Trinity- St. John Lutheran School Closure Detailed Information
As announced Friday, March 13th, 2020, Governor Pritzker has mandated that all Illinois PreK-12 schools close in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. T-SJ will be closed March 17th- March 30th. There will be no school, games, practices, etc. during this time.
I realize the challenges this presents to our working families and the impact it will have. However, after talking with trusted advisors and reading information from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), and other reliable sources, I feel confident that we are making a choice that will positively impact the safety and health of our families and also the larger community around us. That being said, if your family needs help during this time, please let me know. I am happy to help find childcare if needed or assist with other needs. I know many junior high and high school students that are now available!
I will be on site during our regular school day hours of 8 a.m. to 3p.m., in case you are unable to be home with your child, or your child needs a safe place to go. We will exercise social distancing practices to the best of our ability to keep students safe.
Monday March 16 – Normal classroom schedule for all grades will be followed. Students will bring home materials as needed for online and at-home learning.
Tuesday March 17 – First day of closure. Teachers tidy classrooms in preparation for deep cleaning. Mrs. Kurtz will be in the school office from 8 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Wednesday March 18 – Second day of closure. Mrs. Kurtz will be in the school office from 8 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Thursday March 19 - First day of at home learning, anticipated to continue through Monday March 30th, 2020. Teachers will be accessible through email or phone (as directed by the teacher) from 8 a.m.- 3 p.m. (Mrs. Deb Lange will be available from 8-noon) Monday- Friday. Mrs. Kurtz will be in the school office from 8 a.m. - 3 p.m, Monday- Friday. T-SJ will undergo deep cleaning throughout the two weeks.
Tuesday March 31– We hope to resume school on this day.
Free grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches will be available each day beginning March17th for pick-up for all children 18 years old and younger at the following locations: T-SJ, Nashville Grade School, St. Ann’s and Trinity-Hoyleton. Breakfasts can be picked up between 8:30 and 9:15 a.m. Lunches can be picked up from 11:45 a.m.- 12:30.
Online Learning/ Home Learning Initial Plan
We are committed to keeping students engaged in their learning during this statewide school closure. T-SJ teachers at all grade levels have been making plans for a potential change to temporary at home learning. All teachers, PreK- 8th grade will be sending home learning packets for students to work on over the coming two weeks. Parents or caregivers will be asked to sign off on the activities for students in grades K-8 as they are completed. The learning packets will be returned to school when we resume schooling on March 31st. Teachers will be available for questions through email and phone calls during this time, however they will also help students with any questions they have upon returning to school as needed.
Students will not be required to all log in to a website at the same time for virtual learning; the structure will be individualized and each student can complete their work at their own pace. Time spent will vary by grade but should average about 2 hours per day in middle school and less in lower grades. More detailed information will come out on Monday from each individual teacher.
In the event of a longer closure teachers will prepare for additional at home learning and communicate that to parents through e-mail. Additional learning packets would then be able to be picked up at T-SJ.
We recognize that not all families have devices for their child(ren) to access educational websites or Google classrooms. If your student’s learning packet includes required on-line access, parents may check out their student’s chromebook through the school office. They will be asked to sign an agreement ensuring proper care and educational use of the chromebook. Parents would be assessed a replacement or repair fee for chromebooks that are damaged, lost or stolen during this time at home.
Families that do not have reliable internet access or those that experience difficulty accessing on-line resources should contact their teacher to make them aware of the situation and come up with an appropriate solution.
Students will be allowed to access Renaissance Place Monday through Friday during the hours of 7:45 a.m.- 8:00 p.m., to take AR tests from home. We encourage students to continue reading and taking AR tests. Please e-mail Mrs. Deb Lange, email@example.com if you have any issues using AR.
Scheduled Hours/ Days Requirement
Fortunately we are able to use “Act of God” days during this time. However, we do require our students to complete their at-home learning, as we hope to not have to make up any days this summer.
As mentioned above, we hope to re-open school on Tuesday, March 31, 2020. However, the ability to resume school operations will depend on what is happening in the community around us. We plan to assess the situation daily and will communicate any changes to families as soon as possible. Please prepare for a longer closure if needed.
Tuition will continue to be collected as usual. Students are being given learning activities to do and they will have access to teachers through email or phone calls if questions arise.
Communication with Students
Concern over this new virus can make children anxious. It is very important to remember that children look to adults for guidance on how to react to stressful events. If adults seem overly worried, children's anxiety may rise. Adults should reassure children that health and school officials are working hard to ensure that people throughout the country stay healthy.
Children also need factual, age-appropriate information about the potential seriousness of disease risk, so the focus of conversation should be concrete instructions about how to avoid infections and the spread of disease. Teaching children positive measures, talking with them about their fears, and giving them a sense of some control over their risk of infections can help reduce anxiety. Please talk with your children about precautions they can take to stay healthy, including:
Love and blessings to all, Amy Kurtz, T-SJ principal
News of the Coronavirus, prevention and treatment is on all of our minds and hearts. Governor Pritzker held a news conference last night in Springfield to address the growing concerns about the coronavirus. Prior to the news conference, there was much speculation that he was planning to impose a mandatory shutdown of all K-12 school districts in the state.
As of Thursday evening, the governor is not mandating that schools close at this time. He did, however, strongly recommend cancelling any public gathering that would include at least 250 people. Additionally, public gatherings of 1,000 or more people have been banned. This will certainly affect some of our evening functions and we will update all of you when those decisions are made.
We are making preparations to keep our students and their families safe. While I am extremely relieved that schools will remain open at this time, the confirmed coronavirus cases could increase over the upcoming weeks. It is very possible that there may still be a mandatory closing of all Illinois schools at some point. I would strongly encourage all parents to plan ahead and think about potential child care arrangements if this happens. T-SJ will continue to pass along pertinent information as we receive it.
The following plans are being put into action immediately:
Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns.