The Hawk's Nest
January 1, 2021
Thank you to those who donated to our Giving Tree!
Thank you to those who provided constructive feedback through our survey!
Thank you for your submissions to the Art Show and Winter Concert!
3rd Quarter Plans
Based on recent COVID-19 trends, VCS will continue to utilize our remote teaching model for ALL grade levels at both VCS East and VCS West through February 5, 2021. (Our hope is that we can safely begin our hybrid teaching model on February 8th).
- On January 20th, we will issue our next update regarding the remainder of the 3rd quarter.
Click the following link for more details.
We earned our 5 Year Charter Renewal!
Congratulations to our National Junior Honor Society inductees!
Student Social Groups
VCS HAWKS...Are you missing your friends and wanting a social outlet? Are you struggling with mental health due to lack of socialization? Consider joining the school's mental health team for a fun and relaxed time to get to know other peers and ensure that you are receiving much needed social interactions. No reservations are required, links are sent to your teachers weekly, so just pop in if you can--all are welcome!
If you need any support, or have any concerns for your child please feel free to reach out to the mental health workers.
Material Pick-Up and Drop Off
If you have materials (books, musical instruments, etc.) to return please label them with your student's name and grade. Then leave the items in the trunk of your car. We will then switch out the new materials with the returned materials.
Attendance in every class every day is essential for your child's academic growth. In the event that your child cannot be in class, make sure to call the front desk at 303-691-2384. You will receive an automated phone call in the evening if your child was absent from any classes throughout the day if you do not call in to notify us of the absence. You may email teachers to get make up work, but call the front desk, as well.
Specials, Enrichment, and ELD classes are required for all K-8 students.
Have you moved or changed your phone number?
Front Desk: 303-691-2384
New Virtual Club
We are planning to organize a virtual Chess Club for the Spring semester in 2021. We believe the best way to handle this is to make use of Chesskid.com, an excellent site for young players.
The plan is to use Google Meetings to allow students and teachers to interact with each other and to use Chesskid to allow kids to play each other. The plan is to meet as a group every Friday from 3:15 to 4:15. Although kids will play other members of the Vanguard Chess Club at that time, kids will certainly be free to play each other whenever they wish.
We plan to set up a Google Classroom to help manage the Google Meetings and to post announcements. Parents and Guardians are welcome to join the Classroom. A membership in Chesskid will be required. A basic membership is free and a feebased premium membership is available if more features are desired.
If you are interested, best is to sign up as a parent at chesskid.com. The signup process is straightforward. When you add your child, you should add the Vanguard coaches as Chesskid guardians. This allows us to pair the kids in games and also to set up tournaments between members of the Vanguard Chess Club.
The emails are as follows:
Mr. Brewer – firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Haneghan – email@example.com
And then let us know that you are interested and have created a user account at Chesskid. First club meeting will be Friday, January 15th at 3:15 pm. We generally specify grades 3-8 but can certainly make exceptions. Let us know if you have any questions. Thank you!
Resources from the School Health Professionals
Scientists have developed several possible vaccines to provide possible immunity to COVID-19. The pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna have applied for an Emergency Use Authorization with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA authorized the Pfizer vaccine for emergency use on December 11, and Colorado received the vaccine on December 14. The companies report that both vaccines are around 95% effective.
The Pfizer and Moderna Vaccines are mRNA Vaccines.
mRNA vaccines help our bodies build an immune response to the COVID-19 virus. The mRNA vaccine teaches our cells how to make a harmless protein that is unique to the virus that causes COVID-19. After our cells make copies of the protein, our immune system recognizes that the protein should not be in our body and builds antibodies to remember how to fight the virus if we are infected in the future.
An antibody is a protein produced by your immune system that can recognize a specific type of virus in your body. When you get infected, your body’s antibodies are able to recognize proteins on the surface of the COVID-19 virus to attack and stop it from replicating in your body.
For a visual explanation of how mRNA vaccines work, watch Stat’s video “What are mRNA vaccines?”
To learn more, visit CDC’s Understanding How COVID-19 Vaccines Work.
COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
Phase 1A - Winter
Highest-risk health care workers and individuals:
People who have direct contact with COVID-19 patients for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.
Long-term care facility staff and residents.
Phase 1B - Winter
Moderate-risk health care workers and responders:
Health care workers with less direct contact with COVID-19 patients.
Workers in home health/hospice and dental settings.
EMS, firefighters, police, correctional workers, dispatchers, funeral services, other first responders, and COVID-19 response personnel.
Phase 2 - Spring
Higher-risk individuals and essential workers:
People age 65 or older.
People of any age with obesity, diabetes, chronic lung disease, significant heart disease, chronic kidney disease, cancer, or are immunocompromised.
People who interact directly with the public at work, such as grocery store workers and school and child care staff.
People who work in high density settings like farms and meat-packing plants.
Workers serving people that live in high-density settings.
Health care workers not included in Phase 1.
Adults who received a placebo during a COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial.
Phase 3 - Summer
Anyone age 18-64 without high risk conditions.
*Timeline subject to change based on supply chain. Prioritization subject to change based on data, science, availability.
Covid-19 Vaccine frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Who is going to get the first round of vaccines?
A:The first delivery of the Pfizer vaccine will provide 46,800 vaccine doses. These vaccines will go to health care workers who are treating COVID-19 patients. These workers have been on the front lines since the beginning of the pandemic and are directly exposed to COVID-19 as part of their job. Protecting the people who care for COVID-19 patients will help us save lives until the vaccine becomes widely available.
Q:What types of Covid-19 vaccine(s) are available? Will I get to choose?
A:There are multiple COVID-19 vaccine candidates. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) must authorize any vaccine before it will be available to Coloradans. The pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna applied for authorization through an Emergency Use Authorization.The FDA authorized the Pfizer vaccine on December 11 and is expected to authorize the Moderna vaccine soon. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines will be the first to be distributed in the state. Other companies are still going through the clinical research process. Pfizer and Moderna report that both vaccines are around 95% effective.
CDC provides detailed profiles for each available vaccine on their Different COVID-19 Vaccines page.
Q:How many doses or shots is the Covid-19 Vaccine?
A:Both the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines require two doses. The Pfizer vaccine will require two doses 21 days apart; the Moderna vaccine will require two doses 28 days apart. COVID-19 vaccines are not interchangeable. The second dose of any COVID-19 vaccine must be completed with the same vaccine product as the first dose.
Q:When can my family and I get the vaccine?
After the FDA authorizes a vaccine and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) makes recommendations for its use, we expect it will take several months before everyone who wants one can get one because of limited availability. Prioritizing health care workers who have been on the front lines of the pandemic and are directly exposed to COVID-19 as part of their jobs will help us save lives in the next few months.
Until the vaccine is widely available and used, it is important to continue taking precautions to slow the spread of the virus, like wearing masks and practicing physical distancing.
At least initially, we expect that the COVID-19 vaccines will only be authorized for use in adults. Safety and effectiveness data from clinical trials is still needed before the vaccine is available for children or pregnant adults.
Stay up to date about vaccine distribution in Colorado at covid19.colorado.gov/vaccine.
Q:How much will the vaccine cost?
A:Cost will not be an obstacle to getting the vaccine for Coloradans. Medicare, Medicaid, CHP+ and private insurance are required to cover the cost of the COVID-19 vaccines. In addition, uninsured Coloradans will have access to free vaccines.
Q: What are the side effects of the vaccine?
A:The most commonly reported side effects for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine are pain and redness at the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain, and fever for 1-2 days after receiving the vaccine. Side effects may differ among other COVID-19 vaccines.
The process of building immunity can cause symptoms. These symptoms are normal and show that your body’s immune system is responding to a vaccine. Other routine vaccines, like the flu vaccine, have similar side effects.
Clinical trial participants for COVID-19 vaccine reported that the discomfort from side effects went away after a day, sometimes sooner. The discomfort can be more pronounced after the second dose of the vaccine.
If you experience discomfort after the first dose of the vaccine, it is very important that you still receive the second dose a few weeks later for full protection.
For in-depth information about the side effects of the Pfizer vaccines, see the FDA’s briefing materials on the vaccine’s clinical trials.
Q:Are there any serious side effects to receiving the vaccine?
A:Decades of vaccine research demonstrates that most serious side effects generally occur within six weeks of administering a vaccine. For the COVID-19 vaccines, the FDA has required clinical trials to provide data from eight weeks of safety monitoring following the second dose before considering the authorization of a vaccine for public use.
Because this is a new vaccine, researchers will be learning more about rare side effects, if any, over the next year. To identify side effects that happen only very rarely (e.g., once in 50,000 doses), hundreds of thousands of people need to be vaccinated and followed over time.
The FDA and CDC will continue to closely monitor vaccine safety as the public begins using a new vaccine. Both agencies have both longstanding and new safety systems in place for heightened monitoring of all COVID-19 vaccines. Learn more about the vaccine safety monitoring systems.
Q:Do I need to be a U.S Citizen to receive the vaccine?
A:You do not need to be a U.S. citizen, and you will not need to prove lawful presence to get a COVID-19 vaccine in Colorado. Further, public health will never share your information with any immigration or law enforcement agency.
Q:How can I start to make a vaccine plan for me and my family?
Being informed is the first part of making a plan. Get your information from reliable public health sources such as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, and your local public health agency.
When it’s your turn to get the vaccine, ask your primary care provider whether they plan to give the vaccine in their office or what they recommend for you based on your personal medical history.
Recently, COVIDCheck Colorado (CCC) announced a partnership with the State of Colorado that allows all Colorado residents to access COVID-19 testing free of charge at any CCC site, including the APS Professional Learning and Conference Center (PLCC) north parking lot location.
With the increases in testing at the PLCC, we ask that all community members show up promptly for their registered appointments to minimize wait times. Additionally, CCC will be updating the testing process at the PLCC for more efficient service, including additional testing lanes, increased testing appointments and longer testing hours.
Community members, and others who would like to access tests at the PLCC should register here by clicking the button below.
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