Vickery Creek Elementary - 2020-2021 Student Handbook & District Policies Great happens here - Forsyth ...

 
Vickery Creek Elementary - 2020-2021 Student Handbook & District Policies Great happens here - Forsyth ...
Great happens here

                   Vickery Creek Elementary
                             2020-2021

            Student Handbook & District Policies

6280 Post Road                770) 346-0040   (770) 346-0045 fax

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Vickery Creek Elementary - 2020-2021 Student Handbook & District Policies Great happens here - Forsyth ...
2020-2021 Elementary School Student Handbook
                District Information

                    Dr. Jeffrey Bearden, Superintendent
                     Forsyth County Board of Education
                        Mr. Wesley McCall (District 1)
            Ms. Kristin Morrissey (District 2), Board Chairperson
                        Mr. Tom Cleveland (District 3)
                         Ms. Darla Light (District 4)
              Ms. Nancy Roche (District 5), Vice Chairperson

                       Main Phone: 770-887-2461
                   Transportation Phone: 770-888-1234
                      Website: www.forsyth.k12.ga.us

                        School Information

                        Kristan Riedinger, Principal
                     Sandy Wells, Assistant Principal
                  Lindsey Richardson, Assistant Principal

                        Main Phone: 770-346-0040
                            Fax: 770-346-0045
          Website: http://www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/vickerycreekelem

      Mission Statement for Vickery Creek Elementary:

A community igniting the joy of learning and inspiring leaders

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Index

AGE REQUIREMENTS
ATTENDANCE
Absences
Consequences
Make-Up Work
Late Check-In or Early Check-Out
BEFORE and AFTER SCHOOL CARE – Viking Village
BUILDING HOURS
CAFETERIA PROGRAM
       Breakfast
       Meal Accounts
       Free & Reduced Meals
CHANGES IN SCHOOL RECORDS/INFORMATION
CLINIC & HEALTH
       Hospital Homebound
       Medications
       Wellness Policy
COMMUNICATION
COUNSELING
DISCRIMINATION/HARASSMENT REPORTING
DISMISSAL
DRESS CODE
EARLY RELEASE
EQUITY
FERPA AND PPRA NOTICES
FIELD TRIPS
GRADING AND REPORTING
       Honor Roll / Merit Roll
       Placement & Promotion
LOST AND FOUND
MEDIA CENTER
OUT OF DISTRICT POLICY
PARENT NOTICE OF TEACHER QUALIFICATIONS
PARENT – TEACHER COMMUNICATION
       Conferences
       Curriculum
       Homework
PARENT AND LOCAL INVOLVEMENT
PARTIES
RESIDENCY REQUIREMENTS AND ADDRESS CHANGES
RESPONSIBLE USE GUIDELINES FOR FCS COMMUNITY

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SAFETY
      Campus Crime Stoppers
      Emergency Evacuation of Campus
      Emergency Notification to
      Parents/Guardians
      School Closing and Delayed Opening Information
      Early Dismissal Information
      Emergency Response to Life Threatening Asthma or Allergic
      Reactions False Public Alarms
      Gang Related
      Activity
      Possession of
      Weapon Student
      Searches
SCHOOL REGISTRATION/ENROLLMENT REQUIREMENTS
SPECIAL SERVICES and PROGRAMS
      Early Intervention
      ESOL
      Horizons
      Occupational/Physical Therapy
      Speech
      Student Support
      Section 504
      Georgia Special Needs
      Scholarship
      Public School Choice
      Private School Choice Option
STUDENT DISCIPLINE
TELEPHONES
TRANSPORTATION CHANGES and PROCEDURES
      VCE Policy
      Board Policy
      Morning Drop Off / Afternoon Pick up
      Car Line
      Late Arrival
      Late Pick Up
VISITATION
VOLUNTEERS
WALKING STUDENTS TO THE CLASSROOM
WITHDRAWAL POLICY

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5
VCE Office Staff

Admin Assistant/    Linda Bell          180121        lbell@forsyth.k12.ga.us
Records

Bookkeeper          Lesia Richert        180125           lrichert@forsyth.k12.ga.us

Receptionist /      Kelly Brown         180100            kebrown@forsyth.k12.ga.us
Transportation

Receptionist /      Ann Waters          180103            awaters@forsyth.k12.ga.us
Attendance

                             VCE PTO Board 2020-2021

President                           Tara Peterson                   jtnrdh@gmail.com

Vice President                      Meg Ford                        megford85@gmail.com

Treasurer                           Krystle Ulanch                  krystle.ulanch@gmail.com

Secretary                           Julianne Vogt                   Julianne.brock4@gmail.com

Parliamentarian                     Kim Parisi                      kim.parisi@gmail.com

VP Volunteers                       Janelle Pucciarelli             janellerene44@hotmail.com

VP Fundraising                      Richa Sharma                    richapsharma@gmail.com

VP Communications                   Holly Crawshaw                  hcrawshaw@thinkorange.com

VP Membership                       Brandy Craig                    brandybcraig@gmail.com

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VCE PTO Committee Chairs 2020-2021

Redemptions Chair               Shannon Burch    sburch4410@yahoo.com

Principal Pal                   Selena Lewis     skeremes2@gmail.com

Spirit Wear Chair               Amber Couch      amber.b.couch@gmail.com

Family Dance Chair

Yearbook Chair                  Laura Lavin      jllavin@bellsouth.net

Movie Night Chair

Bingo Chair                     Jessica Lacy     Jessica.frickey@gmail.com

Ice Cream Social Chair

5th Grade Committee Co-Chairs   Melissa Tirico   truedawg25@gmail.com
                                Katie De Vita    kdevita77@gmail.com

Hospitality                     Selena Lewis     skeremes2@gmail.com

Candy Grams

Community Relations

Outdoor Chair                   Beth Joice       ejoice@att.net

Honoring Our Heros Chair

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VCE / FCBOE General Information

                                 AGE REQUIREMENT

Children who will be five years of age on or before September 1st will be admitted to
kindergarten. Those who are six on or before September 1st may be admitted to first grade.
Any student entering from a private school or home school will be evaluated by VCE staff to
determine appropriate instructional grade placement.

