Full Handbook

Words of Welcome

One Focus…Preparing Students for Life

Welcome to Chisholm Elementary School for the 2012-2013 school year! Our school is an exciting and enriching place for all members of our school family to learn and grow. The faculty and staff join as a team in being dedicated to providing a safe, productive, and enriching environment for every child. The faculty, comprised of highly-educated and experienced professionals, is committed to providing a nurturing environment that promotes the academic and social success of your child. All school personnel work conscientiously throughout the school to project the positive, pleasant, and safe school image that IS Chisholm Elementary School.

It is a pleasure to serve as your school’s building leader. I view my role as that of a facilitator for the plans, programs, and procedures developed by the Alabama Department of Education, Montgomery Public Schools, Chisholm’s Building Leadership Team, and Chisholm’s parent group. It is my wish to work together as a team to ensure that each and every member of our school family (students, faculty, staff, parents, and community volunteers) is afforded the opportunity to take giant steps toward intellectual, emotional, and personal growth and maturity. Our number one priority, which guides each decision made for our school, is our children.

We solicit your support as we work together to create a strong learning community for all stakeholders and to provide the very best educational opportunity possible. We look forward to your positive and productive involvement with your child's school and teachers.

This handbook is designed to be a quick reference guide for students and parents. It is provided in an effort to give first-hand information about procedures and operations that will be helpful to you and your child. Please feel free to contact the office if you have any questions or concerns regarding the information in this booklet.

We are excited about this school year. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and support. Together, we will turn our school’s mission and beliefs into reality.

Respectfully Yours,

Holly Thursby, Principal



Through a shared commitment, we the teachers, parents, students, and community of Chisholm Elementary School, believe that every child can learn.


The mission of Chisholm Elementary School is to educate the total child in preparation for citizenship in a continually changing society.


The seven belief statements of Chisholm Elementary School are as follows:

1. Students learn best with a correlated curriculum.

2. Students learn best with multiple learning strategies that build on their strengths.

3. Students learn best when provided with a safe, challenging and positive learning environment.

4. Students are motivated by positive professional role models.

5. A challenging curriculum encourages independent and critical thinkers.

6. Teachers, parents, community, and school are necessary for student achievement and success.

7. Students benefit from educators who participate in professional development which reflects current research and practices.


7:10-7:40 Breakfast
7:45 – 8:00 Homeroom Duties
8:00 Announcements
8:10 Tardy bell rings
8:15 Daily Instruction Begins

Reading Block – Grades K – 3 – NO interruptions
10:40 Lunch Begins
12:40 Lunch Ends
2:55 Dismissal of Bus Students
3:00 Dismissal of Car Riders
3:10 Dismissal of All Students/Walkers


Holly Thursby, Principal
Michelle Harris, Assistant Principal
Nina Taylor, Bookkeeper
Beverly Dabney, Secretary
Mary Bogardus, Parent Liaison
Eleanor Tillery, Office Aide,

Freda Burroughs
Tamiko Hardin
Kimberly Mullins
LaTesha Phelan
Michele Whiting

First Grade
Tracy Blackshire
Ty Harrell
LaTonya Harrison
Wilma Jordan
Dana Pettway
Rita Doyle

Second Grade
Carol Davis
Lori Knight
Synithia Reese
Tracie Smith
Lisa Wright

Third Grade
Antonio Hinson
Michelle Jackson
Alice Nettles
Sheila Riley
Roman Zeigler

Fourth Grade
Adwowa Jacobs
Scharinell Lauderdale
Rhonda Moorer
Stan Reese

Fifth Grade
Mable Chames
Marjorie Holtzclaw
Tiffany Persons
Thaddeus Thompson


Physical Education

Doug Baxter
Danielle Martin


Terrence Bruce
Renita Galbreath


Callie Patterson

Teacher Tutor

Roy Brown


Aubrey Larcheveaux

School Nurse

Pam Jackson


LaTonya Wilson

Media Assistant

Valerie Collins

Reading Coach

Rosalyn Floyd

Special Education

William Traylor PALS
Cynthia Welborn PALS
Janice Richardson Resource Teacher
Shronna Brown Resource Teacher
Tracey Davis Speech
Gwen Tunstall Resource Teacher

Instructional Assistants

Pearlie Russell PALS
Wanda Sanders PALS
Damon Williams PALS
Valerie Duncan PALS


Cafeteria Staff

Cindy Gantt, Cafeteria Manager
Maurice Groomster
Gladys Howell
Lois Smoke
Judy Lucy
LaRhonda Green
Patricia Nelson
Leonard Gamble
Genesis Miller

Fontaine Davis
Jeffery Thomas
Chandra Clark Turner
Augustus Dean

Alabama Math Science Technology Initiative

1. Chisholm is very active as an AMSTI school. Through this initiative our students have benefited from the use of hands-on activities in the area of Math, Science and Technology. Students are engaged in a variety of activities throughout the year. Research indicates that student achievement among students in AMSTI schools increased with the use of this initiative.

Students are engaging in more technology activities in class as well as in the technology lab. We have installed Promethean boards in all classrooms. Students are actively engaged by using these interactive boards to effectively enhance instruction. Also, we offer students the opportunity to work with our web-based education program, Study Island. Each student in grades three through five is assigned a password that can be used at home as well as at school.

It is evident that this initiative is very helpful for our learning community. This is measured through the progress that is obtained in the area of science and math. This initiative allows for hands on interaction among students within the classroom. As a result of the implementation and training for this initiative, we have seen significant gains in the area of science, math and technology. We are committed to making this initiative a huge success at our school. We ask that you extend your support to our school.




Our school will continue to implement the Alabama Reading First Reading Initiative that is proven to benefit students across grade levels. We are proud to be an ARFI school. It is our goal to have 100% of our students reading on level and reaching their highest potential. The school employs one school based Reading Coach to assist students, parents and teachers in the area of reading. Our school is also supported by the local school district with System Level Reading Coaches and the State Department of Education Regional Coaches.

The ARMT (Alabama Reading and Math Test) results have increased over the past years due to the instructional strategies obtained through professional development for our teachers. Please share with us our excitement for the progress that we have accomplished thus far. We must strive to continue the processes in place for continued success with all Instructional Initiatives and Best Practices.



The first bell will ring at 7:45 a.m. Children who do not ride a bus should not arrive earlier than 7:30 a.m. Teachers are not on duty for supervision prior to 7:15 a.m. Students who eat breakfast should arrive no earlier than 7:15 a.m. Students will sit on the wall in front of school, and at 7:30 a.m. they will enter the building and sit to the left or right of his/her classroom door in the corridors until the teacher takes them into the classroom at 7:50 a.m. Children will come into the building during inclement weather. Students are dismissed at 3:10 p.m. Car riders should remain in designated areas until they are called to load into a vehicle. Walkers should leave campus immediately. Please be reminded that the start and end times have been changed to reflect a start time of 8:10 and end time of 3:10.

All students must be picked up immediately after dismissal.

A bike rack is provided for bicycles.

Children may ride their bikes to school. Once on campus, bikes must be walked to the bike rack. Please provide a lock to safeguard against theft of property.

The school is not responsible if a bike is damaged or stolen

Uniform Dress Code
Uniform Dress for Boys

*khaki only - no baggy or sagging

*white or burgundy-, must be tucked in at all times

Burgundy, white or khaki pullover or cardigan may be worn

Plain white or black tennis shoes preferred or shoes with a closed heel/toe with no logos

Navy, black, white, or burgundy

Black or brown belts are preferred with clothing that has belt loops

*Only solid colors with no logos

Uniform Dress for Girls

* Khaki only (wraparound, straight, or pleated) No higher than knee length from the crease in the back of the knee

*khaki only (shorts must be knee length, no baggy or sagging)

White or burgundy -must be tucked in at all times

Burgundy, white or khaki pullover or cardigan may be worn

Plain white or black tennis shoes preferred or shoes with a closed heel/toe with no logos

Navy, black, white, or burgundy

Black or brown belts are preferred with clothing that has belt loops

Only solid colors with no logos

We will follow the Dress Code Policy outlined in the 2012-2013 Code of Student Behavior.

First violation: Parents will be contacted and required to take corrective action. Additional violations may

result in detention or suspension.

Note: Parents may be called as often as necessary to address the dress code issue. Dress down days will be announced for special occasions and events.

*Parents, please note that Navy Blue is no longer part of the dress code. Yellow, Green, Red, etc. will not be accepted as part of the dress code for 2012-2013.

Hair styles that interfere with the educational process through distraction either in length, weight, color or attachments are prohibited.



Juice is sold daily. Small cartons of juice will remain at 35¢. Larger juices may be sold for 50¢ on Friday. Popcorn/snacks may be sold on Fridays for 50¢.This will be announced to students. Checks will not be accepted. Lunch and snack money must be exact change. Correct change will expedite collection and guard against loss of instructional time. The profit from this money goes back into the school. We appreciate your support.

If you choose to send juice or snack from home, we ask that it be consistent with what we sell. Juice must be 100% fruit juice by accreditation standards. We ask that snacks sent to school are always healthy snacks.


All children are encouraged to visit the school media center to check out books, view films, read stories or conduct research. It is important that students learn how to use the media center’s resources. Permission slips must be signed by the parent before students can check out library books. Lost, misplaced or damaged books must be paid for before another book may be checked out.


All students are required to participate in all P.E. activities unless parents send a written request for non-participation due to illness or injury. Extended illnesses must have a doctor’s excuse.


Students are allowed access to the telephones only in case of an emergency. Parents should support our procedure of keeping phone calls to a minimum. Please let your child know before coming to school if there is to be a change in the way he/she will come home on that day.


MPS approved Christmas and Valentine Parties will be planned by the homeroom teacher and homeroom mothers. Recognition of student birthdays should take place at 2:30 or at the end of the regular lunch period (with prior permission of the teacher and principal).


Teachers will plan field trips during the year. There may be end of the year field trips planned. All students will have an opportunity to participate. However, school rules and procedures will apply in preparation for the trip as well as on the fieldtrip. There will be no refunds on field trips. School permission forms must be signed by parent or guardian prior to leaving school.



All car riders should be unloaded in the circular drive in front of the school or in a one way direction to the left side of the building. These are the areas to unload your child.

No cars should enter the parking lot during arrival of students. The faculty Parking Lot is for Faculty and Staff Only. Please adhere to this request for the safety of your child.

All students arriving at Chisholm will have a designated place to wait before school begins at 8:10 a.m. Students eating breakfast should enter the doors beside the lunchroom. Students that are not eating breakfast should sit on the wall in front of the school. Students will not be allowed to enter the building before 7:30 a.m.

Teachers will be on hall duty from 7:25 a.m. until 7:45.


Parents are asked to remain outside of the school building during dismissal to ensure a safe and smooth dismissal of our children.

Parents are asked to use the circular drive and the left side of the building on the street to pick up students at dismissal.

Bus students load on west side of building in the Bus Zone.

Dismissal from classes:

2:55-Bus Students

3:00-Car Riders

3:10-All Students/Walkers

Checking Students In & Out of School

*Students are counted tardy after 8:10 a.m. After 8:10 a.m., the parent should check the student in at the office and the student should get a pass to class. Any check in at or after 11:40 a.m. is charged as an absence, and not a tardy. Excessive tardiness will be investigated. Please help us help your child be successful by being on time every day.

*If a student needs to leave school due to sudden illness, the parent will be called. Please ensure that the office staff has accurate telephone numbers for an emergency. In this case, and in the case of a planned check out due to an appointment, the parent should come to the office, request the child for check out, show valid picture identification, and sign the child out of school. The parent should never go directly to the class to get the student. If a person other than the parent should need to pick up the student, the parent should send a note giving the office staff permission to release the child to that person if that person is not listed on the registration/information card as having permission to check out the student. Positive proof of identification is required before releasing any student to any adult. Leaving school prior to 11:40 a.m. is considered an absence, and not a check out.


We encourage classroom visitation. During the hours of 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., please park in the right or left lane of the front drive. You will need to come in the front door of the main building, as other entrances will be locked during these hours for the safety and security of our students. Parents and other visitors are welcome to visit the school provided that they check in and identify themselves with the main office upon arrival and departure. All visitors must get a visitor’s pass before going anywhere in the building. The pass does not allow visitors to travel to other locations within the school. When visiting a classroom, please enter and leave quietly, and remember this is not a time for a conference with the teacher. Any visitor who causes disruption, distraction, or any other interference in the teaching and learning process will be asked to leave immediately. The Principal will have the right to have a disruptive visitor removed by school security and/or the police department, as well as the right to prohibit the individual from participating in future visits to the school.

Student Behavior – Code of Conduct

County and School Policies

A well-behaved student body is required if meaningful, effective instruction is to take place in the classroom. Students are expected to conduct themselves in an acceptable manner, and show proper respect for the faculty and staff, visitors, and fellow students at all times. Each student is responsible for his/her own behavior. Inappropriate behavior will result in consequences as deemed suitable to the severity and frequency of the misconduct. Teachers will team with parents, students, school guidance counselor, and school administration to ensure that each child is given every opportunity to be a SUCCESS.

Students may receive an office referral for any offense listed in the Montgomery Public Schools Code of Student Behavior handbook. Consequences will be issued for students who do not follow procedures and violate the MPS Code of Student Behavior. Refer to the Montgomery Public Schools Code of Student Behavior 2012 -2013 for Class A, B, and C offenses. Consequences for each violation are addressed. Accumulation of Class A offenses may be upgraded to a Class B or C offense.

