What's Happening At TRJHS!
From the Desk of Mr. Sturges, Principal
Welcome Back Week!
On Wednesday, September 16th, we welcomed our Cohort A students back to school. Remote learners and Cohort B students logged in remotely and we kicked off another school year. Although this time we were all wearing masks and socially distancing ourselves, we were still able to have a great opening day. In a year like this, we were then able to recreate the same opening day feel for the Cohort B students on the following Monday. It had been a while since students were walking our halls and it was a rewarding day having safely returned our students to the building. With our new model for education we will be giving our best effort to maintain our high standards for education in an assortment of learning models. There will be moments of frustration as well as feelings of accomplishment and achievement for our students over these next few months. We will work together between home and school to make this as memorable of a year as we can. When our students reflect on their middle school experience at TRJHS years from now, we want them to "remember the year" and have it serve as a positive experience. We look forward to taking this journey with our students.
Parent Drop Off/Pick up
First off, I want to thank everyone for your patience with getting your students to and from school. We recognize the process takes time and it's gotten better each day. In an effort to expedite the process for drop off in the morning as well as pick up in the afternoon, we've taken a few measures. This is not new information, just a reminder on how we are facilitating this process.
We are able to begin letting students into the building at 7:20 each day. We ask parents to line up in two lanes. One line drives through the parking lot and lines up in the right lane out in back of the school. The driveway lane as you go straight entering the campus will line up in the left lane out behind the school. Please wait for staff to call your students for a safe and staggered entrance into the school. We ask that students have bags ready and are set to go so we can keep traffic moving at a steady pace. Once you drop off your child(ren) parents can exit the campus by turning right and heading back around the building.
As many of you already know, we've adopted a number system for pick up. Any student who is parent pickup has been provided a number that we ask is placed in a visible spot on the dashboard. We will use that number to begin dismissing students at the same time as buses are called. This has been very helpful at moving traffic along and minimizing travel at dismissal in our stairwells. Parents should wait at the sign near the back of the staff parking lot until directed by a staff member to move forward allowing the final buses to get into their positions. Once the buses are set we will direct parents into two lanes behind the school. Once you pick up your child we ask that you turn right and continue around the back of the building.
Teacher Absences for Remote Learners
Live Teaching: Remote and In Person
Expectations for Remote Learning and Masks
The two policies are included below for reference.
District Remote Learning Expectations
TANTASQUA REGIONAL/UNION 61
Remote Learning Student Code of Conduct
As remote learning becomes more common practice in our school district, it is expected that all rules for in-class instruction will be transferred to the remote environment. In addition to adhering to all aspects of the District’s Empowered Digital Use Policy, File IJND, the following rules and procedures are established for students receiving remote learning:
· All Acceptable Use Policy and Student Handbook rules continue to be in effect during Remote Learning.
· Students will not use cell phones during synchronous sessions, unless directed by the teacher or using as a device to access the teacher directed remote learning.
· Students will only use blank or solid color backgrounds, or no background at all, during Synchronous remote learning.
· First and last names will be used by students when labeling their “window”
· Comments and responses will be provided verbally, unless otherwise provided for by the teacher.
· Students should be attentive to synchronous sessions at all times, just as during in-person school sessions.
· Student attendance will be required at all sessions, and attendance will be taken with advance notice being provided for tardiness and absences to the extent possible.
· Synchronous Learning Sessions are not intended to replace parental/family/guardian supervision.
· All work products will be graded as during in-person school operations, except as altered by the establishment of an SEL Plan, IEP, 504, or similar arrangement.
· Student recording of live synchronous learning sessions will be strictly prohibited.
· Parents/Guardians/Siblings, etc., are not permitted to participate in, disrupt or record a Synchronous Learning Session unless explicitly granted permission because doing so violates the confidentiality of the other students in the synchronous learning session.
· Asynchronous lessons posted by any staff member cannot be reproduced or shared.
· Any violations of this policy shall be forwarded to the appropriate administrator for disciplinary measures.