                            ATTENDANCE /ABSENCES

Student Attendance

Forsyth County Board of Education considers regular school attendance essential to student
achievement.

 In responding to student attendance issues, the school system shall comply with all
requirements of state law, State Board of Education rules, and the Student Attendance
Protocol that has been developed by the county’s Student Attendance Protocol Committee.

As permitted under the State Board of Education Rule 160-5-1-.10, the Georgia Compulsory
Education Law O.C.G.A. § 20-2-690.1, and Forsyth County Board of Education policy, please
see the following:

Attendance

All children who are between their sixth and sixteenth birthdays and reside in Forsyth County
shall enter school on the opening date and attend regularly thereafter or be enrolled in
private school or a home study program which meets the requirements of state law. All
children enrolled for 20 school days or more in a public school prior to their sixth birthday
shall become subject to the compulsory attendance law even though they have not attained
six years of age.

If the school system is made aware that a child between the ages of six and sixteen or any
child who has enrolled for twenty school days or more in a public school prior to their sixth
birthday is not enrolled in public school, private school, or a home study program, the
Superintendent has the authority and responsibility to file proceedings in court to enforce the
mandatory education law.

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Excused Absences

Student Attendance

   1. Personal illness or attendance in school that endangers a student’s health or
      the health of others.
   2. A serious illness or death in a student’s immediate family necessitating absence
      from school.
   3. A court order or an order by a governmental agency, including pre-induction physical
      examinations for service in the armed forces, mandating absence from school.
   4. The observance of religious holidays, necessitating absence from school.
   5. Conditions rendering attendance impossible or hazardous to student health or safety.
   6. A scheduled medical, dental or eye examination of the student.
   7. Registering to vote or voting.
   8. Visiting with a parent or legal guardian who is in the military service in the
      armed forces and has been called to duty for or is on leave from overseas
      deployment to a combat zone or combat support post. The student may be
      excused for a maximum of five (5) days per school year.

A student shall be counted present when they are serving as a page in the Georgia General
Assembly. Students shall be counted present when they volunteer to work as poll officers during
any primary, special or general election. Foster care students shall be counted present at school
when attending court proceedings related to the student’s foster care.

With proper medical verification, a student may be eligible for hospital / homebound instruction
as outlined in State Board of Education rule 160-4-2-.31 hospital / homebound instruction. A
student receiving hospital homebound services will be considered present.

The student's parent or guardian shall submit to the principal or principal's designee a written
notice stating the specific date(s) and reason(s) for a student's absence from school. The notice
must be signed by the parent or guardian and must be to the principal or principal's
designee within five (5) school days after the student returns to school. An absence for which a
written notice is not received from the student's parent or guardian, or is received after the five-
day time limit, will be considered an unexcused absence.

The principal may require students to present appropriate medical or other documentation upon
return to school for the purpose of validating that absences are excused.

Unexcused Absences

A student’s absence from school or class for any reason other than those listed above will be
considered an unexcused absence.

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Grades and Absences

Grades shall not be penalized because of absences. However, the student is responsible for
completing his/her work.

   1. The student has five (5) school days upon returning to school to complete make-up
      work. The teacher has the discretion to grant a longer period to make up work, if there
      are extenuating circumstances.

Notification Policies and Procedures to Reduce Unexcused Absences

If a student has excessive absences, early check-outs, and/or late check-ins, the student
and/or the parent may be referred to the School Social Worker, Juvenile Court, State Court,
and/or Department of Family and Children Services. A parent/guardian who violates the
compulsory attendance law shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof,
shall be subject to a fine not less than $25.00 and not greater than $100.00, imprisonment not
to exceed 30 days, community service, or any combination of such penalties at the discretion
of the court having jurisdiction. Each day’s absence from school is considered a violation.

   1. The school system requires its schools to provide to the parent, guardian, or other
      person having control or charge of each student enrolled in school a written
      summary of possible consequences and penalties for failing to comply with
      compulsory attendance. By September 1 of each school year or within 30 school
      days of a student’s enrollment in the school system, the parent, guardian, or other
      person having control or charge of such student will be asked to sign a statement
      indicating receipt of such written statement of possible consequences and
      penalties. In addition, students age ten or older by September 1 must sign a
      statement indicating receipt of written statement of possible consequences for non-
      compliance to the local board policy. After two reasonable attempts to notify the
      parent, guardian or other person who has charge of the student, the school system
      shall send written notice via certified mail with return receipt requested or first-class
      mail.
   2. The school system requires its schools to notify the parent, guardian or other person
      who has control or charge of the student when such student has five unexcused
      absences. The notice will outline the penalty and consequences of such absences
      and that each subsequent absence will constitute a separate offense. After two
      reasonable attempts to notify the parent, guardian or other person who has charge
      of the student, the school system will send written notice via certified mail with
      return receipt requested or first-class mail.
   3. Students shall be notified through the student codes of conduct of the definition of
      truancy and a summary of possible consequences and penalties for truancy.

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Truancy and Excessive Excused Absences

Truant is defined as any student subject to compulsory attendance who during the school
calendar has more than five days of unexcused absences. School days missed as a result of
an out of school suspension shall not count as unexcused days for the purpose of
determining student truancy.

Truancy and excessive excused absences will be handled with the protocol that was
developed by the county-wide Student Attendance Protocol Committee.

Student Attendance Protocol Committee

   1. The superintendent or the superintendent’s designee shall fully and actively assist in
      the planning, implementation and evaluation activities of the local school system
      student attendance protocol committee.

   2. The superintendent, a certificated school employee, a local school board member
      and a certificated school social worker shall serve on the student attendance
      protocol committee.

   3. The local board of education shall consider and publicly announce its decisions
      regarding the recommendations of the student attendance protocol committee.

   4. The local board of education shall report annual student attendance rates to the
      student attendance protocol committee and the State Board of Education by
      September 1 following each school year.

