West Week in Review
October 9, 2020
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Tuesday, October 13 - Picture Day for A students during school day, 4-6pm for Virtual students, Midpoint of Trimester 1
Wednesday, October 14 - Early Dismissal Day, no PM asynchronous work
Thursday, October 15 - Picture Day for B group students
Wednesday, October 28 - Early Dismissal Day, no PM asynchronous work
Monday, October 12
All students in grades 6 through 8 who have not previously had their school picture / photo ID taken during the 20-21 school year will have an opportunity to have their picture taken on the following dates during school hours. Students who had the picture taken in September but did not receive an ID card will also get their picture taken again. Additionally, there has been a designated evening date and time scheduled for our BOL and BASD Virtual Learning students.
• Fall Original Dates: 10/13/20 & 10/15/20
• Only Virtual Students: 10/13/20 4:00pm-6:00pm
• Fall Retake Dates: 12/1/20 & 12/3/20
The link to order pictures can be found here. The code for Middle School West is EVTNHFSZ6
Also, for those students who had their school pictures taken earlier this month at BASH, pictures have arrived! Students who returned to school the week of October 5 will receive their packet of pictures at that time. Students who are continuing with either the BOL or BASD Virtual mode of instruction may stop by West between 4-6pm on October 13 to pick up their pictures.
Sixth graders who made thank you cards for Veterans Day should bring the cards with them to drop off at school when they get their picture taken. They will also be receiving a large piece of paper from their science teachers for an upcoming project.
Return to School
Our first week of hybrid learning went very well overall! It was great to have more students in the building! Thank you to our Bear Ambassadors as well as our Team Building planning team of Mr. Ludwig, Mr. Schwegler, and Mrs. Gregory for putting our safe, fun activities together. It was so refreshing to see kids smiling through their masks and hear their laughter.
Our return to school for all students during the week of October 5 was scheduled so that half of our students are in the building on Mondays and Tuesdays while the other half participates virtually. Students flip roles for Thursday and Friday with the second half being face to face while the remaining students participate virtually. Special education students who are part of the September first and second wave of in-person learning continue to attend in person 4 days per week.
Wednesdays remain a virtual day for all students, and students follow a virtual half-day live schedule every Wednesday morning, followed by asynchronous afternoons. Attendance is taken during homeroom as usual. Teachers host a live online session to check in with students, explain the work for the day (including asynchronous activities for the day and the option of a live mini-lesson) and share any small group meeting times that students will need to follow. The afternoon provides opportunities for teacher professional development and collaboration while students work on asynchronous assignments. Students are expected to be working all day on Wednesdays, with the exception of the upcoming scheduled early dismissal days on October 14 and 28.
Free and Reduced Lunch Applications
Lunch and Breakfast
The USDA has recently announced that the waivers that allow schools to serve ALL children meals for free, regardless of their income, will be continued through December 31, 2020. This new announcement means that, effective immediately, ALL our students (regardless of income), are able to receive free breakfast and lunch on any day that school is in session.
Here is some additional information in a FAQ format. Please see below:
Who is eligible for this benefit and what will my child(ren) be able to receive?
This benefit is for all students, regardless of income or grade level. Only one full meal at both breakfast and lunch will be offered for free. If students choose to purchase additional items, those items will be charged to their food service account.
Do I have to sign up or apply for this benefit?
No. Any student who wishes to take a complete meal will get one for free by going through the lunch line.
Why should I still fill out the free and reduced application?
The waivers are currently set to expire on December 31, or sooner if funds expire. If your child qualifies for free and reduced lunch, filling out an application now ensures that they will receive meal benefits after December 31.
Why must my student take all of the food offered?
Under the Seamless Summer Option the school is required to ensure the student receives a complete meal. Students may select their entree, sides and milk, but they must take everything offered with the meal.
- Breakfast includes an Entree, 1 cup of fruit and 8 ounces of milk.
- Lunch includes a Meat/Meat Alternate, Grains, 1 cup of vegetables, ½ cup of fruit for grades K - 8, or 1 cup of fruit for grades 9 - 12 and 8 ounces of milk.
- Students who do not take a complete meal may not participate in this program.
Will a la Carte (extra) food be available to purchase?
Yes. Extra food items will be available for purchase. If your student does not take a complete meal they must pay for the items they take, and must have funds in their school meal account or have cash with them to make the purchase. There is no charging of extra foods.
Will Meals be available for the fully virtual days?
Yes, students will access a Google form in their homeroom to register for meals to take home at the end of the school day for the fully virtual days.
Will the BASD Virtual students and the BASD BOL students have access to these meals?
Yes, students will be provided an opportunity to pick up meals on Wednesdays for the week. Each student may have up to five (5) breakfast meals, and five (5) lunches per week. This will be available as a grab and go that was established this past spring and summer.
