801 Grove Avenue
Emporia, KS 66801
Allison Harder, Principal

July 22, 2015

Dear Parents of Incoming Walnut Kindergartners,

We are excited to share that we are going to incorporate a discovery process to our Jump Start day and first two days of school this year.  A similar approach was previously implemented during Kindergarten Orientation at the building site.  Since elementary buildings frequently do not have updated enrollment information regarding which students are enrolled at specific schools until right before school starts, it is difficult to balance classes based on number of students and skills. Students who attended previous orientation dates in March or April often did not enroll for that building.

When you bring your child to Open House on Monday, August 17th, 2015, you will meet Walnut’s Kindergarten teachers, bring your child’s supplies and have an opportunity to visit the classrooms.  Our grade level teachers all coordinate activities and plan lessons together so, what is being taught in one classroom, is being taught in another, with adjustments made based on individual student needs.

When Kindergarten students come to Walnut’s Jump Start day on Wednesday, August 19th, 2015, they will come to school to begin their orientation.  On this day, our Student Support Specialist, Instructional Coach and Instructional Strategists will work with students in centers, assessing various academic skills.  Thursday and Friday (August 20th and 21st) will be more typical school days, as teachers and support staff work with students to determine appropriate balances of class size and student dynamics.  Class rosters will be shared by the end of the day on Friday, August 21st, so students know which classroom will be their homeroom beginning the following Monday.

This is an innovative approach to balancing our classes and giving students and teachers an opportunity to get to know each other better.  We appreciate your feedback as we move into the school year.  Our focus is always on our students’ needs and we are confident that this will help us make appropriate educational decisions based on information that can be gathered from the first day.

We welcome questions as they arise so feel free to contact the office or one of the Kindergarten teachers.

Thank you for your support and entrusting your child’s care and education to us!


Allison Harder

Allison M. Anderson Harder, Walnut Elementary Principal

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