   5. The superintendent shall be responsible for providing a copy of the written student
      attendance protocol and any revisions or amendments.

Late Check-in or Early Check-out:

An unexcused late check-in or early check-out is defined as any time a student arrives late to
school or leaves school early for a reason other than those defined by the State Board of
Education as an excused absence. A combination of three unexcused late check-ins and/or
early check-outs will be considered one unexcused absence. When possible, medical and
dental appointments should be made outside of school hours. If a student is being checked in
or checked out for a doctor’s appointment, physician’s note or appointment card is required
within 5 school days to be considered excused. After the tenth late check-in or early check-
out, a physician’s note or appointment card is required within 5 school days to be considered
excused.

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Check-in:     Parents must sign their child in upon late arrival.

Check-out:    All check-outs must occur before 1:45 p.m. at the reception counter. If it is
              necessary for a student to check-out early due to illness, the student must be
              assessed by the school nurse and meet assessment criteria for the school to
              excuse the absence.

              If a student must be absent from school for a portion of the school day, the
              student will be released from school only to parent(s) or a parent designee with
              written authorization. Parent(s) or parent designees are asked to sign their child
              out at the front reception center. The student will remain in the classroom until
              the teacher is notified by the receptionist to release the student. An early
              dismissal is defined as any time a student with parental permission leaves school
              prior to the end of the school day at 2:20 p.m.

It is the responsibility of the parent(s)/ guardian(s) to submit a Medical note or written
excuse to the front office within five (5) school days for the student’s absence to be
considered excused. The note must include must the student’s name, the date(s) of
absence(s), and the reason for the absence. The principal may require students to present
appropriate medical or other documentation upon return to school for the purpose of
validating that absences are excused.

*Please send in the written excuse upon the student’s return or you may send an
email to vceattendance@forsyth.k12.ga.us

*If an excuse is not received, the absence will remain unexcused.
                Please Note: We do NOT accept phone calls as an excuse.

In case of extended illness, hospitalization or injury, the parent should apply for hospital
homebound service. Hospital homebound service should be applied for immediately
when absences of ten (10) days or more are anticipated for the student.

                *If you have questions/concerns regarding attendance contact
                Ann Waters ext. 180103 or email her at awaters@forsyth.k12.ga.us

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BEFORE / AFTER SCHOOL CARE

Before and After school care is being provided by VCES. Please visit our website
https://www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/domain/1556. If you have any questions, please contact Linda
Bell at (770) 346-0040 x 180121. Registration is required prior to being enrolled in the
program. Drop-ins are not accepted.

                                   BUILDING HOURS

Office hours are: 7:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
School hours are: 7:40 a.m. - 2:20 p.m.
School doors open at 7:10 a.m. Only students in the Before School Program can be dropped
off before 7:10 a.m located in the cafe. Parents and visitors will be required to show
identification in order to gain access in the Forsyth County Schools Raptor Sign-In System and
are always required to wear an Identification Badge while in the building .

                                CAFETERIA PROGRAM

The Vickery Creek Café offers nutritious meals for breakfast and lunch. Please refer to the VCES
website for specific details about the nutrition program and school menus.

Students may prepay any amount, at any time, and their purchases will be debited from their
balance. Students may buy extra items for lunch. If parents wish to designate that students
only use their meal account balance for breakfast and/or lunch (and not use this money for extra
sale items, such as chips, PowerAde, Fruitopia, etc.), parents must notify the Café Manager, Vicky
Scott, in writing.

Frozen treats are also available for purchase, but it may not be charged to a student’s account.
Students may purchase frozen treats through the cafeteria line during their lunch period.

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Breakfast Program at VCE:

Beginning at 7:10 a.m. the bell rings for all students to be released to their homerooms.
Students wanting to purchase breakfast may go directly to the lunchroom at 7:10, pick up their
breakfast and then go directly to homeroom to eat.

Canned Drinks:
Forsyth County Food Services and VCE administration respectfully request that drinks be sent
in a thermos as opposed to a can. This prevents injuries that may be caused when a child opens
an aluminum can; it also prevents carbonated drinks from bursting. By asking your child to
purchase or bring a healthy drink of milk, fruit juice, or water, we reinforce the food pyramid
which is taught in class.

Lunch Visitors:
In response to COVID-19, we are not accepting visitors at this time.

Automated Meal Account:
Each school has an automated system that is able to track the payment and purchasing
activity of each individual student’s account. Meals may be pre-paid for the week, month, or
even the year. Prepayment is encouraged because it eliminates the daily handling of money
for the child and reduces the time the student must stand in line waiting, providing them
more time to enjoy their meal.

Students may purchase meals and extra foods sold through the School Nutrition Program with
funds debited from their meal account. If parents/guardians wish to limit the use of their
child’s account to meals only, each school year parents/guardians must send a written
note to the school’s cafeteria manager stating that their child will not be allowed to
purchase extra items from their meal account. If this restriction is applied to the
account, all extra items selected will require cash at the time of purchase.

Parents/guardians or siblings having lunch with a student may not use the funds on the
student meal account to pay for guest meals. Guests may cover their meals with a check or
cash.

Pre-payment by Debit or Credit Card via the Internet:

To prepay for a child’s meals online using a valid credit/check card, Parents/guardians must
use the student identification number and school name to register and place money on their
child’s account. If parents/guardians do not know their child’s student ID, contact the school’s
front office. To learn more about paying on-line, visit www.mypaymentsplus.com.

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Meal Charge Policy:

Only students in elementary will be allowed to charge up to the equivalent of five (5) meals.
No ala carte purchases may be charged to the student's meal account, except milk or carton
juice when a meal is brought from home. A charge notice will be completed and sent home to
the parent/guardian through the student. To assist parents, student account balances can be
monitored any time via www.mypaymentsplus.com regardless of whether you use the online
funding option, send cash or pay with a check. When the manager has sent home the third
notification with no success in collection of outstanding charges, the principal or counselor
will be asked to intervene to assist with collecting the delinquent payments and assessing if
there is a need for free or reduced priced meals. After the fifth unpaid charge, the manager
will offer the student a snack or partial meal such as a sandwich or crackers and milk. If a
student continues to come to the cafeteria without a lunch from home or money and the
student’s account continues to be delinquent, the case will be considered for release to the
Department of Family and Children’s Services for neglect. Students who have unpaid meal
charges will not be allowed to purchase any extra sale food items until the charges have been
satisfied.

