2016-2017 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What are the school hours?
GWS will be an early start school for the 2017-2018 school year. The school day will begin at 8:20AM and dismissal is at 3:00PM (12:45PM on Thursdays).
Half Day Kindergarten morning session begins at 8:20AM and dismisses at 11:10AM on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Thursday dismissal is at 12:45PM. Lunch is served. The afternoon session begins at 12:05PM and dismisses at 3:00PM on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. There is no afternoon kindergarten on Thursdays. Kindergarten reversal day is Monday, January 22, 2018.
Do I have to notify the school if my child is going to be absent from or late to school?
Yes, please call the school before 9:00AM if your child is going to be absent or late to school. If we do not receive a call, we will try to reach you (parent or guardian) with the Connect Ed System to account for your child.
Please note that a telephone call does not eliminate the requirement for a written absence note when your child returns to school. A physician’s note is required if a student is absent five or more days. Click here to review the MPSD Attendance Policies.
What is the earliest time I can drop my child off at school?
There is no adult supervision prior to 8:00AM. Please do NOT drop your child off before this time. After 8:00AM, students will be supervised in the PA Room until the school buses arrive. (Please contact the office for information about extended day programs)
Where do I drop my child off in the morning?
Student drop off by car should take place on the sidewalk area next to the bike rack. Access to this area should be gained by circling the teacher parking spaces in a counter clockwise manner and by parking parallel to the sidewalk heading out of the parking lot.
What if my child is late for school?
The school day begins at 8:20AM. All students reporting late to school are required to be accompanied by a parent/guardian to the office to check in before going to his/her classroom. For student safety, be advised that there is no GWS staff stationed outside of the building after 8:20AM. The afternoon kindergarten session begins at 12:05PM.
What if I need to dismiss my child during the school day?
If your child is to be dismissed early from school, please send a note to the classroom teacher. This note will then be sent to the office. Parents or guardians need to come into the office to sign their child out in the dismissal book. Be sure to let the school know if someone other than a parent/guardian will be picking up your child. Proper identification may be requested. Your child will be called to the office when you arrive.
What if I need to change my child’s dismissal plan?
All children will go home on their assigned school bus unless the office receives a parental note that indicates your child will be picked up in the car line.
Bus changes are approved on a permanent basis only and the request must be received in writing a minimum of five days in advance. Once a permanent bus change has been approved, students may not switch back to their home bus on days that they are scheduled to go elsewhere. If there is a change, students must be picked up in the car line.
If there is a family emergency, or medical situation, parents should notify the school principal and other transportation arrangements may be made.
All families should be familiar with the complete Transportation Policy which is available on the district website under School Committee- Polices or in the Elementary School Handbook beginning on page 28.
What if I want to pick my child up at the end of the school day?
Send a note to your child’s homeroom teacher indicating that your child should be dismissed to the car line. Please be sure to indicate if someone other than a parent/guardian will be picking up your child. Proper identification may be requested.
Students being picked up from school will be dismissed at 2:50PM (Thursdays at 12:35PM) at the far end of the parking lot out of the grades 3/4 wing door. All vehicles should enter the parking lot and bear right, head toward the playground area at the far end of our parking lot, and then continue to circle around to the door. Drivers should remain in their cars in single file. Staff will see students to their car, and children will enter through a passenger-side door.
Can a friend pick my child up from school?
Please notify the school in writing if someone other than a parent/guardian is going to pick up your child. Proper identification may be required. Please note also that names listed on your child’s Emergency Contact Sheet are used for emergencies only. This form does not authorize these contacts to pick up your child at any other time without parental notification.
Can my child take the bus to a friend’s house?
Students may not change buses or bus stops. Parents may not ask the bus driver to adjust their child’s stop. Please arrange to have the children picked up in the car line.
What if my child goes to the Boys & Girls Club after school?
The Boys & Girls Club has arranged for a school bus to transport students from GWS to the club each day. Once you have signed up for transportation through the club, you must complete a GWS Dismissal Form indicating which days your child will take the Boys & Girls Club bus. Please note that this is considered a permanent bus change and students may not switch back to their home bus on days that they are scheduled to go to the club. If there is a change, students must be picked up in the car line.
When do I need to complete a Dismissal Form?
The Dismissal Form is used to document any permanent changes to your child's regular dismissal plans, such as being picked up in the car line or taking the Boys & Girls Club bus. For parents who car pool, this form is also used to authorize someone other than a parent/guardian to pick up your child from the car line.
What if I am not able to send a note before school?
Please call the school as soon as possible if a change is necessary. The teacher will be notified so that he/she can plan accordingly. We do request that you make every effort to review any changes to your child’s dismissal plans with him/her before school and send a note to your child’s homeroom teacher. Phone calls during the school day interrupt learning in the classroom and may cause confusion.
How do parents stay informed about what is happening at GWS?
- Be sure that the school has a current email address. Email notices are sent to families as new information is added to the school website.
- Read the weekly school notice.
- Check the GWS website regularly.
- Sign up for the GWS PTO email database and family directory. Please note that this is an opt-in program. Families must sign up each year. The school does not provide family contact information to the PTO.
- To conserve resources, GWS uses a “mail carrier” system when paper notices are sent home. The oldest child in each family will receive notices.
May I send in a treat for my child's birthday?
Our staff prefers to conduct "healthy celebrations" that need not involve food, just fun. Please refer to the "Birthdays and Other Celebrations" guidelines on our website. Due to the current nutritional guidelines and a number of food allergies, you must speak to your child's homeroom teacher and the school nurse for approval before planning any celebrations.
How do I contact my child’s teacher?
Please leave a message with the front office. Staff will make every effort to return your call promptly. It is up to each teacher’s discretion whether to communicate via email.