This Information Session was hosted by the five elementary school principals on Youtube live. There was a short presentation that will be linked here when available about safety protocols and basics information. Then there was an extensive Q&A.
Tasks for Parents/Guardians:
Be sure to update your information in Powerschool. Your email will be pulled from this for health information and emergency contacts. (They understand there is a backlog of people waiting for tech support)
Pickup patrol will also be used for online attendance and dismissal plan. An email will be coming out next week to set up Pickup Patrol account if you don’t already have one.
How do I find out my students cohort and teacher?
The information will be out 9/4 at 5 pm to everyone. For the most part they tried to stick to alphabet split (A-K in Cohort A, L-Z in Cohort B), but it wasn’t always possible and that has been communicated to families who were affected. Students of the same family will all be in the same cohort week. Classroom teachers will share student lists when they reach out in the next week or so. There should be between 8-12 students in a class.
How do I get emails from my school?
In the past each school would send out their own blasts. Now there is a weekly email from the district called “NPS Engage” with links to each school’s newsletter. It comes out on Fridays. Orientation materials will be coming out through this newsletter.
Snack and Lunch available through December for all children?
Snack was a mistake. It’s actually breakfast and lunch that is available for free for all students. The food will be something they can easily pick up and eat at home or their next destination.
Is ASAP cancelled?
No, but it’s not running yet. See the notes from the School Committee meeting here. The Y was mentioned as a possibility for after school care.
Is there concern about students entering at the same time in a ten minute span?
In the beginning of the year it will take a little longer and we expect that will happen as students get used to the process. There are building specific plans that will come out to you from your principal or in the school handbook. Memorial has a rolling drop off. Lots of adult support to help.
How will I know that my student is taking the bus?
If you have signed up from the bus, then you will hear something soon from the Transportation department. But if you signed up you will be on a bus.
Will there be demonstrations about refilling water bottles at school?
Absolutely. It is always typically done but especially this year.
What happens if my child needs a mask break and it is not the schedule break time?
The priority is student safety and health. If they need a mask break teachers can make it happen.
What does recess look like?
Kids will not be wearing masks but distancing 6 ft apart. Playground equipment will be open with the playground broken up into zones. If they can ensure kids can be 6 feet apart then they can take their masks off. For kids that want to be closer to other kids then they might choose to keep their masks on. They are still working this out, making sure kids are safe. At Brown they have been able to identify more spaces where kids can be outside, maybe classes outside on their own.
How does lunch work for Tobin or other after school?
They can pack their own lunch or grab a lunch at school and bring it.
What supplies do students need?
A list of recommended supplies for at home learning will be sent out on 9/4. Any supplies they need at school will be provided and kept at school, packaged in their own bag. Art materials will be sent home to be used for remote learning. Contact Natick Service Council if your family is unable to purchase materials. They are partnering to make sure every student has what they need. They should have a dedicated learning space at home. Students need a device at home for their remote week. It doesn’t matter if it is a chrombook, other laptop or ipad.
Will students need to bring hand sanitizer?
No. They will have plenty at school. Everything that is purchased is approved by FDA, CDC and the school nurses.
Are there touchless water faucets?
They are coming! Everything is on backorder. In the meantime students will learn a protocol of washing hands in the bathroom and then sanitize before they reenter the classroom.
Will this system be in place for the whole school year?
No idea. We are preparing for every scenario
Will I need to order a chromebook for my student?
Every student needs a device at home for remote weeks (doesn't have to be a chromebook, can be ipad or other laptop. Reach out to the tech department if your child needs a device and you cannot purchase one.
How will my student drink water?
There is quadruple protection - desks 6 ft apart, plexiglass, masks, desks all facing same way. If a student needs to take a drink of water the can remove their mask, take a drink and then put mask back up.
What will snack time be like?
When kids are outside they will be spaced at least 6 ft apart. They will use familiar items like hula hoops, beach towel, etc. to help students with spaces.
What will breaks look like in inclement weather?
Thunder/lightening and freezing cold it won’t be possible. We are implementing more safety measures in the classroom so that students can have snack breaks in the classroom worst case.
Will classroom windows and doors be open all the time?
Yes, that is the plan. Also the filters are now all Merv 13.
What will small groups look like?
Students can be in brief small groups if there is plexiglass between students.
When will K screening happening? K orientation?
It will all be done by Oct. 31st typically. It has to be done for state requirements. This information will be communicated out to parents. There will be virtual tours and K teachers will be providing get to know them information. It cannot happen in the building.
What will remote week look like?
The day will begin at 8:30ish. It will start with a community meeting with in school students, remote students. There will be two specials a day (40 mins each). The remainder of the time they will have work assigned to them - a combination of paper work, activities and online work.
I haven’t heard back from Tech support?
There is a big backlog and they are trying to get to everyone. Please be patient.
When does Cohort B start?
There is a two hour orientation on Sept. 14 from 8:30 - 10:30. Then on Sept. 16th they will start their first day of school with a remote learning week.
What are the hours for early release days?
Not sure yet.
Are remote specials mandatory?
Yes. Attendance will be taken. Specials will be live (not pre-recorded) so may look differently then the Spring.
What is the process when kids are sick?
Students have access to school even when they are at home. They can tune into community meeting, engage in the remote work and specials until they are well enough to return.
Will there be orientation for students to meet their classmates (like a step up day)?
This will be teacher specific. It may happen earlier than first day of school, may happen in first week but it will be up to each teacher.
Are there requirements on masks?
Masks must be at least two ply. Gaiters, bandanas and vented masks are not allowed. Wear it one day and then wash it.
How do I drop off student medication?
It will be in the newsletter that comes out Friday.
Are there still cubbies and places to hang coats?
Yes, it’ll be school/classroom specific but students will not be allowed within 6 ft of each other when using their cubby or getting things out of their backpack.
How does it work for students who are at school full time because their adult is a public school teacher?
In their live week they will be in the classroom as normal. In their remote week they will be in a second cohort of other students who are also children of teachers with adult supervision to do their remote work.
What is the protocol to switch between the Remote Learning Academy and hybrid?
It is strongly discouraged to switch between them earlier than the semester because the classes are staffed according to numbers.
When will students eat breakfast provided by the school?
If your student needs breakfast they will grab it and go to a designated place when they arrive at school. It will cut into their classroom time so if they can eat breakfast before they come then they should. But if they need breakfast at school they can get it and eat it at school.
How will buses work? How will dismissal work?
Students will be in every other row and one child to a seat. Siblings can sit together. At Johnson the dismissal will look similar. At other schools it will be a live pickup and drop off.
Will the bathroom be cleaned after each use?
No, but they will be wiped down throughout the day.