Burton Magnet Elementary School
2009 – 2010 Student Handbook
“An IB PYP and World Language School”
1500 Mathison Street
Durham, NC 27701
(919) 560-3908 Phone
(919) 560-2087 Fax
Tekeisha M. Ford, Principal
Dear Parents and Students,
Welcome to the 2009-2010 school year at Burton Elementary! We are thrilled you are here to
begin this fantastic journey of learning and exploration with us. Our goal is to provide a caring,
stimulating, learning environment where children are challenged with rigorous standards. We
have the responsibility to foster learning through meaningful instruction within a balanced and
interactive elementary curriculum. Ultimately, we want our children to have a strong academic
foundation and the ability to apply knowledge to think critically and communicate effectively.
We recognize that student success is dependent on the cooperation of parents and the school
staff. Parents are our partners in the most important job of educating the children of this
community. Personal communication between home and school is vital to providing the best
possible educational experiences for children. Please help us foster this relationship by attending
school functions and monitoring your child’s school progress. Together we are educating our
future leaders and citizens.
The information in this handbook has been compiled to help you succeed at Burton. The entire
staff is here to assist you with your education. Burton provides a rigorous developmentally
appropriate program of study for the students who are motivated, hardworking, and like a
challenge. A diverse global approach to instructional methods, program components, and the
standard course of study provides an understanding of people and their cultures. Countries from
around the world are studied and cultural activities are planned. A highly integrated curriculum
which develops intellectual skills and stresses high academic achievement is a key component.
Both high standards and high expectations are essential to the program.
Foreign language is taught daily. Students have the choice of studying French, Mandarin
Chinese, or Spanish. Internet access and interactive foreign language software are utilized to
supplement instruction. Come and share in our vision of excellence!
On behalf of the faculty and staff of Burton, we wish you and your child a most productive and
Tekeisha M. Ford
BURTON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF
Principal Tekeisha Ford
Guidance Counselor Ponsella Brown
School Treasurer Thomas D. Leathers
School Social Worker Shawn Asor-Sallah
Administrative Assistant/NCWISE Kellie O’Neal
Head School Resource Officer Officer Green
BURTON ELEMENTARY STAFF
Kindergarten Belinda Sligh Room 101
Amanda Santucci Room 102
First Grade Elizabeth Coradini Room 115
Danielle Goggans Room 114
Nicholas Anderson Room 112
Second Grade Stacy Brookins Room 104
Amy Brown Room 110
Anita Harrington Room 111
Third Grade Molly Pulley Room 103
Wendy Thomas Room 123
Niketa Koonce Room 124
Fourth Grade Denise Bullock Room 202
Stacy Russell-Reed Room 203
Fifth Grade Room 207
James Johnson Room 206
Rhonda Lucas Room 204
AU (K-2) Kingsley Onuelu Room 113
AU (3-5) Amanda Mihajlov Room 205
EC Resource (K-2) Franca Emezie Room 122
EC Resource (3-5) Gloria Cole Room 5543
ESL (K-2) Crystal Auguste Room 121
ESL (3-5) Jennifer Daniels Room 201
Music LaSaundra Boone Auditorium
Art Parminder Rajpal Room 120
Physical Education Jerry Drake Gym
Literacy Coach Sheree Chen Room 125
Chinese Su Yen Chen Room 023
French Christina Cuomo Room 025
Spanish Abby Dunn Room 022
Media Susan Ward Media Center
IB Coord/AIG Cynthia Kirkland Media Center
Speech Tonya Young Media Center
EC Instructional Assistants Arthy J. Bedell Room 113
April Richmond Room 205
Miranda Williams Room 113
Instructional Assistant s Ramona Brown
Cafeteria Gwen McCoy
Custodian Rosa Wallace
It is the mission of Burton Geo-World Magnet Elementary School to empower students to
become inquirers, be actively involved in risk taking, try new challenges, and view learning as a
lifelong process. We believe that ensuring equality of achievement in fundamental skills and
preparing students for future success is essential.
The school’s colors are burgundy, gray and white.
The school mascot is the mighty Ram.
