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Santa Fe Trail USD 434

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Superintendent Newsletter January 7, 2022

Dear Parents, Patrons and Staff;

Welcome back to the second semester! Student and staff have hit the ground running with lots of exciting learning activities, events and athletic competitions. For an up to date list of activities and happenings in the district please log onto the district website www.usd434.org for the calendar of events.

Healthy Futures Dental Clinic

Our district will be hosting a FREE dental clinic on January 18th, 19th, and 20th.  This is an opt-in program. You must complete the forms and submit them by January 13th for your child to receive dental care from this dental program. Forms are available in the school office or through the online secure forms at the following link https://heartlandhealth.org/services/ 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Amanda at 785-841-7297, ext. 5601

KESA (Kansas Educational Systems Accreditation)

Our district is in the 5th and final year of the State Accreditation process. The Administrative team has been finalizing the District Accreditation Report and will submit it to the State Department of Education in February. The Outside Visitation team will meet with us for the final accreditation review on February 23rd.  

SAC student drop off and pick up.

Parents, please drop off or pick up students on the south side of the building on Second Street. Please do NOT drive around the gates on Burlingame and park in front of the building. Only school busses loading and unloading students and employee parking is allowed on Burlingame between the hours of 7-8 AM and 3-4 PM. We need your cooperation to help keep kids safe.

Communication Updates:

If you are interested in receiving text messages with school closings and other updates.  Please, text “YES” to 67587.

Congratulations to:

Braegan Buessing and Baily Anshutz for being named to the 321A State Golf Team.

High School Boys and Girls Basketball Teams are off to a great start with 4-1 records.

JH Boys basketball has started their season and will have a B-team tournament on Saturday at Central Heights. We had over 50 boys out to play for our first practices!

Shout Outs

Ms. Crumpton and Mrs. Fawl welcomed the “Voices of January” at our all school assembly this week! These students will be bringing us our morning announcements each day. Congratulations to: 

  • Natalie Sowers - Voice of Monday
  • Lola Thompson - Voice of Tuesday
  • Autumn Uhler - Voice of Wednesday 
  • Lorelei Sherlock - Voice of Thursday 
  • Malea Watts - Voice of Friday 

In order to apply, students had to fill out an application, write a morning announcement outline and perform announcements in front of a live audience. If you have a second or third grader who would like to audition, please encourage them to fill out an application form. 

OAC would like to extend a warm welcome to our new staff members this semester.

  • Ms. Slaght - Music 
  • Mrs. Morris - 2nd grade 
  • Mr. Trent - WIN Coach 

-Lorle Bolt

Shout out to our CAC maintenance crew (and the entire SFT District crew) for working hard to keep our sidewalks safe and hallways clear.

Shout out and welcome to our new teachers Kaylynn Lee, Megan Steele, and Jennifer Slaght to our building.  New faces in our classrooms bring fresh energy to our Charger family.

Shout out to our CAC (and entire district team) Nurse Sam Carothers, who is managing the influx of COVID testing and other needs with a smile and grace.

-Lari Jarrett

I would like to give Mike Whitesell a shout out. He does an outstanding job of working to meet everyone’s custodial needs at SFTJH. Most of the time Mike recognizes our needs before we do!  

-Jodi Testa

COVID Report

The number of positive cases in our district is going up. The number of positive staff members is especially concerning. We are working hard to keep our schools open but we need your help. Do not send your children to school when they are running a fever or have other related symptoms. Do not allow them to take part in out of school activities and events when you know they are sick. Many of our current positive cases can be traced back to non-school related group activities. Please wear a mask when you are with groups of people inside. Our numbers were much lower last year when everyone was wearing a mask in school.


5 Positives

3 Home due to household positives

1 Quarantine at home

1 Pending test results


2 Positives

14 Test to stay

9 Home due to household positives

2 Quarantine at home


7 Positives

1 Test to stay

15 Home due to household positives

4 Quarantine at home

2 Pending test results


1 Positive

2 Home due to household positives

1 Pending test results

Quote for the Week:

                “The most important decision in life is to decide what is most important.”

                                -The L Group

Have a Great Weekend,

Jim Lentz

Superintendent of Schools