Student & Family Handbook

2019-2020 School Year

Cottage Lake Elementary Bus Circle

Cottage Lake Elementary: Home of the Sailors!

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  • Principal: Jennifer Welch
  • Office Manager: Sarah McKinnon
  • Secretary: Teri Negrin

15940 Avondale Road NE
Woodinville, WA 98077

  • Office Phone: (425) 408-4200
  • Office Fax: (425) 408-4202
  • 24hr. Attendance Line: (425) 408-4210

Welcome to the 2018 - 2019 school year! We are looking forward to the beginning of this great year of learning and growing together. This handbook is intended to provide you with information about procedures, programs and expectations at Cottage Lake. We ask that every child and parent read the handbook and sign off that you are aware of the content.

Never hesitate to contact your child’s teacher or myself. We are happy to partner with you!

Jennifer Welch, Principal
(425) 408-4200


Office Hours:
8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

School Hours:
Mon., Tues., Thurs., and Fri      9:20 AM – 3:50 PM
Collaboration Wednesdays      9:20 AM – 2:20 PM

Regular attendance is vital to a student’s success in school. In the case of an absent student, unless the student's parent or guardian has already contacted the school informing them that their child will be out that day, the school will contact the parent/guardian to let them know that their child did not arrive at school. SchoolConnects, our District's autodialer, will be making the calls.

State law requires that a note stating the reason for an absence be sent to the teacher on the child's first day back in school unless previously arranged or a call was made to the attendance line. The note should include the date, the reason and the duration of the absence.

Tardies and Early Dismissals
We ask that you plan family routines to avoid late arrivals to school. Tardy arrivals are disruptive to the classroom morning routines and prevent your child from starting the school day with confidence and clarity about the day’s focus.

We also ask that you avoid early dismissal requests as much as possible.

We especially need your help with the last 30 minutes of the day. This is an important time for teachers to review the day, to explain homework and to prepare for the next day. Please send a note with your child in the morning if an appointment requires your child to be dismissed early.

Pre-Planned Absences
Please check the school calendar for scheduled vacation days. You can find this calendar on the district website home page. We encourage you to use these days for family travel. We ask that you do not request advance homework from the classroom teacher. Students may read and keep a journal while they are away. Homework missed due to absence and any make up work required will be determined when the student returns to school. A ‘Request for Excused Absence’ form is available on the school website and in the school office and should be submitted prior to the planned absence. This form should be completed for absences greater than two (2) days.

Unexcused Absences
Parents/guardians have two weeks to contact the school office with an explanation for a student absence. Absences not excused within 2-weeks are automatically considered “unexcused.” This status cannot be changed after the 2-week period.

Student Records and Directories

Federal law prohibits schools from releasing information, without prior parental permission, except for what is termed "directory information,” which may be released without parental consent.

Northshore will not release directory information for commercial purposes.

Directory information is defined as the student’s name, address, telephone number, date of birth, major field of study, dates of enrollment, photographs, most recent school attended, diplomas and awards, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and weight and height of athletes.

Parent/guardians who do not want directory information or photographs of their students released must notify the school principal in writing by October 1 each year. The permission to withhold student directory form is found on the Cottage Lake website. Please be aware that your child(ren)’s photos will also be excluded from the school yearbook as well.

If you are planning a move from our service area, please contact our office as soon as possible. You may wish to get a copy of the immunization record to facilitate enrollment at the new school.


As a staff, we believe part of the maturation process is growing awareness of other people and their right to be treated respectfully. Therefore, we stress the connections between character virtues and the rights and responsibilities of individuals. This means helping students make appropriate choices, accepting responsibility for their actions and learning through natural consequences and problem solving. The following is a list of student rights and responsibilities.

Student Rights & Responsibilities for Behavior

  • I have the right to be valued, respected and accepted in this school.
  • I have the responsibility to be considerate and tolerant of others.
  • I have the right to express my feelings, opinions and ideas.
  • I have the responsibility to use quality language to show respect and to listen to others’ ideas.
  • I have the right to learn and study in a quiet, productive environment.
  • I have the responsibility to work independently or in cooperation with others and do the best I can.
  • I have the right to be safe while traveling to and from school and during the school day.
  • I have the responsibility to be careful and to use self-control.
  • I have the right to use school supplies and equipment and my personal property.
  • I have the responsibility to use the supplies, equipment and property correctly.

Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports
As part of our implementation of positive behavioral supports, we have developed school-wide behavior expectations that will be specifically taught and reinforced for all students.

At Cottage Lake, we believe all students should “SAIL”:

  • Show Respect
  • Act Safely
  • Show Individual Responsibility
  • Be Learning Ready

Student Problem Solving Process at Cottage Lake
The staff at Cottage Lake is dedicated towards providing the structures, consistency and positive encouragement necessary for every student to be their best self on any given day. We also understand that children make mistakes. Mistakes provide for an incredible and powerful learning opportunity that has the potential to shape students into the incredible adults they will become. The virtues of Honesty, Courage, Responsibility, Respect, Forgiveness and Peacefulness are at the core of our student led problem solving process.

In addition, we firmly believe that families should be provided the information necessary in order to fully facilitate the powerful learning that can be a result of a mistake. While families may be contacted by their child’s teacher and/or principal, students may also be asked to complete a “Think Paper,” or problem-solving worksheet. Students will address information including what happened, their choice, a plan going forward and what they will do to right the situation. Sent home in duplicate, we encourage families to read through the form alongside their child, signing, and charging their student with the responsibility of returning the yellow copy to the Main Office on the following school day.

We appreciate your partnership in the process and are happy to address questions at any time.

The Virtues Project
The Virtues Project is an initiative focused on the practice of virtues in everyday life. It is a global project offering personal, professional and community development programs and materials to help people of all cultures live by their highest values. The purpose of The Virtues Project is to provide life-skill strategies that make the knowledge and practice of virtues accessible to people of all cultures. The Five Strategies help individuals to live more reverent, purposeful lives, support parents to raise children of strong moral character, inspire excellence, commitment and service in the workplace, and help schools and communities to build a climate of safety and caring.

Students at Cottage Lake will focus on and learn about one Virtue a month, yet celebrated and recognized for ANY of the virtues they demonstrate at any time. Virtues we aim to celebrate in our students include Respect, Responsibility, Helpfulness, Peacefulness, Integrity, Compassion, Commitment, Friendliness, Honesty, Tolerance, Determination, Generosity, Forgiveness and much, much more!

As an example, the Virtue of Courage is personal bravery in the face of fear. It is doing what needs to be done even when it is really hard or scary. Courage is going ahead even when you feel like giving up. Courage is needed in trying new things. It is admitting mistakes and then doing the right thing. Courage is the strength in your heart.

Students at Cottage Lake are practicing Courage when they:

  • —  Do what is right for you even when it is hard or scary
  • —  Find strength in your heart even when you are afraid
  • —  Are willing to try new things
  • —  Admit mistakes and learn from them
  • —  Make amends when you do something wrong
  • —  Ask for help

Playground Guidelines
All games are played for fun and to practice good sportsmanship. There are no winners or losers during recess games. Game rules may be different from community-organized programs. School game rules will be taught during Physical Education classes in September.  The PE teacher or Playground Supervisor is the final judge in playground rule disputes. Game rules are printed in this handbook for parent review.

The following expectations are designed to help students practice responsible, positive behavior on the playground.

  • Solve problems peacefully/seek help if needed.
  • Use language appropriate for the classroom environment.
  • Games are open to all students.
  • Learn and follow the rules for playground games.
  • Play within the boundaries set by the playground supervisors.
  • Stay outside unless you get a building pass from supervisors.
  • When the bell rings, stop what you are doing, return play equipment, and walk to your line.
  • Walk to the covered area immediately in the case of a thunderstorm or heavy rain.
  • When a student is injured, report it immediately to an adult.
  • Leave rocks, woodchips and dirt on the ground.
  • Digging is not allowed on the sand field.
  • No food on the playground.

Consequences for Infractions on the Playground

  • Verbal reminder
  • Positive practice
  • Recess break
  • Time-out with the supervisor
  • Time-out on the benches
  • Office referral
  • Games may be suspended for a period of time at the discretion of the principal.
  • Think paper completion

Dress Policy
Experience has shown that there is a relationship between behavior and dress. We trust that students and families will work together in making appropriate choices for school clothing.

