Mesquite PawPrint

Vol#7 Issue#7 The countdown for HYBRID learning . . .

From the desk of Mrs. Koberstein, Proud Principal

Dear Mesquite Families,


It has been a long time coming, but we hope you are as excited as we are to welcome students back to campus. We begin in a hybrid fashion on Tuesday, September 8. If the projections for the continued decline of our COVID numbers hold we will resume school fully in-person on Monday, September 21.


The hybrid return splits students into two groups. Students with the last name A-L will attend school on Mondays and Thursdays for a full instructional day 8:10am-2:55pm. Students with the last name M-Z will attend school in-person on Tuesdays and Fridays for a full instructional day 8:10am-2:55pm. Some classes need to be balanced due to enrollment changes and those families will be contacted directly by the child's classroom teacher. Performance Academy students will attend school for a condensed school day Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 7:15am-12:30pm beginning on Tuesday, September 8th. All students will participate in remote learning on Wednesday, September 9 & 16. Teachers will let students know what the plan and schedule will be for both Wednesdays during hybrid learning. Additionally, your child will have activities to complete independently on the two days they are not attending in-person each week when the teacher will be teaching the other half of the class. Students will need to log into Buzz for attendance for the at-home days. By only having half of the students, we will be able to teach routines and procedures to our students for a positive and safe return to school!


Students returning to campus can expect a few things to look a bit different, so please review and discuss these with your child(ren) so that we are all on the same page as we begin.


Acknowledgment Form

Please complete the acknowledgment form electronically included at the link below confirming your understanding of the COVID - 19 pandemic. Please complete this form for each of your students attending the school prior to September 8 - COVID~19 Acknowledgement and Disclosure Form


Daily Student Health Assessment

Before attending each day on campus, you and your student must complete a student health assessment. Please view the assessment here. Students who are sick or feeling any COVID like symptoms can’t be on campus. For more information including health resources and information please visit www.gilbertschools.net/healthservices.


Face Coverings

Students in grades 1-12 must wear a face-covering in the building including classrooms and when moving from one location to another around the campus. Preschool and kindergarten students may wear a face covering at their parents’ discretion. Make sure your child brings a mask each day they are in school. We also suggest each student brings an extra mask in a ziplock bag with their name on it to store at school. Consider using a lanyard attached to your child's face mask for when not in use or have them bring a ziplock baggie with their name on it. Masks are not required while students are eating or engaging in strenuous activities such as PE or recess in which social distancing can occur. We do recognize some students cannot safely wear a face covering. Refer to the Face Covering Student Exemption Protocol for more information and contact the school’s health office (Nurse Lisa) if you would like to discuss further.


Here are some other things we are doing at our school:

  • Drinking fountains will be turned off throughout the school. Each student should bring a water bottle with their name on the water bottle. Water bottles can be filled up throughout the day with classroom sinks or if in a portable with the bottled water. Cups will also be available for students who forget to bring a water bottle. Thanks to the help of our PTSO, we are installing two water bottle fillers on campus.

  • Students can arrive on campus as early as 7:45am and will proceed directly to their teacher’s classroom or to the multipurpose room if they eat breakfast at school. Staff will be on hand to help students, especially kindergartners and new students to Mesquite to find their way to their classroom as parents will not be permitted into the school.

  • Parents needing to visit the office or any school area will need to wear a face-covering and adhere to social distancing in the front office and other areas as much as possible.

  • Lunch schedules have been altered to ensure reduced capacity in the cafeteria, therefore at this time parents are not able to eat lunch with their child in the school cafeteria.

  • All treats for the classroom/class celebrations MUST be store bought and pre-packaged.

  • Handwashing instructions and reminders about wearing masks are posted around campus. Hand sanitizer will also be available in other areas throughout the school including the office. Teachers will have hand sanitizer accessible in each classroom as well as cleaning supplies that may be utilized throughout the day between classes as well as after recess or any other transition times.

