The Core

October 8, 2020, Volume 11, Issue 5

Principal's Notes

Dear Parents & Guardians,

I am "totally" impressed that everybody got it right for Wednesday - the gray pack showed up! Seriously, thank you parents for staying on top of this moving target of a school calendar. I created a two-week schedule for both grades PreK-2 and grades 3-5. It's only a 2-week schedule because I do not want to commit past that.

We are welcoming all students from PreK through 2nd grade on Tuesday, October 13. The background is a photo of furniture we are moving back into classrooms in preparation for Fully Re-Opening. We are excited to have classmates get to meet each other though we know we face challenges in keeping 4 - 7 year olds physically distant throughout a school day.

Have a terrific 4-day weekend as we celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day on Monday.

Stay safe, stay well, and take some time to read with your child.

Mark Trifilio

Quote of the Week:

"The greatest glory in living lies, not in never failing, but in rising every time we fail."

~Nelson Mandela

Big picture
Big picture


Please reference this Health Department handout, (which is also attached at the end of The Core and was sent home with students this week), as a guide of steps to take when your student is sick.

Please continue to:

  • keep your student home when they show ANY signs of illness in the morning
  • fill out the health questions on the app/email
  • call-in to report your student's absence (652-7303 x 1)

Each day we try to follow-up with parents/guardians of those students who are home due to illness, to check-in and help navigate next steps.

We recognize that following the guidelines can be very challenging and difficult for families and the recommendations for staying home and returning to school are quite different than usual. Thank you for doing your part during this pandemic, as your decisions will ensure the health and safety of our school and community. We appreciate your follow-through, patience and willingness to assist us when making decisions.

Be well,

Kara & Darcy

Orchard School Nurses

PTO Updates


Student Directory! Every family will receive a printed directory booklet, BUT FOR YOUR STUDENT'S INFORMATION TO BE INCLUDED, you MUST go to this link and provide your contact information. Due to privacy concerns, you must opt-in - your information will not appear unless you provide your contact information using the link.

Here is the link:

By including your contact information, you make it easy to connect with other Orchard families and help create a strong Orchard Community! The Directory is being created and provided by the PTO.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Sue Hebeler, PTO member, anytime at or 802/777-6700.


This year is going to look very different for the Orchard PTO and for kids as far as activities go! We will do our best to be creative and to continue supporting families and kids in our community.


Since we will not be having our fun run this year, you can make a direct contribution:

Funds will be used to continue the good work we are doing to support our Orchard community.

Volunteer! We can use all the hands we can get (and right now we don't have very many!). We need a social media maven, a co-treasurer, and a book keeper. Any time you can offer will be valued - and it doesn't have to be time at school - in fact, this year we can't be in the building, so your volunteer time will be at home, and will require a zoom meeting once in a while.

If you are interested in volunteering please email

Big picture

Farm-to-School News

Common Roots, a non-profit, has 12 years of experience delivering explicit Farm to School lessons with taste tests. We provide children with active lessons and experiences engaging youth in nutritious food education. This video is intended for school and/or home use.

This is our response to covid where we know more students will be active with on-line learning. We are teaching young children in socially distanced groups outdoors. Through the magic of video, our new series brings elementary school learners into growing spaces to explore and learn new things--especially where, how, and by whom our food is grown.

-you will discover how to celebrate the traditions and nutrition of a Vermont apple harvest

-come along on an “almost in-person” adventure through an heirloom, organic orchard being reclaimed to promote symbiotic relationships between apple trees, native plants, and pollinators -wellness info for pre-natal to elder apple eaters

-follow up apple adventures, recipes, farm to school lessons on our website -

-full video access can be found at or by using this link

It is being used around the state of Vermont and throughout the northeast. Feel free to forward it as you see best.

Thank You for welcoming us back to the South Burlington Schools!

Be well in every way!


Carol McQuillen

Co-Founder, Director

Common Roots


Big picture