NOTE: In an effort to ensure that students in elementary schools do not carry over a negative
account balance into the new school year, meal charges will not be accepted beginning the
first school day in May.

Returned Check Policy:
The Food and Nutrition Services Program will accept checks for exact payment of meals or
prepayments to the student’s debit account. The program will not cash personal checks or
give change back when a check is received for payment. FCS uses a check company to collect
checks that are returned unpaid. Without further notice, they will attempt to collect on the
check electronically if it is returned unpaid by your bank for any reason. If a check is returned
unpaid, the face amount and a state-authorized fee will be collected electronically from the
parent’s account when the money is available. If a parent writes a check to the district, they
are consenting to allow the check recovery company to electronically collect the face amount
and the fee if the check is returned unpaid by the banking institution to the recovery
company. After the Board of Education, or any entity thereof, has received two (2) checks
returned by a financial institution due to insufficient funds or closed accounts, all financial
transactions thereafter will be on a cash only basis.

Meal Prices:
Breakfast: $1.60     Lunch: $2.70

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Cash payments at register:

Cash is gladly accepted at the cafeteria register for meal and a la carte item purchases, and to
add funds on the student’s account; however, cashiers do not have adequate funds to make
change for customers with bills larger than $20. Bills larger than $20.00 will only be accepted
for meal payment if the entire amount is deposited into their meal account.

                          Free and Reduced Priced Meals Availability

The Free and Reduced Priced Meal Program is available to assist families during times of
financial hardship. The School Nutrition Program accepts free and reduced meal
applications throughout the school year. Students approved for free or reduced priced
meals may eat breakfast and lunch free or at a reduced cost. Parents can rest assured the
information supplied on the form is strictly confidential and student identification is protected
with the computer software used at the cashier’s station.

        For faster processing, access our ONLINE application by clicking this
        link: https://schoolmealapp.forsyth.k12.ga.us
   •    This is a household application, so please submit only one (1) application per entire
        family/household via either online application or by returning paper application
        received at school.
   •    Be sure that your child has money on his/her meal account until you receive formal
        notice that the 2020-2021 F&R meal application has been approved. You will see a
        confirmation number at end of the online process; however, this is to let you know the
        application was submitted for review. This is NOT notification of approved eligibility.

   •            Completed and signed applications can be submitted via one of the three
                methods:
                     o Online application link will be posted in late July
                     o Scan-ready paper copy (received at school) returned to any school café
                     o Scan-ready paper copy returned via US mail to:
                                   Food & Nutrition Services
                                   1140 Dahlonega Hwy
                                   Cumming, GA 30040
                .
   •    Applications will be processed within 10 school days of receipt at the central office.
        Eligibility for those approved for free or reduced benefits will be effective within an
        hour of being processed at the central office. Written notification of eligibility/denial
        will be sent to the household address via US mail the day the application is processed.

       If you have any questions, please call Joe Sanders (770) 888-3473 x 202427 or email
                                   jsanders@forsyth.k12.ga.us .

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CHANGES IN SCHOOL RECORDS/
                          CONTACT INFORMATION

To keep student records current, please visit the VCES office in person of a change in any of the
following: address, marital status/custody that requires to have legal court documentation.
All other maintenance changes such as home, cell phone and work numbers, email address, and
emergency contact names, will need to be changed in your Parent Portal by the parent/guardian.
If you do not have a Parent Portal ID, you must visit the front office to obtain that information.
Forsyth County Board of Education policy requires a photo ID presented at the time of
any student information change.

                                 CLINIC AND HEALTH

Clinic Information:

VCE’s clinic is staffed during school hours by a registered nurse, Barbara Pressley
bpressley@forsyth.k12.ga.us and can be reached at extension 180124. In case of illness or
injury, a student will be cared for temporarily by Nurse Pressley or a designated member of
the school staff. If emergency medical treatment is necessary, the parent or guardian will be
contacted. If parents are not available for contact, an ambulance may be summoned at the
parents’ expense. Remember, an emergency contact where parents can be reached must be
on file at our office and with our nurse.

Communicable Disease:

A child is not to return to school until fever, diarrhea and/or vomiting have stopped for a full
24 hours, without the aid of medication. Prescribed antibiotic medications for communicable
diseases are to be given for 24 hours prior to return.

Infectious Disease:

A child is not to return to school until fever, diarrhea and/or vomiting have stopped for a full
24 hours, without the aid of medication. Prescribed antibiotic medications for infectious
diseases are to be given for 24 hours prior to return.

                                         17
Medications:

All medications (prescription and non-prescription) must be brought to school by the parent
or guardian. No student can bring medications to school. Students may not have medication
in their possession, except with a physician's order for emergency situations only. Medications
brought in bags or other unmarked containers will not be given. Prescription medication must
be in the pharmacy container labeled with the child's name, date, name of medication, name
of prescribing physician, time(s) the medication is to be given and name of the pharmacy filing
the prescription. Please ask your pharmacist to give you two labeled prescription bottles so
that parents/guardians have one bottle at home and one at school. Students are not allowed
to bring medications to the school.

Do not send medication to the school that needs to be given only once daily or two/three
times a day unless the physician specifically states a time during the school day for the
medication to be given. If medication can be given at home, please do so. Parents/guardians
must provide specific instructions (including drugs and related equipment) to the school
nurse. It will be the responsibility of the parent/guardian to inform the school of any changes
in pertinent data. A "Request for Administration of Medication" form must be completed by
the parent/guardian. New medications will not be given unless a new form is completed.
The bottom portion of the form is to be completed by the physician for ANY long-term
medication (more than two weeks). The term “Physician” is used as defined in Article 2 of the
Medical Practice Act of Georgia. The form may be brought to the school by the parent or
faxed by the parent or physician. Due to the risk of Reye’s Syndrome in children under the age
of 18, the school will require a physician signature in order to give any aspirin-containing
medications including Aspirin, Pepto-Bismol, and Excedrin.

