August 2017


Dear DuFief Families:

I hope your summer has been wonderful and your students are rested and ready for school to start in a few weeks!  We have been quite busy here at DuFief assembling class lists, ordering materials, and cleaning the building in preparation for the return of our students and staff.  Our teachers have also been busy this summer; many have been involved in classes and trainings to enhance their professional development and to ensure your student is receiving a top-notch education. 

We hope that each one of our students has been reading all summer long!  Research proves that students who read during school breaks retain more content from the previous year of schooling. These students return to school in the fall with very little loss of content and skill.  Math practice is also a great idea! Staying sharp on math facts and strategies will assist your child’s mathematical fluency.  Please support your child with the summer reading and math activities that were sent home with students the last week of the school year.  These materials are a great way for your child to stay engaged instructionally over the summer.

Mark your calendars! The first day of school is Tuesday, September 5!  Please also note that our Open House will take place on Thursday, August 31st from 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm.  Our Back to School Night (BTSN) for kindergarten parents will be on Wednesday, August 30th at 7:00 pm.  BTSN for grades 1-5 will be on Thursday, September 14th at 7:00 pm.

Over the summer, we made some changes to our DuFief staff.  We would like to thank the following staff who have taken a position at another MCPS school:

  • Stephanie Hazel, paraeducator
  • Patti Engel, Speech Pathologist
  • Christine Hoffman, Media Specialist
  • Donna Willems, IDA and lunch/recess aide

We also spent time this spring and summer welcoming additions to our Dragon family.  We’d like to extend a warm welcome to:

  • Tara Eliason, Media Specialist
  • Soraya Assaf, Resource Teacher and Math 4 Teacher
  • Kelly Carroll, Reading Teacher grade 5
  • Leslie Callaway, Reading Intervention, Learning Center

As we begin the 2017-2018 school year, our grade level assignments will be:

Kindergarten:  Ms. Ellison, Ms. Flynn, and Ms. Walfish (LC)

First Grade:  Mrs. Eisenhower, Mrs. Nicholls (LC), and Mrs. Wolski

Second Grade:  Mrs. Kipfer, Mrs. Nicholls (LC), Ms. Prothero, and Mrs. Weddle (LC)

Third Grade:  Mrs. Kauffman, Mrs. Solovieff, and Mrs. Skrodzki  (LC)

*Fourth Grade:  Ms. Mathous (LC), Ms. Stromowsky (LC), Ms. Torres, and Mr. Yates

*Fifth Grade:  Mrs. Morgan (LC), Ms. Stromowsky (LC), and Mrs. Nass


*Please see the attached letter describing the instructional plan for fourth and fifth grades.


You will find out who your child’s teacher is when the class lists are posted on the DuFief website on August 28th.  An email will be sent from the school when the class lists are posted.  Children are enrolling daily, so the lists may not be complete when you view them. The web address is: 


Please know that you will be notified if there are any changes or updates to our staffing between now and the start of school.                           


Do enjoy the rest of the summer, and on behalf of the entire DuFief staff, we look forward to seeing everyone in a few weeks for the start of the 2017-2018 school year.



                                                                                                                        Brent Mascott

Principal, DuFief ES


Additional Information

PTA Information

Please see the attached letter from our new PTA president, Leilani Micalizzi.

School Hours

School hours are from 9:00 am to 3:25 pm.  Students should line up outside in designated areas with their class as early as 8:40 am. When the first bell rings at 8:55 am, students enter the school with their teachers.  On the first day of school, teachers will show their classes where to line up.

The second bell rings at 9:00 am.  Students who are late to school (after 9:00 am), must be signed in at the office by an adult. 

If a student is absent, parents should call the school or email Mrs. Kiser at  to report the child’s absence.  A message may be left on the school’s answering machine.


Save the Dates!

  • August 30 at 7:00 pm  Back-to-School Night (kindergarten)
  • August 31  Open House 2:00— 3:00 pm
  • September 7 at 5:00 pm  PTA Back-to-School Picnic (rain date September 8); 6:30 pm  4/5 parents Instrumental Music Information Meeting in the APR
  • September 14 at 7:00 pm Back-to-School Night (grades 1-5)
  • September 21 No school for Students and Teachers
  • September 28 PTA Ice Cream Social


Please check the DuFief website for future events!


Student Birthdays

Student birthdays are celebrated by having their names read aloud on the morning announcements and by receiving a birthday pencil in the office.  Please do not send treats into school for your child’s birthday. 


The bus schedule is posted on the DuFief website.

For safety reasons, parents who drive their children to school should drop off and pick up their children using the Kiss and Ride driveway/parking lot. (The Kiss and Ride driveway/parking lot is the lower parking lot that makes a loop by the park.)  Please do not drop off your children along DuFief Drive or in front of the school. 


Cafeteria Information

School menus are sent home monthly and can also be found on the MCPS website.  Elementary school lunches are $2.55.  Deposits can be made to your child’s account during the Open House on Friday, August 28.  Checks can also be sent in at any time with your child.  Information about free and/or reduced price meals will be sent home the first week of school.  See the SNAP Cafeteria News, on the DuFief web site for more cafeteria news.


Returning to School After Absence

Did you know?  A written note or email is required when a child returns to school from being absent.  That note should be given to the child’s teacher who will send it to the office for record keeping.  An email should be sent to Mrs. Kiser in the office.


Please note: Calling the school to notify us that your child will be absent eliminates the need for us to call you and check on your child.  This helps all of us to know that your child is safe at home and not lost on the way to school.  The phone call is not the official record which is why we need the note for every absence when your child returns to school.  Thank you for your support!


Cell Phones in Elementary Schools

Children are not permitted to carry cell phones in an elementary school.  If a parent wants a child to have a cell phone to use when walking home from school for safety purposes, the parent must write a note to the principal stating the reason and requesting that their child be permitted to have a cell phone in his/her backpack. 


During the school day, the cell phone is to be turned off and left in the child’s backpack.  It may then be used when the child is walking home.  Cell phones may not be used in the school or on the school bus. 


If you need to reach your child during the school day for an emergency, please call the school office.


DuFief Dog Policy

Dogs are not permitted on any blacktop or sidewalk areas during morning lineup or afternoon dismissal to ensure the overall safety of our students.  Thank you in advance for your help in following this policy.


DuFief Elementary School Website

Save as a favorite! 

Do you want more information about our school?  Go to our website to see updated information such as bus schedules, newsletters, upcoming events and more!  Check out the calendar! Many events have already been posted and more will be added daily as activities and meetings are planned.  Under Resources find information about school lunches, curriculum, websites for children to access at home for research and/or practice.  It’s all there!  


Friendly Reminders

 Box Tops for Education - Please save your box tops, write your child’s name on the back of each one, and send them to the office.  There is a drawing,   sponsored by the PTA, at the end of every month!  Anyone can win, so bring in your box tops!  Thank you!


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