Arcadia This Week 9/6/2021
Hello, Arcadia families, students, and friends!
The first day of school is almost here--we are so excited to welcome you all back! Plus, the weather looks like it is going to be gorgeous! We will be holding our all-school gatherings outside in the backyard, where COVID-19 is less likely to spread, and the sunshine is plentiful! Preemptively, I want to let you know that, even outside, you will still need to wear a mask during all-school gatherings, since we will all be in the same area.
The following are a few reminders as we get this year started!
School Start/End Times
School starts at 8:02am, and students can be dropped off starting at 7:50am.
School ends at 2:42pm, and students should be picked up by 2:50pm.
These times are a little tight, but they allow us to do staff check-in meetings at the beginning and end of the school day, which are an important part of our communication with one another. They help us make sure we are ready for your children to have the best learning experience possible every day!
Pick up/drop off for students is in the loading/unloading zone in front of the building. Please drive PAST the front door to the end of the sidewalk. There will be traffic cones and Laura standing there waving at you for the first couple of days.
The loading/unloading zone is a State requirement, so we really do need you to use it--please do not drop students off in the crosswalk. The crosswalk is for students coming from the sidewalk where the bus drops off/picks up students.
Speaking of buses, Benjamin Bus assures us there will be busing on Tuesday and Wednesday!
First Day of School/Arcadia School Calendar
One last reminder, our first day of school is September 7th! Our calendar was set prior to the change Northfield Public Schools made, and we kept our calendar as-is. Here is a link to our 2021-2022 Arcadia Charter School Calendar.
A reminder, we have a number of plans in place to protect students as they return to school this year. Read those plans here: COVID-19 Plan 2021-2022
We recommend testing weekly if possible, or at least every other week. The at-home tests are probably the best choice. Order at-home COVID tests free from the State here: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/testsites/athome.html
The data are somewhat incomplete, but so far, the vaccination rate within our student body appears to be around 60%. Keep in mind that some students are not eligible for the vaccine. I know I keep saying it, but: The higher our vaccination rate at Arcadia, the safer ALL students will be, and the more “normal” our school days will be.
Please help us keep everyone as safe as possible at school, and get the vaccine if you are eligible and able to do so.
Here, again, is the Vaccination Opportunities document, maintained by Northfield Public Schools, if you are looking for more information about where to get vaccinated, and how to sign up for an appointment.
Bring a Lunch, Then Hot Lunch
Please bring a lunch every day from 9/7/2021-9/17/2021!
Hot lunches will start on September 20th, so the first nine days of the school year, students will still need to bring food. We have microwaves available. Students, you will have to wipe down the microwave after each use (especially, the buttons that others’ fingers will touch).
I will send the order form for hot lunches as soon as I have the menu.
In the meantime, milk is available right away, starting Tuesday! If you would like to order milk for your child’s lunch, you can do that here: Lunch Milk Order Form
Families who qualify for free/reduced lunch also get free milk! Please fill out that form on JMC. If you filled one out for a child in the Northfield School District, we still need you to fill out a separate form for us.
Gentle reminder, we intend to enforce our existing “Phone Use” policy, but we’d like to approach it in a very specific way to differentiate between middle and high school students, and make the guidelines more specific.
Read more in the Electronics Policy 2021-2022 document!
JMC: Student Information System
Please log in to the parent portal on a computer, and go to “Register for 2021-2022” on the left hand side and fill out all of the associated forms.
The free/reduced lunch form is separate, but it would be great if everyone could fill it out! Yes, it will send you a “DENIED” letter if you know that you do not qualify, but we would rather have everyone fill it out, just in case.
Reminder on what this is...Acknowledging that students have just experienced a year and a half of disrupted learning and isolation, we are spending more time on our school-wide social contract process, in the context of an experiential civics class. Though it will be active, and perhaps look different than a typical class, it is an academic class, and students will earn credit for it. The goal is to teach skills for better academic discussion and communication, to reconnect with one another socially in a structured way, and to focus on our school’s mission--especially the “engaged citizenship” part of our mission--through studying civics. Students can expect a mix of activities and academic work. They will start and end each day in advisory, just like a typical school day.
Return Textbooks and Chromebooks
We are still missing some textbooks and Chromebooks! If you have either of these at home, please bring them with you on the first day of school so that we have them available to the community before regular classes begin on Sept. 20th. Thank you!
Okay, I think we’re ready! Here we go!!
Here are more articles from a range of sources:
Washington Examiner: Rise in COVID-19 infections threatens unvaccinated and some hospitals