January 18- January 22
Note from Ms. Muehling
Thank you for your support as many families transitioned to remote learning this week. As Austin remains in Stage 5, we appreciate all families who were able to have our Panthers continue their learning from home. If you would like your child to transition to remote learning, please reach out to your child's teacher and/or administration and we can ensure all learning supplies are gathered and ready for pickup.
Unfortunately, BW did see a spike in positive COVID cases and exposure this week. We had four confirmed positive cases and many exposures that have required quarantining. To ensure the safety of our students and staff members we are reminding our students to wear their masks properly (covering their nose and mouth), washing hands frequently, and socially distancing when possible. Our outstanding custodial team continues to deep clean classrooms and use additional cleaning procedures for all exposed areas.
This week we will continue our Annual Science Fair. A huge thank you to Ms. Vincent, Ms. Noid, and the Science Committee for working hard and creating a virtual option for our students. I can't wait to see our Panthers' hard work and creativity come to life this Thursday and Friday.
As you may have noticed, our Music classes have been asynchronous. Ms. Schiele will be out for the remainder of the year and we are looking for a long term substitute. Students will continue to participate in music lessons through BLEND. This week and next we have found a substitute that will be able to proctor lessons for our in-person students and I will be uploading lessons to BLEND throughout the week. If you know of anyone who is interested in subbing in our music class for the remainder of the year, please have them reach out to me.
Thank you again for your support. We appreciate our BW community so much!
Peace, Love, Panthers!
This Week's Events
January 25-29: Great Kindness Challenge
January 29: Asynchronous Learning Only (No District In-Person Learning)
February 2: PTA Meeting 5:00
February 5: Magnet School Applications Due (5th Grade)
February 8: CAC Meeting 3:15
February 9: Benchmark Testing (3rd-5th)
February 10: Benchmark Testing (3rd-5th)
February 11: Benchmark Testing (3rd-5th)
AISD: MLK Celebrations
Historically, Austin ISD celebrates the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. by participating in the annual MLK Celebration march, sponsored by the Austin Heritage Council. This year, the march and many other Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities are being modified to keep everyone safe.
AISD encourages students, families and staff to celebrate safely with us at one or more of the free opportunities listed below. Whether you participate in these events or find your own way to honor Martin Luther King Jr., please be sure to use the hashtag #AISDMLK in your social media posts.
MLK LiveStream and In-Car Rally
Monday, Jan. 18, 10:30 a.m.
In place of the traditional march and festival, the Austin Area Heritage Council will host a small, in-car rally, which will air on its Facebook and Youtube pages. Community members are invited to watch a short program honoring the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and recommit to advancing the cause he died pursuing: social justice and racial reconciliation.
SCIENCE FAIR THIS WEEK!!!
Hey Panther Families!
an announcement from Ms. Vincent
Head over to the Bryker Woods Community BLEND course to check out the NEWLY UPDATED BW Science Fair BLEND page! Here, you can grab your copy of this year's Virtual Science Fair Information Packet and complete your online registration form. This page also contains lots of useful things such as important dates, downloads, links, and guidelines to help you with your Science Fair adventures.
Be sure and check back later next week for online volunteer sign ups and project submission pages!
We are also still looking for some awesome Panther Parents or community members to help judge our virtual Science Fair projects this year! Judging will take place Tuesday, January 19 – Thursday, January 21. There is not an assigned time slot for judging- projects may be scored at any time during this window that is convenient for the judge. If you're interested in helping out, head over to the Science Fair page to learn more about how this will work this year and complete our Volunteer Judge Sign-Up Form.
As always, feel free to let Ms. Vincent or Ms. Noid know if you have any questions or need help. GO SCIENCE!
Additional Mass COVID Testing Available
In order to be proactive and offer additional testing resources to our students and staff, Austin ISD will be offering mass COVID-19 testing once per week while we are in Stage 5 in Austin/Travis County.
We are also excited to announce that rapid tests (for mass testing events only) are now available to ALL Austin ISD students and staff, which includes those who learn and work in-person and remotely.
January Dates and Times
- Thursday, Jan. 21 from 8:30 am-5:30 pm
- Friday, Jan. 29 from 9:00 am-3:00 pm (district asynchronous day)
Locations (for both days)
- North: Northeast Early College High School (Nelson Field) 7105 Berkman Dr. Austin, TX 78752
- South: Austin ISD Central Office 4000 S. IH-35 Austin, TX 78704
Participants must register to be guaranteed testing. REGISTER HERE: https://forms.gle/mv9ScYqSTftJiPP76
Items to Bring to Your Testing Appointment
- Austin ISD ID or Badge
- Completed Consent Form
- QR Code from Pre-Registering Online (not required, but strongly encouraged to help decrease wait times): https://register.txrapidtest.org/
If you are unable to make either date listed above, or if you have non-AISD family members who wish to access testing, we encourage you to contact your primary care provider or schedule an appointment through Austin Public Health: https://www.austintexas.gov/covid-testinfo
Alexandra Copeland, Director of Health Services
Update: Opportunity to Support Ms. DiGaetano
As I mentioned last week, Ms. DiGaetano welcomed her baby girl, Cecelia, 11 weeks early. A group of wonderful 1st-grade families are organizing ways to support Ms. DiGaetano and her beautiful family.
