Scotty Updates

A Newsletter from Scotland Elementary School

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Week of March 8, 2021

Scotty Updates

The Scotty Updates has been created to provide families and staff with information regarding upcoming events, happenings, and programs at Scotland Elementary School. Please take time each Monday to review our newsletter. Thank you!

A Message from Mrs. Katkocin ❤️

Dear Scotland Families and Staff,


I hope you are all well and enjoying your weekend!


As Dr. Da Silva shared on Wednesday, we will remain in a full in-person learning model this week. Dr. Da Silva will communicate the learning model for next week to the community on Wednesday, March 10th.


Last week was Read Across America Week - Celebrating a Nation of Diverse Readers at Scotland. We had so much fun celebrating with common read alouds and themed spirit days. Our students and staff were so festive, and it brought such a sense of community to our halls and classrooms. See many fun pictures below!


Last, please note that March 15th is now an asynchronous day for elementary students. Elementary students will engage in a full day of asynchronous learning rather than half day. The reason for this change is due to CSDE requiring teachers to be assessed in the Foundations of Reading assessment. Teachers will be taking this proctored assessment on March 15. As a reminder- due to COVID, we do not have allocated professional development time for teachers, thus it will be necessary to make this adjustment to the school day for students.


Wishing you all a wonderful, healthy week!


Kind regards,

Jill


Reminder: If your child is going to change learning models, please complete this form, and email both your child's classroom teacher and Mrs. Anderson at canderson@ridgefieldps.net to notify us. We ask for 72 hours notice for any change in learning model, so we can ensure our records, PowerSchool, and classrooms are prepared for the change.


*Follow Scotland on Instagram @ScotlandElementarySchool

Virtual Attendance of In-person Learners

The main office staff and teachers have been receiving many questions regarding temporary switches to remote learning for students. Our elementary principals have put together these reminders to clarify questions around attendance and remote learning.


Unexpected remote learning is available for those students who are:

  • Ill and waiting for symptoms to resolve
  • Awaiting documentation from a physician of an alternate diagnosis or COVID test results
  • Required to quarantine for a period of time

In the event that a parent is making the decision to keep their child home for reasons other than the above , the student will be marked in PowerSchool as "remote present unauthorized.” As a reminder, if you wish to change your child to cohort C, we do request that you provide 72 hours notice.


Please note:

  • The learning experience, on short notice, may not replicate the remote experience that occurred during hybrid, or with other remote learners, as the lesson plan may already be drawn up for the day.

  • Students will receive live on camera instruction, but some instructionals materials may not be available for the student. If a student is going to be marked as "remote present" for a long duration, by the third school day, the teacher will provide an experience that resembles the typical remote learning experience.

  • Kindly let your child's teacher, the principal, and the nurse know by email if your child will be participating virtually prior to the start of the school day. The nurse will give you a call. If this is not possible, your child will be able to begin participating virtually the following school day.


Thank you so much for helping our teachers provide the best experience they can for all of our students.

Town Meetings Focused on the Board of Education 2021-2022 Budget

Monday, March 15, 2021

  • Town will hold a Public Hearing on the Town and Board of Education Budgets
  • 7:00pm


Thursday, March 18, 2021

  • The Board of Education will present their budget to the Board of Finance with a follow up meeting on Tuesday March 23rd if needed.
  • 7:00pm


Tuesday, March 23, 2021

  • Possible Board of Finance Budget Workshop with Board of Education
  • 7:00pm


Saturday, April 24, 2021

  • Anticipated Town Meeting on the Town and Board of Education Budgets


Tuesday, May 11, 2021

  • Town Referendum on the Town and Board of Education budgets

Snaps around Scotland 📸

Mixed Up Monday!

Hats off to Reading Day!

Read My Shirt Day!

Silly Sock Day!

Pajama Day!

Reminder from Mr. Truchsess

For their safety, please remind your child to wear comfortable clothes and sneakers on P.E. days (no boots, slip ons, etc.).