We use the Positive Behavior Support Initiative (PBS) in grades K – 5. PBS is focused on developing effective interventions for problem behavior. It emphasizes the use of proactive reinforcement based strategies to manage student behavior. PBS aims to build school environments in which positive behavior is more effective than problem behavior.


Gifted students are those who perform at, or who have demonstrated the potential to perform at, high levels in academic or creative fields when compared to others of their age, experience, or environment. These students require services not ordinarily provided by the regular school program. Students possessing these abilities can be found in all populations, across all economic strata, and in all areas of human endeavor.

Teachers, counselors, administrators, parents or guardians, peers, self, or any other individuals with knowledge of the student's responsibilities may refer a student. Additionally, all second grade students will be observed as potential gifted referrals using a gifted behavior checklist.

For each student referred, information is gathered in the areas of Aptitude, Characteristics, and Performance. The information is entered on a matrix where points are assigned according to established criteria. The total number of points earned determines if the student qualifies for gifted services.

To make a referral, parents can contact the Gifted Specialist or Gifted Referral Screening Team chairperson at your child’s school. If you have further questions, you may contact the Gifted Coordinator at 269-3808.


Items confiscated from students will be brought to the main office where the items will be logged in under the student’s name. The items will be stored in a locked area of the main office. The items will only be returned to the student’s parent or legal guardian. It is the student’s responsibility to inform their guardian that an item has been confiscated. Parents should call the office to arrange a time to retrieve the item. The parent will be asked to identify the item and sign for it before it can be released. Any student who persistently brings impermissible items to school will be disciplined in accordance with MPS’ Code of Student Behavior. Any items not claimed by the end of the school year will be donated to charity.


Students needing medication while at school must follow the MPS procedures for administering medication to students. All medicine will be dispensed from the Nurse’s Office. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should parents ask teachers/students to dispense medicine to the child. Parents must complete a Medication Form which will be placed on file in the Nurse’s office. Parents must give all medications to the school nurse, not to the classroom teacher. All students will be sent to the nurse if they bring medicine of any kind from home. Please communicate with the school nurse regarding medication for your child.


Students are expected to read at least 20 minutes each night with a parent or adult. Parents will be required to sign a reading log to record each night’s reading session. Students may read to adults or adults may read to students. It is hoped that students will read books that have Accelerated Reader (AR) tests designed for them. Students will take AR tests at school regularly. Each test passed will earn AR points. Please reinforce reading at your home on a daily basis.



Approved 6/06/2012

August 13-17 Teachers/System-Wide PD
August 20 First Day for Students
September 3 Labor Day
October 19 First Grading Period Ends
October 25 Report Cards
November 9 *Early Dismissal for Students
November 12 Veterans’ Day Holiday
November 21-23 Thanksgiving Holidays
December 21 Second Grading Period Ends
Dec. 24 –Jan 2 Winter Holidays
January 3 Report Cards
January 3 Students Return
January 21 King/Lee Birthdays
February 15 *Early Dismissal for Students
March 8 Third Grading Period Ends
March 14 Report Cards
March 25- 29 Spring Holidays
May 23 Fourth Grading Period Ends
May 23 Last Day for Students
May 23 Report Cards
May 24 Teachers’ Work Day

First Semester August 20-December 21 85 Days
Second Semester  January 3 -May 23  95 Days 
Total    180 Days 


Grading Period Ending Dates Report Cards
1st Nine Weeks October 19 October 25
2nd Nine Weeks December 21 January 3
3rd Nine Weeks March 8 March 14
4th Nine Weeks May 23 May 23


September 17-21 AHSGE
October 17-24 EXPLORE
October 17-24 PLAN
December 3-7 AHSGE
February 18 – March 29 ACCESS for ELL
March 4 -22 AAA
March 18-22 AHSGE
April 8-19 AMRT

*November 9, 2012 and February 15, 2013 – Students will leave 2 hours early to allow Teachers Professional Development.


When to Contact Your Child's Teacher:

  • Let the teacher know that you are very interested in your child's school progress.
  • Any time you have a question about your child's progress report or report card.
  • If your child often says she/he has no homework.
  • If you want to find out how to help your child with homework.
  • Ask how you can become involved at school.

How to Contact Your Child's Teacher:

  • Call the school office and request that the teacher return the call.
  • Make a request to set up a conference through the office secretary.
  • Send the teacher a note with your child to request a call or conference
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