Welcome Back!  Bienvenidos!  おかえりなさい

Dear McDonald International Students and Families,

Welcome Back!  Bienvenidos!  おかえりなさい I hope you had a relaxing and joyous summer!

It’s hard to believe that McDonald International will soon open its doors to approximately 490 students for the start of the 2018-2019 school year.  We are excited for a great beginning and look forward to seeing all of you at our Meet and Greet.

Meet and Greet will take place on Tuesday, September 4 from 1:30-2:30 p.m. During this time, you will be able to meet your child’s teachers, see the classrooms, and connect with friends.  While kids play on the playground, the PTA will also be there with back-to-school information and to help answer questions until 4:00.

At McDonald International, the PTA collects a supply fee from families and those fees cover most of the supplies that your children will need throughout the year.  This method of purchasing supplies has benefited families, as it has allowed for bulk purchase discounts and has eliminated the need for individual families to go shopping for their own supplies. The only supply we expect students to bring is a pair of headphones or earbuds.  Your child’s teacher will let you know the process for this.

Fridays will continue to be “Spirit Wear” day. We encourage students, staff and families to show their McDonald International pride by wearing spirit wear or McDonald International Colors (royal blue and yellow).

This year, we enthusiastically welcome 12 new staff members: Daniel Reveles (K Spanish Immersion), Izumi Mori (1st Grade Japanese Immersion Instructional Assistant), Jackie Martinez (1st/2nd ELA on the Japanese side), Carlen Luke (2nd ELA on the Spanish side), Juanjo Pedro (2nd Grade Spanish Immersion), Angela Klaassen (3rd Grade Spanish Immersion), Yumiko Taniguchi (3rd/4th Japanese Immersion), Lisa Bussalacchi (Interventionist), Gregory DiGiacomo (School Psychologist), Zoe Facilla (Assistant Principal), Keri Kochvar (School Counselor), and Mary Slater (School Office Assistant). Please also join me in welcoming our interns: Ramiro Baez Fernandez, Silvia Alija Garcia, Heiner Gomez Garcia, Airi Higa, Arancha Duran Piris, Runa Okuyama, and Hinano Sakai. 

A few important reminders:

  • The first day of school for grades 1-5 is Wednesday, September 5, and the first day for kindergarten students is Monday, September 10.
  • Each school day starts at 7:55 a.m., and students may arrive as early as 7:40 a.m. (students arriving after 8:00 a.m. will be deemed tardy and will need to sign-in with the front office).
  • Each school day ends at 2:25 p.m. – except for Wednesdays when school ends at 1:10 p.m.

Be on the lookout for an email later this week from our school Secretary, Jane Petrich, with your class assignments.  This email will contain a link for you to sign up for your class’s specific Google Groups, which will be used throughout the year for communications from the school and with your fellow community members. You will need to sign up for the Google Group for both of your child’s teachers. For example, if your child has Ms. Bixman in the a.m. and Profe Diana in the p.m., you will sign up for Ms. Bixman’s group and Profe Diana’s group. This is a self-service sign-up will enable you to always receive your class-specific communications at your preferred email address. I also recommend registering to receive communications from the PTA so that you can receive other important announcements, including my recurring Principal Newsletter (if you are receiving this directly, you are already on the list). If more than one parent/guardian would like to receive messages from the Google Groups or the PTA, please make sure everyone interested signs up. 

Attention Kindergarten parents!  Please note that after the first couple of weeks of school, we might adjust classroom assignments depending on the dynamics of the students.  While the students will continue to have the same teachers, the teacher they have in the morning/afternoon might switch. If this switch is necessary, we will let you know prior to the switch.  

Be sure to check out our updated Student and Family Handbook. It was put together with input from our Building Leadership Team (BLT), which is a combination of staff and parents. Our hope is that you will be able to use this handbook to assist you in understanding our programs, procedures, policies, activities, expectations, schedules and services.  Please use it as your first reference, and if you cannot find the answer to your question, the office staff will be more than happy to assist you.  Additionally, if you have any recommendations for information that you would like to see in this handbook, please let us know as we are continually looking for ways to improve our communication with families.

We are thrilled to start another great year at McDonald International, and to partner with families for the success of every student.  If you ever have any questions or concerns, please contact a teacher or an administrator, as we are always happy to schedule a time to meet with parents.  Enjoy the rest of your summer, and see you soon!


Michelle Goldberg


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