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Parent and Student Handbook

SOMERVILLE SCHOOL

45 South Pleasant Avenue

Ridgewood, New Jersey 07450-4699


Tel:  201-670-2750 Dr. Lorna Oates-Santos

Fax:  201-670-3381 Principal

 


Somerville Elementary School Safety Guidelines & Information Sheet

WELCOME TO THE 2020-21 SCHOOL YEAR!


In an effort to make the start of school as smooth and positive as possible, I have gathered the following information together in one spot!  Please take some time to read through this document as a family, and maybe take a walk down to Somerville to preview where to line up!  School should be full of joy and excitement this time of year and we are working hard to keep that spirit while still being safe.  I appreciate anything you can do to help:)


The BIG Changes


As you read through this document, you will see that we have tried to answer every question possible as we begin the 2020-2021 school year.  There are large, noticeable changes in and outside of the school building such as new entrances for each grade level with socially distant markings, markings in the hallways that allow for visual guides to remind students to socially distance themselves from one another, classrooms set-up differently than in the past with six feet between students, the requirement that students and staff wear face masks at all times, and new and different drop-off and pick-up stations.  


School will look differently this year - at least as we open.  But one thing will remain as always - TEAM SOMERVILLE is here to work together to keep our community of learners engaged, happy and connected.  Whether your child is learning in the school building or at home, there will be interesting lessons, moments of laughter and care at the heart of it all.  


Acceptable Use Policy

Please review our Acceptable Use Policy as a family and complete this Google Survey indicating that you understand and agree with this protocol.  Our goal is to help our K - 5 students learn how to manage the use of technology in their lives in a way that is healthy and safe.  This work requires a close home-school connection.  Thank you!


Skyward Forms

It is imperative that each parent complete all of the mandatory forms in Skyward in order for your child to gain and maintain access to the school’s computer network and computers.  These forms should be completed prior to the first day of school.  I appreciate you making this a priority item on the to-do list to eliminate any gaps in technology access!  


Bathroom Guidelines

Students in K, 1st and 3rd have bathrooms in their classroom and will use these bathrooms.  Each of these bathrooms will have a deep clean at the end of the school day and teachers will also remind students of the handwashing protocol after every use. 


Students in 2nd, 4th and 5th will use larger, shared bathrooms.  The doors to these bathrooms will be propped open (there are privacy screens in each bathroom entrance) and students will wait outside in designated areas until the bathroom has no more than two students inside prior to using the facilities.  There will be adult monitoring of these bathrooms to ensure that there is no issue with overcrowding.  Again, teachers will remind students about handwashing as a supplement to the signage that has been placed in each bathroom.  


Entrance into the Building & Daily Temperature Checks

Students should not arrive before 8:20 a.m.  There will be no supervision before that time.  The playgrounds and ballfields are also closed in the immediate hours before school starts.  


At 8:20 a.m., adults stationed at each designated entrance door will scan each child’s ID card to assure that the health/safety check was completed by the parent.  Following this, an adult using a hand-held distant thermometer, will take each child’s temperature.  Students who pass the health screening and temperature check will proceed directly into their classroom.


Students who do not have a completed health screening or who have a temperature greater than 100 will report to the school nurse who will be stationed inside her office.  For students without a temperature, a parent must come to the school to complete the health screening report for the child before that child will be permitted to report to the classroom.  Any students with a temperature must also immediately be picked up by a parent or emergency contact.


Hand Washing

As they enter the school and classrooms, students will be required to use the hand sanitizer stations and/or wash their hands.  Teachers will also  discuss  hand washing procedures and protocols within each classroom.  


Drop off & Pick-Up Locations & Procedures

Each grade level will enter and exit the building at a separate doorway listed below.  There is signage on the sidewalk to guide students around standing six feet apart while waiting to enter.  Masks should be worn by any children and adults who are waiting in line to enter the building.  Entry will begin at 8:20 AM through 8:45 AM.  After 8:45 AM, all students must enter through the flag pole door and will be considered tardy.  

Kindergarten:  K Doors near playground

1st Grade:  Door into ‘new wing’ by the rear of the K playground

2nd Grade: Gym Entrance

3rd Grade:  Flag Pole Door

4th Grade:  Door to the right of the Flag Pole Door

5th Grade:  Door to the right of the Gym Entrance


For end-of-the-day pick-up, students will stand at the designated grade level locations with their teacher or a teaching assistant and wait to be picked up (unless the child is marked on the dismissal form as being able to leave the building independently).  


Hallway Signage & Movement

Signs have been posted in the hallways and classroom reminding students to maintain social distance, wear masks, wash their hands, and follow other proper hygiene behaviors.  


