W.E.B. Du Bois Regional Middle School

Week at a Glance, News and Notes

11/9/2020-11/13/2020

Note from the Principal:

What reprieve it was to have some warm weather this week.  The kids loved getting outdoors at their lunch break, and it brought some fresh energy into the school.  We keep plugging along with our hybrid model of learning, and are learning a lot ourselves about how to do teaching best in these conditions.  One thing we are considering is bringing our younger students back for more instruction next month, and we are also looking at how the flow of a day works with the older students.  We are also learning about our fully remote students and what works best for them.  So really, we are doing what we always do: think about what is best for the students, and balancing that with our resources and opportunities.  What I am proud of the most is how we are engaging all students–it is not easy with so many limitations due to the pandemic, and our staff is working hard to meet the needs of all of our learners.

Also, reminder to review safety protocols with your children.  We are doing well every day at school.  It really helps if you continue to remind and review with students the need for masks, hand sanitizing, social distancing and being aware of your surroundings.  We will step up our coaching of students in the next few weeks as the weather gets colder, and appreciate your collaboration in keeping everyone safe and healthy.  In addition there are guidelines below for what to do if your child is home sick as we will see more of that as the winter comes on.

We have finally figured out how to get information about student performance to you.  You can always view your child’s feedback on Canvas, but that is class by class–there is no way to get a comprehensive overview at once.  PowerSchool allows us to do that.  So we have worked diligently to get the information from Canvas to PowerSchool.  Starting on Monday you should be able to log into PowerSchool and see feedback for all of your child’s classes.  Please contact Debra Spence, our Guidance Secretary, at Debra.Spence@bhrsd.org or call the school, if you want help getting logged into PowerSchool.  We are dividing this school year up into trimesters instead of quarters due to the late start of the school year.  The first trimester is over in early December.  In the next month teachers will continue to post feedback on PowerSchool through the end of the trimester.  Please review, and reach out to teachers if you have questions about a particular course.  If you have concerns about your child’s experience overall, please reach out to Kevin Costello, our Guidance Counselor, at Kevin.Costello@bhrsd.org, and of course, you can always send me a note.  The virtual office is always open!

Have a good weekend, and enjoy this spate of warm weather!

Ben Doren

Principal

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Monday, Nov. 9

Hybrid Learning Day:  Group B In Person

Tuesday, Nov. 10

Hybrid Learning Day:  Group B In Person

Wednesday, Nov. 11

No School today – Veteran’s Day Holiday

Thursday, Nov. 12

Hybrid Learning Day:  Group C In Person

Friday, Nov. 13

Hybrid Learning Day:  Group C In Person

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DBM What to do if my child is home sick?

Instructional services while isolated or quarantined

District policy prescribes self-isolation or quarantine for students who are symptomatic or exposed to a COVID-positive individual.  Children showing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 cannot remain in school and must self isolate for 10 days asymptomatic and/or until a negative COVID test is provided.  Students exposed to someone who is COVID positive must quarantine four 14 days regardless of whether they are symptomatic. (see Quick Reference link).

When students are required to be out of school for reasons related to COVID precautions, how will the school continue students’ educational programming?

The varied circumstances and reasons for student absence during COVID make it difficult to plan one response that fits all situations.  The Du Bois Middle school has established the guidelines below based on days of absence that can be applied with discretion, based on input from teachers and the school nurse.

When and how to continue instruction?

Absence days 1-2:  If a child is sent home or absent due to illness, their first job is to get better.  If a child is sick, there will be no expectation for the completion of classwork until they are better.  If a well child has to stay home because a sibling is symptomatic or sick, they can immediately start alternative or hybrid instructional activities provided by the grade level.

  • In Grade 5 students well enough to work should follow canvas and reach out to their crew leader for guidance.

  • In Grade 6 students well enough to work should follow canvas and reach out to their crew leader for guidance.

  • On team Green students well enough to work should be completing the work assigned for the week in Canvas for each of their classes. If students are well enough, they should also join their classes via Google Meet when they can.

  • On Team Orange students well enough to work should be completing the work assigned for the week in Canvas for each of their classes. If students are well enough, they should also join their classes via Google Meet when they can.

