March 29, 2020
Dear Rowe Families,
I want to express our gratitude for your support during this challenging time. Our teachers are doing their very best to provide rich learning experiences for your children. They are holding virtual meetings regularly and working diligently to make this a meaningful experience. At the same time, I want to make it very clear that we understand people are dealing with a variety of different circumstances. Some parents are struggling to balance their own work schedules with distance learning for their children. We also recognize there may be a host of other challenges at this time for many. We want you to do what you can in terms of having your child complete work.
This is an emotionally stressful time for all of us. Please reach out to your child’s teacher if you are having difficulty helping your child keep up with the pace of distance learning. The teachers want to hear from you so that they can help. If you can’t complete all of the assignments, that is okay. I realize some of you have already been reaching out to the teachers. Please keep the lines of communication open so that we can all support one another. We will get through this together!
Comments on student posts on SeeSaw
In conducting virtual meetings with the teaching teams last week, it came to light that teachers have been commenting on nearly every post by students. In order for the staff to be able to focus more on planning quality experiences, we need to cut back on some of the comments. There are children who post more often than others. We will definitely not stop providing feedback on their work, but there will not be a comment on everything posted. Please feel free to reach out to me via email if you have any questions. I have been going on to SeeSaw regularly and am amazed by the quality work the teachers are providing and the students are engaging in on a daily basis!
Expectations regarding distance learning
As many districts embark on distance learning, you are likely to hear from friends and families in other towns regarding their delivery of instruction. Since this is such unchartered territory for educators, there are bound to be differences in the approach and delivery of lessons. We are meeting together on a regular basis as a staff and with the district leadership to discuss how best to do this in Yarmouth. We may refine some of our practices along the way. For now, we realize there may even be differences across schools within our district. In some cases, this may be due to the age and academic needs of the students. Please know that we are all working diligently to provide the best and most appropriate experiences for all students. They will not, however, all look the same.
The Yarmouth School Nutrition Program is providing meals to families on a daily basis, Monday through Friday. Please follow the link here for more information from the Yarmouth School Department website. LINK
In addition, I have attached a document from the Yarmouth Food Pantry regarding their hours for distribution. Some of the schedules for meals may change slightly in the near future. Dr. Dolloff will be keeping everyone informed of those changes as they occur.
Yarmouth Education Foundation I would like to send a special thanks to the Yarmouth Education Foundation for their support during this time. We were able to upgrade SeeSaw for K-4 distance learning and to purchase more iPad chargers for home use due to their generous support. They have also provided funds for needs at Harrison Middle School since distance learning began.
Yarmouth K-8 PTO
The PTO has also reached out to inquire about ways they can help. We are very fortunate to have this organization that supports our schools. They do a tremendous job of ensuring that we have not only enrichment opportunities for students, but are more than willing to fund any needs as they may occur in the unusual circumstances we are currently facing.
We recognize that the children are very disappointed about some of the fun events that were planned for recent weeks that have had to be postponed. It is difficult for us to provide much information at this time in terms of rescheduling. Until we have more information regarding the spread of COVID-19, we can’t take the necessary steps to reschedule anything. We will keep you updated as more information becomes available to us. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
Susan Lobel, Principal