Mahanay News- September 14, 2020
Alief ISD School Start Plan
Please understand that the decision you make will remain in place until December 18th. You will not have the option to switch until after that date.
For students returning in-person, we will share an updated supply list in next Monday's newsletter. We are making adjustments to the current one to minimize the amount of supplies in the classrooms.
A message from Mr. Chambers:
First and foremost, I am hopeful that you and your family are safe and in good health.
As COVID-19 has completely uprooted our lives in many ways, we have been seeing positive signs that by working together as a community to follow health and safety guidelines, the spread of infections have been declining in the Alief community. The health data from multiple sources like the Texas Medical Center and our local health officials from Harris County and Houston show a continual downward trend in cases, hospital bed usage and positivity rate in our area. Please do not misunderstand me, we ALL must continue to practice safe guidelines by wearing masks, social distancing, etc. The only reason we are able to seriously discuss the idea of beginning to bring small groups of students back over time for in-person learning is because the Alief community has made the effort to be safe.
Keeping in mind that our top priority is to ensure that students receive the best education possible, while keenly paying attention to the daily health data that is supplied by local health officials, we have identified a date to begin cautiously phasing in students who choose face to face instruction. As many of you know, the Board and our administration team have talked about using a strategic and methodical phased-in approach for several months.
Our approach to resuming in-person learning amounts to our careful consideration of both safety and academic support--and how to balance the two. We feel our proposed approach, grounded in both health data and the needs of our students, staff and community, is the only way to do right by our students, staff, and families. Above all, we commit to remaining flexible, proactive, nuanced, and creative in our plan as it evolves.
A few points:
- Phase-in decisions will be guided by Alief and COVID-19 related metrics which continue to trend favorably in reduction of the virus.
- Priority has been placed on cautiously phasing in our most vulnerable students in special education: self-contained special education students (2% of our student population) who request in-person instruction starting in mid-September.
- Our classrooms will be guided by our extensive Health and Safety Protocol and Case Response Protocol, which include social distancing, mask-wearing, frequent sanitation, health screenings, contact tracing, and other measures to mitigate and contain the virus. I realize this point is a serious issue to our staff and parents. Our Health and Safety Protocols and Case Response Protocols are outlined in a detailed manner.
- During our first phase in period, we will continue to closely monitor COVID-related metrics and trends, as well as confirm that our health and safety measures are working as designed.
Phase 1 - Begins September 21
Phase 1 will begin with our most vulnerable special education population student groups as identified below.
- ECSE (PPCD)
All other students who select in-person instruction will be phased in therafter. Dates and grade levels are to be determined and will be communicated with staff and parents.
Please know that Alief ISD is prepared to make necessary adjustments to protect staff and students; health and well-being in the event that COVID-19 conditions change in our community. Please know that the Board and administration will do everything possible to keep you informed as we move through this critical process.
In conclusion, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to our staff, parents and students for their partnership and engagement in our best efforts at providing a safe, meaningful and quality education in these trying times. I know we are all doing our best.
Superintendent of SchoolsAlief Independent School District
Curbside Library Book Checkout!
Ms. Nance and Ms. Sykes have been working hard to get books ready to pass out to our students!
If you would like books for your students, please fill out this google form so we can pull books that interest your child (do a separate entry for each child). At the end you may put specific requests and we will do our best to fulfill them.
We will check out 5 books at a time, which will be checked out for a 2 week time period. To begin, we will be offering this service on Tuesday / Thursday lunch periods (10:45-1:00) so we do not interrupt zoom meetings.
We will inform you that the books are ready via text message and will be out in the bus drop off area with your books for a touch free transaction.
In two weeks when you are ready to return the books, fill out the google form again! We will have a new bag of books ready and exchange them with your old ones. Please be patient if a book you want is not available as we will not check-in returned books until their quarantine period has ended.
Missing a book from last school year? It is OK! We will still check books out to you! Keep looking for that lost book and return it whenever you find it! :)
We are so excited to get books back in our students' hands!
Attention 4th Grade Girl Parents: Girl Start is Starting Soon!
Its a Free After School STEM at Home Program Just for Girls!
