Rheel News

November 2021

Dates and Reminders

November 23rd - School Turkey Trot - During recess - Fun run for our students and staff

November 24-26 - No school for Thanksgiving break

December 5th - Holiday Bazaar (see flyer below)

December 15th - Take out Tuesday at Burrito Shack

December 17th - Last day of school before Winter Break

January 3rd - Teacher work day No School for Students

January 4th - Students return from Winter Break

At the board meeting this week we also reviewed our calendar, there have been some approved calendar changes for the second semester!

Please note the following changes:

Friday, January 14th is now a full teacher work day. No school for students that day.
*This makes a 4 day weekend for students since there is no school Monday, January 17th for MLK Day*

Wednesday, January 26th is now a full day of school. No half day for students or staff.

Wednesday, February 16th is now a full teacher work day. No school for students that day.

Reading at home

So many parents frequently ask, "what can I be doing at home to help?"

Most often, the reply is take time to read and read and read. The ability for a child to read to you, to listen to you read, and for you to read together will continue to grow your child's ability to decode and increase stamina in reading.

The state of North Carolina has now created a website dedicated to Literacy at Home. It is full of activities and resources to use at home. All are sorted by grade level. If you feel you are unsure of what level to have your child work on, reach out to their teacher for guidance. Ms. Judie shared this link with our teachers and we felt it was important to share it with our families as well.

Click the book to link to the website!

The burnout is real...

As a parent, who recently had her five year old quarantined for 10 days, I know the feeling of wanting all of this to just go away already. We spent 10 days worrying about every sniffle, keeping siblings apart and hoping to not have to test our child. My husband and I spoke a lot about the feeling of burn out from everything COVID. From masks to symptoms to constant state of worry, it is not a shock that we are all ready to move on. Unfortunately, we are not there yet. While it is encouraging to see the positivity rates go down and some restrictions continue to be lifted by the county, it is important to remain cautious. We are headed into the colder months, runny noses, coughs, and common colds are to be expected. We have to make sure we are continuing to monitor for symptoms, airing on the side of caution, keeping students home when symptomatic, and being open and honest with the staff here at school so we can clean and sanitize to prevent further spread. As the Board shared in their letter, my goal is to keep our school open and safe for our students and staff. We all have post traumatic stress from remote learning for that extended period of time and we do not want to take steps backwards. With cooperation and patience, we will keep our school open and thriving!
Children are just beginning to be able to be vaccinated. This is a choice for each family to consider just as it was for adults being vaccinated. Starting January 4th, we will be making masks optional for all students and staff. Again, this will be a choice for families to make and conversations for families to have with their students. I will be working to update our COVID guidebook based on these new measures and will send it out to families once it is approved by our Board of Directors.

We will continue to do our part here at school to follow the guidelines set in the NC School Toolkit along with recommendations from New Hanover County Department of Health and Human Services. It is important to note that we do not have to follow the county or even the county schools. Our board meets monthly to review the procedures we have in place and update/change as needed.

As always, reach out to me with questions and/or concerns.

Thank you for your continued support and patience.

Here we grow AGAIN!

As you may have seen or heard, we are working on a big project on campus. We own the land behind the Children's School and Upper Elementary building. While most of this is wetlands, there is a clearing of land in the back that we are able to create an outdoor classroom. We are going to have trails to the outdoor classroom that will include a stage and seating. We are working through final approval from the county and are now looking for a contractor to take on the job.

If you are a contractor or know a contractor that would be interested in this work and pairing with our school, please have them reach out to
Brian Corrigan briancorrigan@islandmontesssorischool.com
or Alicia Rheel arheel@islandmontessorischool.com

Thankful for...

It is the time of year where we find ourselves reflecting and finding things we are thankful and grateful for.

For me, I have quite the list:

I am thankful for the wonderful students we have here at IMS. They are our purpose in all we do. They are the forefront of every decision and action that we take. We have an amazing group of students who continue to grow and change the world around them.

I am thankful for the staff we have here at IMS. We have an amazing group of lead teachers, assistants, EC teachers, and specials teachers who work very hard to provide the most nurturing and inviting environments for our students. There are not enough hours in the day to do all that is asked of them but they continue to work and not give up. They continue to find creative ways to integrate topics into their lessons, to meet children where they are and grow our students academically and emotionally. Our support staff and administrative team are the most giving and supportive group we have ever had. They are always dropping their own work to provide a helping hand where needed. They keep us running every day and we would be lost without them! Thank you to each of our staff members for continuing to make our school community the best around!

I am thankful for our families. We are truly lucky with the families we have here. You have entrusted us with something so important and we are grateful for the commitment and trust you show in our Montessori methodology. I am thankful for your commitment to our growth in service. We have had an outpour of support for our food drive and book drive. The food drive for the NC Domestic Violence Shelter was over 600 items. The Shelter Director said they now have enough food for Thanksgiving and December Holidays! To witness this commitment, grows our love for what we do at our school and it would not be this successful without your support!

I am thankful for our Board of Directors. They are the behind the scenes workers who don't get the recognition they deserve. They put in hours of work for policies, fundraising, and support for our school. I am grateful for their work and support!

I am thankful for our FSA. We have a hard working group of parents who volunteer many, many hours to connect our staff, students and families. They have had to find new and inventive ways during COVID but I am so grateful we are able to have community events again this year.

Thank you all for your commitment to our school and our mission. I wish you all a peaceful and relaxing Thanksgiving. May you stay healthy and enjoy time together sharing what you are most thankful for.

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