Welcome Letter from Dr. Hancock — August 21st

Welcome to the 2020-21 School Year!

Hello, Nitrauer Families!
Welcome to the 2020-21 school year! As I shared with you in the letter sent at the beginning of August, we are busy making plans for all of our students and staff to return to school. Health and safety is our number one priority for all students, families, and staff.With that in mind, along with the need to follow health and safety guidelines as related to Covid-19, adjustments have been and will continue to be made for everyone who is in our buildings. These may include changes to typical routines (e.g. we are swapping bus and car rider locations–more info below), procedures, and/or events at our school. This information is being shared with all families, including those who have selected MT-Flex or MTVA as instructional options.

Please read to the bottom of the newsletter where you’ll find a video I created to help our Nitrauer Knights (and families) become familiar with procedures around the building.

If any changes to the information in this newsletter were to occur due to a change in guidelines from the MTSD School Board, governor, CDC, DOH, and/or PDE we will notify you of the change via email. Over the course of the school year, we will work closely together. The home-school connection is vitally important to support our students. It is going to be a great year for our Nitrauer students!

Reopening Our Schools – This link will take you to the MTSD Reopening Our Schools page. It includes links to our Health and Safety Plan, presentations to the school board, and more!

Key safety measures in our schools

  • Our teachers have removed non essential furniture from their classrooms to allow for student desks or tables to be further apart
  • Parents must check your child’s temperature every morning. If he/she has a temperature of 100.4 or higher, he/she must stay home.
  • Traffic throughout the hallways will be reduced as much as possible.
  • During arrival, we will unload students from one bus at a time to minimize the number of students in the halls. Students will report directly to their homeroom on the first day of school.
  • Water fountains will not be in use to start the year. Please send your child with a filled water bottle each day to school. All students will receive an MTSD water bottle on the first day of school.
  • All the supplies your child needs will be waiting for him/her at school. Please do not send items from home unless requested by your child’s teacher.

Masks

  • All students, staff, and essential visitors are required to wear a mask or face covering while in our building.
  • During school time, masks must be worn at all times, EXCEPT when:
    • Students are eating/drinking at least 6 feet apart,
    • Students are operating equipment that makes it unsafe to wear a mask, or
    • Students are taking a 6 foot (minimally) spaced mask break that doesn’t last more than 10 minutes.
  • Masks will stay on at recess, unless staff is able to facilitate and monitor a 10-minute (maximum) mask break with 6 feet of spacing.

Social distancing

  • Teachers and staff will teach students about social distancing. Lessons will include age appropriate information about why it is important.

Beginning of the school year priorities

  • Our focus for the start of the school year is to meet the social and emotional well being of our students. Teachers’ priorities will be to work with their students to develop a positive classroom environment, in person and/or virtually!
  • Lessons to meet the social and emotional needs of our students will be integrated into morning meetings and throughout the school day.
  • PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) lessons will be part of our daily schedule the first few weeks of school. They will include specific lessons for Covid-19. Examples of Covid-19 lessons include why we wear masks, washing hands, social distancing, etc.

MT Flex Parent Information and Training

  • This link includes information for parents about supporting your remote learner.

MT Flex Student Information and Training

  • This link includes information for students about being a remote learner.

MT Livestream Guidelines

When does my child go to school IF K-4 transitions to yellow?

  • Group A
    • Students whose last name starts with A – L
    • Students attend school in person on Monday and Tuesday
    • Students attend remotely Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday
  • Group B
    • Students whose last name starts with M – Z
    • Students attend school in person on Wednesday and Thursday
    • Students attend remotely Monday, Tuesday, and Friday
  • Remote learners continue their remote instruction every day

Student and Parent Handbook

  • Please review this handbook. You will receive information about how to acknowledge that you read it in the next week or two. I’m sending this to you now if you want to get a jumpstart.

MT Live Stream Guidelines & Link

Cleaning/sanitizing

  • Daily cleaning practices will follow CDC/WHO/EPA/PA Health Department guidelines.
  • Signage to encourage and reinforce social distancing and hand washing/sanitizing will be mounted.
  • All water fountains will be disabled; touchless bottle filling stations will be installed.
  • Students and staff will be encouraged to use individual bottles from home.
  • Hand sanitizers will be available throughout the schools for visitors, students, and staff.
  • All occupied areas and touchpoints will be sanitized daily with a viral disinfectant utilizing electrostatic sprayers.
  • Heavily touched areas will be sanitized several times a day.
  • Disinfectant wipes will be placed in each classroom and various areas throughout the schools.
  • Staff and students will be encouraged to sanitize their desks and touchpoints with the disinfectant wipes provided.
  • Restrooms will be regularly cleaned, disinfected and stocked with supplies for hand washing, including soap and hand sanitizer.
  • Outdoor air ventilation in HVAC equipment will be set to ASHRAE maximum limits.
  • Staff will be encouraged to open windows to increase air flow when outside weather conditions warrant.
  • HVAC equipment will be programmed to provide outdoor air purge cycles during school hours.
  • High efficiency antimicrobial filters will be used in all HVAC equipment.
  • Air filtration equipment with bi-polar ionization technology will be installed in all Nurse Suites and in the Containment Areas reserved for individuals that display COVID-19 symptoms.
  • All Plant Services staff will be continually trained in “COVID19 Best Management Practices” https://www.fema.gov/coronavirus/best-practices

Finally, here’s the movie I created. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1LmylWhCdCRmJJHOCimPvgY_5wCAobdB8/view?usp=sharing

I am so excited for school to start!

I will see you all face-to-face or remotely starting Tues, Aug 25 (and Kindergarten on Wed)!!!!

Dr. Hancock