All medications (prescriptions and over the counter drugs) must be kept in the clinic and
administered by the school nurse or his/her designee. No student may possess, or claim to
possess, any drugs at any time without special administrative approval. No member of the
school staff may furnish a student with any medicine, including aspirin or similar non-
prescription medications. In accordance with county policy, law enforcement officials will be
notified when illegal or suspected illegal drugs are found. All Medications, herbals, and
supplements must be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and appear in the
U.S. Pharmacopeia.

Due to the risk of choking, students may not bring cough drops. All Medications, herbals, and
supplements must be approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and appear in the
U.S. Pharmacopeia.

Emergency Response to Life Threatening Asthma or Allergic Reactions
Forsyth County Schools has partnered with District II Public Health to implement a program for
the emergency response to life threatening asthma or systemic allergic reactions (anaphylaxis).
                                        18
More than 20% of children have their first life threatening allergic reaction at school. Designated
school staff members are trained to assess the clinical signs, call 911 and administer the
medications (Benadryl, epinephrine injection or nebulizer bronchodilator). The student must be
transported to the nearest emergency room for evaluation and treatment.

Any medications not picked up from the school by the end of the last school day this year will
be considered abandoned. Abandoned medication will be properly discarded in accordance
with local, state, and federal laws/rules by the school nurse and an administrator.

Fitness Assessment:
As a result of Georgia House Bill 229 (also known as the S.H.A.P.E. Act) starting in February
2012, students in grades 1-12 will participate in a state-wide fitness assessment. Students in
grades 1-3 will only have height and weight measured and recorded. Students in grades 4-5
will have height and weight measured and they will participate in four fitness assessments. At
the end of the school year, families of students in grades 4-5 will receive a formal report of
their child’s fitness assessment performance. The areas of health related fitness include:
cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility and body composition.
The following FITNESSGRAM tests will be used to measure the various areas of health-related
fitness: 1) PACER or 1 mile run (Cardiovascular); 2) Push-Up (Upper Body Strength); 3) Curl-Up
(Abdominal Strength); 4) Back-Saver Sit and Reach (Flexibility); 5) Body Mass Index (Body
Composition).

Hospital-Homebound Services:
If a student should need to be absent from school for more than 10 consecutive school days
because of serious illness or an accident, arrangements may be made to provide instruction at
home. In accordance with state rule 160-4-2.31 Hospital/Homebound Services, students with
absences due to psychiatric/emotional disorders, as defined in the latest edition of the
Diagnostic, and Statistical Manual (DSM), may be eligible for hospital-homebound instruction.
It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to request homebound instruction as soon as
possible. An application for services supported by a doctor’s recommendation will be
required. The application and supporting documentation are submitted to the Principal of the
school.

Wellness Policy:
Consistent with the Forsyth County Administrative Procedures for the Local System Wellness
Policy, we ask for parental support of the following:
    • Meals brought in from outside commercial establishments will be eaten in an alternate
        designated area. Parents and guests are welcomed as customers of the school’s nutrition
        program.
    • Foods not prepared by staff on campus should be purchased from a reputable
        commercial establishment with food labels intact to ensure the safety of students. (This
        does not pertain to individual student lunches brought from home.) This includes items,
        as permitted, into classrooms.
                                          19
•   Students will be discouraged from sharing foods or beverages with one another.
   •   Daily snacks should feature healthy choices.
   •   Celebrations involving food will be scheduled and approved in advance by the Teacher
       and should not conflict with the school lunch program.
   •   Food taken into the classroom for student consumption should be store purchased and
       not homemade.

                               COMMUNICATION

For Updates and Reminders:

Join VCES Parent Communication! Remind is a free, safe, and simple messaging tool that
helps teachers share important updates and reminders with students & parents. Subscribe by
text, email or using the Remind app. All personal information is kept private. Teachers will
never see your phone number, nor will you see theirs.

To receive messages via text, text @vcespa to 81010. You can opt-out of messages at
anytime by replying, 'unsubscribe @vcespa'. Having trouble using 81010? Try texting
@vcespa to (571) 292-3866 instead.

Or to receive messages via email, send an email to vcespa@mail.remind.com. To
unsubscribe, reply with 'unsubscribe' in the subject line. Visit remind.com to learn more.
*Standard text message rates apply.

For Daily Communication:

Students and parents/guardians are encouraged to regularly check each of their itslearning
courses for information such as lessons, assessments, important dates, etc. Within each
course, the teacher maintains a Planner where this information can be found. Student grades,
state assessment results, and attendance are available in ParentPortal,
http://www.campus.forsyth.k12.ga.us, which is also used for school and district enewsletters
distribution lists. The district invites you to stay connected by visiting its website,
www.forsyth.k12.ga.us (which includes language translation options), following on social
media (@FCSchoolsGA on Twitter, @FCSchools on Facebook, and @ForsythCoSchoolsGA on
Instagram), subscribing on YouTube (@ForsythCountySchools) and to download the updated
mobile app, Forsyth County Schools GA.

                                         20
COUNSELING SERVICES

Two counselors are available at Vickery Creek Elementary. The counselors work with school
personnel to foster a positive learning environment through classroom guidance, individual
and small group counseling, and direct parent education classes. In addition, the counselors
are available for parent consultations and may also assist in obtaining special school and/or
community services.