Masks & Face Coverings

All staff and students will wear a mask at all times unless wearing a mask is not possible due to a health condition that is documented by a doctor and shared ahead of time with the school nurse.  Students are required to wear masks at all times at school, both inside and outside the building.  The only exception to this practice is when the class is taking a teacher-approved mask-free break for eating and/or drinking purposes.  All students will wear a mask attached to a lanyard that we provide to prevent the loss of the lanyard during the day.  This pairing should be considered a kit and must come to school each day.  It is recommended that students bring several masks with them in the event that one breaks.


The only permissible face coverings are masks; therefore, scarves, shirts, bandanas, gaiters, and the like are not acceptable. Face shields are also not an acceptable mouth covering and can only be used in combination with a mask.


Recess

The State of New Jersey has not relaxed the recess requirement for students.  There will be time, at each teacher’s discretion when students will participate in a socially distanced recess, most often outside (as weather allows).  


Recommended Supply List Items

Each student is required to bring their own supplies to school.  This includes masks, writing instruments, notebooks, and a backpack or bag for carrying personal items and the school distributed Chromebook.


Classroom supplies will not be shared among students except when a cleaning plan is in place  for those items (such as the kindergarten toy procedure that will be explained by the classroom teacher at the start of the year).


We will also send home a ‘learning hub’ letter that includes suggestions for an at-home workplace and materials to have ready for work at home.   


Snacks

Students are permitted to bring a mess free and nut free snack to school each day. Weather permitting, snacks will be eaten outside with students socially distant from one another. If there is inclement weather, students will eat in the classroom at their desk, washing hands before and after snack. Students may bring a water bottle to school.  Most often the snack break will also be the mask break.  


Socially Distant Classroom and Classroom Safety Protocols

Students will each have an assigned desk to ensure social distancing; desks are placed six feet apart.   At the end of the school day, teachers will spray each desk and chair and each child will wipe down his/her own space as the first step in our daily disinfecting of classrooms. 


Teachers working one-on-one with children may choose to work behind a plexiglass shield.  



Student Health

If your child is sick or feeling ill he or she must stay home.The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to many other common illnesses; therefore, we ask that families be extra cautious in determining whether their child should be sent to school that day.  Keeping a child who doesn’t feel well at home is the best practice. 

 

Please be sure to call the absence line to report your child’s absence and his or her symptoms. It is important that we are aware of any and all illnesses. As a reminder, a daily heath screen must be completed at home for each child. No child will be permitted into the school who has not first passed that daily health screening.  

 

Many families have asked about the protocols in place regarding suspected exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19. Each case will be handled individually with our health offices, school physician, and department of health. The NJDOH has published a detailed document full of information for local schools. You may wish to familiarize yourself with this document; many questions can be answered by reading this fully. 

 

New Jersey Department of Health COVID-19 Public Health Recommendations for Local Health Departments for K-12 Schools

 

 Virtual Learning Expectations

Students are expected to join all classes on time and participate in classroom activities as if they were physically in the classroom. Official attendance will be taken daily. Below are suggested virtual learning etiquette guidelines to follow when participating in virtual learning:

● Come to class ready to learn!  Even if a child is learning from home that day, it is powerful to get dressed, brush teeth and participate fully in the virtual learning environment as if it were a ‘typical’ school day!  

● Participate and pay attention as if you were in the live classroom.  It is important to sit at a desk / table, eat only during snack breaks and have materials nearby.

● The social media policy is in effect so there is no taking pictures, sharing images on social

media, etc. during class time.

● Follow the class schedule, keep the computer muted unless you are sharing, and participate fully!  We want to hear your voice!  Accordingly, you may be asked to share your work with students in class..

● Some classes may post a video or an assignment in place of a live stream. Please complete

the assignments on time during the assigned period. 


Visitors & Parent Meetings

Visitors will not be permitted into the school building.  Parents dropping off items to the school must place those items outside the building in the appropriate bins or areas and notify the main office that the items were dropped off.  All parent meetings will be conducted virtually.  


Pickup of Supplies for REMOTE-only students

If you have chosen the full remote option for your child, we invite you to pick up necessary supplies on the Somerville front lawn on  Tuesday, September 1 at the following times:

    2:00-3:00pm Remote students in Grades K-2 

    3:00-4:00pm: Remote students in Grades 3-5 

***If you are unable to attend the scheduled pick-up, please contact your child’s teacher to schedule another time after the first day of school.***


Please note that parents of students following the hybrid schedule should not come to school on September 1. All of their materials will be distributed by teachers on their first day of school, either September 2 (A-K) or September 3 (L-Z).


Items to be picked up include:

  1. Chromebook for K - 2 students, new students to the district and 3rd Grade. (Students in grades K-2 will receive a new Chromebook. Students in grade 3 must return their current Chromebook and exchange it for a newer model. There is no need for third graders to bring the Chromebook charger to school. Please keep your charger at home.)

  2. Clever badge (grades K-2)

  3. Student ID

  4. Math book

  5. Whiteboard or Smart Pal

  6. Dry erase marker


Please note that remote teachers may schedule subsequent pick-ups of items throughout the school year as needed.





