Dear San Rafael City Schools Middle and High School Community, I am extremely troubled by recent actions in our schools. There is a “challenge” being circulated on the social media app TikTok where individuals are encouraging others to steal items from schools, whether they take soap dispensers, faucet parts, ceiling tiles or more, and then post about the stolen item on social media. This is happening all over the country, and unfortunately, SRCS has not been immune from this disturbing viral trend - tens of thousands of dollars worth of damage has been caused in our schools. This is unacceptable and needs to stop immediately. Our buildings are meant to be a safe, clean space for our students and staff and we will not tolerate the destruction and theft of school property. For schools to replace these items is very costly and takes precious time away from other priorities. Beyond this, it is incredibly disrespectful to our maintenance and custodial staff who work very hard to serve our students and keep our campuses well maintained for our benefit. There are serious consequences for students who choose to engage in this behavior, including the involvement of law enforcement. We are working hard to identify the students who are stealing, in possession of stolen items or damaging property. And, we need your help. Please talk with your child so they understand that actions like these are not to be tolerated, that participating in this or any other activity that involves stealing or damaging school property is a serious offense. Students being willing to take responsibility is an important step - if your child has information that will help us, please encourage them to share it with a school staff member and to tell their peers to stop. Whether you allow your child to have social media or not, it is imperative in today’s world that young people use technology appropriately. I understand that it is difficult, but I encourage you to monitor your child’s social media activity - these types of “challenges” tend to involve risky acts that our students may not realize until it’s too late that it's criminal behavior, not an innocent prank. Please talk to them about being socially responsible and kind, and about the adverse effects of peer pressure that are often promoted by these platforms. Resources: Information on the Devious Lick Challenge, Newsweek Parents' Ultimate Guide to TikTok, Common Sense Media Social Media FAQs For Parents, Common Sense Media Thank you for your help. We have a tremendous SRCS community, and we must not let a small group of students making bad choices ruin it. Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent
September 17, 2021 Friday Focus Video link: https://youtu.be/TBUbrQAcXlQ Letter from the Superintendent Dear San Rafael City Schools Community, Thank you for your partnership as we’ve kicked off the school year together! We are appreciative of everyone's patience, flexibility and understanding as we follow the recommended safety precautions in our schools. As a reminder, one of the most important steps we can take is to stay home when sick. Please refer to Marin Public Health’s “Decision Trees” ( unvaccinated | vaccinated ). As the documents state, a symptomatic student or staff member who tests COVID negative can return to school: After symptoms improved AND fever-free for > 24 hours w/o fever reducing medications AND with copy of negative COVID test result OR communication from healthcare provider that student / staff may return to school AND fever-free for > 24 hours w/o fever reducing medications. Here are some COVID updates from Marin and our District: Recap of “Public Health Update for the School Community” Marin Deputy Public Health Officer Dr. Lisa Santora and Marin Superintendent of Schools Mary Jane Burke provided an update on Sept. 14 on the return to schools, current case rates and trends in classrooms, new policies for extracurricular activities, rapid antigen testing and the future of pediatric vaccinations. Watch a recording of the session . In addition to the many topics covered, we want to highlight information that was shared about the upcoming eligibility for COVID vaccines for 5-11 year-olds. Below are some of the points that were discussed, as well as more information that was since released: The County is planning “Super POD” Vaccination clinics, which will be open to students across Marin. They are anticipated to occur on a Saturday / Sunday in Novato, a Saturday / Sunday in San Rafael and a Saturday / Sunday in Mill Valley – with a capacity of 1,000 or more vaccinations per day. If the CDC approves the pediatric vaccine on Oct. 25 (which Marin Public Health had been anticipating), the first Super PODs will be the weekend of Oct. 30-31. If the CDC approves the pediatric vaccine on Oct. 15 (which Marin Public Health recently learned is possible), the first Super PODs will be the weekend of Oct. 23-24. Three to four weeks after the first-dose clinics, there will be a series of second-dose clinics. In addition, all Marin County healthcare providers who offer pediatric vaccinations - including Marin Community Clinics - should provide eligible patients with the vaccine series when authorized and recommended. Local COVID Data and Schools According to Marin