Events and Happenings

WEEK AT A GLANCE:


Monday, March 8th:

  • F Day

Tuesday, March 9th:

  • A Day

Wednesday, March 10th:

  • B Day

Thursday, March 11th:

  • C Day

Friday, March 12th:

  • D Day

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UPCOMING EVENTS:


Monday, March 15th:

  • Full Asynchronous Learning Day!! *Please note the change to this day!
  • Students will be involved in "asynchronous" (not live teaching) activities for the full day from home


Friday, April 2nd:

  • No school - Good Friday


Monday, April 12th -Friday, April 16th:

  • No school - Spring Break


Monday, April 26th:

  • Early Dismissal Day: Dismissal will begin at 11:30am
  • Students will be involved in "asynchronous" (not live teaching) activities in the afternoon from home


Monday, May 24th:

  • Early Dismissal Day: Dismissal will begin at 11:30am
  • Students will be involved in "asynchronous" (not live teaching) activities in the afternoon from home

You PTA Dollars at Work

Social-Emotional In-School Workshops Coming This Week!

Lorena Seidel, Social-Emotional Learning expert, will provide students with positive and mindful tools for handling emotional challenges. We are living in highly emotional times. Many children are experiencing stress, anxiety, loneliness, feelings of failure, anger, and sadness. These challenges are also known as "emotional injuries.” When we get physically hurt, let us say a cut, for example, our children know to wash it thoroughly and maybe put a bandaid on it. If it's deep enough, they know it might even need stitches. But how much do they know about how to take care of their emotional health?
Each class will spend their upcoming Library time working with Lorena and Mrs. Violante to learn about some mindful and positive tools to stay emotionally healthy. Students will create simple but powerful "Emotional First Aid Kit" for themselves. Lorena Seidel M.Ed. is a Social-Emotional Learning {SEL} Consultant, a certified Montessori teacher, a trained Positive Discipline Educator, a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction {MBSR}teacher, and a mother of three.

Two Author Visits Coming Soon

April 1 - Brod Bagert is the author of numerous books of poetry for children, young adults, and adults. A former lawyer and New Orleans city councilman, he penned his first poem as a favor to his daughter, who needed a poem to recite in a school program. Bagert realized that few poems written in children’s voices were available, so he wrote one himself. Bagert compares himself to Johnny Appleseed because he journeys across America, planting a love of poetry in children. Brod will be visiting with all grades 1-5.


Coming soon...Grace Lin has published over a dozen children's books, including DIM SUM FOR EVERYONE! and LISSY’S FRIENDS. Grace’s first children’s novel, THE YEAR OF THE DOG was released to glowing praise in 2006 and nominated to the TX Bluebonnet list, which she followed with THE YEAR OF THE RAT. Her novel WHERE THE MOUNTAIN MEETS THE MOON was awarded the 2010 Newbery Honor, chosen for Al Roker’s Today Show Kid’s Book Club and was a NY Times Bestseller. Grace’s early reader LING & TING was awarded with the Theodor Geisel Honor in 2011. She will be visiting with grades 1-5!

Dr. Kaboom Science Show March 15!

As part of their asynchronous work, students will be able to watch a super cool science show. Doktor Kaboom has created a special virtual, live version of his "Wheel of Science" show including optical illusions, chemical reactions, a homemade hovercraft, and more! Will we electrocute a pickle or create artificial gravity? Who knows? No two shows will be the same and anything can happen in a live science show! The show is being made available through the Ridgefield Playhouse and is being sponsored by Ridgefield Public Schools, the PTA and the Ridgefield Education Foundation! More information will be made available through your child's teacher on March 15th!

Scotland Virtual Talent Show!

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Join the PTA Today!

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Information to Keep Handy! 📓

Winter Weather Attire

As I have previously shared, at Scotland, we make every effort to send students outside for recess on a daily basis, as we are aware of the benefits of daily physical activity for children. As a part of our mitigating measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, our classroom windows will remain open to circulate air throughout the school year. As such, please make sure to send your child to school dressed in layers, as the classroom spaces can become very chilly.


Students go outside for recess daily, unless the weather/temperature is unusually severe. We will have indoor recess only when the windchill is below 20 degrees, or if it is actively precipitating. Please provide your child with appropriate outerwear each day including gloves, a hat, snow pants, and jacket. Students with appropriate clothing are permitted to play in the snow. Please note, for safety reasons, we can not allow children to play in the snow without gloves/mittens, snow pants, and boots. Students without snow clothing are permitted to play on the blacktop area. Please label your child(ren)’s outer clothing, sneakers, and rain wear for easy identification. Any lost clothing is placed in our lost and found area and kept for a period of time before being donated to charity. As always, thank you for your support!

