I am longing for the day that I don’t have to start my weekly posts talking about the number of positive covid cases! King County Health Department is now updating the Key Indicators on a daily basis, Monday through Friday, so we have a clearer picture of the 14 day trends. Right now, King County is in the HIGH range with positive cases of 90 per 100,000. The Department of Health guidance calls for us to “pause and hold” which means that we are advised to have the classes who have returned to in-person learning remain on schedule in the building but we are to hold off on bringing in any other classes until the numbers begin to show a downward trend for 14 days. This mean that we have no date, as of yet, to begin to bring our intermediate level back (grades 3rd-5th). I had a meeting with the Department of Health yesterday morning and they indicated that they are worried about Halloween and Thanksgiving activities. Currently, the most cases are coming from family gatherings/interactions. The Director encouraged us to please get the word out to limit gatherings, mask up, maintain a 6 foot distance whenever possible and wash hands often.
Tomorrow is Unity Day! This is our day to celebrate diversity, kindness and inclusion. Since orange is the color of unity, students can have free dress if they wear something orange to school, or at home, remotely. As a special treat, during the day our 8th grader leaders will be zooming into each class to teach lessons about kindness, diversity and inclusion. Please join the celebration and encourage your child to wear orange tomorrow.
You should have received the time for your Parent Teacher Conference zoom to take place next Wednesday, October 28th or Thursday, October 29th. If not, please contact Jennifer Hazzard for your scheduled time. Like so much nowadays, we’ve never done these conferences other than in-person. You will receive a link from your child/ren’s classroom teacher to access the conference. Each grade will have one zoom link that all parents will use to access their conference for that class. As one conference ends, the next parent/s will enter the waiting room and the teacher will admit them at the time their conference begins. Each conference is fifteen minutes long with five minutes in-between for teachers to gather materials and prepare them to present. Please honor the time for your conference so that there are not hold-ups for other families.
Finally, Halloween is coming and it will be so different this year. Students are encouraged to wear their costumes to school on Friday, October 30th. Please remember that costumes need to be “life affirming” and not depict violence in either dress or implement. That’s not to say that the traditional ghosts, devils and witches are out, but the more gruesome and negative costumes (as well as accessories that might cause injury or are easily broken) should be left at home. Also, please make sure that the size of the costume is appropriate for a school day. Large, cumbersome costumes where a child cannot sit at their desk should not be worn. Also, all students must wear a cloth mask. Plastic masks are not a substitute for a cloth one, so please leave the plastic ones at home for the health and safety of all.
We are trying to keep our Halloween parade tradition for the classes that are in the building. Beginning at 11:30am on Friday, October 30th, PreK will start the parade by exiting the Banchero Hall doors onto Lee St. They will circle the block, heading west to 2nd Ave, south to Comstock St., north on 1st West and back to the Banchero Hall doors on Lee St. The Kindergarten, first and second grade classes will follow, all distancing as they round the block. Families are welcome to come and watch but please make sure you are masked and staying 6 feet away from other individuals. School will be dismissed at noon on that day, following the parade.
Have a great week.