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News Archive - AUG 2017

News Archive - AUG 2017


Dear Parents and Guardians,

We have a very important School and PTA Fundraiser coming soon--the Art & Wine parking event.

This is a relatively easy fundraiser, in that we receive $10.00 per car that parks in our field over the weekend of September 16th and 17th.

However, we cannot carry off this event without volunteers to help set up the field, hang signs,  guide cars into and out of parking spots, etc. 

If you are able to assist us, please go to the following link to sign up:

Much appreciation!

Ms. Kamstra and PTA



Ms. Miakje Kamstra



Dear Parents and Guardians,

The child nutrition department will do finger scanning (Biometrics) for Kindergarten and new students this Friday. If you want to "opt-out" your child, please complete the opt-out form attached


Ms. Kamstra 


Ms. Miakje Kamstra



The school-wide portion of Back to School Night.




Ms. Vicki and Ms. Sharon have a Physical Education page and blog up and running: https://centralpark-scusd-ca.schoolloop.com/pe


You can find the P.E. Schedule and more information on the Central Park Elementary Physical Education program.


P.E. Schedule

G4 - Berger, 12:45-1:35PM Mon/Thu
G4 - Cary, 1:35-2:25PM Mon/Thu
G3 - Wichmann, 10:35-11:25AM Tue/Fri
G3 - Stauter, 1:35-2:25PM Tue/Fri
G3 - Oyola, 12:45-1:35PM Tue/Fri
G2 - Stewart, 8:30-9:20AM Thu
G2 - Tang, 9:20-10:10AM Thu
G2 - Winslow, 10:35-11:25AM Thu
G1 - Goulette, 12:45-1:35PM Wed
G1 - Gray, 10:35-11:25AM Wed
G1 - Barlow, 9:10-10AM Wed
K - Gonzales, 8:30-8:55AM Tue/Fri
K - Ng, 9-9:25AM Tue/Fri
K - Zeitler, 9:30-9:55AM Tue/Fri



Welcome to Physical Education!

We, Miss Vicki and Miss Sharon, are excited to have your student(s) in our class! All students in Kindergarten through 4th grade will receive P.E. from a certificated Physical Education teacher and a trained paraprofessional. The California State Standards along with Sparks and National Standards will frame our Physical Education program.  


Grades K-2, will focus on fitness, locomotor skills, cooperative play and spatial awareness. Grades 3-4, will learn about their muscles and the 5 components of physical fitness: flexibility, muscular strength, muscular endurance, aerobic capacity, and cooperative group play. Collectively, the students will learn how to live long healthy lives.

(PE State Mandate – Ed. Code 51223)

200 minutes every 10 instructional days


The Science Behind Physical Education

Researchers have linked exercise to increased brain activity and function. Movement creates Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF), which is a protein that increases brain function, promotes growth of new neurons and supports cognitive functions. Low levels of BDNF are linked to Alzheimer’s, poor neural development, obesity and depression. Exercise increases blood flow to the brain, promoting growth of new nerve cells and blood vessels. A rise in movement also increases memory, decision-making skills, multi-tasking, and lengthens attention span.  


Health and Medical Concerns

Let us know if:

Your child has a physical or medical condition that could limit his/her participation in the program. It is important that your child is safe and comfortable while participating in Physical Education. We modify activities as needed to promote success.

If ill or injured for up to 2 days:

Please send a note from home explaining the illness or injury and the appropriate level of activity or inactivity for that day.

If ill or injured for 3 days or more:

Please send a doctor’s note explaining the level of activity allowed and the length of time needed to be excused. We will provide an alternative and/or modified activity appropriate for each student.



*Be Safe *Be Responsible *Be Respectful

Clothing – Please have your student(s) wear appropriate clothing that is suitable for physical activity. Shorts or pants must be worn under skirts and dresses to maximize student participation.

Shoes – Please have your student(s) wear athletic shoes with socks. For safety purposes, crocs, sandals, flip-flops, boots and heels should not be worn to Physical Education. Students may bring athletic shoes in their backpack and change during class if they decide to wear non-athletic shoes to school.

Extras – Sunscreen, hats and water bottles are welcomed and encouraged! Please write student names on their belongings. 



The Physical Education grade is based on individual effort, sportsmanship and *participation.* Each student earns a grade three times a year.

E = Excellent

S = Satisfactory

I = Improving *

N = Needs Improvement

*Only used after receiving a “N”


Any questions or concerns please contact

Miss Vicki via email: vmartin@scusd.net  




4th Grade Physical Fitness Testing

Each year, your child’s fitness level will be assessed using the Fitnessgram criterion-referenced tests adopted by the California Department of Education. Throughout the year, students aim to reach the Healthy Fitness Zone (HFZ) based on their age and gender. During the year, every student is setting individualized physical fitness goals.