NOTE FROM TECHNOLOGY
Message for Students and Their Guardians
Students are responsible for maintaining their Chromebooks (no physical damage, no loose or missing parts) and Chargers. - Students should not be writing on or placing stickers on their Chromebooks.
Chromebooks – District supplied protection cases MUST always be kept installed on the Chromebook. If damage occurs to the Chromebook and the cases are not installed, students are subject to additional repair costs due to removal.
Chromebooks should be charged daily. They should not be allowed to drain the battery completely as this will shorten the battery life and cause damage to the Chromebook. Never use the Chromebook to charge phones as this too causes damage to the battery and life of the Chromebook.
Please ensure you Shut Down your Chromebook at the end of use – not just close the lid. This will help with the performance of your Chromebook.
If you have an issue with your Chromebook:
Face to face: please stop in to see Mrs. Miller in the Tech Office located across from the library
Virtual or issues during a virtual day: please call 610-473-1953
Please visit us online for more technical advice and assistance: https://www.boyertownasd.org/Page/5970
Here you will find links to sign up for an appointment as well as technical tips
Please Note: *** The Acceptable Use Policy for technology is in effect. Students are expected to use their devices and technology resources in accordance with the policy. This includes refraining from engaging in "Zoom bombing". Violations of this policy will be addressed in accordance with the discipline code up to and including the involvement of law enforcement.
Important Health Information!
Dear Parents and Guardians,
This has been a very unprecedented year to say the least!
On behalf of the nurses in the district I am reaching out to you to give you some directions on changes that are happening in the BASD Health Rooms.
- Medication Drop off: please obtain medication authorization papers on-line to take to your physicians to be completed. Once they are completed, make an appointment with your school nurse for drop off, either call or email for mutual time to receive medication and paperwork. Have the medication authorization and the medication in a labeled container to bring to the nurse. Parents will not be permitted into the building to drop off medication.
- Amount of medication: Please consider supplying no more than a month supply of medication in the health room at any given time. Should we need to close for any reason, you will not be short any medication.
- Inhalers and Epi pens: follow above directions. It is recommended that students who can self-carry their own medications (inhalers/EpiPens only) should do so, provided we have the required paperwork on file for administration. This will enable the student to bring his/her medication back and forth to school. Should we be closed again for any reason, the student would have access to their medication. It is not an expectation that your child will administer it by themselves, it is only to keep the medication in the hands of the user, should we need to shut down school without notice. It will be the student’s responsibility to make sure that the medication comes back and forth with them daily. If this arrangement is not conducive for your child, we can keep medication in the health room, but we will not make immediate concessions to return it to you should school be closed for any reason.
- Nebulizer treatments: Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 we cannot administer any nebulizer treatments in the health rooms due to aerosolizing particles. Should your child require a nebulizer, you will need to administer it at home.
- Daily assessment of your child: Just a reminder that you should be assessing daily your child’s health status and monitoring for signs and symptoms of Covid-19. If you feel your child has been exposed or if they have symptoms, please have them tested and do not send them to school. This would include siblings as well from the same household, as they may be contagious as well.
- Health Room: If you child is exhibiting any of the symptoms of Covid-19, you will be notified to come and pick them up. It is our expectation that you will be at school in a relatively short period of time. Please understand that the symptoms of Covid-19 are like other illnesses, such as allergies/colds/flu/asthma. Therefore, children will be sent home for suspected symptoms.
- Returning Paperwork: Please return paperwork either with your child, or via email to the nurse at the building the child attends. You can scan, photograph, and email copies of all paperwork to us. All current state mandates are still in effect and will be required to be submitted.
We wish all of you a happy and healthy school year and are looking forward to seeing you back at school or virtually. If we can help in any way, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Your school nurse can be found by going to the BASD website, choosing the school the child attends, and go to health. The staff nurse and Certified School Nurse are listed there.
Elizabeth Vamvakias, RN, MSN, CSN
Additional Health Reminders
Immunization requirements for 7th grade entry
Attention Parent(s)/Guardian(s) of students entering 7th grade; your child is required to have 1 dose of tetanus, diphtheria, acelluar pertussis (Tdap) AND 1 dose of meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV) by the first day of school. At this time, the Pennsylvania’s Department of Health has not made any changes to the state immunization requirements other than to implement a two-month deadline extension. This requirement applies even to students who are continuing with virtual instruction. This information can be found in 28 Pa. CODE CH.23 (School Immunization) http://www.health.pa.gov/My%20Health/Immunizations/School/Pages/default.aspx or https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/programs/immunizations/Pages/Immunizations.aspx. Please email Mrs. Hopple, our West school nurse, at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
PA Mandated Dental and Physical Exams for 2020 - 2021 School Year
The PA School Code requires dental exams for all students entering Kindergarten, 3rd and 7th grades, and physical exams for students entering kindergarten, 6th and 11th grades. For students entering these grades in September 2020, physical or dental exams that are completed on or after September 1, 2019 are acceptable. If you need a form for an upcoming appointment, you can download one from the BASD website @ http://www.boyertownasd.org under Resources - Nurse – BASD Health Service link. Completed physical and dental forms can be submitted to the health room at the beginning of the 2020-21 school year. Because the health room is closed for the summer, if you submit a completed form over the summer please retain a copy for your records.
