Tips for New Students and Parents
Welcome to St. George’s Episcopal School (SGES)! New families sometimes have questions that arise as they prepare for their first year at SGES. The Parents’ Association has developed what we hope are helpful answers to frequently asked questions.
- What is the Parents’ Association?
Every parent or guardian of a SGES student is automatically a part of the Parents’ Association. Essentially, we support the administration, staff and faculty and help with a number of activities such as class parties, holiday events, and teacher appreciation. We have several meetings a year for everyone to attend.
- What about the uniform?
Specific information about uniform requirements is sent out by the office and is on the school website. Your child will only wear the dress uniform on special occasions and field trips so usually one outfit will suffice. Label all sweatshirts and jackets because students invariably take them off and leave them on the playground, in the gym, or lunchroom etc. There is a lost and found box in both the upper and lower buildings so check there if an item is missing. View the guidelines here.
- How does carpool work?
Drop-off and Pick-up for students is in the front of the school. Students can be dropped off in morning carpool from 7:45 until 8:00 am. If your family needs an earlier option, students may be dropped off as early as 7:00 am at the library doors. At Open House, you will receive a carpool sign. This sign is put in the front window of your vehicle and is used to identify the student or students who will be riding in your car during afternoon pick-up. For safety reasons, we ask that parents do not park their car and walk up to the carpool area to pick up their child.
- Can parents come to Chapel?
Parents are always welcome to attend chapel services with their children. However, Celebration Chapel, on Friday mornings, are often attended by parents/guardians or grandparents. You may particularly want to attend if your child is celebrating a birthday or being recognized at Chapel, but attending these services is fun any time.
- What is Formstack?
Formstack is a program that allows parents to fill out forms such as permission slips, lunch orders, etc. through our website. You will find the Formstack link under the About Us/For Parents tab on the SGES website, www.sges.org.
- How do I get involved at school?
There are a number of ways to get involved at SGES. You can talk to your child’s teacher if you are interested in volunteering in the classroom on a regular basis. Also, parents will be asked to help with school parties and to assist on various field trips. At the beginning of each school year, an email will go out with opportunities to volunteer. Feel free to contact our office or go to the formstacks link to sign up to volunteer. Each class has a Room Parent/ Class Liaison. This person is a volunteer who helps coordinate various events, assists the teacher, and communicates with Parents’ Association about class needs. The Room Parents are always looking for people willing and able to help in small or not so small ways. So, if you are interested in helping contact your room parent.
- What tips are there for packing lunches?
Obviously, students bring a wide variety of lunch items. If your child particularly wants hot items, try using a thermos or insulated container. There are microwaves in the lunch room, but they are in high demand. Students may purchase juice or water for $1.25. They may also purchase ice cream for $1.00. Your child may also need to bring a snack for the afternoon. Your teacher will let you know what the policy is in his/her classroom.
Students may also order catered lunches by the month. Vendors include a variety of area restaurants such as Subway, McDonald’s, Pork Pit and Chick-fil-A. These lunches are ordered through Formstack.
Note – Every child forgets his or her lunch sometime! Don’t panic – you do not have to drop everything and rush to school. On the occasion that a student has forgotten a lunch, they are able to purchase a lunch through the front office.
Pizza Fridays – On Fridays, the Parents’ Association offers pizza for $1.00/slice. Pizza Fridays should begin on August 19th this year. Parent volunteers are needed to help with Pizza Fridays. It only takes a couple of hours and is a fun way to help. Pizza by the slice can be ordered for the entire year.
- What do I need to know about special events right now so I can plan ahead?
Blessing of the Animals –(every September) On this day, students are allowed to bring their pets to school to receive blessings by the Chaplain. Parents usually accompany their child to school that morning and take their pets home immediately afterwards. It usually ends around 8:45 a.m.. Pictures of pets and borrowed pets are also sometimes used. This is always an exciting day at SGES.
Grandparents Day – (every October) Call your child’s grandparents or grandfriend and tell them to put Grandparents’ Day on their schedule now. This is a very special day enjoyed by students and grandparents alike so plan accordingly. Parents (with the exception of grandparent’s day volunteers) do not attend this day. This is a half-day of school so students are dismissed at 11:30.
Halloween – SGES students enjoy a Halloween Party and Costume Parade for this holiday. Parents are always needed to help with these parties (as with all parties) and are welcome to come watch the parade which is toward the end of the school day.
Lessons and Carols – (every December) This beautiful holiday program takes places just before the Christmas break. Everyone is invited. Typically, students in 3rd – 8th grade will be performing that evening.
Note: These are just a few events that occur at the beginning of the school year. Descriptions of most school events are included in the handbook which is very helpful.
- What is a House Competition?
House Competitions are a time for students to come together for some friendly team building activities across grade levels. Each student at SGES is assigned to one of four houses, Agape (red), Shenghou (blue), Imparare (green), and Kutumikia (yellow). New students are given a “House Shirt” to wear on house competition days. Students typically wear their house shirts with jeans or shorts.
- Is After School available?
After School Care is available Monday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. The cost is $8.00 per day and is billed monthly to Smart Tuition. The students are provided with a snack, given an opportunity to complete homework and after completing homework, given an opportunity to play. After School Care is offered on 11:30 dismissal days, except Tuesday, December 20th and Friday, May 26th.
- What to expect with fundraising
As with other schools, St. George’s requires fundraising above the cost of tuition in order to cover operating expenses. There will be several fundraisers during the course of the year and parents and students are asked to help in whatever way they can. The biggest event, the Get-Away-Gig, is held on Saturday, March 4th and is highlighted by an exciting auction which includes items made by the students and items donated from families. SGES parents, prospective parents, and friends of the school are all invited to attend. Definitely put it on your calendar.
Parents are also asked to contribute to the Annual Fund. More information about the program is in the handbook or can be obtained from the office. However, it is important to understand that grants and assistance for the school are often based on the percentage of students/parents participating in a school’s annual fund so a high level of participation is just as important as the overall amount raised.
- What are Birthday Books?
You can commemorate your child’s birthday with a beautiful Library Bound book that will remain in our SGES library for generations to come. A bookplate will be affixed to the inside front cover to depict your child’s name, birthday and who donated the book. We will present your child his/her birthday book on the Celebration Friday of the week of his/her birthday. Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, neighbors and friends are welcome to participate too! Birthday Books will be billed to your Smart Tuition Account in the amount of $20.00.
- How will I stay informed about what is going on at the school?
Dragon Tales – Dragon Tales is a weekly online publication that comes out on Friday afternoon. It is a great source of information and includes highlights and pictures from the week. It also contains dates, announcements and reminders for upcoming events. It is a great way to help stay informed and see what’s going on in various school divisions.
Other information: The Handbook is a great source of information and is the OFFICIAL source for any information about the school. However, if you are uncertain about something or have additional questions feel free to call an officer of the Parents’ Association or ask a staff or faculty member.
We are all looking forward to an exciting new year and hope that this information will be helpful to you.
The Parents’ Association