About Penn Elementary

  • Elementary Handbook:
    Download the ICCSD Elementary handbook. It is also printed in your 3rd-6th grader’s school planner and is available in print copy upon request. 

    Attendance and Absences:
    School attendance is vital to your child’s success at Penn! Please take note of the more detailed Absence and Attendance section in the Elementary Handbook.

    • Please notify the office of your child’s absence or reason for tardiness by 9:00am 
    • Please try to keep afterschool plans the same each day. If there is an unavoidable change, please notify the office by 1pm to ensure your child receives the message without interrupting any learning. We ask that you limit messages for students to emergency situations

    Our school day:
    Students may arrive and enter through the front doors any time after 7:45am.

    7:30 -7:45

    • Breakfast is served in the cafeteria.

    7:45 students may go to their classrooms.
    7:55 school begins!
    2:55 school dismisses (M, T, Th, F), or 1:55 on Wednesdays. 

    Breakfast and lunch are served at school, with menus updated monthly on the district website. Free and reduced lunch rates are available to families who meet the designated guidelines. Those who wish to apply need to fill out an application annually at www.applyforlunch.com.

    There are several ways that our staff communicates with Penn families:

    • Our virtual backpack/Peachjar site (electronic version of fliers and things that no longer get printed and sent home)
    • Our Penn Facebook page
    • Emails from teachers. Staff emails are always:
    • lastname.firstname@iowacityschools.org
    • Newsletters via email every Friday
    • Automated calls for important messages

    PLEASE NOTE:  It is important for the school to have a telephone number where parents can be reached in case of illness, accident, or emergency!  You will not receive automated calls if your information is incorrect.

    Penn tries to be “green” and sends newsletters and communication electronically.  We get your email address directly from Infinite Campus.  If you don’t have an email address and need paper copies sent home, please contact our office.

    Update the school office or your Infinite Campus account whenever you have changes.

    Cell Phones at School:
    The use of cell phones, pagers, beepers, smart watches and other similar communication devices are not allowed during the school day. Items in use between 7:55am and 2:55pm will be taken and stored in the Penn office. The item may be claimed at the end of the school day.  Phones should not be out or in use during the day and should be turned OFF.

    Cameras, video cameras or cell phones which have the capacity to take pictures or video cannot be used during the school day without permission from a staff member.

    The school does not assume responsibility for the loss or damage of these personal items. If lost or stolen, the school does not replace it. Use caution when bringing these expensive items to school.

    PBIS at Penn Elementary
    “At Penn, we are people of character; we are caring, respectful, responsible and ready”.

    PBIS is a school wide approach to creating consistent, predictable, safe, and positive school environments. At Penn, we are committed to reducing behavior challenges by teaching and reinforcing appropriate school behavior.

    At Penn, we share the expectation that all students will be caring, respectful, responsible and ready in all settings. Students are taught, and re-taught, expected behaviors for hallways, bathrooms, lunch room, and playground many times each year. "Penn Paws" are given to students by school staff for showing expected behaviors. Through this process students are acknowledged and reinforced for showing expected behaviors at school rather than being punished for showing undesirable behaviors. Positive behaviors are enforced by positive reinforcement, prevention strategies, teaching expectations, and systems that allow information gathering and data use to guide decision-making.

    NL Family Resource Center
    The North Liberty Family Resource Center (NLFRC) is a free resource for families in the North Liberty community. Our mission is to affirm, strengthen, support and help reduce barriers to learning. Student and Family Advocates strive to facilitate communication between home and school to ensure a successful learning experience for all students.

    Our Student & Family Advocate is Jill Winders. Feel free to call her at (319) 688-1194 or email winders.jill@iowacityschools.org.

    Consider this:
    You are the most important person in your child’s life. No one will have a bigger impact on how well they will do in life. This is not just common sense; it is backed by years of research! When families are involved, children do better in school. What can you do?

    • READ to your child each night! Older children should read to you or read silently for 15 minutes each night.
    • Call or email your child's teacher when you have a question or concern.
    • Attend your child's parent-teacher conferences. These will be held in November and February.
    • Read the school newsletter (every Friday), visit our website, and like our Facebook page.
    • Limit your child’s "screen time."
    • Give your child the gift of your time. You’ll find the time you spend talking and "hanging out" together will be the most enjoyable part of your day!
    • Schedule appointments and family vacations during school breaks or non-school days for students. Daily attendance is important.

    Visiting and Volunteering:
    We encourage parents to visit for lunch or volunteer at Penn!

    • Visitors should make arrangements with the staff they wish to visit ahead of time. Visitors should check in and out at our office and wear a VISITOR badge while in the building.
    • Volunteers are greatly appreciated! All volunteers must complete a volunteer application through the school district which includes a background check. This must be completed prior to volunteering and takes about a week. This will only need to be done once and allows volunteers to work with students, help with classroom parties or go on field trips.