Cottage Lake students are expected to dress in a manner that does not disrupt the educational process. Common sense is the best guide in determining what is appropriate for an educational environment. Listed below are guidelines to support your choices:

  • Footwear needs to be safe and secure. Flip-flops are not advised. Sandals should have a back-strap. Athletic shoes are preferred in order for students to fully participate in PE and recess.
  • Skirts and shorts should come down to mid-thigh.
  • Tops need to cover the entire mid-section (no bare midriffs) and shoulder straps should be at least two-fingers wide.
  • We discourage the usage of make-up at school.
  • Wearing clothing that relates in any way to gangs, sex, alcohol/drugs, tobacco products, or profanity will not be allowed. Sometimes this requires a call home for a parent to bring a change of clothing.
  • Cosmetics are such a distraction to the elementary environment we ask that students not bring facial makeup to school.
  • Emergencies and drills occur frequently and unexpectedly—please dress appropriately for the weather.

 Bullying at School
Under no circumstances do we tolerate harassment, intimidation, and bullying at our school. All teachers present curriculum each year to assist students in recognizing and reporting bullying whether they are a victim or a bystander. Teachers cooperate fully with the administration to take immediate action when incidents are reported. We follow all district guidelines as outlined in the NSD Handbook for Rights and Responsibilities Concerning Conduct for Students and Employees.

A copy of that publication is available on the website


Parent Involvement
Cottage Lake Elementary is delighted to welcome you to the caring and supportive community that surrounds our school.  We invite you to join us in this community as we prepare your children to become life-long learners!  There are many ways you can help us provide rich programs and support to our students and their families.

Below are a few ways you can stay connect to our school and PTA.

Principal newsletter.  “The Sailor’s Log” contains news regarding important events as well as important information regarding school and district beliefs, practices, and programs. This is sent out to families once per month.

Attend our grade level “Curriculum Nights” in September to get to know your child’s teacher and his/her classroom routines and expectations.

Check out our School Web Site: and our PTA Web

 PTA newsletter. “The Foghorn” contains important information regarding PTA events.

 Cottage Lake Elementary School Volunteer Trainings Required by January 2019:

Are you interested in volunteering at Cottage Lake during the 2018-2019 school year?  ALL volunteers should complete the training process by January 2019. You can “get ahead of the game” by attending a scheduled training this fall. You only need to attend this Volunteer Training once during your time here at Cottage Lake.

Volunteers are such an important part of our school community! Assisting in the Main Office, Library, classroom spaces and beyond our learning community during field trips. A volunteer’s generous donation of time and talents enriches the school day experience, providing a helpful hand to staff and serving as mentors and models for our children.

The volunteer training process is established in order to ensure that adults working within our community during the school day are approved to do so, having completed the Washington State background check, and talked with the building principal regarding expectations for interactions and protocols. The information provided is intended to help any volunteer hit the ground running, comfortable with all the options for volunteering and what to expect while on campus!

Below are the steps to become an officially trained Cottage Lake Volunteer.

1.     Attend a Training Session (see dates published on the website).  Volunteers only have to come once while your student(s) attend Cottage Lake.  At the 20-25 minute training, you will learn about the role and importance of volunteers at Cottage Lake, providing classroom and student support, and chaperoning field trips. Participants will also receive an official name badge. No need to sign-up, just select a date and time that works for you.

2.     Volunteering is largely arranged between you and your child’s teacher.

3.     Complete a Washington State Background Check.  This is a form that needs to be updated every two (2) years! For volunteers who may drive students on field trips, you will need to complete an additional form, providing a copy of your driver’s license or other photo identification and a proof of full-coverage auto insurance.  Background checks are good for two years.

Cottage Lake PTA
The focus of the PTA is to enhance the educational experience of all our students while providing support and information for parents and staff. Fund-raising efforts raise money to fund programs, curriculum enhancement and other student enrichment programs.