  • As always, teachers and staff will review school and classroom routines and procedures. This will include walking in hallways, recognizing personal space, etc.

  • Hallways will have clear markings on where students should be walking.

  • Classroom seating will be forward-facing in rows as much as possible with assigned seating.

  • Check the teacher’s directions to see if your child will need to bring their Chromebook and charger to school on in-person learning days.

  • For drop-off and pick-up, please refer to the following guidelines: MES Drop-Off and Pick-Up


Transportation

Transportation will be offered to eligible students. To view your student’s route and bus stop information please click here: https://www.gilbertschools.net/bus. There will be enhanced procedures and protocols in place on our school buses. Each bus will have a visible sign reminding students that only students attending M-Th are to get on the bus on Mondays and Thursdays and those students assigned to Tu-F are eligible to get on the bus on Tuesdays and Fridays. In addition, there will be some special education students who will be transported on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays and have already been informed by the Special Education Department. Performance Academy students have transportation provided on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday to their training facilities. Transportation will not be available on Wednesdays during the Hybrid weeks.


VIK

If you are interested in registering for our before and after school VIK program please visit our website for more information and registration details.


Thursday and Friday, September 24 and 25 were originally scheduled as half days for elementary students due to Parent-Teacher Conferences. Both of these are now full school days for students and we will look to reschedule Parent-Teacher Conferences later in the fall. A PDF of the calendar can be found on the district website or at the following link below:

GPS Calendar


This newsletter is full of information and a few other changes (pay attention to the section on changes to parent pick-up and drop-off) that will be in place when you return. Additionally, for those students riding buses there is more information provided. Please read carefully and look for additional information to be coming your way from us and your child’s teacher prior to our return.


We are very excited to welcome our mountainlions through our doors! We know that there will be challenges ahead, but we also know that we will work collaboratively to make this a positive return to school. Thank you for your continued support of our staff and students. We can’t wait to see you on campus soon!


WANTED, a Mesquite parent interested in getting involved on the Mesquite Site Council! The purpose of this council shall be to act as an advisory committee to the school administration by providing input from all stakeholders into the decision making process regarding areas of school improvement. The School Council is the primary school advisory body devoted to achieve its vision, mission, and goals. Meetings are monthly on Wednesday mornings. If you have questions and/or are interested in serving on this important advisory committee for our school, please email your interest to Mrs. Koberstein, MES principal at: dawn.koberstein@gilbertschools.net


Thank you for your patience and flexibility as together we navigate this new school year. Also, thank you for being a valued partner in your child's education. It takes a team to educate a child, and you are an important member of that team! Together, let's make it the best year yet for our students!


Yours in education,

Mrs. Koberstein

Proud Principal of Mesquite Elementary & the Performance Academy

#mountainlionpride

At Mesquite, we develop & celebrate the WHOLE child while recognizing their unique qualities!

ON-SITE LEARNING Update

Please see the message from the Executive Director of Community Engagement and Strategic Initiatives, Jared Ryan:


We want to thank you for your patience, support and dedication to our GPS students. We certainly understand the unique challenges being faced by our community and want to continue taking steps forward in our offering of student support services. As the state health metrics continue to move in a positive direction, GPS is planning an in-person hybrid model to begin on September 8, 2020 with students attending in-person classes 2 days per week and working remotely the remaining 3 days. In order to support our families with continued Onsite Learning Support, your child(ren) will have their registration extended through September 4, 2020.


Onsite Learning will be modified to align with the hybrid instructional model beginning on September 8th and provide students with the ability to be on campus during the days of off-campus instruction. As an example, if your child(ren) is assigned to in-person classes on Monday and Thursday, then you will be able to register your child for Onsite Learning Support - Open Lab on Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday. Space within the Onsite Learning will be limited and all families will need to register for this specific service. Only the Onsite Learning Support - Open Lab will be available.