District Face Mask Policy
TANTASQUA REGIONAL SCHOOL DISTRICT
The District is mindful of the evolving need for emergency measures to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. In consideration of the recommendations issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Massachusetts Department of Health, and the Massachusetts Division of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), the School Committee is adopting this emergency policy for all students, employees and visitors of Tantasqua Regional Schools.
Until further action of the School Committee, all students, employees and visitors attending Tantasqua Regional School District shall be required to wear a mask including (a) while attending school or a school function in any school building, facility or other area of a school campus, and (b) when riding in school-provided transportation. All masks must cover the nose and mouth of the student.
This policy applies to students waiting outside school buildings, before and after school, and to students waiting at bus stops. Students shall wear masks at all times except for the following:
● Students may remove masks for eating or drinking, only as authorized by school staff and in designated areas;
● Students may remove masks when appropriate social distancing measures are in place as determined by a teacher or school administrator, consistent with DESE Guidance;
● Students may be exempted from wearing a mask by Building Administration when providing medical documentation from a physician of a medical condition prohibiting mask wearing. These students will instead be required to wear a face shield. ;
● Individual students may remove masks on a case-by-case basis for specific instructional needs, as determined by a staff member, in which case the staff member will ensure appropriate social distancing measures consistent with DESE guidelines; or
● Students may be exempted from this policy due to special behavioral or individualized needs as determined by the Special Education Director or Building Principal.
Masks worn by students and staff can be disposable or reusable and shall:
● fully cover the nose and mouth and secure under the chin,
● be made with at least 2 layers of breathable material,
● fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face, and
● be secured with ties or ear loops.
Based on guidance from health authorities, neck gaiters, open-chin triangle bandannas and face coverings containing valves, mesh material or holes of any kind will not be considered appropriate masks.
If a staff member or student does not have an appropriate mask, or soils, loses, or breaks theirs during the day, they will be provided with a mask by the school nurse.
If a student attends in-person learning, the failure of a student to comply with these expectations and the willful defiance to follow direction from school staff will be considered insubordination. Violation of this policy will result in the student being removed from class for dismissal, and a parent/guardian being notified to pick up the student within 45 minutes. Further discipline with be progressive up to and including a requirement to be shifted to fully remote learning.
Visitors in violation of this policy will be denied entry to the school/district facility.
This policy will remain in place until rescinded by the School Committee.
LEGAL REF.: Commonwealth of Massachusetts, COVID-19 Order No. 31 –
REFS.: Center for Disease Control and Prevention – Considerations for Wearing Masks -
● Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education – Reopening
● Commonwealth of Massachusetts – Mask Up MA! –
SOURCE: MASC – August 2020
General Safety Requirements
Just as a reminder, the following are general safety requirements that are daily expectations for all staff/students:
All staff/students are required to wear a face mask at all times
Students will have scheduled mask breaks into each day.
Students will be encouraged to access the bathrooms for hand washing at any time. Hand sanitizer will be available in wall fixtures located throughout the building as well as in each classroom.
Teachers will be encouraged to take their classes outside. PE classes will be strictly outdoors pending weather conditions.
No large group assemblies or field trips will be allowed until further notice.
Calling in Sick/Appointments
Wellness Warrior Gear!
You are invited to check out the attached flyer and online store for some #WellnessWarrior gear! Whether you're representing school colors or your team color, we can all spread the message of kindness together! Order deadline: October 11. Any questions please see Mrs. Lowe (firstname.lastname@example.org)
1. Advise the Principal in the identification of the educational needs of the students;
2. Advise the Principal in the review of the annual school budget; and
3. Advise the Principal in the formulation of a School Improvement Plan.
It is my expectation that the School Council will meet at least once a month to accomplish our
goals. In order to meet the needs of faculty and parents on the Council, a meeting time will be
determined by the members at our initial meeting. We will offer a remote option for meetings as well. Please contact Mrs. Mars (email@example.com) if you are interested in being involved with this committee.