McIntire Elementary School
Mission: High Levels of Learning for ALL!
August 30, 2020 UPDATES
*Updates to the August 14 McIntire Return to Learn Plan are in bold type in this newsletter.*
Dear McIntire Families,
The countdown is on! We are excited to meet our new students and see how much our returning students have grown. We have missed you so much! This school year is going to look different for all of us. We know and understand that last year's learning was cut short and we are going to do everything we can to take our students where they are and move them forward in their social, emotional, and academic growth.
On July 24, the district released the Return to Learn Plan for the 20-21 academic year. Then on July 31, answers to frequently asked questions were also released by our district. Under the guidelines of this plan and these FAQs, each building has created a building-specific return to learn plan. Please know that there has been a lot of work, thought, consideration and time put into all of these plans and with guidance from multiple groups. Our goal for all of these plans is to provide a safe setting for students and staff utilizing reasonable social distancing and sanitation protocols. While we may not all agree on all parts of these plans, our mindsets matter, and the way we discuss our concerns in front of our children matters.
It can be very stress-inducing living in uncertain times with changing and differing information. Please reach out if you have questions or concerns. As a mom of two boys, I will keep my mom hat on when speaking with you.
McIntire Return to Learn Plan - Updated 8/14/2020, 8/30/2020, 9/6/2020
Doors open at McIntire Elementary at 7:45. School begins at 8:05 am.
AM Car Riders & Walkers - We are asking that parents not drop off, or allow their students to walk to school prior to this time. There will be no way for students to social distance standing in lines in front of the building prior to the doors opening. Students who are dropped off by parents or who walk to school should arrive between 7:45 am and 8:05 am. Unfortunately, at this point, we are not permitted to have parents walking their students to class. As soon as this restriction is lifted we will allow this to take place again, as McIntire Staff has worked to be very open for our families.
AM Car Riders - Please use the circle drive in the front of the school. Avoid the two lanes closest to the building as this is the bus lane and it needs to remain unblocked. ALL students need to be dropped off in the circle drive. McIntire staff will stand beside your car when it is time for your child to exit the car. Please do not allow children to exit before a staff member stands at your car. McIntire staff will also direct traffic to help ensure your child's safety. Remind students do not cross without a teacher telling them to do so. To avoid blocking staff entrance to the parking lot please do not arrive at McIntire before 7:40 AM. If you arrive after 8:05, and the staff has gone inside, please walk your child to the door, buzz, and someone will meet you to bring your child in.
AM Bus Riders - Buses begin arriving at McIntire around 7:50. Buses use the lane closest to the school. Buses will no longer all dismiss at once for students to enter the building in the morning. They will be called on the radio and directed when to dismiss their students from the bus into the building to avoid big crowds of students.
Thermal cameras are installed at the main entrance of McIntire to scan all students and staff who enter for elevated temperatures. Anyone experiencing a temperature at/above 100.4 will immediately be moved to a designated area and screened for additional symptoms to determine if they need to be sent home.
Staff and students in 3 - 5 will wear masks at this time. Students in K-2 are strongly encouraged to wear masks at this time.
At this time we can not allow any type of shared food treat. Pencils, sticker sheets, etc are ideas that students can bring. Teachers will keep shared treats two days in advance of handing them out to students.
Book Donated to Classroom Library (teacher will read to celebrate)
Student's Choice of Math Game
Student's Choice of Read-Aloud Book
Students will continue to be celebrated over daily announcements.
McIntire begins dismissing car-riders and walkers at 3:20. Bus riders will begin to be dismissed around 3:30.
PM Car Riders - Car riders are dismissed at 3:20. Please use all three lanes of the circle drive in front of the school. Please remain in your cars as McIntire faculty will dismiss students to your cars. If you arrive after 3:30, please avoid the two lanes closest to school as this is the bus lane and it needs to remain unblocked. Staff members will communicate to the office and classroom teachers when they see the hangtag and call the student(s) from their classroom to come outside and load their vehicles. If your kiddo has not reached the front entrance by the time we move your round of cars, we will direct you to park in a parking space to wait for us to cross them.
**We will no longer have our car riders at the front entry as we attempt not to mix grade levels, instead, students will be waiting in their grade-level classrooms. Kindergarten & first-grade car riders will be out front with staff, waiting for their name to be called.
We are asking that, unless parents have business with the office, to please utilize the car-rider lanes to pick up students, and not gather near the front walk. Please remain in your car so that we can do our best social distancing. Those who do need to park and exit vehicles should park in a designated parking place so that they do not get caught in or block the traffic of car-riders.
Bus riders will no longer congregate in lines in front of the building or in mixed grade level bus rooms to wait for their bus. They will wait in their grade level classroom/area and be called from there to a designated line when their bus is entering the property. Kindergarten bus riders will wait in the gym with staff.
Staff and students in 3 - 5 will wear masks at this time. Students in K-2 are strongly encouraged to wear masks at this time.
Custodians will have a schedule where each bathroom is shut down and sanitized during the day. Classrooms and workspaces will be sanitized every evening/morning by the custodial staff.
During school hours, custodians will thoroughly clean high touch surfaces throughout the building on an ongoing rotation throughout the day, including bathrooms, water bottle fill stations, doorknobs, entrance/exit handles, handrails, walls, etc.
Teachers will sanitize surfaces when their class will be out of the room for a minimum of fifteen minutes.
Handwashing and Hand Sanitizing
Every classroom will have three handwashing times built into their daily schedule. Hands will be washed at arrival, before lunch, and before dismissal. Students will also have access to hand washing and hand sanitizer throughout the day as needed. Students will be required to wash or sanitize before and after eating, before and after recess, at entry to and exit from the building, at entry to and exit from the classrooms.
Cleaning materials and hand sanitizer will be placed in every classroom. Staff will be expected to support the cleaning and disinfecting of classroom surfaces and supplies as needed.
Assigned seats with required seating charts will be implemented in classrooms. As we know there is limited space in classrooms, these seating charts will be made to provide the best social distancing possible in that space. In spaces where social distancing cannot take place, students will have clear individual partitions to use throughout the day.
The practice of students sharing supplies such as scissors, crayons, markers, pencils, etc. will no longer be permitted.
Non-essential furniture and other soft surfaces such as carpets and seating will be removed for sanitation purposes.
Classroom libraries and stations will be altered for sanitation times between student use. There will be a sanitizing and social distancing plan in place for classroom libraries and stations.
- Physical Education
Students will go to the gym for physical education. Coach Dooley-Wilder has worked it into her schedule to have sanitation time for PE equipment between classes.
Mrs. M. Smith will be facilitating music classes in the students’ classrooms. All music equipment will be sanitized between uses. MaryRose will follow health guidelines regarding choir and band type activities.
Mrs. Diekamp will be facilitating art classes in the students’ classrooms. Art equipment will be sanitized between uses. For certain projects (like clay), Mrs. Diekamp will be rotating art classes between the students’ classrooms and the art room so that no grade level meets back-to-back in the art room.
Classes will go to the library during their scheduled library time. Due to the space in the library, classes will be able to utilize different parts of the library with sanitation time in between classes. Mrs. Johnson will have a system in place to ensure that books are sanitized before being returned to the shelf for another student to access.
Counselors will continue to go to classrooms to provide counseling lessons. When pulling individual students or small groups, the counselors will sanitize the counseling office between sessions and will follow the guideline of not mixing grade levels.
Special Education Services
Special education teachers will have adjusted their schedules to accommodate and provide services to their students in a manner that allows for sanitation time between students.
Reading & Math Intervention
Reading & math interventionists will have adjusted their schedules to provide interventions to students in a manner that does not intermingle different grade levels and allows for sanitation time between students.
In order to minimize the exposure of all students and staff to others outside of their assigned small groups, non-essential visitors and parents will not be permitted beyond the secure vestibules or entrances at school buildings. Due to these restrictions, traditional Open House events will not be held at schools this fall.
Any essential visitors who do enter the building will be required to enter through the main entrance, provided with a mask while in the building, scanned by the thermal temperature cameras, and will be tracked in a visitor log to include symptom screening questions, date and time of visit, where they travel to in the building, and which, if any, students or staff they have contact with.
Students will eat lunch in their classrooms. At their designated lunchtime, teachers will take their class to the cafeteria to pick up their trays and return to the classroom to eat. Students will wash their hands before eating and then sanitize hands before and after going to the playground for recess.
The recess schedule will be altered so that only one grade level will be on the playground at a time. Students will use hand sanitizer before and after recess.
K-2 students are strongly encouraged to wear a mask, grades 3-5 are required (like staff).
Masks will be worn on the bus, when students are unable to social distance, and in all classes when social distancing is not possible.
PE- Face coverings will be worn unless social distancing can be maintained or strenuous activity is taking place. Classes will take place outside as much as possible.
Music: Singing will only be permitted when face masks and distancing are possible when in the building. Singing will be permitted without a mask outside of the building with distancing.
Recess-Masks can be off with social distancing.
The district is providing 3 masks per student.
To be considered a face covering, the nose and mouth must be covered; Examples: gaiter, bandana, mask
Disposable masks will be available.
What is not considered a face covering:
A face shield is an extra precaution. It is not a face covering per CDC guidelines.
The CDC does not recommend the use of face shields for normal everyday activities or as a substitute for cloth face coverings because of a lack of evidence of their effectiveness for source control.
The purpose of masks is to keep respiratory droplets from reaching others to aid with source control. Masks with one-way valves or vents allow exhaled air to be expelled out through holes in the material. This can allow exhaled respiratory droplets to reach others and potentially spread the COVID-19 virus. Therefore, CDC does not recommend using masks if they have an exhalation valve or vent.
Teachers will ensure that face covering breaks can happen throughout the day.
Students will be able to take face covering breaks as needed throughout the day
When students are socially distanced (6 feet), they may remove face coverings/masks.
Staff will be teaching how to properly use the mask/face covering.
What happens if a student doesn’t have on a mask/face covering that should be wearing one?
Staff will ask them to put on the mask/face covering.
If the student continues to refuse, an administrator will be notified.
If the student continues to refuse for the administrator, a parent will be contacted.
If the student continues to refuse for the parent, the student will be sent home.
Other Building Notes
We are working to limit student movement in the building, as well as avoiding limiting student to student contact outside of their grade levels.
Until further notice, McIntire will not be able to have in-person assemblies or family nights.
All students will be encouraged to wear a mask in any instance where social distancing cannot be maintained including arrival, dismissal, and while riding the bus. A limited supply of disposable face masks for students will be available if a student forgets, misplaces, or damages their mask throughout the day.
Hand washing stations with soap and/or hand sanitizer will be available in classrooms, commonly used areas, and at the entrances and exits of all buildings.
Drinking fountains with refillable water bottle stations are being installed to be used for individual drinking containers such as cups or bottles. Students will not be able to drink directly from the fountain. It is encouraged for a student to bring their own bottle with their name on it that they can refill at this station. We have several water bottles in storage from our McIntire Bear days and previous Fun Run swag. We also will have cups available for students who forget or lose their water bottles.
Students or staff who display symptoms of COVID-19 while at school will be moved to a designated area within the school building to minimize contact with others until they go home.
At this time there will be no field trips scheduled for the 20/21 school year.
The instructional task force is finalizing guidance on distance learning for teachers and parents to guide the district if a shutdown becomes necessary.
First Day of School Notes
Due to Open House being canceled, and visitors not being permitted in the building, we will have extra staff on hand to assist students coming in the building the first day, and to guide them to their classrooms.
Families will receive car hang tags on the first days of school at arrival and dismissal times to assist with all future dismissal duty. If you still have your hang tag from last year, please continue to use it.