Public Health, overall, school is being seen as a stabilizing, structured, supervised and supportive environment that reduces COVID-19 transmission countywide. They have shared that their data shows that when school started, there was a rapid decrease in case rates for all ages across Marin, which demonstrates, with high confidence, that a multi-layered approach to in-person instruction is highly effective at reducing the risk of COVID transmission across the county. Read more. As a reminder, on a weekly basis (Friday by 5 pm), SRCS’ COVID Data Dashboard is updated to list the number of confirmed positive cases related to both SRCS students and employees by school. Visit www.srcs.org/covid-dashboard to learn more and to view the dashboard. Guidance for Performing Arts, Sports and Extracurriculars On Sept. 10, Marin County Public Health released guidance pertaining to performing arts, sports and extracurricular activities (in and outside of school settings) for public and private Marin-based K-12 schools. The purpose of this guidance is to keep these settings and activities as safe as possible from COVID-19 transmission, and was created as a complement to the California Department of Public Health’s Sept. 1 guidance . Read Marin's guidance . School-Based Testing and COVID Response Coordinator We are pleased to share that SRCS is in the final phase of hiring a COVID-19 Response Coordinator to lead our District-wide testing program. This position is thanks to a state grant the District secured specifically for personnel related COVID testing. Additionally, our school office staff is being trained to offer testing at school. Currently, we are offering rapid on-site testing opportunities for “close contact” students, teachers and staff, in close collaboration with Marin Public Health. We will be expanding this to symptomatic students, teachers and staff in the very near future. All of these plans and details will be thoughtfully and strategically planned and rolled out as our new Coordinator is onboarded. Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent Spotlight SRCS is hiring! Like many organizations, SRCS is facing a labor shortage. We need your help: Please spread the word that we are hiring and consider joining our team - you can have a rewarding career and make a positive impact on student success. There are a number of positions available such as custodians, instructional assistants (part-time or full-time), food service assistants, mental health support, teaching positions and more. Additionally, if you are interested in having flexibility and only working occasionally, we are in need of more substitute teachers. We increased pay rates for substitute teachers to $200 a day. Visit www.srcs.org/careers to see a list of openings or call 415-492-3212 to ask about working for SRCS! Customize Your ParentSquare Notification Settings: I n ParentSquare, view your account and then under “notification settings” click “customize your settings.” Or, review these step-by-step instructions . San Rafael City Schools www.srcs.org | email@example.com 310 Nova Albion Way San Rafael, CA 94903
September 10, 2021 Friday Focus Video link: https://vimeo.com/602142298 Letter from the Superintendent Dear San Rafael City Schools Community, This week has been the 2021 Suicide Prevention Week, and today we recognize World Suicide Prevention Day - times when our San Rafael City Schools community and individuals and organizations around the country and the world join their voices to broadcast the message that everyone can play a role in suicide prevention and to remember loved ones lost to suicide. Our secondary students, teachers, staff and mental health professionals have been engaged in meaningful suicide awareness and prevention activities and challenges throughout this week. Please see the important message below from our SRCS Mental Health Team about World Suicide Prevention Day. I encourage you to demonstrate your own commitment to preventing suicide as well as supporting those affected by suicide by safely lighting a candle by a window at 8 pm tonight. If you or someone you know needs help, please know that you are not alone . Crisis lines, counselors, intervention programs and more are available to you, whether you are in crisis yourself or concerned about someone else. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) Crisis Text Line : Text HOME to 741-741 The Trevor Project (for LGBTQ Young People): 1-866-488-7386 Friendship Line (for Older Adults): 1-800-971-0016 Trans Lifeline: 1-877-565-8860 Teen Line : Call 1-800-852-8336 (from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. PST) Care Solace : Call (888) 515-0595, or visit: www.caresolace.com/srcs Our Friday Focus video this week features our expanded mental health and wellness efforts! It shares more insight to the Wellness Centers we are establishing at our high schools and Davidson Middle School. These centers will provide a layer of much-needed targeted support with a focus on prevention, intervention and postvention activities related to student physical health, mental health, reproductive health and substance use/abuse education. The official Wellness Centers openings are targeted for early 2022 - please stay tuned! At the elementary level, we’ve added counseling staff and a new Wellness Coordinator will support the school counseling teams, community organizations and existing support systems to build and strengthen each school’s social-emotional learning program for all students. At each level, our hope and goal is that the additional and current staff will establish solid systems and structures that can be sustained over time. Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent Suicide Prevention Week Light a Candle for World Suicide Prevention Day Friday, September 10, 2021 It is World Suicide Prevention Day! Each year on September 10th, World Suicide Prevention Day encourages worldwide commitment and action to prevent suicide and to support those who have been impacted by suicide. On this special day, you can join thousands of others in showing your support for suicide prevention and remembering loved ones lost to suicide by lighting a candle near a window or on social media at 8 p.m. Additional Resources: The brochure “Help and Support After Suicide: Information and Resources to Promote Healing” explains complicated grief and offers resources for individuals who have lost a loved one to suicide. The brochure and a California Survivor of Suicide Loss Program Directory can be found on the “Reach Out” page of this website: www.SuicideisPreventable.org Friends for Survival has offered support for those bereaved by a suicide death for over 30 years. Call their help line, sign up to receive their newsletter, and visit their web site for links to resources and reading material. Toll Free Suicide Loss Helpline: 1-800-646-7322. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is a national organization with chapters in all 50 states that is dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide. Their web site includes a wide range of resources and educational materials for survivors of suicide loss. To learn more about World Suicide Prevention Day, visit www.iasp.info/wspd2021 . Find even more activities in the Suicide Prevention Week 2020 Kit here . It’s not too late to join the Suicide Prevention Week challenge. To get started download the challenge flyer and challenge card ! Connect with thousands throughout the country during Suicide Prevention Week by using the hashtags #SuicidePrevention #SuicidePreventionWeek #WorldSuicidePreventionDay Thank you! San Rafael City Schools Mental Health Team San Rafael City Schools www.srcs.org | firstname.lastname@example.org 310 Nova Albion Way San Rafael, CA 94903
Friday Focus Video link: https://vimeo.com/597296789 Letter from the Superintendent Dear San Rafael City Schools Community, The 2021-22 school year is underway, and it’s been a successful start to the year! We remain vigilant amidst the resurgence of COVID in our county and state due to the Delta variant, and we are proud that our SRCS community has been so understanding of the health and safety protocols we’ve implemented in our schools. Here is a quick reminder about our most important measures, as well as some related updates: Stay Home When Sick Parents / guardians should check their child(ren) for symptoms every day before school. Students who are sick should stay home; please report the absence to the school office. Anyone exhibiting COVID symptoms while at school will be in an isolation area until they can be picked up. Refer to Marin Public Health’s “Decision Trees” for specific information: Decision Tree for Vaccinated Students and Staff Decision Tree for Unvaccinated Students and Staff Masks Indoors and Outdoors Everyone on a school campus to wear a mask indoors and outdoors, regardless of vaccination status, based of public health recommendations Watch a video with Marin Public Health Officer Dr. Willis emphasizing the importance of universal masking at school and how it supports modified quarantine. Testing Many community-wide testing options are available. We are pleased to share that SRCS has secured a grant for state funding for testing response! We’re hiring a COVID-19 Response Coordinator to lead our testing program, and our school office staff will soon be trained to offer testing at school. Currently, we are offering rapid on-site testing opportunities for “close contact” students, teachers and staff, in close collaboration with Marin Public Health. We will be expanding this to symptomatic students, teachers and staff in the very near future. Our “Focus Friday” video this week goes into more detail about our testing program. Vaccinations SRCS will promote vaccination options for students and families, particularly when the eligibility is expanded for students under 12-years-old. We are finalizing our staff vaccination rates now, as we will soon begin the process of determining the vaccination rates of eligible students. Exposure Protocols Protocols, actions and template communications from Marin Public Health will be used for COVID related scenarios. View the updated protocols . In general, for a typical positive case for a student or employee, the following notifications will occur: Students / employees who may have been exposed as close contacts will receive a direct communication from the school with information and next steps. Students / employees who were in a class with the positive individual will receive