Gertrude Chamberlin School
Family Newsletter November 19, 2021 Volume 16 Issue 15
November 22nd and 23rd - Parent Teacher Conferences, No School
November 24th, 25th and 26th - Thanksgiving Recess, No School
November 29th - December 3rd (online order through December 12th) - Scholastic Book Fair
Conference Sign Ups for Integrated Arts
If you would like to sign up for a conference with Mrs. Goodrich, the Art teacher:
If you would like to sign up for a conference with Ms. Balk, the Digital Citizenship/Library teacher: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0c48aaa92fa3fbcf8-library1
If you would like to sign up for a conference with Mrs. DeGuise, the Health/Physical Education teacher: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Q1QVefsYl8EzPchQkK4l5v3WBju07oJFwrib1_nrzP4/edit?usp=sharing
All School Celebration...Game Time!
GCS Annual Food Drive
The South Burlington Food shelf is located on:
356 Dorset Street / South Burlington, VT 05403
Hours: Thursday 4:30 – 6:30 PM / Friday 8 – 10 AM / Saturday 8 – 10 AM
Successful Blood Drive
Third Grade is Working Hard at GCS!
School Nurse Notes
Celebrating Thanksgiving or just gathering with others? Here's how to do it safely:
VT data indicates that gatherings are a source for COVID-19 spread. The Delta variant is very contagious, so let's all do our part to keep one-another safe. If you plan to gather, please:
- Discuss ahead of time
- consider indoor mask wearing, when not eating, especially when gathering with those who are unvaccinated
- Keep your gathering small
- larger groups mean a greater chance of someone having the virus and exposing others
- Get tested
- schedule a PCR test by 11/22/21 and consider rapid (antigen) testing, on Wednesday and Thursday, prior to your gathering
- If you have symptoms, even mild ones, STAY HOME
- it may be difficult, but it's the right choice
- Test 5-7 days after your gathering
- even if fully vaccinated and without symptoms
The CDC recommends avoiding travel until you are fully vaccinated, to avoid risk of COVID-19 exposure. If you choose to travel internationally, please be aware that Vermont (and SBSD) follows the CDC's recommendations:
- ALL TRAVELERS: get PCR tested 3-5 days after travel.
- NOT FULLY VACCINATED TRAVELERS: stay home and quarantine for 7 days after travel, even if the test is negative at day 3-5. If not tested, stay home and quarantine for 10 days.
Resources for Parents and Kids
CNN and Sesame Street have teamed up to help answer questions from kids and families (and they are not just for preschoolers!):
- Sesame Street and the ABCs of COVID Vaccine Video.
- Big Bird Talks About COVID-19 Vaccine Fears Video.
- Video for Children: How COVID Vaccines Work
- But Why? Podcast for Curious Kids: Why is it a shot? Kids Questions about COVID Vaccine.
Denise Aronzon, M.D., a local pediatrician and SBSD parent, provides some solid advice when considering the vaccine:
We are so excited that the Pfizer Covid vaccine has now been approved for the 5-11 year old age group! We are encouraging parents to have their children vaccinated as soon as possible. Here are some great reasons to have your child vaccinated:
- Vaccinated children are far less likely to become infected with Covid. If vaccinated children do get infected, they are far less likely to become seriously ill or need to be hospitalized. Children can and do become seriously ill with Covid.
- Vaccinated kids are less likely to infect their families and friends. Vaccinated kids protect vulnerable family and community members, such as infants and toddlers, the elderly, and those who are immunocompromised or have underlying health issues.
- Vaccinated kids do not need to stay home to quarantine if they are exposed to someone with Covid and continue to feel well.
- Vaccinated kids can travel and participate in certain activities where vaccination is required.
- Hundreds of millions of Americans, including many kids between the ages 12-17, have been vaccinated already and side effects have been extremely rare. In rare cases, some children have developed myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle, following the Covid vaccine. Myocarditis occurs in Covid disease as well and we are learning that myocarditis in the disease occurs much more often and is typically more severe than following the vaccine. As for long-term side effects from the vaccine, research and monitoring on other vaccines show that side effects almost always happen within six weeks of getting a vaccine.