Registration in Eleyo for Onsite Learning Support - Open Lab during the hybrid period of time will open on August 31st at 8am and closes on September 2nd at 5pm. If you are in need of supervision for your child, please make sure you register as, once again, space is very limited.

Annual Update

If you haven’t already, we need for you to complete the online ‘Annual Update.’ The ‘Annual Update’ in Infinite Campus allows you to tell us of any updates to your contact information, address changes, and updates to emergency contacts.


In order to ensure we can communicate with you regarding your student, or in case of emergency, it is essential that we have your up to date contact details. Please log in to your Infinite Campus parent portal and complete your student’s ‘Annual Update’ today. If you have difficulty accessing your account in IC, please call the Mesquite front office and ask for Tara Snyder, our Attendance Specialist/Registrar.


Click here to log in to the Infinite Campus parent portal.


Click here for instructions on how to log in to Infinite Campus and troubleshooting resources.

Nutrition Nuggets from Jean, MES Cafeteria Manager

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Free Reduced Lunch Application

If you have any questions at any point during the application, click Help to get help with the current section.

A message from our Social Worker . . .

My name is Karina Nyberg and I am the new School Social Worker here at Mesquite Elementary. I am onsite 5 days a week. Please reach out if there is anything I can do to help. I am available by email (karina.nyberg@gilbertschools.net) or phone (480-813-1240 ext. 1209).


I am here for our Mesquite students to provide them with any resources they may need to achieve academic and personal success. I am also here for our parents if there are any community resources that you may need. Here is a link that shows a map for FREE hotspots. The link also has a section for tree tech help.


We don't want your family to go hungry during this uncertain time which is why we have partnered up with AZ Brainfood to help provide meals to families using our "backpack program." If you wish for your child/family to participate, please complete AZ Brainfood Opt In form below and return to me.

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Parent Tech Support

Need tech help? The GPS Parent Tech Support page is here to help!

A message from our School Psychologist . . .

I am Kelli Sullivan, Mesquite's School Psychologist. I am delighted to be joining the Mesquite staff. Feel free to access my webpage to learn more about me and to access information/resources. Your child's social/emotional health is important to us. Please complete this Social/Emotional Assessment if you feel your child could benefit from additional support.

News from Nurse Lisa

We are delighted for the start of in-person instruction. If your child is going to be needing medical support (administration of medication), please take a moment to email me at lisa.lecomte@gilbertschools.net or call me to arrange an appointment time for us to go over your child's medical needs, health care plans and for you to drop-off their medication in the Mesquite Health Office. Here is my Sign-Up Genius to find a date/time.


IMMUNIZATION COMPLIANCE:

All incoming Preschoolers, Kindergartners, 6th graders and New students need to submit current immunization records, if you have not already done so. Letters are being mailed to those with missing immunizations. Please be advised that the exclusion for non-compliance is August 28th.


Please refer to this link for immunization requirements and forms.


Immunization records can be sent via email to me, faxed, or in person to the front office. Feel free to call the health office with any questions!

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FREE FACE MASKS

If you're looking for face masks for you or your family, please use this link for more information.

Stay Connected to Everything Happening at Mesquite . . .

Mesquite PTSO News:

Our fall fundraiser is underway! By participation in this fundraiser, you will help support the teachers, staff and students at Mesquite Elementary. The Mesquite Elementary PTSO (Parent Teacher Student Organization) is a group of parents who work to support our students, teachers, and classrooms. The PTSO’s primary focus is to provide supplies and equipment needed in our classrooms. We don’t know what the year will look like, but we want to be prepared to support the Mesquite Community however we can!
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Zag Fundrasing Video - Online Only
Mesquite Elementary PTSO Facebook Page

Stay connected by joining the Mesquite Elementary PTSO Facebook page. Mesquite remains a GREAT school because of our community working together to support our school to create the school we want for our children.

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MES Staff Recognition

Take a moment to recognize a deserving Mesquite Staff member.

STAY CONNECTED WITH US!