To my families,I'm not sure how your industries work, but educators like to share. It may be the fact that we are accustomed to presenting and engaging a crowd all the time but when we are faced with a challenge, we tend to go into 'solving mode' and collect as much data as possible and best practices from peers. Thus, over the last 10 weeks, I have had the opportunity to spend most of my waking hours on zoom webinars from across the state, nation, and world on topics from curriculum, culture, culinary arts in quarantine, to the obvious catalyst of all of this, Covid-19. Yesterday, one of the sessions I chose to sign in to was presented by our accrediting association focused on getting back to school in the fall. The presenter challenged each of us to name the chapter in our school's life we just completed. The story is not over, but we have all completed a chapter that is unique and a pivot point in our story together. There were some funny quips from the group, "You want me to do what?", "Unfreeze, Change, Refreeze", "The boy who lived" (From Harry Potter), "Homeschooling is for the birds", "On-campus in the fall or bust." Many of these were comical, many encouraging, but all were very real and very raw. Now it's your turn, take a moment to title your chapter....We have all come through an amazing time and I'm proud of all corners of our community. You should all be proud. As we move into the summer, I hope you all enjoy each other with a little more flexibility afforded by not having classwork to complete and the almost daily visits of my teachers' voices into your homes.As we 'distance' for the summer, I wanted to bring a few items to your attention.
I have been writing you weekly over the last ten weeks. I'll be dropping back on this communication frequency, but you should expect to hear from us about every two weeks with updates on plans for the fall or updated information. I fully anticipate direction from the authorities to adjust throughout the summer, and we will respond accordingly. From the outset of this COVID journey, we have used our resource page as the central location for all our COVID related information. We will be updating this page over the next two weeks as we transition from this school year to focusing on opening in the fall. The direct link to this site is: www.maclay.org/covid-19
Thank you all for your complementary, candid, and constructive feedback on the divisional surveys about distance learning and on our one school survey. Enhanced communication with you has been a silver lining of the last 10 weeks and we are interested in finding a way to continue this moving forward. The Parent Satisfaction Surveys will be open until Tuesday, May 26. To access yours, you can simply click on your division at:
Thank you for being a part of our wonderful community. As my team works over the next three months to prepare for school to reopen in the fall, we will be sharing our framework and guiding principles with you. Our local authorities have been amazingly supportive in partnering to find safe ways of having our students and faculty back on campus. We are committed to finding safe and innovative ways to make sure your children receive the BEST educational journey possible in the region...that is our purpose and our promise.At the link below, you will access a sendoff letter celebrating this outstanding class of seniors. We are so proud of their accomplishments and excited for their next steps. The letter highlights some interesting facts about this class and their journey at Maclay. Please join me in congratulating them!Happy Summer, wash your hands, and don't touch your face!James
As our yearly culminating event, commencement, is always a special time for us as we celebrate our graduating seniors and their families. Please join the community in celebrating the Class of 2020 and watch the Virtual Commencement at 7pm on FOX49 (Comcast 434 or Dish 41). If you do not have cable or dish, you can access the ceremony at this address https://youtu.be/NzRfIcmPQJM. This link will not be live until 7pm but will be available for the next three months.
The Maclay Guidance office recommends the following links as resources for wellness:
Maclay School continues to monitor the COVID-19 virus through the World Health Organization (WHO), the Center for Disease Control (CDC), state and local health departments, and other local and independent schools. Head of School James Milford will also continue to communicate with parents through email and post updates on this page.
A list of current cancellations:
- Florida State Thespian Festival
- 6th Grade Kennedy Space Center Field Trip
- Junior Classical League State Forum
- Maclay Auction (Rescheduled tentatively to May 16th)
- Celebration of the Arts
- 8th Grade Civil Rights Field Trip
Resources for Parents
Center for Disease Control - COVID-19 websiteThe World Health Organization (WHO) website.This site has general information on the coronaviruses, a video, and an infographic about preventing the spread of viruses.
U.S. State Department website.
Florida Department of Education: http://fldoe.org/em-response/
Johns Hopkins Medicine, Coronavirus Disease 2019 v. the FluTalking With Your Child:
NPR: Just for Kids: A Comic Exploring the New Coronavirus
Child Mind: Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus
New York Times: How to Talk to Kids About Coronavirus
USA Today: How Do You Talk to Your Children About Coronavirus?