I hope you and your family are staying well as we go into our second week of school closure and our new social distancing efforts. I have found that my life doesn’t seem to have changed much. I used to get up, go to work, work, come home, and go to bed. Now, there are plenty of days where I’m just eliminating the go to work and come home steps! I’m even starting to forget what day of the week it is. They all, even weekends, tend to look about the same. Honestly, since March 15th, it’s been 12-17 hours of work each day for me. I swear I’m working more when school is closed now than when it is open! I hope you were able to watch the video that I made last week. (See the link in the March 24th Principal’s Post.) I have a whole new level of respect for broadcast journalists who just talk into a camera! Here’s some of the latest new, all subject, of course, to change.
Currently Still Scheduled to Reopen on April 13th
When Governor Reynolds made her recommendation that school be closed for four weeks, she indicated that her recommendation would be revisited in two weeks. That two weeks ends today, and her recommendation has not yet changed. Superintendents will start to push her this week on whether or not there will be an extension. Time to prepare is better than a last minute scramble.
If I were a betting person, I would say that we will at least have an extension. Some of the latest studies are suggesting a peak in cases somewhere between Mid-April and even perhaps into May.
What Will Education Look Like for the Rest of this School Year?
Currently, at JFK, we’ve extended our regular school calendar until June 12th. We are also, through the current closure, utilizing new ways to connect with students and families and providing guidance and focus on JFK students’ needs in all subject areas that can be addressed through a number of options, including both online and “offline” means. After only about an hour and a half “meeting” last Monday, teachers began implementing these new ideas and had .pdf “packets” available on Tuesday and were conducting Zoom meetings with students by Wednesday. The learning curve is huge, but it’s been impressive!
As this work continues, we’re also starting to prepare for the possibility of a longer closure and how we will switch from offering several optional activities for each goal to required activities. As the Iowa Department of Education is beginning to release new guidance for “continuous learning” (also called remote or distance learning), I think it is doing the same: hope for the best, and prepare for the worst. It certainly wouldn’t be ideal, but it may be the way education is done for parts or all of the remainder of the school year.
Technology Access Survey
Both below and through a separate email and text, we are asking all families to complete a survey regarding your child’s access to technology. Specifically, we are asking about internet access and internet capable devices for student use. This information will help us as we plan for the future and determine families who might need more help than others. It is important that we have responses from ALL preschool-8th grade families.
Click JFK Technology Accessibility Survey or use the following link/url: https://forms.gle/SuuA7gSzTKnsSyuu7
Changes to our Website
As you may have noticed, both the school and parish side of our website, www.olvjfk.com, have been changed. Fr. Jake’s daily reflections (or Sunday’s recorded Mass) are on the front page. We also have teacher contacts right on the front page as well so you can more easily find their information and the .pdf packets.
Donations, Tithing, Tuition Payments and Registration for Next Year
Just like your family, OLV and JFK are making sure that we have our financial house in order. The finance council is meeting every two weeks, and Monday night’s discussion will have a focus on flexibility in the payment of tuition. Fr. Jake will have communication to families after the Monday meeting.
That said, both the school and the church are still dependent upon your regular contributions and payments. Donation buttons are also located on the front page of our website. The school side (green) has a button for one time school donations. The parish side (blue) has buttons for one time donations and for setting up recurring donations. Tuition payments can also be made via debit/credit card over the phone. Emily Sanderson is typically in the office on Mondays and Thursdays, and Angie Hillebrand has irregular hours.
Tuition Contracts for Next Year: We still want to continue the registration process for next school year. Returned tuition contracts helps us plan for next year as well. Please return your tuition contract as soon as you can, even without paying the registration fee now. That can be paid later, if necessary. At the present time, we are extending the discounted registration fee (discounted to $100) until June 1st.
ECLC refunds, which I mentioned in last week’s Principal’s Post, should be mailed to families this week.
Recognizing the need that some families have for meals, ANY child between the ages of 1-18 years old may receive a lunch and breakfast at no cost at one of the following locations beginning on Monday, March 23, 2020, between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. It is not a requirement that the child currently be receiving a free/reduced price lunch; it is available to any child.
- DLC/Keystone, located at 1002 W Kimberly Road
- Davenport Sudlow, located at 1414 East Locust Street
- Davenport Williams, located at 3040 North Division
- Davenport Frank L. Smart, located at 1934 West 5th Street
- Davenport Wood, located at 5701 North Division, Davenport
The child no longer has to be present to receive the free meal. A sack lunch and breakfast for the following morning will be handed out on Monday through Friday.
Cultivating Our Future Capital Campaign
While we, of course, are still accepting donations and pledges to the Cultivating Our Future capital campaign, and it is going remarkably well, it is on the “backburner.” In other words, it is not receiving the public attention that one would normally expect of a capital campaign. There are more important immediate concerns. Any HVAC project we’d like to do this summer may be delayed.
OLV parish bulletin: Click HERE or use the following link/url: https://www.olvjfk.com/olv/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2020/03/1032800016A-032920.pdf
Stay well! Our Lady of Victory,…pray for us.