We have created a list of 21 tools/tips, to help the beginning of your
student's school year go smoothly.
21 Back to School DIY Tools
#1. VERIFY STUDENT ENROLLMENT NOW
Our annual online verification for returning students must be completed no later than Friday, August 27. Please log into Skyward Family Access at https://skyward.cdaschools.org/ and complete the verification process for each student.
Why it's important: Online Verification is how you confirm that the information listed in Skyward for each student is accurate and up to date, including health records, emergency contacts and where to send school information and District announcements. To learn more or for technical help please visit https://www.cdaschools.org/verify
#2. WE INVITE YOU TO WORK FOR US.
Whether you’re looking for part-time or full-time work, we have job openings at Coeur d'Alene Public Schools. Learn more about our classified positions and benefits at our annual career fair on Thursday, August 19, from 9 AM to 12 PM at Woodland Middle School in the gymnasium.
Positions include custodians and custodial subs, bus drivers and driver subs, classroom assistants, special education paraprofessionals, playground assistants, crossing guards, nutrition services assistants, and child care assistants.
View positions and apply at www.cdaschools.org/jobs
#3. SHOPPING FOR SCHOOL SUPPLIES
Planning to buy those glue sticks, crayons, notebooks, headphones and tissues for the start of the school year? Make sure you get exactly what’s needed. Find teacher lists for classroom supplies at cdaschools.org/supplylists. Or use our mobile app! Don’t forget to check what our middle schools and high schools need!
NEED HELP? Families who need help obtaining their back-to-school supplies are welcome to stop by our District Office on Thursday, August 26, from 2-6 PM. We will have a limited number of backpacks and other school supplies available from generous business and community donors. The District Office is at 1400 N. Northwood Center Court, Coeur d'Alene. Also, your school office may have some donated supplies available. Give them a call after August 23.
#4. STAY CONNECTED WITH OUR MOBILE APP
Have you downloaded our free mobile app? It’s a great tool for families who want to stay connected through the school year. Our app is available for both Apple and Android devices.
The app delivers real-time school news, calendar updates and notifications about school closures, schedule changes and other important announcements. App users especially like these features:
- Quick access to school breakfast and lunch menus
- Easy access to e-Funds and Skyward Family access
- School and district calendars
- School supply lists
- Directory with school and district office staff contact information
- Links to learning tools and parent resources
Download the CDA Public Schools app now from the Apple App Store or Google Play!
#5 FREE STUDENT MEALS THIS YEAR
Just like last year, there will be no charge this school year for student meals in any of our schools.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture National School Lunch Program is continuing to waive all fees for families as the pandemic continues to threaten the food and nutrition security of our most vulnerable. This ensures that all students, regardless of their educational setting, have access to free, healthy meals for in-person learning.
Families do not need to complete a Low Income Eligibility application to receive free meals this year. The fee waiver applies to all enrolled students.
#6. ADVANCED OPPORTUNITIES: $4,125 PER STUDENT!
If you have a student in grades 7-12, did you know they have access to more than $4,000 to spend on dual-credit courses, overload courses above a full schedule, Advanced Placement exams or career-technical programs? Idaho’s Advanced Opportunities program allows students to customize their high school learning to get a jump start on their future.
The state sets aside $4,125 for each student to help them attain college credit while in high school, work toward career goals and encourage high school graduates to continue their education. Thousands of students take advantage of this “free money” each year.
Our middle and high school counselors and college/career advisers can help students access their Advanced Opportunities money.
Learn more at www.cdaschools.org/opportunities
#7. IMMUNIZATIONS: ARE YOUR KIDS PROTECTED?
Start off the school year strong with immunizations that protect your child from infectious disease. Chickenpox, measles and whooping cough spread quickly, and children should be protected before they enter preschool, kindergarten and all other grade levels.
Idaho’s school immunization requirements are intended to protect children from those diseases as well as diphtheria, tetanus, mumps, rubella, polio and hepatitis. In addition to immunizations for kids entering kindergarten and first grade, students entering Grade 7 need their booster shot Tdap and meningitis vaccines.
