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Communications

Adam Eilath

Dear Wornick Community,

I hope this email finds you well and you are having a restful and enjoyable winter break. I am personally very encouraged by the photos and news of vaccinations that are popping up on my social media feeds. It is a very heartening sign that 2021 could be a much better year than 2020. It has been an honor and a privilege to navigate these turbulent times with a community as special as Wornick and I am grateful to every teacher, staff, student, parent, and community member who came together to support our school, our students, and our families during this challenging time.

This email contains a few updates about our return to on campus learning, required testing, as well as some new guidelines around hybrid learning.

Remote Week + Return to On-Campus Learning

As planned, our entire school will learn remotely from January 5-8, following winter break (January 4 is a staff development day). Pending school wide testing, we will resume on campus learning for TK-5th grade students on January 11. In order to be eligible for on campus learning you must:

  • Produce a negative COVID-19 test for your student administered between January 5-8.
  • Your negative COVID-19 test was administered at least fourteen days after airplane travel, a multi-family gathering, or any activity that does not comply with the Bay Area Counties Holiday Recommendations. If you travelled, gathered, or engaged in any activities that do not fall within these guidelines you must wait fourteen days prior to having your student take a COVID-19 test and only return once the test is negative. If someone in your household travelled, gathered, or engaged in an activity that falls outside the recommendations, but your student did not, the household member must also take a test after a fourteen day quarantine.
  • Your test results must be sent to info@wornickjds.org by January 10 for your student to return to on campus learning on January 11.

Wornick will be offering a Kyla test on January 8 from 2-3:30 pm for all Wornick staff and any pre-registered students. If you have not pre-registered for a Kyla test you may not test through Kyla at Wornick. If you have any questions about whether you are pre-registered with Kyla, please contact Pam Bodin at pbodin@wornickjds.org.

Please note, test results have recently been delayed. If you are able, please plan your COVID-19 test as early in the testing window as possible to ensure your students are eligible to return to on campus learning as soon as possible. 

The following are some free options available to San Mateo County Residents. As of today, there are spots open with each of these testing sites for next week:

San Mateo County Testing through Curative: https://www.smcgov.org/testing

Virus Geeks Testing in San Mateo: https://my.virusgeeks.com/gettested/main

Project Baseline: https://www.projectbaseline.com/study/covid-19/eligibility/

If you do not have a negative test result before the evening of January 10 have your student learn through the remote hybrid option until you have your negative results. Please notify your teacher and info@wornickjds.org if your test results are delayed and you will be starting remote on January 11. If your student is in middle school there is no need to produce a test this week unless you are registered with Kyla. If you are registered with Kyla feel free to join the school wide testing on January 8. Otherwise, if your student is in middle school please look out for another communication from the school next week.

Continued Vigilance around Health and Safety Protocols

The number of COVID-19 positive cases have continued to be very high in San Mateo County and across our state over winter break. It is incumbent upon all of us to do our absolute best to limit the spread by reducing gatherings, wearing masks, social distancing, and following county and state guidelines. Given the extremely high number of cases in the county and across the state and the expected continual rise following winter break travel and activities, we are asking you to exercise caution and practice diligence around any other group, pod, or cohort your student may be a part of outside of Wornick. Positive cases or potential exposure to positive cases will continue to disrupt our students' education. We know that every family must do what is necessary for themselves, but we are asking that you do what you can to limit your students' exposure outside of school.

Over winter break, a Wornick staff member tested positive for COVID-19. Their exposure resulted from contact with a household member during winter break who contracted the virus through travel. The staff member and their household member are both recovering and experienced only mild symptoms. Our Health and Safety advisors have recommended that outside of the staff member, there is no reason for any student or staff they were in contact to be notified or stay away from school, since it is clear that the contact occurred after winter break had begun. The staff member will complete their quarantine outside of school and return to Wornick when we receive clearance from our medical advisors.

Following up on the positive case we had in 4th grade a few weeks ago, we received a full slate of negative tests from the student's cohort and teachers who worked with that cohort. We tested our entire community of students and staff over the last two weeks of school and had only negative tests apart from the one positive case. 

Hybrid Learning Policy

As we complete our first semester of learning, our administration had the opportunity to reflect on the success of our hybrid learning program. We feel confident in the continued success of our long term remote learners who are joining our classes on a regular basis from home. One area of challenge has been our temporary remote learners who often have to join the class remotely unexpectedly due to health and safety guidelines or expectedly due to family travel. As such, we are sharing the times when students can effectively join remotely as well as time when remote learning is beyond the scope of the program beginning January 11.

Hybrid learning is not practical for students vacationing or taking unexpected days off from school. Teachers meticulously plan lessons and materials for high student engagement and learning. Without the proper notice and setting, materials and student attention are reduced, thus making learning challenging for both the student and the class. In these instances, we ask that you notify info@wornickjds.org that you are taking a vacation and will not be attending classes. You may request work to be completed independently while away, however this will be dependent on significant notice and the lessons during your student's absence.

TK-5

Students are encouraged to participate in the hybrid learning when:

  • They are home sick and feel well enough to participate in the school day.
  • There is a family life event, such as a death or birth in the family.
  • The student(s) must quarantine per the Wornick Health and Safety Plan.

In all of these instances, parents would notify health@wornickjds.org and their teachers to arrange for a supply pick up of materials to support hybrid learning for the off campus learning days.

Middle School

Because most middle school work is presented digitally through Google Classroom with limited materials, students are encouraged to attend class when:

  • They are home sick and feel well enough to participate in the school day.
  • There is a family life event, such as a death or birth in the family.
  • The student(s) must quarantine per the Wornick Health and Safety Plan.
  • They are away from school for a prolonged absence (more than 2 days).

For any health or safety absence, please notify health@wornickjds.org and for any prolonged absence, please notify Nicole Haire at nhaire@wornickjds.org. If the absence is sudden, a materials pickup or delivery can be arranged, however in most circumstances, students will have all necessary materials with them.

I want to wish you all a happy new year. May 2021 bring us health, stability, and peace,

Adam Eilath
Head of School