Wednesday, July 1, 2020

STM Reopening Parent Information - July 1, 2020

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July 1, 2020
Dear Families, 

Below is the latest information for reopening STM in August. We will continue to plan and prepare throughout the summer to welcome back our students to school with their health and safety as our top priority. 

Please keep in mind that our plans will continue to evolve as we receive additional information and directives from the San Francisco Health Department and the Department of Catholic Schools. 

The faculty, staff and I continue to feel blessed and appreciate all of the support from you, our parent community, students and STM families. 

Marie Fitzpatrick

Reopening Campus

  • School will reopen with a five day a week schedule, August 18, 2020 as planned. This is pending no further restrictions from the San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH).

  • Preschool will reopen August 17 and will have 2 rooms with 12 students each.

  • Classrooms will be prepared for full capacity. Grades with larger numbers will be split into two cohorts and will be in a different classroom nearby. Classroom aides will be assigned to supervise in these extra classrooms. All classes will be livestreamed so that students in the nearby classroom and students who are continuing with full time distance learning can follow along.

  • Families can choose to have full in class attendance or continue with full time distance learning. You will be asked to commit to your preference  in early August so that staff can finalize plans for reopening. 

Safety Procedures

Health Screening

  • Daily health assessment will be required for students before they can enter the building. This will consist of two parts; a Student Health Screening Form that will be digitally submitted by parents before arriving at school and a visual screening by staff members meeting the car. Parents will be asked to remain in the car unless a student is in a car seat. Students will go directly to their classroom. 
  • An Employee Health Screening Form will need to be completed by all staff members before arriving at school. All staff will check in with the Principal or her designate for a temperature check before proceeding to their classrooms. 

  • Temperature checks for students in TK-8th grade are not planned at this time. 

  • Preschool will be conducting temperature checks.

Social distancing

  • No mingling of cohorts in the classrooms, yard, or anywhere on campus.

  • Desks will be spaced apart. 6 ft is the current guidance, but may be reduced by SFDPH to 4 or 5 ft. STM is currently planning for 6 ft.

  • Entry and exit doors will be assigned by grade

  • Bathroom use for students will be scheduled and assigned by grade

Face coverings

  • All employees are required to wear masks and/or face shields. 

  • STM will comply with guidelines in place for students. Currently, masks are not required for ages 12 and under, but are strongly recommended.

  • Teach your child proper mask usage - putting on and removing 

  • Masks will be available at school as needed.

Limit campus visitors

  • Parents are not allowed on campus except in an emergency

  • Parents requesting early pick up, will call the office to let us know when you attive. You will be asked to wait outside. Students will be signed out by a staff member.  

  • Choice Lunch will be available. No lunch/food drop-offs or deliveries will be allowed for students or staff.

Individual supplies for students

  • No sharing of any school supplies

  • 3-tier individual carts required for all students in grades TK-2. Detailed direction on dimensions and setup  will follow shortly.

  • All students items must be labeled; clothing, pencil boxes, scissors, etc.

Enhanced cleaning and sanitation

  • Custodial staff and teachers will be responsible for frequent cleaning for high touch areas in their classroom such as door knobs, light switches, desks

  • Teachers will train/assist students in daily cleaning of their desk, chair and belongings.

  • Bathrooms will be scheduled for cleaning several times a day.

Restructuring Classrooms

  • Some of the larger classes/grades will be divided into cohorts and Carroll Hall to be used for some classes. We will notify you of your child's classroom placement a few days before school opens. 

  • There will be no moving of students between classrooms. eg. science lab, library. The priority is to keep students  in one space. Teachers will move between cohorts.

  • Teachers desks will have a plexiglass barrier in place

  • P.E. and music will be outside when possible

  • We will need some parent volunteers to move desks, chairs and other classroom furniture on Saturday, August 1st. We will send out a request closer to the date.

Scheduling Adjustment

Drop off procedures

  • Working with the City to request access to all of Thomas More Way from Brotherhood Way to the golf course to facilitate drop off. No morning assembly, students will go directly to their classroom (teachers will be in classrooms by 7:40)

    • 7:45-8:00        6, 7, 8 plus siblings

    • 8:00-8:15        3, 4, 5 plus siblings

    • 8:15-8:30        TK, K, 1, 2
    • Preschool students will probably be dropped off in the yard
    • 8:30-9:00        Pre-K

Pick up procedures

  • TBD

  • Dismissal will be no later than 3:00, but we will probably begin around 2:30pm. 

  • School schedules will vary depending on grade.

  • Lunch/Recess will be staggered. All students will eat outside, weather permitting

  • Choice Lunch will still be offered, but modified (all items pre-selected, delivered in individual packages to the classroom), no sharing of lunches or snacks will be allowed. 

AM/PM Extended Care may be offered on a limited basis to those families who have few other options. 

  • Challenges include space limitations and the ability to keep students in their pre-assigned cohorts with a designated adult.

  • We will send a parent survey shortly to assess the needs of our families. 

  • If we do provide extended care it will only be for students who need the service full time. We will not be accepting drop-ins or part time attendance.

Next Steps

The Department of Catholic Schools of the Archdiocese of San Francisco set up several task forces to develop robust documents to guide schools in planning for the health and safety of all our students and staff going forward. This document, The Infection Mitigation Plan for Schools, serves as a guide for logistics and planning as we return to school, Provides us with  notices of Infection and confidentiality regulations, outlines best practices on managing finances due to the many costs involved in updating facilities, as well as health and safety maintenance practices. 

St. Thomas More School also focuses on continuous school improvement and curriculum planning post Covid 19. Teachers will be returning to campus early this year for additional days of professional development with the goal of adjusting curriculum to ensure that all the "power standards" that may have not been fully developed during distance learning are covered next year.  

  • The Logistics and Planning section of the Infection Mitigation Plan For Schools will be submitted to the Department of Catholic Schools by July 15th.

  • Follow up meeting Catholic School principals with SFDPH, July 17th.

  • Thorough cleaning of all school buildings, furniture and equipment is ongoing.

  • Handwashing and hand sanitizing stations are being installed.

  • Training materials for employees are in development.

Miscellaneous Items

  • Drop Off Day - TK-2 families will drop off their child's three tier cart on Friday Morning, August 14th at a designated time. Detailed directions on size limitations and setup must be followed.

  • No Friday mass in the beginning, maybe return with one class at a time

  • Fundraisers such as Fall Festival canceled

  • Fun Run to go forward (with modifications and no guests permitted)

  • Both 7th and 8th graders will receive Confirmation May 2021

  • First Communion and Reconciliation will be held in the Spring for both 2nd and 3rd graders

  • Outdoor Education Program tentatively rescheduled for the Fall has been cancelled.

  • No field trips will be planned through December 2020.

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