Saint Rita Reopening Update

July 27, 2020

Dear Saint Rita Families,


I continue to pray that you are in good health. Very soon, students will return to Saint Rita in-person or through remote learning platforms. I want to assure you that we have been working diligently to make the start of the year as smooth and safe as possible. We have analyzed learning platforms and scheduled training to best serve our students who choose remote instruction. We have stocked safety and cleaning supplies, and we stay informed on the best practices for keeping everyone healthy on campus. If you have not had a chance to read the Saint Rita Return to School Plan, it is attached to this newsletter.


The purpose of this letter is to update you on what to expect from in-person and remote learning options. Our goal is to continue serving our students with faith formation and academic excellence no matter what learning option is chosen. Please read the information below and respond as needed to the question at the end.


Overview

We want our in-person and remote instruction to be lively, engaging, and responsive to the needs of students. Focused lessons will provide instruction to all students whether in the classroom or in a Zoom session. Guided instruction will assist small groups and individuals with specific learning needs. Collaborative learning such as Socratic seminars, interactive activities, or group assignments will provide the opportunity for shared learning and problem solving. Independent learning allows the student to show what they know and the teacher to assess the child’s progress. A combination of scheduled Zoom meetings, recorded instruction, and coordinated sessions with the teacher will allow us to provide these best practices in instruction.


Structured School Day

To provide the best scenario for students in both modes of learning, the school day needs to be structured. We will begin morning prayers and announcements daily at 7:50. We will take attendance each day by 8 a.m. Students will be dressed in school uniform and seated at a desk-like setting if they are learning remotely. From this point in the day, the schedule and activities will be determined by the child’s age. Students in the classroom will receive instruction that flows from one subject to the next. Students at home will do the same with flexibility built in to allow for time away from the computer. Detailed schedules will be provided by August 7 after I have met with teachers.


Communication Is Key

Whether your child will be coming to school or learning from home, being current on all communication is critical. Please check your email regularly in the coming days. More detailed information about schedules, meet the teacher sessions, and distribution of materials will be sent to parents after coordination with teachers is complete. Once school begins, a weekly overview of assignments, lessons, and due dates will be provided for in-person and remote learning. Students will have Saint Rita email addresses and must check email daily. Parents will need to check email for remote students in grades 3 and under. Parents will have the options of turning in scanned work or dropping off physical work for students on a schedule coordinated with the teacher when digital work cannot achieve a learning goal. Whether students are on campus or learning from a distance, the expectation is that they will be challenged to think critically, participate in discussions, group projects, and respond to teacher feedback.


Saint Rita is dedicated to providing a successful learning experience for all of our students. We have spent much time preparing and planning, and we will continue to seek the guidance of diocesan and local health advisors to ensure the safest possible environment for our students and staff. Thank you for your continued support. Please let me know if you have additional questions that I can answer.


If you have already informed me of your choice to send your child to school or to participate in remote learning, I thank you. If you have not responded or have changed your mind, please reply to this email with your response. Please be aware that choosing remote learning will be a commitment through September 25.


Prayerfully,

Mary Burns

Principal

The chart below provides a quick look of In-Person and Remote Learning at Saint Rita. See the Q&A for additional information.

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Q&A

What are the expectations for students attending remote instruction?

Students attending school remotely will have the same expectations for attendance, participation, completion of assignments, and earning of grades.


When will Zoom classes take place?

Remote students will have scheduled instructional times aligned with in-person instruction times. The schedule of remote sessions will be communicated in August before school starts.


Will my child be required to be on Zoom all day?

Remote students will need to be available during school hours, but there will be breaks throughout the day for recess, reading, and individual work. The frequency and length of Zoom sessions will vary by grade to provide an age-appropriate balance.


When will assignments be due?

Assignments will be due daily or as required by the teacher just as it will be for in-person students.


I have two children. Will their Zoom sessions overlap?

The school will work with families to ensure that students have the necessary access to technology and the Internet so that overlapping sessions are not an issue.


Will remote students participate in music, PE, Spanish and technology classes?

Yes, remote students will participate in all offered classes. Some of these may be recorded sessions and will require responses from the student depending on the course and grade level.


Can remote students participate in clubs and athletic programs?

Participation in clubs and athletics will depend on the organization and restrictions for the program. More information will follow when decisions are made at the diocesan level.


Will hot lunch still be available for my child?

Yes, you may still order lunch for your child(ren). Initially, lunches will be eaten in the classroom. "Hot" lunches and milk will be delivered to students who ordered them.

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