Whittier Elementary School

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Parent/ Student Handbook


Viking Values





Principal: Dr. Fernanda M. Brendefur

Assistant Principal: Erika Velasco

Whittier Elementary School
301 N. 29th Street
Boise, Idaho 83702
PHONE ~ (208) 854-6630
FAX ~ (208) 854-6631

Whittier Elementary School

301 North 29th Street  Boise, ID 83702  Phone: (208) 854-6630  Fax: (208) 854-6631

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Welcome back to a new and exciting school year. We are excited to begin working with your students and providing them with the best educational experiences possible.

This handbook contains important information about school expectations, schedules, policies, and available services. Please take time to review the entire handbook with your child.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions regarding anything in our handbook.

Go Vikings!


Dr. Fernanda M. Brendefur


Erika Velasco

Assistant Principal

Whittier Elementary Daily Schedule

First Bell:9:10

Tardy Bell:9:15




A. M. Recess

10:00-10:15 Kinder

10:15-10:30 1st & 2nd 

10:30-10:45 3rd 

10:45-11:00 4th & 5/6 combo class

11:00-11:15 6th 

Lunch Schedule

1st -11:55-12:40

2nd -12:10-12:55

3rd -12:15-1:00

4th -12:30-1:15

5th & 6th -12:45-1:30

P.M. Recess

2:00-2:15 1st & 5/6 combo class

2:15-2:30 4th & 5th 

2:30-2:45 Kinder & 2nd 

2:45-3:00 3rd & 6th 

Dismissal for All Students


Whittier Elementary

2016-2017 School Year Calendar

August 24                 First Day of School - *Early Release K-12

September 5                 Labor Day - No School K-12

September 21                Open House (5:30pm-6:30pm)

October 6 - 7                 State In-service Days - No School K-12

October 28                 End of First Quarter – No School K-6

November 2                 No Kindergarten classes - Parent Conferences

November 3                 No K-6 Elementary classes - Parent Conferences

- Evening conferences will be held Wednesday, Nov. 2 and Thursday, Nov. 3.

November 4                 No School K-12

Nov. 21 - 25                 Thanksgiving Holiday Break - No School K-12

December 21                 *Early Release K-12

Dec. 22 – Jan. 3         Winter Holiday Break - No School K-12

January 4                 School Resumes

January 16                 Martin Luther King Jr. Day - No School K-12

January 20                 End of First Semester - *Early Release K-6

February 17                 No School K-12

February 20                 Presidents' Day - No School K-12

March 9                 Kindergarten Registration 3:30 - 5:30 p.m.

March 24                 End of Third Quarter - *Early Release K-6

March 27 - 31         Spring Break - No School K-12

May 29                 Memorial Day - No School K-12

June 2                 Last Day of School - *Early Release K-12

*Please remember that we are a late start school.  All early release times will be at 1:45 p.m.  

Home of the Vikings

Whittier Elementary School Field Trip Permission Form

(Student’s Name)_____________________________________________ has permission to attend field trips during the 2015-2016 school year.  These trips will be learning experiences that will supplement their classroom learning.

Parent Signature

________________________ Teacher’s Name

Please sign and return to your child's teacher.


Whittier Elementary Attendance Policy

Attendance is important!


What happens when kids come to school?

What happens when kids don’t come to school?

♦The elementary schools in the Boise District are currently participating in a new attendance policy modeled after the secondary schools.  The policy was set by the Board of Trustees in June 1997 and states that “all students are required to be in attendance at least ninety (90) percent of the time school is in session during each semester.  The Board may deny a promotion to the next grade to any student who is not in school at least ninety (90) percent of the days that school is in session.”  This means that students who miss more than nine (9) days in a semester or eighteen (18) days during the school year may be denied a promotion to the next grade level.  As part of this policy, you and your child will be notified when total absences reach five (5), eight (8), and ten (10) days during the semester.  (Extraordinary absences may be taken into consideration by the building principal in administering the policy.)  As a part of this policy, if a child exceeds 10 days in a semester, he/she will be withdrawn from school pending a parent conference and the case may be referred to Attendance Court, which is a function of Ada County Juvenile Court System

_____I will help my child be at school every day and on time.

Parent/Guardian signature ________________________________

_____I will be at school every day and on time.

Student signature __________________________________

Please sign and return to your child’s teacher.  Thanks!