                 DISCRIMINATION / HARASSMENT
                          REPORTING

FCS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability or
gender in employment decisions or educational programs and activities, including its athletic
programs. Any student, employee, applicant for employment, parent or other individual who
believes he or she has been subjected to harassment or discrimination by other students or
employees of the school district based upon any of the factors listed above should promptly
report the same to the principal of the school or the appropriate coordinator as listed below,
who will implement the board's discriminatory complaints or harassment procedures. Students
may also report harassment or discrimination to their school counselor. Equity coordinators
for the school system are:

              Title VI                                   Title IX
              Nathan Turner (Students)                   Nathan Turner (Students)
              Dr. Cindy Salloum (Personnel)              Dr. Cindy Salloum (Personnel)

              ADA and 504                                Gender Equity
              Sarah Taylor (Students);                   Dr. Cindy Salloum (Students)
              Dr. Cindy Salloum (Personnel)
              Community Based Work Programs
              Valery L. Lowe

Equity coordinators may be contacted at the Forsyth County Board of Education and
Professional Development Center, 1120 Dahlonega Highway, Cumming, Georgia 30040,
770.887.2461. Students and employees will not be subjected to retaliation for reporting such
harassment or discrimination. A copy of the discriminatory complaints procedure under
Forsyth County School District Policy GAAA/JAA (Equal Opportunity/Discriminatory
                                          21
Complaints) or under Policy IDFA (Gender Equity in Sports) is located in the school district
policy manual that is available at www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/boe > policies and procedures.

HARASSMENT:
The school district forbids sexual, racial and other harassment of all employees and students
while at school, in the workplace or at any school event or activity. Any student, employee,
applicant for employment or other person alleging a violation shall promptly notify the
principal or the designated coordinator for the school system.

                                        DISMISSAL

At the conclusion of the school day, all students will go home via their designated mode of
transportation. ALL transportation changes must follow VCE policies/procedures (see below).
Students will not be dismissed to anyone from the classroom, the lobby or from the bus.

      Bus Riders: All students riding a bus will be accompanied to their assigned
      busses at dismissal. Students will NOT be allowed to ride another bus other than the
      one assigned to him/her.

      Car Riders: Car riders will wait in a designated area to be picked up in front of the
      school. All cars picking up students MUST have VCE assigned Car Tag ID number that
      you signed for when you received the tag. It is important that all students be picked up
      in the afternoon at the designated time. For any student who is not picked up by 2:35
      in the afternoon, the student will be sent to the front office.

      Please Note: If your car tag is lost, we will NOT issue a new tag for the safety of the
      children. When approved, you will be asked to wait until the end of car line and your
      student(s) will be brought to you.

      Daycare Riders: All students going to a Daycare facility will have a designated area
      where they will await their assigned Daycare van.

      Viking Village (After School Program): After school students will meet
      in their designated areas at dismissal.

In the event of an emergency dismissal, the school will notify parents through the homeroom
teacher, social media, tune into WSB (TV channel 2, 750 AM radio) or Forsyth County
Schools/VCE Web Page for information regarding school closings and emergency dismissals.

                                         22
DRESS CODE

As stated in the FCS Code of Conduct, student dress should not cause any distraction from the
instructional program. Students are encouraged to dress appropriately for the school setting,
suitable to weather conditions and in good taste. Short shorts and tops/crop shirts are not
considered appropriate dress for school. The length of shorts and skirts should be below the
student’s fingertips when arms are extended down the side. Tops should include a strap of
two or more inches wide. Hats, bandanas and sweatbands should not be worn at school
unless permitted on school Spirit Days or designated Hat Days. Students should not wear
clothing advertising alcoholic beverages, drugs or violence. Students who wear such clothing
will be removed from class until parents bring appropriate clothing.

                                 EARLY RELEASE DAYS

Students are released at 11:50 a.m. on selected parent conference days and on teacher
professional development days. Lunch is served on Early Release Days on a condensed
schedule. The VCES After School Program is available to registered members of the program
only. Please see the school calendar for dates located in the front of this handbook.

                                           EQUITY

FCS does not discriminate based on race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, or sex
in any of its employment practices, educational programs, child feeding program or any other
service or activity. It is the policy of the Forsyth County Board of Education to comply fully
with the requirements of Title VI, Title VII, Title IX, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of
1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act and all accompanying regulations. Any student,
employee, applicant for employment or other person alleging a violation shall promptly notify
the principal or the designated school system coordinator.

                                          23
NOTICE TO PARENTS/GUARDIANS AND ELIGIBLE STUDENT OF RIGHTS UNDER THE
FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS PRIVACY ACT (FERPA) AND THE PROTECTION OF PUPIL
RIGHTS AMENDMENT (PPRA):

Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. 1232g) (the “Act”),
parents/guardians have a right to:
      1. Inspect and review, within 45 days of a request, the education records of a student
         who is their child, or in the case of a student who is eighteen (18) years of age or
         older, or those who are emancipated, their own education records.
         Parents/guardians or eligible students should submit to their principal a written
         request identifying the record(s) they wish to inspect. The principal will make
         arrangements for access and provide notice of such arrangements.

      2. Request the amendment of the student’s education records to ensure that they are
         not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other
         rights. To request the school district to amend a record, parent/guardian or eligible
         students should write the school principal, specify the part of the record they want
         changed, and specify why it is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of
         the student’s privacy or other rights. If the district decides not to amend the record,
         it will notify the parent/guardian or eligible students of the decision and inform
         them of their right to a hearing. Additional information regarding the hearing
         procedure will be provided with the notification of the right to a hearing.

      3. Consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the
         student’s education records, except to the extent that the Act and the regulations
         promulgated pursuant to the Act authorize disclosure without consent. One
         exception which permits disclosure without consent is to school officials with
         legitimate educational interest. A school official is a person employed by the
         district as an administrator, supervisor, instructor, or support staff member; a
         member of the school board; a person with whom the district has contracted to
         perform a specific task (such as attorney, auditor, or therapist); or a parent or
         student serving on an official committee (such as a disciplinary or grievance
         committee). A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official
         needs to review an educational record in order to fulfill his/her professional
         responsibility. Upon request, the school district forwards educational records
         without prior consent to another school in which the student seeks or intends to
         enroll.

      4. File with the United States Department of Education a complaint under 20 S.F.R.
         99.64 concerning the alleged failures by the Forsyth County Board of Education to
         comply with the requirements of the Act or the regulations promulgated there
         under. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is: Family Policy
                                        24
Compliance Office, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW,
          Washington, D.C. 20202-4605.

