What are your school hours?
7:55AM Students who need to eat breakfast are released to the cafeteria
8:00AM Students are released to go to their rooms
8:15AM Tardy Bell

Students are released at the end of the day at 3:10PM if they walk or are being picked up by a parent; approximately 3:20PM if they ride the bus.
Office hours are 7:30AM to 4:00PM

What time do doors open for athletic events?

Gym doors will open no earlier than 5:15pm.

What do I do if my children are sick?
The office has asked that you contact the school by 9:00AM to alert them to your child’s illness.  Students on Attendance Watch by 8:30.  Please let the office know if you would like to pick up homework for your child at the end of the day.  Homework can also be sent home with a sibling if you give the office staff the sibling’s name and teacher’s name.  You may also e-mail your child’s teacher or contact the office via e-mail.  E-mail address may be located on the site directory.  Children may not return to school for 24 hours after they have had a fever of 100° or more, vomiting, or diarrhea. 

I have recently moved into the school area, how do I enroll my child for school?
The office staff would like for you to call the school at 765-583-4401 to make an appointment with the school secretary for enrollment.  A DIBELS Reading Screening is completed on all students prior to enrollment.  This is a policy of the Benton Community School Corporation.  Students are normally enrolled the following day.  Please bring your previous school address and phone number with you.  Enrollment paperwork and tour is approximately 1 hour in length.  Please allow enough time to fill out the necessary paperwork.  Enrollment forms must be completed to allow for the enrollment of your child.

What about Kindergarten enrollment?

Otterbein has a very unique way of having kindergarten round-up.  We offer 2 separate sessions to allow parents and their child to attend.  You may call the office and schedule your session time.

What do I bring to Kindergarten Round-up?

Your child’s birth certificate (copy of certified) and your current shot records.  Also, don’t forget to bring your child.  They will be having a wonderful and exciting time while you complete paperwork and learn about our school and the Kindergarten curriculum.

What is the best way to contact my child’s teacher?
There are several options available to parents.  All teachers have a telephone in their room.  If you have already set up a pre-arranged time with your child’s teacher, please call and indicate that to the office staff and they will put you directly through.  If you have not set up a time, the office staff will put you through to his or her voicemail.  All teachers have an e-mail address.  This is located in the staff directory in the website.  You may also come in and “sit in”.  Please sign in at the office and obtain a visitors pass.  We encourage parents to contact the teacher if you have any questions or concerns regarding your child and their progress.

My child needs to take medicine during the school hours, what do I do?
All medication that is prescribed by a doctor must come with the pharmacy label and in the original bottle.  If a medicine is “over the counter” it will also need to come in the original container.  Parents must fill out a permission form for each medication that the school has on their child.  Medication will not be given if the proper documentation is not received.

We are leaving on vacation early, what is the procedure?

The Benton Community School Corporation Attendance policy will continue to be in place.  It is the parents’ responsibility to contact your child’s teacher and the school office to notify them if you are going to be gone for an extended period of time.  Children will be encouraged to take any homework they will miss with them to prevent being further behind in the classroom schedule.  Please give your child’s teacher several days notice to allow them time to prepare any necessary work.  This procedure is also advised for any family emergencies that will require the student to miss any extended time from school.

Does your school provide before- and after-school programs?  If so, what are they, how do parents qualify or sign-up, what is the cost and details about the program?

Otterbein Elementary offers an After-School Program (ASP) that runs from 3:15 – 5:30 pm, Monday through Friday.  If there is a ½ day of school or no school, there is no ASP.  If a child qualifies for free/reduced meals/textbooks the cost is $1.00 per day per child.  Otherwise, the cost is $4.00 per day per child.  To participate in the program, the parent needs to contact the office to complete the necessary paperwork.  There is a contract the parent must sign that lists the parent’s obligations to the program.  Each child attending will receive a snack.  A qualified teacher and an aide will work with the children from 3:30-4:30pm to work on their homework.  If a child has no homework, they are required to bring two Accelerated Reader (AR) books to read during homework time.  From 4:30-5:30 there is supervised free-time.  That could be a movie, playground time, or gym time.  Parents are still responsible for checking to see if their child’s homework is completed and signed.

What services are provided through your school (i.e. English as a Second Language, Title I, Reading Recovery, etc.)?

Otterbein currently offers no Title I programs.  We offer Reading Recovery for Kindergarten and 1st grade.  1st grade Reading Recovery begins in mid-September and Kindergarten Reading Recovery begins the 2nd semester.

What is the Accelerated Reader program and how does it work at your school?
First, students are assessed using the Star Reading Test. This computerized program is a component of the Renaissance Learning Program. STAR (Standardized Testing for the Assessment of Reading) is used as a formative assessment and periodic progress-monitoring technology to enhance the curriculum, support differentiated instruction, and personalize practice in reading. The STAR test is designed to help students find the appropriate level where they can be challenged, yet successful. This enables us to personalize practice and individual instruction. The test will be given at least three times a year to track student progress over time. We can use this information to drive instruction and report student progress to parents.