Letter from Aaron Crook

12/31/20

Dear Families and Faculty,

I hope you are enjoying the blessings of the season and staying healthy.

Before returning to school on Monday, January 4th, we are requesting that you please watch this video that covers important topics related to our return to school safely. Topics within the video include:

  • RPS at current stage of the COVID-19 pandemic, including a review of the Farmingville outbreak
  • New mitigation strategies that will be in place on January 4th
  • Changes to the Connecticut travel advisory -- Important note: If you traveled anywhere other than New York, New Jersey, or Rhode Island, you must quarantine for 10 days upon return or submit a rapid antigen or PCR test to the Department of Public Health. Please also send a copy to your school nurse.
  • New quarantine guidelines from the DPH
  • Testing for RPS staff
  • Rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine

Mitigation

Increased mitigation measures will be in place when we return to school on January 4th, including a short-term reduction of in-person density in elementary school buildings via the hybrid learning model, and increased supervision of mitigation efforts by school nurses and building principals. In addition, Dr. Da Silva, Dr. Hannaway, Karen Dewing, and I will meet on Wednesdays with Town of Ridgefield Health Director Ed Briggs, and RPS Medical Advisor, Dr. James Ahern, to determine the learning model for the following week.

The video also reviews the importance of staying home from work or school if you have one of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) listed symptoms of COVID-19: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea.

Travel Advisory

If you traveled to any state or foreign country other than New York, New Jersey, or Rhode Island, you must quarantine for 10 days upon return, or submit a rapid antigen or PCR test to the Department of Public Health (DPH). Please also send a copy to your school nurse. More information on CT’s travel advisory can be found here.

Quarantine Guidelines

RPS has adopted the CT DPH revised quarantine guidelines of 10 days after an exposure to COVID-19. At this time, we are not allowing a test-out option after day 5. We may revisit after we see a sustained reduction in new cases at RPS. Parents may contact their school nurse with specific questions related to quarantine timelines for each child’s specific situation.

Testing for RPS Staff

RPS staff may now receive same-day testing at Connecticut Community Health Centers (CCHC) by registering online for a test. Bring your RPS ID badge to skip the line. Also, in partnership with First Selectman Rudy Marconi and DOCS Urgent Care, RPS staff may receive a rapid antigen test at Yanity Gym in Ridgefield (next to Central Office). To register for a test at DOCS, fill out the google form I emailed to RPS on December 14th or send me an email.

Vaccine

Phase 1a of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout has started in Connecticut. Currently, health care workers, including RPS school nurses and health office paras, have appointments to receive the vaccine. Educators and school staff will be in phase 1b. Facilitating the vaccination of our educators is one of our highest priorities. As soon as the vaccine is available to educators in phase 1b, we will communicate that information right away.

Aagin, please watch this video, wear a mask, wash your hands, and keep your distance.



In partnership,

Aaron

Aaron Crook, RN

COVID-19 Health and Safety Compliance Liaison

Coordinator of Nursing Services



Quick Links:

Ridgefield Public Schools COVID-19 Tracker

Town of Ridgefield COVID-19 information

Travel and Returning to School

Please refer to the website below regarding travel plans and what needs to be done if you and your family will be traveling to an affected state, territory, or country.


Connecticut travel advisory requirements have recently been updated and can be found here: https://portal.ct.gov/coronavirus/travel. Executive Order Regarding Travel: Pursuant to Governor Lamont's Executive Order No. 9S, anyone traveling into Connecticut from a state or territory, other than New York, New Jersey, or Rhode Island, or from a country other than the United States, is directed to self-quarantine for a 10-day period from the time of last contact within the identified state or country. An Affected Traveler is exempt from the self-quarantine requirement if the Affected Traveler (1) has had a test for COVID-19 in the seventy-two (72) hours prior to arrival in Connecticut or at any time following arrival in Connecticut, (2) the result of such COVID-19 test is negative, and (3) he or she has provided written proof of such negative test result to the Commissioner of Public Health via email to DPH.COVID-Travel@ct.gov or via facsimile to 860-326-0529. All test results submitted to DPH are confidential. All COVID-19 tests, other than COVID-19 antibody tests, are acceptable for this testing option. If a test was obtained in the seventy-two (72) hours prior to arrival in Connecticut, or following arrival in Connecticut, and such Affected Traveler has not yet received his or her test results, such traveler shall remain in self-quarantine in Connecticut until a negative test result is submitted to the Commissioner. If the test result is positive and the traveler is asymptomatic, he or she shall self-isolate for ten (10) days from the date of the test; if symptomatic, he or she should seek medical assistance. Travelers who test positive for COVID-19 prior to traveling to Connecticut should delay such travel and consult with a medical professional. All Affected Travelers are required to complete the Travel Health Form.

