SPS Staff and Families:
I know everyone is excited about the reopening of our school playgrounds this week. The weather, most of the week, was perfect for getting outside. I have been able to visit many of our schools, and want to thank everyone for their hard work in making sure that we follow all of the safety guidelines in order to be able to do so safely. To stay safe, playground equipment will be used by one class at a time. Students will wear masks and practice hand washing or sanitizing before and after use. Custodial staff will follow established cleaning protocols of the equipment.
Updated COVID-19 Practices and Protocols
In addition to opening playgrounds, we are pleased that our teachers and students are now able to use shared materials in class. Again, students will wash or sanitize their hands before and after using shared materials, such as science equipment or art supplies.
With regard to Physical Education, students will participate outdoors whenever possible and will wear masks. Students should remain as socially distanced as possible, especially when taking a water break. Our teachers will continue to engage students in activities that allow for social distancing and that maintain a low to moderate increase in breathing and heart rate. Just like with our classroom equipment, students should wash/sanitize hands before and after using any shared equipment in PE class.
We are also able to expand our music programs to some degree. For our K-8 students, percussion instruments will be allowed and singing may take place outside only. Our high school students have separate requirements for instrumental music and singing, which will be shared directly with them.
We are pleased that nearly 600 students and their families participated in the COVID-19 vaccine clinic two weeks ago. We learned others received vaccinations earlier and are receiving their second shot this week. If any family who has members 16 or older are interested in getting the COVID-19 vaccine or need help scheduling an appointment, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call 203-977-4312.
We continue to work with the Stamford Department of Health to determine if, and when, it is appropriate to reduce the quarantine time requirements in Stamford. Today, the plan is to remain with the 14-day quarantine period. We are also discussing the possibility of revising the quarantine protocols as it relates to the number of students required to quarantine at the elementary level. We will let you know if any changes are made in the coming weeks.
Middle School Instructional Model
On Thursday, May 6, we will be hosting a Parent Pop Up Webinar on the topic of our plan to provide a more equitable middle school instructional model through expanding teaching and learning opportunities for all middle school students. We are excited to make it possible to have all of our middle schools offer access for all students. You can register to attend the English session at 5:30 p.m. here or the Spanish session at 6:30 p.m. here. The sessions will be recorded and posted to our Parent University webpage for you to view at your convenience.
We are pleased that many of our K-8 families have already registered for our exciting Summer School program, which is free and open to all. If you have not registered and would like to, you can log into the Parent Portal, click on Forms, and click on the SPS Olympian Scholars Summer Program K-8 form on or before the Friday, May 7, deadline. If you have questions regarding summer school, you can email BOE.SummerSchool@stamfordct.gov .
Thank you to the staff, families, and students for all the support as we navigate learning during this unprecedented global pandemic.
Stay Safe and Healthy!
Dr. Tamu Lucero
Superintendent of Schools