SCHOOL ACHIEVEMENTS AND ACCOLADES
The many successes at Burton Magnet Elementary cannot be measured in one test and we
appreciate your past and continued support. I am pleased that our students’ hard work was
evidenced by their 13% growth on test scores. Also, the Student Banking and Finance Club
launched savings accounts for each child enrolled at Burton. Burton is one of eight public
elementary schools in North Carolina that has earned the prestigious International Baccalaureate
Primary Years Programme (PYP) designation. As a PYP school, Burton teachers are trained in a
particular curriculum framework that focuses on the understanding based on personal experience.
Burton is a global studies/foreign language magnet which offers program components designed
to foster within students a global perspective of society and culture, a basic preparation for the
International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme, and a meaningful understanding of world
geography. Unique program features include daily instruction in French, Spanish or Chinese,
ongoing development of research skills, global study of geography and current events, and
student television network (WGEO) which cultivates broadcasting, technical, and publishing
In order for a child to enroll in kindergarten the child’s fifth birthday must be on or before
October 16. If he/she has previously attended a school in another state with a later cutoff date,
this school complies with that state’s age eligibility laws and he/she may attend. All children
need an official birth certificate to register for school.
Proof of Residence in Durham County
Parents or legal guardians of new students will be asked to present proof of residence in Durham
through such items as sales or rental contracts, new home construction contracts, or real estate
Immunizations are required to be up to date: five DPT, four OPV, two MMR, HIB, and Hepatitis
B as required for age. A physical exam/health assessment is required by law for all students new
to Durham Public Schools. Health assessments must occur between the first of January, prior to
school entry, and 30 days after the child’s first day of school. Principal’s now have both the
authority and responsibility to exclude children from school who have not had a health
assessment by the deadline of 30 calendar days after school entry. This deadline also applies
to immunization requirements.
Within 60 calendar days after the commencement of the school year, principals are required to
file health assessment status reports with the Department of Environmental Health and Natural
If the school needs to give the student medicine during the school day, the parent/legal guardian
and the doctor need to sign a form. Also, the medicine container must be labeled appropriately
by a pharmacist. Finally, if the child has a health condition, which the teacher needs to monitor
or provide assistance with during the school day, notify the teacher and ask to speak to the school
nurse. Also see Health Policy on page 5.
SCHOOL TIME SCHEDULE
The school day is 8:25-2:55p.m. Students will be allowed to enter the building at 8:00a.m.
PARENTS please do not bring your child to school prior to 8:00a.m. as it makes for an
extremely long day for your child. Children are to be picked up no later than 3:15p.m. each
afternoon. If this is not possible please contact Community Education to set up after school care
arrangements. If the parent/guardian fails to pick up the student 3 or more times during the
course of the school year the situation will be reported to social services.
BEFORE AND AFTER SCHOOL CARE
Burton Elementary does not have a before program at the school. Your child is not to arrive to
school before 8:00a.m. Durham Public School’s Community Education department operates the
After School Care Program for students attending Burton. The After School program provides
supervision beyond the regular school hours for children who are enrolled. The cost for the
After School Program will be $155.00 per month. There is a one-time registration fee of $30.00
per child. The After School Program will operate until 6:00p.m. Administrators encourage
parents to make full and appropriate use of this program. Parents who need to have their
children supervised after school ends, should enroll their children in the After School Program.
To register, please contact Community Education at 560-3816.
Students will begin their day more positively if they arrive to school on time. Students will be
considered tardy if they arrive to school after 8:30a.m. If a student is tardy he/she needs to report
to the office for a tardy note. Tardies are unexcused regardless of the circumstances. However,
a late bus does not render a child tardy; the child is coded as being on time to school.
Regular attendance is essential for success in school work. In the event of an absence, it shall be
the responsibility of the student to bring a note signed by the parent or guardian giving the reason
for the absence on the day the student returns to school. Failure to provide a note within three
(3) school days after returning to school will result in the absence being designated as unexcused.
Prior approval is required for absences due to educational travel.
POLICY REGARDING SENDING MONEY TO SCHOOL
Any time you send money to school for a school related function, please make sure that your
child brings home a receipt. If for some reason your child does not have a receipt, please call the
school and speak with the school treasurer.