               FERPA DIRECTORY INFORMATION NOTICE

FCS has designated the following information as directory information:
      1. Student’s name, address and telephone number;
      2. Student’s date and place of birth;
      3. Student’s participation in official school clubs and sports;
      4. Weight and height of student if he/she is a member of an athletic team;
      5. Dates of attendance at FCS; and
      6. Awards received during the time enrolled in FCS.

Unless a parent/guardian or eligible student, request otherwise, this information may be
disclosed to the public upon request. In addition, two federal laws require school systems
receiving federal financial assistance to provide military recruiters, upon request, with the
name, address, and telephone numbers unless parents/guardians have advised the school
system that they do not want their student’s information disclosed without their prior written
consent. Parents/guardians have the right to refuse to allow the above information to be
designated as directory information and to refuse to allow it to be disclosed to the public
upon request without your prior written consent. If parents/guardians wish to exercise this
right (Opt-Out), they must notify the principal of the school, in writing, within 10 days of the
first day of school or of their enrollment date.

Parents/guardians are also notified that from time to time students may be photographed,
videotaped, or interviewed by the news media at school or some school activity or event;
unless a parent/guardian objects in writing to their student being photographed videotaped
or interviewed, to the principal of the school where their student in enrolled.
Parents/guardians must notify the principal of their objection by the date specified above. The
principal will take reasonable steps to control the media’s access to students. However,
parent/guardian submission of a written objection does not constitute a guarantee that their
student will not be interviewed in circumstances which are not within the knowledge or
control of the principal.

Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA) Notice:

No student shall be required to submit to a survey, analysis, or evaluation that reveals
information concerning:
• Political affiliations or beliefs of the student or the student’s parent;
• Mental or psychological problems of the student or the student’s family;
                                            25
•   Sex behavior or attitudes;
•   Illegal, anti-social, self-incriminating, or demeaning behavior;
•   Critical appraisals of other individuals with whom respondents have close family
    relationships;
•   Legally recognized privileged or analogous relationships, such as those of lawyers,
    physicians, and ministers;
•   Religious practices, affiliations, or beliefs of the student or student’s parent; or
•   Income (other than that required by law to determine eligibility for participation in
    a program or for receiving financial assistance under such program), without prior
    written consent of the parent or eligible student.

A parent/guardian of a student may, upon request, inspect any survey created by a third party
containing one or more of the items listed as (1) through (8) above before the survey is
administered or distributed by a school to a student and may choose to opt the student out of
participation in the survey. The Superintendent shall develop procedures for: (1) granting a
request by a parent/guardian for reasonable access to such survey within a reasonable period
of time after the request is received, and (2) making arrangements to protect student privacy
in the event of the administration or distribution of a survey to a student containing one or
more of the items listed as (1) through (8). The requirements of PPRA do not apply to a survey
administered to a student in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
(IDEA).

A parent/guardian of a student may, upon request, inspect any instructional material used as
part of the educational curriculum for the student. The Superintendent shall develop
procedures for granting a request by a parent/guardian parent for reasonable access to
instructional material within a reasonable period of time after the request is received.

Parents/guardians shall be notified prior to the administration of physical examinations or
screenings that the school may administer to students. This notice shall offer the
parent/guardian the opportunity to opt the student out of any non-emergency, invasive
physical examination or screening that is (1) required as a condition of attendance; (2)
administered by the school and scheduled by the school in advance; and (3) not necessary to
protect the immediate health and safety of the student, or of other students.

The parent/guardian parent of a student shall be notified prior to the commencement of
activities involving the collection, disclosure, or use of personal information collected from
students for the purpose of marketing or for selling that information (or otherwise providing
that information to others for that purpose). Such notice shall offer the parent/guardian the
opportunity to inspect, upon request, any instrument used in the collection of such
information before the instrument is administered or distributed to a student and to opt the
student out of such activities. The Superintendent shall develop procedures that: (1) make
arrangements to protect student privacy in the event of such collection, disclosure, or use, and

                                          26
(2) grant a request by a parent/guardian for reasonable access to such instrument within a
reasonable period of time after the request is received.

                                       FIELD TRIPS

Field trips are planned throughout the year to complement the classroom curriculum. Signed
permission forms must be on file for each child who participates. The cost of a field trip will
also include expenses incurred for transportation.

                       GRADING AND REPORTING

Students in grades K-5 are graded on a nine-week grading period. Report cards will be sent
home at the end of each grading period.

Kindergarten - Third Grade:
Students in grades Kindergarten through Third Grade will be evaluated using a standards-
based report card. In standards-based grading, student progress is measured by determining
student progress toward achievement of grade level standards. Rather than receiving one
grade per content area, your child will receive a breakdown of performance by standard
cluster enabling you to more readily identify areas of academic strength and opportunities for
improvement. In addition, the reports include a three-point rubric defining work ethic and
behaviors that impact student achievement.

4th Grade PLUS and 5th Grade PLUS:
Students in grades 4 and 5 will receive a report card that includes both a traditional numeric
average and a breakdown of performance, based on standards, for Reading, English and Math.
The traditional numeric average will be determined by an average of summative assessments
(work done after the learning has taken place and reflects the level of student mastery).
Specific standards performance is based on formative assessments (work done during the
learning process) and is evaluated using standards-based scores. In addition, the reports
include a three-point rubric defining work ethic and behaviors that impact student
achievement.

                                        27
4th and 5th Grade PLUS Summative Retest Procedure:
Students will be given the option of a retest on any summative assessment, if their summative
grade is not acceptable to the student, parent or teacher. There will be one opportunity for a
summative retest and a required commitment by the student to attend re-teaching sessions
and/or complete assignments designed to ensure mastery of standards. The re-teaching
sessions and assignments will be determined by the teacher. The expectation is that any
student that does not pass the initial summative test will attend re-teaching sessions,
complete assignments and retake the summative assessment.
Honor / Merit Roll:
Fourth and fifth grade students must have an A in all academic areas and an S in all other areas
in order to be on the honor roll for the grading period. Students must have all A’s or B’s in all
academic areas, and an S in all other areas in order to be on the merit roll for the grading period.
Handwriting grades will not be counted.