Positive Behavior Intervention Supports

The following matrix outlines our expected behaviors in each area of the school setting.  The matrix is based on our overall Viking Values of Ready, Respectful, Responsible, Safe.












All students are outside before school, unless they have a pass

Electronics are put away and off

Hang coats and backpacks on hooks

Exit school when dismissed

Enter and exit orderly

Eyes and ears on the speaker

Show me a V  for Viking

Electronics are put away and off

Line up in an orderly manner

Be ready to order

Face forward in line

Electronics are put away and off

Be on time

Keep toys home

Come in quietly and be seated

Permission needed to use electronics

Have supplies ready

Be ready to learn

Need a pass to be in the hallway

Electronics are put away and off

Bring appropriate clothing

Electronics are put away and off

Keep toys at home

Have a bathroom pass

Electronics are put away and off


Stand in bus line or waiting area

Enter and exit buses orderly

Hats only worn outside

Sit on your bottom

Clap and laugh when appropriate

Use an inside voice

Listen and respond politely

Respect differences

Use quiet voices in the hallway

Treat other as you want to be treated

Pick up and put away the equipment you use

Include others

Hats only worn outside

Treat others the way you want to be treated


Be on time to school

Keep your belongings with you

Be a positive examples for others

Be a positive example for others

Clean up your space

Stay in your seat

Raise your hand to be excused (1st and 2nd)

Put your lunch bag in the classroom container,  before going to recess

Do your best work!

Keep your work area clean

Walk to the right

Line-up quietly when the bell rings.  Teacher will be on time to pick up students

Be involved in an activity

Be a good sport

Return to class quietly and promptly


Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

On the bell, go to your designated area

Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

Follow directions the first time given

Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

Hold tray with all possible digits

Use both hands when carrying your tray

Walk safely to the playground

Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

Walk in the classroom

Face forward and walk quietly in line

Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

On Double Whistle 



Keep your hands, feet and body to yourself

Positive Behavior Intervention Supports-Continued

Our PBIS matrix is taught to every student in each classroom during the first week of school.  This year we will be continue working on creating a system where rewards and consequences will be defined.  The following consequences are subject to change once that process has been completed.

If rules are not followed, and the offense is minor, a student may receive any or all of the following:


∙Time Out

∙Natural Consequences

∙Detention for 30 minutes

∙Conference with School Personnel

∙Notice to Parent

More serious offenses include fighting, defiance of school staff, bringing a weapon to school, bullying, harassment, criminal acts or any other act for which the student could be charged by law in school or out of school.  Consequences may be:

∙Parent Conference at School

∙Conference with Resource Officer

∙In school or out of school suspension



In order to ensure safety for your child while riding the bus we ask for your help in reminding your student(s) to follow all the rules of the bus. In the event that rules are not followed consequences will be given. The following consequences will be given to students who are given a bus conduct report from a bus driver:

*In case of physical aggression a student will be suspended from bus even if it is the first offense.

1st Offense: Verbal warning from Principal or Assistant Principal & Call home to parents, Copy of Conduct Report sent home

2nd Offense:  Loss of morning, lunch and afternoon recess, Call home, Copy of Conduct Report sent home

3rd Offense: Call home,  Bus Suspension - 3 days, Copy of Conduct Report sent home

4th Offense: Call home, Bus Suspension - 5 days, Copy of Conduct Report sent home

5th Offense: Call home, Bus Suspension for the remainder of the year

We appreciate you taking time with your child to discuss respectful and responsible behavior on the bus.

Student Attire

We depend on your good judgment to help your child in selecting appropriate clothing for school.  Some examples of inappropriate clothing include: short shorts – shorts should be fingertip length or longer, low riding pants, tank tops/narrow shoulder straps, midriff tops, see-through shirts, clothing with unacceptable messages, and clothing with advertisements for alcohol, drugs or tobacco.  Hats or any type of head covering may be worn OUTSIDE the building.  Students who arrive at school with inappropriate clothing will be asked to make arrangements to get more suitable clothing.


Please reinforce with your students that we do not allow toys at school, this includes recess.  If staff sees a toy the first time, it will be taken by the teacher and kept until the end of the day.  Repeat offences can be turned into the office and returned to parents or students at the administration’s discretion.  


Electronics are only to be used at the teacher’s discretion in the classroom for educational purposes.  At all other times during the day electronics need to be out of sight, this includes in the hallway and at recess. Students are allowed to have cell phones only to place emergency phone calls on the way to and from school. Cell phones must be turned off and kept in student backpacks. Students who violate this policy will have their devises confiscated until it is picked up by a parent. The school is not responsible for lost or stolen devises.


Students may be suspended or expelled for bringing a weapon – real or toy - to school, even if the student is young and he or she did not intend to use the weapon to hurt anyone.  Please discuss the importance of this with your child.


At Whittier, one of our primary goals is to ensure the physical and emotional safety of your child, inclusive of health related issues. After consulting with other schools in the Treasure Valley and our District Office, we have implemented a new policy regarding parent requests to keep students in at recess. If you request that a student stay in for recess, we will honor your request for up to 3 consecutive days.  If the request extends beyond this time period, a note from a medical provider will be requested and required in order for the student to continue staying indoors.  Please note the following:

  1. The student might be required to stay with staff other than his/her teacher.
  2. This requirement does not apply to students who have chronic conditions such as asthma.
  3. The health office staff might communicate with you about the request.


The safety of students, staff, and visitors is a top priority. Students and staff regularly practice Fire, Hall Check, and Lockdown Drills. You can help us in the following ways:

*Sign in and obtain a Visitor’s Badge every time you volunteer during school hours.

*Make sure we have up-to-date emergency contact information. Notify us immediately of address, telephone, employer, child care, or medical providers changes.

*Don’t call the school during an emergency as this disrupts communication with emergency personnel. Local media will keep parents and the public informed.

If needed, we will escort students to an alternate assembly site, depending on the situation:

        *Whitewater Park Apartments (365 N. Whitewater Park Blvd. Boise, Id. 83702)


Students are encouraged to participate in after school sports and other activities offered at Whittier. Students who participate in evening events or who come to watch sporting events must be accompanied by their parents or be under the supervision of another adult. Please do not send your children to evening or after school sporting events unsupervised. This is for your child’s safety.


If you want to meet with your children’s teachers, please don’t just drop in while volunteering or dropping off/picking up your children. Please do make an appointment so teachers can plan their day accordingly. Please sign-in at the office and allow our office staff to call the classroom to make sure teachers are available to meet with you. Teachers rely on the time before and after school and their prep periods to post concept and language boards, prepare materials, review curriculum, tutor students, etc. Your understanding will ensure that students benefit as much as possible from the learning time available.


All parents are encouraged to join and attend meetings of Whittier’s Parent Teacher Organization (PTO). Sign up to be on their email list or look for PTO announcements in Whittier’s monthly newsletter or Facebook page. If you can’t attend PTO meetings we’d still love to have you as a parent volunteer.


Whittier perates a schoolwide Title I program to benefit all of our students. Title I funding pays for Title I Tutor salaries, additional instructional materials, equipment, and professional development. Title I staff work closely with classroom teachers and other programs to help all children be successful in reading and math. Title I Tutors may assist teachers with large group instruction, they might work with small groups of students, or one-on-one with a child. Students also benefit from professional development, which teachers receive, and instructional materials purchased with Title I funds.

_____I will help my child understand the importance of following all school rules.

I will tell my child what a weapon is and that no weapons, toy or real, should ever be taken to school.

Parent/Guardian signature__________________________________________________

_____I will follow school rules.

Student signature_________________________________________________

Please sign and return to your child’s teacher.  Thanks!

Whittier Elementary Homework Policy

The Boise District is adopting a new homework policy this year.  This policy has been developed based on staff, parent, and community surveys and also book studies that were conducted over the past  year. Each individual grade level may have some variations to the policy, so please look for that information to come home.  However, these are the overall district guidelines.

*The purpose of homework is to practice and reinforce learned skills.  Homework will never be assigned on skills that have not already been taught.

*Grades can be affected positively or negatively in relation to homework habits.  

*Reading every night is encouraged.

*A child’s right to playtime, downtime, and adequate sleep shall not be infringed upon by homework.

*Students are responsible for completing homework. Students have until two weeks before the end of the semester to turn in missing assignments.

*Each grade level may have some unique aspects to their policy.  But, all grade level policies conform to these guidelines.

-Some of the above policies are adopted from Cathy Vatterott’s, Rethinking Homework: Best Practices that Support Diverse Needs and Tom Schimmer’s, Grading From the Inside Out.

I have read and understand the Whittier Elementary homework policy.

Parent Signature________________________________________

Student Signature_______________________________________