Once the students and their teachers learn what their reading zone is, students are encouraged to select books to read within their zone. The classroom teacher sets individual reading goals based on the reading level of the student.  Some teachers set weekly, monthly or nine week goals. The student uses a reading log to record books they read. Classroom teachers monitor these logs and conference with their students regarding progress toward their goals. Each classroom provides appropriate rewards for students that reach their goals. If students make both goals first semester they are invited to go to the movies. Students who make three out of four goals go bowling in May. Any student making all four goals is recognized at the end of the year with an additional treat.

We agree with Renaissance Learning Company that Accelerated Reader:

  • Makes essential reading practice more effective for every student.
  • Personalizes reading practice to each student’s current level.
  • Manages all reading activities including read to, read with, and independent reading.
  • Assess students’ reading with four types of quizzes: Reading Practice, Vocabulary Practice, Literacy Skills, and Textbook Quizzes.
  • Build a lifelong love of reading and learning.

What can you do to be more involved with your child’s education?
The staff of Otterbein Elementary highly encourages our parents to be active in their child’s education.  We offer many opportunities for parents, grandparents and extended families to have an interactive role in their child’s education.  If you are new to our school we encourage you to stop by the office and pick up a volunteer form.  This form offers a variety of areas to volunteer for our school.  Some samples are: Room Parent, Library Parent, S.P.I.K.E. (Special People In Kid’s Education) and our annual and very successful Holiday Shop just to name a few.  We also have an Otterbein Parent Teacher Organization that is open for all parents.  The OPTO meets once a month on the 3rd Monday of each month.  They offer a variety of committees to work on which provide support activities for the staff and students of Otterbein.  The OPTO provides free daycare during their meetings.  Just stop by the office for a form, or feel free to contact your child’s teacher or the OPTO Members.  Numbers can be obtained from the school office.

What does the OPTO do?
Every parent is automatically a member of the Otterbein Parent Teacher Organization (OPTO).  The OPTO serves as a liaison between the Staff and the parents of Otterbein Elementary.  We work together to come up with new ideas to promote education academically, physically, artistically, and verbally.  Some of the activities of that the OPTO sponsors or supports include the Spring Fling (an indoor carnival), Holiday Shop (where student can do their own Christmas shopping), the AR program, the Fluoride treatment program, the SPIKE (Special People In Kids’ Education) program, and teacher appreciation (usually in the form of food).  Some of our most recent accomplishments are the purchase of a marquee sign for the front of the school where messages can be posted, and giving each classroom teacher a digital camera to use in their classroom.  Meetings are held every 3rd Monday of the month during the school year at 7:00pm in the school library.  Childcare is provided free of charge.  We’d love to have you join us!

Does Otterbein Elementary offer advanced classes for the academically gifted?

At the present time the Benton Community School Corporation does not have a Gifted & Talented Program.   However, Otterbein Elementary does use differentiated instruction to help enrich the curriculum.

How much does lunch cost?
Student lunch is $1.90 per day.  Extra milk is $0.30.

How do I know what is being served for lunch?
A monthly menu will be sent home shortly before the first of the month.  The menu can also be found on the school corporation’s website and in Harmony for those logging in.

Can I come and eat lunch with my child?

The staff of Otterbein Elementary would like to welcome you to have lunch with your child.  If you would like to eat lunch, please call the school office prior to 9:00AM with your choice of either entrée.  Adult lunch is $3.00.  You may also bring your lunch or bring lunch for you and your child.  Please remember that Otterbein Elementary School is a peanut free/nut free facility.  Recess is encouraged.

What is Harmony?

The Harmony Program offers a variety of options to view your child’s progress. The school’s objective is to allow all parents/guardians the ability to log on and see your child’s progress in either daily grades or postings by their current homeroom teacher.  The goal is to eventually pay tuition, lunches, and other school fees through this program.  The teacher will be able to post notes to parents, give homework assignments and list upcoming events for the classroom.  We currently are using the system for mid-term reports and 9 week grading cards.  The school secretary will also send out mass e-mails on early release, school closings or other weather related events.  The important factor in this communication process is to make sure your child’s school has current and updated information. 

Sign me up!!

When children are enrolled in school they are provided a log-in account and password.

Instructions are sent home with the students and can also be sent via e-mail.   The letter will have your child’s log-in information and password.  If you are having problems with your Harmony program the school office can provide you with a telephone number or you may contact the help line on the Harmony support.  Your student’s user ID is provided by the school; however you may change your password.  If you have questions we recommend you contact Harmony.