Open House, First Day, & First Week Information

Posted August 15, 2023

Dear McKinley-Thatcher families,

We are thrilled to be kicking off another school year with the McKinley community! We have a lot happening, so please refer to this email for everything you need to know about our upcoming events, the first day of school, and our special first week schedule

Open House – Thursday, August 17, 4:00pm-5:30pm

All school families are invited to join us for our Open House on Thursday, August 17 from 4:00pm to 5:30pm! Families may come anytime between 4:00pm and 5:30pm to see their students’ classrooms and meet their teachers, then join our PTA on the playground for a free ice cream social!

PLUS: families can pick up their free copies of our 2022-2023 yearbook from our lobby during Open House!

First Week of School Schedule

  • Mon., 8/21 K-5th Grade: FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL + Half Day
    • Class hours: 7:30am-11:30am. 
    • Students will eat lunch before dismissal.
    • ECE ONLY: ECE students have NO SCHOOL on Monday, 8/21.
  • Tues., 8/22 K-5th Grade: Half Day / ECE: FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL + Half Day
    • Class hours: 7:30am-11:30am. 
    • Students will eat lunch before dismissal.
    • ECE ONLY: The first day of school for ECE students is Tuesday, 8/22.
  • Weds., 8/23 ALL GRADES (ECE – 5th): Half Day
    • Class hours: 7:30am-11:30am. 
    • Students will eat lunch before dismissal.
  • Thurs., 8/24 ALL GRADES (ECE – 5th): Full Day Classes Begin!
    • Class hours: 7:30am-2:30pm

Discovery Link Half Day Programming for August 21, 22, & 23

Our Discovery Link (DL) program will offer half-day care from 11:30am to 6:00pm for registered ECE through 5th grade students on Monday, August 21, Tuesday, August 22, and Wednesday, August 23. Discovery Link programming takes place in our cafeteria.

Discovery Link does not offer drop-in care, so families must register on the Discovery Link website and add the half days to their child’s schedule in advance.

ECE families: Discovery Link is not offering morning care on Monday, August 21, but your ECE student may attend the DL program from 11:30am to 6:00pm on this day. If you’d like your ECE student to attend, please bring them to the front door of our building at 11:30am.

K-5th Grade: First Day Celebration – Monday, August 21

Families are invited to join us for our annual First Day Celebration on August 21 from 7:15am to 7:30am on our playground. We’ll have photo ops, bubbles, and other fun to welcome the new school year!

K-5th Grade: Assessment Appointments – August 21, 22, & 23

We will be collecting beginning-of-year data for all kindergarten through 5th grade students in the afternoons of the first three days of school, from 12:15pm to 3:15pm. If you haven’t done so already, please sign up for your student’s appointment with a teacher using the links below. (There are no assessment appointments for ECE students.)

Beginning-of-Year Assessment Appointment Sign-Up

ECE Families: First Day of School – Tuesday, August 22

The first day of school for ECE-4 students is Tuesday, August 22. We apologize for the inconvenience this may cause to some families. This was a last-minute decision made by DPS, and applies for all ECE programs, not just McT. We’d also like to say a special thank-you for your patience with the rollout of the new UPK process and all the challenges that have come with it! 

ECE Families: First Week of School Schedule

Our ECE-4 students will have half-days on Tuesday, August 22 and Wednesday, August 23.  Their classes will be in session from 7:30am to 11:30am.  ECE students will eat lunch before dismissal, so please plan accordingly with a lunch from home, or they may get a free hot lunch from the cafeteria. 

Staff Updates for the 2023-2024 School Year

We are very excited to welcome our newest staff members to the McKinley-Thatcher community!

New Staff Members – these updates were previously shared in May 2023:

  • Karen Goldberg – Librarian
  • Michelle Ball – ECE-4 Teacher 
  • Jenn Duff – 2nd & 3rd Grade Special Education Teacher
  • Emily Jones – 4th Grade Teacher 
  • Dean Wymer 5th Grade Teacher
  • Katherine Nelson (McT Parent!) – Health Office Paraprofessional

New Staffing Updates from the summer months: 

  • Zulema Camacho – transitioning to ECE-4 Paraprofessional 
  • Sarah Kirkwood – transitioning to Reading Intervention Teacher 
  • Rebecca Schroeder – Kindergarten Math/Science/Social Studies Teacher
  • Lauren Garcia – Performing Arts & Drama Teacher
  • Kendall Hallstrom – Speech-Language Pathologist
  • Justine Trujillo (McT Alum!) – Special Education Paraprofessional
  • K Doucette-Brayer – Instructional Paraprofessional (1st-5th grade) 

Thank you so much for reading through this important information. We are hard at work getting the school ready for students to return, and we can’t wait to see you all here on Thursday for Open House!

All the best,

Sonia Geerdes (she/her)