- Here is a great FAQ for parents from the American Academy of Pediatrics on the Covid vaccine for kids. It answers questions about vaccine safety, side effects and timing.
And as always, please contact your child's pediatrician or family doctor if you have further questions.
Zoom Conversations: Join discussions with members of the Vermont Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. See dates and zoom links here.
Vermont Department of Health: Answers for Parents
Make an Appointment: visit HERE. Children will receive 2 doses of the vaccine, given 3 weeks apart. A child will be fully vaccinated 2 weeks after the 2nd dose.
- Any families without internet access or who other would like assistance to make their appointment should contact the Health Department call center at (855) 722-7878, Mon - Fri 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Sat and Sun 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
- To speak with someone in a language other than English, dial the call center, and then press 1.
- People who are Deaf or hard of hearing can make a TTY call to this number by dialing 711 or 1-800-253-0195.
TEST TO STAY (TTS)
Unvaccinated, asymptomatic students (ages 5 and up) and staff, who are identified as close contacts to an in-school COVID-19 exposure, are eligible to participate in TTS. Click HERE to view some TTS Frequently Asked Questions.
Farm To School Grades 3-5
We have had to make a tough decision to pause Farm to School lessons for Kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade classes for November & December, due to Common Roots staffing needs in other areas of their programs. Our in person Farm to School lessons this month took place in 3rd, 4th and 5th grade classrooms. Here is the information regarding these lessons:
As we enter November, most plants will not survive the snow and ice here in Vermont. The land around us is transitioning for the winter months, and preparing for next spring. But Kale can survive in the snow! This hardy leafy green is a nutrient dense vegetable that can provide for us late into the fall season.
This month in Farm to School, we made a massaged kale salad, and also made seed packets for the pumpkin seeds we saved last month! Keep those seeds safe through the winter and start dreaming up a good place to plant them next spring. If you don’t have a garden or outdoor space to plant, you can plant your seeds in a pot and place them on a sunny windowsill. They may not grow big enough to produce a pumpkin, but you can observe the sprouting process of a baby pumpkin plant. Have fun!!
Massaged Kale Salad
Massaging kale is an important step in making this salad! It helps break down the fibers in the leaves, allowing our bodies to more easily digest and absorb the nutrients available.
● 1 bunch of kale (~ 8 stems)
● Topping ideas: Toasted pepitas, avocado, shredded carrot, feta or goat cheese, dried cranberries
Honey Lemon Dressing
● ½ cup olive oil
● Juice of one lemon
● 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
● 2 Tbsp honey
● ½ tsp salt
1. Destem the kale by holding the stem in one hand. Gather the leaves with the thumb and pointer finger of your other hand. Pull the leaves along the stem and away from the base.
2. Place your kale leaves in a large bowl and tear into bite sized pieces.
3. Massage the kale with your hands for 1-2 minutes, until it has reduced in size by half.
4. To make the dressing, combine all ingredients in a jar, cap the lid and shake to combine.
5. Add dressing and desired toppings, and toss to coat the leaves. Enjoy!
Come visit our Farmstand at South Village - and support the Farm to School program with your purchase. We are open for 2 more days this season! Hours are Friday & Saturday, 8am-6pm. Closing Day is November 20th. Hope to see you there!
Till next month, Nourish to Flourish
Lauren Jones, Farm to School Educator for Common Roots
November 18th Update from Superintendent Young
November 18, 2021
Dear Parents/Guardians and Staff,
We’re almost there! November family conferences and break! This week has brought with it a great sense of gratitude for you all as we continued our rollout of Test-to-Stay (more on that below). Thanks to incredibly dedicated staff and volunteers, we have been able to keep a number of students in school learning with their teachers and peers! While we hope to not need this strategy long term, for now, in the midst of a continued COVID surge, I am so thankful for it.
On a similar theme, World Kindness Day also took place November 13. Prevention Coordinator at SBHS Gar Smith, who is also the advisor to the Mental Health Club reported that students in the club came up with the idea of a “Wall of Kindness” to honor kindness and create a culture of love. It is in the Big Picture Hallway near the cafeteria and is there for students and faculty to add a quote, picture, or message on a big or little sticky note that inspires them. I’ll need to drop in for a visit and make my own contribution.
