Wednesday, 6/3/2020 - SAU29 COVID-19 Update

Good Afternoon,


I want to start by being very clear that discrimination of any sort (based on race, gender, sexual orientation, color, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, age, disability or any other form) is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in our schools. I’m not certain that I was that clear in my message on Monday, so I wanted to be a lot more direct with that position.


I also want to say thank you to everyone that has been sending in their concerns with what they are seeing on various social media platforms as it applies to discrimination and our schools and districts. This is exactly how “If you see (or hear) something - say something” is designed to work. It truly serves as a way to make our wonderful communities even better. I apologize for not being overly specific (as it may violate confidentiality and privacy rights that I am bound to uphold) but I did want to express my gratitude. I also want folks to know, with no uncertainty, that the concerns that have been shared are being actively addressed.


However, the educator in me leads me to share yet another teachable moment. A social media presence is a very powerful and valuable tool when used responsibly. Having an online presence can open up opportunities for people that may not have been open absent an online presence. The opposite of this can be true as well. Opportunities may be closed as a result of someone’s online presence as well. Which brings us back to the responsible use of social media.  


Job offers, college acceptances, career advancements can often hinge on what institutions/organizations find on people over the Internet. Social media posts, once submitted, make digital imprints that are there forever to be found, even if they are deleted from personal accounts. Educators and parents are united in that they want the best for their students/children.  That means that teaching (and reinforcing) and perhaps even more importantly, modeling, responsible use of social media is critical. I will be working on providing a list of resources that will help us all drive home the importance of responsible social media use for us to model and help guide our children and our students.


I believe all of the end-of-year event details are pretty much finalized. It is my hope that we are all able to help our students enjoy these events as much as possible as they are celebrations of our students. I do recognize that some people may have had other ideas in mind and what has been put into motion may not be what you may have envisioned, so it is really important that we try to put that aside and help our students enjoy the proceedings.  


There are only a couple of days left to submit the videos from the challenge as indicated below.  Please consider being a part of this final challenge so that we have as many voices sharing as possible.  Don’t forget to check in with your child(ren)’s teacher(s) and counselor.  


And lastly, I thought I would share this Less Than 3 Minute video for us to reflect on, given all of the turmoil that is happening because I know that in our communities...We Got This!


Be Well,

Robb


Remote Learning: If you are experiencing any difficulties or concerns with your child’s remote learning or have questions regarding what is expected, please start by asking your child’s teacher. Our teachers are doing a GREAT job of continuing the teaching and learning process through these adverse circumstances and can provide immediate answers or direct your questions accordingly.


Mental Health and Mental Health Awareness Month:  A friendly reminder to reach out to your teacher, school counselor or school nurse if you are feeling the need to talk about matters related to our cultural challenges, Covid-19, or anything else that is weighing on your mind.  We want to hear from you.   


Last week we launched access to our second feature film for Mental Health Awareness Month. Below you will find the link and login information in order to access the Angst online program. I am also including the link and login information for the film Like once again for anyone that may not have had the opportunity to watch it last week. Both of these films will remain available until we have reached our limit for viewings.  


Link to View Angst


Link to View Like


The specific details to login to either film is the same and provided below.

Login: sau29@indieflix.com

Password: sau29


The remaining schedule for the films will be as follows:


Ongoing:  Like a film about the impacts of social media.

Ongoing:  Angst a film about anxiety in our youth.

As a follow up to both films, “Like” and “Angst” some of our dedicated staff have created a pre-recorded panel discussion on many of the most asked questions in relation to those films. This panel discussion will be available for you to watch at your convenience and is linked both here and in the update below.


A friendly reminder that we have limited viewings for each film, so it is really important that households only access one of the viewings. This will allow more of our families and our staff to be able to watch the films as well.


As always, please reach out to your child’s team of school counselors or school nurses if you need support or assistance during this challenging time. If you are not sure who to contact, please call or email your child's building principal.  If you are unable to reach someone, please contact the Student Services Offices at 357-9001 extension 230 or email rmatte@sau29.org.  


Resources:

  • 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.
  • A Mom's Retreat - A podcast on managing anxiety.

School Boards:  Please use the links below to access the most recent school board meetings for your respective school district.


Chesterfield -  CSB Meeting Video

Harrisville -  HSB Meeting Video

Keene - KBE Meeting Video

Marlborough - MbSB Meeting Video

Marlow - MwSB Meeting Video

Nelson - NSB Meeting Video

Westmoreland - WSB Meeting Video


Weekly Challenge:  This two-week challenge is to create a BRIEF thank you video lasting about 5-10 seconds long and is open to students, parents/guardians and all staff members.  We want to recognize and acknowledge that this has been a difficult time for many of us and being able to complete our school year took a great deal of effort on many people’s behalf.