Placement and Promotion:
Grade placement is determined by the overall academic and social progress of a student, with
emphasis placed on the mastery of reading and math skills. Placement is also influenced by the
student's past performance, age, and performance on district and state level assessments and
standardized test results. Conferences are held to discuss placement of students who are not
meeting minimum promotion requirements. Local and state requirements for promotion are
followed in deciding appropriate grade placement. Students entering Forsyth County Schools
from private or home study schools must be evaluated to determine appropriate placement.
Initial placement is temporary until such assessment is completed. Placement of kindergarten
students will be done according to state and county guidelines.

In accordance with the state law, no third grade students shall be promoted to the fourth
grade if the student does not achieve grade level on the state-adopted assessment in reading
and meet the promotion standards and criteria established by the local board of education for
the school that the student attends, in compliance with the Georgia Promotion, Placement,
and Retention law (O.C.G.A. §§ 20-2-282 through 20-2-285) and State Board of Education Rule
(160-4-2-.11).

No fifth-grade student shall be promoted to the sixth grade if the student does not achieve
grade level on the state-adopted assessments in reading and mathematics and meet
promotion standards and criteria established by the local board of education for the school
that the student attends.

To learn more about elementary grading and reporting, please visit the Forsyth County
Schools website at www.forsyth.k12.ga.us.

                                          28
LOST AND FOUND

Lost articles need to be claimed as soon as possible. Found items will be located in the lost
and found for students to identify and claim as they going to PE. Items such as jewelry, car
keys, glasses, etc. are located at the reception desk. Unclaimed items are donated to charity on
a monthly basis. We are not allowing parents to enter the building at this time in response to
COVID 19. Everything brought to school should be labeled so that lost articles can be
returned to the owner.

                                    MEDIA CENTER

The Media Center offers a variety of multi-media resources available for check out and in school
use, including works of fiction and nonfiction, reference materials, videos, software, and
audiotapes. The media center operates on a flexible schedule to allow students to check out
materials. Students in kindergarten may check out one book for a one-week period, and
students in first through fifth grades may check out two books for a one-week period. Books
may be renewed as many times as the student needs, unless another student has that book on
reserve. A replacement fee will be charged for books that are lost or damaged.

                            OUT OF DISTRICT POLICY

In order to attend a school outside the student's residential district, approval must be secured
from the superintendent, the principal of the admitting school. Approval may be restricted by
class size and is granted on a year-to-year basis only. Students who present behavior or
attendance problems may have the out-of-district approval rescinded by a letter from the
attending school principal.

                                         29
PARENT NOTICE OF TEACHER
                         QUALIFICATIONS

Forsyth County Schools informs parents/guardians that they may request information about
the professional qualifications of their student’s teacher(s). The following information may be
requested:
1) Whether the teacher has met the Georgia Professional Standards Commission
   requirements for certification for the grade level and subject areas in which the teacher
   provides instruction;
2) Whether the teacher is teaching under an emergency or other provisional status through
   which Georgia qualifications or certification criteria have been waived;
3) The college major and any graduate certification or degree held by the teacher;
4) Whether the student is provided services by paraprofessionals, and if so, their
   qualifications.

If parents/guardians wish to request information concerning their child’s teacher’s
qualification, contact the Human Resources Department at 770.887.2461 [Section 1111(h)(6)]

                  PARENT – TEACHER COMMUNICATION

Please check the Vickery Creek Elementary School website www.forsyth.k12.ga.us often for
important dates, events and happenings. Teachers send home weekly newsletters on
Thursdays, which include information related to special dates, homework, class activities, etc.
Should parents have any questions, they may contact teachers in writing, through emails or
Thursday folders, or agenda books (3rd -5th only).

Students and parents/guardians are encouraged to regularly check each of their itslearning
courses for information such as lessons, assessments, important dates, etc. Within each
course, the teacher maintains a Planner where this information can be found. For information
about how to access itslearning, go to http://www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/itslearning.

Each classroom has a telephone and you may leave a voice mail message by dialing your
teacher’s six-digit extension number. Please do not expect the teacher to answer the
telephone during instructional time. Leave a message if necessary and the teacher should
return your call within 24 hours. Do not leave a voice message for the teacher regarding any
                                         30
change in your child’s transportation. Open, honest communication between home and school
is essential. Please do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher or an administrator, if you
have a question or concern.

Conferences:
School-wide parent teacher conferences are scheduled twice during the academic year in
October and March. Students are released at 11:50 on conference days so that teachers are
available to meet with parents. Parents will be notified of conference times in advance.
Additionally, parents may request a conference at any time during the school year.

Curriculum:
Forsyth County School’s primary focus is to provide quality work for students every day in
every classroom. The Common Core Curriculum – Georgia Performance Standards (CC-GPS)
provide a rigorous and challenging instructional program for all students at every level. To
learn more about the variety of curriculum services available, please visit the FCS website at
www.forsyth.k12.ga.us.

Homework:
At VCE, the teacher will expect quality work from students and will provide ample
opportunities for student success. The grade a student earns will reflect student
understanding of the subject matter. Homework is assigned to allow practice of learned
concepts. If parents have questions about homework, they should contact the homeroom
teacher immediately.

Homework Guidelines:
Homework is monitored in grades K -5. Assignments will be recorded on the Homework
Hotline weekly for grades 1 - 2 and daily for grades 3 – 5. Agenda books will be utilized in
grades 3 - 5. Daily, weekly, or monthly homework sheets will be sent home with grades K - 2.
Not more than 30 minutes of homework will be given for grades K-3. Not more than 1 hour
of homework will be given for grades 3-5. (These guidelines do not include minimum nightly
reading times.)

Textbooks:
All basic textbooks are on loan to students for use during the school year. Each student is
responsible for the textbooks issued to him or her. Replacement textbooks will not be issued
until reimbursement fees have been paid in the office. All textbooks must be returned, and
fees for any lost or damaged books must be paid by the last day of school.

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