Ames Family Updates » Welcome to the 2021-2022 School Year at Ames

Welcome to the 2021-2022 School Year at Ames

Ames Dolphin Logo

August 10, 2021


Dear A.F. Ames Elementary School Families-


Welcome to the 2021-2022 School Year at Ames!  I hope everyone had a nice summer.  Now that we have had the time to relax and get rejuvenated, I am looking forward to partnering with your family in welcoming our new and returning students to Ames on Wednesday, August 25 for students in Grades 1 to 5 and Thursday, August 26 for our Kindergarteners. 


As we look to begin the 2021-2022 school year together, I want to take a moment to let our families know that I am here to support your child’s education and foster their growth this school year.  I look forward to building and strengthening a home/school partnership with each of you.  Our mission in Riverside Public School District 96 is to provide each student with a challenging education that promotes academic excellence, encourages creativity, develops critical thinking, and fosters respect for self, community, and the environment.


You can keep track of the latest information regarding District 96 and stay connected to A.F. Ames Elementary School by visiting the Ames Elementary School Website.

I also encourage you to visit/subscribe to the Ames Elementary School Calendar by visiting the following link on the District 96 website:

Ames Elementary School Calendar.

If you want to access your child’s school supply list for this school year click HERE.

If you have any questions about your child’s education, social emotional needs, or just want to talk, please do not hesitate to contact me.  I believe that communication is the key to our successful partnership in educating your child.  I look forward to working with each of you in providing the students of A.F. Ames Elementary School with an outstanding and memorable school year.  Please note the following A.F. Ames Elementary School 2021–2022 Information Guide on the accompanying few pages.  This is where you will find important information pertaining to the upcoming school year at Ames.


Partners in your child’s education,


Todd A. Gierman, Principal

A.F. Ames Elementary School

A.F. Ames Elementary School 2021–2022 Information Guide

Save the Dates

Note the upcoming events below.  If the event is noted in BLUE you can click on the link and it will redirect you to the Ames website for more information.




Friday, August 20

Class Assignment Email to Parents/Guardians

By the end of the day

Monday, August 23

District 96 Opening Institute Day

8:00am to 3:10pm

(Students not in attendance)

Tuesday, August 24

District 96 Institute Day

8:00am to 3:10pm

(Students not in attendance)

Tuesday, August 24

Ames Back to School Teacher Meet and Greet

2:00pm to 3:00pm

(Grades 1 to 5 only)

Tuesday, August 24

Back to School PTA Social

3:00pm to 4:00pm

Wednesday, August 25

First Day of School for students in Grades 1 to 5

8:15am to 2:55pm

Wednesday, August 25

Kindergarten Meet and Greet with Families

Scheduled by last name during the school day

Wednesday, August 25

Kindergarten Dolphin Picnic

11:30am to 12:00pm

Thursday, August 26

First Day of AM/PM Kindergarten

8:15am to 11:10am

12:00pm to 2:55pm          

Thursday, September 9

Elementary Fall Parent Night

6:00pm to 7:00pm

Monday, September 20

Fall Picture Day

8:15am to 2:55pm

Your Child’s Classroom Assignment

On Friday, August 20, School Messenger will send electronic notification confirming your child’s registration within District 96 and communicating his or her classroom assignment for the 2021-2022 school year.  If you have not completed in-person residency and registration at the District Office your child will not be assigned to a class until the residency and registration is completed. 


Daily School Schedule and Times

Click here to be redirected to the “All Things Ames” website for our daily school schedule and times.

Morning Arrival Procedures

Click here to be redirected to the “All Things Ames” website for information about where students line-up each morning when they arrive at school.

Times to Drop-off  and Pick-up Students

Students should not be on school grounds prior to 8:00am.  We have teachers who serve on door duty at each entrance before school from 7:55am to 8:10am and after school from 2:55pm to 3:10pm.  Students are expected to go home promptly when dismissed at 2:55pm.

Pick-up and Drop-off Procedures

The safety of our students is of the utmost importance and is our number one priority at Ames.  If you are driving your child to school please drop them off at the main entrance walkway.  Do not drop-off or pick-up your child in the parking lot located behind the school.  

  • The drop-off and pick-up line is closest to the school in the right lane.
  • Do not park in the pick-up line and exit your vehicle.  
  • We need to keep the traffic moving along at all times.  
  • Students must exit and enter your vehicle on the passenger side only.
  • Once you drop-off or pick-up your child, exit the school via the left lane.
  • If you do not see your child outside, please circle around the block.
  • Parents should not exit their vehicles for any reason whatsoever in the pick-up line.  
  • If you need to exit your car to buckle your child in their safety or booster seat, you must park your car in the surrounding neighborhood and walk to the front of the school to pick-up your child.

Student Absences

Good attendance at school is an important factor in ensuring academic success.  If your child must be absent due to illness, we ask you to call the school office at (708) 447-0759 between 8:00am and 8:30am to report the absence.  We ask that family vacations not occur during student attendance days.  

Student Tardies

It is very important that students be at school on time.  Punctuality helps get the school day off to a good start.  Students should be in their classrooms no later than 8:15am.  Students who enter the building after this bell will be marked tardy.  


Students Eating Lunch at School

Students in Grades 1 to 5 will be eating lunch at school sitting 3 feet apart at the lunch tables.  There will be 12 students sitting at a lunch table.  We will have two lunch sections.  Lunch A is from 11:25am to 11:50am and Lunch B is from 11:50am to 12:15pm.  When students are not eating lunch, they will be going outside for recess.  Students will have assigned seats during lunch. We will let students sit where they want the first day and that will be their permanent lunch seat (due to COVID).  Parents can still choose to take their child home for lunch.


Students Going Home for Lunch 

If you decide to take your child home for lunch, please pick them up from the main office at 11:25am and return them to school at 12:15pm.  Students who go home for lunch need to go home for the entire 50 minute lunch/recess period.

Healthy Lunch at School

Per the District 96 Wellness Policy, fast food lunches and soda pop are not allowed in the lunchroom and should not be sent in with students.  Please try to pack a lunch that offers healthy alternatives.  To accommodate children with peanut and tree nut allergies, please notify your child’s teacher that they will need to sit at a section of the lunch table that is a designated “nut free zone”.  Children are reminded not to share any food with others.

Parent Handbook and School Discipline Code

The Parent Handbook and School Discipline Code is accessible by clicking here.

Thank You

In closing, thank you for your attention to this important information.  Please keep this newsletter in a convenient spot for future reference.  Should you have any questions as we look to begin the school year together, please reach out to me via email or phone.

[email protected]


On behalf of the entire staff of A.F. Ames Elementary School, we look forward to providing your children with a productive and memorable 2021-2022 school year.