MONDAY, December 14, 2020

Latest Information

Dear Families,

We are now our second week of all remote learning. I know that some of you are doing just fine with the switch to all remote, and I have heard from a few people that are experiencing significant challenges. In elementary school, remote teaching and learning is not ideal. We need to have students in school in order to do our best teaching and for students to do their best learning. Unfortunately, our only option is to do this work remotely. This is particularly challenging for parents who need to work and rely on others to help our youngest learners get online off and on all day. I am and continue to be open to your feedback, questions, and suggestions. Please reach out to me. More importantly, please communicate with your child's teacher. They may be able to best assist each of you with specific concerns. Last week, I shared the expectations and gave a sample online and offline timeframe for reading. Below, I am sharing a sample full day schedule. Online time is listed first. The additional time for each content area is time for independent work that is not online.

Morning meeting - online for 20 minutes whole class. Engaging, interactive, character building work

Reading - online for 15-20 minutes. Then, the students go read to themselves for 20 - 30 minutes.

Writing - online for 15-20 minutes. Then, the students go read to themselves for 20 - 30 minutes.

Fundations - online for 15 minutes. Handwriting practice for 10 - 15 minutes.

Math - online for 30 minutes. Math practice work for 30 minutes.

Science/Social Studies - online for 15 minutes. Independent work for 20 minutes.

Snack 15 minutes - students are on their own.

Lunch 30 minutes - students are on their own.

Recess 30 minutes - students are on their own.

Music, Art, or PE 40 minutes online

Recall that the student day is 6.5 hours. Homeroom Teachers should be holding students on screen for about 2.5 - 3.5 hours across the entire school day. The specials may be in addition to this time. This is similar to what we had in the fall - about 50% online and 50% off screen.

Attendance in this virtual setting is also required. Students must be online to count as virtually present. Students must also be attending their small group classes. These small group classes include: occupational therapy, speech, physical therapy, English Learner classes, Reading intervention, special education small groups, and classroom teachers may have small group sessions with your child. These are not optional. These represent the required services for your child to support their learning. The online times are when teachers are teaching students. They are sharing the standards required for students at each grade level. This online time is often interactive with teachers asking students to share, answer questions, and talk to their classmates potentially.

Report cards will be available for viewing in the Aspen portal as of 3:00 pm on Friday 12/18/20. They will also be mailed to the addresses we have on file for each student. In these report card envelopes you will find reports from other teachers (ELL, SPED, Interventionists) and therapists. In addition, some families may receive a letter regarding attendance and participation.

Big reminder - the holiday break will be from Wednesday 12/23 - Sunday 1/3. Our tentative return to school in person date is 1/4. Dr. Hallett will be meeting with town officials, Nantucket Cottage Hospital, and the Director of Public Health during the break. She will communicate via email and pace message if the date of 1/4 needs to change. During this holiday break, I truly hope all of you have a chance to take a pause in this crazy time to enjoy some rest and relaxation as well as time to enjoy your families, in small pods while maintaining safety protocols.

We cannot impress upon all of you and us enough the importance of following safety protocols. These include: wearing a mask, washing hands, staying socially distant from others, and staying in your pods. In addition, I would like to add do your own contact tracing. We have been so grateful to the families who have shared with us when they have a positive case in their home. This has enabled us to act quickly and determine close contacts in school. We are so grateful. Our school nurse, Meri Lepore, is on the Board of Health for Nantucket. She has been an incredible help to all staff, school families, and our island community. She has done a tremendous amount of contact tracing also to quickly support our students, their families and the staff. Travel is not advised at this point as our only safe state is Hawaii. These safety protocols are even that much more important.

I continue to be grateful for all of your inquiries. I have been incredibly humbled by the positive messages shared regarding the staff who work with your children. I am also humbled when concerns are shared. We must work together. Our NES Community has always been great at this. Please continue to reach out. Have a very merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, and a very happy New Year!! Stay safe and healthy.


Kimberly Kubisch, Principal NES


Kimberly F. Kubisch


Kimberly F. Albertson

Assistant Principal

Holiday Travel

Please be thoughtful and careful when planning holiday travel. It will be necessary for students to quarantine or test negatively if you travel to all states with the exception of Hawaii. This means you must test negative when you return from the other states. The testing negative is important for the safety of all of our students, their families, staff, and their families. Thank you in advance for your attention to this. I have shared a link for current Corona Virus information.

Children with any illness symptoms

Please be sure to review the Home Screening survey with children at home before they come to school each morning. It is very important to not send children to school with any illness or with medications ingested to reduce symptoms.

Home Screening Protocol

Know that we understand and appreciate when you choose to keep your child at home because they have one of the symptoms or don't feel well, not necessarily COVID-19 positive but run down as happens to us all. With a bit of notice and clear communication to your child's teacher, they can work with you to determine the child's participation in synchronous and/or asynchronous work.