EXCUSED ABSENCES (LAWFUL)
Absences for the following reasons shall be classified as excused absences when the indicated
documentation or approval is provided.
A. Illness of the student (extended illness requires verification by doctor)
B. Medical or dental appointment (verification by doctor required)
c. Death in the immediate family
d. Quarantine (copy of quarantine order required)
e. Religious Holiday (prior approval by principal required)
f. Court Summons (verification by court systems required)
g. Valid educational opportunity (travel-prior approval by principal required)
UNEXCUSED ABSENCES (UNLAWFUL)
Any absence from school, with or without knowledge of the parent, which does not meet the
requirements of an excused absence, shall be classified as an unexcused absence. Also, failure to
provide a note within (3) days after returning to school will result in the absence being
designated as unexcused.
ABSENCES DUE TO OUT-OF-SCHOOL SUSPENSION
Absences due to out-of-school suspension are considered excused absences for attendance
accounting purpose and are not considered a violation of the company attendance law.
MAKE UP WORK DUE TO ABSENCES
In grades 3-5 students are responsible for securing make-up assignments. Students are entitled to
twice the number of days absent to complete all assignments missed due to being absent from
school (maximum five days). In cases with unusual circumstances, the time allowed to make-up
work may be extended with the approval of the principal. If a student is absent and a parent
wishes to pick up make-up work for that student, the parent must call the school before
10:00a.m. on the day the work will be picked up. Work will be ready the following day for any
requests received after 10:00a.m.
A student must be present at school one-half of the school day to be counted present. If a student
comes after 11:45a.m. or leaves before 11:45a.m. he/she will be marked absent.
2009-2010 TRADITIONAL SCHOOL CALENDAR
August 25 First Day of School
September 7 Labor Day Holiday
September 16 PLC Early Release Day
October 14 PLC Early Release Day
October 23 End of First 9 Weeks
October 26 Student Vacation
November 11 Veteran’s Day Holiday
November 18 PLC Early Release Day
November 25-27 Thanksgiving Holidays
December 9 PLC Early Release Day
December 21-31 Winter Holidays
January 1 New Year’s Day Holiday
January 22 End of Second 9 Weeks
January 18 Martin Luther King, Jr.
January 25 Student Vacation
February 10 PLC Early Release Day
February 19 Student Vacation
March 10 PLC Early Release Day
March 19 Student Vacation
March 31 End of Third 9 Weeks
April 1 Student Vacation
April 2-April 9 Spring Break Holidays
April 14 PLC Early Release Day
May 5 PLC Early Release Day
May 31 Memorial Day Holiday
June 10 Last Day of School
If a student is going home by an alternative form of transportation the school must be informed
by 11:00a.m. in order for the teacher/staff to make adequate adjustments.
To ensure the safety of our students, if anyone other than the parent/guardian is to check a
student out from school, a note is required with the student’s full name, reason for leaving, time
of departure, parent signature and the name of the person picking up the student. The note
should also include valid phone numbers for contact if necessary. Please be sure that your
child’s data sheet is updated and completed with the names of people who are allowed to pick-up
the child and for emergency purposes. A PHOTO I.D. MAY BE REQUIRED TO SIGN A
EMERGENCY SCHOOL CLOSINGS/DELAYED SCHOOL OPENINGS
The decision to close schools or to delay school openings due to weather conditions will be
announced over most Durham radio and television stations. Please do not call the school or
school personnel. Please listen to Durham radio or television stations for information when
weather conditions are likely to affect school hours.
PARKING ON CAMPUS
When delivering children before school or picking them up after school, drivers are to use the
front driveway in a single file line. Drivers are not to park in this area: it is only a pick-up and
drop-off area. Enter at the main entrance and exit at the front exit. Stopping or parking
interrupts the flow of traffic. No car riders are to be dropped off at the cafeteria side door.
That area is for buses only.
Visitors may park in the school parking lot located on the right side of the main building.
Visitors should not park anywhere behind the main building. Regular and handicapped parking
spaces for visitors are located in the parking lot.
At Burton Elementary School, we believe that appropriate school dress, personal appearance,
and cleanliness have a desirable impact on student behavior and performance. Persons who take
pride in themselves take pride in their work.