The Hybrid Schedule:

As a reminder, our hybrid schedule looks like the following generic prototype with slight changes based on grade levels/ teachers; your child’s teacher will distribute their version of the schedule on the first day of school.  Please note that the reading, writing and math portion of the ‘at-home’ day will be designed as independent work to build upon the prior day’s learning and/or introduce new concepts as a preview.  Math lessons will require students to view the Visual Learning Bridge to continue the progression of lessons while at home and teachers will use the live afternoon check-ins to reinforce the instruction/ answer questions etc.  

Time

Live Students

Time

Remote Students

8:20 - 8:45

Arrival



8:45 - 9:00

Morning Meeting


8:45 - 9:00

Recorded Morning Message

Online Tools

9:00 - 9:45

Word Study


9:00 - 9:45

Art / Music

9:45 - 10:30

Reading


9:45 - 10:30

Reading Activities

  • Independent reading and notebook work

  • Follow up of previous conference

  • Raz Kids

  • New reading and questions, etc

10:30 - 11:15

SS/Sci


10:30 - 11:15

Library/ PE

11:15 - 12:00

Writing


11:15 - 12:00

Writing Activities

  • Work on teacher feedback from conferring

  • Complete graphic organizer

  • Work on drafting, editing, revising, etc.

12:00 - 12:45

Math


12:00 - 12:45

Math Activities

  • Math Lesson as per pacing guide

  • Watch VLB

  • Complete Guided Practice/Do You Understand?

  • Enrichment/Support based on formative assessment

12:45-1:30

Dismissal/Lunch








1:30-2:00

Virtual Check-in with Classroom Teacher (math focus)

Attendance for the day


2:00-3:30

Teacher Prep/Plan


2:00-3:30

Teacher Prep/Plan


The Remote Schedule:

Our schedule for students participating in the fully remote model looks like the following generic prototype with slight changes based on grade levels/ teachers; your child’s teacher will distribute their version of the schedule on the first day of school.  As a point of clarification, the blue block indicates live teaching (Teacher is available the whole block but will not conduct whole group teaching the whole block.  Rather, there will be a  10-15 minute mini-lesson followed by small group instruction and/or extra help for those who need it.  We recommend having students turn off mic and video and work near the computer so that they can access the teacher if needed).  The green block indicates a pre-recorded video followed by an assignment.  The yellow block is time for independent, assigned work or use of online tools such as Spanish, Reflex, Raz, and Typing Pals.



Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

8:45 - 9:00

Attendance & 

Live Morning Meeting

Attendance & 

Live Morning Meeting

Attendance & 

Live Morning Meeting

Attendance & 

Live Morning Meeting

Attendance & 

Live Morning Meeting


9:00 - 9:45

Word Study/ Handwriting

Word Study/ Handwriting

Music

Word Study/ Handwriting

Word Study/ Handwriting


9:45 - 10:30


Reading


Reading


Art

Reading


Reading


Read Aloud / Online Tools

SS/Science

10:30 - 11:15


Read Aloud

Social Studies/ Science

PE

Online Tools

Read Aloud

11:15 - 12:00


Writing

Writing

Library

Writing

Writing

12:00 - 12:45


Math

Math

Word Study

Math

Math

12:45 - 1:30

Lunch






1:30 - 2:15

Additional Small Group Support






2:15 - 3:00 Prep






Procedure For Changing Between Learning Models:

If a parent elects to move their child from the hybrid model to the fully remote model, or vice versa, that parent should reach out directly to our guidance counselor, Dave Tashian at dtashian@ridgewood.k12.nj.us.  He will then begin the process of transferring your child to a new class, with a new teacher, and possibly in a new school building.  This transition might take up to five days, so please be patient!  

 

Pickup of Supplies for REMOTE-only students

If you have chosen the full remote option for your child, we invite you to pick up necessary supplies on the Somerville front lawn on  Tuesday, September 1 at the following times:

    2:00-3:00pm Remote students in Grades K-2 

    3:00-4:00pm: Remote students in Grades 3-5 

***If you are unable to attend the scheduled pick-up, please contact your child’s teacher to schedule another time after the first day of school.***


Please note that parents of students following the hybrid schedule should not come to school on September 1. All of their materials will be distributed by teachers on their first day of school, either September 2 (A-K) or September 3 (L-Z).


Items to be picked up include:

  1. Chromebook for K - 2 students, new students to the district and 3rd Grade. (Students in grades K-2 will receive a new Chromebook. Students in grade 3 must return their current Chromebook and exchange it for a newer model. There is no need for third graders to bring the Chromebook charger to school. Please keep your charger at home.)

  2. Clever badge (grades K-2)

  3. Student ID

  4. Math book

  5. Whiteboard or Smart Pal

  6. Dry erase marker


Please note that remote teachers may schedule subsequent pick-ups of items throughout the school year as needed.