Panhandle Health District offers back-to-school immunizations by appointment. Call (208) 415-5270 Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 5 PM.
EXEMPTIONS: Idaho law allows a parent/guardian to claim an exemption from immunization requirements for their child for medical, religious, or other reasons.
#8. ATTEND YOUR SCHOOL'S OPEN HOUSE NIGHT
One of the best things your family can do to start the school year off right is to attend the Open House night at your student’s school. Meet teachers and administrators, locate classrooms and lockers, drop off classroom supplies, collect important information about the new school year, discover ways to volunteer, and reconnect with friends.
All middle schools will host open house nights on August 31, followed by all elementary school open houses on September 1. Our high schools have various dates for their open houses, student check-in days and orientations.
For complete details, visit www.cdaschools.org/openhouse.
#9. BUS ROUTES, SCHEDULES, AND RIDER REGISTRATION
Looking for information on school bus routes for the coming school year? You can search for routes and neighborhood bus stops for elementary, middle and high schools using our online guide. Just visit InfoFinder and enter your home address to display the routes and stops near you. Visit our Transportation page at cdaschools.org/transportation, or call the Transportation team at (208) 667-3451.
Register to ride: All students using bus transportation need to be registered by a parent or guardian. You can register your student by visiting our Transportation Department at www.cdaschools.org/transportation. You also can find our bus safety rules there. You will need to know your student's bus route number and stop location to complete the registration form. To look up the route and stop location for your home address, please use our InfoFinder guide. All kindergarten students who ride the bus need to have an adult meet them at the bus stop for drop-off each day.
#10. SCHOOL CALENDAR AND LATE-START MONDAYS
Don’t overlook another school holiday, teacher conference or early release day. The district’s official 2021-22 Parent Calendar is available online: CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD IT. Please save a copy or bookmark a link to it. The calendar includes all holidays and no-school dates, parent-teacher conferences, and other key dates.
Late-start Mondays: We are returning to late-start Mondays for this school year, back to the schedule that was in place prior to last year. School will begin one hour later on Monday mornings, allowing for teacher and staff collaboration time in our schools.
#11: SCHOOLOGY AND TECH SUPPORT
Our student learning management system (LMS) is called Schoology, pronounced skoo’-luh-jee. Students can access courses, assignments and class content by logging into one place. They can submit assignments, complete assessments, collaborate within groups, manage calendars and communicate with teachers. Returning students already should have their Schoology log-ins, and we will provide access to Schoology for all new students.
Tech support: Need help logging in or using any of our technology? Please visit https://www.cdaschools.
#12: OUR PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE
"Each graduate of Coeur d'Alene Public Schools will be equipped with the knowledge, skills and dispositions needed to pursue their future."
That’s the mission of our Portrait of a Graduate, which exemplifies the characteristics that our community wants to see in graduates of Coeur d'Alene Public Schools. The idea is that our students need to have strong content mastery as well as competency in skills and traits they will need to be successful in college, trade school, a new career, community involvement or wherever they are headed next in life.
These are the "six Cs" of our Portrait of a Graduate:
Our Portrait of a Graduate was developed from the ideas and input of parents, students, educators, policymakers, local employers, business leaders, nonprofit organizations and other community members. Participants offered ideas such as critical thinking skills, emotional intelligence, time management, financial literacy, resilience, higher reasoning, teamwork and more. They helped us identify the cognitive, personal and relationship-based abilities that employers tell us they are looking for in our graduates.
#13: READ AND SIGN THE TECHNOLOGY USE AGREEMENT
Each year we ask students and their parents or guardians to read and sign our Student Technology Use Agreement. You will find this form when you log into your Skyward Family Access account. These agreements need to be submitted so that students may use District computers and tablets. Teachers will clarify expectations before students use District technology for the first time. Please log into Skyward to read and sign the Technology Use Agreement.
