Sycamore Leaf

August 21, 2021

Coming Together

On the first day of school, students, staff and family members, each filled with their unique amalgam of emotions, will be drawn back into the orbit of our school. Once here, we'll become part of one body and the actions of each of us will touch the other. With the conditions not yet as we'd like, our connection and communication could not be more important. Together, we will support the physical safety of our students and build the relationships that allow us to exercise and receive care, enjoy a sense of belonging and support us in a journey of learning and change.

In this Leaf, I'm providing information to get us started on that journey. Communication will continue through the weekly Leaf, postings on our website, interaction with your teacher and occasional Blackboard emails or phone calls. Please reach out if you have questions, ideas or needs. I look forward to connecting with each of you.

Sincerely,

Amy Stanger, Principal

astanger@cusd.claremont.edu

909-398-0324 ext. 63001

Calendar

Tuesday, August 24

  • Informational Meeting, Zoom, 6:00-7:00 PM

Wednesday, August 25

  • Kindergarten Tours (times sent via email)

Thursday, August 26

  • New Student Tour, 9:00-9:45 AM

Friday, August 27

  • Teacher assignments will be posted in Parent Connect (see directions below)

Tuesday, August 31

Back to School Night, Zoom (links will be emailed Monday 8/30)

  • 5:30 PM-6:15 PM Kindergarten-First Grade Classes
  • 6:20 PM-7:00 PM First-Second and Second-Third Grade Classes
  • 7:05 PM-7:45 PM Fourth-Fifth-Sixth Grade Classes

Wednesday, September 1

  • First Day of School, students arrive between 8:00 AM and 8:10 AM
  • Dismissal at 1:00 PM (as is true every Wednesday)

Monday, September 6

  • No School, Labor Day

Our 2021-2022 student calendar is posted on our school's website.

Informational Meeting on Tuesday

Many of you learned about our district's reopening plans during CUSD's Community Meeting last Wednesday or Thursday evening's Board of Education meeting. Both of these meetings provided listeners with detail on the guidance we've received from the Governor as well as state and county health agencies. These reports outlined a summary of safety protocols, mental health supports and procedures for health screening and responding to possible COVID exposures. Cabinet leadership also provided information about CALM, Claremont Alternative Learning Model, the independent study option now available under AB 130. A PowerPoint of the Board presentation is quite robust and available on the CUSD website. As mentioned in Dr. Wilson's weekly letter, an FAQ from Wednesday evening will be available soon.

The protocols of the Reopening Plan apply to every school in CUSD, and I'd like to share how they will apply to our day-to-day at Sycamore. Please take a look at our school's 2021-2022 Handbook. It outlines our school's goals and traditions and provides details on schedules and routines. This year's copy includes information about our current plans related to orders of LA County's Department of Health. It is an interactive book, so you'll find it easy to move to additional resources, webpages and documents. I'll host an all-school family informational meeting on Tuesday, August 24 from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM. During this Zoom meeting, I'll review the contents of the handbook and describe our plans for promoting safety during drop-off and pick-up, recess and lunch, classroom interactions and special activities. A recording of the meeting will be posted as a resource.

Back to School Night will be held on the following Tuesday, August 31. See meeting times in the calendar section.

Class Placement will be shared through ParentConnect

ParentConnect allows parents to view their child's attendance record, standardized test data, and pay for school lunches online (currently all students will receive free lunches and snacks). ParentConnect will also be the place where you will find your student's teacher assignment for the school year*. The district will post this information on Friday, August 27. On Monday, August 30, you will receive an email with information on how to connect to your teacher's virtual Back to School Night.

To sign in to ParentConnect, click "demographics" and look in the upper right corner under "advisor" to see the name of your child's teacher. Click here for help with ParentConnect. If you need assistance with your password, you will need to contact us in the school office. We cannot share your login information via email.

*For privacy reasons, we do not post class lists. Students will meet their classmates on the first day of school.

Student Technology

All CUSD students will be provided a district iPad loaded with the instructional apps they need. A Device Check-Out Form is being provided to outline the conditions for using this device. Parents/guardians should review and sign this form and then send it back to the school. This will allow the student to use the device at school and bring it home (at the direction of the teacher or in the case of extended learning at home). An electronic version of the form is available here for your review. A hard copy will be sent home with your child on the first day of school. Please return this form as soon as possible (you may leave the asset tag portion blank). Families may also purchase insurance for the device. A flyer for the insurance is available here. A hard copy will be provided.

Don't forget!