a direct communication from the school. On a weekly basis (Friday by 5 pm), SRCS’ COVID Data Dashboard will be updated to list the number of confirmed positive cases related to both SRCS students and employees by school. Visit www.srcs.org/covid-dashboard to learn more and to view the dashboard. For each case, we will work closely with Marin Public Health on any other specific follow up, including rapid testing for students and employees as appropriate. Based on recommendations from public health, we are implementing “modified quarantine” for close contacts if students are masked so we can minimize student absences and keep them safely in school as long as they do not have symptoms. Ventilation All SRCS HVAC systems meet or exceed the CDC and CaDPH guidance for safe ventilation in schools All SRCS HVAC systems are set to maximize the clean air delivery rate (CADR) and room air exchanges per hour For now, windows will remain open. Windows and doors do not need to be open to meet the above requirements, but when open, enhance the clean air delivery rate. All SRCS HVAC units are equipped with the highest rated filter possible per the unit’s specifications. ALEN 750i standing HEPA-filters are in every room and should remain on at all times. Thank you for your continued support and understanding. Have a great long weekend! Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent Spotlight What is Modified Quarantine? Modified Quarantine applies when a positive case and close contact(s) were wearing masks during all exposures within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes over a 24 hour period (48 hours prior to the case’s last date at school). Modified Quarantine for UNVACCINATED TK-12 Exposed Students and Students Returning from Out of State Travel: Students may attend school for in-person instruction if they stay asymptomatic, wear a mask, monitor for symptoms for 14 days and get tested for COVID-19 5 days after last contact with positive case (or return from out-of-state travel). If any symptoms develop, immediately self-isolate and get tested for COVID-19 or be evaluated by a healthcare provider. Quarantine may be discontinued after 7 days with a negative test completed on Day 5 or later if they remain without symptoms. During modified quarantine students cannot participate in any extracurricular, social, or community activities (incl. child care and after school care). They may ride bus. VACCINATED students/staff should monitor symptoms for 14 days and Test on Day 5 after last exposure to positive case but do not need to quarantine as long as they remain without symptoms.
Dear San Rafael City Schools Community,
We are thrilled to have launched ParentSquare as our District communication tool this school year! It is allowing us to streamline our communication systems onto one robust platform, and it offers many tools to help our District, schools and teachers
communicate more effectively with families. If this is the first time you are hearing about ParentSquare, we are excited to have you on board and receiving messages from San Rafael City Schools!
We want to share with you an important update! We have updated ParentSquare so that general announcements and messages from the District or our schools will now be sent by both email and text message to families, teachers and
We have taken this step because we want to ensure we are doing all that we can to effectively reach our families.
Customizing Your Notification Preferences Given this change, we want to be sure that all parents / guardians, teachers and staff know how to easily customize your notification settings. For example, if you were previously only receiving
email messages, and do not want to receive text messages for general announcements, you can update your preferences!
→ In ParentSquare, view your account and then under “notification settings” click “customize your settings.”
→ This ParentSquare webpage is packed with helpful information and step-by-step instructions so you can customize your account to get messages how and when you like!
For even more convenience, download the ParentSquare app (available for free for iOS and Android devices).
Learn More - Here are some more general resources about ParentSquare:
Parents and Families
Watch this quick “getting started” video
Complete a more in-depth, 15-minute parent training module
Read t ips for parents and guardians
Watch a recorded teacher training video or check out a teacher training module
Review topic-focused help articles designed for teachers
Attend a virtual training session with other SRCS teachers
San Rafael City Schools
San Rafael City Schools Community,
We are very excited to welcome back our amazing students for the 2021-22 school year! To our parents and families: Thank you for entrusting your children to our care. I was out and about at most of our schools on the first day and the enthusiasm was palpable
amongst students, teachers and staff who all seemed very happy to be back in school! Everything seemed to be running smoothly once students found out where their classrooms were and were able to navigate around the school. The joy we see in the eyes of
our students is what motivates and inspires us all, and we are so happy to have them back in school in person!
