EC&FE Update: Dec 21, 2020

From Osseo Early Childhood & Family Education (EC&FE)

This message is for parents/guardians of students currently registered Preschool, Preschool with Parent Connection, Saturday Preschool,PreK and ECFE parent and child classes:

December 21, 2020


Dear parents/guardians:


Some of you may or may not have children enrolled in K-12 schools in the district, but you've told us that you want to receive district-level communications sent to families from Superintendent McIntyre.


The following communication was sent (12/18/2020) from Superintendent McIntyre to families of enrolled kindergarten through grade 12 students in the district. As an EC&FE program, in addition to our program updates, ongoing, we will strive to keep you updated with district-level communications for enrolled families from Superintendent McIntyre.

Message from the Superintendent: Updates

More information about upcoming elementary learning model shift; thoughts about winter break


Dec 18, 2020


Dear caregivers to our valued students:


As promised, I’m writing to provide additional information regarding our plan to bring early childhood and elementary students back for in-person learning on a phased-in basis, beginning Jan. 19. I also want to share some thoughts as we look forward to winter break.


Preparing to return our youngest learners to school buildings


I invite you to review the updated Minnesota Safe Learning Plan and watch my presentation to the school board; I’ll summarize key highlights below. Note: this section does not apply to DLA students who chose a year-long remote learning program.


Jan. 4: All students return from winter break in distance learning model. Emergency child care remains available for all ages from Jan. 4-12.


Jan. 13-15: No school or child care for early childhood through grade 5 (Except for DLA students, who will still report to school on these days)

There will be no school or child care for early childhood through grade 5 on January 13, 14 & 15, to provide staff time to prepare for students’ physical return to buildings. All other grades will report to school those days.


Starting Tuesday, Jan. 19

  • Early childhood students will participate in in-person classes according to their assigned schedule.
  • Students in kindergarten through grade 2 will return to school full-time (5 days/week) and in person.
  • Bus transportation will resume; Kidstop before and after-school care will resume for these students.
  • Emergency child care:
    • Remains available for grades 3-5 from Jan. 19-29.
    • Will no longer be available effective Feb. 1.


Starting Monday, Feb. 1

  • Students in grades 3-5 will return to school full-time (5 days/week) and in person.
  • Bus transportation will resume (review your child’s busing information in ParentVUE); Kidstop before and after-school care will resume for these students.


Secondary students will remain in distance learning until further notice.


Precautions to help keep students and staff safe


All early childhood through elementary schools will continue to comply with state health and safety guidance, including implementing school safety plans, requiring face coverings (specific exemptions are allowed), encouraging handwashing/use of hand sanitizer, and limiting visitors to buildings. New changes to note:

  • School staff will be required to wear face masks and face shields.
  • Staff will have access to self-administered COVID-19 saliva tests every two weeks.
  • The elementary social distancing recommendation has been reduced. Classrooms will be arranged in pods. Clear barriers will be installed where needed.


What if I want my elementary child to remain in distance learning?

The process for applying to the Distance Learning Academy is described here.


Thoughts about winter break


As I look forward to winter break, I’m thinking about everything we’ve dealt with since last March, when the COVID-19 pandemic “got real”:

  • As caregivers, you suddenly became teachers, and you’ve been stretched in ways you never before imagined as you managed your own work responsibilities while also supervising your child’s education.
  • You have seen your child’s teachers and support staff create completely new ways of working as they adjusted to new learning models and health and safety protocols.
  • You have supported our staff even as you faced new and difficult challenges in providing your child’s education.
  • You have been patient and understanding, extending us tremendous grace as we responded to the immediate crisis last spring and then reinvented how to do school for an entire school year amid evolving pandemic circumstances and changing state directives.


As I think about all we have gone through in the past 9 months, I want each of you to know the following:

  • I am grateful for all the extra effort you have invested in your child’s education. You have done things you never expected to do to support your children, and I’m confident your child will never forget what you’ve done.
  • You have been outstanding partners with your child’s teachers and school. You have shown remarkable support, resilience and commitment.
  • We’ve always said “You are your child’s most important teacher.” This year, that statement could not be any more true. You have been heroes, both to your children and to our staff, and your partnership is greatly appreciated.


I also want to share one news item regarding next school year: If your child is interested in a fully online learning environment, please watch for information next week about how to apply to our new fully online school, which will launch next fall as “279 Online.” The current Distance Learning Academy will conclude operations at the end of this school year, to be followed by the 279 Online school.


As we look forward to winter break, I hope you and your family have the opportunity to rest, rejuvenate, and just enjoy being together. I wish you health and happiness in the new year, and I look forward to reconnecting with you in 2021.


Respectfully,

Cory McIntyre
Superintendent

Osseo EC&FE Programs: moving to in person learning model

As noted in Superintendent McIntyre's message above, beginning January 19, 2021 our EC&FE programming will move to an in person learning model. This includes ECFE parent and child classes, Preschool, Saturday Preschool, PreK, Preschool with Parent Connection and Early Childhood Screening.


Exceptions to in person learning model:

  • Online Parent and Infant ECFE classes
  • Online Parenting ECFE classes
  • Online Distance Learning Preschool only for 3-5s classes
  • Early Childhood Screening appointments.


As of today, listed below are highlights and important dates for families currently participating in our program to be aware of:

Preschool and PreK 3-5s programs

Distance Learning Preschool 3-5s classes:

  • Classes will continue online as scheduled with your child's teacher.
  • Learning Material Pick Up dates of January 4th from 11am-1pm and January 5th from 11am-1pm and 3-5pm will continue as scheduled at Arbor View Early Childhood Center.
  • January 13, 14 online classes will be held.
  • January 18- No school in observation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.


Preschool with Parent Connection

  • From January 4 to January 12 all Parent Connection classes will continue distance learning at home as scheduled with your child's teacher.
  • January 13, 14, 15 no classes will be held. These days will be used by district staff for planning in person learning. Families will be reimbursed tuition for these no school days.
  • January 18 to 22 no classes will be held in observation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Interim Break.
  • In person learning days at school begin January 25 as scheduled.


Preschool and PreK
  • From January 4 to January 12 all Preschool and PreK classes will continue distance learning at home as scheduled with your child's teacher.
  • January 13, 14, 15 no classes will be held. These days will be used by district staff for planning in person learning. Families will be reimbursed tuition for these no school days
  • January 18- No school day in observation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
  • In person learning days at school begin January 19 as scheduled.


Saturday Preschool

  • January 9 class will be distance learning at home as scheduled with your child's teacher.
  • No class held January 16.
  • Beginning January 23 class will be in person at school as scheduled.

ECFE parent and child classes

In person ECFE Parent and Child Classes:

  • From January 4 to January 12 in person ECFE classes will continue distance learning at home as scheduled.
  • January 13, 14, 15 no classes will be held. These days will be used by district staff for planning in person learning. Families will be reimbursed class fees for these no school days.


ECFE Online Parent and Child Classes:
  • Online ECFE classes (Parents and Infants and Parent only classes) will meet online as scheduled with your teacher.
  • Online ECFE classes scheduled to start soon will receive class information from the teacher prior to the first day of class including Google Meet information, It is recommended that families have a Gmail account for Google Meet.
  • January 13, 14, 15 no classes will be held. These days will be used by district staff for planning in person learning. Families will be reimbursed class fees for these no school days or class cancellation.

Early Childhood Screening Appointments

  • Early Childhood Screening appointments can currently be scheduled as virtual (phone) appointments. We are currently evaluating when in person screening appointments can resume.
  • To schedule an early childhood screening appointment for your child call 763-391-8777.

Important Dates

December 19 to January 3:

Winter Break- No classes held.


January 4 to 12:

All classes will continue as scheduled in a distance learning model.


January 13 to 15:

No School Days- Planning days for district staff.

Exception: Classes will be held online for Distance Learning only Preschool 3 to 5s classes


January 18:

Martin Luther King Jr. Day- No classes held.


January 19 to 22:

  • ECFE Interim Break- No ECFE parent and child classes or Preschool with Parent Connection classes held.
  • Preschool and PreK begin in person learning days at school as scheduled.


Week of January 25:

  • Our new winter/spring session of ECFE parent and child classes begin.
  • Preschool with Parent Connection classes begin in person learning days at school as scheduled.

Continuous Year Round Registration

ECFE Parent and Child classes

  • Registration will open soon for our next session of ECFE parent and child classes offered end of January to May. A postcard communication will be sent in the mail to households on the district census. Watch for a new electronic brochure to be posted on our website and emailed to currently registered families.

Preschool and PreK classes

  • We continue to accept registrations for our current Preschool or PreK classes for the remaining 2020-2021 school year and will adapt our programming to align with the district learning models. Learn more and find registration at osseo.ce.eleyo.com.
  • Our programming for Preschool and PreK for the 2021-2022 school year is currently being developed. In January, families will receive additional communication from our program about Preschool & PreK programming opportunities for the 2021-2022 school year.

EC&FE Program Office

While the district is in a distance learning model EC&FE staff will be working remotely. When we move to in person learning model January 19 EC&FE staff will be working at school.


Our program office staff are available Monday through Friday 8:00am-4:00pm to answer questions and support families with registration.


Phone 763-391-8777

Calls will be returned during regular office hours.

Language Line 1-855-938-0586 En Español, Lus Hmoob, Bằng Tiếng Việt


Email: ecfe@district279.org


NEW: Virtual Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:00am-9:00am

Google Meet video meeting. To join use this link Osseo ECFE

Otherwise, to join by phone, dial +1 314-474-3483 and enter this PIN: 714 467 841#

With Gratitude

As we transition to the second half of this school year, I know that making this learning model change for your family may be hard and for others, a welcomed change. Our staff will continue our important work to support your child and family through our commitment to providing high-quality early learning opportunities. Please watch for more communication from us as decisions are made at the district level that impact our EC&FE programs.


May your family be safe and well and look forward the start of 2021!


Sally Nault-Maurer

Early Childhood & Family Education Program Coordinator

naultmaurers@district279.org

763-391-8777 main office line | 763-391-8765 direct line

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