#14: EXPLORE YOUR FUTURE WITH XELLO
Xello allows students in grades 8-12 to easily discover their strengths and interests, match them to a career, and create a 4-plan to get there. By exploring career clusters, core tasks, scholarships, colleges as well as technical programs and more, they learn what is required for success in a potential life path — be it a career or continuing their education. In addition, students will be able to connect to a local mentor to guide their investigations through Coeur d'Alene Connects. We encourage you to log in with your student at home to continue the exploration and discuss the results. Learn more at cdaschools.org/xello
#15: READ THE DISTRICT AND SCHOOL HANDBOOKS
Many of your questions about the school year may be answered in our District Handbook for Parents & Students. This resource provides information on rules, policies and guidelines related to the safety and operation of our schools. Please take some time to become familiar with this content.
There’s also a handbook for each school, which includes additional information specific to each elementary, middle and high school. Everything is available online at cdaschools.org/handbooks
#16: FAMILY SUPPORT FROM HOPE ON THE HOMEFRONT
Even in the best of times, raising a family is no easy task. Far too many families are struggling to keep up with the demands of society. When misfortune happens, our community is here to help.
Our Hope on the Homefront team builds bridges to connect families with needed resources and supportive services. We believe that a stable home life will help children achieve their academic and lifelong potential.
Hope on the Homefront is available year-round to help district families in crisis find the help they need — connecting them to resources in our schools and our larger community. If you or a family you know is homeless, struggling with precarious housing, or in need of help with clothing, shoes or school supplies, call (208) 664-8241 x10060. More info at www.cdaschools.org/help
#17: SCHOOL CLOSURES AND WEATHER DELAYS
We may close schools or announce a delayed start due to inclement weather, road conditions or other safety concerns. A school closure or delayed start will be announced by 5:30 a.m. the day it takes effect. If we have your current contact information in Skyward Family Access, you can expect to receive an email message or text from us. If you have the Coeur d'Alene Public Schools mobile app on your phone or tablet, we will send you a notification. You also can find our announcements on any of our websites as well as our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram feeds. Or you can call our Closure Hotline at (208) 667-0784. The safety of our students and staff is most important in our decision-making process. More information on school closures and delays can be at cdaschools.org/closures
#18: MENTAL WELLNESS AND SOURCES OF STRENGTH
Back-to-school season is a time of transition, excitement and change. For some students, though, it can also be a time of increased anxiety and depression. Be familiar with the warning signs of suicide, and never be afraid to ask the tough questions when someone may be at risk. The research is clear: Asking someone if they are thinking about suicide, or making any plans, does not increase their risk or put an idea in their head. Asking with empathy is shown to actually reduce risk. Need help now? Call or text 1-208-398-HELP (4357). During the school year, students and parents can always reach out to a school counselor, nurse or staff member. Learn more about crisis resources, efforts to support mental wellness, social and emotional learning in our schools, our student-led Sources of Strength program and more at cdaschools.org/sel
#19: SCHOOL SAFETY - SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING
We rely on students and families to help maintain safe schools. Report threats or dangerous behavior, including fighting, bullying, drugs and online threats using the District’s mobile app, or using the TIP LINE link found on all school websites. Please have a conversation with your student about how important it is to report potential issues, even if they feel something might be fake or a joke. Student tips have prevented violence, self-harm and threatening behavior. If you see something, say something!
#20: PITCH IN! JOIN YOUR SCHOOL'S PTA OR PTO
There are many great reasons to join a parent-teacher group. Becoming an active volunteer is only one. The best reason to join is that parent involvement has been proven to help students succeed. Anyone can be part of a PTA or PTO to be informed of school issues, connect with other parents, make their voice heard, be a part of new school programs and provide support for the school. Ask about getting involved at your student’s school during the Open House Night.
#21: PLEASE BRING YOUR ID WHEN YOU VISIT A SCHOOL
We use the Raptor system to protect your children by screening parents, visitors and volunteers who enter our buildings during the school day. Raptor screens for registered sex offenders in all 50 states. Additionally, you can help keep our schools safe by always using the secure, buzz-in entrance; sign in and out when visiting a school; wearing your visitor badge or sticker at all times; and never opening locked doors for others. Read more about safety in our schools at cdaschools.org/safety