We invite your daughter to join Girlstart After School at Home! Girlstart created After School at Home for girls to be brave, creative, and curious as they engage in fun, hands-on STEM activities, explore different careers, and get inspired by women in STEM from wherever they are this fall.
Check out the video below to get excited about After School at Home!
The After School at Home Experience Includes:
- A kit with all hands-on activity materials, a comprehensive engineering journal, and Girlstart swag.
- 10 weekly 1 hour and 15 minute secure Zoom calls for your daughter to connect with friends and Girlstart program leaders.
- Recorded videos to support lessons, available for your daughter to view at any time.
Zoom Club Call Time for Mahanay & Youens
- Every Wednesday at 3:45-5:00PM
- Starting: September 30th
- No Club: November 25th for Thanksgiving week
- Last day: December 9th
Please contact your child's 4th grade teacher for more information!
Girl Start Video
Our Counselors Have you Covered!
Alief ISD Professional School Counselors are available to support students remotely during these uncertain times.
In addition to counselors always being available via email, students and parents can request a virtual meeting with a school counselor. Please complete the online Alief ISD Counseling Request Form for this service, and your school counselor will contact you concerning your request.
You can also access the Alief ISD Guidance and Counseling Department website at any time at www.aliefisd.net/counseling for additional resources and support.
Ms. Gina Murane is our counselor here at Mahanay! The character trait for Septemeber is Respect! She will be visiting zooms and speaking with teachers to look for students who are showing respect to one another, families, and teachers!
Some reminders for Virtual Instruction
As we try to keep things as close to in-person school as possible, please help us at home as best you can. We know that you are all working and sometimes helping to keep multiple students engaged in their learning. We so appreciate all that you are doing for your students!
- Students need to be the ones doing the work and responding to teacher questions. That is how teachers are able to see if a student needs additional support. If parents provide the answers, then it appears as if the student has mastered the concept and does not need additional help.
- As best as you can, please allow your child to work away from distractions
- Please encourage your child to sit and stay focused to the best of their abilities
DATE: Monday through Friday (Exception – no service when school is not in session).
TIME: 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
WHO: Only enrolled Alief ISD students
WHAT: Breakfast and lunch will be provided
WHERE: At Mahanay by the gym
HOW TO QUALIFY FOR FREE OR REDUCED PRICED MEALS
Apply online at www.schoolcafe.com
Complete a paper application – Available at campuses, curbside feeding sites & the Federal Meals Office located at 12400 High Star, Building T-248, Houston, TX 77072.
Once the application has been processed, notifications letters will be sent via email or physical address on file.
If students are directly certified (DC) for free or reduced meals, a letter will be sent to homes to inform parent/guardian of child’s meal status and state no meal application is needed.
If your student is enrolled in Kinder-4th grade and you have not picked up your child's materials, please contact your child's teacher or email email@example.com to set up a time to pick them up from the school.
If your child is enrolled in the C.E.A.I program, when their materials are delivered, we will contact you about pick up.
All students should be logged in to Google Chrome with their Alief Google Account (StudentID@ga.aliefisd.net) and then use the Sign in with Google link in the Zoom app and then use their First and Last name for the Zoom Account
In order for students to attend a Zoom meeting they must install the Zoom extension\app.
If you have the link for the zoom meeting, you can click on that as well.
If you do not have the zoom link, you must also use the extension: https://bit.ly/3iuVIgX for Chromebooks and Androids.
If the student is on a Windows device they may install the app from https://zoom.us/download#client_4meeting
If the student's Windows device is locked in S mode they must switch out of S Mode (https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4456067/windows-10-switch-out-of-s-mode) before installing the Zoom app.
Again, all students should be logged into Google Chrome with their Alief Google Account (Student ID@ga.aliefisd.net) and then use the Sign in with Google link in the Zoom app and then use their First and Last name for the Zoom Account.
For password help, please contact your child's teacher. If your child's teacher is unable to help, they can reach out to our tech specialist to give you a call.
Parents/Guardians and students have full responsibility for the textbooks and/or related instructional materials and devices issued to them. Please help your child find a special place to put his or her textbooks/materials when they are not being used. Full payment must be made for lost textbooks/materials/devices. Fines will be assessed for damage to textbooks/materials/devices. Students are to keep their printed textbooks covered at all times to minimize normal wear as well as damage.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.