New Families FAQs

Q. How do I learn more about kindergarten?

Every year, we have a Kindergarten Information Night. Each incoming families will receive an email with detailed information about the event.

Q. How do I register my child for the Dual Immersion Program at Mistral?

A. Please visit the Mountain View Whisman School District registration website for enrollment information. The registration process is handled by the district office, not by the school. The Dual Immersion Program at Mistral has a special enrollment process through the Choice Programs lottery.

Q. How can I help my child meet their future classmates over the summer?

A. There may be some play dates organized by our PTA over the summer for incoming Kinders. Watch our calendar for information.

Q. When can I find out what class my child will be in next year?

A. Students class assignments are posted online on PowerSchool. 

Q. Where should I bring my child on the first day of school?

A. Parents of new Kinders will take their child directly to their classroom at the beginning of the school day for the first few weeks of school. You should receive instruction from your teacher as to what is expected.

Q. What should I expect on the first day of Kindergarten?

A. Each teacher may present these activities in a different order throughout the day.

Every child will receive a name tag. This helps the students identify which classroom they belong to.

  • Parents will be introduced to the location of cubbies and backpack area.
  • Teachers will make morning announcements, the teacher will speak to the parents in Spanish and a bilingual parent will help translate.
  • Attendance will be taken. Late students/parents must go to the office to get a tardy slip.
  • The students will be introduced the alphabet (Los Sonidos)
  • The students will listen to stories about first days of school and learn about Mistral school rules.
  • The students will have a 20 minute snack recess-please bring a small healthy snack in a lunchbox.
  • The students will explore math materials: linker cubes, puzzles, tiles, etc.
  • The students will do an art activity.
  • The students will have exploration time at the end of the day
  • Every Thursday is a minimum day
  • Regular dismissal on MTWF will be at 1:30pm.

The first day is a Minimum Day. On minimum days parents are to pick up their child outside their classroom door at 11:55 pm. Please plan to arrive at least 10 minutes early to allow time to find parking. Children having hot lunch will be picked up and taken to the cafeteria (MUR) by our school lunch monitors. Parents of children having hot lunch will meet them outside the cafeteria.

Q. What are the school hours?

A. Please see the Bell Schedule. The first bell sounds 5 minutes before class is scheduled to begin, at this time the teachers will begin leading children to the classroom. The second bell signals the beginning of the school day at 8:00am.

Q. Where is the best place to park for pick-up/drop-off?

A. Parking around the school is very difficult at pick-up and drop off times. Limited parking is available at the main lot on Escuela (parking under the solar panels is designated for staff only), along Latham Street and other neighborhood streets. There are very few close parking spots so we recommend planning on spending ten minutes walking with your child to the blacktop after parking. Follow signs and adult directions carefully. Do not leave your car unattended. The Mountain View police will ticket parents who are parked illegally and the district reserves the right to tow illegally parked cars.

Q. Will I always need to walk my child into the classroom?

A. Kinder parents usually walk their children to their classroom, wait with them and then help them until teachers open the doors. Students can be left with school supervisors after 8am. Some parents are comfortable dropping older students off at the curb and having them walk themselves to their line, or even walking or biking to school on their own. 

Q. If I park around the back side of the school is it OK to enter from the back or do I need to take my child around to the front of the school?

A. At morning drop off time, parents can enter the campus from the Escuela Avenue gates. At pickup, kinder parents must wait at the designated pick-up spot for their child's class as school is still in session for grades 1-5 . Pick-up for grades 1-5 can enter campus and wait at designated locations. Please do not enter campus until dismissal time in the afternoon.

Q. Is there a "window" of time for drop-off and pick-up, is it better to arrive exactly at the start/end time?

A. Students need to be lined up on the blacktop and ready to enter the classroom before the first bell. It is a good idea to plan on arriving at school 5-10 minutes early to give yourself time to find parking and walk to the blacktop. At the end of the school day teachers generally open their doors at the dismissal time, and parents can be there to greet their children, or pick them up at the drop up/pick up zone. Kindergarten parents should wait at their designated pick-up spot. If after 10 minutes the parents do not show up, the child will be sent to the office so that their parents can be contacted. The teachers are not responsible for the students after school, and children can become upset if their parents are late, so please make every attempt to be on-time. Supervision of students begins at 8:00.

Q. What if my child is late for school?

A. Please come to the office to get a tardy slip before going to class.

Q. What do I need to do if my child will miss school?

To report an absence by telephone, call 650.526.3590 and press 2, or use the absence report form.

Q. If I will be carpooling how do I inform the school/teacher who will be picking up my child? Do I need to provide the school a list of people who are approved to pick-up my child if a friend/grandparent will occasionally pick them up?

A. If you will regularly be having someone other than a parent pick up your child, you will be asked tonotify the office to add the name of the person on the Emergency Contacts list. If your child is going to an afterschool program, the program will pick your child up from the classroom. You should also let your child know what the plan is if you cannot be at school at pick-up time so that they know what to expect at the end of the school day.

Q. Is there a place for the children to leave personal items at school like a sweater, hat or sunblock?

A. Items like this should be kept in your student's backpack. There are hooks  outside of the classrooms for the students to hang their backpacks and coats each day, students need to take everything home at the end of the school day. Students do have cubbies for schoolwork and notices, but not for personal items. Items left behind in the classroom may or may not be there the next day. Items are often taken to the lost and found outside the main office if left behind in the classroom or around campus.

Q. If we bike to school, where should my child park her bike?

A. There is a bike rack at at front right entrance next to room 21 and the building next to the school.  Bikes are not allowed in the classroom or for use during the school day and should be locked up and kept out of the way.

Q. Is there anything my child needs to bring to school besides their lunch/snack?

A. No, school supplies are generally kept at school, students don't need to bring any supplies with them each day. You will want to have your own supplies at home to complete various homework assignments and projects.(glue/scissors/pencils).

Q. What sort of backpack should my Kindergartner have?

A. For Kindergarten, backpacks should be big enough to hold a lunchbox, snack, library book, and manila envelope (9"x 12").

Q. How does lunch work?

A. You have two options, students may bring their own lunch, or receive a free hot lunch at school. See the lunch page for more information. All students can receive a free hot lunch. 

Q. What if my child forgets his/her lunch?

A. The school provides free hot lunch. 

Q. Is there anything that is not allowed in lunch boxes (like nuts, etc.)?

A. The school does not have a prohibition on nuts; however, it is best practice to pack items that are not likely to be allergenic to others. If there is an issue in your classroom your teacher should communicate this with you. The school does not allow students to bring candy and other junk foods to school. Please pack your child a healthy lunch and snack. Children should not share their meals with others due to allergy and other health concerns.

Q. Any tips from other parents for packing lunches and snack?

A. Consider packing something that can be eaten quickly and doesn't require too much preparation time. There are no facilities for refrigerating or warming up food brought from home. Hot food should be kept in a thermos and cold food kept with an ice pack, include a reusable fork or spoon as needed. The students also have a mid-morning snack so please pack a healthy item for them to eat in the morning.

Parents and kids come up with many different ideas for lunches. Sandwiches and wraps are popular and are easy to eat. Some kids prefer eating leftovers from the previous night's dinner kept warm in an insulated thermos. Small containers with fruits, vegetables, beans, and/or yogurt are an easy option for kids who like their food kept separate. Bento-box style lunch boxes make it easy to pack many different small items. Involve your kids in the process of preparing lunches each day so that they have some say in what goes into their lunchbox.

Q. Why do the PTA and MVEF ask me for money?

A. The state government provides the money for the school facilities, staff and basic materials, but that is all. Your contributions to each of these organizations helps your child to have an enriched school experience with art, music, science, field trips, and a classroom well stocked with books and school supplies. Without parent support, these programs would be missing from our school. Parent support of both time and money make Mistral school a special place. Without your contributions to these organizations our school would have fewer opportunities for all students.

Q. Can I help out in the classroom?

A. Absolutely! Sign up to be a room parent at the class list posting or contact your room parent, the PTA or your teacher to find out how to help out. You can also become a permanent volunteer. Please read about the process and let us know if you have any questions. We would love to have your support at school.

Q. How can I help if I am not available during the day?

A. There are many ways to help, even if you are not available during school hours. Many teachers have jobs for parents at home, like prepping art projects. Let your teacher or room parent know that you're willing to help from home and he/she will contact you when a need arises. In addition, there are many PTA tasks that can be done from home and help not only your classroom but the entire school.

It takes a village to raise a child and Mistral School is no different. There are many opportunities to volunteer your time and ideas. For example, annual events like the Walkathon, Science Fair, Multicultural Day, and Día de los Muertos all exist because of parent involvement. Look for emails, flyers, postings and requests from teachers, room parents, PTA and more. The weekly newsletter is loaded with valuable information on this and more.

Q. It's in the middle of the summer and I have a question.

A. Please call the District Office at 650-526-3500.

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