Become involved in the Outreach/Social Services Committee and help those in our community who may need a little extra support at times. Or help find speakers for our Parent Education program. Examples of volunteer opportunities include:

  • Support our Emergency Preparation.
  • Volunteer to lead or support an Enrichment Class for students after school.  Become an Art or Science Docent and bring in specialized experiences for our students. Organize our school-wide Science Fair and Art Walk or participate in arrangements for the School Play.
  • Help raise money for classroom activities and assemblies that extend student learning.
  • Lead the Reflections Program to encourage our students to creatively showcase their talents.
  • Be a part of the Book Swap and count and organize books.
  • Help with the many family activities such as the Welcome Back to School Ice Cream Social, Monster Mash, Winter Fest, or the Follies.

We appreciate the wonderful life experience and passion for students’ success that our volunteers bring to our school.  But we also realize that not everyone can be at school to help. We invite all to come to the community events sponsored by our PTA.


In case of inclement weather there are several ways to find out if school will be delayed or closed. The district will call families in the event of a school delay or closure using its telephone notification system. Morning calls will be made before 6 a.m. to ensure that families of high school students are reached. Also, up-do-date information is posted on Northshore’s home page,, and is kept current as conditions change. You may call the district’s 24-hour emergency number, 425-408-6001. Another option is to listen to your radio or TV stations for late start or closure information. These stations will also carry information if deteriorating weather conditions force an early afternoon closure.

When schools are closed for the day, or even if they close early in the afternoon, there will be no after school activities on that day, including athletic events. When schools open late in the morning, there will be no elementary band, strings, Head Start or preschool classes that day.

Emergency make-up days will be added to the end of the school year.

Emergency Closure
In the event of an emergency closure, every precaution will be made for the safe transportation of all children. Bus students will be transported as close to their regular bus stop as possible, and students who walk will be sent home providing it is safe to do so.

Each student should know what to do in case parents are not home or immediately available should power outages, weather conditions, etc. necessitate an early dismissal. Please discuss, and periodically review, your family safety plan so each student knows whether to go home or to a neighbor, and what to do until parents arrive home. This advance planning will assure safety and peace of mind.

The Northshore School District and Cottage Lake Elementary have an emergency dismissal plan in case of an earthquake or other disaster. Please make sure you have listed with our school several local emergency contacts for your child. These would be people to whom a student could be released in the event that parents are unable to reach the school.

Earthquake Preparedness
Cottage Lake has a very thorough preparedness plan, which includes student, staff and volunteer accountability, search and assessment teams and rescue first aid. Practice evacuations will occur throughout the year. We also have an emergency container for supplies and walkie-talkies. In the event of an earthquake, the staff will be following very specific dismissal procedures to ensure that students are released to only those adults who are listed as emergency contacts. Please make sure the emergency contact names you have provided for your child are current.

Emergencies and Drills
Please maintain current records so that we may contact you in the event of an emergency. Emergency drills are required by law and conducted a minimum of nine times a year, during all kinds of weather (9 evacuations—including 2 earthquake, and 2 lockdown drills). Any person on campus must participate for the duration of the drill.  During an actual emergency, you will check in first with the office staff to release your children. We are allowed to release your child only to contacts listed by you. Please be ready to present current identification and be sure an authorized pick up person is designated in case you are unable to get to school.

Emergency Lockdowns
In the event of a potential danger to our staff and students, we practice two types of lockdown procedures. A “lockdown” means that classes will go on as usual, but students are not allowed outside. Reasons might include a dangerous animal on campus or a natural gas smell. An “emergency lockdown” means that there is a potential danger in and out of the classroom; therefore, students crouch down in a corner of the classroom away from windows. Examples of the need for an emergency lockdown might be an intruder on campus or a person with a weapon at school.

Weapons at School
No weapons of any kind may be brought to school. This includes firearms, water guns, slingshots, knives, or anything else that could be used as a weapon. Depictions of weapons, including toys, Legos, T-shirt graphics and student drawings, are not allowed at school. Violation of these rules may result in detention, suspension or expulsion.


Health Room
At Cottage Lake Elementary, we are excited to have a full-time nurse on staff. Our nurse will be on site during student school hours. If you have questions about sending your child to school, some guidelines include: the fever rule (24 hours fever free). If your child has problems related to health, please call our nurse at 425.408.4206.