In summary, if your child will be returning from an affected state, territory, or country before returning to in person school, they will need to either quarantine for 10 days on their return to CT, or have a negative PCR or rapid test. The results of this test need to be emailed to Mrs. Martire prior to their return to in-person learning.

If you will be traveling, please notify your child's teacher, the nurse, and me via email that the student will be quarantining due to travel. We need to maintain records on the learning model for each student in the building.

Dismissal 🚘

Our dismissal process has been working smoothly, and I am incredibly grateful for your patience and flexibility as we navigate the space we have to use. We will continue to work with Ridgefield Police to ensure a safe, efficient pickup at Scotland! Just a few dismissal reminders as we head into the week...


  • Please be sure to enter dismissal information into School Dismissal Manager. If a family arrives to pick up a student whose name is not entered in SDM, the family will be asked to park, and then sign out their child with our security guard. This is to ensure the safety of each and every student.
  • Please have your students name(s) visible in the front windshield on the passenger side of the car. This will allow our staff to call students for dismissal in the most efficient way possible.
  • In the pick up line, students MUST enter the car on the passenger side of the car. We cannot have students walking between cars to enter from the driver's side. If your child must enter on the driver's side, please park your car, and one of our staff members will walk your child to you.
  • If you need to help your child buckle, or perhaps open a snack for their ride home, kindly park the car in one of the available spots to do so.

A Note from Mrs. Martire 👩🏻‍⚕️


If your child is ill or has been exposed to Covid-19 please contact me at 894-5825 extension 6575 or email me at lmartire@ridgefieldps.net.


Attached below is the letter that was sent out from the RPS nurses at the start of the school year for your reference. It includes a link to Addendum 5 ( also attached below: link to CT Guidelines) which was a collaborative effort by the Connecticut State Department of Education and the State Department of Public Health to provide schools districts with guidance and protocols for responding to specific Covid-19 scenarios that may occur with school reopening.


Due to COVID health and safety concerns, any student with any one of the potential COVID symptoms (cough, difficulty breathing, fever or chills, fatigue, muscle or body ache, headache, new loss or taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea) must remain home until the CSDE and CT DPH guidance is met in accordance with Addendum 5.


Addendum 5 has several scenarios based on symptoms and exposure. Becoming familiar with the document will be helpful as I will be referring to this often this year as we continue to experience this global pandemic.


Please feel free to contact me with any questions .


Stay well,

Lisa Martire

Virtual Learning Reminders

  • Students will be visible to the teacher and other participating students (please remind your child to have their camera on throughout the lessons).
  • Parents are encouraged to have their students independently participate via a location that is quiet and free of distraction, to the extent possible. Other individuals in the home are not permitted to participate in or be visible on the video conference, or otherwise observe the lesson, other than reasonable adult supervision of the student.
  • Parents and students are prohibited from recording video conferencing sessions. The district will not be recording any classes/sessions.
  • Depending on each student’s individual circumstance, teachers or service providers may request the facilitation of the supervising adult to assist the student in engaging in the session.
  • In addition, if your child needs to leave for a period of time during instruction (i.e. doctor or dentist appointment), please notify the classroom teacher ahead of time, just as you would if they were in the building.


Thank you so much for your partnership in making this experience a success!

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School Dismissal Manager


We continue to use School Dismissal Manager this year at Scotland. Please click below for information regarding this system. This system will be available to families in late August. A welcome letter will be emailed to families when the system is available. If you have any additional questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us!

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We'd love to see all the wonderful things our kids are doing during each week!

Send Photos To: robinpro@live.com