Whitewater Valley Elementary School News

Whitewater Valley Happenings

Posted on: November 5, 2020
Update

Whitewater Valley Elementary Parents & Guardians –

Welcome to second quarter!  It's amazing that the year is more than 1/4 over. As I review Progress Book, I always notice a couple things that are a strong indication of student success. This is a great time to share them and look forward to the great things in store for the remainder of the school year at Whitewater Valley Elementary.

The first is attendance. Most students who do extremely well have great attendance. They are here almost every day and they are here (either face-to-face or virtually) on time. Both of these things are important to learning. We certainly understand that students do sometimes get sick and it's better for parents and guardians to be cautious amidst a worldwide pandemic.  Some absences are necessary, but children can't grow consistently if they are not present at school consistently.  We have supports in place if your child has to quarantine unexpectedly.  Students in grades 1-4 can join their class via Google Meets and students in 5th grade can join Microsoft Teams Meetings for video conferencing purposes.  Teachers will have your child's device, charger, and any make-up work available to be picked up in the office.  

The second is participation. Students who are performing well in the classroom (face-to-face or virtually) are actively engaged. I can see it in my visits to classrooms, on Google Meets, and Microsoft Teams meetings.  Students engaged in the learning process increase their attention and focus, are motivated to practice higher-level critical thinking skills, and have more meaningful learning experiences.  I very much recommend that all parents encourage active participation, as it will push your child to truly connect with the teacher, content, and material being taught.

*Second Semester Plan -

Below you will find the link to go into Final Forms and enter your preference for your child's or children's Second Semester placement (January 4 - May 28, 2021), either attending school in-person, face-to-face, or participating in the virtual instruction model.  Please email me if you have any questions about the SLSD Second Semester plan.  Here is the direct link to the survey: https://southwestharrison-oh.finalforms.com/ The survey must be completed by November 9th to allow us enough time to finalize the second semester master schedules and balance our staffing assignments for next semester.

* Veteran’s Day Celebration -

We will honor local Veterans on November 10th at 11:00am with a drive-through parade at Whitewater Valley Elementary.  Our students will be lined up along the bus lane in the parking lot holding flags and waving patriotic signs to honor our Veterans since we cannot host our annual assembly due to COVID restrictions. Students may invite a relative/friend who has served in the US Armed Forces to participate in the car parade.  Veterans are meeting the Harrison Police Department escort across the street in the Harrison Junior Baseball lot at 10:45.  The event will be streamed on Facebook Live on the Whitewater Valley Elementary PTA Facebook page so our virtual families and other supporters can watch live.  There is no school on November 11th on Veteran's Day.

* Kindness Month - 

November is KINDNESS month!  Our teachers, staff, and students are focusing on being kind to one another and spreading kindness throughout the Harrison community.  Friday, November 13 is World Kindness Day.  Please remind your child to wear a red sweater/shirt in honor of Fred Rogers to celebrate this day and show others that it's cool to be kind.

* Harrison Public Library -

The Harrison branch of Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County has several programs planned for November.  Click this link:  November Events  for more information!

* Miami Whitewater Elementary playground committee - 

Construction progress is rolling along at the three new elementary buildings and new junior school.  Our exciting and beautiful plans are taking shape!  The playground at Miami Whitewater Elementary needs to be accessible for ALL students, including our students with special needs and mobility issues.  We are looking for parents and community members who are passionate about the importance of outdoor play to contact the school office if they have a connection to local or national corporations who would be willing to donate to our campaign.  The district has funds designated to the playground equipment and design, but we need to raise additional funds to provide accessible equipment and ground cover.  Reach out if you would like to help us focus on creating a balanced space, including accessible/inclusive playground equipment that meets ADA guidelines!  

* Mayor’s Fund -

Today is the first day that families can sign up for the SLSD / Mayor’s Fund holiday assistance program.  Click the Holiday Assistance Flyer  for details.  Sign ups are in-person at the Harrison Community Center on Wednesdays through Nov. 18th. 

 

Face-to-Face Students & Parents - 

  1. Water Donations – Please send a refillable water bottle with your child to school each day.  Our water fountains are still turned off due to COVID restrictions, so students need a water bottle to keep with them in class.  We have three water bottle refilling stations at school for students to use throughout the day.  Water is the only acceptable drink that students can keep in their water bottles.  Please save the Gatorade, kool-aid, sports drinks, and coffee for home consumption.  If you are able to donate a case of water, please deliver it to the school office.  We have used every case that was donated before school started!  It’s great to have water available daily for students who forget their refillable water bottle.
  2. Arrival time reminder – Students who are car riders arrive in three waves this school year.  Please remember that students with the last name A-I can be dropped off at 8:40, last name J-R can be dropped off at 8:50 and last name S-Z can be dropped off at 9:00.  The temperatures are quite chilly in the mornings and the entry doors are not opened for student temperature checks until 8:40am.  We don’t have teachers in classrooms to supervise the children before 8:40.  Thanks for understanding why car riders need to remain in your vehicle until 8:40.
  3.  Art to Remember - This semester, our school is participating in a unique fundraising program with Art to Remember that gives you the opportunity to purchase keepsake items with your child's artwork on them. The best part is that every keepsake order supports our school. Your child’s personalized order form will come home on Monday November 9th. Just head to ArtToRemember.com and search for your child’s name, enter their online order code, or upload artwork from home and start shopping!  If you have any questions, please email our Mrs. Ferguson at tracy.ferguson@southwestschools.org

 

Virtual Students and Parents - 

 The SLSD administrative team has created several policy changes regarding our virtual option for second semester:
1) No child who failed 2 or more core classes in virtual instruction (Math, English, Science or Social Studies) in First Quarter or First Semester will be permitted to sign up for virtual instruction again.  
2) Any child who participated in the virtual instruction model who missed 20% or more of attendance days during First Quarter or First Semester will not be permitted to sign up for virtual instruction again.
3) All students in grades 3-12 who sign up for virtual instruction MUST come in person to the school for all required state testing, which will be held at the school in small group sessions.
4) Home internet access is required for all families wishing to participate in the virtual instruction model.
5) Each family must designate an ADULT who will serve as each child's Learning Coach.  Southwest Local staff assigned to each student are FACILITATORS of the Accelerate Education platform only, and are not serving in the role of teacher.  
6) Each child enrolled in the virtual instruction model during second semester is required to have a weekly virtual conference with the SLSD staff facilitator and must log in for all help sessions (live or recorded).  

 

Thank you for our continued partnership in your child's education.  The traditional school experience has been disrupted and changed by COVID, and it's greatly appreciated that we help students recover and stay on track while remaining focused on our district mission, "Academic and Social Growth for ALL students, EVERY DAY!"