News & Notes
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Update from Director
Although unseasonably warmer weather has been with us this past week, cold weather will definitely be here sooner than we wish! Please remember that our students will still continue to go outdoors to get fresh air, sun and exercise unless the temperatures are very cold or it is rainy and wet outdoors. As you know, temperatures can change quite a bit from early morning to midday so please dress your child in layers (e.g. shirt, sweater or sweatshirt, jacket, hat and mittens) so they can be comfortable depending on the temperature at that time.
On behalf of the BLOCKS staff, we extend our best wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving Holiday with family and friends!
Look at the creative talents of our Children and Staff with our Fall season pumpkin walk. Enjoy!
Updates from our Nurse
I hope that everyone is enjoying the beautiful fall weather and staying healthy!
We will be conducting Vision Screenings here at Blocks in December. Please refer to the information in this newsletter for more information and to find out how to opt your child out if you chose to.
Please join in on the November Healthy Habits Challenge if you wish to have your child participate. Teachers have been given the calendar to distribute to families. This is a fun, effective way to help to stay healthy!
As we head into the cooler months it is important to try to practice healthy habits. Along with the joy of the upcoming holidays comes the risk of colds, flu and other illnesses.
Remember the essentials of good health are good nutrition, plentiful fluids (always send it water bottle), regular exercise, plenty of rest, and proper hand washing. It is a good idea to get your Flu, COVID and other vaccines. If your son/daughter develops a communicable disease or condition, (e.g. COVID, chicken pox, strep-throat, scarlet fever, fifth's disease, confirmed flu) please notify the school nurse. This will enable us to monitor your child's progress and other student/staff exposure.
A sick child cannot learn effectively and is unable to participate in classes in a meaningful way. Keeping a sick child home prevents the spread of illness in the school community and allows the child opportunity to rest and recover.
Guidelines for Keeping Children Home from School
Often the way a child looks and acts can make the decision an obvious one. The following guidelines should be considered when making the decision:
· Fever/chills/shaking chills: The child should remain at home with a fever of 100 degrees or greater. The child can return to school after he/she has been fever free for 24 hours (without fever-reducing medicine such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen or cough and cold medications with fever reducers).
· Diarrhea/Vomiting/Nausea: A child with diarrhea and/or vomiting should stay at home and return to school only after being symptom-free for 24 hours.
· Conjunctivitis: Following a diagnosis of conjunctivitis, the child may return to school in 24 hours.
· Rashes: Common infectious diseases with rashes are most contagious in the early stages. A child with a suspicious rash should return to school only after a healthcare provider has made a diagnosis and authorized the child’s return to school.
· Colds: Consider keeping your child at home if he/she is experiencing discomfort from cold symptoms, such as nasal congestion and cough. A continuous green discharge from the nose may be a sign of infection. Consider having the child seen by your healthcare provider.
· Cough: A cough that keeps a child awake at night, worsens with increased activity, or is combined with other symptoms.
· Sore Throat: A persistent red, sore throat, especially with a headache, stomachache, and enlarged tonsils. Students who are diagnosed with strep throat should remain out of school until they are on antibiotics for 24 hours.
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Fatigue/Child seems “off”
Muscle or Body Aches
New loss of Taste or Smell
Congestion or Continuous Runny Nose
If these symptoms occur your child should stay home and it is recommended to do a COVID test. Children will need to be fever/symptom free with no fever/pain reducing medications for 24 hours before returning to school.
If your child becomes sick at school, it is a parent/caregiver’s responsibility to pick up students in a timely manner. They may not remain at school and they cannot take the bus home. Please make sure to keep your cell phone on and have a plan to pick up your sick child in case of illness or emergency.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and I hope that everyone has a good holiday break later this month!- Nurse Jenn
Mandated Health Screenings
1. Vision and Hearing Screenings are conducted according to guidelines provided by MDPH (http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/departments/dph/). A referral letter is sent home when the student does not meet the screening parameters recommending evaluation by your physician or vision professional.
Vision screening is performed in grades PK, K-5, 7 and 9.
Hearing screening is performed in grades 1-3, 7 and 9.
2. Heights and weights are done on students in grades 1, 4, and 7. Body Mass Index (BMI) and corresponding percentile is calculated and recorded following guidelines from the MDPH for each student. The results are no longer mailed home but instead will be recorded in the student’s cumulative health record at school. Parents are welcome to call the school nurse to discuss the findings.
A student may be exempt from vision, hearing, BMI, and SBIRT screenings upon written request from the parent/guardian. Please contact your school nurse if you want your student to be exempt from these screenings.
BLOCKS WILL CONDUCT VISION SCREENINGS ON DECEMBER 12 & 13, 2022
Upcoming PTO Meetings
December-no meeting because of holidays
February 28-4th Tuesday because of break
April 25-4th Tuesday because of break
June 13-2nd week of June because of end of school
Parents of all classrooms are welcome and encouraged to attend!
Important Safety Information
In the interest of children's safety, please remember that no child will be given to another adult unless a parent/guardian sends in a written note. Please, do not leave a message on the answering machine or ask the office staff to coordinate this for you (unless it is an emergency). We kindly remind you that the adult picking up the child will be asked to show a picture identification before the child is released. Your cooperation and attention to this matter will be greatly appreciated. If any inconvenience is caused, it is only in the best interest of your child's safety.
In the event of some emergency, such as a snow storm or a loss of heat in the building, a decision may be made to close school and parents/guardians MUST be able to pick up children early. If weather conditions are poor, you may need to allow much extra time in order to make that pickup. For us to be able to notify you, you must have current contact information on file in the office. If you need to update a phone number or contact, please contact the office. You will always be called first but if you are unable to be reached, you should make sure that someone other than the parent/guardian, who lives nearby and who would be able to pick up your child in the event of an emergency closing is listed under your emergency contacts.
Preschool Tuition Payments are due on the first of the month!
B.L.O.C.K.S. Preschool promotes a flexible atmosphere that considers children individually and as members of a group. Our program provides a variety of resources that address children's particular interests, needs and levels of development.
Learning through play, development of self concept, the growth of language and respect for others will be fostered in order to maximize future school success. The ultimate goal of this program is to instill in children a curiosity about their world and a hunger to learn.