Good morning friends,
It is a little hard to believe that we are now officially into fall and finishing out the month of September. I continue to be touched by the acts of kindness and service I witness in our schools, as well as exemplary teaching and student learning: all amid some significant challenges. The theme of my conversations with students, educators and support staff continues to be, “I’m just really glad to be back in school.” Let me echo that sentiment and say, “I’m just really glad that all of you are back!”
As I visited Escalante Valley Elementary School yesterday, I had the opportunity to take some time to help with 1-minute readings and supported writing in Mrs. Schill’s class. Thank you, Jill, for inviting me to engage with these smart and creative kids! Mr. Hart’s students were examining numbers and statistics: 100% engagement! Ms. Warrick, a master teacher of reading, worked one-on-one with her students with leveled books and monitored computer-based learning for other students all at the same time. Ms. Putnam’s kindergarten class, during their snack time, provided me with a joyful and yes, a bit hilarious, conversation about how much they loved school and, of course, snack time. Finally, I watched and visited with special education teacher Mrs. Munns and Principal Allison Drake as they prepared for an IEP meeting to address the needs of “the one”. We truly do have the best educators, and it was a privilege to see a few of them in action!
I am especially grateful today for our school nursing team. They have been caring, supportive and diligent in helping us all navigate the critical processes of hygiene all the while monitoring cases of COVID-19 and tracking quarantine numbers for both employees and students. As of yesterday, we have had three (3) employee positive cases (no increase from last week) and five (5) student positive cases (again no increase over last week) for a total of eight (8) positive cases since the beginning of the school year: none of which are connected to school and school related activities. We currently have two (2) cases still active. In regards to quarantine practices, we have 40 students and two (2) employees who have been quarantined for 14 days as a result of a stated contact with a COVID-19 positive person. A huge thank you to the educators and parents that are supporting the learning of these students who have needed to stay home!
Again, I would express my love and deep appreciation for all that are working tirelessly to keep our students and educators safe and in school. Please take care!