student Handbook

GOALS: Kittredge School strives to provide a nurturing, diverse educational environment in which its students pursue academic excellence with an emphasis on individual creativity, resourcefulness and responsibility. The School focuses on the intellectual, physical and social growth of the individual student.

The specific goals of the School include:

  • Instill an appreciation for education and love of learning in each child.
  • Emphasize the fundamentals of how to study, organize material, listen, think, reason and work independently.
  • Teach children to read with understanding in order to attain a strong foundation in English, mathematics, history and science.
  • Introduce students to the Spanish language and culture.
  • Provide direction while encouraging students to use initiative, develop self-discipline and responsibility.
  • Expose students and parents to the Habits of Mind, in order to facilitate use of the Habits in their daily lives.
  • Encourage students to speak in front of others to aid the development of poise and self-confidence.
  • Help each child develop writing skills with an emphasis on composition, creative writing, grammar, clarity, spelling and penmanship.
  • Provide the specific skills necessary for success in high school, as well as counseling to assist in appropriate placement.

CURRICULUM: The major objective of the curriculum is to help students master the basic academic subjects and to develop strong study habits, thus setting a firm foundation for a well-rounded education.

The basic curriculum includes English (creative writing, grammar, composition and spelling), reading and literature, mathematics, social studies and science. Spanish, performing arts, computer skills, art and physicaleducation are also integral parts of the Kittredge School curriculum.

SCHOOL DAY: Kittredge School hours are Monday to Friday from 8:40am to 3:00pm for kindergarten through 5th grade, and from 8:30am to 3:00pm for 6th, 7th and 8th grades.

Kittredge School offers an Extended Day Program that provides supervised educational and recreational opportunities before school beginning at 7:45am, and in the afternoon until 6:00pm. Students arriving at school before 8:20am should use the 25th Avenue entrance. The front door on Lake Street opens at 8:20am.

HOMEWORK: Homework is assigned at the teacher’s discretion to prepare for and/or reinforce classroom activities. It is a vital part of a student’s educational program. We ask that parents provide ample time for their child to complete the assignments as well as a suitable environment, away from interruptions. Below is the approximate homework times estimated for daily assignments.

Grades K & 1  15 – 20 minutes  Grades 2 & 3  25 – 45 minutes
Grades 4 & 5  45 – 75 minutes  Grades 6, 7 & 8  60 – 120 minutes

Homework is assigned Monday through Thursday, for all grades. Some assignments and long-term projects may need to be completed during weekends and holidays, especially in the Middle School grades. In addition to the assigned homework, students are expected to read nightly.

STUDY HALL: An afternoon Study Hall is available Monday through Thursday, from 3:15 to 4:30 PM. Students are not allowed to leave the school grounds unsupervised between 3:00 and 3:15. Quiet classrooms provide students both the time and the setting to complete assigned work under a teacher’s supervision.

ABSENCE PROCEDURES: Parents must contact the office before 9:00am the morning of any day on which their child will not be attending school. If we have not heard from home regarding an absence, we will call the parent for verification. Please keep your child at home for 24 hours after a fever.

When it is known that the child will be out for any length of time, parents are asked to notify the school as far in advance as possible. The teacher will assign work to help offset that which the child will miss.

Please note that if your child is absent during the school day, he or she will not be allowed to participate in scheduled after school activities, including sports.


ATTENDANCE:
Good attendance and promptness are important habits to cultivate for a lifetime. Kittredge School asks that our families work with us to help our students develop these habits. Much important learning happens during class. This work is impossible to duplicate in homework assignments.  Parents are urged to plan family vacations during official school vacations. Twenty absences may result in a student not matriculating.

If your child is to be picked up by someone other than a person designated on your Parent Contact Sheet, we ask that written permission be submitted to the office identifying that person.

