The Seahawks Call

Week of May 24, 2021 Volume 34

Delayed Opening on Monday, May 24th for Virtual Students

Reminder! Monday, May 24th, students learning in the virtual setting will not join classes until their third period class, which begins at 9:00 a.m.

All of our in-person students will be practicing our required emergency drills.

CCPS revised how it responds to certain incidents in schools, making it clearer what students and teacher should do during an emergency. Called a standard response, CCPS will use five actions developed by the "I Love U Guys" Foundation and adopted by the school system this year. Action items are lockout, lockdown, evacuate, shelter, and hold. Click on the link for additional information. CCPS Emergency Response Codes

End of the Year Schedule for Students

The last day of school for Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) students for the 2020-21 school year is Wednesday, June 16. For planning purposes, here is the end-of-year schedule for students.

  • Friday, June 11: two-hour early dismissal for all students (in-person and virtual)
  • Monday, June 14: two-hour early dismissal for all students (in-person and virtual)
    • This is the last day of in-person school for students who attend school on Mondays and Tuesdays (A-Day students/last names A-K).
    • These students attend school virtually on June 15.
  • Tuesday, June 15: two-hour early dismissal for all students (in-person and virtual)
    • This is the last day of in-person school for students who attend school on Thursdays and Fridays (B-Day students/last names L-Z).
    • These students attend school virtually on June 14.
  • Wednesday, June 16: two-hour early dismissal for students/student last day (asynchronous day)
  • Phase 2 students will continue to attend school four days per week until the end of the school year. The last day of in-person learning for Phase 2 students is Tuesday, June 15.

Library News from Mrs. H-J!


Somers Reads: The school year may be winding down, but the reading doesn’t end! While all physical books are due back in the library next week, students continue to have access to eBooks and audiobooks through their Destiny Library accounts. All students have been taught to access their library accounts using the link in their Office 365. There is also a free Destiny Discover app available for mobile devices. You can learn more about it HERE.


Summer Reading is on its way! Watch for more information to come home about summer reading. Here’s a hint – this summer students will be using Beanstack to log and record their summer reading. Beanstack is accessible to students through their Clever accounts. Beanstack also has an app for use on mobile devices to make it easy for your student to log their reading.


Library Notes: Charles County Public Library will be hosting its 7th annual ComicCon virtually on Saturday, May 12. They will have special guests, a cosplay contest, and all kinds of fun. You can find more information at their website here. A book I am currently excited about is the graphic novel, Class Act by Jerry Craft. It continues the story of friends Drew and Jordan, who attend prestigious Riverdale Academy. And for our 7th and 8th graders, the book Darius the Great is Not Okay by Adib Khorram introduces you to Darius, who is dealing with his family, his lack of friends, and his depression. A serious yet funny read.

PCR Pilot Testing

Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) recently partnered with the Maryland Department of Health (MDH) to participate in a voluntary free weekly COVID-19 screening program for students and staff. This is a pilot program in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to provide increased testing resources to schools. Our participation in the program will help CCPS plan for a full and safe reopening in August for the 2021-2022 school year.


CCPS will launch the pilot program on Monday, May 24, at five schools. The pilot schools include:

  • St. Charles High School
  • Henry E. Lackey High School
  • Milton M. Somers Middle School
  • Arthur Middleton Elementary School
  • Dr. Thomas L. Higdon Elementary School


The program is only available for staff at the pilot schools, students at those schools attending classes in person and anyone who falls in those categories who is not experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. The program is completely voluntary.


Parents interested in their child participating, as well as staff who want to participate, must register in advance online. Students and staff who register for the program are eligible to test once per week. Schools will share registration information with their school communities prior to May 24. Testing will not affect instructional time or school schedules. The MDH/eTrueNorth each week will provide to principals a confidential list of registered program participants.


Staff from the program’s laboratory partner, eTrueNorth, will oversee testing at the pilot schools and process all results. The test used in the pilot program is the nasal swab PCR test, which a student or staff member will administer themselves. ETrueNorth staff will also help any test taker, as needed.


Test results will be shared directly with parents and staff who register for testing. Only positive results will be confidentially shared with our Office of School Safety and Security to ensure the individual is quarantined to minimize exposure risks. This is part of our existing COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures when a positive result is reported.


CCPS plans to participate in the pilot program for the remainder of the school year. Opportunities for participation will be extended to students and staff participating in CCPS on-site summer programs. Parents or staff members with questions about the program can contact Jason Stoddard, CCPS director of school safety and security, at jstoddard@ccboe.com or 301-392-5550.


Sincerely,

Kimberly A. Hill, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools

SCHOOL SUPPORTS

ADMINISTRATIVE TEAM

Marlon Walker - 6th Grade VP - mwalker@ccboe.com

Cynthia Panizzi - 7th Grade VP - cpanizzi@ccboe.com

Wualanda Thenstead - 8th Grade VP - wthenstead@ccboe.com

Sonia Matthew - Administrative Asst. - smatthew@ccboe.com


COUNSELING SUPPORTS

Kenneth Tojek - 6th Grade Counselor - ktojek@ccboe.com

Nancy Franklin - 7th Grade Counselor - nfranklin@ccboe.com

Brittany Williams - 8th Grade Counselor - bwilliams@ccboe.com


INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP TEAM

Andrea Johnson - Reading Resource Teacher (Reading) - afjohnson@ccboe.com

Jennifer Branham - Instructional Resource Teacher (Math) - jbranham@ccboe.com

Suzanne Johnson - Learning Resource Teacher (Gifted Education and Testing Coordinator) - srjohnson@ccboe.com

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 Coordinator (students), or Nikial M. Majors, Section 504 Coordinator (employees/adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, Maryland 20646. 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.