Bret Harte Elementary School
Bret Harte Elementary School Home
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Frequently Asked Questions

Parents of Bret Harte students and those searching for a school for their child frequently come to us asking the same questions, so we have created this page to answer those commonly asked questions. If you do not see the answer to your question here, please don’t hesitate to contact us, and we will be happy to help.

When does school start and end each day?

School begins at 8:05 a.m. every day with a warning bell at 8:03 a.m. Please make sure your child is here no later than 8:03 a.m., as every minute of the school day counts toward their learning. On Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, we release all students at 2:15 p.m. On Wednesdays, we release students at 1:15 p.m.

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What should I do if my child is going to be absent?

If your child is going to be absent from school, please contact the office by phone, and send a signed, written note stating the reason for the absence. We ask that parents clear all absences with a written note no more than three days after the absence occurred. We give students one day after they return to produce a note regarding the absence. Failure to clear an absence will result in a truancy. Please be aware that we will consider students who are 30 or more minutes late or who leave early without an excuse as unexcused.

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Does Bret Harte offer meal services?

We are equipped with a cafeteria and devoted staff that prepares breakfast and lunch options for our students during school days. You can learn more about what we serve on our district website.

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How can I volunteer in the classroom?

We welcome parents' involvement in their child’s education. We have many volunteer opportunities, such as: helping your child's teacher in the classroom, recess supervision, morning drop off, crossing guard, and more. Volunteers must complete a volunteer packet, complete mandatory training, and be fingerprinted. Please contact our front office to find out how you can begin this process. All volunteers and visitors must sign in at the front office using our RAPTOR system and check out before leaving.

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Is there a dress code at Bret Harte Elementary?

We revised our dress code to ensure it allows us to maintain a safe and positive educational environment that does not distract our students from learning. We expect students to follow the dress code while on campus and during any school-sponsored activity. We do not allow any clothing item that a teacher, staff member, or administrator deems inappropriate or immodest. Students who do not follow the dress code will need to acquire the proper item(s). For the safety of our students, close-toed shoes with a back strap are required.

Please make sure your child dresses appropriately before coming to school. For more information regarding our school dress code, please read our student handbook, which is located on our Home page under the Quick Links "Students" section.

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    My child needs to take medication during the day. How can I arrange that?

    California law states that school employees cannot administer medicine without a signed permission form from the student's legal guardian. Forms, for this purpose, are available in the school office.  Please leave all prescription medicine in the office, as we do not allow students to keep medicine in their personal possession without a doctor’s note, including inhalers.

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