General Information

Buses || Class Parties || Communication Policy || Consent and Release || Lost and Found
Lunch Loans || Resource Staff || School Objectives || Student Appearance
School Supplies || Telephone Use || Textbooks 

Buses

Students are picked up at designated bus stops no more than one mile from their home. Parents are responsible for maintaining discipline and safety at bus stops. Inclement weather, traffic accidents, and road construction can cause delays in the bus routes, so the pick-up and drop-off times of each bus may vary somewhat from day to day. Students must follow the bus driver's rules and directions at all times. Questions regarding the buses, bus stops, or bus routes should be directed to the Field Transportation Office Supervisor, Sharon Stream at 301-469-1029.

Any change in your child’s regular transportation arrangement must be explained fully in a note. This note must be presented to your child’s teacher at the beginning of the school day. Sound safety and security practices and time constraints do not permit us to honor telephone requests to change your child’s transportation routine except during an emergency.

Class Parties

Class parties are held twice during the school year for special celebrations: Halloween and Valentine's Day. Parents who do not wish their child to participate in these or other celebrations, including birthday observances, should notify the classroom teacher. Please follow the directions of your child’s classroom teacher concerning birthday celebrations. Any birthday treats must be approved by your child’s teacher beforehand. 

Communication Policy

Families receive a weekly newsletter, Spotlight on Bells Mill, every Friday from the office of the principal. The Bells Mill Beacon is published six times a year by the PTA. Your child’s teacher is the first contact regarding classroom concerns. Because of our busy schedules, it is always best to set up an appointment before coming to school for a conference with the teacher or principal. Please take advantage of the Bear Mail system established by the PTA. This is a quick way to be notified of important school information. Letters are sent home in paper form, on the school website and on Bear Mail.

Consent and Release

During the school year, students may be photographed or videotaped for a variety of reasons. Families are asked to give written permission to use the students’ likeness if the material will be used outside of MCPS. A permission form will be sent home at the beginning of the year. Please sign and return the form to your child’s teacher.  

Lost and Found

A lost and found area is located in the school's all-purpose room for items that have been misplaced by students. Clothing and lunch boxes should be labeled clearly with the child's name, as many items are very similar in appearance. Unclaimed articles are turned over to a social services agency at the end of the school year.

Lunch Loans

Student SNAP accounts should eliminate the need for lunch money loans. Parents are notified when an account is “running low” and this should be a signal to supplement the account with additional funds. However, if an account becomes exhausted and a student is expected to purchase lunch at school we will attempt to reach a parent to bring money to school. If it is impossible for money to be brought to school, we will loan the money for lunch. The student will be given a note to take home stating that a loan has been made. This loan must be repaid before another loan is made. If a student who has not repaid a prior loan does not have lunch money, we will again try to reach the student’s parent(s) for money to be brought to school. If this is not possible, the student will be offered a cheese sandwich and a carton of milk or glass of water. No student will be expected to be in school all day without the opportunity to eat lunch. The large number of unpaid lunch loans has made it necessary for the development of this policy.

Resource Staff

Each classroom teacher conducts an academic program that is designed to meet the needs of students including differentiated enrichment and specialized activities for gifted and talented students. In addition to classroom teachers, Bells Mill has the following resource staff available: art, counselor, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESL), general music, instrumental music, physical education, pupil personnel worker, reading specialist, resource teacher, school psychologist, and speech/language pathologist. Many of these individuals work at our school on a part-time basis.

School Objectives

ll Montgomery County Public Schools develop a School Improvement Plan that reflects goals and objectives for the upcoming school year. The plan, developed by a school community group, focuses on increasing reading comprehension through written responses and writing across the content areas. This year we are implementing the Baldrige Tools for School Improvement and will be asking for input from all stakeholders as we develop our school improvement plan.

Student Appearance

We rely on parents' good judgment as to what students should wear to school. In general, students should wear clothes that are safe, do not disturb or distract others, and are appropriate for learning. Hats should be removed when in the school building.

School Supplies

All Montgomery County Public Schools develop a School Improvement Plan that reflects goals and objectives for the upcoming school year. The plan, developed by a school community group, focuses on increasing reading comprehension through written responses and writing across the content areas. This year we are implementing the Baldrige Tools for School Improvement and will be asking for input from all stakeholders as we develop our school improvement plan.

Telephone Use

The school telephones are for school business use only. Students should make all necessary plans and arrangements before leaving home each morning. After school arrangements should not be made during school hours. Students are called to the telephone only in case of emergency. A courtesy phone is available to guests, visitors, and volunteers located across from the Main Office. Students should not use the phone without permission from the main office or his/her teacher.

Textbooks

Textbooks are furnished to students free of charge with the expectation that all textbooks will be treated with care and returned in good condition. Parents will be charged a replacement fee for any textbook that is lost or damaged beyond reasonable use.

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