Thurmont Primary School News

March 2021 - Volume 2

Principal's Message

Dear Families,

Spring is in the air! Known as a time for renewal, spring often brings with it a sense of hope. After a whirlwind school year we likely all could benefit from being reenergized with warmer weather, rays of sunshine and longer days. Spring break offers us all a time to rest, relax and rejuvenate. I know our TPS staff will be taking full advantage of their time off and I hope you and your child(ren) do the same!

When we return on Tuesday, April 6th, we will be refreshed and ready to take on the last part of our school year! We will embrace the opportunities we have for learning and seize each day as we work towards continued success. Together, we will continue to strengthen ourselves, each other and our entire school community by growing our brain, heart and body power!

Yours in education,
Michele Baisey



Dismissal Necklaces for In Person Students

Beginning Monday, March 22nd all in person students will be provided with a dismissal necklace with their name, grade level, teacher name and dismissal routine (car rider or bus number). This will replace the label/stickers we have previously been using and continue to ensure students safely make their way home each day. We ask that students bring their necklace back on each in person school day.

8 Tips to Help Kids Enjoy Virtual or Hybrid Learning

Mrs. McQuay, School Counselor, shares 8 Tips to Help Kids Enjoy Virtual or Hybrid Learning:

  1. Listen to your child's concerns about their new way of learning.
  2. Notice and praise the effort.
  3. Teach problem solving skills.
  4. Speak to them calmly, but directly when they get off track.
  5. Make the learning process fun.
  6. Cherish the one-on-one time daily.
  7. Seek out and utilize your village.
  8. Empatahize and validate their experiences.

For more information on these strategies please visit:

Raising a Strong Reader

Literacy Specialist, Mrs. Yoder, shares at home tips for raising a strong reader.

  1. Start a reading habit. - Spend time reading at certain times of the day, everyday. Bedtime is a great time to have your child read to you or for you to read to him or her.
  2. Read every day. - It is so important to read at least a little bit every day. Reading 10 or 15 min every day will make a difference.
  3. Keep books all around your home. - Keeping books and even magazines or comics from the newspaper around your home will give your child the opportunity to see and read text.
  4. Visit the Thurmont Regional Library or a bookstore on a regular basis. - The Thurmont Regional Library is allowing students to check out many books and will assist you in finding the “just right books” for your child.
  5. Let your child choose his or her own books. - By allowing your child to choose his own books, he will want to pick it up and read it sometimes over and over again.
  6. Be a reading role model. - Pick up a book, magazine, or newspaper and read yourself or let your child see you reading. If you are reading an article or book on a device, make sure your child knows you are reading and why it is important.

Bedtime Stories:

One of the most pleasurable moments of the day can be bedtime reading. Reading with your child is a fun and great way to spend time together. Sharing books helps open their eyes and minds to different people and situations and stretches their horizons. Reading at bedtime can also be a way to quiet and calm your child. They might even fall asleep in your arms! Research proves that children who enjoy reading do better in all subject areas. Best of all, reading to your child helps to build a strong and loving relationship.

Breakfast & Lunch Menus

Free meals continue to be available to all in person students daily. Students may choose to bring a grab-and-go breakfast to the classroom upon arrival. They may make a lunch selection each morning and it will be delivered to their classroom. Breakfast and lunch menus are included below to help your child know if/when s/he may be interested in enjoying a free meal at school.

March Breakfast Menu

March Lunch Menu

April Breakfast Menu

April Lunch Menu

Free take home suppers continue to be available daily as well. Students may choose to bring a grab-and-go supper home with them each day they are in person for school.

Free meals continue to be available at distribution sites throughout the count for all children 18 years and younger. Information can be found here:

COVID-19 Screening Protocol

FCPS is asking for your help in keeping our schools and communities safe. Please review the list of COVID-19 symptoms below with your student prior to leaving for school every day. You will be provided a weekly communication reminder of this requirement. Students who are ill or are experiencing any of the symptoms or situations listed below are expected to remain at home.

Parents/Guardians are affirming and attesting to the following for their student:

  1. Since last in school, your child has not had any of the following symptoms: Cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, new loss of taste or smell, fever of 100.4° or higher (measured or subjective), chills or shaking chills, muscle aches, sore throat, headache, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, and congestion or runny nose.
  2. Since last in school, your child is not waiting for a COVID-19 test result due to symptoms nor has he or she been diagnosed with COVID-19, nor been instructed by any health care provider or the health department to isolate or quarantine.
  3. In the last 10 days, your child has not had close contact (within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes or more in a 24-hour period) with anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 or suspected of having COVID-19 and did not complete quarantine.

Please keep your child home if they are experiencing symptoms or exposed to COVID-19.

Contact your healthcare provider with any questions regarding next steps for your student.

Thank you for your cooperation!

Communication Process for COVID-19 Cases

The health and safety of our community is our highest priority. TPS follows all COVID-19 related health and safety guidelines, including requiring face coverings for staff and students, encouraging frequent hand washing, maintaining social distance, and following all cleaning and disinfection protocols.

Confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in the school prompt a case investigation to determine if anyone has been in close contact with the confirmed or probable case of COVID-19. A joint effort between FCPS administrators and the Frederick County Health Department identifies all close contacts. All close contacts are contacted individually and advised to quarantine at home, monitor their health, and to contact their healthcare provider for any health concerns.

Important Definitions:

  • Confirmed Case of COVID-19 - Cases of COVID-19 that are lab confirmed positive results of a PCR test.
  • Probable Case of COVID-19 - COVID-19-like symptomatic individual who has had close contact with another individual with a laboratory confirmed positive result within the past 14 days.
  • Close Contact - Close and prolonged contact within 6 feet of a cumulative 15 minutes in a 24 hour period.

The FCPS Health Metrics Dashboard (linked here) reports the number of positive COVID-19 cases for staff and students that are in-person attendance at all FCPS schools. The cases are reported two different ways: (1) total number for all of FCPS; and (2) by each school. The dashboard is updated every Monday morning to report the number of cases from the previous week.

Important Dates

Monday, March 29th through Monday, April 5th - Spring Break (Schools Closed & No Virtual or Hybrid In Person Learning)

Tuesday, April 6th - School Reopens

Monday, April 12th - Teacher Work Day (No Virtual or Hybrid In Person Learning)

Tuesday, April 13th - Start of Quarter 4