The Parsons Happenings
November 20, 2020
In this edition...
Board of Education Updates
Holiday Gathering Safety Tips
GCPS Extends Parent Preference Survey Date
Possible After School Daycare Program
Clean and Beautiful Project
Rocking the Holidays Dress Up Challenge
Red, Blue & You Highlights
Media Center Updates/Book Mobile Visit
Message from Your Proud Principal
Second, I am thankful for the parents, grandparents, and extended family members for your support and dedication to your student's academic development during these unprecedented times. This partnership fosters our students' education and enhances our school in all aspects, especially during these times. We have parents who work hard and advocate to be a partner in their children's education, safety, and well-being. For this, I will always be thankful. I am grateful for our volunteers who enthusiastically provide so much to our school, even during a pandemic.
Lastly, I am thankful for the students that come to school each day, digitally and in person, and are ready to meet the challenges of a rigorous academic environment. It is because of our students that I am truly able to enjoy my administrative journey and cherish the opportunity I have to serve as your principal.
On behalf of the administrative team, teachers, and staff at Parsons Elementary, I wish each of you and your families a healthy, relaxing, and Happy Thanksgiving!
Board of Education Updates: District shares calendar for 2021-22 and makes adjustments to 2nd semester of this year’s calendar
During the Board work session, Dr. Steve Flynt, associate superintendent for School Improvement and Operations, reviewed the calendar development process. He reminded Board Members of the parameters that are considered when developing the school calendar and of the three options he had shared with the Board last month. Of the three calendars that were considered, Option 2 garnered the most support. This option featured a start date of August 4, seven days of pre-planning for teachers, the staggered return of students, and six digital learning days. The six digital learning days are scheduled throughout the year, with three occurring in the 1st semester and three in the 2nd semester. Next year’s calendar also features a fall break in October, a two-week winter break, the addition of a break in February, a week scheduled for spring break, and an end date of May 25.
In addition to looking at next year’s calendar, Dr. Flynt shared adjustments to this year’s calendar, affecting 2nd semester. The district will add an additional day of teacher planning at the beginning of the semester, which will mean the first day of the semester for students will be January 7. The second adjustment calls for the addition of four digital learning days during the semester (January 26, March 2, March 16, and April 20). These will be asynchronous learning days where students will learn from home, providing teachers additional days for planning during the semester.
The Gwinnett County Board of Education approved the superintendent’s recommendation to provide a one-time salary adjustment payment of $700 for all active, full-time, benefitted employees paid on the Teacher Salary Schedule as of November 19, 2020. Recipients will include teachers, counselors, speech language pathologists, local school technology coordinators, and media specialists. The salary adjustment will be paid in a lump sum and will be included in the employee’s December 2020 monthly paycheck. The cost of the one-time payment, which will total $10.7 million, will not encumber funds in future budgets. Due to the district’s conservative approach to budgeting, it will not decrease this year’s ending fund balance.
Some alternatives to the traditional holiday gathering...
GCPS Extends Preference Survey Until November 29 at 11:59pm!
Based on concerns and input the district has received from our community, along with changing dynamics, the decision has been made to extend the deadline for parents to make a decision by 11:59 pm on Sunday, November 29.
The Spring Instructional Preference Questionnaire is available in the Parent Portal. Again, the questionnaire will remain open through 11:59 pm on November 29. If a parent or guardian already has made a selection, changes can be made through the deadline. The updated preference will be displayed the next school day. Please note that what you see indicated in the Parent Portal as your decision will serve as confirmation of your selection. If a parent does not have a Parent Portal account, they can go to the school district website for information or contact Raiya Troshin, Parsons' Data Manager Clerk.
Possible After School Daycare Opportrunity
- Birthday of Guru Nanak Dev
- Special Education Day
- Rocking the Holiday Challenge ~ Candy Cane Lane ~ Wear red and white
- Rocking the Holiday Challenge ~ Frosty the Snowman ~ Wear a snowman
- GCPS Book Mobile (see info below)
- Box Top Collection Day
- 9:00 am ~ Parsons' Spelling Bee
- 9:00 am ~ PTA Zoom Meeting
- 10:00 am ~ Parsons' School Council Meeting
Clean and Beautiful Project
Help our school earn money by giving clothing and household items a second life!
During the week of November 30 - December 4, send gently used clothing, accessories and small household items with your students so they can be donated through our school. There will be a box on each hallway for students to drop off items. Our textile recycling bin, that you may have seen in the car rider line, gets filled with donations all year long. Once the bin is full, it’s collected by Charity Recycling Services, redistributed at a much lower cost and our school gets rewarded for the weight of our donations. Thanksgiving break is a great time to go through clothing and other household items that you may be ready to donate! All items must be in clean, in usable condition and bagged. If the clothing is dirty, it should be washed before donating. If it was sitting in a drawer or hanging in a closet, it does not need to be washed before donating. All small household items should be in working condition and must be non-breakable. See below for a list of acceptable items!
Women's, Men’s and Children's Clothing/Accessories (casual, athletic, formal, jeans, jackets, sweaters, shirts, shoes, purses, backpacks, hats, gloves, etc.)
Small Household Items (pots, pans, towels, sheets, toys, books, etc.)
The donation bin is open 24/7, so you also have the option to come through the car rider line and drop donations into the bin yourself! This option may work best if your student is learning at home and/or if you'd like to continue donating after this week!
Get Ready for our "Rocking the Holidays" Dress Up Challenge
Thank you to our wonderful Parsons' community for making the Red, Blue and YOU event so special for our staff. We definitely felt the love! #STRONGERTOGETHER
Doing our part to stop the spread of Covid-19
Please use the COVID-19 Morning Checklist to help reduce the spread of Covid-19. Please continue to follow the guidelines each morning when sending your in person student to school. We have seen a slight increase of cases in Gwinnett and we want to make sure we are ALL doing our part.
Each school in our district has a trained Health Response Team (HRT). If a suspected case of Covid-19 is reported at our school, this team follows set guidelines and procedures. Please be assured that you will be contacted by an HRT member if your child has been identified as 'close contact' to someone in our school who has tested positive for Covid-19.
The most important thing we can do is continue to wear our masks, practice social distancing, and wash hands regularly. We are #STRONGERTOGETHER when we all do our part.
Media Center Information
Please note the following Curbside Checkout schedule and changes.
- November 24-26: No Curbside Checkout (Happy Thanksgiving!)
- December 1-3: Curbside Checkout Tuesday A-I, Wednesday J-R, Thursday S-Z
- December 8-10: No Curbside Checkout due to Media Center Inventory
- December 15-17: Curbside Checkout Tuesday A-I, Wednesday J-R, Thursday S-Z
- January 5-7: No Curbside Checkout
- Curbside Checkout will resume the week of January 11th. Happy Holidays!
GCPS Book Mobile Visit
Save the Date! Come one, come all to Parsons to get a FREE new book on Friday, December 4th. The GCPS Book Mobile will be in the bus lane, but students will not be getting on the bus. We will operate the event as we did this summer with books on tables and contactless browsing. In-person students will come throughout the day to choose their book with their homeroom teacher. Digital students can come between 10:30 – 1:00. The student must be present and will be the only person exiting the car to choose their book. When you arrive, please line up at the end of the car rider lane if it is not raining and wait in your car for further directions. If it is raining, please come through the bus lane and wait for directions. It should be a quick process. We hope to see all our students at Parsons on Friday, December 4th!