Thanks to all of our parents for your patience, understanding and flexibility over these past 18 months as we have navigated the changes (which seem almost daily sometimes!), and know that things will still continue to evolve. For me, it is reassuring
and amazing to know that over 95% of those eligible in Marin have at least one dose of the COVID vaccine. I look forward to the day - hopefully soon - that our students under 12 years old become eligible!
Even so, we are concerned that the Delta variant is so much more transmissible than previous strains, which is why we have so many safety measures in place . This includes SRCS adhering to Marin Public Health’s recommendations that all staff and students wear masks indoors and outdoors. Additionally, Marin Public Health has released updated Decision
Trees for Schools and Student & Family Handbook; all members of our community should familiarize themselves with these important documents.
Decision Tree for Vaccinated Students and Staff (English and Spanish)
Decision Tree for Unvaccinated Students and Staff (English and Spanish)
Student & Family Handbook (English) (Spanish)
As the Decision Tree shares, there is a “Modified Quarantine” that will be used for unvaccinated students who were exposed to a positive case, but were fully masked, and who do not have symptoms. This is a strong benefit to universal masking
(everyone masking indoors and outdoors) - we can minimize student absences for close contacts and keep them safely in school as long as they do not have symptoms. Refer to the Decision Tree for more information.
Over the summer our hard-working staff was busy making sure that all of our school facilities are in great shape for the return of our students. Our biggest projects were the installation of new heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems at Davidson
Middle School and Bahia Vista Elementary School. We also did a lot of painting, outdoor work, deep cleaning, putting up outdoor tents and also new pavement at Venetia Valley and Coleman. Our two high schools are now in the final phases of the last of
our bond projects-- a new state-of-the-art gymnasium and frontage at Terra Linda High and the new STEAM building in the front of San Rafael High, along with some classroom renovations.
Lastly, we are making significant progress with planning for our new Wellness Centers at San Rafael High, Terra Linda High, and Davidson, along
with staffing of Wellness Coordinators and outreach specialists. We have also increased our counseling services: we now have a full-time counselor at every elementary school, three full time counselors at Davidson and two newcomer counselors at the high
schools. This staffing allows us to have teams in place at every school to make sure we have a system of behavior and academic interventions in place for all students who need assistance.
Again, thanks for allowing us to serve your children - I promise we will do our best to make the most of each day and to ensure that their full academic potential and social-emotional needs are met.
SRCS BACK TO SCHOOL VIRTUAL TOWN HALLS A Safe Start to the 2021-22 School Year TUESDAY, AUG. 17 Parents and Families in English : 5 - 5:50 pm Parents and Families in Spanish : 6 - 6:50 pm Live on SRCS’ Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/SanRafaelCitySchools You do not need a Facebook account to view; the recording will be available after.
Dear San Rafael City Schools Community, We’re excited for this school year to begin and to see all our students in our schools and classrooms - we are looking forward to providing full in-person learning for our students. As a reminder, the school year begins on Thursday, Aug. 19! Our goal is to provide a safe, healthy and welcoming environment for everyone at our schools. It is critically important that we provide full in-person learning for our students while implementing many safety measures to limit the risk of COVID spread in our District and schools. In preparing for the new year, we have been following the latest updates from Marin Public Health and the California Department of Public Health. In collaboration with the Marin County Office of Education, Marin Public Health recently issued updated guidance for all Marin schools (known as the 32-point plan ) to facilitate fulltime site-based classroom instruction for the 2021-22 school year. The evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic requires the need to rethink common protocols and practices in the classroom setting with the understanding that these guidelines could change as the situation evolves. You can read the full document here . Below are some of the key highlights and details about how the safety protocols will be implemented in SRCS, with as much information as we know at this time: Parents / guardians should monitor their child(ren) for symptoms every day before school; students who are sick are expected to stay home and report the absence to the school’s front office. An updated “decision tree” from Marin Public Health will soon be shared, which will help parents know what symptoms to look for and how to proceed in the event that symptoms are present. We will be offering opportunities for testing for students and staff and will share details as soon as possible. Many