NEWS AND NOTES
January 22, 2021
A Note from the Principal
-Today 4th-8th grade will be coming home with extra books due to our increased number of quarantines and teacher absences. This is simply a precaution. We continue to prepare to remain in school but given the spike in our quarantine numbers, we want to be prepared. While a quarantine is obviously challenging to parents, not having all of the necessary textbooks only complicates matters. Kindergarten through 3rd grade will not be doing so given their ability to carry so much and the necessity of packets for quarantine learning. Again, taking items home is simply a precaution that we hope to not use.
-Re-enrollment for current Kindergarten through 7th grade students will begin on Monday! It is very important that you complete re-enrollment by February 8th. We have seen a large increase in demand for enrollment in nearly every grade. Your child will only be guaranteed their re-enrollment for two weeks. We will send out the information on how to re-enroll on Monday. If you have questions or concerns, please let me know.
-February lunch orders are due January 29th at 3:30.
-Conference scheduling is now available, details below.
-The Bishop will be joining us for the first of two Masses on Friday. In order for our students to all participate, Bishop has kindly agreed to come on January 29th and February 19th. Our Kindergarten through 4th grade will participate this Friday. Our 5th-8th will participate on the 19th. Each week of the Bishop's visits, the grades not participating in Mass with the Bishop will still attend their normal daily Mass.
-Please see the note below from our Superintendent regarding standardized tests this Spring.
*78 students on the quarantine list are the result of class quarantines
Total Confirmed Campus Cases: 26
Total Active Cases: 5
Students Actively Quarantined: 97
Classes or Grade Levels Quarantined: 2 grades (1st grade and 6th grade)
Faculty/Staff Actively Quarantined: 3
Total Recovered and Released: 21
I wanted to provide a Covid update. We currently have 97 students in quarantine, of which 78 are the result of the entire 1st grade and 6th grade going into quarantine in the last 24 hours. We are experiencing staffing challenges due to quarantine and illness as well. We currently have 4 staff members out in quarantine or non-Covid related illness as well as additional staff members that have their own children in quarantine. The school and Parish have put every effort into keeping our doors open. Church staff, Father Ketterer, teachers, and administrators have all been helping in the cafeteria and substitute teaching. While we fully intend to be open Friday, we are quickly approaching levels that we may not be able to fully operate. In the event of more teachers being out, specialty classes will be canceled so that specialty teachers can fill in for homeroom teachers. In the event, a specialty teacher must be out, that specialty would be canceled. As a last resort, there is always the possibility we would need to cancel school for a short period until we had enough staffing or approved substitutes. This would be an extreme situation and one that would not be made lightly.
Any Virtus approved lunch volunteers would be appreciated as our lunchroom coordinator Mrs. Maples, will be in quarantine through next week. Please contact Mr. Luetkemeyer if interested.
I would also like to remind our families that our efforts at Covid-19 mitigation are primarily focused on keeping everyone safe. We certainly take many precautions and some have asked why we have quarantines even with our established safety protocols? While we certainly do not like putting individuals in quarantine, our safety protocols are for mitigating the spread of Covid-19, not mitigating quarantine alone.
I provide this update in the spirit of openness and transparency. Our last resort is to cancel school and we recognize the negative impact this would have on families. Please continue to be vigilant of symptoms and err on the side of caution if your child experiences any by keeping them home from school and any sports practices or extracurricular activities.
Updated Quarantine Policy
After consultation with the Marquette Medical Advisory Committee and review of the CDC’s updated quarantine policy, Marquette and ECDC will be amending our individual student quarantine policy. While Marquette is not requiring a 14 day quarantine, it fully supports any family or individual that chooses to stay in quarantine a full 14 days after exposure. Effective January 10th, individuals exposed to Covid-19 without symptoms can end their quarantine:
After day 10 without testing.
After day 7 after receiving a negative test result (PCR test taken on Day 5 or Rapid test taken on Day 7). The individual will be required to wear a mask at all times on campus until day 14.
In order to use this amended quarantine procedure, after stopping quarantine, people should:
Wear a mask at all times on campus.
Continue to watch for symptoms until 14 days after exposure.
If they have symptoms, immediately self-isolate and contact their local public health authority or healthcare provider.
Additionally, students or staff must eat lunch in isolation to minimize possible transmission until day 15 of exposure.
Individuals who have been in quarantine must communicate in writing the date of their exposure and the beginning of their quarantine if they were not informed by the school regarding their quarantine. In order for a student or adult to return to campus, they must provide a negative test result (PCR test taken on Day 5 or Rapid test taken on Day 7) showing they are both negative AND took the test within guidelines. Any testing not within CDC recommended guidelines will not be accepted, regardless of the test result. Additionally, anyone returning prior to 14 days after exposure will have to wear a mask at all times, including outside recess and PE.
Parent Teacher Conferences
Parent Teacher Conferences are February 4 and February 5. School will dismiss at 2:15 on February 4 and there will be no school on February 5. Thursday conferences are 3:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. and Friday conferences are 8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Child care is not provided during conferences other than for those enrolled in aftercare which ends at 5:30. Conferences will take place in each teacher’s classroom (including middle school). We do ask that each parent wear a mask and we will have desks set up to allow sufficient social distancing between the teacher and parents.
We realize that since every middle school teacher teaches almost every middle school student, there are not enough spots for every parent to see every teacher. If you feel like you need a conference and there are no more spots for a particular teacher, reach
out to us and we will determine how to best solve this issue.
How To Schedule a Conference
Once again we will be utilizing the Pick a Time on-line scheduling system. Conference scheduling will open on 02/21/2020 at 7:00 PM and will close on 02/03/2020 at 3:00 PM. You will not be able to schedule before this time on Thursday, January 21.
The website is: https://pickatime.com/marquetteschool/client?event=358465
Be sure to choose February 2021 Conferences
1. Enter your email address and push "Login/Create Account".
2. Fill in the required fields and register.
Sign In (returning users)
If you've previously registered, all you need to do is enter your email and password. The system will know about your appointments and the children you have added to your account.
1. Each colored
square represents an available meeting time. The legend shows you which teacher corresponds to which color, and the times increase as you go down the page. (Note: you may not see all of the teachers at your school, just the set of teachers that your children have classes with.) Click on a square to book that time.
2. You will optionally have the choice of setting a time when you would like a reminder email delivered.
3. Click "Create Appointment".
Repeat until you have a time with each teacher you'd like to visit with.
At any time you can click on "printable schedule" and print the resulting webpage to get a hard copy of your schedule. You will also have the option to email your schedule to yourself. If you want to make changes to your schedule, you can log in at any time with the email address and password you used to create your account.
Click on "Your Schedule" to display and hide your appointments. There will be links to change the time, or cancel the appointment.
A note from our Superintendent regarding ITBS Testing
Dear Catholic School Parents,
I hope this letter finds you well. The Diocese of Tulsa and Eastern Oklahoma diocesan elementary schools have typically administered the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) and the Iowa Assessments. Some schools also administer Cognitive Abilities Tests (CogAT). These tests may be used to assess students’ skills in reading, language, mathematics, social studies and science. These assessments have typically been conducted mid-February during the Spring semester. We usually anticipate some student absences each year, particularly since the tests are given during the height of flu season. However, with COVID-19 still playing a major role with our teachers and students, with possible quarantines and exposures, along with likely flu absences, we are concerned about setting aside so much time outside the regular curriculum dedicated to standardized testing.
After careful consideration and consultation with each diocesan elementary principal, we have decided to forego standardized testing in diocesan elementary schools in the current school year. Both Bishop Kelley High School and Cascia Hall Preparatory School have confirmed that entering 9th grade freshmen will not need a 2020-2021 Iowa Assessment score to enter their schools. Each high school has school specific entrance exams for incoming students, and those will be the primary basis (along with traditional academic grades), that will determine placement, not standardized test scores.
By not participating in the Iowa standardized testing this school year, our students will be afforded more class time instruction which they would not have if Iowa tests were administered. Since our previous school year in-person learning was interrupted due to COVID-19, we strongly feel that our students would benefit more with more regular instruction vs. time spent away from the curriculum. We also want to be sensitive to our students’ stress levels, which we know have been high since the onset of COVID-19. Standardized testing can cause additional stress.
We will review a return to standardized testing during the 2021-2022 school year. Please contact the Catholic Schools Office if you have any questions.
David W. Dean
Lunch During Lent
All of the in-school Fridays during the months of February and March fall during the Lenten season, so we will not be serving meat on those days, hence no Chick-fil-A. Luckily, the McNellies Group will be providing us with a couple of delicious options that we will alternate for the five Fridays during Lent. We will not be in school the first two Fridays of February so the first lunch (Feb. 19th) will be spaghetti, garlic bread, and a dessert, and the second lunch (Feb. 26th) will be macaroni and cheese, green beans, and a dessert. Again, we will be alternating these two selections during the month of March, and the cost for each meal is $6. You are able to place orders for February now through Friday, January 29th... ordering will close at 3:30 p.m. on the 29th. Thank you so much for the continued support of this 8th-grade fundraiser! If you have any questions, please let us know.
Dru Jenkinson and Kristin Mayfield
Week at a Glance
-Re-enrollment begins for current Kindergarten through 7th grade students
-8:15 5th Grade Mass
-Happy Birthday Mrs. Grinzinger
-8:15 Mass for Middle School
-Mass with the Bishop at 10:00 for Kindergarten-4th grade students