The Northshore School District recommends that medication be taken at home whenever possible.  We recognize, however, that in some cases it is essential that medication be administered during the school day. Our school nurse dispenses all medications following written instructions by the physician. Medication must be delivered to school in a properly labeled prescription or original, over-the-counter container.  The student’s name must be on the label with proper identification of the drug, dosage, and directions for administration. A form is available in the school office or with the school nurse.

Field Trips:  For students on daily medication, request an extra labeled empty bottle from your pharmacy that can be used for field trips.

Children with Life-Threatening Conditions
In order to provide a safe learning environment, the legislature of the State of Washington has passed a law to protect children with life-threatening conditions.

The law defines life-threatening condition as a “health condition that will put the child in danger of death during the school day if a medication or treatment order and a nursing plan are not in place.”  Children with life-threatening conditions such as severe bee sting or food allergies, severe asthma, severe seizures, etc., are now required to have a medication or treatment order in place before they start school.

Students with life-threatening conditions qualify for a 504-accommodation/ emergency care plan. The nurse will provide you with the necessary forms for your doctor or provider to complete.

A qualified adult will give first aid to a student who is injured at school. If the injury is serious, we will call 911. Parents will be notified immediately. Emergency telephone numbers are required in the event that the parent is not immediately available. Up-to-date and complete information on the student's records is vitally important. Please contact the school office if changes occur.


Well-balanced meals are prepared in our kitchen each day. When paying on a daily basis, please send the correct amount with your child, if possible.  If paying on the account, please make checks payable to Northshore School District.



Reduced Grades K-3

Reduced Grades 4-5


Grades K-3


Grades 4-5
















Milk/Juice only








Forms and information concerning the government subsidized meals program are available in the school office and on the district website at:

Breakfast is served daily in the cafeteria from 9:00-9:20 for students.

Classroom and School Parties
Generally, there are two regularly scheduled classroom parties each year. These traditionally occur at Halloween and Valentine's Day, but may vary from class to class. Arrangements for these events are determined and supervised by the classroom teacher in collaboration with room parents. Treats served at school must be commercially prepared. With the growing number of students with food allergies, Cottage Lake is a nut-aware school. If your particular classroom has a student with a life-threatening allergy, there will be communication sent home from our school nurse and teacher at the beginning of the school year.

To celebrate a birthday at school, please contact your child’s teacher at least a week ahead of time. We ask that you do not send such items as balloons or flowers to school. Additionally, we do not allow party invitations to be distributed at school, unless every child in the classroom receives one.

As an entire school, we encourage families to consider alternatives to providing food treats for a birthday celebration. A few suggestions are: providing fun pencils or pens to students, fun erasers, bubbles, bring a game from home to play with the class, donating a book to the classroom or school library, just to name a few. Thank you for your understanding and consideration.


AM Drop-off and PM Pick-up
When picking up and dropping off your child, please observe these safety guidelines:

  • Stay in your car when in the loop.
  • Have your child enter or exit the vehicle on the curbside.
  • Maintain a single file line of cars entering the loop.
  • Please watch your speed. Cars should not be moving above 5MPH in the parking lot.
  • Do not block other cars ability to move through the loop to access parking—including designated handicap spaces.
  • No cell phone use while in your car at school.

**Reminder: Exit the school driveway by using a Right Turn ONLY 20-minutes before and after school hours.

Student Guidelines for Safe and Responsible Car Pick-up Behavior

In order for students to be safe and orderly while waiting for their parent driver the following rules are important.

  • Walk directly to the waiting area by the office.
  • Younger siblings should stay with oldest child.
  • Watch for parent car to come to the curb. Enter the car from the curbside only.
  • Students remain behind the yellow line until the vehicle comes to a complete stop. Student will then be released by the supervising staff member.
  • Follow the directions of the adults and safety patrol students.
  • Parent drivers may not leave their cars unless parked in a parking space.

Student Guidelines for Before and After School

  • Arrive at school no earlier than 9:00 AM, which is the time that recess supervision begins.
  • Do not enter the building without a pass until the bell rings.
  • When the 9:17 AM bell rings, line up or go to class as your teacher has taught you.
  • Students who arrive to school after 9:20 AM need to report to the office before reporting to class.
  • At the end of the day, walkers depart quietly by 4:00 PM.
  • Bus riders wait quietly and calmly in their bus line.
  • Car passengers wait for parent’s car to come to the curb outside the main office.
  • **Reminder: Exit the school driveway by using a Right Turn ONLY 20-minutes before and after school hours.

