Greetings 101 Families,
I am writing to give you some updates on how we are protecting your children at this time. As you know, PS 101 is a safety first school- it’s the message I give at every welcoming assembly, and have said consistently throughout meetings. Since this concern began, I have been posting everything that the Dept of Education sends to me regarding the COVID/Corona virus on our school website.
There have been some concerned calls regarding the local King David Nursing Facility where our students have done community service for many years. This past Sunday, March 8 we learned in the news that there was a confirmed case of Corona at the King David Nursing Facility. On March 8, when I learned of this, I immediately reported it to the Superintendent and Dept of Education.
I spoke to the administration at the King David Nursing Facility today and was told that the person who was reported infected on March 8 was last at the Nursing Facility on February 28-29 and on the second floor. Our students who visited from our Little Lighthouse Team (8 students and 3 adults) were at the King David Nursing Facility on February 27 on the first floor, the day before the infected person was there. I have also been told today that none of their residents have been sick or had any symptoms, and even those tested came back negative for the virus.
None of the students or staff who visited the center two weeks ago have been ill or reported any symptoms.
In regards to PS 101 student safety and following State recommendations to avoid crowds, we are taking the following precautions:
- Daily, we announce and remind students to wash their hands, not touch one another, not touch their face, etc.
- Custodial staff is cleaning daily, even more than usual, using disinfectant in classrooms, the cafeteria and bathrooms.
- The custodial staff cleans multiple times a day (hallways, bathrooms, door handles, banisters in stairwells, etc) with disinfectant.
- We are cancelling all non-essential gatherings. This means we are not inviting parents for shows at this time, but will record the show and post it for parents to watch online.
- We will make decisions to cancel or postpone school trips as we get closer to the dates.
- At this time we are not allowing parents to come to the office to pick up their child. If you need to take your child out of school early, tell our security officer who will call the office and we will bring your child to you.
- We are not allowing parents to come into the building at dismissal and asking everyone to wait outside when picking up their child.
- When a child isn’t feeling well, they are sent to the nurse and then the parent is called to pick them up. The child does not return to class if not feeling well.
- We have set up a quarantine room if any children are showing signs or symptoms.
Thankfully, no children have shown any symptoms.
- As messaged, parents can choose to keep their child home during this time and their attendance will not impact their school records. If you child is not in school, they are still marked absent, but it will not hurt their student record.
- If you are keeping your child home, you should continue to ensure they are doing their HW and using iReady daily which we will track and include as part of their grades.
- If you are keeping your child home as a preventative measure, you must let the school know so we can code the absence differently than a regular absence. Please call the school and tell Mrs. Margaret you are keeping your child home as a precaution.
- If your child is not feeling well, you MUST keep them home and I highly suggest seeing a doctor. Please obtain a note from your doctor, preferably with a diagnosis, for the absence.
In regards to posting messages on our school website, as a Principal, I am required to follow Dept of Education protocols. As part of my job, I must follow my supervisor’s directive and can only post official information related to the Corona Virus.
What I can share is that I am in the same situation as you. I also have my own concerns, but I am focusing on the facts. I am still coming to work every day. I am still sending my daughter to school every day, and so are Mrs. Kane, Mrs. Percaccio and all of our staff.
Some measures I take at home with my family, aside from washing constantly, are removing our shoes and also changing our clothes the moment we get home (something we have always done). We do laundry more frequently and disinfect our door knobs and entry way floor. These are great steps to take for you as well.
As I have been, I will continue to post any information we get from the Department of Education.
Thank you so much for your support and messages to me, my staff and our PTA. We are all working very hard to ensure learning continues and that all of our children and families are safe.
Principal of PS 101