All districts are required to report the fitness scores to the state in the spring for all 5th, 7th, and 9th grades. You can review the California districts’ county and statewide results if you visit http://data1.cde.ca.gov/dataquest/.


One Mile Run

Aerobic Capacity is calculated by VO2max which reflects the maximum rate that oxygen can be taken up and utilized by the body during exercise.  The calculation is done utilizing height, weight and mile time.


Curl-Up (Measures Abdominal Strength)

Age       Female          Male

10       12 or more    12 or more

11       15 or more    15 or more

12       18 or more    18 or more


Push-Up (Measures Upper Body Strength)

Age       Female           Male

10       7 or more        7 or more   

11       7 or more        8 or more   

12       7 or more        10 or more   


Trunk Lift (Measures Trunk Extensor Strength and Flexibility)

Age       Female                     Male

10       9 inches or more        9 inches or more   

11       9 inches or more        9 inches or more   

12       9 inches or more        9 inches or more


Back-Saver Sit-and-Reach or Arm Stretch (Measures Flexibility)

Age       Female                     Male

10       9 inches or more      8 inches or more

11       10 inches or more    8 inches or more

12       10 inches or more    8 inches or more


Have a Healthy Heart!

Your heart is a muscle with many parts, it is important to keep it strong and healthy.

What can you do to take care of your heart?


Dear Parents and Guardians,

It came to my attention that the  Back-to-School Night  DATE was missing on the last email.


It is this Tuesday, August 29th.


In addition, please make sure you have looked ahead at our "Important Dates" google doc for all dates for the year. 





A hard copy was sent home at Residency Verification, however, this one will have current updates. 





Ms. Kamstra 

Ms. Miakje Kamstra



Dear Parents and Guardians,


We've had a very busy and productive first 8 days of school! 

We had a great time observing the eclipse last week. Thank you to all of the parents/guardians who were able to take time out of their day to come help out.


We had aprox. 100 parents/guardians/and staff attend the Parent Education Night with Dr. Kenneth Wesson.  He was truly inspiring. If you did not get a chance to hear him, please go to our website to view a video of the presentation. 


I want to thank our PTA for all of the behind-the-scenes work continuing to set up an infrastructure that will allow our school to flourish. We can't thank all of YOU enough for the direct donations that have come in that will support our programs. 


Construction Updates:

As you can see, the administration building at the front of the school is taking shape! We are estimated to move in mid-October. You won't have to walk to the back of the school to get to the office! 



Brain Day!

This next Wednesday all students will take part in some activities that teach about how the brain works with  Dr. Melina Uncapher (UCSF neuroscientist) and her research team. Students will rotate through various stations. Dr. Uncapher speaks all over the world about her research, so having her devote this time to us is a huge honor. 


Drop-Off and Pick-Up:

I have received complaints about unsafe practices in the front of the school and at the Recreation Center parking lot. Please help us by driving safely, courteously and using the crosswalks. If you are on Sonoma Pl., please do not walk across the street with kids unless you are inside the crosswalk. I realize these times of day can be really stressful as folks are trying to get to work, etc.  If you leave a parked car in the loading zone, you will risk getting a ticket, so if you plan to walk into the school with your child, park at the Rec Center or further down the street. We close our parking lot to the public as it will only hold staff parking and it is not safe to drive through at busy times.  Most school parking lots were built in the 1950's for a much smaller population, so the struggle is real. I appreciate everyone's patience.


Mark Your Calendars!


Back-to-School Night:

The purpose of this evening is to learn more about the instructional program for the year. We ask that this evening be "adult only" since you will be receiving important information and seating is limited.  PTA will also hold a brief meeting in between the presentations so that we can get our budget approved and fill vacancies. You will hear from important programs happening school-wide including our Garden Committee as well as Project Cornerstone. The library will also be open--stop by to learn more about Miss Helen's program. 

Since parking will be limited, you may park on the field if necessary.

6:00-6:30 pm: Kinder-2nd grade presentations

6:30-7:00 pm: Meet by lunch tables (Ms. Kamstra speaks, PTA, Garden                                         Committee, Project Cornerstone, etc.)

7:00-7:30 pm: 3rd-4th grade presentations

Note: Locations will vary based on classes/grade-levels. 



Labor Day:

Monday, Sept. 4, NO SCHOOL


School Site Council:

On Tuesday, September 5th, we will hold our first School Site Council meeting for the year. This session is a training session, designed to explain what this council is responsible for. Essentially, this group is responsible for giving input and approving he School Plan and school budget. If you are interested in learning more about school programs this is the group for you! Meetings are once per month for about an hour.

