Shelyn Elementary School

School Starts at Shelyn Monday!

Dear Shelyn Family,
I would like to wish you a Happy New Year and welcome you back to school for this coming Monday, January 7th, 2013. We still have construction crews working long hours to make the school as perfect as possible and will probably still have some light construction occurring in the next few weeks. While these things are inconvenient, once you see the improvements I’m sure they will be worth it.
In light of the recent tragic events that occurred in Connecticut I would like to take this opportunity to mention that Shelyn Elementary School has a comprehensive safety plan that is updated and revised yearly. Rowland Unified Police Department representatives were consulted during the revision process in order to provide students and staff with the best possible safety plan.

Student and staff safety has been and will continue to be a high priority at our school. This tragedy will serve to strengthen our commitment and vigilance to maintain safe and secure campuses. We continually work to maximize student and employee safety in our schools by:
• Maintaining excellent relationships with the police department and city officials. They always provide outstanding rapid response service whenever called.
• Regularly practicing school-wide drills, including lockdown drills, to prepare for worst case scenarios.
• Maintaining an emergency communication system that we use to connect quickly with our parents by phone and/or email.
As a parent of two children, I, like you, have addressed this issue with my family. A website that was of particular help to me was There are helpful talking points that you can use and modify as appropriate for the ages of your children. Experts say that many children may not be affected by these types of events since they occur outside of their community. That is fine and, as parents and educators, it is our job to continue monitoring and listening to our children.

With our new construction will also come a change to some of our security measures. As you know, when we have guests, be they parents, district personnel, dignitaries or otherwise we require people sign in in our front office before proceeding onto campus. In light of the events in Newton we will now require that lunches are dropped in the office and students should be told, prior to school, to come and pick them up at lunch. Because of concerns about security, parents will no longer be able to eat lunch on the outside tables with students. I know this is a difficult change, but as a team devoted to our children’s safety I know you will understand.
We also have new gates in the front of the school. These gates will open for students to enter campus at 8:00 each day. One small side gate will be open for students eating breakfast and those going to classrooms for assistance. As a reminder please note that the school provides supervision for students from 8:00 until 2:50 on a daily basis. Should you need supervision outside these times we have the options program and several other fine before and after school care programs who service Shelyn students. I know, as a part of our team looking to ensure all students’ safety, you as parents will make the appropriate arrangements to make certain your children are supervised throughout their day.
In times like these, we are reminded that every single adult in our school community contributes to our students’ safety and well being. Thank you for caring, loving and doing all you do for the children at Shelyn.


Sarah Opatkiewicz
Principal, Shelyn School