BWRSD Community Update 10/16/20

Message from Jonathan Brice, Superintendent of Schools

Dear BWRSD community,

We have successfully completed our 5th week of school. Thank you for all of your help with classes, feedback and questions, and keeping students home when they are ill. We are extremely grateful for your assistance, the dedication of our staff, and the willingness of our children to work hard in light of the unique circumstances of this school year.


Despite the challenges we face related to changes in practices and protocols related to COVID-19, we remain focused on student achievement. I have reiterated to faculty and staff the importance of frequently communicating with you about your children’s grades. The 2020-2021 school year must be one where our students continue to grow in their mastery of content and ability to meet and exceed proficiency requirements. This can only be accomplished if you and your child are aware of their performance and able to work with teachers to review instructional materials, revise assignments, and improve attendance, if necessary. We should all share the goal that students demonstrate a minimum level (80% or B-) of mastery of content. If students are not meeting this threshold then please reach out to their teacher to discuss ways they can improve, and I have asked teachers to contact you, as well. It is critical that we share high expectations for each and every child.


It is vital that you remain informed of your children’s progress in case swift measures are needed to improve grades as early as possible and avoid learning gaps that may impact their entire school career. Please communicate with your children’s teacher via email or call and leave a message if necessary. At the middle and high school level, please check the Parent Portal frequently to stay abreast of your children’s current academic progress. Ongoing two-way communication should ensure that students have time to make up missed assignments, improve grades when possible, and ultimately master the standards for grade level content.


Working together, we can ensure that our students are reaching and exceeding content learning goals and preparing for their futures.


Sincerely,


Jonathan Brice, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools

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Contents of this Update:

  1. Monday, October 19, 2020 - Professional Development/Distance Learning School Day

  2. COVID 19 Updates (a. RIDOH Quarantine and Testing Guidelines for Children and Staff that Travel Out of RI; b. Guidance for COVID-19 Symptoms/Testing/Return to School; c. Daily COVID-19 Screening Attestation Form Requirement)

  3. October is Bullying Prevention Awareness Month

1. Monday, October 19, 2020 - Professional Development/Distance Learning School Day

Monday, October 19, 2020 is a Professional Development Day for staff and is a Distance Learning Day for all students. This is a statewide PD/Distance Learning Day throughout Rhode Island. There are five PD/Distance Learning Days this school year (10/19, 11/16, 1/25, 3/15, and 5/17). Look for communication from your school administrator regarding more information.

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2. COVID-19 Updates

a. RIDOH Quarantine and Testing Guidelines for Children and Staff that Travel Out of RI

If you are considering out-of-state travel for the holidays, please be advised of the RI Department of Health (RIDOH) requirement that students who travel to one of these states must quarantine for 14 days when they return to RI and prior to returning to school.


Please note that the following information is from the RIDOH's website.


If you are a Rhode Island resident who has been in one of these states with a COVID-19 positivity rate higher than 5%, you must quarantine for 14 days and self-monitor for symptoms.


As an exception, you may provide proof of a negative test for COVID-19 that was taken within the 72 hours prior to arrival in Rhode Island. Quarantining for 14 days is always preferred over relying on a negative test result as quarantining is the best way to limit the possibility of spreading COVID-19.


If you are a returning Rhode Island resident, you can self-schedule an asymptomatic test at a community-based testing location or through portal.ri.gov. Returning residents who schedule an appointment through portal.ri.gov will not be billed for asymptomatic testing. It might take several days to receive test results. You must quarantine while waiting for a negative test result.


If you receive a test during your quarantine in Rhode Island and get a negative result, you can stop quarantining. However, you still need to self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days, wear a mask in public, and follow physical distancing guidelines. If you return to Rhode Island and begin to experience symptoms of COVID-19, contact your primary care provider or a Respiratory Clinic to schedule a test.


b. Guidance for COVID-19 Symptoms/Testing/Return to School

Please see the following 2-page document provided by the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) that is meant to educate families on COVID 19. This document is provided in three languages. It includes updated information on symptoms and guidelines on when children can return to school.


c. Daily COVID-19 Screening Attestation Form Requirement

Each day our school staff ensure that Daily COVID-19 Screening Attestation forms have been completed. When families have not completed the form, our staff contacts families to remind them to complete the form. This takes a significant amount of time. Please ensure that you complete the Attestation form each day so staff do not have to divert their attention from other duties. Please email portal@bwrsd.org if you have difficulty accessing the Attestation form in the Aspen Parent Portal. We are happy to work with families who need alternative ways to complete the form. BWRSD reserves the right to require a child to participate in distance learning if families refuse to comply with the daily attestation form requirement.

3. October is Bullying Prevention Awareness Month

Every October, schools and organizations across the country observe National Bullying Prevention Month. The goal: encourage schools, communities and organizations to work together to stop bullying and cyberbullying and put an end to hatred and racism by increasing awareness of the prevalence and impact of all forms of bullying on all children of all ages. Please be on the lookout for information and activities throughout the month.


Bullying awareness and prevention resources

BWRSD Back To School

Please visit our Back to School 2020-21 web page for important updates and links to our reopening plan and resources.