Wednesday, 6/10/2020 - SAU29 COVID-19 Update

Good Afternoon,

 

Everything seems poised to be a smooth ending to the rollercoaster ride of a school year we have all been through together. The end-of-year events continue to move forward in all of our schools in recognition of the accomplishments and achievements our students have earned.  Tonight there are three events that are scheduled to take place. Both Wheelock and Fuller Elementary Schools in Keene are facilitating their 5th grade recognition celebrations. Both of these events have taken on a new look in response to the current situation but we can all be assured that they will be celebrations nonetheless! Additionally, the Keene High School Senior Scholarship Awards night will be taking place this evening. This too will be an exciting event as students will be receiving a variety of awards that in total come to nearly $300,000! Yet another indication of just how amazing and supportive our communities and the people that make these awards possible are. On behalf of the Class of 2020, I want to say thank you to all those that make these awards possible. Your thoughtfulness and generosity helps open doors to our children/students that may not otherwise be open.  

 

Before I switch lanes, I also want to give a big shout out to all of the individuals that are making all of tonight’s events possible. This is happening because, simply put, you care. You care enough to help our students get to the finish line and you care enough to pause and recognize our students for doing just that. And because you care, I thank you for being that person!  

 

I also want to congratulate all of tonight’s honorees. I wish I could be there to offer each of you individually that acknowledgement of your accomplishment in person, but, social distancing aside, I would be unable to be in three places at one time. Instead, I offer a simple recommendation that when you are done with tonight’s celebration, you take a brief moment to recognize the efforts that your loved ones have made to help you get to this point, look them square in the eyes and say thank you.  As a parent I have come to realize that there may be nothing more satisfying than doing everything we can to support and provide for our children, but knowing that it is truly appreciated comes close. 

 

I have received requests to include folks on the distribution list for our messaging system. While we would like to include as many people as possible, it is not practical at this time to do so.  Our messaging system draws information from our student management system in order to distribute or push out messages. This is true for all of those wonderful snow day announcements everyone so enthusiastically looks forward to during the winter months as well.  In order to expand our distribution, it requires the manual inputting of information by individual message senders to create a special distribution list and because this is one of the busiest times of our school year I apologize in advance for not being able to deliver this service at this time. However, all of our updates are easily accessible through a number of ways. They are posted on our Facebook pages, as well as all of our websites.  Additionally, the archive of all of our messages can be accessed by visiting the SAU 29 News link included here. 

 

Only a couple of opportunities left to check in with your child(ren)’s teacher(s) and counselor.  Please make those final connections before we’re all done for the school year.

 

In closing, I want to share a thought that may be of value to all of us, not necessarily as a result of the unusual circumstances we are faced with at this moment in time, but in general as we navigate the winding roads that our journeys take us through. It is a practice that most (if not all) of us do subconsciously on a regular basis. We do it in our fields of work, in our relationships, in our interactions, and in just about everything that applies to us individually. I’m referring to reflection. Reflection is a powerful tool that can help every one of us learn from our experiences.  It can solidify things that go very well and help us make improvements with experiences that may not go so well. It helps us to enjoy the satisfaction of our accomplishments and prepares us to better approach times where we might come up a little short. In the many roles that I have, I have found reflection to be a true asset and have found myself often referring back to the wisdom of Confucius who offered “Learning without reflection is a waste.  Reflection without learning is dangerous.” In the hectic and busy worlds we all live in, I have learned that it is okay to slow down a little and be more reflective. It is my hope that we all can find the value in reflection and share those practices with our children/students.

 

Be Well Everyone, WE GOT THIS!

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 AwarenesAs 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.
 

Responsible Social Media Use:  As mentioned in the June 3rd update, the responsible use of social media can be an asset or a liability for individuals. It is critical that we teach (and reinforce) as well as model responsible use of social media with our children/students.  Here are some resources that may be of assistance:

 

20 Tips from Smart Social

Safe and Responsible Social Networking 

Social Media Etiquette

Social Media/Media Literacy Responsible Use

Social Media Responsibility 

Social Media Responsibility and Etiquette

 

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


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
:

KMS- Drop off of the Chromebooks 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: