Supts eNews - Aug 9, 2021

 

In this edition ...

  • See what school will look like
  • Teachers/class lists are available today
  • Informational meeting for Remote Independent Study program tonight
  • The “new normal:” Preparing for a safe school year
 
 
See what school will look like
Summer has flown by and Wednesday (first day of school) is just around the corner! Check out this video for what school will look like when students return to campus on Wednesday. More information about this school year can be found at mvwsd.org/backtoschool.
 
 
Teachers/class lists are available today

Your child’s class placement for the 2021-22 school year is now available for viewing on the PowerSchool Parent Portal: https://ps.mvwsd.org/public/ under the My Schedule link. If you have difficulty signing in to PowerSchool, please call your school office.

 
Informational meeting for Remote Independent Study program tonight

In case you missed it, there is a repeat info session about the Remote Independent Study program tonight (Aug. 9) on Zoom at 8 p.m. (Meeting link here). This session is required to begin enrollment in the program. For information about the program, please see mvwsd.org/RemoteIS.

 
The “new normal:” Preparing for a safe school year

Ayinde RudolphFrom Dr. Ayindé Rudolph
Superintendent

As we start the school year, I want to reiterate our district’s commitment to your child. Like any parent, I think a lot about my children’s safety, especially now that the Delta variant of COVID-19 is being transmitted. My concern varies depending on the child and the age. For Kayla and Camille, two women who are attending college, I am concerned about break-through infections, risky behaviors, and dorm room cleanliness. But for Eli, who is too young to be vaccinated and is still in elementary school, I worry about whether or not he will catch Covid-19. Can he stay safe until a vaccine is approved? Will the actions of well-intentioned adults, or of those whom I may view as a little more reckless, put our family in a bind?

I worry about our teachers. I take pause when I think about their safety in dealing with 24 unvaccinated students. I think about the stress that they are under to provide the best education possible under the circumstances. Ultimately, I want Eli to have the best educational experience he can get, even if it isn’t “normal.”

When I look at what we have endured for over a year, I realize that we are all still dealing with some type of grief or loss. We made it through the pandemic with the idea that after the vaccine was approved things would return to “normal.” We hoped as restrictions were lifted that our school days would be more typical. We hoped kids would go on field trips, huddle together with their friends mask-free and enjoy the world, carefree.

The goal this year is to keep our students and staff safe and to keep students in school and on campus. Our best bet is to do as the CDC suggests and employ a myriad of strategies to help keep kids safe. They encourage the wearing of masks as the best mitigation strategy. When coupled with screening, improved ventilation, enhanced cleaning protocols, physical barriers when social distance cannot be maintained, and limited sharing of materials, we can effectively mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

While every strategy has its pluses, minuses and unknowns, the layering of multiple strategies is encouraged to maintain a safe environment. In the event that one COVID measure fails, there will be another to shore it up. Our safety layers include:
* Masks for everyone, all the time
* Upgraded HVAC systems with MERV-13 filters, which is the highest-grade filter available for our units, and outside air dampers open to full capacity
* Desk shields barriers at each desk to help reduce transmission and serve as a reminder for social distancing
* Regular cleaning and sanitization
* Daily health screenings
* Limiting campus visitors
* Enforcing county quarantine guidelines

What I want more than anything else is for each of our children to sit in front of their teacher and learn and grow. These safety measures won’t be comfortable, especially at first, but they are the best ways to reduce the spread and keep our doors open. Going to school, the farmers market, travel, and sporting events will not be the same. It is possible that this, or some variation of this, will be our new normal. I pray that we go back to the same at some point, but I don’t know if our children will ever experience schooling as we knew it. It is not going to be the same, but we can make it safe. And being safe is our “new normal.”

 
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