David Gourley Elementary
Home of the Pandas
Student and Parent Handbook 2021 – 2022
Welcome to David Gourley Elementary School! We are most pleased to have you here and have prepared this handbook to help make your experience at Gourley both more enjoyable and successful.
School Hours: School begins each morning at 8:35 a.m. Students should arrive no more than 5 to 10 minutes prior to the bell. Students who come to school excessively early tend to get involved in behavior issues on the playground before the school day ever begins. All students should enter the building in the morning using their grade level entry/exit doors. The dismissal bell rings at 3:20 p.m. All students are to exit the building with their teachers and board the bus or leave the school grounds immediately. Students are not allowed to stay and play on the school grounds as it is unsafe to do so without supervision.
Attendance: It is very important that students attend school for the maximum number of days in order to participate in the learning activities and not miss any instruction. It is also critical that they arrive at school on time (by 8:35 a.m.). Valuable instruction begins immediately at the beginning of the day. The only time that a student should not come to school is when he or she has a contagious illness or serious family emergency. Parents can assist by notifying the school office by phone when a student is too ill to attend. The student or parent needs to speak with the teacher and make up all missed class work and homework. Did you know that students with poor attendance records in the first three years of elementary school are less likely to graduate from high school? Be sure to set your child up for academic success by assuring they attend school on a regular basis!
Homework: This year we are requesting that all students practice their math facts for 10 minutes each evening and read for at least 20-30 minutes depending upon their grade level. Teachers will provide more specific information as to homework and how they would like you to track reading practice at home. Consider setting up a nightly reading time for your family. This is a great way to spend some quality time together and for parents to show students they value reading as well!
Parent Visitation/Volunteering: We encourage all parents to consider volunteering in their child’s classroom at some point during the school year. If you are unable to come in during the school day, teachers often have projects that they can send home to have parents help prepare for activities in the classroom. If you would like to visit in your child’s classroom, please arrange in advance with the teacher. Visits should be of short duration and should not interfere with the orderly flow of the classroom. All visitors to the school are required to report to the office and obtain a visitor’s pass before proceeding to classrooms.
Birthdays in the Classroom: If you are choosing to bring birthday treats to celebrate your child’s birthday, please adhere to the following guidelines. Treats must be store purchased, not homemade. Treats must also be individually wrapped. Please provide enough treats for each student in your child’s class. When bringing treats to school, they must be left with the front office. The office will make sure the treats get to your child. Balloons and large distracting decorations will not be allowed in the classroom. We will not permit families to take treats directly to their child’s classroom. Please contact your child’s teacher for information about class food allergies and to make them aware that you will be dropping off treats to the office.
Bringing Food to School: Food should only be brought to school if students are bringing a home lunch. Student’s packed lunch may only be eaten in the lunchroom and not shared with others. Single serving items are appropriate. Large portion size items, that cannot be finished during lunchtime, will not be saved or stored for students. Students will need to dispose of them before leaving the lunchroom. Gum is not allowed at school.
Student Check-out Procedure: If your student needs to leave school during the day, he/she must be signed out in the office by a parent, guardian, or adult emergency contact listed on the registration card. For security purposes, you will be asked to show picture ID when checking out your child. The student will then be called to come to the office. Please do not go the classroom yourself to pick up your child. We do not issue street passes at the elementary level for students to walk home by themselves during school hours. All students must be escorted off school grounds by an authorized adult. We ask that you avoid checking your child out in the last 30 minutes of school, this time can be the busiest time in the classroom and office.
Transportation: Students who ride a school bus to and from school are required to be cooperative and demonstrate appropriate behavior on the bus. Parents of students who act in a disorderly manner on the school bus will be contacted by either the school or Granite District transportation services. Students who persist to act in a disruptive and unsafe manner on the bus may have the transportation services suspended. It is highly recommended that parents walk their child to and from the bus stop each day to prevent student conflict.
Personal Belongings: It is not recommended that students bring personal belongings to school with them, especially if the items have significant personal or monetary value. Students are discouraged from carrying money with them at school as well. It is very difficult to tell one student’s dollar bill from another. Coats, snow hats, and backpacks should be clearly marked with the student’s name for identification purposes. All toys should be left at home including fidget toys.