Library Books are now available!
Even though we're learning virtually for a little while, you can still check out library books! Here is a video that explains the process: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1RJr7vla2VjulxCb70uw_p2phlvBZJZFb/view
Follow these steps to request books (up to 3 at a time):
- Go to https://destiny.boyertownasd.org
- Click "Boyertown Middle School West"
- Click the catalog tab on the upper left-hand side of the screen.
- You can search by keyword, title, author, subject, or series.
Once you choose books that you'd like to check out, fill out and submit this Google Form: https://forms.gle/46uWWd1QuTgobaKDA. You must be logged into your BASD Google Account to access the Google Form.
Mrs. Palopoli will email you at your BASD email account to let you know when your books are ready for pick up. Books can then be picked up Monday-Friday from 7:00am-4:00pm at the West main office.
Due dates will be stamped on the card in the back of your book. Be sure to check there to see when your books need to be returned.
Please email Mrs. Palopoli at email@example.com if you have any questions.
As we are bringing students back to the building, we want to review recommended protocols for attendance, especially in light of the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. Our hope is that students are able to participate in their classes as they are scheduled whether it is in person or virtual. We recognize that there may be circumstances in which a child is unable to attend in person, but would be able to attend virtually. Please review the guidelines below as you make decisions regarding your child’s attendance in school in person and/or virtually. And, note the guidelines the building will follow for illness including Covid-19 symptoms or positive cases.
Student cannot participate virtually or in person due to illness
If your child is sick, not feeling well and unable to participate in classes whether it is in person or virtually, follow our typical attendance procedures by notifying the main office via the attendance email or completing the attendance form.
Student is ill and cannot participate in person, but can participate in virtual instruction (e.g due to Covid-19 positive OR exhibits COVID-19 Symptoms for which quarantine is necessary)
If your child is ill or exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms but feels he/she is able to participate in virtual instruction, please follow the steps below:
Email your child’s teacher and the attendance secretary stating that he or she will attend virtually for the day.
It is expected your child will participate virtually the entire day and in all classes to be marked present for the day.
Student presents with Covid-19 symptoms at school:
If the school nurse sends your child home from school due to symptoms associated with COVID-19 infection, the parent/guardian will pick up the child from school. The parent/guardian will be advised to contact their medical provider to obtain a note to clear the child to return to school or follow the next steps of the medical provider which may include a Covid-19 test. If the parent/guardian chooses to not seek a medical provider’s guidance, then the child must participate virtually for 10 days. (See Options # 1 or #2 above)
Exposure to “Close Contacts”.
Members of the same household are close contacts. If a member of a student’s household tests positive for Covid-19 or is symptomatic of Covid-19, please follow the steps outlined below.
A “close contact” can also be a non-household member. If the child has contact with a person within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more, and the non-household person tests positive for Covid-19, please follow the steps outlined below.
Contact your school’s nurse so they can advise you to follow the current protocols in testing and length of quarantine.
Email your child’s teacher and the attendance line stating that he or she will attend virtually for whatever time period is appropriate.
If your child is well and able to participate in their classes virtually, they should login and participate virtually for the entire day and length of quarantine.
Educational trips are still being approved for students who are attending BASD Virtual or returning to the school buildings. The protocols remain the same.
If your family is traveling to a quarantine state on a vacation, your child must participate virtually for 14 days upon returning to Pennsylvania. This information should be included in your trip form request.
Updates and Reminders for the 2020-21 School Year
Google Classroom is the platform that all middle school classes will be based in. If you are not familiar with how to use Google Classroom, this brief tutorial may be helpful: https://youtu.be/VOOnCwWZxX4
Teachers have also created an Office Hours Google Classroom. This link can be used during period 10 on any day that the teacher does not have an advisory group. The teacher will be available at this time for any student who needs help or has questions about an assignment to speak with them over video.
Several documents that have been shared over the past few weeks are available on the West page of the district website. These documents are available here: https://www.boyertownasd.org/Page/6000 if you have not already done so, please check here for codes for the various Google Classrooms.
Grab 'n Go Meals Continuing!
Support for Social Emotional Learning (SEL)
As a district, we have begun a 3-year implementation plan focused on Social Emotional Learning. Social and emotional learning (SEL) is the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. At this link, https://sel4us.org/blog/social-emotional-learning-supports-around-covid-19/, you will find a post from the Social Emotional Learning Alliance for the United States, that offers SEL supports around COVID-19. The post offers suggestions for families to reinforce each of the 5 SEL Core Competencies which include: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making. Thank you for partnering with us to prioritize safety and well-being.