Dear Parents and Guardians,
Greetings all! It is hard to believe the summer is flying by. I hope you and your family have had opportunities to get outside, without a mask, and do some of the normal activities we enjoyed pre-COVID. I am grateful to live in Vermont, where we are doing so well fighting the virus.
As we pause for a breath this summer, I want to keep you updated with information as we know it and tell you of a couple of opportunities yet to come. Summer programming is underway at three of our campuses. Students are enjoying being around friends and playing once again. This is wonderful to see and if all goes well, it bears hope for a more normal school year.
This week’s email covers:
Veggie Van Go July 19
Return to School Expectations
Early Release Days 21-22
Free Summer Breakfast and Lunch
New Website and App Coming
VEGGIE VAN GO AT OVUHS JULY 19
On Monday, July 19th, from 10-11am, the Vermont Foodbank will distribute free fruits and veggies at Otter Valley Middle and High School, 2997 Franklin St, Brandon, VT 05733, through their Veggie Van Go Program. All families of school children and staff are welcome!!
This free monthly produce distribution event is open to all students, families, and staff affiliated with all Rutland Northeast Supervisory Union Schools: Barstow Memorial, Lothrop Elementary, Neshobe Elementary, Otter Creek Academy at Leicester, Sudbury and Whiting., & Otter Valley Middle and High School. There are no eligibility requirements and no reservations needed.
We need 6 volunteers on Monday, July 19 from 9:30- 11 am. Our next opportunities that are in need of additional volunteers are on Monday, August 16 and Monday, September 20.
If you or anyone you know is interested in joining us, please feel free to register here: https://vtfoodbank.volunteerhub.com/ . Any questions? Please feel free to contact Volunteer Services anytime or encourage anyone you know with questions to get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT TO EXPECT FOR RETURNING TO SCHOOL
In Person Learning: at this time, we are planning for full, in person learning at each school. It is anticipated that social distancing will not be required. Other protocols such as frequent handwashing will continue. We do not plan to offer hybrid options for students who do not want to return to school. School will go back to its pre-COVID hours of operation.
Masks:At the moment, masks are not required but they are encouraged when indoors, especially for children age 12 and under or those unvaccinated. However, masks are still required on school bus transportation.
Computers: We do plan to continue providing Chromebooks for all students and anticipate more use of the technology in the classroom. We will have an application process for hotspots should a household need internet access from home. Watch for this with back to school information in August.
Meals: We have been told the free meals will continue for this next school year. No child will have to pay for breakfast or lunch.
Transportation: Regular routes of school bus transportation will resume. Masks are required on school buses
Health Screenings: We do not anticipate taking temperatures or filling out screening questions upon arrival at school. We will continue to ask that any child or staff who is sick or has symptoms stay home.
Remote Learning Periods: We may still need to move classrooms into a remote learning situation if an outbreak occurs. The likelihood of this remains higher while students under 12 are not vaccinated. At this time, we do not plan to use remote learning on snow days, per the secretary of education’s guidance.
CHANGES TO 21-22 SCHOOL YEAR CALENDAR: EARLY RELEASE DAYS
One of the many things we retain from our COVID school year is the ability to be more efficient and effective with staff professional development. As we are delving into student data, we need to bring grade level & 7-12 content level teachers together on a regular basis to look at data, learn methods and techniques and share resources. Therefore we will hold one Early Release Day \every month during the 21-22 school year.
The early release days will be a half day of school in the morning, and students will be sent home at lunch times. Exact times may vary by school and will be announced in August, but roughly around 11:30 am. Students will be given lunch at school or lunch will be sent home. We chose one Friday each month, as that seemed to be the best for parent work schedules and family schedules.
Early release dates: Sept 17, Oct 15, Nov 19, Dec 17, Jan 21, Feb 11, March 11, April 8, May 20. Please put these dates in your calendar now as you plan out the school year.
FREE SUMMER BREAKFAST AND LUNCH FOR ALL CHILDREN UNDER 18
Free breakfast and lunch is available to be picked up at Barstow, Lothrop, Neshobe and Whiting schools this summer from 8 to 8:30 am until August 6.
ANNOUNCING NEW DISTRICT AND SCHOOL WEBSITES AND APP
We are working to roll out a new website this summer. As we get closer to the school year, we will also have an app where you can access information such as Let’s Talk, our communication tool, lunch menus, athletic and other calendar information, etc right from your cell phone easily. Stay tuned and meanwhile check out your school site or the district site at www.rnesu.org. Does something not make sense or is it too hard to find? Please let me know by email or Let’s Talk.!
VACCINE RESOURCES FOR FAMILIES
Vaccinations are now open for ages 12+ in Vermont. Along with your pediatrician, here are some key resources for parents:
What You Need to Know about COVID-19 Vaccines and Kids from the Vermont Department of Health, the Vermont Child Health Improvement Project and the Vermont Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Local Pediatrician Online Conversations on the COVID-19 Vaccine for Kids organized by the Vermont Department of Health.
Pfizer BioNTech Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers (EUA) - FDA's Emergency Use Authorization for use in individuals 12 years of age and older.
There are no July Board Meetings. In August, Board meetings will return to in person meetings with a zoom option for those who wish to attend virtually. Meeting information can be found on the district calendar or on the district website, www.rnesu.org,
BUU Board meets Aug 16, 5 pm
OVUU Board meets Aug 18, 5pm
RNESU Board meets Aug 22, @ 5 pm
Enjoy the summer days and get outside! More information to come in August!
Jeanné Collins, Superintendent of RNESU