Bikes and Skateboards
Students are not allowed to ride bikes to school.

Per district policy, bicycle riding, rollerblades and skateboards are prohibited on school property. Riding or skating on school sidewalks after school hours is not allowed. Riding or skating on sidewalks can result in serious injuries due to our many doors and blind corners. Shoes with retractable rollers are also not to be used at school. We will require that the wheels be removed during school hours.

Most children who attend Cottage Lake ride a school bus. The bus driver is in complete charge of the bus during the ride to and from school.  Bus rules and bus discipline procedures are printed in the district publication, NSD Handbook for Rights and Responsibilities Concerning Conduct for Students and Employees which is available on the school website. If you have any questions or concerns, please call the Cottage Lake office (425-408-4200) or NSD Transportation (425-408-7900).

Bus Passes
Students are to ride only the bus to which they have been assigned. If it is necessary for a student to take a bus other than the regularly assigned bus, a signed note from the parent/guardian is required.  Please let us know about any changes in the schedule: daycare, friendship plans, sports, clubs, and pick up arrangements. The note should indicate the date of the request, the student your child is going home with and the address of the destination. Notes need to be brought to the office at the beginning of the school day. Bus passes will not be issued the first two weeks of school.

Classroom Phones
All classrooms are equipped with telephones and all teachers have direct numbers to their rooms and to their voicemail. Individual teachers will give instruction at the beginning of the year as to their policies. You may call the classroom directly and leave a message if the teacher is not available or class is in session. We ask that students do NOT bring personal cell phones to school. If your family's after school situation makes a phone necessary, students are asked to leave their phones in their backpacks and silenced during the school day. Student cell phones need to stored in backpacks as soon as students enter onto the school campus and should remain in the backpack until leaving the school campus. Cottage Lake will not be held responsible for lost cell phones. Students who remove cell phones from backpacks during the school day will be provided one warning.

A second mistake will result in cell phone held in the office for parent pick-up.

Kindles and E-Readers
Kindles and other e-readers may be used at school at the discretion of the classroom teacher.  In order to bring a Kindle to school, the student must have a “Kindle Contract” on file at school, signed by student and parents, agreeing to the school rules regarding use of the Kindle.

Lost and Found
Articles of clothing found on school grounds are brought to the "Lost and Found" rack.  Small items found are sent to the office. Parents are welcome to check the lost and found anytime. All clothing items not claimed will be donated quarterly to charity.

Pedestrian Safety
For those students who walk to and from school, please follow these guidelines:

  • Students should always walk with a friend and stay well off the road. 
  • Extreme care should be used when crossing streets. Wait until cars are stopped before entering a roadway.
  • Due to the busy nature of Avondale Road, students are NOT allowed to cross Avondale. A bus is provided for all students who live on the west side of Avondale Road.

Personal Items at School
With the exception of items brought for special occasions or with advance teacher permission, all non-school related personal items/toys/stuffed animals/fidgets should be left at home. If items are brought to school, teachers or principal will hold items that are disruptive until parents pick them up. Specific items include but are not limited to: chewing gum, cell phones, iPods/mp3 players/personal stereos, stuffed animals, fidget spinners, fidget cubes and handheld video games.

Student Council
The Student Council is an organization designed to give students an experience in representative democracy and provide a forum for student concerns. This organization is under the direction of faculty advisors.  Students will elect a president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer. Each of the classes in grades K-5 will also select representatives to meet on a regular basis with the officers. The Student Council will sponsor events during the course of the school year.

Northshore’s Nondiscrimination Statement:

Northshore School District prohibits discrimination on the basis of age, sex, marital status, genetic information, sexual orientation including gender expression or identity, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, honorably discharged veteran or military status, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability, unless based upon a bona fide occupational qualification, in all its employment procedures, training, programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following employee has been designated to handle questions and complaints of alleged unlawful discrimination: Doug Hale, Human Resources Director,