Tuesday, Sept. 5th




Robotics Competition Team Informational Meeting (refer to email with more information that was sent out on August 26, 11:00 am).

Tuesday, Sept. 5




Kindergarten begins full day:

Thursday, Sept. 7th, Dismissal: 2:26 pm

Please provide a lunch for your child OR purchase through Child Nutrition.


Wishing everyone a great week,


Ms. Kamstra and Team Chameleon! 

Ms. Miakje Kamstra



Dear Parents and Guardians,


Please see the attached documents (Robotics Team Flyer PDF & Robotics Team Memo of Understanding PDF) in regards to our Central Park Robotics Competition Team. Thank you to the parent volunteers who are leading this effort. Please note the important distinction between this Volunteer run program versus our after other "vendor offered" after school programs. Read the flyers closely if you are interested in this program. 


Central Park STEAM Robotics Team is run by parent volunteers. It is focused on competition and expos not instruction. Robotics competition is only 33% on robotics. Another 33% is focused on researching real world problems and developing prototypes of these solutions that could possibly require additional research on other technology, business practices or challenge themes. The final 33% is focused on teamwork, public presentation skills, organization, and planning.


Robotics competition requires about 2-12 hours per week of time commitment depending on the level of competition. This is a time commitment of both the child and the parent. 


Ms. Miakje Kamstra




Dear Central Park Elementary Community:


We are looking forward to our first PTA Association Meeting of the year on Tuesday, August 29th at 6:30pm and hope to see you there (see agenda attached).  The meeting will be held in the school's Multi-purpose room during Back to School Night.


As many of you are new to the school, we want to be as transparent and inclusive as possible in how we support the mission of the school as well as foster a strong and engaged Central Park Elementary School community.  


To that end--- we have several updates that we wanted to share.


Open PTA Board Position


Our Board Treasurer has resigned due to professional committments. We are thrilled that our sitting Board Secretary, Dasha Estes has stepped up to serve in the Treasurer role for the remainder of her term. However, this leaves an open Secretary position on the Board.  To date, we have had one parent indicate an interest in serving as Secretary for the remainder of the year.  


However, if you are interested, please send your name and position statement to CentralParkPTA2016@gmail.com by COB, Monday, August 28.


Open PTA Committee Chair Positions

Several Committee Chair positions are still open. These positions provide a great way to become involved with our PTA activities!

  • Membership Chair
  • Communications/Social Media Chair
  • Financial Secretary
  • School Spirit Store Chair
  • Maker Space Coordinator
  • Fall Festival Chair
  • Parent Education Chair
  • Spring Social/Movie Night Chair
  • Food Booth Sales Chair
  • Code-A-Thon Chair (similar to walk-a-thon)

Annual PTA Membership

If you have not already paid your annual membership dues or bundled your membership with your Direct Donation, please consider joining the PTA today!  

All members of your family/extended family/children can join.  

Dues are $10/per person and can be dropped off at the office.


Review Proposed 2017-2018 Budget

The proposed budget has been posted outside the school office and will be available on the school website.


Review Proposed 2017-2018 Programs & Events

The proposed list of Programs & Events has been posted outside the school office and will be available on the school website.


Upcoming PTA Fundraisers and Events

  • September 16-17  Annual Santa Clara Art & Wine Festival Parking fundraiser
  • September 18-22  Scholastic Book Fair
  • September 20       Dining for Dollars - California Pizza Kitchen
  • October 27            PTA Fall Social - Community Event - (Save the Date)
  • November 14        PTA Association Meeting 


We look forward to a great year!


--Central Park Elementary PTA Board


Dear Central Park Community,


Our Direct Donation campaign aimed at raising funds to support our kids in the classroom is still in full swing!   To date, we've had over 70 families from our school donate and a number of parents who have activated matching donations from their employers!  


We are very proud of our community, but we want to continue to encourage your participation in this campaign at whatever level is financially feasible for your family.  


Its not too late to act and ADD your donation in support of our Central Park Elementary students!


HOW can you donate? 

  • Consider Corporate Matching through your Employer and DOUBLE your Impact!
  • Donate by filling out the form in your child's Wednesday Envelope           
    *Drop off cash or check to the office 
    *Make a donation using PayPal

In addition, you can choose to bundle your annual PTA  membership dues with your tax deductible donation. We require your full name and address in order to send tax receipts, so please make sure you fill out the form and return it to the office.


If you have questions, please contact the PTA Board at CentralParkPTA2016@gmail.com


With gratitude,


Central Park Elementary PTA


Early childhood education resources are provided by First 5 of Santa Clara County to residents of Santa Clara from the West San Jose Family Resource Center. If you have a child age 0-5 (regardless of your level of income) you are eligible to participate in the FRC's early childhood education programs as they are California tax funded. Community Workers with training in Positive Discipline, SEEDS, social work and early childhood education are available to help. Spanish translators are always available. Their Kindergarten Readiness programs are aligned to give every chlid an opportunity to start at the same basic aptitude when entering elementary school. They also offer resources to help families in need of food, clothing, health insurance and other family needs.


"Neuroscience of the Brain" STEAM Education with Dr. Kenneth Wesson


Ever wonder what we mean by "STEAM education"?  Why is Central Park Elementary focused on a brain-based integrated approach to learning? How does this method best meets the needs of our students?  


Dr. Kenneth Wesson answer these questions and more in the Central Park Elementary Parent Education Night Talk.


Read an excerpt from Dr. Wesson's article, "Education for the Real World."

 “Brain-considerate” home and school learning environments seek to soften the artificial academic borders that were initially created to make instruction and testing less complicated, making learning more difficult in the process. Ours should be “SMART” schools and homes, where we strategically organize learning experiences underscoring the synergies among Science, Mathematics, the Arts, Reading and Technology...Classroom instruction should occur where each of these topics is applied to the others, emphasizing their interconnectedness and linking them to the larger organizing body of what we call “knowledge.”




Lunchtime Chess Club program meet in the cafeteria (Multipurpose Room) every Tuesday starting 9/5.



Team Chameleon Chant





Central Park Elementary Song





Solar Eclipse Song and Information





Ever wonder what we mean by "STEAM education"?  Why is Central Park Elementary focused on a brain-based integrated approach to learning? How does this method best meets the needs of our students?  


To dig deeper, join staff and parents to hear renowned neuroscientist and educator, Dr. Kenneth Wesson answer these questions and more.


Read an excerpt from Dr. Wesson's article, "Education for the Real World."

 “Brain-considerate” home and school learning environments seek to soften the artificial academic borders that were initially created to make instruction and testing less complicated, making learning more difficult in the process. Ours should be “SMART” schools and homes, where we strategically organize learning experiences underscoring the synergies among Science, Mathematics, the Arts, Reading and Technology...Classroom instruction should occur where each of these topics is applied to the others, emphasizing their interconnectedness and linking them to the larger organizing body of what we call “knowledge.”


Dr. Kenneth Wesson

Date: Tuesday, August 22

Time: 6:30pm

Location: Central Park Elem. Multipurpose Room

Adults Only

RSVP to: mkamstra@scusd.net

Go to his website to learn more: http://www.sciencemaster.com/about


We have about 100 seats left for our "Neuroscience of the Brain" STEAM education event. Come listen to Dr. Kenneth Wesson discuss how the brain learns. 


Ms. Miakje Kamstra



Our school is implementing a biometric finger scanning identification system for our cafeteria meal program in an effort to provide accurate student identification as well as security for our student accounts. This will replace our meal cards and students inputting their pin numbers. We want to eliminate identification errors and clerical errors and provide an easy and accurate way to identify students and be sure no one else can charge items to their accounts. Students will scan their fingers as they come through the cafeteria to account for their meal.


Please read the two attachments carefully. If you are NOT in favor of your child having their finger scanned, please complete the OPT OUT form. Keep in mind, this is NOT fingerprinting. 


Concerning the Biometrics. If your child was scanned last year they are in our system already, the scan will not need to be repeated.


If you signed an opt-out form last year, please do another one. 


If they were scanned in the past and you've changed your mind, complete the opt-out form and they will be removed from the system.


Email me if you have any further questions. 


Ms. Miakje Kamstra


Biometrics Frequently Asked Questions (Print PDF)


Biometrics Opt-Out Letter (Print PDF)



Dear Parents and  Guardians,


We have a unique opportunity to hear from a renowned guest speaker, Dr. Kenneth Wesson, on STEAM education and the neuroscience of learning. Dr. Kenneth Wesson is coming to Central Park Elementary.


Date:  Tuesday, August 22nd

Time:  6:30pm

Location: Multipurpose Room


 This was funded by a Donor's Choose grant  Ms. Berger wrote. 


We have limited seating (aprox 200) in our multipurpose room. This is for adults only.


We hope you can attend.


