9955 South 2300 E., Sandy, UT 84092

October’s Principal Newsletter

Justin Jeffery, Principal
October 13, 2022

Dear Park Lane Patrons and Families,    

I wanted to say THANK YOU one more time for your help with our school’s PTA fundraiser. Thank you PTA board for all the work that went into making it happen. Thank you all for your support. Thank you students, parents and teachers, and community for making it such a successful fundraiser! We were in the local/state news a few times for the fundraiser and final assembly as well as with some great successes for a couple of our Park Lane students. It was heartwarming to say the least.

Please see another newly published celebration, and other information below for happenings at Park Lane.


Safety First – I wanted to remind everyone that the parking lot is closed before and after school. If you have family members or friends picking up your students please make sure they know, as occasionally we have someone enter the parking lot with the school busses and are upset to find that they have to wait ten minutes before we re-open the gates and let them out. Also, please remember that if you park in front of the school we need you to please walk to either side of the school and follow the safe route on the sidewalk. We ask that you do not walk up the hill and across the parking lot for safety.

Principal Pride – I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I was recently looking at scores and wanted to re-emphasize how stellar our teachers and students are here at Park Lane. Across the nation I’ve seen data indicating a significant amount of regression over the period during COVID. While I believe that some of our students may have experienced some learning gaps with the 2020 school closure and online learning in 2021, overall our school’s scores went up afterwards. That’s right! We truly grew through this challenge and increased learning! This is unprecedented, but nonetheless the case.

I generally don’t like to spend much time on scores because I know that there is so much more in education than test scores. This data illustrates how our students are doing though, and I’ve been so excited by our results that I just had to share.  The state recently released their grades and Park Lane was once again Exemplary, and received an “A”!
Results like this only come from having stellar teachers who are committed to the education of the whole child. Thanks for humoring me as I brag a little bit about Park Lane. J
Attendance – Remember our attendance motto: Eight or less for greater student success! That is certainly the case when it comes to student attendance. Consistent school attendance is fundamental for student success. We know that students will occasionally miss, and we can’t help it when students get sick and should be home. My concern is in creating habits of missing significant amounts of school for vacations and the like. With our involved curriculum, significant amount of direct instruction, classroom discussions and so much more, there is a lot that is missed when students are absent. It is impossible to catch students up with multiple days of instruction by giving students worksheets and the burden placed upon teachers to do so is unreasonable. A growing body of research shows that missing just a few days here and there can contribute to students falling behind in reading, writing and math. By the sixth-grade, excessive absenteeism is a warning sign of a student not graduating from high school. We know there are legitimate reasons for missing school. But too many absences, even excused absences, can harm a student’s chances for academic success. Help us work together as a school community to encourage students to show up on time, every day, ready to learn.

Reflections – It’s time for Reflections! This is an awesome state and nationwide PTA program, and is a great opportunity for students to showcase their talents. The theme is “Show Your Voice!” All Reflections entries must be submitted online at https://www.utahpta.org/reflections-information-parents. You will need to create an account and click on “Submit Reflection Entries” to fill out the form and upload your entry. Entries are due Monday, October 24th before midnight.

Halloween Festivities – Classroom parties and festivities will happen on Halloween (October 31st) this year. With the positive feedback received last year, we are planning to continue our annual Halloween parade OUTSIDE (dress warm or bring a blanket as it’ll likely be a little cold). Students will showcase their costumes as we take the parade outside for all to see. The parade will begin at 9:00 a.m., and we’ll be outside shortly after that time. Visitors please just meet outside on the North/East side of the school to view the procession.
In order for it to be a success please adhere to these guidelines:

  • All costumes must be school appropriate for all elementary age students.
  • Costumes should be suitable for outside temperatures of the day.
  • Student costumes should allow the student to participate in regular school activities and learning. 
  • Please avoid costumes with full masks or full-face paint (for safety purposes we must be able to identify individual students).  
  • Costumes may not be violent, suggestive, or otherwise offensive to someone’s culture, gender, heritage, or religion.  Violent props such as weapons may not be included at school.  

In case of inclement weather (rain, snow, extreme cold, etc.) the parade will be moved inside.
Digital Citizenship Week – Next week is our annual Digital Citizenship week. Please watch for information that will be sent home with things that you can do to support at home, and for information about our curriculum that will be taught at school.
Important Dates to Remember:

  • Now-October 16th – PTA Papa Murphy’s Spirit week
  • October 13th – Third Grade Field Trip to the Wetlands
  • October 17th-21st – Digital Citizenship Week
  • October 20th & 21st – Fall Recess (no school)
  • October 24th – Reflections Due (online) 
  • October 24th-28th – Red Ribbon Week
  • October 26th – Mini Orchestra Assembly for parents @3:30 p.m.
  • October 28th – Panther Strides Pastries w/the Principal (October+ winners)
  • October 31st – Halloween – Outside Student Parade (weather permitting) @ 9:00 a.m.
  • November 1st – Fifth Grade Biztown Field Trip & Café Zupa’s Spirit Night
  • November 8th – PTA Meeting (11:40-12:30)
  • November 10th  – SCC Meeting @ 5:30
  • November 11th – PTA sponsored Veteran’s Day Muffins with our Military (in the gym at 7:45 a.m.)
  • November 11th – End of the first trimester
  • November 18th – Panther Strides Pastries w/the Principal (November winners) & Report cards go home.
  • November 21st – ARTS Assemblies 
  • November 23rd-25th – Thanksgiving Holiday Break (no school)
  • December 7th & 8th – School Musical Performance of Annie

Thank you again for all your support, and for your partnership in education.
I love being a Park Lane Panther!

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