Student Records: Please update home, work, and emergency phone numbers during the year if they change. It is critically important to be able to contact you in case of an emergency or other special need. Also, by law each student must have a birth certificate and a current immunization record on file in order to attend school.
Behavior/Citizenship: Of all the learning, knowledge, and growth attained in school, two very important characteristics a student can gain are a positive self-concept and good citizenship. Much success in life is a result of these traits. Our school-wide rules, character education program and positive behavior program are each designed to support this belief.
- School Rules: We have 3 school rules that all students and staff members are expected to comply with:
- Follow Directions the First time
- Show Respect
- KYHFOOTY (keep your hands, feet, and other objects to yourself)
- Social Emotional Learning: We believe in teaching students social emotional skills. These skills will help students understand the role of the brain with emotions, learn to verbalize emotional needs, and gain control over their emotions and behaviors. One of the programs we use is called Zones of Regulation. The Zones of Regulation teaches students how to identify their emotions, then to make choices to regulate those emotions in healthy ways. The second program we use is called Skill of the Week. It was created right here at David Gourley! It focuses on teaching important life skills step by step.
- Positive Behavior Program: The school-wide positive behavior program teaches students how to monitor and regulate their own behavior through feedback from their teachers using a leveled system. Students who have no major behavior infractions, or level 4-5 behaviors, during a month are invited to participate in a behavior reward activity. We have many other programs that promote and reward positive behavior. Please contact your child’s teach or the main office for more information,
Safe and Orderly School: Granite School District is committed to providing a quality education to students in a safe, supportive, and welcoming environment. Unsafe conduct and disrupting school programing or student activities violates district policies. Among other things, District polices prohibit: threats or acts of violence; possession of real or look-alike weapons, explosive, noxious, or flammable material; gang activity; criminal or disruptive behavior; destruction or defacement of property; willful disobedience or persistent defiance of authority; and possession of illegal drugs, alcohol, or other prohibited substances. Bullying, cyberbullying, hazing, and retaliation can also disrupt a student’s right to a respectful school atmosphere. Any bullying, cyberbullying, hazing, retaliation, or related conduct is unacceptable. Granite School District prohibits all discrimination, harassment (including sexual harassment), and retaliation against any individual based on race, color, sex, pregnancy, religion, national origin, age, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity in its educational programs, activities, admissions, access to facilities, or other treatment.
The best resources for identifying and addressing incidents of unsafe behavior, discrimination, harassment, bullying, cyberbullying, hazing, and retaliation are students and staff. Granite School District provides several avenues for reporting:
• every school posts the contact information of two or more administrators or staff members that will receive reports
• our school uses a “Buddy Box” for students to make written reports, students and parents are encouraged to make verbal or written reports to any teacher or other staff member immediately after an incident
• the District Safety Hotline is available if students are aware of any dangerous situations involving bullying, weapons, or unsafe behavior – Phone: (801) 481-7199, Text: (801) 664-2929
• students can use the SafeUT application on their phones
Students found in violation of District policies regarding school safety, discrimination, harassment, bullying, cyberbullying, hazing, and retaliation may subject themselves to student discipline including parent/guardian conferences, suspension/expulsion, referral to law enforcement, placement in an alternative program, and/or other consequences and action steps appropriate for the circumstance.
Electronic Devices: All electronic devices, including cell phones, are not allowed to be used at school. These items are often lost or misused in the course of the school day. If for some reason you feel your child must have a cell phone with them, the phone must be turned off and stored in the student’s backpack as soon as the student arrives on the school grounds. Students may not use cell phones for any reason in class, in the restroom, or during recess periods. Students who violate this rule will have their phone confiscated and a parent will be required to come to the school and pick it up. Parents who need to contact their students should do so through the front office at 385-646-4846.
Recess: Our students will participate daily in 2-3 recess periods depending upon their grade level. Requests to hold students in from recess for more than 2 consecutive days will require a medical note. Students who have three or more behavior infractions during recess time will participate in our leveled structured recess program and parents will be notified. During this time, they will learn skills to help them with safer behaviors at recess.
