Parent Peek at the Week

Preparing for School - September 9th, 2020

We're almost there.......

Hello Kawartha Heights families,


It's hard to believe it's been 6 months since we've seen our students and families! Although there is still a lot to prepare and communicate, we are very excited to have our students back with us again very soon. This newsletter will provide many of the details that you've been asking about over the past several weeks. We will do our best to make sure any changes are communicated to you in a timely fashion and appreciate your understanding that ongoing changes will be made as we continue to learn how to best keep our students and staff healthy.


There is no doubt we have some challenges ahead, but we're also ready to tackle them! Please be sure to get in touch with any questions you may not see answered here.


Take care and see you really soon,


Mrs. Sampson

Mask Protocol

In the next few days we'll send you the KPR Mask Protocol - as soon as it has been finalized. In the meantime, here is what you need to know:


- students in Grades 4 to 6 are required to wear masks at school

- students in JK - Grade 3 are strongly encouraged to wear masks at school

- students will wear masks at all times inside the school, except when eating their lunch

- students will wear their masks outside, and then keep them in a pocket or around their upper arm (through the loops) until the recess bell rings

- masks must have loops over the ears (no gators)

- lanyards to keep masks around the neck are not allowed at school due to choking hazards

- we strongly encourage families to pack an extra mask in school bags in case one gets dirty, wet, etc. throughout the day.

Home Self-Screening Tool

This year, it is expected that each family refer to the Covid-19 self-assessment screening tool and make sure your child(ren) is well enough to attend school. If they show any of the symptoms listed below while at school, we will need to isolate them and call you to come pick them up immediately. Please help us keep everyone healthy and safe, by keeping your child(ren) home from school if they are feeling ill at all.
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Drop Off and Pick Up

Due to our COVID-19 restrictions, unfortunately we cannot welcome you into the school like we might have in the past.


MORNING DROP OFF


When dropping off your child(ren), please do so at the back yard fence and have them come on to the yard by themselves. We are respectively asking that ONLY students are on the yard before and after school. Students can arrive between 8:45am and 9am and will go directly inside to their desks in their rooms. Please do NOT send students to school before 8:45am as there will be no supervision and doors will be locked.


If you happen to arrive late, then please have your child enter through the front doors - where Mrs. E. will meet them. If you would like to talk to anyone at the school, we ask that you make a phone or video appointment with us, but unless it's an emergency, do not come to the school at this time.


AFTERNOON PICK UP


Students will be leaving the school building at the end of the day in a staggered way onto the yard. They will then leave the yard at the bell - meeting you on the outside of the gate. Please do not enter the yard this year when waiting to pick up your child.


We currently have 6 gates at our school:


- 1 at the top of the far yard off of Applewood

- 1 at the upper parking lot

- 2 by the bus pick up area

- 1 by the Kindergarten yard at the main entrance to the school

- 1 on the far south side of the school close to the mall


Please decide with your family, which gate is the best place to meet after school. There is no doubt that the 2 gates by the bus pick up area are the busiest, and in order to ensure social distancing it will be important to use other gates as well. More information will be shared by your child's teacher. We are awaiting the signs below that will be on each gate and once installed we will number each gate so they are easier for your reference.


Kindergarten families, please note:


- Ms. Richardson and Mrs. Charmley's class will be picked up at the Kindergarten gate by the front doors each day

- Ms. Bartlett and Ms. Jones' class will be picked up at the gate closest to the bus drop off area each day


We appreciate your support and understanding in helping us to develop these new routines.

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Lunch and Recess

LUNCH


Students will be eating with their class in their homerooms twice each day. We are staggering our lunches this year, so primary students will eat first and then go out. Junior students will go out first and then eat. This will allow us to socially distance each class from each other when on the yard. Please send your child with a lunch they can easily access and containers are preferred. This year we will have boomerang lunches, which means any packaging sent to school will be sent home with your child each day.


STAGGERED RECESSES


This year, students will be assigned one area of the yard at recess and will socialize at 2m distance with their own class only. They will also enter and exit the school with their own class and will not cross paths with others. We will accomplish this by having the Junior classes go out first while the Primary students are eating, and then switch. We will change up the area of the yard each class is using after a few weeks, so that each class has the chance to move around. Please note that all playground equipment is out of bounds and no equipment will be used at this time. We will be working hard to teach students a variety of games that are socially distanced and require no equipment. A challenge for sure - but we'll work on it!

Seeing is believing.... check out our YouTube Channel!

We know how much it means to students to “see” what the school will look like when we come back to school. We have added several new videos to our school You Tube Channel - including "Who's Smiling Behind that Mask?" Starting today, we'll also be posting videos of what each of the classrooms looks like - so be sure to check back frequently! Take a peek at our Kindergarten rooms below.
Who's Smiling Behind the Mask
Welcome to Kindergarten

Staggered Entry

As with all schools in KPR, Kawartha Heights will stagger our entry so that students can get used to the new routines in smaller groups. Our stagger will look like the following:


September 14th and 16th: Students whose last name starts with A - L will attend school to begin to learn our new procedures in a smaller group environment.

September 15th and 17th: Students whose last name starts with M - Z will attend school to begin to learn our new procedures in a smaller group environment.

September 18th: All students attend school.

Other pieces of important information....

Bathroom and Water Bottle Filling

Classes will be going for "class bathroom and water bottle filling" breaks on a regular basis throughout the day. We are attempting to ensure whenever possible, that students don't go to the bathroom on their own, as this might have students cross-cohorting. In case of emergencies, we will ensure students go to the bathroom with an adult escort. For the most part, your child can expect to go several times during the day with their teacher escorting the whole class.


Indoor Shoes

Until further notice, students will be wearing the shoes that they arrive in, all day at school. We will NOT be changing into indoor shoes, so no extra pairs are required. As soon as it starts to get colder, the Board office will revisit this new routine. On a rainy day, please be aware that if you send your child in boots, they will be wearing them all day.


School Supplies

Many of you have been asking about what school supplies are required to be sent. Please know that as a public school system, we do provide all learning materials that students require for school. However, many like to bring their own materials and are more than welcome to do so. This year, we do ask that anything sent in be left at school - not transported back and forth.


Boomerang Lunches

This year we will be focusing on boomerang lunches - what you send with your child gets returned (garbage and all). This reduces the amount of moving around in classrooms during lunch, and is better for our environment. What a great time to consider a Bento box or tupperware instead of throw away packaging! Please also make sure your child is able to independently open and close what they bring to eat - student lunch monitors will not be able to be in rooms this year and adults will be keeping at least a 1m distance whenever possible from students.


Limit back and forth items

In order to support the protocols around touching items and wait time (did you know that we can't touch paper for 72 hours after someone else has touched it?!), we ask that you only send a backpack, lunch and waterbottle to school. Please do not send any toys or personal items.


Agendas/Communication Bags

If you need to contact a staff member, please message us through Edsby or send an email as we will not be able to accept paper notes. This year all communication from the school will be through Edsby. Older students will need to check Edsby for their homework as well.


Extra clothes, masks and hand sanitizer

If your child might need a change of clothes, please send this daily in their backpack, as no extra clothes can be stored at school. Your child is also welcome (and encouraged!) to bring extra masks in case one gets wet or dirty. Some may also wish to bring their own hand sanitizer which is fine - as long as it is scent free.

One more thing....

There is no doubt this school year has thrown us lots of curve balls, but your Kawartha Heights team is ready to run the bases, or even hit a home run! Please bear with us as we adjust and change routines based on the latest information and requirements from the Board and the Health Unit. Any changes are to support our school community in being able to attend school as safely as possible.
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