STUDENT CONDUCT:  Kittredge School places a high priority on students assuming responsibility for their behavior and treating others with respect. Students are expected to be courteous, honest, cooperative, considerate and well mannered. Behavior that conflicts with these values is not condoned and will be subject to counseling and possible disciplinary action. Examples of specific conduct that will not be tolerated include the following:

  • Dishonesty of any kind, whether it involves stealing, lying or plagiarism.
  • “Mean girl” behavior, including but not limited to bullying.
  • Harassment, or unkind behavior directed at another student, especially if it causes physical or emotional harm.
  • Violent behavior or behavior that recklessly disregards or ignores the sensitivities and safety of others.
  • Use or sale of illegal drugs, alcohol or tobacco.
  • Vandalism and defacement of property.
  • Profane, obscene or demeaning language at school or on the playground, field trips or sporting events.
  • Bringing prohibited items to school, the playground or school events, including laser pointers, lighters, markers, and weapons including but not limited to pocket knives, or illegal paraphernalia.

DISCIPLINE:  Kittredge School recognizes the necessity of self-discipline in order for a student to progress to her/his maximum potential. Discipline is approached with a positive attitude and is based on the premise that everyone at Kittredge respects each other, the school and the educational process. Our goal is to help each student recognize his/her obligations to appropriate citizenship. Through discussed standards and effective modeling by concerned staff, students learn the balance between freedom and responsibility.

Kittredge School’s goal is to solve behavior problems before they occur by using positive modeling by the staff, redirecting behavior, and giving positive reinforcement through attention and praise. Positive and consistent class and school rules allow the students to know what is expected of them.

If the student is unable to follow the classroom rules set by the teacher, or the playground rules set by the school, the teacher will bring the concerns to the principal. Parents will be informed and a plan will be designed to work together to reach a solution that will best serve all parties.

Ultimately, Kittredge School reserves the right in its sole discretion to suspend or dismiss a child in the interests of the school community.

PLAYGROUND RULES: Rochambeau Play ground is used for recess breaks and for P.E. classes.

All children are to go to and from the playground supervised by a teacher or coach. We respect that the street is dangerous and there are other pedestrians present.

There is no running or bouncing of balls on the way to and from the playground and no student may leave the playground without the supervising adult’s permission.

There is no eating on the playground without teacher permission and no personal toys or special belongings should be brought out side. Skateboards, bikes and roller-skates are never allowed on the playground and must be stored in the principal’s office during the school day. No bats or hard balls are allowed at school with exceptions for organized school sports activities.

Kittredge School has always had a positive relationship with the city and the playground support staff. We continue to do so by asking our students to respect the neighborhood children who share the playground with us.

Students and families who use Rochambeau playground after school are asked to follow our playground rules for safety and continuity.

TELEPHONE PRIVILEGES: Cell phones must be turned off and kept in a student’s backpack when they enter school. Parents and students should not be using cell phones to communicate during school hours. These devices prove highly distracting to the student and to the class in general and will be held in the principal’s office if they are heard or seen in the building or on the playground.

With this in mind, please be sure your daughter/son knows by whom she/he will be picked up and at what time before she/he comes to school. Parents may leave messages at the front desk for their children, but except for emergencies, students will not be called out of class to receive telephone calls.

DRESS CODE: The Kittredge staff feels that clean and appropriate school attire contributes to a positive learning environment. Kittredge hopes to provide positive expectations and some guidance to students so that they feel comfortable, perform well and know the types of dress and makeup that are appropriate to a positive learning environment. Excessive makeup and flamboyant/unnatural hair color are not allowed.

Any article of clothing, jewelry or adornment which disturbs the educational process is prohibited, including, but not limited to, those with expressions, pictures or words which are taken as being violent or offensive to others or having sexual connotations. This includes clothing that may display specific or generic advertisements for drugs, beer, other alcoholic beverages or tobacco products. Halter tops, crop tops, oversized tank tops, tops with spaghetti straps, and excessively baggy or ripped pants are not to be worn at school. Midriffs must be covered at all times. Wallet chains are also not allowed at school.

Hats, caps and sunglasses are not to be worn in the classroom at any time. For safety reasons, flip-flops, high heels and slick soled shoes should not be worn. Students are required to wear tennis shoes in P.E. classes

COMMUNICATION AND STUDENT PROGRESS: Communication between parents, teachers and students is important at Kittredge. Day-to-day informal communication is made easier by the student/teacher ratio and relatively small size of the school. Formal communication is accomplished by two scheduled parent-teacher conferences during the year. A Back to School Night for parents is scheduled one evening each September.
Kittredge School’s administration publishes a newsletter, the Kittredge Konnection, to keep parents informed of happenings around the school. The students also publish a newspaper, the Kittredge Kronicle, which is distributed to the school community.

Report cards are issued three times per year at the end of each trimester. Letter grades are introduced in the fourth/fifth grade classroom, and the Honor Roll is open to sixth through eighth graders.

A national standardized test (ERB) is administered to 3rd through 8th grade students once a year. Internally, it is used to assess progress and to enable our students to become comfortable with test-taking procedures. This test information is also used by high schools to assess students for admission.

PERSONAL BELONGINGS, LOST AND FOUND: Toys or special belongings may be brought to school only on teacher-designated sharing days. We request that students not bring money, jewelry, radios, CDs, cameras or toys of any value to school. Kittredge School is not responsible for any personal belongings brought to school. Personal stereos may not be used during school hours. We discourage the lending of personal belongings. If a student does loan a personal item, the student, not the school, is responsible for it. If a child wears glasses or a retainer, it is his/her responsibility to keep track of them at all times. Please place your child’s name on all personal belongings. Students who find lost articles are asked to take them to the office. At the end of each quarter, we donate the items we have accumulated to a local charity. Please check the container if your child has lost an article of clothing

Please place your child’s name on all personal belongings. Students who find lost articles are asked to take them to the office. At the end of each quarter, we donate the items we have accumulated to a local charity. Please check the container if your child has lost an article of clothing.

CARE OF PROPERTY: In the event of damage to School or another individual’s property by a student’s intentional or careless conduct, the student’s parents will be responsible for the cost of repair or replacement, in addition to any discipline imposed on the student.

PARENTS ON CAMPUS AND ROOM PARENTS: Kittredge welcomes parent involvement in the School and volunteers in the classroom, on the playground, at sporting events and field trips in a healthy, supportive role for the entire student body. The School reserves the right to limit individual parent participation in its sole discretion in the interests of its students.

SCHOOL DIRECTORY: Kittredge School’s student directory is a confidential, exclusive listing to be used only for approved School purposes. No individual is permitted to use any portion of the directory for the purpose of engaging in mass communication or solicitation of the individuals listed in the directory. Violation of this provision by a parent could result in the removal of the parent’s child from the school community. All students will be listed in the school directory unless specifically requested otherwise.

BIRTHDAY PARTIES: If you would like to send a treat for your child to share with classmates on his or her birthday, please get the teacher’s approval in advance so that the teacher can plan accordingly. If your child is inviting the whole class to a birthday party outside of school, the invitations may be given out at school. However, if your child is not inviting all of his or her classmates, please send the invitations through the mail so that no one’s feelings are hurt.

EARTHQUAKE, CRISIS AND DISASTER EMERGENCIES: The School has organized plans for earthquake response, crisis management and other disaster emergencies. The School has short-term supplies and water for the entire student body and staff. Parent cooperation in emergency situations is vital for the safety of all involved. In the event of an emergency, students will be held at the School or, if the School is not habitable, all students and staff will go to the playground. Do NOT take your child from School in an emergency without clearly informing a responsible staff person. If a sign out procedure is in operation, you must comply so that the School is not needlessly searching for your child. Parents with cell phones and paging numbers should list their phone numbers on the School’s emergency contact form for use in locating them in an emergency.

 HEALTH AND SAFETY: Staff members are trained in first aid and can take care of everyday bumps and bruises. Should emergency action be needed, the student’s parent will be notified as soon as the circumstances of the situation permit. If a parent cannot be reached in case of an emergency, the other numbers listed on the student’s emergency card will be called. If necessary, the child will be taken to the nearest hospital (Pacific Medical Center Emergency Room at the corner of Buchanan and Sacramento Streets).

