Update: URGENT-Quarantine Letter 11/11/21 at MCS
A message to parents from the MCS Principal.
Good Evening Norwich readers,
I just received this update notice from Shawn Gonyaw and thought I should share it with you.
Dear MCS Families,
This letter is to inform you that children in grades Pre-K, 1st, 3rd, 4th, and 6th are considered close contacts and will need to be quarantined. The surveillance testing that was done on Wednesday resulted in positive cases in our school. Please know that we are using Vermont’s definition of a close contact and following the guidance given to us by the Agency of Education. For more information please see this informational link. I certainly understand that this is a challenging time for everyone, and appreciate the patience that you have provided us as we navigate these unprecedented times. It is less than ideal on many fronts to have students miss in-person instruction for several days. However, we are required to follow the guidance that was given to ensure that students are as safe as possible.
After last week, I have learned a few things that will allow kids to be back sooner than the 14 days. Any student who comes on Thursday, November 18th to participate in the surveillance test can return as soon as they receive a negative result and have no symptoms. There will be information coming before November 18th to give you more details.
We are still working with the Health Department to implement the Test to Stay program. If we are able to complete the process and get this set up, we will then alter these plans. The Test to Stay program uses an antigen rapid test to test students each morning. Students who test negative are allowed to stay for the day. This week we found that the process for signing up is cumbersome and that the state health department is not yet ready to implement this program. Nonetheless, we will continue to pursue this option.
Below you will find a detailed description of the remote learning plan that MCS will follow. You will receive another email from your child's teacher outlining what the remote learning schedule will look like for your child(ren).
Remote Learning Plan:
Day 1 of Quarantine (first full school day of quarantine): In this case, the first full school day of quarantine will be November 12, 2021. Teachers will use this day as an “in-service” to prepare for remote learning, and the students will have a non-instructional day. Classroom teachers/staff/administration will complete the following on November 12, 2021.
Classroom teachers will email all families by the end of the day with the information needed to have their child(ren) engaged and prepared for the next day(s) learning, including where to find the daily schedule for their instructional programming during remote requirements.
Teachers will prepare lessons and plans for remote instruction for the following day using Google Classroom. They will also include any Zoom links required for direct instruction.
Teachers will email parents letting them know the student’s schedule for the next day and how to reach teachers during this remote period.
Classroom teachers will organize distribution of devices to students who need them, and any additional instructional materials needed.
At the end of the day, parents will be notified of when and where to pick up devices and learning materials. If they are not able, then arrangements will be made for a drop off.
Day 2 and Remainder of Quarantine:
Students and teachers complete instructional programming through Google Classroom, and Zoom links provided to students.
All classroom teachers will hold Zoom meetings during morning meeting times and will take attendance at that time. Students are considered to be quarantined but present. If for any reason your child is not able to attend the Zoom meeting, please call the school to let us know he or she is home and working remotely.
Teachers will provide a daily schedule and be available between 8:10 a.m. to 3:10 p.m. for students and will have informed parents of their instructional times and “office hours” (planning time) to answer specific parent questions. MCS administration and office staff will be available via phone during normal school hours to assist with any technology and/or communication issues.
Students, upon return to “normal” classroom instruction, will bring their device charger, and any materials sent home back to school on the day of return.
Regular communication with the administration and the school nurse continues for the health and educational needs of the classroom.
Note: If for any reason the teacher is absent we will not provide a substitute, so students will work on individual assignments. No Zoom sessions will be held.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation with this situation. It pains me to have to have students miss school, but we are required to follow AOE guidance, plus keeping kids safe is our #1 priority. Please know that we are taking every precaution to avoid situations such as this one. If your family needs any support at all during this time, please do not hesitate to reach out and ask. We are invested in supporting our families.
Summary: If you are receiving this letter, your child will have a non school day tomorrow and be remote next week. You should plan to participate in the Thursday morning surveillance testing. Children who test negative and are without symptoms can return to school once results are in.