SPS Back to School Tips

Dear Seattle Public Schools families,

2017-18 is going to be a fantastic school year! For most students, school begins Wednesday, September 6. Kindergarten students will begin on Monday, September 11. Below are several Seattle Public Schools (SPS) resources to help you and your student prepare for the start of school.

New Bell Times

You can find your student’s new school bell times on our 2017-18 Bell Times webpage or your school website. The changes this year include 20 minutes of added instructional time and 75 minute early release Wednesdays (except the first day). This is a change from what is incorrectly printed in the family wall calendar. We will send out weekly reminders for the first month of school.

School Meals

Our healthy school meals include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and offer calorie and portion sizes that meet student’s needs. To view the interactive school menu, visit Nutrislice and select your child’s school.

All SPS students who qualify for free and reduced price meals receive meals free of charge. Families can now apply online! Eligibility criteria, additional benefits and the 2017-18 application can be found at SPS Nutrition Services webpage. Questions can be directed to

Family Communications

SPS uses SchoolMessenger to communicate directly with families via phone and email. Every family is enrolled to receive messages from their school and the district. To learn more about updating your message preferences, please visit the Family Communications page. One emergency phone number is required.


We know there are a variety of reasons that students may need to miss school. We miss your student when they are gone, and because attendance matters, we are committed to keeping you informed of your child’s attendance throughout the year. Please visit the Attendance website for information and resources and learn about the campaign we are launching this year.

The Source Parent Portal

The Source is an online tool that provides access to schedules, attendance, test schools and, new this year: the Student Verification Form. The Student Verification form will be available for parents or guardians to confirm and update online through The Source at start of school. To learn more about the Source and other online tools, visit the Student Portal page. For families without a Source account, paper based verification forms will be available at each school.


Please visit the Transportation page for information about bus schedules and routes, walk zones, and the ORCA card program for high school students.

We are looking forward to supporting you, your student and your family this year.

Best regards,

Office of Public Affairs