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Monday, April 06, 2020


Important Notice

COVID-19 UPDATE (March 15, 2020)
All Rivendell Schools will be closed starting March 15, 2020 for the remainder of the school year
Please check our new section COVID-19 Information on the website

Annual District Meeting 
The Rivendell Interstate School District Annual Meeting scheduled for Tuesday, March 17, 2020
at Rivendell Academy has been POSTPONED (tentative date May 5, 2020).



Stay Connected using Social Media

Westshire is now using a social media to stay connected with families and our communities. Please follow us on Facebook.

RISD Elementary Family Newsletters 2019-20

Message from Melissa Zoerheide: April 3, 2020

Dear Families,

IMPORTANT: On Monday, PICK UP a new packet of materials for each of your children

Location: The packets will be arranged by grade on the far side of the front of the elementary school building. If you are looking at the front door, go right and walk towards the big fields. You will see an area with a porch style roof that runs along the front of the building on the far side. It is the same area that we had put the packets the first time.

Personal Safety:

  • All the packets will sit over the weekend and on Monday only be touched with clean gloves by only one person. The packets will be spread out as much as possible, only touch your own child’s materials.
  • Do not linger and give distance to others to maintain the full precautions of distance between people. To be as safe as possible, wait to another 24 hours to open and touch the materials and disinfect anything that can be disinfected. We have been very careful in preparing them and we would rather stay on the side of extra caution during this time.
  • If you can’t pick up on Monday or you need a delivery of materials to your home or you have other questions or concerns, contact Karen Ward (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Melissa Zoerheide (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Over the next couple weeks, we are continuing our efforts to make it work well for your family to continue the student learning in your home over the rest of the school year. Large scale remote education for young children has never been done before. Each child will have differences in his or her adjustment to this new experience. Sadly, we can’t replicate many of the things that are offered when we are in person. We are doing our very best to get the benefits of all the things we can do. We are providing plans, materials and suggestion that we hope will be flexible enough to meet the needs of a range of students. Let us know what works and what doesn’t.

We are working on providing a simple overview for each grade level, in one place. We understand that all the changes over the last few weeks can be confusing and overwhelming at times. We are aiming for increasingly clear and simple formats. It is important to both honor the continuation of learning while being realistic day to day with all the factors at play.

Above all else, keep in touch (even if you have not been able to keep up with the work). The teachers and staff at Westshire will be supportive and understanding. Just a note that tells us that you have seen or read some of the emails is worth sending. We saw your kids 5 days a week for months and they are super important to us, we want to stay connected. Staying connected is the priority for us right now!

Take care and best wishes,

Melissa Zoerheide
Westshire Elementary School


Message from Melissa Zoerheide: March 16, 2020

Hi Westshire Families,

You are on our minds and in our thoughts. We already missing seeing students and hope very much that this does not last too long.

I just wanted to let you know that the teachers and staff have been working very hard today to put together materials and plans for your children to use at home. We will be providing details throughout the week and arranging pick up (or drop off) of the materials.

Expect to get a phone call from a teacher or staff member tomorrow. We are gathering information on your internet access, so that we know what materials will be most useful.

All parent conferences are canceled. We are currently working on report cards which we plan on sending out next week.

Much more information to come in the next couple of days.

Stay well and take care!

Melissa Zoerheide
Westshire Elementary School

(802) 333-4668; 4105
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Message from Principal, Melissa Zoerheide: February 25, 2020

Dear Families,

We hope you had a restful and enjoyable February break!

We wanted to remind families that there will be no school

  • Monday - March 9th
  • Friday - March 20th
  • I love to read week- March 4th Dress up like your favorite book character

Parent-teacher conferences sign up now! Student/Parent/Teacher conferences are coming up in March. Our school is using PTCFast.com to make conference signups as convenient as possible this year. Please remember that there is no school on Friday March 20th, but students are expected to attend their conference.

To sign up for conferences please enter the following web address into your browser window:

If you are unable to schedule conferences online, please contact Karen Ward via phone Westshire 802 333 4668

Sign up now open for Preschool registration for the fall.
Contact Heidi This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 333-4668 to get more information.


