Garfield Newsletter

December 2020

Dear Families,

Hello Garfield Families,

We wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for all of your extra support in making our school a success! We appreciate the team effort of working closely with teachers to make each student successful. You are all wonderful to work with and we appreciate you sharing your children with us.

Mrs. Schaefer

Closings Due to Weather

It is that time of year when the weather can sneak up on us in Kansas...

because of that, are several ways to check to see if USD 290 schools are closed for inclement weather.

  • We have calls that go out to families that have their phone numbers in the Skyward Messaging (phone call, email, and text) system. You would have entered your number when enrolling your student. If you are not sure, please call the school and talk with either Donna or Tayler to see if your number is current.

  • Postings will also be made to the District’s website, Facebook, and Twitter.

  • KOFO and local television stations carry this information as well.

Please do not call the schools or Board of Education office main phone for closing information. The decision to cancel school is made as early as possible and sent as soon as the decision is made.

Parents are advised to make prior plans with their children in case such situations arise.

*Snow days are non-academic days for both onsite and remote students.

From the Nurse...

Hello Garfield Families!

Can you believe that it’s December already!? This crazy year has actually flown by. As much as we all wish that 2021 would reset the magic ball and make everything “normal” again, I do not foresee that happening. So, I’m going to mention a quick little covid reminder, and then move on.

I am so happy that we have been able to stay in person with schooling this year! Everyone is doing so well with wearing masks and sanitizing. There is one problem that I’m still encountering quite frequently, and that is when family members have symptoms and are being swabbed, but still sending siblings and other family members to school. This puts many people at risk for no reason. Please know that your child will be given excused absences, with documentation from the Health Department.

By contacting your child's teacher, your student can log in on Google Classroom and get all of their schoolwork done and not fall behind.

Again, PLEASE do not send your kids to school if anyone at home is showing symptoms of covid, and you are planning to have them tested.

Remember to ensure that your child is wearing a 2-layered mask to school daily. The Health Department has given us guidance that this is what is needed to stay safe, and if your child has an exposure to a positive case in the school setting, they won’t need to quarantine for 14 days as long as they have an appropriate mask on, and wearing it correctly, to keep them safe.

As winter is among us, please make sure that your child is coming to school dressed for the weather. If you need a coat, hat, or gloves for your child, please send me a private email, or contact the school, and we will see if there is anything available in your child’s size. We have several clothing items that have been donated over the years, so we would love to help in any way we can.

I hope that everyone had a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving break, and I look forward to seeing all of the kids again in December.

Jennifer Geist, RN

Garfield Elementary School Nurse

Brave Reminders

  • The school day begins at 7:55 daily.
  • Please make sure your child has the appropriate outdoor wear for the weather. We will go outside every day unless it is 20 degrees, with the wind chill, or if it is too wet.
  • Please make sure that you are screening for Covid 19 symptoms before sending your child to school.
  • Thank you for following your dismissal plans, and picking your student up in the appropriate areas.
  • 1st and 2nd-grade parents picking up students on the blacktop, please remember to leave the outside lane for Kindergarten parents to drive past. Huge thanks for that.

Early Release Fridays

Just a reminder that every Friday, at 1:55 pm students K-5 are dismissed for teacher professional meetings.

Dates to Remember

Monday, December 21st: Last Full Day with Students

Monday, January 4th: Teacher Professional Development Day

Tuesday, January 5th: Students Return

Monday, January 18th: No School - Students and Staff

Friday, January 22nd: Teacher Workday - end of semester progress reports

Big picture

Winter Break Dates

Our last day before winter break will be on Monday, December 21st, with students returning on January 5th, 2021.

Book Fair...ending Dec. 6

Remote Assurances Sign-Off Reminder

Subject: KSDE Assurance Form for All Families to Complete

The Kansas State Department of Education replaced the requirement for a learning log for each student with an Assurance Form for each student in a remote learning environment. Many of you have already completed a form for your student; however, each student must have an Assurance Form on file in the event that he/she needs to move to a remote learning environment. This is a one-time documentation that will be kept on file throughout the 2020-2021 school year.

Please complete the online form for each of your students in Skyward Family Access regardless of if your student is fully remote or receives in-person learning. We ask these forms to be completed for each student now, so it is on file for any possibility of remote learning throughout the year.

Your time and support are appreciated as we continue to navigate through this time. Below is the link for Family Access for you to sign in and go under each student to sign the Assurance Form. Tip: Username is usually the first two letters of your first name and then last name. If you don’t remember your password, you can do "forgot password," and it will email a reset link.

As soon as you log in to Skyward Family Access, the online form will be at the top of the dashboard page for each of your students. You will find the hyperlink that says Fill out Online Form for your student’s name. Click on this to continue to form.

If you have any questions concerning the form, please contact your building principal. If you have any login issues with Skyward Family Access contact

Big picture

From Sally the Social Worker...

Attached you will find a link for local resources available to help all families in the Ottawa area.


A family that needs help with just about any problem a child could have is just a call or click away from connecting with that help using a resource provided by the Kansas Children’s Service League.

The comprehensive resource can also be a valuable tool for educators — teachers, staff, school board members, and others — when trying to help students and families, especially during this turbulent pandemic.

KCSL has launched a new website and an app (1800CHILDRENKS) for mobile devices that provide information and connections to hundreds of programs addressing many needs, such as housing, food, transportation, health care, education, legal assistance, and more.

Garfield Elementary