August 10, 2017
Dear Uinta Meadows Parents and Students,
I hope you have had a memorable summer and that your child/children has been reading every single day. We want every student on the top reading shelf. Summer reading is an important bridge to your child’s success.
UME has a few new faces and changes this year. I, Jerrod Dastrup, will be in my third year as the building principal. Words can’t express the gratitude I feel to be able to call Uinta Meadows “home.” I look forward to the opportunity to get to know each of you and your children better this upcoming year. My goal is to provide a school that is safe for all students. We want to provide a well-rounded education where students can grow and develop academically, physically, cognitively, behaviorally and emotionally. We have even added five additional minutes to students’ lunch recess each day for students to get their wiggles out. I sincerely hope that you feel comfortable participating in your student's education at UME. Let’s make this year the best yet. Go Eagles!
We have some new faces at UME this year! We welcome these new staff members and know that they will make great contributions to success of UME and it’s students.
The following are faculty who have changed positions within UME:
One of the most critical parts of my job is creating an excellent instructional team at UME. I believe that UME has an unmatched team. There is nothing this team cannot accomplish. We are making a concerted effort in regard to communication between school and home. We have a UME Facebook page and Instagram page. Please “Like” our page to get the communication and updates that we will share on a regular basis. We will also be communicating with families through our Powerschool system utilizing a program called SwiftReach SwiftK12, formerly known as Alert Solutions. Yes, this is the robotic female voice that everyone loves. We hope you can appreciate the constant communication even though her voice is a bit less desirable. This program uses the email address and phone numbers you provide UME that are entered into Powerschool. Swift Reach allows us to send a messages via phone, text and/or email to the contact information you have provided UME. This information is confidential and will not be shared with others. We strongly encourage you to update your contact information with your child’s teacher during Open House.
UME and UCSD#1 are growing in the area of becoming highly effective PLCs (Professional Learning Communities). We believe that no single person is smarter than the team. PLCs focus on the learner. We, as educators, ought to be willing to learn how to meet the needs of all students each and every day. Doing this strengthens our ability to focus on Personalized Learning in our classrooms at UME and throughout the district. Personalized Learning focuses on meeting the needs of each individual student. We focus on the academic, social, emotional and behavioral needs of each child. We love our students and want them to love UME. We want them to leave UME having had the best all-around educational experience that we can offer.
UME has the largest PTA in the state of Wyoming with 114 members last year alone. They were also recognized as a National PTA School of Excellence. The UME Community Council is a parent and staff governing council that discusses important educational topics on a monthly basis. PTA and CC Meetings will be held on the fourth Tuesday of each month in Kathy Seale’s room. PTA meetings will begin at 5:30pm and CC will begin at 6:00pm. We encourage all parents/guardians to participate if possible. There will be sign-ups and more detailed information in your back to school packets that you will receive during Open House.
Our Open House is scheduled for August 24th from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. Please bring your school supplies. The PTA is going to be hosting a BBQ as a fundraiser in front of the school during Open House. Bring your appetites. We invite and encourage every parent/guardian and student to attend. This is an opportunity for you to start your year on the right foot by meeting your child’s teacher and getting important information for your child’s success. You will receive your back to school packet of information and handbook. You will also have the opportunity to sign-up to volunteer and help with PTA.
Monday, August 28th will be the first day of school for all students. There is no longer a half-day schedule for testing the first week of the school year.
We encourage parents to sign-up for our Smith’s Earn and Learn Program. You must register your Rewards’ Card annually. This program costs nothing and earns our school thousands of dollars each year. Please ask friends and family members to signup as well. You can be registered for Uinta Meadows Elementary at any Smith’s in the nation.
Remember to always check in at the office when visiting or volunteering at school. We have visitor badges in the office. Your badge will tell the staff and students that you have checked in at UME. At the end of the school day we ask parents to meet students in the lobby rather than walk through the hallways and to their classrooms. We ask that parents do not disturb the school’s learning environment during class time. We encourage all parents to volunteer a minimum of one day at UME. During the day students must be checked out through the office.
This year will be the sixth year that our fifth grade attends Teton Science School in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, May 17th-21st, 2018. Now is the time for your fifth grader to begin earning their money for Teton Science School. Younger students should also be working to earn the money to be able to pay for Teton Science School when they are in fifth grade. Your fifth grade teachers will have more information regarding Teton Science School.
Thanks for your cooperation with our pick-up and drop off this last year. Our system is not perfect, but does work when we are all on the same page and patient. Please read the parent pick-up and drop-off letter for further details. It will be included in your Open House Handbook packet.
As we all know, learning does not just take place during the school year. It is critical that each and every UME student continues growing during the summer. This goal was promoted once again this summer with the Summer Math Challenge and Soaring into Summer Reading. Hopefully your child(ren) has been getting on Dreambox for math and keeping track of his/her reading minutes on the UME reading calendar. Remember, it is never too late to start reading and keeping track of those minutes!! For each goal your child reaches they will earn incentives and spots on the UME bookshelf.
The rewards are as follows: 700 minutes=pizza party with Mrs. Symes and Mr. Dastrup and a spot on the base shelf, 1,000 minutes=pizza party and UME reading T-shirt along with spots on the base and center shelf, 1,600 minutes = all of the above plus a gigantic celebration and a spot on the very top of the book shelf.
Students who are new to UME can turn in a note from parents or a calendar from their previous school to qualify for the celebrations.
As UME pushes to have 90% of our students reading on benchmark, we call upon parents to help us reach this goal by reading with and ensuring that their children are reading 20 minutes each night in a “Just Right” book. This is the single greatest support you can offer to the success of UME and your children.
Looking forward to a great year,!
Jerrod Dastrup, Principal
New Staff Introductions
Hi UME Friends,
My name is Debbie Nixon and I will be joining UME as the Consulting Teacher in the Special Services dept.. Along with being a little nervous at this new opportunity, I am also tremendously excited!! I have worked for UCSD #1 for 28 years in Special Services as a Resource teacher at North Elementary. I love and will miss my North friends. I have been so welcomed and encouraged here at UME, the transition has been great!
A little about me, I am married to Todd Nixon who teaches Computer Science at EHS. He is also an assistant wrestling coach. I love wrestling!!! We have 3 sons, who are all married to amazing women. I have 9 wonderful grandchildren. The oldest is a girl and the youngest is a girl. This gives us 7 little boys in the middle. We have a daughter who is currently serving an LDS mission in Bangkok, Thailand. I have missed her terribly and she will be home in only 4 more lunch menus! Some things I love and love to do are; yard work and flowers, being around children, vacations, reading, and spending time with my family, that is the best!!! Thanks for the warm welcome to the UME Family!!!
Hello, my name is Jeremy Lash and I was born and raised in Pennsylvania. I moved to Evanston in 1999 to teach. I have a wonderful wife and two beautiful daughters. I love the outdoors and fervently pursue hunting, fishing, and camping adventures.
I received my degree from the University of Wyoming in 1997 and spent two years teaching in Pinon, Arizona. Since then I have taught at Clark Elementary in fourth and fifth. I have a Masters Degree in Learning and Technology and I am National Board certified. I am looking forward to my new adventure here at UME and excited to strengthen the science knowledge of all the students at UME. Go Eagles!
Hello UME Family,
My name is Melissa Roundy. I will be teaching 3rd Grade at UME this year and I am thrilled! This will be my eighth year of teaching. I began my career here in Evanston, after I graduated from the University of Wyoming. I enjoyed teaching second grade at Uinta Meadows Elementary for my debut year. After my first year teaching my family and I moved to Morgan, UT where I worked as a second grade teacher for 4 years. After 4 great years in Utah we decided to move back to Evanston, and I was lucky enough to get hired as a 4th grade teacher at Aspen Elementary. I really liked 4th grade at Aspen, but I decided to try something different when I had the opportunity to work as an Instructional Coach at Aspen for the 2016-2017 school year. I will miss working at Aspen, but I’m so excited to teach at the school that my own children attend.
Surprisingly, my whole life doesn’t revolve around school. I’m happily married to Josh who works as a Financial Advisor. We have three amazing children. Kolter-7, Allie-5, and Logan who recently hit the 2 month mark. I love to spend time with my family, shop, read, and travel. Especially if my travels land me on a beach. I’m excited for the 2017-2018 school year. I am confident this will be the best year ever!
Margaret MaGee has been with UCSD#1 since 2000 as a speech-language pathologist. She has worked at the elementary, middle and high school level here in Evanston and will be based at DMS while working part-time at UME. Previously, Mrs. MaGee worked in Arizona and Alaska at the elementary level. She has spent time living overseas and enjoys meeting new people. Her interests include yoga, audiobooks, cross country skiing, foreign foods and movies.
Victoria (Tori) Kasper
Hi, my name is Victoria Kasper. I just moved to Evanston from Cheyenne this year to be closer to family. My daughter, Brooklyn, is 7 and going into 2nd grade. I earned my Associates Degree in education from LCCC and I am so excited to be working in the library and Cybrary. Looking forward to a great year at Uinta Meadows!