Helen M. Knight Elementary School Principal Taryn Kay wants to share a significant amount of information with HMK students and parents, much of which is included here. Most of all, she implores parents to read through the HMK handbook.
Kay said it has been important for HMK parents to register students online from the school district’s website, as it is required each year and it ensures that students’ emergency contacts are up to date, that mailing addresses are correct and to ensure that each student is properly counted.
She encouraged all parents who qualify, to apply for free and reduced-price lunch, which can be done through the school district’s online portal. Although not all families will qualify for discounted lunches, the more students who do, the more the school district benefits monetarily.
Utah uses the number of students in each district who get free and reduced meals in certain calculations related to funding levels and resource provisions. Districts with high numbers of students getting free and reduced-price lunch tend to get more resources and funding allocations.
However, according to Kay, parents of qualifying students do not always apply due to the stigma of receiving discounted lunches, meaning that HMK and the school district misses out on higher funding and resource allocations.
The first day of school is Thursday, Aug. 15, and HMK will host a Back to School night on Aug. 13 to allow students and parents to come meet teachers, receive handouts and get Popsicles. The event will be held outside at the school.
Kay said the new format of holding the greeting event informally and outside was an effort to accommodate parents with schoolchildren in multiple grades. It will allow parents to come and go.
New hires and departures
- Paige Mendenhall will teach Kindergarten.
- Alexis Walker will teach 3rd grade since Charlotte Davis left.
- Pete Basinger will teach 4th grade.
- Tabitha Gritts is a special education paraprofessional, replacing Tom Goheen.
- Brittni Biondi is a special education paraprofessional.
- Sena Nissen is the 4th through 6th grade art coordinator, replacing Dee Hannigan.
- Amasie Willison is the library coordinator, replacing Tracy Renn.
- Kendra Cupps is the instructional coach, which is a new position at HMK.
- Ashly Hunter left her music position and another teacher will take her place.
Kay said that HMK parents are “always welcome” to stop by the school, for example, to eat lunch with their child. She said that the school keeps its doors open to parents and that she invites them to visit throughout the school year.
She also said that parents interested to have their child participate in the BEACON after school program could do so during the first week of school, when sign-up sheets will be sent home with kids. Registration will go out on the first day and is due back on Aug. 21. Parents can also contact the BEACON office at 435-260-9439.