There are multiple videos that can be created and submitted and you are not limited to any one specifically, meaning you can submit multiple videos if you would like. Here are some suggested categories of videos:


  • From Students:  a video to your parents to say thank you for all that your parents did to support you throughout remote learning.
  • From Students:  a video to your teacher(s) and/or other school staff to say thank you for their efforts in supporting you throughout remote learning.
  • From Parents/Guardians:  a video to your child(ren)’s teacher(s) and/or other school staff thanking them for their efforts throughout remote learning. 
  • From Parents/Guardians:  to your child(ren) thanking them for their efforts throughout remote learning.
  • From Staff:  to your students and/or parents/families thanking them for their efforts throughout remote learning.
  • From Staff:  to your colleagues thanking them for their support and effort throughout remote learning.

In order for this to work to the extent we are hoping, we will need permission from parents/guardians to use the videos in the larger production we have planned. This will be easier to attain if permissions accompany submissions so that follow ups are minimized. It could be either a video permission or if the video is emailed from a parent/guardian’s email, written in the body of the email. To safeguard this process, I am emailing students to check with their parents/guardians prior to participation.


Please submit your videos to saupublicinfo@sau29.org with a Cc to rmalay@sau29.org before 5:00PM on Friday, June 5, 2020.  It is our intent to release the compilation of videos prior to the last day of school for all to enjoy.



Special Education: After careful thought, discussion and analysis, it has been decided that extended school year (ESY) instruction and related service therapies will be an extension of remote learning. We appreciate everyone's flexibility and patience as we weighed all options before making this important decision. 


The special education and related services staff continue to provide specialized instruction and related therapies from a distance. Moreover, our paraprofessionals and tutors are providing important assistance and support with remote instruction. In addition, the special education department is moving forward with the daily business of Individualized Education Plan Meetings (IEP), transition meetings and Extended School Year Services meetings (ESY) for those students that qualify. As always, please reach out to the Student Services Offices at 357-9001 extension 230 or email rmatte@sau29.org. Our hours are Monday through Friday from 8:00 to 3:00.  Thank you!


Meals: The order form for meal pick up in the towns is open for Monday, June 8th and Wednesday, June 10th. Orders MUST be submitted no later than this Thursday, June 4th at 5pm.   Please use this meal order form link to place your order.


Meals in Keene are available for pick up behind Franklin Elementary and Keene High School on Monday and Wednesday from 7:30 to 11:30am. No pre-ordering is required for the Keene locations.


Last day for meal pick up:

Keene -  June 10 (4 days)

Chesterfield, Marlow, Nelson, Westmoreland - June 15 (1 day)

Marlborough & Harrisville - June 15 (2 days)

Information on summer lunch programs will be posted this week.


Menus and offerings will vary based on availability.



Technology: Collecting Chromebooks. KHS Seniors if you borrowed a Chromebook or computer please drop it off on the 9th. Make sure you have the power cord with the device.

KMS- Drop off will start on the 15th and 16th. Please contact the school for the assigned day. 

Please contact your school for more information on times and where you should drop off the devices. Make sure you have the power cord with the device.

Help desk number, (603)352-0640 ext 3871,  For help with the Home user and remote learning click here


Phishing attempts:  We have had another phishing attempt. We have blocked the person that is attempting to scam us. Please read this document for more information.


We have Kami as a part of the Google classroom for Teachers and students. Click here for the 1st time login instructions. Click here for the help with getting started with Kami.  


Vetted APPs and Websites:  You can check the online vetted site here SDPC  Look up the App and website by company. We have added more to the list as we get them back from the Vetting team. 


Reporting AbuseIf you see something, please say something.  You can find guidance on the NH Department of Health and Human Services website.  


Additional Resources:


School Calendars: You can use this link to view your district’s calendar:  SAU 29 School District Calendars.  The 2020-2021 school year calendars can also be found using this link.


School Buildings: Building hours are 7:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday for staff only.  All buildings are closed on the weekend.


June 18-19:  All buildings in SAU 29 are closed.

June 26:  Rescheduled floating holiday from April 24.


School GroundsAll school playgrounds, fields, and other outdoor facilities are closed until further notice.  


Social Distancing:  Please refer to Governor Sununu’s Emergency Orders for additional guidance on this as well as other areas of interest.


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 rmatte@sau29.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.


COVID-19 and Remote Learning Resources: