The Au Gres-Sims School District

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Hello Au Gres-Sims Families,

This week marked the first emergence of a positive COVID test in our building. As a result, we were put into the difficult position of having to quarantine two of our elementary classes. Both of these classes have transitioned into remote learning and will continue their education digitally until they are able to return in person. There is no getting around the fact that the pandemic has reached our community. With numbers rising everywhere I encourage everyone to be steadfast in their protections and to continue to follow the three W's: Wash your hands, Wear a mask, and Watch your distance.

The notifications that went out this week to families in our district certainly raised some questions, and rightfully so. Many of those questions center around some of the terminology that is being used and what those terms mean in terms of next steps.

  • POSITIVE CASE = a COVID test has been confirmed as positive via testing and that information has been relayed to the district; must quarantine for 10 days from onset of symptoms and be 24 hours symptom free after that window before returning
  • PROBABLE CASE = a case in which the an individual is experiencing COVID symptoms AND has had close contact with a known positive case. This is presumed positive; must quarantine for 10 days from onset of first symptoms and be 24 hours symptom free after that window before returning
  • CLOSE CONTACT = a person that has been within 6 feet of a positive or probable individual (whether masked or unmasked, symptomatic or asymptomatic) for 15 minutes or more of cumulative time in a 24 hour time span. This includes the 48 hours preceding the emergence of symptoms in confirmed positive and probable cases; must quarantine for 14 days from the last date of contact with a positive or probable case. If symptoms emerge, they should get a test. If they do not, they may return to school or work at the end of the 14 day window.
  • CLOSE CONTACT OF A CLOSE CONTACT = any person that fits the definition of a close contact to a person that has been determined to be a close contact (a degree of separation from a positive or probable case). These people (students) ARE permitted to attend school, but are highly encouraged to monitor their symptoms very closely.
  • CONTACT TRACING = process by which the patient, health department, and school district work together to investigate the potential spread of the virus
  • QUARANTINE = a period of isolation in which an individual is to the extent possible be away from all other people, including family. If a student is unable to isolate away from a positive or probable parent their 14 day quarantine time will not begin until the parent is 24 hours clear of their 10-day window.

With the movement of two of our classes to remote learning for a couple of weeks a need has bubbled to the surface that we want to share our thoughts on, food service. As you all know, AGS provides free breakfast and lunch to our students. This is a service that we extend to all students on our virtual Wednesdays as well as to all of our students that have selected the 100% virtual learning option through food distribution and pick up. It is our intention to continue to provide this service to our students even when they have to quarantine, whether that be a class quarantine or a self-quarantine situation. If you and your child find yourself in that situation, please contact the school and we will work with you to make arrangements for food pick up. In the event that the campus must shut down temporarily and we have to transition all of our learners to remote learning, we will continue to provide food service to our students on Wednesdays, with enough food for five breakfasts and five lunches.

As we rapidly approach the cold weather and holiday season I would like to encourage everyone to be very aware of what is going on around us with the pandemic. Numbers are on the rise everywhere we look and hospitals are filling up (see the attached message below from the Great Lakes Bay Region Hospitals). Now is the time to be diligent in our precautions and to continue to combat this virus that has changed all of our lives. I encourage everyone to be conscious of how you are feeling, to get the proper rest and exercise you need, and to stay home if you are sick. With something this large it is easy to feel overwhelmed, but the solution to our problem lies in every one of us doing the little things that add up over time.

Be safe. We will get through this together. #WolverinesLead #AGSInThisTogether

-Mr. Ming

Community Message-11/13/20
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As we traverse the world of remote learning, there are some “simple” things you may be able to do to make life a little easier. This first thought came from one of our parents. Thank you!

Chromebook screens are relatively small. So, is it possible to hook my chromebook up to my TV and work off of that screen? Yes...and no. For all of our Dell chromebooks (which is about ⅔) there is an HDMI port built in to use an HDMI cable. For our HP chromebooks, you would need to buy an adaptor to convert from USB-C to HDMI. These adaptors cost about $20-$30 and can be purchased from Walmart. After you buy one of these you can then connect the HDMI cable from your chromebook to the TV.

Unfortunately, we were not at school to celebrate and honor our veterans on Veteran’s Day this past Wednesday. The nice thing is that we can still learn who our proud AGS alumni are by clicking on the link below. This video compilation was created by Ms. Richardson and the Computer Productions class. Thank you everyone for your time and efforts in making this awesome celebration of our alumni in the Armed Forces! You can also access this video by going to the Live Feed on the school website.

And last but not least, good luck to all of our hunters this weekend! I look forward to seeing all of your successful excursions and hearing about the opportunity to spend time with family and friends. Be safe!

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From the Desk of Mrs. Socha

Since we started planning for the 2020-2021 school year, we tried to look at all of the possible scenarios in order to be prepared for anything that comes our way. I just wanted to take a quick moment to remind you of some of the resources that we have put together to help support families with virtual learning. These resources would be helpful to students who are currently face-to-face, in our virtual option through January, or temporarily virtual. Our plan of using the same platforms and online tools regardless of your learning plan was put into place to prepare for easy transition from one learning plan to another if need be. Our AGS Learning Resources Website has a whole section of help videos to guide you through the platforms and tools we have been using since September. Students who have been and are currently face-to-face have been using them daily in the classroom as well along with teacher guidance. The hope is that students are now much more comfortable with the platforms and should be able to use them proficiently moving forward. Please remember that our virtual Wednesdays are important days for our virtual students to connect with their teachers. However, teachers can be contacted via email at any time with questions or through Google Classroom. Please reach out if you need assistance. Virtual learning does require a lot of self-discipline to stay on track and commit to logging in and completing work each day. Like always, be sure to start each day in Google Classroom for announcements, assignments, and due dates to help keep you on track!
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Talking to Children about Coronavirus

This week AGS joined many other schools across the state, country and world that are addressing an active case of COVID-19. The need for heightened awareness and open family communication about coronavirus has never been higher than it is right now. Parents and caregivers play an important role in sharing accurate information, and are also called to be a refuge for children who are scared, worried or confused about what they are seeing and experiencing in this new COVID-conscious world.

I would like to share some resources with you that can get the conversation going to help young children understand more about COVID-19. These resources were produced at a time when masks were not yet recognized for the health benefits they afford to wearers and those around them, so masks are seldom mentioned in these materials. You may want to include masks as part of your talks with children.

The first resource, PBS - Tips for Talking to Young Children About COVID-19, is a quick read for parents. It offers tips on what to say to young children, along with ways to encourage healthy habits.

The next, NPR Comic for Kids that Teaches Them About COVID-19, includes a comic book that is appropriate for elementary aged children. Readers can scroll through the comic strip on their own, but parents can also read it with their kids. The comic can even be printed on one page and folded into a book.

The final resource I would like to share is a read aloud (or read together) story. The story can be found here: COVIBOOK My Hero Is You. This is geared more toward students k-3, but could also be a nice read together with older kids.

As we continue to navigate together through these days of COVID-19, please continue to encourage kindness, patience and forgiveness. These three elements can go a long way in making our world a better place for all.

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Junior High Basketball

Nov 17 Home vs Fairview 6 pm
Nov 19 @ Mio 6 pm
Nov 20 Home vs Oscoda 6 pm

Mark Your Calendars

  • Mon. Nov. 16: School Holiday for staff and students, Board of Education Meeting at 5:45pm
  • Wed. Nov. 18 and 25: Virtual Learning Days
  • Th-F Nov 26-27: School Holiday - Thanksgiving
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School Days

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