Other JKES Policies

  • Change of Address or Telephone

    It is very important that we maintain up-to-date home and email addresses and telephone numbers in the school office for every student. Please notify the school immediately if there is a change during the school year. When an address change is made, new proof of residency is required, such as a lease agreement or a monthly bill.

    Cardinal Pride

    *Perseverance       *Respect and Responsibility       *Integrity       *Discipline       *Excellence

    Cardinal Pride is our Positive Behavior Intervention System (PBIS) program at John Kerr.  Cardinal Pride, assists in promoting a positive, safe school climate for all students.


    Communuications to Parents

    • JKES is committed to partnering with families to support student learning at home, school, and in the community.  Guardians have a significant role in making schools effective and enjoyable.  As role models, parents, guardians, and staff should exhibit behaviors they would like for students to see in schools and in society.  Critical aspects of communication between family and staff include effective two way communication.  Ways staff will communicate with staff include: 

      • Quarterly teacher newsletters
      • Weekly or bi-weekly email or remind message
      • Canvas and Remind (technology based)
      • Phone Calls
      • Emails
      • Thursday or Friday Folders
      • John Kerr Elementary School Twitter and Facebook Pages
      • Instant Alerts


    Emergency data for each student MUST be on file in the office; changes should be reported to the office immediately.  These sheets provide a constant link between school and home in case of illness or other emergencies.  Please keep them updated.

    If the need arises to evacuate the building, the following procedures will be in effect:

    • An announcement will be made and the building will be evacuated.  Students will remain outside or be moved to a safe location until it is determined that it is safe to return to the school building.
    • If school must be dismissed for the day, parents/guardians will be notified through emergency numbers kept by the teachers or through Instant ALERT notification

    Enrichment and Tutoring

    After school activities will be offered throughout the school year.  Dates, times, and topics for the sessions are yet to be determined.  Information will be sent home when available. 

    Face Covering and Social Distancing

    Although Covid-19 is still prevalent, at this time, students and guests are not mandated to wear face coverings; however, they are available for those who desire to wear them.  


    The purpose of the School-Community Association is to promote an attitude of being civic minded and to encourage in our students the qualities of trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, and citizenship by designing and sponsoring community service projects and projects to serve John Kerr students.


    Every student in our school is given the opportunity to use the library.  The librarian works very closely with each teacher to provide needed services for all students.  The media center houses over 10,000 books and magazines, and provides access to the Internet.

    Miscellaneous and Electronic Items at School

    Any toys, cards, games, and accessories that do not have an educational value or detract from class work must be left at home. School personnel will not be able to investigate the theft of such items, thus please keep items at home.  At the conclusion of each semester, all items not picked up by a parent or guardian will be disposed of.

    During the school day cell phones should not be activated or visible.  

    Personal tablets are permitted for silent reading.  Student’s personal electronic items are the responsibility of the student and the school is not responsible for damages, loss, or theft.  Administration will not investigate the loss or theft of an item.  

    Playground equipment or balls of any kind may be brought to school upon special permission by the teacher or administration.

    Non-Custodial Parent Participation

    State law provides that, unless a court order has been issued to the contrary, non-custodial parents of students enrolled in public school shall not be denied the opportunity to participate in activities, such as eating lunch with the child and parent-teacher conferences.  The custodial parent is responsible for providing the court order, if one exists, to the school.

    Outside Food

    No outside food should be brought to school without the approval and communication with the classroom teacher.  Due to allergies and food related restrictions, food must be approved or it will not be served to students.

    Parent/Teacher Conferences

    Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held on October 7th and March 30th.  However, teachers are available throughout the year to discuss a student’s progress.  If you would like an additional conference, please call the office or leave a message for the teacher OR send a note to the teacher and your child.  Please understand that teachers will not conference during the school day without prior arrangement. 


    Proper Dress

    A student’s dress shall not distract others from the educational process or create a health or safety problem. Please see division policy for updated specifics on dress code.  Clothing must be appropriate for school activities. For safety purposes, TENNIS SHOES are required for P.E. classes. Students may bring tennis shoes and leave them at school. No student will participate in P.E. classes in shoes that are considered unsafe for active play.

    Report Card

    The Winchester Public Schools elementary report card is linked to student’s progress and mastery on the Virginia Standards of Learning. Codes in K-2nd grade differ from those used on the 3rd/4th grade report cards.

    Kindergarten-2nd Grade:

    MS (Mastered Skills): The student’s achievement matches what is expected to be mastered.

    LS (Learning Skills): The child is developing mastery of the skills/content.

    AC (Area of Concern): The student’s current achievement demonstrates inconsistent retention and/or application of the skills/content.

    NA (Not Assessed): Skills/content for this standard were not assessed for this reporting period.

    3rd and 4th Grade:

    4: Exceeds grade level standards

    3: Meets grade level standards

    2: Approaching grade level standards

    1: Developing proficiency


    School Board policy does not allow for the sale of items through the school system.  Students or Parent Organizations may not distribute publications, flyers, and other items without permission from the superintendent.

    School Counselor and Counseling Services

    The Winchester School Board supports the provision of a comprehensive program of guidance and counseling services for all students.  All services are optional and no student will be required to participate in any counseling program to which the student’s parents or guardian object.

    Personal/Social Counseling is counseling which assists students in developing an understanding of themselves, the rights and needs of others, how to resolve conflicts and to define individual goals reflecting their interests, abilities and aptitudes.  Counseling is offered through structured individual or small group multi-session counseling which focuses on the specific concerns of the participant(s).

    For more information, please visit the JKES Counseling webpage.

    Standards of Learning Tests

    Students in grades three and four will take Growth Assessments for the first time at the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year.  These assessments are required by the state of Virginia and are intended to show growth from the beginning to the end of the school year.  Students will take this assessment in both reading and math.  

    Students in grades three and four will take the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL) tests at the end of the school year. Student performances on these tests are used to determine which students are in need of additional assistance as well as awarding our school’s accreditation status with the State of Virginia. The following grades and SOL tests are as follows:

    • Grade 3:  Reading, Math
    • Grade 4:  Reading, Math, Virginia Studies

    Please see the SOL Testing webpage for more information.

    Sustained Silent Reading

    JKES participates in sustained silent reading. This twenty-thirty minute time is one of the most important instructional times of the school day. It is an extension of the language arts/reading block. This is the time that our students read at their independent level or interest level. While direct reading instruction is critical, so is independent reading time. Literacy improves when students realize that the school is very interested in their independent reading level and provides time for them to read. The message to the students is clear: reading is important. Please support this integral component of reading instruction.