Appropriate dress is that which is suitable and comfortable for a work atmosphere. Students are
expected to participate in all class activities throughout the school year; therefore, appropriate
dress and undergarments should be worn. Students have a responsibility to dress in a manner
which does not disrupt the academic environment. Sturdy shoes or sneakers are necessary for
safety during gym and recess. Girls should wear shorts or slacks on days when they have
physical education. Shorts can be worn under dresses.
The purpose of a dress code is to keep children safe, limit distractions, and keep the focus on
learning. These are the guidelines for our school:
1. Clothing must not display or advertise tobacco, alcohol, drugs, sex, violence, racism, or
2. Shorts and skirts must be fingertip length or longer when standing with arms extended
3. No sagging pants or exposed undergarments.
4. Shoes with laces or must be fastened.
5. Hats or head coverings are not permitted in the building except for medical or religious
6. Tops, which expose sides, chest, stomach, or back, are not permitted. Tank tops with less
than 2” wide straps are not allowed. Waist-length tops, halter tops, tops with spaghetti
straps, fish net clothing which exposes the midriff or lower back area are not appropriate
dress for school.
7. No Heelies or Shoes with skates.
Students wearing inappropriate clothing will be given the opportunity to change at school. The
final decision concerning the appropriateness of clothing will be made by the administration. If
the clothing is inappropriate parents will be called to bring appropriate clothing. Parents please
take a moment each day to monitor what your child has on his/her body.
SHORT TERM SUSPENSIONS
The administration, with the prior approval of the Superintendent, shall have the authority to
suspend students for 1-10 days for violating Durham Public Schools policies. Fighting, as
defined by DPS, could result in an automatic 3 day suspension.
LONG TERM SUSPENSIONS
The principal, with the prior approval of the Superintendent, shall have the authority to suspend
students in excess of 10 school days if they willfully violate the policies of conduct established
by Durham Public Schools. Possession of any weapon or simile may result in automatic
recommendation for long term suspension.
WHAT RAMS DO!
1. I am showing commitment and independence when I come to school on time, prepared
and ready to work.
2. I am showing respect when I am polite and kind to myself, others.
3. I am showing cooperation when I follow school rules.
4. I am showing empathy and tolerance when I accept and understand others.
5. I am showing appreciation when I am grateful for the efforts of my teachers, classmates,
and Burton staff toward my education.
BURTON’S RAMS CLUB PROGRAM
Are not sent to PBS at any time during the week
Are not sent to the office at any time during the week
Do not have more than one (1) time-out in the classroom or in specials during the week
Show respectful behavior to peers and adults
Do not receive a bus referral.
Teachers will send the PBSC teacher a list of those students meeting the criteria before 2:00 p.m.
on Thursday. Students pictures will be placed on the “Wall of Fame”. Those students on the
“Wall of Fame” will receive a reward:
Some examples of Ram’s Club Rewards are:
Pizza Party, Ice Cream Social, Luau Party
Goodie Bags, Arts & Crafts Party, Game Day with prizes
POSITIVE BEHAVIOR SUPPORT CENTER
Positive Behavior Support Center is an alternative to suspension in which the student is separated
from his/her classmates and placed under the direct supervision of a teacher, redirected and
returned to class. Parents will be notified when their child has been assigned to the Positive
Behavior Support Center. Students referred to PBS 3 times in a month will be suspended.
How Behavior will be Addressed:
Behaviors directed to PBSC Buddy Teacher:
Assault- actions involving physical contact that may result in injury (e.g. horseplay,
Disrespect- actions involving talking back and/or rude interactions (e.g. name-calling,
Disruption- actions that interfere with the learning environment (e.g. shouting-out, or
Non-Complaint- refusal to follow directions, rules or procedures (e.g. does not line up
when asked to)
The PBSC/Buddy Teacher reserves the right to send any student to the office if he/she
determines the student’s behavior to be severe and/or chronic.
Examples of Behavior Directed to the office:
Fights- actions involving serious physical contact with the intent to do harm (e.g.
pushing, biting, use of an object to strike with, etc.)
Weapons- student is in possession of knives or guns (real or fake) or other objects readily
capable of causing bodily harm
Property damage/stealing- student deliberately impairs the usefulness of the property
(school or personal) or takes an object from another person or the school without
Fights and weapon related incidents will result in immediate suspension!
SCHOOL BUS TRANSPORTATION
Riding the school bus is a privilege and not a right. The safety of our students is dependent on
the cooperation and good conduct of each passenger. Therefore, all the rules of good classroom
behavior apply to bus situations and the driver carries the responsibility of a teacher in
maintaining order and safety on his/her respective bus. The following rules and procedures are
necessary to maintain safe and orderly transportation for our most precious resource and
priceless possession, our students.
Students in grades K-3 are to have an adult waiting for them as they get off the school bus.
Failure to be in place to receive your child(ren) will result in the following:
1st time- Bus will return them to the school.
2nd time- Taken to the Department of Social Services.
Students may be suspended from the bus for:
1. Failing to remain seated.
2. Fighting, using profanity, or refusing to obey instructions of school authorities or a
school bus driver while riding the school bus.
3. Playing, throwing objects, or otherwise distracting the driver’s attention while the bus is
4. Tampering with or doing damage to the bus.
5. Violating any other rule or Code or Student Conduct while on a school bus or other
6. Failing to observe established safety rules and regulations required by law or adopted by
Durham Public Schools.
7. Leaving the bus when in route from home or school or vice versa without permission.
8. Delaying the bus schedule.
9. Willfully trespassing upon a school bus.
Violations of any of the above may result in the following:
1st Offense- Warning to students- Notice to parents.
2nd Offense- Notice to parents and possible three-day suspensions from riding the school
3rd Offense- Notice to parents and 3-5 day suspension from riding the school bus.
4th Offense- Notice to parents and 5-10 day suspension.
5th Offense- Notice to parent and permanent suspension.
If an offense is considered serious enough, any of the above may be bypassed and immediate
A parent will be notified when a child is running a fever, vomiting, has diarrhea and for all head
injuries. If the child’s parents cannot be reached, the emergency phone number on his/her card
will be called.
It is vital that we have accurate information on how to reach both parents, plus at least two
other people who will accept responsibility for the child if he/she is injured or sick at school. If
during the year there are changes, (i.e. changes in job telephone number), please notify the office
so we can keep our records up-to-date.
In the event of illness or serious accident, the parent will be notified at once and arrangements
made for the child to be taken home or his/her physician. If the parent cannot be reached, the
child will be taken to the nearest hospital emergency room or to the child’s physician.
Report cards are sent home with the students every nine weeks. The report cards should be
carefully reviewed by parents and students, signed by the parents, and returned to the school.
Parent conferences are required at the end of the first nine weeks before the student
receives a report card and during the second semester.
The State Board of Education has approved Grade Level Proficiency Guidelines for all students
in grade 3 through 8. The guidelines established “level III” as the standard that demonstrates
grade level proficiency. All students must now score a level III or IV on the 3 rd and 5th grade
end-of-grade tests before they can be promoted. Third and fifth graders who do not score at level
III or IV on the end-of-grade tests may be retained or must receive remediation at the elementary
level until he/she successfully attains this minimum score.
Only two parties are scheduled per year, before winter break and during the last week of school.
Birthday parties are not permitted.
Students are discouraged from bringing snacks to school, unless the classroom teacher has
requested in writing that parents send snacks.
Lunch money should be sent to school either daily or on the first school day of each week in an
envelope with the child’s name and the amount written on the outside. Make checks payable to
Burton School Cafeteria unless instructed otherwise. School personnel will always appreciate
the parent sending separate checks for each child, rather than combining the money for several
children in one check. If there are any questions please call the cafeteria manager at 560-3908 X
78226. Applications for free and reduced prices may be requested at any time from the school
office. All applications should be returned promptly for processing.
Children who bring their lunches may purchase milk, sold by the day. Parents may request that
fruit juice be substituted for milk for children unable to digest milk properly.
Unbreakable thermos containers for beverages and soups are a must for school children. Glass
bottles and canned drinks are not allowed. Heating of food for student by school personnel, is
Everything must be taken as the student goes through the line. Not more than one of each
supplemental item may be purchased. After completing lunch, children should pick up straws,
napkins, cartons etc. from the floor. Whole classes leave the tables as a group. Classes are
responsible for cleaning tables and sweeping.
If your child has a special diet or is allergic to a food item, please send a note to the cafeteria
manager as well as the child’s teacher.
Gum is not allowed. Candy is discouraged in the interest of dental health and good nutrition.
State adopted textbooks are provided on a loan basis to all students. Each student is responsible
for textbooks and library books assigned to him/her. If books are lost or abused beyond expected
wear and tear students are expected to pay to repair or replace book. Missing library books are
the responsibility of the student who checked out the book.
The Durham Public Schools Board of Education encourages parents, members of the
community, and volunteers to visit our school. Visits would serve to benefit our students and the
learning process in which they are engaged. Visits to our school should be conducted in such
a manner as not to impede the ongoing education process.
Principals are charged with the responsibility of implementing effective visitation procedures
that provide for identifying and welcoming all visitors, maintaining a record of visitors and the
purpose of their visits, and ensuring minimal disruption of the learning environment.
Visitors who fail to comply with this policy statement and efforts of the school administration to
enforce said policy are subjected to arrest for trespassing.
Visitors are required to stop by the office and obtain a visitor’s pass before visiting the school.
This is required for all school visits.
We encourage parents to make appointments for conferences with teachers, counselors, the
assistant principal and principal by telephoning the school office at 560-3908. Please note that
board policy 3065 protects instructional time and keeps interruptions at an absolute minimum.
WITHDRAWAL FROM SCHOOL
Parents must notify the Main Office immediately when a student is to be withdrawn from
Burton. Textbooks and library books need to be returned to school prior to withdrawal. With
notification of your child being withdrawn from school, we will be able to complete his/her
school records and when requested we can forward them in a timely manner.
TITLE I: FACTS ON TITLE I
What is Title I?
Title I, the cornerstone of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, is the largest federal education
program. It is intended to help ensure that all children have the opportunity to obtain a high
quality education and reach proficiency on challenging state academic standards and
How is Title I school funding determined?
Title I is a federal entitlement program, or formula fund. Non-competitive formula funds are
allocated on the basis of student enrollment and census poverty and other data. Local school
districts must allocate the funds to qualifying school campuses based on the number of low-
income children in a school, generally those eligible for the free or reduced-priced lunch
What happens to Title I schools that do not make Adequate Yearly Progress under No Child
Title I schools make Adequate Yearly Progress in the same subject two years in a row are
identified for Title I school improvement. In the first and subsequent years Title I School
Improvement, schools must provide students with reasonable transfer options to another of the
district’s public schools not in Title I improvement at the district’s transportation expense. In the
second years of Title I School Improvement, schools must offer tutoring services to
economically disadvantaged students not performing at grade level through a state-approved
Sec. 1114. School wide Programs.
In general- A local educational agency may consolidate and use funds under this part,
together with other Federal, State, and local funds, in order to upgrade the entire educational
program of a school that serves an eligible school attendance area in which not less than 40
percent of the children are from low-income families, or not less than 40 percent of the children
enrolled in the school are from such families.
A school wide program shall include school wide reform strategies that:
Provide opportunities for all students to meet the State’s proficient and advanced levels
Use effective methods and instructional strategies that are based on scientific research
Components of A School wide Program include:
High quality and ongoing professional development for teachers
Strategies to attract high-qualified teachers to high-need schools.
Strategies to increase parental involvement in accordance with section 1118
Plans for assisting preschool children in the transition from early childhood programs
Measures to include teachers in the decisions regarding use of academic assessments
described in section 1111(b)
Once again, the administration and staff at Burton Geo-World Magnet Elementary School would
like to welcome you to what we expect will be an extraordinary 2009-2010 school year.
Please remember this is not an all inclusive document. This handbook is an overview of the
rules, procedures, and information we feel parents and students need to make informed decisions
prior to and during this school year. More detailed policies can be found in Durham Public
Schools handbook or the Durham Public Schools Office of Public Affairs at 560-3652.
Thank you for taking the time to review this document in detail with your child. We look
forward to a successful academic year.
Burton Rams have