Upcoming Dates of Note:
Winter sports registration for SBHS and FHTMS closes November 29
Parent/Family Conferences November 22-23: No School
Thanksgiving Recess November 24-26: No School
Virtual Community Forum on the FY23 Budget November 23 via Zoom 6-7:30 pm (link below)
Test To Stay (TTS)
Test to Stay, a program designed for unvaccinated, asymptomatic students (ages 5 and up) and staff, who are identified as close contacts to an in-school COVID-19 exposure, are eligible to participate in TTS. The program is going very well and we couldn’t do it without our amazing workers and volunteers! Huge thanks to Ryan Burritt, Kara Cassani, Meg Collins, Karen Dantzscher, Bill Davidson, Caryl Davidson, Lawrence Francis, Delina Gilroy, Jeff Jarvis, Gary Marckres, Bart Miceli, Alice Mills, Violet Nichols, Deb Norotsky, Andrew Pearson, Jeremy Rushford, Jessica Russell, Jen Savas, and Sheramy Tsai. I am hearing a lot of great feedback all around. We will continue to have this in place at our central location, 577 Dorset Street, as long as it is needed. You can find registration and consent forms on the main page of our District website.
COVID in SBSD Thursday Nov. 11 @ 5 pm-Thursday November 18 @ 5 pm
For clarity, the following are cases that were deemed infectious while IN school:
Holiday Gathering Guidance
Celebrating Thanksgiving or just gathering with others? Here's how to do it safely:VT data indicates that gatherings are a source for COVID-19 spread. The Delta variant is very contagious, so let's all do our part to keep one-another safe. If you plan to gather, please:
Discuss ahead of time
Consider indoor mask wearing, when not eating, especially when gathering with those who are unvaccinated
Keep your gathering small
Larger groups mean a greater chance of someone having the virus and exposing others
Schedule a PCR test by 11/22/21 and consider rapid (antigen) testing, on Wednesday and Thursday, prior to your gathering
If you have symptoms, even mild ones, STAY HOME
It may be difficult, but it's the right choice
Test 5-7 days after your gathering
Even if fully vaccinated and without symptoms
Considering traveling? Please refer to this guidance regarding travel and quarantine.
The CDC recommends avoiding travel until you are fully vaccinated. If you choose to travel internationally, please be aware that Vermont (and SBSD) follows the CDC's recommendations:
ALL TRAVELERS: get PCR tested 3-5 days after travel.
NOT FULLY VACCINATED TRAVELERS: stay home and quarantine for 7 days after travel, even if the test is negative at day 3-5. If not tested, stay home and quarantine for 10 days.
Also, vacation is a perfect time to get vaccinated! Children ages 5-11 are newly eligible. You can find information and how to register here.
Any families without internet access or who other would like assistance to make their appointment should contact the Health Department call center at (855) 722-7878, Mon - Fri 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Sat and Sun 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
To speak with someone in a language other than English, dial the call center, and then press 1.
People who are Deaf or hard of hearing can make a TTY call to this number by dialing 711 or 1-800-253-0195.
Questions? Check out these Zoom Conversations with local pediatricians hosted by the Vermont Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. See dates and zoom links here.
Executive Director of Equity Update
Our phase 1 work with Curtiss Reed Jr. from the Vermont Partnership for Fairness and Diversity, which focused on preparing our organization for recruiting, has concluded but we will continue to consult with him as necessary as we've enjoyed a successful partnership with his organization. Next, we will be bringing a consultant on board to facilitate the hiring process inclusive of developing a hiring committee. We will be announcing who this consultant will be in the weeks to come. Our goal is to have an Executive Director for Equity on board in February 2022.
Blood Drive in Memory of Kathy Buley: Thanks to All!
Thank you to everyone who supported the blood drive this past Saturday! What a wonderful event in memory of Kathy. Special thanks to Cindy Tan for working with the Red Cross to organize the blood drive. The Red Cross collected 59 units which will help over 175 patients in need! In case you missed it, here is the WCAX coverage of the drive.
At last night’s school board meeting myself and Director of Operations and Finance Gary Marckres gave an overview of preliminary budget figures and factors as we currently know them. If you missed the meeting, you can watch it via The Media Factory website, typically by Friday evening.
