SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany --
Attention Saber children — it’s time to get your crayons and your pencils.
Department of Defense Education Activity schools at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, and Bitburg Annex, Germany, will begin the 2016-2017 school year later this August.
Bitburg High School will open its doors Aug. 29, and both Spangdahlem Middle School and Spangdahlem Elementary School will commence classes Aug. 31.
The new school year will feature significant changes to both the landscape and calendar for Saber students including all pre-kindergarten through middle school students learning on Spangdahlem and later starts for all students on Wednesdays.
Spangdahlem Elementary School will serve as the sole elementary school for the 52nd Fighter Wing after Bitburg Elementary School closed its doors after decades of operation June 10, 2016.
“I think many parents and students will welcome this change,” said Christine D’Amico, Spangdahlem school liaison officer. “I am looking forward to having them back this year, and I know they are looking forward to being here.”
D’Amico also said another big change will be a 30-minute late start for students on Wednesdays. DoDEA levied a new requirement on schools to have at least one hour of collaboration time per week for teachers. The late start on Wednesdays will allow Spangdahlem and Bitburg educators time to meet this requirement.
“It is still a fairly new trend, but it is taking place in schools all over the United States as well as our U.S. schools here in Europe,” D’Amico said.
Lastly, all Sabers can expect traffic delays at Spangdahlem beginning Aug 31, D’Amico said.
“Our foot traffic will increase quite a bit as we will have many students walking to and from the elementary and middle schools from housing,” she said. “It is very important we remain vigilant, drive the speed limit and watch for children.”
The road in front of Spangdahlem Middle School will close from 2:30 to 3 p.m. on school days, so students can safely load onto buses.
“It would be smart to avoid this area during that time,” D’Amico said. “You may see some traffic backed up near the elementary school for a short time in the morning and afternoon, as well, during drop off and pick up.”
SPECIAL EVENTS/OPEN HOUSES:
Bitburg High School
-New student orientation and Burger Burn is scheduled at the high school Aug. 26 at 9 a.m. in the multi-purpose room. The orientation will transition to school tours and be followed by a burger burn on the football field at 11 a.m.
Spangdahlem Middle School
-New student orientation is scheduled at the middle school Aug. 25 at 12:30 p.m. in the multi-purpose room for all grades except the fifth.
-Welcome Back to School event and Parent-Teacher-Student Association-sponsored barbecue will take place Aug. 30 from 3-5 p.m.
Spangdahlem Elementary School
- Open House is scheduled at the school Aug. 30 from 1:45-2:45 p.m. Fifth grade students should report to their classrooms at the middle school.
The Free and Reduced Lunch application is now online. Parents can fill out an application at https://freeandreducedapps.aafes.com/ and should receive a response within two hours, D’Amico said.
For more information, contact D’Amico at DSN: 452-6942 or commercial: 0656561-6942