community testing options continue to be available - learn more . Wearing masks indoors and outdoors is required at school, unless there is a medical or behavioral contraindication or exemption. There will be frequent hand washing, and extra masks and hand sanitizer will continue to be supplied and available at all schools. When travelling outside of California (including international travel): Unvaccinated students should get tested 3-5 days after travel AND should stay home and quarantine for 7 full days. Vaccinated students should monitor for symptoms for 14 days. If travelling internationally, vaccinated students should get tested 3-5 days after travel. Learn more . Protocols, actions and template communications will be used for COVID related scenarios (exposure, positive case, etc.). More information here ; the protocols for the 2021-22 school year are forthcoming and will be shared as soon as possible. Following State guidelines, our ventilation systems will be set to maximum outside air flow and equipped with the highest rated filter possible per unit specifications. Windows will remain open and each classroom has a HEPA air filter. There will be daily cleaning of every room, focused on disinfecting high-touch areas. Meals will be served outside as much as possible. Volunteers will be limited and must be vaccinated. Parent volunteers must be scheduled, outdoors and have proof of vaccination (no classroom volunteers at this time). At this time, there will be no large, in-person family gatherings. “Back to School Nights” will be virtual this year. All eligible students and staff should get vaccinated as soon as possible and will be required to verify their vaccination status. All staff who are not vaccinated must be tested weekly. We will share more information on how this information will be collected. The percentage of staff and students who are fully vaccinated will be posted on the District website no later than Oct. 1 and will be updated on a monthly basis. Vaccination status of individual students and staff will not be made public. Learn where to get vaccinated in Marin . Marin Public Health is holding a virtual Public Health Update for the greater school community on Tuesday, Aug. 17 at 1 pm. Learn more and find login information here . We will be hosting a SRCS Parent and Family Town Hall on Tuesday, Aug. 17 at 5 pm in English and 6 pm in Spanish live on SRCS’ Facebook Page to cover important safety information. You do not need a Facebook account to view, and the recording will be available after. Thanks for your support! Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent
Dear San Rafael City Schools Elementary School Community, We are busy finalizing plans for the start of the coming school year, and look forward to welcoming students back! We wrote to you in June about updated school schedules to begin with the 2021-22 school year. You can read that previous update here . When we sent the previous update, we let you know that we were in the process of finalizing the end times for the weekly Wednesday shortened days for elementary schools; we are now ready to share the final schedules for grades TK-5 - please see below. You will see that for our elementary schools, we have shifted to a shortened “First Wednesday” schedule the first Wednesday of every month, and the typical “Early Release” schedule the other Wednesdays. This will allow time for important teacher collaboration and professional development, which was previously done by having substitutes in the classrooms to release teachers during a regular school day. These monthly minimum days prioritize the need to have students with their highly-effective classroom teacher, rather than having substitutes for when teachers would have left their classroom for professional development. Even with this schedule, the overall instructional time has been preserved to levels similar to pre-pandemic. SRCS 2021-22 SCHOOL DAY SCHEDULES PDF attached and linked here to better view the tables See “First Wednesday” Schedule dates listed at the end School Start Time Regular End Time “First Wednesday” Schedule: 1st Wed. of the Month End Time “Early Release” Schedule: 2nd-5th Wed. of the Month End Time Bahia Vista 8:00 am 2:35 pm 11:50 am 1:05 pm Coleman 8:00 am 2:35 pm 11:50 am 1:05 pm Laurel Dell 8:00 am 2:35 pm 11:50 am 1:05 pm San Pedro 8:00 am 2:35 pm 11:50 am 1:05 pm Glenwood 8:45 am 3:20 pm 12:35 pm 1:50 pm Sun Valley 8:45 am 3:20 pm 12:35 pm 1:50 pm Venetia Valley 9:00 am 3:35 pm 12:50 pm 2:05 pm Davidson 9:00 am 3:20 pm N/A Early Release: Weekly Thurs. End Time - 2:02 pm While I know that having these different release times on Wednesdays may be inconvenient, please know that the professional development that is taking place amongst our teaching staff is critical to their own learning and growth in key curricular areas. The District and our schools will be sure to send many reminders to help you get used to the new schedule. I also want to emphasize that we are working with our schools and partners to ensure there is supervision, after school care and/or extracurricular activities to help meet the needs of our families as much as we can. Please watch for more school-specific information soon! Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent “First Wednesday” Schedule Dates Sept. 1, 2021 Oct. 6, 2021 Nov. 3, 2021 Dec. 1, 2021 Jan. 5, 2022 Feb. 2, 2022 March 2, 2022 No April date due to Spring Break May 4, 2022 June 1, 2022
Dear San Rafael City Schools Community, We hope you are enjoying a restful, happy and healthy summer break. It is with great excitement that we prepare to welcome our students back to school this August! We are thrilled to start the year with in-person, five days a week, full-day classes, with safety measures in place. It will be great to see our students together again and our classrooms and campuses exemplifying our District values of equity, community and joy! As a reminder, the 2021-2022 school year begins on Thursday, August 19, 2021! Our SRCS community was met with challenges this past year, but we are more committed than ever to supporting the academic, social and emotional health of our students, teachers, staff and families as we navigate this fresh, promising school year together. I am happy to share that we are making much progress in our expanded mental health and wellness programs and services to address the growing and ongoing social-emotional needs, and our new Together 2024 Blueprint lays out our strategic plans. Health and Safety Remain a Top Priority Our goal is to provide a safe, healthy and welcoming environment for everyone at our schools. We are paying close attention to the unfortunate and difficult recent surges due to the COVID Delta variant, and have plans in place to help keep our schools safely open for full in-person learning. It’s reassuring that both local and national public health officials have prioritized the need for in-person learning ; as well as knowing the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends in-person learning. SRCS will continue to follow all requirements from public health, including the most recent California Department of Public Health (CDPH) guidance for schools . Part of this guidance aligns to the update we previously shared that we are requiring universal masking indoors for TK-12 students and staff (regardless of vaccination status, unless medically exempt) to start the 2021-22 school year. We will also share more details about safety protocols as we get closer to the first day of school. I know that guidelines may change throughout the year, and we may need to pivot and adapt in the future as our state and local health guidelines evolve - we are so appreciative of your continued support and understanding. Furthermore, given that public health experts have repeatedly emphasized that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective , we are actively exploring if and how we can require that all SRCS employees get vaccinated against the coronavirus or undergo frequent testing. We are grateful that an overwhelming majority of our teachers and staff have already stepped up to be vaccinated! I want to personally encourage everyone who is eligible to get a COVID vaccination, and for families to vaccinate their children age 12 and older as soon as possible - add it to your back-to-school list! This is the very best way to stop the spread of COVID. Learn more at GetVaccinatedMarin.org . Independent Study Option While we are ready to enthusiastically welcome back all students for full, in-person instruction five-days a week when the school year begins on Aug. 19, in accordance with the California Assembly Bill 130 , all school districts are required to offer independent study to students who are unable to participate in in-person/on-campus instruction. If you are not interested in a remote independent study program and are planning to have your child(ren) return for in-person instruction, you may disregard the rest of this communication and there is no action that you need to take. Independent Study provides instruction based on the State-adopted content standards by certificated teachers. The primary mode of instruction is asynchronous, which refers to various forms of online instruction that is not being delivered in-person or in real-time (such as accessing pre-recorded video lessons) and independent completion of tasks and activities. it may also encompass a wide variety of instructional interactions. AB 130 establishes specific requirements for synchronous and live interaction: There will be daily synchronous instruction for grades TK-3; both daily live and weekly synchronous instruction for grades 4-8; and weekly synchronous instruction for grades 9-12. SRCS will offer a program(s) for our interested students that meet the State’s requirements. We are currently exploring the best available options, including those available in Marin, and will have more information next week for those who are interested. Students that enroll in independent study will retain a spot in SRCS, but not necessarily their home school. If you are interested in your child participating in independent study; learning more about the options; or have any questions, please complete the form linked here and we will follow up with you . Or, you can email email@example.com or call 415-492-3576 if you have questions. If you would like to ensure that your child is registered for independent study on the first day of school, please complete the form by midnight on Thursday, Aug. 5. Sincerely, Jim Hogeboom Superintendent