Concerns: From time to time concerns may arise with parents over school related issues. If you have a concern, the first person to address the concern with is your child’s teacher. They are the person in the building that knows your child the best. When parents and teachers stay in close contact with each other, most issues are easily addressed. If you have tried to resolve an issue with the teacher without satisfactory results, you are welcome to schedule an appointment in the office to visit with administration.
Lunch Money: There is a box on the counter in the office that parents may use to pay lunch money. Parents may also choose to use the following web site to make lunch payments: apply here
Breakfast: Gourley has a school-wide breakfast program where all students have the opportunity to eat breakfast, for free, in their classrooms at the beginning of each school day. Students may choose whether they would like to eat breakfast at school or not. Students do need to be on time to school if they want to participate in the breakfast program. All breakfast is cleaned up no later than 9:00 a.m.
Weather: Living in Utah, we have a variety of seasons throughout the school year. Please be aware of the temperature and weather conditions as you dress your child for school each day. On mornings when we have significant precipitation outside or the temperature is 24 degrees or below, students will be instructed to go to their classroom to participate in a quiet non instructional activity prior to the beginning of the day. The same guidelines are used to determine whether students will have their recess periods outside or in. Students should look for the red or green signs on the entry doors to determine whether it is an in or out day.
Dress Code: Students are asked to adhere to the following guidelines regarding dress. Students who violate the dress code will be asked to call home to obtain appropriate clothing.
- Clothing should be neat, clean, modest and appropriate for a school setting.
- Hats are not to be worn to/at school. If you wear a hoodie to school you are not to wear the hood on your head inside of the building.
- Tops without backs, show the stomach when arms are raised, or that have large arm holes are not appropriate.
- Tank tops are not regarded as appropriate school attire. Shoulder straps on all tops should be at least three inches wide.
- Skirts and shorts must be no shorter than 4 finger widths above the knee or have pants or leggings underneath. Any pants with tears above the knees will require leggings underneath.
- Make-up is not appropriate for elementary age students.
- Coloring your child’s hair can prove distracting to your child and other students. Please consider saving this activity for summer months.
- Students who come dressed in dirty and torn clothing will be referred to the school social worker.
- Clothing with inappropriate pictures, liquor/tobacco advertisements, sexually suggestive messages, drug related messages or gang related, including bandanas of any type, are not allowed at school.
- Shoes are required at school at all times and should provide adequate protection for the students’ feet. Flip flops are not appropriate. Proper P.E. shoes should be worn on days where students are required to participate in P.E. For their safety, students may be asked to sit out of certain activities if proper shoes are not worn.
Walking to and from School: Any student walking to and from school should use the supervised, marked school crosswalks and follow the directions of the crossing guard. Students need to walk bicycles, skateboards, etc. when crossing at the crosswalk and continue walking them on school grounds. Students who choose to use a bike, scooter, or skateboard as a way to get to school must be able to lock them up at the bike rack. These items will not be stored in the school or classrooms. Students also need to respect community, school, and neighbor’s property. Parents, please teach your child the safest route to and from school and encourage him/her to walk with other students and be a safe pedestrian. All students are discouraged from walking through David Gourley Park on their way to and from school. There are visibility issues in the park that make it unsafe for unsupervised students. Students will be held accountable for any disorderly conduct on their part to and from school if that conduct affects the school climate, classroom instruction, and student and staff welfare and safety.
First Aid and Illness at School: In the event your student becomes ill or is involved in an accident while at school, the parent will be notified in order for proper arrangements for the child’s care to be made. Any student who is sick or injured must come to the office and be checked out by an adult. Other than simple first aid, which includes having the student wash his/her own injury and apply a band-aid, school employees cannot administer medical services nor give a student any kind of medication, not even Tylenol. Any medication that needs to be administered to a student during the school day must be brought to the office with a note from a medical doctor. Students should not carry medication in their pockets/backpacks to self-medicate. Also, please do not send your student to school if he/she is running a fever or showing signs of a contagious illness.
After-School Program: We do have an after-school program that is by invitation.