August 21, 2020
Posted by Marie Palmer on 8/21/2020
Dear Brooks Families,
Thank you for a successful first week of school! Though we’ve had our challenges, overall, we’ve had an amazing week of connecting with our students and families! Below are some important updates for the coming week.
Please make every effort to ensure your child is present during “live” instruction. Due to privacy laws, we cannot record live instruction, so if your child misses it, they will not be able to access it. If you are having technological issues or your child misses live instruction, please email your teacher to let them know.
We have received requests to move children to different teachers to accommodate neighborhood learning pods. At this time, we cannot accommodate these requests. As you can imagine, creating classes is an incredible balancing act that requires consideration of many factors.
Additionally, our enrollment is fluid, so there is always the possibility that we may need to move teachers, collapse classrooms, or make different changes as we progress through the beginning weeks.
Given the various school environments that we may operate within this year (In-person, Remote, & Virtual Academy), it may be necessary to rearrange teachers to address the needs of all students later in the year. Therefore, it is possible that your child may start out with one teacher, and as we transition into another plan, your child may be assigned a different teacher. I will ask in advance that you be flexible and recognize that staffing decisions will always be made to meet the needs of all students.
Please do not worry that your child may be missing academics during these first two weeks. Our teachers have always focused on building processes and procedures and community in our classrooms during the starting days of school as this work is critical to a child’s academic and social success. This year we are also embedding the critical need to acclimate our students to learning digitally. Additionally, Wake County Public Schools is working to ensure that all students have access to devices and/or hotspots. We are grateful that our state legislature added five instructional days to our calendar this year as this gives us “extra” time to really establish foundational processes with all students. By being purposeful with our instructional schedules and teaching, our children will be ready to access academic focus areas through technology in the coming weeks.
Next week will be the second week of our two-week orientation period. During this time, classroom teachers will continue working to build classroom community, foster positive relationships with students and introduce additional digital tools for instruction. Academics will not be the focus but may begin being introduced. Like this first week, your student may not have a full 2- 3 hours of live instruction daily. The Brooks expectation is that students will have 1.5-2 hours of live instruction during week 2. We will work to build up to this so that by the week of August 31st, your child will be engaging in 2-3 hours of live instruction each day.
In addition to the previously outlined goals of week two, we will also hold our materials distribution events. These may also impact live instruction. Please read below for details regarding our materials distribution.
📚Materials Distribution Event
We will be distributing student instructional materials during the week of August 24th. Instructional items may include literacy and math materials, Letterland cards, calculators, and any other relevant instructional supplies. If you purchased an EduKit, you will receive it at this time. If your child has leftover materials from last year, you can pick them up at this time as well. If your child has items leftover from last year after this event, they will be thrown away.
During the distribution event, you will follow the carpool route into the parking lot and enter the carpool loop. Please put your child’s/children’s name(s) and grade level(s) on a piece of paper and display it in your windshield. This will help our staff when you arrive. Please remain in your car during this time, and the staff will bring your materials to you.
Please follow the schedule below to pick up your child’s instructional materials. The distribution events will be held from 11:30am – 1:30pm. Please note that if you have multiple children at Brooks, you may pick up all materials at once.
- Monday, August 24th – First & Fourth Grade
- Tuesday, August 25th – Kindergarten & Third Grade
- Wednesday, August 26th – Second & Fifth Grade
- Thursday, August 27th – Overflow – for those that couldn’t make it on their assigned day
- Friday, August 28th – Pre-K
💻Technology Device Distribution
Wake County Public Schools is handling device distribution for all WCPSS students in need of technology. No devices are being distributed directly from Brooks. Families should have completed a technology survey in July indicating whether a device and/or hotspot is needed. If you did not complete the survey, Ms. Aycrigg reached out to you last week to ascertain your needs. If she spoke with you, your current needs have now been communicated to the district, and there is no need for follow up with the school unless your contact information has changed. At this time, the district will be contacting you directly via your provided email to pick up a device during the two-week orientation period. You will receive an email 3 days prior to your assigned pick-up date with all pertinent information. Please note that due to an increased demand for technology across our district, the window for distribution may extend into September. Because communication is being handled by WCPSS, we do not have any information regarding when you have been scheduled for pick-up.
If you already have a device and/or hotspot that you received from Brooks during the spring, you should use it to access remote learning.
✏️Single Subject Acceleration – SSA
Due to COVID and the abrupt closure of school buildings last year, students did not get to complete testing for Single Subject Acceleration. If you are still interested in having your student test for Single Subject Acceleration, please contact our AIG teacher, Ms. Macfarlane, at firstname.lastname@example.org. She will be taking student nominations until Monday, August 31st. For incoming kindergarteners, they will be eligible to test in the spring for Single Subject Acceleration. You can find more information on our school website under our Academics and Programs tab.
I cannot stress enough the importance of ensuring that the school has accurate contact information for each family. This past week we’ve received several phone calls from parents indicating that they did not receive calls or emails from the school. Given the virtual nature of school at this time, it is imperative that we have accurate phone numbers and email addresses for everyone. Email will be our primary method of communication. Please make sure to provide this information to your teacher or call the school so we can update it in our system.
We look forward to seeing all of you next week!
Marie Palmer, Principal