From the Principal's Desk

September 21, 2020

Tally Ho! And, Away We Go!

Welcome and welcome back to all of our new and returning FWAFA students. Just want to take a moment to send a BIG thank you to our AMAZING teachers for making learning happen in two environments today - at-home and in-person. Thank you to students and families for partnering with us to make each learning environment a success. If you have decided to continue with At-Home Learning, please join me this evening on Facebook Live at 7:00 p.m. for more details.


This week's newsletter is brimming over with information. Grab a cup of coffee (or your favorite beverage) and dive in! As always, email me if you have questions. Hope everyone has a fabulous FWAFA week!



Creatively yours,


Dr. Jackson

Safe Return-To-School Health Plan

In order to keep everyone healthy in our school, we have adopted the following six core practices as recommended by the CDC and Texas Education Agency.


Six Core Practices to Keep Everyone Healthy


Symptom Screening for Students, Staff, Visitors


100% Compliance of Face Coverings


Vigilant Hand Washing and Sanitizing


In-Class Procedures that Maximize Social Distancing


Limited Use of Shared Objects


Frequent Disinfection of High Touch Areas

Daily Student Health Screening

Keeping everyone on campus healthy will take a true partnership among all stakeholders. We are asking that parents conduct a health screening of their student each morning prior to arriving at school.


Covid or otherwise, illness decreases a student’s ability to learn and puts them at risk for spreading illness to others.


Check in with your child each morning for signs of illness.


  • Fever (100.4 or greater) or chills

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • New uncontrolled cough that causes difficulty breathing (students with chronic allergic/asthmatic cough, a change in cough from usual)

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

  • Severe headache

  • Unusual fatigue

  • Sore throat

  • Significant muscle pain or body aches

  • Diarrhea

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last 2 weeks (longer than 15 minutes without a mask)


Contact Nurse Kay Armstrong at 817-924-1482 extension 111 or kay.armstrong@fwafa.org if your child is presumed or confirmed with COVID-19.

Face Coverings: A New Dress for Success Item!

100% Compliance of Face Coverings is an important component within our six core prinicples. The following our the guidelines regarding face coverings:


Cloth Face Coverings or Masks

  • Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts will enforce the use of cloth face coverings.

  • Cloth face coverings or masks are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms.

  • Appropriate and consistent use of cloth face coverings or masks is most important when students, teachers, and staff are indoors and when social distancing is difficult to implement or maintain.

  • Cloth face coverings or masks should be at least 2 layers of fabric thick (if you can blow out a candle with the mask on, it’s not thick enough).

  • Neck gaiters, buffs, bandannas, and masks with exhalation values or vents are NOT acceptable face coverings or masks.

  • Choose face coverings or masks that

    • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face

    • Completely covers the nose, mouth, and chin

    • Are secured with ties or ear loops

    • Include multiple layers of fabric

    • Allow for breathing without restriction

    • Can be washed and machine dried without damage or change to shape.

  • Disposable masks should be changed out and any form of cloth masks must be washed frequently.

  • Students must have multiple face coverings or masks each day. Consider providing your child with a container (labeled resealable bag) to bring to school to store their extra face covering when not wearing it. It is also recommended for students to have a labeled resealable bag for contaminated fabric face coverings.

  • Students who come to school without a face covering will be provided with a face covering for the day and parents will be notified by the front office.

  • Label your child’s face coverings clearly with a permanent marker so that they are not confused with those of other children.

  • Explain the importance of wearing a face covering and how it protects other people from getting sick.

At-Home Learning Attendance Policy

Per Texas Education Code (TEC), 25.092, students must attend 90% of the days a course is offered (with some exceptions) in order to be awarded credit for the course and/or be promoted to the next grade level. This requirement remains in force during the 2020-2021 school year.


Students will demonstrate attendance when learning in the At-Home Learning model by responding to the Attendance Check question in Google Classroom each day.


The Attendance Check question will open in Google Classroom at 8:00 a.m. and will close at 11:59 p.m. each day.



Elementary students (3-6) will demonstrate being present to their first academic rotation teacher.


Secondary students (7-12) will demonstrate being present to the classes that they have that day on the modified block schedule.


  • On Mondays, students will answer Attendance Check questions for all 8 classes.
  • On Tuesday/Thursdays, students will answer Attendance Check questions for their odd classes.
  • On Wednesday/Fridays, students will answer Attendance Check questions for their even classes.

Transition Plan for In-School Success

Families who chose the In-School Learning option on the Commitment Form due August 31:


Last names begin with letters A-L: September 28 to October 2


Last names begin with the letters M-Z: October 5 to October 9


Doors open at 8:30 a.m. Class starts promptly at 9:00 a.m.

October 13: Full-Day In-School Learning Begins

We will begin our regular school day hours beginning Tuesday, October 13.


Doors open at 7:30 a.m.


7:45 a.m. - Students dismissed to class from auditorium, cafeteria, or gym.


8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. - 3rd and 4th grade


8:00 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. - 5th - 12th grade

In-School Learning and At-Home Learning Information

Unless our school is required to close by the Texas Education Agency, we will offer both In-School and At-Home Learning models for the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year.


If you would like to change your commitment from one learning environment to another, this can be done by emailing me (jennifer.jackson@fwafa.org) two weeks prior to the end of each grading period.


The deadlines to make a change for each six weeks are as follows:


3rd six weeks - October 23

4th six weeks - December 4

5th six weeks - February 5

6th six weeks - March 26

Shot Records and Medical Forms Needed

Please send your student's shot records to Nurse Kay Armstrong at kay.armstrong@fwafa.org


The following records are needed:

  • All NEW students immunization record
  • 7th graders’ Updated immunization record with required Tdap and Meningococcal


For students who begin In-School Learning during our transition period starting September 21, we also need the following medical forms:

  • Medical Certification (complete with physician’s signature)/Travel/Medical Release
  • Parent/Physician request for Administration of Medication Request by School Personnel

In-School Learning: Dress Code Requirements

Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts and its performing groups are uniformed organizations. The following provides general guidelines for all students; however, each performing group or artistic discipline may have more specific dress code standards.


Students and their families are responsible for understanding and complying with the requirements of their chosen disciplines. In addition to the school uniform, additional uniform items, costumes and luggage may be required depending on a student’s fine arts group.


The Dress Code is established to teach grooming and hygiene, prevent disruption, minimize safety hazards, and create a sense of equality and unity on our campus. Uniform compliance is a positive learning experience for students involved in professional training and will help individual students learn specific responsibilities.


Once a student is enrolled in school, he/she should obtain the required uniform items.


Students are expected to be in dress code beginning the first day of school. Violations in dress code will result in a Silent Lunch Detention.


Standards of Dress


Shoes


Students must wear closed-toe and closed-heel shoes, clean and in good condition, no heels over 2 inches, no flip-flops, sandals, slippers, moccasins, or steel-toed boots


Spirit Dress Days


Every Friday is Spirit Dress Day. Throughout the year, we also have Free Dress Days.


  • Spirit dress consists of standard blue colored blue jeans in good condition without holes, or other approved uniform bottoms worn with the 2020-2021 FWAFA Spirit Shirt.

  • On half-days at the end of each six-week period, students are allowed to wear any FWAFA spirit shirt.

  • Free dress consists of clothing of the student’s choice, as long as it is in keeping with the standards set by the dress code. Length of clothing and coverage of the body must be consistent with uniform standards of dress. Students and families will be notified of dates for Free Dress through JupiterEd. sult in a silent lunch detention.



Tops


  • Red or blue Flynn O’Hara Uniform FWAFA-logoed polo shirt

  • White or light blue uniform oxford shirt with button-down collar, short or long- sleeved

  • FWAFA sweatshirts, cardigans, or hoodies sold through FWAFA or Flynn O’Hara Uniforms and worn over a dress code shirt



Bottoms


  • Flynn O’Hara Uniform plaid skirt no shorter than two inches above the knee

  • Flynn O’Hara Uniform plaid jumper that comes to the top of the knee (worn with oxford shirt)

  • Khaki pants or shorts no shorter than two inches above the knee with a black or brown belt or khaki skirt



Overall Appearance


  • Students must show respect for the academic environment by being well-groomed while attending school or school-related functions.

  • FWAFA uniforms will be worn in a clean and neat manner.

  • Students shall not wear any clothing or accessories that distract from or interfere with the education of themselves or others or is in any way disruptive to the learning environment.

  • Shirts must be worn tucked in at all times.

  • Visible undershirts must be white.

  • Apparel other than designated school uniforms is not to be worn at school unless the principal gives special permission to do so.

PTSO: The Heartbeat of FWAFA

It's not too late to join our amazing PTSO. Click here to join: https://fwafamerch.itemorder.com/sale


Family ambassadors are needed for each grade level 3rd -12th to be a resource for new FWAFA families. If you have student who has been at FWAFA 1 year or more PTSO will help you as you help new families navigate our school. Click here to sign up. FWAFA Ambassador Sign Up

Artsathon: TCAA Through the Ages

We are excited to kick off our 75th Anniversary Celebration with Artsathon: TCAA Through the Ages, a virtual time capsule of our past, celebration of our present, and announcements and discussion to get us excited about the future of our organization. From the first rehearsal of the Denton Civic Boys Choir in 1946, which laid the foundation for Texas Boys Choir, Inc., to growing and evolving to where we are today, Texas Center for Arts + Academics has always supported the talents and creativity of our students.


This year, we learned that even when we cannot perform in person, the show must go on! Artsathon: Live! was a tremendous success this spring, and we couldn't wait to bring it back! We invite you to join in the celebration by participating, watching, and helping us meet our goal.


This fundraiser will serve as the final cap to our annual fundraising drive, and there will be opportunities throughout the evening to support the great work of the schools, premiere choirs, and programs. Tune in on Facebook Live Sunday, September 27th from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. for performances from current TCAA families, faculty, and alumni, interviews, announcements, and prizes throughout the evening!


Make sure you “Like” the Texas Center for Arts + Academics Facebook Page and invite your friends and family to the Artsathon: TCAA Through the Ages Event on Facebook so everyone can tune-in to see your segment. Thank you for helping us make this a successful and fun event!

Juniors: Two Dates Announced for PSAT

CollegeBoard has recently announced that a second date is available to administer the PSAT/NMSQT test. The two dates are Thursday, October 29, 2020 and Tuesday, January 26, 2021.

11th graders have the opportunity to take the test one time on either date. The January 2021 administration will have the same benefits as the October PSAT/NMSQT, including eligibility for programs administed by National Merit Scholarship Corporation. More information on how to register for the test on either date will be sent to 11th graders and their families this week.


9th and 10th graders will be able to take the test on January 26. Information on how to register for that date will be communicated in October.

Required Attendance and Extra-Curricular Activities

Per our Student Handbook, students are required to be in attendance at school to attend any after-school organizations, clubs, or rehearsals. During 100% At-Home Learning, students demonstrate attendance by responding to the Attendance Check Question in each of their classes for the day. Be sure to complete these questions, prior to the club/organization meeting or rehearsal.
Big picture