Due to limited seating for our night with Dr. Kenneth Wesson, please RSVP to mkamstra@scusd.net


Thanks so much,

Ms. Kamstra 

Very best,

Ms. Kamstra

Ms. Berger and Staff 


Central Park Elementary

Kindergarten Schedule


(Print PDF)


Day 1: August 16:

Start: 8:30am

Dismissal 10:10am

Parents/Guardians can stay with classroom until 9:00am, then convene in Multipurpose room for Meet/Greet/Tour. Parents/Guardians take students home at 10:10am. If you cannot stay until 10:10am, please arrange for your child to be picked up.


First (3) Weeks:

August 17 – September 6th


(Students should bring a snack)


September 7 –rest of the year:


(Students should bring a snack AND lunch). You can purchase lunches through Child Nutrition.


All Wednesdays & Early Dismissal Days (Refer to Important Dates for Early Dismissal Days)



Basic Skills Assessment (First 3 Weeks)

Teachers will make appointments with you to conduct assessments of:

*Letter knowledge (identification / sounds)



*Writing their name


Note: This is NOT a conference. Teachers will not have time to talk in between the testing. Parent / Teacher Conferences will be held in September. If you have an urgent concern, set up a separate meeting time.



Dear Parents and Guardians,

We are looking forward to seeing students and families soon! Teachers and staff  have been very busy preparing for everyone's return and are excited about meeting new members of Team Chameleon!

Please know that class lists will be posted Saturday on the office wall (P1)
Keep in mind:
1. You will need your child(ren's) ID number. No names will be posted.
2. If you have not completed Residency Verification, your child(ren's) name will not be posted.

We encourage everyone to come in either today or tomorrow to complete this process.
Hours: 9-12pm

If you have questions, direct them to:

Leanne Konicek



Thank you,

Ms. Kamstra 



Ms. Miakje Kamstra




Dear Central Park Families and Community,


The PTA's Direct Donation campaign is off to a wonderful start thanks to a number of generous donations that have already been made.  We are so grateful!


It has come to our attention that the original letter was missing a digit on the Tax ID number which you will need if you are able to set up a matching donation through your employer (PDF).


In response to some of the questions we have received about how these funds will be spent, one of our parent volunteers created a flyer that illustrates where these resources will be used (PDF).


Receipts for your donation will be provided, but we require your name and address to create the receipt, so please include that information when you donate (even if it is through PayPal).  Checks can be made out to Central Park PTA and please include 2017-2018 Direct Donation in the memo field.


The PTA is available for in-person questions during residency verification and at the Back to School community event on Saturday, August 12th, 11am-1pm.  

Or you can email your questions or feedback to CentralParkPTA2016@gmail.com




Central Park Elementary PTA





Dear Parents,


Each year every family must provide Residency Verification.

Our office is open the following hours this week in order to complete this process. See below for a reminder as to what documents are needed. We cannot officially place a child in a class until this process is complete.


Office Hours:

Monday: 9-12pm

Tuesday: 4-7pm

Wednesday, Thursday, Friday (9-12pm)

Please bring all of the following signed documents to the school office in order to complete your registration for the new school year. If you are missing any of the forms, we will ask that you come back at another time to complete your registration.  We will not be able to accept partial documentation. Please bring your own duplicate copies.

ð   Emergency Release Form (go to website below)

ð   Residency Declaration Form

ð   3 Proofs of residency (6 if living with another family)

Please provide your OWN copies, as we cannot guarantee access to a copy machine our first week.


For more information go to:



Thank you,

Ms. Kamstra



Ms. Miakje Kamstra



Our first annual Back to School Community Meet-Up is next week!  We hope to see you there at this family friendly event.


Date: Saturday, August 12th 

Time: 11:00am - 1:00pm

Location: Central Park Elementary (blacktop and hallways areas-- look for the signs)


Have fun with friends while you ease back into the school year!  Feel free to bring a picnic lunch!

  • Class Lists will be posted (Families who have completed residency verification will be able to see your child's class assignment)
  • Activities and Ice Breakers
  • Music
  • Popsicles for the kids!
  • Meet the Central Park Teachers!
  • Principal and PTA Q&A 

This is a casual event and we hope that everyone will be able to enjoy meeting new people, re-connecting with old friends and showing our school pride!


Please email any questions to:


Mrs. Zeitler has a DonorsChoose projects that needs your help!


Face 2 Face Personalized Learning

The binders will enable each student to have their own portfolio in which to organize their personalized learning. They will be able to add work to show to visitors and keep at the end of the school year. The plastic sleeves will preserve their work. Timers will serve as a tool to keep students on task and carry out their goals in a timely manner. The timers are a useful tool to build independence and responsibility. The headphones will enable learners to research and stay focused on their individual passions when they want a quiet space. The headphones will allow students to learn at their own pace without distracting other students in the classroom.