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Family Information for December 18th

Family Information for December 18th
Parker Families,

Now that was a proper snowstorm!  I hope you enjoyed the snow day and the opportunity to take a deep breath (and clear the drifts).  I also hope that when the holiday break begins next week each Parker family can enjoy the season as best one can in these times.  Happy Holidays!

~Todd
This week’s topics:
  • Survey Reminder
  • Student Meal Pick-up
  • Preseason Track Practices
  • Stuff that Matters – Finding Happiness in Difficult Times
  • ECO Meeting
  • Materials Pick-up
  • Ski & Snowboard Club
  • Student Directory
  • Our Essential Commitment Fund
  • Tracking COVID-19 Numbers at Parker
  • Health Office Reminders

Survey Reminder

This is a reminder that last week, we sent an email to families about our current school model and a request to share your thoughts with us via a survey.  That parent/guardian survey will be open through this coming Monday – about 50% of our families have completed the survey – thanks to those who already have shared their thinking.  If you have not yet done the survey, we ask you to please take a few minutes to do this at your earliest convenience.  The parent/guardian survey link is here. Students were also sent a survey via email this week – if they have not already had time to do this in advisory, they will next week, but they can also do it on their own if they like!  We anticipate sharing the results of both surveys with the community in early January.  Thanks for sharing your perspectives in this way!

Student Meal Pick-up

During the upcoming holiday break, we will follow an altered schedule for meal pickup.  Next week, due to the shortened week, and the following week, due to the school break, we will offer 5 days of meal pickup on Tuesday 12/22 and on Tuesday 12/29.  Meals must be picked up between 7 and 9 AM as we will not have available staff in the school during the rest of the week.  We will resume normal Tuesday and Friday pickups after the New Year on 1/5/21.

Reminder to click here for information about free student meal service at Parker (and other locations throughout the state).  Please SIGN UP for the program via this link so that we can anticipate numbers of meals needed: Student Meal RegistrationPick up hours are normally from 7 – 9 AM on Tuesdays and Fridays.

Pre-season Track Practices

The MIAA has set the track season to begin February 22, and we will be offering preseason running practices for distance, mid-distance, and sprinters starting January 4.  Practices will be run by coaches Ben, Liz, and Jay.  Schedule is Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri from 4:00pm to 5:30pm.  State safety guidelines (masks, distancing) will be in effect, and reflective running gear will be required.  Please email Athletic Director/Track Coach Ben Benoit with questions at bbenoit@theparkerschool.orgThere is no fee for the preseason, but all participants must register/complete all sports forms through nurse Lisa to be eligible.  lzick@theparkerschool.org.

Stuff That Matters: Finding Happiness in Difficult Times

Stuff that Matters, is a series of short videos tackling mental health topics impacting students.  Sheila Kelly, Parker's School Counselor, is happy to accept topic ideas from parents and students at skelly@theparkerschool.org.  This week's topic is "Finding Happiness in Difficult Times".

ECO Meeting

ECO (Parker’s parent and community organization) is holding their next meeting virtually on Tuesday, January 5th, at 6 PM.  Come find out how you can support Parker and Parker’s teachers!  Use this meeting link with the password given in the weekly email to join.

Materials Pick-up

The following materials are available in the Parker lobby:

  • Div 2 AH — Elective Book — Needed by 12/23
  • Wasteland — Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close — Needed by 12/23
  • Spanish and IR books as indicated by your teacher

The lobby is open on school days from 8 AM – 3:30 PM.  Other arrangements can be made as needed by emailing Monique at mbeganski@theparkerschool.org.

Ski & Snowboard Club

Reminder the Parker Ski & Snowboard Club begins at Wachusett Mountain on Wednesday, January 6, 2021 and will run for six sessions.  The cost of the six-week Lift Badge is $176.  Parents must provide transportation to and from the mountain. Click here to learn more.

Student Directory

Reminder a printed Student Directory can be purchased at the front office for $3.  If you would prefer to have a directory mailed to you, you can send $5 to Parker School or pay $5 online via UniPay under Misc, Fees, Other.

Our Essential Commitment Fund

As of December 17, 2020, the Parker community has already invested $114,710!  We are incredibly grateful. STAND UP FOR PARKER by making your donation here.

Tracking COVID-19 Numbers at Parker

Positive COVID-19 cases in the Parker community are reported to the Department of Secondary and Elementary Education (DESE), but if the individual has not been on campus, he/she poses no risk to anyone on campus and the data point gets screened out. We will now include weekly numbers of positive COVID-19 cases in this Family Information email. The following are positive cases in the Parker community from 12/12/20-12/18/20:

  • Staff – 0
  • Students – 2

None of the above have been on campus.  If there is a positive case on campus, all close contacts will be contacted immediately by Lisa Zick, School Nurse.

DESE Reporting Website: https://www.doe.mass.edu/covid19/positive-cases/#weekly-report. Once at the site: click on the Excel box for a particular week, click on the District tab at the bottom of the page, and search for Organization Code #04780000 (Francis W. Parker Charter Essential School). The reported cases include students or staff who have been on campus within seven (7) days prior to the report of the positive case. If you have questions, please feel free to email Lisa Zick at lzick@theparkerschool.org.

Health Office Reminders

Massachusetts has mandated the influenza immunization is required for all children 6 months of age or older who are attending Massachusetts child care, pre-school, kindergarten, K-12, and colleges and universities by December 31, 2020. Elementary and secondary students in districts and schools that are using a remote education model are not exempt. If you have a religious or medical exemption and your student will NOT be receiving the flu vaccine, you must complete the vaccine exemption document which can be found on the Health Portal at www.studentehr.com. Make an appointment now with your primary care physician or visit a local pharmacy that administers vaccines. Contact the school nurse, Lisa Zick, with any questions at lzick@theparkerschool.org.

Reminder that students should not come to school if:

  • the student or a family member living in the same household presents with COVID-19 symptoms
  • a student has been exposed to COVID-19 (close contact) and is in quarantine, regardless of a negative test result
  • a family member has been exposed to COVID-19 (close contact) and is unable to isolate from the rest of the family, regardless of a negative test result
  • a family member/student is AWAITING RESULTS of a COVID-19 test

Upcoming Dates of Note:

Tue

DEC 22

Enrollment Information Session

Wed

DEC 23

12:15 PM Dismissal for Holiday Break

Tue

JAN 5

Classes Resume

Tue

JAN 5

ECO Meeting

Tue

JAN 5

Enrollment Information Session

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