Also, please join us for our first of the season, virtual community forum on the budget! This coming Tuesday, November 23 from 6:00-7:30 pm via Zoom (Meeting ID: 817 2342 3010 Passcode: 843581). There will be a budget overview and plenty of time to share your thoughts, questions, and ideas! We’re all ears!
School Board News
It was announced at the November 17 board meeting that long time board members Bridget Burkhardt and Brian Minier will not be seeking reelection in March. We are so thankful for their service and dedication to the board! Their voices and institutional knowledge will be greatly missed. That means that there will be both a two and three year term open on the board. If you have been considering running, the best way to get an idea of what it’s like to be a board member, is to talk with one! You can contact current board members by phone and email here
You can also watch or attend a board meeting.
In terms of process, candidates’ petitions will be due near the end of January, but it is recommended that individuals wait until closer to that timeframe to begin gathering signatures since people who sign now may have moved in the time span between the time they get the petition and when they are turned in. See more information for candidates here.
SBHS Japanese Club Participates in Onigiri Action
During a recent Friday block activity, the Japanese club participated in the Onigiri Action and posted some of their pictures on their Facebook page showing how they contributed to this worldwide project.
Sinyoung Evans shared this information, “Onigiri Action is an annual social good campaign in autumn connecting the simple act of taking a photo with helping to feed school children in need. During the campaign, through the generosity of partner organizations, every Japanese rice-ball-related post on the global campaign website or social media with #OnigiriAction provides five school meals to children in need around the world.” Japanese program students (in Japanese-2-4) also participated in this project during their class time.
FHTMS QSA Takes Part in Outright Vermont Virtual Conference!
Fifty schools statewide, including FHTMS, participated in a virtual conference yesterday hosted by Outright Vermont. Students who are engaged with the FHTMS QSA (Queer Straight Alliance) along with their advisors Penny Pizer and Scott Carlson, gathered for lunch and spent time connecting. rebuilding, and leveling up for community care with Outright VT and fellow GSA/QSAs around the state. Next month the QSA is going back to the kitchen to create gingerbread houses. Penny noted, “We are excited we have grown to 25 students spanning 6th-8th grade!”
Gertrude Chamberlin All School Celebration...Game Time!
Over at GCS, students have filled their hive and earned an all school celebration! Their PBiS student representatives thought that a game time in each class would be a great way to celebrate! Students enjoyed playing games together with their classmates, some brought games from home, and many played their favorite games from the classroom. Congratulations to GCS students for being KIND, RESPONSIBLE and SAFE!
Rick Marcotte Central School: Maker Cart Celebration
Thanks to the PTO and hard working 3rd Graders, a makers space celebration took place in Mrs. Vincent’s 3rd grade. This is one of the students’ favorite choices so far this year! Thanks to the RMCS PTO for restocking the "Makers Cart" with so many creative supplies for our engineers and innovators!
Orchard School: Reading to Raise Anti Racists Year Two
Orchard school is in the second year of a "Reading to Raise Anti-Racists" project. Each month, every class reads and discusses the same picture book. The November book is Traci Sorell’s WE ARE STILL HERE. Students are learning so much! Mrs. Pecor’s third graders are finding out about Native people who are making a difference in the world today. Check out Orchard School's Instagram for a video message from Traci!
I wanted to let you know I’ll be taking a break from the Thursday newsletter on Thanksgiving. I hope you all have a chance to connect, rest, and restore. Thank you for reading and for your continued support,
The Scholastic Book Fair Is Coming!!!
Here is the link to our Chamberlin Book Fair Homepage - you can start shopping on Monday, November 29th through this link! On this homepage, families can view the dates of the book fair and browse our interactive book flyer. Students will also have the opportunity for in person shopping in the library that week. However, shopping doesn't start until Nov. 29th. In person shopping goes until Dec. 3 and online shopping goes until Dec. 12.
Students will be receiving book flyers with some of the book offerings to bring home next week.
Does Your Child Need Milk for Their Home Lunch?
If you have any questions, please contact Rhonda Ketner firstname.lastname@example.org.