A student who becomes ill at school will be made comfortable until the student can be released to his/her parent. If your child is exposed to a contagious disease, we ask that you inform the office so that other parents can be informed of possible exposure and watch for symptoms.

If medication needs to be given to a student during the school day, it must be brought to the office in a dated child-safe container. To dispense medication we must have written authorization and instructions from the parent or doctor.

Fire drills are held monthly. Students are carefully instructed on what to do in case of a fire or other emergency. Evacuation plans are clearly posted throughout the school for all concerned.

We encourage families to send healthy food items with their children for lunches and snacks. Please be aware that students cannot bring gum or candy to school at any time. Students are asked not to swap food items.

In response to our awareness that there can be drug and alcohol abuse among pre-adolescent and adolescent youth, and in recognition of the fact that drug and alcohol use is illegal, dangerous and a critical breach of discipline, Kittredge School supports the following statement of policy for school and non-school related issues of drug, alcohol and tobacco use:

• Kittredge encourages self-disclosure or parent disclosure of student drug, alcohol or tobacco use so that the student may obtain appropriate guidance and intervention. In such cases, the School will endeavor to treat the situation with confidentiality.

• If any student is found to possess drugs, including alcohol or tobacco, the principal will be notified immediately. The principal will then notify the student’s parents at the first opportunity.

• If a student is found to not only be in possession but also to be using drugs, alcohol, or tobacco, the school will work with the family for appropriate resolution. This would include counseling along with the possibility of suspension, expulsion and/or notification of proper authorities.

• Upon any subsequent offense, or if the sale of drugs is discovered at any time, the student will be expelled from school immediately, and the proper authorities will be notified.

POLICY ON VIOLENCE IN THE SCHOOL/WORKPLACE ENVIRONMENT: Violence in schools and work environments has become an increasingly troublesome concern throughout the country. It is extremely important that all students and employees cooperate with the School in order to minimize this potential threat to our community.

Please immediately report to a teacher, an administrator or the Principal any concerns or information you have which could lead to violence within our community. This includes potential or actual threats by anyone, including fellow students or employees, former students or employees, their relatives as well as former friends. Weapons of any kind are absolutely prohibited on campus or at School events. The possession of a weapon by anyone at School or at a School event should be reported immediately. Likewise, discussion of any plan or intent to bring a weapon on campus or to a School event should be reported immediately. If a student, a student’s parent, or an employee becomes aware of any actual violence, imminent violence or threat of imminent violence, you should immediately report the information to the School and, where appropriate, to the police. The School will endeavor to maintain the privacy of any confidential information shared with us. Students, parents and employees may report any incidents of weapons, violence or threats of violence without fear of reprisal.

Also be aware of persons loitering for no apparent reason (including in walkways, entrances/exits, service areas, backyard and playground). Report any suspicious persons or activities to a teacher, administrator or Principal without delay.

POLICY ON SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND OTHER PROHIBITED HARRASSMENT: Kittredge School prohibits sexual harassment of any student or employee at school by anyone. Off-campus sexual harassment of any student or employee by anyone connected with the School is also prohibited. While teachers will discuss this policy with their students in age-appropriate ways, it is the responsibility of each employee and each student [where the child is capable of doing so] to read and abide by this policy. Under no circumstance is a student or employee expected to endure any form of sexual harassment or any other kind of prohibited harassment as described in this handbook. No teacher, administrator, other employee or student is allowed to engage in any form of sexual harassment of a student or employee of the School on or off the campus at any time. Sexual harassment by a visitor at the School likewise is prohibited.

No teacher, administrator, other employee or adult visitor of the School shall make sexual advances to a student whether welcomed or not.

Similarly, any harassment based on race, color, ancestry, national origin, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, medical conditions related to genetic characteristics or cancer, marital status, or veteran status is strictly prohibited.

As defined by the State of California, prohibited sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature made by someone from or in the work or educational setting, under any of the following conditions:

• Submission to the conduct is explicitly or implicitly made a term or a condition of an individual’s employment, academic status, or progress.

• Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as the basis of employment or academic decisions affecting the individual.

• The conduct has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact upon the individual’s work or academic performance, or of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or educational environment.

• Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as the basis for any decision affecting the individual regarding benefits and services, honors, programs, or activities available at or through the educational institution.

Prohibited sexual harassment also includes, but is not limited to the following types of behavior:

• Verbal conduct such as epithets, derogatory jokes, innuendoes, comments or slurs of a sexual nature, unwanted sexual advances, invitations or comments.

• Visual conduct such as sexually oriented posters, cartoons, photography, drawings or electronically generated material.

• Non-verbal conduct such as leering, staring at sexual body parts or making sexually suggestive gestures.

• Physical conduct such as unwanted touching, blocking normal movement or assault.

• Threats or demands to submit to sexual requests as a condition of employment or academic status, or to avoid some other loss, and offers of employment or academic benefits in return for sexual favors.

• Retaliation for reporting, threatening to report or for participating in a sexual harassment investigation.

The determination of what constitutes sexual harassment will depend on specific facts and the context in which the conduct occurs. Sexual harassment may take many forms. It can be subtle and indirect, or blatant and overt. It can occur between people of either gender, between peers, or between individuals in a hierarchical relationship. A single incident could be grounds for discharge or expulsion, depending upon its severity.

If you believe that you have been or are being harassed sexually or because of any of the other reasons listed above (race, color, ancestry, etc.), you should immediately speak with one of the Committee Members or alternate person, as listed below, so that the matter can be investigated promptly and appropriate corrective action can be taken. Also, if you have a question or concern about harassment, please speak with one of the Committee Members.

Do not tolerate any form of harassment. Tell the harasser to stop, if you feel able to do so, and promptly speak with a Committee Member or alternate person, as listed below. If you have previously tolerated or permitted the conduct and now you would like it to stop, speak up – tell the harasser to stop and immediately speak with a Committee Member or alternate person. Your communication pursuant to this policy will be handled in a manner that respects the privacy of the parties concerned to the extent permitted by the situation. The School prohibits retaliatory behavior against anyone who complains or participates in the complaint process.

If harassment is established, the offender will be disciplined. If the harasser is an employee, the individual will be disciplined up to and including discharge. If the harasser is a student, the individual will be disciplined up to and including expulsion. If the harasser is a visitor or someone not directly connected to the School, the individual will be dealt with appropriately, such as permanent prohibition from visiting the School and possible prosecution.

Kittredge School’s Harassment/Discrimination Prevention Committee Members are Wayne Riddle, Terry Young, and Debra Dharmer. If a student or employee is not comfortable speaking with one of the above-named Committee Members, you are welcome to speak directly with the Principal of the School at any time. If you do not feel listened to or you are not satisfied with the action taken by the Committee, please promptly speak directly with the Principal.

The School encourages all employees and students to report immediately any incident of harassment or discrimination forbidden by law so that complaints can be promptly addressed and fairly resolved. You also should be aware that the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigate and prosecute complaints of prohibited harassment in employment. If you think you have been harassed or that you have been retaliated against for resisting or complaining, you may file a complaint with the appropriate agency or telephone them for information about their rules and procedures for reporting charges of sexual harassment and for pursuing available remedies. The nearest office is listed under the government listings of your local telephone directory.

PARENT RESPONSIBILITIES: Parents are expected to conduct themselves in a responsible manner in their interactions with the School community and to adhere to the following:

• Read this handbook and comply with its policies.

• Take an active role in your child’s personal development.

• Discuss the policies in this handbook with your children to ensure they understand them.

• Reinforce the School’s rules and policies with your children.

• Help your children arrive at school on time and with everything they need for the day.

• Model good behavior, including respect, integrity, sensitivity and a willingness to listen to your child and to others; conversely, avoid modeling bad behavior, including anger, inconsistency, ridicule or abuse.

• Act on recommendations of teachers and the principal regarding your children’s needs, including referrals to physicians, learning specialists, tutors and counselors.

• Raise concerns you have directly with the classroom teacher or appropriate staff member in a timely and respectful manner, seeking additional assistance or intervention from the principal when needed.

• Sign the permission and acknowledgement forms and help your child return them promptly.