BWRSD Community Update 12/11/20
Message from Jonathan Brice, Superintendent of Schools
Dear BWRSD community,
Thank you for your continued support of the work of teachers, teacher assistants, staff, and administrators as they teach students and help them to learn during this school year. Each of our staff members, in ways big and small, have shared a kind word, spent extra time with students explaining a concept, or providing words of encouragement to make this school year as comfortable and successful as possible. Please join me in thanking our staff for their work and commitment to our students.
We continue to stay informed of the most current information and recommendations related to COVID-19. Medical professionals from the CDC and RIDOH indicate that the next several months may be some of the most difficult times of the pandemic, with surging infection rates spreading throughout our community, state, and nation. Researchers have confirmed that young children are not typically affected by significant symptoms or serve as vectors of widespread infection. However this is not the same for adults, who are more likely to be vectors of widespread infection through their daily interactions and close contact with family, friends, and co-workers. The media are not asking the correct question about the difficulty of keeping schools open as cases spread. Providing adequate coverage and supervision within schools when staff members are quarantined makes each day a challenge in determining if schools will be able to operate in person.
Each day, school and district administrators are reviewing the next day’s absences to determine what we need to do to safely provide coverage for each class and ensure that teaching and learning continues. We are relocating staff, shifting coverages, and assigning staff from other schools and district offices to cover absences. Despite these efforts, there are times when we are still not able to provide enough coverage for all classes or schools. In these instances I must make the difficult decision to place a school on distance learning. Please know that placing a school on distance learning is my last option. We will continue to work through every option possible to safely provide our students with access to in person instruction.
Thank you for your continued flexibility as we deal with issues related to COVID-19 and I wish each of you and your families, peace and health during this holiday season.
Jonathan Brice, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Bristol Warren Regional School District
Contents of this Update:
Rockwell School - Full Distance Learning Monday, December 14, 2020, through Friday, December 18, 2020
Key Work of the District to Prepare for School Year 2021-2022
Device Insurance for Chromebooks and iPads
Rhode Island Healthy School Coalition’s December Newsletter
Bristol 4th of July Committee 30th Annual Button Contest
Update on Quarantine Requirements from the Rhode Island Department of Health (beginning in January, 2021)
Contact Tracing - 5 Things to Know: An Important Message from the Rhode Island Department of Health
1. Rockwell School - Full Distance Learning Monday, December 14, 2020, through Friday, December 18, 2020
As you are aware, Rockwell Elementary School was in full distance learning Dec 10 and 11. Distance learning will be extended due to the timeline of waiting for test results for a number of staff and students and determining if additional contact tracing is required. After consultation with the RI Department of Health, having been assured this is the appropriate course of action, Dr. Jonathan Brice has decided to place the school on pause through Dec 18 as we await test results.
2. Key Work of the District to Prepare for School Year 2021-2022
December is not only a time for holiday celebrations but signals the beginning of preparation for the upcoming school year. It is important that members of our community are aware of the important work that staff and community members have begun and will continue through February and March of 2021. You may be asked to participate in this work so it is important that you understand the importance of the four organizational building blocks; Strategic, Budgetary, Operational, and Facilities. These organizational building blocks are composed of interrelated improvement initiatives designed to chart the pathway forward for BWRSD to become a Top 5 in 5 years academically ranked school district in RI. A more detailed description can be found here.
3. Device Insurance
As part of our technology refresh plan, several grade levels will be receiving new devices. We encourage families to purchase insurance if they have not already. BWRSD has partnered with Worth Avenue to provide a low cost solution for Chromebook/iPad insurance. It is well worth the investment when contemplating the use of the devices and the cost of replacement parts, particularly screen breakage! The cost is $29.90 for one year. Information is provided below or you can contact BWRSDtech@bwrsd.org with tech questions.
5. Bristol 4th of July Committee 30th Annual Button Contest
ATTENTION ASPIRING BRISTOL STUDENT ARTISTS: Check out the Bristol 4th of July Committee 30th Annual Button Contest Flyer and put your pens, pencils and crayons to work! The contest deadline is January 16, 2021 giving you well over a month to come up with the winning entry. The actual entry form may be obtained at the three places mentioned on the flyer or at www.fourthofjulybristolri.com/buttoncontest. This contest information was also included in school newsletters in November.
6. Update on Quarantine Requirements from the Rhode Island Department of Health (Beginning Jan. 2021)
At the Governor’s press conference on Thursday, December 10, 2020, we received the following information regarding updated quarantine requirements and BWRSD will implement the new guidance in January 2021.
Close contacts will now quarantine for ten (10) days.
Quarantine can be reduced to seven (7) days if the individual receives a negative test five (5) days or more after exposure.
Click on the infographic above or the link below to learn more about the updated information from the RIDOH.
7. Contact Tracing - 5 Things to Know: An Important Message from the Rhode Island Department of Health
It is important that parents, guardians and members of our community make themselves available for contact tracing. The “Contact Tracing Call - 5 Things to Know” infographic and attachment linked below is from RIDOH’s Contact tracing website and provides information from RIDOH of what you should and should not expect when going through the contact tracing process.
Please visit our Back to School 2020-21 web page for important updates and links to our reopening plan and resources.