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Southgate Parent FAQ

Where do I drop – off and pick – up my child?

You are encouraged to have your child ride the bus. If you choose to transport your child to school, use the lower parking lot to assure the upper circle is clear for buses. Please note there is no parking on the upper or lower circles. Students (not enrolled in the before school program) will be permitted to enter at 8:05 a.m.

Drop Off

If you are dropping your child off, please keep in mind that no cars will be allowed in the front circle between 7:55 and 8:15 a.m. as students arrive. Students are to be dropped off at the lower circle during this time. Any student arriving after 8:30 a.m. must be signed in with the main office by an adult. Please also note that cars are not to park in the upper or lower circle at any time. The upper circle is a designated fire lane.

Pick Up

Sign out for dismissal begins at 2:30 in the cafeteria. Students are called to meet their families here and dismissed through the rear exit of the cafeteria beginning at 2:40. Students being picked up must be signed out prior to 2:40. Walkers are also dismissed at 2:40. Bus dismissal immediately follows.

Please always observe all “rules of the road” and New York State traffic laws. Please remember:

  • It is illegal to pass a stopped school bus when red lights are flashing
  • It is illegal to leave a motor vehicle running and unattended
  • Please do not leave young and/or sleeping children unattended in the vehicle when you come in to sign out siblings.
  • Park only in designated parking areas.

What if I need to pick up my child during the school day?

Please be sure to send a note to your child’s teacher if her/his dismissal plans change. Please do not leave changes on the teacher’s voicemail or send an email as there is no guarantee that your message will be retrieved before the end of the school day.

  • If your child is going to a friend’s home either on a different bus or to a different stop, a written note from a parent/guardian is required stating that this is the case.
  • Please send a note if your child normally rides the bus home, but she/he will be picked up instead.
  • We must have a signed note on any day that anyone other than the student’s parent/guardian will be picking him/her up from school even if they are designated to do so as per the emergency contact list.
  • Please include the child’s teacher’s name and the date on all notes.
  • You must be present by 2:40 to pick up your child – no exceptions.

Unless we have a written note for a change in dismissal plans, students will be dismissed in the usual manner.

Who do I tell if we have a new phone number or address?

Please notify the main office and your child’s teacher as soon as possible when a change of address or phone number occurs. This includes cell phone numbers. For your child’s safety, insure they know these numbers and how to contact you. If you have a change of address, the Central Registrar must be notified. The phone number for the Central Registrar is 785-8591 ext. 3135. Please also notify the school of any changes in custody arrangements. We must adhere to the most recent custody papers provided to us.

Who do I notify if my child is absent?

Parents are asked to notify the main office each day their child is absent. Please call 785 – 6607. Voicemail is available 24 hours a day. It is very important that we are able to account for students. When a child does not come to school and a parent has not called to report the absence, we become concerned about the safety of the child. . Therefore, please call the school at 785-6607 or send an email to office staff danielledomicolo@ncolonie.org AND rscully@ncolonie.org to report your child’s absence or tardiness each day they are absent or tardy. A written note signed by a parent, guardian, or doctor is required upon the student’s return to school. The note should include the date of the absence and the reason. If a note is not sent in, the absence will be considered illegal.

Parents are requested to notify the main office and classroom teacher when a student will be absent for an extended period especially a planned absence of greater than three (3) days.

How do I receive homework for my absent child?

Our classroom teachers are often asked to prepare work for children who are home ill. We are happy to provide work for absent students who feel well enough to complete it. Please make your requests for work in the morning when you call your child in sick. Requests received before 10 a.m. can be accommodated. Requests made after this may not be able to be fulfilled. Requested work will be available on the table in the lobby after 3 p.m.

Per district guidelines, we do not provide homework, practice work, work in advance, etc. for students who are to be absent as a result of a family trip or any other illegal absence that takes place during the academic period. Upon their return, students will have an opportunity to make up work they have missed.

When family trips are planned while school is in session, the educational process is interrupted. Please make every effort to plan family trips to coincide with school vacations.

How do I find out about my child’s assignments?

A central goal of the district Study Skills Curriculum is to foster learner independence and self-direction. To reach this goal, students are taught to utilize organizational strategies with increasing independence. We recognize that organization and planning are skills critical for academic success. We appreciate your help in encouraging and assisting students to plan ahead for each school day.

Parents may seek information about assignments or the scheduling of special classroom events. All teachers have voice mail and e-mail. These are good ways to communicate with teachers for general clarification. Parents may request teacher conferences to address concerns as needed beyond the scheduled fall parent-teacher conferences. When using e-mail to communicate, please practice appropriate, courteous “netiquette”.

Can I send in a treat for my child’s birthday or other special event?

Food allergies/anaphylaxis can be life threatening. The risk of accidental exposure to foods or other allergens can be reduced in the school setting if schools work with students, parents, and physicians to minimize risks and provide a safe educational environment for allergic students. It’s important to understand the precautions to take to keep students as safe as possible. The biggest risk to these students is accidental exposure. It’s important to work together as a team to minimize risks and provide a safe environment.

Southgate does not allow food to be shared for occasions such as birthdays or Star of the Week. Students will continue to be allowed to bring something special to share to celebrate their special event should you so choose. Such items however must be non – food. Ideas for such treats instead include stickers, bubbles, or pencils. Food for holiday parties will continue to be provided by PTA. Please note that candy, gum, hot chocolate, soda and coffee are not allowable food items as part of classroom celebrations or daily snack. Snacks must be nut and/or peanut – free in identified classrooms.

Birthday celebrations differ in each classroom. Please contact the classroom teacher for classroom routines. Please note birthday invitations are NOT to be handed out at school. Addresses for invitees can be attained via the school directory sponsored by the PTA.