Well you really can’t ask for a better weekend than we had this past weekend. I hope that you were able to spend some time outdoors enjoying the beautiful weather.
With the numbers for Cheshire County being as favorable as they have been, there have been some questions about when our schools may return to more than 2 days of onsite teaching and learning. It is extremely important for me to stress that we are not using the community transmission rates as the only measure of readiness. As mentioned in a previous update, we also need to consider the impact on the school when considering a move in either direction. Important factors that are considered include student absenteeism, strain on staff and physical capacity to maintain distances - “with the deliberate and intentional goal of maintaining 6 feet of distancing (as approved in the Comprehensive Opening Plan).” And although the State of New Hampshire Back-to-School Guidance allows for distances of three (3) feet, it is continually recommended to maintain distancing of six (6) feet by both NHDHHS and the CDC. When all of these factors are taken into consideration in totality, we will make appropriate recommendations for any change in structure.
All of our schools continue to work with families on completing the screening assessment prior to leaving for school. Having those inputs before students turn up greatly helps with the morning arrival processes. Please continue to Do Your Part by completing the screening assessment.
Speaking of which, our screening assessment tool received an update last week with regard to the third question that asks “Have you been exposed to someone experiencing symptoms or tested positive in the last 14 days?” If you answer “Yes” to that question, you will be directed to a new set of questions to determine clearance for the day in accordance with NHDHHS and CDC guidance. You will be asked about the results of the symptomatic person’s test and depending on your response to that, you may be asked if the symptomatic person came into direct contact with a positive COVID-19 patient or traveled outside of New England in the past 14 days.
It all sounds very confusing when reading it this way and we are developing a flowchart that will hopefully make it much clearer and easier to follow for everyone. As soon as that flowchart is completed, I will be sure to send it out to everyone.
Lastly, I want to continue to encourage everyone to continue to reach out to your child(ren)’s principal(s), teacher(s) and counselor(s), with any questions or concerns you may have. All of our outstanding staff members are working hard to provide the best possible outcomes for all of our students while maintaining the highest possible safety protocols at this time. They stand ready to assist all of our families as we all continue to navigate these uncertain times.
COVID-19 Data: Here is a 7-day look at the data related to COVID-19 that we’ve been tracking since March. Source: NHDHHS COVID-19 Page
*Note: Westmoreland total on 10/8/20 went up by 1 despite no new cases being reported for Cheshire County in the daily update from NHDHHS.
*Note: 10/5/20 - NDR = No Data Reported as the NHDHHS dashboards were down. 10/6/20 - NHDHHS dashboard did not capture reported cases in daily update. 10/8/20 - NHDHHS dashboard inexplicably went down by 1 from previous total leaving a discrepancy of 2 cumulative cases for the county inconsistent with what was reported in the daily updates.
Do Your Part: Here are the 7 short videos that were created from the Do Your Part Challenge that was issued to all stakeholders. A huge thank you to those that participated and we’re looking forward to the next challenge that is issued.
- DYP - Screening (Part 1)
- DYP - Screening (Part 2)
- DYP - Face Covering (Part 1)
- DYP - Face Covering (Part 2)
- DYP - Hand Hygiene
- DYP - Big 4 (Part 1)
- DYP - Big 4 (Part 2)
E-Flyer Distribution Program: As a reminder, there are many flyers that our schools are asked to send home throughout the school year. We also post these flyers on our website and it can be found by going to this E-Flyer Distribution Program embedded link.
Mental Health & Cultural Awareness: Below are some resources that may be helpful.
- https://www.parents.com/kids/education/back-to-school/12-fun-first-week-of-school-traditions/ Cool ideas….clever, fun and creative.
- https://discoveries.childrenshospital.org/preparing-kids-school-covid-19/ to help talk with your kids about returning to school.
- https://www.unicef.org/parenting/talking-to-your-kids-about-racism to help talk with your children, our students about racism. This article covers ages ranging under 5 years old, between 6-11years old, and 12+.
- https://www.unicefusa.org/stories/5-ways-stand-against-racism-and-injustice/37355 This article addresses acceptable ways to condemn racism.
- https://www.unicefusa.org/stories/how-white-people-can-talk-their-kids-about-racism/37361 This is a great way to start a conversation about racial issues with your kids. Racism thrives in silence.
- The 5 Signs to help you identify and support others who may be struggling more than usual at this challenging time, or at any time.
Reporting Abuse: If you see something, please say something. You can find guidance on the NH Department of Health and Human Services website.
- Monadnock Center for Violence Prevention - We’re here for you 24/7. You don’t have to be in crisis to call. Call our hotline at: 603-352-3782 or 1-888-511-MCVP
- National Domestic Violence Hotline - 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
Meals: Every student in SAU 29 is eligible for FREE breakfast and lunch for each day of school through the USDA until 12/31/2020 or until funds are exhausted.
Hybrid students: All students attending school in person are eligible to receive their free breakfast and lunch at their school on the days they are attending in person. Families can sign up for three additional days’ worth of meals (6 meals) each week representing the school days that hybrid students are not in school and are learning remotely. If you would like your student to receive those meals for remote days the order form will need to be submitted by Thursday at 5:00pm each week. Those reserve orders must be picked up on the following Wednesday at the locations requested on the order form. Please see the link below to fill out the required order form.
Fully Remote Students: Fully remote families can sign up to get 5 days’ worth of meals (10 meals) each week representing the school days that fully remote students are learning remotely. The order form will need to be submitted by Thursday at 5:00pm each week. Orders must be pickuped the following Wednesday at the selected. Please see the link below.
Please note, meals are provided for students only. Please call Keene Food Services at 603-357-9011 with any questions. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
LINK FOR REMOTE MEALS ORDER FORM:
Special Education: Special Education continues to work very closely with building leaders to ensure that the needs of students with disabilities are met. As always, please reach out to your child’s special education teacher or building principal with questions. You can also contact the Student Services Offices at 357-9001 extension 230 or email email@example.com if you have any questions. Our office hours are Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Thank you!
Contact Information: Dr. Rick Matte is the lead contact person for all COVID-19 inquiries and concerns at all SAU 29 schools and districts. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Governor Sununu has also activated a 24-hour COVID-19 hotline for all related needs and supports. The hotline can be reached by dialing 211.
Technology: Teachers, we have installed some software for remote teaching. Currently we have Kami which integrates with Google classroom. Screencastify will let you record your computer screen to share with the class. You can also have your image in the corner of the screen as you record the lesson. EquatIO Easily add equations, formulas, graphs to G Suite for Education. It has a scientific calculator, and periodic table charts.
Parents, please make sure you fill in the online registration for your students. It is important to have all the correct information in place.
Technology support during COVID19: Please see the update.
Power School update:
Power school online registration help can be found here.
Please remember to fill out the youtube permission form. For KHS and KMS
Help desk number: (603) 352-0640 ext 3871. For help with the Home user and remote learning click here.