It's very important for families to ensure we have complete information in our registration forms. Both new and returning families need to log into their ParentConnect account to ensure all 2021-2022 Required Forms are complete and emergency contacts and phone numbers are updated. In the case of illness or injury, we'll need to contact you right away, so please make sure to provide multiple contacts, if you can. See these directions or give us a call.

News from Nutritional Services

Under current policy, all students will receive a free lunch, snack and breakfast. A monthly menu is posted on the Nutritional Services website. Students will let their teacher know if they need a school lunch each morning. Those students who need to eat breakfast at school may enter campus at the southernmost Yale gate between 7:45 AM and 8:00 AM. Snacks are provided at morning recess. Lunches are individually wrapped.

Whether eating a school lunch or one from home, we remind students to eat only the items given to them by the cafeteria or their family. We'll not be sharing food items. Please talk with your child about this important safety practice!

Parents are no longer required to fill out an application to qualify for free meals. That said, we encourage completing the application because of the additional benefits of eligibility status. P-EBT cards, band instrument usage, reduced or waived assessment fees, and tutoring are a few of the benefits students can still receive when you apply. You can find a printable or electronic copy of the application under the Nutritional Services tab in the CUSD website. Please call their department if you have any questions. (909)398-0609 X 73003.

Health and attendance

Communication and adherence to protocols will be key as we work together to ensure student health. We ask that you check-in with your child about how they're feeling before coming to school. If you have any concerns at all, please keep your ill child at home. If your child is sick, please email Norma, our health assistant, at nperez@cusd.claremont.edu or call the attendance line at 909-398-0325.

As a part of our daily screening, we will ask each student questions about wellness as they enter the campus. When a child reports not feeling well either during screening or later in the day, they will be given a medical grade mask and be monitored in our outdoor health area while awaiting pick-up by a family member or guardian.

We realize the symptoms of colds, allergies and tummy troubles are also covid-related symptoms. While we do not want to cause undue concern, it is important that we respond in a way that promotes safety for all. Please know we will investigate all cases thoroughly and follow guidelines of the Department of Public Health for school exposure. We will support families in the process of acquiring testing, communicate with parents/guardians of close contacts and notify the school as a whole. The district's presentations on the Reopening Plan addressed this topic at length. Look for this on the CUSD website.

Before closing this topic, I want to speak directly about absences from school. If your child is not ill but they are not coming to school for a personal reason, please report that openly rather than calling them in "sick." Otherwise staff will be contacting you to obtain details about the illness. If your child has not been feeling well for any reason, do not allow them to return to school until they are free of vomiting, diarrhea or fever for 24 hours ("fever free" means they no longer require a fever reducer). There are additional requirements for returning to school following COVID. Please feel free to contact us with questions.

Drop-Off and Pick-Up

Details for drop-off and pick-up are included in the school handbook. In general, families with one or more children in the primary grades will drop-off and pick-up their family at the Yellow-Yale gate, and families whose students are all in the fourth, fifth and sixth grades will drop-off and pick-up at the Green-Harvard gate. This will be your assigned gate regardless of whether students walk or drive to and from school. At the mid-day 11:50 AM dismissal, kindergarten students will be picked up along 8th Street. No one will enter or exit near the school office on 8th Street. In both the morning and afternoon, the Yale and Harvard curb operates as a drive through lane. See the map in the handbook for greater detail.

Is campus open to visitors?

At this time, we ask that school business be completed remotely. If you need any resources or need to speak with a staff member, please contact them by email or call the school office at 909-398-0324. After school conferences and Individual Education Plan (IEP) meetings may be held virtually or in person. Please contact Mrs. Stanger if you have questions or specific needs. We will keep you informed as these plans change.

What to bring?

As you're thinking about school supplies, make sure to put masks at the top of your list. Current protocols require everyone to wear a face covering while indoors at school. Mask coverings should fit comfortably to cover the nose and mouth and be washed daily. Masks with one-way valves or gaiters are not approved. The school can provide your child with a mask if they need one or if theirs becomes soiled or lost during the day. We advise keeping a back-up mask in a backpack, and marking both masks and backpacks with your child's name. We also ask students to bring a full water bottle each day. They may fill their water bottle at our water bottle filling stations, as need be.

As a school, we have purchased basic classroom supplies for each student so you will not need to send your child with personal supplies. Throughout the year, your child’s teacher may ask for specific donations. Donations of Kleenex, pencils, pens, crayons, markers, tape, glue sticks, 70 page spiral notebooks and writing paper are always appreciated. We share these with students as they need them. If you have need for any items for school or use at home, please let us know in the office. We are happy to help.

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