‘Out of school days’ 3-4: Once a symptomatic or sick child is feeling better (but perhaps still awaiting test results) they should do the instructional activities of the grade level.

  • In Grade 5 students should follow canvas and reach out to their crew leader for guidance.

  • In Grade 6 students should contact their Crew teacher and they will be put into the all remote Crew until their return to school.

  • On Team Green should be completing the work assigned for the week in Canvas for each of their classes. Students should also join their classes via Google Meet when possible.

  • On Team Orange should be completing the work assigned for the week in Canvas for each of their classes. Students should also join their classes via Google Meet when possible.

‘Out of school days’ 5+:  Students needing to self-isolate or quarantine for an extended period will be temporarily assigned to the Group D (Remote-Only) cohort.  They will be assigned a remote learning teacher and may, depending on grade level, join a separate remote class for the duration of their time out of school.

Considerations:

  • The need to provide interim instruction for symptomatic students and asymptomatic siblings will take place under a wide variety of circumstances and situations.  The school administration will use discretion and input from the school nurse and teachers to interpret the above guidelines.

  • In determining when and how to provide interim instructional activities, communication between school and home will be essential.  The school nurse will learn when students are ready for instruction to resume and when test results may become known.  The principal will interpret the above guidelines based on this information.

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Ski Butternut Program

Ski Wednesday’s for BHRSD students at Ski Butternut.  See flyer below.

School Pictures

Our photographers from O’Connor Studios have a plan to keep it safe for our students and their staff.  Soon you should be receiving an email from O’Connor Studios with details on ordering pictures.  Picture day for  Cohort B will be Tues. Nov. 17 and Cohort C will be on Fri. Nov. 20.  If your student is in Cohort D please stay tuned for more details on how to schedule a time for your child’s photo.

School Calendar

Our 2020-2021 school calendar was recently updated.  You can find it here:  https://www.bhrsd.org/school-calendar-2020-21/

Food Service Distribution Info for holidays

As the holidays approach, we will be making some minor adjustments to our food distribution schedule.

Wednesday, November 11th (Veteran’s Day) – Normal operations – 11 am to 2 pm for pick-ups and deliveries.

Wednesday, November 25th (day before Thanksgiving) – Modified Schedule – 8 am to 11 am for pick-ups and deliveries.

Wednesday, December 23rd (last day before vacation week) – Modified Schedule – 8 am to 11 am for pick-ups and deliveries.

Lastly, if we should have “winter weather” on a Wednesday and the road conditions are not safe, we would not be able to have pick-ups or deliveries. Thank you for your understanding.  If you have any questions or concerns please contact me directly.  Kathy.sullivan@bhrsd.org (413)644-2325.

Warm the Children Donations

Please see the flyer below if you are interested in donating to the Kiwanis, Warm the Children program to help provide warm clothing for children in need this winter.

Flyers and School Letters

Flyers and School letters are available on our website at this link:  https://mvrms.bhrsd.org/category/families/flyers/

This week’s flyers:

  • Ski Wednesday’s at Ski Butternut

Recent flyers:

  • SC COVID Situation Webinar – Description for Registration Nov 5 2020

  • Family Newsletter from Great Barrington Libraries

Older flyers:

  • Ballet, Tap and Hip Hop at BSRCC

  • Holiday Food Service Schedule

  • Ski Butternut Program Proposals

  • Warm the Children Donations

  • STEM Week:  Berkshire Museum

  • Flu Vaccination Clinics

  • Great Barrington Family Resource Center Information

  • Parent Support Group

  • Homework Help

  • Weekly Activities

  • Mindfulness Mondays

  • Babysitter Training @ BSRCC

  • Family Forum Video and Thank You!

  • Health Office letter

  • 5th Grade Family Letter

  • Grade 6 Letter to Families

  • Letter to Grade 6 Parents – Important!

  • Team Green Welcome Letter

  • Team Orange Information Letter

  • Help with P-EBT Card Use

Debra Spence

Guidance Support & Data Coordinator

W.E.B Du Bois Regional Middle School

313 Monument Valley Road

Great Barrington, MA 01230

PH: 413-644-2300 x2301

FAX: 413-644-2394