West Week in Review

September 25, 2020

Connect with us!

Please check your email weekly for our West Week in Review! In order to help us connect with you and make sure you are not missing any important information, please add messenger@boyertownpa.mg.infinitecampus.org to your trusted senders in your email so that you don’t miss out on important information. Infinite Campus is now open. Also, be sure to follow us on the Boyertown Middle School West Facebook page and our Twitter/Instagram accounts @WhatsUp_West.

Wednesday, September 30, is an early dismissal day!

That means there will not be asynchronous work required of students on Wednesday afternoon this week. The morning will still follow our Virtual Wednesdays schedule.

Additional upcoming early dismissal days are scheduled for October 14 and 28.

Thank you for attending Back-to-School Night!

It was great to "see" many of you at back-to-school night this week. Now, more than ever, communication between home and school is critically important to students' overall well being and academic success. Thank you for partnering with us!

Please continue to encourage your child to remain engaged in their school work. Expectations now are different from the spring and students are earning grades for their learning! We also have updated guidance from the state regarding attendance and must document both students' presence in class as well as their satisfactory work completion.

Free and Reduced Lunch Applications

Lunch and Breakfast

The USDA has recently announced that the waivers that allow schools to serve ALL children meals for free, regardless of their income, will be continued through December 31, 2020. This new announcement means that, effective immediately, ALL our students (regardless of income), are able to receive free breakfast and lunch on any day that school is in session.

Here is some additional information in a FAQ format. Please see below:

Who is eligible for this benefit and what will my child(ren) be able to receive?

This benefit is for all students, regardless of income or grade level. Only one full meal at both breakfast and lunch will be offered for free. If students choose to purchase additional items, those items will be charged to their food service account.

Do I have to sign up or apply for this benefit?

No. Any student who wishes to take a complete meal will get one for free by going through the lunch line.

Why should I still fill out the free and reduced application?

The waivers are currently set to expire on December 31, or sooner if funds expire. If your child qualifies for free and reduced lunch, filling out an application now ensures that they will receive meal benefits after December 31.

Why must my student take all of the food offered?

Under the Seamless Summer Option the school is required to ensure the student receives a complete meal. Students may select their entree, sides and milk, but they must take everything offered with the meal.

  • Breakfast includes an Entree, 1 cup of fruit and 8 ounces of milk.
  • Lunch includes a Meat/Meat Alternate, Grains, 1 cup of vegetables, ½ cup of fruit for grades K - 8, or 1 cup of fruit for grades 9 - 12 and 8 ounces of milk.
  • Students who do not take a complete meal may not participate in this program.

Will a la Carte (extra) food be available to purchase?

Yes. Extra food items will be available for purchase. If your student does not take a complete meal they must pay for the items they take, and must have funds in their school meal account or have cash with them to make the purchase. There is no charging of extra foods.

Will Meals be available for the fully virtual days?

Yes, students will access a Google form in their homeroom to register for meals to take home at the end of the school day for the fully virtual days.

Will the BASD Virtual students and the BASD BOL students have access to these meals?

Yes, students will be provided an opportunity to pick up meals on Wednesdays for the week. Each student may have up to five (5) breakfast meals, and five (5) lunches per week. This will be available as a grab and go that was established this past spring and summer.

Return to School

We are looking forward to bringing students back to the building in the A/B hybrid model during the week of October 5! You should have received an email with your child's A or B assignment. Transportation information, as well as the A/B designation, are available in the Infinite Campus portal. Special education students who are already attending in person four days a week will continue to do so.

We will be having building tours provided by our Bear Ambassadors as well as team building activities for our A group of 6th grade students on October 5 and and our B group of 6th grade students on October 8. Tours will also be provided on those dates for 7th and 8th graders who are new to West.

Virtual Wednesdays

Our return to school for all students during the week of October 5 will be scheduled so that half of our students are in the building on Mondays and Tuesdays while the other half participates virtually. Students would flip roles for Thursday and Friday with the second half being face to face while the remaining students participate virtually. Special education students who are part of the September first and second wave of in-person learning will continue to attend in person 4 days per week.

Wednesdays will remain a virtual day for all students, and students will follow a virtual half-day live schedule every Wednesday morning, followed by asynchronous afternoons. Attendance will be taken during homeroom as usual. Teachers will host a live online session to check in with students, explain the work for the day (including asynchronous activities for the day and the option of a live mini-lesson) and share any small group meeting times that students will need to follow. The afternoon will provide opportunities for teacher professional development and collaboration while students work on asynchronous assignments. Students are expected to be working all day on Wednesdays, with the exception of the upcoming scheduled early dismissal days on September 30 and October 14 and 28.

Technology Reminders

Here are a few important technology reminders for students and families:

1. If you are having technology issues, please notify your teacher and attempt to reconnect. If there is an issue with your device, please reach out to the IT department at https://www.boyertownasd.org/Page/5970 .

2. The Acceptable Use Policy for technology is in effect. Students are expected to use their devices and technology resources in accordance with the policy.This includes refraining from engaging in "Zoom bombing". Violations of this policy will be addressed in accordance with the discipline code up to and including the involvement of law enforcement. http://go.boarddocs.com/pa/boyr/Board.nsf/goto?open&id=AF4GGF433A3C

Boyertown Area School District Appropriate Use of Technology Update

As you know, BASD is currently using Google Meet and Zoom as platforms for presenting synchronous virtual learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are pleased that a strong majority of our students have been responsible and resourceful, using the technology appropriately and communicating with our teachers when there are issues. We have had several incidents, however, of “Zoom Bombing.” This is where an individual gains access to a Zoom or Google Meet session and causes disruption in the learning environment. Unauthorized access is gained when a student shares their Google Meet and Zoom codes/links via social media or other methods.

Disruptions to the educational environment will not be tolerated and BASD will respond in accordance with our policies and procedures. Consequences that students may face when misusing the technology and the network may result in suspension from school activities, temporary or permanent access to the network, community service assignments at school, and possibly the filing of a criminal complaint with the BASD School Police Officer and/or local law enforcement.

BASD students are required to abide by the following policies/procedures as they relate to appropriate behavior virtually or in person:

  1. BASD Policy 815 -- Acceptable Use of Internet, Computers, and Network Resources

  2. BASD Policy 249 -- Bullying/Cyberbullying

  3. BASH & Middle School Student Handbooks

  4. BASD 1:1 Computing Handbook

We encourage parents and guardians to have a conversation with their students about the seriousness of these concerns. In the event that these events continue to occur, BASD may be forced to limit synchronous learning opportunities in order to protect students and staff from disruptive behavior.

Important Health Information!

Dear Parents and Guardians,

This has been a very unprecedented year to say the least!

On behalf of the nurses in the district I am reaching out to you to give you some directions on changes that are happening in the BASD Health Rooms.

  • Medication Drop off: please obtain medication authorization papers on-line to take to your physicians to be completed. Once they are completed, make an appointment with your school nurse for drop off, either call or email for mutual time to receive medication and paperwork. Have the medication authorization and the medication in a labeled container to bring to the nurse. Parents will not be permitted into the building to drop off medication.
  • Amount of medication: Please consider supplying no more than a month supply of medication in the health room at any given time. Should we need to close for any reason, you will not be short any medication.
  • Inhalers and Epi pens: follow above directions. It is recommended that students who can self-carry their own medications (inhalers/EpiPens only) should do so, provided we have the required paperwork on file for administration. This will enable the student to bring his/her medication back and forth to school. Should we be closed again for any reason, the student would have access to their medication. It is not an expectation that your child will administer it by themselves, it is only to keep the medication in the hands of the user, should we need to shut down school without notice. It will be the student’s responsibility to make sure that the medication comes back and forth with them daily. If this arrangement is not conducive for your child, we can keep medication in the health room, but we will not make immediate concessions to return it to you should school be closed for any reason.
  • Nebulizer treatments: Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 we cannot administer any nebulizer treatments in the health rooms due to aerosolizing particles. Should your child require a nebulizer, you will need to administer it at home.
  • Daily assessment of your child: Just a reminder that you should be assessing daily your child’s health status and monitoring for signs and symptoms of Covid-19. If you feel your child has been exposed or if they have symptoms, please have them tested and do not send them to school. This would include siblings as well from the same household, as they may be contagious as well.
  • Health Room: If you child is exhibiting any of the symptoms of Covid-19, you will be notified to come and pick them up. It is our expectation that you will be at school in a relatively short period of time. Please understand that the symptoms of Covid-19 are like other illnesses, such as allergies/colds/flu/asthma. Therefore, children will be sent home for suspected symptoms.
  • Returning Paperwork: Please return paperwork either with your child, or via email to the nurse at the building the child attends. You can scan, photograph, and email copies of all paperwork to us. All current state mandates are still in effect and will be required to be submitted.

We wish all of you a happy and healthy school year and are looking forward to seeing you back at school or virtually. If we can help in any way, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

Your school nurse can be found by going to the BASD website, choosing the school the child attends, and go to health. The staff nurse and Certified School Nurse are listed there.

Elizabeth Vamvakias, RN, MSN, CSN

Nursing Supervisor



Additional Health Reminders

Immunization requirements for 7th grade entry

Attention Parent(s)/Guardian(s) of students entering 7th grade; your child is required to have 1 dose of tetanus, diphtheria, acelluar pertussis (Tdap) AND 1 dose of meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV) by the first day of school. At this time, the Pennsylvania’s Department of Health has not made any changes to the state immunization requirements other than to implement a two-month deadline extension. This requirement applies even to students who are continuing with virtual instruction. This information can be found in 28 Pa. CODE CH.23 (School Immunization) http://www.health.pa.gov/My%20Health/Immunizations/School/Pages/default.aspx or https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/programs/immunizations/Pages/Immunizations.aspx. Please email Mrs. Hopple, our West school nurse, at dhopple@boyertownasd.org with any questions.

PA Mandated Dental and Physical Exams for 2020 - 2021 School Year

The PA School Code requires dental exams for all students entering Kindergarten, 3rd and 7th grades, and physical exams for students entering kindergarten, 6th and 11th grades. For students entering these grades in September 2020, physical or dental exams that are completed on or after September 1, 2019 are acceptable. If you need a form for an upcoming appointment, you can download one from the BASD website @ http://www.boyertownasd.org under Resources - Nurse – BASD Health Service link. Completed physical and dental forms can be submitted to the health room at the beginning of the 2020-21 school year. Because the health room is closed for the summer, if you submit a completed form over the summer please retain a copy for your records.

Library Books are now available!

Even though we're learning virtually for a little while, you can still check out library books! Here is a video that explains the process: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1RJr7vla2VjulxCb70uw_p2phlvBZJZFb/view

Follow these steps to request books (up to 3 at a time):

  • Go to https://destiny.boyertownasd.org
  • Click "Boyertown Middle School West"
  • Click the catalog tab on the upper left-hand side of the screen.
  • You can search by keyword, title, author, subject, or series.

Once you choose books that you'd like to check out, fill out and submit this Google Form: https://forms.gle/46uWWd1QuTgobaKDA. You must be logged into your BASD Google Account to access the Google Form.

Mrs. Palopoli will email you at your BASD email account to let you know when your books are ready for pick up. Books can then be picked up Monday-Friday from 7:00am-4:00pm at the West main office.

Due dates will be stamped on the card in the back of your book. Be sure to check there to see when your books need to be returned.

Please email Mrs. Palopoli at spalopoli@boyertownasd.org if you have any questions.

Picture Day

All students in grades 6 through 8 who have not previously had their school picture / photo ID taken during the 20-21 school year will have an opportunity to have their picture taken on the following dates during school hours. Additionally, there has been a designated evening date and time scheduled for our BOL and BASD Virtual Learning students.

• Fall Original Dates: 10/13/20 & 10/15/20

• Only Virtual Students: 10/13/20 4:00pm-6:00pm

• Fall Retake Dates: 12/1/20 & 12/3/20

The link to order pictures can be found here. The code for Middle School West is EVTNHFSZ6

Also, for those students who had their school pictures taken earlier this month at BASH, pictures have arrived! Students who are returning to school the week of October 5 will receive their packet of pictures at that time. Students who are continuing with either the BOL or BASD Virtual mode of instruction may stop by West between 4-6pm on October 13 to pick up their pictures.

Attendance Information

As we are bringing students back to the building, we want to review recommended protocols for attendance, especially in light of the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. Our hope is that students are able to participate in their classes as they are scheduled whether it is in person or virtual. We recognize that there may be circumstances in which a child is unable to attend in person, but would be able to attend virtually. Please review the guidelines below as you make decisions regarding your child’s attendance in school in person and/or virtually. And, note the guidelines the building will follow for illness including Covid-19 symptoms or positive cases.

  1. Student cannot participate virtually or in person due to illness

    1. If your child is sick, not feeling well and unable to participate in classes whether it is in person or virtually, follow our typical attendance procedures by notifying the main office via the attendance email or completing the attendance form.

  2. Student is ill and cannot participate in person, but can participate in virtual instruction (e.g due to Covid-19 positive OR exhibits COVID-19 Symptoms for which quarantine is necessary)

    1. If your child is ill or exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms but feels he/she is able to participate in virtual instruction, please follow the steps below:

      1. Email your child’s teacher and the attendance secretary stating that he or she will attend virtually for the day.

      2. It is expected your child will participate virtually the entire day and in all classes to be marked present for the day.

  3. Student presents with Covid-19 symptoms at school:

    1. If the school nurse sends your child home from school due to symptoms associated with COVID-19 infection, the parent/guardian will pick up the child from school. The parent/guardian will be advised to contact their medical provider to obtain a note to clear the child to return to school or follow the next steps of the medical provider which may include a Covid-19 test. If the parent/guardian chooses to not seek a medical provider’s guidance, then the child must participate virtually for 10 days. (See Options # 1 or #2 above)

  4. Exposure to “Close Contacts”.

    1. Members of the same household are close contacts. If a member of a student’s household tests positive for Covid-19 or is symptomatic of Covid-19, please follow the steps outlined below.

    2. A “close contact” can also be a non-household member. If the child has contact with a person within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more, and the non-household person tests positive for Covid-19, please follow the steps outlined below.

      1. Contact your school’s nurse so they can advise you to follow the current protocols in testing and length of quarantine.

      2. Email your child’s teacher and the attendance line stating that he or she will attend virtually for whatever time period is appropriate.

      3. If your child is well and able to participate in their classes virtually, they should login and participate virtually for the entire day and length of quarantine.

  5. Educational Trips

    1. Educational trips are still being approved for students who are attending BASD Virtual or returning to the school buildings. The protocols remain the same.

    2. If your family is traveling to a quarantine state on a vacation, your child must participate virtually for 14 days upon returning to Pennsylvania. This information should be included in your trip form request.

      1. To find the most current list go to https://www.google.com/url?q=https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/disease/coronavirus/Pages/Travelers.aspx&sa=D&ust=1600434762458000&usg=AFQjCNF_VMgVgVp8KJREXQxuGFimND9uMA

Updates and Reminders for the 2020-21 School Year

Thank you so much for all of your support and patience! It's hard to believe school has been in session for 4 weeks already!

Google Classroom

Google Classroom is the platform that all middle school classes will be based in. If you are not familiar with how to use Google Classroom, this brief tutorial may be helpful: https://youtu.be/VOOnCwWZxX4

Office Hours

Teachers have also created an Office Hours Google Classroom. This link can be used during period 10 on any day that the teacher does not have an advisory group. The teacher will be available at this time for any student who needs help or has questions about an assignment to speak with them over video.

Back-to-School Updates

Several documents that have been shared over the past few weeks are available on the West page of the district website. These documents are available here: https://www.boyertownasd.org/Page/6000 if you have not already done so, please check here for codes for the various Google Classrooms.


Yearbooks have arrived!!!

We still have yearbooks that had been previously ordered and have not been picked up. Yearbooks can be picked up during regular office hours, from 7am-4pm.

If you can't remember if you purchased a yearbook, please email Mrs. Palopoli at spalopoli@boyertownasd.org and she can check the list. We no longer have extra yearbooks available for purchase.

Grab 'n Go Meals Continuing!

Our Grab ‘n Go meal program will continue this fall. Please visit the district website for more information on Grab 'n Go meals, along with other district-wide updates. Families may pick up at any of the designated locations but must sign up in advance. https://www.boyertownasd.org/domain/1773

Support for Social Emotional Learning (SEL)

As a district, we have begun a 3-year implementation plan focused on Social Emotional Learning. Social and emotional learning (SEL) is the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. At this link, https://sel4us.org/blog/social-emotional-learning-supports-around-covid-19/, you will find a post from the Social Emotional Learning Alliance for the United States, that offers SEL supports around COVID-19. The post offers suggestions for families to reinforce each of the 5 SEL Core Competencies which include: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making. Thank you for partnering with us to prioritize safety and well-being.