Message from Barrett Williams, Superintendent: February 14, 2020

Message from Principal, Melissa Zoerheide: January 24, 2020


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide January 13, 2020

Dear Westshire Families,

It’s great to be back into the regular weekly routine after the break from school. Despite the dramatic highs and lows in the weather over the last couple weeks we have still been outdoors most days for recess. Remember to send in dry winter clothes, boots, hats, gloves/mittens every day. Hopefully the soft snow will return soon because, the most popular way to spend recess is sledding!

See information about the upcoming budget forums below. Now is the time to get involved what’s being considered for the budget and plan for next school year.

In addition, we would like to hear your thoughts. Fill out the RISD Strategic Planning Survey so your voice is heard in creating the next strategic plan.
The Rivendell Interstate School District is approaching the end of its current strategic plan that was developed in 2015. With a new administrative team in place I am excited for the opportunity to build upon the current foundation to create positive school climates and enriching academic experiences for our children in the future. Fill out the survey for the website https://www.rivendellschool.org/

Upcoming Events
*For all information related to School Board meetings and the upcoming budget go to https://www.rivendellschool.org/
FYI - These discussions may address Westshire elementary adding a 5th grade and the preschool program structure.

  • Community Budget Forum – District Office Tuesday January 14th at 6:30PM
  • No School – Monday January 20th
  • Community Budget Forum – Westshire Elementary School Tuesday January 21st at 6:30PM
  • February Break – Feb. 17-21st


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide December 16, 2019

It was really wonderful to have the gym filled with so many friendly faces at the Westshire Winter Concert concert! Thanks to everyone who could join us for the performance. Enjoy the video of the concert.


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide December 9, 2019

Concert - Upcoming break - Differences day - Report cards

Dear Families,

It was really wonderful to have the gym filled with so many friendly faces at the concert last week! Thanks to everyone who could make it to the performance.

We have two weeks of school before the break and we plan on keeping students focused and productive in school. Keeping routines, and taking care to eat and sleep well is extra important as we head into this busy time of year.

Again this year, we will have a Differences Day, which is an event where students have a short experience that brings more awareness to disabilities and differences. “The goal is to help each child recognize his or her uniqueness and challenges and, in doing so, to promote a deeper understanding, respect, and acceptance of all people.” -from the program Ann O’Hearn has been teaching in Guidance class, called Changing Perspectives. https://changingperspectivesnow.org/ Ask your child about this experience on Tuesday.

You will be getting the first trimester report cards on Monday. The report cards are Standards-based. This means that you’ll see a list of what teachers expect your child will master by the end of the school year and numbers between 1-4 that indicate progress made so far.


  • December 9th Monday – Report cards go home in backpacks
  • December 10th Tuesday – Differences Day
  • December 23 - January 1st - No School
  • January 2 – School begins again


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide November, 24 2019

Dear Families,

We’ll host our first Games with Grandparents hour this Wednesday at 12:00, right before the early release at 1:00. We are looking forward to welcoming and sharing grandparents while playing board games throughout the school. Connecting and appreciating our families and the larger community is a joy and responsibility for the faculty at Westshire. We are thankful to the Friends of Rivendell for providing cookies and coffee/tea. We are thankful for all the people that support our school at the District Office (food service, operations, technology, accounting, payroll, human resources, administration). I am thankful for our teachers, staff, and students who are taking on the work of learning and education.

Thank You ALL!

Morning Drop Off Information:
All students should arrive dressed for the weather and go directly to outdoor recess before school starts in the morning.
Soon there will be a sign at the front of the school that will say -Indoor- on days that it is too rainy or cold to be outdoors.
All backpacks are to stay outside near the back doors (we are working on getting hooks and a tarp). Students that eat breakfast go in at 7:45. When school starts at 8:00 students will go into their classrooms. *Remember to send in winter clothes every day.

Upcoming calendar events:

  • November 27th Games with Grandparents 12-1 pm
  • November 27th Early Release 1:00 pm
  • November 28-29th NO SCHOOL Thanksgiving Break
  • December 3rd School Board Meeting 6:30 pm
  • December 5th Winter Concert 6:30 pm (doors open at 6:00)
  • December 6th Pajama Day – Wear PJ’s to school
  • December 9th Report Cards go home in backpacks
  • December 23 - January 1st NO SCHOOL Holiday Break


Melissa Zoerheide
Westshire Elementary School


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide November 17, 2019

November 2019

Dear Families,

It’s been a wonderful time at Westshire Elementary with students and staff alike set into the weekly routines. Knowing what to expect day to day is a great place to be and I’ve found so much to enjoy and appreciate in this new season. The few inches of snow have given us new ways to enjoy recess with sledding, fort building and imaginative games that involve animals that enjoy the winter.

Most of our parent-student conferences have happened and I hope this provided ample information about this years’ learning. If you have not had a conference, contact your child’s teacher.

I’m working on more frequent newsletters so keep a lookout for more emails to come!
Upcoming calendar events:

  • November 21st Picture Retakes - let us know if needed
  • November 27th Games with Grandparents 12-1 pm - Invitations are going home with students. Cookies and tea.
  • November 27th Early Release 1:00 pm
  • November 28-29th Thanksgiving Break
  • December 3rd School Board Meeting 6:30 pm
  • December 5th Winter Concert 6:30 pm
  • December 6th Pajama Day
  • December 23 - January 1st No School


Melissa Zoerheide
Westshire Elementary School


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide October 27, 2019

Dear Familes,
We are having a fun Friday this week. We plan on having a great day with our regular academic learning and some extra fun. Students are invited to wear pajamas to school on Friday.

No Halloween costumes during school this week. We decided to keep the focus on learning and not risk wearing out costumes before trick or treating.

Reminder: Dress warmly, the weather changes fast. Pack warm clothes every day!
Kids should bring a warm jacket, hat, mittens/gloves, and wear long pants to school every day. Winter boots and snow pants will be needed soon.

Upcoming Dates:

  • Pajama Day Friday 11-1-19
  • No School/Parent Conferences Friday 11-8-19
  • No School/Veterans Day Monday 11-11-19
  • Early Dismissal 1:00 Wednesday 11-27-19
  • No School/Thanksgiving Thursday and Friday 11-28-19 and 11-29-19
  • Picture Retakes 11-21-19
  • Winter Concert 12-5-19


Every Monday the Westshire community meeting brings students in grades K – 4 together for a morning of singing, announcements,activities, appreciations and recognition of birthdays.

Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide October 18, 2019

Dear Parents and Families,

We have been in school 36 days now and it is starting to feel like we know each other. I’m working on setting up a regular weekly newsletter to highlight what’s happening at Westshire day-to-day and to provide dates on upcoming events. The newsletter will begin in the next couple weeks. I’m very excited to get this up and running because there are many great happenings to share.

Teachers have started to dive into more of the content of the curriculum, as setting the positive tone and culture of the classroom is now set. This week, all teachers met with educator instructors from the Montshire Museum to look deeply at this years’ science units. On Monday, we increased our collaboration with the educators at Rivendell Academy and Samuel Morey by meeting together and finding connections and resources in our district. Teachers left with new connections to strengthen what we do together. I’ll be sure to highlight more specifics (like the 1st grade forest exploration unit). New and experienced teachers are regularly meeting for mentorship to build both the friendly excitement for learning and the rigorous pursuit of high-quality teaching.

We are happy to be outside for the morning and mid-day recess unless it is pouring rain or very cold. We have just put in an order for more recess equipment as these items have begun to dwindle (like balls, jump ropes). In addition, I’m hoping to add a Ga Ga ball structure to the playground. Ga gab ball is a safe and pro-social ball game that can be played in a large group. The set up will require some communities volunteers to help put together, let me know if you are interested in helping. More details on this to come. A reminder that the weather is changing and kids need warm clothes, boots, hats, mittens for school.

Thanks for being the dedicated caregivers of the students at Westshire. I’m impressed daily by our families because I’ve heard from you and see you in the hallways. You are focused on your child’s education by working together in a caring way to address questions, hopes, and concerns. Thank you for saying hi when you’re in school and communicating with teachers when the need arises. Westshire is a great place, thanks for welcoming me into your world.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and enjoy the sunshine!


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide October 9, 2019

Happy Fall Parents,

Colder temperatures are here. We will still be outside (except in pouring rain and extreme cold).
Kids should bring a jacket, hat, mittens/gloves, and long pants to school every day. Winter boots will be needed soon.

Stay warm,


*If winter clothing is a financial hardship this year, please contact me or Ann O’Hearn, the school counselor.


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide October 8, 2019

Dear Westshire families,
Happy October! The leaves are changing and the temperatures are dropping quickly. Thank you to everyone who was able to make our open house, we enjoyed seeing familiar faces as well as meeting some new! We also wanted to recognize the chaperones who joined us on our all school hike. We had a beautiful day hiking up Flag Pole Mountain in Vershire, Vermont. We appreciate all of the chaperones, staff and students for creating a fun day spent outdoors as an entire school!

Picture day is fast approaching! Westshire Elementary picture day will be THIS Friday, October 11th. Picture forms have been sent home in backpack mail. If you are needing a new form, please let Mrs. Ward know at the front desk and a new form will be sent home with your child.

Upcoming important dates:

  • Friday, October 11- PICTURE DAY
  • Monday, October 14- NO SCHOOL- TEACHER IN SERVICE


Message from the Principal, Melissa Zoerheide October 1, 2019

It could not have been a better day to be hiking last Friday. What a beautiful day! Kids worked together, followed directions and school expectations while playing, hiking and getting lots of fresh air. We got to know our local area and the cross-rivendell trail. Thank you to all the parent chaperones, it was great to have you join us!


September 30, 2019

Open House

A special thanks to all families that participated in the Open house last week!
Teachers and staff enjoy welcoming parents into their classrooms and sharing the work that has begun this year.
Many classrooms had a scavenger hunt and in that was a visit to the student’s ‘hopes and dreams’ for this year. My hope is that we take these things seriously and work hard to fulfill them.
Parents had a chance to contribute a wish for their child and for the school as a whole.

Here are some of the wishes.

‘I wish for my child to grow up to be kind.’
‘I wish for my child to do his best and make friends’
‘I wish for teachers to be paid well and the school to have all the resources needed.’

‘I wish that Westshire will teach to the whole brain of the children.’
‘I wish for a happy, safe, and productive year for all staff and students.’


September 19, 2019

Dear Families,

We are off to a great start! I welcome communication and I’m happy to set up a time to meet if you’re ever interested in talking about our school and education. I suggest that you seek out your child’s classroom teacher first. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me with any questions.

  • September 26 6:00-6:45 PM Open House for Families
    Tour your child’s classroom, talk to teachers, sign up for classroom blogs and more.
  • September 27 10:00-2:00 PM All School Hike (ASH) See permission slip.
  • October 11 School Picture Day

Best Wishes,

Melissa Zoerheide, Principal
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(802) 333-4668 x4105

 September 14, 2019

Our First Community Meeting of the Year

We had our first community meeting which brings K – 4 grades together for a Monday morning singing, announcements, appreciations and recognition of birthdays. Thanks for our Music Teacher Elizabeth Duvall for her role in providing structure and playing the guitar!

Learning and Fun at the Tunbridge Fair!

The fair was a tremendous success, full of fun and learning. We discovering how tools were used in the past with reenactments of stores and schoolhouse, blacksmithing and farming. We used our senses spending time with goats, pigs, chickens, cows, oxen, horses and more animals. We were impressed with the beauty and size of vegetables, fruit and flowers. We were inspired by contest entries of fine craftsmanship, in sewing, quilting, woodworking, art, lego creations and more. What a day! Thanks to all the parents who attended.


 RISD Elementary Parent Newsletters 2018-19


All newsletters are in PDF format.