Back to School Letter

August 23, 2019                                                                 

Dear Parents,

I want to take this opportunity to welcome you to St. John’s School.  I am so happy that your family has chosen to join our school family!  This will be a year for your child to learn new things, meet new friends, and develop into wonderful young students.

I am sure there are many questions you have as your child starts their journey into the exciting world of SCHOOL!  This packet will help answer some questions, but if you have any questions or concerns throughout the year please email me.  I will respond to your email within 24 hours.  If you need to pick up your child early or have a change in the way they normally go home, you may email me, but please email the office also, due to the fact I may not have time to check email before dismissal.

Take Home Folders/Homework:  Each student will be given a take-home folder at the beginning of the year.  This folder goes home every night and should be brought back the next school day. Please clean out your child’s folder every night.  There will be a pocket in the folder for papers to stay home, and a pocket for papers that need to come back to school.  Any notes can be placed in here as well.  This folder will be our main source of communication.  

Our Day:  Pre-Kindergarten is all about learning through play and discovering the world around you.  Everything may be a game for your child, but a great deal of learning is going on too.  I will use our class blog to weekly inform you of our focus in academics, social skills, and our faith.

As for playground and lunch, we will have our own time outside and a separate place in the cafeteria.  The students will have several opportunities to work with other classes in the school, but we found that they are more at ease when we are separated on a daily basis.  The Pre-K has different rules on the playground and need a great deal more help in the lunch room so, this gives us the opportunity to focus just on them.

Specials:  The students in the class will be participating in all specials offered at St. John’s.  This includes Art, P.E., Music, Library, Foreign Language, and Computers. 

Parents’ Information:  I will send emails and post on webpage at the beginning of the week to keep you informed on what is going on in our classroom.  

Snack/Lunch:  St. John’s will be providing snacks and milk for every child (unless they have an allergy then water will be given).  If your child doesn’t like any snack, you can just keep a non-refrigerated snack in their backpack for these times. Please let me and the office know of any allergies your child may have.

Early Dismissal Days: We have lunch on early dismissal days.

Rest Time: Rest time is required by the State of Maryland for all day pre-kindergarten programs.  The students will have 1 hour to rest.  If they do not take a nap they are required to rest quietly on their mat. Students are allowed one small stuff animal for rest time. Please no toys or stuffed animals that make noise. Students can bring a book from home to look at during rest time or they can get off the bookshelf in the classroom.

Birthdays: On your child’s birthday, you may send in a special treat (cupcakes, cookies, etc.) for the class.  We have 19 students in our class this year.

Extra Clothing /Potty:  Please send an extra pair of clothing for your child in a large Ziploc with their name on it.  The clothes do not need to be uniform clothes, but they need to follow the school dress code.  These will be kept in their cubby in the hallway. I am not expecting any student to have a “potty” accident.  These clothes are mainly for if a child has too much fun at the water table, outside, after it rains, or when they paint.  Students also spill milk, yogurt, or other items on themselves or others.  If I have other clothes, then your child will be much more comfortable in such cases.

If your child does have a “potty” accident, we will discreetly help them get themselves cleaned up and go on with the day.  If the child can’t clean themselves up, we will call you to come and help them. Please note that if they have 3 accidents in a 5-day period, you are required to come in and meet with the principal and teacher to discuss the situation.

If I do send clothes home, please make sure to send a new set of clothes back the very next day so that we ensure there is always a clean set at school.  As the weather changes, send in a different set and we will send the first set home again.

Illness: Please remember to follow school policies, no child may return to school until fever is gone for 24 hours without medication, no throwing up or diarrhea for 24 hours.  If the office sends your child home due to illness, you are not to bring them back the following day.

Toys, Etc.: No toys should be brought to school except for homework in which the teacher will hold on to it.   Having toys in backpacks or cubbies creates great distraction and inhibits the learning experience.  I am not responsible for lost or broken toys brought to school.

Volunteers: I love to have help in and out of our classroom!  I will send emails out as the occasions arise and take volunteers on first come first serve basis.  To give you an idea we may need cutting or stapling, chaperones for field trips, items sent in for parties, or help with parties.  Please make sure with the office that you are an approved volunteer. If you are not you cannot be a volunteer in the school or a chaperone on field trips.

We are going to have a fun and exciting year!  I believe that by working together your child will have a successful year in Pre-K!  I look forward to getting to know you and your child. If you have any questions, please email me at


Ms. Trish Mattingly

Pre-K Teacher