I hope that everyone enjoyed that fabulous weather this past weekend, particularly on Saturday, as much as possible and you were able to get outdoors for at least a portion of the day. Personally, I started outdoors with our final District Meeting in Nelson and stayed outdoors for most of the remaining part of the day. I’m happy to report that all seven of our districts now have an approved budget for next school year!
As reported last week, our staff have been working through all of the logistical concerns and obstacles that returning to a five day per week onsite teaching and learning model presents. There are a number of complex and complicated considerations that need to be made as it is not as simple as just flipping a light switch. Schools that have already been in a four or five day model have had less of a lift then schools that were still in a two day a week hybrid model. Specific attention has been given to the following areas:
- Classroom Spacing - maximizing spacing/distancing to the fullest extent possible but keeping within the recommendations released in the NH Back to School Guidance. Meaning, there may be a need to go to 3, 4 or 5 feet in some cases in order to bring both cohorts back. Trouble areas have been identified and are being addressed.
- Large Group Settings - Continuing to minimize the use of, but when needed, maximizing distancing to the fullest extent possible and not be less than 3 feet.
- Transitions - Maximizing safety between classes, during arrival and during departure.
- Instructional Practices Shifting from 2 days to 5 days - Maximizing instructional content delivery with onsite days.
- Transportation - Continuing to communicate guidance that was updated in the March 26th Update
- Meal Schedules and Spacing - Maximizing distances while eating and drinking as well as considerations to additional spaces (including outdoors, weather permitting) that can assist with distancing concerns to the fullest extent possible.
- Furniture Relocation - Moving several hundred pieces of furniture throughout each building to maximize spacing ability.
- Supplies and Materials - Ordering/reordering necessary supplies and materials for buildings to meet the demands of higher levels of occupancy.
- Remote Only Model/Staffing Limitations - Maintaining the remote only model for families that have opted into that model while identifying and addressing all staffing limitations that come with running two models.
We have made significant progress in most of these areas and continue to work through all of the finer details so that we can provide accurate updates for all of our students, staff and families to be aware of. Maintaining student and staff safety in the highest regard will continue to be a primary focus.
I have also gone on record through various media sources expressing concerns about the risk of returning prior to our staff being beyond the 14-day period after receiving their final dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Please don’t construe this as placing the onus on our staff as preventing us from returning to a five day onsite model. Plain and simple, it is NOT that at all. Our staff are dedicated professionals that want to be in our buildings with our students as much as possible! My concerns are, and have been, on the ability to have an available workforce so that we are not shifting to a more restrictive model as a result of large numbers of staff testing positive. Having our staff complete the vaccination cycle greatly increases our ability to maintain our workforce and finish the school year on a high note. Our staff will by and large be completed with that cycle on May 1st.
Our request to make the transition to the five day model after we return from April break is still pending. I was anticipating a response by today, but as of the writing of this update, I still have not received a response. As soon as we receive an official notification on that request, I’ll be sure to let everyone know. Please be on the lookout for additional information throughout the remainder of this week. The bottom line is that we will be returning to five days a week of onsite teaching and learning in all of our schools! I am confident that we will absolutely get there and appreciate all of the support from our communities, families, staff members, and school boards! WE do this because of our students! Stay safe everyone and...
Student Challenge: This challenge is to create a very short (less than 15 seconds) video clip completing one of the following prompts:
“________ School is the best school because _______” or
“I love _________ School because ________.”
Tell us what makes your school awesome and unique. What is it that you like the most about your school? I don’t want to steer any responses as they really ought to be organic from our student’s perspective, but last spring, I issued a challenge asking students to tell us what they missed the most about school while we were fully remote. Those responses were amazing and I’m confident these responses will be equally amazing.
This challenge will remain open until 5pm on Friday, April 30th. Please send your videos to email@example.com.
COVID-19 Data: Providing all of the COVID-19 data that we have been tracking since the onset of the pandemic back in March, 2020.
Confirmed COVID-19 Positives that our school personnel are aware of from the beginning of school year 2020-2021 (numbers from 1-4 will be suppressed to help protect individual privacy). These are aggregated so that it does not identify either student or staff and provided in both the most recent weekly totals as well as the totals for the entire school year.
E-Flyer Distribution Program: As a reminder, there are many flyers that our schools are asked to send home throughout the school year. We also post these flyers on our website and it can be found by going to this E-Flyer Distribution Program embedded link.
Every student in SAU 29 and all children 18 and under are eligible for free meals through June 2021. Meals for all students in SAU 29 are free at this time. Students are eligible for up to 7 days’ worth of meals per week, remote meals and/or in-school dining depending on the modality of their instruction.
Please read carefully as schools have a variety of learning plans.
- Students attending school fully remote with 5 remote days per week will receive 7 days’ worth of meals.
- Students attending school in person 2 days a week with 3 remote days per week will receive 5 days’ worth of meals.
- Students attending school in person 4 days a week with 1 remote day per week will receive 3 days’ worth of meals.
- Students attending school in person 5 days a week with 0 remote days per week will receive 2 days’ worth of meals.
- Students not enrolled in public school may receive 7 days’ worth of meals.
Please do not sign up under a parent name, use your student’s name only.
SUBMIT ONLY 1 ORDER FORM PER STUDENT. If you are not sure if you signed up, please call Keene Food Services to confirm.
Please submit your order for the following week's meals no later than 7:00am Friday, April 16th. You will receive an email confirmation after placing your order. This form is to order meals for remote pick up on Tuesday, April 20th and Friday, April 23rd.
Please contact Keene Food Services with any questions. 603-357-9011
Screening Assessment: Please continue to complete the screening assessment each school day. This allows our school nurses to continue to monitor and provide support with regard to the health of the school community. Please note that we are not requesting that this be done on the weekends, holidays or breaks, only on days that school would typically be in session.
Special Education: The needs of students with disabilities are enormously important. As always, your first point of contact is your child’s special education teacher or building principal. Please reach out to them anytime and share your thoughts. You may also contact the Student Services Offices at SAU 29 at 357-9001 extension 230 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The Student Service’s office is open from Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. We want to hear from you, Thank you!
https://childmind.org/article/back-to-school-anxiety-during-covid/ - learn how to help kids handle fears and gain independence with returning to school.
https://www.unicef.org/coronavirus/supporting-your-childs-mental-health-during-covid-19-school-return - Learn how to support your child’s mental health during Covid-19 school reopenings.
https://www.parents.com/parenting/better-parenting/advice/how-to-teach-your-kids-to-fight-hate-an-age-by-age-guide/ - An anti-racism, age by age guide on how to talk with your kids about this difficult topic.
Please if you have not already picked up your students Chromebook for the 1:1 program we need you to print and sign the agreement HERE .
We can not release the Chromebook to your student until we get a signed agreement. Please send the agreement in with your student.
Parents and Students, Chromebooks should be used for your school work only. Please do not eat while using your school issued Chromebook. We are experiencing high volumes of damaged Chromebooks due to spills. Please make sure you fill in the online registration for your students. It is important to have all the correct information in place.
Clever academy for teachers: Login to your clever account and click on the question mark in the upper right corner of the screen and choose Clever academy.
Technology support during COVID19: Please see the update.
Power School Update:
Power school online registration help can be found here.
Please remember to fill out the youtube permission form. For KHS and KMS
Help desk number: (603) 352-0640 ext 3871. For help with the Home user and remote learning click here.