AN IB WORLD SCHOOL

Headline News

Graduation Announcement

July 27, 2020

 

Please join us as we celebrate the Class of 2020 by watching the livestream of their Graduation Ceremony this Thursday, July 30th at 5PM. It will be a live event and not pre-recorded. 

Please use this link to attend the ceremony via our YouTube Channel:

Saint George's School Class of 2020 Graduation

  • Please feel free to share this link with anyone that you think would like to watch the ceremony.
  • We recommend that you join by 4:55PM as there will be a short slide show as part of a countdown to the start of the ceremony. 
  • You can also search for Saint George’s School on YouTube and you can find the graduation ceremony that way. This works well if you are using a smart TV.

We look forward to “seeing” you there!

 

 

SGS PARENT NEWS       
JULY 16, 2020

 

Jamie's Update: Re-Opening Plan for the Fall-UPDATED

Dear SGS Families,

I hope your summer is going well and you are enjoying the beautiful weather.  I can’t believe it is already mid-July . . . where does the time go?

We continue to develop our plan for the start of the 2020-21 school year as the COVID-19 landscape across the state and nation remains fluid and uncertain.  This continues to be a challenge as the virus spikes, guidelines evolve, and attitudes are quite diverse in regard to safety and health concerns.  We continue to plan for an in-person start (with a back-up plan in place) to start school the week of August 31 as previously published on the school calendar.  The in-person start includes accommodations for those unable to be on-campus.

We convened a Task Force and working groups of administrators and teachers to research and create recommendations in multiple areas for a successful school year in any scenario.  We have completed the first draft from three working groups to share with our faculty and staff that outlined:

  • Essential Learning Recommendations
  • Technology Recommendations
  • Community Expectations and Norms Recommendations

Three other working groups have identified their initial recommendations, and now are waiting for the release of new/updated information from outside agencies.  These groups include:

  • Safety
  • Athletics and Activities
  • Community Well-Being (Social, Emotional Health)

Several Updates:

Daily Schedules:

  • A Secondary School schedule (Grades 6-12) will include one 8 period day and 4 block days that will be used for both in-person and in distance learning.
    • This provides fewer transitions between classes throughout the week, longer periods for differentiated instructional methods (synchronous/asynchronous/group, etc.) and also allows students to focus on 4 periods per day during the block days.  The 8-period day will be on Mondays as a way for teachers and students to connect in all classes and provide an overview of the week.​​
  • Lower School (K-5) Schedule for Distance Learning.
    • This has been created to provide a coordinated structure and routine for students, teachers and Specialists in a distance learning situation.
    • Lower School classes will maintain their grade-level cohort and will follow their respective daily schedule within the classroom for in-person school days.                                                       
  • Safety expectations and norms are still developing as we are evaluating the best way to conduct recording of daily wellness checks among students and faculty.  Items still under consideration include self-testing at home, temperature taking, tracking and tracing protocols.
    • Masks and/or face shields will be required.
    • Social distancing in classrooms requires 6 ft spacing between students. We are setting up rooms and other teaching spaces to accommodate these Department of Health guidelines.                                                                        
  • Athletics and Activities are still under consideration by the WIAA with an update expected next week.
    • The WIAA has delayed the start of fall sports by two weeks.                                    

During the first week of August, we will publish our final Re-Opening Plan.  As the situation evolves, we hope to have the information to finalize our decisions.  We know school will be different in the Fall on many levels, but safety will remain paramount as we mitigate the risks to our community and provide the quality education to which our SGS families are accustomed.


Enjoy the rest of your summer and stay safe during these challenging times.

Sincerely,

Jamie Tender   


 

 
Dear SGS Community,
 
Happy early 4th of July!  I hope you and your families are able to enjoy the upcoming weekend and safely enjoy captivating fireworks.  June has been a busy month with preparations for the new school year.  Our Task Force and Working Groups have met and produced recommendations for the coming year.  We are still in the process of completing the final document and guidelines as we establish our SGS plan to address the nuances of this pandemic situation.  The ability to be nimble and flexible as well as mitigating the risk of spreading the COVID-19 Virus to keep everyone safe add to the complexity of our overall planning.
 
Overview of the SGS Re-Opening Plan
While the situation continues to be fluid in our region and state, based on the guidelines, restrictions, etc. currently in place, we feel confident in our ability to offer in-person school to start the year and meet the needs of students that are unable to participate on campus.  Our primary goals: 
 
• Establishing relationships between students and teachers to start the new year.
• Establishing classroom processes and routines that can carry over to Distance Learning (DL) as needed.
• Establishing the essential learning objectives for each grade level and subject. 
• Creating and enforcing the elements of a safe learning environment while mitigating the risks of the COVID-19 Virus.
 
What to Expect
There will be a “new” normal in the way we operate in most areas.  The working groups took what we experienced and learned in the spring during DL 1.0 along with input from a multitude of resources in addressing the issues that were identified. 
 
• When school starts, students will be expected to wear masks, wash/sanitize hands, and social distance at six (6) feet.  Classrooms and learning spaces will be set-up to establish the spacing, but students will also need to take on responsibility between classes, during lunch, and at breaks.  We will also be communicating new safety procedures including, but not limited to, entering and exiting buildings, as well as movement within and between buildings and spaces on campus.
• School employees and students will need to adhere to guidelines for personal health before coming to school. (Health guidelines are established by the CDC, DOH, and SRHD.)  
• We anticipate Lower School classes operating primarily in grade level cohorts.  Students in grades 6-12 will also be attending classes mainly by grade level, but there is more movement in these larger grades with student schedules.
• Technology integration will continue to be prioritized within the classrooms as teachers and students utilize a more streamlined platform of tools and establish classroom expectations.  The school is also updating from cable to fiber to increase internet upload speeds and overall reliability.
• Teachers are engaging in a variety of Professional Development opportunities this summer to be better equipped to address teaching in this complex model.
• Clarified expectations and norms for the community (Students, Teachers, Parents, Administrators, etc.) will apply equally in-person and in the DL 2.0 model.  These roles and responsibilities were outlined with the intention of making clear what is expected of each of us, so that everyone can learn and work together as a community and in line with our school’s core values. 
• Large gatherings (Friday Morning meetings, Monday Meetings for MS/US, etc.) will be on hold until we better know the situation in September.
• Transportation and busses – Currently, bus guidelines will require masks, window ventilation and social distancing when it allows.
 
What Is Still Developing?
• Start of School Activities – Each division will be developing a playbook for the start of school and prioritizing the needs of the students.
• Daily Schedule – As part of the need to have a transition plan from in-person to DL, we are creating a daily schedule that will allow for a more seamless transition to DL 2.0 if needed.  This is primarily a focus for the MS/US since LS classes are self-contained.
• We are identifying alternative teaching spaces that will accommodate “larger” classes and social distancing requirements.  Our campus and facilities will allow creativity in this area. 
• Athletics and Activities – Initial guidelines have been published by the WIAA in conjunction with the DOH.  This plan is tied to the state’s re-opening phases, so there is uncertainty based on how the COVID-19 virus responds and the impact to athletics and activities for 2020-21. 
 
Updates will continue in July and August as we approach the start of the school year.  We will also be sending out the Back to School mailing the first week of August.  
 
Thank you and enjoy your summer.
 
Jamie Tender
Head of School

Summer reading assignments for incoming Lower School students are now on the Parent Portal's Documents & Bulletins page.  Here are links to the incoming K-3rd Grades Summer Reading, the incoming 4th Grade Summer Reading, and the incoming 5th Grade Summer Reading assignments.

Saint George’s School is excited to welcome Stephanie Jackson as our new volleyball coach!  We think Coach Jackson will be a great addition to the Saint George's Community.  When we get back together, please make it a point to introduce yourself and Stephanie to our School.

As a collegiate athlete, Stephanie was a volleyball player at Auburn and the University of Georgia. During her collegiate career, she won the Arthur Ashe student-athlete award in 1999. Stephanie grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, in Lockport, IL.  In high school, she was the Illinois Gatorade and Chicago Sun Times Player of the year her senior year.  Stephanie was a setter and an outside hitter throughout her career.

Stephanie has taught English as a Foreign Language internationally in China, Venezuela and the United Arab Emirates. In the United States, Stephanie has primarily taught History and Spanish in Illinois and Louisiana.  While teaching, Stephanie also sponsored a student club that advocated against school bullying.  She has a Master of Arts in Teaching in the Secondary Classroom. 

"Stephanie has demonstrated a strong passion for youth leadership and a belief in the values fostered by an International Baccalaureate education," says Ryan Peplinski, SGS Athletic Director.  "She is excited to have the opportunity to join the Saint George’s community and to help the players get closer to fulfilling their potential in volleyball, in school and in life, and in doing so to help lead the Saint George’s volleyball team to victory!"

Students, parents and staff combined two words to create a new word describing their feelings about life under quarantine.  Then they created a piece of art to illustrate those feelings.  See a Photo Gallery of their creations and see if you share the feelings they've described.

 

Saint George's regrets to announce that the annual Golf Classic scheduled for June 26th has been cancelled.   The restrictions on off-campus events during Phase II means the school needs to avoid getting out of compliance with state rules.  Everyone who has already paid their entry fee will receive a full refund.  Saint George's intends to restart Golf Classic tradition in 2021 on the Friday before Hoopfest.  If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Athletic Dierctor Ryan Peplinski.

A team of parents made goody bags and delivered them as a caravan to the 8th graders on Tuesday, June 9th to celebrate the end of the year.  See a Photo Gallery of the happy recipients and a Video made by the delivery team.

Saint George's will be getting printed yearbooks for 2020, but not until later this summer.  We expect they will be distributed when everyone returns to school this fall.  If that plan changes, an email will go out to parents and students.  And in the meantime, anyone who purchased a 2020 yearbook can view it online.  Here are the Instructions.

The spring issue of the Upper School student newsletter The Round Table is available to read on the Parent Portal.  This issue features graduating editor Marshall Roll's thoughts, ideas for quarantine projects, the environmental effects of the pandemic, and much more. 


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