Saints Speak From Mrs. Marshall - Best Practices and Safety - 9/10/2020
Earlier this week, I shared some information with our All Saints school community that I had hoped would never come to pass – that one of our own had tested positive for COVID-19. We are working tirelessly to keep All Saints safe, and we know it can be upsetting when this impacts our community directly. We must remember that people do get sick, and we must remain vigilant in our efforts to prevent any further spread of illness.
At All Saints, we continue to follow best practices and health department recommendations. We thought it important to remind our community what steps we are taking daily to keep our community safe:
- We are temperature checking all who enter the school building.
- We are wearing masks. Moving forward, students will wear masks while at recess as well as indoors. This will provide an added layer of protection for our students during a time of day when social distancing is challenging for them.
- We are hand sanitizing and hand washing throughout the school day.
- We have hand sanitizing stations at each entrance, throughout the building, and in each classroom, and we have given a personal bottle of hand sanitizer to each student.
- We are practicing social distancing, reminded by teachers, administrative staff, and signs on the floors and walls.
- We have touchless faucets, soap dispensers, and paper towel dispensers in our bathrooms.
- We are not sharing supplies that cannot be sanitized between uses.
- We are limiting movement throughout the school and within cohorts.
- We have a high air quality maintenance system, with regular maintenance checkups to ensure it continues to work properly.
- We have invested in the Clorox Total 360 Cleaning System to help reduce pathogens.
- We are providing additional cleaning of common areas throughout the school day and each evening.
- We have a full time school nurse.
Please take a few minutes to review the CDC best practices to protect yourself and others, and discuss them with your children.
Over the next two weeks (September 14-September 25), our students will participate in standardized testing. This year, students in 3rd-8th grade will take both the IOWA and CogAT assessments. Students in Kindergarten-2nd grade will take the IOWA assessment only. The IOWA assessment is a norm-referenced achievement test that assesses students’ skills in Reading, Language, Mathematics, Social Studies, and Science. The CogAT (Cognitive Abilities Test) measures reasoning skills with different types of verbal, quantitative, and nonverbal questions. Both assessments are used nationally and throughout the Diocese of Joliet.
Testing will take place daily, first thing in the morning, and regular classes will resume following testing. You can expect a lighter homework load and no other tests during these assessments, so students do not become overwhelmed. Tests are spread out over 3-5 days depending on the grade level; 3rd-8th grade students will begin testing on Monday, 9/14, and K-2nd grade students will begin later in the week (homeroom teachers can confirm testing schedules).
This year, all testing will take place online, using the students’ Chromebooks and iPads. To protect our technology and eliminate any concerns over additional eating and cleaning needed during testing, we will not be providing mints or allowing snacks during testing. Testing periods are short enough each day that we are confident students can complete the testing successfully without needing a snack break.
There is nothing your child can do to study for these tests. However, there are a few things you can do at home to help your children do their best on these assessments:
- Make sure your child gets a good night's sleep
- Make sure your child eats a healthy breakfast each morning
- Make sure your child is on time for school each day during testing
- Encourage your child to do his/her best each day
A separate email will be sent to virtual learners soon regarding testing.
As we remain vigilant with regard to safety here at All Saints and in our homes, let us keep in prayer all those affected by COVID-19, and especially those in our own school community impacted by the virus. Let us also continue to pray for our school faculty and staff, and in particular our nurse Mrs. Fuller, who work daily with our students to keep them safe and healthy while at school.
God bless you,
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