Happy Friday AmPark Families,
Today the sun will set on Week 6 of Remote Learning. Governor Cuomo has also confirmed that our schools will remain in remote instruction for the duration of the school year. Over the past six weeks we have redefined teaching and learning while holding tightly to one another as a community. As we look to the next eight weeks, we are determined to continue to build our capacity to meet the social and emotional, as well as academic, needs of our students. We offer you continued gratitude for the ways in which you are supporting your children through the difficult feat of navigating this home schooling environment and want to remind you to give yourself some grace and some space when needed. If the work becomes overwhelming or is impacting social and emotional health, please don’t hesitate to take a break and reach out to a staff member for support. There is tremendous flexibility during this time and while the concerns over learning loss are real, mental health is by far the most important thing. We can and will address the learning needs when we are together again. For now, showing up for our children as steady during this storm takes priority.
To that end, our school social worker, Mike Molloy (firstname.lastname@example.org), and guidance counselor, Ana Veras (email@example.com), continue to be available to support both children and families during this time. Mike has also compiled this list of “Pandemic Perks” to support emotional well-being. Please see the link here and enjoy!
As many of you may know, the Department of Education has released a new grading policy and you have likely already received the letter outlining the changes and rationale from your child’s teacher. In the coming week, we will be working with our district and with the central offices to revise our school specific grading policy to align with the changes. More information will be shared as it becomes available. Final grades will be either Meets Standard or Needs Improvement. To continue to support your child in meeting the standards, please remind them to submit assigned work and attend classroom events to the best of your ability.
We count the support of our parent community among our many blessings. In this new landscape of remote learning however, recognizing our teachers for their tireless efforts to continue to advance learning and connect their classroom communities is more meaningful than ever. As a collective our teachers have balanced personal and family illness, loss of loved ones and loss of income, and working from home while also caring for children and older relatives, among other hardships. Despite all of this, they continue to amaze us with their can-do approach and unwavering commitment to their students. Next week is Teacher Appreciation Week and includes National Teacher Appreciation Day on May 5th. We invite you to post photos of remote learning on social media using the hashtag #ThankATeacherNYC and #DOEConnected; and and to send notes of gratitude to recognize teachers via the online Teacher Thank You Tool.
Week 7 of Remote Learning brings many exciting school wide events! We are so pleased to launch a “One Book, One School” initiative. Books are terrific tools for bringing people together and this initiative centers around sharing a text with all of our community members through live read aloud and book talk events. Our selected text is Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel, by Nikki Grimes. This book is sure to appeal to all ages with a relatable main character that overcomes the challenge of moving to a new city and having to make new friendships. We will launch on Tuesday, May 5th at a Live Lunch event. After the launch, students will be given clues about the readers of the chapters to come so they can guess the mystery reader’s identity!
Next week’s events also include:
Monday, May 4th at 11:30: Star Wars Day! May the Fourth be with you! Come to a Live Lunch hosted by Caitlin in your best Stars Wars gear!
Tuesday, May 5th at 11:30: One Book One School Launch: Chapter 1
Wednesday, May 6th: One Book One School: Chapter 2
Thursday, May 7th: Field Day Opening Ceremony
Friday, May 8th: Ongoing Field Day! (This is not a live event, but families are encouraged to take part throughout the day)
For adults, we will be holding our May PA meeting on the 6th at 6:30. Please see the emails from the PA for meeting links and be sure to email any questions you have in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please also mark your calendars for a remote Parent Engagement Evening on May 14th. More information will be shared by classroom teachers.
Remember to keep it positive with daily affirmations!
I spread joy when I am myself.
I have so much to offer.
All feelings are important.
My presence makes someone’s day better.
I have a lot of love to share.
The DOE is launching a family-facing Remote Learning Technical Support ticket system. Families (or someone on their behalf) can submit requests for technical support for a broad range of issues, including application support, lost, stolen, or broken devices, and delivery status, though the Technical Support for Families page. Note that when families select a topic and issue in the ticket submission form, the form will automatically list common resolutions to technical support problems; if the suggested resolutions do not resolve the family’s issue, they can continue to submit a tech support ticket by completing the form.
This family-facing system, and the DOE staff remote learning support ticket system, is intended to replace emails to the SchoolDevices@schools.nyc.gov inbox. Schools should share this new resource with families.
In collaboration and with appreciation,
Kelly, Bonnie, & Francisco