Please see this link on Living Tree for more information on how to support Ms. DiGaetano.
BW Library Announcement
Regularly Scheduled Library Classes Resuming
I am so excited to announce that we will be starting our scheduled library classes at the end of January! Remote and in-person students will all participate in biweekly lessons, with in-person students having the option to check out a book to keep in their classroom. Classes will be safely held in the library, with only one to two in-person classes a day. Remote learners will join on a Zoom with Ms. Kettler, and have the option to check out an eBook through our virtual library MackinVIA. All schedules will be communicated through your teacher. I am looking forward to formally working and reading with all our students once again!
Central Texas African American Family Support Conference
Wednesday, February 3, 2021 - 8:30 am to Friday, February 5, 2021 - 6:00 pm
Join us for the Central Texas African American Family Support Conference which will be held virtually, Feb. 3-5 from 8:30 a.m.–6 p.m.
- Inspirational speakers like Grammy-winning songwriter Billy Dorsey, who overcame depression and homelessness to reach his dreams, plus Dr. Brenda Combs and Dr. Lonise Bias
- 20 interactive workshops on grief and loss, COVID-19 and racism, trauma, Black men and mental health, self-care, substance use and much more
- Entertainment from Austin’s finest hip-hop duo Riders Against the Storm as well as local icon DJ Hella Yella
Austin ISD will be providing scholarships to AISD families who would like to attend the conference. Deadline to request a scholarship is Fri., Jan. 22.
Any AISD family interested in attending who needs a scholarship to pay the conference fee can register with their @AustinISD Parent Support Specialist or call the AISD Parent Engagement Support Office at 512-414-0726. Visit: ctaafsc.com for details.
If you have any questions, please contact your school Parent Support Specialist or Jennifer Vasquez at 512-414-0726.
AISD Family Survey
The Austin ISD 2020–21 Family Survey is now available and is accepting responses online through March 5, 2020. Please click the link below to access the survey.
Families are encouraged to participate so they can share input on district and campus performance. The survey includes questions about how well school staff and leadership communicate with parents, as well as how easily parents may communicate about their students and how families learn about programs offered at their school. Due to COVID-19, it is especially important this year to provide your opinion to ensure we are providing a great experience for you and your child.
The results will help district leadership learn how to best to improve services for our students.
To take the survey:
2021/2022 Calendar Survey
Austin ISD is currently working on the calendars for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 school years. The Calendar Task Force has worked very hard to prepare two (2) calendar options. Please take a minute to vote on the calendars that you prefer for each school year.
Please click on this link to view the calendars and to vote: Vote here
Or copy and paste the URL below into your internet browser:
If you have technical issues with this survey, please contact Cinda Christian at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Technology Available at BW!
If you need to request a device, please reach out to Ms. Kettler.
iPad Home Screen/Layout Settings by The Time of Day
Beginning Friday, September 25, Austin ISD iPads have settings restrictions that vary by time of day. From 7:00 am-4:00 pm, Monday to Friday, apps will appear in the current pushed layout. Outside of those hours, the apps will revert to any customized layout caregivers have set, AND they will be able to delete apps they have added. (Note that the iPads have 32GB of storage, and currently 13GB is taken up by District-required content.)
Lost/Stolen student devices:
Families should follow the procedures outlined here.
Student devices in need of repair:
Families can take iPads, Chromebooks, and hotspots in need of repair to either your school or to one of the Curbside locations, where they can be swapped out as long as supplies allow.
“Power wash” Chromebooks to Update Zoom:
Students may notice that Zoom is out of date on their Chromebooks. Students and caregivers that Chromebooks must be “power washed” (restored to Austin ISD default settings) for Zoom to update automatically. Here is a step set as well as a link to a video.
MackinVia and Dreambox added to iPads:
The MackinVia and Dreambox apps have been added to iPads. Apps on the student iPads will soon be organized into logical folders to streamline student access and hide infrequently used apps and system apps.
Students use the Canvas Student app to access BLEND (and then Seesaw)
A video in English demonstrating this process can be seen here. A video in Spanish is in progress and a link will be provided as soon as it is available.
Student iPad Security and Student Safety
Please note: District-wide safety restrictions can be seen on the iPads under Settings> General > Device Management > JamfSchool MDM Management Profile > Restrictions. Families may see other options under Screen Time, but despite appearances, no Screen Time setting can be less restrictive than the General Restrictions pushed by the District. A flyer for distribution is available here.
Have a question? Use Let's Talk! to get the answers you need. Families may call the Family Support line at 512-414-9187. You can also send a Let's Talk! text to (512) 886-6434. Support is available weekdays from 7 a.m.–5 p.m.